She explicitly rejects the idea that musicals are less serious than straight dramas. “Musicals can be serious entertainment,” she said. “If you look at the history of musical theater, if you look at some of the early book musicals like ‘Oklahoma,’ these are dealing with really intense topics.” In addition, “The musical is a signature American art form. And we are the American Repertory Theater.”While this production brings back the songs that audiences may remember through the years, it adds a fresh element: the seven performers (plus guests) explaining why these pieces touched them, or how they came to a particular production.,Before Matthew James Thomas, from the 2012 production of “Pippin,” performs “Corner of the Sky,” for example, he recalls resisting the song, which has become part of the musical theater canon. He had resisted despite the urging of his vocal coach — until he found himself auditioning for the part. Brandon Michael Nase, from the 2018 production of “The Black Clown,” talks about his journey from musical educator to performer. These and other returning cast members are being joined by guests who appear on limited dates, such as Gavin Creel (Nov. 27‒30), Carolee Carmello (Nov. 29), and Elizabeth Stanley (Nov. 30). The show runs through Nov. 30.The performers’ personal recollections reinforce the impact of what is already an emotional art form. “Literally, musical theater is about the moment when you can no longer speak and you have to sing,” said Paulus.While this production is, by its nature, a retrospective, Paulus sees in it the seeds of future productions. “I’ve always wanted the A.R.T. to feel like an artistic home for artists,” she said. “It’s always about creating conditions where collaborations are born. I think this reunion is going to do that. You’re going to see shows where the story is, ‘I came back to A.R.T. for that show … and that’s where the idea was born.’ ”This production is hardly meant as the last word on musicals, or the A.R.T. “Our season ends with a world premiere of a new musical [“We Live in Cairo”] about the Arab Spring,” Paulus said. “ExtraOrdinary” is “kind of looking backward,” she acknowledged, “but the last show of the season is looking forward.” Audiences know the stories of their favorite musicals. Often, as in the case of productions like “Jagged Little Pill” that tap into popular tunes, they know the songs from the radio. But in “ExtraOrdinary,” a cabaret-style retrospective at the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.), they not only hear songs previously performed on the Cambridge stage — in productions like “Pippin,” “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess,” and “Waitress” — they hear the performers’ own stories too.The show, under the direction of Diane Paulus and with music directed by Lance Horne, celebrates and revisits the 10 years of musicals and music theater that Paulus has shepherded through the Harvard institution.“I’ve always been passionate about the power of musical theater because I feel it can reach audiences in a way that builds bridges,” said Paulus, the A.R.T.’s Terrie and Bradley Bloom Artistic Director.She distinguishes between classic musicals and “music theater,” in which tunes are added or integrated into a play. Both, as well as opera, have found a place at the A.R.T. under her direction, “expanding the boundaries of theater, which is our mission, through newly reimagined productions of classic musicals and creating conditions for new musicals.”Of course, what exactly music or musical theater is can be up for debate, a subject that cast members discuss and sing about in this production. “Shakespeare is music,” Paulus said, suggesting that all theater may be regarded as musical. “We’re talking about live sound,” she said, “rhythm and vibration.” “It’s always about creating conditions where collaborations are born. I think this reunion is going to do that.” — Diane Paulus
Additional creative team members and casting will be announced at a later date. The Broadway show will not be cast by reality television as previously rumored, however replacement and tour cast members may be chosen this way. The show will appear at a Nederlander theater to be announced, after playing a world premiere engagement in Chicago next summer. Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 20, 2017 On Your Feet! Love to hear percussion? Well, you’re in luck! The long-awaited Gloria Estefan musical On Your Feet! will conga its way to the Great White Way in the fall of 2015. The tuner, which will feature well-known songs by the Grammy winner and her husband Emilio Estefan as well as new music penned by the pair, is inspired by their life story and musical legacy. Tony winner Jerry Mitchell will direct the production, which will feature a book by Alexander Dinelaris and choreography by Tony nominee Sergio Trujillo. View Comments Related Shows Estefan and her husband Emilio Estefan were both born in Cuba and together became musical hitmakers in Spanish and English, winning Grammy Awards and fans across the world with hits like “The Rhythm is Gonna Get You,” “Conga,” “Words Get in the Way,” “1, 2, 3″ and the Oscar-nominated “Music Of My Heart.” They’ve also helped shape the careers of other artists including Shakira, Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony.
