Thursday, August 30, 2007

But For the Grace... New play at Trinity Rep

Interesting new play at the Pell-Chafee Center at Trinity Rep starts on Monday, September 10th.

This play, written and directed by David Eliet, is a commission from the Rhode Island Community Food Bank to tell the stories about people who live with hunger as a part of their lives. It features as a solo performer Bob Jaffe, who has a long string of excellent and thought provoking work in the local area. David Eliet, the author/director, was my teacher and head of the Trinity Rep Conservatory while I was there. It is sure to be a very thought-provoking and well-done production. See it if you can!

Here are the details:

But for the Grace...
Voices of Hunger

The Pell Chafee Performance Center at Trinity Rep
87 Empire Street, Providence, RI

Monday, September 10th @ 7pm
Tuesday, September 11th @ 7pm
No performance Wednesday, September 12th
Thursday, September 13th @ 7pm
Friday is a special fundraising performance for the Food Bank
Saturday, September 15th @ 8pm
Sunday, September 16th @ 2pm

Monday, Tuesday and Sunday - Tickets are $10
Thursday and Saturday - Tickets are $25

Tickets are available at Trinity Box Office 401-351-4242

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Middle School Musical August 21

I received this from Elizabeef Keiser, an actress/director/playwright who has been working in the schools and creating amazing plays with students for a number of years.

With a number of talented collaborators, she has created a playw ith a number of Central Falls students this summer: a parody of Disney's High School Musical called Middle School Musical.

WHEN: August 21, 7 pm
WHERE: Second Stage Studio
1 Angell Road, Cumberland, RI
(First building after turn from Mendon Road)

Here's the email I received directly from Elizabeef. Check this out if you can-- As she says in her email-- the students will knock you out-- but then they'll help you back up again.

This summer, the multi-faceted talent Joanne Vecchio, the extraordinary
fountain of everything, Nancy Carnevale, and the endlessly amazing Clayon
McFarland, and I had the honor of working with Central Falls' finest: a
group of students from third grade to high school.

In this collaboration with SCOPE, we were mesmerized by the outstanding
talent and initiative of these students. Carrying the torch of
ArtsLiteracy, sponsored by Navigant, and relying on the foundation of the 3
years of TALL, the team was also supported by the long list of "celebrity
career guests" and professional designers, including Miss Meg McKenna,
Professor Dorothy Abrams, the unbelievably brilliant Everett Dance Theater
and Friday Night Live, Film Expert Serena, the birthday rock camper Hannah
DeVine, Laura Wood and Chef Melissa, Big Nazo's Erminio Pinque, the
beautiful Dr. Tanya Becker, and the world's greatest lighting designer: Deb

For your entertainment and pleasure, we invite you to Middle School Musical,
a parody of Disney's High School Musical, where the protagonist, Marilia,
spends her time fantasizing about her college acceptance letter. In the
meantime, Marilia visits the campus of Scary University, where students and
administrators take pride in having the best food fights and rudeness.
Hopefully, Marilia has applied to other colleges as well!

Please come support this fantastic Second Stage premiere. The students will
knock you off of your feet... but they'll help you up, too.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Our Nation's Flea Circus!

Let me take a moment to shamelessly promote my own project!

Trained Fleas To Perform In Our Nation's Capital

WHAT: Acme Miniature Flea Circus at the Palace of Wonders
WHERE: Palace of Wonders, 1210 H Street NE Washington DC
WHEN: Sunday August 26, 2007 at 4pm and 8 pm. (4 pm is an all ages show)
COST: $8

Washington, D.C., 8/1/07

This summer, our nation's flea circus will not be performed in the White House or the Capitol Building, and will not feature any elected officials That's because this year, the flea circus will take place in Washington D.C's up and coming Atlas District, and will feature insects. Trained insects. Fleas, to be exact.

The show, the Acme Miniature Flea Circus, is an authentic Victorian flea circus that features trained fleas Midge and Madge who perform spectacular circus stunts as seen before (and on top of) the crowned heads of Europe. Midge and Madge will perform their star turn at D.C.'s wildest and wackiest venue, the Palace of Wonders on Sunday August 26.

