Showing posts with label Cameo Theater. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cameo Theater. Show all posts

Monday, February 2, 2015

The Cameo vintage sign is burning bright again.

A small black and white photo framed on the back wall of Snap! Orlando shows the historic Cameo Theater with its original signage. Building owner Jorge Boone applied to the Orlando City Counsel to have a replica of the original Cameo sign put back on top of the building "to re-establish the identity of the building and bring a sense of history and place to the area." The project is expected to cost around $29,000 and the city agreed to Boone's request for $14,000 through the facade program. The new 18-foot-long sign will use the same retro font as the original, and it will be lit with more than 300 LED bulbs.

The Cameo Theater first opened opened on Christmas Day, 1940. It was a latecomer in Orlando’s movie theaters, and was located just a block west of the Vogue Theater. Open for only a few years (maybe less than five), the Cameo sat abandoned for years, save for an occasional booking by a evangelical group.

The building was remodeled and occupied for years by IBM. Since then it has had many occupants, and has often been vacant. The marquee still stands. In October 2008, it was in use as a live performance space, but had closed by Summer of 2009. By early-2010, it had reopened and was available ‘For Rent’, and several groups had regular performances, primarily live music.

Today the Cameo Theater is home to Snap! Orlando, a hip gallery that is bringing cutting edge exhibits to Orlando. The owners, Patrick and Holly Kahn  also have expanded Snap into a gallery space in Miami and they seem to have finally created a gallery worthy of a top class city here in Orlando.  Nearly 1200 people came to celebrate Snaps one year anniversary, and the lighting of the Cameo sign on January 23, 2015. As Patrick said "Thank you to all of our partners, supporters, Snap! team members and friends who joined us last night! Our deepest appreciation and love to the exceptional Jorge Boone and Magdalena Dalsjo for reviving the Cameo sign, and sponsoring the public art fence, created by Chris Scala. In 2015 Snap is planning a citywide event with pop-up art exhibits, lectures with guest speakers, workshops, and other educational and cultural events. Announcements soon."

Thursday, November 13, 2014

All Things Rauncy and Risque Could Be Found at the Vagabond Art Party

The Second Annual Vagabond Art Party was held in the Cameo Theater way back in May of 2010. Back then I was sketching so often that I often let sketches go unpublished as I got distracted with the newest events and sketching opportunities. It was billed as an amazing night of Art, Music and live Performances. It was organized by Pergo who's Art Army troops were quite busy honing their skills, developing concepts and creating unbelievable moments individually. They we come together, bringing all the inspiration, all the creative force from the Universe, for one night at The Cameo. The line-up was staggering in not only scope and talent, but in diversity of expression as well. Pergo is a colorful character who does speed paintings live at events. He has long flowing hair that at times he dips into the paint. I keep hoping I'll catch a sketch of him someday.

Every half hour there was an amazing performance of light, sound and art set to rock your world. There was an Interactive Art Community Mural, Body Art, Organic Light show, an Art Army Fashion show by Dechoes Vintage hosted by Jamesson, Provocative Model, Tracy Spivey. There was open mic, acoustic corner in the outside patio. A portion of the proceeds went to benefit the United Artists of Central Florida. The cover was $10 but I managed to smuggle myself inside at a working artist.

I focused on the art being painted live by Trevor and Nikki Divine that had a hint of the sensual with a flair of burlesque. There were pasties and corset for sale in  a Sexy expo by Blissful Lotus in case you ever want to get into that line of business. A couple worked on a large painting in black and white of a sensual dancer. The girl seated on the couch opposite me offered herself as the perfect model as she twisted to watch the artists at work.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Snap! Attacks! to Open at Snap Space!

On June 16th I went to Snap! Space,  to sketch German Muralist Mark Gmehling as he worked on a huge five story high mural. I had also visited on Friday the 13th, but he had just painted the whole area grey using a roller on that day. The mural depicts Mickey Mouse gloved hands clutching oozing gooey brain matter.

As I did this sketch, an angry line of fire ants marched in line into a crack in a blue grey wall. Patrick Kahn, Snaps founder offered me an umbrella to block the sun. I felt a little guilty being pampered because Mark was five stories up in the lift wearing a black TShirt in the 90s plus humid Florida heat. He didn't need any shade. Since I have had skin cancer before, I accepted the offer and helped him tape the umbrella to the telephone pole I was leaning against.

