Some photos from my June 9, 2017 visit to Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala’
Photo credit: SJF Communications
Feel free to click on each photo (arrow key advances), like, comment, & share!
It was a beautiful San Diego day last Sunday, April 23, 2017. I was meeting friends from the East Coast at the San Diego Zoo. Little did I know that Balboa Park was celebrating Earth Day, and it was extremely crowded! Parking took forever! But lo and behold, I finally was able to park and decided to capture some images of the afternoon at Balboa Park en route to meeting my friends.
Most of the images are flowers. That’s celebrating the Earth, right???
Feel free to enjoy these images by clicking on each one.
Have fun and kindly “Like, Comment, Share” away!
All photo credit: SJF Communications
La Jolla, California couple Hedges Capers and Nancy Locke Capers are truly an extraordinary couple! They are married co-creators and co-writers of The Geeze & Me– an original “boomer” musical about aging…which will have it’s World Premiere March 31 – April 29, 2017 in San Diego at The Tenth Avenue Arts Center.
Hedges, formerly of the folk duo Hedges & Donna (with ex-spouse Donna Carson, during the late 1960’s-early 70’s), is The Geeze & Me Composer/Lyricist and also plays several characters in the production (David, the Soap Boxer and Beat Poet) and Nancy, a member of the Director’s Guild of America, SAG-AFTRA is the Producer & Director.
According to Hedges and Nancy:
The Geeze & Me is a funny, irreverent, and poignant original musical. This timely show features a comedic troupe of eccentric players who team up to wrangle aspects of aging from an expert. An eclectic blend of songs ranging from pop to blues to corner street doo-wop, accompanied by innovative choreography. The perils and benefits of growing older are reflected in the concerns of this diverse group of people.
Think “Hair,” after it’s gone.
THIS IS THE DAWNING OF THE AGE OF BEWARE OF US
(Read more about The Geeze & Me below following the interviews)
Connecting with Hedges and Nancy for SJF Communications to provide PR/Publicity for The Geeze & Me has been a total joy and is never dull! Hedges is truly a master wordsmith and composer/lyricist/musician and Nancy, Actress-Psychotherapist, is warm, open, nurturing and very astute. They are equally excited about The Geeze & Me!
I am so proud to interview this “chill” dynamic duo, partners in personal life-and in the biz!
Without further ado….introducing our interview with Hedges Capers followed by Nancy Locke Capers!
Photos courtesy of Hedges Capers and Nancy Locke Capers
SJF: Tell us about yourself, where were you born? Where have you lived?
HC: My father was a Navy Chaplain …the longest time I spent in one location was two years…until I was 50 – then I was stable for three years. It has been four years now and I’m planning on more in the San Diego/La Jolla area.
I was born in Princeton NJ…I lived in Pennsylvania, Kansas, Virginia, New York, Guam, California (Monterey, San Francisco, La Jolla, L.A., San Diego, Whittier, Beverly Hills, Benedict Canyon, Laurel Canyon, Hollywood, Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach), Japan, Washington State & Washington DC and Hawaii. And some I don’t remember !
SJF: You have certainly lived EVERYWHERE! When did you first perform?
HC: My first performance was 1959 on board ship to Japan…I sang Endless Sleep and Shimmy Shimmy Ko-Ko-Bop. I began writing lyrics at age 11 and started composing music when I was 15. I received my BA at Whittier University and Masters of Arts at the University Without Walls, a tutorial program out of U.C. Berkeley. Private lessons: I’ve never had a music lesson, I tried a vocal lesson 5 years ago when I was unable to sing at all. The lesson was unsuccessful, but it led to my vocal cord surgery which thankfully was successful and instrumental in the content of our show.
SJF: Tell us about you as an actor
HC: I did theatre shows in college; Pajama Game – Playboy Of The Western World – Zoo Story – Rashomon and a few others… but I just wanted to be a singer I never thought about acting. … I went to college because I didn’t know how to get into the music industry (even after having signed a recording contract in 1961 at age 16). I didn’t want to pump gas or marry Leigh Deane Larson… I formed a trio my first week of college- we were hired to sing at a hotel dining bar 2 days after we met and sang together for four years at Whittier. We signed with Dot Records in 1966 and released a single in Japan which we were told made the charts there to #7.
In 1970 I had the title role in The Legend of Hillbilly John. The producers didn’t know whether they should get an actor they hoped could sing or a singer they hoped could act… the final two choices were Arlo Guthrie and myself… a stunning cast of amazing character actors Denver Pyle, Harris Yulin, RG Armstrong, Susan Strasberg and more.
SJF: Any low times?
HC: Hearing a group of kids ask Donna (my ex-wife and former duo partner) if she knew me? She said “Yes he’s my husband” – they looked at her then back at me then back at her and said “He doesn’t look at all black” but in their world it was not possible that a white man and a black woman could be married.. the only possibility was that I must be black… that night I wrote
“No child of mine’s gonna have to plant no god damn cotton. No child of mine ever gonna harvest up the rain No child of mine’s ever gonna have to know that pain. Steeple people twisted children God’s almighty bent and broken they went to Little Rock all alone and God went home”.
Anger and hurt were the emotions…Donna was pregnant and I was wondering are we doing to this child-any favors bringing him into THIS?
SJF: Tell us about your duo Hedges and Donna
HC: We opened for Nina Simone, Judy Collins and Bobby Hebb, Harry Belafonte, Neil Diamond, Oscar Brown Junior and Jean Pace, Ritchie Havens … Groups that opened for us? Jackson Browne, Blood Sweat and Tears, James Taylor, Ritchie Havens, Hoyt Axton, Joni Mitchell and lots more…
SJF: Highs of your career?
HC: Too many highs to list them all …Headlining the Philadelphia Folk Festival… The Smothers Brothers Show, Carnegie Hall, The Tonight Show three times.
SJF: …and Lows?