Details magazine called the show "One of the top alternative circuses in the country." The New York Times said "The appeal is irresistible... Gertsacov is every bit the fantastical impresario, in his purple top hat and cash-register voice, introducing us to the wondrous insects itching (sorry) to perform" And the Los Angeles Times says that "Professor Gertsacov holds the audience (and the stars of the show) in the palm of his hand."

According to Professor A.G. Gertsacov, ringmaster and proprietor of the Acme Miniature Circus, flea circuses were popular entertainments during Victorian times, but had nearly disappeared since the advent of television. The last popular American flea circus was Professor Heckler's of Time Square, which left New York in 1957. The rumor is that Heckler thought that the nude shows were giving his fleas a bad name.

There are now only a handful of flea circuses still performing throughout the world. Gertsacov's is arguably the most famous. The Rhode Island native (now based in Yonkers, NY) and his amazing insect stars have performed throughout the country, and in Canada, Chile, and Brazil. He recently spent three months performing in Times Square, less than two blocks from where Professor Heckler once had his fleas. Gertsacov has also been filmed for documentaries on the History Channel, the Travel Channel, and numerous news programs. He's even been a question on Jeopardy!

Gertsacov's educated insect stars pull chariots, dance on a tightwire, and perform other circus-like stunts. While he does not reveal his method of training (a proprietary secret, he explains) , he assures the curious and the civic minded that he uses only methods of positive reinforcement to teach the insects their routines. "I treat them as if they are my own flesh and blood," Gertsacov says. "And in some ways, they are."

Professor Gertsacov will bring his minuscule marvels to perform at Washington's wildest and wackiest venue on Sunday August 26 . He invites all curious parties to come and see the show that was deemed one of the top shows of the world famous Spoleto Festival in 2004. But he asks that you leave your dogs and cats at home. Gertsacov quips, "I don't want anyone to steal the show."

Shows are at the Palace of Wonders, 1210 H Street NE in the Atlas District of Washington DC. Shows are at 4 pm and 8 pm. Admission is $8. The first show is for all ages. The second show is for over 21 only. (In this show, the fleas will perform completely nude!
PLEASE NOTE: At the 8 pm show ID's will be checked!)

For more information about the show, or to reserve tickets, call the Palace of Wonders at 202-398-7469 (SHOW)
Or visit

For press information, photographs, or interviews, please contact Flea Master Professor A.G. Gertsacov at 401-351-2596 or visit the flea circus website:

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

King Stag Performed by Elemental Theatre Ensemble

I've been hearing about these guys for a while, but didn't realize that they were Conservatory grads. (I am also a Conservatory Grad as well, admittedly a lot earlier than these guys (like 14 years!)

They are performing a great Commedia play, King Stag through the month of August at venues around town. Admission is free.

Sat 8/4, 6 pm - Clark Memorial Library - Carolina - link
Sun, 8/5, 6 pm - Goddard Park - Warwick - link
Goddard Show Sponsored by Warwick Dept of Tourism
Sun 8/12, 6 pm - Foster Town Hall - Foster - link
Wed 8/15, 6 pm - Louttit Library - West Greenwich - link
Sat 8/18, 6 pm - WaterFire - Waterplace Park - link


Elemental is a theatre collective primarily made up of the Trinity Rep Conservatory Class of 2002. During three years of intensive learning and collaboration, they became determined to continue their growth as theatre artists together after graduation.

In the fall of 2005, they mounted their first full-length show in Providence, a critically acclaimed production of Tony Kushner’s incendiary A Bright Room Called Day. It was nominated for Best Production, Best Director and Best Actress by Motif Magazine that year.

They also produce an annual summer festival of short plays in Tiverton called Outbursts!

This outdoor summer tour of King Stag, is the next step for them.

To find out more about Elemental Theatre Ensemble, visit them online at the websites listed below.