Daze & Nights VI
The Late 1970's -- Personal Transformations
& The Later Mime Troupe
Daze & Nights VII
made a new committment to graduating college. I also took a
job as an ITV video cameraperson at the University of Utah, shooting
theater and performance, but also sports and educational sessions;
Linda C. Smith's Repertory Dance Theatre
was at the top of it's game with Backstage Jitters; The Mime
Troup's ex-manager Mark Nelson was booking ASUU Programs, and I
helped promote Duck's Breath Mystery Theater. We became friends,
and I rode in the Homecoming Parade with them the next spring, wearing
a duck mask of my own design; |
My days of personal involvement in Theater were ending: I made
some videos for Debra Ryals' Masters Degree; Spent a short time
at Pioneer Memorial Theater as a scenery painter; Ran lights one
night for Patsy Droubay and Hillary Elmore at the Art Barn; Shot
my last video for the Great Salt Lake Mime Troupe at Kingsbury
Hall in 1978;
My graduating thesis -- Masks
and Transformations was shown at the Marriott Library, thanks
to Sharon Shepard and Laird Rodet. It was a kind of stand-alone
Attendance rather than participation;
The Fowler Brothers, Bob
McFerrin, Hole in the Wall Saloon -- live music every night, including
Mime Troupers Gregg and Stuart playing Jazz in the first incarnation of Available
Jelly. I drew cabaret sketches of the Jordan River Uptown Band at Trolley
Square. My teaching career crashed on take-off, but it's aftermath propelled me
to technical school, and long-term employment.
I am NOT the only college graduate
who's had this experience.
1980's -- Spectator, Supporter, Jogger, and Technician
Daze & Nights VIII
started taking more and more photographs in the 80's and making
drawings from them.
Nina Cheney was a friend of Patsy Droubay. I first met her in
Amsterdam while she was travelling. She later studied with Carlo
Mazzone-Clementi. She was/is a serious juggler. Nina re-visited
Salt Lake with her juggling partner at the beginning of their
long career, and I took some PHOTOS.
Double Oh Four (004) -- a dance band. (Visit Hole
In The Wall on State Street.) Photos, drawings, friendships
with Doug Edwards (very much like Jango), Wanda Day (very much
like Katie), Elaine Matsui and Scott Simons (unique and friendly
people). Wanda introduced me to 'Punk' guitarist Al Grazzi, and
bassist/model Lisa Verstieg. 'SLC
Punk' and New Wave had their OWN scenes. I
created some graphics for the Salt Lake Track Club and Sojourners
when I was a jogger. I served as
crewmember for some of the weekend races and shot pictures too
-- one of them won a Blue Ribbon at the Utah State Fair.
I volunteered at KRCL
Community Radio for a few years, and one of my most pleasant
duties was dubbing syndicated Duck's Breath Homemade Radio
segments for drive-time. Dan Coffey even helped make a special
tape with me, as his famous radio character Dr.
Science -- who is still on the air!
The last time I hung out with Duck's Breath was when they screened
their movie Zadar, Cow From Hell, at the Sundance Film
Festival in Park City and performed one more concert at Kingsbury
Hall in the late 80's.
The 1990's to the 21st Century
-- Digital Art and Technology
graphics, writing, and publishing caught my interest, and I pursued them all
the way from Salt Lake to Seattle to Spokane and Kalispell, Montana after I was
married. I sharpened my skills on college newspapers in Spokane and Kalispell,
briefly dabbled in music journalism in Spokane, and even in Salt Lake City once
again, when I returned for some "temp" work at the end of the 90's.
While living near my old haunts on Capitol Hill, I was inspired
to take up caberet sketching again at performances of the popular
Disco Drippers band, featuring the angelic voices of Tamara
and Lisa Rodgers -- scanning my drawings and turning them into more
atmospheric representations of the dancing scene. Look at some drawings
of the Rogers sisters in Adventures
on the ONE Pt. 2
I made friends with members of the group, and other
people who enjoyed funky music. In fact, I used digital techniques to make colorful
prints of other jazzy Funk artists who performed in Salt Lake -- Maceo Parker,
Rodney "Skeet" Curtis, Greg Boyer, Bernie Worrell (plus his Woo Warriors),
Fred Wesley, and Dennis Chambers. They'd all served time with Funk mastermind
See Adventures on the ONE Pt.
3 , Pt. 4 , & Pt.