Next stop the Great White Way? Broadway alums Justin Guarini, Rose Hemingway, Kevin Cahoon, PJ Benjamin and more have been tapped for the world premiere of Moonshine: That Hee Haw Musical in Texas. Directed by Gary Griffin, the previously reported new musical comedy lovingly (and loosely) inspired by the classic TV series will feature a book by Robert Horn and score by Brandy Clark and Shane McAnally. The tuner will play a limited engagement September 2 through October 11 at Dallas Theater Center.Joining Guarini (Wicked), Hemingway (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying), Cahoon (The Wedding Singer) and P.J. Benjamin (Wicked) in the cast will be Ken Clark, Ryah Nixon, Rob Morrison, Mackenzie Bell, John Campione, Travis Coombs, Leslie Flesner, Julie Johnson, Kate McMillan, Harris Milgrim and Adam Perry.Set in present day Kornfield Kounty, Moonshine: That Hee Haw Musical introduces a new generation of characters as it tells the story of Misty Mae, the ultimate hometown girl, who heads out to follow her dreams in the big city of…Tampa. When she returns home to introduce her slick city-boy beau to her friends and family, everything goes haywire!The production will feature choreography by Denis Jones, sets by John Lee Beatty, costumes by Mara Blumenfeld, lighting by Philip Rosenberg, sound by John Shivers and musical supervision, arrangements and orchestrations by Stephen Oremus. View Comments
Editorial: End ‘Sloppy Oversight’ of Federally Owned Coal FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享From the Seattle Times:Sloppy oversight of lucrative coal mining on federal lands has been the norm for decades.Credit the Obama administration with initiating a review of the financial details and their consequences for taxpayers, the environmental impacts of coal mining and coal burning, and the industry’s legacy for coal workers and their communities.Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell raised the issue a year ago with a call for modernizing the federal coal program. President Obama renewed the theme in his 2016 State of the Union address.The Department of Interior’s review includes the Bureau of Land Management hosting six public meetings to gather comments. They started May 17 in Casper, Wyo., and will arrive June 21 in Seattle. That session at the Sheraton Seattle Downtown will start with speaker registration at 8 a.m., and the meeting and comment period will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Certainly this will be a good place to explore and register the public’s concerns about coal’s impacts on the environment and climate change. It should also bring attention to the failure of the federal government’s leasing programs to protect the financial interests of taxpayers and the U.S. treasury.Another expensive failing exposed by the downturn in the coal industry is the apparent scam that lets coal companies off the hook for environmental reclamation.During this Interior Department review period, which will extend into the next presidential administration, the federal government is suspending coal leasing. Enough active leases exist to cover a projected 20 years of demand.A nod of gratitude is owed to Secretary Jewell for moving the federal bureaucracy to consider the equity issues for taxpayers and the environment.Here’s your chance to shape federal oversight of the coal industry
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Topics : The Kremlin said Monday that Trump had called President Vladimir Putin and discussed his plan to hold a rescheduled G7 “with possible invitation of the leaders of Russia, Australia, India and South Korea.”Trudeau though flatly rejected that prospect.”It’s really important to keep holding these meetings and making sure that we are we are coordinating internationally in this time of crisis,” he said.Russia was expelled from what was previously the G8 in 2014 after invading and seizing Crimea from Ukraine and declaring it part of Russian territory. On Saturday Trump said he would postpone the planned June summit of leaders from the United States, Germany, Britain, Canada, France, Italy and Japan after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she would not be coming, citing the coronavirus pandemic.Trump said he could try again in September, and invite other countries including Russia to join the meeting.”I don’t feel that as a G7 it properly represents what’s going on in the world. It’s a very outdated group of countries,” Trump said.He said he would like to invite Russia, South Korea, Australia and India to join an expanded summit in the fall. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday rejected Russia’s participation in a coming summit of the G7 nations, despite host US President Donald Trump wanting to invite Moscow.”Russia was excluded from the G7 after it invaded Crimea a number of years ago,” Trudeau told reporters. “Its continued disrespect and flaunting of international rules and norms is why it remains outside of the G7 and will continue to remain out,” he added.
