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Posts tagged ‘theatre’

25
Mar

Weekly Photo Challenge: Through …… Odysseo

 

Yesterday I had the great fortune of seeing the dreamy, magical and brilliant show, Odysseo, playing in Miami.  It was an amazing experience.  We were front and center – close enough to smell the horses and see the sweat glistening from their beatifically coiffed coats.

I didn’t have time before the show to focus on this weeks’ photo challenge, which asks us to capture an image that says”through,” but I think the glow of the lights and the complicated structure beneath the bleacher seats works pretty well for my interpretation of “through.”

I had my camera with me and as we entered the Odysseo big top to see the show, it was impossible not to notice the massive scaffold-like structures underneath the enormous bleacher seats.  The purple glow that washed through the bleacher support beams, came from the stage lighting.  I love the wild effect the purple lighting made through the bleachers.

Below are a few of photos of the underside of the bleachers.  The photos with a TV screen, were hanging on the outside frame of the bleachers and showed some of the dramatic moments from the show.

Photo by Andrea O'Connell, 2012. All rights reserved

Photo of bleacher support beams with TV showing scenes from Odysseo:

Photo by Andrea O'Connell, 2012. All rights reserved

Photo of bleacher support beams with TV showing scenes from Odysseo:

Photo by Andrea O'Connell, 2012. All rights reserved

Photo of bleacher support beams with TV showing scenes from Odysseo:

Below is a you tube video that I think you’ll enjoy.  There are a lot of YouTube videos of this remarkable show.  Follow this video to more YouTube links about the show.

Screen-shot image of Odysseo web page. Click photo to access Odysseo website

 

 

 

 

 

 

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21
Jan

magic, passion, madness

The writer, Henry James wrote:

We work in the dark – we do what we can – we give what we have.  Our doubt is our passion and our passion is our task.  The rest is the madness of art.

Although spoken by one of Henry James’s characters, these words were also his personal credo.  James truly feared his work would forever stay in the dark, forgotten.

After the release of a few of his novels, namely Portrait of a Lady (1881), he released many more short and full-length novels, but few were popular.  He knew criticism more than he knew acceptance of his writing.   Of course, after his death, in 1916, at age 72, he is now revered as the master he always was.

This Henry James quote reminds me of the theatre – working in the theatre.  It’s all passion and madness and love, it is not always a normal life when one lives it.  But, it is love and passion.  And so is the brilliant musical I saw last night. 

Next to Normal is one of those experiences that, if it grabs you, as it did me, it’s bound to hold you for a lifetime. 

The show was chilling and lovely and scary and electric and I couldn’t speak when it ended.

Tears dripped on my blouse down to my lap, wetting my theatre program.  I wasn’t the only one crying.  Maybe I was the only one with out a tissue, though, but a kind woman gave me one of the cocktail napkins she held on to.

I don’t want to give away any part of the story – if you have a chance to see it, you’ll want to be surprised.  It’s best to see it without any preconceptions.  It will add to the magic for you, like it did for me.

I grew up in the theatre and love the magic and the passion and the madness and the love that is beyond words when a great play hits you in the gut.

There are a few musicals that will never leave me.   I’ve seen many, but cling to a few; Next to Normal is one of those – probably the best among all the greats I’ve seen.

It’s like the musical Rent, edgy, amazing and now.  It’s rock and roll and light opera and psychology and slice of life – all in one incredibly structured and fluid and dynamic powerful package.

Next to Normal, is playing for four weeks at the Miracle Theatre, in Coral Gables, Florida.  (By the way, I was in the inaugural show, A Thousand Clowns, which opened the Miracle Theatre!  picture below!)

Next to Normal is also touring across the Unites States.  Catch it if you can – you’ll be so glad you dd.

There’s a reason why it won the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award in 2009.

That's Me in the play "A Thousand Clowns" at the Miracle Theatre!

14
Jan

Weekly Photo Challenge: Peaceful

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge asks us to post a photo that speaks “peaceful,” and this one works for me.

This is Pompano Beach, Florida, which is my home.  Well, I don’t live on the ocean and this is not my view, unfortunately (or fortunately, during hurricane season!).

