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The Heidi Chronicles, Starring Elisabeth Moss, Confirms B’way Theater

first_img Star Files Show Closed This production ended its run on May 3, 2015 Related Shows Bryce Pinkham Elisabeth Moss has found her Broadway home! The previously reported revival of Wendy Wasserstein’s The Heidi Chronicles, led by the Mad Men star along with Jason Biggs and Bryce Pinkham, will play at the Music Box Theatre. The production, directed by Pam MacKinnon, will begin performances February 23, 2015 and officially open on March 19.The Heidi Chronicles won both the Tony and the Pulitzer in 1989. This is the first revival since the original production shuttered in 1990. The show spans over 20 years, following Heidi Holland (Moss) from high school to her career as an art historian and how she copes with feminisim, men, politics and motherhood.The production will also feature Tracee Chimo, with additional casting to be announced later. View Comments The Heidi Chronicleslast_img read more

Broadway Grosses: The Great White Way Ends 2014 on a High, Belted Note

first_img FRONTRUNNERS (By Capacity) 1. The Elephant Man (102.78%) 2. The Book of Mormon (102.63%)*** 3. The River (101.99%) 4. Once (101.61%) 5. A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (101.03%) Source: The Broadway League View Comments UNDERDOGS (By Gross) 5. This Is Our Youth ($569,187)*** 4. Constellations ($478,445)* 3. The Real Thing ($462,361)**** 2. Honeymoon in Vegas ($409,674)* 1. Disgraced ($386,752) *Number based on eight preview performances **Number based on twelve regular performances ***Number based on nine regular performances ****Number based on seven special performances UNDERDOGS (By Capacity) 5. Honeymoon in Vegas (82.72%)* 4. Disgraced (78.12%) 3. You Can’t Take It With You (77.83%) 2. On the Town (74.75%) 1. The Temptations and the Four Tops (74.70%)**** Here’s a look at who was on top—and who was not—for the week ending January 4: It was a stellar week to end a stellar year on the Great White Way. 2014 marked the best attended and highest-grossing calendar year for Broadway, as 13.13 million theatergoers brought in $1.362 billion. The past two weeks marked the highest-grossing and attended Christmas and New Year’s weeks in history. For the week ending January 4, 19 shows hit seven figures, including the 2014 Tony winner A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (bringing in $1,011,822). The tuner first joined the millionaires club the week before. Other hits to celebrate milestones included Wicked, which set an industry record for the highest-grossing eight-performance week with $2,740,642, as well as The Book of Mormon, Aladdin, The Elephant Man and The Lion King, which all broke their respective venue’s house record. For the second consecutive year, The Lion King took top honors as the highest-grossing show of the year. Meanwhile, the Keke Palmer and NeNe Leakes-led Cinderella bid farewell to the Broadway ball on January 3, but not before seeing its highest-grossing week of its almost two-year run. Additional shows to take final bows over the holiday week were Once, Pippin, Side Show, This Is Our Youth and The Real Thing.  FRONTRUNNERS (By Gross) 1. Wicked ($2,740,642) 2. The Lion King ($2,514,994) 3. The Book of Mormon ($2,224,280)*** 4. The Illusionists: Witness the Impossible ($2,217,405)** 5. Cinderella ($1,873,246)***last_img read more

Five Surprising Facts About New On the Town Star Misty Copeland

first_img4. A commercial put her on the mapDespite being a superstar in the ballet world, Copeland’s career exploded in 2014 when she became a spokeswoman (spokesdancer?) for Under Armour. In an ad campaign that paid far more than her ballet salary, Copeland dances up a storm as a voiceover reads a rejection letter she recieved as a young girl. #inspiration 3. Prince pushed her to succeedWhen she recieved an out-of-the-blue phone call from Grammy-winning pop star Prince in 2009, Copeland was shocked. “I was literally still waking up,” she told New York magazine. “What? Prince who?” The next day, the ballerina flew to L.A. to star in Prince’s music video “Crimson and Clover” and went on tour with him. Hey, it’s always nice to have a guy in crushed purple velvet looking out for you! Big news, sailors! Misty Copeland, who was just named the first-ever African-American female principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre, will make her Broadway debut as Ivy in On the Town beginning August 26. While the stunning ballerina is all grace and poise on stage, Copeland is a tough-as-nails dancer who has risen to the top in the cutthroat world of professional ballet, and her life is even more fascinating than the movie Black Swan. From growing up in a motel to secretly dancing on a broken leg, Copeland’s life is just begging to be made into a movie. Check out the five most surprising facts we learned about On the Town’s new Miss Turnstiles. 2. Ballet tore her family apartWhen Copeland was 15, she was caught in the middle of a custody battle between her dance teachers and her mother. While her instructors Cynthia and Patrick Bradley tried to nurture her ballet career and provide her with a stable family life, Copeland’s mother wanted to pull her out of ballet altogether. Copeland ran away and attempted to emancipate herself, but after going to trial, was returned to the care of her mother. View Comments 5. Broken bones won’t stop herAfter being cast in The Firebird at the Metropolitan Opera House, Copeland began to feel pain in her left leg. Determined to make it to opening night, the ballerina ignored her pain and didn’t tell anyone she was suffering. After the performance, she was diagnosed with six stress fractures in her tibia. Something tells us this new Broadway star won’t be calling out sick when she gets the sniffles.center_img 1. She grew up in a motelUnlike her On the Town predecessor Megan Fairchild, Copeland wasn’t groomed to become a ballerina from a young age. She grew up sharing a tiny room at the Sunset Inn with her mother and five siblings in Gardena, CA. When she began taking formal lessons at age 13, she practiced using the motel’s metal railing as a ballet barre. On the Town Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on Sept. 6, 2015last_img read more

