Monday, November 24, 2014

These guys are coming to speak to Theatre VCU students today at 5:15… how bout that!

Angus Macfadyen: Professional actor currently working on Turn.  Most known for Braveheart, Saw III, Equilibrium, We Bought a Zoo, and others.

Still of Angus in Braveheart.

Kevin McNally: Professional actor also working on Turn.  Most known for the all the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, Downton Abbey, Supernatural, and many more.

Still of Kevin in one of the Pirates movies.

Both are excited to come talk to any performance majors in Newdick today at 5:15.  Both of these men began on stage and transitioned to film, and both still do stage when they can.  They are going to be here to answer questions, so bring your all your questions! 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Save the Date! High School Theatre Design & Technology Exposition - April 25, 2015

Design, Technology and Craft Exposition & Competitions! 

Scenic, Costume, Lighting, Sound & Makeup Design 
as well as
Costume Construction, Scenic Construction/ Painting, 
Props, Stage Management

A full day of Workshops such as:
Makeup  Model Making
Costume Design  
Costume Construction 
Lighting Design 
Stage Management
Portfolio Development &
Applying to Universities 

Your work will be critiqued by our professional
designers including Broadways' Toni-Leslie James!

Lunch with the Design Faculty and 
Theatre VCU students

Exhibition of award-winning 
Theatre VCU student designs

Attend an evening performance of 
Frankenstein: Dawn of a Monster

$30.00 per student for entire day


$10.00 per student for  
Frankenstein: Dawn of a Monster

Send your Application in BEFORE March 15 and  attend 
Frankenstein: Dawn of a Monster for FREE!

For More Information
Ron Keller (
or call

Be a part of the first HS Exposition at Theatre VCU!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

We need some serious input about a not-so-serious subject…. call it the "HolidayHooHa" call it the "TheatreatreVCUHoovalation" We don't care… we just want you to call it "yours"

Hey ALL Theatre VCU Students!!

This one's for you.

it's been QUITE a semester - Every semester is HUGE….

that's why we have a blow-out with the Ball in May (by the way – there's a meeting for anyone and everyone who can give the Heaven & Hell Angels & Demons Ball a boost on this Friday, Nov. 21 at 1:15 on the second floor of PAC - drop in for a few minutes and let us know what would be fun to do and how you can help us do it - the more that pitch in - the more better, right?)

THIS SEMESTER - we want to give you an end-of-the-semester gift in the form of an afternoon/evening of food, performances, Secret Santa presents, holiday foolishness.

What would you like to do?

Let us know - we'd like to give you a celebration that you helped us design.

Here's what we have so far:

• December 4th at 5:00pm - Location TBA.

• Susan Schuld and her talented troupe of Radio Players will give us a heartwarming portion of "It's a Wonderful Life" Radio Drama with a Holiday sing-along

• Cookies, Hot Chocolate (or coffee), Candy Canes

What are YOUR ideas?

• Holiday Karaoke?

• Secret Santa gifts (under $10)?

• What other food?

• Bad Christmas movies?

• Photos with Santa?

• Ugly sweater contest?

• The best of No Shame?

• Charades? (really… what?)

WHAT DO YOU THINK would bring us all together to celebrate another HUGE semester? We want to do it.

Email me ( - Facebook me - slide secret messages under my door.


Monday, November 17, 2014

Our second week of Man of La Mancha was sold out - Have you bought your tickets for the final week yet?

Only one week left!

Theatre VCU's
Man of La Mancha
is getting standing ovations and standing room only crowds.

It's the musical you don't want to miss!

Audiences have been loving this tale of the mad knight, and James Taylor's rich baritone brings to life "The Impossible Dream", "Dulcinea", and ", Don Quixote"!

Check out last Thursday's  appearance on Good Morning Virginia -

For tickets go to

or call the Box Office at

Reserve your tickets now - we would hate for you to miss out!!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Man of La Mancha comes to Channel 6

This was SUCH a great experience yesterday at Virginia This Morning on Richmond's Channel 6 (CBS)

Go here:

Check out James Taylor (Don Quoxite) mahlon Raoufi (Sancho) and Emily Adler & Alex Burkart (the Horses) singing and galloping their way through "I Don Quixote" - SO much fun!

