Sep 232014

Special Screenings, Live Discussions through February 2015

Hollywood Costume Exhibition In Los AngelesThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will complement the groundbreaking exhibition Hollywood Costume with a series of special screenings and live discussions exploring costume design as an essential tool of cinematic storytelling. Presented by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London and the Academy, Hollywood Costume will be on view October 2, 2014, through March 2, 2015, in the historic Wilshire May Company building at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles. Visitors who purchase tickets to Hollywood Costume will receive free admission to Academy events held on the same day. Tickets are on sale now at Hollywood Costume is sponsored by Swarovski.

Exhibition-related public programs include:

The Perfect Match: Hollywood Costume Collaborations
Saturdays, October 4 through December 20
This screening series explores the relationship specific Hollywood costume designers have developed with directors, whether over large bodies of work or in concentrated periods of creative collaboration, spanning the silent era to present day. A diverse range of costume designers will speak about their work with noted directors: Mary Zophres on Ethan and Joel Coen, Mark Bridges on Paul-Thomas Anderson, Marilyn Vance on John Hughes, Jeffrey Kurland on Woody Allen, and Deborah Nadoolman Landis on John Landis.

Sep 222014

A DouglasPlus Presentation

World Premiere Of Dael Orlandersmith “Forever” To Take Place At Kirk Douglas Theatre

Playwright and performer Dael Orlandersmith. Commissioned by CTG and directed by Neel Keller, the world premiere of Orlandersmith’s “Forever” will be presented at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, October 9 through 26, 2014, as a part of DouglasPlus programming. Photo by Pavel Antonov; courtesy of CTG.

The world premiere of Dael Orlandersmith’s “Forever,” a DouglasPlus presentation, begins rehearsals September 23 at the Center Theatre Group/Kirk Douglas Theatre where it will open on October 12, 2014. Commissioned by CTG and directed by CTG Associate Artistic Director Neel Keller, previews begin October 9 and performances continue through October 26.

In “Forever,” writer/performer Orlandersmith investigates the complex legacy she received from her mother and their difficult life in New York. A riveting and powerful memoir about family – the ones we are born into, and the strange way powerful bonds are formed with people who are “kin” through shared experience and perspective, is inspired in part by Orlandermith’s experiences in Paris at the famed Père Lachaise Cemetery where strangers from around the world make pilgrimages to the graves of such legendary artists as Jim Morrison, Marcel Proust and Richard Wright.

Orlandersmith has been seen at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in a staged reading of “Forever” (2013), preceded by her plays “Stoop Stories” and the world premiere of “Bones” (2010). Her award-winning plays have been commissioned and presented by theatres across the U.S., including “Black n’ Blue Boys/Broken Men,” “Horsedreams,” “The Blue Album,” “Yellowman,” “The Gimmick,” “Monster” and “Beauty’s Daughter.” She is the recipient of the New York Foundation for the Arts Grant, the Helen Merrill Award for Emerging Playwrights, a Guggenheim and the 2005 PEN / Laura Pels Foundation Award for a playwright in mid-career and a Lucille Lortel Foundation Playwrights Fellowship.

“Forever” is the second DouglasPlus presentation for the 2014-2015 KDT season. For five years, DouglasPlus has provided the flexibility to explore new work and push boundaries through fully and minimally staged events, workshops and readings and traditional and non-traditional performance configurations.

The Kirk Douglas Theatre is located at 9820 Washington Blvd. in Culver City, 90232. For tickets and information, please visit, by calling 213-628-2772, in person at the Center Theatre Group box office or at the Kirk Douglas Theatre box office two hours prior to curtain.

Sep 212014


Blithe Spirit comes to the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles

Following the internationally acclaimed production with sold-out engagements on Broadway and in London’s West End, television legend, Oscar recipient and five-time Tony Award®-winner Angela Lansbury returns to the stage in Noël Coward’s smash-hit comedic play “Blithe Spirit” in an exciting North American tour to be launched at Center Theatre Group’s Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles.

Performances for “Blithe Spirit” at the Ahmanson begin Tuesday, December 9, 2014, and run through Sunday, January 18, 2015. The opening is set for Sunday, December 14.
Following the L.A. engagement, the tour will continue to SHN’s Golden Gate Theatre in San Francisco, January 20 through February 1, 2015; Mirvish Productions’ Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto, February 10 through March 15, and concludes in Washington, D.C., March 17 through March 29, at the National Theatre where Lansbury made her first pre-Broadway stage debut nearly 58 years ago to the day.

Angela Lansbury In Blithe Spirit

Angela Lansbury in the 2014 West End revival of Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit.” Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” is the second production in the Center Theatre Group /Ahmanson Theatre’s 2014-2015 season and will play December 9, 2014, through January 18, 2015. The opening is scheduled for December 14.
Photo by Johan Persson.

Returning to the role of Madame Arcati, for which she won her fifth Tony Award® in Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” at Center Theatre Group’s Ahmanson Theatre for which she won her fifth Tony Award® in 2009 for Best Featured Actress in a Play, Angela Lansbury (the popular TV show “Murder, She Wrote,” the memorable stage productions of “Sweeney Todd” and “Mame,” the classic film “Gaslight”) will be joined by an all-star cast including Charles Edwards (PBS’ “Downton Abbey,” “The 39 Steps,” “Blithe Spirit” – 2014 West End revival), Jemima Rooper (the film “The Black Dahlia,” “One Man, Two Guvnors,” “Blithe Spirit” – 2014 West End revival) and Charlotte Parry (“Coram Boy,” “The Importance of Being Earnest”). The cast also includes Susan Louise O’Connor (“What to Do When You Hate All Your Friends,” “Blithe Spirit” – 2009 Broadway revival) and Sandra Shipley (“Anything Goes,” “Blithe Spirit” – 2009 Broadway revival). Additional casting will be announced in the coming days.
The play is directed by two-time Tony Award-winner Michael Blakemore (“Kiss Me, Kate,” “Copenhagen”).

“It’s going to be exciting to play Los Angeles for the first time in over 30 years,” said Lansbury. “I’m delighted to be returning to the Ahmanson Theatre in the role of Madame Arcati in Noël Coward’s wonderfully funny play ‘Blithe Spirit.’ It is one of the great comedic roles and playing her for a new audience every night is a joy. I can’t think of a better place to start off this tour than with my family and friends here in my own backyard.”

The creative team includes scenic and costume designs by Helen Hayes Award-winner Simon Higlett, Ms. Lansbury’s costume designs by two-time Tony Award®-winner Martin Pakledinaz and sound design by Olivier Award-winners Ben and Max Ringham.
“Blithe Spirit” replaces the previously postponed production of “Heartbeat of Home” in the Ahmanson Theatre’s 2014-2015 season.