Get a Sneak Peek at Kristin Chenoweth’s The Art of Elegance

first_img Star Files View Comments Kristin Chenoweth Rejoicify, theater fans! As previously announced, Kristin Chenoweth will release her new album, The Art of Elegance, on September 23. (Wicked super fans can also enjoy Idina Menzel’s idina., which drops on the same day.) The Tony winner recently offered an inside look into the recording studio, talking through her song selections and discussing how her voice, both on and offstage, has changed throughout her career. “This [album] is me,” she said. A few of the standards to look forward to on the pocket diva’s record include Frank Sinatra’s “I’m a Fool to Want You” and Hoagy Carmichael and Johnny Mercer’s “Skylark.” Take a look and a listen below!center_img Take an intimate look at #TheArtOfElegance… Delighted to take you behind the scenes!— Kristin Chenoweth (@KChenoweth) August 24, 2016 Kristin Chenowethlast_img read more

Marie and Rosetta Will Extend Off-Broadway

first_img Show Closed This production ended its run on Oct. 16, 2016 Marie and Rosetta Related Shows View Commentscenter_img Music to our ears! The world premiere of George Brant’s play with music, Marie and Rosetta, will extend off-Broadway through October 16; it had previously been set to shutter on October 2. Directed by Neil Pepe and starring Rebecca Naomi Jones and Kecia Lewis, the production is playing at Atlantic Theater Company’s Linda Gross Theater.A huge influence on Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles and Jimi Hendrix, Sister Rosetta Tharpe (Lewis) was a legend in her time, bringing fierce guitar-playing and swing to gospel music. Tharpe was the queen of “race records” in the 30’s and 40’s, a woman who played guitar as passionately as Clapton, who performed mornings at churches and evenings at the Cotton Club, who was a big enough star to fill a baseball stadium for her third wedding, but ended up buried in an unmarked grave in Philadelphia. Marie and Rosetta chronicles Sister Rosetta’s first rehearsal with a young protégée, Marie Knight (Jones), as they prepare to embark on a tour that would establish them as one of the great duet teams in musical history.Marie and Rosetta features scenic design by Riccardo Hernández, costume design by Dede Ayite, lighting design by Christopher Akerlind, sound design by Steve Canyon Kennedy and music direction by Jason Michael Webb. Rebecca Naomi Jones & Kecia Lewis in ‘Marie and Rosetta'(Photo: Ahron R. Foster)last_img read more