HC: Lows… for a sad reason. At the Atlanta International Pop Festival 1970… the crowd estimates vary even today between 200,000 and 600,000 people… 750,000 was the count the artists were given…much larger than Woodstock. This was deep South… we had played The Hungry I in SF with Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs and were told by them ”You all can come”…it was their nod of approval to our music… as we performed on stage at the festival we were buzzed repeatedly by a series of Lear and larger jets… no other act had that happen… We were told later that Lester Maddox had orchestrated that as a show of his objection…
SJF: What differentiates you as a composer, writer, performer, former therapist, corporate biz guy?
HC: I don’t have a clue….but maybe? I’ve always loved lyric and loved word play… as a 5 year-old, I went to a school with first thru eighth grade in the same classroom and above the black board the alphabet and numbers were written out … I stared and then saw U R N U 2 B 4 U 4 U R 1 U C A B U T U Q U 2 B U. U 1 2 B 4 U? I 1 2 B 4 U 2! OG.
Language in Thought and Action by S.I Hiyakawa was my English book in high school. Albert Upton was my freshman college English professor and he was Hiyakawa’s chief semantic rival. I was partnered with the original Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) research team and was the first person certified to train for the Process Communication Model (PCM), the only two process models for human interaction…
All that to say I have had an extraordinary exposure to how words affect people, and I am pretty sure I’ve never looked at a phrase with that lens consciously.
SJF: Tell us about The Geeze & Me
HC: I would love to see The Geeze & Me on Broadway… In Vegas, and Branson and touring groups in regional theaters all over… I would love folks to feel that passion of “It ain’t over until the fat lady sings and there ain’t a lady fat enough to sing for this generation …” I would like people to hear the research regarding aging and feel empowered. I’d like to stand outside a theater in NY and hear people humming or singing “HOW OLD DO YOU FEEL?”
SJF: I am singing that tune all the time already!
SJF: What is your strongest asset?
HC: I love people! And I think I understand their worth.
SJF: Tell us two wonderful things and two difficult aspects of being YOU
HC: 1. I love the way my mind works especially with words… as they flutter by like Butterflies…Or like the way I hear Guilt and my mind says “it’s just decorative stuff that goes around mirrors (gilt) unless you put U in it… or being ‘now and here’ is really being ‘nowhere’ where you know where you are… I have developed a patience in my late 60’s that I never dreamed I’d have…2. Difficult aspects… my grief is way too close to the surface… I see it too clearly in too many places too much of the time.
SJF: Tell me what makes Hedges “TICK”
HC: I use to say “I’m just moving slide to slide and sucking on the main stream… but I think I was just being flippant… I think I just want to see my kids headed to something that might be full with enough joy to be really worthwhile and I still want to see a bit of tomorrow.
SJF: If you had to do it over again…how would you choose what do in life as a career/profession?
HC: I have been blessed to have done exactly as I dreamed.
SJF: What two things don’t we know about you?
HC: I don’t know what you do know so it’s hard to know what you don’t but…If you have asked me something I will tell you. I haven’t found it useful to hide
SJF: What are your fears??…
HC: I’ve had anxiety attacks at different times in my life that were debilitating… I think as a result of several years of drug experimenting… sniff, swallow or smoke without question…a really stupid period. Fortunately for me the era of designer drugs had not arrived then or I may have died as my son did.
I think I also fear I was not the father I should have been… my kids deny this but how can we ever really know?
SJF: Any regrets?
HC: 1- Not having been able to prevent my son’s death. 2- Not being cleaner with how I separated from Donna… I didn’t want to be the “bad” guy and so I drug things out instead of saying “I won’t do this, I’m leaving you.” Explanations can just muddy the water and invite attempts to change ones mind.
It is hard to have regrets when you are given the opportunity to live a life long dream. At 7 or 8 that’s what I wanted. At 7 we went to the Grand Canyon and my folks put my sister and me on the mule ride at the bottom of the canyon. It seemed like my mule wanted to nibble on things growing on the fall and you die side of the path. I was in tears but the path is too narrow to turn around or dismount and walk back so I had to go all the way… I cried until I realized my fear was unfounded… but my parents could hear me singing filling the Grand Canyon with joy for 45 minutes before the mules reached the top.
… if I reach for one regret, it’s that I didn’t do a better job of keeping clippings and songs and the journal writing I sometimes did… Moving as much as I did I never kept “things”- I would love to have been able to share those with my kids.. but … And the songs that were written that have been forgotten.
SJF: An ideal week for you would be…
HC: Watching The Geeze and Me on Broadway with my family and friends- playing golf (well!) with my buds.. singing … eating Swiss enchiladas.. swimming in warm water, walking on the beach at sunrise and again at sunset… hearing the world laugh … discovering that there really is an afterlife that works well enough to make any pain of this life irrelevant … KNOWING that I did what I was here to do, knowing, without a doubt.
SJF: What have been your life hurdles?
HC: 1. I was told at 16 my sibilance was so bad I would for sure never be able to be a recording artist…2. My height: I was 4’11” as a Junior in high School 3. I can’t sing the way I want to sing… ( I like the way I sing… it’s that there are ways I can’t that I’d love to but I think men don’t have the tool women have…).
I don’t think there have really been any hurdles because my life is evidence that I haven’t been stopped. There are things I haven’t done but the choice to not pursue has been mine, I have stopped.
Photos courtesy of Hedges Capers and Nancy Locke Capers
SJF: Tell us about your upbringing, family, siblings, schooling, etc.
NLC: I was born in the SPAM capital of the world – Austin, Minn. We were solid middle-class. I grew up in Minnesota & Mt. Lebanon, Pittsburgh. Came to Glendale, California when I was 11. My Mother was a singer and housewife and my Dad was a businessman.
I have an older brother who is an international trade Attorney and previously worked in the White House as Legal Counsel under former Presidents Nixon & Ford. My sister, ordained in the Episcopal Church, was a Chaplain at San Francisco General Hospital in the 80s, during the A.I.D.S. epidemic. I returned to school at age 40 and have my Masters of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology. (Still think about going for my PhD. I’m a knowledge-hound.)
