Garth wins honorable mention honor

first_imgLamar sports informationFRISCO — Lamar freshman guard Nick Garth has been named 2016 Honorable Mention All-Southland Conference, league officials announced Monday morning.Garth received the honor as the team’s sixth man, coming off the bench in all but six games this season.Garth led the Cardinals, and finished 13th in the Southland Conference averaging better than 13 points per game (13.4 ppg). The Houston native was one of the league’s top freshmen in 2015-16 finishing the year as the league’s second-leading freshmen scorer.One of the more accurate three-point shooters in the conference, Garth finished the season ranked 12th in the league in three-point field-goal percentage (.337) and finished tied for fourth in the Southland knocking down 2.3 triples per contest. He also ended his rookie campaign ranked among the Southland’s top 10 in free throw percentage (.813).Garth became the third player in program history, and just the second freshman, to lead the team in scoring while coming off the bench (Joey Ray in 2000-01 and Keith Veney in 1992-93). He played in 29 games recording just six starts as a freshman. He scored in double figures 22 times, including the first 10 games of his career. Garth hit the 20-point plateau four times, including a career-high 25 points against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.In addition to his ability to score, Garth was also ranked among the league leaders at getting his teammates involved in the scoring. Pressed into the point guard role at times, Garth also finished among the league leaders averaging better than 2.5 assists per game. Next Uplast_img read more

Martin “Mike” Hlavinka, Jr.

first_imgMartin “Mike” Hlavinka, Jr., 89, of Port Arthur passed away Sunday, November 20, 2016 at Lake Arthur Place in Port Arthur, Texas.He was born on August 20, 1927 in East Bernard, Texas to Martin and Victoria Hlavinka.Mike was a lifelong resident of this area and member of the Catholic faith. He retired from Southern Union Gas as a supervisor after 40 years of service.Mike was a United States Navy veteran serving his country during World War II.Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at Levingston Funeral Home in Groves with Reverend Kevin Badeaux officiating. Burial will follow in Greenlawn Memorial Park. A visitation for family and friends will begin at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday until service time at the funeral home.Mike was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Mary Vivian Hlavinka, two sisters and three brothers.center_img He is survived by his three daughters, Sandy Stansbury and Blaine Dugas of Port Arthur, Carol Jean Hlavinka of Beaumont and Paula Kay Hussey and husband Paul of Nederland, two sons, Thomas Martin Hlavinka and wife Jackie of Beaumont and Keith Richard “Bumper” Hlavinka and wife Bridgett of Beaumont, nine grandchildren and fourteen great grandchildren.Friends wishing to make memorial contributions may send them to: Nutrition Services For Seniors, 4590 Concord Rd., Beaumont, TX 77703 or Seniormeals.orglast_img read more

Roy Mannino

first_imgRoy Mannino, 87, of Nederland, died Wednesday, December 7, 2016. He was born on October 5, 1929, in Port Arthur, to Irene and Joe Mannino. Roy was a United States Air Force veteran. He retired from Texaco as a Machinist. Next UpSurvivors include his sons, Robert J. Mannino and his wife, Melinda and Carl Anthony, both of Nederland; grandchildren, Monica Renee Mannino of Nederland and Chris Miller and his wife, Tiffany, of Lumberton; great-grandchildren, Bryce and Landon Miller; and sisters, Betty Venable, Connie Lanclos, Pat Jackson, and Ethel Gobel. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Margaret Mannino; one brother; and one sister. A gathering of Mr. Mannino’s family and friends will be from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m., with his Rosary at 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, December 13, 2016, at Broussard’s, 505 North 12th Street, Nederland. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, December 14, 2016, at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, 211 Hardy Avenue, Nederland, with his interment following at Oak Bluff Memorial Park, Port Neches. Memorial contributions may be made in Mr. Mannino’s memory to St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, 130 Hardy Avenue, Nederland, Texas 77627. center_img Complete and updated information may be found at: read more

