Thursday, June 25, 2009

Opening in less than a month!

Here at Quincy Community Theatre we are very excited about Mel Brooks’ “The Producers” opening in just under a month now.  This is the largest show QCT will have ever done.  You may say, how is this possible when QCT has done shows like, “Beauty and the Beast” and “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat”?  Well to answer that question you will have to come and see all the elaborate sets and costumes, the massive amount of dancing, the superior sound of the music and the extraordinary talent of the performers.  This show contains over 100 costumes, over 50 set pieces, fun special effects, 19 unforgettable songs and laughter the old fashioned Mel Brooks way.  “The Producers” was Mel Brooks’ first feature film in 1968 starring Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder.  Audiences fell in love with “The Producers” once again in 2001 when it was adapted to the stage as a Broadway Musical.  On Broadway “The Producers” ran for 2,502 performances and won a record-breaking 12 Tony Awards.  Whether you enjoy musicals or not, this is one show you do not want to miss!  The only way you won’t like Mel Brooks’ “The Producers” is if you don’t enjoy laughing.

 

As Carmen says in the show…

“People want laughter when they see a show, the last thing they’re after’s a litany of woe.”

 

“Comedy’s joyous, a constant delight, drama’s annoy us … and ruin our night.”


video

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Choosing a season!

Choosing a season for Quincy Community Theatre is a difficult task and not one that can be done alone.  Many people think that I, Dominic Cattero, sit in a room and choose the shows.  That is not the case.  There is a committee of community members who sit, read and discuss scripts for seven months looking for a well-balanced season.  This committee then reaches a decision by late July.  This decision is a difficult one and must take many things into consideration.  Therefore, the committee looks for a well balanced season including; audience appeal, shows that will challenge our volunteers, designers and directors, a show option for every age range and gender, shows which are financially doable and shows which are available and for which we can obtain rights.  That being said there is not one show in the world that reaches all of those criteria.  That is why QCT produces 7 shows each year.  Our hope is that in any given season there is a show for everyone.  The play reading committee's job is on of the most difficult at QCT.

 

Right now our play reading committee is in the final stages of this process and creating a truly well rounded season.  I look forward to sharing it with everyone in August.


Please feel free to leave a post of shows you would like us to consider in the future.

 

Dominic Cattero

Managing Artistic Director

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Arts Education - It's your carrots and peas

Arts Action Alert - Take Action Now!
Dear Dominic:
 Today, for the first time in 11 years, the federal government 
released a national report card on achievement in the arts 
among 8th graders.  This long-awaited report finds that 
since 1997, our nation's students have not made 
significant progress in developing their skills and knowledge 
(NAEP) in the Arts report is the only continuing, national 
measure of academic achievement in America's schools. 
 
A nationally representative sample of over 7,900 eighth grade 
students from public and private schools participated in the NAEP 
Arts Assessment in 2008. Students were measured on their ability 
to create and respond to the visual arts; whereas, the study scaled
 back on music questions and only measured a student's ability 
to respond and identify music.  Unfortunately, theatre and dance 
skills were not assessed at all due to budgetary and data 
collection constraints, according to the National Center for 
Education Statistics.
 
As reported today in the New York TimesChristian Science 
Monitorand USAToday, the findings are "mediocre," "lackluster," 
and "may make America's arts instructors kind of blue."  
Not a great report card.  However, new U.S. Secretary of Education 
Arne Duncan gave a strong reaction in support of arts education, 
"This Arts Report Card should challenge all of us to make K-12 
arts programs more available to America's children ...
We can and should do better for America's students."
 
As you may know, Americans for the Arts has been leading a 
national effort to increase federal funding and to strengthen the 
role of the arts in the classroom through legislative efforts in 
Congress.  We have published a set of legislative 
recommendations that calls for changes to the problematic 
No Child Left Behind Act. Our schools need greater support
for arts education - take two minutes to send a message to 
your Congressional delegation, please visit our E-Advocacy Center.
 
The Arts. Ask for More.To raise awareness of the
importance of arts education, 
we have also been leading, 
along with The Ad Council, 
the NAMM Foundation and 
hundreds of local, state, 
and national campaign 
partners, a public service awareness campaign 
titled, "The Arts. Ask For More." currently airing on radio 
and television and appearing in print media.  
In the television and radio ads, the arts are equated with a 
healthy diet; just like kids need healthy foods on a daily basis, 
kids need their daily serving of the arts. Included in the campaign 
is a list of "10 Simple Ways," detailing how parents can get 
involved in their child's arts education.
 
Please take action on this important education effort by 
heard.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Preparing "The Producers" - Team work

Every show a director and his team work on presents its own series of special circumstances and it is this team's responsibility to find solutions to these unique specialties.  


How do we make this show fit in our space? 

Who are the people that play these characters?  

How do we do the scene changes so they don't last for five minutes?  

How do we make this show fit in our budget?  

Where are the specialty props coming from?  

Where do we get the time to alter 160 costumes?  

Why did the playwright put a set in the show that is used only once for five minutes but will be the most expensive set in the show to build?  

And on they go …

 

With "The Producers" there are probably triple the amount of these happy showisms to solve.  Some of the puzzles we have already solved.  "Alright, we have a great cast!"  With arrival of each solution comes a sense of relief to the entire team; the reason for this is that now they can focus their energy on one of the other challenges presented by the show.  Our process as a team will continue on in this perpetual - identify the challenge, find the solution, move on to the next, identify the challenge, find the solution, move on to the next, - until we reach opening night.  Some might find this process stressful; those people shouldn't go on to jobs in theatre.  I find it exhilarating!  To accomplish that common goal on opening night, have all the answers figured out and create your own piece of art as a team- nothing beats that high as the curtain rises for the opening.  I do stress the "as a team" statement in the prior sentence, because without that team your piece of art would be a fraction of what it could have been.  Listening and collaborating are the keys to any great piece of theatre.  I believe that I have the best professional artistic team working in theatre and I look forward to each journey we take.  

Now I must go, writing this blog was only code for procrastinating on "finding the solution."

Friday, June 5, 2009

Blog Introduction

Welcome to the new blog portion of the Quincy Community Theatre website.  I am hoping for this blog to be an interactive way for patrons and volunteers to directly interact with Quincy Community Theatre.  Have a question about one of the programs we offer?  Want information on how the theatre is run?  Want to know the behind the scenes tricks to some of the magic you see on stage?  Well ask away!  You might even have a comment on a past show you saw at QCT, post it here.  There are endless opportunities as to what can be talked about on this blog.  Please keep your blogs polite, any posts that are deemed hurtful or aggressive will find their way to the cutting room floor.  That being said, all posts which are constructive, whether complimentary or not, will make it to the blog. 

So let the blogging begin!  If it's on your mind it's probably on another persons as well.

Dominic Cattero
Managing Artistic Director