Random Thoughts on a Sunday

Okay, the weather is cold outside, but soon it won’t be. Soon the Tigers will be back, and MLB will begin the marathon of a regular season. There’s fear in Detroit, though – the Tigers will be in a big rebuilding season, and the new predictions for Wins/Losses just came out. It’s not looking good for the Tigers. Click here to see the dismal prediction.

I heard a great quote from a TED Talk by Susan David: “Discomfort is the price to a meaningful life.” She gave a very nice talk about dealing with negative emotions in a positive way.

Speaking of negative emotions: Is it just me, or is Facebook almost unbearable lately? No dialogue, no fun, just people deciding they’re authorized to tell everyone else what they’re allowed to believe, like, say, or do. Maybe I just need a break from it, but right now it’s just a tiresome repetition. One that I know I’m just as guilty of as anyone else. I feel like we all need a reminder (me included) that maybe our best option is to embrace the connections from our similarities and shared opinions, and embrace non-judgmental curiosity about our differences. *sigh* I just know I’ve enjoyed not being on it as much lately.

On a more positive note: I’m so proud of the team at Williamston Theatre, and the response we’re getting from audiences for the current production of Our Lady Of Poison. Shannon Ferrante led a terrific staff and cast, and did marvelous work. 27625370_10156102918764629_6048259823109898447_o.jpg

Right now we are deep into pre-production for our next show at Williamston, Doublewide. I’m having a blast working with this production team, and even though we have a few weeks of Our Lady… left, I’m raring to jump into rehearsals! I really hope folks enjoy this show, I think it’s a beautiful and honest exploration into life in this part of the world, and the struggle to find a place in it.

Speaking of Doublewide, here’s a Work-In-Progress of the scenic design by the amazing Kirk Domer. I’m not going to explain anything in it yet, it’s just a sneak peek.Doublewide Rendering - House Left - Draft 2-11-18 No Walls for Tony

I can’t remember if I posted these before? The last show I directed, Beau Jest, was a ton of fun. During the show, which took place in the late ’80’s, a little camera was used by a couple characters to take pictures of other people in the play with them. We used real film in a camera, and got some of them developed. Here, for fun, are some of them!

Ah, there are Pat Loos, Vanessa Sawson, Michael Lopetrone, Sandy Birch and (barely) Fred Buchalter! The quality is awful because they were under stage lights and it was an old camera, but I love that you can also see audience members in the background!

Random TV Thoughts: The Good Place is so freaking good. If you haven’t watched it, start at the beginning and binge. Star Trek Discovery has become a pleasant surprise for me, and I’ve really enjoyed Agents of Shield also! Tops on my list, and I’m late getting to it, is The Great British Baking Show! Jeanne and I have just started watching it, and we’re in love! Thanks to everyone who recommended it. I now desperately want to take some baking lessons.

Lastly – because it’s time to work: Man, I am so excited to see the Black Panther movie coming out this week. I just think it looks terrific, for lots of reasons, and I’m really looking forward to seeing it.

Hope you’re having a good weekend, everyone. Stay safe, and spend time with people you love!

Wednesday: things to be grateful for. 

Hanging out with these awesome people…

When this awesome person comes back after being in Finland for almost a year…. 

Having a nice breakfast with these two!

This bit of cleverness!

A great day at the ballpark!

Starbucks Matcha Lemonade 

Season 7 of ERNIE!

Closing this amazing show, and being really proud it was on our stage…

Starting rehearsal for THIS amazing show! 

And…. just this sentiment!

Thursday Pic Post

We start previews for 1984 this evening, at Williamston Theatre. Having an amazing time working with a fantastic cast and production team! 

It’s been a heck of a few weeks. We, like many people, lost power at home for several days. Fortunately we have a fireplace! 

Once the power was back on, we found ourselves with a rare occurrence this month: everyone home at once! We played some games….

…and I got Tommaso and Max to eat some vegetables! 

Speaking of kids – here’s a pic of Maggie with her significant other, Beni, at a dance in Finland. 

And here’s a picture of Max and his significant other, Sophie, going to the Winter Carnival dance a couple weeks ago!

Now, we’re a couple hours away from first preview for the show. There is some really cool artwork in the theatre gallery by Anita Brett:

Also in the gallery is a very cool “Orwell Installation” from the MSU Department of English students, with some great displays about Orwell and the novel. 

And now, no more time for writing. Gotta get ready for tonight. Excited to introduce audiences to our version of Orwell’s dystopia! 

A Tuesday Autumnal Pic Post Celebration

Autumn is the eternal corrective. It is ripeness and color and a time of maturity; but it is also breadth, and depth, and distance. What man can stand with autumn on a hilltop and fail to see the span of his world and the meaning of the rolling hills that reach to the far horizon?

– Hal Borland

Autumn is almost upon us. I love this time of year. After a weekend where I got to rehearse a brand new play with an amazing team of people, and I got to have a 30 minute phone call with my daughter in Finland, I thought I’d celebrate with some pictures. 

