CMU School of Drama

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Alums Light Up Primetime & More

Entertainment News - Carnegie Mellon University: "As you set your DVR for the new fall shows, be sure you don't miss the ones that feature Carnegie Mellon's talented alums — on screen and behind the scenes.
'Carnegie Mellon's School of Drama is one of the world's leading educational institutions focused on preparing young artists for careers in the theater and entertainment industries,' said Peter Cooke, head of the school."

Opera Theater new season to offer rarities, world premiere

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Opera Theater will revel in its role as Pittsburgh's second opera company during the 2009-10 season, presenting a world premiere and three rarities that complement the more familiar offerings of Pittsburgh Opera."

Review: Singers triumph in Pittsburgh Opera's 'Onegin'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "The G-20 summit unintentionally cast extra light on the Saturday night opening of Pittsburgh Opera's season because other Cultural District events were cancelled or rescheduled. The opera's presentation of 'Eugene Onegin' was up to the challenge, for the most part, because it was an impressively sung performance of a gorgeous, yet neglected, opera that was limited mostly by uninspiring sets."

Apple Hill Playhouse's 'Busybody' keeps them guessing

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "As sure as fall brings cool temperatures and colorful leaves, the new season brings classic murder mysteries and thrillers to community theaters.
Apple Hill Playhouse is the first to scare its audiences silly by staging 'Busybody' beginning this weekend. The Jack Popplewell mystery comedy, which closes the 2009 season at the Delmont theater, focuses on Mrs. Piper, the cleaning lady, portrayed by Anne Crusan of Bolivar."

Cirque du Soleil show 'Alegria' closes in on action

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "It all started in the early 1980s with a small band of musicians, jugglers and fire-eaters roaming the streets of Baie-Saint-Paul, a small town near Quebec City in Canada.
Today, that street theater troupe has grown into Cirque du Soleil, an international entertainment empire with 21 shows in performance on stages around the world."

'Off the Record IX' promises satirical hilarity

Post Gazette: "Imagine Luke Ravenstahl, Lynn Cullen and Ben Roethlisberger in high school together, in a biology class taught by Cyril Wecht.
If that's a little tough, not to worry: The slightly demented folks who put on 'Off the Record' have done it for you."

Dance Review: Exuberant Philadanco an ideal partner for August Wilson Center

Post Gazette: "Philadelphia is a city that likes to soar, as witnessed by the names of some of its sports teams -- the Eagles, the Flyers and the lesser-known Wings (lacrosse). But it's doubtful any of them can equal the expansive spirit and due diligence of another hometown team, the remarkable Philadanco."

Opera Review: Pittsburgh Opera stages soaring 'Eugene Onegin'

Post Gazette: "A Russian delegation of one held her own summit at the Benedum Center Saturday night as soprano Anna Samuil put on a remarkable performance in Pittsburgh Opera's production of Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky's 'Eugene Onegin.' And the other delegates, as it were, in the cast held up their end of the bargain excellently."

Pop Filter Event of the Week: Ella!

Pop City: "So just who was the greatest jazz singer of all time? Find out as the Pittsburgh Public Theater (PPT) opens its 35th season with Ella , the hit bio-musical about 'The First Lady of Song,' known for her pure tone, impeccable phrasing, and 'horn-like' improvisational singing style (a.k.a. scat)."

WGAE Looks to Get in on Digital Ground Floor

Backstage: "Better to be early to the party than late. That's the attitude of the Writers Guild of America, East, which announced Tuesday that it has signed deals with 11 companies creating new content for digital-media. The signatories, producers of Web series with titles such as 'The Temp Life' and 'Hedge Fund,' may not be household names, but guild executive director Lowell Peterson believes that the deals represent an opportunity to establish a guild presence in a corner of the media world that is growing quickly and still taking shape."

'Laramie' Sequel Gives Voice to Killer

Backstage: "A decade after 'The Laramie Project' became a theatrical phenomenon, its creators are back with an epilogue highlighted by a riveting prison interview with the killer of gay college student Matthew Shepard — depicting him as candid but not remorseful over the murder."

Good Theater Business News?!

Chicagoist: "So as we were flipping through our Wall Street Journal this morning (O.K., O.K., it was a press release), we were surprised and excited to hear that there is some hope out there for the business we call show. Our very own Steppenwolf Theatre Company has been named on of the top 15 places to work by the Wall Street Journal’s Top Small Workplaces 2009."

The Marvels Inside the Wyly

Art & Seek – A service from KERA for North Texas: "In planning for its new home in the Wyly Theatre, the Dallas Theater Center was determined to continue its 25-year tradition of 'flexible' theater. The Theater Center's Arts District Theater was flexible in the way it could be completely altered, its seating and staging configuration changed for each production. The basic thinking behind the Arts District Theater was that of a movie studio. It was a tin shed with a concrete floor, and everything inside it could be dismantled and scraped away and re-built differently for the next show."

Donmar West End season records 98% average attendances

The Stage: "London’s Donmar Warehouse has revealed that its West End season at the Wyndham’s Theatre recorded average attendances of 98%, including 13.5% of first-time theatre bookers."

Jackman, Craig Play Low-Down Chicago Blues in ‘Rain’: Review

Bloomberg.com: "It may be sensation enough that in the two-character police drama “A Steady Rain,” stage-and- screen stars England’s Daniel Craig and Australia’s Hugh Jackman have come to Broadway to play low-level Chicago cops. They even have the accent right. The rest is less impressive."

“Light Plot Deconstructed” by Gregg Hillmar – A Review

Ramblings of a Techie: "Gregg Hillmar is a busy scenic and lighting designer who has been using Vectorworks for many years. And he has used the skills that he has learnt over these years to put together this book. His book looks at how he uses Vectorworks to draft lighting plots."

Yeast Nation (The Triumph of Life)

The Rob Kozlowski Chicago Theater and Vintage Film Medicine Show: "A lot has been made of how Greg Kotis and Mark Hollman picked the worst possible concept for a musical as a fun challenge - covering the lives of single-cell organisms at the beginning of the creation of life on the Earth more than three billion years ago - but personally I don't think it was that much of a challenge if only because the musical necessitated the creation of a universe and society not unlike those from science fiction. No, I think something more up Kotis and Hollman's alley would be a musicalization of Beckett's Not I. Let's see it. I dare them."

Animal Crackers

The Rob Kozlowski Chicago Theater and Vintage Film Medicine Show: "There are few riskier propositions for a theater than attempting to replicate the stage and screen performances of legends, but Henry Wishcamper's production of Animal Crackers at the Goodman Theatre takes that proposition and bravely runs with it, taking what could have been a disaster to the eyes of this Marx Brothers worshiper and creating a lovely tribute not only to the brothers but also in large part to the songwriting team of Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby."

Lightwright 5 New Features YouTube Video

iSquint | Entertainment Lighting News & Review: "At the release of Lightwright 5 at the beginning of September, John Mckernon, the developer of the software put together a YouTube video of some of the new features found in the update."

And the Top Jobs for 2009 Grads Are...

CollegeSurfing Insider: "There’s no doubt, job offers are few and far between in these dreary days of layoffs, cutbacks, and hiring freezes. That’s why we can learn a lot from the list of the 10 jobs most offered to the class of 2009 as reported by the National Association of Colleges and Employers in its Fall 2009 Salary Survey."

Electronic Webcaster Gun makes Halloween decorating a cinch

DVICE: "If you want your house to look a little more like a set piece for Arachnophobia, this Electronic Webcaster Gun should do just the trick. It's loaded up with 'Web Sticks' that give it something of a glue gun feel, but — instead of hot glue — it shoots out icky streams of webbing."

'Where the Wild Things Are' Production Designer Speaks!

I Watch Stuff: "K.K. Barrett was production designer for Human Nature, I Heart Huckabees, Lost in Translation, Maria Antoinette, and every feature film Spike Jonze has made. If he spends 18 minutes talking about his work, including his recent Where the Wild Things Are job, wouldn't you want to hear that?"

40 Styles of Chairs

Props: "There are 40 distinct styles of chairs embracing the period from 3000 B.C. to 1900 A.D. — nearly 7,000 years. Of all the millions of chairs made during the centuries, each one can be classified under one or more of the 40 general styles shown in the chart. This chart was compiled by the editor of Decorative Furniture. The Colonial does not appear on the chart because it classifies under the Jacobean and other styles."

