CMU School of Drama

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Big blue boycott sparked in Vegas

Las Vegas CityLife: "Those zany, resourceful Blue Men -- making instruments out of pipes and empty oil drums, creating art out of junk. But local stagehands locked in a labor battle with the Las Vegas-based production are proving no less resourceful. The local branch of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees recently got union federation AFL-CIO to call for a worldwide boycott of the avant-garde production. On Dec. 20, union federation AFL-CIO asked union families nationwide to boycott the show that has productions in Las Vegas, New York, Boston, Chicago, Berlin, London, Toronto and Amsterdam."

Anne Midgette - Opera

New York Times: "It is a truism in opera that you’re only as good as your last performance. Human variability is supposed to be one of the exciting things about live music, making it like a high-wire act. Will the tenor successfully negotiate the course? Or will he fall spectacularly, in plain sight of everyone, cracking on a high note (or, as Roberto Alagna infamously did nearly three weeks ago, storming off the stage)?"

A Full Cast of Supporting Players, With Very Few Demands

New York Times: "No casting calls were made to fill the roles of the 80 serfs that grace the stage of the Lincoln Center Theater’s production of Tom Stoppard’s “Coast of Utopia.” No agents were approached. In “Voyage” and “Shipwreck,” the first two parts of Mr. Stoppard’s trilogy about 19th-century Russian intellectuals and the societal fissures that would later erupt into revolution, the lowest class is represented not by actors grand or unknown, but by mannequins: specifically, headless, legless dress forms sheathed in the grim costumes of servitude. Had real actors been considered, the cast would have ballooned to 124 members."

The Met begins broadcasts into movie theaters

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "In the Pittsburgh area, the performances will be shown at Cinemark 18 at Pittsburgh Mills in Frazier.

Only movie theaters in the United States and Canada equipped with digital high-definition projection systems and Dolby digital surround sound were chosen to screen the performances as they are broadcast from the Metropolitan Opera House in New York."

Revised Muckle Man to Resurface at Pittsburgh's City Theatre; Cast Announced

Playbill News: "Aguirre-Sacasa, the rising playwright whose Based on a Totally True Story was seen at Manhattan Theatre Club in 2006, will be in residence at City Theatre during rehearsals of The Muckle Man in January. The play, about a giant squid, a mysterious man from the sea and a family in crisis, had its world premiere in August 2001 in a staging by the Source Theatre Company in Washington, DC."

Friday, December 29, 2006

2006 LifeHack Review: Best 50 hacks for your Life "I’ve selected the best 50 life hacks of the year, based on their popularity and contents in different categories. Invest your time - read them. Bookmark this page and mark reading them as one of your new year resolutions."

Maltby & Shire Song Cycle to Premiere in California

Yahoo! News: "The two-character musical, seen in a developmental run in Westchester County, NY, in 2004, charts the life story of a couple using old and new songs by the composer (David Shire) and lyricist (Richard Maltby Jr.) who gave us Closer Than Ever, Big, Baby and Starting Here, Starting Now."

NYC Run of 'Slava's Snowshow' Hits 1,000 Perfs

Yahoo! News: "The unique clown experience with an international reputation for spectacle - including a climactic, blinding snow storm - will play its final New York City performance a few days later (Jan. 14), making the total performance count 1,004."

Tops in Chicago? Los Angeles? Pittsburgh?: Critics' Best of 2006 From Across U.S.

Playbill News: "Shakespeare, Chekhov, Ragtime, August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean and Heather Raffo's 9 Parts of Desire are among the shows popping up on critics' lists of top 2006 local productions around the country. has compiled several of these lists below."

American Repertory Theater Artistic Director Robert Woodruff to Leave Post in June

Playbill News: "The Brooklyn-born director will return to New York to teach and direct. ART executive director Robert Orchard will maintain theatre operations while a search for a successor begins in January."

Business booming on Broadway "Broadway will rake in more coin than ever this year, hitting a record $900 million after this weekend."

New Years preparations begin in NYC

News 10 Now: "Alberto Ibanez of Staten Island has an important task, installing 72 new Waterford crystal triangles in the New Years Eve ball."

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Detroit's Plowshares Troupe Gets Year-End Windfall

Yahoo! News: "The Detroit company, struggling in a period when Michigan and Detroit face economic woes, is the recipient of a year-end $30,000 donation by Leroy C. and Julia Richie. The charitable donation of $30,000 includes $25,000 shares of DaimlerChrysler AG (DCX) stock. The gift is the largest donation from an individual or couple received by Plowshares in 2006."

Lively 'Rat Pack' takes audiences back

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "'The Rat Pack Live at the Sands Hotel,' a lively and remarkably entertaining exercise in nostalgia, music and mimicry, is being presented through Sunday as a special non-subscription offering of the 2006-07 PNC Broadway Across America -- Pittsburgh series."

The full First Night: A complete schedule of events

Post Gazette: "First Night featured attractions"

Best Play: 'Endgame' and Beckettfest

Post Gazette: "Even so, Pittsburgh theater continued to ebb and swirl into new neighborhoods and colonize unexpected venues. It's no longer just Quantum Theatre that seeks out such places: so do barebones productions, Thank You Felix, Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Park and Steve Pellegrino's Drywall adventures. CMU even took over an Uptown storefront for Brecht -- you just can't keep theater people in a regular theater after they've seen the big city."

Nine Theatres to Sprout Premieres in First Philly New Play Fest in Early 2007

Playbill News: "World premieres don't happen only in London and New York anymore — and the Philadelphia theatre community will prove it in February 2007, when a collection of troupes participate in the inaugural Philadelphia New Play Festival."

The HRC's Beckett Online: Googling for Godot

The Austin Chronicle Arts: "When your Web-wanderings bring you to the Harry Ransom Center's online Samuel Beckett exhibition, you have a choice.

'I can't go on,' reads one scrawled line. 'I'll go on,' reads the other."

Studio Theatre's Tales From the Temp Side "These are the tales of temp workers, the nameless, unappreciated legions of data-entry clerks, receptionists, marketing assistants, proofreaders, lawyers, etc., who toil at unpleasant and often stupor-inducing tasks. It's their world that Dietz, himself a long-suffering temp during summers in grad school, mines in 'tempOdyssey' at Studio Theatre's 2ndStage. It's lovingly described as a screwball comedy about the trials and tribulations of a young temp, Genny, and the quirky characters she encounters both on the job and in flashbacks."

That ain’t *No Way To Treat A Lady*

The Tartan Online: "The most visible people in any performance — theatre, opera, or film — are often the actors or singers. They are the ones who get the most public acknowledgment, despite the fact that there are many more people deeply involved: directors, producers, designers, writers, and composers. Douglas Cohen, a composer and lyricist most recognized for his show No Way to Treat a Lady, had the show performed by Scotch ’n’ Soda this past weekend."

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

j-o-b (ish)

Florida Studio Theatre, a professional Equity regional theatre in Sarasota, FL is seeking a Production/Company Management intern.

Duties include: work with production manager and company manager on scheduling, budgeting, calendaring, guest artist pick-up, housing prep and production support as necessary. The applicant must have a car.

The position offers a stipend of $75 per week and free furnished housing. The internship begins in January, 2007. Please have interested students and recent graduates email cover letter and resume with references to James Ashford, Casting & Hiring Coordinator. EMAIL -

In Memoriam: Remembers Those We Lost in 2006

Playbill News

Wells Earns WGA's TV Writing Prize

Backstage: "'John's place in the pantheon of television writers and creators is secure, and yet he continues to earn it anew every award season,' WGAW president Patric Verrone said. 'I find myself regularly in awe of John's achievements as a writer, as a colleague and as a friend.'"

Opera Audiences Return To Historic Raucousness

The New York Sun: "Two incidents of raucously censorious opera audiences seem to have caught the public unaware in recent weeks. At the Metropolitan Opera, Placido Domingo was booed when he conducted a 'La Bohème,' in which Anna Netrebko sang her only Mimi of the Met season. Five days later at La Scala in Milan, Italy, Roberto Alagna, singing Radamès in Franco Zeffirelli's new production of ' Aida,' was greeted with catcalls at the end of his ' Celeste Aida,' early in Act I. Mr. Alagna beat a hasty retreat, and Antonello Palombi was thrown onstage to pinch hit."

Opera on the big screen

Philadelphia Inquirer: "Productions by the Met will be simulcast in this area and elsewhere, and they will be in high-definition."

AA and AAA “Free” Battery Hacks "Two hacks on batteries surfaced recently. One on AA battery and the other one on AAA battery."

Some TV Performers Fear Sharpness of HDTV

Backstage: "The holiday season was expected to increase the number of U.S. homes with high-definition televisions to almost 33 million. In the eyes of a growing number of image-obsessed on-air personalities, that's 33 million clear reasons to be concerned."

Broadway 2006: The Year in Pictures

The New York Times > Theater > Slide Show

Best in Show: Grey Gardens and Spring Awakening Top 2006 Year-End Lists

Playbill News: "Before 2006 officially ends, several New York publications are posting their year-end 'Top 10' or 'Best of' lists. Among the front-runners are the Off-Broadway-to-Broadway musical transfers of Grey Gardens and Spring Awakening."

