Friday, July 30, 2010

Tickets Still Available for Weekend Performances!

No need to head to your local multiplex for a movie this weekend. Support LIVE THEATRE right here in your community. Come out to CSUN this weekend to see the Teenage Drama Workshop's wonderful productions of "Seussical" and "Alice in Wonderland." Tickets are still available. 

Here is our schedule for this weekend:

Friday, July 30
  • "Seussical" at 7 p.m. in the Campus Theatre

Saturday, July 31:
  • "Seussical" at 11 a.m. in the Campus Theatre
  • "Seussical" at 7 p.m. in the Campus Theatre
  • "Alice in Wonderland" at 7 p.m. in the Little Theatre.

All performances are in Nordhoff Hall on the campus of Cal State Northridge. The closest parking is Lot B1 at Nordhoff and Darby. Parking is $6. Purchase a parking voucher from the dispenser in the lot before you head for the theatre.

The box office in Nordhoff Hall opens two hours before any TADW performance. Adults are $12, kids and seniors are $9.  All tickets are general admission. Latecomers  may not be seated.  Additional info on buying tickets can be found here.  Or, please visit our website.

Wacky-Tacky Dress-Up Day at TADW

Wacky? Tacky? Or just "wacky-tacky?" Nope. Just another fun dress-up day at the Teenage Drama Workshop.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Donors, Supporters Honored at Dean's Reception

TADW donors, parents and supporters were honored at a special reception Wednesday evening, hosted by Robert Bucker, Dean of the Mike Curb College of Arts, Media and Communication at Cal State Northridge.  At the event, Dean Bucker thanked attendees for supporting the arts and supporting the children whose lives are affected by the Workshop. Held in the beautiful Organ Room in Nordhoff Hall, the event included a cameo appearance by the cast of "Alice in Wonderland". Attendees, including longtime TADW donors Allan Rich and Nancy Cartwright, were also invited to attend the opening night performance of "Seussical."

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

"Seussical" Sneak Peek

TADW's production of "Seussical" opens Wednesday, July 28 at 7 p.m. in the Campus Theatre in Nordhoff Hall at CSUN. Get your tickets today!

Monday, July 26, 2010

TADW Donor Featured in CSUN's "northridge" Magazine

Just spotted in our mailbox: The latest issue of CSUN's "northridge" magazine features TADW supporter Nancy Cartwright on the inside front cover. The item includes a nice mention of Nancy bringing "her enthusiastic support to CSUN's Teenage Drama Workshop."

Musical Theatre Class: Preparing for Munch & Crunch

With "Alice" up and running and "Seussical" opening Wednesday, July 28, students in TADW's musical theatre elective are busy preparing for their "Munch and Crunch" revue, which will be held Sunday, Aug. 8 beginning at 10 a.m. in the Campus Theatre. 

This not-to-be-missed event is the annual culmination of TADW and will include the musical theatre performance as well as recital pieces from voice and dance classes.  Lunch will be served (there will be a small fee for parents and guests), after which there will be several special presentations, including TADW awards and scholarships. 

The theme for Munch and Crunch this year is "Movie Musicals", so get ready an entertaining day!  Below, choreographer Candy Sherwin and the MT students work on several numbers.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Aherns & Flaherty: "Seussical" Composers

When TADW's production of "Seussical" opens on Wednesday, July 28, 2010, audience members will delight in music and lyrics by one of Broadway's most illustrious songwriting teams: Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty.

Their body of work includes the renowned Broadway musical "Ragtime," for which they won the Tony Award for Best Musical and Best Score and two Grammy nominations; "Seussical," also Grammy-nominated and now one of the most frequently performed shows around the world; the long-running hit "Once on This Island," which garnered eight Tony nominations, and the film "Anastasia," for which they received two Academy Award Nominations and two Golden Globe nominations.

For more information, visit

Noted TADW Alumni

Alex Borstein - Actress, Emmy-nominee
Don Burroughs - Actor
Marylata Elton Jacob (Latie Elton) - Grammy-nominated record producer
Arye Gross - Actor
Bill Irwin - Broadway actor, Tony Award winner
A.J. Langer - Actress
Wendy Jo Sperber - Actress
Mare Winningham - Actress, Oscar nominee

(Editor's Note: To submit someone for this list, please leave a comment below. We will update regularly.)

