Wednesday, September 26, 2007

First Time at the Opera Boys?

Not to worry, Opera Tampa at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center has a full service bar that refrains from using glass containers.

-Kari G.

TBPAC 0708 season podcast

In all the excitement over the My Fair Lady podcasts, I neglected to pitch the general podcast on the 0708 TBPAC season. This is a 4 or so minute overview on the 0708 season coming up here at TBPAC, hosted by Michael Kilgore and myself. Give it a listen here. It's roughly in the middle of the archive there.

As always, you may sign up for an RSS feed there, and get future podcasts automatically.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Green Goblin wants Spiderman to go to the opera

Okay, maybe not exactly, but at the Metropolitan Opera’s opening night of the season, this guy was there:

And Mr. Dafoe was not the only celebrity to be cited, other guests included Jane Fonda, David Schwimmer, Anthony Minghella, John McEnroe, Bianca Jagger, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Walter Cronkite and the beautiful and stylish grandmother of Apple and Moses, Blythe Danner.

All of the schmoozing and fun can be found here.

Gaetano Donizetti’s “Lucia di Lammermoor” continues General Manager Peter Gelb’s vision of opening night showcasing an opulent opera. Once again simulcast to the adoring public, “Lucia di Lammermoor” was seen by over 8,000 opera lovers (or people wandering by the Lincoln Center). For full details on the performance read the NYT review.

Tonight the Met offers Gounod’s “Romeo and Juliet” with Placido Domingo conducting and the dead-sexy Anna Netrebko as Juliet. Standing room tickets are still available – just in case you were planning a last minute trip to NYC tonight.

-Kari G.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Best of the Bay at TBPAC!

There was a lot at TBPAC that ended up being chosen as Best of the Bay by Creative Loafing. Take a look!

Best Artistic Director: Judith Lisi

Best Theater Company: Jobsite Theater (TBPAC's resident theater company, Shimberg Playhouse. Also a finalist for the Reader's Poll award, the winner of which will be announced at the awards ceremony on 9/24. Jobsite has now been named Best Theater Company in '04, '06 and '07.)
Best Actor: Steve Garland (The Pillowman, Jobsite Theater)
Best Actress: Ami Sallee Corley (Woman in Mind, Jobsite Theater)
Best Costume Designer: Katrina Stevenson (Jobsite Theater)

Best Play: Frozen (Stageworks in the Shimberg Playhouse)
Best Director: Anna Brennen, Stageworks (The Sisters Rosensweig and Frozen in the Shimberg Playhouse)
Best Set Designer: R. T. Williams, Stageworks (The Sisters Rosensweig, The Mystery of Irma Vep in the Shimberg Playhouse)

Between the body of work contributed by both Jobsite Theater and Stageworks, our very own Shimberg Playhouse had the work of seven Best of the Bay Award winners!

Other Reader's Poll finalists include Ryan McCarthy, Larry Buzzeo and Richard Coppinger for Best Actor; Ami Sallee Corley and Eileen Koteles for Best Actress and Patel Conservatory Instructor and Jobsite Theater performer "ranney" as Best Local Comedian


(Disclosure: I am also the producing artistic director of Jobsite Theater, but am genuinely exceedingly proud of all that TBPAC has to offer, expecially the most mightiest of mites in the building in our own beloved Shimberg Playhouse.)


From Ashley the Intern:

In honor of the amazing original cast members, Adam Pascal (Roger Davis) and Anthony Rapp (Mark Cohen) reprising their roles in Broadway’s production of RENT through October, we are going to be hosting the film adaptation as our movie-on-the-lawn! The movie is FREE and you can bring your own blanket and chairs (no coolers though, sorry!) and enjoy the movie that starred these two prolific original stars!

Even better, we will be offering special ticket discounts to the Opera La Boheme which, by the way, is what RENT is based on. Since La Boheme is coming to the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center in November what better way to celebrate Adam and Anthony’s return than to see them in RENT the movie and then watch the award-winning musical’s inspiration on stage?