Although yesterday was an incredible day, it was hardly peaceful for me!

Yesterday began with a 7:30 am breakfast-tribute to the memory of Martin Luther King, Stand for Something.

The Broward County YMCA puts on this Martin Luther King Inspirational  Breakfast program each year.  This year J.R. Martinez – Iraq war Veteran, and more recently, winner of the Dancing with the Stars show, was the Keynote Speaker.

And, former Dancing with the Stars contestant and newly retired Miami Dolphins football great, Jason Taylor was honored with the Spirit Award, from the YMCA.

I’ll write about the event tomorrow – it was very special.

Then, I had a phone interview with Microsoft.  Yes, THE Microsoft!!

The other day I wrote something about all the applications and jobs that I have on the burner and how I didn’t want to accept anything from Acme Computers if Microsoft called…. And…

Well….,

They called!

Who would have thunk it?  They saw my resume online and called ME?  OMG!

Well, I don’t have the job – yet.  And, although I want to keep really positive about getting it….well, I’m realistic, too.

And I had another great interview with a firm that I like very much…

Then, last night, I saw a wonderful play about, of all things, wrestling!  I am hardly anyone who enjoys wrestling – but I have a new-found respect for the show-business side of it now.

If you happen to be in the South Florida area, GO SEE this play.  You will love it!

The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity

Playing at the Caldwell Theatre, Boca Raton, FL

 

19
Sep

no regrets?

Some nights I can’t think of anything I want to talk about.  Well, that’s not entirely true, there are nights that I just want to bemoan about how tired I am after working a full day teaching.  Teaching kids would be so much easier.  I teach adults which is more difficult; especially when adults act like children.  That’s when it gets really problematic.    I teach a new hire class of new employees at the university.  It’s a two-week intensive training that wipes me out.  I wrote all the training I teach, and I conduct the training, too.  Usually one person creates the training and another person delivers it.  I prefer to create the curriculum and not train it.

I have been a one-person training department for nearly five years; now I have a boss to split the work with, and that’s nice!  But, it’s going to take her another year to get up to speed on the curriculum, so the training is all on my shoulders, still.  My boss helps, though.  She puts all the participant guides together for me – and that’s a crummy job.  She also assigns which project I need to develop next, and does all the preliminary setting up for me.

She’s like my agent setting up “gigs” for me.  I hope that pretty soon the work will even out and I won’t have to be in the classroom as much going forward.  It’s exhausting to orchestrate the learning activities of a whole classroom of adults for seven hours a day.  The funny thing is, when I’m in the classroom and working with my students, I love it.  I completely enjoy seeing people learn.  I enjoy the fun we have in the classroom, too.  Fun, you may wonder?  Yes.  Adult learners need to enjoy the experience of learning and it is my job to make them laugh and enjoy themselves because it enables their learning.

So, I enjoy the moment to moment interactions with the participants, and they respond well to me, which is really helpful.  What I have trouble with is waking up in the morning and starting the day.  I would rather be doing so many other things.  I’d rather be writing.  I need to start listening more to what I want to do, I’ve realized now.  My passion does not involve being in the classroom. My “work” passion involves writing training programs; it’s fun and creative, but it’s also not what I really want to do with my life, for the rest of my life.

I want to write stories, a book, and try play-writing, and photography, too.  But it would mean quitting my job, most likely.

I want to read more.  I have so many books lined up to read.  I’m reading Wendy and the Lost Boys, by Julie Salamon, right now.  It’s wonderful and I’d like to be reading right now, but there is this blog to write.

Will the earth open up and swallow me if I don’t write my blog post every night?  No.   It’s become a habit now. But a good and nice habit – usually.

I get hooked on things, and I’m hooked on blogging.  I used to be hooked on smoking – about ten years ago.  I’d come home from work, sit in my comfortable chair and smoke and read and drink soda until midnight.  For a while it was difficult to read because I really wanted a cigarette to go with my book.

I am really conflicted right now.  I am overcome with “shoulds.”

