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Archives for : Art

An amazing start to 2015

Haven’t posted an update in a while, and there’s been a lot going on so I really should get something up here. Few major announcements:

First, I have accepted the position of Managing Director with Little Church Theater of Holderness, New Hampshire. It’s a job where I will wear many hats, including day-to-day operations, managing staff, producing the shows, public relations, as well as possibly directing a production. I do have some year round duties, and will be basically living at the theater from June through August. We have our first big meeting at the end of the month, and I can not wait for the summer to be here.
So what will I be doing in the meantime? Well, I have signed on to direct three productions this winter/spring! First, I am directing Timothy Mason’s Beauty and the Beast with the Maskers Drama Club at Central High School in Manchester. It’s a very interesting adaptation of the original fairytale (and predates Disney’s version by about five years.) I am working with some very excited students who I look forward to getting to know over the next month.

After B&B goes up, my focus will be shifted to directing one of my absolute favorite shows: Avenue Q! I cannot believe that only two short years after playing one of my dream roles (Trekkie Monster) I will now get to direct a production. I will be working with ACT Theatre Company in North Andover, MA on this show, and am at a loss for words over my excitement for this production.

Finally, shorty before Avenue Q opens, I will be in the director seat at auditions for Legally Blonde: The Musical, which is the Majestic Theatre’s spring teen show. I have performed several times with the Majestic, and am very glad to accept their offer for the teen show. The show will go up at the end of May, and then it’s on to Holderness.

So my 2015 is already almost completely booked, and it’s only day 12. I still will be mentoring FRC team 3467, as well as carrying out all my other duties for Cue Zero Theatre Company, who should be putting on at least two productions come the fall.
Thank you to everyone who is providing me with the great opportunities, 2015 is going to be a fantastic year!

A Week of Discovery and My Next Big Project

So this should really be two separate blog posts, but I’ve been so busy that I’ve fallen behind on updating the site as need be so I apologize for cramming two huge topics into one post. I want to talk both about my week at the TheatreKapow Artists’ Retreat, and my next directing project.

I spent the 11th-15th of August at the Chanticleer Gardens in Dunbarton, New Hampshire with some amazing artists. The TheatreKapow 2014 Artists’ Retreat covered many different types of theatre/actor training and was extremely refreshing, eye opening, and gave me some great moments of self-reflection. We explored the methods of Michael Chekhov, Viewpoints, and Integral Transpersonal Theatre:  La Poetica dell’ Invisible. The Transpersonal Theatre workshops were especially powerful, we were working with its creator, Valentina Lattuada, a theatre artist from Barcelona. With Valentina’s work, I initially was hitting a metaphorical wall. We focused a lot on breathe and being natural, following our actual impulses and not “creating” (forcing) anything. I really had to turn my brain off (something not easy for me) and just let my body/emotions do what they wanted to do. I was able to gain a whole new level of listening and person-reading through these workshops. The Viewpoints and Michael Chekhov work also helped me get in touch with various places in my psyche and physicality that I had previously not known how to reach. We also had a brief workshop in Shakespeare and Company’s technique called “Dropping in,” which is a way to create instant connection between actor and text. I cannot wait to use all of these discoveries about myself, as well as some new techniques, in both my directing and acting lives. I would like to thank TheatreKapow for their continual dedication to actor training, and for alway pushing me to be a better artist (and person.)

As for my next big project, I am very excited to announce that I have signed on to direct the Windham Actors’ Guild’s production of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” This will be a very unique and fun directing challenge and I’ve spent the past week ripping apart the script, attempting to get at the soul of this character-driven musical that has a lot of heart. It is a show that is very quirky, and a lot more complex than meets the eye. I cannot wait for our first production meeting on Wednesday, and for auditions the following week. We will need some very talented performers to put this show on, and I’m certain we will find them. WAG is full of some delightful people, and it is an honor to get to work beside them on this show.

Well, that’s all I’ve got for now. I need to get back to dissecting the spelling bee script, re-reading “A Director Prepares” by Anne Bogart (one of my favorite books), reviewing some directing class notes, and so much more. Oh! Also, the first meeting of the school year for FRC Team 3467 is tomorrow. Really excited for that as well. I hope my schedule allows me to continue to mentor these amazing students. Okay, for real now. Signing off!

