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Hello Readers!!

I trust that you all had an awesome summer full of sun and fun! We are ready for our amazing 50th Anniversary Season and we hope you are too! This year is going to be fantastic. We have something exciting coming and that is….drum roll please….A NEW WEBSITE!! That is right we will be debuting a new website for our 50th season! We are really excited about it. It will be user friendly and interactive. It will be going live in the next week or so, so to be sure to watch for it!

With our new season comes a new batch of interns. We are looking forward to working with this awesome group! I put together a list of fun questions for them to answer. That being said let’s meet our first intern! Meet Kim Alley one of our Acting/Administration Interns!

Kim Alley

Where did you grow up?
Grew up in Redford, MI

Where did you go to school?
Graduated with a BA in Theatre from Oakland University

Favorite snack food?
I love any and all food…really, if it’s edible, I’ll eat it.

Favorite actor?
Martin Freeman

Favorite movie?
I have so many favorite movies! I have to CHOOSE?!

Dream vacation?
Visit Hobbiton in New Zealand

Do you believe in Bigfoot?
While I do enjoy a good urban legend, no, I do not actually believe that there’s a giant, undiscovered creature out there who has successfully managed to evade humans for so long.

You’re a new addition to the crayon box, what color would you be and why?
I think I would be Bright n Bubbly Blue, because blue is my favorite color and I like to think that I’m a rather cheerful person

Which super power would you like to have?
If I had a super power, I would want it to be shape-shifting. It would make auditioning so much easier!

If you could have dinner with anyone in the world living or dead who would it be and why?
These questions are hard! There are so many people I want to meet, I can’t possibly just choose one!
 
If you were trapped on a desert island and you could only take three things, what would they be?
Stranded on an Island…I would take sunglasses, a water filter, and a boat 🙂

Stay Tuned for the next installment…

Casey S. Hibbert©

20 Questions with Jake Wood of Lysistrata Jones

JakeW
Jake Wood (Harold Lacedaemonian)

 

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Farmington Hills.

Where did you go to school?

For high school, I went to Brother Rice in Birmingham and then for college, I went to Oakland University.

What/Who was your inspiration to become an actor?

The Wizard of Oz. My parents showed me that as a kid, as most of our parents did, and I’m pretty sure that just sparked the fire. I also saw a lot of live entertainment as a kid (like Disney on Ice or Sesame Street Live or even touring shows at the Fisher) and that had a big influence on me as well.

What is your biggest fear as an actor?

One of my biggest fears would have to be not being able to perform. This career is so uncertain and not knowing when your next show/performance will be is scary.

What is your dream role?

Now my mom would like me to say the Phantom in the Phantom of the Opera. It was the first stage musical I saw (in Toronto when I was 9) and I was mesmerized. I would really love to get a chance to play the role. But for me, my dream role hasn’t been written yet. I would love to have a role written for me and catered to my talents as well as a chance to work with the creative team on a new character.

What is your biggest dream?

It used to be winning a Tony. Don’t get me wrong, that still is at the top of my list and the ultimate goal but as I’ve gotten older things have changed a bit when you see how difficult this career can be. My biggest dream is to keep performing and just make myself happy. I’m a huge family person, so eventually having a family one day while continuing to perform is my biggest dream. Later in life, hopefully after a few Tonys and a successful career, I would love to run a college theatre program and train young performers.

What is your best/favorite role you have played?

Foreground: Jake Wood (Harold Lacedaemonian) Background: Kathryn Terza (Cleonice Sanchez)
Foreground: Jake Wood (Harold Lacedaemonian)
Background: Kathryn Terza (Cleonice Sanchez)

OOO! Tough question. Now it feels like every show I do just tops the last one in some way. I’d have to go with Lt. Cioffi in Curtains. I did it my senior year of high school and was way too young for the role. I’d love to play it again when I’m age appropriate. The show is a theatre lover’s dream. It’s a throwback to Golden Age musicals and it’s so witty and the music is so fun. The role almost never leaves the stage. He holds the show together. He gets an amazing dance number in the second act. Definitely my favorite role, but I would like to play him again.

Do you have a special prep routine before going on stage?

It varies from show to show. Some shows I like “me” time, just 15 minutes before the show laying down with my iPod in. I almost always have throat coat (tea) with honey, just to get the chords ready to go. Although, most of the time, I just like to
talk and visit with the cast. I think it’s important to have a good relationship with everyone you’re onstage with. It makes me feel comfortable onstage and you have more fun when you’re performing with friends.

Funniest stage blooper?

I’ve been lucky enough not to have a lot of stage bloopers, but one happened yesterday during Lysistrata Jones. We were in the middle of You Go Your Way and I just lost complete control of the basketball and it went flying across the stage.

What was your first impression of this show?

I LOVED the music. I thought it was a lot of fun. It’s like Legally Blonde meets Bring It On meets High School Musical. It felt like a feel-good musical and that’s exactly what it is.

Dancing with a basketball, easy or hard?

