The Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department proudly congratulates Columbia College Chicago alum Tyla Abercrumbie ’98 on winning the 2022 Lorraine Hansberry Award for Writing of a Play for her drama Relentless, which received its world premiere from Chicago’ TimeLine Theatre. The Hansberry Award was presented as part of the 28th Black Theater Alliance/Ira Aldridge Awards ceremony on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, at Columbia College Chicago’s Conaway Center in Chicago’s South Loop.
Also honored in the 2022 Black Theater Alliance Awards were former Columbia College student MJ Rawls, who received the Eartha Kitt Award for Featured Actress in a Musical for Black Ensemble Theatre’s It’s Just Like Coming To Church (Welcome To The Church Of You), and Kenny Ingram, former teacher of Musical Theatre Dance in the Columbia College Theatre Department’s Musical Theatre Program, who won the Katherine Dunham Award for Choreography in a Play for his work on Porchlight Music Theatre’s Blues in the Night.
The Black Theatre Alliance/Ira Aldridge Awards were established in 1995 by Columbia College Chicago alumnus Vincent Williams ’03, a graduate of the BA Program in Performing Arts Management from what is now the Columbia College Chicago Business and Entrepreneurship Department. The awards were founded to honor African Americans who achieve excellence in theatre, dance, and all areas of the performing arts in the Chicagoland area. The awards also pay homage to Ira Aldridge (1807-1867), an African American actor famed for his performances in Shakespearean roles in Europe. The 2022 awards recognize Chicago-area stage productions produced and presented between August 1, 2021, and July 31, 2022.