YOU TUBE WHERE..?

That was the opening subject line for an email message received not so long ago from somebody who wanted to know where our presence is for submitting new content on the get-go place in the “Meta Universe” a.k.a. “Cyberspace” to view, post, and share moving imagery.

That place is of course known as YouTube that’s been part of the media landscape since 2005, now in its eighteenth year of existence.

To give you a brief rundown of what we are speaking about. This person only identified as “Dave” wanted to know if we place original content  on YouTube in order to express an idea on what’s going on in the world we exist in.

The email was quick and to the point as stated: “When are you guys going to post new videos on YouTube? -Dave” sent from an email as a Gmail account?

We will get down to the point of Dave’s question in the same fashion that Dave asked us. And out answer is “When we have something new to post”. That’s our answer!

As some of your readers are aware, we have a vast collection of video imagery within our archives. Most of this imagery exists on videotape. Some are on film stock, and even a selection exists as video files of various formats. (The video file collection was obtained as video files, even though some of the material came from other stock.) And from that collection, only five percent of the material was created by me. Another 10% came from amateur sources in the form of home movies and home videos. This means that the remaining 85% was created by somebody else. That bulk of material we don’t have the rights for, meaning that it belongs to somebody else.

As a preservationist, I sit on the very narrow fence with it comes to make my collection available to those that desire to view it and appreciate its value. At the same time, I have to respect the outside courses that might have the rights to the imagery. This is now only because I pay respect to those creators that made the imagery possible, or I don’t want to go through the hassle of that source (or its executors) to have be a “ceased and desist” notice.

First and foremost, I am not an attorney that deals with the issues of copyrights and the connections that go along with it. And I do take note of the difference between what’s known as “fair use” and outright plagiarism. However, those issues are not the only reason why I don’t place anything in my collection that I didn’t have anything to do with its creation. Maybe the reason why I don’t place anything down to including new materials is this–enough to answer as its own paragraph.

I don’t have the time and effort to post older content, as well as to create anything new.

In this day and age, anyone can (and has) posted moving imagery up for anyone to see. Kids as young as seven years old (so they claim they are that age), have used their phone device to place something on TickTok and its many other applications. Those that work with the kid(s) assist in the uploading of the content, and depending on what the content is, they can receive as many as a million views. (Don’t laugh folks! It has happened!) Some even become “influences” which in turn make them celebrities in their own right.

As one suspects, this kind of fame (real or otherwise) belongs to those of youth, generally of the “Gen Z” demographic. (“Gen Z” refers to those born from 1996 to the present.) Some of the Millenniums, born between 1980-1996, also rule, but are aware that there is a new breed attempting to take over. Those that are middle aged, the “Gen X” crowd (born between 1965-1979) who were the demographic that was introduced to the internet as we know it, were accustomed to home video, and many of these folks actually created short video content that exist on VHS, S-VHS, 8mm/Hi8mm, and even on DV. This material didn’t have a creative circulation, only limited to those of the creator’s personal circle, but were the forerunners to original YouTube content.

As for the generation that came before the Gen Xers, the ever lovin’ Baby Boomers? They were the first to become aware of creating moving imagery, either on videotape -assuming that they had access to a camera and a portable tape deck recorder to capture it all), or on Super 8mm film.

The latter format (Super 8mm) was a bit tricky to capture. Usually, one had only three minutes tops to film something. And one always was in a guessing game to discover if whatever was shot on film actually came out OK as there was no way to view the content after it was shot! And if one used 8mm, one can only shoot about ninety seconds of uninterrupted material before the roll as used up, had to be removed from the camera (and to be careful not to expose the roll in direct light), reload the camera, and to continue for another ninety second before the roll was completed. If one was shooting various shots without any real continuity, that roll flip was just an issue to deal with. But if one was shooting a “feature” then one had to be careful not to shoot a scene that should not be broken up!

But videotape did away with such an issue, and many kids (or at least those that were “kids” from 1978 onward) were able to create this form of content. But unless one came from a household that was willing to shell out over $1000 and up for such equipment, then the young folks were real video pioneers to create video.

Of course, editing the video was rather tough. There were ways to do this from editing “in the camera” (shooting a scene, pausing the tape, and releasing the pause button for the next scene shot in real time), something that was mostly done for fun and personal amusement. In short, before there was any method of posting their content to a mass audience outside of their family and friends, these young folks were not looking for fame, although if they did receive it, they would accept what fame came across their way.

Bet getting back to the entire issue on why we don’t place anything on social media. We will consider such when the need calls for it. As if this moment, or the moment as this article is written, there is no cause. But keep in mind folks then that time arrives, you’ll be the first (or second) to know all about it. Just stay tuned to this news service for the updated information and details!

-See you then!

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Theater 40 of Beverly Hills closes their 2021-22 season with THE PLAY’S THE THING, a comedy written by Ferenc Molnar and adapted by P.G. Woodhouse is about a playwright who comes up with an idea to save the engagement between his nephew and an actress after the nephew overhears a flirty conversation between his fiancé and an unsavory actor.

The setting is a majestic castle set upon the Italian Riviera in the roaring 1920’s. Sandor Turai (Daniel Leslie), an author of a number of theater plays, undergoes a scheme to rescue an engagement between his nephew Albert Adam (Eric Keitel) and an actress named Idona Szabo (Kristin Towers Rowles) where the young Albert overhears a conversation that’s rather flirty in nature between Idona and her one time lover Almady (Todd Andrew Ball), whose character is on the annoying side. From there, Sandor uses his notable insights to save his nephew and future niece-in-law from a romantic disaster. From there, one element leads toward another with applying sophisticated charisma and wit within its process.

