Nashville Notes

Nashville Notes: Paul Gatrell

paulgFall is just around the corner and pretty soon Nashville's university theatre departments will be back in action. Since I arrived here i 1999, Belmont University has lead the way on this front by proudly putting it's young actors and theatre artists on the front line where most universities put the football team. Belmont's Department of Theatre


Nashville Notes: Kathleen O'Brien

KathleenOBrienOne of the most exciting activities on the cultural front here in Nashville these days is the "Stronger ARTS/STRONGER Cities" series presented monthly by the Vanderbilt Barnes & Noble. So far this year we have heard from Alan Valentine, CEO of The Nashville Symphony and Nashville Shakespeare Festival's


Nashville Notes: David Rush

David RushI am very excited to be producing a reading of LENNY - David Rush's one man play about Leonard Bernstein. I felt that this was the perfect play to with which to kick off the second half of the 2014 Nashville Parks Theatre Department's New Play Reading Series.I asked David to tell us something about himself and this is what he has to say:What role did theater and the arts play in your childhood and
upbringing?Theater and the arts actually played very little role in my upbringing. My family was not arts-oriented so, although I grew up in Chicago,


Nashville Notes: aka Veronika Electronika

veronikaI owe my career to drag queens.

My musical CAFE ESCARGOT never went anywhere until I cast three guys (including the incredible Flotilla DeBarge) as the ladies of the Buckhead-Dunwoody Diet Brigade in the 1994 off off Broadway production. The 2003 Nashville production of CAFE ESCARGOT was a great success thanks to Angelica DeVil and her crew and the amazing talents of Tony Domeico, whose turn as food critic Emily Snit made the show.


Nashville Notes: The Road to OZ

oz"I'm just letting the city evolve around me" said my friend Diane Di Ianni when I ran into her at OZ - and OZ itself ( is certainly the prime example of how Nashville is evolving on the cultural front. We were there for the very last performance of the U.S. tour of the Peter Brook production of THE SUIT,and if it weren't for OZ, I doubt that Nashville would have had the opportunity to experience this marvelous performance -


Nashville Notes: Apollo's Struggle

nashnotesIn 1978, I fell in love with Theatre History.

I was already in love with history - European history in particular - and when the man who was to become my mentor, Richard Thomas Pike, taught that theatre history course which was the last course of my undergraduate career (starting with the Greeks, of course) I saw that history in a whole new light, through the eyes of the many artists - actors,


Nashville Notes: Wes Driver & John Updike onstage

WesHeadshotSince bursting on to the Nashville theatre scene in 2010, Wes Driver, Greg Greene and their company, Blackbird Theatre ( have raised the bar, starting with their own play TWILIGHT OF THE GODS and following that with such intellectually challenging properties as ARCADIA, RED and MAN & SUPERMAN. They have


Nashville Notes: The Longest Street

Lower-Broad-in-Broad-DaylightWhen I toured the country as an actor in the 1990s, I was surprised at how many towns across our country, big and small, have a street named Broadway. Soon it became almost mystical, telling me that the spirit of the American theatre was with me where ever I might go.

Nashville is no exception - in fact, Broadway is the heart of our town,running right through the middle of down town and separating the Avenues into North and South. And the core of Nashville's entertainment district we fondly call "Lower Broad." You can stroll Lower Broad


Nashville Notes: Sue Matsuki

SUE TEALOne definite highlight of the May 9th NYC Nashville cultural exchange concert and competition at The Hermitage Hotel here in Music City was getting to meet and enjoy the talents of the fabulous Sue Matsuki. In addition to being one of the four artists who came down from New York (along with Tracy Stark, Jerry Costanzo and Julia Simpson), Sue was a major force in organizing and promoting the event - but she still had plenty of energy for the stage and all that that entailed.


Nashville Notes: Garrett Marks

Compressed HeadshotAmong Nashville's treasures are it's fantastic university theatre departments. I am especially a fan of Belmont University and it's musical theatre and theatre/dance programs and pleased to count amonst my younger friends 22 year old Garret Marks, who has the distinction of having pioneered the Dance major, creating his own curriculum. Now Garrett,


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