One Full Trip Around The Sun As A Real Person

May 18th 2013, at about noon time I was handed something I had worked extremely hard for during the previous four years… well sort of. I was given my University of New Hampshire diploma…holder. The actual diploma would come in the mail about a month and a half later, but the symbolism was there. I was officially a owner of a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre. I was now what I joking refereed to as “A Real Person.” I am an adult, with debt, a need for a career and a whole bunch of scary life choices sitting in front of me. One of my favorite teachers in college, Dan Raymond, usually made us write a “What I learned in this class” reflection paper to end every semester, which was always extremely insightful. Since today is sorta like my “first birthday” with respect to the diploma, I would like to reflect upon everything I have accomplished professionally and personally since graduation.

I guess my first major accomplishment was making my professional directing debut, which took place not long after graduation. The entire process that was “Bye Bye Birdie” was certainly an adventure. It was the first true test of my education while at the same time one of the most valuable learning experiences I ever had as a person. It tested my character. It tested my work ethic. It tested my ability to handle pressure, deal with many of the lesser than enjoyable parts of show biz, and made me realize a lot of things about myself. All things considered, we put on a damn good show. I’m very thankful for the opportunity I got, for the moments of self-discovery, and the continuous affirmation that the world of theatre is the world I belong in.

I also served as lighting designer on two very different productions. Both of these experiences involved me being a bit out of my comfort zone (for different reasons each time) which I find is one of the most important things when wanting to grow as an artist. Risks need to be taken, acceptance over the fact that you don’t always know 100% what you’re doing needs to be had, and you need to alway trust in yourself, and your fellow artists. I never want to accept easy tasks; challenges are where the real fun lies. My fulfillment in life comes from accomplishing, not necessarily the impossible, but the improbable. Now, is lighting design what I want to do forever? No, but it is something that pushes me artistically. Also during the two productions (as well as my time as “emergency technical director” for another production) I believe I earned the deep respect of a lot of people, which is something I value highly. I have nothing but respect for my craft, and I want to be respected for my craft and work ethic. When I lose either of these things, I will need to seriously reevaluate where I am in life.

Something I did not expect to be so life changing were the two major trips I took this year, first to NYC, then to Disney World. Both trips woke me up, allowing me to see there is so much more than just the world just outside my window. For a while I think I had set my goal as being a major player in the arts and entertainment scene in New England, but now I’m not so sure that’s the best thing for me. I think this guy has to go out and see the world as a whole, experience many different places, cultures and people. I can’t let my geography limit myself. So when the time comes, I’m going to explore all of my options across the country, and possibly even globally. I’ve said it for a while, but now I truly accept it: I’ll go wherever the road of life takes me.

Had I not made a pit-stop on an impulse, I would have missed out on an extremely important experience this year, and that was my joining of FRC Team 3467. FIRST shaped a major part of who I am, and I am always in favor of giving back to the community, so the partnership just made sense. What I originally envisioned as a minor amount of helping out burst into a full on mentorship of the team. I really feel like my year with the Windham Windup was very much like Kevin Garnett leaving the Minnesota Timberwolves for the Boston Celtics. I love (the now no longer active) FRC Team 241 of Pinkerton Academy with all my heart, but 3467 was just the right place for me. Everyone on this team has a great mindset, understand the culture, and wants to achieve big things. I don’t want to take more credit than I deserve, but I really did enjoy coaching the team to some major awards, as well as being along for the ride when it came to the robot’s successful season. I hope all of the students learned as much from me as I did from them. I’m not certain that my career path will allow me to continue being as active with the team in the future, but I will give them everything I can for as long as they will have me.

On a purely personal level, it has been a very crazy year when it comes to friends and family. Going back to slightly before graduation, I’ve spent the last 14 months solidifying some amazing bonds with people from all parts of my life. I have surrounded myself with the right people, cutout those hurting me or holding me back, and I love all of them deeply. My friends and family always go above and beyond for me, and for that I will always be forever thankful.