Angela Lansbury In Blithe Spirit2

Angela Lansbury (clockwise from her) Janie Dee, Simon Jones (obscured) Serena Evans (obscured) and Charles Edwards in the 2014 West End revival of Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit.” Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” is the second production in the Center Theatre Group /Ahmanson Theatre’s 2014-2015 season and will play December 9, 2014, through January 18, 2015.
Photo by Johan Persson.

Tickets for “Blithe Spirit” go on sale September 24 and are available by calling (213) 972-4400, visiting, or in person at the Center Theatre Group box office at the Ahmanson Theatre.

“Blithe Spirit,” one of Noël Coward’s most popular comedies, was first seen on Broadway in 1941, the same year it was produced in London where it set British box office records and was the longest running comedy (1,997 performances) until it was eventually surpassed by “Boeing-Boeing” in the 1970s. The original Broadway production played nearly two years and co-starred Leonora Corbett, Mildred Natwick, Clifton Webb and Peggy Wood. In 1987, it was revived on Broadway in an all-star production with Richard Chamberlain, Blythe Danner, Judith Ivey, and Geraldine Page, in her final Broadway appearance.

The latest revival on Broadway in 2009 was directed by Michael Blakemore and co-starred Angela Lansbury, Jayne Atkinson, Christine Ebersole, Rupert Everett, Simon Jones and Susan Louise O’Connor. Following its critical acclaim and box office success on Broadway, Lansbury returned to the London stage after 40 years to reprise her Tony Award®-winning role. Also under the direction of Michael Blakemore and starring Lansbury, the London revival opened at the Gielgud Theatre on March 18, 2014, and co-starred Janie Dee, Serena Evans, Charles Edwards, Patsy Ferran, Simon Jones and Jemima Rooper.

Coward, in his autobiography, claimed he wrote the play in five days during a holiday. Only two lines of dialogue were removed before its first production in London.
Researching for his new novel, Charles Condomine invites the implausible medium Madame Arcati to his house for a séance. While consumed in a trance, Madame Arcati unwittingly summons the ghost of Charles’ dead wife Elvira. Appearing only to Charles, Elvira soon makes a play to reclaim her husband, much to the chagrin of Charles’ new wife Ruth. One husband, two feuding wives and a whisper of mischief in the air – who will win in Coward’s unworldly comedy?

The North American tour of “Blithe Spirit” is produced by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Steve Traxler, Lee Dean, John Frost, Charles Diamond and Will Trice in association with JAM Theatricals.
For more information about the “Blithe Spirit” tour, please visit

ANGELA LANSBURY (Madame Arcati) has enjoyed a career spanning over 70 years in film, stage and television. Winner of five Tony Awards®, she made her Broadway debut in 1957 playing Bert Lahr’s wife in “Hotel Paradiso” which opened its pre-Broadway tryout on March 16, 1957, at the National Theatre in Washington, D.C. where she will return 58 years later during the final two weeks of the North American tour of Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit.” In 1960, she returned to Broadway as Joan Plowright’s mother in Shelagh Delaney’s “A Taste of Honey.” She starred in her first musical, “Anyone Can Whistle” in 1964, and in 1966 she triumphed as “Mame,” winning her first Tony. She won Tonys for “Dear World” (1968), “Gypsy” (1974) and “Sweeney Todd” (1979). After a 23-year hiatus, she returned to Broadway in 2007 starring in Terrence McNally’s “Deuce.” In 2009 she won her fifth Tony Award as Madame Arcati in Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit,” which was followed in 2010 by her performance as Madame Armfeldt in Stephen Sondheim’s classic “A Little Night Music” and Gore Vidal’s classic “The Best Man” (2012). In 2013, she appeared in the highly acclaimed Australian tour of Alfred Uhry’s play “Driving Miss Daisy,” also starring James Earl Jones and Boyd Gaines. It was so successful that it was filmed as a live theatre performance and was released in movie theatres worldwide earlier this year.
Most recently, in March 2014, she reprised the role of Madame Arcati at the Gielgud Theatre, which opened to rave reviews and great acclaim. It marked her return to the London stage for the first time in nearly 40 years. Previous London appearances were in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Edward Albee’s “All Over” at the Aldwich, “Gypsy” by Arthur Laurents, Jules Styne and Stephen Sondheim at the Piccadilly, and “Hamlet” co-starring Albert Finney at the National.
She has appeared in over 60 motion pictures beginning with “Gaslight” at the age of 17 for which she was nominated for an Academy Award. Her other films include such classics as “National Velvet,” “The Harvey Girls,” Frank Capra’s “State of the Union,” “The Portrait of Dorian Gray” (her second film and second Academy Award nomination), Cecil B. DeMille’s “Samson and Delilah,” “The Court Jester,” “The Long Hot Summer,” “The Manchurian Candidate” (Academy Award nomination), “The World of Henry Orient” and “Death on the Nile.” In 1991 she was the voice of Mrs. Potts in the Disney animated feature “Beauty and the Beast,” and in 1997 she was the voice of the Grand Duchess Marie in the animated film “Anastasia.” In 2005, she was in Emma Thompson’s “Nanny McPhee” and in 2011 she co-starred with Jim Carrey in “Mr. Poppers Penguins.”
From 1984-1996 she made television history starring as Jessica Fletcher on “Murder, She Wrote,” the longest-running detective drama series in TV history, winning four of her six Golden Globe Awards. She has also starred in numerous other films for television and appeared as a guest star on series such as “Law & Order.”
She is a recipient of the National Medal of the Arts, the Kennedy Center Honors. In addition to her five Tonys, she is the winner of six Golden Globe Awards and was nominated for 18 Emmys and three Oscars. In 2013 she was awarded an Oscar for Lifetime Achievement in Motion Pictures. She is a member of the theatre and television halls of fame and recipient of the Silver Mask for Lifetime Achievement from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, as well as the BAFTA/LA Britannia Award for Lifetime Achievement in Television and Film. Earlier named a Commander of the British Empire, she was named a Dame of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II on this New Year’s Honours List and was invested at Windsor Castle on April 15, 2014.
She was married to motion picture executive Peter Shaw for 53 years. He died in 2003. She has three children and three grandchildren.

