Daily Rehearsal: Rift between Rudin and Norris threatens B'way run of 'Clybourne Park'

February 1, 2012

1. The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago has received a 2012 Joyce Award, which they'll use to pay for (project) Moseses Project, by choreographer Reggie Wilson. The grant is $50,000; The Dance Center says they're the only dance organization to receive two Joyce Awards. The last one they won was in 2004, for Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan's Wild Cursive

2. Excellent PR copy: "For any Valentine’s Day Gift Guide, tickets to a hot night of contemporary ballet make an excellent gift from any forward-thinking romantic partner." The bottom line -- see the Joffrey Ballet' Winter Fire starting February 15.

3. Northlight Theatre will put up The Odd Couple in November, casting Second City alums Tim Kazurinsky and George Wendt as Felix and Oscar, respectively. "My history with George and Tim goes back decades and their own particular chemistry is a national joy," says director BJ Jones. This should be good.

4. Scott Rudin has done it again -- but this time he's brought Chicagoan Bruce Norris into the mix. Michael Riedel (who is no stranger to controversy himself) reports that according to anonymous sources, the partnership between Rudin and Norris, which was resulting in an acting gig for Norris in the HBO TV show The Corrections, as well as Rudin producing Clybourne Park for Broadway, has ended nastily. On Monday, Norris reportedly said he wouldn't do The Corrections anymore (“I don’t like to do pilots.”) and Rudin responded by refusing to produce Clybourne Park anymore, as well as two other planned Norris plays. Norris told the New York Times that he wants to focus on writing, not acting, which is why he left the TV project, and that he wasn't sure what would happen to the show.

5. Timothy Douglas has written a long essay on HowlRound called "The Benefits of Slavery", which is not as controversial as it sounds, for those who need a history lesson. The former Artistic Director of Remy Bumppo, whom our own Kelly Kleiman spoke to about the role of race in his relationship with the company, has some interesting insights from his years as an actor playing the "other" parts. "When pressed for details by the media and the genuinely curious here in Chicago on how race may have impacted my departure [from Remy Bumppo], I answer in this way: If you liken my creative-self to a gumbo, the specificity of my race and primary cultural influence is the equivalent of a dominant spice," writes Douglas. It's a worthy and well-thought out read.

Questions? Tips? Email kdries@wbez.org.