Mailbox Monday: Dance Kaleidoscope, Fringe Friday, Cirque at the ISO and More

Frantic update:  I can’t believe I almost forgot the first item that went into my “Mailbox Monday” file for this week:  Indianapolis-based professional actor Bill Simmons will head up to the Purple Rose Theatre in Chelsea, Michigan, later this spring to begin rehearsals for the world premiere of a play called “Wake,” by Carey Crim.  The show will open June 18 and run through August 21, 2009. 

Bill and I were e-conversing about another topic last week when I asked if he knew what show he would be in next.  He told me about “Wake” and added this about the Purple Rose Theatre:  “After making it big in New York theatre and doing some major movies like Woody Allen’s ‘Purple Rose of Cairo’ and ‘Terms of Endearment,’ Jeff Daniels returned to his home town to open this theatre. ”

I wish I could see this world premiere.  Hmm.  I’ll have to check my calendar.  In any case, break a leg, Bill!

Now…back to my original Mailbox Monday post for today:

Good morning!

I am just back from four days at the third annual “Going Deep: Long Traditional Stories Retreat” in Bethlehem, Indiana, and I am working on four posts about it, so this week’s Mailbox Monday post is going to be even more quick-and-dirty than usual. 


(Now, now, not “dirty” as in sexually explicit.  ‘Sorry to disappoint you, if I did. I probably should have said “hastily compiled” instead.  Anyway, I apologize for any bizarreness in the formatting of today’s post.  I do not have time to mess with it much this week.)

My various mailboxes include one emailed press release (my favorite because it is relatively easy to cut-and-paste!), one fancy-format email update, several Facebook messages, and one paper postcard that I would like to share with you:


Dance Kaleidascope’s new collection, “America, the Modern,” will be performed at the Indiana Repertory Theatre.  This coming weekend (Thursday-Sunday) is the only chance to see it.  Here is the description from the Facebook invitation:

Modern dance, like Jazz and the automobile, is a uniquely American invention,” says DK’s Artistic Director David Hochoy. “I wanted to put together a program celebrating the boldness and audacity of American creativity and ingenuity and by having three different choreographers’ visions in a single performance; audiences will see the differences, similarities and diversity in the approaches of both the choreographers and composers.”

The evening includes Dance Kaleidoscope’s athletic signature piece, iconoGlass , set to the music of Philip Glass plus two World Premieres by guest choreographers.

Dreams, Converging , choreographed by Butler University’s Cynthia Pratt, is inspired by the dreams of contemporary composer John Adams, and imagines the realms which his music creates.

Callused Hands , choreographed by Nicholas Owens, Kenyettá Dance Company, reflects on the hard work of Americans past and present as the country renews its strength to reclaim the American dream. Music is by Mikel Rouse, Philip Glass and Steve Reich.

In recognition of the current economic recession, ticket prices have been reduced to $20 each for all adult tickets (regularly priced at $21-$37).

In addition, the Sunday Matinee will offer $10 tickets, day of show only, to enable families to attend. There will be a one-hour Mini-Matinee at 12 noon on Thursday for just $6. Thursday Preview Performance is at 7:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday shows are at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday’s show is at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the IRT ticket office at 317.635.5252 or on its web site at


Here is the line-up for this week’s Fringe Friday:

March 27, 2009

IndyFringe Building, 719 E. St. Clair St.

5:30 p.m. – Mix and Mingle – music from Otto the Comic

Complimentary appetizers and cash bar

6 – 7 p.m. – Performances

Featured performances:

Does This Show Make My Butt Look Fat?

Preview of Theatre On The Square’s upcoming one woman show starring Julie Inskeep.

Kate Lamont

Singer/Songwriter and director of the Earth House Collective.

First They Came From

Award winning short film by local director/produce Kate Chaplin.

Molly Wyldfyre

An American Tribal Style Bellydance solo, part of a new vaudeville act in this year’s IndyFringe festival by Midwest Emerging Artists. (MEA)

For more information about this and other events at the Fringe Headquarters, please see

And don’t forget that the Heartland Actors’ Repertory Theatre’s production of Neil LaBute’s “In a Dark, Dark House” continues at the Fringe Headquarters at 8 pm this Friday and Saturday night plus next weekend.  (Closes April 4, 2009.)


I learned from Tim Northcutt that “Cirque de la Symphonie” will join the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra this weekend, too.  It sounds like a fun combination, both visually and aurally interesting!

Here are the 5W’s in brief:

Highlight:           Aerialists, jugglers and acrobats join ISO for Pops Series weekend

Performers:        Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra

Conductor:          Jack Everly

Artists:                 Alexander Streltsov, Aerialist; Jarek & Darek, Acrobats; Vladimir Tsarkov, Juggler; Aloysia Gavre, Aerialist; Irina Burdetsky, Hoop Artist: Elena Tsarkova, Gymnast; Christine Van Loo, Aerialist

Location:             Hilbert Circle Theatre

Dates(times):      Fri. & Sat., Mar. 27 & 28, 8 p.m.; Sun., Mar. 29, 7 p.m.