CHARLES EDWARDS (Charles Condomine) plays Lady Edith’s publisher lover Michael Gregson in “Downton Abbey.”
He played Charles in Michael Blakemore’s hugely successful London production of “Blithe Spirit” in 2014. Also in London’s West End he played Bertie in the original stage play “The King’s Speech” by the Oscar-winning playwright David Seidler, and Benedick in “Much Ado About Nothing” at Shakespeare’s Globe; he was nominated as Best Actor at the London Evening Standard Awards for these performances. He led the Tony-winning Broadway production of “The 39 Steps,” having originated the role of Richard Hannay in London, where it won the Olivier Award for Best Comedy. He played Oberon opposite Dame Judi Dench as Titania in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at the Rose Theatre, and in Coward’s “Hay Fever” at the Haymarket Theatre he played Sandy Tyrrell with Dame Judi as Judith Bliss. At the National Theatre he won the 2014 Clarence Derwent Award for his performance as Marsden in Eugene O’Neill’s “Strange Interlude” opposite Anne-Marie Duff. Also at the NT he has played Andrew Aguecheek in Sir Peter Hall’s production of “Twelfth Night,” Michael Quince in “Pravda” opposite Ralph Fiennes, directed by Sir Nicholas Hytner, and Jack Weatherill in James Graham’s 1970s political epic, “This House,” for which he was again nominated as Best Actor by the Evening Standard.
For television Charles has just completed filming “Arthur and George,” a new series for ITV about Sherlock Holmes author Arthur Conan Doyle. He played Monty Python’s Michael Palin in the BAFTA-nominated “Holy Flying Circus” for the BBC, and he also
plays hapless doctor Iain McKenzie in the ongoing Sky comedy series “Trying Again,” both of these projects come from the writers of the multi-award-winning HBO series “Veep,” Simon Blackwell and Tony Roche. In 2014 he worked with Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe on the series “A Young Doctor’s Notebook,” and with Matthew McFadyen on the BBC’s “Ripper Street.”
Recently in the cinema he appeared in Stephen Frears’ “Philomena” with Steve Coogan. Other film work includes Christopher Nolan’s “Batman Begins,” “Mansfield Park,” “An Ideal Husband” and Charles Sturridge’s “Longitude.”
He trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.

JEMIMA ROOPER (Elvira). Most recently Jemima has been seen on the West End stage in “Breeders” and the sell out West End production of “Blithe Spirit” opposite Angela Lansbury. Other theatre credits include “One Man, Two Guvnors” (National Theatre, Tour, West End, Broadway), “Me and My Girl” (Sheffield Crucible), “All My Sons” (West End), “The Power of Yes” (NT), “The Great Game: Afghanistan” (Tricycle), “Her Naked Skin” (NT), “A Respectable Wedding” (Young Vic), “Us and Them” (Hampstead Theatre) and “Where Do We Live” (Royal Court). Film includes “What If,” “One Chance,” “The Black Dahlia,” “Kinky Boots,” “A Sound of Thunder,” “Snapshots,” “Owd Bob,” “Willy’s War” and “The Higher Mortals.” Television includes “Lucky 7,” “Atlantis” (Series 1 and 2), “Frankenstein’s Wedding,” “A Bouquet of Barbed Wire,” “Poirot: The Third Girl,” “Lost in Austen,” “Hex,” “As If” and “The Railway Children.” Jemima was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for What’s On Stage Awards 2011 (“One Man, Two Guvnors”) 2010 (“All My Sons”) and for Best Performance in Musical for Theatre Awards UK 2011 (“Me And My Girl”).

CHARLOTTE PARRY (Ruth) recently played Gemma in Adam Bock’s “The Colby Sisters” in the West End, and Catherine Winslow in the very well received Broadway run of “The Winslow Boy.” Charlotte was a member of the inaugural year of Sam Mendes’ Bridge Project, performing “The Cherry Orchard” and “The Winter’s Tale” at BAM, in the West End and internationally. She played Cecily in the sellout Broadway run of “The Importance of Being Earnest.” Broadway: “The Winslow Boy,” “Coram Boy,” “The Real Thing” and “The Importance Of Being Earnest.” Off Broadway: “Equivocation” (MTC), “Look Back In Anger” and “Howard Katz” (Roundabout), “The Master Builder” (Irish Rep), “Rainbow Kiss” (The Play Company), “The Lover” (Directorfest). For Sir Peter Hall Company at BAM, Center Theatre Group and London: “As You Like It” and “The Importance Of Being Earnest.”
Regional: Eliza Doolittle in “Pygmalion” (Old Globe), world premiere of John Patrick Shanley’s “Pirate” at New York Stage and Film, world premiere of Edward Albee’s “Me, Myself and I,” and “The Birthday Party” (McCarter Theatre), “The Turn Of The Screw” (Westport Country Playhouse), “Cymbeline” and “Private Lives” (NJ Shakespeare). In the UK – West End: “The Colby Sisters,” “The Real Thing,” “The Cherry Orchard” and “The Winter’s Tale.” Regional and National Tours: “Charley’s Aunt,” “Amadeus,” “The Blue Room,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Titus Andronicus,” “As You Like It,” “Northanger Abbey,” “Les Liaisons Dangereuses,” “The Seagull,” “Three Sisters,” “Godspell,” “Follies” and “Whistle Down The Wind.” TV: “The Safe House” (ITV) and “Extreme Ghost Stories” (ITV). Film: “The Park Bench.” Charlotte has narrated over 50 audiobooks in America and the UK.

SUSAN LOUISE O’CONNOR (Edith). “Blithe Spirit” on Broadway (Theatre World Award, Dorothy Loudon Fellowship, Outer Critics Circle nomination). Other theatre credits include productions with Rattlestick Theatre, Urban Stages, Huntington Theatre, Premiere Stages, Cincinnati Playhouse, St. Louis Rep., Abingdon Theater, La MaMa, Collaboration Town, Daryl Roth Prod., Resonance Ensemble and Barrington Stage. Film, TV and web credits include “Orange is the New Black,” “Boardwalk Empire,” “Law & Order: CI,” “Doomsdays,” “Flying Scissors,” “Coming Up Roses,” “Acts of Worship,” “Yellow Fever,” “The Poets,” “Project Beth” and “Wallflowers” (Seasons 1 and 2). She stars in, co-wrote and co-produced the web series “Lucy Knows Love.”

SANDRA SHIPLEY (Mrs. Bradman). Broadway: “The Importance of Being Earnest,” “Blithe Spirit,” “Equus,” “Pygmalion,” “Retreat From Moscow,” “Vincent in Brixton” and “Indiscretions.” Off-Broadway/Tour: “Anything Goes” (Tour), “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” (Encores), “Suddenly Last Summer” and “Deep Blue Sea” (Roundabout), “Kindertransport” (MTC), “Stuff Happens” and “Venus” (Public). Regional: ART, Humana, Hartford, Huntington, La Jolla, Long Wharf, Old Globe, Williamstown, Guthrie. UK: RSC, Royal Court, West End. Film/TV: “Monument Ave,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Third Watch” and “Lipstick Jungle.” Elliot Norton Award Medal for Theatre Excellence.