SJF: When did you begin acting?
NLC: I began acting when I was tapped for a Kimbie’s diapers hidden camera commercial with my baby son. Shortly thereafter, Geoff Lewis (Juliette Lewis’s wonderful dad) walked into my kitchen and asked me if I wanted to be in a movie. I said, “Sure.” He coached me on how to audition on the way to the meeting at Sunset Plaza, with the director, Floyd Mutrux. I auditioned, and when it was clear I was a terrible actor, he said “I have a waitress part with 11 or 12 lines. Do you think you could handle that?” and I was off to the races. A friend of mine, Robert F. Lyons, began teaching acting around this time and thought I might enjoy taking classes. I studied with him for two years before going on my 2nd audition.
SJF: Who have you taken private lessons with?
NLC: In acting: Milton Katselas, Robert F. Lyons, Joan Darling, John Voight. In Producing: Ron Schwartz, Jim Aubrey. Directing: Garry Marshall, Ulu Grossbard, Dwight Little, etc. You pick up a lot just being around a set.
SJF: Were you always enthused about acting?
NLC: Not at all. I didn’t really begin until I was 30. My son was a baby and so I didn’t start seriously auditioning until I was 30.
SJF: What are some highlights of your acting career?
NLC: “Pretty Woman” of course was so much fun to work on. I learned a lot from Garry Marshall and how he handled actors. True Confessions with Robert Duvall and Robert De Niro – I worked in a scene (later cut), but he was the kindest, most generous man. He completely normalized any nerves I was feeling. By the way, Milton Katselas used to say that “nerves are our talent trying to get out.” He put a positive frame on having nerves. He also said, “If you’re not nervous then you should be concerned.” That might be a tip-off that you’ll give a flat performance.
SJF: Have there been any low times?
NLC: I was previously married to an actor/director/writer and so we were each doing our separate jobs. The low times were really when the jobs weren’t coming in and the bank account was running out. Ninety-nine percent of SAG members don’t make a living at acting. We were able to live nicely and reap the benefits of being working actors. I made a decision not to do on-location work, which definitely impacted my hire-ability. I wanted to be a mom to my son and step-daughter. I’m not sure that I experienced “low time” because of it, but I felt it was more important to have a responsible adult at home, and my former spouse was working actively during that period and wasn’t able to provide childcare.
SJF: Any Pretty Woman stories?
NLC: Yes, but not sure I’d want to go public with them. Richard Gere was a perfect gentleman and quite kind. Jason Alexander was hilarious. Julia was like a fresh colt, very excited to be working on the film, along with everyone else.
SJF: Jane Fonda stories?
NLC: I was a spokesperson for Jane Fonda Work-Out Wear in the ’80s. They chose 3 women out of 700, so I felt incredibly lucky. We met. She congratulated me on getting the job. She was very kindhearted.
SJF: What differentiates you as a director, performer, person, actor, therapist, corporate biz person?
NLC: Hmmm. My humor? My curiosity in all things? My experiences with tragedy. I’m not sure. But I lost my parents at ages 18 & 26, so all three of us (me, sister, brother) have fairly wicked senses of humor as a coping mechanism. I think it’s a survival mechanism for those struck with tragedy as a young person. All my life I’ve found most people endlessly interesting. This, of course, reflects the kind of work I’ve chosen as an actor, writer and psychotherapist.
SJF: Tell us about The Geeze & Me
NLC: It began as a lark. Hedges had some unrecorded songs that were fantastic. I’d been missing the theatre world, so I thought maybe I could fashion a love story around those existing songs. But then, I (or he, one forgets who brings what to the table in collaboration) decided to do something about aging. We’re the largest demographic of elders in the history of the world.
So, Hedges went to bed at night and would wake up with this wonderful, funny, deep music that surprised both of us. It just came rolling out of him. He used to be a staff writer at A & M, so he knew songwriting structure. And so then I had to actually learn how to write a musical. This was tortuous and enchanting, but I don’t have a musical bone in my body. Thank goodness he was so prolific. At some point, we both began collaborating on the book. Somewhere (when it was still a little theater idea) it became clear that I would direct it-which was and is terrifying. It would be terrific if it had legs and went on to tour in regional theatres, etc.
SJF: What is your strongest asset?”
NLC: My publicist.
SJF: LOL!!! Thanks, Nancy! You make my work easy!
SJF: Tell us two wonderful things about being a Psychotherapist.
NLC: Two wonderful things:
1. It is an honor to do the psychotherapeutic work I do. When people say, “Ugh, how can you stand listening to problems all day” I don’t understand why they think this is difficult or depressing. In fact, it’s the opposite. It’s energizing when someone talks with you on a deep, intimate level that does not often happen outside of the office. It’s invigorating to give another the space to explore safely. It’s a privilege.
2. Seeing suffering in all its disparate forms is humbling.
SJF: And two difficult aspects as a Psychotherapist?:
NLC: 1. I can’t fix them in 10 minutes. I have to let them take the time they need to heal and arrange their life differently or get out of a bad relationship. 2. There’s a chronic sense of loss in my job. People move, people don’t need you anymore, people have a hard time staying in therapy when they should – so, one learns to deal with it, but you invest YOURSELF in your clients. That’s a big part of the job. It’s in the relationship, the trust, the consistency, the non-judgmental dialog that allows a patient to heal.
SJF: Tell me…what makes Nancy “TICK”?”
NLC: I’m alive. That, and sheer terror. Joking. Kind of.
SJF: If you had to do it over again…how would you choose what do in life as a career/profession?
NLC: Well, primarily, I would not join a cult (Scientology). That was really an attempt to grab ahold of something, anything that gave me structure and the appearance of answers at that point of my life. I could have studying for my PhD. But I think you have to be allowed to explore and pay attention to what turns you on. Go where your passion leads you, if you’re lucky enough to have the time and financial support to do so. I think “following your bliss” just is not an option for most people, but that changes with age. For me I’ve been allowed to return to the world of the theatre which I’ve been away from for 20 years.
