January 18

Paul Alexander Nolan on Being Scared to Tackle Guy in Once and Becoming a Goofy Sock Connoisseur

first_img Are you excited to spend the holiday season in New York City? What will you be doing to ring in the new year? My gal gets here on New Year’s Eve, but I don’t know what we’re going to do. I doubt we’ll go to the ball drop in Times Square [laughs]. I said to the cast last night, “So what are you doing for New Year’s?” And the first thing out of all of their mouths was, “Don’t go to Times Square!” I’m not a big club person, but it would be fun to go to a burlesque show. We have a performance the next day, but I would like to do something fun! Related Shows What do you love about the show? I was really inspired by the fact that the show feels more like a play with music than a musical. The storytelling is poetic, and it doesn’t give you everything. The story is very human in that it addresses the complexities of relationships. It doesn’t necessarily have the most “satisfying” ending, but it speaks to you because it’s realistic.  See Paul Alexander Nolan in Once at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. Paul Alexander Nolan Speaking of being a goofball, what’s the story with you and the crazy socks on Twitter? I wear a lot of gray, and I’m not really into fashion [laughs]. Last fall, I thought, “I’ve got to do something fun with my wardrobe,” so, I chose socks. While I was playing Fyedka in Fiddler on the Roof, I started tweeting photos of the goofy socks I was wearing underneath my calf-high boots. Then I invited people to send me pairs of socks they wanted me to wear during the performance of Fiddler they were attending. I did get some very cool socks! I got one pair of very sheer, feminine, ankle-high socks, which were an odd sensation under the boots, but I wore them. Was Guy in Once a role you’ve had your eye on? Yes and no. I first saw Once when I was here doing Jesus Christ Superstar and it was such a monumental event, a perfect, magical night for me. Steve [Kazee], Cristin [Milioti] and the whole company were so electric that I thought, “I’d love to play that, but it’s perfect, so there’s no point.” I just couldn’t imagine it being any better. But when I found out they were doing replacements, I was obviously very interested because I really believe in the show. Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 4, 2015 What’s the biggest challenge in having to sing, dance, play guitar and act at the same time? To play an instrument and move is actually really tricky. My biggest challenge in the show is playing because I don’t have an extensive background in instrument-playing. I understand that Cristin didn’t play a lot of piano before she got the role of Girl, so that made me much feel better because I felt out of place coming into a company of people who are really fantastic musicians. I’ve played guitar for a number of years, but I don’t play in front of people. This is like a giant mountain to climb. Once Every time I see this show, it makes me want to head to an Irish pub. Does it do the same for you? Absolutely. The Once company is a pretty tight group, and they spend a lot of social time together. I’ve already been to a hootenanny with some of them. These guys play together a lot, so it’s an honor to be invited into the group. I would love to have seen you play Cousin Kevin in Tommy! It’s interesting you say that, because I don’t think most people would expect me to be good as Cousin Kevin [laughs]! It’s a really awesome show, and I think there is an appetite for it. It’s an incredible achievement because it doesn’t spoon-feed the audience. I knew nothing about Tommy and I didn’t do any research going in because I didn’t want to bring any preconceived ideas. Luckily, Des trusted me to figure it out. Jesus Christ Superstar was such a fabulous show! What was the highlight of playing the title role? What was exciting about that production was how much we all believed in it. Of course, we would have liked for it to have more success here—and by success I mean have it run longer and do well financially—but I moved to a new level of artistry doing that show. It helped me dig, dig, dig, dig deep because I was with it for so long. Playing Jesus was a huge responsibility, and I took it really seriously. I can’t lie: it was almost a relief to close. Maybe I took myself too seriously, but I did consider it something I had to show up for. Paul Alexander Nolan is back on Broadway in his first leading role since wowing audiences as the titular savior in 2012’s Jesus Christ Superstar. Fresh off his sixth season at the Stratford Festival, where recent roles included Cousin Kevin in The Who’s Tommy and Fyedka in Fiddler on the Roof, the Canadian-born actor is now headlining the Tony-winning musical Once at the Jacobs Theatre. Nolan is taking over the lead role of Guy, whose will-they-or-won’t-they romance with Girl is at the center of the intimate show. Below, the actor gives Broadway.com the scoop on returning to the Great White Way and spending New Year’s Eve in New York City. Star Files View Comments What’s the advantage of being part of the Stratford Festival “family” and the range of roles you’ve been able to play? The biggest gift I’ve received from working in Stratford is that it solidified my skill as an actor, and my eyes have been opened to the technique behind classical theater. Also, working with the different directors there taught me how to adapt; Des McAnuff works very differently than Gary Griffin, who works differently than Antoni Cimolino, who works differently than John Doyle. I think the best artists are flexible. It’s dangerous to lock yourself into, “This is how I work.” I’ve constantly been rewarded for being willing to try it someone else’s way. Any dream roles you’d love to play on the Great White Way? Bobby in Company. I love that show. In fact, I’d probably play anything in that show. Sweeney Todd would be amazing. It’s a little low for my voice, but maybe if I stretch my muscles I can get there. It’s weird, I’m attracted to dark stuff, but I’m also drawn to really goofy stuff. If and when we bring Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots to New York, I’d love to play Ben Nickel again, who’s just a huge goofball. But I’d also love to do Floyd Collins, Long Day’s Journey into Night or The Country Wife on Broadway. Do you think the timing was wrong for that production? I don’t know. How would you time it? There was a lot of competition on Broadway at that time. It’s a tricky show to sell. You’ve got people who don’t want to see it because it’s religious, and then you have people who are religious and don’t want to see it because they don’t agree with it. I will say that the audience response to the show was huge. They absolutely went berserk for it.last_img read more

