Tuesday, August 26, 2003

I'm changing the archiving to monthly, so that there are less archives listed on the left. (That list was getting a little daunting)

Sunday, August 24, 2003


The next week or so is a crunch time for me, so I'm going to hold off for a bit on posting to the web log. In the meantime, check out some of the archives for cool places to visit about Rhode Island, or maybe just shut off the computer and get some sun!

Check back here after Labor Day (around September 3) and we'll start updating the weblog again.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Giant Harp Playing--8/21

Artist/musician Steven L. Jobe will perform on two musical instruments of his own conception during Gallery Night this Thursday at The Rhode Island Foundation. The musical instruments are based upon those in the painting, "Garden of Earthly Delights," by Renaissance artist Hieronymous Bosch (a portion of the painting appears at left).

The first instrument is a stringless harp, that stands approximately 12-feet tall. Jobe will perform on it by breaking beams of laser light he fashioned to extend across the harp's frame. The MIDI instrument and laser assembly was installed by media whiz Tom Sgouros, and the frame constructed by Jeremy Woodward. The second instrument is a gong drum that features a yard-long cylinder with 28" gongs installed at either end. The gong was built by Dennis Hlynsky. Both instruments were part of a Bosch extravaganza called Bosch's Garden, which was funded in part by the Rhode Island Foundation.

Jobe will offer 15-minute performances this Thursday, August 21, at 6:30 PM and at 8 PM, and will repeat the performance schedule at Gallery Night on September 18.

I know all of these artists, and I assure you that their work is bound to be exciting! I've seen the harp before, but haven't yet seen the gong-drum.

Find out more about the Bosch's Garden project.

Find out more about the Rhode Island Foundation.

Find out more about Gallery Night

Find out more about Bosch's Painting The Garden of Earthly Delights

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Capturing The Friedmans

See the Trailer

Capturing the Friedmans is one of the most riveting and startling movies I've seen in some time. I don't want to give too much away, but it's an astonishing documentary about a regular family who get torn apart by an awful crime that the father and one of the sons may or may not have committed. Throughout the movie I kept on yo-yoing back on forth--- did they do it? Didn't they do it? There's no way they could have done it! But then, why did they do that? But where's the physical evidence? And why didn't they get a better lawyer?

Part of the film are actual home movies from the family. It started out as a documentary about one of the brothers and his work as a clown (that's right, the oldest Friedman is a birthday party clown in NY. Actually, I should say he is THE birthday party clown in NY. I've seen him perform, I've talked to him, and he's very good! If an ambassador's kid is going to have a birthday party, you get this guy.) But the documentary changed focus when the film-maker discovered the skeleton in his family closet.

I highly recommend this movie (it's currently playing at the Avon Cinema in Providence.)

See the official website

See Jesse Friedman's website (the brother that was accused of the crimes)

Friday, August 15, 2003

Flea Circus on Coney Island -August 17!

The flea circus is coming back to its roots! The first flea circus on Coney Island in over 40 years! One performance only at the Coney Island Circus Sideshow. August 17, 8 pm!

Watch trained fleas perform spectacular circus stunts as seen before (and on top of) the Crowned Heads of Europe.

These Educated and Industrious Insects will perform upon command! They pull chariots, walk a tightwire, and dance to the strains of actual music! The Finale is a death-defying spectacular of unbelievable proportions!


Be Amazed and Mystified by these Curious Natural Wonders.
Discover the strange but true history of the Flea!
Thrill to the astonishing Chariot Race!
It's all live, It's all real, and it's all on the inside!


So step right up, and see for yourself the show that Details magazine called "one of the top ten alternative circuses in the country."