Anyway, here’s a character comparison between RENT and La Boheme so you can see the similarities in both productions!

See you at the movie!

Character in La Boheme

Character in RENT

Mimi, a seamstress with tuberculosis

Mimi Marquez, an exotic dancer with HIV

Rodolfo, a poet

Roger Davis, a musician with HIV

Marcello, a painter

Mark Cohen, a filmmaker

Musetta, a singer

Maureen Johnson, a bisexual performance artist

Schaunard, a musician

Angel Dumott Schunard, a gay cross-dressing drummer with AIDS

Colline, a philosopher

Tom Collins, a gay philosophy professor and Anarchist philosopher with AIDS

Alcindoro, a state councillor

Joanne Jefferson, a lesbian lawyer

Benoit, a landlord

Benjamin 'Benny' Coffin III, also a landlord

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

DL on HBO Saturday night!

D.L. Hughley will be premiering a new comedy special on HBO this Saturday night (check your local listings for details) - his fourth special for HBO, which is within itself an accomplishment. The special will also be released on video (including Netflix) on 9/25.

Once you've watched the special, you may be so inclined to pick up a ticket for his Nov. 4 appearance at TBPAC. I think this is DL's 3rd trip through TBPAC since I started working here in 1999. As a matter of fact, we've had all of the Kings of Comedy here on more than once occasion.

I've never heard a comedian take down hecklers the way I saw DL do it that first time. I can't even repeat any of them here, being a corporate blog an everything, but his act is well worth the price of admission!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Jewtopia PR photos

I got to the office this morning to find these fantastic PR shots for the upcoming production of Jewtopia (opens Oct. 26 in the Jaeb) sitting in my inbox.

Take a peek! Click any of these to view the larger images. All photos are courtesy Rob Harris.

Chris JDate ©Rob Harris3953

Firetushy ©Rob Harris3869

Chris W Candles ©Rob Harris3929

Chris & Firetushy ©Rob Harris3864

Chris & Firetushy ©Rob Harris3842

The Witnesses - download page to help the show

We have the new musical The Witnesses is premiering at TBPAC Oct. 13-14. It's from the same highly successful collaboration that's brought shows like David and Rock and the Rabbi to TBPAC again and again.

It looks like they've set up a pretty nifty (and smart) downloads page where folks can go in and print out flyers or posters for distribution at churches, workplaces, community centers etc. as well as PR photos and logo banners for online use.

It's good to good see more local producers latching on to this marketing tool. A lot of the larger Broadway/touring shows as well as our own resident theater company have been using this tool for a few years.

Of course all the good marketing in the world won't make a bad show good, so it's a good thing the creative team of Danny Hamilton and Gary Richardson always seem to turn out a very high quality project.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Henry Rollins has been Provoked

Henry Rollins is just one of those guys. A cult icon. One that you either love or hate with a passion, or you have no idea at all who he is.

I've enjoyed his live recordings and show - sometimes called "talking shows," or spoken word or even stand-up - for close to 15 years now I think.

I'm always excited when he comes to TBPAC, and he certainly gives you a show well worth the price of admission. Just Hank, a mic, a stool and a bottle of water. He's alternately hilarious and fierce and simply a master showman.

Here's a blog post from Java Joe, who is equally as stoked about Rollins' tour-opening show in Flagstaff. Here is also a link to an interview our own local REAX Magazine did with Henry.

I keep looking for a blog review of one of his shows, but no dice so far. He's only had two shows, so I guess I need to hold my horses.

Friday, September 14, 2007

"The rain in Spain ..."

I did those interviews that David mentioned. I wanted to add that it's been quite an experience having the "My Fair Lady" creative team here for the last few weeks.

They've worked incredibly hard, with 10- and 12-hour days.

In the interviews, they're appropriately proud of the result.

A review in today's St. Petersburg Times calls it "A charming Lady. "

And the Times' review also says, "My Fair Lady at the TBPAC features a sparkling star, a wonderfully complex set and splendid choreography."

Check out the four interviews on our podcast. The final two should be posted a little later on today.

