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2014 Stage Raw Los Angeles Theater Awards Ceremony Scheduled for April 13th

2014 Stage Raw Los Angeles Theater Awards Ceremony Scheduled for April 13th

The artist-formerly-known-as-the-LA-Weekly-Awards – now the Stage Raw Los Angeles Theater Awards (acronym The SRLATA’s?) – will be having its first annual ceremony on Monday, April 13th, at the Los Angeles Theater Center, special guest is the Celebration Theatre. Go here for deets and to buy tickets. And here’s the blurb-age from the site: Because we […]

Newsflash: Theater is Alive and Well in Los Angeles (Evidence Within)

Newsflash: Theater is Alive and Well in Los Angeles (Evidence Within)

Yes, even amidst all this AEA shizzle the show continues to go on here in LA and I’ve had the opportunity to soak up some of the magic. Here are a few thoughts on some recent shows I’ve seen. The Night Alive (Geffen Playhouse): It’s been while but I finally saw a show at the […]

Ms. Mary McColl and the DoubleSpeaks Performing Live at a Venue Near You

Ms. Mary McColl and the DoubleSpeaks Performing Live at a Venue Near You

AEA Executive Director, Mary McColl, is beginning to put Orwell to shame. At the Special Membership meeting last month, pretty much the entire gathering groaned in unison when – after being asked by a member what evidence she had to support the assertion that imposing minimum wage on its LA Membership would in turn create more opportunities […]

From Backstage's Pages Equity Proclaims: "We stand ready to help LA small theater take steps to adapt to any change and we have repeatedly stressed that we are committed to working with producers to help build infrastructure and increase funding.”

From Backstage’s Pages Equity Proclaims: “We stand ready to help LA small theater take steps to adapt to any change and we have repeatedly stressed that we are committed to working with producers to help build infrastructure and increase funding.”

Uhhhhhh… Sean J. Miller, have you taken over Maria Somma’s position as Equity National Communications Director? I mean this latest “news” article was published at 1.07 am EST tonight. So that means you just published it like…an hour ago? Dude, you were on those quotes like an actor on a krafts service table, I mean… And […]

City Council Member Mitch O'Farrell and Others Get Some TV Time Supporting LA's 99 Seat Theater Community

City Council Member Mitch O’Farrell and Others Get Some TV Time Supporting LA’s 99 Seat Theater Community

Apparently the segment may have aired already and may air again on Channel 2 and Channel 11 at 11pm? Oh, wait, here it is. This is very good news, because this should absolutely be getting air time and I’m predicting that the closer we get to the vote, this will have become a national news story. […]

Actors' Equity "Phone Banking" to get out the "Yes" Vote on 99 Seat Proposals

Actors’ Equity “Phone Banking” to get out the “Yes” Vote on 99 Seat Proposals

I haven’t received one yet but others have confirmed that, yes indeed, AEA has opened up a can of “phone bank” on it’s LA members to try and sway them towards a “yes” vote in the Apri non-binding membership vote on the new proposals. Here’s a little snippet taken from the Pro99 Facebook page describing […]

“I♥99 The Musical!” - One Night Only - At Akbar, Tuesday, March 10th, 8pm

“I♥99 The Musical!” – One Night Only – At Akbar, Tuesday, March 10th, 8pm

Oh, Los Angeles Theater, you are nothing if not a creative bunch of merry pranksters. This is such a perfect response to this whole mess, hell, I might have to even check this one out myself. And I hate musicals…well done all involved! SIXTH AVENUE PRESENTS DIRECTED BY DANIEL HENNING AT AKBAR IN SILVER LAKE TUESDAY, […]

Dramaturgy Playlist: 5 Plays for the 99-Seat War

Dramaturgy Playlist: 5 Plays for the 99-Seat War

I’m coming in with my hands over my head, okay? I’m not wearing a wire. I’m not carrying a weapon. I have credentials: I ran a nonprofit theater company here in Los Angeles for several years, one that survived and thrived in large part because of the 99 Seat Plan. I have many close friends […]

A Filmmaker in Illinois Chimes in on the 99 Seat Debate: "If raising wages limits the number of theatres and their productions, maybe it’s time to pare down the L.A. theatre scene."

A Filmmaker in Illinois Chimes in on the 99 Seat Debate: “If raising wages limits the number of theatres and their productions, maybe it’s time to pare down the L.A. theatre scene.”

