Campus: CSU, Hayward -- June, 1999

CSUH Professor Named Top Theatre Educator in US

California State University, Hayward theater professor Edgardo de la Cruz has been chosen as the Outstanding Teacher of Theatre in Higher Education for 1999. The award, given by the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, will be presented to de la Cruz at the association's annual conference in Toronto, Canada, in July.

"I was stunned and highly honored," said de la Cruz of the award. "I will keep on doing what I love to do."

"Edgardo de la Cruz has taken the rawest of materials and fashioned theater artists who are practicing around the world," said Tom Hird, chair of Theatre and Dance at Cal State Hayward.

Student designers who have worked with de la Cruz on productions have won awards at the American College Theatre Festival‚s annual regional and national competitions. Many of his former acting and directing students are working in regional companies across the country and around the world. This year one of his directing students was accepted for graduate study at the Royal Scottish Academy of Drama.

De la Cruz has been recognized for his influence on theater students and non-majors alike. He was chosen as Outstanding Professor of the Year at CSUH for 1994-95.

According to Jill Dolan, president of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, the award committee was unanimous in its selection of de la Cruz as the outstanding theater teacher.

In addition to his work with acting directing students at Cal State Hayward, de la Cruz has been a guest faculty member at several universities, including the University of Illinois, California State University, Fullerton and Columbia.

He has directed plays for companies across the United States and in other countries, including the Philippines to the United Kingdom. His work also has received awards from the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival.

In 1998 Photos Photiades, an internationally known performer of classical Greek plays, invited De la Cruz to bring his student production of "The Bacchae" to Cyprus, where it was performed in open-air amphitheaters that summer.

Professor de la Cruz, a San Leandro resident, is a member of the executive board of the United States International Theatre Institute. He is a graduate of the University of Santo Tomas, Manila and the University of Hawaii.

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