AUGUST 17 AT 8 PM $5 (free for members!)
1208 SURF AVENUE, BROOKLYN (F,Q, or W trains)
CALL 718 372 5159 or visit http://www.coneyislandusa.com

Here's what the press has said:

"Too Ludicrous and Perversely Fascinating to Miss!" DIGITALCITY.COM

"The appeal is irresistible. Professor Gertsacov, every bit the fantastical impresario, in his purple top hat and cash register voice, introduces us to... a high-spirited glance back at an entertainment form that had been dead as a door nail. Old Time Vaudeville is New Again!" NEW YORK TIMES

"Gertsacov holds the audience (and the performers) in the palm of his hand." LOS ANGELES TIMES

For more press quotes, visit http://www.trainedfleas.com/press/

For more information visit http://www.trainedfleas.com

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Artist's Health Insurance Resource Center

A major concern for artists and small arts organizations is affordable health insurance. Because many artists do not receive health insurance through employment, and do not qualify for needs-based insurance, they frequently fall between the cracks.

In response to this crisis, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) convened a national forum in 1994. Participants urged the establishment of an Artists’ Health Insurance Resource Center (AHIRC) to assist the arts community nationwide in accessing information about health insurance options. The Actors’ Fund of America was selected as the NEA’s partner organization in implementing this program.

Through this initiative, The Actors’ Fund provides the arts community with information on a community and national basis to inform artists of their health insurance options. Information is provided through their website and a toll-free hotline. Information is available on a state-by-state basis.

See the Information for Rhode Island or call the toll-free hotline (For some reason the toll-free number is not listed on the website! When I find it out, I will post it here!)

Wednesday, August 13, 2003


Picture Start is an annual summer festival of independent short films, animation, short features and documentaries. Started in 1999, their mission is to support the RI film community, by creating a forum for discussion for audiences and filmmakers. They focus on work that has limited commercial possibilities, like documentary, short films, animations, and experimental work. You'll be able to see films here that you'd be hard-pressed to find anywhere else!

The festival runs every Wednesday from August 13 (that's today!) to September 17. Shows start at 8 pm at the Columbus Theatre, 270 Broadway in Providence. Tickets are $4.00 per evening, and a bargain at twice the price!

For programming information visit the Picture Start Website


* I say sadly, because it is my opinion that Flash sites generally aren't efficient at getting information into the hands of consumers, and while they often look cool, they are not very user friendly. Picture Start's website isn't bad-- but nothing they do couldn't be done in HTML, and would take much less time to load, and be available on just about any computer without additional download. Just my opinion!

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

More Arts Meetings!

There are three more public meetings of the Mayor's Arts, Culture and Tourism Steering Committee.  The committee, a group of arts, business and community leaders, was created to help develop the City's new Office of Arts, Culture and Tourism, and begin the work of creating a cultural plan for the City of Providence.

Wednesday, August 13 , 4-6 pm Open meeting at the Elmwood Community Center - 155 Niagara Street 4-6 pm.

Thursday, August 21, 5-7 pm - A meeting with the Film Community will be held at the Rhode Island Foundation, One Union Station, Downtown Providence.

Thursday, August 27, 5 pm- A meeting for Individual Artists will be held at Monohasset Mills Project Gallery, 53 Kinsley Avenue, 2nd Floor.

For more information, check the website of RI Citizens For the Arts

Monday, August 11, 2003


Originally known as VJ day (Victory over Japan Day), this holiday started in 1948 to celebrate our World War II triumph. Other states also celebrated it as well. But over the years, other states cashiered the holiday, but we kept it going. And even though the word Japan has been stricken from the name of the day, that's as far as the General Assembly has been willing to go. There are perennial attempts to change the name to something like Remembrance Day, but they never get further than committee.

See an online exhibit about American War Posters

See some British World War II Posters

Friday, August 08, 2003


Rose Weaver's Menopause Mama has been a HUGE success for the Perishable theatre. It's been playing all summer , and even now it's completely sold out (except for Saturday 8/9 and Saturday 8/17)

If you haven't seen it, you better get your ticket right away! You get your tickets through ArtTix The tickets cost $25 each, but it's worth it! (And yes, they're air conditioned!)

Visit Perishable's website

Visit the Menopause Mama Webpage

Visit ArtTixRI online or call 401-621-6123 to charge by phone.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Rhode Island International Film Festival August 5-10

Now in its seventh year, the Rhode Island International Film Festival celebrates the independent spirit in film and has become a haven for independent filmmakers from throughout the world.