I’m not sure where to start with this one, but figured I’d offer it up to the sharpened knives of the LemonHeadNation and see if they can make a nice chef salad out of it. Here’s a tasty morsel from Illinois filmmaker, Terry Green, offering his sage advice on what y’all out here in LA […]

Mr. Holder's Neighborhood, Part Two: "If you've managed to earn a living doing theatre in LA, you are in the extreme minority"

Mr. Holder’s Neighborhood, Part Two: “If you’ve managed to earn a living doing theatre in LA, you are in the extreme minority”

Sir Travis of the Michael Holder wasn’t finished. This is his response to this recent posting. From the Desk of Travis Michael Holder: Isaac Butler’s pro-AEA rant in the Parabasis website, listing the annual incomes of some of our most successful 99-seat theatres, is a heap of steaming dog crap. Posting the annual incomes of […]

Mr. Holder's Neighborhood: "I will never see my Union in the same way again"

Mr. Holder’s Neighborhood: “I will never see my Union in the same way again”

Travis Michael is pissed and asked that I show you all just exactly HOW pissed: From the desk of Travis Michael Holder: Here’s something I keep thinking watching all this unfold. There have been so many responses forgive me if I missed anyone else mentioning this: It makes me crazy the wily, fact-avoiding folks at AEA […]

Boston Court Performing Arts Center Releases Statement on 99 Seat Debate

Boston Court Performing Arts Center Releases Statement on 99 Seat Debate

Being that Boston Court is one of the companies that has been frequently “outed” by many of the people who have waded into this debate – myself included – especially when it comes to their income and budgets and 99-seat-cetnric theater, it looks like they’ve decided to finally make their position official. I got this […]

Rob Weinert-Kendt Gets "Even More Personal" on the 99 Seat Debate

Rob Weinert-Kendt Gets “Even More Personal” on the 99 Seat Debate

Rob asked if we’d be interested in perhaps cross-posting this article from his The Wicked Stage site. We said yes. This is definitely a man conflicted and his energy and focus on the subject are extremely insightful and should be read thoroughly by both sides. Good stuff. SWEATING EQUITY By Rob Weinert-Kendt The last thing […]

Actors' Equity Association Responds to the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle

Actors’ Equity Association Responds to the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle

Well at least they’re paying attention. Here’s the latest I just received in response to the LADCC’s recent statement against the proposals from the AEA machine and its herald National Communications Director, Maria Somma: AEA’s Response to the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Although we respect that the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle’s statement about […]

Los Angeles Outsider, Isaac Butler, Offers Some Outsider Analysis of the AEA 99 Seat Proposals

Los Angeles Outsider, Isaac Butler, Offers Some Outsider Analysis of the AEA 99 Seat Proposals

Yes, I used “outsider” twice, cuz this comes from a person who is clearly not that familiar with the ecology of Los Angeles Theater – and it shows – but Isaac Butler is a smart theater guy and he does have some splash-of-cold-water analysis that both sides should take a gander it. He – as […]

Some of Los Angeles' Intimate Theater "Celebs" Come out Against the AEA Proposals

Some of Los Angeles’ Intimate Theater “Celebs” Come out Against the AEA Proposals

It’s a veritable cavalcade of celebrities in support of LA’s 99 Seat Theater scene:

John Flynn Responds to AEA Councillor Gregory North: "We want change - just not this change"

John Flynn Responds to AEA Councillor Gregory North: “We want change – just not this change”

Things remain heated over at Bigcheap and John Flynn, acting as a rep for the original plaintiffs in the Settlement Agreement, decided it was time to respond in an open letter to AEA Western Regional Councillor, Gregory North. I know both these gentlemen and find them both to be well intentioned honorable people. So if […]

Critique of the Week

Critique of the Week

Some more good stuff from A-Burn, including some deserved criticism for a company still coming into its own, as well as some well-deserved praise for a company on the cusp of greatness. THE TEMPTATION OF ST. ANTONY Anthony Byrnes – KCRW When’s the last time you were excited to go to the theater? When the […]

99 to HAT: A Possible RoadMap for Gradual Growth in Los Angeles Theater

99 to HAT: A Possible RoadMap for Gradual Growth in Los Angeles Theater

Frankly, this is what Equity should have done. But it seems clear now that what they want to do first is to get rid of the 99 Seat Plan. After that, it appears, they may be wiling to compromise and perhaps sit down at the table with TPLLA and others and maybe work out a more […]

LA Times Puts Some Numbers to Names in the 99 Seat Debate

LA Times Puts Some Numbers to Names in the 99 Seat Debate

Yes, the latest reporting from LA Times reporter Mike Boehm is clearly LA-centric – as it should be considering this is after all the LA Times and this is after all EXCLUSIVELY A LOS ANGELES ISSUE – and there is less of the voice of the Equity leadership in the recent article, but I like this […]