Repertoire:         The artists will perform many aerial and acrobatic feats to popular symphonic works such as Saint-Saëns’ Danse macabre, selections from Khachaturian’s Gayane, Mussorgsky’s A Night on Bare Mountain, and Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries,” among others.

Tickets:                $20 – $73 (evening concerts). Students, $10. (317) 639-4300; toll free (800) 366-8457; or order on-line anytime at

And here is the full press release:

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and Principal Pops Conductor Jack Everly welcome world renowned Cirque artists who will perform spectacular routines to symphonic music in a new production titled Cirque de la Symphonie in Printing Partners Pops Series concerts Friday, March 27, through Sunday, March 29, at the Hilbert Circle Theatre.  Printing Partners is the Title Sponsor for the entire 2008-2009 Printing Partners Pops Series season, and Raymond James and Associates is the Premiere Sponsor for the series.  Associate Sponsors for this weekend are Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Fifth Third Bank, and Direct Brands.  Mirassou Winery and Kroger will provide complimentary food sampling and wine tasting before the concerts.

Ticket prices range from $20 to $73, with student tickets are $10 each by showing a valid student ID. Tickets may be ordered by calling the Hilbert Circle Theatre Box Office at (317) 639-4300, or online at  Performance times are at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday.

This exciting and colorful new production will feature superb aerialists, acrobats, contortionists, dancers, and jugglers who will perform spectacular feats to popular symphonic works such as Camille Saint-Saëns’ Danse macabre and the “Bacchanale” from Samson and Delilah, selections from Aram Khachaturian’s Gayane, Modest Mussorgsky’s A Night on Bare Mountain, and Richard Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” from Die Walküre, among others.  The Cirque artists joining the Orchestra will be acrobats Jarek and Darek, juggler Vladimir Tsarkov, hoop performer Irina Burdetsky, gymnast Elena Tsarkova, and aerialists Christine Van Loo, Aloysia Gavre, and Alexander Streltsov, the latter who thrilled Duke Energy Yuletide Celebration audiences with his artistry in December 2002.

Artist Biographies:

A North American leader in symphonic pops, Jack Everly is celebrating his seventh season as Principal Pops Conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.  He is widely known for his innovative approach to programs that have brought new audiences to the time-tested and beloved genre.  In addition to his Indianapolis position, Maestro Everly also serves as Principal Pops Conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Principal Pops Conductor of the National Arts Centre Orchestra of Ottawa, Canada.  He also is the Music Director of Yuletide Celebration, the ISO’s popular holiday theatrical symphonic production each December, and he founded the Symphonic Pops Consortium in 1998 that creates innovative original pops presentations that are premiered in Indianapolis, then performed by other orchestras around the nation. Originally appointed by Mikhail Baryshnikov, Maestro Everly was conductor of The American Ballet Theatre for 14 years, where he served as Music Director.  On Broadway he has conducted The Goodbye Girl, Hello, Dolly!, Show Boat and tours of They’re Playing Our Song and A Chorus Line.  In Hollywood he was Music Director of Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame.  His discography includes The ISO’s newest recording, the Yuletide Celebration Holiday CD, Broadway cast recordings and Everything’s Coming Up Roses: The Complete Overtures of Jule Styne.

Aerialist Alexander Streltsov began his career at age 12 under the tutelage of  Cirque du Soleil choreographer Pavel Brun and won the Gold Medal at the prestigious Festival Mondial Du Cirque De L’Avenir in Paris.  He has performed for three Russian presidents and with the Bolshoi Ballet, numerous symphony orchestras in the United States and Europe (including the ISO’s Yuletide Celebration in 2002), and elaborate theater and stage productions worldwide.  His numerous television appearances include the ABC-TV special, Christopher Reeve-A Celebration of Hope and the PBS nationwide telecast of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra’s Fourth of July Celebration concert.

Polish native acrobats Jarek and Darek perform powerful and graceful hand balancing feats.  Former Polish national champions in their craft, the duo has competed and performed throughout Europe and the United States, winning addition championships in Evian, France, and Sarasota, Florida.  Their credits include numerous NBA halftime shows, Cirque du Soleil, the national tour of Cirque Ingenieux, and Circus Circus in Las Vegas.

Pantomime and juggler Vladimir Tsarkov performs his craft with rings, balls, and batons with skill and theatricality.  A graduate of Russia’s prestigious State College of Circus and Theater Arts, he won the Gold Medal at the Cirque de Demain International Festival in France.  He is a long-time veteran of Circus Circus and Cirque Ingenieux productions.

