My Westfield News Group feature on RealTime Concert Notes, a bold audience-building initiative developed by conductors Kevin Rhodes and Matt Bertuzzi for the Springfield Symphony Orchestra.. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-extra-springfield-symphony-launches-innovative-real-time-concert-notes
Saturday, October 21, 2017
Friday, October 20, 2017
DATELINE: October 23, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THE CAPITOL STEPS BRING “ORANGE IS THE NEW BARACK” TO HARVARD ON NOVEMBER 25.
The Capitol Steps return to Harvard University’s Sanders Theatre in Cambridge for their 19th annual Thanksgiving weekend performances on Saturday, November 25 with their new show Orange is The New Barack. New faces from the Trump White House and Mar-A-Lago join old faces from the Obama years to bring their musical political satire to Greater Boston with performances at 3PM and 7PM.
The Capitol Steps have been a national institution for over 35 years, providing a unique blend of musical and political comedy and satire to audiences coast-to-coast.. Each show consists of tasteful lampooning guaranteed to leave both sides of the political spectrum laughing. The troupe started in 1981. Since then, they have appeared on The Today Show, Nightline, CBS Evening News and for many years in specials for NPR.
Elaina Newport, co-founder of The Capitol Steps, says “More than ever, people are coming up to us after our show and saying ‘Boy, I needed that!” – it’s a crazy time and people need a laugh. Of course, our challenge is to be more outrageous than the headlines! So, we have Donald Trump singing a rock song, Bernie Sanders singing a show tune, and Vladimir Putin dancing shirtless…you can’t see that anywhere else.”
Mike Thornton of the Mike Thornton Agency, who is producing the Cambridge performances, also performs with The Capitol Steps, and says the year since the election has been filled with constant rehearsals and new material added almost nightly. “It's almost impossible to stay ahead of the buffoonery. One constantly relies on daily news for new snipppets, and sometimes we get new material texted to us right before we go onstage”, says Thornton.
In Orange is The New Barack, The Capitol Steps promise to put the "MOCK" in Democracy to showcase the craziest post-election you've ever seen. If you've ever wanted to see Hillary Clinton belt a pop hit, or appearances byJeff Sessions, Rex Tillerson, Kim Jong Un, and Pope Francis, this might be the show for you..
Tickets for both performances of Orange Is The New Barack by The Capitol Steps are available at the Harvard Box-Office. For details: 617-496-2222 or https://www.boxoffice.harvard.edu
To preview some of the Capitol Steps materials, visit their website, www.capsteps.com, or find The Capitol Steps on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter (@capsteps)
Note to The Press.
For Capitol Steps publicity photos: http://www.capsteps.com/live/pr06.html
For a copy of The Capitol Steps’ latest CD, Orange is The New Barack, or links to broadcast versions of Capitol Steps songs, and other promotional items, please email Mark G. Auerbach at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a recent Washington Post review of The Capitol Steps: https://www.washingtonpost.com/express/wp/2016/10/13/the-capitol-steps-an-oasis-of-good-natured-ribbing-in-a-fiercely-partisan-world/
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 10/18/17. Springfield Symphony Viva America features Gershwin and Bernstein, plus shows CT Rep and Playhouse on Park. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-195
Saturday, October 14, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of The Wolves at TheaterWorks in Hartford, written with Benjamin Jacek. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-wolves-opens-theaterworks-season
Friday, October 13, 2017
My Take Magazine Profile of conductor Kevin Rhodes. https://thetakemagazine.com/kevin-rhodes-conductor/
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Monday, October 9, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Gaslight at Barrington Stage. They saved their best for last. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-gaslight-barrington-stage
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Westfield News Group ArtsBeat 10/4/17. Liz McCartney headlines "The Importance of Being Earnest" in Storrs; Springfield Symphony opens season with Kevin Rhodes, and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-193
My Westfield News Group review of Les Miserables at The Bushnell. A fresh take on a powerhouse hit. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-les-miserables-bushnell
Tuesday, October 3, 2017
My October column for Succeeding in Small Business. Event Planning Simplified. https://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/planning-dos-and-donts-for-your-next-small-business-event/#.WdOg_iMrJaV
Monday, October 2, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of David Auburn's Lost Lake at Berkshire Theatre Group. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-lost-lake-berkshire-theatre-group
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
Monday, September 25, 2017
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 9/20 /17. Rags revisal at Goodspeed, Midtown Men in Springfield, Moonfish Theatre in Amherst, and Mike Thornton and Gruppo Mondo jazz in Egremont. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-191
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
AMERICAN CONDUCTOR KEVIN RHODES ANNOUNCES 2017-2018 SEASON
Massachusetts-based American conductor Kevin Rhodes will be performing extensively on both sides of the Atlantic during the 2017-2018 season. He begins his 17th seasons as Music Director of the Traverse Symphony in Michigan and the Springfield Symphony Orchestra in Massachusetts, and his 8th season as Principal Conductor of Boston’s Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra. He also returns to the opera houses of Stuttgart, Germany, and Vienna, Austria to conduct their highly acclaimed ballet companies.
Maestro Rhodes will conduct two concerts at The Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, which celebrates its 40th anniversary season. He opens their season with a performance of Schwantner’s New Morning For The World, and closes their season with performances of Daughtery’s Sunset Strip and Copland’s Clarinet Concerto.
The Traverse Symphony in Michigan, celebrating its 65th season, has Maestro Rhodes conducting a half-dozen classical concerts, which include a program with violinist Yevgeny Kutik and a choral program showcasing Vivaldi’s Gloria.
