Knaves, MTV & call for artists

Timing isn’t everything. But it’s pretty darn important.

So here’s a roundup of time-sensitive arts news — including calls from various local and national organizations for your participation.

First, something you wouldn’t normally expect from Mesa’s neck of the woods — a call for possible knaves to complement a cadre of wenches.

Seem the education and outreach folks for the Southwest Shakespeare Company in Mesa recently held auditions for their “Wenches & Knaves” program — which provides opportunities for high school students who are enthusiastic about Shakespeare (aren’t they all?).

But alas — the wenches outnumber the knaves so the search for eligible young men continues. Selected participants “will benefit from workshops with highly qualified classical actors, tickets to shows and sometimes even onstage experience,” according to Dawn Rochelle Tucker, director of education for the Southwest Shakespeare Company.

Wenches and Knaves members help SSC promote shows and sell souvenirs, represent SSC on the streets of the Valley in full Shakespearean costume and perform the Bard’s work geurilla style at festivals and other venues.

Students also work in areas of character development, text work, personal voice and improvisation. Interested boys in grades 11 and 12 can contact Sara Chambers with SSC at for audition and program information.

But make haste. The 2010/2011 season for the Southwest Shakespeare Company opens soon with “Blood Royal,” being performed at the Mesa Arts Center.

Second, news from a national organization called Americans for the Arts — which is holding a “Why Arts Matter” video contest. The winning video will be shown on the MTV screen in NYC’s Times Square, and the winner will be there to capture it on his or her new Flip UltraHD Camcorder.

Video entries can be uploaded to YouTube through Sept 24. A voting period takes place between Sept 24 and Oct 8 — with the winner will be announced on Oct 12 to kick off National Arts & Humanities Month.

Finally, a call for artists from the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts –which is seeking artists working in all media to exhibit at the 41st annual Scottsdale Arts Festival on March 11-13, 2011.

Participating artists will be selected by a jury of arts professionals who will also award prizes in several categories — including ceramic, furniture, glass, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, textiles and woodworking.

The award-winning festival displays the work of some 200 artists from throughout North America among the gardens, fountains and walkways of the Scottsdale Civic Center.

The festival attracts “tens of thousands of Scottsdale-area residents and visitors,” who also can enjoy live music, entertainment, fine food and wine, and activities for children.

Works of art can be purchased at the event or via online auction, with proceeds benefiting arts and youth education programs of the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts.

There you have it. Now get out there and alert your favorite knaves, videographers and artists…


Graphics from — which offers a wide range of products perfect for gift giving

Note: If your organization is issuing a call for visual or performing artists, please add a brief comment below to share information about your opportunity with our readers

Coming up:  New and improved theater venues in the Valley, Sunday’s free “Grandparents Day: Passport to Japan” celebration at the Arizona Museum for Youth in Mesa

Update: The Arizona Jewish Theatre Company holds auditions Thursday, Sept 16, for its “All Rights Reserved Teen Improv Troupe.” Auditions begin at 7pm at Congregation Beth Israel and youth ages 13-18 can call 602-264-0402 to schedule an appointment time.


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