Features

Photographing Quince Productions’ YOU KNOW MY NAME: A DANIEL TALBOTT TRIO

In shooting YOU KNOW MY NAME: A DANIEL TALBOTT TRIO, I wanted to capture not only the unique world in which Talbott’s plays occur, but the very different worlds of these three short plays. A kitchen (Break My Face on Your Hand), a public bench (You Know My Name), and a bedroom (What Happened When) become joyous, sinister, hopeful, despairing, or reassuring places as the plays move along and flow into one another.

Gizel Jimenez and ensemble in the Walnut's 2013 show IN THE HEIGHTS. Photo credit: Mark Garvin.

Walnut Street Theatre: Part 3, The Changing Shape of Philadelphia Theater

Katelyn Behrman’s three-part series on the Walnut Street Theatre concludes with a consideration of the Walnut’s place in the changing landscape of Philadelphia theater.

Isa St. Clair, Allen Radway, and E. Ashley Izard in THE GLASS MENAGERIE. Photo by Kyle Cassidy.

Kyle Cassidy Photo Essay: THE GLASS MENAGERIE (Commonwealth Classic Theatre)

Kyle Cassidy photographs Commonwealth Classic Theatre Company’s production of Tennessee Williams’s THE GLASS MENAGERIE, now onstage at the Off Broad Street Theatre.

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Rethinking Dance Writing

Journalism is fine. Readers are the problem: they don’t demand arts coverage the way sports fans demand sports coverage.

Robert Patrick, image by Andrew Adam Caldwell

“What doesn’t kill me makes a great story later”: Interview with Robert Patrick on the birth of Off-Off-Broadway and 50 years of gay theater in America

Robert Patrick, born into a migrant worker’s family in 1937, wrote many plays, songs, poems and stories. According to the Samuel French script company, he was the most produced playwright in New York City in the 1970s. His two most famous plays are Haunted Host and Kennedy’s Children. He currently lives in L.A. and earns a living writing porn reviews.

Quince Productions’ GayFest! kicks off with HEAD OVER HEELS

Philadelphia’s first and largest LGBTQ theater festival, GayFest! by Quince Productions, returns this August 5-23 to Plays and Players Skinner Studio. Opening this year’s festival is the The Bang Group’s HEAD OVER HEELS, a high energy mix of concert dance, slapstick, and musical theater in a cabaret setting. Artistic director and choreographer David Parker took time with me to offer some insights into the dance and his New York City dance ensemble’s interests in creating the piece.

Walnut Street Theatre Studio 5.

The Walnut Street Theatre: Part 2, Crafting a Popular Season

In the second of her three-part series on the Walnut Street Theatre, Katelyn Behrman looks at how the Walnut puts together its season of popular productions, and considers the opportunities presented by the second stage and rented facilities.

Ama Bollinger stars in Chris Davis’s ANNA K (Photo credit: Courtesy of the artist)

Deb Miller’s 15 Top Picks for the 2014 Philadelphia Fringe Festival

Phindie will provide more Philly Fringe Festival coverage than any publication in the world! Coverage begins with 15 picks from star Phindie writer Deb Miller.

The Walnut opened as a circus theater in 1809.

The Walnut Street Theatre: Part 1, The People’s Playhouse

Philadelphia’s oldest theater is also by far it’s most popular and financially secure. In a time when other large theaters are struggling to stay afloat, the Walnut Street Theatre maintains the largest subscriber base in the country. In the first section three-part series, Kathryn Behrman sits down with Walnut artistic director Bernard Havard and other local theater folk to consider the playhouse’s commitment to popular entertainment.

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Sebastian Cummings talks about LIFE ON THE FRINGE

Sebastian Cummings has always been a little edgy. A military brat, a black man in the white suburbs, a Jamaican American in African American black society, a gay actor in a straight-role world—throughout…

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Sustainability and the Artist

Lately I’ve been thinking about that “worthwhile strategy” in regards to making a living as a theatre artist. Too many of my colleagues can’t afford to get sick, and certainly can’t afford to start a family. An interview with Charlotte Ford (revealing she’s stepping away from theater to go back to school for speech pathology) seems to have sparked a vigorous public debate about how difficult it is to make a living as an artist, and what can be done about it.

Unemployment

The Ups and Downs of Success: Theatre artists between jobs

“There aren’t enough cocktails to help me understand why I continue to be an actor! This shit is for the birds!”

Thus begins the Facebook entry by Joey, a dancer-actor-singer who played many roles along the U.S. east coast, but recently did not get hired for a new musical.

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Philly Performing Artists Discuss their Untenable Careers: Video from the Philadelphia Artists Summit

Josh McIlvain’s interview with Charlotte Ford “The untenable career of a successful Philadelphia theater artist” sparked some soul-searching among Philadelphia performers. They met on June 23rd to discuss.

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Asaki Kuruma on Writing, Immigration, and the Racial Dynamics of Philadelphia Theater

“It’s really hard to do acting and make a living unless you’re really good—and a Caucasian man.”

Full House 2014 - Michael L Medvidik

Full House (Quince): You deserve a cabaret!

Downtown theater company Quince Productions – the punchy, LGBTQ-leaning bunch that puts on GayFest! every August – opens their sixth annual Full House cabaret series this Thursday in its ancestral home, the Red Room at the Society Hill Playhouse, and it’s looking as wicked, delightful and boozy as ever. (Boozy because your ticket includes the price of a drink.)

Thierry Santine as Martin Luther and Richard Chan as MICHAEL THE REBEL.

MICHAEL THE REBEL (Humble Treasure): Tearing up the German Society library

Director Manon Manavit had not heard of Heinrich von Kleist when she found a copy of his Michael Kohlhaas on a street in Montreal. It’s easy to understand why she was attracted to the text.

Manon Manavit

Manon Manavit: Taking Philadelphia by Sturm und Drang

Phindie talks to Manon Manavit, a future star of Philadelphia performing arts, before her debut show in the city. She just relocated from Montreal, where she worked with Cirque Du Soleil.

Kate Brennan

Philadelphia Misses Kate Brennan: Interview with the now NYC-based actor and producer

Kate Brennan lit up the Philadelphia stages for years as an actor and producer for BCKSEET Productions. Now NYC-based, she’s back in town this summer for an offbeat theater camp. Phindie asks her about this and her memories of Philly.

Tananya Garza.

30/30 Vision: Tamanya Garza on Latinos in Philadelphia theater

Phindie talked to Tamanya Garza, a longtime leader of the Philadelphia Latino theater community and director of EL NOGALAR, part of the three-play 30/30 series exploring Latino theater.

This painting is valued at $250 million.

Putting the value on the art of performing art

The support for performing arts organizations and artists, of all sizes, pales in comparison to the type of funding that art museums obtain. It is time to start placing more value on the “art” part of performing arts.