CMU School of Drama

Sunday, September 25, 2016

NFTRW Weekly Top Five

Here are the top five comment generating posts of the past week:

“Offend and Apologize” Doesn’t Benefit The Arts

Arts Integrity Initiative: In recent years, it’s been suggested that some companies and organizations have intentionally caused upset through a statement or product, only to quickly recant, for the express purpose of getting two press “hits” out of one incident, in the process demonstrating their responsiveness to their customers or the population at large. As a one-time publicist, admittedly in the lower-stakes world of not-for-profit theatre, I’ve never been entirely convinced that this is a valid or even calculated strategy, or that it benefits the “offender” in any way.

I Wrote That? Playwrights Look Back at Their Teenage Work

The New York Times: How mortifying would it be to page through the creative writing you did as a teenager? And then, years or even decades later, actually see it in print?

That’s what we recently asked a set of notable playwrights to do. The inspiration: A rare New York engagement of Shelagh Delaney’s 1958 kitchen-sink drama, “A Taste of Honey,” which she wrote when she was a mere 18. Not only had she never written a play before; she’d never seen one.

Three Simple Rules For Answering The Toughest Interview Questions

Fast Company | Business + Innovation: Let’s see if this scenario sounds familiar: You’re in the interview hot seat, but so far, you’re pretty sure you’re nailing it—until the hiring manager throws you a curveball. The dreaded "What’s your biggest weakness?" comes up. Or better yet, "Why are you leaving your current job?" We know you’re thinking of your favorite four-letter word.

Upcoming Changes to Forbes Avenue Revealed-Faculty & Staff News

Carnegie Mellon University: Carnegie Mellon and PennDOT have rolled out an improvement plan for Forbes Avenue that will benefit pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and public transit riders traveling through the CMU campus.

The project, announced at a public meeting in late August, will transform the major Pittsburgh artery through the heart of the university into a calmer, more efficient and aesthetically appealing roadway, enhancing travel for everyone. The work also will help connect CMU’s main campus to the David. A. Tepper Quadrangle and other destinations to the north and west, as it will provide for a safer and easier commute across Forbes.

How Pittsburgh became America's most unlikely cultural capital

www.telegraph.co.uk: When Pittsburgh was ranked the best US city for foodies by the respected Zagat restaurant guide last year, many were surprised.

Not so in the USA, where the city in the heart of Pennsylvania once known as Steel City has become not just a culinary and micro brewery hub but a centre for the arts as well.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Theatre in the Age of Climate Change: An Educator’s View

HowlRound: A group of students is folding recycled paper aeroplanes. When ready, they hoist their planes high, a cloud of bright wings and tail fins. I ask them to make eye contact with another student, launch their plane, and make a swap. Hilarity erupts as some planes go off course in crazy circuits, but everyone participates and every pair completes the task.

Now a different instruction: “Throw your plane as high in the air as you can.” When the planes are aloft, I add: “Collect as many planes as you can! The person with most planes wins!” There is a moment’s hesitation, then the grabbing begins.

Prolyte Campus blog: Stick to the nodes – Part 2

Prolyte: There are some different points of view on node points in our business. This is caused by the fact that welding in aluminium alloys causes a weakened area in the material in and around that weld, known as the HAZ (heat affected zone). We know that almost all trusses do have a multitude of welding positions that will meet in node points and can be heavily present in the connection part areas.

“Offend and Apologize” Doesn’t Benefit The Arts

Arts Integrity Initiative: In recent years, it’s been suggested that some companies and organizations have intentionally caused upset through a statement or product, only to quickly recant, for the express purpose of getting two press “hits” out of one incident, in the process demonstrating their responsiveness to their customers or the population at large. As a one-time publicist, admittedly in the lower-stakes world of not-for-profit theatre, I’ve never been entirely convinced that this is a valid or even calculated strategy, or that it benefits the “offender” in any way.

How Pittsburgh became America's most unlikely cultural capital

www.telegraph.co.uk: When Pittsburgh was ranked the best US city for foodies by the respected Zagat restaurant guide last year, many were surprised.

Not so in the USA, where the city in the heart of Pennsylvania once known as Steel City has become not just a culinary and micro brewery hub but a centre for the arts as well.

