Stirring the Talent Pool

With some exceptions, local theaters tend to be rather quiet during the summer months. But a slowdown in performance schedules does not necessarily translate to “no work.”

Many local theater pros turn their attention at this time of year to nurturing the talent ranks of tomorrow. Summer drama courses and camps for students of all ages have opened in theaters and other settings around the city. As you’ll see in our feature story by Leon Contavesprie (an award-winning actor in his “other” life), New Orleans is doing its best to ensure the ongoing enrichment of the local talent pool. If you know someone who might enjoy or benefit from one of these offerings, be sure to check the contact list on page 25 for more information.

Some folks involved in operating the summer educational programs were among
the “stars” honored in April during the annual Storer Boone Awards presentation at
Le Chat Noir Cabaret Theatre. The evening, along with other recent awards programs, was a lovely reminder of how rich and vigorous the New Orleans-area theater scene has become. Our congratulations go to all of the winners and nominees, who were selected by their peers for outstanding work done during 2007.

One of the city’s richly talented performers is the centerpiece of a fundraising effort organized by some of her colleagues. Running With Scissors arranged the June 9 benefit in honor of actress Lisa Picone, who recently has done battle with serious illness. Entitled, “That’s Our Lisa: A Boob-tastic Cancer Bash,” the event is scheduled at Le Chat Noir, 715 St. Charles Ave., with a silent auction beginning at 6:30 p.m. and performances on tap at 8 p.m. Hosted by the inimitable duo of Brian Peterson and Todd Schaffer, tickets are available for $20 at 504-606-9903. If you can’t attend but would like to make a donation, please see for more information.

Lastly, OnStage extends thanks to everyone who turned out to enjoy a local performance in recent months. This city is rich in talent, but in the end it is the audiences who make the performances possible. Thank you, and please keep up the good work! •

Categories: Theatre + Art