Shaking the Tree

Lisa Mulcahy

Reflections on Writing My Eighth Book
I remember my first days at Brandeis University, when I entered the school’s wonderful theater arts program as a freshman. It felt magical and special to walk into the vast Spingold Theater and imagine myself performing on its stage (which I started doing soon after, loving every minute of it). As my years at Brandeis happily progressed, I learned EVERYTHING—every aspect of top-notch theater study and practice was available right in front of me. I studied acting with the late, great Ted Kazanoff and playwrighting with the incredible Edward Albee, sang and performed many classic musical theater roles, worked as a production sound designer, studied theater history (which I found fascinating), and completed my honors thesis in directing. I learned the practical skills that made me tough enough to survive as an actress in Boston theater right after graduation, and honed the chutzpah I needed to direct, produce, and teach professionally in Boston and New York, too. 

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Rights are right...

Michael Eddy

Welcome to the June issue of Stage Directions magazine. Once again, students are graduating and moving on to the next stage of their studies, professional training, and/or starting the work of their professional career. For many, work in summer stock is the most immediate thing on the horizon. Spring also brings spring openings of new productions on stages across the country. Some revivals, some brand new original works and some new works from other sources, especially film adaptations. Film to stage has been a trend that seems to keep building momentum and one that adds a layer to a topic that is very important to any artist—theater or otherwise—copyright. 

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Reflections and Respect - A note from the Editor

Michael Eddy

Fall always makes me a bit reflective, assessing where things are at as they start to get back underway from the ‘lazy days’ of summer (a term coined by someone who has never done summer stock, obviously!). I was recently thinking about the fact that SD is 30 years old this year, which is almost as long as I’ve been married and five years younger than my professional career in theater. Things have changed over the past three decades, yet much has stayed the same. One of the things that I love about theater is that we have our traditions, our seasons, a shared way of working; yet we adapt and change over time. As technologies are created to improve our lives, much of what we do in theater is still created in similar manners and methods, just with better tools and processes. 

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The Confident Craftswoman

Lisa Mulcahy

Makeup Artist and Wig Specialist Tara Cooper
Tara Cooper has always believed in herself as an artist, and it’s carried her far. The Texas-based makeup artist and wig specialist’s credits are highly diverse, and her collaborators impressive. She is also an adjunct faculty member at St. Edwards University. Cooper has worked at scores of respected regional theatres, including Austin Shakespeare, The Vortex, TexARTS, the Palindrome Theatre, and the Zach Scott Theatre. Her show credits include Book of Grace, Metamorphoses, The Way of the World, One Night with Janis, Antigone, Carousel, Tuesdays with Morrie, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? On the Verge, The Crucible, Peer Gynt, Tartuffe, Cloud 9, City of Angels, On the Town, Measure for Measure and Romeo and Juliet. She’s also worked on local crews for touring productions like The Lion King, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Mamma Mia!, and Wicked.

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Pips Island Enchants Young Theatergoers

Stage Directions

Immersive theater pieces have for some time been realized for the most part focused on drawing adult theater audiences. Though Stage Directions, in December 2017, did cover Punchdrunk’s Fallow Cross experience in London, which was geared towards elementary to middle school ages, Pip’s Island draws an even younger audience of 4-10 year olds. Yet it should be noted that with the quality of the creative design work and realization of Pip’s Island, adults accompanying the youngsters are apt to be just as transported in wonder. A truly immersive theatrical experience, which had a limited run that was quickly sold out in 2016, returned to New York City this April in a new custom-built, state-of-the-art permanent location on 42nd Street at 9th Ave to rave reviews by critics, parents, and most importantly, the under 10 yr. old theatergoers. Developed over five years, the creation of the sister-and-brother partnership of Rania & Rami Ajami, and creative director Walter Krudop, Pip's is an hour-long walk-through journey filled with a mix of live performers, puppets, interactive set-pieces, and animated characters. Pip’s Island boasts beautiful design and fabrication work throughout nine distinctive environments, modern technology, and an imaginative interactive narrative that turns the young audience into adventuring explorers helping the hero Pip and his fellow adventurers Pebble and Finn save the island. 

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Del Hughes Lifetime Achievement Awards

Stage Directions

On Monday, September 17, 2018, the Stage Managers’ Association (SMA) will present its annual Del Hughes Lifetime Achievement in the Art of Stage Management Awards to three stage managers from the worlds of Broadway, regional theatre, and dance: Roy Harris, Lyle Raper, and Maxine Glorsky. In addition to the three Lifetime Achievement Awards, the SMA will recognize Peter Sargent of Webster University with a special award for Achievement in Stage Management Education for his work as an educator. 

Considered the crowning achievement in a stage manager’s career, the Del Hughes Award is awarded to those who represent the finest qualities of stage management: patience, diplomacy, organization, and a sense of humor. The awards were named for Del Hughes, who had an illustrious career as a Broadway and television stage manager as well as a TV director from 1933 to the 1970’s. 

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A Conversation with Costume Designer Jess Goldstein

Howard Sherman

Jess Goldstein’s work in costume design is perhaps most familiar from Jersey Boys, which has been playing around the world for the past 14 years. His Broadway credits include Tintypes (1980), The Most Happy Fella (1992), Love! Valour! Compassion! (1995), Take Me Out (2003), The Rivals (2004), The Merchant of Venice (2010), Newsies (2010), and On the Town (2014). His roughly 90 Off-Broadway credits include the original New York production of Buried Child, as well as multiple plays by Jon Robin Baitz, Terrence McNally, and Donald Margulies. He has also designed extensively in regional theatre and opera, and has been on the design faculty of the Yale School of Drama since 1990. He retires from Yale at the end of the current academic year.

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Designer and Educator Michael Yeargan
Designer and Educator Michael Yeargan

A Conversation with Designer & Educator Michael Yeargan

Howard Sherman

From his days as an elementary school student in Texas enraptured by opera to his Tony Award-wining scenic designs for The Light in the Piazza and South Pacific, Michael Yeargan has been creating worlds for audiences on stages across the U.S. and in Europe. Throughout that time, he has also been teaching generations of set designers as a member of the faculty, and now co-chair of the design department, at the Yale School of Drama. In a wide-ranging interview with Stage Directions' contributing editor Howard Sherman, Yeargan spoke of his start building shadow box sets while still a child to the intricacies of his celebrated designs; Stage Directions will be sharing several portions of that conversation in coming months, both in print and online. In this excerpt, [which has been edited and condensed for space] Yeargan traces the line from his opera work to his series of collaborations with Bartlett Sher in New York’s Vivian Beaumont Theater, which in addition to his Tony winning shows, includes The King and I and My Fair Lady.

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Maxine Glorsky: A Life in Stage Management

Lisa Mulcahy

When it comes to creative and technical accomplishments, Maxine Glorsky has an impressive list to reflect back upon. Glorsky has been a highly regarded dance stage manager for many companies for decades. Her seminal work includes SM duties for Lar Lubovitch since 1970, as well as the Juilliard Dance Repertory since 1998. Her list of credits include the Martha Graham Dance Company, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, the Maria Benitez Spanish Dance Company, and numerous other dance companies extending to modern, ballet, and ethnic disciplines. She has also worked in opera with the Dallas Civic Opera, among other companies. Early in her career, Glorsky also worked in lighting design, and assisted masters such as Jean Rosenthal as well as Jules Fisher. Her Broadway stage production credits include the 1973 production of Seesaw, as assistant to Fisher, as well as assisting Rosenthal on both 1967’s Illya Darling and 1966’s The Apple Tree

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