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Hal Scott

Theaters, Actors, Etc.

By Rick Pender · July 26th, 2006 · Curtain Call
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  Hal Scott, who passed on July 16 at the age of 70, was once the artistic director at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.
Playhouse In The PArk

Hal Scott, who passed on July 16 at the age of 70, was once the artistic director at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.



One-time Cincinnati Playhouse Artistic Director HAL SCOTT passed away on July 16 at the age of 70. He led the Playhouse for two seasons in 1973 and 1974, when he became the first African American to head a major regional theater. Scott was a respected, award-winning actor (he earned an Obie Award for his performance in Jean Genet's Deathwatch in 1958) and director (he staged Avery Brooks' one-man portrait of Paul Robeson and other Broadway productions). He returned to the Playhouse in 2002 to stage Blues for an Alabama Sky, and in February 2006 he directed Yellowman, Dael Orlandersmith's provocative play about a light-skinned African-American man who struggles to have a relationship with a dark-skinned woman. Scott taught directing at Rutgers University for two decades. In 1995 he was honored with the Lloyd Richards Director's Award from the National Black Theatre Festival for his "profound contribution to black theater." In a city where we're often branded as being narrow-minded, it's worth noting that when the Playhouse was a young institution -- it was founded in 1960 -- it was shaped by Harold Scott, an outstanding theater artist who also happened to be an African American.

If you haven't submitted your choices for the CINCINNATI ENTERTAINMENT AWARDS, you have until July 31. (Go to page 55 for a ballot or to citybeat.com/cea to vote electronically.) When the awards are presented on Aug.

25 at Corbett Auditorium on the UC campus, it will be the result of thousands of voters, in addition to decisions by a group of theater critics in Greater Cincinnati.

One-time Cincinnati Playhouse Artistic Director HAL SCOTT passed away on July 16 at the age of 70. He led the Playhouse for two seasons in 1973 and 1974, when he became the first African American to head a major regional theater. Scott was a respected, award-winning actor (he earned an Obie Award for his performance in Jean Genet's Deathwatch in 1958) and director (he staged Avery Brooks' one-man portrait of Paul Robeson and other Broadway productions). He returned to the Playhouse in 2002 to stage Blues for an Alabama Sky, and in February 2006 he directed Yellowman, Dael Orlandersmith's provocative play about a light-skinned African-American man who struggles to have a relationship with a dark-skinned woman. Scott taught directing at Rutgers University for two decades. In 1995 he was honored with the Lloyd Richards Director's Award from the National Black Theatre Festival for his "profound contribution to black theater." In a city where we're often branded as being narrow-minded, it's worth noting that when the Playhouse was a young institution -- it was founded in 1960 -- it was shaped by Harold Scott, an outstanding theater artist who also happened to be an African American. ...

If you haven't submitted your choices for the CINCINNATI ENTERTAINMENT AWARDS, you have until July 31. (Go to page 55 for a ballot or to citybeat.com/cea to vote electronically.) When the awards are presented on Aug. 25 at Corbett Auditorium on the UC campus, it will be the result of thousands of voters, in addition to decisions by a group of theater critics in Greater Cincinnati. The latter choose winners in several categories, including the outstanding play and musical that requires familiarity with a broad array of work. Among this year's Outstanding Musicals, the nominee earning the most nominations is the Playhouse's revival of Stephen Sondheim's COMPANY, directed by Tony Award-winner John Doyle. Named in nine CEA categories, the show will be restaged on Broadway later this year. In addition to acting recognition for Raul Esparza, Barbara Walsh and Heather Laws, Company has also been cited for achievement in scenic design, costume design and lighting design. Additionally, due to Doyle's innovative staging with actors playing musical instruments, the show has been cited for ensemble performance and stage movement. Just to show that you don't have to be a professional theater to create an award-winning musical, community group Showbiz Players' staging of the wry URINETOWN earned six nominations, including four for performers in the offbeat show's tale about a city where "it's a privilege to pee." The two remaining nominees for best musical are the Playhouse's re-creation of '60s Pop icon Janis Joplin in LOVE, JANIS and Know Theatre's first-ever outing with a musical, TICK, TICK ... BOOM!, a small-cast show by Jonathan Larson, who went on to create Rent. Nominees for Outstanding Play come from four different theaters, ranging from small to large. New Edgecliff Theatre, which presents shows in a one-time church in the East End, offered a powerful production of David Mamet's terse drama about lowlife criminals, AMERICAN BUFFALO. Its strong cast earned several CEA nominations. Acting was also a strong aspect of Cincinnati Shakespeare's production of Tennessee Williams' classic play about the clash of harsh reality and idealized romance, A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE; it's the recipient of four nominations. The other two nominees for Outstanding Play were new works to Cincinnati audiences. Local writer Joe McDonough's world-premiere script, WAYFARER'S REST at Ensemble Theatre, was a kind of adult fairytale exploring human love and fear; its beautiful staging earned four CEA nominations. Sarah Ruhl's THE CLEAN HOUSE, now being staged by theaters all over the U.S. this season, earned one of its earliest productions locally. The story of several women who are dissatisfied with their present realities is competing for five CEA awards.



contact rick Pender: rpender(at)citybeat.com
 
 
 
 

 

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