Toddler dies in hospital after being apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border

first_img On April 6, the official said, his mother alerted agents that he was sick. An ambulance took him to Providence Hospital in Horizon City that day, and officials transferred him the next day to Providence Children’s Hospital in El Paso.On April 8, federal officials formally released the family from Border Protection custody with a “notice to appear” in immigration court.CBP officials are required to notify Congress of a death in custody within 24 hours, and it was not immediately clear whether officials would do that when The Washington Post inquired about the death because the boy had been released from custody.Later, an official said they would notify lawmakers.After two Guatemalan children died in December, Homeland Security officials expanded care for children at the border. They have required health screenings of all children in custody and deployed scores of medics and equipment to the border to quickly triage new arrivals, some arriving in groups of 300 at a time.Hundreds of people have been taken to the hospital. Some have arrived with preexisting health concerns, including influenza and liver disease.Two weeks ago, U.S. border agents along the Rio Grande recovered the body of a 10-month-old boy after his family’s raft capsized while crossing the river near Eagle Pass.On April 30, a 16-year-old unaccompanied minor from the southeastern state of Chiquimula suffered a severe brain infection and died after several days in federal custody. He had been apprehended more than a week earlier and transferred to a Health and Human Services shelter. His was the first known death in HHS custody.In December, two young Guatemalan children died after being apprehended by CBP. Felipe Gomez Alonzo, 8, died of complications from influenza B infection, and Jakelin Caal, 7, died from a bacterial infection.Among the worst crowding is in the El Paso sector, where on March 27 agents held almost 3,500 migrants in custody, well above capacity, and some families were held under a bridge.Paniagua said the consulate has warned families in Guatemala that the trip is risky.“We have reiterated the message that trips to the United States, in the condition in which the Guatemalan families are undertaking them, is highly dangerous,” Paniagua said in a statement. “We’ve seen four cases in a row of children who have lost their lives in this way.”The Texas Tribune is a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them – about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues. By Maria Sacchetti And Robert MooreThe Washington Related story: Photos capture near-drowning of migrants on US-Mexico border A 2½-year-old Guatemalan boy apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border died Tuesday night in El Paso after several weeks in the hospital, according to the Guatemalan Consulate and another person with direct knowledge of the case.The boy, who was not identified, arrived at the border with his mother days after Kevin McAleenan, now the acting homeland security secretary, held a news conference near a crowded holding facility in El Paso on March 27 to warn that a surge of Central Americans was pushing the system to the “breaking point.”The boy is the fourth migrant child to die since December after being apprehended at the southern border and taken to the hospital. All have been from Guatemala, a Central American nation experiencing severe drought and poverty, and where smugglers have been offering discounted trips to families traveling to the United States. Record numbers of families from Guatemala and other northern Central American countries are surrendering at the border and seeking asylum, with nearly 100,000 crossing in April, the highest monthly total in a decade. The White House has asked Congress for $4.5 billion in aid and increased enforcement, saying the influx is risking lives, while advocates for immigrants have raised concerns about health and safety conditions in cramped federal holding facilities.The Washington Post confirmed the death with two sources, including Guatemala’s Consul Tekandi Paniagua, who covers the El Paso area. Another source confirmed the death on the condition of anonymity.Paniagua said the boy, who had spent three days in federal custody, appeared to have developed a form of pneumonia, but the death remains under investigation. The El Paso medical examiner’s office and the hospital declined to comment.It is unclear when the boy fell ill. A Customs and Border Protection official familiar with the case, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the CBP apprehended the boy and his mother April 3 near the Paso Del Norte Bridge.last_img read more

