Dear Beyonce,
Yes you are sexy, but you are also wrong. Diva IS NOT the female version of a Hustla Your song is catchy, but the lyric really annoys me. I know you aren’t reading my blog, but I just wanted to put it out there. If you want to know what a diva really is, here’s Anna Netrebko. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m ready to go to the opera.

Hugs and Kisses,

Mark

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CUNY’s Sustainable Shorts contest is expanded until April 22, 2009. With a $500 prize, why wouldn’t you enter? Contest is only open to CUNY students, alumni, faculty and staff. Details are available on the Sustainable CUNY website. You can submit your video, or just check out the competition here.

Here’s one of the latest entries from Michele Forsten (City Tech) and Barry Mitchell (Graduate Center) . My favorite line– “less gas, more grass.”

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Zombie Hunters: City Of The Dead didn’t take top spot at this year’s Rondo Awards for best independent film, but we did get honorable mention. That’s not too shabby considering 1. Zombie Hunters isn’t a film at all and 2. we were up against Christopher Walken reading Edgar Allen Poe’s classic, The Raven. The top dog? SPINE TINGLER: The William Castle Story (Directed by Jeffrey Schwarz).

Zombies faired better. World Zombie Day took first place for fan event of the year. That bodes well for us. Where there’s Zombies, there are Zombie Hunters.

The Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards were created by David Colton and Kerry Gammill at the Classic Horror Film Boards in 2002. The awards are fan-based, and have no connection to any commercial sponsor. Anyone in fandom can vote or propose nominees.

Thanks to everyone who voted for us. Next year DVD 2 will be eligible for nominations, so let’s keep our cold, dead fingers crossed.

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Tibbie-X in an undisclosed Brooklyn location Tibbie-X from NYC’s own Kissy Kamikaze graced the set of our last Zombie Hunter shoot. I was shooting with a camera. Tibbie was the one using a gun (an Airsoft replica, actually).

Tibbie is playing hunter Gabby. Kissy K’s music is on episode 4 and Tibbie will be on the episodes 5-8 DVD, but that’s all I could let on without pissing a whole lot of people off. If you want to find out more, check out the Zombie Hunter blog.

Also in attendance: Vinny from Sci-Fi Ninja Theater.

By the way, here’s Tibbie and friends rocking out at some all girl roller derby. I don’t know what this is all about, but I can’t stop watching it.

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Aisha Gilkes is deathly afraid of spiders. While producing this piece, I encouraged her to “face her fears” and let the tape roll. What resulted was this personal narrative about fear and looking it right in the eye. Gilkes produced this piece in the Fall 08 TVR 25.1 Elementary Radio Production class at Brooklyn College.

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As an African-American, Vaughan Myers always felt funny when someone asked him “Where are you from?” He had no answer other than “right here.” His quest to find his history took him to his cousin Nona Reilly, his family’s “Alex Haley.” Myers produced this piece, “Cousins,” in Fall 2008 in my TVR 25.1 class at Brooklyn College–elementary radio production.
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I’m rushing to finish a brand new audio drama- an adaptation of The 1/3rders by Cory Einbinder. That should be ready by this summer. In the meantime, here is Jesus Hitler which I recorded in 2001. I voiced the story, which was probably a mistake since I’m a better ballerina than I am an actor, but the rhythmic voice music by Floor Van Herreweghe really helped.

Jesus Hitler is a strange story, so it might make more sense if I tell you I wrote it right after I finished William Burroughs’ Wild Boys. Essentially it is my take on Dante’s Purgatorio. I hope you enjoy.

P.S. I really like Jesus.
P.S.S. Audio theater isn’t dead. just check out Fred Greenhalgh’s Radio Drama Revival. It’s probably my all-time favorite podcast.

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Jenova Chen, 27, is a video game design upstart. His goal seems modest– to add “vegetables” to the unadventurous menu of video game diet. But, like everything else, the development of interactive media into a valid form of expression is at a crossroads thanks to digital distribution. The same trends that are changing the game (pun intended) of the game industry are also the same forces changing music, film and journalism forever. Here is Jenova from a recent episode of Studio 360. Or you can listen to it right here:

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Lawrence K. Grossman lived in the worlds of both commercial and public television at the highest levels. As a former president of PBS and former head of NBC news, Grossman’s interview is a perfect class transition from commercial broadcast to topics in public broadcasting. While you would think a promotions and advertising exec might be a little more… animated, we can cut Grossman a little slack–the interviewer isn’t exactly Hugh Jackman either. Never the less, this video is informative and interesting. If you don’t think it is interesting, then imagine ME talking about this for 50 minutes.

This is from a series called  Conversations With History, which is produced at the Institute of International Studies at the University of California at Berkeley. 

Here is a link to the transcript.

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Between academic and practitioner, producer and executive , thinker and doer, teacher and theoretician there too often exists a Chinese Wall. So how rare it is when you find an individual like George Dessart. Dessart,  Professor Emeritus at Brooklyn College and former VP at CBS is all of the above. You can read his official bio here, but my recollection of him is more personal. Not TOO long ago, he was my professor. Without giving offense to my other teachers, he is one of only two whose lessons I often seem to remember even if I can’t remember what I ate for breakfast (the other is the historian Paul Avrich).

So when preparing for this past class on global media and the history of the BBC, it is no surprise that professor Dessart was very close to the front of my mind. So why should you care? To paraphrase Arthur Jenson from Network, because you study television, dummy (none of you are dummies, but the quote doesn’t work without it). In his book Down the Tube: An Inside Account of the Failure of American Television, co-written with William Baker, Dessart and Baker try to make sense of why American television is in decline. Baker and Dessart, both TV executives at the highest levels, take our  text-book orthodoxy and explain it in thoughtful, real-world terms. For Dessart and Baker, the cycle of regulation and deregulation has had a destructive effect on American media and the example of the BBC is used as a comparative counterpoint.

Much has changed in the broadcast world since the book was published in 1999, but many of the dynamics are still in play. If you have any inclinations to work in the media industry, have an intellectual interest in television or just want to be an educated consumer of your favorite show, read Down The Tube. Now.

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