For The Craft

Video posted December 12, 2013 in News by Casie Tennin


Phil Young realized that he wanted to dedicate his life to theater at the age of 10. While performing with the first ever National Barney Tour in Memphis, Young fell off the stage. After diving head first into the cement ground eight feet below him, he was immediately rushed to the hospital. While in the ambulance, he did not give one thought to his gushing head injury. All he thought about was getting back on stage.

That moment is when Young realized he could not fathom a life without performing.

Young attended the prestigious High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston. Come the arrival of college application time, Young was offered full scholarships from a variety of the nation’s best musical theater programs. However, once he received his offer from Penn State’s top ranked Bachelor of Fine Arts program, “it was a no-brainer.”

It was not an easy transition from the “warm-hearted Midwest to the cold-blooded north.” Young found it extremely difficult to adjust to the cultural differences of Happy Valley. Because of Penn State’s typecast theater program, he struggled with his identity throughout his freshman year. Young was unsure if he was a theater student at Penn State because he “filled the black male role,” or because of his talent.

Four years later, 21-year-old Young has not only flourished and found himself as a performer, but as an individual with a unique and effervescent zest for life on and off the stage.

Young just finished performing in “Guys and Dolls,” his last show as a BFA student. His dream is to be cast into a professional theater group in a top five big city. According to Young, “the limits are endless.”

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Senior / Broadcast Journalism

Casie Tennin is a Senior Broadcast Journalism major from Mahwah, New Jersey. She spent last semester studying in Buenos Aires, Argentina as part of her International Studies minor. Casie has interned at Life and Style Magazine in the editorial department, as well as Clear Channel’s hit radio station Z100, based out of New York City. Here in Happy Valley, she is a former producer of State College’s All Hit B94.5, as well as a lead host for PSNTV’s entertainment news talk show, The U. She is excited for her final year of Penn State, where she will continue to work with PSNTV and further her involvement in THON 2014. Post graduation, she hopes to move to New York City and start her career within the entertainment communications industry. You can reach her via e-mail at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).