In Springfield, MA, Maestro Rhodes conducts 8 programs for the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, which begins its 74th season. The season includes an all-Rachmaninoff program, a performance of the Verdi Requiem with orchestra and choruses; a Viva America concert celebrating Gershwin and Bernstein, and The Star Wars and Star Trek Sci-Fi Spectacular.
For The Vienna State Opera Ballet, Maestro Rhodes makes his annual appearance conducting the Rudolf Nureyev Gala, celebrating the dancer and choreographer, who would have turned 80 this year. He also conducts Nureyev’s production of Raymonda, to the music of Glazunov. a mixed repertory program of works choreographed by George Balanchine, John Neumeier, and Jerome Robbins; and a mixed bill featuring Frederick Ashton’s ballet Marguerite and Armand, originally created for Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn.
Maestro Rhodes also returns to The Stuttgart Ballet to conduct a revival of the John Cranko production of Swan Lake.
For The Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra in Boston schedule: http://www.proarte.org/
For The Traverse Symphony in Michigan schedule: http://traversesymphony.org/
For The Springfield Symphony Orchestra in Massachusetts schedule:http://www.springfieldsymphony
For The Stuttgart Ballet schedule: https://www.stuttgart-ballet.d
For The Vienna State Opera Ballet schedule: https://www.wiener-staatsoper.
For Kevin Rhodes’ website: http://kevinrhodesconductor.co
For Kevin Rhodes biography: http://www.parkerartists.com/K
Monday, September 18, 2017
My profile of TheaterWorks Artistic Director Rob Ruggiero for Take Magazine. https://thetakemagazine.com/rob-ruggiero-theaterworks/
Saturday, September 16, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of A Midsummer Night's Dream at Hartford Stage. An incredibly beautiful production that is hysterically funny. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-midsummer-nights-dream-hartford-stage
Friday, September 15, 2017
CAPITOL STEPS ACTOR MIKE THORNTON AND BERKSHIRES BAND GRUPPO MONDO TO RECORD JAZZ ALBUM BEFORE A LIVE AUDIENCE SEPTEMBER 28 AT THE EGREMONT BARN
Mike Thornton, the actor/singer who plays Presidents from Bush to Trump with The Capitol Steps, and the Berkshires-based jazz quartet Gruppo Mondo, will record an album of jazz standards before a live audience on Thursday, September 28 at 7PM at the Egremont Barn, 17 Main Street, South Egremont, MA.
Thornton, a member of the political satire group The Capitol Steps for over twenty years, met the musicians of Gruppo Mondo two summers ago, when The Capitol Steps was doing a summer residency at Cranwell in Lenox. “I discovered Gruppo Mondo at a Pittsfield jazz club, and we began to do occasional sets together, after I’d finished playing singing and dancing politicians”
Thornton decided that he wanted to record material for his upcoming jazz standards album Top Standards on the MTA label with Gruppo Mondo from a venue located in The Berkshires. “I grew up north of Hartford, and spent time in The Berkshires. I’ve performed annually in Lenox with The Capitol Steps, and I’ve gotten to know the artists in the Berkshires.”
Thornton, now based in Washington, DC, attended Hartt School, University of Hartford, where he studied voice and theater and had the opportunity to study with the great Jackie McLean. At the age of 19, he sang with Uptown Sound– a “Manhattan Transfer” style group featuring intricate harmonies and sophisticated arrangements by the former Glenn Miller Band arranger, Ed Cerveney. Before joining The Capitol Steps in 1995, Mike appeared in several Off-Broadway productions, the American premiere of Blood Brothers., and the Kennedy Center production of Shear Madness in Washington, DC. His Jazz Quartet performed in many of New York City’s major venues and his Jazz Collective performs regularly in Washington, DC. His most recent CD of standards isStep Back. on the MTA label. For information on Mike Thornton:http://www.mikethornt
Gruppo Mondo is a Premiere Live Jazz/Funk Group based in The Berkshires & Hudson Valley, NY. Gruppo Mondo featuring Peter Primamore on keyboards, Aaron Dean on tenor sax,, Tom Major on drums, and Fran Tokarz on bass is a powerhouse Jazz & Rock band with a unique take on a wide variety of music. From straight ahead Swing and Latin Music to one of a kind re-imaginings of classic rock and unique originals, Gruppo Mondo delivers intense performances with unpredictable improvisations. For information on Gruppo Mondo: www.facebook.com/Gruppo
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
Monday, September 11, 2017
My September column for Succeeding in Small Business. Content Is Essential in Social Media. https://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/want-more-audience-engagement-improve-your-content/#.WbaZXiMrJaU
Wednesday, September 6, 2017
Tuesday, September 5, 2017
DATELINE: September 6, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mark G. Auerbach
Mark G. Auerbach Public Relations
The Mike Thornton Agency presents
MIKE THORNTON and GRUPPO MONDO
Mike Thornton, Vocals
Peter Primamore, Keyboard
Aaron Dean, Tenor Sax
Tom Major, Drums
Fran Tokarz, Bass
Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 7PM
The Egremont Barn
17 Main Street
South Egremont, MA 01258
No one trumps Torme! Night after night, The Capitol Steps actor Mike Thornton heats up the political comedy circuit, playing presidents from Bush to Trump. Then he cools down with jazz standards in area clubs. Be part of an extraordinary live recording, as The Capitol Steps actor and jazz vocalist Mike Thornton, backed by area quartet, Gruppo Mondo, record their unique stylings of jazz standards for Mike Thornton’s upcoming album Top Standards for MTA Records.
