Tag Archives: politics

Updated: Playing the Trump Card

united states us presidential seal

The hashtag #NotMyPresident is quite popular right now.  I can’t get behind it.  Whether or not a person voted for Mr. Trump, he is now the soon-to-be Chief Executive of the country.  So he will be  our President as defined by the Law of the Land, the United States Constitution. And, because he is our soon-to-be President, there are many legal ways to interact with ...

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The Season of the Scare

Scare halloween pumpkin glow in dark

Lately my thoughts have drifted to Halloween because we live in a culture where, the moment Labor Day hits, polite women stop wearing white shoes and grocery stores start pushing orange bags of candy. As with most things in America, sophisticated marketing has changed Halloween over the years. However, the essentials of the holiday are still there: the candy, the dress-up, and the scare. I ...

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The Bechdel Test and the Art of Politics

diversity bechdel scientist appearance

Have you heard of the Bechdel test?  It was developed to formalize an observation made by Virginia Woolf about the simplicity of women’s characters in literature.  A piece of fiction passes the test if, and only if, three conditions are met: The work has at least two women in it who talk to each other about something other than a man. Given the simplicity of ...

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Looking for the Promised Land

February is Black History Month, an organized effort to recognize, accept and validate the African American Experience in Western Culture. It’s complicated. It’s about pride, it’s about history, it’s about education, it’s an effort to merge two ideas that often seem conflicted. Community And Diversity. How do we meld common interests (community in this case Western Culture), and special/individual interest (again in this case, the ...

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Sheldon Epps Talks Diversity and LA Theater

Sheldon Epps has been the Artistic Director of the Pasadena Playhouse since 1997. He came to that position with a great many credits, including being the Assistant AD at the Old Globe, the founder of several theatre companies, and a noted director on and off Broadway. His television credits read like a who’s who of Hollywood.  We talked just before his announcement to step down ...

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More on Mother Courage and #BlackPerspectivesMatter

mother courage #blackperspectivesmatter diversity footlights pinkins

Tonya Pinkins walking out of the Off-Broadway production, Mother Courage and Her Children, has made clear the difficulties that can occur when artists of varying perspectives collaborate, particularly when sensitive topics like diversity are part of the mix.  As further proof of the nuances involved, Michael Potts, another actor from the production, recently gave his behind-the-scenes perspective about what happened during the rehearsal process: I’ve ...

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Theatre Communications Group Takes Official Position on Color-Conscious Casting

Theatre Communications Group, the publisher of American Theatre, has taken an official position on color-conscious casting.  You can co-sign this letter by going to their web form. December 2, 2015 Over the past several weeks, we’ve witnessed two troubling examples of university productions disrespecting a playwright’s intent in regard to casting. Clarion University in Pennsylvania had to cancel their production of Lloyd Suh’s Jesus in ...

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Steven Leigh Morris on the Future of LA Theater

Steven Leigh Morris Ovations American Theatre Interview Kevin Delin

American Theatre:  Incoming LA STAGE Alliance Executive Director, Steven Leigh Morris, gives an extended interview on the future of Los Angeles theater and his ideas on how to get it there. We need to get recognition of the theatre art beyond the theatre community, so that people who live in Los Angeles understand really clearly that if they haven’t seen a play, in a large or ...

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Los Angeles County Supervisors Seek to Formally Improve Diversity in the Arts

los angeles arts footlights

SUBSTITUTE MOTION BY SUPERVISORS HILDA L. SOLIS AND MARK RIDLEY-THOMAS NOVEMBER 10, 2015 Improving Leadership, Work Force, Programming and Audience Diversity in Los Angeles County Cultural Institutions As the County of Los Angeles (County) is recognized around the world as a leader in the performing and visual arts, its Arts Commission should be at the forefront of encouraging a constructive County-wide conversation about ways to ...

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The Making of King Lear: Behind the Scenes

The New York Review of Books:  A thorough review of The Year of Lear: Shakespeare in 1606 by James Shapiro discusses Shakespeare’s writing of King Lear in the context of the artist’s life.  How did the final version of the play veer from the source material – and why?

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