SJF: What two things don’t we know about you?
NLC: That I know how to make a delicious Hartquist Spring Salad Sandwich. And that I was on TWA flight 840 that exploded in mid-air over Greece.as a result of a terrorist bomb in 1986. I was on my way to Greece to meet my former husband on a film he was making. Ten days later I had to fly to South Africa as the lead in a film (Hostage) about terrorism, shooting in the fuselage of a plane for six weeks. We then had to go to Dallas to shoot a film we’d written.
SJF: What are your fears?
NLC: I think I have the usual fears that all parents have. I fear something happening to my son. Losing my stepson at age 20 was, and is, indescribably sad. Oddly enough, I don’t fear flying.
SJF: How do you “give back”?
NLC: We’re donating 50% of The Geeze & Me revenues to: A New Path, PATH, LGBT Senior Care, and The Unbattle Project. We’ve also given to the UCSD Center for Healthy Aging.
SF: Any regrets?
NLC: Of course.
SJF: Enough said!
SJF: Ideal week for you would be…NLC: Travel to Maui, read a great novel, swim in the ocean with mi amoré. (Kind of what I do here anyway….)
SJF: What have been your life hurdles? Successes?”
NLC: Overcoming panic disorder. Feeling like I’m not “enough”. Not being thin enough. Not being pretty enough. You know, typical American woman hurdles.
Successes? As I look back on my life, I’m aware that I’ve felt chosen by casting directors, by a director, by the producer. But I am also aware that it’s a roll of the dice. I’m not sure I take any particular pride in being chosen. I think the successes also had to do with persistence. You just kept doing it. And I was able to keep doing it because of nepotism or having a good day at that audition, or knowing the right person. I learned at some point that the confidence game is really about acting “as if.” I’ve seen major actors get squeamish if they have a crying scene coming up, whereas I’d worked with “lesser” actors who could cry on a dime. If one chooses a profession in theatre/films, you have to love doing it. It’s terribly hard on people because of the rejection rate. But, Mark Ruffalo went on 600 auditions before being chosen. You have to be good enough when you stumble upon an opportunity.
I tend to be a risk-taker. For example, this is my first time directing a musical. I have great support from extremely talented others – BJ (musical director), Hedges, having a great staff, fantastic cast. Feeling the fear and doing it anyway. That’s how we grow.
SJF: Who is your inspiration?
NLC: My mother. I’ve gotten to live the life she would have loved.
SJF: What are your 5 year and 10 year goals?
NLC: Seriously? That goal setting never works for me. Even when I’ve been diligent. I never said, “I’m going land a part on Dynasty in 5 years!” So much of my life has been being in the right place at the right time. I’m not sure I ever really consciously set a goal. Perhaps I should have. You know, I’d decide to take a class in screenplay writing (from Syd Fields) and then I’d write a couple of mediocre scripts, then I’d work on something and someone would show interest in it. So much of acting, writing, selling a script, getting my masters degree – it was all so pleasurable, with just the right amount of challenge.
SJF: Describe your dreams.
NLC: VIVID. I know you’re talking about BIG DREAMS, but I’m talking about nightly, very vivid, wild, entertaining dreams since I’ve begun directing The Geeze & Me. What subconscious?
SJF: Describe three pivotal events in your life.
NLC: My Father’s death. My Mother’s death. Marrying mi amour.
SJF: Role models- male and female?
NLC: Hmmm, well, I tend to be suspicious of role models, of idealizing an individual and projecting onto them all of my ideas about who they are. But you know who comes to mind? Béyoncé. I know. I’m a 68-yr. old white woman, but watch Drunk, In Love and tell me she’s not got it going on. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1JPKLa-Ofc) It’s hard to do overt sexuality and not feel used at the end of the day. And she’s brave enough to go for it. Hillary Clinton. President Obama’s grace and elegance. Jon Stewart’s genius. Stephen Colbert’s limitless mind.
SJF: Where are your favorite La Jolla/San Diego places? Your favorite places for a vacation?
NLC: In La Jolla – George’s; A small Greek restaurant called Cafe Athena in Pacific Beach, La Valencia Hotel for breakfast, Come On In’s cornmeal pancakes. My ideal vacation: on a beach anywhere. Paris, like most everyone. Lisbon. London. Monemvasia, Greece. Two Bunch Palms in Desert Hot Springs. I’m not a Trump Tower person, and I like small, manageable, places that feel personal. It’s a feeling I get in a place. But Jerusalem would be good, too.
SJF: Any memorable live performance experiences (or other), and why?
NLC: Anthony Hopkins in Equus. Raw power. I was sitting in the front row and I was certain that Anthony Hopkins delivered his monologue to me. Which is how great actors make you feel…
I also saw a recent production of The Normal Heart at the Diversionary Theatre that about ripped mine out of my chest. I can’t remember being so deeply struck by anything like that in a long time. Really visceral. The play is about the A.I.D.S. crisis hitting in the 80s in San Francisco. My sister was a Chaplain at San Francisco General at that time, and I recall vividly our conversations about what they were seeing then. About all the men who were dying. She saw it firsthand. The production, directed by Kim Strassberger and Claudio Raygoza was superb.
Many thanks, Hedges and Nancy for giving us a peek into your lives! It’s been a pleasure interviewing you!
What if there was a musical – simultaneously serious and hilarious, that explores the wild ride of life’s later years, addressing the good, the bad and the ugly of aging? The Geeze & Me is a musical production about the aging process, upsides and down. The World Premiere of The Geeze & Me will be presented in San Diego, March 31 – April 29 at the Tenth Avenue Arts Center.
