CMU School of Drama

Friday, July 21, 2017

Jurassic World Comes to Life at Chicago’s Field Museum

InPark Magazine: Following record breaking attendance in Melbourne, Australia and Philadelphia, Jurassic World: The Exhibition is now open at Chicago’s Field Museum. Based on one of the biggest blockbusters in cinema history, Jurassic World: The Exhibition immerses audiences of all ages in scenes inspired by the hit film.

Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Regina King Seek SAG-AFTRA Board Seats

Variety: SAG-AFTRA’s upcoming national board election has drawn a quartet of new high-profile candidates — Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Matthew Modine, Abigail Spencer and Regina King.

With ballots going out July 25, the names were revealed as the self-styled progressives of Membership First and the ruling Unite For Strength Factions have unveiled their candidate slates representing the Los Angeles branch, which has the largest representation and the most competitive races. The winners will be announced on Aug. 24.

Doing This One Thing Can Hurt Your Job Interview Chances

www.fastcompany.com: Of course there are lots of ways you can sabotage an interview. But we’re going to assume you know better than to lie on your resume, bash your previous employer, or perhaps worst of all, show up totally unprepared. So let’s talk about one thing you might not realize is hurting your chances of landing a new job: being inconsistent.

Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Extend Copyright to Pre-1972 Recordings

Variety: Legislation was introduced this week to close a long-standing quirk in copyright law: Sound-recordings made before 1972 do not get federal protection.

It’s long been a source of complaint among artists, musicians, and record labels, among others, particularly with the dramatic changes in revenue streams in the digital age. It has created confusion in the marketplace for oldies radio, as streaming services depend on the classic recordings popular with their subscribers.

Matthew D. Loeb Re-Elected International President at IATSE Convention

Stage Directions: IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb was re-elected by acclamation during the IATSE 68th Quadrennial Convention. Running unopposed, Loeb’s slate of candidates was also re-elected, including General Secretary-Treasurer James Wood, 13 International Vice Presidents, three International Trustees, and one delegate to the Canadian Labour Congress.

Theaters Need to Stop Racially Segregating Their Season

OnStage Blog: I love it when a local theater company wants to encourage diversity and inclusion with their season. The desire to tell different stories with an array of different types of people is something that should be applauded always. If your theater is doing this with their current or next season, congrats.

However, I also feel that the commitment to diversity should be extended to every show in your season and not stop with the one that would require roles of color.

August Wilson Center Names New Head

Blogh: The August Wilson Center, which in 2014 came close to a permanent shut-down, seems to be recovering nicely. And it has taken the next step by selecting an experienced new leader, respected local arts programmer and administrator Janis Burley Wilson.

In Tina Howe Premiere, Theatre 167 Confronts Climate Change

Clyde Fitch Report: Theatre 167 is currently presenting the world premiere production of Tina Howe‘s play Singing Beach at HERE Arts Center in Lower Manhattan, Running through Aug. 12, the play follows a family on the North Shore of Massachusetts as they deal with, among other things, an aging parent and climate change.

A new play by Howe, of course, is an event. During the last five decades, the Tony-nominated Howe has written outstanding plays that have been produced worldwide, including Painting Churches, Museum, Coastal Disturbances and Pride’s Crossing.

Dressing a Tale as Old as Time: An Exclusive Interview with the Costume Designer of Disney Cruise Line’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’

Disney Parks Blog: Our all-star creative team is hard at work to bring the beloved story of “Beauty and the Beast” to life in a whole new way on stage aboard the Disney Dream this November. I had the honor of meeting up with Broadway costume designer Sarah Cubbage recently to get the inside scoop on what it takes to design the elaborate costumes for a brand-new stage production of this classic tale.

The Originalist returns to Arena Stage

DC Theatre Scene: All rise!

Not so much for an associate Supreme Court Justice, but for Edward Gero, the man currently embodying the late Antonin Scalia in the remounted and revised production of The Originalist at Arena Stage.

Newsies

Pittsburgh in the Round: Believe it or not, times used to be harder for those with a career in the journalism industry.

No clear victor has emerged in this war between modern journalists and their cantankerous subjects who cry “Fake news!” in the face of all negative press. Unless you consider late night TV talk shows who need look no further than current headlines to find material for a week’s worth of broadcasts.

The Art of Bringing Paper to Life

Projection Mapping Central: If you are the kind of person who loves making things – and I’m guessing you are, I mean you are reading this blog! – then Papercraft is for you!

