A message from our Summer Intern

This summer, college freshman Sydney Berk came to work with Antaeus.

She was a tremendous asset to our organization, from managing our Box Office and Assistant Directing some of the ClassicsFest workshops, to just being an all around life-saver.

Here are her words about her summer experience:

Dear Jeanie Hackett,

I hope all is well at Antaeus and with you. The summer was such a great success and I’m happy I got to witness it all unfold. I want to say thank you for the wonderful opportunities you gave me this summer. I feel incredibly lucky and so appreciative for all I learned and the experience I gained. I could not have found a better company to work with. Antaeus is truly one of a kind. Every moment I was there I could see how invested every company member and friend was in the success of the mission. There is always a feeling of support; people help each other, listen to each other and grow with one another. Antaeus showed me what it means to be in a company and gave me a model of the kind of company member I want to be in the future. This summer, I learned boundless amounts about acting, directing and managing a theater. Watching the actors prepare, work and perform was a blessing. Observing the way the different directors interacted with their casts was so beneficial. It was one of my first professional theater experiences and I feel that I could not have been luckier.

I also want to personally thank you because I learned so very much about running a theater from watching you. The way you make decisions, the way you take every opportunity and the way you are always efficient. Thank you for constantly communicating with me, for showing me how to properly run a theater but also for explaining to me why each step you took was important. I really appreciate it.

I miss Antaeus already and am really forward to seeing Autumn Garden later this fall. It was a truly inspiring place to work. The actors, directors and crew all welcomed me so lovingly. The way so many made a point to say hello to me daily meant a lot. It is such a wonderful place to work. I feel so grateful that I got to witness and be a part of the success. I hope I will be back in the future. It is definitely something I would love.

Sincerely,
Sydney

Advertisements

Intern Interviews – Carolyn and Jenn

Interview with Carolyn

Antaeus: What made you want to begin volunteering in general and how did you find
Antaeus?

Carolyn: I’ve always loved theater and had worked full time for a children’s theater in Boston for the past two years. So when I moved to LA and saw the post for Antaeus on Craig’s list, I knew that volunteering
would be great way to get involved with a theater out here.

A: What about Antaeus made you think you would enjoy working with them?

C: I like the dedication Antaeus has to classical works and I also love
the idea of the education outreach program. Also, after meeting Cindy,
who is also from Boston, I knew I would love working with her and for
Antaeus!

A: Do you have a background in theater? If so what type?

C: I grew up acting in school shows and majored in theater in college.
After college I was a company member of a theater in Boston and worked
administratively for an educational theater company called Chamber
Theatre Productions.

A: What have you enjoyed doing most since working with Antaeus?

C: I think my favorite part so far is just getting to know everyone and
being back in and around a theater.

A: What is your favorite thing about theater?

C: I’ve always loved theater because of the excitement of acting in front
of a live audience and the magic it can create in terms of having the
power to affect and inspire everyone it touches.

A: When not volunteering at Antaeus what do you like to do for fun?

C: I love to write and currently write for an art and literature
magazine. Also, because I’m new here, I love exploring the many
restaurants, shops, art galleries and events that LA has to offer.

Interview with Jenn

Antaeus: How long have you been volunteering at Antaeus?

Jenn: Since October ’09. so almost 5 months.

A: What made you want to begin volunteering in general and how did you find Antaeus?

I wanted to gain work experience in a creative atmosphere, and I found Antaeus in the “jobs” section of Craigslist.  It sounded perfect.

A: What about Antaeus made you think you would enjoy working with them?

J: I had a good feeling about Antaeus, and rightfully so.  There’s an easy-going but professional atmosphere here that I really like.  Everyone is super friendly.  Most importantly, the work they do here is amazing and inspiring.

A: Do you have a background in theater? If so what type?

J: I acted in high school plays and musicals, and also did a lot of technical theater work.  My theater experience pretty much ended upon high school graduation.  That’s part of why I joined the Antaeus family:  to get involved again.

A: What have you enjoyed doing most since working with Antaeus?

J: Helping behind-the-scenes: painting, decorating the lobby for Potluck Readings, and editing the program.

A: What is your favorite thing about theater?

