Really Rosie

Weston Playhouse’s Young Company performs the family show in the afternoon, the cabarets at night and is in the Main Stage musical. This year they are doing Really Rosie, a delightful production that is truly for the entire   family. Watching the young actors interact with the children in the audience before and during the show is one of the many pleasures  of the performance.

The songs  and dances in Really Rosie engage every member of the audience young or old. The production goes until July 9 so calling or clicking of the company’s website quickly is a good idea.

Click below to listen to The Young Company talk about their work on Really Rosie.

Click below for the website

Weston Playhouse







Measure for Measure – Riggs Theatre 37

The Austen Riggs Theatre 37 is presenting Measure for Measure, May 22 through May 28 at 7:30 pm in their intimate theatre at 37 Main Street, Stockbridge Massachusetts. Kevin Coleman, Director of Education at Shakespeare and Company, has  been directing two plays a year at Austen Riggs for over twenty-five years. The theatre’s  May production is a Shakespeare play. Measure for Measure is a play that is not done as frequently as some of Shakespeare’s more familiar plays. Kevin talked about the production with us, providing  fresh insights into the play. You can listen to Kevin by clicking on the link below. For tickets to the play, call  (413) 298 5519 Ext 5606.

Measure for Measure-Kevin Coleman


Kevin Coleman at Austen Riggs in rehearsal


Austen Riggs Lavender Door Theatre

National Endowment for the Arts

nea-logoThe new President has said that he might eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts, The National Endowment for Humanities and funding for the Corporation for  Public Broadcasting. Various estimates indicate that the National Endowment for the Arts is .0004 percent of the federal budget. That is approximately 148 million dollars. The cost of one bomber is estimated to be 564 million dollars.

Founded by Co     ngress in 1965, the NEA funds projects in all of the arts, including theatre, dance, music, literature, the visual arts, and film. They support educational programs in the arts and museum programs.  Forty percent of all NEA funding goes to the state arts agencies and regional arts organizations.

img_cast_peterson-150x150To gain some perspective on the work of the National Endowment for the Arts, we spoke with Eric Peterson, Artistic Producing Director of Oldcastle Theatre and a past president of Vermont’s Council of the Arts.


Click below to hear the discussion.

National Endowment for the Arts Part 1

National Endowment for the Arts Part 2

National Endowment for the Arts Part 3

National Endowment for the Arts Part 4

Click below for the National Endowment of the Arts web site.
The National Endowment for the Arts

The Girls Ensemble

girls-ensembleboswam2Most of the theatres in our area offer young people opportunities to explore issues important to them and experience the joys of creativity. WAM Theatre, “where arts and activism meet,” has a program for adolescent girls, 13 to 18 years old. where they can address their concerns while learning dramatic skills and devising their own theatrical productions. This is a collaborative process that uses improvisation, games, movement, brainstorming, writing  and more to create original material for performance.

To learn more about this unique program, Bob and I talked with Alicia Maher, Education Co-ordinator and Barby Cardillo, Education Outreach and Teaching Artist. Girls come from many different schools in the area. Auditions are  December 10 and the performance will be February 17, 7:30 pm  at The Tina Packer Theatre at Shakespeare and Company. The theme for last year’s production was Miss Labeled. This year’s theme will be decided by the girls themselves as they talk and work together.

Click the link below to listen to Barby and Alicia.

Barby Cardillo and Alicia Maher











Click on the link below to find out about the Decenber auditions.

Girls Ensemble Audition

Weston Young Company 2016


Each summer the Weston Playhouse selects a Young Company by auditioning students from selected schools with musical theatre programs. Bob and I enjoy interviewing them and seeing them perform, first in the family show and then in the cabarets and in the major musical productions. We are always impressed by their talent and energy and enthusiasm.

We had the pleasure of seeing them in School House Rock in their first performance with the theatre filled with children, ranging in age, but completely engaged as the actors involved them in the action. Having enjoyed the cartoons, it was magical seeing them come to life.  The show runs from June 23 to July 10.Schoolhouse Rock Live!

Tuesdays and Thursdays, there are performances at 1:00 and 4:00 pm and 3:00 pm on Sundays. You don’t need to have a child  escort, but if you have children or visiting grandchildren, you will all have a great time.                                                                                                                                                                             Weston Young Company Interview


 Adjective Unpacking
Adjective Unpacking

 Interplanet Janet

Interplanet Janet


Conjunction Junction
All Watching TV


Barrington Stage Education Programs

Tim Pare and Jane O’Leary

As educators, as well as theatre goers, we know how important theatre can be for young people as they develop. The importance of the arts generally has been underrated by some educational policy makers. However, as we have interviewed theatre companies that  offer educational programs of different kinds to children and young adults,  we have seen how significant and important they are.  Having  heard generally  about the theatre programs Barrington Stage offers, we wanted more details. We were fortunate to interview Tim Pare and Jane O’Leary, the Director and Associate Director of the rich variety of programs available to young people in the Pittsfield and North Adams areas.  Tim and Jane provide an updated account of the programs, some of which are shown in  videos that were available on youtube.

