HITTING THE BIG TIME: Arlington artist Pavel Melecky has been named a finalist in the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition. Never heard of the contest? Neither had I before today. But the prize for the winner is what caught my attention: $25,000 and a commission to make a portrait of a living person to be displayed in the National Portrait Gallery. It doesn’t looks like Melecky made the short list of seven artists for that commission, but he’s still in the running for the People’s Choice Award, which will be announced in January 2010.
REALITY GETS ARTSY: Sarah Jessica Parker’s production company will launch an art-related reality show on Bravo. Contestants will compete for cash prizes and a gallery exhibition. There’s no word yet on when this will air, but given the lead time necessary for reality shows, I’m guessing sometime next year. As you know, North Texas has always had a presence on reality shows, offering up everyone from Kelly Clarkson (American Idol) to Colby Donaldson (Survivor) to Lisa Garza (The Next Food Network Star) to Melissa Rycroft (The Bachelor AND Dancing with the Stars). So given the number of artists living and working in this area, surely one of you is right for the show. It looks like you’ll have to travel to one of the casting calls, though, so here’s the deets on that.
DCT GETS MAGICAL: A smart way to get parents to take their kids to children’s productions is to stage an adaptation of something the parents might have watched when they were kids. The may be the strategy with Dallas Children’s Theater’s The Neverending Story, based both on the 1979 book and 1985 movie. Mark Lowry and Nancy Churnin have each reviewed the show, and they came to a similar conclusion: the script could use a little work, but the staging is fantastic. Reviewing for theaterjones.com, Lowry says, “From a book about the power of imagination comes a very creative stage production that illustrates how theater can create its own kind of magic.” And over on dallasnews.com, Churnin calls the show, “a magical mix of potent projections and eye-popping puppet.”