I’ve also put in another year as a mobile entertainer/master of ceremonies/DJ with Sowa Entertainment. The wedding industry is always an interesting place to work, and I have met some wonderful individuals. It’s kinda strange, I never wanted a job where wearing a tie was a requirement, but I never thought there were jobs this fun that require formal wear. I’ve had a very good eight years in the DJ biz. I take pride in the fact that I have had such a successful run since starting to do my own events. I hope the remainder of my events this year are all memorable and exciting for my clients and myself.

So the last thing item to reflect up is the fact that in little over a month and a half, I’ll be making my debut as an independent theatre producer. Creating Cue Zero Theatre Company has been a tremendous undertaking, and against all logical judgement, I knew this was the next step for me. I’ll go into longer detail later as to what exactly sparked this need to produce, but I’m really excited for this, in every sense of the word. I’ve gotten all the encouragement and support of some great people, and I cannot wait for July. There’s so much to do between now and then, but I am not afraid. I say “Bring. It. On!”

So, that’s where I am one year later. Where do I go from here? I honestly have no idea. As I said in a text message to Dani Pancoast the other day: “I feel our entire existence right now is ‘Well, I have several sets of plans for the next six months that may or may not happen… and beyond that I’ve just got some hopes and dreams.” It’s kinda nice knowing most of my friends are in the same boat, unsure if they have under or over achieved, and uncertain of the what the future holds.

I’ve got my goals. I want to be a successful theatre artist/director. I’ve got some ideas on how to accomplish that. I’m never going to stop working until I’m the best. How do I define “successful” or “best?” I don’t know. I don’t think I ever will, but I’ll know it when I reach it.

Thanks for reading.

First post of 2014

Hope everyone had a wonderful New Year, I know I did. If you came here from the main blog directory, you will have seen the picture for this post is of me with my good friend Jacob Randlett from the 1920’s themed New Years Eve party that we attended. Good times had by all.

So just like how I had my 10 goals for the 2nd half of 2013, I have drawn up 22 goals for 2014. Eleven of them are professional, eleven of them are personal. For now, let’s just look at the professional ones:

Produce a weekend of theatre
Lead FRC Team 3467 to an award
Read 30 plays
See 25 shows
Write 4 plays
Enter a playwriting contest
Direct a short film
Script a comic book
Do design work for a show
Attend at least 10 theatre related workshops
Read ten educational/professional text

I believe I’ve put together a good mix of accomplishments to shoot for that will all bring about professional growth for myself. The wheels are in motion for several of these already, and I will be keep everyone updated on them periodically.

The first goal I should be knocking off is seeing one of those twenty five shows, as next week I’ll be spending a few days in New York City alongside another one of my good friends, Dani Pancoast (who is an excellent designer and stage manager by the way) and we will be taking in “Waiting for Godot” on Wednesday afternoon. Very excited about this road trip.

When I return from NYC, I am looking forward to continuing attendance at Theatre Kapow’s Open Training sessions they hold every third Saturday of the month. We have done some great work at the ones I have attended thus far, and it is always a pleasure to be in a welcoming creative environment like the one Theatre Kapow creates.

Cue Zero Theatre Company update: We have a lot of good things happening, and a lot of people excited about getting involved with CZTC. I have had some very important meetings recently, and will be making some major announcements as soon we have details hammered out. I don’t mean to keep constantly pumping the hype machine, but I’ve never been more excited for a project than I am for our production that will be taking place this summer.

That’s all I have for now. I’m spending the rest of today watching playoff football (Go Pats!) and tomorrow the family and I are venturing down to see Blue Man Group, among other things.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


It’s The Holiday Season

Christmas is right around the corner, and all I want this year is for Cue Zero Theatre Company to have a prosperous first year. While this isn’t really something I’ll know until the end of the summer of 2014, we are already making more progress than I had imagined. The number of people looking to get involved has been overwhelming and I am very moved by the amount of people that believe in the project. The plans for our first show are just about finished, and I will unveil them in January in full detail. On top of that, I’ve already accepted a proposal for our second show, and will be working on the information for that over the next month or two as well.