How “N*W*C” Became Drama Non Grata On A California State Campus

Arts Integrity Initiative: To start at the end, or at least where we are today: Michele Roberge, executive director of the Carpenter Performing Arts Center on the campus of California State University, has resigned, effective yesterday. Why? Because the school’s president, Jane Close Conoley, insisted upon the cancelation of Roberge’s booking of the comedy N*gger Wetb*ck Ch*nk, a show that has toured extensively for more than a decade to performing arts centers on and off college campuses. In fact, it played to a sold out house of more than 1,000 seats last year at the Carpenter Center. When Conoley raised a red flag earlier this year, Roberge made it known that if Conoley forced the cancelation, she would resign on principle. And so when the axe fell, she did.

Roots and All

TheaterJones: If you saw Trinity Shakespeare Festival’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Texas Christian University in June, and Lyric Stage’s full-orchestra revival of Lerner and Loewe’s Camelot at the Irving Arts Center in September, you might have noticed a major similarity in their set design: a visually stunning tree with myriad roots and branches twisting in every direction.

It was, in fact, the same tree in both productions, designed by busy designer Bob Lavallee, the scenic designer for A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It is made with a wood structure with different sizes of Sonotube, a form for concrete, used for the coiling effect around the roots, trunk and branches.

When A Tree Falls in Athens and Rises in Camelot, Whose Design Is It Anyway?

Arts Integrity Initiative: There’s a very large tree that has been traveling around the Dallas-Fort Worth region in Texas. There’s no need to worry, as the tree hasn’t acquired independent mobility and become sentient, but rather, it has made major appearances in two theatrical productions in the area in a short span of time. Designed originally by Bob Lavallee for the Trinity Shakespeare Festival production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Texas Christian University, it just finished a run center stage in Camelot at Lyric Stage.

Hooked: Confessions Of A Gearaholic

Pro Sound Web: Hi. My name is Craig, and I’m a gearaholic.

I tried to find a 12-step program, but quite frankly if I have to move gear more than six steps, I’m going to need a hand truck because my back isn’t what it used to be. It’s not just that I like gear; it’s that I’m addicted to it.

It Only Takes Six Seconds To Hear The World’s Most Sampled Song

FiveThirtyEight: Fans know that when a new Beyoncé, Kanye or Diplo track drops, it will likely contain a musical sample — an instrumental or vocal nugget from a song of yesteryear. That nugget will be rearranged, looped or otherwise given new context. Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” for example, didn’t just introduce us to an unusual dance style; its sped-up sampling of an 1972 R&B hit reintroduced the world to Timmy Thomas and the distinctive beat of “Why Can’t We Live Together.”

Preparing for Your First Overseas Tour

Shure Blog: Your band is at that point. You’ve built a considerable following, and now people from other continents are hungry for your show. Where to start? How should a band prepare for this trip, and what are some words of wisdom that can be carried on the plane (for free) when you go?

I had the pleasure of asking a few people who have been touring for a considerable part of their lives.

The Petersen Re-Emerges

News | MATT Construction: In spite of the Petersen’s rich history in Los Angeles, and its amazing location, smack-dab in the middle of Southern-California-the-Car-Culture-Capital-of-the-World, before 2016, the most visitors the Petersen had received in a single year was 138,000. Now with a finely-tuned re-vision and a new racing team, the landmark museum is ready to set new records.

The Top 10* Most-Produced Plays of the 2016-17 Season

AMERICAN THEATRE: Every year, American Theatre receives a flurry of season submissions from TCG member theatres, which we use to calculate our Top 10 Most-Produced Plays and our Top 20 Most-Produced Playwrights lists. While not the most comprehensive imaginable measure of popularity, these numbers provide a handy snapshot of the nation’s preeminent plays and playwrights, and of what kinds of plays take precedence in today’s theatre field.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Stage preview: 'Hand to God' unleashes one wicked puppet at City Theatre

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: If you see a guy walking around the South Side with a puppet, say “Hi.” Just don’t be surprised if the puppet answers.

Nick LaMedica is the guy, and the puppet is Tyrone, his co-star in “Hand to God,” the wicked comedy about a foul-mouthed demonic puppet who wreaks havoc among members of a Christian Puppet Ministry in a Texas town.

LRLR Begin Fundraising for 2017 Ride

Stage Directions: It’s hard to argue with the success of a charity event that has raised more than $550k for Behind the Scenes and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, but Long Reach Long Riders are changing things up to make next year’s ride even more successful. After several requests, they have begun fundraising now, instead of waiting until spring.

Upcoming Changes to Forbes Avenue Revealed-Faculty & Staff News

Carnegie Mellon University: Carnegie Mellon and PennDOT have rolled out an improvement plan for Forbes Avenue that will benefit pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and public transit riders traveling through the CMU campus.