Memory Lane: Brent Rosen, the TADW Years

Here's a blast from the past. Pictured at left: current TADW Managing Director Brent Rosen back when he was a student in the Workshop, circa 1995.  Love the Boys II Men T-Shirt.

Dean Bucker Drops in on Company Meeting

At the TADW Company Meeting on Friday, July 23, Robert Bucker, Dean of the Mike Curb College of Arts, Media and Communication at Cal State Northridge, spoke to students.  Dean Bucker will host a special reception for TADW donors and parents on Wednesday, July 28 at 5:30 p.m., before the opening night of TADW's "Seussical".  Thank you for your support of TADW, Dean Bucker!

(*Thanks to Becca Lasky for the cell phone photo!)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

"Alice in Wonderland" - Photo Links

For your downloading and sharing pleasure, here are links to pictures from today's photo call for the cast of "Alice in Wonderland"

Facebook (low-res, but easy to share if you're a Facebook member): 

Flickr (high-res, suitable for downloading and/or printing):

(Pictured: Cast and Crew of TADW's "Alice in Wonderland", July 24, 2010, CSUN, Nordhoff Hall, Little Theatre)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Alumni Q&A with James Magedman, TADW Program Collector Extraordinaire!

(Editor's Note: Perusing the social network recently, TADW's Facebook moderator Danielle Fairlee stumbled upon a wonderful collection of scanned-in TADW programs.  Facebook members will find it here:  The extensive album covers the years 1981 to 1991. Needless to say, this terrific find just begged for more information.  Herewith an interview with the collector, James Magedman, who attended TADW from 1982-1987, and worked in the program during the summers of 1988 and 1989.)

Q:  You have an extensive collection of TADW programs scanned in and posted on Facebook -- probably the best we've seen. How did you come to have so many programs?  What has been the reaction to your collection on Facebook?

A:  My mom took my brothers and I to our first show at TADW in 1975.  I believe it was “Androcles and the Lion.”  She took us to all the shows every year.  I believe she enjoyed it as much as we did.  My older brothers, Seth and Max, became students in 1979.  I joined in 1982 and my younger brother, Neil, hopped on board in 1986.  

Most of my collection came from the years I attended the Workshop. My older brothers were in "Oliver" the year before I showed up.  I have a few friends from the years after I had left so I have a few of those as well.

All my friends on Facebook that viewed the collection loved mentally transporting themselves back to the days of the summer lovefest that is TADW.  No one seemed to have any adverse reaction to it.  Several comments included the phrase “best years of my life.”  I concur.

Q:  How has Facebook helped you keep in touch with TADW alumni?

A:  I have remained in personal contact with many of my TADW friends over the last couple of decades.  After I joined Facebook, that group multiplied 10x or more and (is still) growing.  Friends are in contact with friends in contact with friends.  My TADW programs collection helped add to that as well.  

An amazing thing about my experience at TADW was that I made friends with teenagers several years older than me when I was in Group 1 and several years younger than me when I was in Group 6.  I met thousands of wonderful and talented  people over my many years.

Q:  What years did you attend the program?  What shows were you in?  (Did you go to CSUN?, etc.)  What is your favorite memory of the Workshop?

A:  I attended TADW as a student for 6 years, from 1982 to 1987. During my time I acted in 3 plays onstage - “The Prince & the Pauper,” “Rags to Riches,” and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”  In addition, I worked backstage on countless other plays. I ran sound and lights on several shows. I stage managed “The Fabulous Fable Factory.” After classes, when I was not rehearsing or working on a show, I very much loved to help build and paint sets in the construction shop as well as help out hang and focus lights.  I was a happy monkey on a ladder.

In my final year I received the Alan Oldham Memorial Scholarship to attend CSUN.  However, I received most of my college education at the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts (PCPA) in Santa Maria, CA, along with several other TADW Alumni, and received a B.F.A. In Theater from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).

I also worked at TADW in the summers of 1988 and 1989, both in the office as well as assisting in classrooms.  In the afternoons I assistant directed 2 plays - “Story Theater” and “Golliwhoppers.”

