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Conference & Stage Expo
For the Record
Southwest Plans Winter Symposium

The Southwest Regional Section will host its Winter Symposium January 17 to 18 at Midwestern State University, Wichita Falls, Texas.

The symposium will include SWDesign, an adjudicated student exhibition with an array of prizes including, but not limited to, the Shuler Shook Annual Award (which includes conference registration, airfare and hotel to the USITT Annual Conference & Stage Expo); training workshops at Vari-lite, Meyer sound, and others; a full version of WYSIWYG; a Le Maitre Confetti Canon; GAM Check; and many, many others.

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Desert State Stays Active

The Desert State Regional Section has kept busy this fall. It received support from Niles Sayre at Stage Technologies for its student award program. The program helps students and new graduates attend the Annual USITT Conference & Stage Expo. The Section honored its founder and first chair, Clyde Parker, naming the technical production award after him. Mr. Parker retired from Arizona State University’s Gammage Auditorium this year and has influenced many theatre students and professionals for many years.

In November, the Desert State section hosted Tech Olympics for the Arizona Thespian Conference at Phoenix Convention Center. Pete Weisman has led this project for seven years, and it would not be what it is with out him. It is fun to see the student’s progress from year to year in their skills and competitiveness.

The Section will hold its annual conference January 17 following Desert Tech at Arizona State University. Workshop topics at the conference will include information on safety programs, legal aspects, educational programs, and professional information. For information or to RSVP for the conference, contact Fran Sutherland at

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Cleveland Hosts Ohio Valley Event

On October 11, the Ohio Valley Regional Section welcomed over 70 people to its fall mini-conference – Behind the Scenes Cleveland.

The featured event of the day was a tour of the newly renovated Hanna Theater, the fifth theatre of Playhouse Square to be renovated and the new home of the Great Lakes Theatre Festival. As one of the first groups to visit the re-opened theatre, OVS was led on a top to bottom tour by Raymond Kent, CTS, Assoc. AIA, director of Innovative Technology Design with Westlake Reed Leskosky (WRL), the project's architects and theatre technology consultants. Following the tour, the group enjoyed a lively panel discussion featuring Tom Einhouse, vice president of real estate development for Playhouse Square; Charlie Fee, artistic director of Great Lakes Theatre Festival; and Paul E. Westlake Jr., FAIA, managing principal of WRL.

During lunch at the offices of WRL, OVS members were treated to an inside look into the world of a major national architectural firm specializing in facilities for the performing and cultural arts communities. The afternoon included a tour of the Idea Center, a collaboration of public television, public radio, and another WRL project led by Playhouse Square Arts Education Program Coordinator Tony Hanf. There was time to view the impressive display of work by over 40 regional designers – students, teachers, and professionals – submitted for the Peggy Ezekial Awards. The display will be featured at the 2009 Cincinnati Conference & Stage Expo. The event concluded with a walking tour of the rest of Playhouse theatres conducted by Playhouse Square Technical Director Bob Rody.

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Southeast Master Class

The University of Alabama provided a weekend of workshops and demonstrations for the 2008 Southeast Regional Section Master Class September 26 to 28.

Edward Pierce, Broadway associate designer for Wicked; Rafael Jaen, author/costume designer; and professional lighting designer Don Guy were guest presenters. The activities gave participants diverse choices that included Blowing up Costumes and You can avoid the Draft with Elizabeth Lewandowski; Drawing and Rendering with Bill Brewer and Tan Huaixiang; Stress Testing with Delbert Hall; Theatrical Wigs and Stage Make-up with Cynthia McCourt; Color Demonstration with Jeff Davis; and Creating 3-D Textures with Andy Fitch.

Attendees were treated to a well-represented and competitive Design Expo. A showcase for the design efforts of Southeast Section members, the 2008 Expo entries made the adjudication process particularly challenging. The quality and range of design entries, coupled with increased numbers, served to exhibit the breadth and creative resources available in the region. The designers whose work will represent the Southeast Regional Section in Cincinnati are: Student winners; Jenny Bryant, Lisa Conly, and Laura Kuhn, University of Georgia; Stephanie Farris and Lanci McAdams, University of Montevallo; and Eric Thomas, Greensboro College.

Faculty winners were: Ivan Ingermann for Midsummer at University of Georgia; and Emily Gill, University of Montevallo, for Angry Inch at Actor's Express, Atlanta, Georgia.

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