Quick hits on my other projects:

  • The FIRST robotics build season starts on January 5th, and we have been busy preparing the kids for this undertaking over the past few months. At yesterday’s meeting, I was given the opportunity to help with team bonding, as well gage each member’s public speaking skills. I simply asked each student to talk in front of the rest of the team about something they are passionate about for at least one minute, and it had to be in a positive light. They were not allowed to have written anything down, but they were asked to put a little bit of thought into what they were going to say before they had their turn. I was very impressed with all of the students, and it was a great teaching moment on top of my other pieces of agenda. I was able to point out examples of good things each student did, as well as things they should be aware of and need to improve upon. Everyone enjoyed getting to know their team  mates a little better, and I hope we can do more activities like this in the future.
  • This past weekend, my family attended the Granite Statesmen Christmas Cabaret in Nashua. The Granite Statesmen are an all male barbershop chorus, of which my grandfather was a founding member of all the way back in 1955. While he has since retired from singing due to his age (I believe he is 92 or 93 years old), we still enjoy taking in the show every year, as the performances are always top notch. Some of my favorite childhood Christmas memories are from the Granite Statesmen shows, and I am sure these shows impacted my love for performing. If you are ever in need of some good clean family fun, I highly suggest seeking out these wonderful singers performances. You will not be disappointed.
  • I don’t think I remembered to bring this up in my last post, but I just wanted to take a moment to say that my trivia team finally won the monthly contest at Double Midnight Comics in Manchester. Trivia games has always been something I really enjoy doing, (I’ve often joked my means of making my fortune is going to be winning on Jeopardy) and to win the game after six attempts was very satisfying, especially since the game went to triple overtime.

Well, I think I’ve said everything I need to say. If you haven’t done so already, please like “Cue Zero Theatre Company” on facebook, as well as follow us on twitter @CZTheatre.

Merry Christmas to all!

Time is a Funny Thing

The other day I realized I had really lost track of time. Not just for that day, but for a few weeks. I had no idea we were so close to the end of November, with Thanksgiving next week, and Christmas being little over a month away. 2013 is almost over, which is a bit of a scary notion.  As of today, I’ve been a graduate of UNH for 186 days, and I’m still attempting to get my footing in the world. I’m not worried that I won’t get everything figured out, I just thought I’d have a clearer idea of what I was doing at this point. I mean, a lot of people tell me I seem to have a better plan than most, but I don’t know, I guess everything is relative.

Anyways, back to what I did this week. Thursday night, Sam and I went to see “Spamalot” at the Palace Theatre, and both throughly enjoyed the performance. It was a very warm and charming production with the highest of quality when it came to sets, lights and the like. On Sunday, I took my mother to see “It’s A Wonderful Life” at Pinkerton Academy, which was a nice little student production. Pinkerton always puts on a solid production when it comes both to their fall drama and their spring musical. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Mrs. West was still directing the productions, as she has been working at the Academy since 1959! Good for her, I hope my career is as long and fruitful as hers. So with these two shows, I am now one away from my goal of seeing ten different productions in the second half of the year, and there are at least two more shows on my calendar for this coming week, so I’ll probably reflect upon all these shows in next weeks post. Also this weekend I’ll be attending WWE “Survivor Series” in Boston. Not sure if most people would count this, but I do, as I have always argued that professional wrestling is the love child of musical theatre and comic books.

Last week I announced that I hope to self-produce an original piece for public consumption before my next birthday. I’ve set a target performance weekend of July 11th and 12th. I have also settled on exactly what I hope to produce. My idea is to do a night of two one-act plays both written and directed by myself. One play will be my play “Cheap Heat” with some re-writes and modifications, and the second will be a new play that I have begun writing this week. Ideally, I’ll have both scripts “finished” by the end of December. During January and February, I’ll get the script for the second play into the hands of very capable actors so we can “workshop” it, work out the kinks, and re-write it into a piece of compelling drama. Working on both pieces will continue into the spring, with a troupe of 4-6 actors recruited no later than mid-May, and formal rehearsals during the month of June. I’ll obviously have to bring in at least one other person to help out behind the scenes, and maybe even a business manager. Of course during these period I’ll be fund raising and advertising the hell out of the show.  I have a few ideas for a performance space, and I hope to nail it down sometime in the near future. I also need to find out a few more details about the business/legal/management end of producing, which I shall be investigating this weekend. I’m being really ambitious with this project, but I really wouldn’t have it any other way.