Several people stopped to look and take pictures. Two time lapse cameras were set up to record every stage of the mural's creation. When Mark came down for a break, we spoke for a while. He is a teacher and he does most of the painting using spray paint. He likes the greys that are in the Montana Gold spray paint being used for this mural. The forms combine hard edges and soft edges as he builds up the form. He works quick. The mural will be complete in less than a weeks time and he worked entirely alone. Local artist Chris Tobar did help paint some of the grey base coat paint lower to the ground floor. A tattoo shop is opening up right behind Snap! Space. I imagine one of the first requests will be to tattoo Marks melting brain image onto someones arm.

Mark Your Calendar! The mural will be completed before the "Snap! Attacks!" opening on Friday June 20th from 6pm to 10pm at Snap! Space, in the historic Cameo Theater, 1013 E. Colonial Dr., Orlando, Fl. The show will be a cutting edge contemporary and figurative art show from the combined curatorial forces of Snap! Orlando and Art Attacks featuring photography, painting, illustration, mixed media, sculpture and video installation with internationally renowned artists in attendance. Guest curators Art Attacks is an online art resource for contemporary arts, providing a curated digital gallery, in depth interviews, and art event coverage. After four years of showcasing the best in contemporary art and creative inspiration, Art Attacks Online is pleased to announce its very first gallery show!

On Saturday June 21st from 2pm to 4pm there will be a free artist panel discussion at Snap! Space so you can meet the artists and learn more about their work.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Viet Garden

Whenever I find myself with extra time before going to a theater or other event I often stop at Viet Garden (1237 East Colonial Drive, Orlando FL) for a bite. They serve the most delicious Pad Thai that I have ever tasted. The dish is prepared super quick and it is always super good. There are shrimp and peanut sauce soaked noodles along with light bits of chicken and seed sprouts. Once, I overpaid because the server and woman at the cash register had intercommunicated. The server ran out to the parking lot and caught me before I left. That kind of caring service is rare and it has made me a very loyal customer.

I am almost always alone and I am ushered to a window seat. Since I know what I love, I can usually immediately order. All of the walls in the restaurant are covered with beautiful murals depicting the Vietnamese landscape. Some of the sponge painting of the clouds could be refined, but over all, it is impressive. Mirrors help the room feel larger than it is.

I did this sketch on the evening of my Retrospective exhibit opening at Snap Space in the historic Cameo Theater (1013 East Colonial Drive, Orlando FL). I knew that at the opening I would be pulled in multiple directions with no time to sketch. I kind of regret that this important moment in my career wasn't documented with a sketch. There are however plenty of photos to be found online. The opening was a whirlwind and it was wonderful to see so many friends and meet new people. A contingent of former Disney animators showed up. I probably hadn't seen some of them in 10 years. Four original sketches sold almost immediately and that let me relax and enjoy the night. Other pieces kept selling, and when I wasn't talking to patrons, I was signing books. Most important, I believe my work was introduced to people who hadn't seen it before.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014


I stopped by Snap (Cameo Theater, 1013 E. Colonial Dr., Orlando, Fl ) on the day before my retrospective exhibit went up. The gallery was open till 4pm. Emily Jordan and Diana Rodriguez were working as interns at the front desk. This was the last day that "Flight" was on display. As I sketched the last of the arts patrons explored the gallery. Three pieces of drywall proclaimed the gallery's mission statement: Contemporary, Creative and Spontaneous. Patrick Kahn, the gallery's founder had to step out.

Diana's son, Josiah Portillo, stopped in and hung out for a while.  As he and Diana talked, he decided to water the potted orchid on the reception desk with his bottled water. He then headed out to hang with some friends in the park. Diana offered him some money in case he wanted a snack but he said he would be fine.

I discovered later from Holly Kahn, that the lamp on the reception desk was from her son Luke's room. Emily and Diana were chatting and getting to know each other. Emily is a photographer who takes society shots for a local magazine. Diana is an actress and avid supporter of the arts. When she discovered that Emily had never been to the Fringe, she excitedly explained what the Fringe is all about. Diana suddenly shrieked and stood up. A large puddle had mysteriously formed and was spreading across the table. They both quickly removed books, paper and art. The potted orchid was leaking. Diana put the potted plant on the floor as they mopped up the spill. "How much water did Josiah put in this plant?" Diana said. On the floor the plant was still gushing out water.

