Putting the Arts to Work for Homeless Youth in Los Angeles

    Art is more than entertainment or decoration.   Back in March, this photo caused some tepid online outrage in Los Angeles, and spurred another (too brief) examination of the homelessness crisis in the city.   It served as a snapshot of how relatively wealthy millennials were changing some of Los Angeles’ most iconic neighborhoods and ethnic enclaves into playgrounds of twenty-something decadence, literally stepping over homeless residents to snap a selfie in front of a cheeky mural.  When I saw it, I was immediately upset by not only how indifferent […]

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AEA Votes on #99Seat

We’re almost at a head. I also recommend the editorial from Bitter Lemons​ and it’s detail about the full pager in the Los Angeles Times​ and Actors’ Equity Association​’s response: http://losangeles.bitter-lemons.com/2015/03/25/vote-no/#sthash.HLkwZvyx.dpbs It’s very possible that union actors will be forced out of the indie scene by their own leadership, which will make producer-hyphenates like me seek non-union talent or hang it up all together. AEA insists on portraying people like me as exploitative of actors and dismissive of their contributions, when in fact, most of what I do is engineer […]

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Not a Review: The Late Late Show at Bootleg

I try to see everything labeled ‘environmental/immersive/ambulatory’ that pops up in Los Angeles because I feel it’s the coolest thing theater has going for it. No other form can make you stand up, walk around, touch, feel, smell and throw yourself into a story or experience like the present art of theater. TV and video games can’t do that, and never will (my apologies to Virtual Boy.) And yet, how do we spend our time at plays?  Silent, seated, hands folded or clutching a program, policing the behavior of other […]

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LACAC and LASA Launch SpaceFinderLA

I’ve written before about the ways that small LA theater companies face daunting financial hurdles that are being overcome by greater cooperation and asset sharing.  I’m very happy to spread the word about another such opportunity.  The first step of production is often to seek out a venue.  The calculus and footwork involved can be daunting, and with the huge number of venues in the city and the somehow also huge rents to pay (and competition for the 5% of venues that are actually worth the money) a show can […]

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Crowds Swarm Times Square to Demand Taymor Step Down

Thousands of theater fans peacefully took to the streets of New York on Tuesday to demand the ouster of embattled director Julie Taymor from her position as creative principal of the world’s most expensive theatrical production, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.  News reports indicated that her resignation could be imminent despite her struggle to maintain control over the troubled venture which has claimed the lives of hundreds of performers and committed unspeakable horrors in the name of popular entertainment.

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ShopLab: A Huge Opportunity for Small LA Theater

[UPDATE: Apparently you can (and must!) vote for ShopLab everyday at the Pepsi Refresh Project. It’s super easy to sign in, especially if you’re already logged into Facebook.  Keep voting and we can win! DOOO EEEEET NNAAAOOOO!] If you have ever produced a low-to-mid-scale play for a nomadic company in Los Angeles, or in any city for that matter, you know how expensive and inconvenient a temporary a shop/storage place can be.  For companies without an existing space to store materials, build set pieces, or ways to move stuff around, these costs can drag down even a healthy budget.  The time spent securing these resources also weighs on a production, and when it’s time to strike the show, there’s that sinking feeling you get when you watch perfectly good lumber, flats, large props or whatever can’t be stuck in the producer’s living room, get thrown in the dumpster and lost forever. The Solution. (click and vote, more below the fold.)

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At Least She Didn’t Leave it to the Cat

Did the audience go to the Met too?

It’s a good day to be in the development department at the Met, and an equally bad day for the bean counters at the Washington National Opera.  According to PND, a former board member of the WNO rendered an $18M gift to the opera “with the unusual stipulation that should that company fail to remain independent the gift would be rescinded and transferred to the Met.” Now, as the Kennedy Center continues their slow consumption of the capital’s high-brow art centers, the WNO is faced with losing close to 2/3rds […]

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