Saturday, July 26, 2008

How Are They Doing?

As we head into our August vacation, I thought it was a great opportunity to catch up with some Archetype Alums and see what they've been up to, and what they have planned for the upcoming season.

Joette Waters recently shot a short film that is under consideration for inclusion in the Democratic National Convention. You can see Joette here. And if you go to the website, your vote may help it get shown!

Jay Johnson used the proofs of this shot -- not even a finished headshot -- and landed a role in an independent film with 9:23 Films entitled Chicago Heights.

This is a great example of targeting your headshots. With Jay's military background we wanted to target the tough cop archetype. The specificity of this shot was interesting, yet univeral enough to get him called for a sexually conflicted minister. When Jay wrote and told me about the film he said, "I did want to let you know that I cut out a proof and sent it as a headshot for an audition, the one with the vest and the sleeves pushed up, for a "reverand" role...and I GOT IT! Man, you've got the magic eye, that's for sure."

Mary Anne Bowman, who just finished a run at the Theater Building in one of four one-acts entitled 4Play received unsolicited praise for her headshot: "One of them said almost exactly what you have on your archetype blog -- that the picture really shows who I am as a person and that the eyes are very striking. You really do have a good eye. Virtually everyone in the business (actors, directors and the like) have been the most impressed with the green shirt shot."

Dominic Bogart, who is one of the ensemble members of the Chicago company for Jersey Boys was promoted to covering the four leads. He's currently auditioning around Chicago and it looks like he intends to make it his home.

Next season at The Side Project will include a fall one-act festival (three productions in rep, running from November 16 thru December 21,) with a similar slot set for April. Adam Webster, artistic director, is spreading his wings and currently has a production of Glengarry Glen Ross running with RedTwist. And opening September 27, he is directing a production of Dracula for Theatre-Hikes out at Moron Arboretum.

Also currently running and receiving rave reviews is Eclipse Theatre's Plaza Suite at the Victory Garden's Greenhouse. Next up is Lillian Hellman's The Autumn Garden, directed by artistic director, Nat Swift.

Kate Teichman is perhaps one of the hardest working actors in Chicago. She's currently playing Daniel Day Lewis in the Prop Theater's production of Daniel Day Lewis and the Big Potatoes. Opening at the end of October will be her own production of The Maids at the Acme Art Works space, 2215 W. North Ave.

Lizzie Lovelady is assistant stage managing Iolanthe for Light Opera Works, and will begin her first professional directing assignment as assistant director on Love Person with Sandy Shiner at Victory Gardens.

And last, but certainly not least...

Ryan Salzwedel has also been very busy, shooting a short film, The Getaway Job, the hidden camera show Entrapment, and a lead role for an Animal Planet production. In August he'll shoot the feature Little Fur. 2009 will be big for Ryan. He's making the move to the East coast! You can read Ryan's blog here.

OK. That's it for us. See you in September!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Plaza Suite

Perhaps, in the serious-minded, off-Loop theatre community there is no more provocative two words than "Neil Simon." You don't do Neil Simon. His plays are worthy pieces of Theatre. They're froth. "High-school kids knock this stuff out of the park."

Several years ago, while I had disengaged from the theater scene and was clawing my way up the corporate ladder, I heard there was a company who was devoting an entire season to Neil Simon. I thought the idea was genius. High-school kids and amateur community theater groups do indeed knock this stuff out of the park. Having been a part of a community theater as a teen, I can tell you that his plays were cash cows that kept more than one group afloat. Audiences love his work.

Which is truly a testament quality, not mediocrity. This summer there is a chance to see one of Simon's most popular plays, Plaza Suite, and the genius of the playwright and of Eclipse Theatre just rolls across the stage. Simon's texts are delicately structured. The dialogue is constructed perfectly so that the audience can laugh and still not miss a syllable. The saying goes, "Death is easy, Comedy is hard." Well writing comedy is harder. His plays are like spun sugar castles. They taste good to the uneducated palate, but to the connoisseur the artistry of the dialogue construction is reason to love Simon. There is no playwright, Shakespeare included, who consistently delivers comic delight.

Eclipse offers an all-star cast in this delightful production of Plaza Suite, running now at the the Victory Gardens Greenhouse through Labor Day. Directed by Steve Scott, this cast includes Ted Hoerl, Nora Fiffer, Nathaniel Swift, Jon Steinhagen, JP Pierson, Cheri Chenoweth, CeCe Klinger, and Frances Wilkerson. Even if you're a theatre snob -- or especially if you're a theatre snob -- you should not miss this production.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Ken Puttbach Designs

Last December, during one of the worst ice storms in Chicago's history, I went to Loyola to shoot the set up for a fundraising, Christmas party at Loyola University. It was a relatively small affair for three hundred of Loyola's most ardent supporters that was designed by Ken Puttbach Designs. Ken and his staff spent two days transforming a meeting room into a old English Christmas wonderland.

Now, in all fair disclosure, not only is Ken a brilliant party designer, he's also a friend of mine. That said...he's a brilliant designer. And he's busy. So, if you're in the need of party or bridal designs, call him now and book. Especially for the holidays. because Ken's schedule fills up quickly. Check out the Archetype website for contact information.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

By Popular Demand...

...coming soon...Wedding Photo Services

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


A much-earned, and well-deserved vacation for Archetype Images: the entire month of August. Book your September sessions now.