The 2016-17 George Jean Nathan Award goes to Sara Holdren
The 2016-17 George Jean Nathan Award goes to Sara Holdren

Sara Holdren Wins the 2016-17 George Jean Nathan Award

Kathy Eddy

In a theatrical season marked by debate over the representation of women onstage and off, and by controversy surrounding male critics’ assessments of women’s stage artistry, Sara Holdren has emerged as a powerful and uncompromising new critical voice in the theater. Her debut review essay, “The Revolution Will Not Be Hashtagged: A Misguided Joan of Arc at the Public Theater,” published in the online journal Culturebot in April 2017, provided an impassioned and razor-sharp critique so articulate and compelling that New York magazine soon thereafter appointed her its new theater critic. The essay has inspired the selection committee of the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism to select Holdren as the 2016-2017 winner.

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Steve Younkins Brings Q2Q Comics to Stage Directions

Michael Eddy

Many of you most likely already know—and read—the webcomic Q2Q Comics, created by Steve Younkins. We are very happy that Stage Directions will now be running a new Q2Q comic in each print edition starting with the January 2018 issue as well as running one classic Q2Q each week on our website and in our weekly SD Newsletter. I’d like to thank Steve for working with us to bring his unique brand of theatrical humor to Stage Directions and I hope that you find them as funny in pointing out the follies that sometimes go on backstage as I do. Be sure to check out the January SD issue to see the new Q2Q Comic and in the meantime enjoy this classic strip...

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A Look at A Life with a Set Design by Laura Jellinek

Kathy Eddy

Scenic Designer Laura Jellinek was just named by the American Theatre Wing as one of five theater artists to be honored with the Henry Hewes Design Awards. Her set design for Adam Bock's A Life at Playwrights Horizon this past year. The play follows the hopelessly single Nate Martin (David Hyde Pierce) as he obsessively questions his past and his place in the cosmos. The answer he receives, when it comes, is shockingly obvious — yet totally unpredictable. A Life was directed by Anne Kauffman and featured Marinda Anderson, Brad Heberlee, Nedra McClyde, Lynne McCollough, along with David Hyde Pierce. Jellinek's fellow designers on the creative team included Costume Designer Jessica Pabst, Lighting Designer Matt Frey, and Sound Designer Mikhail Fiksel. The Production Stage Manager was Erin Gioia Albrecht.

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Designer Machine Dazzle
Designer Machine Dazzle

Taylor Mac and Machine Dazzle, Henry Hewes Design Award Honoree, Talk A 24 Decade History of Popular Music

Kathy Eddy

 Costume Designer Machine Dazzle was just named as one of the five Henry Hewes Design Awards Honorees announced by the American Theatre Wing for his work on Taylor Mac: A 24-Decade History of Popular Music at St. Ann’s Warehouse during the show's Brooklyn run. Here what performance artist Taylor Mac, a 2017 MacArthur Fellow, and Machine Dazzle have to say about this extraordinary production, (a romp through American history from 1776 to the present day that uses the pop hits of the ages, commentary, and off-the-wall fashions to share a unique vision of this country's story). KQED’s senior arts editor Chloe Veltman, sat down with them in the costume-strewn basement of San Francisco's Curran Theater when the artists were prepping for a run of the show in SF this past September. 

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The Radio City Rockettes
The Radio City Rockettes

Projection Mapping for the 2017 Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes

Michael Eddy

This year a full system technology upgrade at Radio City Music Hall by media serving and display technology company, 7thSense Design, delivered updated video technology for the 2017 production of the Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes, presented by Chase which has transformed the world’s largest proscenium theatre and has enabled video content to be displayed on all eight of the venue’s iconic ceiling arches. Design studio Obscura Digital is behind the new creative elements that envelop the theatre. batwin + robin productions, a New York-based multimedia design studio, has re-created and enhanced existing video projection and LED content to utilize Radio City’s new projection system. 7thSense contracted Pro Sound & Video as partner in fit-out and installation of the equipment.

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Part II A Crash Course in American Stage Management History

Jennifer Leigh Sears Scheier

The term “Director” was introduced in the late 1800’s, although scholars continue to debate who was the ‘first’ American modern director, I attribute it to Augustus Daly. Augustus Daly (among others), changed the production process in theater. Daly expected more out of his actors, requiring attendance at all rehearsals, beginning the rehearsal process several weeks or months in advance and for several hours at a time. Prior to this, rehearsals for specific productions were sporadic, and totaled a few hours spanning over several weeks. He fined actors for lateness, absenteeism, and forgotten lines or blocking. Overall, he regimented the rehearsal process.

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A Look at The Honeymooners Nativity Drop

Kathy Eddy

Recently Scenic Art Studios' scenic artists Irina, Rosalind, and Andy worked on the Nativity Drop for the world premiere production of The Honeymooners at the Paper Mill Playohouse. The scenic design was done by Beowulf Boritt. This video shows the painting of this unique drop and how it looked when installed in the set.

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