1970s Theatre… Now Online

ATW: "Beginning today, thanks to a collaboration between the American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League, audiences across the country will have the opportunity to hear “This is Broadway,” more than 70 vintage interviews with Broadway luminaries circa 1977. These short radio features have not been available publicly since their original broadcasts 32 years ago. Even the program’s hosts, Isobel Robins and Richard Seff hadn’t heard them in years."

Landru Design Releases New Vectorworks Plug-ins

iSquint | Entertainment Lighting News & Review: "While working in Vectorworks, do you have trouble rendering and display soft goods such as curtains or designing commonly used items? Landru Design, a lighting design firm out of Nashville TN has just releases two new Plug-ins for Vectorworks to help folks that use Vectorworks to design and develop 3D rendering of sets and lights."

‘Hair’ Closes for One Day So Cast Can Attend National Equality March

NYTimes.com: "Playwrights and producers have used scathing commentary, heartbreaking drama and sharp satire to score political points about war, torture, presidents, AIDS, race relations and women’s rights with New York theater audiences. Now the Broadway musical “Hair” is expanding the concept of stage activism by taking to the streets and urging audiences to follow. The producers canceled a Sunday matinee so that the cast and crew could attend and perform at a march for gay rights in Washington on Oct. 11."

WGA East ups digital media ante

Hollywood Reporter: "As part of its Writers Guild 2.0 organizing effort, the WGA East has signed 11 new companies that create content for digital media. The writers at these companies will become WGAE members.
Inroads into digital media are a priority for the guild, and its initiative includes seminars, a job training program and an organizational push."

Australia's Bovell hits the big time

Variety: "LONDON Australian theater has never been big in London -- or New York for that matter. But, suddenly, playwright Andrew Bovell has three major productions opening within months of each other in the world's twin theater capitals."

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Filmmaking incentives losing glamour in cash-strapped states

latimes.com: "More than 40 states offer tax breaks for movie and TV production, drawing business away from Southern California. But in the face of budget crises, several states are having second thoughts."

Arts foundation layoffs imperil federal funding

Starbulletin.com: "Leaders from arts organizations across the state say the loss of 10 employees — about one-third the staff — at the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts would be a destructive move that jeopardizes not just arts programs, but the economy and education as well."

LDI2009 Adds Classes in wysiwyg and Vivien Software

Live Design: "Cast Lighting’s award-winning wysiwyg and Vivien software training has been added to the LDInstitute at LDI2009. Attendees must bring their own laptops and have WYG R24 or Vivien 2010 downloaded in advance in order to take these classes."

In Memoriam: Harry Donovan, 1943-2009

PLSN: "Harry Donovan, one of the world’s foremost rigging experts and author of Entertainment Rigging, died Sept. 23 after an ongoing battle with cancer. Donovan, 66, was both an engineer and one of the entertainment industry’s most experienced and respected riggers, a unique combination. He devoted his career to studying the art and science of rigging."

ZFX and Stage Technologies Announce Strategic Alliance

PLSN: "ZFX Flying Effects and Las Vegas-based Stage Technologies have announced a strategic alliance to offer automated solutions for productions that require complex flying sequences.
ZFX will add Stage Technologies’ hoists and control systems to its roster of complete flying services. ZFX also named Joe Champelli, who has considerable experience in automation and machinery design, as its general manager."

NFTRW Weekly Top Five

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

'Lion King' Costumes Headed to Smithsonian

Backstage: "Producers of 'The Lion King' musical are donating two of the Broadway show's elaborate costume pieces to the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History."
<-- Comments Here

Business Card Alternatives For the Real World

WebWorkerDaily: "So you’re a web worker, but you still meet people in meatspace that you want to network with, and making them type an email into their phone or handing them a plain jane business card either feels awkward or isn’t getting results."
<-- Comments Here

I-Phone Revisited

Ramblings of a Techie: "When I posted my article listing some apps for the I-Phone I did not realise how popular the story would be. since then I have been reminded of a couple of applications that I missed. So I thought I would add a few more."
<-- Comments Here

Is 90 minutes the right length for a show? Not so fast.

chicagotribune.com: "Within the last week, I've twice found myself complaining about running time. I thought 'Mistakes Were Made,' the hugely entertaining Craig Wright play at A Red Orchid Theatre, needed to lose about 15 minutes. And I thought 'Stoop Stories,' the artful solo show by Dael Orlandersmith at the Goodman Theatre, needed to add at least that much.
Which would mean both shows would clock in about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Was I positing some kind of ideal length for a show?"
<-- Comments Here

Help Wanted sign during G-20, in Pittsburgh

gigapan: "Carnegie Mellon University freshman Sarah Ceurvorst and other students created this huge sign near the CMU track."
<-- Comments Here

Long-term Projects: Moving Past the Distractions

WebWorkerDaily: "When I sit down at my computer each morning, I always have plenty of emails asking me to work on short-term projects: a connection that has to be made today, a round of revisions that needs to be made immediately, a phone call that really ought to have happened last night, etc. Because of how immediate all of these requests are, it’s easy to get lost in them and let my long-term projects fall by the wayside."
<-- Comments Here

SURG Applications

SURG Spring 2010 Poster

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Stratford's 'Macbeth,' 'Julius Caesar' disappoint, but 'Three Sisters' soars

Post Gazette: "It was Shakespeare who inspired the establishment of this theater festival in Western Ontario farm country in 1953 and who has sustained it ever since.
I have made the trek on and off for more than 30 years primarily to see his plays staged in Stratford's legendary style -- one without peer in North America. So, when productions don't meet expectations, it's a genuine letdown."

Kidd Pivot takes dance beyond the present

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "The source of creativity is usually something of a mystery and seems to differ from artist to artist.
For Crystal Pite, the founder of Kidd Pivot dance company, creation is 'always a sort of play between instinct and intellect. I generally start from instinct and then wrangle the material into something that can be understood.'"

Geffen Playhouse embraces bad reviews for 'Alpacas'

Los Angeles Times: "The Geffen Playhouse is attempting to turn some bad reviews for its production of 'Matthew Modine Saves the Alpacas' into marketing gold.
In an advertisement appearing in the Sunday Arts & Books section of the Los Angeles Times, the theater company runs quotes from reviews, including from The Times and Variety critics, both of whom panned the movie-industry satire in their respective pages."

George S. Kaufman’s Plays Retain Their Sparkle

NYTimes.com: "AMONG the celebrated witticisms once witticized by the great George S. Kaufman is that snappy line about the short shelf life of a certain brand of comedy. “Satire is what closes on Saturday night,” he observed glumly after the humbling experience of having a new musical bomb in Philadelphia. After it had already bombed in Long Branch, N.J."

Lemon Andersen’s ‘County of Kings’ - A Long Journey Home

NYTimes.com: "ONE September morning Lemon Andersen, a 34-year-old poet and actor, returned to the Brooklyn housing complex where he grew up in a close-knit Puerto Rican community ravaged by drugs and disease. He does not really like to go back there, he said, but it behooves him now that he is a professional memoirist with a one-man show, “County of Kings,” starting a six-week run at the Public Theater on Tuesday."

Stamos, Gershon say hello to 'Bye Bye Birdie'

Post Gazette: "When John Stamos heard he'd be starring opposite Gina Gershon on Broadway this fall, he was beyond psyched.
Not because he was intrigued to meet and work with Gershon on a revival of 'Bye Bye Birdie,' although he was. Not because both had built up impressive Broadway credits, although they have."

Following the wake of 'August: Osage County'

Variety: "Even though it’s a follow-up to a play that swept essentially every legit award there is, 'Superior Donuts' isn’t necessarily a slam-dunk for Broadway.
Playwright Tracy Letts’ latest outing, about the owner of a run-down Chicago donut shop and the young employee he hires, follows the success of Letts’ 'August: Osage County,' the family epic that nabbed the 2008 Tony and Pulitzer (among other kudos), launching a national tour and a stint at London’s National Theater."

Saturday, September 26, 2009

'Kristina' - At Carnegie Hall, Swedes Coming to America, Grandly

NYTimes.com: "If the moribund music-theater genre facetiously nicknamed poperetta has any chance of a resurgence on Broadway, it could come somewhere down the road from an American production of the bombastic Swedish epic “Kristina.”"