Cecilia Comeaux Singleton

first_imgMrs. Cecilia Comeaux Singleton passed away Monday, March 9, 2020.She resided in Port Arthur for 71 years. A lifetime educator, she was employed in Plaquemine, Louisiana; Sherman, Texas; and her longest tenure was with the Port Arthur Independent School District as a librarian at Lamar Elementary and DeQueen Elementary.Survivors include her nieces, Betty Lee (Jethro), Mitchellville, MD; Myrtle Comeaux Johnson, Houston, TX; Veronica “Gail” Comeaux Doyle, Port Arthur, Texas; Cheryl Singleton Piper, Plaquemine, LA; and Lola Comeaux, Dallas, TX; nephews, Columbus Como; John Comeaux (Cynthia); Spencer Comeaux (Abigail); Gerald Comeaux; Donald Comeaux and Dorie Earl Comeaux all of Port Arthur, TX; Joseph Comeaux (Brenda), New Orleans, LA; James Comeaux, Dallas, TX; Glenn Comeaux (Donna), Tulsa, OK; and Noah Comeaux, Kansas City, MO; special godchild, Alyssa Howard Savannah, Houston, TX; 28 great nephews/nieces; 39 great-great nephews/nieces. Funeral service will be 2 p.m. Saturday, March 14, 2020 at Gabriel Funeral Home Chapel with visitation from 12 noon until service time.center_img Entombment will follow in Greenlawn Memorial Park.last_img read more

Grand jury hands down Jefferson County indictments for assault, drugs, firearms cases

first_img An indictment is not a final conviction of guilt; it is only a ruling by the grand jury that allows the district attorney’s office to proceed with a criminal case. BEAUMONT — Assaults and drug cases topped last week’s most recent indictments handed down by a Jefferson County grand jury:Michael Chund Bates, 35, of Port Arthur was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Aug. 31.Lynnisha Battiste, 25, of Port Arthur was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Aug. 10.Camryn Jenkins, 18, of Port Arthur was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Aug. 10.Jennifer Lane Berry, 47, of Port Arthur was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine, for an incident that occurred May 14.Osvaldo Blanco Santana, 29, of Nederland was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Aug. 25.Jonah Ian Broussard, also known as Jonahian Broussard and Jonah Broussard, 47, of Cleveland, Texas was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine, for an incident that occurred Sept. 13, 2019.Jonah Ian Broussard, also known as Jonahian Broussard and Jonah Broussard, 47, of Cleveland, Texas was indicted for evading arrest/detention use of a vehicle for an incident that occurred Sept. 6, 2020.Jerry Lewis Craigen, 60, of Beaumont was indicted for unlawful possession of a firearm by felon for an incident that occurred Feb. 9.Julius Justin Fisher, 37, of Port Arthur was indicted for unlawful possession of a firearm by felon for an incident that occurred July 1.Israel Galvan, also known as Isreal Galvan, 27, of Port Arthur was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, etizolam, for an incident that occurred May 1.Israel Galvan, also known as Isreal Galvan, 27, of Port Arthur was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, fentanyl, for an incident that occurred May 1.Benjamin Bernard Garrett, also known as Benjamin B. Garrett, 39, of Beaumont was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Sept. 6.David T. Green, 22, of Beaumont was indicted for unlawful possession of a firearm by felon for an incident that occurred July 14.Garrett Deshawn Hall, 24, of Port Arthur was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Sept. 17.Elton Dewayne Harris, 41, of Port Arthur was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, phencyclidine, or PCP, for an incident that occurred Jan. 23.Will Wilson Hawkins, 34, of Port Arthur was indicted for unlawful possession of firearm by felon for an incident that occurred Sept. 14.Monica Monique Haynes, also known as Monica