The project, announced at a public meeting in late August, will transform the major Pittsburgh artery through the heart of the university into a calmer, more efficient and aesthetically appealing roadway, enhancing travel for everyone. The work also will help connect CMU’s main campus to the David. A. Tepper Quadrangle and other destinations to the north and west, as it will provide for a safer and easier commute across Forbes.

NATEAC Raises $11,000 for Behind the Scenes

Stage Directions: There were 150 attendees at the North American Theatre Engineering and Architecture Conference (NATEAC) charity dinner at Sardi’s this year, and together they raised more than $11,000 for Behind the Scenes.

The Breakdown: Which Gender Wrote More Plays and When

AMERICAN THEATRE: Catalyzed in part by the creation of the Kilroys List in 2014, which helped put the catchphrase “gender parity” front and center in the U.S. theatre field, last year we did our own count of who’s writing the plays on our stages, breaking down authors by gender in the 2015-16 season. We also tallied the eras in which plays were written, reasoning that if we corrected for earlier ages in which women’s voices were effectively silenced or shut out, the ratio of female to male authors might look better for plays written more recently.

ESTA Names Winners of Two Awards

Stage Directions: ESTA has named the winners of their 2016 Eva Swan Award and the 2016 Volunteer of the Year Award. Eddie Raymond, current ESTA president, will be honored with the Eva Swan Award, recognizing exceptional long-term commitment to the association. The Volunteer of the Year Award goes to the members of two project committees: the Technical Standards Program’s Stage Lifts Working Group and the ETCP Subject Matter Experts for the Portable Power Distribution Technician Certification.

The New Play’s the Thing

AMERICAN THEATRE: As part of this special issue’s exploration of the state of the new American play, we wanted to highlight some of the most exciting works of theatre written within the past five years. So we asked a group that champions new work, dramaturgs and literary managers across the U.S. and Canada, which productions they were most looking forward to this season.

How Theatre Renewed My Perspective on Climate Change

HowlRound: Last February, I had the wonderful opportunity to perform in the new play Forward by Chantal Bilodeau at Kansas State University. Going into auditions for the production, I knew they play’s message was, at its core, about climate change. I’ll go ahead and admit now that, at the time, I was more excited for the opportunity to be doing a new play than I was to be performing a show about climate change as all my life, save for one special day in the eighth grade, I’d never really had my own, solid opinion on that subject. However, working on this play, the second in the Arctic Cycle series, completely renewed my perspective.

What Do Agents Do for Playwrights?

AMERICAN THEATRE: The business of agents is often a mystery to the artists they represent. Every young writer scrambles to find representation, but once they’ve landed it, what the agent actually does can be hard to figure out.

For Charles Kopelman and Sarah Douglas, who head up the literary arm of Abrams Artists Agency in New York, the job is “very relationship-oriented,” as Kopelman puts it. “You really do function in a lot of ways as an agent: You play mother, father, and shrink.”

IAAPA announces its move to the theme park capital, Orlando

www.themeparkinsider.com: Orlando is the biggest market in the theme park industry, as home to five of the world's most-attended theme parks. So it makes sense that the city also would be the home for the industry's largest trade association.

Are Your Shackles Safe for Overhead Lifting?

Hoist and Rigging Safety Blog: When determining the best shackle for your lifting application, there are many options to choose from. Shackles are typically available in two styles: chain style and anchor style.

Chain shackles are best-suited for straight line, single connection pulls because of their U-shape. Anchor or bow shackles have a more generous loop. This allows them to be side loaded or used for multiple connections.

2016 Knights of Illumination Award Winners Named

Stage Directions: The ninth Knights of Illumination Awards were held on September 18 in London. Among other winners, Mark Henderson took home the Hawthorn Award for Musicals for his work on Sunset Boulevard at the English National Opera. The Elation Professional Award for Plays was given to Jan Versweyveld for Songs from Far Away at the Young Vic. Full list of winners in Dance, Opera, Projection design and more after the jump.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

SawStop Vs Bosch Reaxx Lawsuit: It's Not Over Yet

Pro Tool Reviews: Here we go again. The latest SawStop Vs Bosch Reaxx lawsuit has found in favor of SawStop with the ruling coming from Administrative Law Judge Thomas B. Pender. As it has been since the Reaxx was first announced, the lawsuit is based on patent infringement.