Mike Thornton, a native of Windsor, CT attended Hartt School, University of Hartford, where he studied voice and theater and had the opportunity to study with the great Jackie McLean. At the age of 19, he sang with Uptown Sound– a “Manhattan Transfer” style group featuring intricate harmonies and sophisticated arrangements by the former Glenn Miller Band arranger, Ed Cerveney. Before joining The Capitol Steps in 1995, Mike appeared in Off-Broadway productions of The Zoo Story, The Madwoman of Chaillot, the American premiere of Blood Brothers., and the Kennedy Center production of Shear Madness in Washington, DC. His Jazz Quartet performed in many of New York City’s major venues and his Jazz Collective performs regularly in Washington, DC. His most recent CD of standards is Step Back. on the MTA label. For information on Mike Thornton: http://www.mikethorntonjazz.com/.
Gruppo Mondo is a Premiere Live Jazz/Funk Group based in The Berkshires & Hudson Valley, NY. Gruppo Mondo featuring Peter Primamore, Aaron Dean, Tom Major and Fran Tokarz is a powerhouse Jazz & Rock band with a unique take on a wide variety of music. From straight ahead Swing and Latin Music to one of a kind re-imaginings of classic rock and unique originals, Gruppo Mondo delivers intense performances with unpredictable improvisations. For information on Gruppo Mondo: www.facebook.com/GruppoMondo/
Mike Thornton and Gruppo Mono first performed together two summers ago in Pittsfield, MA, while Thornton was appearing with The Capitol Steps at Cranwell in nearby Lenox, MA.
For information: 413-528-9580 or http://www.theegremontbarn.com/
DATELINE: September 8, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mark G. Auerbach
Mark G. Auerbach Public Relations
The Mike Thornton Agency presents
THE CAPITOL STEPS
Orange Is The New Barack Tour
Saturday, November 25, 2017 at 3PM
Saturday, November 25, 2017 at 7PM
Memorial Hall, Harvard University
45 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA.
Tickets are on sale at the Harvard Box-Office. For details: 617-496-2222 or https://www.boxoffice.harvard.edu
The Capitol Steps have been a national institution for over 35 years, providing a unique blend of musical and political comedy and satire to audiences coast-to-coast.. Each show consists of tasteful lampooning guaranteed to leave both sides of the political spectrum laughing. The troupe started in 1981. Since then, they have appeared on “The Today Show,” “Nightline,” “CBS Evening News” and for many years in specials for NPR.
The Washington Post calls The Capitol Steps: “An oasis of good-natured ribbing in a fiercely partisan world”.
Larry King of CNN said of The Capitol Steps: "They're the best. There's no one like them, no one in their league."
Former President George H. W. Bush said of The Capitol Steps “"The Capitol Steps make it easier to leave public life." :
In less than a year since The Capitol Steps’ Post Election Therapy Show came to Cambridge, the political musical comedy troupe works overtime to capture the new administrations’ antics in satire and song. And since The Capitol Steps find their laughs in materials ripped from today’s and tomorrow’s headlines you never know whether Steve Bannon, Jeff Sessions, or Kim Jong-un might appear from Mar-A-Lago or The White House.
To preview some of the Capitol Steps materials, visit their website, www.capsteps.com, or find The Capitol Steps on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter (@capsteps)
Friday, September 1, 2017
Thursday, August 31, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Georgie at Barrington Stage. Ed Dixon shares his relationship with the eccentric actor George Rose in a tour-de-force solo performance.
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
Friday, August 25, 2017
Westfield News Group ArtsBeat Extra 8/25/17. Westfield native Nick Burrage joins cast of Cinderella national tour. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-extra-westfields-nick-burrage-joins-cast-cinderella-national-tour
ArtsBeat Radio on 89.5fm/WSKB 8/25/17 An hour with Maestro Kevin Rhodes, conductor at three American orchestras and for ballet and opera worldwide. https://vimeo.com/231091918
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Sunday, August 20, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Hershey Felder in his Our Great Tchaikovsky at Hartford Stage. A tour-de-force performance of music and theatre in a portrait of the Russian composer. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-great-tchaikovsky-hartford-stage
Wednesday, August 16, 2017
My August article for Succeeding In Small business. Perk up your presentation skills. https://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/perk-up-your-presentation-skills/#.WZRMnCMrJaV
Monday, August 14, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Company at Barrington Stage. Aaron Tveit stars in the Sondheim classic. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-company-barrington-stage
Friday, August 11, 2017
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Monday, August 7, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat feature: Westfield native Joshua Burrage to make Broadway debut in Cats. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-extra-westfields-joshua-burrage-make-broadway-debut-cats
Saturday, August 5, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! at Goodspeed. It's spirited and exuberant. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-goodspeed-stages-oklahoma
Friday, August 4, 2017
My 89.5fm/WSKB ArtsBeat Radio for 8/4/17. An hour with TheaterWorks Producing Director Rob Ruggiero. https://vimeo.com/228370444
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
My Westfield News Group Review: Finding Neverland at The Bushnell. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-finding-neverland-bushnell
Tuesday, August 1, 2017
8/1/17: WOW It's Tuesday Show on 89.5fm/WSKB. Dennis Akins and I subbed for vacationing anchor Bob Plasse. Music from Oklahoma at Goodspeed, Finding Neverland at Bushnell, Company at Barrington Stage and surprises from Berkshire Theatre Group and more. Sorry about the tech glitch that kept us off the air for an half hour. https://vimeo.com/227909129
Monday, July 31, 2017
My Westfield News Group review o Berkshire Theatre Group's Arsenic and Old Lace. A handsome revival of a comedy classic inspired by a Northern CT serial killer.