J: I love watching an unraveling story that speaks universal truths—truths that are within us and greater than us.  I feel that good theater demands honesty from audience and actor alike.  My favorite thing about theater is probably when, watching a skilled, honest actor, I’m inspired to admit, “I know that feeling.  I’ve been vulnerable/silly/foolish/sincere/fabulous/utterly human like that.”  It’s a confirmation of humanity, a reminder of the beauty of our sameness.

A: When not volunteering at Antaeus what do you like to do for fun?

J: Creative things!  Mostly I like creative writing, songwriting, and singing.

Why is Arts Education important to me?

Brett Colbeth, A2 member & volunteer for Shakes Alive!, Antaeus's Shakespeare in the Schools Program

Brett Colbeth, A2 member & volunteer for Shakes Alive!, Antaeus's Shakespeare in the Schools Program

Why is Arts Education Important to me?

By Brett Colbeth, member of A2 & Antaeus Shakes Alive! Volunteer

You ask that question to any artist and they will probably chuckle like I did.  To me, it’s like asking, “Why is breathing important to me?”  I can only speak from my own experience and that’s exactly what I hope to achieve in this, my very first blog post.

If I weren’t fortunate enough to have had arts education in my life I would have turned out to be a degenerate… seriously!  I came close a few times in life.  Since as far back as I can remember, the arts have always acted as a productive and healthy outlet for me.  As a child, I would sketch and paint in order to quiet my mind and make sense of what I was feeling.  I still do.  Ms. Hemmings, my elementary school art teacher, taught me that whatever I created was beautiful because it came from my own personal truth.  She praised my version of “American Gothic” a la “Ren and Stimpy.”  I won my school district’s art award and a lot of self-esteem. Thanks Ms. Hemmings.  Mr. Provost, my fourth grade cello teacher, not only taught me “Ode to Joy” but how to handle and care for something with love and grace.  Thanks Mr. Provost!  Bruce Altice, my guitar teacher, taught me how to wail on the guitar and not on others.  Mr. Wahl, my senior year English teacher opened my eyes and soul to Shakespeare and poetry!

These are just a few of the arts educators that played a major role in putting the arts into my life.  I would like to conclude with recognizing my mother and father who nurtured my love for the arts at an early age and though not “artists” in the purist sense of the word are two of the most creative and original people I know.  They taught me to look at things subjectively, empathize with others and seek out the beauty in life, my brother man, and myself.  And most importantly, never settle for anything less than the truth! So to conclude, why is arts education important to me?  If I didn’t have sketching and painting as a means to quiet my mind and focus my energy I would have drugs and alcohol.  If Ms. Hemmings never told me about my own personal truth I would have looked for it in another person, place or thing.  If Mr. Provost never taught me how to hold and care for a cello I would have a difficult time holding and caring for anyone and anything I had the chance of laying my hands on.  If Bruce Altice never taught me how to wail on the guitar at that very moment in my life, I would have been kicked out of school and thrown in juvenile hall for violent delinquent behavior. And If Mr. Wahl, never opened my eyes and soul to Shakespeare and poetry I would struggle even more than I do today with “finding the words to say.”  And that’s exactly where I will end it.  Do the world a service and create some art today!

Brett Colbeth

“The arts provide a more comprehensive and insightful education because they invite students to explore the emotional, intuitive, and irrational aspects of life that science is hard pressed to explain. “

-Charles Fowler

The Antaeus Company

Artists-in-Residence Program

SHAKES ALIVE!

BACKGROUND

Shakes Alive! Is the education outreach program run by the nationally-renowned Antaeus Theatre Company.  Dedicated classical theater actors, many of whom are recognizable from TV and film as well, encourage students in non-theater classes to dive into Shakespeare and other classic plays.  Students discover how actors breathe life into these texts, and then they do it themselves.  By analyzing rich, dense language, absorbing its meaning and beauty, and then performing it with energy and emotional truth, students gain confidence — and a deep appreciation for some of humanity’s greatest works of art.

PROGRAM

Our Lead Teacher works closely with your teachers to choose a text to bring to life in each class.   Perhaps in an English class students are studying THE TEMPEST, THE CRUCIBLE, or ROMEO AND JULIET.  In a science class, we can introduce a play to like the Pulitzer Prize-winning COPENHAGEN, which explores the concept of objectivity both in science and in our moral lives.

Each week one or two professional, successful actors visit to share their process in mining and examining a role.  Students participate in acting games, improvisation, and “direct” the actors as they make choices about their performances.  In so doing, students learn that they have power both as artists and readers, and that classic plays are dynamically relevant and exciting.