You'll learn which of producer Cameron Mackintosh's dozens of hit musicals are his favorites.

And what classic songs for "The Phantom of the Opera," "Les Miserables" and "Cats" were written literally at the last minute.

And the differences Lisa O'Hare found in playing Eliza Doolittle in "My Fair Lady" vs. Mary Poppins.

And the challenges this mostly American cast had in playing British swells and toughs.

"My Fair Lady" has three more performances at TBPAC, one tonight and two on Saturday. Then it heads off to Pittsburgh for the beginning of the national tour.

That means you have three more chances to see this new hit musical before anyone else in the country. -- MichaelK/TBPAC

Thursday, September 13, 2007

My Fair Lady podcasts

Head over to our podcasts page to check out interviews with Cameron Mackintosh, director Fergus Logan and actors Christopher Cazenove and Sally Ann Howes - with more to come!

As always, you can subscribe to our feed from that page, or search the archives for old podcasts!

Brian Regan on going to the doctor

My eyesight starting going all wonky yesterday around 4 in the afternoon. Real bright white spots, everything within 3 to 5 feet looked blurry while everything far away still looked fine. It was ultimately resolved by putting my sunglasses on for half an hour.

I was again reminded how freaked out I get anytime I think something is wrong with me, how distrustful I am of the medical field, and how I hate doctors. This, in turn, reminded me of this bit of Brian Regan's stand-up. It's ok to watch at work, he's about as family-friendly as a comedian gets.

Legally Blonde on MTV

According to MTV will air the Broadway show in its entirety on Saturday, Sept. 29, at 1 p.m. including backstage interviews, etc. "We are creating a one-of-a-kind special weekend event - done in a way only MTV can," Tony DiSanto, MTV vice president, said.

Set those DVRs!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Tale of Two Cities

It’s a long way from London to Tampa. But for a theatrical young Brit, the distance between the two cities didn’t seem all that far.

Shaun Kerrison, who is currently hanging out and working at TBPAC as the director of the new production of My Fair Lady, is glad to be back in Tampa – although it’s not exactly the same city he remembers. Some things come back (a building, a restaurant) some things don’t (was it always this hot in September?).

Kerrison has been leading the My Fair Lady company through the rehearsal process here in town for the last few weeks. They’ll give five performances of the show here in Morsani Hall before heading off on a national tour.

As a kid growing up in England, his family became close with a Tampa family living in London. The family friendship allowed Kerrison to spend a couple of his formative summer holidays in Tampa. He even stayed around long enough to attend fall semesters at Horace Mann and Greco Junior High Schools.

All told Kerrison thinks he spent a couple of years in Tampa and he grew to love Florida. And although he’s not exactly sure what, he thinks there is something important he should remember about Sligh Ave., or was if Bearss Ave.? He’s got a few more days in the Florida sun before the company heads off to Pittsburgh … he’ll figure it out.


Friday, September 07, 2007

Jersey Boys on the Emmy Awards

From an email from the tour:
The San Francisco Company of the Tony and Grammy Award-winning hit musical JERSEY BOYS will perform on the 59th Primetime Emmy Awards on Sunday, September 16 at 8:00pm (7:00pm Central) on Fox.

JERSEY BOYS is currently playing to sold-out houses on Broadway at the August Wilson Theatre and in San Francisco at the Curran Theatre. JERSEY BOYS just completed a sold out, record-breaking engagement at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles on August 30 and will begin performances in Chicago at the LaSalle Bank Theatre on October 5. Productions have been announced for Las Vegas, London, Toronto and a US National Tour will visit a host of cities across the country.

JERSEY BOYS, winner of four 2006 Tony Awards® including Best Musical, is written by Marshall Brickman & Rick Elice, with music by Bob Gaudio, lyrics by Bob Crewe, and is directed by two-time Tony® Award-winner Des McAnuff and choreographed by Sergio Trujillo.

JERSEY BOYS is the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons: Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Tommy DeVito and Nick Massi, about a group of blue-collar boys from the wrong side of the tracks who became one of the biggest American pop music sensations of all time. They wrote their own songs, invented their own sounds and sold 175 million records worldwide - all before they were thirty.

