Cuesta College’s original play, pool ’63, has been chosen to receive a full production at the 2014 Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival in Los Angeles. Created in collaboration with the theatre department students, director and faculty member bree valle and playwright Philip Valle, pool ’63 is one of only nine productions chosen to participate in this year’s regional festival. The event will take place February 12-16, 2014, at the Los Angeles Theatre Centre.

Described by Kennedy Center adjudicator Josh Machamar as “one of the best plays I’ve seen in a very long time,” pool ’63 draws its subject matter from Birmingham, Alabama, and the racial unrest of the civil rights movement that occurred in 1963.

“We are very proud of our student’s achievement and this recognition, particularly because we had not even entered the piece for consideration,” said valle. “It was only after a buzz was generated by the first adjudicator that the committee chair flew in from Los Angeles to see the show.”

Region 8 of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre includes more than 300 colleges and universities throughout California, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Colorado, Hawaii and Guam.  Each year, the regional festivals showcase the finest of each region’s entered productions and offer a variety of activities, including workshops, symposia, and regional-level award programs.

pool ‘63 first hit the Cuesta stage in early December 2013. According to valle, many patrons were turned away at the door due to limited seating. As a result, Cuesta’s Theatre Department has elected to stage pool ‘63 again in February and March of 2014.

“The play’s message is powerful and we want to offer our local community an opportunity to see the work — including local schools,” said valle. 

Tickets for the spring 2014 production will be available for purchase beginning in January.


Lauren Milbourne / (805) 546-3108 / Lauren_milbourne@cuesta.edu / Posted: 12/19/13