Maggie got to go on a cruise from Finland to Sweden! I sure miss having her around, but it fills my heart to see her enjoying herself. 

My son Max, and our new son Tommaso (our exchange student from Italy), had a great time this weekend. I stayed home to work, but Jeanne and the boys went north to the lake where my in-laws live and had a great time visiting and swimming!

A couple shots from rehearsal of Pulp by Joseph Zettelmaier:

Here, John Lepard and Joe Bailey have a little standoff.  (Well, their characters do. The actors get along great! 😜)
And here are Michelle, Sarah and Anna -some of the amazing people making the show happen!

Recently I made my first foray EVER into an IKEA. We and our pals the Woodards went in a big group. My ratings:

Store: Fun.  

Coffee:  Good. 

Meatballs: Meh. 

And so – today starts a new year for our house. The start of a new busy cycle. I’m deep in rehearsals for our new season of plays. Maggie may be off in Finland, but Max Tommaso and Jeanne all began a new school year this morning, which will include classes, tennis, choir, theatre guild and lots more. It’s easy to look at that and think “Oh geez, back to the grind” – but it’s also an exciting time. So much good stuff is on the way, so many new exciting projects. I know many of you are going through your versions of this transition too – and I hope you’re enjoying it as much as I am!

The season for enjoying the fullness of life — partaking of the harvest, sharing the harvest with others, and reinvesting and saving portions of the harvest for yet another season of growth.
 -Denis Waitley

Pic Post Saturday

Random photos from the life of a Dad, Husband, Artistic Director!

Our new season promo.


The amazing folks at the Ringwald Theatre!

I updated the Team Tony page on my website and added some pictures, including this one from the amazing folks at the Ringwald Theatre!

Williamston Theatre did a reading of Joseph Zettelmaier's new play "Campfire" at the Renegade Theatre

Williamston Theatre did a reading of Joseph Zettelmaier’s new play “Campfire” at the Renegade Theatre

This just made me laugh.

This just made me laugh.

A night at the Red Brick with the three most important people in the world.

A night at the Red Brick with the three most important people in the world.

Maggie and I

Maggie and I

Jeanne and Maggie went away for the weekend, so Max and I had some quality time... like a video game and pizza binge!

Jeanne and Maggie went away for the weekend, so Max and I had some quality time… like a video game and pizza binge!

I don't know who this guy is, but I was at the Oddball Comedy Fest and saw his shirt, and now I want one!

I don’t know who this guy is, but I was at the Oddball Comedy Fest and saw his shirt, and now I want one!





Monday Morning Pic Post

Random pictures from the life of a random guy who is also a dad, husband, director and nerd.

This is the glass blowers studio across the street from Williamston Theatre. Folks who came to an evening performance of The Woman In Black had a little surprise waiting for them after the show. It was so much fun to see who would spot it, and what their reaction would be!

Sometimes you put stuff in a desk drawer, and it slips behind the drawer, and maybe under it, and just gets lost in the desk. Then after a while, sometimes after years, you open the drawer and that something that you’d forgotten all about falls out from under the drawer. Sometimes that something is a few pictures that your kids made for you when they were little… Like this collection of all my favorite superheroes that my son, who was probably in first grade at the time, made for me because he knew I liked them…


…or this picture and note that my daughter made for me. I won’t lie, working on the play that I’m directing now (which is all about family, and parents/kids/grandparents and growth and change), finding these pictures from years ago was a little bit of an emotional moment. Now the kids are teenagers, busy all the time, and the days of wanting to write notes to mom and dad is gone. And I guess the bittersweet thing about that is that I don’t remember exactly when it happened. *sigh*! Still, their are more parenting adventures on the way!

My Klingon Piggy Bank went as a leprechaun for Halloween.

This creepy doll is from The Woman In Black. Spooky.


Maggie planted an apple tree several years ago – this year she got to collect her first crop of apples from it!

Aaaaaaand I’m just sharing this because it makes me laugh every time I see it!

Thursday Pic Post

Yep, it’s hot today.


Thankfully, I’m in my office, where we have air conditioning…

(Hey! Don’t judge me, ALL our desks get messy SOMETIMES!)


Last night we had a blast hanging out with our friends Ann and Duncan, playing “Last Night On Earth” (the zombie board game) outside, under the trees, in the dark, by candlelight! It was great fun. 20120628-162516.jpg
Here are the ladies, beating the heat with some ice cream before the game!

I can’t tell you what the picture below is yet…

…. but I can tell you that it’s:
A) work related
2) awesome
III) part of something else that is also awesome. 🙂

Also, in case you’re wondering whether we’re pet friendly here at Williamston Theatre…

I helped John feed his snakes this week. The ones he keeps in his office.  Here’s one of them. The small one.
(And by “helped” I mean stood and watched from the other side of the room waiting to see if he got his arm bitten off.)
(He didn’t.)

Happy Thursday everybody!