A Philly Primer
Hey There Folks! In this blog, I want to primarily focus on the city of Philadelphia. Having now lived in Philadelphia for approx 2 and a half months, Im just starting to figure out what the city has to offer. It's incredible how much this city has to offer to young artists. Its almost impossible to list all of the great things, but I am going to try and hit the highlights.
I just got back from seeing the production of Our Class at the Wilma Theatre. That was honestly one of the most moving and beautiful pieces of theatrical art that I have ever seen. Similarly, the production of Red over at Philadelphia Theatre Company, was just one of the best overall productions I have ever seen. Those two statements, are coming from someone who has seen his fair share of shows on Broadway. I have only started to dive into the theatrical world of Philadelphia, but the amount of theatre that is constantly being produced and performed is insane. I literally have seen some sort of theatrical performance every week since I moved in on August 25th. Whether it was going to a professional company around the city, or seeing a school production, or taking a trip to South Philly with your playwriting class, to take in an experimental type of theatre done in an old machine shop. It has been an absolute eye opening experience, and to have the professors be able to use the professional shows to make a point and prove that what they are teaching us actually works when it is done in the professional world, is unreal. I'm slowly realizing more and more, how much I just utterly love this school.
For those of you visual artists, having the Philadelphia Art Museum only 2 miles away (not that bad of a walk, by the way), is incredible. The fact that we also get in there for free as UArts students, means that there is always somewhere to go, to see the major paintings in history. The collection that the museum has is absolutely incredible. However, the Philadelphia Art Museum isn't the only place to see art. There are a ton of other small galleries all over the place showcasing and selling some of the best art in the world, and even original pieces by Philadelphia based artists. Also, in May of 2012, the Barnes Museum/Foundation will finally complete their move onto the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, which will bring billions of dollars worth of art into the Philadelphia Art Scene.
The music scene in and around Philadelphia is just as hot and popping as any of the other scenes. Not only are there street musicians posted at almost every corner, which is awesome, but there are a ton of clubs, pubs, and coffeehouses willing to give a young, up and coming artist a slot on an open mic performance. My room mate (who is a Jazz Vocal Major), went over to a Jazz Club a few weeks ago for dinner, and he said that the place was awesome. They have high profile Jazz groups playing basically every night (and it's not that expensive either).
Opportunities like these are all around us, which makes going to school in Philadelphia one of the best options. Peace out, for now!
David Fertik is a theatrical director, producer, administrator, and designer (specializing in Scenic and Puppetry Design). He currently serves as the Founding Artistic Director of Stage Left Theatre Company and the Co-Producing Artistic Director of Revolution Arts Workshop. Regional Credits include: Delware Theatre Company, Barrington Stage Company, International Opera Theatre, Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre, Marian Anderson Award, French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts, and Playhouse 22. David's senior thesis project entitled "The Circus Freak" featured various different types of puppetry. David is a proud member of the two largest organizations for puppeteers, UNIMA-USA and Puppeteers of America.