The Wally Russell Foundation will be moving its sponsorship and awards to the annual USITT (United States Institute for Theatre Technology) Conference and Stage Expo. (www.usitt.org)
The Foundation has annually sponsored, for nearly 20 years, Lighting Interns in the name of Wally Russell for the Los Angeles Opera and the Canadian Opera, two organizations with which Wally has been closely affiliated.
“Wally was always about the young,” commented Richard Pilbrow, Wally Board member and Founder of Theatre Projects. “He was constantly finding and promoting new talent. As USITT has grown and matured over the past two decades, the Wally Foundation Board felt it now provided the best access to young designers, technicians and artisans.”
“At the inception of the Wally Russell Foundation, we associated with Theatre Crafts Magazine and the Lighting Dimensions Exposition. In 1993 it was the obvious choice, and frankly, USITT did not offer a significant exhibition for the award to operate effectively,” said Tom Folsom, Chairman of the Wally Foundation and President of KTRP, Inc. “We are and have been always appreciative of the support we have received over the years from LDI and Penton Publications. This change is an acknowledgement of the growth of USITT, and its ability to provide access to talented and successful young people in our industry.”
“We thank LDI for its support in the past and look forward to a long and positive relationship with USITT,” concluded Paul Vincent, Wally Board member and President of Vincent Lighting.
David Grindle, Executive Director of USITT commented, “We are flattered and appreciative of the faith that the Wally Russell Foundation Board has placed with USITT. As we continue to grow and expand, the support and affiliation with these professional organizations becomes part of the expanded service and rewards we are now offering to our members.”