Why B’way Audiences Should Head Uptown for the Met’s New Season

first_imgEric Owens & Susanna Phillips in ‘L’Amour de Loin,’ Anna Netrebko in ‘Eugene Onegin,’ Renée Fleming in ‘Der Rosenkavalier’ & Sonya Yoncheva in ‘La Traviata'(Photos: Kristian Schuller & Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera) L’Amour de Loin – Begins December 1L’Amour de Loin, the first opera from Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho, will be the Met’s first opera composed by a woman since 1903. Conductor Susanna Mälkki will make her highly-anticipated Met debut with the 2000 piece, about a knight and his faraway lover, separated by the sea, their own idealized perceptions of each other. The Met rarely produces work as contemporary as this, making it a solid pick for both opera aficionados and adventurous theatergoers.Other picks deviating from the norm in this year’s roster include Idomeneo, one of Mozart’s earliest works, and Fidelio, Beethoven’s only opera.The Metropolitan Opera’s complete 2016-17 season is as follows:Tristan und Isolde – Begins September 26Don Giovanni – Begins September 27La Bohème – Begins September 28L’Italiana in Algeri – Begins October 4Guillaume Tell – Begins October 18Jenůfa – Begins October 28Aida – Begins November 5Manon Lescaut – Begins November 14L’amour de Loin – Begins December 1Salome – Begins December 5Nabucco – Begins December 12The Magic Flute – Begins December 20Roméo et Juliette – Begins December 31Il Barbiere di Siviglia – Begins January 9Carmen – Begins January 19Rigoletto – Begins January 20Rusalka – Begins February 2I Puritani – Begins February 10Werther – Begins February 16La Traviata – Begins February 24Idomeneo – Begins March 6Fidelio – Begins March 16Eugene Onegin – Begins March 30Der Rosenkavalier – Begins April 13Der Fliegende Holländer – Begins April 25Cyrano de Bergerac – Begins May 2 Rusalka – Begins February 2Following her productions of Lucia di Lammermoor and La Sonambula at the Met, Tony winner Mary Zimmerman will direct a new production of Dvořák’s fantasy, premiering in February 2017. Zimmerman reunites with her longtime costume designer Mara Blumenfeld, whose concepts evoke a blend fanciful and natural: think water lilies trailing down gowns. The opera tells the tale of a water sprite who gives up her voice to be with a prince on land. Latvian soprano Kristīne Opolais, who opened last year’s new production of Manon Lescaut, takes on the title role and the haunting aria “Song to the Moon.” It’s the “Part of Your World” of arias.Sher’s production of Il Barbiere di Siviglia also returns to the Met this year, as do two more productions with Broadway names at the helm: Julie Taymor’s holiday presentation of The Magic Flute and Michael Mayer’s Vegas-set Rigoletto.Witness La DivaManon Lescaut – Begins November 14Anna Netrebko recently donned wings for her new album cover straight out of Westeros, and this fall, the world-renown soprano flies back to New York to sing the title role in Puccini’s romantic tragedy. For a soprano who sports wings, it’s an appropriate role: Manon transforms from a quiet country girl to Paris starlet to a disease-ridden desert vagrant (all while singingly flawlessly, of course). The visually stunning production places the action in a film noir-era France, replete with beautiful 1940s outfits and a grand-staircase-turned-wasteland. Opolais, who opened the Richard Eyre staging last year, will reprise her role for a few performances as well. Der Rosenkavalier – Begins April 13Renée Fleming will headline the Met’s new production of Strauss’ opera. Joining her in Robert Carsen’s opulent staging are Elīna Garanča and Matthew Polenzani; both received thunderous ovations in last season’s Roberto Devereux. The aristocratic Marschallin has become a signature role of Fleming’s, and it could be one of the last in her illustrious opera career. Fleming has gone on record to say this will be her last major opera appearance, so if you have not yet seen La Diva in action, this is your chance.Looking for more divas? Netrebko will also reprise another signature role centered on transformation, Tatiana in Eugene Onegin this season. After opening the new Roméo et Juliette, Damrau will show off her vocal fireworks in I Puritani, featuring one of the most well-known bel canto mad scenes. Two stunning sopranos—Sonya Yoncheva and Carmen Giannattasio—will take on one of opera’s greatest heroines in La Traviata.Going Against the GrainGuillaume Tell – Begins October 18Many operas can claim at least one tune that rises to notoriety, thanks to the likes of Bugs Bunny, The Fifth Element and Hey Arnold. Such is the case for Rossini’s approach to William Tell, featuring the ubiquitous overture that’s transcended the opera itself. The new staging, a co-production with Dutch National Opera, marks the first time Rossini’s final work has taken the Met stage in over 80 years. Waiting just beyond the familiar overture is an four-and-a-half-hour quest for liberty.center_img The Metropolitan Opera’s 2016-17 season opens on September 26 with a new production of Tristan und Isolde. Wagner’s romantic epic kicks off a lineup of six premiere productions and 20 returning stagings, ranging from perennial favorites to new, exciting experiences. This year’s roster—the Met’s 50th at Lincoln Center—includes the familiar ABC’s (Aida, La Bohème and Carmen), as well as the following operas that Broadway audiences should keep an eye on. Whether you’re a Lincoln Center regular or someone who usually stays between 41st and 52nd Street, here are a few titles to consider.Broadway Directors Head UptownRoméo et Juliette – Begins December 31Tony winner Bartlett Sher returns to the Met to ring in the New Year with his production of Gounod’s take on the iconic tragedy. (Last year, he tackled another Shakespearean opera: Otello.) Taking center stage as the star-crossed lovers are a lineup of superstar singers, beginning with Diana Damrau and Vittorio Grigolo. The two have a proven, electric energy, as seen on the Met stage previously in Manon. Sher transports the story to 18th-century Italy, inspired by Fellini’s Casanova. View Commentslast_img read more