What? Origami? Well, kind of…more like complex paper crafted models, built with your own hands, brought to life by projection mapping. Sounds good? Ok, stay with me.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Under the Big Top: Creating Multi-Sensory Work for Children with Autism

HowlRound: It is about two-thirds of the way through the show. Actor Noah LaPook looks to me, the stage manager, with a look of panic in his eyes. The inherent question passing from actor to stage manager is “what do we do?” Not a single child in the audience is paying attention to the story being told. Some of them are even running around the space. Some of them are drawing on the set with chalk. I sit back and send a silent answer back to the questioning actor: “have fun!”

TEDxBroadway 2017: Caroline Bragdon Shares How Community Activism Is Pest Control

Selling Out: Did you miss this year’s TEDxBroadway? Or do you want to relive the magic? We’ll be sharing videos of all the talks from this year’s conference over the next few weeks here on Selling Out. Or if you’re in a binge-watching mood, you can catch them all now at TEDxBroadway.com.

Today, we’re watching Caroline Bragdon, MPH, who is Director of Neighborhood Interventions for the Pest Control Services Program at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Her work focuses on improving neighborhood level responses to rat infestations.

Hot Metal Musicals 2017

Pittsburgh in the Round: The development of a new musical is a complex art. From the development of the original idea, into a workable script (book), music and lyrics, it is a consuming labor of passion, creativity, and love.

Those who attended Musical Theatre Artists of Pittsburgh’s 2017 Hot Metal Musicals had the opportunity to preview songs from over a dozen works in development as well as four songs yet to find a book.

Stage review: Pittsburgh CLO delivers a new 'Newsies' that pulses with energy

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: It was a David-and-Goliath story a newsman should have loved: A gutty army of street urchins brings New York to a standstill and a tyrant to his knees.

Publisher Joseph Pulitzer would have loved it. Except those urchins were the kids who delivered his newspapers. They were on strike, and he was the tyrant who tried demanding a few precious cents from their pockets.

Keep Your Project Secure with These CNC Workholding Techniques

makezine.com: Once upon a time, the movements of master machinists were measured, recorded, and stored on cards and paper tape. The stored numbers were used to control motors that moved mills, lathes, and other machines exactly the way the machinists had. This was referred to as numeric control (NC). After World War II, computers found their way into manufacturing and were used to control the machines, which is called computer numeric control (CNC). Broadly, computers controlling motors that move tools includes modern 3D printers, laser engravers, stencil cutters, and the target of this skill builder: CNC devices using routers (Figure A) or motor spindles.

The Rise of the Prop Designer

Prop Agenda: The title of “prop designer” seems to appear more now than in the past. More experienced prop masters have made note that younger props people are being credited as prop designer on their shows, or self-identifying as one on their resumes. Is this just a trick of perception, or are prop designers actually growing in number?

Google Glass resurrected as a tool for hands-on workers

www.dezeen.com: Following a two-year hiatus, the Google Glass augmented-reality headset has made a comeback, and is being targeted exclusively at businesses.

Google suspended sales of Glass at the start of 2015 in order to rethink its development.

But yesterday, the team behind the wearable made an announcement on Medium that after a two-year testing period, the headset – now named Glass Enterprise Edition – is being made available to all businesses.

Good Basic Advice At Any Career Stage

Butts In the Seats: Juilliard Professor Benjamin Sosland shared some advice he gives his students as they think about developing their careers. Some of the advice is pretty common across most career advice articles, but there were a number of suggestions I hadn’t seen very often and wanted to share.

Why This Dolly Will Never Go Away For Me

Theatre Development Fund – TDF: On a recent Sunday afternoon, I settled in to my seat in the upper balcony of the Shubert Theatre to watch Bette Midler in Hello, Dolly!. Over half a century earlier at age 10, I had attended my first Broadway show, Oliver!, in the same theatre, sitting in the same section. I have seen many a musical in the intervening years. Nowadays, I rarely attend revivals -- I'm old enough that they tend to be of shows I saw in their original productions, and I don't feel the new incarnations have much to offer me. But Hello, Dolly! is different.

The Theatre Industry Needs to Start Awarding Free Theatre Licensing to Low Income Schools

OnStage Blog: What has become a disturbing trend among high schools, is finding ways to take the cost of theatre productions out of school budgets and pass them on to students and their families.

Whether it's "pay-to-play" policies or just eliminating it from the budget altogether, schools are constantly looking to make theatre productions cheaper or not do them at all.

