Wednesday, November 30, 2005

There's a trend in the actor biographies that appear in the programs of local theater companies that I'd love to see end. Soon. Instead of just giving us information on what the actor has done in an organized, nicely written format, we start by hearing how incredibly, unbelievably happy the actor is to be appearing with the company. OK, believe me I know all actors are happy to be employed. At any given moment, 85% of the members of Actors Equity Association are NOT employed, so if the've got a gig they're just flying. But this almost universal vying to suck up to the employer company in print has become a tiresome cliché.

My program for "Kiss of the Spider Woman" lists three actors who are happy, three more who are delighted, one who's excited, two who are very excited, and one each who are glad, pleased, thrilled and, finally, tickled pink to be appearing. It gets worse. Several bios include thanks at the end to friends, family, lovers (straight and gay), God--you name it. There are also dedications of the performance to someone special and messages in acronyms that only one or two people will be able to understand. It looks like the program bio is morphing with the acceptance speech the actor hopes to deliver at Boston's annual Elliot Norton Award ceremony. It also looks uncomfortably like the program material at a grammar school production. Basingstoke! (Gilbert & Sullivan fans out there will understand that reference).

We're in another run of unseasonably warm weather days. Not that I'm complaining, given home heating costs this year. We reached the lower 60s in Boston on Tuesday and mild temperatures will persist through Thursday. When I came home on Tuesday night, the front of my house was covered with small, prettily patterned moths--probably 60 or 70 of them, all in the light from my outside light fixture. These guys were supposed to be dead a month ago. The fact that they popped up this week leads me to think they're a whole generation whose larvae were supposed to remain in hibernation over the winter and come out next spring. Well, they're here now. Amazing. So, will there be any moths next year or will the entire generation get wiped out when the cold returns this weekend?

Also, Fritz told me this morning that there's a daffodil up and getting ready to blossom by the flagstone walk leading down from the Center to his house. This season reversal is really something.

Below is an example of the latest spam I've been getting on my primary email account, the one provided by MIT that has supposedly unbreachable spam filters. Shorter and far more amusing than the long-winded Nigerian money transfer scams, they have internet translation site services written all over them:

Your case has been discussed to the important peoples, and upon precise weighing up, we are able to volunteer you the subsequent opening offer. Based upon precise weighing up you are eligible to acheive a generous rebate on your primary property investment.
Please go here to settle this juncture of the arrangement.Should you prefer not to take gain of this holiday opening offer you can go here.

Like to Hell, perhaps? I know better than to click on that. And right after Thanksgiving, a "precise weighing up" is probably NOT a good idea.


Will is ecstatic to the point of creaming his briefs to be back posting again at DesignerBlog. Since his last three posts (in which he was like totally overwhelmed, eternally grateful, and absolutely stupefied, respectively) he has designed Anouilh's "Leocadia" at MIT and been hired to design Lee Hoiby's "The Scarf" for Intermezzo, The New England Chamber Opera. Opera Pig that he is, he's also accepted an invitation to join Intermezzo's Board of Directors. Will wants to thank his wonderful husband for putting out on a regular basis (ILYFAAW), and his cat for allowing him into the bed she sleeps on. Thanks to my daughters for putting up with me all these years. Go New York City Opera!

That spoof is fantanstic! If the real bios sound anything that, it only confirms why the majoriuty of space in a playbill would have been better off being made into toothpicks. IMHO.

Isn't it scary that gMail has a hundred times better spam filter than the pinnacle of technology school that is MIT?

Did a quick google-monkey dance and found this:
"The word Basingstoke ...a city in used in the operetta Ruddigore, as a reminder to a once-mad maid ...that she should not relapse into madness, and that she should control her behavior."

Oh, and, ugh, here comes the cold outside...
Bingo! If I were offering a prize, you'd get it. Yes, "Basingstoke" is the control word that's used to snap Mad Margaret out of any developing fits.

I've always wondered if those who are very excited score more points toward being cast in the next production than those who are only excited or just glad. I took my parody over the top, of course, but yes, the real bios are very much like that--one after another after another.
Brilliant bio!

This might inspire me to write one...for no other reason than I can!
"to the point of creaming his briefs"! Hehehe! Totally tickled.
I didn't even realize I was reading a spoof bio. Talk about being frazzled after a bout with a sinus infection gone bonkers!
Yes, it's a spoof at the beginning and the end. Like the actual actors' bios, the central part, the professional stuff, is fact. I went over the top elsewhere in order to support the parody and also give you guys a good laugh.

However, I AM an opera pig--big time.
No prize? All my 0.11 seconds of google work for nothing?

I figure the real gung-ho attitude works best with gung-ho employers from gung-ho new companies that want to do a kick-ass job making a name for themselves as a gung-ho kick-ass can-do company.

I bet it works less with world-weary employers who've done and seen all the bullshit and really just want to hire a good person for the job.

I suppose in theater, every new show is a new gung-ho kick-ass enterprise, so this approach works.

Just a theory, though.
I loved your bio! I understand what you're saying about the actors' bios, some of them can get pretty sappy...but, as an actor myself, my own bios tend to be "moderately sappy". I feel that I should thank the director for the opportunity, and I also feel a bit like I'm "tooting my own horn" by listing only my accomplishments. Some bios I've seen take up an enormous amount of space; I try to keep mine short. I also HATE writing them...I usually have someone help me. I also hate every headshot I've ever had taken...
Who knows where to download XRumer 5.0 Palladium?
Help, please. All recommend this program to effectively advertise on the Internet, this is the best program!
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