CMU School of Drama

Friday, August 31, 2007

Start Writing

What Does Your Business Card Say About You?

Quick Sprout: "Hopefully you already have a business card, but if you don’t you should definitely create one. Business cards are something that we take for granted when we shouldn’t. The look, feel, and message on a card help people determine how they view you and more importantly, if they will even remember you."

Ruptured water main drenches Oakland, dries out customers for miles around

Post Gazette: "The people who work along one of Oakland's busiest thoroughfares looked at the cascade of water from a broken pump line yesterday in disbelief, as Centre Avenue disappeared under the brown surge 1 to 2 feet high."

Cameraphone: Turn Your Digital Camera into a Scanner with Qipit

Lifehacker: "Webapp Qipit turns a digital photo of a whiteboard, handwritten notes or a typed document into a PDF. Much like previously mentioned ScanR, you can email cameraphone snaps to Qipit, or upload images via email or the web site."

Concert finishing times? Don't get me started

Telegraph: "Recently I received an irate letter from a reader complaining about a concert at the Barbican that had finished so late that he had been forced to leave well before the end of the performance in order to catch a last train to the suburbs."

A Festival Rooted in Female Ingenuity

New York Times: "In 1927 a wealthy New Englander who went by the sturdy name of Mabel Choate set out to preserve a building that housed a neglected 39-year-old social club in the central Berkshires, the Stockbridge Casino. Designed by Stanford White, the building had been described by The Pittsfield Sun in 1888 as the area’s first “symptom of dissipation and gaiety.”"

Portable Theater (Just Go With the Flow)

New York Times: "UNDER a full moon on Tuesday night, in a little-known corner of Staten Island, the Mabou Mines theater company was afloat, rehearsing its latest work. Jutting from Pier 7 1/2, a 90-foot barge, built up with several stories of scaffolding and filled with actors, musicians, costumes and props, bobbed gently in New York Harbor."

Swedish Workwear Hits U.S.

Tools of the Trade: "It only takes one glance to notice that Blåkläder workwear is a bit different. But beyond its distinctive styling, Blåkläder clothes offer standout functionality and durability, says this Swedish manufacturer that recently brought its 48-year-old brand to the U.S. The company describes its products as 'functional workwear' aimed at solving common contractor challenges through features like specially designed (and plentiful) pockets, integrated kneepads, and durable materials and construction."

Rental Cars Available to Students, Faculty and Staff

8 1/2 x 11 Newsletter - August 30, 2007 - Carnegie Mellon University: "Carnegie Mellon has partnered with Zipcar, the world's largest car-sharing company, to provide cars to students, faculty and staff on an hourly or daily basis."

Fringe Fest 'Jihad' Musical Touches Explosive Topics

NPR: "The Edinburgh Festival is the largest arts festival in the world. Competing for attention during the month of August in the Scottish capital is the Fringe Festival, which gives amateur theater productions and stand-up comedians a chance to make a name."

Actor Cuts Himself on Stage

NPR: "An actor in Shakespeare's Julius Caeser got a little too realistic. The play includes the killing of Caesar by Roman senators he knew. Caesar turned to one and said, 'And you, Brutus?' But as it worked out on a stage in Aspen, Col., Brutus should have said that to himself — because he stabbed himself."

67-Year-Old Stuntwoman Still Jumps, Falls, Crashes

VOA News: "Stuntmen and stuntwomen may have the most demanding job in Hollywood, performing falls, tumbles, dives and other feats too dangerous for actors. Sandy Gimpel, 67, is still doing stunts at an age when many people are retired. She tells VOA's Mike O'Sullivan, she has no plans to quit the risky business."

MOUSE OF BLUES

NY Post: "ON the heels of the fiasco that was 'Tarzan' and the lumbering bore that is 'Mary Poppins' comes Disney Theatrical's latest stage cartoon, 'The Little Mermaid' - which Variety has helpfully dubbed 'a waterlogged misstep.'"

Helicopter check of roof support cables at convention center a first

Post Gazette: "Yesterday's inspection was the first for the rooftop cable system; the inspections are to take place every three years. Engineers had to use a helicopter to do the work because more traditional methods -- such as scaffolding and ladders -- can't reach such heights, about 180 feet above the ground."

Federal judge refuses to dismiss obscenity charges against author

Post Gazette: "'There's no legal prohibition with Ms. Fletcher sharing these stories with next-door neighbors or friends,' he said, noting that the law does prohibit disseminating them through the mail or online."

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Stage Review: 'Last Yankee' finds Red Barn in less-than-upbeat mood

Post Gazette: "But for all the play's insightful pathos, the backstage drama at the Red Barn is more intense. After 47 years in its atmospheric little honest-to-god barn, 28 of them under chief everything Pat Van Eman, the company has been evicted. The owners hope to sell the property and figure that a barn full of actors could be a liability."

PG East preview: 'Ballyhoo' takes on religious prejudice with a light touch

Post Gazette: "'Ballyhoo,' which opens tonight at Apple Hill Playhouse, focuses on the changing lives of the wealthy and assimilated Levy and Freitag families during the 1939 premiere of 'Gone with the Wind.' The arrival of religious New York Jew Joe Farkas and the news of war in Europe forces them to look at the world outside their all-Gentile Atlanta neighborhood."

PG South review: Two plays give audiences a look at families in transition

Post Gazette: "Like 'Ancestral Voices' the plays opening next Thursday at two venerable South playhouses are sure to teach and entertain their audiences. And the local talent on stage is sure to wow."

Classroom to stage: College theaters make it worth the audience's time

Post Gazette: "The CMU School of Drama season tackles the theme of the individual's struggle with a hostile society. Shows will be staged not only in the three theaters in the Purnell Center but also in various locations around the campus and the city."

Google Earth Technology Preview for AutoCAD available on Autodesk Labs

Daily Autocad: "As the name suggests, the AutoCAD extension allows you to integrate your drawings with Google Earth. Though this technology preview has been around for some time, it was updated on May 29 to support AutoCAD 2008."

When Threats Are Like Spam

Inside Higher Ed: "Such threats aren’t necessarily unusual at large and prominent institutions, but in this case officials started to notice that they weren’t alone. At Princeton University, an e-mailed bomb threat arrived at an inbox for general inquiries early on Sunday morning and was discovered the next day. Eleven separate messages arrived at the admissions office of Oregon State University at around the same time. On Tuesday, American University’s Washington College of Law received two threatening e-mails."

'Kid Nation' puts Hollywood labor tension into sharp focus

Los Angeles Times: "Were they working? There doesn't seem to be a simple answer. But what is clear is that CBS' new reality venture, which placed 40 children on a New Mexico ranch without any contact with their parents, has become a flash point in a television genre actors and writers have long blamed for taking jobs from them."

Why You Should Plan Your Week This Friday

lifehack.org: "Ihateyourjob.com has 3 simple reasons why doing your following week’s planning on the Friday afternoon works best."

Row over wife's role delays Havel's stage comeback

Guardian Unlimited Arts: "But it now looks like the wait for a fresh Havel work will be further prolonged following his decision to pull his latest play from Prague's National Theatre after its refusal to allow his wife to play the lead role."

Edinburgh Festival Directors Call for More Funding

Whatsonstage.com: "As festival month draws to a close in Edinburgh, the directors of the five main festivals – the International Festival’s Jonathan Mills and the Fringe’s Jon Morgan, both of whom were new to their jobs this year, as well the chiefs of the books and film events and the Military Tattoo – assembled for a rare joint appearance yesterday to lobby for greater public spending in support of the annual events."

'33 Variations,' 333 Alterations

washingtonpost.com: "As his new show '33 Variations' steams toward its world premiere, writer-director Moises Kaufman is making things up more than ever. It's two weeks before previews, he doesn't have a finished script, and the seasoned actors at Arena Stage often seem baffled."

Fritz Blitz 14th Annual Showcase

SignOnSanDiego: "New plays are the glitz of the Fritz, which on Thursday opens its 14th annual monthlong showcase of new plays, the Fritz Blitz. Many, if not most of the dozens of scripts featured on the Blitz have gone on to further productions."

Mirror images a challenge for opera

smh.com.au: "The artist M.C.Escher was famous for his prints of impossible buildings full of never-ending staircases. These perplexing designs seem an unlikely inspiration for a three-dimensional stage set, but Roger Kirk clearly relishes a challenge."

Kiss my sass

smh.com.au: "There are many reasons why burlesque is enjoying a worldwide comeback. You could point to the popularity of burlesque icon Dita Von Teese and her famous cocktail-glass routine - or its championing by pop stars such as Pink and Christina Aguilera, who employ it in their risque stage shows."

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Aunty Entity: The Myth Of MS Project

Freelance Switch: "MS Project is listed on many job ads as a desirable or even a ‘must-have’ but consider this: Many corporate clients do not have a copy of MS project."

Susan Sarandon talks about the Wachowski Brothers SPEED RACER and confirms something revolutionary

Collider.com: "A few months ago I heard this crazy story that The Wachowski Brothers were filming 'Speed Racer' with a new type of camera that was revolutionary and the final film would look like nothing we’d ever seen before on a movie screen. But try as I might, I couldn’t second source the info and find out exactly what was going on."

Trying to change how people watch films

CNET News.com: "On August 23, Dolby Laboratories held an event at its headquarters in San Francisco, showcasing the differences between the look of a movie on film, as opposed to in a digital format."

Why Copyrights Would Kill The Fashion Industry

Techdirt: "Earlier this month, we wrote about Senator Chuck Schumer's misguided plan to extend copyright protection to the fashion industry. As we've noted in the past, this makes absolutely no sense."

