Tuesday, June 30, 2009

pina bausch RIP

Now there's a loss.

Working on The Event with Dave Calvitto today, it's looking good. So grateful when I work with smart, intuitive actors.

On the MMMQ front, asking who coined the term punk rock, I always heard that it was Ed Sanders of the mighty Fugs, but someone I trust just swore to me that it was Dave Marsh. This is one of those things lost in the mists, I expect, so I'm declaring this one a toss-up, everyone wins but no prizes awarded.

Monday, June 29, 2009

some good news

The National Endowment for the Arts as well as the National Endowment for the Humanities received a $170 million budget from the U.S. House of Representatives for 2010, nearly a 10 percent increase from their current $155 million budget.

The vote was 254 to 173.

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee's budget proposal for the cultural agencies calls for $161.3 million each. President Obama proposed $161.3 million for the NEA and $171.3 million for the NEH.


NYTE has won the Microsoft/Techsoup “Show Your Impact” contest, which gives them a grant of $5K in cash and $25K in software. Well done, Martin and Rochelle.

Our MMMQ takes us back to the early 70s, when punk rock was thrashing about getting born. Who, in those dark and distant days, first used the term and gave the sound a name?

1. Lester Bangs

2. Legs McNeil

3. Ed Sanders

4. Dave Marsh?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

day of the dead


You've certainly heard the news by now.

Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson, both dead.

You can either take Ed McMahon as the third (these things come in threes, as my fellow Irish-Americans know), or we should think seriously about organizing a 24 hour medical/security force stationed around Bruce Springsteen.

Icons dying.

People in the street.

And me sitting on the couch, staring at the TV, feeling like the World's Only Cold-Hearted Bastard.

Michael Jackson was someone's child, brother and friend. For his family, his mother, his father, his brothers and sisters, his old friends, this is a terrible, terrible day.

Michael Jackson was one of the most purely gifted raw entertainers in the history of show biz. No one, no one, could move like him. Thriller is the greatest selling album of all time. Can't deny that combination of talent, craft, instinct and anticipating what the market wants.

But he's dead now, at 50, after this great career, and let's think about this for a second.

What is the "loss" we find ourselves bemoaning?

People die.

At 50, at 86, at 12. Every one of us. We don't want to think about it, naturally, but, come on. Jackson is no exception.

Would it be worse if he lived another 20 years, another 30 and then died all old and broke?

Was he on the brink of some extraordinary comeback, resulting in new music, a new sound, that is now lost to all of us?

Maybe. Overwhelming odds suggest no, probably not.

And again, doesn't matter, a man is dead and for those who knew him, grew up with him, knew him, it's a terrible day.

But for the rest of us, for the crowds in the street and all of the babbling heads on the TV screen, can we all just get a fucking grip and shut the fuck up for a second and admit that the only thing that really happens when an icon dies at 50 is we realize with a terrible jolt that we're getting older and that we too will someday die?

"If Michael Jackson can die, well then, Jesus... Maybe there's something to this after all..."

Icons go past the human, and when they die, then all bets are off. And that scares the shit out of us in a very, very deep way.

And, folks, let's be completely straight here. Let's not forget everything we know just because we're a little stunned that someone we've placed in a position Beyond Human while he was living here with us has succumbed to the Inevitable Eviction.

Michael Jackson was a pedophile.

Maybe not legally, but, come on.


Never proven, never admitted, but absolutely fucking no-doubt-about-it true.

Michael Jackson was right out of his own fucking mind for the last twenty-five, thirty-five years.

Not his fault, maybe, who knows? But a fact.

So we mourn a pedophile who can dance and sing like that for forty years but we think it's rough justice when some talentless pedophile gets beaten to death in prison?

I know, cold-hearted as all hell. Why not just join the chorus and remember Where I Was When I Heard the News? Can't do it.

If you knew him, a very bad day.

If you think you knew him, you really, actually, didn't.


Good luck on the Big Tour, Mr. Jackson.

I hope, sincerely, that the Critics are kinder than me.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

the curious case of Mark Sanford

Deep craziness out of South Carolina.

A self-professed "man of faith" and full-throated bellower of "family values" admitting to an affair is hardly news these days.

But this one just kept slipping farther into Looney Land.

Not only did Sanford spend the first two minutes of his press conference rambling on about his love for "adventure trips" and then bizarrely insisting that his love for such trips was "true", not only did it take him over seven minutes of apologizing, (only breaking down when apologizing to his friends as opposed to his wife) but during the entirety of the press conference, directly over Sanford's right shoulder, two grinning young women beamed at the cameras, particularly lighting up when Sanford would say something like:

"I hurt her. I hurt my boys."

Fiends in human form? Non-English speakers who thought they were getting a tour of the Statehouse?

Curiouser and curiouser...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

blank page

Oh, man.

Spinning my wheels and staring down the blank page today, trying to find the door that leads to the end of the play.


I'll never confuse what I do with actual hard work, manual labor or air traffic controlling, say, but somedays it's a bitch.

Ann gets the picture, Rosie stares out the window, dreaming of lost scorecards...

And now, back to work.

Monday, June 22, 2009


Great weekend up in the Berkshires and now back in Rat City for a full week of work.

Need to nail that Kill Me Now script so that the designers have time to design.

Some interesting Off Broadway stats in Crains last week:


Listening to some old Laurie Anderson over the weekend and was struck anew by the freaky beauty of Excellent Birds. Peter Gabriel sings back-up and released an alternate version of the song titled:

1. This is the Picture (Excellent Birds)

2. Falling Snow (Excellent Birds)

3. Sitting at the Window (Excellent Birds)


4. Mercy Street (Excellent Birds)

And for the purists out there, this is not a MMMQ, it's a MAMQ, so you'll need the other scorecard.