Jenkins Hayes, Monica Nettles, Monica Bennett and Monica M. Bennett, 45, of Beaumont was indicted for assault on a peace officer for an incident that occurred June 14.Monica Monique Haynes, also known as Monica Jenkins Hayes, Monica Nettles, Monica Bennett and Monica M. Bennett, 45, of Beaumont was indicted for evading arrest/detention with previous convictions for an incident that occurred June 14.Larry Bob Hebert Jr., also known as Larry Hebert and Larry Bob Hebert, 24, of Port Arthur was indicted for forgery (counterfeit) for an incident that occurred July 16.Thomas Kyle Huff, 46, of Beaumont was indicted for assault-family violence/choking for an incident that occurred May 14.Lawrence Dewayne Jackson, also known as Lawrence Jackson, Lawrence Dewayne Jackson, and Lawrence Duane Jackson, 38, of Beaumont was indicted for burglary of a habitation for an incident that occurred Aug. 9.Daron Markeith Jones, 29, of Port Arthur was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine, for an incident that occurred June 5.Preston Anthony Lange Jr., 60, of Beaumont was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred Aug. 22.Dewarren Jacoby Lewis, 26, of Port Arthur was indicted for assault on a peace officer for an incident that occurred Aug. 15.Ronald F. Lyons, also known as Ronald Fitzgerald Lyons, 55, of Beaumont was indicted for unlawful possession of a firearm by felon for an incident that occurred March 5.Shawn McGaha, 32, of Beaumont was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred June 16.Jaime Moron-Munoz, 31, of Edinburg, was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, cocaine, for an incident that occurred Oct. 21, 2019.Justin Taylor Neff, 28, of China, Texas was indicted for assault-family violence/choking for an incident that occurred Aug. 8.Darrell Phillips, 32, transient, was indicted for assault on a public servant for an incident that occurred Sept. 5.Otis D. Poullard, also known as Otis D. Poullard Jr., and Otis Poullard Jr., 37, of Beaumont was indicted for unauthorized use of a vehicle for an incident that occurred July 9.Francisco Ruiz Rodriguez, 37, of Port Arthur was indicted for felony stalking for an incident that occurred July 8.Zachary James Dean Rogers, also known as Zachary James Rogers, 24, of La Porte as indicted for felony theft of a firearm for an incident that occurred July 8.Steven James Russell, 33, of Beaumont was indicted for aggravated assault-family violence for an incident that occurred Sept. 15.Juan Sanchez-Macias, 37, of Port Arthur was indicted for assault-family violence/choking for an incident that occurred Sept. 9.Chad Norman Smith, 45, of Port Neches was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine hydrochloride, for an incident that occurred April 20.Michael Shane Socia, 49, of Vidor was indicted for possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine hydrochloride, for an incident that occurred March 26.Mary Thomas, also known as Mary Ellen Thomas, 55, of Port Arthur was indicted for aggravated assault for an incident that occurred June 28.Ronald Jay Turner, 20, of Beaumont was indicted for assault on a peace officer for an incident that occurred Jan. 15.Monica Lynn Vincent, 36, of Orange was indicted for assault on a peace officer for an incident that occurred Aug. 24.Anthony J. Weber, 47, of Beaumont as indicted for theft of service for an incident that occurred June 3.Richard Gabral Moody, also known as Richard Moody, 28, of Port Arthur was indicted for injury to an elderly individual for an incident that occurred Aug. 28.Rustin Chase McKinsey, 34, of Beaumont was indicted for assault-family violence/choking for an incident that occurred Jan. 24.Rustin Chase McKinsey, 34, of Beaumont was indicted for assault-family violence/choking for an incident that occurred Jan. 24.last_img read more