99 Seat Thoughts from the Fringes of the Los Angeles Blogosphere

99 Seat Thoughts from the Fringes of the Los Angeles Blogosphere

We’ve highlighted many stories from the big boys like American Theatre and Backstage (and more Backstage) and the LA Times and the LADCC and TPLLA and The Hollywood Reporter and Playbill (Playbill?), and certainly more detailed and impassioned conversations are happening on social media such as Facebook and Twitter, but many of those outlying blogs and review sites that […]

American Theatre Magazine Gives "Long Overdue Props" to the "Indispensable" Bitter Lemons

American Theatre Magazine Gives “Long Overdue Props” to the “Indispensable” Bitter Lemons

That’s right, mofos, about freaking time! Of course that’s not all they do in their latest Offscript podcast called The Tiers and Tears Edition over at the American Theatre site, they also do some excellent roundtable analysis on the Los Angeles Theater 99 Seat Debate with editors Rob Weinert-Kendt, Eliza Bent and multi-hypenate blogger/writer, Isaac […]

Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle on the 99 Seat Debate: "We foresee what could be the virtual demise of Los Angeles as a leading incubator of plays and theater of innovation and diversity."

Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle on the 99 Seat Debate: “We foresee what could be the virtual demise of Los Angeles as a leading incubator of plays and theater of innovation and diversity.”

And this appears to be the money quote right here from the statement: The Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle urges all stakeholders in the cultural, civic and economic health of the region to involve themselves in learning about the issues and consequences of the proposals currently on the table. The Mayor, the City Council and […]

Acting and Doing

Acting and Doing

I came to L.A. in the late 90s with the primary intention of not doing any more low-rent theater. Back in New York, I’d been the worst director and second-worst actor on Delancey Street, working with the sort of producers who claim to have performance rights when in fact they don’t have rent. It had […]

Just a National AEA Councillor and a Los Angeles AEA Member Having a Friendly Conversation...

Just a National AEA Councillor and a Los Angeles AEA Member Having a Friendly Conversation…

I was guided to this exchange on Facebook by an interested party who understood the incendiary nature of it and why it would appeal to us at Bitter Lemons and to the people that read Bitter Lemons. Yeeks. I’ve always liked playing with fire. Once lit an M80 inside a glass jar and held it in […]

The 2013-2014 AEA Members' Median Annual Earnings:: $7,463

The 2013-2014 AEA Members’ Median Annual Earnings:: $7,463

Hey, it’s up $363 from last year’s tally! For the last few years I’ve been reporting these findings from Equity’s end-of-year financial summaries, gotten a little behind over the last couple months, now catching up. So the median annual earnings for a working (doesn’t include those who haven’t been working which is about 60 to […]

The East Coast/West Coast Coverage of the 99 Seat Debate

The East Coast/West Coast Coverage of the 99 Seat Debate

Recently there have been articles from Backstage, the LA Times, American Theater Magazine and now Playbill and The Hollywood Reporter on the 99 Seat Debate, and there definitely seems to be a shift in perspective depending on which coast the reporting comes from, be it mainly from the East Coast, or mainly from the West […]

Critique of the Week (on a Monday)

Critique of the Week (on a Monday)

Been busy lately, but got a chance to read this humdinger from J-Beers. Dude is writing some of the best theater criticism in SoCal at the moment. This show sounds pretty good too. Here’s an example of how to write personal, smart, compelling criticism. LOCH NESS, A NEW MUSICAL Joel Beers – OC Weekly If it […]

A Statement from the Theatrical Producers League of Los Angeles (TPLLA)

A Statement from the Theatrical Producers League of Los Angeles (TPLLA)

This from the TPLLA/intimate site in response to the town hall that took place on Saturday: The Theatrical Producers League of Los Angeles/Intimate (TPLLA/Intimate) does not support the promulgated changes made on February 6, 2015 to the Los Angeles 99 Seat Plan as proposed by Actors Equity Association (AEA). We hope that as Los Angeles […]

Independent Shakespeare Company's, David Melville, Offers a Somewhat Contrarian View

Independent Shakespeare Company’s, David Melville, Offers a Somewhat Contrarian View

This from David Melville today… I think AEA’s proposal is pretty hardline but at the end of the day I can see why they want to make these changes. The three tier approach will allow union members to self-produce storefront shows – they just can’t do it under the auspices of a 501 c 3. […]