This year the Festival will present 25 World Premieres and 21 US Premieres. Films have been entered from 42 countries and 32 states. Attending the Festival will be filmmakers, producers, distributors, cast and crew. RIIFF is dedicated to the creation of opportunities for artistic interaction and exchange among independent filmmakers, directors, producers, distributors, backers, and the film-going community. Of special note is that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has elected to recognize the Rhode Island International Film Festival as a qualifying festival for the Short Films category for the Annual Academy Awards. With more than 1400 film festivals worldwide, only 47 have this recognition.


A friend of mine is in a film in the festival (about clowns!), so go and see it! The film is Amores Payasos, a short film playing with "Schtickmen" ), my friend is Christine Duenas, and the show is on Sat, Aug 9th at 3:15 PM at the Columbus Cinemateque, 270 Broadway.

Find out more about the Festival

Call the festival at 861-4445 for showtimes, or see the calendar online

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

First Night May Ride Again!

As you may or may not now, First Night is currently in serious doubt of happening this year (due to budget shortfalls, a deficit, etc) I met today with a bunch of artists, as well as the organizers of First Night, to see if there's something that we can salvage, and perhaps continue the First Night Tradition. All of the artists were in agreement-- we wanted First Night to continue!

We are asking people to write letters to their elected officials to help the ball rolling-- this is the letter that I wrote-- feel free to send your own to the Mayor of Providence, to the Governor, and to anyone you think can help!

Find your elected officials


Dear Mayor Cicciline:

My name is Adam Gertsacov, and I am an artist and performer living
in Providence I am the author of the best-selling book Rhode
Island A to Z
I’m also a professional clown and performer.

I recently attended a meeting of artists to discuss the possibility of
making First Night happen this year. At this meeting the 25 artists
or so that attended the meeting were all in agreement: we want First
Night to happen. It may not be as big as it was last year, but we all
are going to work together and revive First Night..

I urge you as both a citizen of Providence and as an artist to make it
happen. Champion First Night to corporate sponsors, to your political
supporters, and to the city council. Give First Night the funding
that it needs to hire a staff person and get the ball rolling. Speak
with the Police and the Fire units to donate services or give at cut
rates the necessary services to make First NIght possible. Help First
Night organizers find venues which will make in kind donations.
Make First Night happen!

This festival is part and parcel of the continued renaissance of
Providence as an artist’s city. Withdrawing city support will cripple
the efforts of the arts community to revive the festival, and
irreparably damage the reputation that Providence has as an arts
friendly community.

I urge you to become a champion of the arts, and a champion of First
Night Providence.


Your Name

Monday, August 04, 2003

Buddy Cianci The Musical

Brown University graduate Jonathan Van Gieson has written (and will produce) Buddy Cianci The Musical for the New York Fringe Festival. The show opens August 9 (and that show's been sold out!) and then runs 5 more times over the next couple of weeks. Here's the schedule:

SATURDAY 8/9 @ 8:00pm SOLD OUT
MONDAY 8/11 @ 3:00pm
THURSDAY 8/14 @ 10:15pm
FRIDAY 8/15 @ 5:15pm
FRIDAY 8/22 @ 7:45pm
SUNDAY 8/24 @ 1:30pm

by phone: (service charge additional)
212-279-4488 or 888 FringeNYC
in person (no service charge)
FringeCentral (177 MacDougal Street)

Read the Production Blog

See the Website

Visit the NYC Fringe Festival

Friday, August 01, 2003


For those of you who don't believe in sedentary activity, there's a race this Sunday, if you'd like to try your hand. It's kind of a mini-triathlon.-- you swim 1/4 of a mile, bike 10 miles, and run 3 miles. Not too bad, if you like this kind of thing. Of course, it's relatively difficult (I think I could do everything except run the 3 miles-- don't press me about how long it would take!) Be warned, the swim is in the Ocean!

Date: Sunday Aug 3
Time: Registration: 6 am-7:50 am, race starts at 8 am.
Place: North Kingstown Town Beach, North Kingstown RI
Costs: $50-$59 )depending on Triathlon membership. Add $5 day of race.
Only 500 people are allowed to race, so if you are interested, check it out today!

For more information visit the organizer's website or download this PDF (Requires Acrobat Reader)