IS _____ DYING OR DEAD?

This is a type of headline that’s been appearing in news stories over the past few periods of time when some kind of shift of either doing business of living in some form of domestic lifestyle has changed in the recent times that questions the previous method on how its motions take their course.

Much of this shift of an existence has to do with the ever changing methods on how technology is making things smaller, faster, and cheaper–or a variation thereof. These things can either be in the form of physical objects, or of a system to perform a task or service. This task can be through for monitory gain (i.e. a business), or declared as a basic function, such as consuming video programming. The new techniques are always first raved as the “latest thing” that will become the be-all-to-end-all, and the question if the classic style will become doomed to reach its end cycle of existence.

Since the beginning of the 21st century, this notion of the changing on how things get done has increased in droves. This form of new processes creates an illusion that when somebody or something holds an idea on how to proceed on a method that currently exists or how to create an advanced practice of an element that might be new altogether, then the old way is considered as a plot to send it off to its grave. It doesn’t matter what this thing may be. If the new(er) way is indeed smaller, faster, and cheaper, then that is how it’s going to be! The end!

However, these predictions of “___ is dead! Long live ___!” is far from new. In fact, that battle cry of the new way being born and the old way declared as dead and gone has been around for longer than one may realize. It’s been around for the past 150 years since the period called “the industrial age” captured its foothold in domestic society as recorded for generations to either marvel about, or to scratch their heads with total confusion.

Perhaps the first takehold of these every changing ways in life that involves technology came around in the 19th century when the telegraph made its mark. This form of communication that consisted of dots and dashes clicked on a telegraph key was first thought as how written messages would be soon obsolete. For some sources, perhaps. But for most of the population, no! When the telephone came into the scene not too many years after the telegraph, it was believed that letter writing would come to its end because folks would not compose a letter, but to replace those personal notes with a phone call. That might have been so, but since phone service in those early days were rather expensive for what it was, let alone dicy in terms of reach and quality of transmission, it would not become a standard method of communication until the 1920’s. Not everyone had access to a phone, so letter writing continued.

So did newspapers around that time when that device called “radio” made its entry. Again, radio receivers were not cheap either, so getting news and information wasn’t available to everyone. Besides, newspapers carried photos and illustrations. Radio couldn’t and didn’t. That is, until television finally got its act together after the end of World War II. In spite of the fact that one can see pictures along with its sound, it was better than radio! And with a TV set, one didn’t have to go to the movies for such visual entertainment and thus, gave the movie studios their first real threat. The same went for the theatre operators that showed those moving pictures. No movies, no theaters!

When Sony introduced its Betamax video cassette recorded in the middle 1970’s, along with JVC’s version of the beta format, the video home system (VHS), people would be able to watch movies at home on video cassette, and no longer head off to movie theaters. The VCR’s fate was in place when the digital video disk (DVD) came around at the near end of the 20th century, By the time the 21st century progressed, so did the method of watching movies by something called “ video streaming”, where one can watch movies at home using a system that can duplicate a movie theatre. Mainly, a big screen TV with a booming sound system.

Using the above timeline as a guide, did the new method vs. the old method really cause a “death” of an old medium? That answer is a simple “yes and no”! When radio came about, it didn’t replace newspapers. When TV made its entrance, did radio and the movie industry totally go away? What about the rise of home entertainment via videocassette and DVD? Did it make movie theaters extinct? The same story for streaming movies and later TV shows on electronic devices? Where are the movie theaters and cable TV connections? (Cable TV wasn’t really discussed in this article, but you get the idea!)

Newspapers, radio, television, movies and movie theaters, as well as the afterthought mention of cable are still around to this very day. Granted, their method of service and existence has changed. Some of that change was more for some mediums than others, but they are as a whole still alive and kicking!

It would be totally drastic to have some element become declared as dead in the same method as a person being declared as deceased. A person might be in a state where they are slowly dying, but remains alive nevertheless. When they totally die, they are gone never to return! Radio may no longer be the prime source for entertainment as it was from the 1920’s through the 1960’s with programming was presented in some kind of dramatic method, but its still here! Newspapers may be concentrating on delivering information online, but most, through not all, text based news sources still creates a print version. Movies and the theaters that showcase them are also alive and living as well. Again, they may not be what they were from a generation before, but are still there for public consumption.

So the next time one reads or hears something about a source or medium that is announced as “dead”, take that information for what it is. It’s not totally gone, it’s just changed! It may take a very long time for that element to disappear if at all. By the time it becomes completely extinct, chances are that that method had since been long forgotten, meaning that very few, if anyone at all, will even notice! How many of you out there wonder whatever became of the gas lamp lighters, the seltzer bottle fillers, or the elevator operators that were once part of the domestic landscape? Anyone really cares for not using buggy whips anymore, or washboards to clean your starched shirts and bloomers? Yep, we thought so!
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NEWS AND REVIEWS

ANY NIGHT, a play by Daniel Arnold & Medina Hahn that takes its setting upon a relationship between an apartment dweller and its caretaker sprouting within hidden worlds that are imagined or real, makes its Los Angeles premiere as a guest production at the Sacred Fools Theatre in Hollywood.