Rory O’Malley on Life After Mormon, Obsessing Over Honey Boo Boo & Starring in Nobody Loves You

first_img What is life after Mormon like? It was strange at first to get away from the eight-show week—I’d start to get anxious at half-hour call and not be sure why; you just have that internal clock. After being chained to Midtown for two years, I traveled for three months, and it was a great experience. I was also able to go to London and saw The Book of Mormon there with my friend Gavin Creel on opening night. Kate Winslet was sitting behind me. Five years ago, we were at the Vineyard Theatre reading through half a show and five songs! It was amazing to be in a different country, watching British actors take on these roles you had a part in. I’m so lucky to have been a part of something that will live on for such a long time. How did Nobody Loves You cross your radar? I’d known [composer] Gaby Alter because I did a demo for a show he wrote called Band Geek a couple of years ago. And Itamar [Moses], who wrote the book and lyrics, is an amazing playwright. When Nobody Loves You came up, I was really excited to get to be in a room these two up-and-coming, wonderful young writers. Do you have a lot of fans from The Book of Mormon coming to cheer you on at the stage door? Every single show, I see somebody with a Book of Mormon T-shirt or iPhone cover, or someone I recognize from the Book of Mormon stage door, and it’s so sweet. I’m blown away by it. It’s wonderful to be a part of something where people are following what you’re doing. It makes me feel like I’m still part of the Mormon family in a way that I didn’t know was going be possible, so it’s a wonderful thing. See Rory O’Malley in Nobody Loves You, opening July 18 at Second Stage Theatre. Rory O’Malley’s antics never fail to steal a show, whether he’s turning his sexuality off “like a light switch” in The Book of Mormon, spazzing out as Leaf Coneybear in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee or obsessively tweeting about reality shows as superfan Evan, one of three hilarious characters he plays in the new musical Nobody Loves You. (Opening night is July 18 at off-Broadway’s Second Stage Theatre.) By day, O’Malley is the co-founder of Broadway Impact, an organization of theater artists uniting to fight for equal rights. O’Malley recently chatted with about his Les Miz fanboy past, DOMA’s demise and his undying love for Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. How often do you watch reality TV? I watch it more than I’d like to admit—my favorite is definitely Honey Boo Boo. I absolutely love Alana, and I have a whole case for it being better than other reality TV shows. At least they’re a loving family and hang out with each other! In most other shows, the people are just fighting and screaming and tearing each other apart. This family, even if you don’t like them or approve of the way they live their lives, does love each other and it’s pretty clear. How much of a hand do you have in creating the three characters you play? They’ve been really good about giving [the cast] room to help create. They’ve given us all the lines and things we need, but there’s been a lot of discovering who these characters are together. It’s been a very quick process, but we made choices, saw what worked and what didn’t, and then made changes to lighten it up a little. So much of it has been working with the costume designer, Jessica Pabst, because she brought so much to the table initially that influenced us. For Evan, we had animal T-shirts and glasses, and for Chaz, who is kind of a stonery, middle-aged guy, she brought sandals, which really made him come to life for me. Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 11, 2013 Related Shows Evan is the ultimate reality show fanboy. Have you ever been that obsessed with anything? Absolutely! I was definitely that obsessed with theater, and I was so happy when cassettes were replaced with CDs because my tapes were almost dead. I loved Les Miz and Into the Woods—I used to cast Into the Woods with my friends, even if they’d never stepped on stage before. “Clearly, he would be the best Wolf,” you know [laughs]. I was definitely Evan when it came to Broadway, so he’s very easy for me to identify with. Star Files As the co-founder of Broadway Impact, what was it like for you on the day that DOMA was overturned? It was amazing. What’s cool is that for many Supreme Court decisions, you don’t know when they’re going to happen, but for this one, we were able to plan. I think they did that on purpose, because they know the gays like to organize and have the party scheduled [laughs]. Jenny [Kanelos, co-founder of Broadway Impact] came over to my apartment and we watched together, and we Facetimed with Gavin [Creel] in London. It was beautiful, because it brought me back to when Prop. 8 passed and the three of us came together to say, “This is horrible. How can we respond to this?” Here we are, five short years later, and the Defense of Marriage Act and Prop. 8 were overturned in one day. An amazing day I’ll never, never forget. His big number, The Twitter Song, is hilarious—do you think it’s the first musical theater song to include the word “hashtag”? I think it might be! When I leave the theater, the number one question I get, especially from people above 65, is “What is a hashtag?” But they still go with it! Everyone’s laughing at this word hashtag, and they just go with the flow, even if they don’t know what it means. View Comments Nobody Loves You On Twitter, you wrote that your mom is happy as an accountant and as a mother because she does your taxes. Is she hoping you’ll get married soon? When you work on a marriage equality organization, you invite that question about yourself! My mom is so thrilled—I want to have a family and have all the rights for my family, so definitely that’s going to happen—but it’s more about the high school kids who are back in Ohio right now. When I came out, I thought coming out meant giving up a marriage and a family. That was, to me, the most difficult part of the coming-out process. And that was probably the hardest part for my mother, who will be the most kick-ass, amazing, wonderful grandmother this earth has ever seen. I know now that this is not only going to happen, it’s going to happen for me, and for LGBT kids forever from now on. Their dreams about their future will include marriage and a family—or not, but it’s their option. Rory O’Malleylast_img read more