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A Blizzard in Denver Rains on the Parade of Performances

Yahoo! News: "the white stuff is bad news for shows playing Denver Center for the Performing Arts: Wednesday and Thursday performances of the national tour of All Shook Up and the resident stagings of A Christmas Carol and Season's Greetings by Denver Center Theatre Company were canceled, a spokesperson confirmed."

Eyring Named New Executive Director of TCG

Backstage: "Teresa Eyring, the managing director for the Tony-winning Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis who has helped to revitalize two other regional theatres in the United States, was named on Wednesday as the executive director of Theatre Communications Group, the leading service organization for nonprofit theatre in the United States."

Top 10

New York Times: "LOOKING in the rearview mirror at my year in theater, I was happily impressed with the sheer variety of the contenders for cream-of-the-crop consideration."

Broadway Top 10

New York Times: "THIS is strictly a best-of-Broadway list, which means a number of my favorite shows are not contenders. (That includes the splendid Russian-speaking “Twelfth Night” at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Public Theater’s high-octane production of David Hare’s docudrama “Stuff Happens” and the stirring revival of “Seven Guitars” from the Signature Theater Company.)"

Duncan Sheik

New York Times: "Duncan Sheik lacks the wan look of an alternative rocker. He has a happy, welcoming face and comports himself with no signs of angst. During the many years he has worked as a singer-songwriter he has remained consistently immune from the grip of creative block. On the subject of the self-doubt that can afflict so many young artists, Mr. Sheik said, “There were a couple of moments but literally two or three moments.”"

An all-too-familiar chorus "When it comes to sentimental indulgence, there really is no business like show business. Where else but on Broadway would employees (aka actors) expect to receive royalties or perpetual acknowledgement for a job when, years later, the vehicle they worked on enjoys a new, extended life without them?"

'Corrie' canceled in Canada "CanStage, the country's largest not-for-profit theater, has reversed its earlier decision and opted not to present the show as part of its 2007-08 season.
Play, about the 23-year-old American activist who died under the wheels of an Israeli bulldozer in 2003, was originally produced at London's Royal Court Theater in 2005."

See classic opera on the big screen

The Seattle Times: "You can see a lot of the Metropolitan Opera this season if you happen to live in Auburn. Or Spokane, or Redmond.

These three sites are the only places in the state of Washington where the Metropolitan Opera's first live high-definition 'simulcast' broadcasts into movie theaters will take place, starting Jan. 6. "

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Union federation says issue about respect from honchos

Rocky Mountain News: "Local labor officials say the issue that might derail Denver's chances to host the Democratic National Convention goes beyond whether the Pepsi Center will use union stagehands - it's about respect."

Berlin's `Idomeneo' Fails to Stir Fuss Even With Severed Heads "Anyone hoping to see fisticuffs between well-heeled Berlin burghers and irate Islamic radicals last night was in for a disappointment."

Broadway demographics show 20-year high in attendance

The Stage: "Entitled The Demographics of the Broadway Audience 2005-2006, the report found that the majority of the Broadway audience continues to be women, accounting for more than 62.3% of all ticket purchases last season and at least a 20% higher rate of attendance over males since 1990-1991. Women also purchased 2.96 million more tickets than men and made the final decision (54.5%) in deciding which show to see."

Peter Pan's gift to children continues with a sequel "In 1987, however, exactly 50 years after Barrie's death, the story's copyright expired in Britain and in many European countries, and the work finally entered the public domain. (In the US, too, the novel's copyright has expired, though the play remains in copyright until 2023.)
In 1988, the British government pushed through an amendment that allowed the hospital to receive royalties from Peter Pan in perpetuity.
In 1995, however, new European Union standardized copyright law came into effect in Britain. The result: All European copyrights for Peter Pan will finally expire in December 2007."

Watching Idomeneo in Berlin

Slate Magazine: "In the first half, the chorus wore stylized mock Baroque, coordinated to match their hot pink, lime green, and fluorescent orange bouffant wigs. In the second half, Electra crawled into a tiny model of the Parthenon and had a kind of epileptic seizure (as, later, did several other characters, though most recovered). One of the sets featured a series of black doors, which King Idomeneo, dressed in the garb of an Italian playboy, opened and closed as he sang. Another set featured scaffolding, upon which stood the 'gods.' Among them were Jesus, in a white cassock and floaty hair; Buddha, entirely painted gold, with prayer beads in hand; and a somewhat anorexic Mohammed, veiled and turbaned. At one point, Poseidon—sporting waist-length dreadlocks and green body paint—did a back flip. It was that kind of opera."

How Projects Really Work "This is one of the cartoon cells in the site called Project Cartoon to show how different people in a project group has different representations on a product. I thought this is quite clever."

Grants: Not Much Access for Actors

Backstage: "'I've already made more money this year than in any single year I worked as an actor,' said the Berkeley, Calif., resident, who is currently selling real estate. 'That is so sad to me and so telling about my field.'"

Drabinsky and Other Livent Execs Made Toronto Court Appearance for Early Stages of Trial

Playbill News: "Livent founder Garth Drabinsky and other executives from the defunct production company appeared at a Toronto courthouse Dec. 19 for routine procedural reasons as part of the early stages of the executives' long-awaited trials for fraud, Variety has reported."

Drabinsky in court "The cases of Livent founder Garth Drabinsky and other former executives of the defunct theater company will be one step closer to trial in Canada after an appearance at a Toronto courthouse today."

Lloyd Webber to use reality TV to find new Joseph

Celebrity News: "Reality TV has turned into the most successful and profitable way to hold auditions for major roles. Need a lead singer for a band? Try Rock Star. Need a new Pussycat Doll? Talk to the new CW. Need a new Sandy and Danny for Grease? Talk to Simon Cowell. When Andrew Lloyd Webber needed help filling the role of Maria in The Sound of Music, he turned to reality TV with the show How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria, which aired on BBC One. Now, Lloyd Webber will do it again as he starts off in search for a new Joseph for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat."

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

New job: Carpenters in Marin

The Marin Theatre Company needs carpenters for immediate employment through the 5th of January. All days possible besides the 24th and 25th and the 31st and 1st.

Please contact the Assistant Technical Director, Jeff Klien, at 415-388-5200 x307

New job: Master Carpenter/ ATD - Cal State University East Bay (Hayward)

Cal State East Bay is looking for a part time carpenter. We produce four mainstage and several smaller productions/yr. in two theatres. Looking for an experienced carpenter willing to supervise student crews, work some event calls.

Nice shop, generally good working conditions. Some flexibility in schedule possible, depending on production schedule.

Goodbye VHS, farewell fair use

Marketplace: "As VHS tapes and VCRs head the way of Betamax and phonographs, commentator Bill Hammack warns that the right to fair use is in danger of disappearing right along with them."

Shakespeare Returns to Kashmir Bookshops

Backstage: "Books are back on the shelves of insurgency-wracked Kashmir which has been blighted by a literary drought for several years."

Crew members for upcoming project

Craigslist: "Need crew members, grip persons, etc. for upcoming film for Crosbyhead Visions. "

Monday, December 18, 2006

Carrie _ in drag _ goes off-Broadway

Yahoo! News: "The off-Broadway remake of the 1970s cult classic film and book 'Carrie' stars a giant drag queen plastered with makeup and clad in a hideous assortment of floral print dresses and bulky sweaters."

Phoenix Theatre for sale "The state smoking ban has cast the future of the Phoenix Theatre and the Next Stage Theatre Company in doubt.
Theatre Group artistic director Steven Tangedal has put his Phoenix Theater at 1124 Santa Fe Drive up for sale. The company has depended for years on about $80,000 in annual revenues from running weekly games at Bingo City.
'But in the six months since the smoking ban went into effect, we've only earned about $10,000,' said Tangedal. 'That's a 75 percent drop.'"

Is it curtains for the class system?

Times Online: "An experiment at the Barbican will look at how class-ridden the theatre still is, but our corresspondent set about his own investigation"

'Headless Opera' Puts Police on Alert

New York Times: "Audience members at Monday's Deutsche Oper production of Mozart's ''Idomeneo'' will be kindly asked to empty their pockets of all metal objects. And they should be prepared to leave -- quickly -- in case of a bomb alert."

Farce comes to fore "'Theater owners have never had it so good,' argues producer Sonia Friedman. 'With so many musicals in London doing good business and filling even smaller theaters, play producers are now under immense pressure. The owners know there's so much work lined up and waiting to come in that the moment a show dips it becomes highly vulnerable.'"

Finding Motivation: What To Do When You Don’t Feel Like Doing Anything "Many people should come across this before: Sometimes you may find yourself not interested to do anything productive. You want to chill out and take a rest, but you already took a long break. Simply, you’re not motivated. What should you do?"

South Africa theater icon shot dead in robbery "South African theater impresario Taliep Pietersen, producer of some of the country's most successful musicals, was shot dead during a robbery at his home outside Cape Town, police said on Sunday."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Freelance Musicians Work Hard to Get Work

STLtoday: "The musical life of St. Louis depends on people who take their voices or their instruments from gig to gig. But is it possible to make a living as a freelancer? "

Art scene: Booming or busted?