“’Claws’ is the reverse ‘Sopranos’”: Jason Antoon is redefining diversity on TNT’s “Claws”

Salon.com: The casting director, showrunner and head writer for TNT’s “Claws” — an hour-long dramedy about a gal-gang of quirky, money-laundering manicurists in Central Florida — are sitting behind the table, chuckling. For actor Jason Antoon, this reaction is par for the course. He’s an easy-going, funny guy, but this time there’s an extra ease to what can be a stressful audition experience. He feels unexpectedly calm. He finishes his audition lines in one take, thanks everyone, jokes around for a few with the assistant and goes out to his car. Drives home. Eats a salad. Later, his agent calls him to say he got the part of Dr. Ken Brickman, a series regular on all 10 episodes.

Mural pays tribute to August Wilson as the center that bears his name readies for 'next phase'

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Until Saturday, August Wilson was attached in name only to the Downtown building that dominates Liberty Avenue between Smithfield Street and William Penn Place.

Today when you walk into the August Wilson Center for African American Culture you come face to face with a larger-than-life image of the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, the centerpiece of a new mural that celebrates the Wilson legacy.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Some of Your Millennial Employees Could Make Great Leaders. Here Are 3 Ways to Identify Them

Inc.com: There's no denying that Millennials are the future of the workforce.

But managing each new generation brings its own challenges, none more so than the current crop, who feel unfairly stereotyped by the negative traits often associated with them: that they're entitled, lazy and self-absorbed, to name just a few.

So how do you spot the next leader among this rising group who, to older managers, seem to spend their lives bent over their phones, may never have hand-written a letter, let alone a thank-you note, and like to photograph their food before eating it?

The Marvel Universe Live Show Is a Goofy, Kid-Friendly Preview of Infinity War

io9.gizmodo.com: Over a dozen Marvel heroes are teaming up to battle the forces of evil. There’s Thor, Iron Man, Black Panther, as well as Iron Fist, Wasp, Hulk, the Guardians of the Galaxy and many others. However, this isn’t unfolding on a movie screen, it’s happening for real in a massive arena. This is Marvel Universe Live: Age of Heroes and it’s oddly familiar.

With Oscar Isaac, a ‘Hamlet’ Where Everyone’s Onstage

www.vulture.com: A little over a third of the way into the modestly dressed, disarmingly brilliant production of Hamlet now playing at the Public, Oscar Isaac as the iconic prince turns to us before one of his famous soliloquies and calmly tells us, “Now I am alone.”

I caught my breath at these four words. They were not a statement of fact — they were an invitation to the audience to imagine.

10 of the most ground-breaking uses of plywood in architecture and design

www.dezeen.com: To coincide with the opening of an exhibition dedicated to plywood at London's V&A museum, we've rounded up 10 projects from the Dezeen archives that push the material to its limits.

Plywood: Material of the Modern World charts the history of plywood from the 1850s to present day, showcasing examples of how the material has contributed to significant developments in the design industry, from transport to housing and furniture.

Design as a Third Area of General Education

Design Observer: Graphic designers are insecure. This is understandable; design lacks defensible boundaries. It is ubiquitous and absorbent, everywhere and everything. It is never itself, always its subject. It is diffused evenly across our lives to such a low concentration that we often doubt its worth.

Hiring a Fight Director

HowlRound: Your theatre company is doing Romeo and Juliet for the next show in your season. Shakespeare wrote multiple fights in the play, so you’ve wisely hired a fight director to choreograph them. The following show has only a couple of slaps, a push, and a fall. One of the actors cast in Romeo and Juliet is also cast in that show. He’s had a little stage combat training over the years, so you wonder if you really need to hire a fight director since he can probably choreograph those minor incidents, and will do it for much less?

Wirque du Soleil

PLSN: I lived in Las Vegas for seven years before I felt the need to get off the traveling circuit. I had met my soon-to-be wife, and spending six to seven months away was going to make it tough for us to progress our relationship. In my head, the only way to settle down and continue to work in entertainment was to work for the largest entertainment conglomerate in Vegas. I would be able to work five to six days a week and have a scheduled day off every week. I would still be a part of show business and maintain my home life. I would be able to have benefits and a free meal. I was happy to put on the golden handcuffs and serve my term. I lasted three years in the system, and when I got let out, it was the best thing that ever happened to me.

Key to this production is F-U-N: Geyer Performing Arts Center staging 'The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee'

TribLIVE: Quirky characters, touching moments and relatable memories are all part of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” according to Latrobe native Katti Grosso, who spells out what audiences will find in Actors and Artists of Fayette County's stage production July 20 to 23 at Geyer Performing Arts Center in Scottdale.

TAIT Builds Elaborate Stage Set for Queen and Adam Lambert's Tour

www.taittowers.com/portfolio: Back by popular demand, American Idol alum Adam Lambert joins Queen for another high-energy, theatrical tour showcasing the bands’ classic hits and flamboyant performances. The tour kicks off in North America, extends to Europe and the U.K. this fall and concludes early 2018 in Australia.