Hah! Well, if you scroll up two questions, I guess there is your answer. No, but really, I consider myself a decent basketball player and I’ve played almost every sport in the book but dancing with a basketball was certainly challenging.

How do you feel about pranks?

I think there is a time and place for them, but I really do find them funny.

What is the best prank you have ever pulled?

I’m so good at hiding around a corner and jumping out when someone walks by. Old school, I know, but everyone loves a classic.

So there is a story floating around about a family driving through a neighborhood in downtown Detroit. The family spotted Bigfoot coming out of an abandoned house carrying a stick. Do you believe in Bigfoot?

YES!

Favorite snack food?

Chips and Salsa

Favorite actor?

There are way too many to pick. There are a few that are just givens (Like Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks) but lately, I’ve been on an Emma Thompson kick.

Favorite movie?

The Wizard of Oz

Dream vacation?

Europe. I’ve never been overseas, I don’t even have my passport. My dream vacation would be to visit multiple countries in Europe for an entire summer.

If you could have dinner with anyone in the world living or dead who would it be and why?

Frank Sinatra. He is my idol and my inspiration. I love that whole 60s era of booze and great music. I would love to sit down and have drinks and dinner with him and hang out. And of course, Dean Martin would be at the restaurant bar and
eventually join us for a nitecap…or two.

If you were trapped on a desert island and you could only take two things, what would they be?

A pencil and a sketchpad. I love writing and drawing.

Stay Tuned…

Casey S. Hibbert©

And today….

Hello Everyone,

Today we have another intern for you all to meet her name is Mary Gietzen. But before we meet her I wanted to put in the plug about Nunset Boulevard. This show is hilarious. I went and saw it on Friday last week and I couldn’t stop laughing. For those of you who don’t know this is the last installment of the Nunsense Series by Dan Goggin. The sister of Hoboken New Jersey travel to LA to play what they think is going to be the Hollywood Bowl, but when they arrive they find out they are playing at the Hollywood-Bowl-A-Rama. A Cabaret lounge and bowling alley! If you have not had a chance to see this show you must come and see it! Tickets are on sale at ticketmaster.com, or you can call the Box Office at 248.377.3300. So back to the task at hand, here is Mary Gietzen.

What is your name? What department are you interning in?

My name is Mary Gietzen and I am the Wardrobe intern.

Are you from the area? If not, where?

I am originally from Warren MI but currently live in Rochester Mi.

Tell us a little bit about yourself. (You don’t have to write a novel)

I recently graduated from Oakland University in Rochester, MI, where I was a Theatre Design and Technology Major. I worked in the theatre’s costume shop for five years, partaking in many of their productions whether in the capacity of design, construction or running shows. In the summer of 2009 I had the chance to work at the West Virginia Public Theatre where I was the Assistant Wardrobe Coordinator. I love working with people and clothing, which the costume area allows me to do both. I love designing, crewing and stitching and hopefully one day I can say that I have done them all professionally.

Where is your favorite place to eat in Michigan? What about it is your favorite?

My favorite place to eat at is Chipotle, simply because it is good food that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg to fill you up.

What are some of your favorite things to do? When not being an intern.

When I am not at Meadowbrook doing my intern duties I enjoy being around my friends and family just hanging out, whether it’s doing karaoke, the movies or even the theatre, just having fun is what makes my time away from the theatre more special.

How did you find out about this internship? What did you do to apply for the job?

I found out about this internship while I attended Oakland University, I had heard about it not only from the friends I had that were interns themselves but from people at Meadow Brook. In order to apply for the job I had to send in my resume and a cover letter, once that was done I waited until I got an interview in which I showed my portfolio.  I knew they were adding the position of Wardrobe intern so I applied for both of the costume positions that were available.

What was the interview like?

The interview was at first a bit scary while I was waiting for my turn, but once I sat down to talk with Sarah Warren it wasn’t so bad. I showed her my portfolio and talked about the work I had done in my undergrad. She asked me a few questions and we talked about what the job was looking for and if I would be a good fit. It was an interesting process and in the end I am glad that I was able to do something that allowed me to receive a position.

What has been your favorite part about his season so far?

I love being able to spend time in my area and concentrating on being the best I can be has allowed me to learn more about it and expand. Being able to be efficient and helpful have always been important to me and learning how to do this on a new level is very satisfying. It is very rewarding to be able to help someone and make them feel like they are in good hands backstage. In addition I like knowing that an actor can concentrate on the show if they know that their costumes are taken care of. Theatre is truly a collaboration and the more you can work together the better each and every show will be, which is why I am truly glad that I have a great supervisor that I can learn from and eventually my experiences here will shape me into being a better supervisor in the future.

What has been the coolest thing you have done since you started your internship?

The coolest thing I have done so far in my internship was make new friends and be apart of memories that will last for a lifetime.

What are some things that you have learned so far? What else would you like to learn?

I have learned more about working with people and about tag teaming to make sure the job gets done. This goes for all areas of theatre because being part of a team makes the job ten times better than having to do it alone. I really want to learn as much as I can about the costume field, whether its about sewing or wardrobe, I just want to be the best I can be through out my costume career.