Saturday, July 29, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Jacques Lamarre's Raging Skillet at Theaterworks in Hartford, the story of chef Rossi. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-raging-skillet-theaterworks
Wednesday, July 26, 2017
My Westfield News Group Arts Beat 7/26/17. Finding Neverland at The Bushnell, Springfield Jazz and Roots Festival, Arsenic and Old Lace at Berkshire Theatre Group and more.
Monday, July 24, 2017
My Westfield News Group review o Taking Steps at Barrington Stage. Two words: Hysterically funny. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-taking-steps-barrington-stage
Sunday, July 23, 2017
Westfield News Group Review: Edward Albee's At Home at the Zoo (Zoo story). at Berkshire Theatre Group
My Westfield News Group review of Berkshire Theatre Group's production of Edward Albee's At Home at the Zoo (Zoo story). http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-home-zoo-zoo-story-berkshire-theatre-group
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 7/19/17. Eric Hill directs an Edward Albee masterwork at Berkshire Theatre Group, Posh Picnic at Tanglewood, and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-182
Friday, July 14, 2017
Thursday, July 13, 2017
Totally thrilled to co-produce and co-host the 2-hour Westfield News Radio special on the Berkshire Theatre Group for 89.5fm/WSKB. With Westfield News' Patrick Berry, BTG CEO Kate Maguire, and the casts o Million Dollar Quartet, Children of a Lesser God, and At Home At The Zoo-Zoo Story. https://vimeo.com/225433309
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Monday, July 10, 2017
Westfield News Group Review of Connecticut Repertory Theatre's Newsies and the UConn Dairy Bar. Thanks to my pal Ben Jacek for his help on this story. http://thewestfieldnews.com/double-bill-disneys-newsies-ice-cream
Friday, July 7, 2017
ArtsBeat Radio 7/7/17 on 89.5fm/WSKB. My fabulous guest: Rorianne Schrade from Sevenars Concerts. https://vimeo.com/224642683
Thursday, July 6, 2017
The ins and outs of media buying. My July article for Succeeding in Small Business.
BERKSHIRE FILM AND MEDIA COLLABORATIVE PRESENTS
“POSH PICNIC AT TANGLEWOOD”
A FUNDRAISER FOR BFMC’S EDUCATIONAL INITIATIVES
ON SUNDAY, JULY 23rd
The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) presents its fourth annual Posh Picnic at Tanglewood in Lenox, MA on Sunday, July 23rd from 12:00 noon – 2:30pm. This unique event raises funds for BFMC’s educational initiatives which include workforce development courses and college workshops that teach the skills necessary to work on film sets. As Executive Director Diane Pearlman explains, “We are committed to strengthening and expanding our local workforce in the film and media industry. As we train more professionals and promote the region as a location for shooting, we create employment opportunities and support the creative economy”.
The Posh Picnic at Tanglewood includes a delicious gourmet catered picnic lunch on the lawn, an eclectic silent auction, and Shed seating for the matinee performance of The Boston Symphony Orchestra’s concert featuring Kernis, Prokofiev and Tchaikovsky, conducted by Ken-David Masur. Special thanks to BFMC’s major sponsor, Tanglewood, for hosting and catering the event. The now famous make your own Bloody Mary bar will feature vodka from sponsor, Berkshire Mountain Distillers.
The Posh Picnic at Tanglewood will honor acclaimed feature film, commercial and theatrical Production Designer/Art Director, Carl Sprague. Carl is a Berkshire resident whose credits include work with such illustrious directors as Wes Anderson, Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese and Stephen Spielberg. Carl was recently made a new member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
This year the winners of the first annual BFMC Short Screenplay Contest will be announced at the Picnic. The contest was open to all amateur filmmakers who live or study in western Mass. The top three prizes include cash awards.
Tickets for the Posh Picnic at Tanglewood are $160.00 per person and available through the Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative. For details: call 413-528.4223 or visit www.berkshirefilm.org
Since 2009, the Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) has created educational, workforce and production opportunities in Western Massachusetts as a creative economic engine for the region. BFMC offers networking events for industry professionals, develops educational and workforce enrichment courses, acts as a resource for visiting productions, creates jobs within our communities in the film and media industry and provides an on-line production guide and locations database as a resource for filmmakers. BFMC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Tuesday, July 4, 2017
Saturday, July 1, 2017
Lauren Gunderson's I and You gets a magnificent staging at Chester Theatre, thanks to Kristen Van Ginhoven's direction and a performance by Paul Pontrelli. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-chester-theatre-company
Friday, June 30, 2017
ArtsBeat Radio 89.5fm/WSKB 6/3O/17. "The Music Man" at Berkshire Theatre Group. Mark G. Auerbach talks with Travis Daly, director and Mark Gionfriddo, music director. https://vimeo.com/223769871
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Monday, June 26, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Ragtime at Barrington Stage.