Interview with Tim and Jane


Kids Act


Playwrights Mentoring Project






Action Theatre Conservatory

ATC-logo-15Our daughter-in-law, Maren is an actress, director and teacher. She has done all three at the Action Theatre Conservatory in Clifton New Jersey, as well as at other places. One of our fondest memories is when Maren directed the Scottish play, with the co-founders of Action Theatre Conservatory, Joel Robertson and Kathleen Kellaigh, as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Our son Paul was Duncan and Macduff, our younger granddaughter, Marnie, who was ten or eleven at the time, played Macduff’s son and our older granddaughter, Kate, was the stage manager. The production was excellent.

Currently, Maren is being directed by Kathleen, in a production of Cabaret where she plays Fraulein Schneider. We are expecting rave reviews. 13029653_10153639220008723_415483109517636323_o10509770_10153601575768723_6991619946628868846_n









Last year we interviewed Maren about the Action Theatre Conservatory. The year before we interviewed Joel Robertson, who was in Kiss me Kate  at Barrington Stage about that production and about ATC.

Interview with Maren

Interview with Joel Robertson Part 1

Interview with Joel Robertson Part 2


Action Theatre Conservatory

The Glass Menagerie

glassmenageriewebThe Glass Menagerie is one of Tennessee Williams’ most memorable  and frequently performed plays. Set in the 1930s, it is the story of a family in transition. Although the circumstances may be specific to a time and place, the relationships are universal. Often categorized as a memory play, it is narrated by Tom, remembering his sister and mother at a crucial moment in the family’s history.

Christine Decker, the director, has a long relationship with the play. Early in her acting career at Oldcastle Theatre she played Laura, the shy daughter.  Later she played Amanda, Tom  and Laura’s mother.

The Mount Anthony Union High School Drama Club offers a wide variety of plays, performing American classics such as last year’s production of Arthur Miller’s  All My Sons along with musicals like The Adams Family.  Different casts will play on alternate nights from April 13 through April 16 at 7 pm at the Oldcastle Theatre on Main Street in Bennington.

Interview with Christine Decker Part 1

Interview with Christine Decker Part 2


img_cast_decker-150x150 (1)
Christine Decker
Tennessee Williams



Shakespeare and Company’s Educational Programs

teacher-ongrass-1Besides the Fall Festival, which Kevin  Coleman has talked about in the past,  Shakespeare and Company has a number of other educational programs for students in elementary and middle schools. Kevin Coleman and Lezlie Lee talked with us about them and what the experience for the children is. They also touched on the company’s court diversion program, The Riotous Youth summer program and the Teacher Education program. There wasn’t enough time to go into all the programs in the detail that we would have liked. However, we will have them back at some point to talk further about each of these programs.

Shakespeare and Company Educational Programs Part 1

Shakespeare and Company Educational Programs Part 2


Riotous Youth in Class
Riotous Youth in Class
Riotous Youth Ready to Perform
Riotous Youth Ready to Perform








Shakespeare in the Courts
Shakespeare in the Courts
Teacher Education Program Sword Play Class





Shakespeare and Company at Hudson Valley Community College 2014

Riggs Theatre 37

Kevin Coleman at Riggs Theatre 37
Kevin Coleman at Riggs Theatre 37

The Austen Riggs Psychiatric Center has an activities program that includes arts, crafts and drama. Set up in 1954 by Joan Erikson, wife of Erik Erikson who was on the staff at the Center, the program recognizes how valuable the arts are in people’s lives. Kevin Coleman, the Educational Director at Shakespeare and Company, is also the director of Riggs Theatre 37 which offers classes, in house performances and theatrical productions.  These productions, which are open to the public, take place at the Lavender Door in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. The theatre seats 75 people.

Their upcoming production is a Feydeau farce, The Patsy. The performances are from December 15 to December 23 at 7:30 pm at The Lavender Theatre. Kevin talked to us about the production as well as his work at Austen Riggs.

Riggs Theatre 37 Part 1

Riggs Theatre 37 Part 2
Riggs Theatre-jp