The cast of the San Francisco Company includes Drew Gehling (Bob Gaudio), Michael Ingersoll (Nick Massi), Jeremy Kushnier (Tommy DeVito), Jarrod Spector (Frankie Valli), Dominic Bogart, Lyndsey Cole, John Michael Coppola, John Michael Dias, Mike Erickson, Steven M. Goldsmith, John Hickman, Lauren Marshall, Rashad Naylor, Jenny Lee Ramos, Brad Russell, Kevin Russell, Jake Speck, Kara Tremel, Ryan Quinn West with Craig Laurie and Jonathan Weir.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

0708 Club Jaeb series podcast

Michael Kilgore's podcast on the upcoming 0708 Club Jaeb series is now up, including some clips of the artists coming! Keep in mind that you can RSS that feed and get new ones when they go live or also search the podcast archives.

Thoughts from the marketing intern

Ashley Thomas has been with us for a few weeks now, though she still doesn't have a proper name tag (unless her parents were cruel enough to dub her VISITOR), and so she's gained some insight into arts marketing and our good ol' TBPAC. Here are some of her thoughts:

Honestly, I came into this internship as a series of unrelated coincidences.

Ultimately, I stumbled across in on their website while I was dutifully verifying that the tickets for the Lion King had not gone on sale yet. I ended up with the best internship that I have had to date.

I have never been more eager to go to work (especially since it’s unpaid) and I learn something new every day. I can hardly believe that I get to walk by pieces of the My Fair Lady set or stand on Carol Morsani Hall. Most days, I can not believe that I am so fortunate that I have an internship in such an interesting place. So, for the sake of making this less of an ode to my internship, I have developed a list of the Top 20 Things I’ve Learned While Interning at the TBPAC:

  • The Rehearsal Hall is the same dimensions as Carol Morsani Hall’s stage to allow the performers to mark.
  • The cardboard cutouts in Ferguson Hall and Carol Morsani Hall windows may seem innocuous but they make very poor and space-consuming cubicle-fellows. (Sorry Brian Regan.)
  • Advertising a show is extremely expensive.
  • If you read the show descriptions, there are things that are interesting outside of the Broadway series. (Crazy, I know.)
  • The appeal of the Radio City Rockettes draws more of a crowd than the legal drama of Twelve Angry Men
  • Radio commercials are harder to write than TV commercials because they are longer and there is no visual to help—you’re on your own.
  • People are crazy about Menopause The Musical. Maybe that’s just odd to a college student.
  • The Lion King will require Carol Morsani Hall to be temporarily remodeled.
  • Sometimes the small shows are the most fun (Rest In Peace, Hurlyburly)
  • Everything is in constant flux.
  • Opera is the new cool thing in Tampa.
  • They still do fire drills.
  • Excel is life and the copy machine is your friend.
  • Marketing uses an ungodly amount of paper
  • The Marketing Department is small so everyone works really hard to get a show advertised and they are all really good at what they do.
  • The electronic marquee is run by Tampa’s most ancient computer (just kidding, but it really is the thing of legends.)
  • Patel Conservatory’s “Make Your Own Musical” program is such a cool idea (I’d never heard of it).
  • Ferguson Hall is the size of a Broadway Hall.
  • Velcro signage, while a great theoretical design idea, loses its practicality in the Florida heat.
  • TBPAC employs the nicest and most fun people I have ever worked with and it is truly a wonderful place to intern.
So, unbeknownst to me, I have stumbled across the best learning experiences that I have had. I have learned so much about Marketing and the processes behind a Broadway show that I can hardly believe it has only been just over a month.

I never considered working in the marketing department of a theater, but now that I am doing it and loving every minute of it I may reconsider. At any rate, I am totally sold on the idea of Event/Entertainment marketing.

This internship has helped reiterate why I love my major and generated more of passion for what I want to do than I had before. It’s amazing (and I’m not just saying that because I want tickets to The Lion King).