The Geeze & Me Production/Creative Team includes: Original Music/Lyrics by Hedges Capers and Book written by Hedges Capers and Nancy Locke Capers. Produced and Directed by Nancy Locke Capers. Musical Direction by Will (B.J.) Robinson, Choreography by Joanne Lovejoy, Sound & Video by Joe Huppert, Costume Design by Max Cadillac, Lighting Design by Cynthia Bloodgood,Script Consultant Dilip Jeste, M.D., and Danielle K. Glorioso, L.C.S.W., in consultation with UCSD Center for Healthy Aging at UCSD, PR/Media/Press by Susan J. Farese, SJF Communications, Casting by Samuel Warren & Associates, , with Brendan Hill as Assistant Director and Beonica Bullard as Stage Manager.
THE GEEZE AND ME CAST: Devlin (Kay), Hedges Capers (David), Kent Brisby (Bob), Byron La Due (Howard), Gabriela Nelson (Sherry), Jesse MacKinnon (Dwight), Lorraine Devon Wilke (Helen), Lolly Boroff (Mrs. Dingler), Susan Benninghoff (Miranda), Kiera Mersky (Bobbi & Margo), Lauren Preski (Margret), Erin Vanderhyde (Homeless), Susie Singer Carter (Science & Ginger) and Scotty Billion (Undertaker).
The Geeze & Me is a funny, irreverent, and poignant show about surviving aging. This timely show features a comedic troupe of eccentric players who team up to wrangle aspects of aging from an expert. An eclectic blend of songs ranging from pop to blues to corner street doo-wop, accompanied by electric choreography and state of the art projections. The perils and benefits of growing older are reflected in the concerns of this diverse
The Geeze & Me is thrilled to give back! Over 50 % of proceeds from ticket sales of The Geeze & Me will be donated to the following charities: Path, A New Path, The Unbattle Project and The Center LGBT Senior Services as well as the UCSD Center for Healthy Aging
What audience patrons of The Geeze & Me staged readings are saying:
“So life-affirming. Even just seeing a reading was fantastic. Look forward to seeing it mounted!”
“…the story, writing, and music are stunning.”
“…intimate dialectic you achieved between characters/story/music is amazing. So well done! Really smart.”
“…your inclusion of socio-scientific-political realities re: aging and society are never forced, always brief, and work. This is very hard to do. But you did it.”
“I’m in awe of the music/lyrics…”
General Admission tickets are $30: http://www.sdartstix.com/the-geeze-and-me/ or http://www.thegeezeandme.com. For Group Discount rate ($20 for 10 or more) contact email@example.com or call 858-232-9696.
SCHEDULE: Previews/Pay what you can with a cast talkback following the preview performances March 29 & 30th. Performances: March 31 – April 29, Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 2:00 p.m.
LOCATION: The Tenth Avenue Arts Center, 930 10th Ave, San Diego 92101
For press info, interviews, photos or press comps, please contact: Susan J. Farese,
Thank you for visiting SJF Communications!
Our next extraordinary person sharing her story is renowned Classical Pianist Dr. Jeeyoon Kim
Classical Pianist Dr. Jeeyoon Kim is a PR client of SJF Communications, but she is so much more than a client. Jeeyoon is a kindred spirit and hopefully a forever friend. She exudes kindness, positivity, talent, wit, intellect, elegance and a keen sense of mastery, interaction, connection and engagement as a person and as a musician. I first heard, rather “experienced” her incredible musical talents after one of our early business meetings. Jeeyoon surprised me by granting me my own “personal mini concert”. I must admit, I had to hold back tears – it was so surprisingly magical. It was an emotional experience for me to hear the selections she played, watching her gently move to the rhythms of the classical pieces she performed so gracefully and poetically. She was truly “one” in concert with the music. She respectfully honored each composer and emotionally as well as technically “connected” to each piece.
I knew from the beginning that she was an extraordinary person – and cannot wait for her exciting upcoming 10 More Minutes National CD Release Celebration Concert on December 11, 2016 at 3 p.m. at the Auditorium at The Scripps Research Institute!
Ticket Link for 10 More Minutes Concert & and a short video about 10 More Minutes!
Jeeyoon Kim is a force to reckon with! And so, without further ado…Ladies and Gentlemen:
SJF: Let’s start at the beginning! Please tell us about your upbringing, family, siblings, etc.
JK: I grew up in South Korea with one older brother. Both of my parents were business owners. I was raised to be independent, as my parents were always busy, but they always supported my music. They both were naturally good singers and they always sang a lot casually. I also remember the scenes of childhood involved with mountains, pine trees, Buddhist temples, and also contrasting high rises, busy cities and busy street markets. I was lucky enough to have both; places like New York City or scenery such as in the Smoky Mountains have almost an equal amount of feeling like of a home for me. I remember going to get fresh water at a nearby mountain top with my Grandma, and we would play badminton on the way back. I remember she always won those badminton games!. Going to a farmer’s market is one my favorite activities as that is one of the closest experiences I have in terms of getting produce just like we did when growing up in Korea. I still try to visit Korea once a year if possible. And most of those times, my list of foods I want to eat during my stay is always much longer than I can possibly eat then!
SF: When did you begin playing the piano? Private lessons? Were you always enthused about piano?
JK: I started playing piano when I was four years old, and I don’t have any recollection of choosing that myself. But I remember I always enjoyed going to the local piano institute on my own every day except Sunday to have a lesson and to practice. I thought it was always so much fun to play piano, and I still think it is!
SF: Such dedication at an early age-and ever lasting as you received your Doctorate in Piano Performance and Masters in Music Degrees at the Jacobs School of Music at the University of Indiana!
SF: Do you ever feel stage fright?
JK: If I feel so comfortable and normal playing in public, then I will start to worry about it, as I believe that having those butterflies in your stomach is a necessary part of being a performer and that makes a live performance more beautiful and organic. No, I don’t have a phobia doing it. I also know nobody dies if I make a mistake. I just learned and still learning to deal with it, as I love to share music with people.
SJF: So…there’s no need to keep the butterflies at bay!
SJF: Do you have any different routines on a performance day?
JK: Yes, I treat myself like a queen. Haha, just kidding. Perhaps I try to do my best to do things as normal as possible in terms of what I eat, but less physical practice, more sleep, taking a long walk for a mental practice and fully acknowledging a feeling of gratitude of that day given to me as a gift that I can share my music with people. I certainly don’t talk much before the performance though.