The Detroit News Online: "P lease choose one:
A) Metro Detroit offers an array of cultural and arts experiences. From great museums, including a new museum of contemporary art, to street fairs, jazz and folk clubs and poetry slams, Detroit and its surrounding counties have it all.
B) If you seek cultural vitality, Metro Detroit is a bust. Our area -- 10th largest in population -- ranked 59th for the number of arts and cultural establishments in the nation, according to the Urban Institute, a nonprofit research organization, and in the same national ranking, it never broke 38th in any of seven measures."

SAG head decries digital divide

Plain Dealer: "How much should actors get paid for appearing on iPod screens instead of television? The studios and the Screen Actors Guild, which represents film actors, are on opposite sides."

Art goes mobile "Why the cellphone has become the single most important technological innovation to help artists bust out of gallery walls"

Epic trilogy vexed by success "When 'The Coast of Utopia' opened at Lincoln Center Theater this fall, the challenges of selling the mammoth production were almost as daunting as its staging.
Tom Stoppard's drama about 19th century Russian intellectuals hardly screams sexy and accessible. Not to mention 'Coast' is a cycle of three plays totaling more than eight hours in running time, with the trilogy rolling out incrementally over a six-month period."

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Drew Sarich Is Victor Frankenstein in NYC Reading of Tour-Aimed Musical

Yahoo! News: "Billed as a 'bold new theatrical experience' rather than 'a musical,' the song-rich show, told in flashback, has music by Mark Baron, and text and lyrics by Gary P. Cohen and Jeffrey Jackson. A recording of an earlier version of the score (seen in a New Jersey regional theatre production) is on sale at (Tony winner
Shuler Hensley is on the disc)."

Canadian Actors Approve Strike Mandate

Backstage: "Members of ACTRA (the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists) have overwhelmingly voted to support a strike if their union's contract negotiations with North American producers are unsuccessful. A total of 97.6 percent voted in favor of a strike making the referendum the largest-ever strike mandate in ACTRA's history. "

Faust - Punchdrunk

New York Times: "WHAT if you went to the theater and there were no seats? What if you could meander with no guide or direction — from one room to another, and one plot to another? And after sampling a few scenes, you could then repair to the bar, order a drink and listen to a twanging honky-tonk band?"

Friday, December 15, 2006

Gelber Stars in Macbeth-Ubu Roi 'Polish Play,' Jan. 13

( "Avenue Q's Jordan Gelber will star in the Katharsis Theater Company's World Premiere production of The Polish Play: A Conflation of Macbeth by William Shakespeare and Ubu Roi by Alfred Jarry, devised and directed by 2004 Drama Desk-nominee Henry Wishcamper (Pullman Car Hiawatha)."

The musicals are a-changin'

Independent Online Edition: "In New York, Paul Taylor finds a Broadway scene revitalised by a new breed of show in which anything goes. Shame about the Bob Dylan production, though"

Getting that crunching sound juuust right

Marketplace: "Sound design and branding are becoming increasingly important in a crowded marketplace. Kyle James reports."

Actors' Equity challenges Girl again "Actors' Equity has filed another charge with the Natl. Labor Relations Board against American Girl Place, New York, the retail outpost of the popular line of dolls.
In an Unfair Labor Practice charge, the actors' union claims that American Girl management funneled unlawful payments to thesps employed by American Girl, in an effort to sway a recent vote to unionize by the shows' casts."

Ousted Tenor Blames Low Blood Sugar

Backstage: "Roberto Alagna, the tenor who quit the stage at Milan's La Scala after being booed, said Friday he plans to sue the famed opera house for damaging his reputation by dismissing him from the cast of 'Aida.' He claimed he suffered low blood sugar and couldn't continue the performance."

Beane's 'Xanadu' Heads for Broadway

New York Times: "Douglas Carter Beane will be coming back to Broadway for the second time this season, after making his debut this fall with his play “The Little Dog Laughed.” The producers Robert Ahrens and Dan Vickery have announced that Mr. Beane’s take on the cult 1980 movie-musical “Xanadu” will be skating into the Helen Hayes Theater in May."

Stage Review: Closing bit of improvisation puts the fun in 'Dysfunctional'

Post Gazette: "You open yourself up to an obvious jab when you call your holiday revue 'dysfunctional,' and I was all set to take advantage of the invitation at the apparent end of Wednesday's opening Second City performance -- when, what to my wondering eyes should appear but a really funny ad-on, an improvised musical, 'Frogs in Love,' that made the evening worthwhile."

Synthetic Orchestras Not As Good As The Real Thing, But May Be Close Enough

Techdirt: "There have been numerous instances of machines replacing humans to perform some tasks, though traditionally this phenomenon is associated with repetitive, unskilled labor that can be easily automated."

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Q & A | Wade Mccollum • What a standout Portland actor really thinks about local theater.

Willamette Week Online: "What do you make?
It ranges. I was making $7 a show in Los Angeles. I've made $130 a week. There is no average Equity wage: I've been paid between $7 a show and $1,000 a week. God knows I've lived in the car for most of the time I've been a professional actor."

How To Network: For Introverts "Many people see the importance of networking, but it may be one of the difficult aspects in business. Especially for introverts, they may feel uncomfortable in networking. Rob May at Businesspundit shares some great tips on networking as an introvert to overcome."

'Littlest Angel' tells story of giving

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "'We moved here two years ago from Maryland when I was in second grade,' says Paige, who will appear in Greasepaint Players of Greensburg Civic Theatre's stage adaptation of the Charles Tazewell story. 'I felt homesick for my old friends, but I met so many new friends here.'"

'Holiday Revue' satirizes season's traditions

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "If traditional entertainments makes your Christmas spirit melt faster than Frosty the Snowman in a microwave, you may be in the mood for something new.
Pittsburgh Public Theater is hosting 'The Second City's Dysfunctional Holiday Revue,' an offbeat, satirical look at holidays and the people we celebrate them with."

'Toyland' adaptation celebrates holiday spirit - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "The Westmoreland Academy of Performing Arts presents a Christmas tale that will resonate with young and old.
'Barnaby and the Babes of Toyland' is an original adaptation of the popular show 'Babes in Toyland,' which brings to life many of children's favorite storybook characters."

Google Patent Search launches

Boing Boing: "Link to Google Patent Search beta. Instant favorite new timehole. Fascinating, and infinitely better than the USPTO website (all data comes from USPTO, and results on Google do include links to the USPTO entries). "

Stage Review: Kimberly Richards takes command as feisty nun in 'Catechism'

Post Gazette: "Pittsburghers sometimes being a step behind the curve, there may be some who haven't yet caught on to the 'Late Nite Catechism' phenomenon over at City Theatre on the South Side."

Experienced Creative Volunteer Costumer for Dark Red Riding Hood

Craigslist: "The Rage of the Stage Players, the not-for-profit, Pittsburgh-based theatre group, dedicated to offbeat stage productions including horror, mature fantasy, and black comedy, who recently brought you their sold-out urban/modernized version of 'Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,' is currently seeking responsible and dependible costuming help for its upcoming dark, original stage show based on the folk tale, Little Red Riding Hood. (Actual show slated for March 2nd, 3rd, 9th and 10th, 2007). "

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Policing the Dorms

Inside Higher Ed: "Attempting to end its reputation as a party school, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst has changed a number of police practices over the last couple of years to cut down on drug activity and to increase campus safety. But the changes have caused some student unhappiness — evident in a protest Tuesday — as convictions soar for drug use, and claims swirl that officers are violating rights by randomly patrolling hallways to catch students smoking pot."

The greatest story never told

Guardian Unlimited Arts: "A virgin birth, great parts for everyone and a happy ending ... so why aren't there more good plays about Jesus? Mark Ravenhill reports "

A Glorious New Awakening:The Broadway Musical Reborn

NYO: "It’s with great joy and excitement that I report the triumphant opening of Spring Awakening on Broadway. A kind of miracle is happening at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre. With its superb rock score by Duncan Sheik, and Steven Sater’s fine book and lyrics, this is the show that changes everything we thought we knew about that once-great invention, the All-American Musical."

Managing Stress in Daily Life "How many people do you meet who complain of being totally stressed out and tired all the time? Do you also feel that you are tired and fatigued most of the times and do not have time for yourself?"

The Fine Art of Self-Promotion

Backstage: "On a set the other day, the question of how much an actor should be a businessperson and actively promote his or her career came up. "

Stage Review: PICT's 'Shaughraun' delivers a charming romp with heart

Post Gazette: "As a title, 'The Shaughraun,' it's a robust Victorian melodrama by the Irish whirlwind, Dion Boucicault, 1820-90, that tests Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre with 17 actors, 16 scenes, 14 settings, five musicians and a dog."

Emerging Writers and Performers Get Goodspeed Showcase in Early 2007

Playbill News: "Goodspeed Musicals' Max Showalter Center for Education in the Musical Theater announced its programs for the 2007 Goodspeed Musical Theatre Institute, including the second annual Goodspeed Festival of New Artists."