MICHAEL BLAKEMORE (Director) became the first director to win a Tony Award® both for a musical (“Kiss Me, Kate”) and a play (“Copenhagen”) in the same year, 2000. For “Kiss Me, Kate” he also won the Drama Desk and Outer Critics Awards. Michael was Associate Director at National Theatre where productions included “The National Health,” “Long Day’s Journey into Night,” “The Front Page,” “Macbeth,” “The Cherry Orchard,” “Plunder,” “After the Fall” and “Copenhagen.” Elsewhere: “Privates on Parade” (RSC); “Don’s Party,” “Widower’s Houses” (Royal Court); “Make and Break” at Lyric Hammersmith Theatre (where he was Resident Director) and Haymarket; “Mr. Peter’s Connections” by Arthur Miller (Almeida). Other West End successes are “A Day in the Death of Joe Egg,” “The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui,” “Forget-Me-Not,” “Design for Living,” “Knuckle,” “Separate Tables,” “All My Sons.” “Noises Off,” “Benefactors” “Lettice and Lovage,” “Uncle Vanya” and “The Sisters Rosenweig.” On Broadway, productions include three musicals, the Tony Award®-winning “City of Angels”; “The Life,” voted best musical of 1997 by the Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League; “Kiss Me, Kate,” which received 12 Tony nominations. He also directed “Death Defying Acts,” three one-act plays by David Mamet, Elaine May and Woody Allen. He has written and directed two films, “A Personal History of the Australian Surf” (Standard Film Award 1982) and “Country Life.” His books include a novel, “Next Season” (1968), still in paperback, and two memoirs, “Arguments with England” (2004) and recently “Stage Blood” (Faber & Faber). Michael has directed “Democracy” (New York and London); “Embers” and “Three Sisters” (London); “Deuce, Is He Dead?” and “Blithe Spirit” (Broadway and West End).

NOЁL COWARD (Playwright) has achieved enduring success as a playwright, composer, director, actor, and singer. Many of his plays are firm favorites in the theatre repertoire and include “Private Lives,” “Hay Fever,” “Design for Living,” “Present Laughter” and “Blithe Spirit,” which remains one of his most popular comedies. His screenwriting credits include “In Which We Serve” (which he also co-directed) and “Brief Encounter.”

Sep 202014


Iconic singer-songwriter and 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Yusuf / Cat Stevens has joined Legacy Recordings’ storied musical family.

Cat Stevens -Yusuf Islam

Yusuf / Cat Stevens Relases New Album and Announces North American Tour

To kick off this exciting new chapter in Yusuf’s career, Legacy Recordings will release his first new studio album in five years, entitled Tell ‘Em I’m Gone, on October 27. Recorded across the globe, including Los Angeles, Dubai, Brussels, and London, the album features 10 brand-new studio recordings, including five original tracks and five carefully-chosen cover songs. Tell ’Em I’m Gone features musical contributions from Richard Thompson, blues harmonica legend Charlie Musselwhite, singer-songwriter Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Tuareg group Tinariwen, and guitarist Matt Sweeney. The album was produced by Yusuf and Rick Rubin and was mixed by Yusuf and Paul Samwell-Smith.

The worldwide premiere of “Dying To Live,” the first single from Tell ‘Em I’m Gone is available now at here:

This new relationship with Legacy Recordings will include brand new recording projects, existing catalog titles, previously unreleased live material, and a treasure trove of audio and video from Yusuf/Cat Steven’s personal archives. The new album, Tell ‘Em I’m Gone is the first piece of a larger relationship that will continue over the coming years.

Yusuf/ Cat Stevens also announced that he will embark on his first North American tour in over 35 years, giving fans in select cities the opportunity to hear his remarkable catalog and superb new songs live, many for the first time. The Peace Train…Late Again tour will kick off December 1 at Massey Hall in Toronto and conclude on December 14 at Nokia Theatre LA LIVE in Los Angeles, CA. The Peace Train…Late Again North American tour dates include:

December 1 Toronto- Massey Hall
December 4 Boston- Citi Performing Arts Center Wang Theatre
December 7 New York City- Beacon Theatre
December 9 Chicago- The Chicago Theatre
December 12 San Francisco- The Masonic
December14 Los Angeles – Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE

Tickets for the general public begin going on sale on Saturday, September 27th at 10:00am local time (please check your market for select timings). Fans who pre-order Tell ‘Em I’m Gone on (starting now until Sunday, September 21 at 11:59pm PST) will receive early access to purchase tickets to the US tour dates. Please see specific details below.

The North American tour comes on the heels of the European leg of the Peace Train…Late Again tour.

November 4 London, UK – Hammersmith Eventim Apollo
November 9 Brussels, Belgium – Forest National
November 11 Milan, Italy – Mediolanum Forum
November 13 Vienna, Austria – Stadthalle
November 16 Paris, France – Zenith
November 20 Berlin, Germany – Tempodrom
November 23 Hamburg, Germany – CCH 1
November 25 Dusseldorf, Germany – Mitsubishi Electric Hall

For complete ticket on sale information visit

On Tell ‘Em I’m Gone, Yusuf returns to the roots of his teenage musical inspiration: American blues and R&B, using these genres to explore humanity’s climb to freedom with songs that recall the spirit of his earliest days as a nascent singer-songwriter in London. Each track on the album revives the age-old themes of freedom and peace that have marked more than four decades of Yusuf’s musical career. Stunning originals like “I Was Raised In Babylon” and “Cat And The Dog Trap” plus covers of blues-pop and American song standards (“Big Boss Man,” “You Are My Sunshine”) and a moving version of Edgar Winter’s “Dying To Live,” find Yusuf as strong of voice and as engaging a performer as ever.

Tell ‘Em I’m Gone is available now for pre-order at physical and digital music retailers.

“Although I was to venture through many lyrical terrains, melodious valleys and cadences during my fifty-year musical and spiritual exploration, and though many would agree that I have covered a lot of ground, there was always one path I meant to take. Hidden in the background behind my renowned troubadour persona lurked an R&B alter-self waiting to be let free,” Yusuf says of the new album. “What’s powerful and profound, to me, is the overall message which emerged, lyrically. It suddenly stared me in the face: the innate struggle for Freedom! Isn’t that what most human beings dream of? Music and the Blues particularly was a means of escape for many chained to the destiny of the rich and powerful.”

“Yusuf continues to make music that resonates in its beauty and universally empowering themes,” says Adam Block, President, Sony Music’s Legacy Recordings. “It’s both humbling and thrilling to be given the opportunity to have him become a member of the Legacy family. We look forward to working together to create new platforms for Yusuf’s future recordings while celebrating his remarkable career with stories we’ll tell from the artist’s personal archive.”

Having first found fame as a teenage heartthrob singer in 1960s England, Cat Stevens gained worldwide acclaim for his intimate and affecting works in the 1970s. His compositions “Wild World,” “Peace Train,” “Father and Son” and “Morning Has Broken” remain staples of the folk genre. Following a conversion to the Islamic faith in 1977, Stevens retired from the music business to work with and support causes in education and humanitarian relief. In 2006 Yusuf returned to pop music with the album An Other Cup. Yusuf was also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2014.