My Westfield News Group review of Berkshire Theatre Group's Children of a Lesser God, directed by Kenny Leon. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-children-lesser-god-berkshire-theatre-group
Friday, June 23, 2017
My ArtsBeat Radio 6/23/17 on 89.5fm/WSKB with Terrence Mann and Christopher d'Amboise from CT Repertory Theatre's "Newsies". https://vimeo.com/222833997
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 6/21/17. Springfield actor John Shea returns to town with his new movie. Chester Theatre opens I and You and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-178
My Westfield News Group review of "Fun Home" at The Bushnell. Kate Shindle and Robert Petkoff star in the Tony Award-winning musical about Alison Bechdel. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-fun-home-bushnell
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Berkshire Theatre Group's Million Dollar Quartet. There's a whole lot of sizzle going on. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-million-dollar-quartet-berkshire-theatre-group
Friday, June 16, 2017
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Saturday, June 10, 2017
Here are the catalogued ArtsBeat Radio shows from 89.5fm/WSKB
5/26/17: Mark G. Auerbach interviews Kate Maguire and Eric Hill from The Berkshire Theatre Group https://vimeo.com/219120468
6/2/17: Mark G. Auerbach interviews Denis Jones, Tony Award nominee. https://vimeo.com/220003185
6/9/17: Patrick Berry interviews Shawn Farley from the UMass Fine Arts Center. https://vimeo.com/220964950
Friday, June 9, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of "Fade" at TheaterWorks, Hartford. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-fade-theaterworks
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Tuesday, June 6, 2017
My June article for Succeeding in Small Business. Answering the Tough Questions. It's Not always easy. https://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/in-the-hot-seat-how-to-deal-with-a-tough-media-interview/#.WTa5aiMrJaV
Saturday, June 3, 2017
My WestfieldNews Group Review of 1776 at CT. Repertory Theatre. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-1776-connecticut-repertory-theatre
Wednesday, May 31, 2017
My Westfield News Group Arts Beat 5/31/17. Million Dollar Quartet opens Berkshire Theatre Group season; Springfield Symphony Orchestra's upcoming season and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-175
My Westfield News Group review of The King and I at The Bushnell. One word. Sumptuous.
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Monday, May 22, 2017
My Westfield News Group article on Massachusetts funding creative economy projects in WMass. http://thewestfieldnews.com/massachusetts-awards-9-3-million-cultural-facilities-awards
Saturday, May 20, 2017
My Westfield News Group Review: Darko Tresnjak stages Shaw's "Heartbreak House" at Hartford Stage. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-heartbreak-house-hartford-stage
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Thursday, May 11, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of "Thoroughly Modern Millie" at Goodspeed. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-goodspeed-stages-thoroughly-modern-millie
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
My latest article or "Succeeding in Small Business" about radio interviews. http://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/how-to-ace-a-radio-interview/#.WRHfYiMrJaV
Friday, May 5, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Storm Large and Le Bonheur at CityStage. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-storm-large-le-bonheur-citystage
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 5/3/17. The Three "T"s. Travis G. Daly at Berkshire Theatre Group, Terrence Mann at Ct. Repertory Theatre, and Todd Rosenthal on "Roman Holiday". http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-171
Monday, May 1, 2017
Westfield News Group reports on my Arts Beat Radio debut on May 26. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-radio-launches-89-5fmwskb
Thursday, April 27, 2017
Dateline: May 2, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ARTS BEAT RADIO LAUNCHES ON 89.5FM/WSKB ON MAY 26
Arts Beat Radio, a new limited-run, hour-long arts and entertainment program launches on Fridays from 8AM-9AM on 89.5FM/WSKB beginning May 26. Produced for 89.5FM/WSKB by Mark G. Auerbach Public Relations, and hosted by Mark G. Auerbach, Arts Beat columnist for The Westfield News Group, Arts Beat Radio will showcase the diverse performing arts scene in Southern New England.
“I want to bring some of our region’s finest talents into the WSKB studios to talk about the state of their arts, and what it’s like to create music, dance, and theatre here in Western New England”, said Auerbach, who announced that the premiere of Arts Beat Radio on May 26 will feature Berkshire Theatre Group’s Kate Maguire and the internationally renowned actor, director, and teacher Eric Hill, former Artistic Director of StageWest.
Mark G. Auerbach studied theatre at Northfield Mount Hermon School, American University and The Yale School of Drama. After working at Wolf Trap outside Washington, DC; Houston Grand Opera and Houston Ballet, Connecticut Ballet, The Springfield Symphony, Greater Miami Opera, and StageWest, he opened a public relations consultancy. As an arts reporter, he was written extensively for newspapers, magazines, and radio.
Some of the upcoming guests on Arts Beat Radio include: Shawn Farley from the UMass Fine Arts Center; Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative’s Diane Pearlman; and Maestro Kevin Rhodes.
89/5FM/WSKB, Radio or The Western Masses, is licensed to serve Westfield State University and the Greater Westfield, MA area. WSKB runs Community Radio programming daily from 6AM-10AM. Arts Beat Radio and other WSKB programming can be heard at 89.5FM, on Comcast Channel 15 in Westfield, and streamed by www.wskb.org or at www.westfieldtv.org.
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
AMERICAN CONDUCTOR KEVIN RHODES TO MAKE NORWEGIAN DEBUT CONDUCTING NORWEGIAN NATIONAL BALLET PRODUCTION OF DON QUIXOTE MAY 19-JUNE 10
The Massachusetts-based American conductor Kevin Rhodes makes his Norwegian debut, when he conducts the Rudolf Nureyev production of Don Quixote at the Norwegian Opera and Ballet in Oslo on May 19 through June 10.