Coinciding with the bands 40th anniversary of their sixth record, News of the World, the set, built by TAIT, is an elaborate production designed to highlight Queen’s set list and its unique yet comparable take on the Queen of past.

The Tear Won…

filmmakersinfo: I started in this industry in 1986 on non-union productions working very hard and enjoying it. I was a non-union set dresser/driver. The theory was the swing gang (set dressers) teams of two would trade off driving the 5ton set dressing truck to give each other a break. In reality what would usually happen was quite different. The decorators would hire the two most dependable guys they knew.

Oh, the dreaded intermission: Long plays at a time when shorter is sweeter

LA Times: Recently while scrolling through Facebook, I came across the lament of a playwright who was distressed that the new play he was writing seemed to require an intermission. I had no personal knowledge of the author, but I instantly recognized the sentiment.

The vogue for shorter plays is undeniable. Ask me while stuck in traffic on my way to the Mark Taper Forum or the Geffen Playhouse what my favorite dramatic genre is and I’ll likely say, “90 minutes, no intermission.”

Jury awards $11.2 million following Georgia movie-set fatality

www.ajc.com/news: A Chatham County jury on Monday awarded more than $11.2 million in a civil suit stemming from a deadly accident on a Georgia film set.

“Midnight Rider” crew member Sarah Jones, 27, died in February 2014 when a train came hurtling down the track where the film crew was setting up for a scene. The production did not have permission to film on the train trestle, outside Jesup.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Twilight Zone is being adapted into a stage play

The Verge: The Twilight Zone, Rod Serling’s landmark sci-fi anthology series about technological paranoia, creeping dread in 1960s America, and monsters and weirdos of all sorts, will be adapted as a stage play, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed this morning.

Preview: Things get personal in 'Intermezzo,' a Pennsylvania premiere

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Benedick’s immortal line from Shakepeare’s “Much Ado about Nothing” does not appear in Richard Strauss’s opera “Intermezzo.” It aptly describes, however, the protagonists of the opera in which the German composer immortalized his family and the stormy relationship that existed between the peripatetic, self-absorbed musician and his imperious, shrewish wife, soprano Pauline de Ahna. Their marriage was loving but turbulent, and when Strauss wanted to compose a domestic comedy, he turned inward.

SAG-AFTRA Board Approves New Studio Contract

Backstage: The SAG-AFTRA national board of directors has approved a new film and television contract that is estimated to generate an additional $256 million for performers over a three-year period if ratified by the guild’s members.

A big win out of the negotiations is the tripling of residuals from shows that air on streaming platforms such as Netflix and Amazon. The contract also allows actors in these type of series to receive the residuals significantly earlier than before; it’ll be only 90 days instead of a year. The new formula delivers a 300 percent increase in residuals to performers within their first two years when their work is exhibited worldwide on Netflix, according to the union website.

The horror: Remembering George Romero's genre-defining career

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: George Romero may no longer be with us, but his influence in the horror genre will be felt for as long as Hollywood continues to churn out zombie-related content with biting social allegories.

The Pittsburgh icon died Sunday after a battle with lung cancer, and popular filmmakers who revered his work rushed to social media to eulogize the man who had a profound impact on their careers.

Lift Turn Move are lifting Ed Sheeran

www.lsionline.com: One of the most eagerly anticipated and high profile tours to embark on a worldwide journey in 2017 must be Ed Sheeran. The show’s production company, Major Tom Limited has purchased LoadGuard hoists from LTM- Lift Turn Move to fly the entire lighting, sound and AV system. In total, LTM have supplied 68 1t and 36 2t LoadGuard motors all running at four metres/per min. The motor control system is Kinesys throughout and operated by Steve Bliss from LCR.

The Politics in Plays: August Wilson

Breaking Character: What does it mean for art to be political? It could mean the art presents direct and indirect perspectives on society. It could also mean the art refers to a specific political figure or subject that “expresses critique” of the status quo. One man whose art, in the form of theater, can be interpreted as political is that of August Wilson.

In Conversation With Rithisal Kang About Amrita Performing Arts In Cambodia

thetheatretimes.com: ASEF culture360 contributor David Fernández talks with Executive Director Rithisal Kang about the origins of Amrita Performing Arts as well as the developments of performing arts in Cambodia.

Breaking Down Personal Fences

Breaking Character: Fences by August Wilson is a play surrounding the lives of an African American family in the 1950s. Fences demonstrates the struggles of power, love, trust and acceptance that are magnified by the characters’ similarity to true life situations and problems. August Wilson creates a family that is unbelievable yet relatable in both the 1950s and in modern time.