Tough times for Broadway shows "Its producers have announced that 'High Fidelity' will shutter Sunday, becoming the second tuner this fall to close soon after it opened. Last month Twyla Tharp-Bob Dylan tuner 'The Times They Are A-Changin'' threw in the towel less than a month after opening to negative reviews."

'High Fidelity' To Tune Out On Broadway - Fun & Entertainment: "The New York Daily News Wednesday reported that the musical from director Walter Bobbie opened last Thursday, but poor reviews have forced the show's producers to announce that production will end on Sunday, after only 14 regular performances."

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Happy Holidays

CFA Announcements

Carnegie Mellon's College of Fine Arts Announcement:
See events below that should be on your calendar for next semester.
Wats:On? Festival is Back ______________________________________________

Friday, January 19th, lecture by David Adjaye one of the most prominent architect in the UK, and one of the most important emerging architects on the international scene.

Saturday, January 20th, lecture by Elizabeth Diller winner of prestigious MacArthur Award for Creative Genius, artist and architect.

Contact Charles Rosenblum at for more information.
Art and the Media Panel Discussion ______________________________________

January 30th, 11:30 a.m.
Alumni Concert Hall, CFA building

Editors and writers from around the U.S. will discuss various topics on media; how the media industry works and how one can participate in media for advocacy, publicity or education purposes.

Lunch will be provided.


Scott Holleran, Box Office Magazine
Andrew Druckenbrod, Classical Music Critic, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Beth Broome, Architectural Record, Managing Editor Julie Lasky, ID Magazine, Editor-in-Chief Kurt Shaw, Art Critic, Pittsburgh Tribune Review

Contact Eric Sloss at for more information.
School of Drama's "Playground"___________________________________________

February 11-17

"Playground" Student Developed Project Week will happen all over campus.

Contact Taylor Harris at for more information.
"You're Not the Boss of Me" conference on Copyright______________________

March 30 and 31
A two-day festival of performances, screenings, exhibitions and lectures hosted by the School of Art.

Contact Christopher Sperandio for more information at
Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic____________________________________________

May 3
Severance Hall, Cleveland, Ohio
7:30 p.m.
Contact Amy Stabenow at for more information.
3rd Annual Conference on the Art and Science of Services________________

May 23 - 26
Designing for Innovation in Services
Carnegie Mellon University School of Design

Contact Shelley Evenson at for more information.

With 'Radio Golf,' Goodman Becomes First Troupe to Stage Complete Wilson Cycle

Yahoo! News: "With the early 2007 production, Goodman becomes the only resident theatre to have produced every play in the late Wilson's cycle about the 20th-century African-American experience."

The Great White-Bread Way

New York Times: "“I don’t remember having to line up like this,” winter-whites huffed to no one in particular.
Neither do I, actually. My experience of Broadway theatergoing dates back only a couple of decades, but it does not include many memories of idling outside theaters in clean files, an experience that recalls waiting your turn to savor the excitements of an amusement park ride, or maybe a Hollywood blockbuster on opening weekend. Time was, the modest line for people picking up tickets was the only serious obstacle to entering a Broadway theater. If you had yours in hand, you simply cleaved the anxious melee waiting outside for latecomers and marched in. No queue in sight."

One stage of film's marketing is on stage

Los Angeles Times: "DreamWorks has been building support for its Oscar-gunning adaptation of the stage musical 'Dreamgirls' by paying licensing costs for any noncommercial theatrical organizations (high schools, colleges, community and youth groups and other groups) that wanted to stage the musical. So far more than 50 productions of the show have been performed across the country, in venues including Hackensack, N.J.; Milwaukee, New Orleans and Boise, Idaho."

10 tips for time management in a multitasking world "If you have not subscribed our feed and missed a lot of tips and tricks for your life everyday, I suggest you to read this article instead (or an better option, do both). Penelope Trunk, a columnist at the Boston Globe, summarizes some great tips that coming from the blogosphere. She lists ten important tips to get a better handle for your work and focus to achieve productivity"

Scenes from the Arts-burgh

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Now in its 15th season, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera's 'A Musical Christmas Carol' celebrates the holidays by performing an intervention on miserly Ebenezer Scrooge."

Grinch Is Rolling in Green

New York Times: "''Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical'' grossed over $1.5 million last week for 12 performances at the Hilton Theater."


New York Times: "Thirty years after we first saw that photograph of a blood-drenched Sissy Spacek in her prom dress, pretty much everyone knows how the movie “Carrie” ends. But the story’s big prom-night finish has never been more fun than in the deliberately cheesy comedy version of “Carrie” at Performance Space 122. (Poor Miss Gardner, the phys ed teacher, done in by a silvery cardboard star!)"

Fire ballet at The Crucible

Boing Boing: "The Crucible, a sculpture and industrial arts organization in Oakland, is presenting a fire ballet rendition of Romeo and Juliet on January 10 to 13, and 17 to 20. The teaser video is exciting."

Local choirs take stage to warm up CLO crowd

Post Gazette: "One distinction of Pittsburgh CLO's 'A Musical Christmas Carol,' which opened last week at the Byham Theater for its 15th year, is to intermix the familiar Dickens story of Christmas redemption with the other kind of carols -- songs, some 18 in all."

Theater Review: 'Christmas Carol' a gift that keeps on giving

Post Gazette: "Pittsburgh CLO's 'A Musical Christmas Carol' has become, like the Dickens tale it dramatizes, a seasonal tradition."

Edward Scissorhands Cuts a Swath in L.A. Starting Dec. 12

Playbill News: "Michela Meazza and Sam Archer in Edward Scissorhands. Matthew Bourne's dance theatre musical, Edward Scissorhands, makes its Los Angeles debut Dec. 12-31 at the Ahmanson Theatre following a run in San Francisco."

Monday, December 11, 2006

Additional Readings

Monday December 11th 2pm, Studio C
"Flowers & Flies" A Play by Carol Godart Directed by Laura Konsin

Ashes, Ashes we all fall down.

Monday December 11th 8pm, Checco
"Double Lub Dub" A Play by Rob Smith
Directed by Dana Friedman

Two Hearts. One Chest. Seriously?

Tuesday December 12th 2pm, Checco
"Dani Girl" A New Musical
Music by Michael Kooman
Book and Lyrics by Christopher Dimond
Directed by Kathleen Asmoff

A young girl battles a terminal disease. Hilarity ensues.

Tuesday December 12th 8pm, Checco
"Three Ways to Tie a Noose" A Play by Michael Scotto Directed by Dana Friedman

Crawford spent twenty years in prison, but he's only begun to pay.

Wednesday December 13th 2pm, Checco
"Ether Steeds" A Play by Jason Williamson Directed by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar

In a churning sea of memory, Skeeta struggles to find true union with another human being.

Wednesday December 13th 8pm, Checco
"Chasing the Dragon" A Play by Michael Herman Directed by Allegra Libonati

A young woman struggles to connect, but sinks deeper into chaos.

Tuition Tax Break Extended

Inside Higher Ed: "Under the provision, individuals who earn less than $65,000, and couples who earn less than $130,000, can deduct up to $4,000 in tuition and some other college costs for themselves or their children."

Feeling the Winds From Washington

Inside Higher Ed: "The 600 academic administrators and professors who gathered in Philadelphia last week for the annual meeting of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education are on the front lines of accreditation. They’re the ones who lead self-studies of their own colleges or participate on visiting teams that review other institutions. They are charged with ensuring that their campuses are fulfilling their missions of educating students, and of enticing or prodding occasionally recalcitrant faculty members to measure their effectiveness and change their ways if they come up short."

Disney considers options amid Shanghai park doubt

Yahoo! News: "The U.S. entertainment giant has been exploring the possibility of opening a park in China's biggest city for over a year, according to city government officials."

Video technology allows casting in real time

Yahoo! News: "When casting director Charlie Bogdan was recently in Brazil casting a Toyota commercial and needed approval on the Amazon Indians he wanted for the spot, flying them to Hollywood never crossed his mind."

Tenor Walks Off Stage at La Scala

Backstage: "Tenor Roberto Alagna marched off the stage at La Scala when the audience booed him during the second performance of Franco Zeffirelli's 'Aida.' He was replaced seconds later by his understudy, who rushed on wearing jeans."

GTD Coach on Google Tools "Kelly Forrister, a facilitator and coach at David Allen & Co., shares her GTD system with Google tools. As she is a fan of Google software, she tries to integrate many tools, like Google Personalized Homepage, Spreadsheet, Calendar, and Mail into her workflow. "

'Nutcracker' dreams flourish

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's lavish production of 'The Nutcracker' began casting its charms in Downtown's Benedum Center again over the weekend in a holiday tradition more dependable than a white Christmas."

Dance Review: Buoyant, localized 'Nutcracker' shows off the PBT's women

Post Gazette: "This year audiences can be a little more nostalgic, given the proscenium clock that is inspired by 'I'll meet you under Kaufmann's Clock' and the book 'Kaufmann's Christmas Stories for Boys and Girls' that occupies a prominent space in Marie's dream."

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Conservatory Hour

One last one this year!

The critiques for “Side Show” and “Romeo and Juliet” will be held on Monday, Dec. 11

5:00-6:30pm in Rangos 1

This is your opportunity to have your say about these productions.