During the first week of campaigning for the 2020 simultaneous regional elections, a number of candidates violated COVID-19 health protocols while hosting face-to-face events, the Elections Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) has said. Observers blame the leniency of sanctions for the number of health violations.Bawaslu announced that an undisclosed number of candidates in 53 regencies and cities had hosted campaign events either without physical distancing and mask-wearing or with more than 50 people in attendance from Sept. 26 to Sept. 30. Bawaslu said it had dispersed the events, which were in violation of a General Elections Commission (KPU) regulation.The regulation, issued on Sept. 23, bans candidates from holding rallies and crowded events such as concerts during the campaign period, which lasts from Sept. 26 to Dec. 5. Candidates must instead use online platforms to reach voters, and they may host face-to-face rallies indoors only when online campaigns are impossible. The events must be held under strict health protocols with no more than 50 attendees. Candidates and members of their supporting political parties and campaign teams who violate the regulation will receive warnings from the KPU, a penalty that critics say is too lenient. Bawaslu may disband campaign activities in violation of social distancing rules and will report repeat offenders to the police.Read also: KPU bans rallies, concerts for regional pollsBawaslu member Mochammad Afifuddin said his office could not yet disclose the number of violations during the first week of campaigning because the data had not been compiled. He promised he would release details soon and would continue disclosing violations every week until the campaign season ended on Dec. 5.He said 250 of the 582 campaign events held from Sept. 28 to Sept. 30 were face-to-face events and noted that candidates preferred promoting themselves in person to using online platforms. He said some of the in-person events had violated protocols but not all of them.“We haven’t compiled the total number of campaign violations as of Friday, but what I can say is that many candidates still opted for face-to-face rallies,” Afifuddin told The Jakarta Post on Friday. “We are afraid that such a way of campaigning will definitely increase the risk of COVID-19 contagion in the country if candidates keep neglecting health protocols.”Health protocols during elections (JP/Hengky Wijaya)President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s son-in-law Bobby Nasution, who is running for mayor of Medan, reportedly violated health protocols in his campaign. Tempo.co reported that Bawaslu had warned Bobby’s campaign team to stop doing so.KPU commissioner Ilham Saputra said the agency had received most of Bawaslu’s reports and would issue warnings to offenders. He did not disclose the number of the violations.“Nonetheless, we thank candidates for not hosting concerts that could attract crowds,” he said, adding that everyone should play a part in ensuring safe elections.Read also: Regional polls will be COVID-19 free: MinisterElection activists and health experts have repeatedly criticized the government for insisting on going ahead with the regional races as scheduled in December despite the public health risks. They have demanded postponement, warning of low voter turnout that could undermine the electoral process.The outcry was amplified after Bawaslu found last month that 243 prospective candidates had violated health protocols by bringing large entourages to register their candidacies at regional KPU offices from Sept. 4 to Sept. 6.Khoirunnisa Nur Agustyati of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem) said more violations of health protocols would be seen in the near future “because the KPU regulation gives only lenient sanctions to the offenders”.The KPU initially wanted to introduce stricter punishments than those that prevailed in its regulation, but the commission refrained from doing so because the 2016 Regional Elections Law did not provide for sanctions against people who put public health at risk during elections.Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Mahfud MD said he had instructed the police not to hesitate to take stern measures against repeat offenders who defied KPU warnings.“There will be mass health protocol violations during campaigning over the next few weeks if we don’t take the issue seriously,” he said.Many political parties have told their candidates to prioritize virtual campaign events and to stay disciplined in applying COVID-19 health protocols.Topics :
SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Economy, Education, Infrastructure, PAsmart, Press Release, Workforce Development Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced new funding for the acquisition and renovation of a property located at 101 S. Seventh St., Allentown, to turn it into a lab space enabling the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) to expand their apprenticeship programs, strengthening the local workforce.“One of the goals of my PAsmart initiative is to invest in apprenticeships, which offer rewarding careers for Pennsylvanians in a number of skilled trades,” Governor Wolf said. “This funding will help expand the IBEW’s apprenticeship program, providing opportunities for new labs and classrooms to train the next generation of electrical workers.”IBEW Local Union No. 375 was awarded $1 million for acquisition and renovation of the nearly 35,000-square-foot building. The renovations will result in new offices, meeting space, classrooms and electric labs for training the next generation of electricians. Renovation work includes new entrances, new roofing, interior partitions, and mechanical, electrical, and plumbing improvements. Additionally, the project includes ADA upgrades and improvements to the entire streetscape, including new trees, sidewalks and curbing.“An important part of a healthy and growing economy is the availability of a qualified and skilled workforce,” said Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Pat Browne. “This RACP for IBEW 375 for renovations to expand its training and apprenticeship programs at its new headquarters in downtown Allentown will help ensure electrical workers entering the job market have the necessary training and skills to perform work that is both high-quality and extremely safe. Working with my colleagues and the governor, providing financial support to attract employers and employees to the Lehigh Valley and across Pennsylvania and make sure they receive proper training is a critical investment for the fiscal success of the Commonwealth.”The newly-purchased and renovated building will enable the IBEW to expand the number of apprentices accepted into the program and trained annually. The expanded training classes will lead to more skilled electrical workers, providing workers with family-sustaining jobs and giving local manufacturers a greater talent pool from which to hire.“Location matters. IBEW has a great history of training the next generation of tradespeople. By locating their new facility in our urban core, IBEW is ensuring that all folks will have an opportunity to access these great family sustaining jobs,” said Rep. Peter Schweyer.“The modern job is one that requires training and skills,” said Rep. Mike Schlossberg. “Our friends at the IBEW have been promoting high wage, high skill jobs for decades. I’m proud to have worked with my colleagues in the legislature and the governor’s office to help make this project a reality.”Supported through the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) program, funding will support critical expansion projects, some of which will provide opportunities for additional economic development. Governor Wolf Announces Funding to Expand International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Apprenticeship Programs in the Lehigh Valley August 14, 2018
The combination of volatile stock markets and falling interest rates is having a dramatic impact on the coverage ratio of Dutch pension funds. During August, the average funding has already dropped 5 percentage points to 101%, according to pensions adviser Mercer.Dennis van Ek, actuary at the consultancy, described such a rapid decline over such a short period as “extreme”.Aon Hewitt, which uses a slightly different accounting method to calculate its average funding rato, even claimed a larger funding drop. According to Mike Pernot of Aon Hewitt, the average coverage ratio had already fallen 5 percentage points by last Friday, and the declining stock markets since have added at least a further 2 percentage points.At July-end, the consultancy concluded that funding stood at 104% on average, which would imply that the current coverage would be no more than 97% on average.The minimum required funding of Dutch pension funds is 105%.Van Ek of Mercer said that on Monday the MSCI World Index and the MSCI Europe Index had fallen 14% on average since the start of August.Equity holdings of Dutch pension funds are roughly equally divided across Europe and the rest of the world.The pensions adviser further said that the 30-year swap rates – the relevant rate for discounting liabilities – had dropped from 1.50% to 1.44% in August.He added that many pension funds were making inquiries about developments. Schemes with a liability-driven investment (LDI) policy in particular, were asking for advice on the level required for their interest hedge, Van Ek said.According to Mercer, the average funding of pension funds has dropped 8 percentage points since mid-July.Mercer bases its funding calculations from the most recent reports by De Nederlandsche Bank, examining the asset allocation of funds and their level of interest rate hedging – currently approximately 40% – and uses a currency hedge of 50%.Aon Hewitt assumes an asset allocation of 30% equity, 50% fixed income and 20% alternatives. It uses an interest hedge of 50%, but does not calculate the potential impact of hedging currecy exposure.Its model is also based on a hypothetical pension fund where one-third of the total number of participant is retired.