Winners of the 2016 Ivey Awards Announced

AMERICAN THEATRE: The Ivey Awards announced the recipients of the 2016 prizes, as well as the recipients of the lifetime achievement and emerging artist honors, at a ceremony on Sept. 19 at the Historic State Theatre. The lifetime achievement award went to theatre critic Graydon Royce, and the emerging artist award was given to costume designer Trevor Bowen.

Interview with Playwright Sarah Ruhl

Proscenium: Sarah Ruhl’s plays include Scenes from Court Life, For Peter Pan on her 70th Birthday, The Oldest Boy, In the Next Room, or the vibrator play, The Clean House, Eurydice, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, A Melancholy Play, Orlando, Late: a cowboy song, Dear Elizabeth and Stage Kiss. She is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award nominee. Her plays have been produced on Broadway at the Lyceum by Lincoln Center Theater, off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons, Second Stage, and at Lincoln Center’s Mitzi Newhouse Theater. Her plays have been produced regionally all over the country and have also been produced internationally, and translated into over twelve languages.

Behind the Scenes Announces the Fred Foster Scholarship Fund

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: The Behind the Scenes Foundation announces the Fred Foster Scholarship Fund. Board members had long been seeking a way to honor Fred's innumerable contributions to our industry and, in particular, his unwavering support of the charity since its inception.

Sample a variety during Pittsburgh's dance season

TribLIVE: Rehearsals are already under way for the coming dance season in Pittsburgh, which promises to be impressively wide-ranging. Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and Pittsburgh Dance Council, which is part of the Cultural Trust, offer complementary programming at the highest level. The ballet specializes in full-length works expressed through classic technique, such as the family Christmas favorite “The Nutcracker,” as well as more contemporary styles. The Dance Council is a presenting organization that brings in a mix of American and international companies.

Winners of the PLASA Innovation Awards 2016 Announced

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: Sponsored by Velta, the 2016 PLASA Awards for Innovation took place in the Apex Room at the end of an extremely busy Monday at this year's PLASA Show. Hosted by PLASA's new managing director Peter Heath and presented by PLASA chairman Ed Pagett, the awards aim to recognize and reward outstanding new product ideas.

Hot picks: Wiz costumes

TribLIVE: 'burgh gets first peek

The costumes that brightened the NBC television broadcast of “The Wiz Live” last year will be on display starting Sept. 23 at the August Wilson Center, Downtown.

I Wrote That? Playwrights Look Back at Their Teenage Work

The New York Times: How mortifying would it be to page through the creative writing you did as a teenager? And then, years or even decades later, actually see it in print?

That’s what we recently asked a set of notable playwrights to do. The inspiration: A rare New York engagement of Shelagh Delaney’s 1958 kitchen-sink drama, “A Taste of Honey,” which she wrote when she was a mere 18. Not only had she never written a play before; she’d never seen one.

MakerBot Releases Their 6th Generation Of 3D Printers

Hackaday: Just in time for the back to school and holiday season, Makerbot has released their latest line of printers. The latest additions to the lineup include the new Makerbot Replicator+ and the Makerbot Replicator Mini+.

The release of these new printers marks MakerBot’s first major product release since the disastrous introduction of the 5th generation of MakerBots in early 2014.

The ‘Mad Professor’ Who Makes Sure the Tutus Swirl

The New York Times: On one side of the fitting room at New York City Ballet’s costume shop, the clothing designer Narciso Rodriguez was studying the neckline of a pink-and-black dress on the ballerina Indiana Woodward.

On the other side, the designer Rosie Assoulin was evaluating the length of a tailored jacket on Sterling Hyltin.

“Glitterwashing” Orientalism in Molière’s Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme

HowlRound: Toward the end of Act IV of Denis Podalydès’ production of Molière and Lully’s comédie-ballet, Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme, a delirious seventeenth-century cloth merchant beams at the audience, his face coated in silver glitter layered over streaks of black make-up. Monsieur Jourdain, Molière’s class-striving protagonist, wears a thin nightshirt and a thick cloak of self-satisfaction. He is so pleased with himself now that he has been made a mamamouchi in an elaborate Ottoman induction ceremony.

Pittsburgh Opera opens 78th season with 'La Traviata'

TribLIVE: Opera began in Italy around 1600 as an attempt to re-create ancient Greek drama. It found its own greatness just a few years later when Claudio Monteverdi wrote “L'Orfeo.”