NYDAC News and Events - December 2006

Carnegie Mellon New York Drama Alumni Clan

NYDAC News and Events - December 2006

In this message:

:: Directories

:: Our 49th Holiday Party


New Directories for 2007
by Chris Cummings, NYDAC Communications Secretary

We are in the process of printing the 2007 Directory, which will be available for pick-up at the Holiday Party. You can also get one if you buy your membership at the door. If you are a member and can't make it to the party this year, it will be mailed to you in January.

We're proud to be able to help keep the connections between Carnegie alums strong, and excited that our membership has developed so much that we need to print a new directory just to keep you up to date!

... and EVENTS
Wednesday, December 20th

49th Holiday Party
by Evan O'Brient, NYDAC President

Reminisce with old friends, meet someone new, and welcome our most recent alumni at the 49th Carnegie Mellon New York Drama Alumni Clan Holiday Party!

It's hard to believe that it's time for Sardi's already. We hope that you'll join us this year for another evening of good fun and good friends at one of New York's most historic restaurants. Last year we unrolled a whole new menu of food so if you're hungry, please come have a bite. There's a full service cash bar so if you're thirsty, by all means come join the fun. We will also be raffling off tickets to Broadway shows and the good old Carnegie Mellon (or Carnegie Tech) paraphernalia! How much more fun could you wish for from a holiday party?

We hope to see you later this month at Sardi's!!

Wednesday, December 20th
$10 Members, $20 non-Members
Membership can be purchased at the door. Want more information on NYDAC membership? Please visit or e-mail us at

Upcoming Events:
Ice Skating -- February 10th

we remain,

Special John Kani Visit Confirmed! - Liz Bradley

As some of you are aware, we have been working for some time to achieve a visit to the School of Drama and the Carnegie Mellon campus by Dr. John Kani, who will be visiting the Drama School from January 15 to 19.

I have attached a short biography for your review, but know first that this remarkable actor, director, playwright and humanitarian created one of the two roles in THE ISLAND, which he co-authored with Athol Fugard. His performance was subsequently honored in America with a Tony Award. (As I'm sure you'll recall, we produced the play in a shortened version earlier this
term.) He also served the reknowned Market Theatre in South Africa as Artistic Director for a very distinguished term.

I am aware that these dates fall on our first week back, but John goes into rehearsal for a play that will be produced in London and run until June.
Therefore he must leave to begin rehearsals on January 20.

Still we will have him on campus as our guest for almost a week -- which is a remarkable commitment of time. As Monday is Martin Luther King Day, he may participate in some of those observances if he is sufficiently rested from his trip from South Africa.

His first official duty is meeting with Sophomore Actors between 9 AM and 12 PM, on Tuesday.

We are offering a preparatory lecture on his importance to world theatre -- currently planned for the Chosky Theatre between 1:30 to 2:50. All Drama History students will attend. All others are welcome.

John Kani will give a University Lecture in the Chosky Theatre on Tuesday, January 16 at 4:30. This event is co-sponsored by the August Wilson Center, the President's Diversity Council, the office of the Dean of Student Affairs, and the President's Office. All Drama students are required to attend.

Option coordinators are working with me on confirming the rest of his schedule. Our goal is to have him interact with as many students as possible.

His non-apartheid theatre work includes performances in a series of Western plays both controversial and acclaimed - for example, HAMLET and OTHELLO both directed by actor and activist Janet Suzman which transferred to the Royal Shakespeare Company's Complete Works Festival.

I can't imagine a better start to 2007 than time spent with this extraordinary artist, whom I hope will be an inspiration to us all.

I extend every good wish for a peaceful, restorative and well deserved break. A great deal of very hard and worthwhile work has taken place in the Drama School this autumn.

Ohio Motion Picture Tax Incentive Passed by Ohio Senate; to Be Heard in House of Representatives Next Week

Yahoo! Finance: "'In my union capacity, I work with some of Ohio's most talented and creative people,' said Patton. 'With this legislation, our state can become a leader in drawing new motion picture and other media production - creating new, family-supporting jobs for men and women in Ohio,' Patton concluded."

Playwright Nina Raine on the difficulties of directing your own work

Guardian Unlimited Arts: "The qualities that make a good assistant director are diametrically opposed to those that make a good director. On his first day as assistant at the RSC, John Caird was asked to make his director a cup of tea. It came - deliberately - with a sinister metallic sheen. The director took one sip, and said, 'Well, I'm never asking you to do that again.' Next thing, Caird was directing Nicholas Nickleby with Trevor Nunn - as an equal, as co-director. Meekness, self-effacement, near invisibility are all excellent gopher qualities for an assistant director. But they are potentially catastrophic for a director." "These articles get you around if you are a student - these advices are extremely valuable for your school years. Specifically, these articles could help you answer all these questions: How to start sucessfully as a freshman? Where to study? How to plan my school year? How to tackle my projects and papers? How to do well on exam?"

Canadian Actors Prepare to Strike

Backstage: "U.S. actors are already enjoying holiday down-time: TV series are on hiatus, film production has slowed, curtains are coming down on many plays, and thesps are making their way home to families eager to hear about their adventures in acting. Actors north of the border, however, are preparing for what could be a not-so-happy new year. Rocky contract negotiations between North American producers and the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists are increasing the likelihood that ACTRA's 21,000 members will go on strike early next year. "

ACTRA Makes Progress with Producers

Backstage: "The Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA) reports North American producers have unconditionally withdrawn their proposal to reduce actors' fees by 25 percent — a sign that the union has made some progress in its negotiations. "

Berlin Opera House Loses 'Muhammad' Head

Backstage: "The head of the Islamic prophet as well as those of Jesus, Buddha and Neptune that were used in the three-year-old production of Mozart's 'Idomeneo' have gone missing, Deutsche Oper Berlin spokesman Alexander Busche said Friday, confirming a report in the Berliner Morgenpost newspaper."

SAG Says No to Health Insurance Hike

Backstage: "Daily Variety reports the Screen Actors Guild will soon announce the elimination of an expected hike in the salary requirements to receive union health insurance. "

Dinner Theater

New York Times: "For many Americans this is the only kind of live theater available. Fans of the Border Line boast that people drive in from more than 100 miles away for the show. “There’s not a lot to do in a small town, so two times a year there’s an outing,” said Chris Tharp, who works in a bank and plays a lady-in-waiting. “We always have a good time.”"

The Voysey Inheritance

New York Times: "OFFHAND it would be hard to think of a theatrical pairing less likely than David Mamet, the tough-talking hard guy, and Harley Granville Barker, an Edwardian playwright, director and matinee idol whose work, though daring in its time, is seldom put on anymore without a whiff of musty drawing room and mothballed frock coat. But there a number of affinities between them: a bent toward dark and sometimes uncomfortable themes; a liking for plain, colloquial language; and — as evidenced by Mr. Mamet’s adaptation of Granville Barker’s play “The Voysey Inheritance,” which opened Wednesday at the Atlantic Theater Company — a mutual fascination with greed, guilt and financial corruption."

Stage Review: 'Buffalo' crackles with sad comedy

Post Gazette: "Last week Pittsburgh had the quintessential chick show, 'Mamma Mia!' So it's a good time for a response from that poet of aggressive American males, David Mamet. Note that the ladies had a great time at 'Mamma Mia!,' allowing the men to join the final jubilation. But in Mamet's world the women are just off-stage irritants, and when male bonding fails, the men descend into despair, alone."

British holiday programming changing "Once upon a time, as all good Yuletide tales begin, Christmas theater programming in Britain could be summed up in a single word: pantomime. Entire families flocked annually to this peculiarly British entertainment. For more than a decade, however, London has bucked the trend with many venues providing alternatives to trad seasonal fare. This year is no exception."

Humana Fest announces spring slate "Thirty-first edition of the annual event, one of the country's highest-profile showcases for new legit writing, runs Feb. 25-April 7. Sked includes the traditional marathon weekends for industry types (including the usual influx of Gotham legiters): March 23-24 for artistic directors, lit managers, dramaturgs and writers and March 30-April 1 for journalists, producers, helmers and casting agents."


Chronicle: "'Dreamgirls' is loosely based on the Supremes -- particularly on how the late Florence Ballard lost the lead-singer spot to Diana Ross, who lacked Ballard's vocal power but was prettier and thinner. It could be the story of any show business heartbreak."

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Judgment day

Time Out New York: "Everyone’s a critic, but some professional reviewers have the power to shape NYC culture—and for the first time, these tastemakers have been rated by the artists and industry insiders who know them best."

Arm-Mounted Index Card Scabbard "By strapping on this GAUNTLET OF PRODUCTIVITY, I gain a +1 on focus and maybe a +1 on intelligence. I call it the “Nag-a-tronic”, but I think Index Card Scabbard is a little more general-purpose… "

Help! Ex-Beatle Paul demands copyright fair play

Yahoo! News: "Paul McCartney andRobbie Williams joined thousands of other performers on Thursday in an appeal for an extension to British copyright on their recordings.
They called for 'fair play for musicians' in a full-page advertisement in the Financial Times containing more than 4,000 names."

