WMU News

WMU alumna named Atlanta's Artist of the Year

Oct. 18, 2002

ATLANTA -- WMU alumna and theater set designer Rochelle Barker was named Artist of the Year earlier this week in the Abby Awards for arts excellence in metro Atlanta.

"It was very exciting to win the award," says Barker, "but somewhat odd to be in competition with painters, dancers, actors, and other performing artists."

Barker is resident scenic designer and production manager for Theatrical Outfit, an associate artist with Georgia Shakespeare Company and an associate artist and advisory board member for Actor's Express. Her set designs can be found in theaters throughout the greater Atlanta area.

The Abby Awards are sponsored by the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce and judged by a panel of critics, business leaders and artists. In addition to Artist of the Year, other categories recognized the top person or group among arts organizations, arts volunteers and corporate sponsors, as well as recognizing lifetime achievement.

A resident of Tucker, Ga., Barker earned her undergraduate degree from Western Michigan University in 1983 with a major in English and a minor in theatre. She returned to her alma mater in 2001 to design the set for the University Theatre production of "A Chorus Line."

Media contact: Thom Myers, 269 387-8400, thomas.myers@wmich.edu

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