January 17

Whoopi Goldberg Has A New Nickname for Broadway: ‘The Great Bright Way’

first_img View Comments Whoopi Goldberg(Photo: Emilio Madrid for Broadway.com) The nation is engaged in challenging conversations about racism, which have reached the lights of Broadway. “The Great White Way” has been a longtime nickname for the New York City theater district, first coined in the early 1900s to pay homage to the dazzling lights of the marquees. But in 2020, the original meaning is lost, with the phrase no longer reflecting the diversity audiences demand on Broadway. So what now? EGOT-er Whoopi Goldberg has a fix!On the June 24 episode of The View, the morning talk show she co-hosts, Whoopi Goldberg shared a simple update that a friend suggested to her. “We talk about Broadway from time to time [on The View], and I have a pitch,” she offered. “Maybe we can stop calling [Broadway] ‘The Great White Way’ and replace it with ‘The Great Bright Way,'” she said. “It’s not just the words. It’s the way we think about it.” Well said, Whoopi! Not only is this change super simple and more inclusive—it’s catchy!Goldberg won a 2002 Tony Award as producer of Thoroughly Modern Millie, and hosted the awards in 2008. Her Broadway acting credits include A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and Xanadu. Her solo shows Whoopi Goldberg and Whoopi have earned her acclaim. As previously reported, she will reprise her 1992 film turn as Deloris Van Cartier in the London production of Sister Act set for July 2021. Here’s hoping we see her back on the Great Bright Way soon enough!Watch the full clip below.last_img read more

November 19

In the aftermath of disaster, social media helps build a sense of community

first_imgShare on Facebook “A relatively organized social media resource can go a long way to ensuring that people’s needs can be met;” said Douglas Paton, a professor of Psychology at Charles Darwin University and lead author of the study; “This is the first paper to explore whether people’s engagement through Facebook could translate into the development of more enduring, functional relationships.”Following a wildfire in Tasmania in 2013, the local community used a Facebook page developed by co-author Mel Irons, Tassie Fires – We Can Help, to relay details about disaster relief efforts and resources. The site also provided an opportunity for people to share their individual situations, needs, and reactions–and to connect with other people who might find themselves in similar circumstances.After the wildfire, the Facebook site users could complete a questionnaire about their thoughts on the Facebook page. Paton and his colleague, Irons, studied their responses to measure the impact of the page, particularly as a community building resource.The user feedback was largely positive for both the site’s informative value, as well as how it provided new opportunities for people to help each other. Users reported that they “couldn’t help wanting to be a part of it all” and that “the cause became personal and it was great to feel like part of the solution.”Researchers have suggested that reaching out to others and building a sense of community can accelerate recovery efforts, as well as build an enduring local framework for the future. These findings confirm how social media can play a critical role during and after disasters, and that there is even greater potential when these networks also bring people together.“Social media will play increasingly pivotal roles in disaster response and recovery;” said Paton, “It becomes more important to ensure that its use extends beyond information (which will remain important) to also include developing a resource for mutual support and encouragement over the longer term.” Pinterest Share on Twitter Sharecenter_img Social media can disseminate critical information as well as unite disaster victims during their recovery efforts, suggests a study published in Frontiers in Communication.After natural disasters communities rely heavily on local governments to provide the necessary resources and information to respond to such disasters, but these approaches are not well equipped to meeting individual needs.As a complement to traditional methods, social media can provide a more personalized resource as well as fostering a sense of community in response to the crisis. Email LinkedInlast_img read more

