5/27/2017

THEATRE AND DANCE - A Life in Theatre Chronicle





A new app, Chronicle, enables cast and crews who were in the South Gate productions to share photos and annotate with their own stories.

Click below to view and please contribute:



A 2 minute overview of the Chronicle is below:


video

5/20/2015

                 Click below for Video Highlights:

                  Video Highlights of South Gate Shows


                                  

3/20/2011

SOUTH GATE STAGE




Most musicals have happy endings and likable characters, but not CHESS. It is a show about deception that leads to an endgame with the appropriate song Nobody’s On Nobody’s Side.

ABBA,composers of CHESS, rank in the top four of world music sales. ABBA'S musical, Mama Mia, was a mega-hit, but CHESS was a Broadway flop.  Many revivals have changed plot, locations, sets, costumes, characters and music and lyrics in an effort to make CHESS work.  South Gate Stage takes on the challenge of this intriguing but difficult musical.

2/19/2008

FEVER GOES HOLLYWOOD


FEVER, an original musical, performs at the Ricardo Montablan Theatre in Hollywood. 

1/26/2008

SOUTH GATE STAGE PREMIERS NEW MUSICAL FOR “FESTIVAL OF NEW AMERICAN MUSICALS”

FEVER  flies to the stage at the Ricardo Montalban Theatre in Hollywood.  http://www.ricardomontalbantheatre.org/

FEVER, an adaptation of Midsummer Night's Dream,  is a 'play within a play' as disco era characters act out the lives of Shakespearean characters.

FEVER is written and directed by Howard Dando.

South Gate Stage is proud to be invited to present this original musical for the Festival of New American Musicals with the following professional companies including: the Old Globe Theatre (San Diego), South Coast Repertory Theatre (Orange County), Rubicon Theatre (Ventura), Sundance Theatre Program, UCLA Music Department, USC School of Theatre, the LA Master Chorale, The Ford Theatre, Rogers & Hammerstein Organization, etc.

Festival chairs are Stephen Schwartz (Wicked), Stephen Sondheim (Sweeney Todd), Jerry Herman (Hello Dolly), Jason Alexander and Angela Lansbury. 

1/25/2008

FEVER ON FRONT PAGE NEWS


FEVER on the cover page of the largest International English speaking newspaper, the Christian Science Monitor:

FEVER on Orange County Register:
The front cover of Backstage Magazine and more.


10/30/2007

SOUTH GATE STAGE WINS DTASC TROPHY


South Gate Stage wins DTASC Trophy in competition with 60 High Schools from Santa Barbara to San Diego.

8/23/2007

SOUTH GATE STAGE GRAPHICS AWARDS

South Gate Stage wins prestigious national, state, local and even international awards for Poster and Program designs for the following productions:


First Place - United States Graphic Association Award
First Place - California State Fair
First Place - Los Angeles County State Fair
Best of Show - Los Angeles County State Fair

PIPPIN

International Graphic Arts Education Association (National Competition) - First Place
Thummer Award (National Competition) only awarded in a year when a graphic exhibits Excellence beyond Standards
California State Fair - First Place
LA County Fair: First Place
LA County Fair - Best of Show
International recognition - PIPPIN Poster - only 'non-commercial' graphic displayed at the European Union Guttenburg Festival


GODSPELL




First Place - California State Fair

First Place - Los Angeles County Fair




SHADY COMPANY

First Place - California State Fair
First Place - Los Angeles County Fair
Best of Show - Los Angeles County Fair



To view Poster and Program Designs click on:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/south_gate_stage_posters/

8/22/2007

BACKSTAGE at SOUTH GATE STAGE

Stephen Schwartz, composer of 'Wicked' with South Gate Stage students.
Marcia Seligson, Producer with Broadway Tony and Golden Globe Winner,
 Judith Light; and Debbi Gibson, Broadway, film and television star and hit singer songwriter.
John Rubenstein, Original Pippin in 'Pippin' speaks before 
South Gate Stage production of "Pippin.'

Ken Page, Broadway and Film star, original role of "Old Deuteronomy"
 in both Broadway and film of Cats, with South Gate Stage students.
Jean Louisa Kelly, Broadway, Film and Television star, with South Gate Stage
Jennifer Leigh Warren. Marcia Seligson with South Gate Stage







6/12/2007

CATS


South Gate Stage is the first school (University or Secondary or non-professional theatre) to present a production of CATS in California.




5/12/2006


Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat




12/01/2005

PIPPIN ... with an all new cast

After many requests for a repeat production of PIPPIN  we present an all new production.