Cats’ Christine Cornish Smith on Her Dream Jellicle Date & More

first_img Age: 25Hometown: Dallas, TXCurrent Role: Christine Cornish Smith is making her Broadway debut in Cats as flirtatious feline Bombalurina.Stage Cred: Cornish Smith appeared in the national tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Her regional credits include Oklahoma!, A Chorus Line, Guys and Dolls, Victor/Victoria and Fiorello!. She has appeared as a principal dancer with the Dallas Metropolitan Ballet and as a lead vocalist with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic. View Comments Show Closed This production ended its run on Dec. 30, 2017 Catscenter_img Related Shows Christine Cornish Smith photographed at The Copacabana NYC(Photo: Caitlin McNaney)last_img read more

Pine Seedling ‘Shortage’

first_imgIn most nurseries, you’ll hear babies crying. But adults may be crying this fall — after theylearn that pine nurseries have sold out of their seedling trees.”Our nurseries produced about the same number of seedlings for this year asnormal,” said David Moorhead, a forest regeneration specialist with the University ofGeorgia Extension Service. “But landowners need more than that.”Moorhead said it’s not so much a seedling shortage as a demand overage. But the effectis the same. People planning to plant pine trees need to order their seedlings as soon asthey can. Georgia landowners plant about 300,000 acres of pine trees annually — more than anyother state. That helps contribute to the $16.2 billion economic impact of forestry andforestry products in Georgia.”Adverse weather over the past two or three years was just one factor that keptGeorgia farmers from planting as many trees as they usually do,” he said. They’retrying to catch up now. Nurseries plant enough seeds in March and April to cover expected demand for the nexttree-planting season. Georgia landowners plant pine seedlings from November to March.In a typical year, farmers plant 600 to 700 seedlings per acre. That creates a Georgiademand of about 195 million seedlings. But landowners will order more than that.Most farmers order 5 percent to 10 percent more than they expect to plant. “Thisallows them to cull the seedlings and plant the best of them,” Moorhead said.”So they order a little extra.”After adding in the extras for “insurance” and those to make up for acres notplanted in 1994 or 1995, Georgians’ demand for pine seedlings will far outnumber thesupply.Many people order seedlings from private nurseries or their state forestry commissionin early- or mid-fall. But Moorhead said those who wait will likely be disappointed. “Many of the 200 million seedlings planted for the 1996-1997 planting season arealready spoken for,” he said. “Nurseries grew some under contract. Others aresecured by order reservations.”Based on a high demand this year, many nurseries may increase the number of seedlingsthey start for the ’97-’98 season. Across the South, laws require most state-run pine nurseries to sell seedlings tolandowners in their home states first. Moorhead said Georgia farmers looking for seedlingsin Mississippi or Alabama will find the nurseries can’t sell to them yet or havealready run out of seedlings.”Even if farmers can find pine seedlings out-of-state, they need to make sure thevariety they buy can grow well where they want to plant them,” he said. “It’s no use paying top dollarfor out-of-state seedlings that are just going to die a year after they’ve been planted.”Fortunately, homeowners looking for ornamental pines for their landscapes can stillfind plenty in nurseries.Moorhead said Georgia pine farmers cut nearly 500,000 more acres than they plant everyyear. “Some find it’s more profitable to grow an annual row crop or convert that land touses other than pine forests,” he said. Others let the forest regenerate naturally,with a mix of pine and hardwood trees. But you have to look at the forest, not just the trees.”The 20- to 30-year maturation time of pines helps even out a drop in plantings inone year,” Moorhead said. “So it won’t make a great impact on forestry production levels.”last_img read more

