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INSULA – Kennedy Center Region II American College Theatre Festival
As I mentioned in a previous post, I got my feet wet in the realm of directing as assistant director to Kari Margolis as we took on creating an original devised piece with BFA Acting students at Montclair State University. Inspired by the physical theatre space given to us at Montclair, INSULA developed organically into an awe-inspiring work of physical poetry as we explored the concept of islands, both metaphorical and literal. We pulled from personal feelings of isolation, literary islands such as Avalon, Never Never Land, and sites from The Odyssey to create a living, breathing dreamscape of morphing stories and images.
Well, it is with great pride that I can announce that the show has been selected to perform at the Kennedy Center Region II American College Theatre Festival, held this year at Towson University.
Of course, I started this draft weeks ago and now that I am getting back to it, we leave for Towson TODAY! From what I understand, we open the festival tomorrow morning with a performance at 9am and perform again later at 3pm. We hope to seriously blow the minds of our audiences!
I had a busy December with more gigs at Bakers Taproom II. I cannot say enough great things about the place. The food is spectacular, the clientele is friendly, and they have a seasonal rotation of great beer on tap. They were decked out for the holiday season, and I had a great time honing my chops with sets of originals, cover, and I sprinkled in some holiday tunes to celebrate the festivities. I snapped some video of a gig, but there is so much crowd audio with spiky levels I’m not sure how much of it is usable. Still, if I can clean something up, I’ll post it.
I have a lot of projects on the table for 2013, and am so excited! Working on a lot of new music and I’ll be posting clips of songs in progress as they get ironed out.
I was psyched to finally arrange a date to play an acoustic set at Baker’s Taproom II in Barryville, NY. It’s a place near and dear to my heart, and they have the best pizza I’ve had anywhere (Chicago & NYC have nothin’ on this place!).
I played two 40-minute sets, with an even mix of original songs and relatively obscure covers. It was so great to get my feet wet playing music live again. I”ve been playing and writing, but much of my focus lately has been on theatre, so it’s great to break in those calluses again and rebuild hand and finger strength! I’m looking forward to lining up more winter dates and really getting back into the groove. Cannot wait to do some more writing!
PULLING STRINGS – Middletown, NY Oct 20
Here comes the world premiere of our new production, PULLING STRINGS! We’ll be performing one night only at Orange Hall in Middletown, NY. We had a phenomenal preview work-in-progressing showing a few weeks back, and we’ve had time to tweak, edit, and polish to create an even stronger show.
More dates are in the works to tour this sizzling gem of a production, and I have no doubt whatsoever that we will knock the socks off of every audience we perform for–it’s a show like none other! More details to come as developments continue.
INSULA – Montclair State University
It is with great pride that I am assisting Kari Margolis with a brand spanking new piece of devised work with BFA students at Montclair State University to be performed at the L. Howard Fox Theatre. The new piece, titled INSULA, will delve into the various metaphorical and literal islands we as humanity create and have created for ourselves and for others throughout the ages. Islands of myth and legend clash with those of modern technological isolation to create a rich human collage of emotion, history, dilemma, and discovery.
The work is being built from the ground up, with the BFA students offering a strong artistic voice to unearth imagery and story under the ever brilliant guidance of Kari Margolis and myself. Other members of the MB ADAPTORS Company are popping in to assist and inspire, and not only are we creating some phenomenal work, but the experience itself is so empowering and enriching for the students. I really think projects like this are invaluable for young artists in their formative training. Where else does one get to don the hats of actor, playwright, and collaborator with a world class theatre company in such a supportive, nurturing, and educational environment?
Kudos and thanks to Montclair for supporting this amazing endeavor!
The show itself will open Thursday, November 29th and continue through Saturday night with another run the following Thurs-Sat. You can purchase tickets HERE!
I recorded a video performing the finished version of my new song “Lullaby.” I’m learning more and more about youtube itself and what goes into making a good video, though ultimately I am most concerned with giving a rich, soulful performance. Subscribe to my youtube channel for updates as they happen!
Holy overdue update, Batman! So much to recap.
Two years of hard work is finally culminating as we polish the imaginative powerhouse of a production we call PULLING STRINGS. As a creative endeavor, it has been incredibly artistically fulfilling. I have been challenged and inspired in all of the ways I could hope for as a working artist. Every moment of this show is packed with imagery, metaphor, emotion, and subtext. We perform final work-in-progress showing as part of NACL’s Deep Space series in September, and then make our debut in Middletown, New York in October (more details to follow). If you are in the area, come and experience the wonder of a show like nothing you have ever seen before. I feel so lucky to be part of such a spectacular ensemble of artists (Jalyn Knobloch, Gregory G. Schott, Tania Liberata, Jonathan Beller, and Helen Buron.) Of course I owe so much to my director and mentor, Kari Margolis and her brilliant partner, Tony Brown.