Friday, June 19, 2009

thanks, Andy

Andy Propst is shutting down americantheaterweb.com on June 30.

I feel like the Times is closing or I've just been told I'm going to lose one of my five senses in a couple of weeks.

He's been doing it since 1998 and it's been a part of my morning routine for years.

So, thanks, Andy, for the years of service.

Good weekend to all.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

rainy day

And me back on the road, heading up to Greenfield, MA for a few days to check in on Spitfire's dad.

Had a read of The Event with Dave Calvitto yesterday. Strange to be walking back into that script with a different actor. Completely different rhythm and feel to it, which is going to make for a very exciting rehearsal process.

And kudos to my old compatriot Madi Distefano who just picked up some cash from the Pew Center by way of the Philadelphia Theater Initiative.

Way to go, Madi.

Don't blow it all at the track.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

health care for artists

Something I learned about last night at the Get LIT gathering, thanks to International Culture Lab:

It is called Artist Access and is part of the HHC Options program that is only available to artists living in the five boroughs of New York. It is not health insurance, it is affordable health care.

Check it out here:


And I'm going to need to fire the intern again or stop farming out those MMMQs. Ann is right, twice, on the Keb' Mo' covers of the Robert Johnson classics.

Went back and looked at the question to see if I could bullshit some way of saying I was being extra tricky, but no, I just missed Kind Hearted Woman Blues on the Keb' Mo' album.

Maybe I can interest Ann in playing guest quizmaster next week.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Get Lit tonight

This is what's happening tonight:

Get Lit with LIT!! is coming again this MONDAY JUNE 15 at 7PM with special guest LIT Executive Director John Clancy.

at: Fanfare, 100 East 4th Street
between 1st and 2nd Avenue.

The League will be holding a special election at the start of the event, but after that its FREE BEER and a chance to mingle with the League and hear from LIT Executive Director John Clancy.

Me and free beer. Not so bad.

So come on down.

This morning's MMMQ tests your knowledge of the blues, old and new:

On Keb' Mo's eponymous debut album, which Robert Johnson classic is covered quite lovely?

1. Kind Hearted Woman Blues

2. I Believe I'll Dust My Broom

3. Cross Road Blues

4. Come On In My Kitchen

Winners get a deal with the devil, losers get a different deal altogether.

Friday, June 12, 2009

all clear

Disregard previous post, Spitfire solves the cyber-riddle.

cyber woes

Something went weird with the website yesterday, Walsh is still trying to figure it out. Until further notice, john@clancyproductions.com will bounce right back at you.

If you need me, use the gmail account, johnclancy7@gmail.com.


In my day, you'd just pick up the phone, give it a few cranks, and you'd be talking to someone clear across the state, no problems, unless there was a storm coming in or something.

Good weekend to all.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

lucky man

Sitting at my desk, typing away, rain falling outside, rock and roll playing softly in the background.

Hot coffee in the cup.

Work to be done, plenty of time to do it.

Simple things today, grateful for them all.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


AP has the headline,

"Lincoln Center Names Real Estate Exec As New Chair"

Nine words that manage to sum up the major problem with theater in America.

The MMMQ Twins romp again. Congrats, ladies.

Monday, June 08, 2009

me neither

Didn't see the Tonys. Not really a choice, forgot they were on and got caught up in a bunch of old Dexters.

Love that serial killer.

Kill Me Now had a nice showing on Friday at the nEW Festival and then scorched the roof off of the place on Saturday. Everything came together, the rhythm and the flow and the performances and the audience was with us from the opening speech. Very encouraging.

Pulling our MMMQ out of thin air today, but here goes:

Which Englishman was born David Robert Hayward-Jones in 1947?

1. David Bowie

2. Sid Vicious

3. Davy Jones

4. Joe Strummer

Friday, June 05, 2009

random friday

Saw the President's speech in Cairo yesterday.

Love the man, but if 90% of success is just showing up, then I'd give that speech a 90.

If you're in the Philadelphia area, come check out a Kill Me Now teaser at the Drake Theater tonight and tomorrow at 10:00 PM. Part of the nEW Festival put on by Melanie Stewart Dance Theater.

Last chance to help New York Theatre Experience pick up five thousand dollars today.

Details at:


And I find that I have no interest in the upcoming Tony Awards. Would like Diane Paulus to win, she's an old friend, but other than that...

Sometimes it just feels like a whole other world down here.

Enjoy the weekend, folks.

Thursday, June 04, 2009


Got some kind of low-level bullshit that's keeping me down today, can't get focused on the job at hand.

I'll just keep drinking coffee until I start twitching, that usually works.

Check out the Brick's latest, opening this weekend:


Tuesday, June 02, 2009

help out NYTE

If you have a minute between now and Friday, the good people at New York Theatre Experience could use your help getting 5K.

Info at:


Ann and Rose prepare a fine hog, indeed.

Monday, June 01, 2009

beautiful day

Holy God, I can't believe what's outside my window. Perfect blue sky, trees shimmering green in the sun, birdsong everywhere.

Have to leave paradise, drive into Rat City, work for a few hours and then back down to Philly for a tech tonight.

No complaints here.

Missed our MMMQ last week as the Museum was shut for the holidays, so here's our first summer quiz:

Noted musician and outlaw chef Tom Waits takes us through the steps of cooking up a Filipino Box Spring Hog on Mule Variations.

Which of the below is not recommended by Mr. Waits?

1. Slap that hog

2. Roll him over twice

3. Baste it with a sweeping broom

4. Rub him all over with the Rebel Yell

Winners get a Chocolate Jesus, losers have to room with the Eyeball Kid.