I Was Raised In Babylon (Yusuf)
Big Boss Man (Luther Dixon-Al Smith)
Dying To Live (Edgar Winter)
You Are My Sunshine (Jimmie Davis-Charles Mitchell, arr. Yusuf)
Editing Floor Blues (Yusuf)
Cat And The Dog Trap (Yusuf)
Gold Digger (Yusuf)
The Devil Came From Kansas (Gary Brooker-Keith Reid)
Tell ‘Em I’m Gone (originally “Take This Hammer,” arr. Yusuf)
Doors (Yusuf)

While supplies last, eligible fans who pre-order Yusuf / Cat Stevens’ new album Tell ‘Em I’m Gone on MP3 or CD on or before 11:59 PM Pacific time on September 21, 2014 from will receive a unique pre-sale code good for early access to purchase up to two (2) tickets for eligible concerts in his upcoming U.S. tour. Early access using the pre-sale codes is available between Wednesday, September 24, 2014 at 12:00 PM local concert venue time and Thursday, September 25, 2014 at 10:00 PM local concert venue time. Please note concert tickets and pre-sale codes are subject to availability and the presale code does not guarantee tickets to the concert or price level of your choice. Your pre-sale code will be emailed within 24 hours of your pre-order. Limit 1 code per Amazon customer. For more information please visit:

Sep 192014

World Premiere “Marjorie Prime” Opens
at Mark Taper Forum Sunday, September 21, 2014, at 7 pm

Features Lois Smith, Lisa Emery, Jeff Ward, Frank Wood

"Marjorie Prime" Opens

Lois Smith and Frank Wood in the world premiere of Jordan Harrison’s “Marjorie Prime” at the Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum. Directed by Les Waters, “Marjorie Prime” plays September 10 – October 19, 2014. For tickets and information, please visit or call (213) 628-2772.
Photo by Craig Schwartz

The world premiere of Jordan Harrison’s “Marjorie Prime” opens at the Center Theatre Group / Mark Taper Forum on Sunday, September 21, 2014, at 7 p.m. Directed by Obie Award-winner Les Waters, the profound and engaging new play continues through October 19, 2014.

The cast of “Marjorie Prime” features acclaimed actors Lois Smith (Tony Award nominated for “The Grapes of Wrath” and “Buried Child”), and, in alphabetical order, Lisa Emery (who has appeared on Broadway in “Relatively Speaking,” “The Smell of the Kill” and “The Women,” among others), Jeff Ward (who recently made his Broadway debut with “Orphans”) and Frank Wood (Tony Award winner for “Sideman”; recently appeared at the Taper in “Clybourne Park”).

Set design for “Marjorie Prime” is by Mimi Lien, costume design by Ilona Somogyi, lighting design by Lap Chi Chu, sound design by Adam Phalen and casting is by Mark B. Simon, CSA. The production stage manager is David S. Franklin.

“Marjorie Prime” asks exquisite questions about the difference between a life lived and a life remembered. Marjorie (Smith) is a clever, wry woman who, at age 85, finds that her memory is failing. She is living out her days at an assisted living facility where she is frequently visited by her anxious, quick-witted daughter, Tess (Emery), and her kind, easygoing son-in-law, Jon (Wood). With the urging of Jon and the facility and despite Tess’ misgivings, a mysterious young man, Walter (Ward), joins the group with the hope that he can help reverse Marjorie’s decline. Through an ingenious series of shifting realities, Walter’s nature is revealed, and the family’s memories gently unfold into a cathartic meditation on life and loss, and the desire to keep our dearly departed with us.

Tickets for “Marjorie Prime” are available by calling (213) 628-2772 or visiting Tickets range from $25 – $70 (ticket prices are subject to change). The Mark Taper Forum is located at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown Los Angeles 90012.

Sep 192014

Reginald Hudlin To Produce Academy’s 2014 Governors Awards

Reginald Hudlin To Produce Academy’s 2014 Governors AwardsReginald Hudlin will produce the 6th Annual Governors Awards for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announced today. The Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award will be presented to Harry Belafonte, and Honorary Awards will be presented to Jean-Claude Carrière, Hayao Miyazaki and Maureen O’Hara, on Saturday, November 8, at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center®.

“With Reggie’s experience, unique vision and immense creativity, the evening celebrating those who have given so much to our industry is certain to be a memorable one,” said Boone Isaacs.

“I’m honored to be working with the Academy again,” said Hudlin. “The collective impact of this year’s Governors Awards recipients on the evolution of cinema is immeasurable. I’m a fan of all four of these legends, so producing a celebration of Ms. O’Hara’s performances, Mr. Carrière’s storytelling, Mr. Belafonte’s dedication and Mr. Miyazaki’s magic is a pleasure.”

A writer, director, producer and pioneering entertainment executive, Hudlin received a Best Picture Oscar® nomination as a producer of “Django Unchained.” His feature directing credits include “The Great White Hype,” “Boomerang,” and “House Party,” which he also wrote; he also has directed episodes of such popular television series as “Psych,” “Modern Family,” “The Office” and “The Bernie Mac Show.” Hudlin recently produced “The Academy Celebrates the Black Movie Soundtrack” concert at the Hollywood Bowl and has executive produced the NAACP Image Awards show for the past two years. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Directors Guild of America, Writers Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild, and serves on the executive board of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television.

Sep 182014

The Sound Of MusicA New Stage Production of The Sound of Music
Suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp
Directed by JACK O’BRIEN
Will Tour North America beginning September 2015
Tour Starts at Center Theatre Group / Ahmanson Theatre

Producer Ken Gentry for NETworks Presentations, in collaboration with Ted Chapin, President and Executive Director of Rodgers & Hammerstein: An Imagem Company, announced that a brand new production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC, directed by Jack O’Brien, will tour North America beginning September 2015. This lavish new production will launch at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles, under the auspices of the Center Theatre Group, and will then tour North America for multiple seasons, playing multi-week and week-long engagements. Additional cities and casting will be announced at a later time.

THE SOUND OF MUSIC features music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp. This new production is directed by Jack O’Brien (Three-time Tony Award® winner, credits include: Hairspray, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Coast of Utopia). The design and production team is comprised of Douglas Schmidt, Set Design (Tony Award® nominee: 42nd Street, Into the Woods); Natasha Katz, Lighting Design (Four-time Tony Award® winner: Once, Aida, The Coast of Utopia, The Glass Menagerie) and Ken Travis, Sound Design (Aladdin, Newsies, Memphis).

Director Jack O’Brien said, “THE SOUND OF MUSIC has been in our ears for decades, as it deserves to be: but it might be time to look once more, and more closely, at this remarkable work which, I feel, begins to reveal itself as deeper, richer, and more powerful than ever before. It’s no longer ‘your mother’s familiar’ SOUND OF MUSIC we’re trotting out. We are tearing off the varnish of the past of one of the great, fresh glories of our theatre-going experience! This is an opportunity we’ve all longed to create!”

