New dating website launched to match up UK theatre lovers

Posted on, December 21, 2010

Romeo and Juliet were the most famous couple to tread the boards, now fans of the theatre can find their own true love thanks to a new website which looks to match-make. has been created by white-label online dating network Easydate with, the UK's leading theatre website, to allow musical fans,  drama devotees, opera enthusiasts and ballet buffs to find like-minded people for friendship, dating and relationships.  Fans of the stage will be able to create a profile, chat to other members about their favourite shows and hopefully find romance.  Terri Paddock of Whatsonstage said: "If you're single and looking for a lasting relationship, common interests are important.  But sitting in a darkened auditorium, you don't always get to meet other fans of the theatre.  We hope that this dating site can help break the ice.  It's also a great way to discuss your favourite productions and arrange trips to the theatre with other people who feel as passionate about it as you do."


Where can I park for the show? Now, there's an App for that

Posted by David Dombrosky on the Technology In The Arts Blog, December 21, 2010

As a denizen of downtown Pittsburgh, I am well aware of how difficult it can be to find a parking spot when I go to the theatre, a gallery crawl, or the symphony. You end up driving to various parking garages only to find a "Lot Full" sign at the entrance.  In a brilliant bit of service to the arts organizations in the cultural district, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has created ParkPGH - a multi-platform service providing real-time parking availability information for eight garages in downtown Pittsburgh.  In addition to the iPhone application, ParkPGH has a mobile website, a traditional website, and both text and voice option --  thereby offering the service to anyone with a phone or access to the Internet.  Did I mention that the parking availability information is updated every minute? A key layer of the service developed in collaboration with Traffic 21,  a multi-disciplinary initiative of Carnegie Mellon University directed from within Heinz College, which provided research capabilities and back-end support for the ParkPGH project.  So, thanks to the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust for making it easier and more convenient for me to find a parking spot in the cultural district! Hopefully, this idea will catch on in other cities.


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Wrestling and theatre converge in Glasgow

From The Herald, December 21, 2010 [hat tip to American Theatre Wing Twitter feed]

 "I like to think of wrestling as theatre," says playwright and actor Rob Drummond. "But sports organisations won't take it seriously as a sport, so it can't get funding from there, and it isn't regarded as an art form, so it can't get arts funding either. But it is movement-based theatre, and it is an art form, so this show is really a wrestling promo in theatrical form."  Rob Drummond: Wrestling -- which opens at Glasgow's multipurposes Arches space in February -- is one of the first winners of Creative Scotland's Vital Spark Awards, designed to encourage seemingly disparate artists from a multitude of backgrounds to go public.   On a freezing December morning, Drummond and his training partner, James Tyler, are being put through their paces by Belfast-born trainer Damien O'Connor.  "They have to know what they're doing in the ring," says O'Connor, who's been wrestling for seven years. "It is reality-based in terms of the storyline, so you have to put the reality into it just as you would with a piece of theatre."  The language O'Connor uses with Drummond is surprising.  Effectively, O'Connor is choreographing his performers the way a theatre director would, mixing practical tips about sightlines, projection and the like in among the creative rough and tumble.  This attitude isn't anything new. In the UK, pro-wrestlers have long held Equity cards, albeit as "circus entertainers". This allows them to work on TV as extras, usually playing tough guys in fight scenes.


Basketball star Shaquille O'Neal conducts the Boston Pops

From the Los Angeles Times' Ministry of Gossip blog, December 21, 2010

Shaquille O'Neal conducted the Boston Pops on Monday night, getting into the groove on the orchestra's renditions of "Sleigh Ride," the Jackson 5's "Can You Feel It" and, of course, Queen's "We Are the Champions," a tune well suited to the former Lakers star.  The Boston Celtics center gave the performance a bit of a "Gulliver's Travels" feel, towering over the musicians and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus as he, um, helmed the group. (Watch the video - he eventually gets into it!)  "I have a whole new respect for conductors," O'Neal said before his performance. "I went through a rehearsal today, and my arms are shot right now."  The musician's necks probably got a workout as well as they looked to the 7-foot-1, tuxedo-clad basketball player for guidance. Their usual conductor, Keith Lockhart, measures in at a merely human 5-foot-9 and weighs around half as much as Shaq does.


Super Bowl on its way, Dallas Opera leader hopes for more connection to sports

Posted on KERA's Art & Seek blog, November 12, 2010

Like most arts leaders, Graeme Jenkins, music director for the Dallas Opera, wants to build a bigger audience for the arts. And last night at State of the Arts, he tossed out several ideas on his wish list [including the possibility of] broadcasting short performances from arts groups on Victory Park video screens - after games at the American Airlines Center.  It is not likely a coincidence that arts leaders locally are thinking especially hard about sports these days, and coming up with ideas like Jenkins'.  Hellooo Super Bowl. And hello Bill Lively.  The man behind the Performing Arts Center's fund-raising effort is, of course, now leading the Super Bowl Host Committee.  Is there something to be learned about the multi-city collaboration he's orchestrating to make the big game possible that can be applied to the arts?  It will be interesting to watch this play out.


Dallas Museum to host discussion of artwork exhibited at Cowboys Stadium

Posted on KERA's Art & Seek blog, September 10, 2010

The Dallas Museum of Art's "State of the Arts" series is a little different from other on-stage interviews.  It pairs up arts leaders, sometimes from seemingly unrelated fields, and gets them talking about the creative process, the cultural landscape. For the audience, it's kind of like getting to eavesdrop on a side-conversation that might take place at an arts lover's fantasy dinner party.  And here's a special note to football lovers - or those who might be tired of Super Bowl hoopla and want to see a different side of football: January's conversation features Bryan K. Trubey, who designed Cowboys Stadium, Annette Lawrence, who's work Coin Toss is installed there, and DMA curator Charles Wylie, who's also part of the Cowboys Stadium Art Council. That's the group commissioning contemporary artists to create site-specific work for the stadium.

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