Don Quixote is set to the music of Ludwig Minkus, as arranged by John Lanchberry; Rudolf Nureyev choreographed the production after Marius Petipa. .Maestro Rhodes is no stranger to Don Quixote. He first conducted the new Dutch National Ballet production by Alexei Ratmansky, which was recorded live at the Amsterdam Music Theatre, and is available on DVD. Rhodes toured with this production to Beijing. He then conducted the Nureyev version of Don Quixote with the Vienna State Opera Ballet and the Paris Opera Ballet. The Vienna production was filmed for television, and has been aired extensively throughout the European Union. The Paris production, recorded live at the Bastille Opera House, was filmed for TV and cinema, and has been aired worldwide. Rhodes toured with that production to Tokyo.
Maestro Rhodes divides his time between his roles as Music Director for the Springfield Symphony Orchestra in Massachusetts, and the Traverse Symphony in Michigan; he is celebrating his 16th season with both ensembles. He conducts Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Traverse on April 23, and in Springfield, MA on April 29. He has just renewed his contract in Michigan for another four seasons. He is also Principal Conductor for Boston’s Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra for his 7th season.
Last fall, Maestro Rhodes conducted an all-Balanchine program as part of the Paris Opera Ballet’s Homage to Violette Verdy. and the Nureyev production of Raymonda at the Vienna State Opera Ballet. A regular guest conductor at Europe’s top opera houses for over 20 years, this season he also returns to the Stuttgart Ballet to conduct Romeo and Juliet, on June 13 and 17, and the annual Nureyev Gala at the Vienna State Opera on June 28.
For details on the Norwegian Opera and Ballet production of Don Quixote:http://operaen.no/en/P
For Kevin Rhodes’ website: http://kevinrhodescon
For Kevin Rhodes biography: http://www.parkerar
My Westfield News Group Review of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre at the UMass Fine Arts Center. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-alvin-ailey-american-dance-theatre-fine-arts-center
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
Monday, April 17, 2017
Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative’s 4TH WESTERN MASSACHUSETTS FILM AND MEDIA EXCHANGE: VITEC VIDEOCOM’s “Roadshow” Comes to Springfield
Friday, May 12, 2017 from 11:30am to 6:30pm Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel, 1 Monarch Place, Springfield, MA
Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) is proud to partner with Vitec Videocom to bring their nationally touring "Roadshow" to the Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place on Friday, May 12th from 11:30 to 6:30pm. This will be BFMC’s 4th Film and Media Exchange - a DAY 2 PLAY - with workshops and an exhibit hall showcasing the latest in production equipment! The event will focus on cost effective production techniques designed for anyone in broadcasting, filmmaking, photography, communications, and marketing. The Exchange also includes lunch, keynote speech, and networking opportunities with others in the industry.
According to Diane Pearlman, Executive Director of BFMC, “Vitec Videocom produces the Roadshow all across the country - we’re thrilled they’re bringing this high-end conference to western MA!”
Seminars at the Exchange include:
• Litepanel's co-founder, Pat Grosswendt, revealing some of the subtleties of LED lighting. • 20-year Anton/Bauer veteran, Joe Teodosio, explaining the importance of a complete system of
batteries and chargers - with new updates from NAB 2017.
• The latest options for adding teleprompting to your production to keep your cast on script. Find out how
using portable tablets such as the iPad, can move teleprompting from the studio into the field.
• As production moves beyond 4K to 8K and HDR, which tools and technologies should you be focusing your production future on? Join Vitec's resident technologist, Gary Adcock, for a lively discussion on filmmaking's constantly evolving future.
Sponsors of the Exchange (to date) include: Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, Economic Development Council of Western MA, Mark G. Auerbach Public Relations, Massachusetts Cultural Council, New England Public Radio, Take Magazine, Vitec Videocom, The Westfield News Group, WGBY Public Television for Western New England, WRSI/The River and Northampton Radio Group and Talamas.
For more info on programs and tickets contact: BFMC at berkshirefilm.org or call 413.528.4223.
The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) is a creative economic engine that supports production and workforce development in Western Massachusetts. BFMC develops educational and workforce enrichment courses, offers networking events for industry professionals, acts as a resource for visiting productions, creates jobs within our communities in the film industry and provides an on line production guide and locations database as a resource for filmmakers. BFMC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
There will be a product demo area where attendees can get hands-on time with several Vitec brands such as Sachtler, Vinten and OConnor supports, Litepanels lighting and Anton/Bauer batteries. Talamas will also be there with the latest camera equipment. The Exchange is a unique opportunity for Vitec to educate attendees around workflow solutions and how be most effective with even a small amount of gear.
Thursday, April 13, 2017
Keeping It Real. What To Do With Fake News. My April article for the award-winning Succeeding in Small Business blog. http://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/keeping-your-business-social-media-free-of-fake-news/#.WO-3kCMrJaV
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Saturday, April 1, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of James Lecesne in his The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey at Hartford Stage. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-absolute-brightness-leonard-pelkey-hartford-stage
Friday, March 31, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Next to Normal at TheaterWorks in Hartford, CT. It's superb, people! http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-next-normal-theaterworks
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
My Westfield News Group ArtsBeat for 3/29/17. James Lecesne brings Leonard Pelkey to Hartford Stage. Hartford's Bushnell announces its Broadway season for next year. Next to Normal at Hartford's TheaterWorks and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-167
Monday, March 27, 2017
My Succeeding in Small Business Article for March. On the Brand Wagon. http://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/on-the-brand-wagon-if-the-media-doesnt-get-your-message-no-one-else-will/#.WNk36CMrIzZ
Saturday, March 25, 2017
A Westfield News Group Arts Beat Extra. How Trump's proposed cuts to the NEA, NEH, and CPB could hurt the WMass creative economy. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-extra-federal-budget-cuts-impact-wmass-creative-economy
Thursday, March 23, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Jersey Boys at The Bushnell in Hartford. Oh what a night! http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-jersey-boys-bushnell
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
Sunday, March 19, 2017
The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative
4TH WESTERN MASSACHUSETTS FILM AND MEDIA EXCHANGE
Friday, May 12, 2017 from 11:30AM to 6PM
Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel
One Monarch Place, Springfield, MA
A day of hands-on workshops and networking opportunities for filmmakers, photographers, students, small businesses and non-profit organizations looking to incorporate the latest techniques in their film and media creation. Workshops and equipment demonstrations will be presented by Vitec Videocom, a Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative partner.
