Last week I volunteered at the Ovation Awards, LA Theatre's equivalent to the Oscars. Despite being one of the Box Office ladies at a table Don Shirley described as "worse than traffic on the 101," the event was serious fun. I highly recommend signing up for the LA Stage Alliance mailing list to stay in the loop about volunteering for future events - it's the third-best way to attend the swanky event for free (first would be to be nominated, second to be presenting, duh)!
Looking around the sea of theatre artists, I was struck by how goshdarn attractive everyone was. Sure, all the ladies were in floor-length gowns and men were super suited-up, but I was so clearly NOT at my high school theatre awards ceremony anymore (no offense, Ohio). LA artists come in very color, age and fashion sense, and surrounded by so many talented, devoted people reminded me how important it is to celebrate the victories of our creative peers. Some (ex-New Yorker) award-winners even thanked the LA Theatre Community for being such a surprisingly great place to work and create! Whodda thunkit.
I know I'm just a little voice in the big picture, but I'm really proud of the work Bitter Lemons, LA Theatre Review, Hollywood Fringe, LA Female Playwrights Initiative and so many other great organizations are doing to be inclusive and create an overarching community amidst our various theatre spaces and the expanse of our huge city. I'm a proud theatre nerd, confident because I am seeing the work and meeting the people who have devoted themselves to the worthy world of theatre. There are downsides, too (whoever organized that Box Office needs to go back to Organizing 101), but based on the positive tone of the Ovations, I have faith we can figure it out.
In the photo: theatre director extraordinaire Jeremy Aluma and I couldn't help but pretend we were actual guests on the red carpet. I met Jeremy during the Durang plays at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre in Santa Monica last May and can very well say that he will be nominated for an Ovation one day, providing New York or grad school doesn't steal him away. Send him some love at his website; if you're an actor-friend o'mine, stay turned for casting calls of his in the future.