Friday, April 29, 2016

Worth a Look

Here are a few posts from last week's Greenpage that might be worth your time...

Costumes and Makeup: Designing Temporary Body Modification

HowlRound: Every day we get up and get dressed. We may think for hours, days, and weeks on what to wear. For some of us this process begins with the buying of garments, and for others it is a no-brainer because our likes are clear and our needs are simple. We modify our look with what we wear. It is our armor. We use it to protect ourselves from the weather, to suit our mood, and to shield our psyche from the world. As a costume designer, I know this to be true. I use this process to discover the characters I am designing for the productions for which I am involved. However, how many of us have considered it to be a type of body modification? It is temporary, but it is also modifying. We are visually changing how we are seen.

Historians are criticizing Hamilton, and fans should be thrilled.

www.slate.com: In part thanks to this Q&A between Slate’s Rebecca Onion and Rutgers professor Lyra Monteiro, a conversation is finally brewing about how Hamilton, the brilliant musical phenomenon, approaches history, the factual record, and its real-life subjects. If, like me, you work in theater and spend a lot of time procrastinating on social media, you’ve probably seen many of your friends ranting about small-minded academic quislings fact-checking every minute of the show from their ivory towers.

Orientalism, Whitewashing, and Erasure: Hollywood’s Historic Problem With Asian People

The Mary Sue: Hollywood has no idea what to do with Asian people. And, given the fact that Hollywood often serves as a reflection of contemporary culture, this is a major problem. Aside from casting us as goofy comic relief (Long Duk Dong, really) or evil mystical ninjas (come on, Daredevil season 2), they just don’t know what to do with us. The confusion and ignorance around what we bring to the table sometimes gets so bad that rather than try and find out who we actually are, they’ll overwrite us with white characters, erasing us completely from narratives that inherently belong to one culture or another (looking at you, Ghost in the Shell). Sometimes, to bridge that gap, they’ll even try to use yellowface, which (if you somehow weren’t already aware) is the practice of donning makeup and a really racist accent to look and sound Asian.

Breaking Records at Art+Feminism's Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon

The Creators Project: For it’s third-annual Wikipedia Edit-a-thon, Art+Feminism supported 2,500 participants in 175 events across 6 continents for a record-breaking year of editing and creating pages for women in the arts. Organized in collaboration with the Professional Organization for Women in the Arts (POWarts) and the Museum of Modern Art, the Edit-a-thon was led by Si├ón Evans of Art Libraries Society of North America’s Women and Art Special Interest Group, Jacqueline Mabey of failed projects, and artist Michael Mandiberg (read: "Meet the Man Printing Wikipedia as a Book").

Yes, Calling Someone a "Techie" Can Be Offensive

OnStage: Sometimes, even with the best intentions, certain terms, labels and names you have for various people can be offensive to them. One term that is commonly used in theatre is to describe the technical crew, technicians, etc as "techies". And while this term is often used with the best intentions, at the end of the day, it's offensive.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Worth a Look

Here are a few articles from last week's Greenpage that might be worth your time...

How To Survive Working On An Underperforming Team

Fast Company | Business + Innovation: In general, people are poorly educated to deal with workplaces. That's because education is a largely solo affair. Students are asked to work alone. Grades are given to individuals. Indeed, the idea of individual achievement is so ingrained that when kids are assigned a group project in school, they worry how their own grades will be calculated if their team members fall down on the job.

They're probably right to. In the workplace, teams that fail usually bring everyone down with them. But there are a few ways to survive that fallout, or at least minimize its impact on your own career.


With Hollywood's Advanced Digital Face-Lifting, Do We Even Need Actors?

NPR: You can now digitally replace just about anything on an actor's body — including the actor himself. Journalist Logan Hill explains this practice of often invisible digital retouching in media.