SJF: Very astute elements of your routine! Interesting about not practicing much that day and feeling gratitude for your gift of sharing! And feeling comfortable with the “quiet” on purpose is a point especially taken.
SJF: What do you think about when you are performing?
JK: I think about music and the composer, following their emotional process or its course of hidden messages closely. I also think about the overall structural picture of the piece, as if I am building an aural structure, noticing where I am going and where I am. If I focus on the core message, then the rest of technical things will serve its musical purpose. But if I put a priority on the perfection of the notes, no music nor perfection would exist.
SJF: Yes, affirmed! I most definitely witnessed that when I hear you perform!
SJF: Do you exercise?
JK: I want to exercise more than I do now. Normally I exercise with my trainer once a week, and swim once or twice a week at the Broadway Athletic and Swim Club. Generally speaking, I like to do an intense conditional workout and also long distance swimming. As time is one of the least available resources I have, I want to do a more intense interval workout when I actually get to exercise. Sometimes I swim to practice a piece in my mind on purpose, especially at the end of a day. It takes at least three or four times longer to practice in my mind than its actual time on piano, but it is so valuable for me to do so. I feel mentally exercised yet physically relaxed afterwards. I love it.
SJF: It would be so cool to be inside your mind and note the process as you “practice” while swimming! Wow, you are featured on the cover and interviewed in Swimmer Magazine! How cool is that?!
SJF: How did your new CD album 10 More Minutes evolve?
JK: It is like a recurring dream, I had a thought that kept popping in my head, which was creating an album to be very much like ‘Jeeyoony’ and as close as my live performances. I have realized that the time and spaces that I can reach is limited, but at the same time it doesn’t have to be that way. I thought creating an album is a great way to connect with more people in this world, sharing what I am passionate about. I also wanted to collect many of the pieces that are like my old friends, which I often play as an encore. ‘Ten more minutes’ is also a concept behind when audiences ask for encores at my live concerts. Definitely that is not greedy, as I am not asking for 10 more days, but just simply wish having that 10 More Minutes to cherish.
As soon as I had a concept in my head more solidly, it had its own life, evolving and expanding its possibility. I wanted to record pieces that are close to me, so it is easier to connect with people more. Then I realized that the time is actually ‘now’ to create. I presented the idea into a possible reality through crowdfunding, Kickstarter, to the world. I also wanted this project to be collaborated work with people, that mutually we all want this idea to be a reality. When it became successfully funded within 30 days, I have felt like I had received an excellent engine that can run so well, and all I had to do is to drive that engine with the best ability that I could ever have.
I cared for every single detail of this album, involving every aspects of this album, from each single note to finishing. I have created the best team for the album – a producer, sound engineer, graphic designers, photographers, a recording studio in New York City, and a great Hamburg Steinway. I feel content with it knowing that I did my absolute best – even though from the idea to the actual CD, it took about a year and half. I also feel that my whole life is fused in the album; if I didn’t have practice times when I was 4 years old, if I didn’t have that struggles and tears in my past studies and experiences, this would not have been the same.
The 10 More Minutes CD release celebration concert will take place on this December 11th, Sunday at 3 pm at Auditorium at the Scripps Research Institute (TSRI). That is a venue that I often performed at for the San Diego Symphony Chamber Music Series and the La Jolla Music Society. I wanted this national celebration to be where I reside, though this album is not limited to be local and I certainly hope some people from out of town can join this celebration as well. I can’t wait to celebrate this day with audiences, who have been in this journey with me all along. It will be certainly a concert that I will remember even without having that concert yet.
SJF: My anticipation is building, I cannot wait to see you present your gift performing and connecting with the audience!
SJF: What is your strongest asset?
JK: If I have to choose one asset that I find very useful in my journey it is the fact that I always look at the positive side and keep moving forward. There are struggles and difficulties, but I know at the end of it, I will get myself up again and continue my journey, doing my absolute best to be better each day. Some have said that I am strong, but I say I am not strong at all, but I will choose to get up again when I fall down, not because I am strong, but I know I will have struggles, which is normal, what I have to do is to learn to keep moving forward, learning valuable wisdoms on its ways. I always dream of a better version of me in 10 or 20 years.
SJF: Valuable advice for all! I asked Jeeyoon’s Managing Representative, Bryan Smith to say a few words about working with Jeeyoon. Here’s what Bryan had to say:
“Jeeyoon Kim is truly a musician of the 21st century. Her polish and depth as a performer reflect a connection to music that is equally physical, intellectual, and emotional. A true citizen of the world, her empathy towards, and genuine interest in the people and communities around her inform her choice of repertoire and her interpretations. Combining world class virtuosity with a humanist and personal connection with the audience, Jeeyoon achieves a degree of engagement that is often lacking in soloists at this level. She brings a truly modern sensibility to classic repertoire. She is a joy to listen to, and what’s more, a joy to work with” -Bryan Smith
SJF: Tell us about your studio? What is like taking piano lessons with you?
JK: At the Dr. Kim Piano Academy, I have a wide range of students, beginners to advanced. I only have just handful of young students, but mostly students older than 16 and adults. I find teaching very creative. I see each student and their own character as if they are an already beautiful bonsai tree. I find the areas that they need strengthening, and areas that they could shine more as it’s their strength. Finding unique ways for each student to accept these instructions to grow healthy in music is an art in itself. I sometimes feel like a therapist and need to be a good therapist to make them grow in music, as my students often say they get to know about themselves much more in piano lessons than any other activities. I love it.
SJF: Tell us…what makes Jeeyoon Kim “TICK”?
JK: Besides music, I do appreciate experiences with food. As a foodie, I can write an entire book about what I like about certain foods in certain cities. Recently I had an experience of dining in a restaurant called Benu in San Francisco. I still vividly remember every bite of every course. It was a really beautiful meal. I get excited about going on some adventures with a certain restaurant in mind. But my normal daily routine includes a very healthy and clean diet.