Ted Chapin, President and Executive Director of Rodgers & Hammerstein: An Imagem Company, said “THE SOUND OF MUSIC continues to be the world’s most beloved musical. When Ken Gentry suggested a major national tour, I not only agreed, but was willing to roll up my sleeves and do whatever I could to make a new stage production that would re-engage today’s theatre-going public. The show was originally created for Broadway, and seeing it on stage only reinforces the power of the story and the score. And with Jack O’Brien at the directorial helm – well, we simply couldn’t do better. Landing somewhere between The Coast of Utopia and Hairspray (shows for which Jack won the Tony®), his production will be smart, focused, and surprising. I can’t wait.”
THE SOUND OF MUSIC enjoyed extraordinary success as the first live television production of a musical in over 50 years when “The Sound of Music Live!” aired on NBC in December, 2013; 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the film version, which continues to be the most successful movie musical in history. The spirited, romantic and beloved musical story of Maria and the Von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with such songs as “My Favorite Things,” “Do-Re-Mi,” “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “Edelweiss” and the title song.

Facts and Figures about THE SOUND OF MUSIC
The original Broadway production (1959)
Won 5 Tony Awards® including Best Musical
Original Cast Album won the Grammy Award
Tens of thousands of productions worldwide, with over 500 professional, amateur and school production each year in North America alone
Award-Winning London production set box office records with an all-star cast from award- and ratings-winning UK television program “How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?”
The motion picture (1965)
Won 5 Academy Awards® including Best Picture
The most successful movie musical in history and one of the top-grossing films of all time
Annual network television ratings winner
Millions of VHS and DVD copies sold; the 40th Anniversary edition (2005) shipped over 1 million copies
The Music
Decades of popular artists have recorded songs from THE SOUND OF MUSIC
Over 12 million copies of the best-selling film soundtrack to date
“The Sound of Music Live!” was #7 on US Billboard 200
“The Sound of Music Live!”
Seen by more than 44 million viewers
Top rated NBC non-sports program since the Frasier and Friends finals in 2004

Sep 172014

Written By Ken Levine
Directed by Andrew Barnicle

A or B? at Falcon Theatre in BurbankPreviews begin October 15, 2014
OPENS Friday, October 24 at 8pm

The Falcon Theatre to present the world premiere of A or B? This comedic, modern day love story, written by Ken Levine, and directed by Andrew Barnicle is the second production of the Falcon Theatre’s 2014-2015 Subscription Season.

In corporate New York City, Abby Morgan (Jules Willcox) interviews with Ben Steele (Jason Dechert) for a high-profile marketing job. Sparks fly between them, but will they pursue love or profession? Is it possible to do both? This romantic comedy carries two stories in one, turning romance on its head as we see Abby and Ben travel down two parallel lives, pitting destiny vs. choice, love vs. career, ambition vs. passion and man vs. woman.


PREVIEWS: October 15 -18 at 8pm; October 19 at 4pm; October 22 & 23 at 8pm
OPENING NIGHT: Friday, October 24, 2014 at 8pm
SHOW CLOSES: Sunday, November 16, 2014 at 4pm
PERFORMANCES Wed. – Sat. at 8pm, Sun. at 4pm
PRICES Previews $31.50 – $34.00
Opening Night $54.00 – $59.00
Weekdays (Wed/Thurs) $36.50 – $39.00
Weekends (Fri/Sat/Sun) $41.50 – $44.00
Student Rate (valid student ID) $29.00

WHAT: A or B?
WHERE: Falcon Theatre, 4252 Riverside Dr., Burbank, CA 91505
TICKETS: (818) 955-8101 or
TICKETS ON SALE: September 17, 2014

Sep 162014

Saturday, October 25, 2014, 8 p.m.
Smothers Theatre, Pepperdine University
24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA

The Dunwells

Trendy English Band The Dunwells To Perform At Pepperdine University’s Smothers Theatre on Saturday, October 25, 2014. Smothers Theatre, Pepperdine University, Malibu.

The Leeds-based band The Dunwells bring their blend of English rock and American roots music to Pepperdine University’s Smothers Theatre at 8 p.m. on Saturday, October 25.

From the pubs of Leeds, England, to an American record deal and a stunning debut album in just a few short years, these four “best mates” have had an amazing journey together. The trendy English band, The Dunwells’ music is characterized by soaring vocal harmonies amidst their rock and roots influences, resulting in a sound that is bracingly fresh, yet warm and familiar.

The English band, The Dunwells is a four-piece band made up of brothers Joe and Dave Dunwell and cousins Jonny Lamb and Rob Clayton. Having spent their formative years honing their chops in the clubs, their first big break came when they hit the shores of the United States in 2011 to perform at the Folk Alliance Conference in Memphis, TN. Their impact was nothing short of astounding, landing them a record deal with Austin-based indie Playing In Traffic.

The Dunwells’ swift rise in 2012 and 2013 developed through endless touring, an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and packed shows at Red Rocks in Colorado, the Levitt Shell in Memphis and the Rock Boat. They also appeared at major festivals in both the U.S. and the U.K., including Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, Bunbury, Cropredy, HMV’s Next Big Thing and The Great Escape.

In September 2014, the band followed up their 2012 debut album Blind Sighted Faith with a special 4-song digital EP entitled Show Me Emotion. (More information about the group visit

WHAT: The Dunwells’ concert
Sunday, October 19, 2014 at 2 p.m.
Smothers Theatre, Pepperdine University, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA
(310) 506-4522 or
$22-$28 for adults; $10 for Pepperdine students

The Lisa Smith Wengler Center for the Arts at Pepperdine University provides high-quality activities for over 50,000 people f­­rom 664 zip codes annually through performances, rehearsals, museum exhibitions, and master classes. Located on Pepperdine’s breathtaking Malibu campus overlooking the Pacific, the center serves as a hub for the arts, uniquely linking professional guest artists with Pepperdine students as well as patrons from surrounding Southern California communities. Facilities include the 450-seat Smothers Theatre, the 118-seat Raitt Recital Hall, the “black box” Helen E. Lindhurst Theatre, and the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art.

Sep 142014

Andy Warhol Shadows
MOCA Grand Ave In Los Angeles
September 20, 2014–February 2, 2015

Andy Warhol Shadows

Image credit: Andy Warhol, Shadows (1978–79). Dia Art Foundation. © 2014 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo credit: Bill Jacobson Studio, New York.

The exhibition / installation will feature 102-part series of silkscreened canvases which the artist conceived as one work in multiple parts. Andy Warhol’s Shadows emphasizes his fascination with repetition.

In 1978-79 Andy Warhol produced Shadows, a monumental painting in 102 parts. Conceived as one work, Warhol’s exceptional series of variously silkscreened and hand painted canvases features two different compositions, ranging in hue from an electric green to a somber brown.

In Shadows, Warhol extended his long-standing interest in seriality and repetition beyond the cultural icons and commodity forms that often populate his art. He once referred to the paintings as “disco décor,” a nod to the works’ moody, environmental, and propulsive qualities, as well as his well-documented familiarity with Studio 54. Shadows follows upon Warhol’s experiments with abstraction from the previous year, in works such as the Oxidation, Rorschach, and Camouflage paintings, it remains one of his most mysterious works, seemingly empty and full, fast and slow, light and dark at the same time.