Backstage preview of PIPPIN ... click below: 



SOUTH GATE STAGE

5/12/2005

Anti-war protest before show




Cast members take to the streets prior to performance of HAIR.  VIDEO below.

video

2/17/2005

A Flea in Her Ear

Second Production of 'A Flea in her Ear'

First Production of 'A Flea in her Ear'

6/10/2001

FINAL CURTAIN
By Peter Harrison


Backstage at his final performance for South Gate Stage, director Howard Dando appears to be in several places simultaneously, discussing a sound cue with the stage manager, helping an actor with a line, and checking with the conductor about tempo.

His career includes producing and directing several Broadway productions, including the Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Who’s Tommy. He was founder and Director of the major ballet company, Stars of the American Ballet that the New York Times reviewed as "Leading the Dance Renaissance" as well as raves from every major newspaper in the nation, But tonight finds Dando directing a production of his original musical FEVER, not on Broadway, but at the West Coast equivalent Ricardo Montalban Theatre in Hollywood.

Why would a veteran of the New York stage, choose to direct theatre at a high school? “To make a difference! That's why we're on this earth?” said Dando.

The early challenges at South Gate were formidable with an enrollment of over five thousand students in a school built for twelve hundred. Principal Tony Sandoval asked Dando to take on the Drama program but Dando was reluctant, "I knew the hours would be unlimited, but Mr. Sandoval twisted my arm, and changed my life. I had more joy in working with the students than in any other endeavor."

Dando took over a theater built in 1929, that was in major disrepair, no air conditioning, an ancient light board, no sound system, no supplies, not even a hammer or a nail. There was no room in the wings because the wings were used for school lockers. Dando corralled major funding to equip the school with professional sets and costumes, a new state of the art lighting and sound system, wireless microphones, and more.

Bye Bye Birdie was selected as the first production. “I told students to be prepared to work five days a week and even weekends." said Dando, “Within a couple weeks a third of the cast bailed out. For the cast that remained I emphasized my ‘Three D’s’ – Dedication, Discipline and Devotion,' and that group became the foundation for a tradition of excellence”

Birdie played to an audience of two thousand. Prior to that a typical production yielded an audience of fifty people a night. Years later, Joseph and the Amazing Dreamcoat was to play to an audience of almost 4000. Principal Anthony Sandoval noted the revamped Drama department, "Mr. Dando came in with just a couple of assistants and created an amazing theater program."

'Amazing' was the word that was heard after every performance. The students won trophies at the annual DTASC Competitions against schools from San Diego to Santa Barbara; and performed at professional theatres,  “I wanted my students to rub shoulders with professionals so we developed partnerships with major LA Theatre companies including Reprise Theatre Company, Geffen Playhouse, Ricardo Montalban Theatre, East LA College, The Actors Gang, the Skirball Center, Los Angeles Theatre Center, Festival of New American Musicals, The London Globe, Pasadena Playhouse, A Noise Within, Los Angeles Music Center, and more.” said Dando.

Dando was nominated for a Bravo Award by the Los Angeles Music Center for Outstanding Arts Teacher and received certificates from City Council. But he insists, “ It’s the students who make it happen. They deserve the awards. Working with the these kids is my reward. They inspire me with their passion for theatre. At every rehearsal we laughed every day. That joy can’t be duplicated in the commercial theater,” said Dando.

It was fun for the audiences as well. A Middle School group was reluctant to attend FEVER because they heard is was based on a Shakespeare play. After the performance a busload of students asked their teacher if they could all go again the next night. After a matinee a family sought out the director to tell him that they were at the previous performance and their daughter wanted to see the show again, but it meant cancelling her birthday party. “It was worth it," the young girl said, “FEVER was more fun than any birthday party.”

A letter arrived from the Los Angeles Theatre Arts Advisor. It read, “A level of artistic excellence above and beyond the norm in our district. ” Dando shared the letter with his students, “It means you made a difference.”

More information on FEVER at: http://www.dancetheatre.blogspot.com/


Documents

6/10/2000

Thanks to all the casts, crews and staffs of South Gate Stage for your passion and devotion to our theatre program.

You are all Amazing!

And to our Professional Partners - your generosity to our students was Awesome!

Thank you for the joy of working with you - and hopefully again in the future.


LINKS:

A new original musical
'Love on the Rocks'

                              http://hcdando.wix.com/love 

Blog

dancetheatre.blogspot.com/


YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/user/Stagelight2/videos





Dancers in the Dark - A Number 1 Bestseller on Amazon.

Dancers in the Dark, available on all Ebook platforms


CLICK   Link to  AMAZON


Video scenes from the novel below (featuring Kaitlyn Jenkins of the Disney series, Bunheads, and Elan Alekzander of the TV series, Big City Ballet. 
 




Link to Amazon - Dancers in the Dark