Bob Abelman, Professor of Communication and a theater critic for several local newspapers, has been named one of just 25 arts and entertainment journalists and editors chosen for fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The prestigious fellowship allows Dr. Abelman to take part in the Arts Journalism Institute in Theater and Musical Theater on the campus of the University of Southern California this summer. The 11-day program includes writing workshops with leading arts journalists, Master Classes with performing arts professionals and viewing world premiere theater productions.
In addition, Dr. Abelman received top honors in the 2010 Ohio Professional Writers, Inc. (OPW) Communications competition for his articles about community and professional theater.
Winning first prize in the OPW competition were his News-Herald reviews of last year’s Cleveland Play House production of the one-woman show "The Lady With All the Answers" and last December’s productions of "A Christmas Carol" by the Geauga Lyric Theater Guild and the Great Lakes Theater Festival.
Also receiving recognition were his Chagrin Valley Times reviews of Chagrin Valley Little Theater’s “Perfect Wedding,” the Geauga Lyric Theater Guild’s “Fiddler on the Roof,” Mercury Summer Stock’s “Me and My Girl,” and Lakeland Theater’s “Private Lives.”
An additional first prize was awarded in the “Personality Profile” category for Dr. Abelman’s Chagrin Valley Times article about the “patron saint of community theater”—an octogenarian who is omnipresent at local productions and is one of theater’s most colorful advocates.
The annual competition rewards excellence in all facets of writing, from fiction to print and broadcast journalism, magazine writing and public relations. Contest winners will be honored at the OPW Spring Meeting in May at Kent State University, and first place winners will have their work entered in the national competition.
Ohio Professional Writers, Inc. is a statewide network of corporate and freelance writers, editors, reporters, photographers, graphic designers, public relations and advertising practitioners, and webmasters. An affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women, the OPW is dedicated to excellence in communication and to protecting First Amendment freedoms.
Dr. Abelman has been a faculty member at CSU since 1982, and is the recipient of a Distinguished Faculty award for his research on children and television. He has written for the Chagrin Valley Times/Solon Times/Geauga Times Courier papers since 2006 and the News-Herald since 2007, and currently teaches a media criticism course.
Founded in 1964, Cleveland State University is a public research institution that provides a dynamic setting for engaged learning. With an enrollment of more than 16,000 students, 8 colleges and more than 250 academic programs, CSU provides a hands-on learning environment that connects students, ideas and real-world experience. Visit www.csuohio.edu for more information.
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