Tickets will be on sale on April 1. For information on programs, tickets, and more: Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative at www.berkshirefilm.org or call:413-528-4223
Sponsors to date include Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts and The Massachusetts Cultural Council.
The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) is a creative economic engine that supports production and workforce development in Western Massachusetts. BFMC develops educational and workforce enrichment courses, offers networking events for industry professionals, acts as a resource for visiting productions, creates jobs within our communities in the film industry and provides an on line production guide and locations database as a resource for filmmakers. BFMC was formed in 2009, and is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Sunday, March 12, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of Faust Symphony at Hartford Symphony. A blend of theatre and music--innovative collaboration and performance. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-the-hartford-symphony-orchestra-a-faust-symphony
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
Wednesday, March 1, 2017
Friday, February 24, 2017
For my Succeeding in Small Business column, I remind people that the media is not the enemy. Dishonesty is. http://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/the-media-and-lessons-small-business-can-learn-from-the-new-administration/#.WLBNGiMrJaV
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
DATELINE: February 21, 2017. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AUTHOR HARRIET SCOTT CHESSMAN VISITS WESTERN MASSACHUSETTS ON NATIONAL BOOK TOUR FOR “THE LOST SKETCHBOOK OF EDGAR DEGAS”
Author Harriet Scott Chessman will do readings and book-signings of her new novelThe Lost Sketchbook of Edgar Degas at three Western Massachusetts independent booksellers as part of her 15-city national book tour with the book’s release on the Outpost19 imprint. .
Chessman is the author of the earlier novels The Beauty of Ordinary Things, Someone Not Really Her Mother, Lydia Cassatt Reading The Morning Paper, and Ohio Angels. She wrote the libretto for Jonathan Berger's opera My Lai, commissioned and performed by the Kronos Quartet. My Lai opens in New York later this year.
Harriet Scott Chessman is a graduate of Northfield Mount Hermon School, Wellesley College, and Yale University, where she received her PhD in English from Yale University. She has taught literature and creative writing at Yale University, Bread Loaf School of English, and Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program. She lived for twelve years in Palo Alto, CA. She now lives in Connecticut.
The Western Massachusetts tour dates include:
Tuesday, March 28 at 7PM: The Odyssey Book Shop, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA Made possible with the support of Northfield Mount Hermon School Alumni. Harriet will be introduced by Northfield Mount Hermon Archivist Peter Weis.A portion of the proceeds from book sales will benefit the NMH Fund. http://www.odysseybks.com/
Saturday, April 1 at 1PM: Blue Umbrella Books, 2 Main St, Westfield, MA., Harriet will be introduced by Westfield News Group Arts reporter Mark G. Auerbach http://www.blueumbrellabooks.
Tuesday, April 4 at 7PM: Water Street Books, 26 Water St, Williamstown, MA http://www.bkstr.com/williams
store/home/en?cm_mmc=Redirect- _-VanityURL-_-waterstreet.bkst r.com-_-10283
All readings and booksignings are free and open to the public.
Dates and times are subject to change.
For information on Harriet Scott Chessman: http://harrietchessman.com.
For information on The Lost Sketchbook of Edgar Degas :http://harrietchessman.com/bo
For complete tour information: http://harrietchessman.com/eve
For information on Outpost19: http://www.outpost19.com/
Sunday, February 19, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of the Springfield Symphony's Celebration of Leontyne Price, Kevin Rhodes conducting, and starring Othalie Graham. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-the-springfield-symphony-orchestra-celebrates-leontyne-price
Thursday, February 16, 2017
My Westfield News Group review of The Book of Mormon at The Bushnell in Hartford. http://thewestfieldnews.com/review-the-book-of-mormon
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Wednesday, February 8, 2017
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
My Westfield News Group Arts Beat for 2/1/17. Native composer Adam Schoenberg;s new CD; an exhibition that showcases Connecticut's rich history of dance and more. http://thewestfieldnews.com/arts-beat-158
Tuesday, January 31, 2017
My Succeeding in Small Business Profile of WAM Theatre's Kristen van Ginhoven, a visionary who has built a first-class theatre company for all audiences that works to better the lives of women and girls. http://www.succeedinginsmallbusiness.com/small-business-success-37-kristen-van-ginhoven-wam-theatre/#.WJDoYyMrJaV
Please note: Due to a schedule conflict, The Big Broadcast has been moved to Sunday, March 5.
DATELINE: February 13, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mark G. Auerbach
Mark G. Auerbach Public Relations
“THE BIG BROADCAST!” RETURNS TO MOUNT HOLYOKE COLLEGE’S CHAPIN AUDITORIUM ON SUNDAY, MARCH 5, FOR TWO PERFORMANCES AT 2PM & 7PM
Brian Lapis Celebrates His 10th Season as Emcee Fred Kelley.