The Internet made it possible for me to contact various musicians within
these seminal "bands of bandleaders," and I treasure the friends I have
met in this manner. I have also personally seen George and his Funk Mob twice
in the wilds of Montana, and spoken with many of them at length. Read about it
starting with Adventures on the ONE
While I was checking out interesting venues in Salt Lake,
I renewed my aquaintence with Linda C. Smith, who still ran Repertory
Dance Theater in a new downtown building named the Rose Wagner Performing
Arts Center. Read more in Reflections on
I made friends with a ballerina named Heather Thackery and gladly
watched Ballet West
whenever I could. I attended appearences by poet/performer Alex Caldiero -- an
electrifying presence onstage, and a kind, gentle friend offstage. Read about
him in Reflections on Alex Caldiero
I also spent quality time with, and did a sketch or two for Scott Simons and his
wonderful wife Diana, who ran a shape-shifting musical group called Curious
Birds among their other intense (and positive) projects.
an out-of-the-way place called Kilby
Court where I saw two unusual events: Bindlestiff Family Cirkus,
and the multi-media Mesh, starring Street Legal Theater -- who combined
stilt-walking, fire manipulation, juggling, and rauchy comedy. They also lived
communally in a way I hadn't seen since the 60's and 70's.
I first met Street
Legal's members at a neighbor's garage sale on Capitol Hill when Amber Merriwhether,
their hard-working den mother, did an impromptu fashion show right off the racks
of clothing. She was hilarious, and I made a drawing of her when I got home, so
I wouldn't forget how funny the whole thing had been, and later made friends with
her. Street Legal targeted their energies towards the annual Burning
Man Festival every August/September in Nevada.
Check out Reflections
on Street Legal Theater
In the wake of their return from 1999's Burning Man, I saw the Bindlestiffs,
straight from New York by way of the high Nevada desert, surrounded
by the costumed Street Legal gang at Kilby Court. When Ringmisteress
Philomena started singing "You are the show..." she was
certainly addressing the right crowd! The Bindlestiffs are
a variety act -- that being said, it is impossible to adequately
describe the totality of their performances. Keith (Pennygaff) Nelson
is from Coney Island. They had supporting acts, like "Rocket
Johnny," a Canadian pyrotechnic performer -- but primordial
sideshow stunts, performed by Keith and Stephanie (Philomena) Monseau,
supplied the BIG thrills.
I stay in touch with the Bindlestiffs
via email and it turns out that Hovey Burgess is on their Board
of Directors (!) I can't do much but send them money when
it crosses my mind, or encourage them in their daredevil antics,
but I'm glad to know that centuries-old traditions continue in this
I worked at Flathead Valley Community College in Montana for
nine years, and there was an active Theater program there. I
videotaped performances for two years, and supplied equipment as
part of my job, but I wasn't personally involved very much. A dancer
and theater veteran named Linda Grinde charmed me into designing
some oversized costumes for her pantomime-like production of a Dr.
Suess story. I was happy to lend a hand, but intentionally limited
my input. My FVCC
Theater Projects are worth a quick look.
I worked for the Hockaday Museum of Art, for ten
years handling paintings, drawings, and sculpture. I was a photographer there
too, and enjoyed it very much.
photos are from a charity art auction which the Hockaday Museum helped sponsor,
with a Modern Dance group as artistic presenters.
Digital photos, Internet video, and writing may occupy a lot of
creative time now, but music is still a major muse of mine, as a
glance at the Exceptionally
Yours page, and my Personal
Blog will clearly demonstrate. I also produced videos on
the local Public Access channel for the college in conjunction with
the public relations department, where I promoted our theater productions
and other events.
felt pangs of theatrical temptation when Footsbarn
Theatre asked for help in finding venues in North America after
a scheduled appearence at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis during
the summer of 2005. I contacted Nina Cheney, and she agreed to look
around. John Kilby gave her a call too, and we started making plans
to see them. Just before Footsbarn flew off to India, the Guthrie cancelled
their gig. Footsbarn eventually landed on their feet, performing in
a specially-built venue on the docks of Dublin, Ireland for the whole
month of July, 2005, after a successful tour of the Far East.
2006 was Footsbarn's
I went to their home base in France -- it was
quite a festival, and a fine "working vacation" -- over 250 artistes
from around the world, almost 10,000 people filling the seats, and dozens of volunteers
like me trying to keep it all together! I met some of my old compadres, and made
new friends too.
the Illustrations of:
Anniversary -- A Celebration of Theatre
spent the summers of 2011 and 2012 in Amsterdam
and master teacher Katie
Duck invited me to take photographs and shoot video
during the MAGPIE
Summer Workshops and Orgel Park workshop/performances.
I became friends with her musical partner Alfredo Genovesi,
met many other fine artists, and reconnected with great friends
like Davey Norket in 2011. The next year I was part of Katie's
team throughout the entire summer. Investigate Katie's
Videos, plus peruse some of my own Performance
Credits: All graphics are made from digital scans of personal memorabilia, and
are presented as 'scrapbook' samples of my own experiences, based on the 'fair
use' principle of international copyright law. Some photos are from public archives
in Utah and Wisconsin, assumed to be for public use. All drawings are by ME. Most
black & white and color photographs are taken by myself, or are digital copies
of personal photos taken by friends and family members in the 1970s, 80, and 90s.
Copyright© by Michael Evans 2006. *Burning Man, Curious Birds and
Bindlestiff Family Cirkus are digital reinterpretations of images found
on their websites.
images used by permission. Public Domain images are used freely under provisions
of International law.
Rights Reserved © Michael R. Evans 2012