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ATW - Downstage Center

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The American Theatre Wing presents Downstage Center a weekly theatrical interview show, featuring the top artists working in theatre, both on and Off-Broadway and around the country.

The American Theatre Wing presents Downstage Center a weekly theatrical interview show, featuring the top artists working in theatre, both on and Off-Broadway and around the country.
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Location:

United States

Description:

The American Theatre Wing presents Downstage Center a weekly theatrical interview show, featuring the top artists working in theatre, both on and Off-Broadway and around the country.

Language:

English


Episodes

Bill Berloni (#334) - March, 2012

3/14/2012
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Broadway’s premier animal trainer Bill Berloni got his foot in the door in 1976 as a teenager when he rescued and trained the original Sandy for the Goodspeed Opera House original production of "Annie." Sandy went to Broadway in 1977 and so did Mr. Berloni, and he never left. Michael Price, Goodspeed Musicals Executive Director, interviews the 2011 Special Tony Award winner and friend Mr. Berloni about his career in the theater: from "Annie" to "Camelot" (with Richard Burton) to Andrew...

Montego Glover and Adam Pascal (#333) - February, 2012

2/29/2012
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Where are Broadway’s hottest stars? Downstage Center. The latest episode heads down south as Memphis’ Montego Glover plays the role as interviewer to her co-star Adam Pascal. The versatile duo expounds on, among other topics, their experience in "Memphis", the skill sets needed to be a working actor, and some of the other roles they may be known for: Mr. Pascal in "Rent" and "Aida", and Ms. Glover in "The Color Purple."

Nina Arianda (#332) - February, 2012

2/15/2012
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Nina Arianda’s star has never shone brighter. Recreating the off-Broadway role that her made a name to watch, the actress returns to Broadway in "Venus in Fur" in what the New York Times called "the first, must see performance of the Broadway season." Downstage Center, with NY1’s Frank DiLella, sits down with Ms. Arianda to discuss, among other things, the acting process, family, her Tony nomination for "Born Yesterday", working in Woody Allen’s "Midnight in Paris", seeing Meryl Streep in...

Andrew Rannells (#331) - February, 2012

2/1/2012
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Go backstage with one of Broadway's hottest actors from Broadway's biggest show. NY1's Frank DiLella interviews "The Book of Mormon" star Andrew Rannells in the latest "Downstage Center". From "Hairspray" and "Jersey Boys" to "The Book of Mormon"'s Elder Price, Oklahoma native Mr. Rannells relishes his time in the hottest show in town. Inspired by "Into the Woods" and "The Who's Tommy", he somehow found a way to keep a straight face during each hilarious performance on his way to his first...

Marlo Thomas and Lisa Emery (#330) - January, 2012

1/18/2012
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Marlo Thomas and Lisa Emery share the stage in Broadway's "Relatively Speaking" (an evening of one-acts written by Elaine May, Woody Allen, and Ethan Coen). In the Wing's latest "Downstage Center" they get together to swap stories on the craft they love and how they got where they are today. Ms. Thomas begins as the interviewer but soon a conversation ensues about mutual director horror stories, women in the theatre, pre-show rituals, the inspiration they receive from hearing the audience...

Elaine Paige and Ron Raines (#329) - January, 2012

1/4/2012
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What happens when "Follies" star Elaine Paige sits down to interview her co-star Ron Raines? Listen now to the lively discussion about everything "Follies" and Sondheim: his lyrics, Sondheim as teacher, and the difficulty in performing "Sweeney Todd", among other topics. Sondheim isn't the only show in town. Paige and Raines also talk about balancing life and art, musical theatre vs. opera, the economics of Broadway, career longevity in the theatre, "The King and I", transitioning from...

Eugene Lee (#328) - July, 2011

7/27/2011
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Eugene Lee, resident designer for Rhode Island's Trinity Rep since 1967, set designer for "Saturday Night Live (SNL)" since its inception, and three-time TONY Award winner, talks about the realistic set of "Sweeney Todd"; growing up in Wisconsin and his early theatre memories and experiences; why he dislikes proscenium stages; what led "SNL"'s Lorne Michaels to hire him; working with Hal Prince on "Sweeney Todd", "Candide", "Merrily We Roll Along", and "Showboat"; how he got involved in...

Lois Smith (#327) - July, 2011

7/13/2011
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American actress Lois Smith, whose career in theatre, film, and television spans five decades, talks about her experience of playing the originally male role, Alcandre, in the Signature Theatre production of Tony Kushner's "The Illusion", an adaptation of Pierre Corneille's "L'Illusion Comique". She also talks about her upbringing in Kansas; experience in working on the film "East of Eden"; working with Helen Hayes on "The Wisteria Trees" and "The Glass Menagerie"; working with Andre...

Angela Lansbury (#326) - June, 2011

6/29/2011
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Returning to Downstage Center five years after a 2006 conversation, the legendary Angela Lansbury talks about her most recent Broadway roles, in Terrence McNally's "Deuce", Noel Coward's "Blithe Spirit" and Stephen Sondheim's "A Little Night Music". She also discusses her experiences with artists with whom she's frequently worked - Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Arthur Laurents and Edward Albee; her foray into Shakespeare, playing Gertrude opposite Albert Finney's "Hamlet" in London; why her...