Dry winter ahead

first_imgPaz said two climate scenarios are possible for this fall and winter. If a La Niña forms in the next few months, the Southeast will likely have a warm, dry fall and winter. But if the Pacific Ocean remains in the neutral phase, the result would be rainfall and temperature patterns close to normal. “Each agricultural group I meet with has its own set of concerns,” he said. “And lately, they center around the drought.” Despite the onset of what the SECC calls the “convective rainy season,” rainfall totals for the year remain below average except for in isolated areas, such as parts of central Georgia. The southwest corner of Georgia, around Seminole and Decatur counties, has been dry, too. The drought caused an increase in late planting, and these crops will need ample rain well into September. Paz is one of a team of scientists involved in the Southeast Climate Consortium, which tracks and predicts how the climate will affect crops and farmers in Georgia, Florida and Alabama. “If a La Niña does form in the Pacific Ocean in the next few months, it’s known to increase the likelihood of a warm and dry fall and winter in the Southeast,” he said. “Drier-than-normal conditions this fall and winter will make things really hard for farmers who’ll be harvesting peanuts in September and October.” Colder-than-normal surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific and the greater extent of deeper cool water are signs that it’s “as likely as not that a full La Niña will develop sometime this fall,” he said. Rainfall in western Georgia, northern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle still lags behind. These areas remain in a drought ranging from severe to exceptional, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. “A La Niña is likely to happen this fall, and if it does, we’ll be in deep trouble,” Paz said. “Our rainfall level is already down 20 inches in some areas of the state.”center_img “A winter season with near-normal rainfall would go a long way toward easing drought conditions in Alabama and Georgia,” Paz said. By Sharon OmahenUniversity of GeorgiaThe crowd of Georgia peanut shellers gasped at Joel Paz’s presentation. The slides weren’t gory, but the information was scary nonetheless. Peanut shellers don’t want to hear that the state’s rain deficit will likely continue into the fall. “The shellers are really concerned over the quantity and quality of the peanuts they’ll get this year,” said Paz, an agrometeorologist with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “Pasture conditions have improved slightly in northeast and central Georgia,” he said. “But a dry August and September could be stressful to forage crops and grazing herds.” On July 31, the U.S. Department of Agriculture declared 36 percent of Georgia’s corn crop and 40 percent of the state’s hay crop to be in “very poor to poor condition.” Summer afternoon thundershowers brought some beneficial rainfall to the Southeast. Tropical storm Barry was the first to bring relief to the drought-stricken Southeast on June 2, Paz said. Barry came ashore in the Big Bend of Florida and brought welcome, widespread rainfall to eastern and southern parts of Georgia and most of Florida. Farmers statewide would benefit from a neutral climate phase this fall and winter. The state’s extreme drought has already withered pastures to the point that farmers are desperately searching for alternatives for nonexistent or low-quality hay. See complete agricultural climate predictions at the SECC Web site ( read more

8 Turf alternatives

first_imgVolume XXXIIINumber 1Page 8 All right, you caught me. I don’t have turf in my front yard. I have a wonderful collection of weeds. My excuse is that it makes it so easy to collect samples for the weed science class I teach. I have no problem telling everyone who comes into the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension office in Athens how to take care of turf. But my own yard operates on a different motto of live and let live. Apparently, the remains of turfgrass in my yard are not listening to the first part of that particular motto. Between pruning, mulching and moving plants to their second and third locations, I have so much fun working on everything else in the yard that I don’t worry about the turf. There are good and bad aspects to my method, and I know there are many dormant weed seeds in my soil. But I need something a little less demanding in the area of maintenance.I have been considering some other options for my shaded front yard. There are some beautiful turf alternatives available if you have the right conditions. My two favorites are moss and dwarf mondo grass. A moss lawn is perfect when you have a heavily shaded yard. Moss prefers a low pH, which is rather typical in central and north Georgia due to clay soils and acidic leaf litter. Moss is also attracted to areas of low fertility, improper drainage and compaction. If you have moss growing in your yard, chances are most turfs will struggle in that particular area. I once heard another gardener say, “Embrace the moss.” A moss lawn will never need to be mowed but will need to be raked each fall. They will not tolerate heavy foot traffic so you may need to use stepping stones in well-traveled areas. Also, mixing in ferns, hostas and other shade-loving perennials will create a much different look than a struggling turf lawn.Another turf alternative is dwarf mondo grass. Dwarf mondo is an evergreen groundcover that is grassy in appearance but is actually in the lily family. Dwarf mondo matures at three inches and typically does not need to be mown. Another selling point for this groundcover is that deer typically do not munch on it like they do some other shady perennials. Dwarf mondo is typically planted using plugs since it is not available in sod form. Because of this, it is more expensive to purchase and install than traditional turf options. But it is well worth the time and money once established. When planting from plugs, know that dwarf mondo is a clumping perennial. It can take over a year for it to fill in between plugs depending on your spacing and budget.Like moss, dwarf mondo prefers shade and will burn in full sun, detracting from the lush, dark green color. If there is sun damage, this groundcover can be mown in late winter before new growth begins. So, if you, like me, have been fighting a losing battle of shade versus turf, try one of these low maintenance alternatives. Happy planting. By Amanda TedrowUniversity of Georgialast_img read more