The Writers, Directors, and Producers who Make Films that Fail the Bechdel Test

poly-graph.co: Rather than generalize a sexist system, one theory is simple: filmmakers, unintentionally, make movies about themselves (i.e., write what you know). Since the most powerful producers, writers, and directors are men, male-themes permeate into Hollywood’s output. To see if women are more likely to write about women (i.e., pass the Bechdel test), we compiled the genders of the producers, writers, and directors on thousands of films.


Led Zeppelin 'Stairway To Heaven' Copyright Case Will Go To A Jury... Meaning Band Will Almost Certainly Lose

Techdirt: federal district court judge Gary Klausner rejected a variety of claims from Zeppelin's Robert Plant and Jimmy Page and said that the case needs to go to trial in front of a jury. That's going to make things difficult for Plant and Page. As with the Blurred Lines trial last year, you see that many people freak out when they hear two songs are pretty similar and assume that something wrong must have happened. Of course, that's not how copyright law is supposed to work, but alas, that's what years of the big legacy industries brainwashing the public on copyright has resulted in.


After social media outcry, AMC changes tune on texting experiment

Ars Technica: Just one day after Ars and other outlets published comments by the CEO of AMC Entertainment saying he's interested in allowing some texting in theaters, the movie chain is backing away from the idea.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Worth a Look

Here are a few posts from last week's Greenpage that might be worth your time...


How One Simple List is Changing the Face of American Theatre

msmagazine.com: According to a recent study, only 22 percent of plays produced in the United States are written by women. That means, if life worked like theatre, 4 out 5 things you ever heard would be said by men. But a Los Angeles-based gang of badass women playwrights and theatre makers are attempting to rewrite this narrative.


The novel and play that predicted Donald Trump's rise – and countered a swell of Great Depression demagoguery

theconversation.com: The performing arts and politics have an uneasy relationship.

From Aristophanes satirizing the senselessness of the Peloponnesian War in Lysistrata to Shakespeare telling the story of Elizabeth I’s grandparents in Henry IV Parts I and II, artists have put forth sharp criticisms of their governments. Artists in Russia and Germany during the 1910s and 1920s created art that supported communism. And during the 1960s, artists all over the world were some of the loudest voices for social and political change, whether it was the civil rights or anti-war movements.


“He struggled and kept his guard up”: Hamilton in the Big House

plainKate – The online portfolio for Kate Powers: I work with a group of men who aren’t used to seeing themselves in the narrative, unless it’s as the villain; maybe not in your history book, but in a few newspaper articles a few years back and in the hearts of their victim’s families. These men understand that much of America thinks they are monsters who deserve to be locked in cages. They are the bastard, orphan sons of … every kind of women you can imagine; they are also beloved sons and husbands in close families who come to see them in the visiting room at the prison every week. Maybe they’ve been “livin’ without a family since I was a child. My father left, my mother died, I grew up buckwild.” Many of them know all about impoverished, in squalor, and fathers who split. A few of them are in college, working on being scholars.

People look at them like they’re stupid; they’re not stupid.


The Tonys Are Just As White As The Oscars

Forbes: #TonysSoWhite might become the new social justice hashtag. In the midst of a notably diverse Broadway season, we delved into the Tony Awards database to see how they compared to Hollywood’s highest honor. The result? The Tonys and the Oscars are almost the same institution when it comes to racial diversity.


crew safety meeting...for real. being a safety conscious touring industry.

this tour life: In light of recent events in the world (Brussels attacks), even more specifically in the music industry (Paris attacks), we have never been made more keenly aware of the need for emergency procedures when on tour. These horrific attacks have sparked discussions on how to create a safety conscious industry and what things to implement in case of such incursions. Venues all over the world have plans in place in the event of an emergency but does your touring crew know what those are? Do you know where all the exits are? Do you even know what the emergency number is for the country you are in?

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Worth a Look

Here are a few posts from last week's Greenpage that might be worth your time...

