Two photos for #ThrowbackThursday. The Good Woman of Setzchuan from Spring 2002, and the Fredonia Dance Ensemble from Spring 2006.

Fredonia TADA Scores Big at Arties

It was a great night for Fredonia theatre alums at the 24th Annual Artie Awards held on June 2, 2014 at the Town Ballroom in Buffalo NY. The Arties is Buffalo’s annual celebration of its theatre season, a time to acknowledge the contributions of actors, designers and theatre companies in the city, and also a fundraising event for the Erie County Medical Center Immunodeficiency Services. 

Here is a list of the TADA award winners and other participants in the festivities. We are very proud of all of them!

  • Tom Dudzick - Lifetime Achievement Award. Also one of the evening’s presenters.
  • Josie DiVincenzo - Outstanding Actress in a Play (Dai)
  • Steve Copps - Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson). Steve took the opportunity to announce that he and his wife Kelly are expecting their first child!
  • Tom Loughlin - Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Play (Hamlet)
  • Matt LaChuisa/Steve Brachman/Maura Nolan/Steve Copps - Outstanding Production of a Musical (Producer/Cast members Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson)
  • Tom LaChuisa - Outstanding Ensemble of a Play (Cast member A View from the Bridge). Nomination for Outstanding Actor in a Play (A View from the Bridge).
  • Michele Costa - Nomination for Supporting Actress in a Musical (Buffalo Moon)
  • Mary Ryan - Nomination for Outstanding Production of a Musical (Cast Member Into The Woods)
  • Maura Nolan - Nomination for Outstanding Ensemble of a Play (Cast Member Dog Sees God)
  • Charmagne (Hale) Chi - Nomination for Outstanding Actress in a Musical (I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change). Charmagne was also one of the evening’s gracious, witty and lovely hosts.
  • Dixon Reynolds - Nomination for Outstanding Costume Design (A Woman of No Importance)
  • Matthew LaChuisa - Nomination Emmanuel Fried Award for Outstanding New Play (Shine). Matt is a Fredonia graduate from the English Department, and he is also the founder and Artistic Director of the American Repertory Theatre of Western NY, which produced Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. He has hired several Fredonia alums to work in his theatre. We welcome him as an “honorary” TADA alum!
  • Sophie Howes, Raphael Santos, Eliza Vann - Blossom Cohan Debut Awards (recognizes all actors making their debut performances in Buffalo theatres)
  • Michael Hake served as Musical Director for the evening
  • 5-time winner Brian Riggs was one of the evening’s presenters.
  • In attendance in addition to the winners and nominees were Tina Rausa, Chris Scherr, Marisa Caruso and Sean Marciniak.

I hope I got everybody! Let us know if we missed something!

I think it’s fairly safe to say that Fredonia’s theatre program is well-represented in the city of Buffalo, and it continues to grow. Buffalo affords to our graduates not only the opportunity to grow and develop in their art, but also to work within a tremendously hard-working, supportive, and talented community of theatre artists producing excellent theatre in venues large and small. Congratulations to all the recipients, nominees and participants in this major event! Here are some pictures - hopefully more will follow.

imageJosie DiVincenzo with her award for Outstanding Actress in a Play

imageSteve Brachman, cast member in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson

imageSteve Copps accepting his award for Outstanding Actor in a Musical

Fredonia Alumni Night at GEVA Theatre in Rochester! Chair Tom Loughlin, Chair Emeritus Steve Rees, and some current students and alums gathered at GEVA’s production of The Odd Couple, where Fredonia alum Jennifer Cody has been performing as Gwendolyn Pidgeon. Hunter Foster, pictured with Chair Emeritus Steve Rees above, was also in town to see his wife perform. GEVA employs many Fredonia alum, including Katie Everdyke (Electrician/Board Op), and Scott Falkowski (Subscription Services Manager), both pictured with Prof. Loughlin lower left picture. Other alums working at GEVA include Dawn Kellogg (Communications Manager) and Kris Stengrevics (Facilities Manager). Also in attendance were current students Pablo Vasquez (junior BFA Acting) and Mark Montondo (senior BFA Musical Theatre).