Penguins unveil arena design drawings

PostGazette: "The new building, which is being designed by HOK Sport of Kansas City, Mo., will have its main entrance on Centre Avenue near Washington Place, with other entrances on the east side of the building off Centre Avenue and at Fifth Avenue and Washington Place."

'Superbad' director to take helm of Pittsburgh production

Pittsburgh Business Times:: "The first fruits of Pennsylvania's new $75 million film tax credit program for Pittsburgh will be a comedy called 'Adventureland,' written and directed by Greg Mottola, who directed the summer hit, 'Superbad.'"

SAT Scores Down Again, Wealth Up Again

Inside Higher Ed: "Average scores on the SAT fell this year in critical reading, mathematics and writing. The writing test only has two years of scoring history, but for the other tests, this year’s scores marked back-to-back years of score declines — something that has not happened since 1991."

The Rise of Robots in the Workplace

International News Portal: "For a rudimentary example of what an emotional robo-colleague might look like, meet Pearl, a lovely, red-lipped robot who resides at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute in Pittsburgh. Pearl, with a wheeled base and a smiling, metallic face, is a prototype “nursebot,” built to care for the sick and the elderly in their homes."

SAT scores still on downward slide

PostGazette: "The average SAT college entrance exam scores have taken another hit. Last year, the exams posted the largest point decrease nationwide in three decades. In results released yesterday, the average national SAT scores in critical reading were the lowest in 13 years and in math the lowest in six years."

US theatre triumphs at The Stage Awards for Acting Excellence

The Stage: "American visitors to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe might have been fewer but US performers scored one of their best results at this year’s prestigious Stage Awards for Acting Excellence."

WGA-AMPTP Negotiations Set to Resume

Backstage: "That's just two days later than the studios' Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers suggested almost two weeks ago. But the guild, in a letter received late Monday by the AMPTP, rejected a management request to continue holding the talks at AMPTP headquarters in Encino and instead demanded that talks shift to WGA West headquarters in Los Angeles."

ATA and SAG Meet to Mend Fences

Backstage: "Reps from SAG and the Association of Talent Agents got together Monday in an effort to mend their tattered relationship."

SAG President Hopefuls Spreadin' Views in NYC

Backstage: "Campaigning for SAG president has taken a turn toward the Big Apple, with recent candidate statements from incumbent Alan Rosenberg and chief rival Seymour Cassel finding them in a New Yawk state of mind."

Greater Tuna

Pittsburgh City Paper: "Back when I first encountered Greater Tuna, a staple of small companies like South Park Theatre, it just seemed a whimsical view of small-town life -- sort of the Texas version of Lake Wobegon. But after more than six years of George W. Bush and the 'religious right' in power, Tuna's cheerful view of small-mindedness has taken on more menacing overtones. At the very least, it's an excoriation of 'heartland' values by Broadway-type liberal elites, right?"

Apartment 3A

Pittsburgh City Paper: "You're probably familiar with the talent of actor Jeff Daniels, a film star with solid on- and off-Broadway credits. Recently he's also been writing and producing plays in his home state of Michigan. One such play, the clever, inventive Apartment 3A, is at Little Lake Theatre in a well-played, well-directed and polished production."

Private Lives

Pittsburgh City Paper: "Since we never met, it seems unfair to place this onus on him -- but I'm convinced that one reason I'm so screwed up is because of Noel Coward. With his world-weary sophistication, razor-sharp wit and piss-elegant style as a blueprint, I spent a lot of years (and annoyed a lot of friends) trying to be just like him. As a little kid, I thought that being an adult meant being Noel Coward."

'Flags': A small victory in bringing Iraq war to stage

Los Angeles Times: "After more than four years of bloody chaos, roadside bombs and multiple tours of duty endured by U.S. servicemen and women, the war in Iraq has yet to produce a signature American stage drama. But one candidate might be the Greek tragedy-inspired 'Flags' by the pseudonymous Jane Martin, which ran for three months at the 99-seat Odyssey Theater in Los Angeles in 2005 and is headed for New York with much of that cast reunited for the occasion."

Finding space for Orlando's small theaters

OrlandoSentinel.com: "The Orlando Sentinel's Elizabeth Maupin's profile last Sunday of three theaters and their space struggles struck a chord. I have the pleasure of reading the budgets of dozens of performing-arts organizations regularly, and one of the make-or-break expenses is the rent. A significant portion of the $2 million-plus in grants United Arts awards every year to 50 organizations is spent on facilities. The two largest theaters in the region -- Orlando Repertory Theatre and Orlando Shakespeare -- pay $1 a year thanks to the city of Orlando. Small theaters with modest facility costs, such as Bay Street Players in Eustis, are doing well."

New era for Helen Stairs Theatre waits in wings

OrlandoSentinel.com: "When the Helen Stairs Theatre plays host to its opening-night event for the 2007-08 season next month, its leaders will formally announce an expansion and fundraising campaign to transform the 200 block of Magnolia Avenue into the Wayne Densch Performing Arts Center."

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Jason Fried: Working closely together ain’t productive

LifeClever ;-) Tips for Design and Life: "Proximity is an invitation to interrupt somebody. And interruption is the biggest enemy of productivity that there is. When everyone is sitting together, everyone’s at the same desk or nearby. It’s really easy to shout something over to somebody or tap someone on the shoulder or whatever. That can be useful at times, no doubt. But for the most part, it’s interruption."

London Rings shorter, not better

TheStar.com: "The revised production of The Lord of the Rings that opened at the Drury Lane Theatre last night is not unlike a friend who's been hitting the Botox a bit too heavily. At first glance, they may seem sleek and lovely, but look closer and you'll find that everything underneath is frozen and unmoving"

Cirque Du Soleil, MGM/Mirage Join ETCP Certification Council

Stage-directions: "The Council is the governing body, which manages the development and implementation of ETCP, the industry-wide certification program for entertainment technicians. The MGM/Mirage currently employs over 1,500 technicians to support Cirque du Soleil operations."

Review: "The Little Mermaid"

The Denver Post: "'Mermaid' was greeted by a thunderous and appreciative (and undemanding) Denver audience. How likely that love is to carry over to New York in December depends on how willing the creative team is to accept that their very adorable little guppy has not quite yet found its full sea legs."

The play's the thing, but so are new theaters

STLtoday: "This fall, the big excitement on the St. Louis theater scene is the theaters themselves."

Staging a coup in broadcasting theatre

Scotsman.com: "PROGRAMMES about theatre on TV rarely work: some show you haven't seen, and will likely never see, filmed in an artificial style switching between alarming close-ups of people projecting to the back stalls and awkward shots of audience members stroking their chins. But Black Watch is different: the National Theatre of Scotland's smash hit has been to Scottish theatre what JK Rowling has been to children's literature, playing to packed audiences in Edinburgh last August and then on tour this year, generating the kind of positive reviews that normally have to be paid for (not that you can pay us Scotsman critics for good reviews. At least not with a cheque)."

Update: SAG 'Shocked' About 'Kid Nation'

Backstage: "The Screen Actors Guild has condemned the working conditions on the set of the CBS reality show Kid Nation, currently under investigation for violating its contract with the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists."

Prop Master

Craigslist: "Echo Theatre, the live local theatre for the Pittsburgh Airport and Sewickley Valley areas, is looking to hire a Property Master for its upcoming show, Blithe Spirit."

Monday, August 27, 2007

50 arrested as police storm play in Belarus

Guardian Unlimited Arts: "Members of the theatre were about to begin a performance of Eleven Vests by Edward Bond at a house in a Minsk suburb on Wednesday when armed officers from the Omon unit entered the building and detained everyone present. The actors, performers and spectators were taken by bus to a police station, but released three hours later."

IATSE 871 Picks Missy Humphrey

Backstage: "The IA local is composed of 1,500 script supervisors, production and art department coordinators, teleprompter operators and others. Its separate balloting for board seats was recently overturned by the U.S. Labor Department."

101 Common Sense Rules For Managers

lifehack.org: "The InsideCRM guys posted this managerial cheat-sheet today for anyone in a leadership roll. Thankfully they’ve also split all 101 into categories."

Advice for Students: 11+ Ways to Make this Your Best Semester Yet

lifehack.org: "Right about now, America’s students are heading back to school for the Fall semester. Last week, I gave some very specific advice about using a wiki to store and organize notes, but keeping good notes is just part of being a successful student. Over the weekend, I decided to offer up some more general, all-purpose advice for students. Whether you’re just starting college or returning, the tips below will help you make the most out of the coming school year."

Water Everywhere

The New York Times: "'Fuerzabruta,' a new production from Diqui James, who helped create the show 'De La Guarda,' is a wordless fusion of physical and visual feats. The auditions included performers in a pool, left."

Actors on Life Offstage

New York Times: "But it is work, work that is supposed to pay rent, buy food and sustain people (and in some cases families) for the long periods of anxious unemployment that are an inevitable part of a performer’s life. Given what stage actors make and what New York costs, staying afloat has always required improvisation, shrewdness, discipline, luck and a kind of obstinacy that some people call passion and others call craziness, and is probably a little bit of both."

Original Haunted Mansion documentation

Boing Boing: "Haunted Mansion superfan Chef Mayem has uncovered the orginal internal Mansion 'information sheet' written by WED, the old design division for Disneyland, produced four months before the Haunted Mansion opened in Disneyland."

Director Tina Landau knows how to do bold.

