This past weekend was an interesting one for me and several friends as we had the chance to see the SAG award-winning performance of Jeff Bridges in the theatrical release Crazy Heart a day before he was hailed by his peers as Male Actor in a Leading Role in Film. This indie movie chronicles the life of aging country singer Bad Blake (Bridges), as he hits rock bottom and then triumphs over a number of mostly self-inflicted adversities. The movie co-stars Maggie Gyllenhaal and Robert Duvall with a surprising appearance by Colin Farrell as Blake’s protégé turned superstar country singer Tommy Sweet. If you get the opportunity to see this movie, I recommend that you do so, as it is one of Bridges’ best performances even in all its grit and grim.
I also had the chance to attend a very unique stage play called Spike Heels, starring Robin Dunne (Will Zimmerman on the Syfy hit series Sanctuary) and actors Vanessa Parise, Jeff Roop and Katie Walder. In a small 47-seat theatre located in West Hollywood this intimate play has a limited run until January 31. The premise of the play is about 4 individuals (2 men and 2 women) in Boston whose lives, work and relationships blur the lines of friendship and love. At times the play was a little difficult to watch because of the honest portrayals of where friendship and love blur the lines of what’s right and what’s wrong; but the actors gave their all and truly entertained all of us in the audience. And that’s the key to acting: getting the message of the play across to the audience and entertaining them at the same time. Kudos should be extended to Dunne, Parise and Roop who produced this play which was written by Theresa Rebeck and directed by Stan Zimmerman.
As a side note, there was a celebrity sighting at the play as actor David DeLuise (son of the late, and great, comedian-actor Dom DeLuise and brother of actor-turned-director Peter DeLuise) was in attendance. It’s always nice to see actors supporting other actors in their work.
Also this weekend, fellow NiceGirl Tiffany and I finally had the chance to watch the first three episodes of the much-talked about Canadian series Being Erica that stars Erin Karpluk , Michael Riley and Tyron Leitso (formerly of Wonderfalls). I must say what a delightful series this is and I am very grateful that SOAPNet aired the entire first season last Sunday. The second season of the series just started last week and I look forward to getting caught up on what many critics and bloggers have been hailing as a terrific show. It also doesn’t hurt that the show features time travel, great music and winning performances by the entire cast. If you get the chance to see this wonderfully different series, please do so.
Artists Spotlight: Angela Sasser is this month’s artist spotlight. She hails from a multicultural family in Atlanta, Georgia, but spent much of her life traveling as a military brat. She first fell in love with fantasy while in Germany thanks to the collected stories of the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Anderson. Her dream was to grow up to follow in their footsteps, telling stories to awe and terrify future generations. As a child she loved painting rainbows zebras and has been creating characters and stories since she was young; her greatest motivation is to bring these stories to life in a visual way through her drawings. “Synthesizing words and images in a story in such an interactive way fascinates me, particularly in how this fascination links to cinematic storytelling, graphic novels, and animation,” says Angela. Her specialty is storybook illustrations; namely, in the fantasy genre with a subject matter dealing with angels and fairy tales. Her favorite media is color pencil, but she also does watercolor, collage mixed media and digital. She also holds three degrees: a BA in English, a BA in Studio Art and an MA in Arts Administration, allowing her to lavish in her love of writing, illustration and helping other artists. She will also have an illustrated book out this year. You can learn more about Angela via her website at http://www.angelicshades.com and you can contact her at email@example.com. Her featured piece, shown to the left is called Uriel from her Archangel Series.