September 26

Semenya athletics testosterone drama angers South Africa

first_imgCaster SemenyaJOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AFP) — Anger is mounting in South Africa over new athletics rules prescribing maximum testosterone levels in female competitors widely seen as targeting the country’s Olympic champion Caster Semenya.Her backers at home and abroad have denounced the International Association of Athletics Federations’ (IAAF) new policies that target women who naturally produce unusually high levels of testosterone of being “sexist”, “racist”, “homophobic”, “dehumanising” and “humiliating”.From November 1, athletes classified as “hyper-androginous” will have to chemically lower their testosterone levels to just 5 nanomoles per litre of blood to be eligible to run any international race of 400 metres up to the mile.The IAAF has defended the rule change as scientifically sound.According to a study financed by the IAAF, high testosterone levels in some athletes give them a “significant” advantage in certain competitions.The first athlete to be affected by the change is double Olympic 800 metres champion Semenya — who also runs the 1,500 metres.The IAAF insists that the new rules “are about levelling the playing field to ensure fair and meaningful competition in the sport”.“The regulations are solely to ensure fair and meaningful competition within the female classification for the benefit of the broad class of female athletes,” said the IAAF in a statement.But the decision has provoked an explosion of anger.South African law professor Steve Cornelius described it as “ostracising certain individuals, all of them female, for no reason other than being what they were born to be” in a stinging letter resigning from the IAAF’s disciplinary tribunal.“I cannot in good conscience continue to associate myself with an organisation which insists on… female classification (that) is based on the same kind of ideology that has led to some of the worst injustices and atrocities,” he wrote to IAAF president Sebastian Coe.South African sprinter L.J. van Zyl told AFP that the decision was “unfair because there are only certain events that are targeted”.Canadian Olympic wrestler Erica Wiebe tweeted that “I believe in #fairsport, #cleansport and #sportsocialchange but I don’t believe in policing women’s participation in sport because they don’t fit within Western conventions of femininity. C’mon” IAAF.Semenya, who has undergone several sex tests since her first title in 2009, responded defiantly to the new IAAF rules.“God made me the way I am and I accept myself. I am who I am and I am proud of myself,” she wrote over an image of herself looking skyward posted on Twitter.Semenya has a deep voice, strong build and is considered “intersex” — born with sex characteristics not typically male or female — along with between 0.1 and 0.4 per cent of people globally.Heightened testosterone levels among androgenous women can contribute to increased muscled mass and heightened sporting performance — a competitive advantage caused by involuntary genetic traits.Semenya, who was previously suspended for 11 months as a result of her genetic makeup, has tackled her situation head-on — winning the backing of former South African president Nelson Mandela.The chair of the country’s parliamentary sport committee Beauty Dlulane said she was “appalled” by the decision which she alleged was part of “a plan to suspend Caster”.“This should be challenged,” she said.Athletics South Africa said on Thursday it would take the IAAF to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland if it did not back down over the new rule.The scandal has also taken on a racial edge in the rainbow nation which was for decades run according to apartheid laws.Sports minister Tokozile Xasa called the regulations “a very sexist, racial and homophobic… way to discourage her”.Mandela’s party, the ruling African National Congress, called the rule “unjust and blatantly racist”.“The regulations are a painful reminder of our past where an unjust government specifically legislated laws for (activists) to stifle their fight,” it said. “The IAAF uses the same tactic.” The outcry has not been confined to South Africa.Canada’s athletics federation has jumped to the defence of “hyper-androginous” athletes calling for athletics to be “free of discrimination”.Cornelius, the South African law professor who resigned from the IAAF disciplinary panel, said “the big problem is the science is not conclusive”.“The science on which the IAAF relies has been questioned in academic journals,” he told AFP. American athletic champion Tianna Bartoletta said she was not surprised the IAAF had acted, but wished it had “sought a more inclusive solution”.“Athletes have been outspoken about the unfairness of competing against women who have higher testosterone levels,” she said.Bartoletta suggested the IAAF could have acted more fairly if it had contacted “all of its participating elite females for a snapshot of their hormone panels.”Cornelius said the IAAF study that led to the rule change centred on the pole vault and hammer throw competitions — and made no direct reference to the 1,500 metres.“They are going to struggle in a court of law to explain,” added Cornelius. Share Share InternationalNewsPrintSports Semenya athletics testosterone drama angers South Africa by: – May 4, 2018 Tweetcenter_img 15 Views   no discussions Share Sharing is caring!last_img read more

September 16

Bishops’ defeats Marian

first_imgBishops’ High and Queen’s College walked away with contrasting wins, when the GuyOil/Tradewind Tankers U18 Secondary School Football Championship, continued yesterday at the Ministry of Education ground, Carifesta Avenue.  Linford Isles opened the scoring compliments of a 31st minute strike, as Bishops’ High downed Marian Academy 2-0.Kesi Carter sealed the hard-fought victory, as he etched his name on the scorer’s sheet in the 63rd minute. Meanwhile, Queen’s College defeated Dolphin Secondary via walkover. The tournament continues on Sunday at the same venue with another round of matches. Complete ResultsGame-1Queen’s College vs Dolphin Secondary Queen’s College won via walkoverGame-2Marian Academy-0 vs The Bishops’ High-2 Linford Isles-31stKesi Carter-63rdlast_img read more