I should find another job (I like my boss, but the office environment I work in is toxic).  I find it sad how unhappy the employees are who work in the office, and yet, at least 25 percent of the employees have worked there over 10 years.  Why would you work in a place for so long and be miserable?

I don’t want to live in a state of  long-term misery, that would be an awful way to live.

People think it’s prestigious to work for a university, and I suppose it is.  And, it’s wonderful to be a part of the excitement that goes on at a university.  On that level, it’s really great.

So, I’m torn.  I could continue to work at the university, get a Ph.D., and be well-educated but would that make me happy?  A Ph.D in my pocket would allow me to teach at a university level, but I don’t want to do that, so I guess the Ph.D., wouldn’t be the best thing for me.  Well, I could do research articles and publish with a Ph.D., and I like research writing a lot, but I like creative writing more.

I love the law.  At least three times a week I think about throwing everything to the wind and try to get into law school.  But, then I come to my senses.

My real passion has always been the theatre and writing.  I am a pretty good actor, but I wasn’t sure if I could write.   The last couple of years, especially since beginning this blog, has helped me realize I can write, but need so much more practice.

I think I’ve figured out what I need to do.  Well, I know what I need to do, but do I have the courage to do it?  That’s the sticking point.  (The bottom line is, I am full of too many doubts; and my ego needs a kick in the pants.)

Should I throw caution to the wind and follow my dreams?  How will I pay the bills?

Maybe I am where I should be right now and I shouldn’t try to ruin a good thing.  And here’s the rub: If I did quit my job and go out on my own, would I have the same kind of regrets as when I left the theatre?

I tell people I had a great career as an actor – and it’s true, I loved every minute of the work.  But, I do have regrets.  I do.  The regret is that I didn’t stick with the theatre longer.  If I’d just given it five more years, moved to NYC, things may have been different.  My friends were making it, the only reason I couldn’t?  Self doubt.  I took the safe way out, quit while I was ahead and got the things that many theatre people don’t have: A nice car and a mortgage.

But, did I leave the theatre so I could have a nice car and a mortgage?  Yes, I did.  And I left the theatre because I was tired of working as a waitress after a show ended and before the next one began.  The time in between theatre jobs could sometimes be months. And I couldn’t stand waiting tables. I really despised the work with every ounce of my being.  I still have nightmares about being forced to wait on tables again.

So now I’m asking myself, what the hell am I doing and where the hell am I going??

The only answer I really have right now is I need to get off this computer and sit down with my book and relax.

I’ll figure out my future tomorrow – perhaps.

17
Jan

glorious day

I spent a lovely day in Miami yesterday.  A good friend of mine is a Bass player (the standing bass) and he got me and another friend tickets to see a wonderful performance of the music of Irving Berlin.

As I was sitting outside of the theatre, which is on the Intercoastal Waterway, I snapped this picture with my phone.

This is in Adventura, Miami. It is one of the many high-rise condo buildings – a virtual mountain of condos, in various shapes and sizes all sit clustered there.  So many people are crammed into these rich, almost opalescent places!

You can see how glorious the day was in this picture!  My dear friend and I sat out and looked at the water for about a half an hour before the show began.

It was so lovely.

23
May

forgiveness. gratitude. a quick hello. plus my new photo blog!

You know, thinking and writing about forgiveness, gratitude, and humility is so far inferior to experiencing it; I cannot stop smiling.

I am having a wonderful weekend; busy with work and theatre and catching up with old friends.  The weekend started with seeing a delicious concert version of Into the Woods, at the Caldwell Theatre.

Also, because I love photography, I decided to start a photo blog that I’d like to share with you.  It’s called Lovingjazz’s Photo Blog.  (Yup, it’s named after my dog, who is the subject of a few of my photos!)

I love to photograph nature, as you will see.

I am also working on another blog.  It’s about a topic that I am passionate about: Bullying (in schools and in the workplace.)  It’s not ready for prime-time, though!  I will post a link soon.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!  I will, even though I have to go into the office for a bit, it’s still a lovely weekend… 🙂

Here’s the URL to Loving Jazz’s Photo Blog:   lovingjazz.wordpress.com

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