Shadows was first exhibited in January 1979 at Heiner Friedrich, Inc. in New York. The original installation featured a total of 83 panels, 67 exhibited publicly and 16 shown in the gallery’s private back room. Each measuring 76 x 52 inches, installed edge to edge and close to the floor, the final number of panels presented is always determined by the dimensions of an exhibition space. MOCA’s exhibition marks the first West Coast presentation of Shadows.

Sep 142014

“The Trip To Bountiful”
At The Ahmanson Theatre

The Trip to Bountiful

Cicely Tyson, who will be joined by Vanessa Williams and Blair Underwood in the critically acclaimed, Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Horton Foote’s American masterpiece “The Trip to Bountiful,” September 17 through November 2, 2014, in the exclusive Center Theatre Group engagement at the Ahmanson Theatre.

The full casting has been announced for the Center Theatre Group engagement of the Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Horton Foote’s American masterpiece “The Trip to Bountiful,” which begins performances at the Ahmanson Theatre on Wednesday, September 17, and continues through November 2, 2014. The opening is September 26.

The previously-announced cast members Cicely Tyson, Vanessa Williams and Blair Underwood will be joined by Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Devon Abner, Wade Dooley, Arthur French, Pat Bowie, Russell Edge, Dalila Ali Rajah, Keiana Richàrd, Duane Shepard, Sr. and Desean Kevin Terry.
Directed by Michael Wilson, “The Trip to Bountiful” features scenic design by Jeff Cowie, costume design by Van Broughton Ramsey, lighting design by Rui Rita as well as original music and sound design by John Gromada, hair design by Paul Huntley, make-up design by Angelina Avallone, casting by Caparelliotis Casting and Los Angeles casting by Mark B. Simon, CSA. The production stage manager is Robert Bennett, the associate director is David Alpert and the CTG associate artistic director is Neel Keller.

“The Trip to Bountiful” tells the story of Mother Watts, played by Tyson. She is an elderly woman forced to live with her overprotective son, played by Underwood, and domineering daughter-in-law played byWilliams. Mother Watts’ dream is to return for one last time to her small hometown of Bountiful, Texas. Her journey becomes a heartbreaking but ultimately life-affirming and inspiring tale that examines the fragility of memory and celebrates the enduring power of hope, faith and family.

“The Trip to Bountiful” was lauded as one of the most distinguished productions on Broadway in 2013. Terry Teachout of the The Wall Street Journal said, “I’ve never been more deeply moved by a theatrical production of any kind. ‘The Trip to Bountiful’ is without flaw!” While Ben Brantley of The New York Times said, “Book the next bus to Bountiful! Cicely Tyson is remarkable.” David Cote from Time Out NY called the show “Soul-stirring and flawless. ‘The Trip to Bountiful’ seems as fresh and vibrant as the day Horton Foote finished it.”

Tickets for “The Trip to Bountiful” are available by calling (213) 972-4400, visiting, or in person at the Center Theatre Group box office at the Ahmanson Theatre. Tickets range from $25 – $115 (ticket prices are subject to change). The Ahmanson Theatre is located at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown Los Angeles, CA 90012.

Sep 142014

Cast features Chris Bauer, Dominic Hoffman, Jonno Roberts and DeWanda Wise


DeWanda Wise and Dominic Hoffman in “Race” by David Mamet. Photo by Craig Schwartz

“Race,” by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Mamet, opened on September 7, 2014, at the Center Theatre Group / Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. Performances run through September 28.

Directed by longtime Mamet collaborator Scott Zigler, “Race” features acclaimed stage and screen actors Chris Bauer (“True Blood,” “The Wire,” Broadway’s “A Streetcar Named Desire”), Dominic Hoffman (Mamet’s world premiere of “Faustus”), Jonno Roberts (Broadway’s “Take Me Out”) and DeWanda Wise (ABC’s “Firelight”).

“Race” has set design by Jeffery P. Eisenmann, costume design by Leah Piehl and lighting design by Josh Epstein. Casting is by Mark B. Simon, CSA, and the production stage manager is Kirsten Parker.

Mamet tackles America’s most controversial subject in this provocative tale of sex, guilt and bold accusations. In “Race,” two lawyers find themselves defending a wealthy white executive charged with sexually assaulting a black woman. When a new legal assistant gets involved in the case, the opinions that boil beneath explode to the surface.

Tickets for “Race” are available at, the CTG box office located at the Ahmanson Theatre, at the Kirk Douglas Theatre box office starting two hours before curtain or by calling (213) 628-2772.

Sep 142014

Jackie Evancho International Tour And A Concert At Nokia Theatre L.A. LivePlatinum-selling, 14-year-old vocal sensation Jackie Evancho will release her third studio album, Awakening, September 23 coinciding with her international tour. Jackie Evancho will return to Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE with a performance on Thursday, January 29, 2015. Tickets on sale Saturday, September 6 at 10:00 AM. Tickets will be available at, STAPLES Center Box Office or charge by phone at 888-929-7849. This concert is produced by AEG LIVE.

“I feel that my singing style has matured, and it’s easier for me to feel comfortable on stage,” says the admittedly shy Evancho, who lately has taken up painting and is also trying her hand at songwriting.
“I have a lot to write about because I have a lot for which to be thankful,” she says, looking ahead now to her forthcoming tour in support of Awakening.
“I’m excited about it,” she concludes. “Tours equal tour bus, and tour bus equals fun!”

About Jackie Evancho:
Evancho dazzled American television audiences at age 10 gaining global recognition with her stunning debut on NBC’s America’s Got Talent. She was immediately signed to Columbia Records where she released a string of successful recordings including O Holy Night, Dream With Me, Heavenly Christmas and Songs From The Silver Screen. She has since acted in Robert Redford’s The Company You Keep alongside Susan Sarandon, Shia LeBeouf and Nick Nolte, and performed as a special guest in Cirque du Soleil’s “One Night for One Drop” benefit at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. She also starred in the Fall 2012 GUESS Kids clothing campaign, and in June, she performed the classic film song “Over the Rainbow” at the prestigious Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Evancho has also participated in the lighting of the National Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C., where she delighted President and Mrs. Obama. She performed before 100,000 people in Russia with opera stars Dmitri Hvorostovsky and Sumi Jo prior to the opening of the St. Petersburg Economic Forum, and has performed in Japan before the Royal Family at the Imperial Palace. Her first PBS special was one of the top pledge producing performances in PBS history. Her wide-ranging achievements caused Billboard to include her on its list of “music movers-and-shakers under the age of 21” in 2011 and 2012.

Sep 142014

Honorary Oscars 2014The Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences voted to present Honorary Awards to Jean-Claude Carrière, Hayao Miyazaki and Maureen O’Hara, and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award to Harry Belafonte. All four awards will be presented at the Academy’s 6th Annual Governors Awards on Saturday, November 8, at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center®.

