..going, going, gone....
we have been so busy in the last ten days..
i haven't been able to write about
the wonderful visit from Petronia Paley and Timothy Douglas,
actress and director, who were able to talk about their careers and offer a new perspective to the students on how culture affects choices we make as artists....
..or about the terrific plays that are coming up in Playwriting and Rep,
and the language the students are acquiring,
the shared dictionary,
with which they can now begin to discuss and analyze their work...
and the way in which the students are moving more deeply into observing and responding to the people around them...
..and how the City has become a character in their work and lives
..and how they will be different after their time here with us
..and how we have learned the way we learn
..and the way in which we want the program to grow..
And the discussions we are having now as we enter our final week about the way we approach our work as artists... and our responibilities as people of the arts. It is an odd and difficult truth that there are more and more young people coming out of national theatre programs and less and less young people and people in general supporting the arts. So, we make the point that the support of fellow artists and arts institutions is an important and basic part of our civic membership. If we know what it is to be empowered to connect with and express our deepest selves in our work.. it is just as important for us to make sure we join the local museum or theatre compant or symphony season. It is our job to keep the energy of the arts in our world. It this energy that continually recycles and refreshes our community.
We have established the Tony Shultz Memorial Scholarship Fund in memory of the man who has underwritten much of the development and scholarships for the program in the two and one half years of the programs development. Tony was an actor-musician who starred in the original company of Grease, in Bakers Wife and Platinum on Broadway. He played percussion instruments by ear, was an accomplished carpenter and potter and believed passionately in both the arts and education. With this goal in mind, Tony supported the Holly Bendek Arts Fund in Los Angeles, connecting the fund with LA'S Best, an afterschool program for kids at risk. He sat on the Board of the John Aaroe Charitable Foundation and was an active patron of the arts in Los Angeles making sure that museums and theatre and music were part of the lives of his family and friends. He also underwrote the original New Play Festival seasons of ON YOUR FEET at California State University, Fullerton. And he was my husband of twenty seven years before his untimely death in March, 2008.
This year we were able to support several students in the program with partial or full tuition scholarships due to Tony. He would be proud that his name is associated with bringing the artistic experience to a wide and deserving student base.
Contributions to the fund can be made by sending a check to
ENSEMBLE STUDIO THEATRE
549 WEST 52 nd STREET
attn: Shultz Memorial Scholarship Fund.