Out and About in Baltimore

A few days back Nicole and I went to a bourbon-tasting on Hopkins campus. In this pic is our old friend Fritz Read who used to live on the same alley (Tyson St.) with us many, many moons ago.

Just learned that the location at Hopkins for the Telling Project has to be changed. Oh well, these things happen. Happy to know about this now, and not 2 days before the performance. Our first rehearsal is July 10th and the cast (about 10) seems very excited to tell their story and to be involved. I think sometimes, that it’s just giving people a voice and asking them to “come on inside” opens a boulevard of appreciation. We’ll see what “adventure” comes from finding a new space.

Also, I wanted to “give a shout out” to this theatre company. A little start-up here in Baltimore. I predict good things will come their way. Their home is a place that was a former school that Son-Charles attended back in the day. The father of one of the company creators called me at home after I made a donation. He just wanted to say thanks. After I hung-up I realized how sweet and rare a gesture it was. Like someone had called to tell me how much they like a play of mine. Or something like that……




Meetings With “Telling” And Students From MICA

This project is moving like gangbusters! A few days back I met with Shannon Dunn, Director of the Hopkins Office of Cultural Affairs along with Max Rayneard and BR McDonald from the Telling Project. Shannon, BR & Max Inside SPH

Here we are (Shannon, BR and Max) inside the School of Public Health. We were talking over logistics for Sommer Hall and our performance on September 11th. Shannon is who I first talked to about bringing Telling to Hopkins. BR brought me into the project and was my initial contact (he also encouraged me to “keep looking” for funding). Shannon, who I worked with for “East Side Story,” eventually came to our financial rescue. A while back I discovered this little nugget about “East Side Story” and Project Gado in the Baltimore Examiner. Max Rayneard is doing the veteran interviews and from what he gets from the veterans, he then writes the script. We all looked over the space and shared ideas on how things could go. Having this meeting got me very excited about what we were doing. Also, it’s good that my chief concern is JUST Directing, and not getting my panties in a bunch about resources, PR or all the miscellaneous coordination behind having something of this nature at Johns Hopkins.

The next day I met with Max and the two ladies from MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art) at MICA. Max was taking a break from the interviews and we Emily Russell (left) and Kirsten Poulsen-House (right) were asking questions about the “making” of the show. Max boiled down the essence for everybody. Emily and Kirsten will be providing an exhibit for the audience to see/witness before and after the performance. They’ve both been in on this almost from the start, and they hope to provide that “organic” addition to what the audience will experience. Since Telling evokes such a strong connection between audience and performer, having a visual compliment (the exhibit) would be like adding a brand new “sense” to the ones we work with now.


I can’t tell you how rewarding this has been. I love having a project like this. The more you work in the arts (in any capacity) the more you appreciate collaborations that aim high. Starting in July I’ll meet the cast and start rehearsals (one day a week till September). I never knew that I’d be associated with something so “large,” in nature. I have many feelings about the rewards that come with age. And patience. All of them good.I expect the next stage of working with Telling with unveil even more for me.


Updates & Projects & Riding A Bike

Hey, long time no see! Summer has finally arrived and my brain is abuzz with activity. In case you think I haven’t been “here,” that is soooooo not true! I created a page for Telling but, OOPS —- don’t think I told anybody about it. I’ll be sure to add more as we travel down this path. I’m meeting BR McDonald and Shannon Dunn this coming Monday to discuss the logistics for the Hopkins performance. And I’ve met with Emily Russell and Kirsten Poulsen-House from MICA about their contribution to the productions. At this point, they’ll be working on an installation or an exhibit that will lend itself to the entire “audience experience” of the performance. Something that serves as a portal to the world of the presentation.

The Veterans Artist Program works in conjunction with Telling and we’ll be utilizing the resources of both organizations. This, as they say, is a good thing.

I’m also working with the Hopkins Center for Educational Resources to create a video based on their “Preparing Future Faculty Teaching Academy”. It’ll be a 3-5 minute promotional Video that highlights their summer academy workshop.PFFTA-Orientation3_sm






For this I’m working with Elizabeth Donadio, my Videographer/Editor. We’re looking to finish up later in June. This weekend I’m riding with a couple of my bike buddies from the Welch Library. We’re doing “Tour Dem Parks”. I can’t remember how many years I’ve done this ride, but I know it’s certainly been a few. My pals Anne and Dwight are the organizers.

2014 Tour Dem Parks posterAlways a great ride. I appreciate more and more of the city as we wind our way through it. This past weekend, I did the MS Ride in Easton, Maryland.

bike MS





I did the 100 mile route and was proud as a peacock. Though I hadn’t ridden on any official “training rides”, I do ride most every day. But would this carry me through 100 miles on windy stretches of the eastern shore?

chesapeake challenge

Well lo and behold, I felt strong the whole day. I got a late start (a little more than an hour after the century ride began), but one of the tour registration folks whispered “just follow the metric century route, it’s the same ride—and then at mile 66 you’ll see the signs to continue onto the century”. So I did. Lucky me too, I didn’t want to ride no stinkin METRIC CENTURY. Not after waking up at 4:30, packing the bike, and wiffee and I making this a grand weekend getaway. Nothing wrong with the Metric, mind you, but I wanted to “go long”. Riding was such a rush, for so many reasons. I had my hybrid KONA which was definitely not the choice most cyclists make. They have sleek 16-20 pound bikes. And 200 dollar shoes and….oh I could go on. The point is, I never felt slow or weak. I felt strong and powerful. What a combination, my friends. That, in itself, is a good thing to know after all these years in the saddle. Coming into the last mile or so, I couldn’t have been happier knowing this ride was now under my belt. What I set out in my mind to do, had become reality. That’s why the beer tasted EXTRA cold, and the steak tasted EXTRA great. (I wonder how many more “great secrets of life” I can pass out today) I find that there’s a synergy of play and work that I must have. On the average day, it might not be transparent, and I have to cultivate it more than other days. But there clearly is an equation. There clearly is a map for me to follow.

Just when I was thinking “What have I been up to? What have I got to write home about” —- Gosh Gee, there appears to be alot.