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The Zombie Chicken Awards

posted by Megan Wygant on Tue, May 26, 2009
in General theatre talk

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You like us! You really like us!

OK, well, Chad Jones over at Theater Dogs likes us, which is totally awesome. is run by Chad Jones, who writes about the ins-and-outs and behind-the-scenes buisiness of theatre at many of our local papers. I also have it on good authority that he's an excellent bowler. One of my favorite things about Theater Dogs is that it really reflects the wealth of theatre taking place in the Bay Area --  whether it's an interview with a local playwright, a profile on a Bay Area comedy troupe (well, hello, Killing My Lobster!), or a carefully examined, thoughtful critique of the latest show on one of the Bay Area's numerous stages.

ANYWAY: Chad nominated (and therefore, gave) our little blog a Zombie Chicken Award -- an honor bestowed upon blogs "so compelling that readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read them." Wow! (or, um...BRAAAAAAINS!) We're delighted, and for the record, Chad, we'd devour ahem, read, your material any day.

Part of the responsibility of winning a Zombie Chicken Award is that you must infect five other worthy bloggers. Here then, in no particular order, are our five favorite theatre-based blogs, as nominated by the contributors to this one: Lisa Lazar is Berkeley Rep's charge scenic artist -- that is, the alchemist responsible for transforming styrofoam into stone and metal into wood on Berkeley Rep's stages. Her personal blog ranges from activism and birds to neurology, photography, and all manner of other interesting things, but her "what the heck is a scenic artist?" posts offer a funny and fascinating perspective on what it takes to get our sets on the stage (and looking so good). Actor James Carpenter started this blog for Cal Shakes' Richard III, and continued to use it to chronicle his work, even though Richard III is now several shows past. Many of us here at Berkeley Rep follow the work of Cal Shakes with great interest, whether it's because we used to work there, or have friends who currently do (it's a small world, East Bay theater is), so we were reading Jim's blog even before the actor himself arrived at the Theatre for The Lieutenant of Inishmore--and subsequently wrote a really lovely farewell-to-the-show post. Drop by to hear about rehearsals for Cal Shakes' Romeo and Juliet. In French, "une bricoleuse" is a creative, resourceful person (in this case, a woman) who creates things from scratch; someone who collects information and things and then puts them together in a manner for which they were not originally designed. In the blog world, La Bricoleuse is a costume artisan who documents her work in millinery, mask-making, period costumes, and more. She provides perspective on a career in fine arts, and highlights interesting work from other artisans. It's informative, well-written, and definitely a must-read for those who want to stretch their crafty ways. Portland Center Stage's blog has been around a bit longer than we have, and we're playing with the idea of wanting to be them when we grow up. What do we like? It's very authentic; a little rough-n-tumble/fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants. We like the voice of the authors. We might have a crush on Chris Coleman, the artistic director (definitely check out his posts--very funny). Plus, you've got input from people like Alan Cummings. What's not to love? When we first decided to start this blog, everyone was supposed to bring to the table one or two blog-posts whose style we enjoyed. Several people arrived with McCarter's condom-and-battery post. Longtime fans of our theatre will probably also enjoy their video about the Argonautika load-out --  it's the same set you saw here two years ago, and the load-out process is quite similar to what took place on our stage when we struck the set. Plus, recent authors include Tarell McCraney, who is currently one of Berkeley Rep's artists under commission. They do good work, McCarter does. So take a look!

All five of these blogs (and Chad's--who would have been our first choice if he hadn't nominated us first!) are great reads definitely worthy of the Zombie stamp of approval. And, as recipients of this award, they now have the task of passing it on to at least five other worthy bloggers. As another blogger has said: "do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely...or not choosing at all."

(yes, this was an attempt to combine the call of the zombie with the call of the chicken. What?!? I'm a blogger, not a zombie-chicken-impersonator!)


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