This past weekend I attended my first open training session with TheatreKapow, and I LOVED it. It was a great little workshop that crammed so much useful exercises into two hours. We started with a great relaxation exercise, which I am a huge fan of. I am always stressing to both my Sowa Entertainment colleagues as well as my robotics kids that the number one key to a good performance/presentation is being relaxed. After a group body exercise we did a short little active listening scene work, and in that moment I realized since I had been so consumed with directing and writing, I haven’t done any acting since April. Doing this thirty-second, on book cut from “The Seagull” was a great reminder of what I have been missing, and I really should seek out an acting project every once in a while, instead of purely focusing my efforts on directing like I have been over the past few months. While DJing is still partly a performance art, it still doesn’t capture the magic and rush of acting. The TheatreKapow monthly open training session is now marked down on my calender and I will be attending regularly

Speaking of acting, I’m about halfway through “Respect for Acting” and am still in love with the book. It’s been nice focusing on something that’s a bit more foundation level rather than the higher level acting/directing theory things I’ve been looking at over the past few months, as I am sure many of my actors in the near future won’t have as much, or the same type of actor training that I’ve had, and I need to be ready to deal with actors of all experience levels. Uta also discusses a few concepts I hadn’t given thought to before, as well as looking at ones I have but from a different angle, and having this widened perspective will be very helpful as both an actor and director. I am looking forward to applying some of her techniques in the near future.  I’m am also about twenty pages into “Laughter, Pain, and Wonder”  by my former professor David Richman. Since I know David personally, I really can hear his voice in the text, and his seemingly endless insight on Shakespeare, theater history, and directing is always a pleasure to hear. I’ll never forget taking one of his classes and feeling that this man knew everything worth knowing about theater. If asked him a question about theater history, and David didn’t know, I assumed it wasn’t a fact worth knowing, and no longer wondered about it. The last item in the subject of “What is Dan Reading,” I finished “Superman: Birthright” last night, which is a brilliant modernization of Superman’s early exploits. One thing I really love about these hardcover DC collections is occasionally they will include the writers original pitch for the story, which as a writer myself, I love to see thought process, especially when it comes to the Man of Steel. Mark Waid goes over every detail and justification for his choices for the novel, and it really shows his dedication and love for both the character and the history of behind him.

Well, this is certainly the longest post to date. Hope I didn’t bore you. See you all next week!

New Goal Set

Well, “Shrew” has come and gone, and I must say it was a smashing success. We pulled a strong audience every night, both in numbers and in their reception to the piece. More importantly, I believe every person involved with the production grew as a person, and became better performers, designers, theater organizers, etc. because of their work on the show, which is the most important factor when working on a project with Mask and Dagger. I know I personally learned about lighting design, what goes into producing a show, the director-designer relationship, effective leadership, and so many more minor things that will help me become a more effective theatre artist. I hope everyone involved takes time to reflect upon how being apart of this production has changed them, and will use this reflection to not only make them better actors/designers/directors/etc, but also better people. Once again, thank you to Samantha Smith for giving me this great opportunity.

Moving on to my next big project (I have a series of small projects I’m attempting to get going), I have set my next big career goal. As of right now, I am twenty three years old. Before I turn twenty four, I am going to self-produce a performance of an original play, at least one hour in length. This gives me approximately 250 days to go from concept to performance, which I believe is plenty of time, if I put my mind to it. After some examination, I have determined the bare minimum things needed for producing a piece of theatre are actors, an idea, a performance space, and an audience.  Hopefully by this time next week I will put together a schedule of hard deadlines for the various milestones on the project. The place I believe is best to start is to put together a small “brain trust” of a few individuals whom I trust dearly for me to bounce ideas off of, and produce a starting script as soon as possible. Expect a weekly update on the progress of the project, as well as information on how you can get involved along the way.

In other Dan Pelletier news, the more I go to Windham Windup robotics team meetings, the more I am in love with this team. Team 3467 is exactly what a FIRST robotics team is supposed to be, is loaded with bright, young individuals who are all going to achieve great things in life, and this team is primed for a successful FRC season.