IATSE Lashes Out at WGA over Nixed Talks

Backstage: "A simmering feud between two unions burst into full flame Tuesday as IATSE president Thomas Short accused WGA leaders of 'irresponsibility and incompetence' for nixing early producer negotiations for a new film and TV contract."

Children - Broadway

New York Times: "Four hundred and fifty bucks. That’s what it cost the Agnew family for a Saturday night performance of “The Lion King.” Whether that considerable chunk was spent for two hours and 45 minutes of delight or for one flustered and fuss-filled act followed by a hasty escape at intermission came down to one person: Harris Agnew, age 3."

Disney film's stage version on tap

Post Gazette: "The mother of a preteen girl recently described the phenomenon of Disney's TV movie 'High School Musical' as having 'a life of its own.'"

Stage Preview: Busy actors come to town to pair off in Irish Theatre's 'The Shaughraun'

Post Gazette: "As you might guess, it's an entertainment for the holidays -- 'The Shaughraun,' a 19th-century comic melodrama that completes the 10th Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre season."

Stage Preview: War is the backdrop for father-son drama 'Corps Values'

Post Gazette: "Since the Iraq War has now gone on longer than our part of World War II, isn't it time it started showing up on Pittsburgh stages?"

Sights & sounds

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "One of the best assets of Carnegie Mellon University's Regina Gouger Miller Gallery is the three floors that comprise it. For stepping off of the elevator to each, you never know what you're going to see. That's especially true of three exhibitions currently on view, because each is a surprise in its own way."

Heroes & Villians

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "For scenic designer Fred Kinney, 'The Shaughraun' presents challenges very different from his most recent Pittsburgh show."

Arena raises over $100 million for new facility "Adding to the theater's existing two stages, the $120 million complex will sport a 200-seat black box theater for new works, as well as spaces for rehearsals, classrooms and set design; onsite apartments for artists; a cafe; and administrative office. All will be housed under a single sweeping roof designed by Vancouver's Bing Thom Architects."

More 'Urinetown' trouble "Joseph P. McDonnell, who directed the original 1999 production of 'Urinetown' at the New York Intl. Fringe Fest, is accusing the team that staged the Broadway version of the musical of plagiarizing some of his contributions to the show."

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Last ULS lecture and Faces of Democracy:International Film Festival

1. University lecture

Thursday, December 7th 4:30pm - McConomy Auditorium, University Center
Comics: A Medium in Transition
Scott McCloud
Author of "Understanding Comics/Reinventing Comics"

American comics are changing fast. Bolstered by the literary ambitions of the "graphic novel" movement, a flood of international influences and the growing importance of new technologies, the comics landscape shifts regularly in surprising and increasingly unpredictable directions. Author and comics artist, Scott McCloud, puts all these trends into perspective in a fast-moving visual presentation.

There will be a booksigning after the lecture ends in McConomy Auditorium. Copies of Making Comics, Understanding Comics and Reinventing Comics will be available at a cost of $20/each plus sales tax.
Additional information can be found at this link:

2. Faces of Democracy Film Festival
December 7-10: South Side Works Cinema
December 10: Closing Night Reception at Regent Square Theatre.

Thursday, December 7, 7:30 pm: Your Name is Justine (Poland-Germany- Luxembourg, 2005) + Short film. Introduction with director Franco de Pena.

Friday, December 8, 6:30 pm: Stolen Eyes (Bulgaria, 2005) + Short film.
Friday, December 8, 8:30 pm: Faces of Change (USA, 2005) + Short film.
Introduction with director Michele Stephenson.

Saturday, December 9, 3:00 pm: American premiere of I Love You (Croatia, 2006) + Short film. Introduction with director Dalibor Matanic.
Saturday, December 9, 5.30 pm: Foundation (Poland, 2006) + Short film. Introduction with director Filip Bajon.
Saturday, December 9, 8:00 pm: Czech Dream (Czech Republic, 2004) + Short film.

Sunday, December 10, 3:00 pm: I Love You (Croatia, 2006) + Short film.
Introduction with director, Dalibor Matanic.

Sunday, December 10, 6:00 pm: Black Gold (UK, 2005) + Short film.
Closing reception with special screening and guest.

Film descriptions:

Your Name is JustineYour (Masz Na Imie Justyna) Directed by Franco de Peña Poland-Germany-Luxembourg, 2005; 97 min *Luxembourg's Official Submission for the Academy Awards '06
in a Foreign Language Film category

Mariola dreams of a better life far from her provincial town. Her boyfriend Artur invites her for a short vacation to Germany, to meet his parents, but his real motive is to sell Mariola into prostitution. Two million people are sold worldwide everyday. Two hundred thousand of them are women sold to work in brothels. Fifteen thousand of them are Polish women. The film is a story about one of them. *Pittsburgh Premiere*. Thursday, December 7, 7:30pm.

Czech Dream (Ceský sen)
Directed by Filip Remunda and Vit Klusak Czech Republic, 2004; 90 min *Best Non-Fiction Film Award at Michael Moore's Traverse City
Film Festival 2005 (US)

Two film students test the bounds of propaganda and advertising by creating a full-fledged campaign for a non-existent hypermarket. Despite ads like "Don't come. Don't spend," a crowd still forms on opening day. In a humorous and disconcerting way, the documentary reveals the Czech obsession with consumerism. Faces of Democracy urges that you don't see this film, don't enjoy it, and don't learn from it, but it is okay to sing the catchy jingles! *Pittsburgh Premiere* Saturday, December 9, 8:00pm.

Stolen Eyes (Otkradnati ochi)
Directed by Radoslav Spassov
Bulgaria, 2005; 110 min
*2005 Moscow International Film Festival Nomination: Golden
St. George Award for Director Radoslav Spassov

The line forms here for a new name, here for a new birth certificate and here for a new address. Just like that an old identity is erased, and a new identity is forged. Even something as basic as a name is a freedom not to be taken for granted. For if a name is replaced, what is next? A style of dress? A religion? A language? A homeland? Against this back drop of ethnic cleansing, a contradictory love story emerges between a Muslim-Turk woman struggling to maintain her identity and the non-Muslim Bulgarian man commissioned to regenerate her. However, her identity is the one he is unable to erase from his mind. *Pittsburgh Premiere* Friday, December 8, 6:30 pm.

I Love You (Volim Te)
Directed by Dalibor Matanic
Croatia, 2006; 83 min
*53rd Pula Film Festival: Kodak Award for best photography,
Golden Arena Award for best photography to Branko Linta

Ana and Kreso are separated by two ultra-white iBooksTM that replace their former intimacy. Ana complains about Kreso's adultery, his boredom and his drinking until Kreso silences her with his news: he has AIDS. Kreso clings to debaucheries to avoid being whited-out by the society that obsesses over face-lifts and materialism.As Kreso says, "We became aware that we are fucking suburbs of everything, so distant from anything important, so we started to swallow as much as we could. **American Premiere** (SS) Saturday, December 9, 3:00 pm. (SS) Sunday, December 10, 3:00 pm.

Faces of Change
Directed by Michele Stephenson
United States, 2005; 80min
*2005 African Diaspora Film Festival Winner: Best Film directed
by a Woman of Color- Locarno Film Festival

"Oppression is the same everywhere." A black, single mother draws from her own experience to counsel teen mothers in Brazil. A boisterous New Orleans resident fights her medical maladies and environmental racism, after learning that her low-income, housing community was built on a toxic-waste dump. An abolitionist in Mauritania fights the slavery that his leaders deny. An Indian man explores the stigma of the Dalit lower caste into which he was born. A Bulgarian Roma doctor-turned-lawyer struggles against his country's marginalization of the Roma ("gypsy") people. *Pittsburgh Premiere* Friday, December 8, 8:30 pm

Black Gold
Directed by Marc Francis and Nick Francis United Kingdom, 2005; 78min
*2006 Sundance Film Festival Nomination: Grand Jury Prize for World Cinema-Documentary for Directors Marc and Nick Francis

A hot caramel macchiato would effectively combat the chilly weather. Meeting a friend would feel best over two white-chocolate mochas. The last minute, pre-class energy kick comes in the form of an espresso. No matter where one turns, there tends to be a coffee-based beverage, but from where do those magical little beans come? Ensuring that your next coffee beverage will never be the same, Black Gold reaffirms the ever-growing need for fair trade in the face of globalization. *Pittsburgh Premiere* (RS) Sunday, December 10, 6:00 pm

Foundation (Fundacja)
Directed by Filip Bajon
Poland, 2006; 110 min

Founded on true events, Foundation tells of a con man who managed to trick the entire law enforcement. His creativity, finesse and exceptional charm gained considerable media attention, and his crime became only more impressive considering that he managed the entire scheme from prison. *Pittsburgh Premiere* (SS) Saturday, December 9, 5.30 pm.

For general information, please contact the festival Director Jolanta Lion at: or phone: (412) 445-6292


Wednesday December 6th 8pm, Checco

“Floating Underwater”
A Play by France-Luce Benson Directed by Dana Friedman

Drowning in a life of sexual degradation, a young woman is forced to confront her past, and finally reclaim her power.