Post-Gazette NOW: "Her take on Charles Mee's 'Iphigenia 2.0' is aggressive, in-your-face theatrical, a startling, ambitious re-examination of the Euripides classic done in modern dress and sporting an up-to-the-minute sensibility that suggests today's Iraq conflict as much as it does antiquity's Trojan War."

Volunteer craftsman needed ASAP to build coffin for new Dracula play

Craigslist: "Volunteer carpenter, craftsman, needed immediately to help build a sarcophagus/coffin in an upcoming premiering production of Dracula."

Friday, August 24, 2007

Two CMU buildings reopen after bomb threat

Post Gazette: "Carnegie Mellon University reopened a pair of campus buildings last evening that had been closed as a precaution after the school received an anonymous bomb threat."

Strawdog Theatre Company Announces 20th Anniversary Season

Stage-directions: "Strawdog Theatre Company of Chicago celebrates its 20th anniversary by presenting a three-show main stage season and ongoing late night offerings at their space in the heart of Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood."

Toolmonger’s Top 5: The Week In Tools

Toolmonger: "It’s been a busy week here at Toolmonger. If you’ve been spending time in the shop — you should! — and you haven’t had a chance to keep up with Toolmonger this week, we suggest you start with these posts, which our readers helped to select"

Perfecting the Sauce

Free-Range Drama Farm: "If you’re a student, theatre professional, or just interested in what we’re doing, and you’d like to be one of our “beta testers”, leave a comment below or drop us an email. And spread the word to other people you know - the next step is to build a real community of people and get as much feedback as we can, as we start to put together a program for next summer. This is one case where too many cooks will definitely not spoil the sauce!"

j-o-b Strike/Build

Hi,

Could you possibly forward on the word to applicable Design/PTM folk that Quantum Theatre is looking for people the help with its strike/build starting Monday and running through the next two weeks. The pay is $8 an hour and the hours are flexible depending on schedules.

Thanks,
Kathryn C.

Technical Director
Quantum Theatre
412-352-7046

Are Reality-TV Actors Professional?

Slate Magazine: "Do the contestants on a show like Survivor count as working actors?"

U.S. education suddenly a hard sell

Marketplace: "Visa delays, an unpopular war and an immigration crackdown have made America a less appealing destination for international students, and that could be bad for the U.S. economy down the road."

Advertising: Facebook's New Ad System Will Target Users Based On Personal Information From Profiles

Consumerist: "Like to tell the world your business on Facebook? Get ready for some heavily targeted ads."

Two Marshalls win Governor's Awards for the Arts

Post Gazette: "The 2007 Governor's Awards for the Arts, just announced, are topped by Distinguished Arts Awards to a theatrical brother and sister duo who are Squirrel Hill natives -- Rob and Kathleen Marshall."

PG East review: 'Sunny Side' fine musical on Carter family

Post Gazette: "Although the Carter family recorded more than 250 songs between 1927 and 1943 and dramatically influenced country, bluegrass, gospel and folk music, fans of those genres may still not have heard of them, unless it's through descendant June Carter's marriage to another music legend, Johnny Cash."

Stage Review: Demands of 'Private Lives' find PICT game but flawed

Post Gazette: "This is not to say that 'Private Lives' is all gossamer elegance, a common misapprehension about Coward. Beneath its high sheen of wit and style beats a heart passionate about the need for love and angry about its disappointments."

Festival stages readings in August, plays through September

Post Gazette: "The 2007 Pittsburgh New Works Festival kicked off Sunday with staged readings of four one-act plays, and there will be three more this Sunday."

A Class Act: Pittsburgh New Works Festival returns to raise curtain on new plays

Post Gazette: "The love of the stage, collaboration within and among theater troupes and the 'craziness' of theater people are just a few of the reasons given for returning to the Pittsburgh New Works Festival every year."

Arts Boards Struggle with Changing Roles

NPR: "Recent criticism of Smithsonian mismanagement and corruption has come to haunt its Board of Regents. But ineffective governance by the board of a nonprofit organization is not a problem unique to the Smithsonian."

Equity Nixes Pirated Plays on YouTube

Backstage: "The lights go out. The curtain rises. The Broadway actors hit the stage, and within moments red lights appear, blinking at them from various locations in the audience. They're not cues from the stage manager or warning lights from lighting designers; they're the red lights of video cameras and cell phones snuck into the theatre to illicitly tape performances and perhaps share them online. Since the video-sharing site YouTube.com was born, in February 2005, the practice has become an epidemic."

'Bridge Builders' Honored at Diversity Awards

Backstage: "'I think an actor should be trying to bring his own sense of how thing are into whatever he does. That's my motto,' said honoree Robert Guillaume at the fifth annual Ivy Bethune Diversity Awards, held Aug. 20 at the East West Players in downtown Los Angeles."

Playwright Fights for Congolese Women

Craigslist: "Eve Ensler has just returned from hell. That's how the author of 'The Vagina Monologues' describes her trip to Congo, where thousands of women have been sexually attacked and mutilated in the African nation's civil war."

The Indie City

Backstage: "First, the good news. Ask Betsy Steinberg about Chicago film production in 2007 and she doesn't equivocate: 'It's just hellzapoppin!'"

10 Tips For Keeping The Peace

lifehack.org: "Stop shouting at me! How can we solve this conflict in a civil manner?! It’s not necessarily a hard thing so here are 10 quick tips to get people to simmer down now."

How To Negotiate Freelance Pay For Non-Negotiators

lifehack.org: "A fundamental skill to learn for any freelance work is pay negotiation. If you don’t get good at this you can be sure not to get as much as you should."

Organizing ToDos: Urgency Vs Importance

lifehack.org: "You can organize your todo lists any which way you like [house, work, fun etc] but how often are you categorizing them into importance and urgency?"

Celebrating a Playwright

New York Times: "Edward Albee celebrates his 80th birthday on March 12, an event that will be marked by a number of productions in the New York area, collectively titled “The Albee Season.”"

PA/INTERN

Craigslist: "New York Filmmaker coming to Pittsburgh Aug. 27th tot he 31st. Need intern willing to work a few hours a couple days to help out."

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

14 Essential Tips for Meeting a Deadline

Freelance Switch: "Today, we’ll focus on meeting deadlines, as that’s the area that many freelancers have problems with. Sure, you can do great work, but if you don’t turn your projects in on time, you won’t get many repeat customers."

Pittsburgh Ballet Stages Impressive Recovery

PlaybillArts: "The Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, which recently emerged from years of orchestral discord and financial woes, will continue its rebirth with season openers at Wolf Trap and Hartwood Acres."

Highland Games

Pittsburgh Alumni:

Our 5th annual celebration at the 49th annual Ligonier Highland Games in Idlewild Park is just around the corner! The Highland Games will feature a variety of musical, dance, athletic, dog shows, cultural events, as well as shopping. For more information about the games, go to www.ligoniergames.org. There are planned activities on Friday and Sunday as well, so come out for the weekend.

The Pittsburgh Chapter will offer a hot buffet containing both American fare and a broad selection of authentic Celtic cuisine and beverages (yes, Scotch and Scottish beer) at the Carnegie Mellon pavilion. The Carnegie Mellon Pipe Band will again join us for lunch and provide a private performance at the pavilion. Our featured attraction will be one of "Red" Whitaker's Highlander autonomous vehicles that participated in the desert DARPA Grand Challenge in 2005. Bring your questions!

Games will go on rain or shine - we hope to see you there.

New Powered Rigging Standard Project: Electric Chain Hoist Control

www.etnow.com: "The BSR E1.6 project to develop an American National Standard for powered theatrical rigging systems has a new project and part to the standard: E1.6-4, Control of Serially Manufactured Electric Chain Hoists Used in the Entertainment Industry."

Always ... Patsy Cline

Pittsburgh City Paper: "'Authorized biography' does not portend a spicy story, but that's only part of the problem with the theatrically disappointing, if sweet-sounding, Always...Patsy Cline, the long-running show at the CLO Cabaret."

Eighteen

Pittsburgh City Paper: "Every now and again a gaggle of local theater artists forms a new company and opens with a theatrical hit of yesteryear ... forcing me to wonder why anybody would go to the considerable trouble of starting a new company to stage a show which has been seen a gazillion times before."

The REAL High School Musical

csmonitor.com: "The sequel to Disney's cash cow premières tonight. How does the franchise play with actual drama teachers?"

Citi Center defends spending

The Boston Globe: "The letter, responding to a series of recent Globe reports and signed by chairman John William Poduska Sr., stated a $1.2 million 'retention' bonus was committed to president and chief executive Josiah Spaulding Jr. in 2001 to 'assure that the then Wang Center would be optimally positioned to face significant challenges for an additional five years.' In addition, Poduska criticized the Globe for how it reported on the bonus."

Three Orlando theaters struggle to keep homes

OrlandoSentinel.com: "Now that Orange County commissioners have given the go-ahead to a downtown Orlando performing-arts center, the public might jump to the conclusion that Orlando's arts groups have it made. Or do they?"

Opportunities for Sideline Work

actorsequity.org | News #038; Media: "The Actors Fund's Actors Work Program assists entertainment industry professionals in identifying and finding non-industry work that complements their industry careers. Through the program, many Equity members throughout the country have gained skills and found work in such diverse fields as teaching, sales, and administrative support - work that allows them to continue their acting career."

Making the ground shake

Inquirer7: "The 15 prehistoric creatures in this show are powered by animatronics - a robotic system developed in movies and Disney theme parks - with some good old-fashioned puppetry thrown in. They are all life-sized (or as near as science and the entertainment industry can estimate) and they act naturally (ditto). The audience will see them hatching from extra-large eggs; running and stomping; fighting and kissing; roaring and soaring; and occasionally eating (each other)."