The Week in Tools: Toolmonger Top 5

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"

Long-term Projects: Moving Past the Distractions

WebWorkerDaily: "When I sit down at my computer each morning, I always have plenty of emails asking me to work on short-term projects: a connection that has to be made today, a round of revisions that needs to be made immediately, a phone call that really ought to have happened last night, etc. Because of how immediate all of these requests are, it’s easy to get lost in them and let my long-term projects fall by the wayside."

No sleep till Brooklyn…

Backstage at BackstageJobs.com: "Despite Broadway In Chicago’s attempts to make themselves the head of Chicago theatre, with everyone else merely “Off-Broadway In Chicago,” Chicago theatre is not what you will find in the touring houses here, any more than you would find a Chicago-style hot dog under a pile of ketchup."

Business Card Alternatives For the Real World

WebWorkerDaily: "So you’re a web worker, but you still meet people in meatspace that you want to network with, and making them type an email into their phone or handing them a plain jane business card either feels awkward or isn’t getting results."

Easily find Ribbon Commands

The CAD Geek Blog: "As illustrated by my blogging frequency, the last several weeks have been incredibly busy. During that time I had the chance to speak with a large number of AutoCAD (and its many vertical flavors like Civil 3D) users, and answer some of their burning questions. As you might imagine, I fielded a diverse range of questions, many of which I intend to use as inspiration for a number of upcoming blog posts. Certainly one of my most asked questions was some derivative of “Where can I find ___ command in AutoCAD 2010?”"

ABBA Duo Turn Swedish Epic Into Windy Oratorio: Jeremy Gerard

Bloomberg.com: "After flopping on Broadway with “Chess” (but before their “Mamma Mia!” megahit) the Swedish song-writing duo behind ABBA went Baroque with “Kristina,” a hit in Malmo, Sweden."

Penn State New Musical Fest to Stage 'Dani Girl'

Yahoo! News: "The Penn State New Musical Theatre Festival, recently re-branded as the NU.MUSICAL Festival, will resurface Dec. 12 with two performances of Dani Girl, a musical by composer Michael Kooman and lyricist Christopher Diamond."

'Lion King' Costumes Headed to Smithsonian

Backstage: "Producers of 'The Lion King' musical are donating two of the Broadway show's elaborate costume pieces to the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History."

Friday, September 25, 2009

Studiocraft - Refrigerator Drawing

Enterprising student and I are having trouble with the Multi-line text function. We can type, but whenever we hit enter, the cursor simply opens a new text box. If we press any thing to get out of that, everything is deleted. For the time being we wrote our names and quotes with the line tool.

Thank you for you time.
You get out of MTEXT by either clicking outside the box or clicking the “OK” on the toolbar. Hitting enter will do a line feed or re-invoke the command.

You could just use DTEXT

Tchaikovsky's 'Eugene Onegin' a tale of two heartbreaks

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Russian literature is rich with exploration of fate's cruelty. One broken heart usually is enough for a good story, but the opera 'Eugene Onegin' goes one better, or rather worse, with two broken hearts.
Pittsburgh Opera will open its season with Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's 'Eugene Onegin' on Saturday at the Benedum Center, Downtown. The show repeats Tuesday and Oct. 2 and 4."

Hamlet: 66 And Counting

Steve On Broadway (SOB): "There are precious few plays that have graced a Broadway stage as many times as William Shakespeare's Hamlet.
While it's not known precisely when Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, historians believe The Bard wrote this play circa 1601, and it's known that the work was mounted in New York City as early as the following century."

5 Shows I want to see at the NYMF.

PRODUCER’S PERSPECTIVE: "I've got a soft spot in my heart for The New York Musical Theatre Festival.
The NYMF was our midwife on Altar Boyz, and without her, it would have been an even tougher birth than it was."

In Response to People Who Don't Believe Me

Dramaturgy in H[ollywoo]D: "When I was college, I had the extreme pleasure (*Note of Sarcasm*) of taking a Statistics class for Humanities majors. I never understood why Humanities majors needed to take statistics, but I was told it was for research purposes. I didn't believe it until I started looking at what research opportunities were available out here."

'Love' under way as film crews roll into Pittsburgh

Post Gazette: "The following story first ran on July 31, but it bears repeating as it speaks to the state of Hollywood's attraction to Western Pennsylvania, including the new CBS show 'Three Rivers,' which is set in Pittsburgh and recently filmed scenes here.
Since this story ran, the filming of 'Unstoppable' has started elsewhere in Pennsylvania;'Love and Other Drugs' began shooting in Pittsburgh on Monday; and 'The Next Three Days' is scheduled to roll Oct. 3. Since this story first appeared, Judy Greer, Gabriel Macht, Hank Azaria and Oliver Platt were added to the 'Love' cast."

I-Phone Revisited

Ramblings of a Techie: "When I posted my article listing some apps for the I-Phone I did not realise how popular the story would be. since then I have been reminded of a couple of applications that I missed. So I thought I would add a few more."

Is 90 minutes the right length for a show? Not so fast.

chicagotribune.com: "Within the last week, I've twice found myself complaining about running time. I thought 'Mistakes Were Made,' the hugely entertaining Craig Wright play at A Red Orchid Theatre, needed to lose about 15 minutes. And I thought 'Stoop Stories,' the artful solo show by Dael Orlandersmith at the Goodman Theatre, needed to add at least that much.
Which would mean both shows would clock in about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Was I positing some kind of ideal length for a show?"

Mike Hodge Elected SAG New York President

Backstage: "Mike Hodge has been elected president of the Screen Actors Guild's New York division. Hodge succeeds Sam Freed, who did not seek re-election. 'I am thrilled,' said Hodge. 'We absolutely have a mandate to work and build for our members.'"

SAG Elects Ken Howard as National President

Backstage: "Members of the Screen Actors Guild have elected Ken Howard as their new president, the guild announced this evening."

Help Wanted sign during G-20, in Pittsburgh

gigapan: "Carnegie Mellon University freshman Sarah Ceurvorst and other students created this huge sign near the CMU track."

Rendell urged to scrap arts-tax plan

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Pittsburgh and Philadelphia cultural groups on Wednesday met with Gov. Ed Rendell and legislative leaders of both parties to convince them to drop a budget proposal that would levy the state sales tax on music, dance, theater and museum admissions."

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fabric Printing with Citra-Solv

Instructables: "Any photograph, image or design that looks good in black and white is a great candidate for printing with Citra-Solv. It's permanent, can be washed in the washer, takes about 2 minutes to do and it's cheap and easy."

Stop the World -- It's Dicey and Paprika

Post Gazette: "What better way to celebrate the departure of all those schedule-snarling, suit-wearing, smooth-talking world leaders than by attending a post-G-20 blowout at Your Inner Vagabond in Lawrenceville?
The live musical comedy show, called 'Stop the World -- We're Here,' stars the glittery Dicey Stewart and a brassy babe named Paprika LaRue."

Mother Russian for 'Onegin' soprano

Post Gazette: "When Russian soprano Anna Samuil makes her local debut Saturday as Tatiana, the heroine of Tchaikovsky's 'Eugene Onegin,' she will be singing in her mother tongue."

In Belarus, Theater as Activism

NYTimes.com: "Welcome to the world of the Volny Teatr, or the Belarus Free Theater, the only unregistered — and therefore independent — dramatic collective in this nation of 10 million on Europe’s edge, which President Aleksandr Lukashenko has ruled since 1994."

Autodesk and Parallels Team to Support Mac Virtualization for AutoCAD, AutoCAD LT, Autodesk Inventor Professional, 3ds Max and Revit Software

Autodesk :: Investor Relations :: News Release: "Autodesk will now support use of AutoCAD software, AutoCAD LT software, Autodesk Inventor Professional software, Autodesk 3ds Max software, Autodesk 3ds Max Design software and the Autodesk Revit software platform for building information modeling (BIM) on Mac OS X via Parallels Desktop. Autodesk added official support for these products on the Mac via Boot Camp earlier this year."

A return to Laramie

Berkeley Rep Blog: "It is hard to imagine that more than 10 years have passed since Matthew Shepard’s life was taken with hate in Laramie, Wyoming."

