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Posts Tagged ‘Mary Bond Davis’

Tom D’Angora was “Adaumbelle’s Quest” very first interview! (click here for Tom’s previous interview) At that time I focused more on his performing than producing. Now that Tom’s show “NEWSical the Musical” is back on the boards, it was time to revisit with Tom and find out more about his producing ventures.

Tom D’Angora is the producer you’ll want to make your production a success, whether it be a stage show, concert, movie, or CD! Formally an actor himself, Tom easily moved into producing when he produced and starred in his multi award-winning one man show “Divas I’ve Done.” After the success of “Divas I’ve Done,” Tom continued producing successful shows such as Off-Broadway’s “A Broadway Diva Christmas” and “Back in Pictures.” Tom has also taken his talented producing skills to Provincetown, MA where he has produced sold out productions of “Naked Boys Singing” as well as shows for Rue McClanahan, Mary Bond Davis, and The Kinsey Sicks. Tom also executive produced Ellen Greene’s CD “In His Eyes,” “Screams along with Billy” (available at the Marc Jacobs stores), and hit movie “The Big Gay Musical “. Currently, Tom is the producer of the Off-Broadway hit musical “NEWSical the Musical: Full Spin Ahead” starring fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest participants Christine Pedi, Michael West, and Christina Bianco. “NEWSical the Musical: Full Spin Ahead” plays at Theatre Row’s Kirk Theatre (410 West 42nd Street, between 9th & 10th Avenue). Click here for tickets! For more on Tom be sure to visit http://www.tomdangora.com.

1. Who or what inspired you to go from performing to producing? I had self produced Divas I’ve Done as well as starred in it. It was a huge success for many years but I hated having to step on stage after a full days work of producing so I decided to try just the producing end and I had these amazingly talented friends like Ellen Greene, Maya Days, Marla Schaffel, and that brilliant Christine Pedi. My partner Michael and I were out to dinner at Houstons one day talking about how cool it would be to get them all in one show. That’s how Diva Christmas happened. Since 2005 I’ve produced 15 stage shows, 3 albums, and 2 movies.

2. If you could produce any show, what show would it be, who would be your dream cast? I hope it doesn’t exist yet and I get to produce a new classic. But if it were a revival and I could make just make it happen. I would do Once on this Island With an unknown as Ti Moune, Tonya Pinkins as Mama, Chuck Cooper as Tonton, Maya Days as Eurzulie, Mary Bond Davis as Asaka, Norm Lewis as Agwe, and Billy Porter as Papa Ge.

3. How does this version of “NEWSical” differ from the 2009 version? We are lampooning different topics this year of course (with a couple of old favorites mixed in). The biggest difference is this edition covers all of our favorite stories from the last 12 months, so we can do fabulous things like the crazy flight attendant from Jet Blue, or those colorful Mel Gibson Tapes. I believe the material to be even funnier then last year. Rick Crom has really out done him self We are also in a new theater The Kirk at Theatre Row and have a fabulous new cast member John Walton West (you need to hear his Morgan Freeman impression).

4. Who’s the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Michael Jackson ūüė¶

5. Who’s the most interesting person you’ve worked with? The Amazing Rue McClanahan. What a talent. Her comic timing was not of this earth. Such a wonderful and smart woman.

6. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? No matter what you do be the best at it…weather you are a producer, a grocery bagger, a mail person or the President as long as you are at your best you are a total success.

7. Favorite place to plan a show (i.e. coming up with the concept, cast, etc)? Love a nice booth in a diner with lots of caffein coming my way.

8. Favorite way to spend your day off? What is a day off?

9. Favorite way to stay in shape? Well I used to have a trainer 5 days a week and do Bikram yoga, but as of late I just eat and eat and eat.

10. Boxers or Briefs? Boxer briefs.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I can’t say in a public forum LOL.

12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My hero and idol Hillary Rodham Clinton…I often have dream that she is President and everything is wonderful again…that is a dream I hate to wake up from.


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Photo credit: Stephen Mosher

