Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Audition Tip (a CD's perspective):
Just before you interface with someone who can hire or represent you: stop, take a beat, and tell yourself "My job is to make their job easier" Then: "Is what I'm just about to do going to make their job easier?"
Sounds deceptively simple. It isn't. Try it a few times until you get the hang of it.
This is one of the great principles of success in dealing with anyone in a position to select you. It has universal application out in any marketplace.
Once this practice becomes embedded in your thinking process as second nature, you will start almost immediately to see the results. You will be in awe of how fast your career (in fact, any career, not just acting) will move ahead beyond all expectation.
James Murray
Casting Director
Scott Powers Studios, Inc.
I've heard some odd rumors about Scott Powers Studios; caveat actor.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Equity actors now get session and use fees for commercials:
The new four-year Production pact between Actors' Equity Association and the League of American Theatres and Producers, according to two union reps, contains new fiscal formulas favorable to actors that will make it easier for producers to promote shows, keeping them running longer.
As reported in last week's Back Stage, this aspect of the new agreement consists of paying a standard on-camera principal rate to all performers appearing in a commercial for a Broadway or touring show
Under the old formula, Greenwood detailed further, actors were paid a "session fee" - a fee for the session in which the commercial was made - and that fee could be applied to the "use fee" for the dates when the commercial was aired. Under the new formula, he says, actors will get a session fee and a separate use fee, "so there will be a lot of chorus actors making a lot more money than they used to under the old formula, and in this respect we've improved the formula for actors and producers. I think, at the end of four years, there will be more money in the pockets of actors because more commercials will have been done."

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Dan Trujillo's musings about potential audience members disliking theatre: Do we walk out of enough theatre?

Monday, September 20, 2004

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre leads the 2003-2004 Joseph Jefferson Award Equity nominations with 24 nominations. The awards ceremony is November 1, 2004 at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

How Shakespeare became Shakespeare:
A young man from a small provincial town - a man without independent wealth, without powerful family connections and without a university education - moved to London in the late 1580's and, in a remarkably short time, became the greatest playwright not of his age alone but of all time. His works appeal to the learned and the unlettered, to urban sophisticates and provincial first-time theatergoers. He makes his audiences laugh and cry; he turns politics into poetry; he recklessly mingles vulgar clowning and philosophical subtlety. He grasps with equal penetration the intimate lives of kings and of beggars; he seems at one moment to have studied law, at another theology, at another ancient history, while at the same time he effortlessly mimics the accents of country bumpkins and takes delight in old wives' tales. Virtually all his rivals in the highly competitive theater business found themselves on the straight road to starvation; this one playwright by contrast made enough money to buy one of the best houses in the hometown to which he retired when he was around 50, the self-made protagonist of an amazing success story that has resisted explanation for 400 years
(from The New York Times).

A british discussion of the preview process, and it's implications:
The American theatre economy can sustain this lengthy period of what is effectively public rehearsal because it has a huge subscriber base. Producers can satisfy the appetite of all their loyal devotees with the previews, then risk the reviews. If they are bad, they have at least made some of their money back; if good, tickets will sell to a wider general audience.
In Britain, shows are allowed up to 21 previews and traditionally, these have always been cut-price. But, with the honourable exception of the RSC, which makes massive reductions, this usually amounts to a couple of quid off, and, particularly if you find yourself watching an early preview, you are effectively subsidising a rehearsal
(from The Telegraph).

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Appetite Theatre Garage Sale:
Appetite Theatre's first annual company sale of furniture, housewares, appliances, antiques, clothing, props and collectibles... everything including a kitchen sink. We've been collecting all year and we're ready to sell.
  • September 18 & 19 - 10AM-4PM (rain or shine)
  • 6041 North Maplewood, Chicago, IL 60659 (Yahoo Map)
  • Plenty of street parking
  • Cash only
All proceeds help support our first season of plays.
-Lauren Golanty, Michael Graham, Liz Warton
This is all I know about this; caveat emptor.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Lyric Opera Warehouse Sale:
Chicago-area theaters and schools will have "first dibs" on thousands of "AS IS" costumes (including 30+ like-new Santa suits), some scenery elements, and 100+ steamer trunks some dating back to the 1920s) being sold at bargain prices ($10-50, cash & carry only)during Lyric Opera of Chicago's WAREHOUSE SALE on Saturday, Oct. 9, from 9 a.m. until noon , at Lyric's warehouse, 2559 S. Dearborn at 26th. Friday preview available BY APPOINTMENT ONLY for theaters and schools, 1-4 p.m. on Oct. 8. For preview appointment, call Tom Gilbert: 312-827-5781. Arrangements can bemade to pick up larger items on Sunday. The sale willopen to the public 1-4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 9-10
This is all I know about this; caveat actor (and others).

