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Tuesday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 10 Jul 2012 7:51 AM

Today in the roundup: Adding beats to the Bard, Dallas Opera’s community footprint and a big award for a local photographer.


THE BARD (WITH BEATS): Second Thought Theatre is wrapping up its season with Bomb-itty of Errors: A Night of Shakespeare and Hip-Hop. The show is pretty much what it sounds like – a musical adaptation and modern spin on The Comedy of Errors. These types of things are tricky to get right, and so far the show’s produced a rant and a rave. “There is something for everyone,” M. Lance Lusk writes on Front Row, “rap references, “yo momma” jokes, audience participation, clap and sing-alongs, funky moves busted all out, effective mugging to the peeps, and a big ol’ chase scene farce.” Mary L. Clark was far less impressed. “The pace is too fast, the music overpowers them, if that is possible, and the story is pretty much obliterated in a sea of neon costumes, wigs and sweat,” she writes on You can be the judge through July 22.

MAKING THEIR MARK: Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny is back with another of his Off the Cuff columns for – mandatory reading if you’re into how arts organizations function. This time, he writes about opera companies’ need to maximize their community footprints in order to remain relevant. “In a world where donations and endowment draw account for as much as three-quarters of the annual revenue, I believe that opera companies must earn the right to rely on this level of public support by maximizing their community footprint.,” he writes. “And, like many executives, I believe that measurement drives organizational behavior very powerfully, so that it is important for opera companies to measure this impact rigorously.” He then goes onto list the three tiers of the DO’s footprint: its main stage productions, arts education and low-cost or free community programs. The column makes a nice companion piece to Scott Cantrell’s look on Sunday at the leadership (or lack of) at Arts District organizations.

PICTURE PERFECT: Congratulations to Oak Cliff photographer Kael Alford, who has received the 2012 Michael P. Smith Fund For Documentary Photography Award. The $5,000 award is given by the New Orleans Photo Alliance to a photographer whose work on the Gulf Coast “combines artistic excellence and a sustained commitment to a long-term cultural documentary project.” Alford, who also teaches at SMU, is in the middle of a long-term photography project that documents the changing cultural landscape of the region, which we talked about back in February.