This play was first created by Hungarian playwright Ferenc Molnar in 1924. British playwright Pelham Grenville (“P.G.”) Woodhouse adapted it, writing it in english two year later. This makes this play as a piece of the classic mode set during the era of the early 20th Century known as the time “between the wars” (“The Great War” and “World War II”) where British charm and grace was at its peak. And the way that this play was created, it shows that same charm and grace with a good dose of wit added as its spice. In the Theater 40 production, the lead characters express those notions as well. The elder men are donned in tuxes and smart suits, while the women are dressed in their finest, coming close to being the grand dames that they are as part of the theater scene. (Albert, the youthful one, is just as snappily dressed as all of the rest!) The play itself is very talky where its humor has to be heard with careful ears to really be appreciated. There’s nothing that is “laugh out loud” present, since Woodhouse’s writing shows all of the impressions of smart set canniness.  After all, he was the playwright that created the butler Jeeves who is more of a leading man rather than a part of the domestic help.

These aspects from this between-the-wars phase is what makes this play amusing and as its saving grace. The entire cast in this Theater 40 production performs their roles within those methods where being avant-garde would become the choice way for presentation. Melanie MacQueen directs this program using those same principles adding to its jollification. Along with the visuals to go along with everything else, most notably Michele Young’s costume design, and Jeff G. Rack’s set of furnishings and backdrops that could be found in European based castles, it all adds up to the section that caters toward the smart set of yore.

Also appearing is Michael Robb as Mansky, and Jeffrey Winner as Johann Dwornitschek, the butler.

If one is seeking a British comedy where everyone is running in and out of doors being scantily clad mistaking somebody as someone else, this isn’t the play to find those options. This is a stage performance that is good for the character with subtle humor as its zest. That is why this production is called its title. It’s indeed “the thing” this play is meant to stand by!

THE PLAY’S THE THING, presented by Theatre 40 and performs at the Reuben Cordova Theatre, located within the campus of Beverly Hills High School, 241 South Moreno Drive (off little Santa Monica Blvd.) Beverly Hills, until June 12th. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights @ 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 2:00 PM.    

Theater 40 has announced its schedule of plays for the 2022-23 season. Opening on July 21st is David Ives’ The Metromaniacs, followed by Norm Foster’s A Clean Brush opening on September 22nd. On November 17th, Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner? is presented written by Todd Keiedler adapted from William Rose’s screenplay. On January 19th, ’23 , Katie Forgette’s Incident at Our Lady of Perpetual Help opens, followed by Terrance McNally’s It’s Only A Play on March 23rd. And ending for that season will be Lauren Gunderson’s The Revolution’s Reign of Terror on May 18th, ’23.

For ticket reservations for The Play’s The Thing, as well as details for Theater 40’s 22-23 season, call (310) 364-0535, or via online at http://www.Theatre40.org      

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Tanya Thomas stars in NATURALLY TAN, a solo performance currently performing at the ARTSpace Black Box Theatre in Simi Valley, is about her personal journey in becoming accepted for her ethnic background from her own resident land as well as the land that she adapted as her own.

In this performance, Tanya tells her tale of becoming an actress and performer starting out in her native land of Singapore, located on the southern tip of Malaysia. In this nation, there is an “invisible” ruling where if one holds a lighter complexion within their skin tone, that person will experience more opportunities within their domain, from career choice to overall acceptance. This is also a rule existing in many other countries within Asia. Tanya expresses her journey as told through various characters ranging from a drag queen to an eight year old that note these viewpoints. Of course, since her goal does deal in performing, she relocated to southern California where this rule also tends to apply. She is fortunate that she is in an area of America where the Asian population is rather large, even in recent times where the Asian acceptance has hit a virtual road block. But with any form of being a “person of color” , there are some levels to climb. And she succeeds within this right of passage as told by Tanya and her many alter egos.

This is a program, written and performed by the artist that is based upon her actual experiences, although there is a bit of creative license added to her true appeal story. Tanya reaches out in her honesty on how one must confine to a source that feels that being “whiter” is not only the accepted choice, but in some methods, the only choice. But she accepts this reasoning as she is not alone in these standings. But in the aftermath, Tanya is the sole person on stage! With the assistance of a visual projected background as created by the team of Kenny Johnston as video designer and Serina Morris as graphic designer. Tanya proves to her audience that she holds the complexion of being the tan she has and holds.

Jessica Lynn Johnson, a person well known for developing solo performances from other talented presenters that have a personal epic to share on a stage set, directed this presentation that follows the “sell line” for this show to its “T”; It’s a one woman’s cross cultural path to self-worth.

And that self worth is witnessed within Tanya’s performance. Although the show itself clocks in at about ninety minutes or so, it’s in reality, a saga that was thirty some years in the making! Tanya wraps things up quite nicely. And for the record, Tanya’s skin tone is tan by nature and thus, Naturally Tan!

NATURALLY TAN, presented by and performs at the ARTSpace Black Box Theatre, 2856 School Street, Simi Valley, until May 28th. Showtimes are Saturday evenings at 8:00 PM.

Tickets may be obtained at the door, or through VENMO @Jan-Glasband. More details can also be found through the website https://tanyathomas.com/artspace

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2022 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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