Tony Winner Tyne Daly Headed Back to Broadway in Terrence McNally’s Mothers and Sons

first_img Mothers and Sons will mark McNally’s 20th Broadway production, His other workds include Bad Habits, The Ritz, The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Love! Valour! Compassion!, Master Class, Ragtime, The Full Monty and Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune. Mothers and Sons Tony and Emmy winner Tyne Daly is set to return to Broadway in spring 2014 in Mothers and Sons, the new play by four-time Tony-winning playwright Terrence McNally. Directed by Tony nominee Sheryl Kaller (Next Fall), the play had its world premiere at Bucks County Playhouse in June with a cast that included Manoel Felciano, Big Fish star Bobby Steggert and Grayson Taylor. Casting, exact dates and a theater for the Broadway production will be announced at a later date. View Comments Mothers and Sons explores the essence of family and forgiveness in a rapidly changing society. Twenty years after her son’s death, a mother turns up at the door of his former lover, who is now married to another man and has a young son. This man and his family challenge the woman to confront the truths of their shared past, and a future she never imagined. Values clash as they struggle to reconcile their vastly different worlds. Show Closed This production ended its run on June 22, 2014 Related Shows Tyne Daly Lead producers for Mothers and Sons will be Tom Kirdahy, Paula Wagner & Debbie Bisno and Alan and Barbara Marks and Wade Turnbull. Star Files Daly is known to Broadway audiences for her Tony-winning role in Gypsy and her recent performances in Rabbit Hole and Master Class, but the grande dame is also a beloved screen actress with credits including Cagney & Lacey and Judging Amy.last_img read more

Romeo and Juliet’s Jayne Houdyshell on Finding Humor and Freshness in Shakespeare’s Tragedy

first_img Jayne Houdyshell Related Shows One year after my first meeting with David, we gathered for our first day of rehearsal. The room was packed with all of these lovely actors, none of whom I had ever worked with. Most of us were new to one another. This element made initial rehearsals very stimulating—when one is working for the first time with people, everyone listens with great intensity, and the joy of discovery is made all the more wonderful by the newness of each voice. View Comments Orlando Bloom Now, as we near opening night, the tweaks and changes are smaller and excitement is mounting. Our entire company is keenly aware of what an honor it is to perform this great and iconic play—though, hopefully, audiences will not view it as iconic, but experience it as an extraordinary story about love and passion, found and lost due to profoundly tragic human blindness…a timeless story that just happens to be told with some of the most beautiful words ever written or spoken. My journey with this production of Romeo and Juliet began in July 2012. I got a call from my agent wanting to know if I was interested in meeting with David Leveaux about playing the Nurse, and of course I said yes. Romeo and Juliet is a play that I love, the Nurse is a role I feel right for, and the chance to work with David Leveaux was more than enticing. My meeting with David and associate director J.V. Mercati was inspiring because David spoke with such passion and clarity about his vision for the play. I read a scene, and I guess it went well because the next day my agents received an official offer. I became more and more enthused as casting continued: All of the actors were artists for whom I had the greatest respect, and I was very excited about working with such an esteemed group. About the author: Since receiving her first Tony nomination for her Broadway debut as a demanding mother in 2003’s Well, Jayne Houdyshell has played some outlandish characters on the Great White Way. She lorded over Shiz University as Wicked’s Madame Morrible, drew laughs as the meddling Mae Peterson in Bye Bye Birdie and delivered her best “Broadway Baby” as Follies’ brassy Hattie