Second expert knocks Kimmel sound quality

Inquirer: "Three years after an acoustical study criticized the sound quality of Verizon Hall, a second leading acoustician says the cello-shaped concert room needs major work to improve its sound."

Met Opera Box Office Breaks Record, Sales Topped $2.08M, A 25% Increase Over Last Season's Opening-Day Sales

The ShowBuzz: "Sales topped $2.08 million, a 25 percent increase over last season's opening-day sales of $1.66 million, said Sommer Hixson, a spokeswoman for the Met. Sales on the Internet this year were nearly 50 percent higher than last year."

How To Quit Complaining

lifehack.org: "Please, chronic complainers: try to quit!"

Can You Catch Productivity?

lifehack.org: "Like anything, a little influence and encouragement from people can help a lot. Kelly Forrister at DavidCo suggests that, like social ties affecting obesity, productivity could also be affected by the people you’re surrounded with."

Big Mac Museum Restaurant opens in area

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "McDonald's without the Big Mac would be like the Pittsburgh Steelers without their black and gold team colors. Thus, it's only fair that the franchise's signature sandwich, and the man who invented it, will be feted today at the opening of the Big Mac Museum Restaurant, in North Huntingdon."

Kennywood ends Gold Rusher era

Post Gazette: "Tomorrow will be a dark day for a dark ride: Kennywood is closing The Gold Rusher. Presenting a fantasy trip into a haunted mine, The Gold Rusher, which opened in 1981, is considered a classic by dark ride enthusiasts. Hollywood special effects designer Maurice Ayers, who won an Oscar in 1949 for developing a lightweight plaster process for set construction, designed the interior scenes. His movie credits include 'Paint Your Wagon' and 'The Blue Max,' according to the Internet movie site www.imdb.com."

After Sold-Out Goodspeed Run, Fonzie & Co. to Begin Paper Mill Life Sept. 26

Playbill News: "It's a hard ticket to snag in its current developmental run by Goodspeed Musicals in Connecticut, but Happy Days: A New Musical will live on — in an expanded physical staging, with more seats and chances to see The Fonz sing — at Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, NJ, Sept. 26-Oct. 28."

MGM Mirage shares jump on Dubai World deal

MarketWatch: "Shares of MGM Mirage were on the rise Wednesday after the casino company said it had inked a $5 billion deal in which Dubai World will ultimately acquire a 9.5% stake in MGM and partial ownership of a massive real-estate project."

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Kuntu Season Announcemet - Auditions

Pitt’s Kuntu Repertory Theatre Announces 2007-08 Season/ Auditions for all plays to be held Sept. 9

Kuntu Repertory Theatre, based at the University of Pittsburgh, celebrates 33 years of Black theater with an exciting new season that begins Oct. 18.

The 2007-08 season includes:

Good Black Don’t Crack
By Rob Penny
Oct. 19-Nov. 3, 2007
A revival of this popular classic tells the story
of a single mother juggling family, work, and
her own need for intimacy.

Journey of the Spirit: A History of Gospel
Music
By Ernest McCarty
Jan. 24-Feb. 9, 2008
An original play with music, commissioned
by Kuntu Repertory Theatre.

Lavender Lizards & Lilac Landmines: Layla’s
Dream
By Ntozake Shange
March 20-April 5, 2008
A fresh look at love, life, relationships, and
the need to be wanted, from the acclaimed
author of For Colored Girls Who Have
Committed Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf

Ain’t Misbehavin: The Fats Waller Musical
Show
Music by Thomas “Fats” Waller
Book by Murray Horwitz and Richard Maltby
Jr.
May 15-May 31, 2008
Experience Harlem in the 1930s, with the
toe-tapping, foot-stomping and soul-stirring music of Fats Waller.

Auditions for all four plays will be held from noon to 4 p.m. Sept. 9 at Alumni Hall, 4227 Fifth Ave., Oakland. People of all ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to participate. Actors should be prepared to deliver a short monologue; dancers should prepare a short piece that shows their versatility; and singers should prepare 8 bars of two songs—one Gospel and one pop—that show their vocal range. Callbacks are scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. the same day. For more information, call 412-624-7298.

ELS's "One Percent for Others" Program Launched with $5,000 Donation to the ESTA Foundation

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: "With a $5,000 check to The ESTA Foundation's Behind the Scenes program, Entertainment Lighting Services (ELS) has launched the 'ELS One Percent for Others' fund-raising project to help entertainment technology colleagues in times of crisis."

ESTA ANSI E1.11-2004 Revision Project Started

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: "The Controls Protocols Working Group has started work to revise ANSI E1.11-2004, Entertainment Technology -- USITT DMX512-A, Asynchronous Serial Digital Data Transmission Standard for Controlling Lighting Equipment and Accessories."

NSCA and InfoComm to Consolidate Trade Shows

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: "InfoComm International, the worldwide leader in professional AV exhibitions and NSCA, the leading trade association for the electronics systems contracting industry, have announced a cooperative effort to consolidate the leading industry events for both the professional AV and electronics systems industry."

Part-time gig takes music lover backstage

Lebanon Daily News: "For the past two years, the 42-year-old Cleona man has worked as a part-time stagehand with the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Local 98, Hershey."

Churches and theaters find communion

The Dallas Morning News: "Churches and theaters have been at odds for most of the last 500 years. So why are so many Dallas theaters moving into churches?"

Shakespeare hovers over Bush's administration

Guardian Unlimited: "Bush's former speechwriter has penned a column in praise of Shakespeare's plays. Maybe it's time someone gave the president a copy of the Complete Works?"

PICT's 'Private Lives' is a satisfying cocktail

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Other couples' relationships are often mysterious and impenetrable: What does she see in him? Why does he stay with her? How do they manage to go on year after year after year?"

TV Review: A likable take on Shakespeare play

Post Gazette: "But here comes Kenneth Branagh, the busiest current interpreter of Shakespeare on film, with a movie of 'As You Like It,' to debut tonight at 9 on HBO. And he sets it in late-Victorian ... Japan! In justification, he notes that there are actually few place names in Shakespeare's text, 'so you could argue that the Forest of Arden is a mythical place, or, if you like, a state of mind.'"

Sound Mix for Short Film Needed

Craigslist: "Hello. I am currently producing a short film that is in its editing stages."

5 simple steps to greater productivity

LifeClever ;-) Tips for Design and Life

Stratford's Fantastic Four

TheStar.com: "Many people have been saying it would take a team of superheroes to turn around the Stratford Festival. It looks like they've got their wish."

Boulder Fringe: It's boys' turn to talk about sex

The Denver Post: "No doubt the 2007 Fringe will be remembered for its eclectic amalgam of solo women sure to be equal parts angry, radical, angst-ridden, comic and sexually charged. And that's not by design: The lineup is determined each year by lottery."

"Mermaid" a sea of employment

The Denver Post: "While the show is playing in Denver, the music is being performed by an 18-person orchestra that includes 14 local players plus two substitutes. The running crew numbers 40 locals - that includes stagehands, wardrobe, hair and makeup."

There's no Will to suspend our disbelief

TorontoSun.com: "Even when it's rooted firmly in fact, theatre at its most basic is all about make-believe. And the further removed from fact it becomes, the harder a playwright must work to convince an audience that what they are watching is not simply a figment of the playwright's overheated imagination."

Circus maximus

TorontoSun.com: "Kooza, the latest instalment in the ongoing success story that is Cirque du Soleil, is everything you've come to expect from the Montreal-based ring masters."

Forget H’wood. Shoot your film in Connecticut

Show Business Weekly: "Connecticut is well on its way to becoming the new Hollywood East. With high-profile films like “College Road Trip,” “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2,” “Revolutionary Road,” “Old Dogs,” and the next installment of the Indiana Jones series shooting in Connecticut this summer, the state is seeing a boom in its film industry — and reaping the benefits of its new tax incentives."

Employees boycott Glasgow's Cumbernauld Theatre to protest job cuts

The Stage: "Bectu members will boycott the venue every fortnight for three Fridays, starting this week. The first two strikes will target the public bar, which remains open while the theatre is closed over the summer. However, the third will fall on the opening night of the new season."

ETC Announces 2007 LDI Student Sponsorship Awards

Lighting&Sound America Online - News: "Jason Read is pursuing a master of fine arts in lighting design from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania."

Carnegie Mellon MBA class gets down and dirty

Post Gazette: "Seventy first-year graduate students in the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University got as dirty as coal miners yesterday gutting four, century-old houses. Another 170 got rained on hauling pallets, pushing wheelbarrows, lugging mulch and collecting litter."

Monday, August 20, 2007

Musings from Boot Camp

Free-Range Drama Farm: "So, I got back from Nonprofit Boot Camp at 8:00 last night, and my head is still spinning! It was almost 12 hours of fabulous workshops, keynotes, and chatting with other nonprofiteers, and now that it’s over I’m sorting through all of the new ideas and perspectives I’ve found. Here’s just a few of the big things I took away from it - I’m sure there will be more to come in the next few weeks, as I continue to ponder…"

Why everything you thought you knew about Parkinson’s Law is wrong

JARKKOLAINE: "Even if you haven’t heard the term, Parkinson’s Law, I’m sure you are familiar with the idea: The law states that if you reserve some amount of time for a given task, the task takes up the whole time, no matter if the task could be done faster or not."

