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February 9, 2014
“My Little Davy” Performance Scheduled at Hoogland Center for the Arts

Posted by Michael in : Acting, Directing , add a comment

My Little Davy 3

My comedy sketch, “My Little Davy,” will be performed as part of One Mic Stand, a local stand-up comedy show that’s taped in The Club Room at the Hoogland Center for the Arts in Springfield, Ill., on Wednesday, Feb. 12.

It’s been a lot of fun to direct one of my own sketches. I haven’t done that in quite a while. And it was all the more enjoyable to work with three talented actors who are bringing these characters to life. The actors, pictured above from left, are Linda Castor as Doris, Jeremy Goeckner as Davy and Danielle Ward as Emma.

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October 5, 2008
Making sure you prop up your actors

Posted by Michael in : Directing , add a comment

It’s been a long, long time since I’ve been on stage. Sure, there have been some exceptions over the years. I’ve filled in when needed for a sketch for the worship service, but only when it was absolutely necessary. I’ve also been in two community theatre productions, one of which I did not audition for. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Most of my acting was while I was a student at Judson University (back then it was Judson College) in Elgin, Illinois. I had a great director, Dave Larson, who taught me a lot. I will always remember Dave’s frequent instruction that “An actor can only act action.” You can’t ‘act’ happy or nervous or angry. You reveal these emotions to audiences through your facial expressions and body movements. You also reveal it through the way you handle props. (more…)

August 7, 2008
Great drama means taking time to cast

Posted by Michael in : Directing , 2comments

We can spend hours in rehearsal to make sure that the scripts we bring to life are at their best, but how much time do we give to our decision to cast the script? Casting can be half your battle, yet we may rush through this important part of the process by looking for any warm bodies who are free to show up at rehearsals.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a five-minute comedy for your church’s worship service or a multi-million dollar historical movie for the masses, the right casting choices can make or break you. Just ask anyone who’s sat through 1956’s “The Conqueror” starring John Wayne as Genghis Khan.


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July 13, 2008
We loved the drama, but what did they say?

Posted by Michael in : Directing , add a comment

If actors perform a sketch in the church and no one in the congregation can hear them, did they really minister?

One of the biggest challenges that I’ve faced in directing sketches for churches was getting amateur actors to project so they could be heard by the congregation, including those people in the back row. Of course, if your church budget’s big enough, this isn’t a problem. All the actors gets their own lapel mics, and they’re all plugged into the sound system. Not many churches, however, have this luxury. So what are our options? (more…)