August 2014

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August 2014

News & Notices


SPARK! Postponed

The initial presentation of SPARK! originally planned for September has been postponed due to unforeseen circumstances. The cutting edge topics which are the heart of SPARK! mean USITT needs to be able to assure all those participating will have the highest quality experience. Scheduling difficulties for both presenters and those planning to attend have arisen which caused the change. Planners are now working on a new date when all elements can come together seamlessly to allow industry-leading innovators to explore new technologies in automation, sound, software, and more.

An announcement about the new SPARK! schedule will be included in a future issue of Sightlines and on the USITT website.

David Grindle, USITT Executive Director, said "We thank design visionaries and innovators Tupac Martir, Thomas Rhodes, Kim Scott, Meyer Sound, and the faculty of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts for their work on SPARK!"

Seek Lighting Design Projects for Compendium

There are many clever and effective lighting projects instructors use, and the Lighting Design & Technology Commission wants to include some in the updated Practical Projects for Teaching Lighting Design: A Compendium.

Projects that teach the practical and artistic aspects of lighting design projects can range from concept papers, research, practical design projects, paperwork techniques, consoles, electricity, cueing, color, and equipment -- including undergraduate through graduate level projects.

Visit to download the submission form. The deadline to submit is October 15. Return the form and all applicable photos to: A panel of editors will review and select the final projects.

The new Compendium will be available as a hard copy in a three-ring binder at the USITT Bookstore during Annual Convention & Stage Expos and as a print-on-demand/downloadable option throughout the year.

New Grants & Fellowships Deadline November 15

The Grants & Fellowships Committee has bumped the application deadline up to November 15 so that recipients can not only be named, but honored at the Annual Conference & Stage Expo.

Beginning this year (for awards to be made at the 2015 Conference), application materials will be available on the USITT website beginning September 1. This will allow the Committee to review applications and have the recipients and award amounts approved by the Board of Directors at its January meeting. Recipients will then be notified shortly after that time so they can be present for a formal presentation at the conference.

This year, the Committee will accept and review Fellowships applications. An article with more details will appear in the September Sightlines, and information and application materials will be on the website around September 1. To get a jump start on putting an application together, visit Fellowships website.

Behind the Scenes Holiday Cards Available

This year's Behind the Scenes Holiday Cards were created by an impressive array of all-star designers and young talent —Chris Barreca, Marci Bilskie, Alexander Dodge, Andrew Hefter, Todd Rosenthal, and Donyale Werle.

PLASA offers three ordering options: personalized cards with a company logo and custom message, card packs of 10 with a standard greeting, and electronic versions for delivery by e-mail. Orders will be taken until September 22 to arrive by late November. All proceeds benefit the Behind the Scenes charity which provides financial assistance to entertainment technology professionals who are seriously ill or injured.

View and order cards at For more information, contact 212-244-1421 or

Chris Barreca won the 2014 Tony Award for Scenic Design of a Musical for Rocky. His designs have been seen around the world in theatre, opera, and dance. Highlights include Broadway premieres of Marie Christine and Chronicle of a Death Foretold (American Theater Wing Award) - both for Lincoln Center Theater; The Violet Hour, Our Country's Good (Prague Quadrennial Selection); and Search and Destroy (Drama-Logue Award). He is the head of scenic design at CalArts.

Marci Bilskie is a sophomore at the Mount Vernon Senior High School Fine Arts Academy, Mount Vernon, Indiana. An annual competitor in 4-H regional art shows, her career plans includes graphic design, photography, and music.

Alexander Dodge is an award winning set and costume designer for theatre and opera. He received Tony Award nominations for Present Laughter (Roundabout Theatre) and A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder. He earned a Lucille Lortel award for Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Toward the Somme and Boston's Elliot Norton Award. He has designed productions in London at the Duke of York's Theatre, and for a wide variety of theatres including Second Stage, Lincoln Center, the Public Theater, The Old Globe, and the Stratford Festival in Canada. His opera designs have been seen in Minnesota, Munich, and Budapest.

Andrew Hefter is a Texas born, Portland raised, Brooklyn based photographer with an art school degree from Savannah College of Art and Design. He's been documenting his travels to far-away places since 2008 and has been working with Behind the Scenes even longer. View more of his work at

Todd Rosenthal is an internationally recognized set designer whose work includes circus, museum exhibitions, opera, Broadway, and regional theatres. He received the Tony and Olivier awards for scenic design for August: Osage County. He has received the Ovation, Helen Hayes, and Michael Merrit awards. His designs have been seen at Steppenwolf and the Goodman Theatres in Chicago, Berkeley Rep, Manhattan Theatre Club, National Theatre in London, Sydney Theatre, and Theatre Royal, Ireland. He also designed Mythbusters: the Explosive Exhibition for the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, the international exhibition Sherlock Holmes, the Science of Deduction, and environments for five seasons of the Big Apple Circus.

Donyale Werle is a Brooklyn based set designer. She received the Henry Hewes Design Award, the Lucille Lortel award, and Outer Critics Circle and Tony award nominations for Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. She has received an Obie for Sustained Excellence of Set Design. She was awarded the Tony for Peter and the Starcatcher. She has also designed for productions at the Denver Theater Center, Hartford Stage, Manhattan Theater Club, and The Old Globe Theatre. She co-chairs the Pre/Post Production Committee for the Broadway Green Alliance.

For more information about Behind the Scenes, to donate, or to apply for a grant, visit

Museum Uploads Images of New York Theatre

The Museum of the City of New York has posted over 2,500 images of theatrical production to its Collections Portal, This represents the first in a series of uploads that will eventually make over 30,000 images of more than 5,000 Broadway and Off-Broadway productions available.

Last September, the museum was awarded a $150,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) for a two-year project to catalog and digitize photographs in its extensive collection on Broadway and Off-Broadway productions. The first upload includes theater stills, character portraits, rehearsal shots, and backstage peeks of New York productions from that range from the mid-19th to the 20th centuries.

Visitors can search for images by production, performer, theatrical playhouse, and photographer; each image has keyword associations and is coded with descriptive metadata. When a desired image is located, visitors can use the site's magnifying glass icon to zoom in and explore a photo's most intricate details. A Lightbox option encourages visitors to pull together different images to create their own virtual gallery. Visitors may also purchase exhibition-quality reproductions in a variety of sizes and framed for personal décor.

Theatre Words App Available

Digital Theatre Words (DTW) mobile app is on App Store and Google Play. Own the pocket theatre dictionary and avoid being lost in translation on tour.

The app offers more than 2,000 theatre terms interchangeable in 24 languages in 10 theatre categories. Download a free trial and opt for purchase later.

OISTAT Meeting, Symposium Scheduled in Taipei

Registration is now open for OISTAT's 2014 Publication & Communication Annual Meeting, October 3 to 8 in Taipei, Taiwan.

Held in conjunction with the PCC meeting is a two-day symposium themed "Cultural Landmark and Its Communities" for large arts venue managers in Taiwan.

The symposium invites international speakers to spark dialogue on creative programming and community involvement. The PCC meeting program includes the symposium, cultural visits to various arts venues, tastes of famous foods, and an authentic feel of the city that never sleeps. View full program here.