Toolmonger’s Top 5: The Week In Tools

Toolmonger: "It’s been a busy week here at Toolmonger. If you’ve been spending time in the shop — you should! — and you haven’t had a chance to keep up with Toolmonger this week, we suggest you start with these posts, which our readers helped to select"

Carnegie Mellon University's College of Fine Arts Announcement

Future Tenant, Miller Gallery, Events, PGH Events

Future Tenant ____________________________________________________________

Future Tenant and Thank You, Felix Holding Auditions for Ten-Minute Play Festival

Auditions will be held from 7-10 PM on Monday, September 24, 2007, for the fourth installment of Future 10, the annual 10-minute play festival produced by the alternative art space Future Tenant and local theater company Thank You, Felix.

Please note: Auditions will take place at Bricolage Production Company, 937 Liberty Avenue, Downtown Pittsburgh.

Auditions are by appointment. Please call 412-848-3984 or email brad@thankyoufelix.com to schedule a time. Actors are asked to prepare a 1-2 minute contemporary monologue and to bring a headshot and resume if available.

Future Ten 4 is scheduled to run at Future Tenant, located in the heart of Pittsburgh¹s Cultural District, November 2-3, 9-10, 2007. The festival is split into two distinct programs, so actors with a conflict on one of the two weekends should still consider auditioning.

Future Tenant will be moving to a new home on Penn Avenue in the coming weeks. Please check www.FutureTenant.org for updates.

Future Tenant, visit www.FutureTenant.org .
Thank You, Felix, visit www.ThankYouFelix.com

Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, August 31 opening ____________________________

The Regina Gouger Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University will present an exhibition of furniture pieces and other work created by Japanese-American artist and architect George Nakashima. The exhibition, which runs from Aug. 31 through Oct. 28, will showcase approximately 15 pieces of furniture from Carnegie Mellon's collection, as well as historical photographs and original design sketches. An opening reception will be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 31. All events and exhibitions at the gallery are free and open to the public.

To listen to a news podcast with Delphia visit www.cmu.edu/cfa/labA6.html and click on the link "News: Nakashima Furniture Exhibit."

The Miller Gallery is open from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. Visitor parking is available in the East Campus Parking Garage on Forbes Avenue, just east of the Morewood Avenue intersection. For more information, call 412-268-3618.

____________________

Exhibit of Steel, Bronze Sculptures by Dee Briggs Opening in Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, Aug. 31

A sculpture exhibit by Dee Briggs will open at Carnegie Mellon University's Regina Gouger Miller Gallery Aug. 31 and run through Oct. 28. There will be an opening reception in the gallery from 5 to 8 p.m., Friday, Aug. 31.

"In this exhibit I've installed several new, large-scale works made of mild steel and stainless steel," Briggs said. "I am very excited to have this opportunity and support to publicly exhibit this new work because of its spatial achievement. They will be my largest pieces to date, and I hope that everyone visiting the show will experience the space that both the lines and the planes of my work are creating or implying."

In her work, Briggs experiments with a concept called chirality by rotating an image or shape and its mirror image around different axes. She is interested in the resulting spatial relationships, which she translates into steel and bronze sculptures. Chirality is a property that figures prominently in chemistry, mathematics and physics. A chiral object or shape is one that can't be superimposed on its mirror image. Examples of chiral objects are hands ‹ the left hand is the mirror image of the right hand.

Briggs received her bachelor's and master's degrees in architecture from the City College of New York in 1997 and Yale University in 2002, respectively.
Her work appeared in the International Sculpture Biennale in Palm Beach in 2006. The exhibit at the Regina Gouger Miller Gallery is her first solo exhibit. Examples of her work and process can be viewed at www.deebriggsstudio.com.

There is no admission fee for the Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, which is located on Carnegie Mellon's campus in Oakland. The gallery is open from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday-Sunday. For more information, call
412-268-3618 or visit http://millergallery.cfa.cmu.edu/~miller/.

Events ____________________________________________________________________

Leading performance artist Grisha Coleman, a fellow in Carnegie Mellon University's STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, will present her latest work, echo::system‹The Desert, September 6 at the New Hazlett Theater in Pittsburgh¹s North Side on Allegheny Square East.

echo::system‹The Desert is a 70-minute performance installation in which audiences and performers are immersed in a fully synthetic desert environment made of audio and visual media, digital movement analysis, robotics and live performance. As audience members walk through the space, they will trigger subtle changes in their surroundings with their steps, body heat and even their breath. The changes are made by sensors installed on the set.

³We affect every environment we touch and are affected by them. Because these phenomena are not always obvious, I am trying to feel my way through it with the making of this work,² Coleman said. ³I am using the experimental elements of the desert environment to create an alternate reality and to explore how we impact our surroundings.²

This artificial desert landscape is the backdrop for the tale of an ancient species that encounters its future. The species of Coleman¹s desert environment are ³Mudmen² and ³Mummies,² ³Suits² and ³Skateboarders.² Between performances, visitors may explore the performance environment independently as an art installation.

echo::system‹The Desert was co-commissioned by the the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry--where it was developed--and the New Hazlett Theater as part of the theater¹s Women in the Arts Festival, which was launched in June and runs through June 2008. The performance will run through September 15. The concept behind echo::system is to find resonances between science and art.

³The New Hazlett Theater is a flexible performing arts space operating with the intention of blending disciplines and engaging audiences in new ways by supporting innovative projects,² said Sara Radelet, executive director of the New Hazlett Theater. ³echo:system is a project that beautifully launches the performance programming of our Women in the Arts Festival. In our inaugural year, the festival celebrates accomplishments of women in the arts through performance, symposia and special programs. Of particular interest with this project is the blending of art and science, art and technology, and the mix of performing arts and visual arts traditions.²

The echo::system series boasts a dynamic team of collaborators from the fields of the performing arts, natural sciences, computer technology and metaphysics, including creator and composer/choreographer Coleman; population biologist Mike Bryant; architect and designer John Oduroe and Pittsburgh-based Lubetz Architects; videographers Maya Ciarrocchi and Peter Kirn; lighting designer Tony Mulanix; sound designer Leon Rothenberg and Mark Huang; Pittsburgh-based fashion designer Namiko Ogawa; and writer Onome Ekeh. The performance components, vocals and movement are by Coleman, Anitra Brooks, Sherwood Chen, Wendell Cooper, Reggie Ellis Crump, Soomi Kim, and a group of skateboard artists. Heidi Riegler is the producer and manager.

Carnegie Mellon¹s STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, a research center founded in the College of Fine Arts in 1989, aims to support creation and exploration in the arts, especially interdisciplinary projects that bring together the arts, science, technology and the humanities, and impact local and global communities.

Visit www.echo-system.org to learn more about the installation. Tickets can be purchased by calling Pro Arts at (412) 394-3353. The ticket prices are $20, $10 for students and senior citizens A schedule of the installation appears below.

Performance Dates:
Thursday-Friday, Sept. 6-7, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 8, (Press Night) 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Wednesday-Thursday, Sept. 12-13, 7:30 p.m., followed by post-performance discussion Friday, Sept. 14, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 15, 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Installation viewing only:

Saturday-Saturday, Sept. 8-15, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

PGH Events ________________________________________________________________

I Made It! 3, a crafting DIY event, will be held at the Brewhouse - SATURDAY, September 29, 2007, 12 - 5 pm, 2100 Mary Street, South Side, Pittsburgh.

Vendors will be accepted starting Friday, August 17. The first 50 vendors will be accepted with a waiting list of 10 in case additional room opens up.

To apply, send your name, business name, e-mail address, phone number and a short description of your craft to imadeitpgh@gmail.com starting on Friday, Aug. 17 at 6 pm.

First 50 vendors to apply will be notified via e-mail within 3 days of their status.

Check www.myspace.com/imadeitpgh for more details as they develop!

See you at the Market! and check out our sponsor, the Brewhouse Association at www.brew-house.org .

__________________

The New Hazlett Theater

Last Days Cafe
Monthly Creative Resource Meet and Chat for Pittsburgh's Creatives Friday, August 31, 5:30PM to 8:30PM
http://www.newhazletttheater.org/event/?event_id=86



This happy hour, casual "salon" is held the last day of every month (except
for December) and all are welcome. Each month will feature one or two
representatives of Pittsburgh's resource network for individual artists and
arts organizations. --- New Hazlett Theater Executive Director, Sara Radelet
says, "Pittsburgh has a wealth of extremely creative people working in their
own zones on great projects. We hope to create a place for them to take a
break and interact with other creative people, providing the kind of
environment that can give a tangible and necessary boost to a person's
energy and productivity." --- Artists, musicians, writers, dancers, poets,
performers, and arts administrators are invited to stop in, enjoy
complimentary refreshments and talk about projects, plans, ideas, and
interests. Often the key to unique opportunities is discovering who is doing
what and interacting regularly with a circle of colleagues who are working
creatively. The Last Days cafe will also provide a forum through which
Pittsburgh's creative community can become more familiar with the resources
available to them as they create new work, consider forming a new
organization, or think about how, when and where to show their work.
_____________________

Quantum Theatre

Join Quantum Theatre for the world premiere of Le Grand Meaulnes, and share
a romantic summer fantasy under the stars, in the stunning ambiance of the
Stables at Hartwood Acres.
"The company that always seeks a distinctive, nonconventional site for its
plays has never found one more perfectly matched to its subject or more
visually delicious in effect."

-Christopher Rawson, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"If theatre is supposed to help us imagine other worlds, Quantum has outdone
itself."

