Boston University College of Fine Arts presents three students with prestigious Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Awards

Contact: Ellen Carr, 617-353-8783 |
Contact: Jean Connaughton, 617-353-7293 |

Boston, MA – The Boston University College of Fine Arts is pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Award: Kara Harris from the School of Music for opera, Paul Tate dePoo III from the School of Theatre for theatre design and production, and Shari Mendlowitz from the School of Visual Arts for sculpture. The winners each received $10,000 grants to help them transition into their artistic careers. The awards will be presented at a luncheon this spring, hosted by Walt Meissner, Dean ad interim of the BU College of Fine Arts.

Soprano Kara Harris recently finished her residency at the Boston University Opera Institute, where she received the prestigious Phyllis Curtin Fellowship. Credits include the title role in the New England premiere of Tobias Picker’s Thérèse Raquin, Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Second Lady in The Magic Flute, Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, cover of the title role Susannah, Chérubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, and Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly. She has been a soloist in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony (Paul Madore Chorale), the second soprano soloist in Mozart’s C Minor Mass (Boston University Symphony Orchestra) and Second Woman in Handel’s Solomon (Marsh Chapel). She received her operatic training from the University of Arizona, Boston University Opera Institute, Central City Opera, and Arizona Opera. Ms. Harris is a two-time Arizona district winner of the Metropolitan National Council Auditions, as well as a Western Regional Finalist winning the Special Encouragement Award. Ms. Harris plans on using the Kahn Award for necessary audition materials, voice lessons, living and audition expenses in New York City. The Kahn Award will also enable her to further pursue her operatic career when she moves to Germany in early 2011.

Paul Tate dePoo III is originally from Key West, Florida and just completed his BFA from the Boston University School of Theatre, majoring in Production Design. Mr. dePoo recently designed BU’s Radium Girls and the BU Opera Institute’s production of Thérèse Raquin, assisted the design with David Zinn for Opera Boston’s premiere of Madame White Snake scheduled to tour Asia this summer, and was an assistant designer to Theatre Projects Consultants London, working with Cirque du Soleil’s newest production in Dubai and architect Zaha Hadid’s Dubai Opera House. Mr. dePoo will use the Kahn Award to move to New York City to pursue his dream and design with Michael Jackson’s former production designer, Michael Cotton.

Shari Mendlowitz just received her MFA in sculpture from the Boston University School of Visual Arts, and received her BFA in 2002 and post-baccalaureate certificate in 2007 from Brandeis University. During the post-baccalaureate program, Ms. Mendlowitz received the Kira Fournier Fellowship and she is the recipient of a Dean’s Scholarship at Boston University. Ms. Mendlowitz took part in the Homestead AK residency in Sunshine, AK during the summer of 2009. An extended stay summer residency, the Homestead AK provides artists a place to make art while encouraging the use and reuse of materials already on the land. With the 2010 Kahn Award, she plans to continue making artwork, while renting a studio in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

The Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Award Fund was established in 1985 with an endowed contribution of $1 million from Esther Kahn (SED’55, Hon.’86). Each spring, students completing their last semester of graduate or undergraduate studies are eligible to compete for the award. Deborah Kahn and Linda Green, the daughters of the late Esther and Albert Kahn, along with a faculty panel from CFA, select winners from throughout CFA to be awarded grants of $10,000. Kahn Award recipients have gone on to enjoy successful careers including singers Stephen Salters, Dominique LaBelle, and Kelly Kaduce; violinist Mira Wang; actors Russell Hornsby and Ellen Harvey; scenic designer Antje Ellerman; designer Bethany Shorb; and painter Nicholas Lamia.

Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized private research university with more than 30,000 students participating in undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. BU consists of 17 colleges and schools along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes, which are central to the school’s research and teaching mission. The Boston University College of Fine Arts was created in 1954 to bring together the School of Music, the School of Theatre, and the School of Visual Arts. The University’s vision was to create a community of artists in a conservatory-style school offering professional training in the arts to both undergraduate and graduate students, complemented by a liberal arts curriculum for undergraduate students. Since those early days, education at the College of Fine Arts has begun on the BU campus and extended into the city of Boston, a rich center of cultural, artistic and intellectual activity.


For additional information, please contact either:
Jean Connaughton at 617-353-7293 or
Ellen Carr at 617-353-8783 or