Walker, which garnered Houdyshell a second Tony nod. Now, as the Nurse in director David Leveaux’s contemporary revival of Romeo and Juliet, the Topeka-born Broadway favorite is taking on the challenge of one of William Shakespeare greatest tragedies. Below, Houdyshell recounts how she became involved with the production, why the cast was encouraged to embrace the play’s comedy and why it’s an honor to bring this classic play to a new audience. It was a heady and exciting time; we all were growing closer as a company as we became immersed in this glorious play. The entire tone for rehearsals was one of mutual respect and a growing affection for one another and for the work we were doing. Our first run-through was thrilling. How wonderful to see it all come together after so many weeks of working on the play in small sections and scenes! The entire company is truly terrific, and I have to say that Condola Rashad and Orlando Bloom are brilliant leaders. They lead as true stars by my book, because they hold the bar high for us every day with their commitment to the play and their unfailing work ethic.center_img Condola Rashad Romeo and Juliet Show Closed This production ended its run on Dec. 8, 2013 David spoke with great eloquence about Romeo and Juliet being a story we think we know well, but our responsibility is to tell it with the freshness of a story unfolding for the first time, without knowing how it is going to end. He also discussed the speed with which he wanted to hear the tale told. There’s no time to ruminate—these are people living their lives with fierce passion, joy and deep humanity. I remember him saying that the first act, in particular, is written as a comedy—the end is not to be played until it is evident that there can be no other outcome. He impressed on us the fact that there is no tragedy until something tragic actually happens, much later in the play. It is tempting to come to Romeo and Juliet with the attitude of participating in the saddest story ever told—a trap that can color everything that is said and done from the start. Star Files Our four weeks in the rehearsal space were very busy with both fight and dance rehearsals happening in one area while scene work commenced in a second area. The initial staging for the play was organic, found by the actors on their feet while discovering the life and world of the play through the text. For the most part, no scene was physicalized the same way twice. No blocking was given or discussed. As our understanding of the play grew, our staging stayed in flux. This was a brilliant way of working, because the feeling that this story was happening for the first time was always true. David, meanwhile, focused brilliantly on helping all of us find our way into the relationships that drive the story forward—and we also had the great privilege of working with Shakespeare coach Patsy Rodenburg to find the action of the play within the text. She is stellar in helping actors understand that when speaking Shakespeare, the word is action. Thought, action and word happen simultaneously, and it is imperative to always move forward with the text. When we moved into the exquisitely restored and renovated Richard Rodgers Theatre, we were ready for the next step. As technical rehearsals began, we started to discover the physical world of this production that has been realized so beautifully for us by set designer Jesse Poleshuck, sound designer David Van Tiegham, lighting designer David Weiner and costume designer Fabio Toblini. It was also the moment when David Leveaux was able to start orchestrating stunning visual images that so eloquently assist in illuminating the story. It was inspiring to see all of those images come to light and life as David shepherded us toward previews. We now were confident with our storytelling, and it was time to learn to tell it the same way eight times a week. We had become able to repeatedly deliver the play with the fresh attack of a “first time” that the flexible rehearsal method instilled in our psyches.last_img read more

