Monday, August 2, 2010

Conservatory Report, May 2010


By Barbara Grant

Once again, it is my great pleasure to report that the Nevada SAG Conservatory has completed the 2010/11 fiscal year in the black. This fact is even sweeter in my mind when I look over the last year and remember how many terrific workshops we had and all of the positive feedback that was given. Classes included a retrospective from SAG Award-winning actor and one of the stars of The Sopranos, David Proval; casting director Don Finn (his latest success project:Avatar); Fawnda McMahan, renowned commercials acting coach; UNLV Professor Michael Tylo; and our best-attended class, Los Angeles casting director Bill Dance. I could go on listing our many terrific presenters, but you get the idea.

I do want to take a moment to thank a few special local personalities. On very short notice due to a cancellation, two of our very special SAG talent agents stepped in to help. Using the SAG Foundation LifeRaft program, we had an “afternoon with the agents” workshop and Tena Houser of Lenz Agency and David Brown of Remington stepped in and did a superlative job of answering questions for the participants. The other presenter was our own John Powers. As you know, John Powers was a member of the Nevada Branch Council, but what wasn’t known by many was how long and distinguished a career John had and how he had transformed his love of acting into a career of teaching others how to perform. I am so saddened by John’s death, while at the same time it gives me joy that we got to share an afternoon with this special man.

Finally, it needs to be noted that the Nevada SAG Conservatory is successful for a couple of reasons: first and foremost, the answer is you the Nevada SAG member. Without the SAG Nevada membership, the conservatory would not exist and would not go on. Being an actor means a lifelong commitment to our craft and to continually refining our skills, and there is no better place in Las Vegas to hone our talents and to network with our fellow actors. The second reason is the Nevada Branch Conservatory Committee, who month in and month out give of themselves for no financial reward to ensure our conservatory runs smoothly and delivers, and of special note is SAG member Steve Lizotte. Steve puts in untold numbers of hours both at the conservatory and behind the scenes to make sure each and every conservatory runs smoothly. Simply put, he is invaluable, and on behalf of the Nevada Branch, I want to use this report to thank him from the bottom of my heart.

Take care, be safe, and I’ll see you at the next Nevada Branch Conservatory.

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