The Ups and Downs of Stage Rigging

theatreconsultants.org: Innovation in the theatre world is essential to support ever evolving audience expectations and the creative process. In the past, innovation has been an essential part of theatre systems design except for the traditional manually operated, counterweighted stage rigging system. For decades, this system has changed little and has become the true workhorse of the theatre. However, in recent years, innovations in motorized computer controlled stage rigging systems have made motorized rigging more prevalent and a viable option in performance venues of every scale.

From the Past to Now: August Wilson Politics

Breaking Character: August Wilson has accomplished many things, including winning two Pulitzer Prizes, six New York Drama Critics Circle Awards, a Rockefeller Fellowship, a Whiting Writers Award, a Heinz Award and more. Most of these awards are for his extraordinary plays and wonderful shows. Mr. Wilson was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the setting of nine of his ten “Century Cycle” plays. The Century Cycle is a series of plays that were based off the many hardships in the city where he grew up. He often focused on topics like sexism and racism.

Projecting Room Numbers At The Ritz

Rosco Spectrum: Gobos are often used in architecture to project logos or enhance environments with patterned light. This blog post will help you think beyond the logo and imagine how gobos could be used in much broader, functional applications, such as projecting graphic elements or replacing printed signage with projected imagery. A perfect example of this can be seen at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Doha, who used hundreds of Rosco Custom Gobos to project the room numbers inside the hotel.

Russia's Canceled Ballet Is a Sign of the Times

Creators: The Bolshoi Ballet, Russia's premier ballet company, hit the ballet world with another scandal recently by canceling its much-anticipated premiere of biopic performance, Nureev, three days before curtain. Created by director Kirill Serebrennikov, choreographer Yuri Possokhov, and composer Ilya Demutsky, it was a performance that combined ballet and theater to tell the story of Rudolf Nureyev, one of the greatest dancers of the 20th century. The performance was expected to be the cultural event of the year, potentially revolutionizing the repertoire of the classically-minded Bolshoi, as well as a new opportunity for touring and income from the international stage.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Surround Sound? You Ain’t Heard Nothing Yet

The New York Times: If you’ve spent any time at children’s birthday parties, you probably know what an inflated balloon sounds like when rubbed: harsh, squeaky, not particularly resonant.

“Rubbed-balloon sound” might not seem like a sonic texture you’d place much stock in if you were creating a musical work. But how would that change if you were listening from inside the balloon? The composer Natasha Barrett decided to answer the question. She put a 3-D microphone in a balloon, pressed the record button and got down to some serious rubbing.

Up Close With the Gorgeous Costumes of Black Panther

io9.gizmodo.com: Ever since that first trailer, we’ve known that Ruth E. Carter’s sublime work on the costumes for Black Panther would make it one hell of a gorgeous movie. But on the floor at Disney’s D23 Expo in Anaheim, we’ve been able to get a great look at some of the outfits from the film—including T’Challa’s new look.

Behind the Scenes at a Professional Fireworks Show

Hackaday: Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes at a big fireworks show? Last year [Kenneth] was asked to help manually ignite a fireworks show, and this consisted of him running down a row of shells with a road flare, lighting each one in turn. He apparently did so well that this year worked another show, this one with a more complicated setup.

Planet of the Apes movement coach Terry Notary on the secret to the films' stunning performances

The Verge: Planet of the Apes movement choreographer and actor Terry Notary says playing an ape takes strong legs and an ability to reach a kind of effortless, meditative state. If performers consciously try too hard to take on ape-like qualities, Notary says, it “makes the performance look crappy.”

Crappy ape performances would have killed War for the Planet of the Apes, the latest installment in the Apes franchise. Human characters spend much less time on-screen than hyper-intelligent chimp Caesar (Andy Serkis) and his band of smart apes. By this point in the film series, most of humankind has succumbed to the simian flu, a virus that all but eradicated human populations while boosting the brainpower of non-human primates. The last surviving people are hell-bent on destroying the remaining apes, who just want to find a peaceful home in a post-apocalyptic world.

Xerxes

Pittsburgh in the Round: Pittsburgh Festival Opera gave the first of three performances of Händel’s Xerxes last night, and it was a delightfully rare opportunity to hear this seldom performed “Baroque” music. The work premiered in London in 1738, and flopped after a handful of performances. The famous “Ombra mai fu” opening aria survived to become a standard with concert singers many decades later; is in the repertories of most organists, and has been recorded by tenors, contraltos and counter-tenors from the earliest days of “phonographic” history until the present. But the opera itself virtually disappeared until the 1920’s.