Disaster was averted since the angle of the table made the puddle flow away from the art and papers on the desk. Just when things returned to normal, Patrick came back and the women were free to go home. Diana told me about a dress rehearsal for "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" by Tennessee Williams, which I will be sketching next week. Patrick explained to me that she is one of the most active supporter of the arts that he knows.

Mark your calendar and come on out to the opening of my retrospective showing of sketches of Orlando on March 21st from 7pm to 10pm at the Cameo Theater (1013 E. Colonial Dr., Orlando, Fl). The show will remain open through April 17th.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Changing of the Art

A retrospective exhibit of the sketches I have done in Orlando will be opening on March 21st from 7pm to 10pm at Snap in the historic Cameo Theater (1013 E. Colonial Drive Orlando FL). I stopped by Snap on the final day of Flight, a group show of photographers and other artists. At 4pm the gallery closed and Patrick Kahn popped the first labels off the walls. He explained that this moment was always a bit sad, like the circus leaving town, but when the walls are bare again, his excitement builds. Its like when you open your sketchbook and are faces with a white page. There are so many possibilities.

The two interns, Emily Jordan, and Diana Rodriguez, who were at the front desk, left at 4pm and then Patrick's wife Holly arrived with their two children, Luke and Juliet. Juliet saw my open sketchbook on the floor and she crouched down to look. "You drew that right now?" When I said "Yes", she stood and shook my hand with enthusiasm. I was surprised by her adult politeness and respect. Holly had put on blue surgeons gloves and she flipped through the sketchbook to let her kids see. Their enthusiasm was the best affirmation that I've felt in a long time. They have grown up around art thanks to their parents. Holly told me that Patrick used to keep sketchbook journals as a child. He passed on this tradition to his children and apparently Luke has displayed some unique talent in his journal. No wonder the kids loved seeing my sketchbooks.

The large photos were quickly but delicately removed from the walls and packed away. Holly helped Patrick and Vince Santilli at every step while Luke and Juliet worked at their computers, but Luke became impatient. "Mom, when can we go!" he shouted. The question was repeated multiple times until Holly decided to recruit him to do some of the work. She gave him a drill and let him assist in removing some of the screws in the masonry. He climbed the ladder and she climbed up behind him to be sure he didn't fall and to help with the heavy drill. This was serious "man's work" and Luke  loved it.

When it came time for the kids to go home, Luke shouted out, "Dad, we are proud of you!" Holly, next to me raised her hand to her chest and sighed. "It's moments like this when you realize it is all worth it." she said. It was heart warming to see this family working together to make a dream become reality. The next day, my sketches would go up on these walls.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Analog Artist Digital World Retrospective

If you can make it to the opening on March 21st, please register on Everbrite via the Facebook invitation page. There is no cover to get in, but registering will help guarantee that you get past the velvet ropes, should the Cameo Theater get too crowded.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Lake Eola Sunset

On August 28th I found myself downtown with several hours to spare before going to an artist paint out in front of Loft 55 Gallery and Boutique (55 West Church Street, suite 114, Orlando, Fl). Walking around Lake Eola I was struck by the amazing sunset and decided to do a straight forward landscape sketch. I avoided line much of the time trying to just capture the play of warm and cool colors in the sky and on the buildings. The city has invested in brand new swan peddle boats which must have cost a fortune. Joggers and people walking their dogs circled the lake.

There were several other events I could have been sketching, like an Urban ReThink Town hall meeting and a Social Media Club Meeting.  Sadly, Urban ReThink has had to close its doors, but It will be returning in a new form at the recently refurbished Cameo Theater (1013 E Colonial Drive Orlando, FL). I was playing hookie. It felt good to slow down and take in the sunset.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Cameo Theater

On March 22nd, I went to the Cameo Theater for a display of garbage as art. The Cameo had been closed for well over a year due to fire code violations so I was curious to see it open it's doors again. UCF architecture student, Jorge Boone, who recently purchased the Cameo, Wes Featherston and James Cornetet of Process Architecture, LLC hosted the art installation.

Two amazing installations created by ten talented UCF architecture students in the alley beside the Cameo. The students were tasked with studying post-consumer waste and developing innovative new techniques for transforming these materials into building systems.

One group re-purposed plastic grocery bags using tribal basket weaving techniques to create a structural 40’x10’ canopy that sores over the Cameo’s courtyard. The bag canopy was tied to a ladder above my head and various window bars and metal stairs. It started raining as I sketched and unfortunately the canopy didn't protect from the rain because of it's open weave.