The Jazz Ensembles of Mount Holyoke College present the 12th edition of The Big Broadcast! on Sunday, March 5 at 2PM & 7PM at Chapin Auditorium, Mount Holyoke College, in South Hadley, MA. Created and directed by Mark Gionfriddo, who is also onstage as “Matt Morgan”, The Big Broadcast! is a re-creation of a live 1940's radio show featuring the Mount Holyoke College Big Band, Vocal Jazz, and Chamber Jazz Ensembles performing well-known tunes from the swing era and the American songbook. WWLP-TV meteorologist Brian Lapis is emcee “Fred Kelley” for his 10th consecutive season.
Earlier announcements stated that performances were scheduled for Saturday, March 4, but due to a Mount Holyoke schedule conflict, the date has been changed to Sunday, March 5.
Mount Holyoke College music faculty member Mark Gionfriddo originally created The Big Broadcast! for a small cabaret group he directed, and incorporated it into the concert season at Mount Holyoke College.
“Preparation for the show began early in January when my students and I researched live radio broadcasts of the 1940's: big band swing music, those great radio serials, and the commercials of the day," said Gionfriddo. “We incorporate all of those elements into our production to give the audience the feel of an authentic radio variety program on a fictitious station named WJAZ."
"This year, much of what we're presenting is all new material to The Big Broadcast!,” says Gionfriddo. “We are performing two Johnny Mercer songs about trains: Harold Arlen’s "On The Atchison, Topeka & The Santa Fe" from the movie The Harvey Girls, as arranged for Rosemary Clooney and Harry James; and Les Brown’s “Sentimental Journey” as sung by Doris Day.
Gionfriddo and Lapis always include one swing era “buddy number” for The Big Broadcast!; this year, they’re rehearsing “Chicago Style” from the Hope and Crosby movie Road to Bali, which they’ll perform as Morgan and Kelley. Gionfriddo and Lapis also sing with a female trio a great arrangement of Irving Berlin's standard "There's No Business Like Show Business" as originally recorded by Bing Crosby, The Andrews Sisters, and Dick Haymes.
Gionfriddo added “We are performing a classic 'riff song' (written specifically to get people onto a dance floor) by Artie Shaw called "One Night Stand". I’ve also made a new arrangement of an old chestnut, "My Melancholy Baby," which will be premiered by Vocal Jazz.
Mark Gionfriddo (“Matt Morgan”) is well known to area concertgoers as a pianist, accompanist, composer, arranger, and musical director. His versatility and knowledge of many musical styles has brought him together with a wide range of popular and classical artists through the years, among them Mitzi Gaynor, Liberace, Al Martino, Anna Moffo, and Garrison Keillor. Mark's adventures while assistant conductor on board Cunard's MS Royal Viking Sun brought him around the world to 30 countries. Mark received his Bachelor's Degree in Piano from Skidmore College and Master's Degree in Accompanying from UMASS/Amherst.
Mark has been based at Mount Holyoke College since 1986 where he is a Senior Instructor in Classical and Jazz Piano as well as Director and Founder of the Jazz Ensembles. In 2006, he conducted the MHC Big Band during two episodes of the popular public radio quiz show “Says You!”. Mark is also a music director for Berkshire Theatre Group in Stockbridge and Pittsfield MA during the summer, and has recently served in that capacity for productions of Peter Pan, A Class Act, Seussical the Musical, Mary Poppins, Beauty and The Beast, A Christmas Carol, and the Neil Ellenoff Musical Mondays series.
Gionfriddo recently released his first novel: Good Night, Dear Hart, Good Night, the story of Hart-Lester H. Allen, whose husband brought down the infamous Ponzi of “Ponzi Scheme” fame. The book, on the Epigraph imprint, is co-authored by his mother, Jeannie Gionfriddo.
Brian Lapis ("Fred Kelley") joined the 22News Storm Team in 1996. He got his start in broadcasting at the age of 15 at radio station WILI, in his hometown of Willimantic, CT. He's worked as a radio on-air talent for stations in Hartford, CT; Philadelphia, PA; Syracuse, NY; and Providence, RI. Brian has a Bachelor's degree in Television Radio Film Management from Syracuse University. In addition, he holds a certificate in Broadcast Meteorology from Mississippi State University. This is his 10th season as WJAZ announcer and emcee “Fred Kelley”. In 2013, the National Weather Association named Brian “Broadcaster of the Year".
Brian loves performing as “Fred Kelley”. “The combination of the opportunity for me to perform, the creative energy of the students and Mark Gionfriddo, and the great music makes this far and away my favorite event of the year," he said. "As a 'student of broadcasting’, I am one who appreciates the “golden age” of radio and just how hugely popular these variety shows were in their day. I’d like to believe that if I were around back in the 1940s, I would have a gig like Fred Kelley’s."
Performance sponsors ofThe Big Broadcast! are: Mount Holyoke College, WWLP-22News & The CW Springfield, New England Public Radio and the NEPR News Network, The Republican powering MassLive and El Pueblo Latino and Loomis Communities.
Tickets (general admission): $20.00 premium front and center seating.$15.00 regular seating. $10.00 seniors and students. Tickets are on sale at The Odyssey Book Shop, Village Commons, South Hadley; the UMass Fine Arts Center Box Office; and at the door (subject to availability). For advance phone orders, call 413-545-2511 or 800-999-UMASS. For online tickets, visit www.fineartscenter.com. Doors open one hour prior to each performance.
Ticketholders who purchased tickets for Saturday, March 4, may use them for Sunday, March 5. Those ticketholders who want a refund may return their tickets to their point of purchase by the end of the business day on March 3.
For information on The Jazz Ensembles of Mount Holyoke College: