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MiraCosta College drama student wins Kennedy Center award

OCEANSIDE — MiraCosta College theatre student and standout actor Sassan Saffari has been awarded the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival’s award and scholarship for a play he authored entitled “Beacons of Hope.” The award is given to just four undergraduate students in the nation, as part of “The Presidency of John F. Kennedy: A 50th Anniversary Celebration,” which commemorates Kennedy’s inauguration.
A panel chosen by members of the Kennedy family made selection for this honor. Saffari will receive his award and scholarship at the Kennedy Center celebration in Washington, D.C., Jan. 31, during which the winners’ works, including Saffari’s, will be presented in concert-reading format, performed by a Washington, D.C.-based company of artists. The ceremony will be simulcast on the Web and archived on the Kennedy Center’s website.
Saffari will also receive a $1,000 scholarship and travel expenses for the event.
“I’m very humbled and honored to receive this award. I moved from Massachusetts three years ago and will always have a strong connection to Boston,” said Saffari. “I feel a strong connection to JFK (he was born in Brookline and I in Dorchester) and felt like I had a responsibility to pay homage to his legacy.”
Saffari’s 20-minute play blends history with fiction. “Beacons of Hope” takes place in October of 2004, a time Saffari characterizes as one of national division.
As a student, Saffari is an Actor’s Academy graduate and the recipient of several Spotlight Circle Merit Awards and has worked in area theatres including Carlsbad Playreaders and New Village Arts.
For more information on Saffari, the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival, or MiraCosta College’s theatre program, contact Tracy Williams at (760) 757.2121, ext. 6448.