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Shakespeare Quartos online - images of the quartos of some of William Shakespeare's plays (from the British Library).

If you want to buy a facsimile folio of your own (published later than the quartos), I recommend the version I bought; it's less than $50. You can also read the text of all of William Shakespeare's plays online for free.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Box Office Job at Chicago Dramatists:
Chicago Dramatists seeks a Box Office Manager for its fall production of The Age of Cynicism or Karaoke Night at the Hog by resident playwright Keith Huff.
Directed by Ann Filmer.
Previews are September 16, 17 and 18.
Runs Thurs - Sun September 23 - October 31.
There is pay.  Please contact ASAP!!  Thanks.
Brian Loevner
Managing Director
Chicago Dramatists
This is all I know about this; caveat actor.

Chicago Community Cinema, a networking event for independent film in Chicago, meets Tuesday, September 14th, at 6:00 PM at Excalibur, 632 N. Dearborn St. (Yahoo map).

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Jimmy and Liz's Top 10 Blindspots Among Improvisers:
  1. lack of trust
  2. fear of being labeled character with politically incorrect point of view
  3. nice people + nice choices = boring scenes
  4. the improv persona
  5. conflict is okay
  6. anger is ok, too
  7. playing from the brain, not the gut
  8. afraid of naming people, places and events
  9. plain ol' agreement
  10. spreading yourself too thin
Jimmy Carrane and Liz Allen co-teach their Individaul Asessessment Workshop. They have just anounced their fall schedule. For further information you can e-mail them at or by calling 773-528-0433.
This is all I know about them; caveat actor.

Day job that helps cure cancer:
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is currently looking for a recruiter to contact schools to take part in a community service project, which helps raise funds for cancer research.
  • no experience necessary
  • must have good phone skills, customer service/sales background a plus
  • position will be full-time, temporary. 9-5, monday through friday
  • starting Monday, September 13, running through mid-December
  • $10.50/hr
  • The office is located in the West Loop, accessible by CTA
Please contact Brian Goodman immediately at, or 312-651-7350 x246. Thank you
This is all I know about this; caveat actor.


Sunday, September 05, 2004

The Chicago Theatre Directory, which gets thousands of visitors a month, is the first result on google for the words "Chicago Theatre."
To add a theatre to the Chicago Theatre Directory, send the following (The Chicago Theatre Directory reserves the right to omit any theatre for any reason):
  1. The theatre's name
  2. The theatre's physical address (sorry no PO boxes, offices or apartments)
  3. The theatre's phone number with area code (this must be a number that makes a phone at the theatre ring [e.g. no ticket seller numbers])
  4. this is optional, the theatre's web site
Also, if you can add a link from your site to the Chicago Theatre Directory, that would be great.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Day job at a trade show company:
Dietze Enterprises, a leader in the convention and tradeshow business, is in need of an entry level office assistant. The duties include, but are not limited to:
  • Answering phones (4-6 lines)
  • Order processing (Data Entry)
  • Knowledge of Word, Excel, Access (a plus), internet, and email
  • Assisting sales manager in ACT database
  • updating contract templates
  • Filing, faxing, making copies
  • Provide customer service
The office is located in downtown Chicago. The hours are 9am to 5pm Monday thru Friday and the dress is casual! Salary commiserate with experiences. Benefits. A flexible attitude is a must! We are a busy, seasonal office so must be able to prioritize during hectic times and able to go with the flow. Initiative is expected. Please, if you are flaky, DO NOT apply. We are a casual company, however we work hard and do not have time for irresponsible people.
If you are interested, please email your resume at
Best of luck and thank you!
This is all I know about this; caveat actor.