I love going to classical and jazz concerts, musicals, and plays. I get so energized and inspired from those live performances. I also like to play ping pong and pool. I can say I am not really great at it, but I get very into it. I own a good ping pong paddle and a pool glove for my left hand.
SJF: Those answers made me smile!
SJF: If you had to do it over again…how would you choose what do in life as a career/profession?
JK: Of course I would choose to be a pianist again, but besides that, I would choose something related to some language or food. Though I don’t definitely see myself as a cook even in a next life, I would love a job to communicate with people with different languages, which make me to travel for a job. After all, music is a language.
SJF: Here’s a fun question: What three things don’t we know about you?
I love watermelon. In fact, I have a weakness for them. I want to eat the whole intact thing in one sitting and I actually can do it undoubtedly, but I know I shouldn’t.
I have a black thumb, meaning I tend to kill all plants I have at my place. That is sad, but I really try. Not that I don’t water them, I do give them love and care, ,and water! Somehow no plants ever survived with me for a long period of time, even cactus. That doesn’t discourage me though. I keep trying to have them around me, doing my best to keep them alive. I talk to them each time watering them too -this might sound crazy but I do! I always get fresh flowers for my place. Flowers bring me a smile and that is more than I can ask for any object.
I enjoy at least an 85% or higher percentage of dark chocolate. The darker the chocolate, the more I like it. A friend of mine brought me 100% dark chocolate from Italy, and I actually liked that too. Probably somewhere around 88-93% would be my sweet spot.
SJF: Watermelon… Sad Flowers…Dark Chocolate! I shall remember that in the future!
SJF: An ideal week for you would include…
JK: I would have one public performance, three days of teaching, one beautiful meal at a great restaurant with people I love, weight training three times, swimming twice, practicing every day at least 5 hours except for the day of performance, praying every day, sushi one night, sleeping 8-9 hours, and laughing a lot.
SJF: Well said – you are very disciplined!
SJF: Describe your dreams
I am living the dream already in terms of what I am doing for life. I want to continue doing my dream, and keep dreaming more than I can be capable of. My dream is my limit.
SJF: Ah, you are fortunate to be living your dream and are very inspirational to others!
JK: Where are your favorite San Diego places?
My favorites in San Diego are Little Italy and the Hillcrest Farmers Market, walking around Balboa Park, Broadway Athletic and Swim Club for my night swimming, Lunch at the rooftop at George’s at the Cove, Hane, Sushi Ota, Ken Sushi Workshop, True Foods, Cafe Gratitude, Coffee at Caffe Calabria, and Croissants at Cafe Chloe. (I need a separate article about this question)!
SJF: One of your most memorable live performance experiences, and why?
JK: When I performed Schumann Concerto at the Hilbert Circle Theatre Hilbert Theatre in Indianapolis, there was a tornado national warning and a big storm would be hitting us about 3 hours prior to the concert. I was completely soaked, even for 5 seconds trying to get to the hall from a car. Then we all realized that people would be completely discouraged to come to a concert for their safety, not alone some orchestra members for trying to drive through the storm. We contemplate cancelling the concert, then except one second violinist, all musicians were finally there, so we decided to do it anyway. Until the time I walked out to the stage, I had no idea how many people would be there. All I was thinking was probably just handful of people might be present, but it would still be nice to play. Then when I walked out to the stage, it was almost a completely filled hall with about 600 people and more enthusiasm from the audience than any other concerts I had ever played. They all decided the concert hall was in fact the safest hiding place from tornadoes, as the hall is completely sealed and there was no window! I had so much fun playing in that concert. I felt like we are having a great party inside a cave.
Many thanks, Dr. Jeeyoon. You are truly an “extraordinary” gift to the world.
I continually marvel at hummingbirds…such tiny magnificent magical creatures!
Their stunning colorful beauty, their speed, their zest for the “hummingbird life”….
It beats watching the news these days. It inspires my creative spirit and hope!
Susan J. Farese, SJF Communications
Here is a short video from today. See these lovely hummingbirds in action as they fly continuously over to the feeders and enjoy nectar, hover, and then dance away!
And now…some photographic images!
Hopefully these hummingbird images will captivate you and yours too!
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Hope you enjoyed the poem, video and photos from SJF Communications!
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I recently spent some time strolling on the beautiful campus at San Diego State University (SDSU). Our daughter is enrolled for Fall, 2016 and we love taking the time to explore every chance we get!
Here are some photos I captured that gloriously beautiful day! I wish I could have photographed the entire campus! Perhaps I will visit again soon to capture much more! Feel free to click on each photo.
Subscribe and leave comments and let us know if you have any links, photos or blog posts about SDSU as well! Enjoy!
Conrad Prebys Student Union
Conrad Prebys Student Union Walkway
And here is some of the gorgeous foliage seen that day. Click on each photo to enlarge it. Such vivid color and so many beautiful varieties of trees and flowers!
And a few more images of the “bench art” and more!
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I had just sat down looking out at our 2nd floor balcony, when all of a sudden, a beautiful Monarch butterfly visited!
I grabbed my Nikon Coolpix L830 and put it on the “close up” setting and snapped away!
This post will be super short and sweet..
-Just a way to share how gorgeous this colorful butterfly was!
Enjoy these photos, feel free to like, comment and share this post link.
Beauty in nature abounds, we just need to look for it, spot it and savor the beauty of it!
p.s. (*I didn’t get a chance to determine if it was a male (black spot on hind wing) or female (no black spot)!
(Check out http://www.monarchbutterflygarden.net for more info)
Funny thing is, I just bought those two plants a few days ago and haven’t even planted them yet!
Lucky enough to catch the butterfly in flight, although a bit blurred!
Hope your day is as delightful as this butterfly’s has been!
Susan J. Farese, SJF Communications
Tonight we said goodbye to Kate
So fiercely talented, in the know.