Review: Cross-dressing and miscommunications abound in Pittsburgh Festival Opera's "Xerxes"

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Opera companies in Pittsburgh don’t generally build their productions around an individual singer.

Then again, Andrey Nemzer, the poster child for Pittsburgh Festival Opera, is not your typical performer. The Russian-born countertenor won the company’s first Mildred Miller International Voice Competition in 2011. Then, he took his talents to a national stage, with a victory at the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions and performances on the Met’s stage.

Authenticity in casting: From 'colorblind' to 'color conscious,' new rules are anything but black and white

LA Times: When Edward Albee’s estate denied permission for a production of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” because the director had cast a black actor to play a character Albee had specified as white, social media boiled over. How can the theatrical canon remain relevant if creative casting isn’t allowed? Why shouldn’t a black man play a white character? Actors are actors, storytelling in the search for universal truths.

What It's Like To Do Theatre In A Rural Community

Theatre Nerds: I would hope this is not a story that has been particularly overdone, but in case it is, I apologize.

My name is Reagan Drury, and I have spent the last 5 years of my life living in a town of about 900 people in rural Missouri. I know, I know, that sounds like a hick town, and all ingenues come from somewhere like Ohio or Iowa, right?

You will be right about that if I make it in the theatre world. Time will tell on that aspect. I have been doing theatre since I was in 4th grade, and I immediately fell in love with it. I have now graduated high school and am attending a private college in Minneapolis in the fall to study theatre.

Harvard theater school to go on ‘three-year hiatus’

The Boston Globe: Harvard University’s struggling ART Institute, a graduate-level theater training program housed within the American Repertory Theater, has announced that it is suspending admissions for the next three years “to work on a strategic plan” for the Institute.

The move is the latest setback for the troubled school, which in January suspended admissions for the coming academic year after receiving a “failing” grade from the US Department of Education for saddling students with onerous levels of debt. In May, the Institute dropped off The Hollywood Reporter’s annual list of the 25 best drama schools for an acting degree. And in June, Scott Zigler, the Institute’s longtime director, announced he was leaving after more than 20 years to become dean of the School of Drama at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

14 Alumni Nominated for Emmy Awards

Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama: The nominations for the 2017 Emmy Awards were announced last week and the School of Drama has 14 alumni nominated for eight of the awards; there are 17 nominations total.

Noah Mitz (A 2005) garnered three nominations this year for “Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Series” for his work on America’s Got Talent and two nominations for “Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Special” for his work on the Grammy Awards and the Tony Awards broadcasts.

Of the alumni nominated, 13 hail from the design and production area of the School of Drama, including scenic, costume and lighting designers.

When Women Won’t Accept Theatrical Manspreading

The New York Times: There is an animated ad playing in the subway that drives me a little up the wall. It’s an anti-manspreading spot, in which a seated man with his legs wide open closes them, mostly, allowing a woman to sit beside him. So far, so good — until she daintily crosses her ankles to make herself as small as possible. Then she thanks the nice man for, as far as I can tell, no longer taking up way more than his fair share of room.

In theater as in life, there is a lot of manspreading: Men get more jobs, more money, more prizes, more stories told about them onstage than women do. The numbers are grim nearly everywhere, but especially on Broadway, where an Actors’ Equity study released last month showed female and minority actors and stage managers at a gross disadvantage to white men.

“The Liar” at Kinetic Theatre Company

The Pittsburgh Tatler: In an age when our leaders play loose with the facts
What a lark to return to a play from the past
That takes joy in exposing the fibs of a liar
And does so while setting our laughter a-fire.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Once-abused toy poodle now star in Seattle play

The Seattle Times: The story of little Blanca’s life did not begin happily.

The tiny poodle was rescued, along with scores of other dogs, from a King County home about two years ago where the animals were kept in cages, denied food and water and abused, according to animal foster parent and play producer Catherine Weatbrook.

Taken in by the Seattle Animal Shelter and sent to recuperate at a foster home, the then 3-pound dog began her recovery.

The Cast of 'Bastard Jones' & the Importance of Inclusiveness

OnStage Blog: Often diversity onstage doesn't mean Inclusion. Diversity usually entails having more than one "token" person of color in the ensemble. That is usually good enough for producers. This is hardly "good enough" and clearly doesn't represent what the world looks like. Where's the inclusion? I'm talking about people with disabilities. Why the hell aren't they represented in shows? Oh and here's the ridiculous part, if there is a "disabled" character, that role usually goes to an "able-bodied" actor. Seriously stupidest thing ever.

V&A exhibition charts the rise and fall of humble plywood

www.dezeen.com: The social history of plywood – as an innovator in the furniture and transport industries, and a maligned everyday material – is explored in a new exhibition at London's V&A museum, which opens this weekend.