“The Governors Awards allow us to reflect upon not the year in film, but the achievements of a lifetime,” said Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “We’re absolutely thrilled to honor these outstanding members of our global filmmaking community and look forward to celebrating with them in November.”

Carrière, who began his career as a novelist, was introduced to screenwriting by French comedian and filmmaker Pierre Étaix, with whom he shared an Oscar® for the live action short subject “Heureux Anniversaire (Happy Anniversary)” in 1962. He received two more nominations during his nearly two-decade collaboration with director Luis Buñuel, for the screenplays for “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” and “That Obscure Object of Desire.” Carrière also has collaborated notably with such directors as Volker Schlöndorff (“The Tin Drum”), Jean-Luc Godard (“Every Man for Himself”) and Andrzej Wajda (“Danton”). He earned a fourth Oscar nomination for “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” with director Philip Kaufman.

Miyazaki is an artist, writer, director, producer and three-time Oscar nominee in the Animated Feature Film category, winning in 2002 for “Spirited Away.” His other nominations were for “Howl’s Moving Castle” in 2005 and “The Wind Rises” last year. Miyazaki gained an enormous following in his native Japan for such features as “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind,” “Laputa: Castle in the Sky,” “My Neighbor Totoro” and “Kiki’s Delivery Service” before breaking out internationally in the late 1990s with “Princess Mononoke.” He is the co-founder of Studio Ghibli, a renowned animation studio based in Tokyo.

O’Hara, a native of Dublin, Ireland, came to Hollywood in 1939 to star opposite Charles Laughton in “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.” She went on to appear in a wide range of feature films, including the swashbucklers “The Black Swan” and “Sinbad the Sailor,” the dramas “This Land Is Mine” and “A Woman’s Secret,” the family classics “Miracle on 34th Street” and “The Parent Trap,” the spy comedy “Our Man in Havana” and numerous Westerns. She was a favorite of director John Ford, who cast her in five of his films, including “How Green Was My Valley,” “Rio Grande” and “The Quiet Man.”

An actor, producer, singer and lifelong activist, Belafonte began performing in theaters and nightclubs in and around Harlem, where he was born. From the beginning of his film career, he chose projects that shed needed light on racism and inequality, including “Carmen Jones,” “Odds against Tomorrow” and “The World, the Flesh and the Devil.” He was an early supporter of the Civil Rights Movement, marching and organizing alongside Martin Luther King, Jr. and often funding initiatives with his entertainment income. Belafonte was named a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1987 and currently serves on the boards of the Advancement Project and the Institute for Policy Studies. His work on behalf of children, education, famine relief, AIDS awareness and civil rights has taken him all over the world.

The Honorary Award, an Oscar statuette, is given “to honor extraordinary distinction in lifetime achievement, exceptional contributions to the state of motion picture arts and sciences, or for outstanding service to the Academy.”

The Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, also an Oscar statuette, is given “to an individual in the motion picture industry whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry.”

Sep 052014
Can We Talk About Joan Rivers

Remembering Joan Rivers.
(The photo is believed to be public domain.)

Joan Rivers’ passing took us by surprise. Yes, everybody knew about her heart attack, her coma, her being in critical condition in a New York hospital. Still, in Joan Rivers’ case somehow we half hoped – and half expected – that at some point she’ll come to and say: gotcha! It may sound inappropriately today, but that’s what we’ve come to expect from her. Joan Rivers was always vivacious and yes, if someone earned the right to be called a survivor, it was Joan. I suppose that unreasonably we hoped that she’ll survive anything…

Joan Rivers was highly intelligent, insightful, witty, outspoken and a prolific author. She was also a jewelry designer and successful entrepreneur promoting and selling her jewelry and cosmetics on QVC.

Joan became a household name as a comedienne on television and she was one of the first female comedians to do so. As a pioneer she has had to overcome many obstacles.
Having appeared regularly on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson for years, she was given her first big break by Johnny Carson himself when he appointed her as his permanent guest host on The Tonight Show (1982).
When Joan Rivers was offered a late night show of her own in 1986 (The Late Show on Fox Network), she expected that Johnny Carson – whom she considered her mentor – will take pride in her success. Johnny took offense and never spoke with her again, instead.
The following year, Joan’s husband of 22 years Edgar Rosenberg committed suicide, leaving her to raise their daughter alone. Her Late Show on Fox, wasn’t long lived.
Joan had to deal with debts left behind by her husband and few career opportunities. One can only imagine how hard it must have been for her to raise herself up and make a comeback.

She was prolific, competitive and hard working. She fought and she succeeded.
She’s written many books – most have made it to New York Times Bestsellers’ List! – “Enter Talking”, “Still Talking”, “Bouncing Back: I’ve Survived Everything… and I Mean Everything… and You Can Too!”, “Don’t Count the Candles: Just Keep the Fire Lit!”, “Having a Baby Can Be a Scream” and “The Life and Hard Times of Heidi Abromowitz”. Her last book is “Diary of a Mad Diva”.
She performed live comedy, toured in the US and internationally and kept an extremely busy schedule. She performed on stage and was nominated for a Tony. Her work as a daytime television talk show host earned her an Emmy Award.
Her TV shows included Live from the Red Carpet, Fashion Police, In Bed With Joan, Joan and Melissa: Joan Knows Best?
Joan Rivers was also a playwright, screenwriter, film director, columnist, lecturer, syndicated radio host and a jewelry designer…
She found it in her heart – and in her incredibly busy schedule – to support numerous charitable organizations, most notably God’s Love We Deliver, The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and Guide Dogs for the Blind as well as the National Osteoporosis Foundation and Wounded Warriors.

In Joan Rivers’ own words: “I’ve been up, I’ve been down. I’ve been fired, I’ve been hired. I’ve been broke. What are you gonna to do me? Not like me? I don’t give a damn.”
We beg to differ, whether you loved her on-stage persona or not, Joan Rivers’ personal courage and professional accomplishments are deserving of highest respect.

We’re profoundly sorry for Joan Rivers’ daughter Melissa’ and her grandson Cooper’s loss. A presence as large as Joan’s will be very difficult to live without. We’re sorry for Joan’s friends and fans.
As a fellow Gemini, I’m not sure whether we should be quite as sorry for Joan Rivers herself. A person as full of life, energy and humor as she was would have suffered greatly were she afflicted by a chronic or degenerative disease. We suspect that given a choice, Joan Rivers would have preferred a sudden departure to a prolonged illness or a gradual surrender to the ravages of time.
She didn’t leave after long suffering but while on top: she was in control of her life, dare I say, to the end. 81 or not, she was in her prime till the last day and it is her vitality, indomitable spirit and incredible comedic talent that will be remembered.

“Can we talk?” No, not anymore. We’ll miss her monologs which were sometimes too brash but never dishonest.