-Robert Isenberg, Pittsburgh City Paper

Le Grand Meaulnes
Outdoors at the Stables, Hartwood Acres Park
215 Saxonburg Boulevard, Pittsburgh, PA 15238

Wednesdays - Saturdays through August 25, plus Sunday August 26

Curtain at 8:00 pm

Call now for tickets, only 8 performances left
ProArts tickets: 412.394.3353 or visit www.proartstickets.org

A lack of direction

Los Angeles Times: "Not surprisingly, a good portion of what's presented at the smaller venues is actor-driven. The sub-100-seat houses, granted a special dispensation by Actors' Equity to accommodate the desire of many of its members to work regardless of wage scale, provide an endless stream of opportunities. Yet something seems missing. Time and again, I leave one of these magical mouse holes marveling at the quality and commitment of the actors on display but desperately wishing they were in more adept directorial hands."

Cover Story / BERKELEY REP TURNS 40

San Francisco Chronicle: "Berkeley Repertory Theatre turns 40 this season. It's come a long way from humble beginnings with a production of Georg Büchner's 'Woyzeck' by UC Berkeley graduate student Michael Leibert's Pomegranate Players. The April 1968 run at the university's International House proved so popular that Leibert leased a vacant storefront on College Avenue, put in some seats and opened the Rep's first season at it in the fall."

BURNING MAN TRIES TO COPE WITH CASH

San Francisco Gate: "Inside the Alamo Square apartment of Larry Harvey, the co-founder and impresario of Burning Man, there is a wooden statuette of Ganesh, the Hindu deity known for his patronage of arts and science."

State Increases Spending On Arts - After That It Gets Complicated

Courant.com: "We're told to look at the end result and not the sausage-making process also known as legislating. So in that case, let's go straight to the bottom line and simply say: 'The legislature - with the governor approving - gave the arts its biggest cumulative funding boost in years. Hooray!' I should stop here."

11 Extas Hurt on Set of Tom Cruise Movie

Backstage: "The 11 men, along with a companion who escaped injury, fell off the back of a truck on Sunday night. Police said in a statement that a bolt on a side panel of the truck apparently came loose as the vehicle turned."

When To Use Email & When Not To

lifehack.org: "Dave Pollard not only discusses 10 situations where email probably isn’t a suitable communication tool, but also put together this flowchart for figuring out which tool is right."

Hill District church to present 'Dr. Goddess'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "The Wesley Center A.M.E. Zion Church, a historic church in the Hill District, will present 'Dr. Goddess Goes to Jail' on Aug. 26."

Grove Playhouse averts foreclosure

MiamiHerald.com: "The embattled Coconut Grove Playhouse has dug out from under one of its major financial burdens after the theater raised more than $470,000 to pay a creditor and prevent a scheduled foreclosure auction of a portion of its property."

Kids learn a lot more than their lines in this summer theater project

chicagotribune.com: "When Alexis Pride founded the AJ Ensemble Theater Company in 2003, her goals went beyond presenting innovative theater productions in Chicago. She also wanted to bring young people to the arts, kids who often never get such an opportunity."

Wall art

Courier Journal: "Chris Skorija looks at a brick wall on a busy street and sees past the blandness and the decay. In his eye, the wall becomes an unconventional canvas, a surface to reinvigorate."

Why no review? No critics allowed

Seattle Times Newspaper: "Politely or bluntly, quite a few readers are asking me the same thing: 'That heavy-duty show 'Young Frankenstein' is premiering here at the Paramount Theatre. So where the heck is your review of it?'"

Sightlines: 'Opus,' Primary Stages' Latest, Not Such a Classical Gas

village voice: "Ironically, though, Opus is more like Pachelbel's somewhat lulling piece: an easily digested soap opera set in the highbrow world of classical music."

Two Plays Take on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

village voice: "If, as Edward Albee once insisted, the health 'of a society can be determined by the art it demands,' then we and our commitment to the Middle East are feeling rather poorly."

Sunday, August 19, 2007

College students return, roads close

Post Gazette: "With fall classes approaching, students moving into Carnegie Mellon University residences tomorrow -- and into University of Pittsburgh halls next week -- will mean road closures and extra traffic in and near Oakland."

Lehman and Adkins Are Bialystock and Bloom in Marriott's 'The Producers'

Yahoo! News: "The Sept. 5-Dec. 2 Lincolnshire, IL, staging is one of the first major regional productions of the Broadway smash based on the film comedy of the same name. Pioneer Theatre Company in Salt Lake City is among other resident American theatres serving the show in 2007-08. (The show popped up over the summer on some summer stock slates, including at the Augusta Barn Theatre in Michigan.)"

Fringe has grown too fast for audiences to keep up, venue bosses say

Times Online: "Venue bosses at the Edinburgh Fringe festival have voiced concern that the event has outgrown its audience."

Drama kings and queens: Meet the new generation of writers and directors behind the renaissance of British theatre

Independent Online Edition: "The old guard of UK playwriting is on a roll. According to Nicholas Hytner, the artistic director of the National Theatre, the hottest British dramatists right now are all over 70. 'Here we are with this generation of playwrights, and they're writing as well as, and better than ever before,' Hytner enthuses, with reference to Alan Bennett, Tom Stoppard, Michael Frayn and others."

Tuskegee Airmen

New York Times: "ROSCOE C. BROWN JR., 85, stood drill-baton straight addressing the audience after the first performance of “Fly,” a new play about the all-black Army Air Corps fighter squadron known as the Tuskegee Airmen. One of a few hundred remaining members of that World War II unit, he held up the Congressional Gold Medal that it had taken the government until last March to award to the squadron."

High-Energy Behemoth Devours Edinburgh

New York Times: "These men of action may sound like Jason Bournes or James Bonds, but they’re actually from this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, where the shows that generated much of the attention were eye-popping adrenaline rushes, full of propulsive music and elegantly choreographed destruction."

Grease Is the Word: Broadway Revival Opens Aug. 19

Playbill News: "The Broadway revival of Grease — starring TV reality winners Max Crumm and Laura Osnes as, respectively, Danny Zuko and Sandy Dumbrowski — officially opens at Broadway's Brooks Atkinson Theatre Aug. 19."

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust's money issues reflect risks of programming

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Recent reports that the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is experiencing financial difficulties is a matter for concern, but not alarm -- or surprise."

National Aviary's expansion keeps shifting shape

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Pittsburgh's National Aviary has spent nearly $2 million on architects and money-raising consultants over the past decade, but officials said they're still not ready to unroll final designs or break ground on a long-planned expansion."

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Former La. film commissioner charged

Yahoo! News: "Mark S. Smith was charged Friday with accepting bribe money from the Louisiana Institute of Film Technology, a New Orleans production company, in exchange for approving the company's inflated budget."

Labor Board Rules Against American Girl

Backstage: "American Girl Place officials committed unfair labor practices in trying to dissuade performers at the company's New York theatre from voting to hire Actors' Equity Association as the performers' bargaining representative, a judge for the National Labor Relations Board has ruled. Separately, Equity told the NLRB it will hold a new election this fall to settle American Girl's charge that the union also tampered with the voting process."

Welcome to New York

Backstage: "The stereotypical image of New York is that of a cold, bustling metropolis where actors struggle and starve. While an acting career is never a sure bet, the odds have improved of late. Not since the 1950s and early 1960s has New York seen such a burgeoning of acting opportunities, with many provided by Off-Off-Broadway."

New York International Fringe Festival

New York Times: "As an experience in scruffy cultural consumption, the New York International Fringe Festival is without parallel in Manhattan, or possibly anywhere else."

Rabih Mroué - How Nancy Wished That Everything Was an April Fool’s Joke

New York Times: "Over the next three months, the Lebanese artist Rabih Mroué will stage his new performance piece in Paris, Rome and the capitals of Tunisia, Morocco and Egypt. But he will not present it here, for the audience with whom it might resonate most."

Jane Eyre the Musical, Like Its Namesake, Reaches for a Brighter Future

Playbill News: "Jane Eyre, the 2000-01 Broadway musical by composer-lyricist Paul Gordon and librettist John Caird, is getting a serious 're-think' by the authors, who aim to make a chamber version of what was previously seen as a 22-actor, large-set epic."

Row hits Havel's return to the stage

Variety.com: "Vaclav Havel’s return to the Czech stage is not even firmly calendared but has already run into problems at Prague’s National Theater, with his wife, Dagmar Havlova, announcing she will not play the part he wrote for her."

'Le Reve' redo in Vegas

Variety.com: "Here's the big question buzzing around town these days: Has 'Le Reve' finally become a beautiful dream, or is it still a contentious, money-burning nightmare? With two major revamps now under its belt, creatives behind the circus spectacular are looking to find new life in the Vegas desert."

Audiences get their circus kicks

Variety.com: "Though most of the fame goes to a pair of behemoths — arty Cirque du Soleil and old-fashioned, elephant-populated Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey — many smaller, nontraditional 'alternative circus' productions are thriving across the U.S., comprising what is arguably a major sub-genre."

'Young Frankenstein' getting ready

Variety.com: "With an unorthodox ticket distribution strategy that pushes premium-ticket price-tags up to a walloping $450 a seat, producers of 'Frankenstein' are banking on a monster hit when it opens at New York's Hilton Theater Nov. 8."

Film Make-Up Artist

Craigslist: "Los Angeles Producer/Director bringing a new indy film (The Cage) to Cleveland/NE Ohio."

Friday, August 17, 2007

Children's Theatre Company names new managing director

Star Tribune: "The Children's Theatre Company, the nation's largest theater for youth and families, announced Thursday that Gabriella Calicchio will be its next managing director."

AFTRA Musicians Lead Protest Against Labels

Backstage: "AFTRA's sound-recordings contract expired June 30, and talks about a new agreement are going poorly enough to prompt an online protest campaign against major record labels."

Productivity: 9 Habits To Quit Now

lifehack.org: "I like to-do lists, but do you know what I like better? NOT-to-do lists! The less to do the better, so I’ll take this advice from 4-Hour Workweek author Tim Ferriss. 9 things you can check off your list that do nothing but impede your business progress, productivity and pleasure in your personal life."

Cuban dancer Acosta seeks Afro-Cuban roots

Reuters: "Cuban ballet star Carlos Acosta plans to treat London audiences to a novel fusion of classical dance and Afro-Cuban rhythms played by a live band."

Director of Stage Technologies (Technical Director)

JOBZone - Live Design Online: "EMPAC, the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, invites applications for the position of the Director for Stage Technologies. The position is to be filled immediately."

Broadway Gives Its Regards to Preschoolers

NPR: "For generations, many preschoolers got their first taste of Broadway by listening to their parents' original cast recordings. Now, Broadway's giving its regards to the pre-K set on cable TV. Two very popular series feature the music and lyrics of well-known and up-and-coming Broadway songwriters."

'Idol' Flops on Broadway

NPR: "Of the many post-American Idol careers the talent show may have spawned, its own career seems to be stuck in TV Land. Just one day after opening, Idol: The Musical, was voted off Broadway. It didn't make it past round one, meaning it closed right after opening night."

Hundreds of Channels, but Where's the Artsy Stuff?

NPR: "Flip through your cable, and it seems there's a channel or three for every possible interest: golf, history, animals, kids, home improvement. But you have to look hard to find the fine arts. Back in the day, both Bravo and A&E featured classical music, ballet and the visual arts. But they've long been taken over by Project Runway and Law and Order reruns."

Controversial Play in Spotlight at Contemporary American Theater Festival

VOA News: "My Name is Rachel Corrie is a one-woman play pieced together from journals and e-mails written by 23-year-old Rachel Corrie. The young American was working in Gaza with the International Solidarity Movement in 2003 as a human shield."

Thursday, August 16, 2007

j-o-b lighting instructor

USAJOBS: "You will instruct, direct, and guide cadet program participants in theatre arts, with an emphasis in lighting. You will provide hands-on demonstrations and instruction in lighting and stage crafts. You will provide cadets with a hands-on introduction to producing professional quality lighting for live stage productions and lectures."

j-o-b museum

USAJOBS: "We are more than a place to visit. The Smithsonian offers incredibly diverse and unique career and intern opportunities. Whatever your skills, interests, or education level we have a career opportunity that will fascinate you. This position is located in National Museum of American History (NMAH), in the Exhibit Service Group, Exhibits Production, Office of Exhibition Services. The purpose of this position is to plan, design, install, operate, and maintain exhibition lighting, its related systems, and to maintain exhibits."

Interactive theatre is all the rage

Guardian Unlimited: "Six Women Standing in Front of a White Wall, which encourages audience participation, is fast becoming a word-of-mouth hit. I want more shows like it - especially if hugging is included."

Blame TV Tie-ins for Overhyped West End Musicals: Matt Wolf

Bloomberg.com: Muse: "With London's theaters increasingly overrun by musicals, it seems producers have found the holy grail to commercial success. This is no reference to the epic search in ``Monty Python's Spamalot'' -- it's just that when all else fails these days, get a television tie-in."

22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

lifehack.org: "Deadlines are the chronological equivalent of a budget. By setting aside a portion of time to complete a task, goal or project in advance you avoid over-spending. Deadlines can be helpful but they can also be a source of frustration if set improperly."

Tools For Creating Ideas

lifehack.org: "I recently came across the CreatingMinds site and their Creative Toolbox, full of interesting ways to solve creative problems, come up with new ideas and implement your solutions."

Harry Potter and the Crazy Expensive Theme Park.

Slate Magazine: "In June it was finally made official that Universal will create a Harry Potter attraction in Florida. The Los Angeles Times reported that this will enable Universal at last to challenge Disney's dominance there. It was mentioned that Disney had tried to make the deal. But Hill had the real dish. His under-the-radar reportgave some details on Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling's ideas on how this attraction would work. And it said that Disney concluded the project would be an expensive nightmare."

Carter family's musical heritage onstage in Playhouse's 'Sunny Side'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Guitars, autoharps, banjos, mandolins and a harmonica will be more than just props in the last performance of the Mountain Playhouse's summer season, 'Keep on the Sunny Side.'"

Portrait of passion

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Fitting an elegant 1930s Riviera hotel terrace and a charming Parisian pied-a-terre apartment into the contemporary confines of the Henry Heymann Theatre is no small task, Gianni Downs says."

Stage Review: Premiere doesn't delve deeply enough into subject

Post Gazette: "New theater companies seem to be sprouting up like a late summer crop. Last month, Caravan Theatre opened with the compelling 'Savage in Limbo.' Now, in the same space (Playwrights Theatre) and with two of the same actors, LTD Productions, in association with Winter Morning Pictures, LLC, premieres with Allison Moore's 'Eighteen.'"

Stage Preview: Buffalo actor makes the trek to PICT for 'Private Lives'

Post Gazette: "When you think of Buffalo, N.Y., what comes to mind? The Bills? Really bad winters, maybe? When actor Paul Todaro talks about Buffalo, besides calling it home, he says it reminds him a lot of Pittsburgh. Buffalo may be smaller but it, too, is struggling to forge an economic renaissance, to develop its waterfront and, Todaro, says, there's a similar mix of theater companies."

Feedback: 8/16/07

Post Gazette: "Like many local artists, I was saddened to learn that the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has had to reduce its spending by $5.4 million this year, because of gambles gone wrong on big-ticket productions."

Tips For Handling Multiple Projects

Freelance Switch: "Whether you’re working on different projects, handling different clients on the phone, or working on some small fixes on the side, having more than one commitment is what most freelancers consider normal."

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Featured Download: Excel Gantt chart template

Lifehacker: "I'm basically just using Excel like graph paper, and there is absolutely no automatic calculation at all. On the other hand, it's probably a lot EASIER to keep up to date, through copying/pasting and inline annotation, than actual software like Microsoft Project."

Fox deal with writers has got buzz

Marketplace: "20th Century Fox has reached agreement with a group of top screenwriters that would pay them smaller advances in exchange for allowing them a percentage of the profits if their movies get made. Lisa Napoli reports."

Featured Download: Replace Microsoft Project with OpenProj

Lifehacker: "The $1000 price tag attached to Microsoft Project Pro got you down? Cross platform open source app OpenProj comes to the rescue. OpenProj markets itself as a complete replacement for Microsoft Project and boasts complete integration with existing Project files and Primavera."

Lifehacker Top 10: Top 10 PDF Tricks

Lifehacker: "Chances are you've already got a free PDF reader installed on your computer, but you can do a lot more with your PDF files than you might think. Hit the jump for our top 10 list of techniques for converting, exchanging, sharing, managing and editing PDF documents."

Time and Money

Backstage: "In the arts, corporate sponsorship is often problematic. Although institutions need and appreciate the funds, the money sometimes carries with it — whether real or perceived — the taint of commercialism and control. Further, the largest nonprofit institutions (the ones that appear to be self-sustaining) often receive the lion's share of the cash. Rarely does a major corporation spend a significant amount of money in a way that directly benefits fledgling artists — those who would seem to need the support most."

SHORT FILMS NEED LOCATIONS AND SOME CREW

Craigslist: "alot of our talent is already lined-up we are mostly location scouting... we do need some crew."

Artist/ painter wanted for trompe l'oeil mural

Craigslist: "Artist or painter wanted for tromple l'oeil mural on exterior of private home."

Cabaret

Pittsburgh City Paper: "Like most people who've worked in theater, I have very little sympathy for the audience. From a theater person's point of view, the audience has one job: To sit there and marvel at the glory unfolding on stage. We did the work, by God, so you'd better like it!"

'Gone Missing' finds humor in cop stories

New York Daily News: "The evidence can be found at 'Gone Missing,' a bittersweet Off-Broadway musical about loss that uses the small and tangible - a mislaid wallet, say, or scarf - as a way to tap into yearning for what's irrevocably left us."

CMUQ to begin next session in new building

Gulf Times: "AFTER spending three years occupying a portion of the Weill Cornell Medical College building, Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMUQ) will begin its fourth academic year in a new building - the Liberal Arts and Science (LAS) building in the Education City."

Le Grand Meaulnes

Pittsburgh City Paper: "In France, Le Grand Meaulnes is considered a classic novel. No student would graduate from a French école without reading it, just as every American seems to read The Catcher in the Rye. Written by Alain Fournier on the cusp of World War I, Meaulnes has dominated nearly a century of literature classes, even though the book is almost unknown outside of France."

Talented Teens

USATODAY.com - feature Since 2002, some of the top drama students from U.S. and Canadian high schools have come together in the summer for a drama boot camp.

Performing Shakespeare casts a spell on teens

OrlandoSentinel.com: "This production, a sort of Reader's Digest version of A Midsummer Night's Dream, began as a grand experiment: Take a group of kids with developmental disabilities -- cerebral palsy, brain damage, learning or emotional problems -- and mix them with kids considered normal, or at least as normal as any teenager can be. Then, in two weeks time, put on a Shakespearean play."