‘Walking Dead’ Stuntman Died After Missing Safety Cushion by Inches

Variety: “Walking Dead” stuntman John Bernecker reportedly died after missing a safety cushion while filming a stunt for the AMC series.

Bernecker was shooting a stunt for the show’s eighth season in which he was to fall off a balcony onto the cushion some 20 feet below, but missed and instead landed on the concrete, according to TMZ. Assistant director Matthew Goodwin told police that Bernecker missed “just by inches.”

AMC has not yet commented on Bernecker’s death.

Pittsburgh Festival Opera opens Handel’s Comic Opera XERXES

'Burgh Vivant: George Frideric Handel’s opera “Xerxes” defies some of the preconceived notions audiences might have about the great Persian ruler, often billed as the “king of kings.” For one, who would have thought to create a comic opera about so august a historical figure?

Most times, persons of Xerxes rank are given the demigod treatment. Who would dare to tarnish the heroic image of one so high in the Pantheon of human history with such banal and cavalier treatment?

Pittsburgh Symphony musicians donate $10,000 for PBT orchestra

TribLIVE: Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra musicians have contributed $10,000 to the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's endowment fund for the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre Orchestra.

The fund aims to protect the company's current level of orchestra accompaniment and build on its goal of sustainable, long-term funding for annual performances with live music.

10 Unique Multi-tool Designs That Break the Mold

Everyday Carry: When you picture a multitool in your mind, what does it look like? Chances are it's something along the lines of the traditional “butterfly” or Swiss knife design. Since multi-tools in general are usually designed to pack in as many functions as possible, they tend to get too bulky, heavy, and complex for a lot of EDCs. Luckily, there's been plenty of innovation in multi-tool designs recently. More and more modern tools break tradition and put their unique spin on specialized functionality, changing the way you can use or carry a multi-tool. In this guide, we're highlighting our favorite multi-tools with unique designs.

Participation Fees vs. Mandatory Selling- Which is the Lesser of Two Evils?

OnStage Blog: I get it. Theaters need to make money. And ticket sales don’t always cover the bills. So what else do you do, what else can you do, except ask your actors to pay. Some theaters charge a participation fee, others ask their actors to sell a minimum number of tickets, sell ads or collect items to be raffled off to raise money. Each way has pluses and minuses. Let’s discuss.

The Corporate Side ROCKS!!

Guild of Scenic Artists: The basic concept of what we call Scenic Art will always be the same. As Scenic Artists we provide a solution to the needs of a client be that a set designer, or a company, and we as the artists have the responsibility to figure it out.

First, let’s take a moment to talk about my trajectory, and how I came to this place in my life. After getting a BFA, I worked with small theatres and set building companies, and trained some more at Cobalt Studios, before making my jump to ATOMIC. Now it’s all about the big companies, big bands, and BIG SCENERY!

How Burning Man Helped the Arts Community Collaborate and Evolve

makezine.com: I first attended Burning Man in the late ‘90s. In the early years of the festival, most projects were still being built during the event, so I was able to participate with a group of people building and burning art. Collaborative art was something I explored before, but discovering a whole culture and festival focused on it changed my art practice entirely. The process of making artwork together was beyond something I alone could envision. It took the group to complete the process. I was hooked.

19 Phrases You Need to Cut From Your Resume Right Now

business.tutsplus.com: Before you cross the two page benchmark on your resume with another bullet point, consider deleting cliché and useless information first.

It might take more time to determine what’s okay to remove, but it’s a better strategy than reducing font size or trimming the margins of your resume, which can make your resume look off.

In this article, we take a quick look at what phrases you should remove from your resume. With just a bit of editing, your resume will read with more professionalism and keep within its concise, to the point format.

'Bandstand' and the Issues with Wartime Musicals

OnStage Blog: Bandstand, a new musical directed and choreographed by Andy Blankenbeuhler (of Hamilton fame) plays at the Bernard Jacobs Theatre. It holds the distinction of winning this year’s Tony for “Best Choreography” despite a curious inability to receive Tony nods in any other categories, including Best Actor/Actress for its talented leading duo of Corey Cott and Laura Osnes.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

DeWalt FlexVolt 60V Max Circular Saw Review

Pro Tool Reviews: One of the products we saw at the DeWalt Experience made us wonder at first if it was really necessary – the new DeWalt FlexVolt 60V Max Circular Saw. After all, full-size cordless circular saws have been around for a while and they cut quite well, to be honest. With DeWalt’s recent success in the 20V Max/18V sector, they were due for a 7-1/4 inch model and likely could compete near the top. So why jump up to the 60V class with the rest of the FlexVolt line if you don’t need to?