Whether he’s in front of the camera acting or behind the scenes as a film maker, Michael Stever, is making art for all to see. Michael has worked with some of the biggest names in entertainment. As an actor Michael has performed in both theatre and television in such shows as “Super Force,” “Deadline,” and “Arsenic and Old Lace” starring the legendary Betty Garrett. He has filmed Debbie Reynolds induction into The Friars Club, Mary Bond Davis in her “The Next Food Network Star” video, Judy McLane at the Laurie Beechman theatre, musical virtuoso Janice Martin, various events for The Screen Actor Guild’s BookPals group, Barnes and Noble, and Playbill magazine columist Ellis Nassour. He also filmed and lent his voice to Broadway Impact’s “Defying Inequality” Broadway concert where he interviewed such performers as Lynda Carter, Gavin Creel, Jonathan Groff, and Tamara Tunie. He was the Unit Production Manager on the critically acclaimed documentary “Broadway: The Golden Age” while his short film “Ghosts of Zion & Michael Nyman” was featured on the Indie film website “Shooting People.” Michael also shot and edited the Actors Fund benefit reading of “Valley of the Dolls” as well as ABLE Rigging Contractors’ brand new website. He is the official camera man for “The Brini Maxwell Show” podcasts and most recently he completed filming and editing the new commercial for Boy Butter Personal Lubricant starring drag superstar and fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Hedda Lettuce. Finally, in what will be his first independently produced short film, Stever is producing “Saturday Nightmares; The Ultimate Horror Expo of All Time!” No ordinary Horror Expo, this unprecedented event brings together the entire George A Romero family! Also features Adrienne Barbeau, Tom Savini, Roy Fumkes, Ken Foree, John Amplas, Joe Pilato & many more.¬† Coming soon to Amazon.com. For much more on Michael and all of his projects be sure to visit: http://www.michaelstever.net.

1. Who inspired you to be both an actor and a film maker? That’s a hard question, but as a filmmaker, I would say “King Kong” and Fay Wray were my first muses in that sense. I started playing with my mom and dad’s 16mm video camera from the time I was 7 or 8 years old and was a big fan of “King Kong” and Fay Wray and I basically wanted to re-create King Kong.¬† All I had at my disposal was a “Planet of the Apes” doll which I used as my King Kong then stuck him on this round plastic garbage can, and got a plane and put that on a string and that was my King Kong, it was very simple. As an actor I would have to say Jessica Lange. I was a big fan of the 1976 remake of “King Kong” which she was in, but the movie itself got ripped to shreds and she didn’t get a lot of respect for it, but she worked really hard and gravitated to really challenging things as an actor and she got an Oscar nomination for her role as “Frances Farmer” in “Frances.” To me that was pretty great.

2. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? I’d love to work with the amazing Jan Broberg who I worked with years ago. She has had some¬†great opportunity’s as an actor, specifically in the WB series Ever wood. Jan also published a book a couple years ago called Stolen Innocencewhich chronicles her kidnapping when she was 12 years old at the hands of a trusted family friend. We have discussed shooting a documentary together that centers around her and her ordeal, but nothing is finalized on that, though she was recently in Los Angeles to see if Lifetime would produce her story into a film, which is pretty exciting. I’d also love to work with Margot Kidder, who I’m a big fan of and Angelica Torn (the daughter of Geraldine Page and Rip Torn). Angelica’s been out on tour with “August: Osage County.” She’s brilliant. She is also the person who murders the little girl in “Sixth Sense.” Would love, love, love to work with her.

3. What’s your proudest moment both as an actor and as a filmmaker? As an actor that would definitely be “Arsenic and Old Lace” with Betty Garrett and Carole Cook. It was one my first straight plays I did and Betty Garrett is a legend. My other proudest moment is when I made my TV debut in a sci-fi series called “Super Force” and I had a fight scene with Traci Lords, which afterward I became a big fan of hers.

4. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? “To do your homework” and “Try not to project expectations onto other people.”

5. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? I can tell you who I have dreamt about. I actually had the fortunate experience of meeting Fay Wray, who of course was the original star of “King Kong” who was also a silent film icon. I kind of had a thing for Fay Wray as a kid and I never thought I’d actually meet her, but fate intervened and I got to meet her when I was working on “Broadway The Golden Age” and I learned we had so many things in common. When Fay passed away, I finally read her autobiography learned there were more things we had in common. I had this vivid dream about us, but I really think she was a muse and guiding force for me on many levels.

6. Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts? What do you order? Starbucks. Their coffee is stronger. I used to do coffee all the time, but now I do espresso. I get 2 shots of espresso, with a pump of cherry syrup and chocolate.

7. Favorite way to stay in shape? Since I’ve been editing, that’s been really difficult, but over the past few years, my favorite way to stay in shape has been yoga and bike riding.

8. Boxers or Briefs? Both…it depends on what I have.

9. Favorite website? Youtube and Rottentomatoes.com.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Both, with a lean to Wonder Woman, though I do think the original “Superman” movie is one of the best movies ever made. The scene where “Lois Lane” crashes into the Daily Planet in the helicopter, I think is probably next to King Kong my favorite scene in all of movie history.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite TV Show Theme Song? There’s been so many. I was one of those kids who wanted to capture everything from the television so I would just stick my parents tape recorder up to the television and record things.

12. Favorite way to spend your day off? I love to watch movies, take yoga, or ride my bike.

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