Joe Mantello (#320) - May, 2011

5/18/2011
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Joe Mantello talks about returning to the Broadway stage as an actor after a 17-year hiatus to play the role of Ned Weeks in Larry Kramer's "The Normal Heart" -- and what it's like to play a role that the play's author has based on himself when the author is at the theatre nightly. He also talks about his acting days in school and community theatre in his hometown of Rockford, Illinois (with classmates that included Marin Mazzie); his training at North Carolina School of the Arts and why...

Jason Robert Brown (#319) - May, 2011

5/11/2011
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Jason Robert Brown, who prefers the title "songwriter" over "composer," talks about why he spends so much time performing his own material and engaging directly with his fans. He discusses writing all of his songs "in his own voice"; his short time at Rochester's esteemed Eastman School of Music; coming to New York, getting work in piano bars and how that led to rehearsal pianist jobs; the evolution of "Songs for a New World" and whether it began as a collection of existing songs or...

David Lindsay-Abaire (#318) - May, 2011

5/4/2011
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Playwright David Lindsay-Abaire talks about returning to his South Boston roots with the play "Good People", how the characters are amalgams of the people he grew up with in that private neighborhood and why he chose it as the setting for a play about the class system in America. He also talks about moving beyond his "Southie" roots as early as seventh grade, when he received a scholarship to a private school and how he had to learn to fit in there; his earliest plays, written for his...

Laurie Metcalf (#317) - April, 2011

4/27/2011
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Laurie Metcalf talks about her role in Sharr White's play "The Other Place" at MCC Theater, and the challenge of playing someone whose mental faculties are diminishing in a non-linear play, requiring her to constantly leap between varying states of mind. She also talks about her embrace of theatre during her college years at Illinois State University, where she first studied German, then anthropology, before settling on theatre; being one of the original company members of the acclaimed...

Casey Nicholaw (#316) - April, 2011

4/20/2011
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Co-director and choreographer of Broadway's "The Book of Mormon", Casey Nicholaw, talks about his initial reaction on reading the irreverent new musical and how it was to work with Matt Parker and Trey Stone, heretofore most experienced with work in animation for "South Park". Nicholaw also talks about his early work at the San Diego Junior Theatre, his decision to leave California at age 19 and embark on a career in New York without even a completed college degree under his belt; his...

Nicholas Hytner (#315) - April, 2011

4/13/2011
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From London, National Theatre artistic director Nicholas Hytner talks about his tenure leading that influential institution, including whether, as some have said, it was always his career goal; why he thrives on the need to embrace a general audience for the organization's survival; the impact of the 10 (now 12) Travelex season on the company and why he prefers to work under the budgetary rigor it imposes on the theatre's staff; his commitment to seeing new, "muscular" work by young...

Margaret Colin (#314) - April, 2011

4/6/2011
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"Arcadia"'s Lady Croom, Margaret Colin, discusses grappling with the intellectuals concepts in the play, the experience of spending several days having Tom Stoppard explain them, and what it's like to do a show in which she never shares the stage (or the green room) with half the cast once the curtain goes up. She also talks about growing up and performing in Baldwin NY, where her school shows included a production of "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum", directed by her...

Janet Suzman (#313) - March, 2011

3/30/2011
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Royal Shakespeare Company veteran Janet Suzman discusses her early years with the company, including her daunting audition for for Peter Hall, John Barton and Peter Brook; her repertory roles of Portia, Rosalind and Ophelia; opening the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles in "The Taming of the Shrew"; and her career defining role as Cleopatra in "Antony and Cleopatra". She also discusses her upbringing in cultural limited Johannesburg, South Africa; her student years at a highly politicized...

Michael Frayn (#312) - March, 2011

3/23/2011
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Acclaimed for his works of fiction, non-fiction, philosophy, and theatre, Michael Frayn discusses how he determines when an idea is right for the stage when he has multiple forms to choose from. He also recalls writing and performing childhood puppet plays; the reason why his edition of Cambridge's "Footlights Revue" was the only one not to be seen in London; his days as a newspaper columnist, during which he frequently mocked and parodied the popular theatre of the day -- and whether he...

Austin Pendleton (#311) - March, 2011

3/16/2011
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Austin Pendleton, director of the recent production of "The Three Sisters" at Classic Stage Company in New York, talks about the many Chekhov productions he's appeared in and directed over the years, including five "Uncle Vanya"s and four "Three Sisters". He talks about falling in love with theatre via his mother's involvement in community theatre in his hometown of Warren, Ohio; writing original musicals while an undergraduate theatre student at Yale; being directed by Jerome Robbins in his...

Barry Grove (#310) - March, 2011

3/9/2011
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Barry Grove, Executive Producer of the Manhattan Theatre Club, talks about his three-and-half decades of partnership with Lynne Meadow at the top of one of New York's largest not-for-profit theatres. He recalls about his introduction to theatre while growing up in Madison CT; his college experiences at Dartmouth and his participation in the very first semester of The O'Neill Theatre Center's National Theatre Institute; his earliest experiences working in New York Theatre while still a...