'Oleanna' Will Allow Audiences to "Take a Side" Following Broadway Previews

Yahoo! News: "The Broadway premiere of David Mamet's Oleanna, starring Bill Pullman and Julia Stiles, has announced a series of talkbacks following preview performances of the contentious drama.
Tony Award winner Doug Hughes (Doubt) stages the Broadway production, which played to acclaim in Los Angeles last June. Previews begin Sept. 29 at the Golden Theatre. Opening is Oct. 11."

White House Honor

Carnegie Mellon University: "The G-20 Summit week concludes Sept. 25, with Carnegie Mellon Professor Gregory Lehane directing First Lady Michelle Obama's concert for the spouses of G-20 leaders — a responsibility undertaken at the special request of the White House."

Stomp makes garbage sound good

The Tartan Online: "The international hit Stomp premiered at the Benedum Center in downtown Pittsburgh last Tuesday. The show has just entered its 16th season off Broadway, making it one of the longest-running international productions to date."

Performing Arts Groups Concerned About Sales Tax

WDUQNews: "A key component of Friday’s budget deal has members of Pennsylvania’s performing arts communities rankled.
Over the course of the summer, Governor Ed Rendell insisted lawmakers should close sales tax loopholes to help overcome a 3.2 billion dollar deficit. During the last day of budget negotiations, leaders agreed to remove the exemption for live theatrical and musical performances."

Theatre Factory's 'Romance' offers fun, challenging show

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "To say that Scott Calhoon has his hands full with Theatre Factory's production of 'Weird Romance' is an understatement.
The off-beat musical by composers Alan Menken and David Spencer ('Little Shop of Horrors,' 'Aladdin,' 'Beauty and the Beast,' 'The Little Mermaid') features its share of challenges for Calhoon, who serves as both director and set designer for the show that launches the Trafford theater company's 15th season."

'Church' a perfect fit for 'M*A*S*H' actor

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "At age 76, William Christopher sees no reason to stop acting or wearing a clerical collar.
Christopher, most widely and enduringly known for his role as Father Mulcahy in the long-running television series 'M*A*S*H,' is happily on the road playing Lutheran minister E.L. Gunderson in the musical comedy 'Church Basement Ladies.'
The show stops Saturday and Sunday for four performances at the Byham Theater, Downtown."

Bellevue native Paul McGill goes from Broadway to the big screen

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "For actor Paul McGill, shooting some of the scenes in the movie 'Fame' brought on a severe case of deja vu.
While playing Kevin, a dance student at the Performing Arts High School, McGill spent two weeks acting in scenes shot in New York City's Professional Performing Arts High School, where he had been a student."

Passion to perform drives arts students

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Those who remember the 1980 movie 'Fame' might imagine professional performing-arts schools as a place where kids flood into the streets to pirouette atop car hoods or burst into song vowing:
'I'm gonna make it to heaven/Light up the sky like a flame, fame/I'm gonna live forever/Baby remember my name ...'
What actually goes on inside a performing-arts high school program and the students' ambitions are somewhat different."

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Dorner troupe uncoils with joy

Post Gazette: "Austrian choreographer and filmmaker Willi Dorner has been making an Internet/YouTube name for himself with sculptural concoctions using human bodies. Usually his dancers perform in a colorful and casual array of T-shirts, sweats, hoodies and tennis shoes. They are placed in a jigsaw puzzle of rounded, Henry Moore-esque proportions -- butt to butt, topsy turvy, feet in the air, all askew -- and usually tucked away in angular urban corners of the street like human sausages."

Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre's season features Foster, Pinter, the Bard

Post Gazette: "Stephen Foster and Harold Pinter are the most unlikely of bedfellows, but they are teamed up to open and close the 2010 regular season of the Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre.
Sandwiched in between is Shakespeare.
PICT's annual holiday show will be an English chestnut, the 1915 'Hobson's Choice,' directed by Christopher Newton, long-time artistic director of Canada's Shaw Festival"

Production Assistants Needed

Craigslist: "We will be conducting a large scale photography shoot just outside Pittsburgh 7 days a week from October 5-20. We are looking for hard-working individuals to assist our photographers and GPS surveyors."

Follow Spot/Sound

Craigslist: "The Theatre Factory is looking for someone to run follow spot/sound"

Production Assistant Needed 10/8-10/10

Craigslist: "A medical mystery show will be filming in and around the Pittsburgh area from October 8th-10th. We are looking for a PA"

2009 IT Award Winners Announced

Backstage: "The winners of the 2009 New York Innovative Theatre Awards were announced last night at New World Stages in a ceremony honoring the best of Off-Off-Broadway, hosted by Julie Halston. The award for outstanding ensemble went to the cast '(Not) Just a Day Like Any Other.' Jeff Grow took home the award for outstanding solo performance for his role in 'Creating Illusion.'"

Behind the Curtain of a Customizable Theater

Wired: "The Dallas Arts District Theater was a magnificent piece of crap. Affectionately dubbed the Shed, the junky, corrugated-steel construction looked more warehouse than Koolhaus, but it was basic enough that wild-eyed visionaries would routinely rip out and rearrange seats to fit whatever the current show demanded. Then, in 2005, the Shed was torn down."

Showtime, Spielberg team on series

Variety: "Showtime and Steven Spielberg want to put on a show about putting on a Broadway show.
DreamWorks TV and Showtime are in the early stages of developing a scripted series that will chronicle the development of an original Broadway musical, from its creative inception through its opening night. The intention is to then mount the tuner on the Main Stem after the series airs."

PhotoLapse Makes Time-Lapse Movie Creation a Snap

Lifehacker: "PhotoLapse is a tiny and portable application for stitching together images into a time-lapse video. Point it at a folder full of pictures, and you're mostly done.
All your time-lapse options are displayed in a single pane when you launch the 158k application."

Art and life

Backstage at BackstageJobs.com: "In the 72 hours between 10pm Thursday (when I got home from a show) and 10pm Sunday (when I expect to get home from a show), I will have spent 35 hours traveling to, traveling from, or being in a theatre. And this is an easy 3 day period compared to many. Some days are 14-16 hours in the theatre.
These are hours not spent with my family. These are hours not available to spend with my family. This is what is required to work in theatre."

A Challenge: Chicago-Theater-A-Day

Theater For The Future: "So perhaps you haven’t heard yet:
The TCG National Conference is coming to Chicago in 269 days (as of this post).
At the recent host committee planning session at the League of Chicago Theatres for Chicago’s contribution to the festivities (many many cool events, opportunities, and ideas are in the works for all sizes of theaters, and we’ll need your help putting them together) someone made a pretty simple observation: 269 is approximately the number of active theaters in Chicago.
So someone else threw out the idea: What if we created a youtube channel, and featured a video of a Chicago Theater each day until the conference?"

Tips from the Trenches: Getting Things Done

Web Worker Daily: "In your quest for better efficiency, you’ve probably read books like “Getting Things Done” and “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,” and tried to implement the strategies contained within them. Yet you know you can do better in managing your day and being more efficient.
For this post, instead of quoting yet more theories from books, I asked some experts and fellow Twitter users to share their real life tips for getting things done."

Playbill Turns 125

Steve On Broadway (SOB): "When it comes to Broadway, I rarely if ever buy souvenirs.
Yet there is one prized possession -- aside from memories of the performances themselves -- I proudly take home from each show: my essential Playbill.
Today, the venerable Playbill organization turns 125 years old."

Master the "Why Hire Me" Story to Land a Job

Lifehacker: "So you've finally landed that job interview. Now it's time to seal the deal with a killer interview. How? For one, try mastering your 'Why hire me' story."

Laser-Accurate microphone captures 'pure sound'

DVICE: "Related Sections: Future Tech
Laser-Accurate microphone captures 'pure sound'
There are good microphones, and there are bad microphones, but pretty much all of them are limited by the nature of the technology — specifically, the diaphragm that moves in response to air. The structure of that diaphragm will affect the sound that's recorded, even if that influence is minute. There's simply no way around it."

How to Decide What to Include in Your Portfolio

FreelanceSwitch: "Remember when you graduated from school or first decided to become a freelancer? You likely didn’t have much work to show and had to scramble to fill your portfolio. If you now have a few years under your belt, you’ve probably started to build up quite a collection of finished pieces.
The importance of having a professional portfolio website has been discussed on FreelanceSwitch – it is essential for the modern freelancer. But how do you decide what to include in your portfolio?"