For more information, please email cindy@antaeus.org

My acting experience with the Young Idea opened up a whole new perspective on Noel Coward. First and foremost I discovered that there is no one way to ‘play’ Noel Coward. So often I had heard of a distinct Coward ‘style’ and only that way was the correct way. I was glad to find I was wrong. This freed me up from thinking Noel Coward was difficult to perform and allowed me an opportunity to tell the story as Coward intended.

Thankfully,

Jeff Gardner

A2 member since Fall '08

A2 member since Fall '08

Jeff is a native from Los Angeles. A graduate of the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, Jeff began acting professionally in Washington D.C. where he appeared in Little Women at the Kennedy Center, Skylight at The Studio Theatre, Henry V, Henry VI parts I-III and Measure for Measure, all at the Shakespeare Theatre. Other regional credits include Our Town and The Seagull (with Gwyneth Paltrow and Christopher Walken) at Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts. His film credits include Lifeform, Fall Time and the MGM feature Hollywood Sign. Jeff also has an award-winning one-man riff on TV entitled Kill Your Television.

A Note From Artistic Associate Cindy Marie Jenkins

When we received the grant from the Noel Coward Foundation, completely new opportunities opened up to The Antaeus Academy. Building the playground for learning The Master as well as fostering a love of Coward in younger audiences were two goals we knew would enrich Antaeus’s mission and invigorate us as we leapt into our first full season. The Antaeus Academy studies Coward among the British Classics, but rarely are able to involve its members in such an immersion. When Jeanie Hackett, Artistic Director of both the Company and Academy, hatched the idea to expand the scope of the grant by creating a mentorship for young directors as well, the project took on a new energy. I personally have the privilege of experiencing a mentorship simply by working at Antaeus and assisting the moderators in our Academy classes, but many new directors are left on their own.

In addition, the grant allowed us rare opportunities to experiment with outreach and programming around plays that we knew would reach beyond generations. Each play in The Young Idea hinges on one specific conflict: how can younger people’s ideals evolve & prosper when they are caught in the very world which suffocates their parents? Sorel and Simon Bliss play out their frustration within the very games their parents created; Dora & Stevie Shattock must deceive their parents to save all their lives; and John Whittaker melts into a little boy in full view of his wordly wife after being with his parents for barely a month.

In this time of online, open communication, Noel Coward clearly proves that accepting new ideas and valuing the old is the best road forward. We thank the Noel Coward Foundation for the chance to infuse our contemporary voice into his classical themes and hope you will join us in celebrating The Master, Noel Coward, during the weekend of The Young Idea!

-Cindy Marie Jenkins, Artistic Associate of The Antaeus Company

Antaeus at Cleveland High School: King Lear

Paid Antaeus Internship Available

Want to work at Antaeus this summer? AND get paid? Here’s the official scoop…

125 PAID SUMMER INTERNSHIPS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS AVAILABLE THROUGH LOS ANGELES COUNTY ARTS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

Eligibility requirements expanded Summer job opportunities for 125 college students are now available through the L.A. County Arts Internship Program. The positions are for 10 weeks and pay $350 per week. Interns also take part in educational and arts networking activities. Through the program, interns gain real work experience to strengthen their resumes and develop business skills that can be put to use in their future careers.

To support the internships, Los Angeles County, through its Arts Commission, has given grants totaling $500,000 to 95 performing, literary, media and municipal arts organizations throughout the County. The internship program celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2009. More than 1100 college students have participated in the program since its inception in the summer of 2000.

Descriptions of and contacts for the 125 internship positions are posted on the Arts Commission’s web site. Go to www.lacountyarts.org, click on Internships, then 2009 Internship Positions. The direct link is http://lacountyarts.org/internships/docs/internships_postings09.pdf (the description of the Antaeus internship is on p5).

Interested college students should apply directly to the organization offering the internship, not the Arts Commission. General information on the internship program is also available on the web site. Eligibility requirements for the internships have been expanded in 2009. Graduating seniors who complete their undergraduate degrees by September 1, 2009 are eligible as well as undergraduates. Undergraduates must have completed at least one semester of college by June 2009 and be currently enrolled (full-time) in a community college or a four-year university. Applicants must be resident in and/or attending school in Los Angeles County.