Aerial hoop performer Aloysia Gavre received her early training from Master Lu-Yi and at the Pickle Family Circus School, and she was the Special Prize winner at the International Circus Festival in Monte Carlo.  A veteran of stage and theatrical performances, she is best known for her many years with Cirque du Soleil’s productions “Quidam” and “O,” and her presentations in “Quidam” established her as one of the best aerial artists in the world.

Hoop performer Irina Burdetsky grew up in a circus family in Moscow and was trained by some of the greatest names in acrobatics, gymnastics and hoops.  Early in her career, she traveled as one of the youngest performers in the Moscow Circus and was awarded the Silver Medal at the Concours International Des Ecoles de Cirque in Monte Carlo.  She starred in Japan’s Circus-Mircus and in world tours of Cirque Ingenieux and Cirque La Masque.

Gymnast Elena Tsarkova is a graduate of the famed Moscow Circus School and a first-place winner at the National Russian Circus Festival.  Over the years, she has performed with the Big Apple Circus, Switzerland’s Circus Knie and Germany’s Circus Roncalli, and her artistry made her a major star with Cirque de la Mur in Florida and Circus Circus in Las Vegas.

Aerialist Christine Van Loo is a seven-time consecutive national champion and was named “Female Olympic Athlete of the year and Athlete of the decade in acrobatic gymnastics, and was inducted into the USSA Hall of fame.  She has performed in the 2002 Winter Olympics, two Grammy Awards ceremonies, the American Music Awards, the Miss Universe pageant, Paul McCartney’s European tour, and she choreographed the aerialists for Britney Spears’ World Tour and the Stars on Ice U.S. tour.


This Friday is the last chance to see the Three Dollar Bill Comedy Company’s late-night, adults-only “Album Cover” series.  It starts at 10 pm at ComedySportz


This Saturday is the last chance to see “Mauritius” at the Phoenix Theatre.


This Sunday afternoon is the last chance to see “West Side Story” at the Indianapolis Civic Theatre.


Claire Wilcher asked me and others to help get the word out about the following part-time job opportunity with the Indiana State Fair.  It is a stretch to include it here on my theatre reviews blog, but what the heck:  I know that actors are not the only ones hustling for work these days.

Hi all,

This was the best way I could think of to get the word out about a work opportunity. I’m gonna tag a bunch of you, and I’m hoping you will pass the word along to those who might be interested, even if you are not or can’t do it. Please help!! Thanks in advance.

I work at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, in the education department. I work with kids, teaching them about farm animals, Indiana history, plants, and whatnot. This is a year round job that includes working at the State Fair in August. So, here’s what’s up:

The Ed. Dept. hires contract staff to work at various times of the year. Contracts are signed for a year-long period, with chunks of work here and there throughout that year. One chunk is for five weeks in the Spring, one is for another five or six weeks in the fall, and of course one chunk is for about three or four weeks during the State Fair. Then, there are scattered outreach programs that allow for more hours and work opportunity about 10-20 times per year. Here are more specific times:

April 18-May 21 (Mornings only, Monday-Friday, around 9-1) – FIELD TRIPS
August 1-26ish (State Fair time, as many hours as possible!–Great time to make a big chunk of change)
September 12 – end of October (Mornings only, Monday-Friday, around 9-1) – FIELD TRIPS

Here’s what’s great about these opportunities:

Contractors are paid $10 bucks an hour.
The job is laid-back and the bosses are way cool.
We’re flexible. If you can only do a couple of days per week, that’s okay. We’ll work with you!
The job is easy to learn. AND it’s fun and different.


You must love to work with kids. That’s our main focus.
You must love to be outside. 90% of our programming is outdoors.
You’ve gotta have a good attitude. We’re a goofy bunch of people.
Love animals? A plus!
Love the fair? A BIG plus!

This job would be great for people looking for part-time work with flexible scheduling, college students, retired teachers, creative types, desk-haters, etc.

-Please pass this along to anyone you may think is interested. It’s good money and a good time. Message me, or call me at my office (927.7529). (If you know Mookie, ask him about working here–he’s under contract here and does a GREAT job.)

Thanks for reading,everyone. Even if you are slightly interested, let me know. I’ll work hard to find a way to work with you if you’re qualified and enthusiastic!


Whew!  I think that is all I wanted to share with you today.  Have a great week!

Hope Baugh –

3 thoughts on “Mailbox Monday: Dance Kaleidoscope, Fringe Friday, Cirque at the ISO and More”

  1. And i think I can speak for many local actors over 30 who wish Bill well on his trip to The Purple Rose and thank him for leaving some Indiana work for the rest of us, if only for a few summer weeks!

    😉 break legs, Bill!

  2. Hah! Thanks for reading and for leaving that comment, Adam!

    I also forgot to say that I asked and received Bill’s permission to share his news here on my blog.

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