I’ve got the ball rolling on a few other projects I’m attempting to get involved with, but until things are official, I shan’t say what they are.  I’m currently gearing up for the holiday season, as many of my friends know, I am a “Christmas Enthusiast.” I cannot wait for the first real snow fall, decorations, FOOD, tv and music specials, and all the other things that go along with this time of the year. Really just Halloween through New Years is wonderful in my eyes. Also, I still have a ton of reading I’m attempting to get done, both for intellectual simulation, as well as for pleasure, although I am on the verge of giving up on one piece of text that I thought would be very insightful, but has turned out to be boring and lacking substance. Since I hate ending on a negative note like that, I will also add that I am finally seeing some great progress at the gym. While I am still technically no where near my target weight, I am feeling in better shape, have gained strength and flexibility, and several people have commented on my physique looking slimmer. With any luck, I’ll be back to “game shape” by the time we are ringing in the New Year!

Thanks for reading!

Shrew, Youtube, Robotics, and So Much More!

After months of planning, rehearsing, designing, building, and millions of other tasks, Mask and Dagger’s production of “The Taming of the Shrew” is finally ready to open! Tonight we have our final dress rehearsal, and while there are still a few kinks to work out tonight, I am certain we will have a fantastic opening on Thursday, and a great show week. The thing that makes a Mask and Dagger production more challenging than some is the fact that we have a very abbreviated tech week. We load in the set Saturday and Sunday (the best we can anyways, usually we have to come in Monday and Tuesday mornings as well) and then we get three tech/dress rehearsals before we open. It can be a bit nerve racking at times, especially with so many people in positions they may not have held before, but somehow, through the magic of theatre, it always comes together in the end. Hopefully audiences will love this show as much as we all do, and I am sure everyone is as proud of all the work we’ve put in as I am.

Check out the event page here:

In other Dan Pelletier news, I will now be utilizing my new YouTube channel (danpelletiertheatre) to give the world a taste of all my different talents. The first video I have uploaded is my final performance for our Acting III class last May, which was an original “New Clown” piece. I should start uploading new material regularly to YouTube starting in 2014, but be on the look out in the coming weeks for a few surprises.

You can check out the clowning video here:

I have attended my second Windham Windup robotics meeting, and my Chairman’s Award team is now hard at work on constructing our strategy. I love the culture of excellence that the other mentors on the team have created, and the students on the team are enthusiastic about being on the team, learning, and the overalll FIRST experience. Over the next few weeks, I will be developing a series of mini-projects to help prepare my team for their Chairman’s Award presentation, as well as teaching them the finer aspects of creating and developing any sort of collaborative project.

Over the weekend, I was able to take in two different performances: Seacoast Repertory Theatre’s The Odd Couple and the University of New Hampshire Department of Theatre and Dance’s Anything Goes. My dear friend Gabby Archambault was delightful in “The Odd Couple” as Cecily Pigeon, and it was an enjoyable night of comedy. I also had a good time at Anything Goes, despite the less-than-stellar writing/plot that plagues many Golden Age musicals. The tap choreography was fantastic and the lead performers all had their moments to showcase their talent, which made for a relaxing night at the Johnson Theater. After the show, it was great to catch up with people in the show, as well as other alumni that were also in the audience. With everything in life lately moving so quickly, being able to hang out with friends, and carry on conversations as if we still see each other every day is very refreshing.

Well, with all that said, I’d once again like to plug “The Taming of The Shrew” which opens tomorrow night, and runs through Sunday in the Stratford room of the Memorial Union Building (MUB) at the University of New Hampshire. The hours upon hours of hard work were very well spent, and I doubt anyone that sees this production will walk away disappointed. Subscribe to my YouTube channel: and be on the look out for my next big project!

Big News!

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been working on setting up my next big venture, and since it is now official, I can finally announce it. I have signed on to mentor FIRST robotics team 3467 of Windham High School! FIRST was a huge part of my life during middle and high school, and I am delighted to be returning to my roots. My time as both a student and mentor of FRC Team 241 at Pinkerton taught me leadership, teamwork, and responsibility. The team is run by one of the former Pinkerton mentors, Scott Kukshtel, who is now the engineering teacher in Windham. The team is entering only it’s fourth season, and has already accumulated many prestigious accomplishments.  The team is hoping on capturing FIRST’s top achievement: The Chairman’s Award. The Chairman’s Award recognizes a team that personifies the FIRST values, betters its community, and is an role model for other FIRST teams to follow. The award involves a series of essays, presentations, and video creation. This is where I come in; it is the plan of Scott and I to have me help the students with their presentation and leadership skills, as well as using my eight years of experience working on FIRST teams to help them reach their biggest goals.