Here’s a short video of the current construction process going on at the Rockefeller Arts Center for the new addition. The video shows the northwest loading dock and entrance to Marvel being demolished, the parking lot and sidewalk being torn up, fencing being installed, street lamps torn down and trees marked with orange Xs to be removed.

The 2013-14 academic year is over, but construction on the new addition to the RAC has just begun. We will try to document progress with photos and videos as the summer progresses. The north loading dock, which is the current main entrance to the Marvel Theatre, undergoes demolition, while the area is being fenced off. Prof. Loughlin has one last photo taken on the current Marvel loading dock.

The Class of 2014 on Graduation Day. It’s the last time this loading dock will be used for a class photo, as construction begins this summer on the RAC addition and the loading dock is removed. The wall has been moved to a new location outside the scene shop. Congratulations and best wishes!

Graduation Day 2014. Congratulations to the Class of 2014! Best wishes to our newest graduates and alumni!

One Last Blogpost

One last blog post for Tom Loughlin about how strange senior year was, what a truly amazing this semester has been, how I’ll miss everyone and what is happening next. Here we go.

It was a strange senior year: I was cast in The Spoon River Project at the beginning of the year. No sooner had it closed that I ended up dislocating my kneecap and spending the rest of the semester in physical therapy. Six months later though, I was going to my first stage combat workshop and I received my first recommended pass! I lost a good friend of mine this year but I know that we are leaving a better writing community here at Fredonia than what we started with. I directed, asst. stage managed, organized, performed, house managed and devised! Yes, it was a truly amazing senior year as well, especially this last semester.

One of the incredible things I got to do before I graduate was take Devising with Dr. Ivey (I hope you all saw our performance yesterday outside of Tim Hortons!). Over the semester, we developed a joke based on one of our projects, that the answer is “we don’t know”. That’s exactly how I feel right now – we don’t know but we are going to do it anyways. I don’t know what California or my job or the real world is going to be like, but I am going to go do it anyways.

What I do know is that four years in Fredonia have taught me enough that can do it anyways. More importantly, I’ve learned what kind of theatre I want to be responsible for.

All of these shows I’ve been a part of: The Spoon River Project; commedia d’ell arte, Stop the World, I Want to Get Off!; Here, And After; The Vagina Monologues; Spontaneous Productions; devising – I want to go out into that real world and I want to make theatre for an audience to experience, be become aware – theatre that speaks out. My senior capstone, The Vagina Monologues, is the show I am most proud of doing here for  those reasons. Site-specific, devised, collaborative, ensemble, combative, guerrilla, street, invisible – if it wasn’t for Fredonia, I would have never been exposed all these forms of theatre and now, I want to do the same.

What else have I learned? Tell Tom thank you– he’s sitting in his office right now and he would LOVE to sign all your papers and discuss life. Take a class with Dr. Ivey. Say yes a lot. Travel. Say to “hi” to people. If there is anything you have always wanted to do, do it. Lisa will be your best friend and you should stop by her office to see her. Practice Grip Top Sock. Get out of RAC and doing something that isn’t theatre for at least an hour every week even if it’s just running in the woods. Get acupuncture from Terry Beck. Read more, tweet less. Watch I Love Lucy often. Use sunscreen (hello 3-hour PACnic sunburn).

At this point, I will need to stop typing. I’ve had four years to blog and now, I only have two more days that I will need to finish packing before graduation – and then take a car, two planes and a bus to Santa Rosa.

Good-bye Fredonia. It’s been the best four years.

~          Shelby

The Props Class presented their Mad Hatter Tea Party on Thursday afternoon May 15, 2014. The props are the result of the class’ semester work. Chairs, day bed, table, and table settings as well as the giant Mad Hatter hat were all constructed this year. Kudos to the class and Prof. Ken Shaw for their work. 

Fight Day - Students test with Fightmaster J. Allen Suddeth to gain ther certification in single sword, rapier, and rapier and dagger. Above are some pictures from the workshop following the afternoon of fights.