Association for Jewish Theatre
Newsletter
Fall 2012  
 

2013 Conference Theme

The 2013 AJT Conference -- June 2-5 in the Twin Cities (Minneapolis/St. Paul) -- will have the theme "Imagining Jewish Theatre for the 21st Century."

The 2013 conference promises to be one of the most innovative and exciting conferences since, well, since the last conference.

The headquarters hotel will be the Crowne Plaza, St. Paul-Riverfront and the room rates will be $110 per night, a considerable discount from the regular rate.


Closing Session at the 2012 AJT Conference in Los Angeles

The programs, panels and entertainment for the conference are being set and the keynote speaker is being chosen. Conference chairs Barbara Brooks, Producing Artistic Director of the Minnesota Jewish Theatre Company, and Diane Gilboa, Producing Artistic Director of Theatre Or in Denver, are hard at work in planning.

Of course, AJT members get a significant discount on the conference fee. Early-bird rates (an even bigger discount for members!) will be announced soon.

So make sure your membership is current, and make your reservations early in order to take advantage of this incredible deal.

For hotel reservations, call 866-686-2867.


Ed Asner opens the 2012 AJT Conference

 


 

AJT Board Members

David Chack, president
Elayne LeTraunik, AJT coordinator
Mira Hirsch, immediate past president
Rebecca Joy Fletcher, vice-president
Doug Brook, vice-president
Hannah Hessel, vice-president
Diane Gilboa, secretary
Susan Lodish, treasurer
 
Members-at-large:
Barbara Trainin Blank
Aaron Henne
Leslie Marko
Mel Weiser
Bryna Weiss
Eli Taylor
 
Ex-officios:
Ellen Schiff - Scholar-in-residence
Moti Sandak - Editor-in-Chief of All About Jewish Theatre

 

Shanah Tovah!

A happy, healthy New Year to everyone, from the Board of the Association for Jewish Theatre. May 5773 bring you happiness, success, and increased ticket sales.


David Chack and Carl Reiner at the 2012 AJT Conference in Los Angeles

 


 

From the President

Recently, David Chack, President of the Association for Jewish Theatre, submitted a letter of support for a theater member. This may be helpful to all of you as well.

Here is an excerpt. For the whole letter, contact David at dchack@afjt.com.

As the President of the Association for Jewish Theatre I write on behalf of one of our member theatre artists My understanding is that XXXX is being questioned about their professional work for tax purposes.

Regarding professionalism, XXXX is a member of our association - a member organization for theatre artists who produce, write, direct, perform and promote Jewish and multicultural theatre throughout the United States. Member theatres and member theatre artists, include the renowned Theatre J in Washington, DC and the National Yiddishe Folksbiene in New York City. We also have individual members such as well-known artists like Theodore Bikel, Donald Margulies, Ed Asner, and Carl Reiner -- all who have changed the face of theatre in this country.

As one of our members, XXXX is part of this vibrant group devoting their lives to their craft for the enjoyment, education, entertainment, multicultural experience, artistic enrichment, and enthusiastic engagement of audiences throughout our country.

Numerous studies have been and are being done showing that the arts not only contribute to the well-being of a community but they provide a multiplier effect on community businesses and help in revenue for area restaurants, local businesses, etc. Unfortunately the artist doesn't see these dollars during an economic downturn because the money goes to the businesses and not to the venues that are sponsoring the artists. In effect, the artist reaps the benefits of communal cohesiveness, but not in dollars since sponsoring venues are dealing with annual financial deficits. Schools, community centers, universities, churches and temples, museums, and other cultural institutions are all hurting financially and yet they continue to call on artists -- and artists keep delivering.

They are true patriots giving totally of themselves by plying their trade and sacrificing themselves in order to contribute to the greater good of our collective culture and this nation.

 

 

Renew Your AJT Membership

Now is the time to renew your AJT membership!

All AJT memberships begin on January 1 but for those who joined in the middle of the year, you will receive a pro-rated renewal fee.

The pro-rated fee is determined in quarters, for example, if you joined in April, May or June, you would take 25% off the renewal fee. If you joined in July, August or September you would take off 50% and if you joined in October, November or December, you would take off 75% of your renewal fee.

Fill out the membership renewal form today! Please renew now and be a part of AJT as we plan for our next conference in the Twin Cities.


Richard Montoya at the 2012 AJT Conference

 


 

New AJT Members

Please welcome some of our newest AJT members!

Lisa Grunberger holds a doctorate in Comparative Religions from the University of Chicago Divinity School, She's a Yoga teacher, a college professor, performer, and published writer. A Jewish woman from Long Island with an Israeli mother and a Viennese Father, Lisa was immersed in Yiddishkeit from a young age.

Her one-woman show, The Prayer Collector, premiered at Makor/Steinhard Center in Manhattan. Her art installation, A Series of Disruptions, was exhibited at the Producer's Club Theatre in Manhattan.

She is an Assistant Professor in English at Temple University in Philadelphia. James Gabbe

James Isaiah Gabbe is an author, professional photographer, documentarian and co-owner of a communications firm in New York City. MARCH, his first dramatic work, grew out of a life-long obsession to understand how Adolf Hitler could seduce tens of millions of educated, cultivated people into supporting his monstrous acts. His screenplay, Duke, was taken into development by TriStar. His novel, LaRue's Maneuvers, explores generational conflict and trauma during the Vietnam war in the late 1960s. His recently published, critically acclaimed, historical work, The Universe of Union Square, tells in words and nearly 1,000 photos and illustrations the mostly untold and/or lost story of a small piece of a giant city that has had an out-sized impact on the history of New York, America and, in some cases, the world. The recipient of numerous awards for industrial documentaries, Jim is currently working on a TV documentary that portrays in a personal and dramatic way China's rapid steps toward global power. A former journalist and decorated U.S. Army officer, Jim attended Northeastern University and holds graduate degrees in history and journalism from Brown University and Columbia University, respectively.

Randi Michaels (Block) has been a professional singer and songwriter in NYC and Nashville for 30 years and has extensive experience in studio recording, production and performance. Signed to Bug Music and Milsap-Galbraith Music, she has had many songs recorded in the US, Canada and Europe by various artists including David Kersh, The String Cheese Incident, Heather Myles, Andy Childs and Marilyn Martin. She has performed on some of the most prestigious stages in the world including Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden and has performed, toured and/or recorded with Gloria Estefan, The Mavericks, Buster Poindexter, Englebert Humberdink and Roger Daltry. In 1991, Randi created and produced New York City's first writer-in-the-round show called "The Songwriter's Circle" at The Bitter End. Randi has been a mentor for NSAI (Nashville Songwriters Association International) in Nashville, Los Angeles and Denver and teaches group classes for their annual Songposium Series in Nashville. She was an instructor at the Breckenridge Education and Music Seminars as well as The Swallow Hill Seminar in Bailey, Colorado with Celeste Krenz. From 2006-2008, Randi was the Show Producer and Booking Manager for NSAI's Tin Pan South, the largest songwriting festival in the world. In 2009 she became the Booker and Talent Supervisor for the new PBS television series "Legends & Lyrics." She has written two musicals, one of which was featured in the Eugene O'Neill Theater Festival in August 2008 and 2009 and produced by AMAS Theater, NYC in November 2009. She was a finalist for the prestigious 2010 Fred Ebb Award for her new show "Guess Who's Coming To Seder? A Delicious New Musical" which was directed by Ted Swindley (creator and director of "Always... Patsy Cline") and has been performed in Nashville, New York and Tulsa. Randi currently teaches, coaches and co-writes with new and established artists in Nashville, New York and LA.

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