New, Edgy 'Tosca' By Metropolitan Opera Draws Boos

NPR: "Most serious opera lovers know what they like and like what they know. Many saw something they didn't like or care to know last night at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, a new interpretation of Tosca, Giacomo Puccini's beloved warhorse.
The Met staged a production of the opera as re-imagined by Swiss director Luc Bondy who evidently left out some of the traditional features opera goers associate with Tosca while creating post-modern sets, all of which proved too much for many in the audience."

So many images

Props: "Check out the Ephemera Assemblyman blog. If you look at the right column and scroll down, you will see one heading labeled “resources”, and another labeled “images.” Each link points to even more vintage images. I’ve been looking at them for hours, and still have barely cracked the surface. Have fun!"

I – Phone apps for Theatre

Ramblings of a Techie: "I recently got a Apple I-Phone 3gs 16gB so I have decided to see what software applications are available for the entertainment industry. so below is a list with links and a brief summary. and were I have used it personally what I think of the app."

A Multicolored Script

Steppenwolf Theatre Company Blog: "Greetings from the basement of Steppenwolf Theatre! I am Karyn, the 2009-2010 Downstairs Stage Management Apprentice. I am currently working on Fake, the new play written and directed by ensemble member Eric Simonson. This is the first world premier show I have ever worked on, and it is quite a change of pace for me!"

Harold Prince and Susan Stroman Bringing ‘Paradise’ to Broadway

NYTimes.com: "Harold Prince and Susan Stroman are planning a return to Broadway with a musical that they say will convey the grandeur and mystery of 19th-century Europe and the Middle East and feature several well-known performers, with a modest (for Broadway) budget."

'Bring It On' set for stage adaptation

Variety: "A squad of Broadway creatives are bringing 'Bring It On: The Musical' to the stage in a tuner version aimed toward a regional developmental staging in early 2011 ahead of a national tour."

Beyond the spotlight: How to carve out a career backstage

The Independent: "Purists may question the increasing blandness of the West End, but for the army of creative technicians working backstage on everything from lighting or props to set design and costume, the rapid growth of opportunities in anything from musical theatre to the Fringe is worth celebrating."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Internship

Will Joyce Theater Be Home for Union Stagehands?

Playbill News: "Local One of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) filed a petition with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) on Sept. 14 requesting an NLRB-supervised election of the Joyce Theater stagehands to certify Local One as their collective bargaining agent."

A.C.T. Offers Valet Bike Parking on Bike to the Theatre Nights

Stage Directions: "American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.), in partnership with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition (SFBC), is providing a greener alternative to theatre transportation. For each production of the season, A.C.T. will host a Bike to the Theatre Night, during which the SFBC will offer free valet bike parking for all patrons who cycle to the theatre. Valet bike parking is available one hour prior to showtime. Bicycles will be attended throughout the evening. Patrons are asked to please bring their own locks."

ZFX Launches Automation

Stage Directions: "ZFX Flying Effects has formed a strategic alliance with Stage Technologies, based in Las Vegas, Nevada, to offer automated solutions for productions that require more complex flying sequences. ZFX will add award-winning products from Stage Technologies, including hoists and control systems, to its roster of complete flying services."

Artists no longer mavericks at society's fringe

The Age: "SHAKESPEARE wrote in Measure for Measure that 'Truth is truth to the end of reckoning.' Shakespeare was a man who knew a thing or two. So what is the truth of Australian theatre? It's in decline. It's been in steady decline for most of the past two decades and, for some reason, policymakers cannot see it, and the industry and its audience have chosen to ignore it. Theatre in this country has, for too long, been trapped in a limited reality, a white middle-class sport both on stage and in the auditorium, comfortable in its homogeny, creatively self-referential and, it seems, almost determinedly culturally unrepresentative."

Nemetschek NA Releases Vectorworks 2010

PLSN: "Nemetschek North America announced the 2010 release of their Vectorworks line of design software, including: Designer, Architect, Landmark, Spotlight, Machine Design, Fundamentals, and Renderworks.
Building upon the integration of the Parasolid 3D modeling core in 2009, version 2010 is geared to making changes easier with the addition of bi-directional associativity features and a 3D modeling environment. These capabilities are included to help make sure that changes are reflected throughout the entire design."

Lighting Design Group- Lighting Project Manager

Backstage Employment Network: "The Lighting Design Group, an Internationally recognized Broadcast and Entertainment Design firm in NYC seeks an experienced full-time Lighting Project Manager."

Le Rêve - Automation Technician

Backstage Employment Network: "Wynn Las Vegas is seeking an Automation Technician for its show 'Le Rêve' located in Las Vegas, NV."

Le Rêve - Rigger

Backstage Employment Network: "Wynn Las Vegas is seeking a Rigger for its major production show “Le Rêve” located in Las Vegas, NV."

Monday, September 21, 2009

NFTRW Weekly Top Five

Here are the top five comment generating posts from the past week...

Phantom celebrates 9,000 performances on Broadway

The Stage: "The Phantom of the Opera, already the longest-running show in Broadway history, will today hit another milestone when it becomes the first Broadway show to reach the 9,000 performance mark."

Top 10 Underhyped Webapps, 2009 Edition

Lifehacker: "As with rock music, video games, and other awesome pursuits, great web applications often don't get enough credit for what they do well. We're revisiting and updating our favorite underhyped webapps to give a new crop of contenders their due."

With ‘American Idiot’ the Musical, Green Day Reaches a New Stage

NYTimes.com: "MOMENTS before the opening curtain of “American Idiot,” the musical theater debut of the punk band Green Day, a T-shirted house manager took the stage at Berkeley Repertory Theater for the tradition of reminding audience members to turn off their cellphones and unwrap their candies.
This being a musical by Green Day, though, it wasn’t your typical curtain speech.
“Are you ready to rock tonight?” shouted the house manager, John Gay. And sure enough, the crowd roared back, “Yeah!”"

Communicating with Co-Workers and Clients Through Social Media

WebWorkerDaily: "Lately, I’ve gotten a lot of my clients contacting me through Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media sites. I got a direct message from one of my clients, saying that she has a new project she wants to start on. I received a LinkedIn message from a prospective client interested in working with me. It isn’t just clients, either. I sent a direct message to a designer I’m working with in order to get a quote for a project myself.
But are there any problems that can arise from conducting business conversations through social media?"

Stage Rights plans to soar with 'Peter Pan'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Elly Noble of Greensburg has acted in many local theater productions, including several at Pittsburgh Playhouse, but her leading role in Stage Right's 'Peter Pan' is unique for one reason:
'It's my first time flying,' she says.
The young actress, a senior in Point Park University's musical-theater program, is excited about playing the boy that won't grow up — especially because she gets to be airborne in a few scenes."

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Phantom celebrates 9,000 performances on Broadway

The Stage: "The Phantom of the Opera, already the longest-running show in Broadway history, will today hit another milestone when it becomes the first Broadway show to reach the 9,000 performance mark."

Communicating with Co-Workers and Clients Through Social Media

WebWorkerDaily: "Lately, I’ve gotten a lot of my clients contacting me through Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media sites. I got a direct message from one of my clients, saying that she has a new project she wants to start on. I received a LinkedIn message from a prospective client interested in working with me. It isn’t just clients, either. I sent a direct message to a designer I’m working with in order to get a quote for a project myself.
But are there any problems that can arise from conducting business conversations through social media?"

Horton Foote’s ‘Orphans’ Home Cycle’ Arrives at Hartford Stage

NYTimes.com: "When Mr. Foote died in March, he was in the middle of big career developments. “Dividing the Estate,” his new play about a battling family, had just won a Tony Award nomination for best play and was returning to Hartford Stage, with its Broadway cast largely intact."

Melissa Gilbert Revisiting ‘Little House’ at Paper Mill Playhouse

NYTimes.com: "BEFORE Melissa Gilbert could tackle the role of Caroline Ingalls, who was Ma to her Laura on the TV show “Little House on the Prairie,” she “had to get the music of Karen Grassle’s voice out of my head from all those years,” she said. Ms. Grassle was the actress who played Ma on the series, which originally ran from 1974 to 1983."

Twyla Tharp Fashions a New Dance Show From Sinatra

NYTimes.com: "DURING the last decade Twyla Tharp — no matter her successes and failures — has remained a choreographer for whom dancers will bend over backward. Two and a half years ago she received a call from three accomplished dancers she met in the course of her 2002 Broadway hit, 'Movin' Out.' They showed up at her home on the Upper West Side of Manhattan for tea."

Michael McKean Returns to Broadway, by Way of Chicago

NYTimes.com: "WHEN Michael McKean first sat down to read Tracy Letts’s 'Superior Donuts,' he had the script in one hand and a menu the size of a novella in the other. “I took the play, and I went to the Westway Diner,” he said of the Midtown Manhattan restaurant popular with theater types. “I’m sitting there with tears streaming down my face, pounding the table and just behaving like a madman. Of course no one looked at me. It’s the Westway Diner.”"

Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Ortiz - Friends Play Enemies in ‘Othello’

NYTimes.com: "JOHN ORTIZ and Philip Seymour Hoffman have been close friends for 15 years, both off stage and on. They played best buddies in the 2007 production of “Jack Goes Boating” at the Public Theater, and Mr. Hoffman directed Mr. Ortiz to rave reviews in “The Last Days of Judas Iscariot” in 2005. They were co-artistic directors of a downtown theater company, LAByrinth Theater, for more than a decade; during that time they celebrated the births of each other’s children and commiserated over the highs and lows of their beloved New York sports teams."

Fake, With Guinan as Arthur Conan Doyle, Opens in Chicago Sept. 20

Playbill News: "Steppenwolf Theatre Company's world premiere of writer-director Eric Simonson's Fake, featuring 'Sherlock Holmes' writer Arthur Conan Doyle as a character, opens Sept. 20 after previews from Sept. 10."

Gilbert, Blanchard, Lindsay, Massey, Loprest Explore a Musical Prairie at Paper Mill, Opening Sept. 20

Playbill News: "The East Coast premiere of the new musical Little House on the Prairie, starring Melissa Gilbert as Ma, officially opens Sept. 20 at Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, NJ, prior to a national tour."

film crew needed

Craigslist: "shooting a movie called Beyond Me in pittsburgh pa"

Saturday, September 19, 2009

John Wells elected WGA West president

Hollywood Reporter: "Signaling that it is ready to strike out in a new direction, the WGA West has elected John Wells president. Wells, who earned 52.8% of the vote, ran against the Writers United slate, headed by presidential candidate Elias Davis, which was committed to following the path set by outgoing president Patric Verrone."

Mountain Playhouse's 'Menagerie' lacks Williams' classic tension

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "How well you enjoy the Mountain Playhouse production of 'The Glass Menagerie' might depend on whether you've come to see the play or its star, Sandy Duncan.
Duncan and her son, Jeffrey Correia, are playing Amanda and Tom Wingfield, the mother-and-son duo in Tennessee Williams' classic drama that runs through Sept. 27 at the Jennerstown theater."

The Week in Tools: Toolmonger Top 5

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"

Top 10 Underhyped Webapps, 2009 Edition

Lifehacker: "As with rock music, video games, and other awesome pursuits, great web applications often don't get enough credit for what they do well. We're revisiting and updating our favorite underhyped webapps to give a new crop of contenders their due."

Docu-plays hit the road

Variety: "Guerilla playwrights, willing to sleep in their cars for fear of losing an interview, or decamp for the Middle East or West Africa at the drop of a hat, are planting their flags all over the nonprofit theater map.
Documentary plays, fresh from still-boiling conflict zones, are appearing all over the country, from Lynn Nottage’s 'Ruined,' the Pulitzer -winning 'Mother Courage' update about Congolese victims of rape and sexual mutilation, to Danai Gurira’s Liberia-set 'Eclipsed' and Jessica Blank and Eric Jensen’s Iraqi exile drama 'Aftermath.'"

Broadway's commercial attempts at Shakespeare

Variety: "Something smells sweet in the state of Denmark.
The Jude Law 'Hamlet,' set to open Oct. 6 on Broadway, grossed an encouraging $236,145 in its first two previews. It’s safe to say that since this London transfer opened to upbeat reviews at the Donmar Warehouse, those two New York perfs did not include many ambulance chasers in search of a movie star’s onstage car crash."

Friday, September 18, 2009

Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre plans Pinter paean for 2010 seasons

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "A Shakespearean tragedy, the world premiere of a musical by a local playwright and a celebration of Harold Pinter's plays are among the plans for the 2010 Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre season.
Subscription sales began Thursday for the season of six productions and four directed readings that will be performed between April and December 2010 in the Stephen Foster Memorial in Oakland."

Stage Rights plans to soar with 'Peter Pan'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Elly Noble of Greensburg has acted in many local theater productions, including several at Pittsburgh Playhouse, but her leading role in Stage Right's 'Peter Pan' is unique for one reason:
'It's my first time flying,' she says.
The young actress, a senior in Point Park University's musical-theater program, is excited about playing the boy that won't grow up — especially because she gets to be airborne in a few scenes."

Seeking Sound Recordist

Craigslist: "Production company is seeking a sound recordist and boom operator for a High Def film to be shot on location in and around the Pittsburgh area from early October to early November."

Makeup/Wardrobe NEEDED for Short Film

Craigslist: "Hi there! I'm looking for someone to be a part of the production design team and take care of makeup and wardrobe."

Cruz, Weller and Wilson Among Winners of the Helen Merrill Award

Playbill News: "The eight winners of the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award — established by Merrill, the late theatrical agent who devoted her life to nurturing the careers of playwrights — were announced Sept. 20."

With ‘American Idiot’ the Musical, Green Day Reaches a New Stage

NYTimes.com: "MOMENTS before the opening curtain of “American Idiot,” the musical theater debut of the punk band Green Day, a T-shirted house manager took the stage at Berkeley Repertory Theater for the tradition of reminding audience members to turn off their cellphones and unwrap their candies.
This being a musical by Green Day, though, it wasn’t your typical curtain speech.
“Are you ready to rock tonight?” shouted the house manager, John Gay. And sure enough, the crowd roared back, “Yeah!”"

A toast to the opening of American Idiot

Berkeley Rep Blog: "This week has seen one thrill after another with the festive opening, at long last, of Green Day's American Idiot. The world premiere of this extraordinary rock-and-roll event was greeted with standing ovations and an incredible level of audience enthusiasm.
To share the excitement, here are a couple video peeks into the world of American Idiot."

House Passes The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act

The Gavel: "This afternoon, the House passed the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (HR 3221) by a vote of 253-171. The bill ensures that higher education is more affordable at no additional expense to taxpayers – in fact, it saves money. More students will go to college, they will graduate with less debt, and the federal loan initiatives that they and their families depend upon will be strengthened for decades to come."

How to Finish a Writing Project

Men With Pens: "Do you have a big writing project on the go? Perhaps it’s an ebook, a non-fiction book, a novel, a free report for your website, or a series of pillar posts for your blog. Whatever that project is, it’s probably not something you can knock out in an afternoon."

Sexism Watch: Steinberg Playwright Awards

Women & Hollywood: "It’s not enough to have clear statistics about how women are discriminated in theatre, but now a new award — The Steinberg Playwright Awards — given to “emerging” playwrights has decided that there is no woman good enough to qualify as emerging."

Quickly Incorporate Curves Into Your Project

Toolmonger: "If you want to incorporate curves into your project, there are a few ways to do it. You can cut wood into thin strips of veneer and build up a curve layer by layer, you can steam the wood, or you can cut closely-spaced kerfs. Using KerfKore panels is another way to skip these time-consuming methods and get down to building."

Dear Dramaturgs...

Dramaturgy in H[ollywoo]D: "Even though you have been trained to be lean, mean researching machines, frankly...research is the last thing anyone will hire you to do. Everyone assumes that the writers and designers have done their own homework, so why would they hire someone ELSE to do research? That's just another person on payroll. And, whatever research jobs you will get will probably be part-time and underpaid. Why? Because there is no union for researchers. You will live your lives pseudo-employed, without health care and definitely without benefits.
So, here are some other options you should look into"

Steinberg Trust Honors 3 After Tussle Over Playwright Award

NYTimes.com: "After awarding Tony Kushner a record-breaking $200,000 for distinguished playwriting last fall, the Steinberg Trust suddenly realized there was a problem with its plan to present its other newly created award to two emerging playwrights this year. “What we immediately discovered was that we all described ‘emerging’ differently,” said Oskar Eustis, artistic director of the Public Theater in New York and a member of the selection committee. Some of his colleagues thought the prize, created by the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, was geared toward writers just a year out of school, while others considered “emerging” to refer to a playwright in midcareer."

At long last, work will start on Shubert Center

TwinCities.com: "Construction on the Minnesota Shubert Center will begin this autumn, a decade after the historic theater was hoisted up on rollers and moved onto Hennepin Avenue and following a series of delays and revisions.
Shubert executive director Colin Hamilton said a ceremonial groundbreaking is set for Nov. 19 with a 12:30 p.m. event in what is now a vacant space between the Hennepin Center for the Arts and the Shubert Theater, located on Hennepin between Fifth and Sixth streets in downtown Minneapolis."

'Yeast Nation,' the Musical From 'Urinetown' Writers, Ferments in Chicago

Yahoo! News: "The Chicago premiere of Yeast Nation (The Triumph of Life), the musical from the Tony Award-winning authors of Urinetown, begins brewing in Chicago on Sept. 17.
American Theater Company (ATC)'s production of the quirky show, with music and lyrics by Mark Hollmann and book and lyrics by Greg Kotis, is directed by artistic director PJ Paparelli."

First Steinberg Playwright Awards Announced

Backstage: "At a New York press conference today, Tony Kushner announced the selection of Bruce Norris, Tarell Alvin McCraney and David Adjmi as the first winners of the Steinberg Playwright Awards. The awards recognize playwrights 'at various stages of their early careers whose professional works show great promise' and will be presented at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theatre on Oct. 26."

Thursday, September 17, 2009

PICT deftly cuts to essence of Dostoevsky's 'Crime'

Post Gazette: "For those of us who have read Dostoevsky's 'Crime and Punishment' in our youth when suffering seemed somehow noble and the book's great length unimportant, we now wonder how the classic could be turned into a play, and an 80-minute one at that.
What you do is boil it down into a bouillon cube, hoping to create 'Essence of Dostoevsky,' not exactly a fragrance you'd wear on a daily basis, maybe something you'd dab on to ward off swine flu."

Strong characters help Playhouse Rep's 'That Championship Season' revive memories of bygone era

Post Gazette: "They don't write them like they used to: three acts in real time, exposition, complication and explosion, fueled by alcohol and simmering passion. Gaps aside, 'That Championship Season' is a pretty well-made version of that seldom-seen archetype, the well-made play."

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust to offer free outdoor performances before G-20 summit

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Beginning Thursday, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust will offer a series of lunchtime and afternoon rush hour performances to showcase Pittsburgh's diverse cultural community to early arrivals for the G-20 Summit as well as the public at large.
Each day through Wednesday Agnes R. Katz Plaza at Penn Avenue and Seventh Street will feature free outdoor performances open to anyone."

August Wilson Center for African American Culture opens Thursday

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Pittsburgh playwright August Wilson was a living legend in 2002 when a group of local visionaries incorporated a nonprofit organization called the African American Cultural Center. After his death in 2005, it was only natural to rename it in his honor.
Now, seven years after its inception, the August Wilson Center for African American Culture is a physical reality."

Steinberg Trust in a Tussle Over Eligibility for Playwright Award

NYTimes.com: "After awarding Tony Kushner a record-breaking $200,000 for distinguished playwriting last fall, the Steinberg Trust suddenly realized there was a problem with its plan to present its other newly created award to two emerging playwrights this year. “What we immediately discovered was that we all described ‘emerging’ differently,” said Oskar Eustis, artistic director of the Public Theater in New York and a member of the selection committee. Some of his colleagues thought the prize, created by the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, was geared towards writers just a year out of school, while others considered “emerging” to refer to a playwright in mid-career."

100kgarages: a new initiative to connect designers with local makers

Core77: "As designers, we are all familiar with how difficult it is to push small projects through the vast industrial manufacturing complex. You have the idea, the drawings and the money, but factories have no time or patience for your small run. Or it's difficult to find someone open to having a conversation about the methods available to produce your rather experimental piece."

Myna Is an Awesome Multi-Track Audio Editor for Anyone

Lifehacker: "Myna, a free online audio tool from the makers of reader favorite image editor Phoenix, lets pretty much anyone jump into recording, arranging, and mixing audio tracks for quickie soundtracks, or just for the fun of it."

Performing Arts Center opens at Seton Hill University

Post Gazettte: "Seton Hill University is going downhill … in a most positive way.
The venerable Catholic institution, on a bluff overlooking the rest of Greensburg, has expanded its campus, its academic offerings and its reputation -- while further rejuvenating the cultural climate of its city."

August Wilson Center opens its doors

Post Gazette: "Live music, star voices and heartfelt thanks, accompanied by the aroma of southern foods, will waft through the airy spaces of the August Wilson Center for African American Culture tonight as the new facility holds its grand opening celebration."

New team announced for Theatre Building Chicago’s ‘Musical Theatre Writers Workshop’

Chicago Theater Blog: "Theatre Building Chicago is pleased to announce that Jon Steinhagen and Patrick Holland will join Artistic Director Allan Chambers to “team teach” TBC’s Musical Theatre Writers Workshop. The workshop’s curriculum will continue to focus on the development of the artist in specific fundamentals related to creation of new musicals. The Fall semester focuses on lyrics, music and book and the Winter/Spring semester Practicum takes workshop members through the planning, writing and rehearsal process of a new musical."

The Eye of the Storm

Steppenwolf Theatre Company Blog: "Technical rehearsals started today for Fake. We joke and call it the fake tech rehearsal, but it’s very real, and hopefully all our expectations will be met. This is the first time the crew and cast get to see all the production elements together.
The initial hours of tech give me an indication of how the next three or four days will go. So far, so good. We’re about two hours in and moving along."

Women On Stage This Year

Women & Hollywood: "The NY Times did a look at the upcoming theatre season across the country (but honestly, most are in NY.) Here are plays (and musicals) written by women, about women and directed by women."

Autodesk SketchBook Mobile for the iPhone and iPod touch

Between the Lines: "This is so very cool for users of the Apple iPhone and Apple iPod touch and only $2.99 which has to be a record low price for an Autodesk application excluding free products. I am a longtime Crackberry users and never really been tempted to jump to the iPhone because I would spend my time playing with all the cool things instead of working. This single application makes me really consider getting an iPhone, or at least an iPod touch."

Regina Spektor is the latest rock musician to cross over into theater

Los Angeles Times: "Following in the recent footsteps of Green Day and Duncan Sheik, singer Regina Spektor is making the transition from rock star to stage artist in the new musical production 'Beauty,' which is expected to open in 2011.
The Russian-born Spektor, whose latest alt-rock album 'Far' was released earlier this year, currently is writing the music for the show, collaborating with playwright Tina Landau, whose one-act play 'Beauty' provides the inspiration for the production."

'Godot is here': how Samuel Beckett and Vaclav Havel changed history

The Guardian: "In 1982, Samuel Beckett dedicated a new play, Catastrophe, to Václav Havel, then a political prisoner in Czechoslovakia, serving a four and a half year sentence for 'subversive activities'. He had been asked to write the play by the International Association for the Defence of Artists, who were organising a night of solidarity for the Czech playwright at the Avignon festival that summer. Although Beckett had never met Havel, he was concerned by the persecution of artists in eastern Europe and was horrified to hear that Havel had been forbidden to write in prison."

Artistic Director Joy Zinoman to Retire From Studio Theatre

washingtonpost.com: "After 35 years at the helm of a theater and acting school she built from scratch in a once blighted, now thriving city neighborhood, Joy Zinoman is doing what many thought she never would: Leave as artistic director of Studio Theatre."

August Wilson Center to Open in Pittsburgh

Yahoo! News: "The August Wilson Center for African American Culture will officially open the doors of its new facility in Pittsburgh with a music-filled gala on Sept. 17.
The occasion is marked by what's billed as a Grand Opening and World Premiere Tribute Ceremony & Celebration that will run 5 PM to midnight (with various admission levels and times) at the organization's new home at 980 Liberty Avenue."

Steinbeck's "Pastures of Heaven" Will Get World Premiere Adaptation at Cal Shakes

Yahoo! News: "California Shakespeare Theater's 2010 season will feature the world premiere adaptation, John Steinbeck's The Pastures of Heaven, by Octavio Solis. Artistic director Jonathan Moscone announced upcoming programming for the Bay Area company on Sept. 16.
This will mark Moscone's 10th year as leader. The slate includes a provocative comedy of George Bernard Shaw, and 'brand-new productions featuring two of Shakespeare's most intriguing couples [the Macbeths and Beatrice and Benedick].'"

Green Day's 'American Idiot' Musical, Shaped by Tony Winner Mayer, Opens in CA

Yahoo! News: "American Idiot, the new musical borrowing characters and songs from Green Day's hit punk-rock concept album of the same name, opens Sept. 16 after previews from Sept. 4 at Berkeley Repertory Theatre in California.
Tony Award-winning Spring Awakening director Michael Mayer harbored a longtime passion to see the 2004 album realized as a fleshed-out musical."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Three Questions About August Wilson's 'Fences': Warner Miller

Explore Boston Theatre: "Warner Miller makes his Huntington Theatre Company debut with August Wilson’s Fences. Recently appeared in The Old Globe’s premiere of Since Africa. His credits include August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Syracuse Stage), The Piano Lesson (Geva Theatre and Indiana Repertory Theatre), False Creeds (Alliance Theatre), A Raisin in the Sun (Hartford Stage), The Ballad of Emmett Till (Eugene O’Neill Center), and A Soldier’s Play (Black Spectrum Theatre). Film credits include Melvin Lucas in American Gangster (dir. Ridley Scott), Nicky Lolo in HBO Films’ Wyclef Jean in America,and Beadle in HBO Films’ Everyday People. Television credits include Law & Order, CSI: NY, and Guiding Light. He earned his B.P.S. in music business at Five Towns College."

Carnegie takes another dip into Harris' image trove

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Legendary photographer Charles 'Teenie' Harris (1908-98) captured the black communities of Pittsburgh for more than 60 years, with an essence of family, hope, dignity and celebration at the core of his craft.
His archive portrays the strength and vitality of a thriving black community, from the most acclaimed to the most ordinary subjects."

'Menagerie' is family affair for television actress Duncan

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "A Tennessee Williams classic is next on the books for the Mountain Playhouse staff in Jennerstown.
'The Glass Menagerie' is a play about family dynamics, according to one of the show's lead performers, television actress Sandy Duncan. And the play is a family affair. Duncan's son, Jeffrey Correia, plays her son in the play as well. It's the first time the two have shared a professional stage. Correia was a member of the Mountain Playhouse's resident acting company this season and in 2003."

Review: Streamlined 'Crime' ratchets up the tension

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Corporations are downsizing. Politicians' speeches on complex topics are reduced to sound bites and breaking world news can sometimes arrive as a 140-character tweet.
In a world where small is the next big thing, it's not surprising to find the 500-plus pages of Dostoyevsky's 'Crime and Punishment' has been distilled into an 80-minute drama performed by three actors."

Review: Actors' skills fuel disquieting 'Season'

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "The men of 'That Championship Season' are neither a happy nor a likable bunch.
Twenty years after winning the state high-school basketball championship, they are mired in mid-life angst and self-pity, fueled by anger and bigotry and stifled by small-town life."

August Wilson Center for African American Culture opens Thursday

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: "Pittsburgh playwright August Wilson was a living legend in 2002 when a group of local visionaries incorporated a nonprofit organization called the African American Cultural Center. After his death in 2005, it was only natural to rename it in his honor."

Assistant Makeup/Wardrobe Needed

Craigslist: "Need someone to assist with makeup and wardrobe for a short film. Person will be working with production designer and makeup artist to help keep actors properly clothed and shine-free."

MAKE UP/ SPECIAL FX NEEDED

Craigslist: "Make Up/ Special Effects artist needed for upcoming recreations for a medical mystery television show."

Jenny Allen’s ‘I Got Sick Then I Got Better’ - Another Stage of Cancer

NYTimes.com: "One expects a certain degree of self-sufficiency from anybody who writes and performs a one-woman play. But the image Jenny Allen brought to mind as she trudged along East Fourth Street the other day on her way to rehearsal at New York Theater Workshop was something more like a solo polyphonic busker — the kind with pedal-operated drums strapped to the back and a harmonica harness around the neck."

‘Avenue Q’ Downsizing, to New World Stages, Off Broadway

NYTimes.com: "In June it was announced that “Avenue Q,” an adult takeoff of children’s shows like “Sesame Street,” would close at the Golden Theater. But at what was to be its final performance, Kevin McCollum, the lead producer, said that “Avenue Q,” which in 2004 won the Tony Award for best musical, would move to New World Stages in Clinton, where it would resume performances on Oct. 9."

The Still Sorry Stats on Women Working Behind the Scenes on TV

Women & Hollywood: "Martha Lauzen and her team at the Center for Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State U. have updated the statistics on women creatives working behind the scenes during the 2008- 2009 TV season."

Ubidesk: A Rapidly Evolving Project Management Tool

WebWorkerDaily: "Project management seems to be the 21st century’s “better mousetrap.” There seems to be an endless supply of new project management services; the latest addition to the ranks of this huge category is Ubidesk.
It has an interface that I find more attractive than some of the other products I’ve looked at. Its navigation is better than Peago’s, with menus that seem logical to me, and slide-out sidebars that can be made to appear and disappear as desired. Ubidesk is Flash-based, however, so it won’t be useful in corporate and mobile environments where that technology isn’t available."

Does the NEA still matter?

Steppenwolf Theatre Company Blog: "Rocco Landesman, the new chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, has little patience for the disdain with which some politicians still seem to view the organization."

Synonyms: “Local” and “Small-town”

<100k Project: "I went to Thesaurus.com for some help in coming up with a new name for this project, and I typed in “small town,” which brought up the following list"

Code of Ethics for Theatre Workers

Chicago Stage Review: "A part of the great tradition of the theatre is the code of ethics which belong to every worker in the theatre. This code is not a superstition, nor a dogma, nor a ritual which is enforced by tribunals; it is an attitude toward your vocation, your fellow workers, your audiences and yourself. It is a kind of self-discipline which does not rob you of your invaluable individualism."

An experiment in procrastination

Orange Crate Art: "Students have three papers to write. Students in one class make their own deadlines. Students in a second class are given one deadline for all three papers: the last day of class. Students in a third class are given three deadlines for the three papers: the fourth, eighth, and twelfth weeks of classes. Which class gets the best grades?"

Universal's Wizarding World of Harry Potter to open in Spring 2010, webcast confirms

Theme Park Insider: "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal's Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida will open in 'Spring 2010,' Harry Potter co-star Tom Felton announced today in a live press webcast."

Mad Men Props

Props: "I love Mad Men. If you watch the show, you know it is just jam-packed with period details and an almost obsessive attention to detail. The show takes place in and around New York City in the early 1960s. For some people, this would be a prop master’s dream; for others, a nightmare."

Microsoft Project 2010 Promises Significant Improvement

WebWorkerDaily: "Microsoft Project is frustrating. Although it’s still a very good planning and project management tool, it’s tricky for non-PM professionals to get the hang of, and it hasn’t seen any significant updates in a very long time — while its (mainly online) competitors have been improving apace. Hopefully, that frustration should be eased next year, when Project 2010 is launched. Project 2010, officially announced today at the Microsoft Project Conference in Phoenix, looks like it will include significant improvements to the user experience, coupled with better integration with other Microsoft products."

Working in the Theatre - Design - September, 1993

American Theatre Wing: "The design panel - scenic designer John Arnone (The Who's Tommy), costume designer Elizabeth Fried (Brother Truckers), special effects designer Wendall K. Harrington (The Who's Tommy), lighting designer Mimi Jordan Sherin (New York Shakespeare Festival) - moderated by costume designer Patricia Zipprodt (My Favorite Year), Professor Tish Dace, and author/designer/producer Jean Dalrymple discuss their creative childhoods; how the role of designers has evolved from directors, stage managers, and technicians; working with varying production budgets; and the colors and projections used in The Who's Tommy."

Spider-Man’s Aunt Plays Barrymores’ Matriarch in Arch Revival

Bloomberg.com: "No longer sweet Aunt May of the Spider-Man movies, Rosemary Harris morphs into the acerbic matriarch in the latest revival of George S. Kaufman and Edna Ferber’s 1927 theater-world send-up, “The Royal Family.”"

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