Loving Wife, guiding Mom to her daughters
With pen in hand, her words would flow…
She touched many lives in so many ways
by guiding and writing & teaching
A Theatre Mom supporting the arts
Her essence in life so far reaching.
As we left her Memorial Service
An amazing sight was seen
The most brilliant magnificent sunset
With bright light among hues pristine.
In the midst of that glorious sunset
A shining light appeared…as if to say
My friends, I’ll be with you in spirit
Think of me as the sun goes away.
And when we returned home
I peeked at the moon
So bright, full and gleaming with light…
And I pondered, so thankful
For Kate and her life
Dear Kate, Farewell,
If your answer is YES, kudos to you!
If not, the best way to describe it is a whirlwind weekend of tight deadlines, a love of the craft of filmmaking, an appetite for team building and bonding and a love for creativity. What more could film aficionados ask for? Oh, there’s also a screening on the “big screen” for each team soon after the weekend of filming!
In 2015, over 130 cities will compete in the Worldwide 48 Hour Film Project from Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas!
How does it work? A team is formed and over one weekend, a short film (under 8 minutes, including a minute of credits) is written, filmed, edited and submitted within 48 hours! You might be saying “Are you kidding me”? NO, this is really how it works!
What’s the procedure? On Friday evening, in an orderly fashion, each team randomly picks a “genre”, (in San Diego there was a giant “plinko board” that teams took turns at), after which all teams are assigned the same line, character and prop that MUST be included in their film. For this 48 Hour Film Project. We’ll get to Team XX ‘ challenge soon!
Read more about the San Diego 48 Hour Film Project, which took place July 24-26, 2015. The event is Produced by Duane Trammell and Robyn Sarvis, and the website includes information about the Project, the film “Premiere” Screenings August 10-13, the “Best Of” Screenings and the wrap party August 22nd.
Producer/Director Sue Vicory, of Heartland Films (www.suevicory.com, Sue Vicory, IMDB Link) formed, Executive Produced and Directed the first “all-female” 27 member “Team, XX” film titled “Down Stage” for the 2015 San Diego 48 Hour Film Project.
“Down Stage”, a Holiday Film, will screen with 12 other film entries in Group A at 6:30 p.m., plus about 13 films in Group B at 9:00 p.m. at Reading Cinemas Gaslamp 15 on 701 5th Ave. in the Downtown Gaslamp District of San Diego (92101) on Monday, August 10, 2015. Tickets are $15 for the “Premiere” Screenings and $20 for the “Best Of” screenings. Tickets
Vicory had several “bonding” meetings with most of the 27 members of the cast and crew (mostly from Southern California) a few weeks before the actual filming weekend. One such meeting had the 10 actresses, performing in a “mock talent show” audition which featured a variety of techniques, such as monologues, singing, dancing and improv.
With Vicory and a few Team XX’ers present, Team XX Assistant Director Jen Allen drew the genre “Holiday Film” for Team XX at the “kickoff” event at Liberty Station on Friday evening, August 24. The designated line for all teams was “Sometimes that’s (or that is) all you need”, the prop to be used was a “flashlight” and the character was to be either “Alan or Alice Downing, a Coach”.
Team XX writers included Sariann Monaco, Talia Pauletti and Holly Rone. The multigenerational writing team cranked out the “Down Stage” script about Mother’s Day within a few hours from Friday evening into Saturday early morning at Vicory’s seaside condo.
The script was sent digitally to the cast.
Actresses included: Jess Antrobus, Isabel Canzoneri, Jody Catlin, Nancy DeMars, Emmy Farese, Susan Farese, Cat Forrest, Lori Jones, Sariann Monaco, and Holly Rone. Feel free to click on each name and photo.
The crew included: Sue Vicory: Executive Producer/Director; Lori Jones: Producer, Jen McCleary: Assistant Director; Maidy Morhous: Production Assistant. Amanda Niles: Sound; Angela Wong: Director of Photography; Kymberrly Scott: 2nd A.D.; Krystin Cline: 2nd Camera; Tamara Ilich: Gaffer; Cara Myers: Editor; Natalie Lauer: Production Assistant; Danni Michele: Animation; Nannette DeRobertis: Photographer; Sariann Monaco: Writer; Talia Pauletti: Writer; Holly Rone: Writer; Corrinne Smith: Communications; Pamela Weigelt: Massuese; Miranda Muse: Massuese; Lisa Wintersdorff: Makeup; Crystle Orantez: Hair; Susan Farese: Public Relations. Special Thanks to SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) and Derek Johnston at the Horton Grand Theatre.
Team XX filmed Down Stage at the Horton Grand Theatre throughout Saturday, August 25th. In the meantime, editor Cara Myers began the editing process from her hotel suite at the Horton Grand Hotel as soon as Saturday’s footage became available and into Sunday with only one “pickup” of a voiceover on Sunday morning. Serendipitously, the “7 minute 29 second” completed film, “Down Stage” was turned in to the 48 Hour Film Project at 7:29 p.m.
I asked Sue Vicory about her experience with Team XX and the 48 Hour Film Project. Vicory stated “The passion within this group was palpable. We each brought our A Game to the production. Collaboration is a natural strength for women and it shows up clearly on the screen of our first film, “Down Stage”.
Down Stage will have a Premiere Screening with over 20 other films on Monday, August 10th at starting at 6:30 at the Reading Cinemas Gaslamp 15, 701 5th Ave. San Diego, 92121. Here is the Ticket Link. Note: You must purchase tickets online, there will be no ticket purchases at the theatre.
Somehow, during the past few years, I have become an avid bird watcher,
particularly at Torrey Pines State Beach.
I am always amazed at seeing Ospreys.
I’ve seen them perched high and also on the beach with prey.
I ‘m not sure how many are at Torrey Pines State Beach, but I have seen this one lately.
Today it was perched above “Flat Rock” and it flew towards other rocks.
Take a gander at this beautiful osprey.
Snapped with my Nikon Coolpix L830 and edited in Picasa.
Here are a few more photos from today! Feel free to click on each one to see it larger.
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