I cannot name a single favorite memory from my years at TADW.  I was there for a total of 8 years.  I've seen over 60 brilliant children's theater shows.  I've had dozens of amazing teachers, including Candy Sherwin and Ed Archer.  My elective classes included juggling, mime, story theater, musical theater and many, many years of back-cracking dance production.  Professor Jerry Abbitt, technical wizard, gave me a such an amazing education about all things backstage, I should have paid twice the amount to TADW.  I owe my teenage happiness to the great Dr. William Schlosser, co-founder of the Workshop and the magnificent Professor Maryellen Clemons who succeeded him.

My memories of TADW go like this:  I need to find an audition piece.  I'm a nervous wreck.  Auditions.  Call-back board.  Great happiness and great sadness.  Cast lists go up.  Greater happiness and even greater sadness.  First day of classes.  Old friends reuniting.  New students feeling left out for maybe a day (if that) until they become new friends.  Back on Your Elbows.  Breaks spent in the Green Room.  Horace the Ghost in the basement.  The 39 Cent Hamburger Stand (where Der Weinershnitzel is.)  Invitational and going to Farrell's Ice Cream (which closed and became Fuddruckers – Farrell's was better).  Break rehearsals.  Dance Finals.  Munch and Crunch.  Everyone cries.  See you next year.
Q:  What advice would you give a current TADW student?

A:  If you love theater, go for it!  Put your entire heart, mind and soul into it.  Don't let anyone tell you it is a waste of time.  Skeptics of the profession are often the same people who love a good show. 

More importantly, DO NOT let lack of ability keep you from trying.  In my first year at TADW, I was cast in a show and had one line.  I was not cast again until 4 years later when I landed a fantastic, funny and memorable part in a great show - "Rags to Riches" directed by a genius, John Dantona.  

I was a horrible singer and dancer when I had begun my training.  It wasn't until I reached my early 20s (post TADW) when I found my natural ability.  Believe in yourself.  Be patient with yourself.  Go out of your way to promote those same attitudes toward your friends.

Q:  What are you up to now? Professionally, personally? Fill us in.

A:  Recently, I got engaged to Jackie Shaffer (who is the cousin of one of my best friends from TADW).  I moved to Sacramento to be with her.  I am still a SAG and Equity actor, however, my focus has shifted toward writing and production.  I work with a video production company just north of Sacramento.  In a couple of weeks I will go on the road be Production Manager for a reality show in L.A.  

As far as acting, I will be in a film short later this summer as well as a feature film set to shoot in the Fall.  Meanwhile, I am editing a script for a producer up here and I run a small online business –

Q:  Anything else you'd like to add?

A:  There was a time when the future of TADW was unstable.  I would love to thank Doug Kaback, Brent Rosen and anyone else involved for keeping TADW alive.  

Below, James shares some of his favorite TADW photos, along with a few present-day shots. From top to bottom:  In the TADW dressing room, 1987; Group 5 with Candy Sherwin, 1986; James with Julie Goldman; Group 5 with Plant, 1986; Recent photo of James in a lighter moment; James on his engagement day with fiancee Jackie Shaffer.

Updated News on Sold Out Performances

As of July 22, the following performances are SOLD OUT!

Alice in Wonderland - Saturday July 24 - 11 a.m.
Alice In Wonderland - Wednesday, July 28 - 11 a.m.
Alice in Wonderland - Friday, July 30 - 11 a.m.
Seussical the Musical - Friday, July 30 - 11 a.m.
Alice in Wonderland - Wednesday, Aug. 4 - 11 a.m.
Seussical the Musical - Wednesday, Aug. 4 - 11 a.m.

Plenty of tickets remain for our other performances. For information, visit THIS LINK.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

"Alice" Display Case Features Local Students' Artwork

In anticipation of opening night, the display case for "Alice in Wonderland" is up outside the Little Theatre in CSUN's Nordhoff Hall. With photos of the cast and show, the display case also features some special artwork from local students.

In her duties as a Professor in the Department of Special Education, TADW's administrator Beth Lasky recently visited the classroom of Tina Goodman at Summit View School, a school for students with learning disabilities.