Marie Fahlgren and Zac Thomas are featured as Anna and Patrick. Anna is a teacher of dance at a nearby studio. Zac is a media tech who maintains an apartment space in an urban location. Anna is interested in moving into an available unit as she attempts to escape a previous relationship. Patrick serves as the landlord by default, as the place is owned by an elderly woman that Patrick has known for much of his life. Upon her settlement at the place, Anna undergoes some flashbacks to previous episodes from her past that serve as nightmares. Patrick, becoming aware of Anna’s flashbacks, makes note to look after her as a measure of concern and safety. At first, the two are distant, but a trust slowly develops that brings them closer. But this form of bonding is not something that appears to settle on the surface. Is Anna discovering a hidden life that she is finally taking grips with? Is Patrick’s concern over her well being moving toward a new level? And does he hold a hidden life that might be real or one that is just as mysterious as Anna’s?

This one act play takes upon a number of issues between two souls that possess personal backgrounds, teetering between tangible and imagery, while attempting to live their moments as a standard couple, blending professional concept (tenant/landlord), personal moments (man/woman/friendship/lovers), and those that speak for a subconscious state of being-past, present, and future. Playwrights Daniel Arnold & Medina Hahn creates a stage abstraction that adds every one of these episodes, never letting the pace and tension to ever settle. The farther the play progresses, the more complex it gets. The pair of performers, Marie Fahlgren and Zac Thomas, are very likable once they step into their characters only for their roles to change. They keep up to their places throughout with a sense of sprit and grace. Between selected sets, they place forward dance movements as choreographed by Erica Gionfriddo that add the only form of calmness between the Anna and Patrick roles. When the two are not involved within the elements of dance, Elizabeth V. Newman’s stage direction take over, making this stage work as fiery, leading up to its climatic conclusions.

In this showcase seen within its ninety minute run are the backdrops as designed by set decorator Vanessa Montano, consisting of a background “wall” comprised of white mesh materials that could represent a mist or cloud, while metal pieces built as a wall or partition are placed on stage left/right representing the units that Anna and Patrick dwell. These pieces may look like junk welded together at first, but hold more presence to such. It’s more of a sense of an urban landscape between the two and their open and subconscious connection they dominate between each other and themselves.

With the title of this work being as ANY NIGHT, one may believe that this play is another romantic comedy one would find through the standard media landscape. That theory is far removed from that concept as it shows more undertaking within what’s being close through physical, emotional, and psychological standpoints as each element serves with equal respect to the other. This is a production that is worth its good look.

ANY NIGHT, presented by The Filigree Theatre and EVN Productions, both of Austin, Texas, performs at The Sacred Fools Theatre space, 1076 Lillian Way at the corner of Lillian Way and Santa Monica Blvd., one block west of Santa Monica Blvd. and Vine Street, Hollywood, until July 30th. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 5:00 PM.
For ticket reservations or for more information, visit http://www.AnyNightAustin.com.
Also visit The Filagree Theatre at http://www.FilagreeTheatre.com, and EVN Productions at http://www.EVNProductionsATX.com

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The Write Act Repertory presents the world premier of Joni Ravenna’s BLINDED, a black comedy of a “blind” man, his headshrinker, and a pair of women undergoing an affair of sorts.

Chris Muto is Donald Stark. When he was a lad of eighteen, he discovered that his mother was having an affair in bed with another person. This lead to a trauma where he lost sight in his eyes, leading to a psychosomatic caused blindness. Many years later as an early-middle aged adult, Donald’s well being has taken its toll. Coming toward his edge, he attempts to “see” a psychologist, Dr. Bob Silveroni (Rico Simonini). Instead of writing more prescriptions for Donald, Dr. Bob has an idea. He requests that Don carry on an affair with his wife Bridget (Cindy Marinangel). The reason for this odd sounding request is because Dr. Bob is having his own affair with his “nurse”, Cheila (Mariyn Sanabria), a Puerto Rican spitfire type. While Donald visits Bridget at her apartment, he plays a role as a French teacher that can see as Bridget doesn’t know of his “illness”. It’s a comical tale of a love triangle that isn’t triangular, square, or any form of shape! It’s a function to cover up one fling with another!

This humorous play by Joni Ravenna takes upon a string of tragic episodes and makes it more of a satirical farce than a joke-upon-joke of a comedy. The cast of four in this play are as just as comical as the material they are working with. Out of the four players that appear in this production, Rico Simonini as Dr. Bob and Marilyn Sanabria stand out comic wise, as Dr. Bob is more of a snide con-artist than a professional headshrinker, while Cheila is a hot-to-trot mucho caliente chica that is coming close to being past her prime–although Cindy Marinangel’s character as Bridget already reached her expiration date–the reason to Dr. Bob’s chili pepper laden affair! (Chris Muto is Donald Stark is amusing, but that’s about it!) T. J. Castronovo directs this comedy with a load of humorous flair that gives the show with what it’s got!

One can’t be wrong with a comedy that is based upon romantic flings that go amuck. BLINDED is one of those examples, as set within a production that’s tight in its running time at around ninety minutes or so, not counting the intermission! That’s enough minutes for all of the hidden secrets to become exposed, leading to its lighter hearted conclusions.

BLINDED, presented by the Write Act Repertory and performs at the BrickHouse Theatre, 10950 Peach Grove Street, one block north of the intersections of Camarillo, Lankershim, and Vineland streets, North Hollywood, until August 13th. Showtimes are Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday matinees at 2:00 PM. For ticket reservations and for more information, call (800) 838-3006, or via http://www.BrownPaperTickets.com/event/2993431.
Visit the Write Act Repertory online at http://www.WriteActRepTheatre.org, or through Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/WriteActRepertory

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE
is a presentation of Linear Cycle Productions

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2017 Linear Cycle Productions. All rights reserved. The views and opinions are those of the writers, and not necessarily of the staff and management. ‘Nuff said!

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