To Our Members

Actors' Equity - Representing American Actors and Stage Managers in the Theatre: Yesterday we published a tweet that made many of you angry. We’ve been monitoring the conversation all night, and we now regret that the message was worded in that way. We at Actors’ Equity are fully committed to diversity, inclusion, equal employment opportunity and universal access to auditions for all of our members.
 

Casting Call Creators on Their Viral Video That Exposes Sexist Industry Practices

Women and Hollywood: There's no denying that women have faced sexism in the entertainment industry since its inception, but actresses in particular have it especially tough as a result of ridiculous standards of beauty.

Earlier this month, a video from a project called "Casting Call" went viral. The clip draws attention to the frustratingly sexist way women’s roles are often advertised in casting calls.
 

Brussels Terrorist Attacks: Are Broadway Theaters Safe?

Variety: No one on Broadway wants to talk about security concerns and safety precautions — a silence that’s only amplified by the fact that high ticket prices and a largely affluent clientele make Broadway easy to overlook as a perfect storm of worry: A cluster of small, high-profile targets, right in the middle of tourist-magnet Times Square, where big-name celebrities onstage are increasingly common.


Scenic artists at Oregon Shakespeare Festival can create just about anything

News - MailTribune.com - Medford, OR: When a designer comes to Gabriel Barrera with new ideas for a play's scenery, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's scenic artist doesn't back down from the challenge.

"I never think, 'We can't do that.' I think, 'We can do that. We just have to figure out how,' " said Barrera, who is in his eighth season with OSF.


This Stretch Of Route 66 Plays 'America The Beautiful' If You Go The Speed Limit

jalopnik.com: Even for the speed demons out there, it would be unpatriotic to go anything but the speed limit on a small stretch of Route 66 in New Mexico. That’s due to the fact that if drivers obey the signs, the road will treat them to its own rendition of the song “America the Beautiful.” That’s right. The road will belt it out.



Friday, April 01, 2016

Worth a Look

Here are a few posts from last week's Greenpage that might be worth your time...

‘Midnight Rider’ Director Randall Miller Freed From Jail In Shock Ruling

Deadline: Midnight Rider director Randall Miller is being released from a Georgia jail today after a motion filed by his attorneys Friday was heard in court this morning. The surprise move came after Assistant District Attorney John Johnson and Miller’s attorneys had negotiated a two-for-one deal in the hallway prior to Miller’s plea agreement a year ago, so Judge Anthony Harrison said today he had no choice but to honor that agreement, follow the law and release Miller.


The 2014-15 season.  How many people saw new shows?

Shubert Ticketing Blog: How many people see more than one new show in a season, which I defined as May in one year to September in the next to allow for those who buy tickets to a new show after the Tony’s. Every new show fights for as large as share as possible of the audience that sees new shows. Ideally the audience that sees new shows would expand but it seems however much it expands it is never enough to keep all producers happy.


Toonz Software Used by Studio Ghibli and 'Futurama' Being Made Free and Open Source

www.cartoonbrew.com: With one announcement, the animation software game may have changed forever. Toonz, the software used by Studio Ghibli to produce films like The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo and The Wind Rises, will be made free and open source to the animation community beginning March 26, 2016.


Survey Reveals Attitudes on Arts Education, Government Funding

Your Performance Partners: The link between robust K-12 arts education today and a vibrant performing arts community tomorrow is easy to understand. Today’s students who are taught to explore, embrace and appreciate the arts are tomorrow’s actresses, musicians, stage & sound technicians, costume & lighting designers and – importantly – ticket-buying audience members and tax-paying citizens.


Our Shrinking Repertoire

TheaterMania.com: A few weeks ago, I saw a bad production of a great play. I won't mention the play's title or the theater's name, because I like the people involved, I value their efforts, and I bear them no ill will. They chose to do a great play, they fought hard to do it justice — oh, how well all of us in the theater know that story! — and they didn't succeed, except in patches. But I won't write them off, and neither should you. After all, they aimed for greatness.