Pittsburgh Opera is in a class by itself locally because opera is such an extravagant art form, requiring an expensive cast of singers, a full symphony orchestra, costumes and sets.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Cameron Mackintosh & Alain Boublil Release Statement on Donald Trump's Use of LES MIS Tune at Miami Rally

www.broadwayworld.com: As BroadwayWorld reported over the weekend, at a recent rally in Miami, presidential candidate Donald Trump made his way to the stage to the sounds of Boublil and Schoenberg's, "Do You Hear the People Sing?" -- a theme from the beloved Broadway musical LES MISERABLES.

Maker Faire Pittsburgh sets loose 200 makers for a weekend circus of creativity

NEXTpittsburgh: Pittsburgh will put its indelible spin on inventive genius when Maker Faire Pittsburgh (MFP) materializes on the North Side this October.

This is the second full-scale Maker Faire for the city, the largest and most comprehensive display of maker ingenuity in the Northeast between Detroit and New York City. More than 200 makers of all ages will come together for a weekend circus of creativity, science and performing arts on the commons of Nova Place.

If You Build A Censorship Machine, They Will Come

Electronic Frontier Foundation: If you have the power to censor other people’s speech, special interests will try to co-opt that power for their own purposes. That’s a lesson the Motion Picture Association of America is learning this year. And it’s one that Internet intermediaries, and the special interests who want to regulate them, need to keep in mind.

An Open Letter to Donald Trump: You Lost My Vote When You Crossed My Picket Line

Medium: My name is Dan Mahoney. I was born and raised in New York. I am a proud member and employee of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), the union that represents backstage crew and technicians in entertainment.

Native Communities and Climate Change, Center Stage

HowlRound: We need, collectively, to break up with Aristotle and elementally reframe and fast-track evolve a holistic understanding—an Indigenous understanding—of what it means to be human in a vibrant world that includes and transcends humankind.

We need Native voices—historically dehumanized, marginalized, silenced, and subject to appropriation—center stage in all discussions leading to effective efforts, as Native communities are center stage in the experience of climate change.

Commanding the Scenery

Stage Directions: Scenic design is the physical representation of the emotional world of a show, where the vision becomes reality. But making several hundreds (if not thousands) of pounds of scenery move like a vision is not a simple task. We reached out to leaders in the field of automation and asked them how they make automation easier—and safer—for everyone.

Matt Trueman: 'Lighting designers are the unseen heroes of the theatre'

WhatsOnStage.com: Forget BAFTA masks and teeny busts of Laurence Olivier. You know what they dish out at the Knights of Illumination awards? Swords. Full-sized, silver-forged medieval battle swords. Try getting one of them home on the tube afterwards, let alone finding space on your mantelpiece.

Three Simple Rules For Answering The Toughest Interview Questions

Fast Company | Business + Innovation: Let’s see if this scenario sounds familiar: You’re in the interview hot seat, but so far, you’re pretty sure you’re nailing it—until the hiring manager throws you a curveball. The dreaded "What’s your biggest weakness?" comes up. Or better yet, "Why are you leaving your current job?" We know you’re thinking of your favorite four-letter word.

Forge Your Own Neon Signs With EL Wire

Hackaday: Neon tube signs radiate an irresistible charm, which has been keeping them alive to this day. The vintage, orange glow is hard to substitute with modern means of illumination, but never trust a neon sign that you didn’t forge yourself. [NPoole] shows you how to build remarkably realistic faux neon tube signs from plastic tubing and EL wire.

Stage preview: 'Kinky Boots' brings Josh Tolle home to the Benedum

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: The first line of Josh Tolle’s website isn’t about his impressive singing career or that he is now traveling with the “Kinky Boots” national tour. No, it’s about his hometown:

“Josh Tolle is a proud Pittsburgher, born and raised just north of the Steel City,” it reads.

Beauty and the Beast

Pittsburgh in the Round: There is a certain uncanny valley effect to the popular theatrical adaptation. The more well-oiled productions of a play there are, the less vital the story will feel. This is not to say that a heavily retold story loses its significance; the more you see, or hear, or read, or watch something, you become better at understanding its roots. But the Perfectly Told Play – the play where every element of production and performance is measured to the smallest decimal and executed with scientific specificity – this is a space where a story can lose its meaning. What new can be discovered in a place perfectly excavated?

Beyond Hamilton: How Diversity Could Save the Future of Theater by Celanie Polanick

YES! Magazine: In 1980, Ralph Pena and his friends were young activists, doing political theater on the streets of Manila to protest the corruption and violence of the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship. Pena’s university theater troupe, Bodabil (“vaudeville,” later renamed Peryante, or “carnival worker”), created props and costumes out of whatever objects they could find, and from police hid their faces with masks they could throw away. With song, mime, and imagery that ranged from the nightmarish to the mythological, they created vivid dystopian satire that gave audiences new tools to understand the country’s increasingly hellish martial law landscape of poverty and censorship.