What is your favorite part about being an intern?

I don’t really have a favorite part simply because I am still learning and growing as a theatre artist and there are things that I haven’t experienced yet. I do enjoy getting to work in the different fields because in the end it will make me a stronger person.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? What do you want to do when your internship is over?

In the next 5 years I see myself either in grad school or working on Broadway. When this internship is over I want to do something that will allow me to get closer to my goals, exactly what that is I am not sure yet.

Thanks Mary! I hope that you continue to follow your dreams! You will go far. Remember never give up on something you can’t go a day without thinking about! Stay tuned…

Casey S. Hibbert© – Guest Blogger

Feet for Seats: A Reminder

With the 3rd annual ‘Feet for Seats 5K Fun Run/Walk‘ just a couple days away, I thought it might be a good idea to let everyone know where this idea came from!

Let’s start at the very beginning… (Julie Andrews taught me that this is always a good idea)  A few years ago when the economic downturn started to affect the whole nation, money became tight for families, businesses and Non-Profit Organizations.  While the theatre continued to produce Broadway quality productions under tight budgets, the audience was finding it hard to afford theatre.  We knew we needed to act quickly and to rethink our fundraising efforts as we knew that contributions would also be affected by the economy.  What was there to do?

Feet for Seats Chair Krista Reszewski with her sons Ethan and Alex

The administration of the theatre turned to the Board of Directors for guidance through what we knew would be a hard time and started brainstorming new ways to fundraise…  It was then that Krista Reszewski stepped up to the plate with a great idea…  an idea that had never been tried by the theatre…  an idea that just might work… a 5K fun run/walk.

Krista was not new to the theatre by any means.  She visited the theatre when she was a student in high school thanks to her long-time subscriber parents.  She again went to the theatre when she was in college attending Oakland University… AND she is the daughter of one of our Board Members.  She knew the power of the theatre to educate, entertain and to inspire all that comes through its doors.  What a great way to introduce people to the theatre by hosting a 5K and get the whole community involved… and that’s just what happened.

A committee was formed immediately to plan the first ever Feet for Seats event and volunteers started lining up to help.  Many long days/nights went into the planning and we could start to see by the community’s excitement that this was going to be a great event.  We knew that we needed to make this event something special… we needed to show of the arts and have a great time doing it.

Jill Jack performs at the first Feet for Seats and invites the children on stage

Well Jill Jack came to the rescue. For those of you not familiar with Jill, she is one of the foremost singer/songwriters that Michigan has to offer (click her name in the previous sentence to visit her website).   She donated a live performance and entertained all of the participants when they crossed the finish lines.  Tables were set up by the entertainment stage so that people would encouraged to spend sometime watching the concert and enjoy the community experience.  The Lion’s Club of Rochester donated a vending truck, GFS donated food and we served FREE food for the afternoon to all participants/volunteers.  Also as a perk on the day of the event… participants could purchase tickets to the new season that day (one month before they went on sale to the general public).

The Event Site

After all was said and done, the first ever Feet for Seats was a qualified success!  With approximately 80 volunteers and 300 Participants, corporate sponsorships and pledges from participants… the theatre raised around $18,000.

We were all very excited with the success of this new event and vowed that we would make it annual.  We have made some fabulous changes this year that we know you will love! The Mike Duncan Band will perform as well as

The Start of the Race

the Peanut Gallery Players.

The race this year will also be TIMED thanks to our friends at Hanson’s Running Shop

The committee is working feverishly to make this year’s event even better than last year’s…  Now all we need is YOU!!!

HAVE YOU SIGNED UP TO PARTICIPATE OR VOLUNTEER YET???

There is still time. The 2nd annual Feet for Seats 5k Fun Run/Walk will be held, rain or shine, on August 21, 2011 at 9:00 am. Registration begins at 8:00 am.  Come out and run/walk for the cause.  Pre -register online to participate or volunteer at our website www.mbtheatre.com today!  We want to make this year’s event even bigger than last year so tell all of your friends about it!

A donation of $25 will get you a commemorative race day  shirt and even better… as Meadow Brook Theatre is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization… your donation is tax-deductible!  Participants can also gather pledges for the race day by downloading your pledge form here.  There are also prize levels for participants who gather pledges. Free Tickets, Back Stage Tours, a Walk on Role in Christmas Carol and more can be yours.  (See all Prize Levels) Remember that while gathering pledges, you are an ambassabor of Meadow Brook Theatre. Be sure to thank them and tell everyone who donates that their donation is tax-deductible and that they are helping to ensure that Meadow Brook Theatre remains the cultural gem of Oakland County… most importantly thank YOU for helping us to remain Michigan’s largest producing professional theatre.

This year we are also proud to announce that Feet for Seats has also been endorsed by the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness, Health and Sports.  We can’t think of a better way to kick off our 45th Anniversary Season than a great community building event.

Bring the whole family and we’ll see you there!

~Travis W. Walter, Artistic Director