Thursday December 7th 8pm, Checco

“The Eye Of The Storm”
A Play By Toussaint McClellan Directed by Dana Friedman

Mississippi tries to prevent a family curse from falling on his little brother.

Friday December 8th 8pm, Checco

“Oracle of the Modern Times”
A Play By James Sandlin Ashby Directed by Robert May

A mother's love, a father's sacrifice, a son's determination.

Saturday December 9th 2pm, Checco

"Ferocious Love"
A Screenplay by Michael Scotto

A desperate orphan struggles to regain the vision that made his art--and his life--worth living.

Saturday December 9th 8pm, Checco

“Blue Star, Gold Star”
A New Musical
Book and Lyrics by Ryan Garney
Music by Galison Lau
Directed by Michael Finkle

Senza dispiacere, non ci è gioia. Senza limitazione, non ci è la libertà.
Senza dolore, non ci è amore. Think about it.

Sunday December 10th 2pm, Checco

“Not Fade Away”
A Play by John-Paul Nickel Directed by Allegra Libonati

An invisible man struggles to find his self-worth.

Scott McCloud

Scott McCloud, comic writer/artist and author of UNDERSTANDING COMICS will be speaking to the CMU population at large Thursday, Dec 7 at 4:30 pm in the UC. Mr. McCloud has spent the last 15 years analyzing the form of comics and visual storytelling, and his theories and observations are worthwhile to any artist creating for an audience.

On Friday, at approximately 4:30, Mr. McCloud has graciously agreed to come to the School of Drama to talk with students. Both Dick Block and I use his first book in our classes, so hopefully there will be some interest in attending. BUT, realize Scott is not a theater person, so he isn't here to TALK AT students -- he has no portfolio to present, no war stories to relate, and won't have much to say about process and practice in the professional theater. He is here to TALK WITH students, if you get the difference.

I'd suggest anyone thinking of attending should come prepared with at least one question for Mr. McCloud. If you're stumped,

take a look at Chapters 2 and 7 in UNDERSTANDING COMICS. He has some very interesting ideas about Art, Artists and the relationship between creators and audience that seem to me to have everything to do with what everyone in this building is here for.

We're booked in Design II at 4:30-5:30. I hope some of you will be able to participate.

Joe Pino

18th Annual Gypsy of the Year Raises Almost $3 Million

( "This year, the Broadway production of The Color Purple raised the most money of any show this period with $194,500. Jersey Boys was the fourth runner up with $133,250, The Phantom of the Opera the third runner up with $153,800, The Drowsy Chaperone the second runner up with $185,900, and Wicked the runner up with $192,900."

Stripping is art, Norway decides

BBC NEWS: "A Norwegian appeals court has ruled that striptease is an art form and should therefore be exempt from value-added tax (VAT)."

Wonderful World

The New Yorker: "Anything other than sunshine would have been an insult to the opening of America’s latest Shangri-La: Disneyland, or, as its creator called it, “the happiest place on Earth.” On that day, if you believe one estimate, as many as twenty-eight thousand people poured through the gates, with seventy million more, about half the population of the country, watching the event on television."

'Model' a Step Closer to Unionization

Backstage: "'America's Next Top Model,' emblematic of recent efforts to organize reality television, took a giant step toward becoming a more fully unionized production Monday as IATSE won a key representation vote."

Long Memories of 'Long Day's Journey'

New York Times: "Eugene O’Neill’s “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” opened on Broadway 50 years ago this November; Brooks Atkinson, in his review in The New York Times, said the play “restores the drama to literature and the theater to art.”"

'Rachel Corrie' to Close

New York Times: "After a year of controversy and debate, “My Name Is Rachel Corrie” is closing. The one-woman play was put together by Alan Rickman and Katharine Viner from the writings of an American-born Palestinian-rights advocate who was killed in 2003 by an Israeli Army bulldozer in the Gaza Strip. After its final performance on Dec. 17, “Rachel Corrie” will have played 9 previews and 71 regular performances at the Minetta Lane Theater in Greenwich Village."

Stage Review: 'El Paso' pursues unusual itinerary

Post Gazette: "With any successful play, the destination can be said to be worth the journey. But with Quantum Theatre's 'El Paso Blue,' the reverse is also true."

Students collaborate for this 'Nutcracker'

Post Gazette: "Sometimes the trickle-down effect doesn't apply only to economics. When Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre eliminated its orchestra, audiences showed that they wanted live music with resounding support."

Which Side Show Are You On?

Pittsburgh City Paper: "As the lead characters in the stage musical loosely based on their lives, conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton sing such cheekily titled tunes as 'When I'm By Your Side' and 'I Will Never Leave You.' In Side Show's premiere, in 1997, and in many subsequent productions, the twins are portrayed as cover-girl beauties."

Thousands of songs in your pocket: An audiophile's nightmare? "The main issue: size. New technology can deliver ever smaller, more storable music files - but the process carries a cost in terms of sound quality. Most of what all those earbuds-wearers are hearing, say experts, is bass-heavy noise."

Set a boundary and they will break it

Los Angeles Times: "The fourth wall, that cozy invisible space between audience and actors, is about to be wryly breached by STO Union. Like any experimental theater, this Canadian group uses plenty of multimedia and irony to upend conventional storytelling. But their primary tool is the self-awareness — even the discomfort — brought on when audiences and performers aren't so neatly separated."

Hakuna matata (there are no worries here)

Orlando Sentinel : Theater: "She's 15 feet long, 6 feet across and weighs 150 pounds. At the beginning of The Lion King, the touring Broadway musical, she makes her entrance down one of the center aisles from the rear of the house.
Except that at Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre, where Bertha the elephant will make her debut Thursday night, there are no center aisles.
What's a touring Broadway musical to do?"

Diary of a Dance Captian | News #038; Media: "Hello, my name is Michelle Kittrell and I am a Dance Captain!
Sometimes, I voice that title with great pride and, sometimes, with great exhaustion - but always with great gratitude."

AFL-CIO Adds BLUE MAN GROUP to Don't Buy List | News #038; Media: "The decision to put Blue Man Productions on the official Boycott list was taken at the request of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employes, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts (IATSE) with support from dozens of performing arts unions in the U.S., Canada and Europe."

Beloved 'BFG' tale delightfully adapted

Philadelphia Inquirer: "BFG stands for 'Big Friendly Giant' - as almost anybody from 5 to 35 can tell you. The beloved children's book The BFG, written by Roald Dahl in 1982, is about the adventures of Sophie, a little orphan who is snatched from her bed by the BFG and brought to Giant Country. Happily, both the stage adaptation by David Wood and the Arden Theatre's lively production, directed with great imagination by Whit MacLaughlin, do the book justice."

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

In Print

Any Alum Out There?

From Dick Block...

All -

Melissa and I are still gathering information about any work that our alums since 2001 have been doing. Anything that you can send me would be good. This is a bit more extensive than what I asked for earlier since it goes back farther. Liz will be using this list as well to show the Provost how successful our recent alums are so please send me anything and everything that you have. I know everyone is ridiculously busy but the sooner I get this the better.



Dick is at

Stage Review: 'Side Show' is freakishly fine

Post Gazette: "Or take the 1997 musical 'Side Show,' with book and lyrics by Bill Russell and music by Henry Krieger, which is now being given an elaborate staging at Carnegie Mellon. Here, as with 'The Elephant Man,' we are brought inside the world of the supposed freak to discover the human being. But even as we deplore the objectification and exploitation of abnormality, we still feel the fascination. So it is not surprising that these plays accuse our fascination of being freakish, evidence of the mix of normal and abnormal in us all."

Women working backstage in West End likely to receive less pay

The Stage: "The Society of London Theatre is being urged to revise its minimum wage agreement to tackle a situation whereby people in female-dominated departments such as costumes and wigs are paid less than their equivalents in traditionally male areas such as sound and lighting."

Can You Say NACIQI?

Inside Higher Ed: "Judging from Monday’s meeting of NACIQI (nuh-SEEK-ee), the first since Education Secretary Margaret Spellings and the report of her Commission on the Future of Higher Education put major changes in accreditation near the top of their reform agenda, that visibility is likely to turn up the pressure on accreditors and colleges to provide tangible proof that they are educating their students."

High Fidelity to Offer Opening Night Rush Lottery

( "The producers of the new Broadway musical High Fidelity have announced they will have 13 $26.25 rush tickets available for the opening night of High Fidelity on Thursday, December 7th. Cards will be available starting at 3:30pm, for a 4:00pm drawing on opening night - Thursday, December 7th - in front of the Imperial Theatre (249 West 45th Street). Opening night curtain is set for 6:30pm. There is a limit of two tickets per person - these tickets are located in the 1st row of the orchestra, the winning party must supply photo ID, and tickets must be paid for in cash."

Cell phones are a turn-off at orchestra

couier-journal: "When I attend Louisville Orchestra programs in the Kentucky Center's Whitney Hall, I sit in the front row of the grand tier (that's the first level up from the ground-level seats). This vantage point allows me to observe my fellow concertgoers sitting below me. And what I see, more and more, is the collective flickering of multiple cell phone screens. Not before the music starts, which would be reasonable. But during the actual performances, which is wholly unreasonable."