Opening statements begin in 'Midnight Rider' civil trial against CSX Transportation

WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports: Opening statements were given Tuesday in the civil suit filed by the parents of Sarah Jones against CSX Transportation and a local film production company.

Child actors at risk 'due to lax chaperone rules'

Carousel, News | The Stage: Child performer safety is being put at “needless” risk due to inconsistent regulation of chaperones working in the entertainment industry, experts have warned.

Demands have been made for new, more rigorous regulations around those who supervise and look after child performers at work, amid warnings that the current situation is failing.

It follows a new campaign by union BECTU requesting an "urgent dialogue" with the theatre, film and television industries to make the approach around employment of chaperones more consistent.

British TV and film industry 'pulls plug' on black actors, says Cush Jumbo

Stage | The Guardian: Actor Cush Jumbo has accused the British television and film industry of “pulling the plug” on actors of colour, and said she repeatedly came up against “the exotic best friend ceiling” when auditioning for roles in the UK.

Jumbo, known best for her roles in hit American TV series The Good Wife, and its spin-off The Good Fight, spoke at an evidence session for the Labour party’s inquiry into diversity in the arts about the failures of broadcasters to recognise the value of black and working class actors.

All Women, All the Time

WSJ: Do female playwrights get a fair shake? Not according to the numbers. The best available statistics indicate that somewhere between one-fifth and one-quarter of the plays professionally produced in the U.S. are by women. And who’s to blame for this gender gap? Paula Vogel, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1998 but only just made it to Broadway this past April with “Indecent,” claimed in a recent tweet that white male critics “help close us down.” To which Lynn Nottage, another Pulitzer laureate who had an equally belated Broadway premiere in March with “Sweat,” replied, “The patriarchy flexing their muscles to prove their power.” I very much doubt it’s that simple, but whatever the reasons, there’s surely something amiss.

Students are Better Off without a Laptop in the Classroom

Scientific American: As recent high school graduates prepare for their migration to college in the fall, one item is sure to top most students’ shopping wish lists: a laptop computer. Laptops are ubiquitous on university campuses, and are viewed by most students as absolute must-have items, right alongside laundry detergent, towels, and coffee pots.

Weta Raises Performance-Capture Bar on ‘War for Planet of the Apes’

Variety: Ever since the debut of “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” in 2011, Hollywood’s visual effects community and mainstream moviegoers alike have been enthralled by the breakthrough digital motion-capture work that endowed the movie’s simians with uncanny human movements and facial expressions.

Chodos Named Director of Carnegie Mellon's Miller Gallery

www.cmu.edu/news: Elizabeth Chodos has been named the director of Carnegie Mellon University's Regina Gouger Miller Gallery. Chodos joins CMU from Ox-Bow, school of art and artists' residency in Saugatuck, Michigan, where she has worked since 2010, most recently as executive and creative director.

5 Tony Award Categories That NEED To Be Added!

Theatre Nerds: The Tony’s are one of the — no, the BIGGEST — night for Broadway and theatre nerds all over the world. Every theatre nerd get pumped up for the awards season on Broadway, and screams when the opening number comes on! But, we all know… When they special presenters start to announce the awards, we watch intently, but in the back of our brain, we are thinking about what other categories could be added.

In 'Hir' and 'Rock Critic,' there's a dramatic push-pull at Steppenwolf

Chicago Tribune: At the end of the Saturday night performance of his solo show "How to Be a Rock Critic," a work based on the writings of the great Lester Bangs, the actor Erik Jensen, sweaty from his exploits in Steppenwolf's 1700 space, gave an emotional little curtain speech.

Best Theatre Cities in the U.S.

Theatre :: Lists :: Paste: Listen, New York is pretty great. The Empire State Building: very tall. Times Square: so many screens. The Holland Tunnel: a great tunnel. But, at least when it comes to theatre, it sometimes feels that because the highest profile theatre is usually on Broadway, actors, directors, playwrights, and designers feel like New York is the only city where you can make a living as a theatre artist. That’s a bummer for the rest of the country, where great theatre also exists but often goes overlooked. So here at Paste we wanted to give some love to nine great theatre cities (that aren’t New York), and the amazing performances they have to offer.

Melbourne's La Mama Demonstrates The Value of Independent Theatre

The Theatre Times: La Mama is a unique institution. But the working conditions Burstall described are not. Once called “little theatres,” now called “independent,” these companies are the ones largely responsible for the development of Australian drama. Sometimes they go by the bland appellation “pro-am,” a mixture of high standards and basic budgets that have characterized Australian theatre from Federation onwards.

Pics from CMU Drama