Equity Eys YouTube

actorsequity.org | News #038; Media: "If You See Something, Forward the Link! Members Encouraged to Report Illegal Footage to: taping@actorsequity.org"

Funding Available

actorsequity.org | News #038; Media: "The San Francisco Arts Commission has asked to help get out the word about a new granting program available to artists and arts groups in San Francisco."

Know Anyone in THE WEDDING SINGER Tour ?

actorsequity.org | News #038; Media: "Actors' Equity and the American Federation of Musicians are trying to contact actors, stage managers and musicians who are working on this non- union tour."

Lawsuit: Music Publishers v. YouTube Doesn't Solve the Problem

Media 3.0 With Shelly Palmer - Blog: "Lawsuits will not solve the problem, which is: there is no easy way to identify who owns which rights in and to most pieces of music and there is no easy way to get a quote and pay them."

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Feature: Future Robot Technologies



TechEBlog: "We have seen the future, and it's robots. As robots continue to advance, we can only guess at how smart they will become. Continue reading to see them all."

Senate Looks To Slow Innovation In Fashion Industry With New Copyright Laws

Techdirt: "So, with the highly competitive fashion industry thriving due to the lack of copyright protection, there should be no reason to suddenly add copyrights. Apparently, no one has explained that to the U.S. Senate, which is considering a bill to extend copyrights to fashion designs."

The taste of Pittsburgh: Edible robots?

CNET News.com: "Dancing robots made of Rice Krispies Treats and robotic cucumber hands were made through an event hosted by a CMU computer scientist, Maya, a design consultancy and technology research lab, and Mattress Factory, a Pittsburgh contemporary-art museum, as part of the Community Open Studios component of Robot 250."

Broadway Softball League

New York Times: "A humid August afternoon in Central Park. After the sharp crack of a bat, a ball arcs forcefully into right field. Runners at first and second sprint forward, kicking up clouds of dirt. When the lead runner crosses home, his teammates stream from the bench, punching their fists in the air and chanting:

“Mary Poppins!” “Mary Poppins!” “Mary Poppins!”"

FOX Animated Comedy, "Family Guy," Will Hit Chicago Theatre Stage

Playbill News: "Family Guy Live! will feature 'an uncensored live reading of a classic episode' with 'bonus material never before seen on FOX,' according to an announcement. The events will also include 'the cast performing some of the most memorable musical numbers from the series as well as a Q&A with the cast and creators of the series.'"

Dirty Dancing Will Launch U.S. National Tour in September 2008

Playbill News: "Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story On Stage, the musical based on the Hollywood film that starred Patrick Swayze, will make its U.S. debut in September at Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theatre."

Idol-inspired NY musical voted off after one night

Reuters: "A musical inspired by the hit reality television show 'American Idol' has been voted off the stage in New York -- closing one day after officially opening off Broadway."

Where to show off your work (and get noticed)

LifeClever ;-) Tips for Design and Life: "After 6 years as a professional designer, there’s one reason why I still don’t have an online portfolio: it’s a pain in the ass to create and maintain. Online portfolios just involve labor-intensive design, coding, updating, and promoting. I know I’ll eventually get around to making a stellar online portfolio. But for now, I need something quick and dirty."

High School stage show wows crowd

TheStar.com: "If the reaction to Wednesday night's premiere of High School Musical at the La Salle Bank Theatre is any indication of what we can expect when the show hits Toronto this September, then David Mirvish is only going to have one problem on his hands. Crowd control."

Richard Monette's final bow at Stratford

TheStar.com: "Having transformed Stratford into a profitable festival, the artistic director reflects in an exclusive chat on choices made in his 14 years"

History, mystery and art

TheStar.com: "But that's the major problem with David Edgar's Pentecost, which opened at the Studio Theatre on Friday night in a galvanically commanding production by Mladen Kiselov, performed with full firepower by the Stratford company."

Double-wide musical pride

The Denver Post: "OK, so Alex Ryer and partner Gary Schnell didn't exactly 'break in' to the mobile-home park near Greeley. 'But we do have connections,' said Ryer, producer and star of 'The Great American Trailer Park Musical,' a cheeky, bighearted and a little bit vulgar musical making its big-buzz regional premiere tonight at the New Denver Civic Theatre."

Pentecost a stunning achievement

TorontoSun.com: "As such, it represents both a major challenge and a remarkable achievement for director Mladen Kiselov in his Stratford debut."

Equity vs. YouTube

Show Business Weekly: "The union has launched a campaign to remove unauthorized clips of Equity productions that have been posted to the video-sharing site."

Now you can have your show on Fox

Show Business Weekly: "The Storyteller Challenge, which begins Sept. 4, will allow contestants to post five- to seven-minute video pilots on the popular social networking site MySpace, which is owned by Fox’s parent company News Corp. Once posted, MySpace users will be able to view, comment and vote on their favorite videos. A panel of judges, including members from the PGA and Fox, will then narrow the field down to six."

Monday, August 13, 2007

ESTA Celebrates 20 Years

Live Design: "In November of 1987, a group of 25 theatrical dealers walked into a meeting room in Las Vegas and emerged eight hours later as a fledgling association called the Theatrical Dealers Association. The name of the organization has changed, but the volunteerism and idealism have only grown with the years. Two decades later, the Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA) now represents all facets of the entertainment technology industry."

Long Reach Long Riders Finish 4th Annual Charity Motorcycle Ride

Live Design: "Bill Sapsis, Greg Williams, and the riders and staff of the Long Reach Long Riders are happy to announce the completion of the 4th Annual Charity Motorcycle ride."

Brainstorming Walls

lifehack.org: "Finding the right way to get ideas together, particularly amongst a group, can really impact results. Usually something large, easily viewed, and graphically versatile is best. Like a wall?"

j-o-b TD

Full-time or flex-time, salaried position available starting in November for Squonk Opera, a small, nationally touring, non-profit, multi-media performing group based in Pittsburgh. Would be part of a touring and creative tech and run team consisting of Lighting, Sound and Video Designers/Operators and Backstage Manager. Would be the third in-house staff member along with the 2 Artistic Directors who are the designer and the composer. In between touring engagements, responsibilities include organizing tech for touring and building and creating new productions every other year. Squonk Opera has received 3 NEA creation grants, a Rockefeller M.A.P. Fund grant and The American Theatre Wing Special Effects Hewes Award.
Please email resume and contact information to: Steve O¹Hearn, Co-Artistic Director, steve@squonkopera.org.

At Boulevard, see a lifetime of shows

JS Online: "Performing arts groups encourage people to buy season tickets. It is money in the bank months before shows open, and it guarantees a company's continuing presence on the crowded calendars of busy patrons.

How about a lifetime ticket?"

At Boulevard, see a lifetime of shows

JS Online: "Performing arts groups encourage people to buy season tickets. It is money in the bank months before shows open, and it guarantees a company's continuing presence on the crowded calendars of busy patrons.

How about a lifetime ticket?"

We hate it when shows become successful

Guardian Unlimited: "I know Lyn Gardner was unimpressed by Fuerzabruta, but I had a whale of a time standing in the crowd being sprayed with water, coated in debris and captivated by the Argentinian company's gravity-defying antics. Much as I was thrilled by its novelty, however, a thought occurred to me during the show: would there come a time when I would look upon Fuerzabruta as sniffily as if it was just another commercial, mass-market product on the same circuit as Cirque du Soleil and Stomp?"

Waters recalls men who played Edna

Variety.com: "In the beginning, Divine played the role of Edna Turnblad. And the first day on the set of 'Hairspray,' I didn't recognize him. I thought it was another neighborhood woman watching the shoot. We were filming in East Baltimore, and all the housewives were talking to him. Divine looked normal, not weird. It was a moment of truth. It was so anti-the-Divine-character that we started with. Divine said, 'Nobody can call me a drag queen, because what drag queen would allow themselves to look like this?'"

How to Criticise People without Causing Offence

lifehack.org: "In life we often need to criticise the actions of others, yet at the same time it can be a daunting task. Nobody likes being told their are wrong or need correcting. Yet, just because people may not like being criticised, doesn’t mean we can avoid doing it."

Blue Men have always been smarter than they look

chicagotribune.com: "If you'd told me in 1997 that -- ten years later -- I'd be back at a packed-to-the-gills Briar Street Theatre watching a mute but weirdly expressive trio of cobalt dudes drumming and splattering, I'd have said you'd ingested too much blue paint."

Plays that run forever

chicagotribune.com: "They are the evergreen crowd-pleasers, the shows that keep selling tickets season after season, year in and year out. Compared side by side, many of these long-running shows share similar elements. Most are comedies; many also employ improv. They encourage audience participation and focus on relatable themes, such as relationships."

Stage Crew - All Departments

Craigslist: "Carnegie Mellon Drama is once again looking to add names to our overhire labor list."

Surviving a theatrical butchering

chicagotribune.com: "A year ago this week, 25-year-old, Wilmette-raised playwright Marisa Wegrzyn made a splash at the Steppenwolf Theatre's First Look Festival of new American plays. It was a bit of a bloody splash. Wegrzyn's pitch-black comedy, 'The Butcher of Baraboo,' was a piece of Upper Midwestern Gothic featuring gore, eccentricity, small-town intrigue, a possible murder and a prominently wielded meat cleaver."

How Can We Improve the New York Fringe?

village voice: "The New York Fringe Festival—which starts it 11th year on Friday—doesn't exude that kind of excitement or buzz. It has largely failed to attract the range and quality of shows at other fringe festivals— Edinburgh, Dublin, Adelaide, even nearby Philadelphia."

Pics from CMU Drama