It cited World Health Organisation estimates that put the economic cost at more than $1trn (€822bn) globally.The policy will be implemented gradually, with divestment expected to be complete by the end of 2018.In November, the asset manager’s parent, BNP Paribas Group, announced it would stop “financing and investment activities related to tobacco companies”.Frederic Janbon, CEO of BNP Paribas Asset Management, said: “BNP Paribas Asset Management is one of the first global asset managers to exclude tobacco from its mainstream investments. BNP Paribas Asset Management has extended its tobacco exclusion policy to apply to its “mainstream investments”. It will exclude tobacco from the actively-managed collective investment vehicles over which it has full discretion, it announced on Thursday.The policy has been applied to its sustainable portfolios since 2002, when the asset manager launched its first socially responsible investment fund. BNP Paribas said the decision took into account concerns about public health and human rights abuses as well as the economic cost associated with tobacco. “We recognise the important role that long term capital plays in tackling major global issues and with an increasing number of asset owners, insurers and pension funds excluding tobacco from their investments, we are taking into account growing international concerns about the risks posed by tobacco.”According to Tobacco Free Portfolios, Actiam, Achmea and AMP Capital also have tobacco-free policies.ABP, Europe’s biggest pension fund, announced in January that it would sell all its holdings in tobacco and nuclear weapons, and French public sector scheme Ircantec has also this year decided to pull out of the industry.Index provider MSCI recently indicated it could introduce a series of indices excluding tobacco companies.As part of a wider consultation about changes to its ESG indices, it had asked investors if companies involved in tobacco should be added to a list of “worst offenders” and therefore excluded from all MSCI ESG Indexes. It said it did not observe a consensus about this, but that a number of market participants had expressed interest in tobacco divestment.Asset managers react to US shootingIn the wake of the school shooting in Florida in February, US asset managers have announced they will engage with weapons manufacturers and distributors.“The term ‘impact’ is also likely to have long-term applicability and cover emerging environmental/societal concerns”PLSA recommends changes to Stewardship Code State Street said it would be seeking “greater transparency from them on the ways that they will support the safe and responsible use of their products”.It also said it would ensure that any of its shareholder resources used to fund public advocacy would be line with the company’s public views.In a statement, BlackRock said index providers were responsible for the construction of their indices and that it could not sell shares in a weapons manufacturer or distributor if it was in an index, but that it would engage with them “to understand their response to recent events”.It was also working with clients who wanted to exclude from their portfolios weapons manufacturers or other companies that did not align with their values.PLSA: UK stewardship code should go ‘impact’The UK pension fund association has recommended that the country’s Stewardship Code should ask investors to set out how they consider the environmental and social impact of their investments.Investors were under increasing pressure to align their practices “with the interests of wider society”, it noted in its response to a consultation by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC).The FRC will formally consult on amendments to the Stewardship Code later this year, but included some preliminary questions about it in its consultation on the Corporate Governance Code. This closed on Wednesday.The PLSA said “impact” would be the most appropriate term to use in a new provision in the Stewardship Code as it was relevant to a wider range of stakeholders than the related concept of ESG, which referred only to how environmental, social, and/or governance considerations could shape investment returns.The PLSA also advocated for the term ‘impact’ because it was likely “to have long-term applicability and cover emerging environmental/societal concerns”, such as the use of plastics. In the UK, a recently-aired episode of the popular marine life TV documentary Blue Planet II sensitised many to plastic pollution in oceans and the toll on wildlife, sparking pledges for action by private citizens, businesses and politicians. With regard to the Corporate Governance Code, the PLSA welcomed FRC proposals for it to introduce a greater stakeholder voice in boardroom decision-making, but warned that care needed to be taken with the specifics of implementation.Luke Hildyard, policy lead for stewardship and corporate governance at the PLSA, said: “There is a risk that these new measures will represent an ineffective gesture unless the different options for increasing stakeholder voice include key rights and responsibilities.”A proposed new provision in the code sets out three options for integrating “the employee voice” in the boardroom: a director appointed from the workforce, a formal workforce advisory council, or a designated non-executive director.The PLSA also welcomed the new code’s focus on diversity at senior levels of companies, but warned that proposed new guidance would do little to discourage excessive pay awards.