Don't miss this show - it's one of the last Golden Age musicals -
winner of 5 Tony Awards - and the Theatre VCU production features a magnificent set, exquisite costumes and the beautiful voices of our students. Plus Don Quixote is played by James Taylor, known for his international operatic work. He brings not only his incredible vocal talent, but also his true understanding of Cervantes magical character…. James Taylor IS Don Quixote!

There is still a GroupOn deal out there…. shhh… don't tell anyone, but it's:

Come downtown and support the work of our artists - it's well worth the trip.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Two more weeks of Man of La Mancha!!

Audiences are raving!
Here's what John Porter (Theatre Reviewer of WCVE) has to say:

If you need a reason to head over and see one of the great musicals of the American theatre  currently playing at VCU trust me, MAN OF LA MANCHA is well worth the effort if only to admire Ron Keller’s towering set. In an era of tiny stages with rotating turntables, this set rises a good thirty feet in the air with a staircase that lowers out of the ceiling like the hand of God passing judgment or deliverance to the actors below.

Since most theatre goers don’t just go to be amazed by the set, let’s look at some of the other reasons to enjoy the play. MAN OF LA MANCHA is a play within a play detailing the life and adventures of Don Quixote de La Mancha – a chivalrous knight roaming the land some 300 years after knights stopped serving king and country.

As the nobleman knight, James Taylor (not the pop singer) is a commanding presence. In the dual role of Don Miguel de Cervantes and Quixote, he has to move from madness to lucidity and back again. His voice is strong and clear, and his interpretation of the big song, “The Impossible Dream” is a highlight.

Kamaron Carter makes a strong Aldonza – the stable girl who becomes the noblewoman muse of Quixote and is elevated by his adoration.

The rest of the cast takes on multiple roles, most without much of a hitch, and under Patti D’Beck’s direction and choreography handle the varied dance moves well. These characters start off waiting trial – some portray murderers and thieves while others play characters with mental disorders and must move accordingly.

David Leong provides the fight choreography and utilizes stylized movements for one fight to comedic effect, and brutal more realistic movements for another in order to emphasize the horror that Aldonza faces.

Devario D. Simmons’ costumes work very well – showing differences in status, and in the case of Quixote versatility moving him back and forth between his two characters. Michael Jarett’s lights are very good – equal to just about any seen on a professional stage this season. Ben Miller serves as the Musical Director and keeps the music moving very well.

I don’t get out to see University productions as often as I would like. Often they operate on short schedules and are in conflict with professional shows I need to see. However, I may have to reevaluate that policy as invariably I find things that excite me and give me hope for the future of theatre.

Now if we could only offer these talented performers more incentive to stay in Richmond after graduation and continue to grace our stages. Even though there are more and more opportunities to perform, making a living creating the art they love is always going to be a struggle.

Okay, I’ll climb off my soapbox now and get back to MAN OF LA MANCHA. This production will be running through November 23 and is well worth making the journey.
For 88.9 WCVE, I’m John Porter.

Thank you John Porter!!

We have heard such wonderful things from our audience about Man of La Mancha - Don't miss it!

This weekend  - Nov. 13-15 at 7:30 pm and 
Sunday Nov. 16 at 3:00 pm

Next weekend - Nov. 20 - 22 at 7:30 pm and 
Sunday Nov. 23 at 3:00 pm

Monday, October 20, 2014

It was RTCC night in Richmond and Theatre VCU was there!

Sunday October 19th was RTCC night (Richmond Theatre Critic's Circle Awards)

Here are all the nominated and the winners - with Theatre VCU highlighted (of course):

Best Direction (Musical): Chase Kniffen, The Color Purple
Robin Arthur, Shrek the Musical
Josh Marin
Penny Ayn Maas, Cabaret
Richard Parison, Fiddler on the Roof
Tom Width, The Drowsy Chaperone

Best Actor (Musical): Josh Marin, The Color Purple
David Benoit, Fiddler on the Roof
Ronnie Brown, Shrek the Musical
Chris Hester, Cabaret
Jason Marks, Shrek the Musical
Jerold Solomon, The Color Purple

Best Actress (Musical): Felicia Curry, The Color Purple
Grey Garrett, Beyond the Rainbow, Swift Creek Mill
Christie Jackson, The Drowsy Chaperone
Nicole Oberleitner, Caberet
Aly Wepplo, Shrek the Musical

Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Musical): Doug Schneider, Cabaret
Steve King, The Drowsy Chaperone
Josh Marin, The Wild Party, Firehouse Theatre
Matt Shofner, The Drowsy Chaperone
Scott Wichmann, Olympus on my Mind, Virginia Repertory Theatre

Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Musical): Jeanie Rule, Cabaret
Carolyn Meade, The Wild Party
Carolyn Minor-Daughtry, The Color Purple
Nicole Oberleitner, The Drowsy Chaperone
Desiree Roots, The Color Purple

Best Musical Direction: Paul Deiss, The Drowsy Chaperone
Kim Fox, Cabaret
Ben Miller, The Color Purple
Ben Miller, The Wild Party
Anthony Smith, Fiddler of the Roof

Best Choreography: Leslie Owens-Harrington, The Color Purple
Robin Arthur, Shrek the Musical
Dennis Clark, The Drowsy Chaperone
Karen Getz, Fiddler on the Roof
Penny Ayn Maas, Cabaret

Best Play: Clybourne Park, Cadence Theatre (collaboration with Virginia Rep)
The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, Firehouse Theatre (aka ‘Chad Deity’)
Good People, Cadence Theatre (collaboration with Virginia Rep)
Joshua Plant, Chamberlayne Actors Theatre
Quality of Life, HATTheatre

Best Direction (Play): Keri Wormald, Clybourne Park
Anna Johnson, Detroit, Cadence Theatre (collaboration with Virginia Rep)
Anna Johnson, Good People
Kerry McGee, Chad Deity
David Emerson Toney, ‘night, Mother, Firehouse Theatre

Best Actor (Play): Scott Wichmann, Say Goodnight Gracie
Joseph Carlson, A Streetcar Named Desire, Firehouse Theatre
Jeff Cole, Wittenberg, Henley Street/Richmond Shakespeare
Aaron Orensky, Joshua Plant
Alexander Sapp, Grace, TheatreLAB

Best Actress (Play): Catherine Shaffner, ‘night, Mother
Eva DeVirgilis, Hypocrites & Strippers, Richmond Triangle Players
McLean Jesse, Clybourne Park
Katrinah Carol Lewis, Death & the Maiden, Henley Street/Richmond Shakespeare
Dawn A. Westbrook, Good People

Mauricio Marces, Nicklas Aliff, Joe Carlson
Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Play): TIE: Mauricio Marces, Chad Deity & Alexander Sapp, Richard III
Andrew Firda, Clybourne Park
Stephen Ryan, The Importance of Being Earnest, Henley Street/Richmond
Shakespeare/Richmond Triangle Players
Alexander Sapp, Tartuffe, Virginia Repertory Theatre

Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Play): Jacquie O’Connor, Good People
Jennifer Frank, The Dixie Swim Club, Swift Creek Mill
Melissa Johnston Price, Other Desert Cities, Virginia Repertory Theatre
Debra Wagoner, Tartuffe
Raven Wilkes, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Henley Street/Richmond Shakespeare

The Ernie McClintock Award for Best Ensemble Acting: The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity
Clybourne Park
Quality of Life

Most Promising Newcomer: TIE Grace Mincks, Beyond the Rainbow & Diego Salinas, Joshua Plant
Isabella Cipolina, The Miracle Worker, Swift Creek Mill
Ally Dodds, Fiddler on the Roof
Brad Frazier, Tartuffe

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design: Geno Brantley, Chad Deity
Joe Doran, The Drowsy Chaperone
Joe Doran, The Color Purple
Lynne M. Hartman, Other Desert Cities
Robert Perry, Fiddler on the Roof

Elizabeth Hopper
Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design: Elizabeth Weiss Hopper, Shrek the Musical
Maura Lynch Cravey, The Drowsy Chaperone
Sue Griffin, The Color Purple
Sue Griffin, Fiddler on the Roof
Sue Griffin, Tartuffe

Outstanding Achievement in

Set Design: Ben Burke, Other Desert Cities
Tennessee Dixon, Death & the Maiden
Frank Foster, Cabaret
Ron Keller, Color Purple
Tom Width, The Drowsy Chaperone

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design: Joey Luck, Cabaret
Andrew Craig, Death & the Maiden
Derek Dumais, The Color Purple
Chase Kniffen, Say Goodnight Gracie

Joey Luck, Chad Deity