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MFA Students Blog


Daryll Heysham: That Championship Season at the Playhouse with The REP (Fall 2009)
Rita Reis:People Like Us at Future Tenant (Fall 2009)
Robyne Parrish:Weird Romance at The Theatre Factory (Fall 2009) and Candide for Quantum Theatre (Fall 2009)
Christopher Spare:Let Go at Future Tenant (Fall 2009)
James Fitzgerald:Jayne Erye at PICT (Fall 2009) and A Midsummer's Night Dream at Pittsburgh Public (Winter 2009)
Gab Cody:Girl Science at the Eco-Drama Festival at CMU (Fall 2009)

The summer of 2009 was a busy one for the Point Park MFA Acting Students.  Rita Reis traveled to Canterbury to participate in the symposium  "Grotowski: After - Alongside - Around - Ahead."  There, she was invited to speak about her experience teaching a Grotowski-based movement class to young American acting students at Point Park.  This was a great opportunity for Rita to meet and connect with researchers and practitioners from all over the world.  

She was also part of a revealing experience: "The Way", a workshop with Rena Miretzca, one of the key figures in Jerzy Grotowski's theatrical and paratheatrical experiments.  Those two experiences gave her the opportunity to meet with some of the most experienced Grotowski acolytes. Rita is now planning to coordinate studies with some of those practitioners to expand her knowledge of voice and movement training.? During the summer Rita also attended a conference for the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) held in New York. During the conference she participated in the reading of the award-wining play Deception Pass: An American Story by Kamarie Chapman.  This gathering also gave Rita the chance to attend several inspiring voice, movement and new play development talks and workshops.

Robyne Parrish returned to school after finishing her long shoot with Steve Guttenberg, Richard Kind and Sabrina Bryan for the upcoming comedy feature If It Ain't Broke, Break It.  Not long after her return to Pittsburgh from New York (where she runs Sonnet Repertory Company) Robyne was cast in the musical Weird Romance  for the Theatre Factory.  She plays an android and a hologram in this "off-beat musical by composers Alan Menken and David Spence." (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review).  Robyne will also be playing Paquette in Hugh Wheeler's musical adaptation of Voltaire's Candide this fall for Quantum Theatre (where she appeared in Mouth to Mouth last year). 

Christopher Spare spent the summer with Nick Nolte! He played Francesco Barbosa's fight manager in the upcoming feature film WARRIOR starring Thomas Hardy and Nick Nolte (and Christopher Spare!).  Chris continues to work in theatre in Pittsburgh as well acting in two plays for Future Tenant's Fall Reading Series: Let Go and All the Answers .

James FitzGerald continued his work with Pittsburgh Irish Classic Theatre (PICT) this summer, where he acted in and co-directed TheHistory Boys.  This fall he joins them for Jane Eyre.  James is a renaissance man; he directs, writes, acts and generally lightens the mood wherever he goes! We will also look forward to seeing him as the rude mechanical, Snout, in the Pittsburgh Public Theatre's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream in January. James has a deep background in Shakespeare, so it will be a real treat for anyone living in Pittsburgh to check him out!

Daryll Heysham wrapped up the summer in Harry's Friendly Service at the Pittsburgh Public and entered the fall in rehearsal for the Playhouse REP's production of That Championship Season.  Daryll's performances in both pieces were very well received. Daryll continues to teach combat classes at Point Park University and is working to develop regular workshops in specialized areas for the undergrads.

Gab Cody finished producing the 12-part public service announcement video series for Take Charge of Your Life Partnership and the State of Pennsylvania.  She is in production for her next short movie (after the success of MOMBIES last year).  This film is a short documentary about the ACCORDION POOL PARTY.  Gab will also join James Fitzgerald in a reading of Girl Science for the Eco-Drama Festival hosted by CMU.

So, everyone continues to be very busy creating, acting, writing, producing and teaching!

It's been a great semester thus far as we study comedy styles.  We are also really enjoying our special guest movement teacher, Gale McNeeley.  He is exploring commedia and red nose clowns with us this semester!