I attended the meeting on Tuesday to introduce myself to the team, find out who they are, and get a feel for where my talents can be best utilized. I observed the students working on their normal tasks, paying close attention to their dynamic interacting with each other (as well as the other mentors), and took notes on what I thought I could help the team with. Towards the end of the meeting, I pulled the team leaders aside and began working with them on what my expectations were for them, and how I plan on getting them to the level they need to be at to win the Chairman’s Award. The team overall has a solid crop of students, and I am eager to get to know them over the next couple of months.

In other news, “The Taming of the Shrew” opens next Thursday, and we have load-in this weekend. Soon we will be getting to test my abilities as a designer, and I am confident that the lights will come out as planned. It’s nice to have a safety net in Sam (the director) who has a fair amount of lighting experience herself. Between now and opening night I will be advertising the heck out of the show, as I am very impressed with the quality of performances being given at the rehearsals I have attended.

Last Friday night, I attended New Hampshire Theatre Factory’s performance of “Ghost Hunting: The Musical Murder Mystery.” NHTF is a new theatre group, and the show was an original production created by their artistic director, Joel Mercier. The show was lots of fun, and very charming. I hope NHTF continues creating enjoyable productions like “Ghost Hunting” as they grow into southern New Hampshire’s newest professional company.

I’m pretty sure that’s all I have to say this week. Still attempting to read three books at the same time, as well as trying to cut down on my enormous stack of comic books that I have fallen behind on. On top of load-in this weekend, I will also be seeing “The Odd Couple” at Seacoast Rep, and “Anything Goes” at UNH, both of which should be fantastic nights of theatre.

Until next time…

Due Dates and Insomnia

So in case you didn’t know, is now 100% live! The website came out better than I could have imagined, and I would like to once again thank my life long friend Tommy McCarthy for helping me put it together. It still needs a few updates, but nothing major. Thing that made me kinda chuckle was the day after we go live, I’m scrolling facebook between reps at the gym, and I see an article on “” entitled: “7 Items for a Successful Actor Website.” I open the article, look over the check list, and I already met every one of their criteria for a good site! With a few minor tweaks, this page will be the ideal model for an actor’s website. Yay us!

My “The Taming of the Shrew” light plot is due tomorrow, and after a few hours of sketching it out, I’m very pleased with how it turned out. The space the show is taking place in is not the easiest to light, and we will be cramming 28 lights on a 30 foot truss, with a few other lights on off stage booms, but the plot is actually very clean and I didn’t have to sacrifice any lights due to physical limitations. My ambitious color usage should look beautiful on Sam’s set, and I’m eager to start the next phase: making all the cues. This one is a little nerve racking, as everything I’ve designed to this point has been manual cues with sliders, and we will be using programmed cues. I signed on to this project to get experience creating much more complicated designs than anything I’ve done before, so I can’t wait to get started.

Last night, for no apparent reason, I really couldn’t sleep, and I didn’t feel like reading either of the books I’ve been working on (Taking Stock or Superman:Birthright) but did want to read something, so I grabbed off my shelf the famous Uta Hagen text Respect for Acting. I purchased it back in May, but had not gotten around to reading this quintessential theatre text, and now I regret it. I plowed through the first fifty pages of this book without blinking. Every thing she had to say about her passion and respect for the craft of acting and the broader world of theater spoke to me on so many levels. I think between innings of tonight’s Red Sox’s game, I’ll look to read even more, and hopefully finish it before the weekend.

I hate to drag on longer than three paragraphs, so I’ll wrap up with a teaser for my next big announcement. I have currently signed on for a project like I haven’t worked on in many years. All I’ll say for now is that I will be getting to share my craft with those who would most likely never consider themselves theater people.  To find out who, you’ll have to check back next week!