CelebrityAccess Industry Profiles

www.celebrityaccess.com: This week In the Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc: Jim Digby, founder & chairman, Event Safety Alliance.

Jim Digby is optimistic that if his peers embrace a safety-based culture lives will be spared.

In 2011, following the Indiana State Fair outdoor stage roof collapse, the Philadelphia-based production veteran joined with other event industry professionals to launch the Event Safety Alliance (ESA).

Monday, September 19, 2016

Lisa Carr wins 2016 Gary Maker Audience Award

DC Theatre Scene: Lisa Carr, an enthusiastic DC theatergoer who considers less than a hundred shows to be a “slow year”, has won the 2016 Gary Lee Maker Audience Award as this year’s outstanding audience member.

This T-Rex Battle Royale Makes Me Wish I'd Gone To Burning Man (Almost)

sploid.gizmodo.com:If you’re secretly harboring a Mad Max fetish, there’s yet another reason to spend a few days in the middle of the desert at Burning Man. Usually it’s hard for most of us to see the appeal of the festival, until you realize it includes the opportunity to watch a pair of T-rex battle inside a replica of Mad Max’s Thunderdome.

Studios Focus on Opinionated Nature of Movie Ratings in Smoking-in-Films Lawsuit

Hollywood Reporter: The Motion Picture Association of America is offering a full-throated defense that movie ratings are protected under the First Amendment. On Thursday, the trade association and their member studios discussed in a court brief the way that ratings are registered as trademarks and emphasized the subjective nature of ratings. The filing is the latest in a putative class action that blames Hollywood for smoking-related deaths and demands that any film featuring tobacco imagery not be given "G," "PG" or "PG-13" ratings.

Cranberry native kicks up heels in Kinky Boots

TribLIVE: When a musical is titled “Kinky Boots,” footwear plays an important role.

Based on a true story and the 2005 movie of the same name, the 2013 Tony Award winner for best musical focuses on a nearly bankrupt English shoe factory that reinvents itself by creating and building thigh-high boots that are not just sturdy and comfortable but also gloriously flamboyant for drag artists to wear.

How Artists and Environmental Activists Both Do Better Together

NEA: For a number of years, artist Jenny Kendler had been searching for a science-based or activist organization with an artist-in-residence program as a way to explore her interest in environmental themes. Having had little luck in her quest for formal programs, Jenny’s interest was piqued in the fall of 2013 at the EXPO CHICAGO international art fair, where she saw that the environmental non-profit Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) was an exhibitor. NRDC’s show included artwork by Maya Lin and Gordon Matta-Clark, and was distinctively different from the other art/activism partnerships that she had seen, which had tended to use artwork solely for marketing or design purposes.

Pittsburgh Ballet expands into new annex

TribLIVE: Joy abounds at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre this month because of the opening of the Byham Center for Dance, a major expansion of its headquarters that increases its ability to serve its dancers, its students and the community.

Want to Be an Artist? Be Passionate and Realistic About Your Career

NEA: I almost didn’t become an artist. Throughout school, I acted but never envisioned it as a vocation. As a Sri Lankan woman immigrant, I didn’t have role models who looked like me out there in public. My own experience didn’t give me the courage to pursue theater as a profession. When I was playing a supporting role as a bag lady in an eighth-grade production, the director pulled me aside and said, “You have talent. Stick with it. You have such an expressive face.” I was flattered but wondered, Then why did you cast me as the bag lady?

30 Years After 'Aliens,' James Cameron Looks Back on the Power Loader

The Creators Project: Though it's perhaps the most iconic single prop in the entire Alien franchise, the power loader Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) uses to fend off the xenomorph queen in Aliens (1986) was a real pain to make. A new featurette, premiering today on The Creators Project, reveals that, while Rome wasn't built in a day, the very first model for this "far future forklift," actually was.

Do Artists Have a Competitive Edge in the Gig Economy?

NEA: Artists are all too familiar with the act of juggling multiple jobs in order to sustain their art work. While for many multiple jobholding is an economic necessity, as the original gig workers artists may have a competitive edge to sustaining work in the new gig economy.

Fitting In

Dimmer Beach: Let’s start this week with a definition and go from there. I think by the title of the post you can guess where this is going, but play along anyway.

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