The other group of students examined the structural nature of paper mache egg cartons to create a pair of 12’x20’ wall panels that will create the only ‘quiet’ zone in the district due to the natural acoustic qualities of the cartons.

Several new designs for the theater were lying on tables inside the Theater. Then both seemed to focus on sprucing up the Theater's facade. The interior was gutted clean. One student was sweeping the dusty floor. A talent agency is still upstairs as well as John Hurst's animation storyboard artist studio.

Hopefully the new owner will resurrect the Cameo since it was one of my favorite venues to sketch. The place was raw and uncluttered making it ideal for large installations and cutting edge experimental shows. Perhaps the Phoenix can rise again from the fire codes ashes.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


As part of Arts Fest, DRIP dance company unveiled a work in progress for an upcoming show titled RIFF, at the Cameo Theater (1013 East Colonial Drive). Dubbed, a Night of Music, The DRlP performance was preceded by four bands. The first band on the line up featured Britt Daley with her unique brand of electro pop. Next up was Telethon, then The Pauses and Peter Baldwin. Between acts and beers I spoke with Andy Matchett. I had heard of him a number of times and he let me know that I had sketched his wife and child once when I did a sketch at Dawn Schreiner's "Doodles" opening at Seven Sisters Coffee house. I was fascinated by some club kids who filmed every moment of their experience, voguing in front of their iPhone cameras. I suppose I am not much different as moments of my daily experience are documented with a sketch.

Andy Matchett & the Minks performance was a perfect match to the DRIP experience. The act began with a colorful whirlwind of confetti which was kept alive with fans and hair driers by members of the audience. I already had finished two sketches so I resigned myself to enjoy the experience by dancing and laughing. For the final songs a huge parachute was unfurled over the audience and Andy jumped off the stage to perform in the heart of the maelstrom. This was pure unbridled childlike fun and I'm glad I put my pen down long enough to simply experience it. Now Andy Matchett & the Minks is on my radar and I will follow them until I do a definitive sketch.

The RIFF dance performance happened in a hallway that was created by hanging a huge bolt of clear plastic from the ceiling. Jessica Mariko, Drips founder, CEO and Creative Director announced that the plastic had arrived only moments before the opening of the show thus the dancers would be performing within its limitations for the first time. Nikki Serra choreographed the Hallway piece.At one end of this plastic hall was a fan and buckets of colored salts were waiting for the performers. I knew the dance performance was less than five minutes long so I resisted the urge to sketch. The dancers entered the space and performed a sensual dance that involved tossing the colored salt in the air and showering themselves in pure color. The RIFF band performed the equally sensual music composed by David Traver.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Something Worth Going To - The Cameo

Katie Windish the owner of Frames Forever & Art Gallery helped get me a press pass for this show held at the Cameo Theater (1013 East Colonial Drive). Twenty two artists from around the country were featured in this show. Each artist was given a large drywall slab on which to work their magic. Many of the panels were painted the day before in the parking lot of Frames Forever & Art Gallery. When Katie and I arrived, music was blasting in the back of the ground floor space. The DJs this night were SJ Supershot, DJ SPS, Rubeox and Divinci of Solillaquists of Sound.
It was hard to choose a spot to sketch from since the space was broken up with all the drywall panels. I finally settled onto a comfortable red couch with a view of a bicycle that was covered with graffiti. The bike was decorated by Chico who is one of the earliest NYC graffiti artists. On the base of many of the spray cans that were mounted on the bike, Chico had painted his self portrait.
Across from me a New York City artist was painting an amazing mural of skulls. I had watched him start the mural the day before and I was fascinated to see how he was finishing up the process. Much of the work in the exhibit had a pop cultural hard edged feel. A friend of Katie's named Tobar had a panel that featured a man in a gas mask. This iconic image appears again and again in his work. What really struck me was the fact that he had 2 security cameras mounted on the top edge of the display. It left me feeling a little uncomfortable like Big Brother might be watching.
Chico stopped over to see what I was working on. He offered me a signed print of one of his paintings which he gladly signed. It was a relief to see so much urban art. This show really was worth going to.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Something Worth Going To

The parking lot behind Frames Forever & Art Gallery became a large outdoor working studio for the Urban artist who came to Orlando from all over the country to showcase their work. In Progress Urban Arts Magazine hosted the event which would ultimately be staged at the Cameo Theater (1013 East Colonial Drive). In this sketch, local Urban Artist, Swamburger is seen working on a large sheet of Drywall. The old trees offer a perfect easel for the large works.
It was exhilarating to watch artists from all over the country all working together. While I was working on this sketch, a third panel was started just to the left of my view. This work of art was started with bold sharpies to block in the basic shapes. Then spray paint was used to throw in the dark's and more drawing was added. Finally a wide brush was used to add bold drybrush highlights to the skulls which had taken form. I had a fantastic time watching this bold execution and I would have stayed longer if I didn't have another event to sketch lined up. It is exciting to see this vibrant Urban Art being created right in white bread Orlando. The city and its art scene seem to be growing up. As I packed up to leave Katie Windish explained that she might be able to get me a press pass to the actual show the following night. I most certainly had to see the final results.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Sketchy Broads - Alice in Wonderland

The Cameo Theater hosted Sketchy Broads as they posed in an Alice in Wonderland setting. The event cost $7 to sketch and $10 to take photos. Sketchy broads is a sketch club consisting of three costumed models. Megalo Music was playing a mix of Alice themed music all night which made sketching even more fun. When I arrived I was a bit frantic because my cell phone had died in my pocket and I hadn't mentioned to Terry that I would be out sketching at the Cameo. I asked John Ageeb if he had a cell phone and he was nice enough to go all the way back to his car to get it. It turned out he left his cell at home. I then asked Geoff Sprague if he had a cell and he let me borrow it. I suddenly realized I didn't remember Terry's work phone number, I always just instant dial the number. I ended up leaving a message at my home phone.
When I entered the model who played Alice was busy helping the rabbit putting on his makeup. This in itself would have been a good sketch but they were finished before I committed to the sketch. I loved the outfit of the female Mad Hatter. She work a shiny black girdle and vibrant shirt and stockings. An artist complimented her saying she was a better Mad Hatter than Johnnie Depp.
Perhaps seven or eight artists showed up to sketch at this event and there was plenty of room for more. I did my first sketch from the side lines so I could get a view of some of the artists at work. the models kept knocking down the paper mache mushrooms between poses.
There were three photographers wandering around as well. I kept getting blinded by flashes and strobes. On photographer set up a huge light right next to me which blocked the light that had been on my sketchbook. I struggled on but I was getting distracted. I am encouraged however that there are new venues being offered for artists to explore in Orlando. The models were professional and held the poses while staying in character sometimes for 20 minutes at a time. As scatter shot as this first event was, I am sure to return to see what they come up with next.

Monday, February 22, 2010

FRESH-The Coffee Mound

Rather than staying with my exhibit of sketchbooks at FRESH, I returned again and again to the main show space to sketch the performers. In this performance, TinTin danced on the mound becoming more and more a part of the earth. He then dug into the earth, essentially resurrecting his dancing partner, Ashley Kroft. She gracefully rose up, spreading her arms towards the sky. Their dance then became an erotically charged dance of embraces, painful separations and joyful reunions. They both embrace the earth, and share it with each other. They rub the coffee scented earth into each other's skin. It would be awesome if Starbucks would embrace this celebration of coffee by bringing this dance to the center of its coffee shops. I am certain they would sell more coffee.
I am writing this post from the Himalayan Institute in Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Gentle new age music is playing as I enjoy my morning coffee. The music perfectly brings back impressions and feelings I had while watching the FRESH performance. I feel at peace although I am here, to do one last portrait of my stepmother who is losing her battle with cancer. I visited her yesterday and she is a frail fraction of the woman she was. This portrait is the most important sketch I will do in some time. It is time to pack up my supplies and get to the hospital. I approach this new found day buzzing with hope and faith. I do not want to waste a minute.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

FRESH - The Coffee Mound

In the final hours before the opening night performance, Jessica Mariko had the dancers do a full run-through of the whole show. I had spent most of the day setting up my art installation of the 2009 Sketchbooks in the entry room. I had fun using a whole lot of junk found in my garage to create my odd, somewhat alienish installation. In the main room I leaned up against a wall and started to sketch. Everyone was rushing around to clean up before the first audience arrived. Bob Kodzis asked Christie Miga where a garbage can was. She pointed towards me and said "Over there next to the artist sketching." It is humbling being a landmark for garbage. When Ashley Kroft and Tin Tin started to explore the coffee mound which is the stage for one of the dance routines, they discovered rocks and glass in the dirt. Ashley, and several other volunteers, had to sift through and remove as much glass and rock as possible. They can never be sure they sifted every inch. Lighting was being installed and aimed right up until the last second. There are no dressing rooms in the Cameo theater so for the rehearsals the dancers changed in the man's room and the women's room became the bathroom. I only discovered this when I had to actually use the bathroom and I almost walked in on a costume change. Right before the performance Jessica poored a whole bag of raw coffee grounds on the mound which filled the room with the distinctive pleasing aroma of coffee.
There was a rumor that someone was going to propose marriage to his girlfriend this night so I had my eyes on the lookout for who that couple might be. For an additional fee some couples were allowed to wander through the Willy Wonka like edible environment on their own before the main crowd arrived. The more daring also had their bodies painted and got Henna Tattoos. This was a small group of couples and I figured the marriage proposal would be among them. Tisse and I debated on which couple it might be and we agreed on a slender young woman who was getting a Henna Tattoo. Her boyfriend however was in his iPhone not really paying attention to her. I wrote this behavior down to nerves and figured he was texting a friend to try and decide when he should pop the question. I kept my eyes on this couple for some time but then out of the corner of my eyes I saw a glint of gold and a woman hugged her fiance and kissed him. I had missed the main event! Bob, who was acting as the MC, announced the proposal and acceptance, and everyone in the room applauded.
If you want a unique sensual and pleasurable evening with your true love, then FRESH is without a doubt the hottest ticket in town!

Friday, February 5, 2010

FRESH - Building a Tree

Becky Rankin is seen here adding the finishing touches to a huge tree trunk that now acts as the centerpiece to the FRESH performances now going on at the Cameo Theater. I watched Becky as she delicately interwove branches into the rope and potato sack-like structure. In the background, Christie Miga, one of the DRIP art directors, is working on a waterfall installation which is also part of the show. Christie put out a request for various forms of junk which she wanted to use as the raw materials to built the set pieces. I bought in a VCR and an old air conditioning unit. My VCR can be seen in the foreground of the sketch with its various wires now acting as the delicate inner workings of an exotic plastic flower made from a soda bottle. Using everyday objects in unconventional ways is seen throughout the DRIP installations. Tree branches which had been painted white can be seen at the front of the warehouse. I find myself drawn back time and time again to see what they will come up with next.
Evan Miga told me it took two trips in a U-Haul truck to transfer all of these creations to the Cameo Theater, where they then had just two days to set everything up and make sure it all worked. Evan said that he had tree branches sticking out all around him as he drove to the Cameo in the truck.
I spent all of yesterday at the Cameo setting up a display of my 2009 sketchbooks. Keeping with the theme of the whole show, I ended up hanging my work in a rather unconventional way using found objects and plenty of creativity. I thought it would take only an hour to hang the show, but when the ideas started flowing, I found myself lost in the process for the whole afternoon. From my garage, I bought in some folding closet doors that had been sitting unused for years. I also bought in various Indian drapes and pillows to decorate the space. I had decided to share the space with photographer, Tisse Mallon. She hung her photos from vines made from rope and fabrics. I was delighted at how seamlessly we designed the space. I was amazed that Louise Bova, another exhibiting artist, had bought in folding doors almost identical to the doors I had decided to bring in. This sort of melding of creative minds happened more than once, making it seem like these choices were preordained.
The first run-through in the Cameo Theater in front of a select audience was thrilling to say the least. FRESH indulges all the senses so you really have to experience it for yourself to truly understand it, but I will be sharing many sketches in the next few weeks since FRESH is as exciting as the Moulin Rouge.
Dinner events for couples:
Feb. 5-6 8PM
Feb. 11-12 8PM
Feb. 13, 6:30PM, 9PM
Feb. 14, 6PM, 8:30PM

Brunch events:
Feb. 6th Kids FRESH 11AM (Presented by PLAYGROUND Magazine & Misty Forest Enchantment Center)
Feb. 13 Friends and Singles 12PM
Feb. 14 Big Gay Brunch 12PM

Complimentary Childcare during dinner events on Feb. 13 & 14. (Provided by Misty Forest Enchantment)

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Fresh Rehearsal

Jessica Mariko invited me to sit in on rehearsals for Fresh which is starting February fourth at the Cameo Theater (1013 East C0lonial Drive). Rehearsals were held at the new Drip Warehouse on Old Winter Garden Road. I got hopelessly lost the first time I tried to find the place but Christie Miga, one of the amazing Drip Art Directors finally gave me some landmarks to help me find the place.
Fresh promises to offer a Willy Wonka like edible environment where guests get to experience culinary performances all revolving around the theme of love. There will be an art and candy market in which you will be able to see my work as well as photos from Tisse Mallon. This is an amazing event that will appeal to all of your senses. Everyone at the event will be dressed in their bohemian best along with colorful hippie accents and beatnik flair.
At this rehearsal Tin Tin was leading the dancers as they rehearsed a piece around a new hand made silk screen printing press. In previous performances they had rented a printing press but for this show a hand crafted press was created using PVC, wood, and lots of creativity. Now the press looks like a glorious lotus flower. The music for this piece is driving and rhythmic. At first he dancers move like zombies who are discovering their body movements for the first time. They stretched and reached out in staccato violent moves. They shivered and shook until they discovered the press and through it they developed a sensuality and vitality to their movements. As they created, every movement became more vibrant.
The warehouse where the rehearsal was taking place was littered with all of the creative elements that are being assembled for the set. Christie asked me for any junk I might have lying around my garage, and I bought in an old Computer monitor, a VCR and a broken down air conditioner. There were disassembled and incorporated into organic creations. I saw VCR wires hanging from a flower made from plastic bottles and the computer monitor was painted white. I joked that if these set designers had been given the task of fixing the Lake Eola Fountain they could recreate and get it working it with found objects, old PVC, duck tape and a whole lot of creativity.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Seven Deadly Sins - Sloth

The Cameo Theater on Colonial near Mills was the venue for an Emotions Dance Company event called Seven Deadly Sins. When I arrived, the first thing I saw in the theater's plate glass windows was Brian Feldman who sat on a worn and tattered recliner staring at a TV which was showing nothing but static. Brian had a remote control, but for this 30 hour performance he was personifying Sloth so he never had the ambition to change the channel. There was also a fake aquarium with animated fish swimming about. I immediately sat on my portable stool and started to sketch. Several times people passed by that I knew so I paused for a moment to say hello. A drummer set up camp right next to me, leaned over and asked "Hey, I love your stool. Any chance I could borrow it?" I was working so I had to say "No". He began putting out plastic buckets of varying sizes and before I knew it he was banging out a very loud beat. He must have banged on those cans for close to an hour and I found it hard to concentrate. I probably rushed this sketch a bit since I wanted to get inside away from the noise. If Brian noticed the drumming, he never showed any interest, he just stared listlessly at the static screen and ate Cheerios.
Tisse Mallon, who organized the event, came outside and said to me, "Brian is very proud of the Game of Life that is in the foreground. He replaced LIFE with SLOTH". Feeling a bit slothful myself, I hadn't even noticed, so I went back and added that detail to the sketch. Inside the theater, there were semi-nude dancers painted to represent the 7 deadly sins. I spent some time trying to figure out which sin each represented. They moved in slow motion constantly gesturing in an abstract sinuous ongoing performance. There were also staged acts throughout the night. This was a fun event and sketch outing.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Cameo Theater

I went to an event called Mills 50. When I got to the location, called Cameo, there was a crowd outside. I made my way inside got a wrist band and was surprised when I was greeted by and old friend from my Disney Days named John Hurst. Not only had I known John from Disney but his dad taught me history in High school in New Jersey! It turns out John and his wife had bought the building on a leap of faith and turned the ground floor into an entertainment complex. John told me that the building opened on Christmas day in 1940 as a movie house. Today the ceiling has been lowered to add another floor. John has his freelance animation studio on the second floor and rents out other offices to entertainment companies.
The interior of Cameo is a hip industrial complex of exposed brick and ceiling beams. An arched line on the wall hints at where the movie theater seating used to be.
The evenings entertainment consisted of folk singer Kaleigh Baker who's warm inviting voice greeted me when I first entered. The Black V Tribal Dancers were sitting to my left while I was sketching. There exotic belly dancers outfits caught my eye but I was committed to this sketch and it looked like they might be the next act on stage. Sure enough they went up and danced and gyrated to the whoops and screams of a very pleased crowd. The last act I saw was Beef Wellington and Divinci they played the keyboards to the right in the drawing. Divinci, who I didn't draw, played the keyboard for a solid 10 minutes with his face which was to say the least very amusing and entertaining.
I fell in love with this place. It has the best of art and entertainment. It is raw, exposed and very real. I suspect I will be back many times.