Theatre: The Young Producers Organization wins a SOAR award.

The Young Producers Organization won the Outstanding Student Innovation award at Colorado State University’s 2011 Student Organization and Advisor Recognition (SOAR) Ceremony on April 28, 2011.

The ninth annual ceremony, hosted by Student Leadership, Involvement and Community Engagement (SLICE), is an opportunity to present awards and recognition for outstanding achievement in 5 areas: organizational performance, marketing, programming, leadership and service, and advising.

This is the first SOAR award for this relatively new organization and both the members and leaders are ecstatic about the recognition.

The Young Producers Organization (YPO) is a Colorado State University student organization that promotes student involvement and education in theatre, while being a fun and safe place for new students to make friends and begin their growth as artists.

YPO produces around seven student-run productions each school year, giving students hands-on experience in theatrical work. Students direct, act, and design in a flexible and experimental environment; limits are often pushed as YPO considers itself a “safe place for failure.” These popular productions run two or three nights in the University Center for the Arts’ Large Acting Lab. The space seats fifty audience members and shows are free – show up early as YPO shows are sell-out hits!

Beyond annual productions, YPO hosts an educational workshop series, building upon standard classroom lessons and skills in preparation for the “real world.” YPO also runs a weekly play-reading group, reading fifteen plays over the course of the semester, spanning the classics to new works, and even work-shopping student pieces.

To provide additional performance opportunities, YPO presents a cabaret night each semester where CSU students, regardless of their major, may submit a five-minute act. The sold-out spring show featured musical acts, stand-up comedians, a monologue, and a very talented impersonator.

YPO provides student representation to the theatre faculty, and the strong bond between the Theatre Program and the organization has lead to YPO assisting with special events and senior students’ capstone projects.

In the coming years, the Young Producers Organization hopes to continue its growth and prominence in the campus and Front Range communities. In a bold move away from college theatre, YPO is venturing into children’s theatre with The Little Prince, coming this fall.