I have had the great pleasure to assist Master Teacher Kari Margolis at a number of high profile Master Classes. As I mentioned in my last post, in April, I was there to assist at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival in Washington, DC, where we worked with a group of finalists from across the country. This was my second year bringing the Margolis Method to the artists at the KCACTF. I also sat in on a panel to discuss devised work as the Festival continues to develop an arena for this type of work at the regional festivals. Very enlightening and very inspiring.
In June, I accompanied Kari to NYC, where we taught at the Actor’s Movement Studio’s 2012 Summer Intensive. Janice Orlandi, who runs the studio, is such an exuberant, supportive force. It was a great weekend for me as a teacher, given the reins to lead the group at times throughout the workshop.
Margolis Method 2012 Professor Certification
We had our second annual Professor Certification course at the beginning of the summer, and boy was it an inspiration. Professors from colleges and universities across the country–and two from Canada–assembled to learn exercises, concepts, and creative structures to incorporate into their classes. There is nothing like being in the presence of professional theater educators discussing craft. I sense the flow of theater shifting, and I truly believe it is the coming age of actor-centered theatre. It all starts with the educators. If we spread the word and help to create empowered artists, the whole paradigm of theatre will and must change.
Been picking up my guitar lately. Here’s a snippet of a song I was working on (which is now finished). I’ll record the full song soon and post it. Enjoy!
Where to begin? Well the most recent exciting news is that I just assisted Master Teacher Kari Margolis teach a workshop at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, for the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival. As always it was great to be a part of the national festival, and the actors we worked with were all spectacular.
My focus this winter and spring have been working on two major projects. First, I’ve been continuing to collaborate as a Company Member with the MB ADAPTORS on our newest production, Dreamscape I: Pulling Strings. It’s rich with metaphor, imagery, questions, and unique, evolving characters. Right now we’re aiming to perform in the fall. More details to come.
The second big project has been to help develop the Margolis Method Professor Certification Level II, which equips university and college professors with a deeper understanding of Margolis Method principles and more exercises to incorporate into their existing syllabuses. We have professors coming to attend both the Level I and Level II workshops this summer, and as faculty at the Center, I cannot wait to work with this diverse group of professionals!
More updates to come with more information!
Wow this summer is flying by like I cannot believe!
We had an enormously successful launch of our Margolis Method Professor Certification Level I program in June. I was thrilled to take part in facilitating this new program as faculty here at the Margolis Method Center. Level I Certification equipped a group of eager and inspiring Theatre Education professionals with concepts, exercises, and improv structures to incorporate into their existing syllabuses at their universities and colleges.
The Center’s Summer Intensive followed right on the heels of the Professor Certification, and we’re currently two weeks into the summer session. It has been phenomenal. As usual, the students joining us in the studio are immensely generous, hard working, and creative. It should prove to be yet another mind blowing summer, and I’m thrilled to be teaching my first classes in one hour Practice sessions where we focus on breaking down exercises for a microscopic exploration of their mechanics and principles.
Wow. I just have to say wow.
This past weekend was the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival and I had the honor of assisting Master Teacher Kari Margolis with a Master Class for some of the nation’s best collegiate actors. The students were all so engaged, enthusiastic, and inspiring, and they all really seemed to tap into the spirit of our work. Really great stuff. The Kennedy Center graciously offers a scholarship for a month’s study at our Margolis Method Training Center during our Summer Intensive, and our recipient this year was just phenomenal in presence and spirit. Hopefully more of these amazing artists will join us for summer study.
A huge thank you to the Kennedy Center for all of your support!
A lot has changed in my life. I have moved to Barryville, NY to pursue training with the incomparable Kari Margolis in order to become Faculty at the Margolis Method Center.
But more to the point of this post, I am diving back into music. I’m going to be recording old songs, new songs, and some covers. So, head on over to my Youtube Channel and Subscribe!
Just finished our first weekend with IN SEARCH OF TONTO BLUE at the Baltimore Theatre Project. It was a really great opening weekend, and I had forgotten how much I love the Baltimore Theatre Project! The space is amazing and the staff is passionate and so friendly and upbeat. The frosting on the cake is definitely the neighborhood. I’ve fallen in love with the area around BTP. Spectacular architecture and fantastic food make for a happy tour.
One weekend left, and it should be a great one! Performances and workshops on Saturday & Sunday will make it busy and fulfilling. If you’re in the area, definitely check us out!