Meg Ryan Taught Annaleigh Ashford to Fake It, Audra McDonald Ain’t Afraid of No Telecast & More Lessons of the Week

first_imgThe last seven days have been a whirlwind of opening nights, classy galas and thrilling casting news—let’s revisit what we’ve learned, shall we? From Les Miserables mania to Annaleigh Ashford’s first onscreen sex scene, a lot of funny, weird and downright crazy things have happened this week. Read below for the latest installment of’s Lessons of the Week!Ramin Karimloo and Will Swenson Go Crazy for CarbsOf all the epic Broadway feuds—the Sharks and the Jets, Benny and Roger, Patti LuPone and, uh, everyone—the whole “loaf of bread” spat between Valjean and Javert in Les Miserables is by far the most epic. Ramin Karimloo and Will Swenson will keep the legendary fight alive on Broadway next spring, where they’ll brawl, cry (and both of them will die) eight nights a week, all set in motion by a hunk of sourdough. This is Broadway drama at its finest, people.Jessica Lange Needs to Star in a Good ComedyWe’d happily watch another 10 seasons of Jessica Lange on American Horror Story, but the actress revealed that next year will be her last—and she’s talking about quitting acting altogether! Jessica, we love the troubled characters you play, but do you think you might be getting too into this whole immersive acting thing? During Streetcar, you used to “soak in a hot tub for hours in the dark, just like Blanche”?! We hereby order you to take a month off, do a rom-com (maybe even a musical?) and you’ll be back in business. Hey, it worked for Meryl Streep.Broadway Stars Have Their Own Time ZoneIn Lesli Margherita’s always-hilarious video blog, the Matilda star revealed a secret that completely explains why stage actors are always so grumpy in the morning: They live inside their own time belt, which we’ve officially named BST: Broadway Standard Time. “This morning I was up at 7 AM, which, for an actor, is like 3:30 in the morning,” Lesli kvetched. Now it all makes sense! Our original theory was vampires, but a time warp is much more plausible. It’s just a jump to the left…Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig Are Living in the PastSpeaking of time travel, have you checked out those vintage Betrayal photos of Rachel Weisz, Daniel Craig and Rafe Spall on Oh wait, those are from the current production? From 2013? But why are they in black and white? The show’s in color. We’ve seen Skyfall, so we know Mr. Craig is certainly in color. The only hypothesis we can make is that because Harold Pinter’s play travels backward in time, the poor trio has somehow gotten stuck in the ‘60s and can’t get out. Give our regards to Tracy Turnblad.Kristin Chenoweth Is Popular…in PrisonLast week, you voted Kristin Chenoweth the most popular witch in Oz (at least more popular than Idina—sorry, girl!). This week, we’ve discovered Kristin’s not only a draw among us Broadway folks, but prison inmates are also totally into her. On The Tonight Show, Chenoweth told Jay Leno that the last time she did her “fist in the mouth” trick on his show, she got a lot of fan mail from convicts. She also talked about Idina’s marriage and lamented the fact that she’s still single. Kristin, don’t worry. One of your prison pen pals will be happy to marry you—just don’t swallow the ring!Jeremy Jordan Sold His Soul to Alan MenkenNewsies hunk Jeremy Jordan spent almost a year selling papes on Broadway, but it sounds like he sold something else to the show’s composer. “I still owe Alan Menken a couple favors, so I decided to show up and sing one of his songs. Now I only owe him one,” Jordan ominously said at this week’s Dramatists Guild Fund Gala. “I’m not gonna tell you what kind of favor that is.” Wait, Jeremy, does Alan Menken keep your voice in a shell around his neck? Does he only let it out for galas and Smash reunions?Karen Walker and Ron Swanson Are Coming to NYCGet a martini and some Lagavulin on the rocks ready, because two of our favorite boozy TV characters, Karen Walker and Ron Swanson, are heading off-Broadway. OK, fine, it’s their real-life counterparts, Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman, who, on top of being completely awesome, just happen to be married. In the New Group’s Annapurna, they’ll step out of the box and play an estranged married couple, and we can’t wait to see them on stage together. It doesn’t make up for the mysterious disappearance of Parks and Rec, but it sure helps.Annaleigh Ashford Will Have What She’s HavingThere’s a first time for everything: your first kiss, your first date, and of course, your first on-screen sex scene. Kinky Boots star Annaleigh Ashford had her first TV tryst on Masters of Sex, and she bravely recounted every detail, from the tequila shots to the doggy style, in the newest issue of Elle. How did she learn to fake it so well? Meg Ryan, of course! “I had to watch When Harry Met Sally a couple of times,” she admits. Wait, that’s what that scene was about?! We thought it was just a really, really good sandwich! #scarredforlifeTovah Feldshuh Has Amazing GenesIt takes a special kind of middle-aged woman to be able to throw off her inhibitions (and most of her clothes) and swing in the air in front of an audience—and as we’ve discovered in the last few weeks, new Pippin star Tovah Feldshuh is just the brave lady for the job. Where does she get her youthful spirit? From her mom! “[She’s] going to be 103 years old next April 18,” Feldshuh told us, and she owes her long, happy life to “laughter and chocolate on a daily basis.” You heard it here first, folks: peanut butter cups are the key to eternal youth.Audra McDonald Is Fearless (Carrie Underwood, Not So Much)This December, the hills will be alive with the sound of Carrie Underwood! Yep, the American Idol champ is taking on the role of Maria in the NBC broadcast of The Sound of Music, and she’s—gulp—doing it live. Is she scared? “This is definitely a challenge for all of us,” she said. Well, almost all of us. “It doesn’t scare me,” said five-time Tony-winning Broadway superstar Audra McDonald, who we approximate has performed live at least 85 gagillion times over the course of her career. Damn! Who’s your Momma (Abbess), Carrie? View Commentslast_img read more