EAST BRUNSWICK — A student at the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools (MCVTS) was a winner in the 34th annual New Jersey Young Playwrights Festival.
Michael Villanueva, of Woodbridge, a senior in the School of the Arts on the MCVTS East Brunswick campus, was one of five winners in the high school category, chosen by a panel of professionals from more than 450 entries.
It marks the second consecutive year that an MCVTS student has won.
Michael’s one-act play, “Packing,” focuses on two young friends, one African American and one Latino, as one moves to a predominantly white neighborhood.
“He is determined, very creative and incredibly ambitious,” Maria Aladren, director of the theater program in the School of the Arts, said of Michael.
Winners in the Young Playwrights Festival receive the Governor’s Award, a one-year membership in the Dramatists Guild, the professional playwrights union, and will have their plays staged by a professional director with professional actors in June. Michael’s play will be presented by Luna Stage, an Actors’ Equity Association theater company in West Orange.
Michael is deciding on a college to attend and plans to focus on writing and directing.