'Urinetown' blues "The team's lawyer, Ronald H. Shechtman, has been in contact with reps of the now-shuttered productions in Chicago and Akron, Ohio, asking them to share visual documentation of the performances. The New York side, which met Monday, also expressed willingness to make available their records of the Broadway original in the interest of determining whether the two regional shows plagiarized the Rialto staging, choreography and design."

10 Ways to Extend Laptop Battery Life "When you travel with your laptop, you would want long battery life. It’s extremely important when you travel on the plane, where you have all the time to be productive, but the battery couldn’t last as long as your concentration - ouch. "

Show Your Negative Trait: A way to increase Credibility? "A blog called Smart Graduate School Applications has an article on a phenomenon: If you deliberately showing a weakness trait, it helps to increase your credibility."

What Are You Worried About? "We all worry. The same wonderful tools our brain uses to imagine new innovations and solve complex problems, also has a habit of looking for trouble - even when it may not exist."

Quantum travels through the mythic in 'El Paso Blue'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Playwright Octavio Solis envisions the Texas town of El Paso not as a border town but a hybrid city-state that's both Mexican and American.
It's a place where borders are blurred, contradictions prevail and cultural ambivalence is the only certainty.
That makes El Paso a fitting location and title for his play 'El Paso Blue' that's being given a well-directed, superbly and subtly acted production by Quantum Theatre."

Stage Reviews: Emotions boil over in 3 off-Broadway plays

Post Gazette: "After the varied attractions of Broadway musicals, from the sugary assault of 'Mary Poppins' to the bittersweet character studies of 'Grey Gardens,' you crave something a little less grand. This sends you naturally to plays, which are found, most naturally, off-Broadway, where plays are more at home."

Nonprofit theater goes commercial

News: Show Business Weekly: "Everyone knows creativity is the cornerstone of putting on a good play. But in the world of nonprofit theater, where venues in New York and across the country endure a daily struggle to stay afloat, that creativity is increasingly being applied to the administrative end of the business."

Wales set to ban smoking on stage

The Stage: "Despite lobbying from the arts world, including the Theatrical Management Association, the Welsh Assembly took the decision not to allow a clause to be inserted into its legislation as in England, where smoking on stage will be permitted as part of performance “if artistic integrity makes it appropriate”. Wales’ ban on smoking in enclosed public places comes into force on April 2, three months ahead of England."

Monday, December 04, 2006

Late Submissions/Resubmissions

The last day to turn in work that has yet to be submitted is Friday, December 8th at the end of business. The end of business is when I go home. When will I go home? I don’t know, but it will be after 6:30. Work dating from before mid-semester will receive less consideration than work from after mid-semester.

The last day to re-submit previously graded work is Monday, December 11th at the end of business. The end of business is when I go home. When will I go home? I don’t know, but it will be after 4:30. Work being resubmitted must include the original submission, the grading form, and a brief explanation of what you would like me to re-examine. Items submitted without all these components will not be reviewed.

Party Hearty

Equity Gets Embroiled in 'Girl' Fight

Backstage: "To an outsider, a job at the theatre at American Girl Place in Manhattan would seem to be a young actor's dream: a chance for paid work on a New York stage for months at a time. Though toiling at a doll store in a musical titled Circle of Friends or Bitty Bear's Matinee isn't like tackling Sweeney Todd or Grey Gardens, it is an opportunity to hone skills in front of an audience that can be tough to please: children and their parents."

Six Tips on How to be Ultra Productive "The guys at SalaryScout did a quick piece on helping procrastinator with perfectionism. You may have encountered when you want to find the perfect moment to start your project, or you may have tendency to start a task because you have not gotten the best tool you need. Are there any ways to complete task at hand with a tendency towards perfection?"

Preview: Actress strives to bring Magnani's passion for family, art, to portrayal

Post Gazette: "Nine a.m. on a Saturday is frightfully early for most theater people, and actress Theresa Gambacorta proves this by announcing she'll be fielding questions from beneath the warm blankets of her New York bed."

Color Purple Recoups $11 Million Investment

Playbill News: "The Color Purple, the Broadway musical adaptation of the famed Alice Walker novel and the Steven Spielberg film, has recouped its $11 million investment."

Broadway Gypsies Compete in Annual BC/EFA Fundraiser Dec. 4 and 5

Playbill News: "Spamalot co-stars Marin Mazzie and Jonathan Hadary host the 18th Annual Gypsy of the Year Competition — benefiting Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS — Dec. 4 (at 4:30 PM) and Dec. 5 (at 2 PM) at the Neil Simon Theatre."

No more n-word

Pittsburgh Courier: "Since the 1970s, Mooney has operated at the highest levels of Black comedy -- writing for artists such as Richard Pryor (who was largely responsible for mainstreaming the word) and Redd Foxx and television shows like 'In Living Color' and 'Good Times.' He's performed countless standup routines, been in movies and on television, most recently Comedy Central's enormously popular but now-defunct 'The Dave Chappelle Show,' where he anchored sketches like Negrodamus (a black version of the psychic Nostradamus) and 'Ask a Black Dude.'"

Woyzeck by Alexis Soloski

village voice: "Woyzeck, the titular character of Georg Buchner's 1837 play, newly adapted by London director Daniel Kramer, is incontrovertibly all shook up. "

Synchronicity theater to lose 2 founders

AccessAtlanta: "The Synchronicity trio is going solo.
Rachel May, who founded Synchronicity Performance Group in 1997 with co-directors Hope Mirlis and Michele Pearce, becomes producing artistic director at the end of the year."

Sunday, December 03, 2006

U.S. Copyright Office issues new rights

Yahoo! News: "Other copyright exemptions approved by the
Library of Congress will let film professors copy snippets from DVDs for educational compilations and let blind people use special software to read copy-protected electronic books."

Now that's rich

Los Angeles Times: "'The Lion King,' 'The Light in the Piazza,' 'Sister Act,' Carrie Fisher's 'Wishful Drinking' and 'Ricky Jay & His 52 Assistants' — three musicals, a celebrity monologue and a magic show — are reaping triple digits for the best seats, although the $100 face price kicks in only for certain performances of 'Piazza' and 'Sister Act,' and applies to just 14 seats nightly for 'Wishful Drinking.' And opening soon is 'Jackie Mason in the Ultimate Jew,' commanding up to $103 in a four-night stand at the Wadsworth."

The new® face of™ museums "Branded exhibitions with comic-book heroes and action films are increasingly featured at public institutions. But making money comes with a cost"

Disneyland early years photos

Boing Boing: "USC's library has posted an archive of photos from the early days of Disneyland."

50 Artists to Receive $50K Grants

Backstage: "A new foundation dedicated to supporting American artists will award $2.5 million in grants on Dec. 4 in a ceremony at Lincoln Center in New York — 50 gifts of $50,000 each to individuals in all fields of the arts, including theatre, dance, and the media arts (film, television, and radio)."

SAG Strengthens Ties with National Labor

Backstage: "For the past half-century, the Screen Actors Guild has been among one of the 53 member unions of the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations, a federation representing nearly 9 million workers — including doctors and dockworkers. The AFL-CIO has largely provided support to SAG, offering assistance to actors during the Red scare of the 1950s and organizing SAG members for the commercials strike of 2000."

Amanda Green

New York Times: "But when he discovered that Amanda Green was working as the lyricist on a musical version of the novel, he figured he would check it out. “I knew Amanda,” he said. “She’d done some workshops of ‘Avenue Q,’ playing the Gary Coleman part, and I must say she was hilarious. I was very fond of her, so I went to hear the songs.”"

Kristin Chenoweth

New York Times: "MADDIE THE MALTESE was wearing a Rolling Bones T-shirt for her walk in the cool November morning. At the other end of the leash was all 4 foot 11 of Kristin Chenoweth; in boots and cropped jeans, with her hair tucked under a tweed newsboy cap, she looked like a refugee from “Ragtime.” When they got to the Canine Ranch pet emporium on West 72nd Street, everyone cooed about Maddie’s figure; she’d finally lost the weight she’d gained on vacation while her owner made the movie “Deck the Halls.” “When she got back,” Ms. Chenoweth whispered, as if to avoid offending the dog, “I couldn’t get a size 12 around her.”"

Stage Reviews: 'Grey Gardens' and 'Drowsy Chaperone' are sharp contrast to Broadway's 'Tarzan'

Post Gazette: "God bless the Broadway musical, which continues to tackle both the obvious and the arcane."

University continues tradition of 'The Nutcracker'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "From time to time Donna Anthony wonders if the magic of California University of Pennsylvania's annual production of 'The Nutcracker' will last."

Nutcracker challenge

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Ask any child who's been to 'The Nutcracker,' and you'll know it's no trivial pursuit. Seeing the magical ballet can open a child's spirit to the joyous wonders of culture -- not to mention refreshing that quality in grown-ups."

Chicago guy big on Broadway "It might seem counter-intuitive, but director Robert Falls believes that to best serve the Goodman Theater, the venerable Chicago institution of which he is artistic director, sometimes he needs to get away."