"I noticed a table with projects on it and I realized they were all related to 'Alice in Wonderland,'" Lasky said.

Goodman's high school students had all read the Lewis Carroll book and had created dioramas to depict scenes from the story.

Lasky was so impressed with the students' work that she asked to borrow several of them for TADW's display case.  The artwork will be displayed throughout the run of "Alice in Wonderland."

Lasky has also extended an invitation to the students and their teacher to come see the show!

Memory Lane: The First TADW - Summer 1957

Click the picture to get a good look at this archive photo from CSUN's Department of Theatre from the very first TADW in the summer of 1957.  Special thanks to Theatre Manager Bill Taylor for this one!

Dominguez Brings Colorful, 3D Feel to TADW's ‘Alice in Wonderland’

With opening night of “Alice in Wonderland” just a few days away, director Corky Dominguez is busy putting the final touches on the colorful, custom-made masks that are featured in the show.

“We’ve all seen Alice many times, so I wanted to look at a more creative way to tell the story,” Dominguez said. “So I decided to utilize mask work, similar to the commedia dell'arte style.”

In addition to the beautiful masks, audience members can expect a few other surprises in Dominguez’s “Alice, ” from the “pop-up book” look of the set, to the gorgeous costumes. “With all the emphasis on 3D in movies like ‘Avatar,’ I was going for color and texture, so we’ve done that with the lights and sets and costumes,” he said.

Dominguez also incorporates a ‘Mardi Gras-Samba’ element that provides scene transitions. “Alice gets swept up in a parade as she transitions from scene to scene,” Dominguez said. “It is very fun.”

TADW's retelling of the story finds Alice as a modern-day schoolgirl. “She even wears ‘Harajuku-style’ fashion and has a BFF,” he adds.

A CSUN theatre graduate, Dominguez is a returning TADW staff member. He taught and directed various productions for the workshop in the 1980s, when he was a student in the theatre department. More recently in 2008, he directed “Disney's High School Musical” for TADW.

He says the Workshop provides students with excellent professional support, from the costumes and sets to the lighting and sound. “But the number one thing is that the kids get 10 performances,” he said. “For these kids to get the opportunity for a run, I don’t know any other program where they get that. Plus, they get all the educational training with the morning classes.”

In addition to working with TADW, Dominguez teaches part-time during the school year at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, where he teaches a class in cultural social theatre studies. “We look at writers of color,” he said, adding that the class helps prepare students for a “wider view of theatre.”

Dominguez also serves on the board of the California Educational Theatre Association, as co-chair of cultural diversity. The organization hosts two theatre festivals and a conference for educators, in addition to working on keeping the arts in schools.

"I am the perfect example of how important the arts are," Dominguez said, citing growing up in East Los Angeles. As a young boy, he was involved in choir, band and talent shows, eventually taking part in school plays. "I never stopped," he said. "Even now, I'm still working with high school students."

So how can TADW students and parents help support the arts in their schools and communities? “Go see theatre,” Dominguez said. “Everywhere. Whether it is at a school, a community theatre or an amateur show – every time you see a play you are supporting the arts.”

To further support the arts, he also encouraged students and parents to look for volunteer opportunities with local theatre groups – even including TADW.

"Alice in Wonderland" opens Friday, July 23 in the Little Theatre in Nordhoff Hall on the Campus of California State Univeristy, Northridge. For ticket information, visit this link.

(Pictured: Director Corky Dominguez puts the finishing touches on masks for "Alice in Wonderland"; the cast of "Alice" during a recent technical-dress rehearsal.)

Info for Parents: 'Alice' Rehearsals

Here is the latest regarding "Alice" rehearsals:

On Thursday, July 22: Rehearsal will go from 1:15pm to about 3:30pm.  The cast will not have time to leave the building.  Students should bring a big healthy snack to keep them going.  They will have 30 minutes to eat.  They have to be at the theater at 4pm (call time) to get into costumes for the 6pm Invitational. Most likely the show will be done by 7pm.  This means they can be at Sizzler by 7:30 to eat dinner!!

On Friday, July 23:  The cast will rehearse until 4pm.  They can leave the building to go eat or they can stay at TADW.  Call time is 5pm for the 7pm Opening Show!!