Friday, June 25, 2010


Photo Credit: Alex Hoerner/Icon International

Byline: "Drake is an unlikely rap star, a former child actor from Canada who balances arrogance and vulnerability."

My take: I liked this line best: "Biracial Jewish-Canadian former child actors don't have a track record of success in the American rap industry." Which is what makes Drake's sucess all the more interesting and cheer-worthy.

Byline: "[How] Musical theater is enjoying enormous popularity among young people, attracting a dedicated group of true believers: Broadway babies."

My take: It makes sense that musical theater is gaining popularity among young people. It is a source of hope and lends itself to a feeling of togetherness and community, something we ALL need right now.

Byline: "Yes, People Still Read, but Now It's Social."

My Take: It would be interesting to start an online discussion about Stephen Johnson's conclusion that "[...] the speed with which we can follow the trail of an idea , or discover new perspectives on a problem, has increased by several orders of magnitude. We are marginally less focused, and exponentially more connected. That's a bargain all of us should be happy to make."


What: A Benefit for Theatre for a New Audience, presented by Brooklyn's Dreamers

When: Thursday, July 22, 2010 6 P.M until 9 P.M.
(with free Salsa Fever party continuing all night!)

Where: Deity – 368 Atlantic Avenue, btwn Hoyt and Bond, Brooklyn

Cost (includes a free drink): $25 – Basic $40 – Because You Can $35 – At the Door

Tickets & Info:

Theatre for a New Audience is an award-winning off-Broadway classical theater company in New York committed to finding the contemporary heart of the classics. Now in its 31st year, The Theatre’s mission is to vitalize and develop the performance and study of Shakespeare and classic drama. TFANA runs the largest arts-in-education programs to introduce Shakespeare in the NYC Public Schools to students from the fifth through twelfth grades. TFANA’s programs began in 1983 and we serve more students in Brooklyn than in any other borough.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


(Reprinted from Park Slope Parents Blog)
Yes, we have a few months before school starts again but whether you’re a veteran or a looking forward to pre-k, a little forethought can make the transition between summer and school easier.

Here are Eleanor Traubman’s top ten tips for staying cool and collected when the lazy days of summer give way to the panic of the new School year.

Flash forward: It’s a week into the school year and your home is already strewn with backpacks, homework, art projects, juice boxes, sports equipment, forms and permission slips. The cooler and swim floaties from your end- of-the -summer beach trip are still lying in the hallway and you can’t find the time to go through the ever-growing pile of mail that sits on the kitchen table.

Ready to run for the hills? No need. The transition from summer to school is an exciting, if chaotic time that is made easier if you have some good solid organizing systems and habits in place.

Here are a few tips for staying sane during back-to-school season:

(1) Have a central location where you can process mail and other incoming papers and information. Think of it as The Information Processing Center. It’s helpful if the Center contains these items: a desk, calendar, shallow tray for incoming mail, basket for recycling, shredder, file cart or cabinet, and office and bill-paying supplies.

(2) Go through mail daily. This prevents paper pile-up. Use the RAFT acronym for dealing with incoming paper. R = Refer it to someone else (your spouse, etc.). A= Take action on it. Pay the bill, make the phone call. F = File it. T = Toss/Recycle it.

(3) Set up camp the night before. Lay out your clothes and pack your own bag for the next day’s activities, including snacks, gym stuff, etc. Pack lunches and help your children load their backpacks and lay out clothing. This will make for a much more pleasant morning!

(4) Plan your day the night before. Write down your top three priorities for the following day. (Forget about self-defeating, never-ending to-do lists!)

(5) Put self-care at the top of your list of priorities and decide what that means to you. Does it mean hopping on your bike for a spin around the park? Meeting a good friend for lunch? If life goes well for you, it goes better for everyone around you, including your family.

(6) Carve out some quiet time for yourself each day, even if it’s 15 minutes, so that you can connect with yourself and what’s important to you. For more on this topic, see Silence: The Best Organizer of All.

(7) When you take down fall/winter clothes and store summer clothing, make the
time to weed out and donate items that no longer fit you or will no longer fit your children when next year rolls around. Label whatever you store so you remember you have it! Canvas boxes are best for storing clothing items, as fabric needs circulating air.

(8) Start thinking of your closets as places for retrieval, not just for storage. Use higher and harder-to-reach spaces in your closet for off-season items. Use the easy-to-reach areas for the items you need to access on a regular basis.

(9) Put a plant or a vase of flowers on any flat surface where clutter tends to build up. It’s hard for clutter to grow where beauty lives!

(10) Find a local thrift store or charity that you love and make that your destination for gently-used items that are no longer in the love/use/need category. Pick a place that you can easily walk or cab your stuff to, or one that makes pick ups.

Remember that being organized does not mean having a home that resembles the pages of Martha Stewart’s Living, with nary an object out of place. Being organized means having a few systems and habits in place which free you up to spend more time with friends and family and less time wading through clutter or hunting for things you need.

About Eleanor
A professional organizer since 1999, Eleanor helps busy Brooklyn moms de-clutter and make better use of desks, closets, filing systems, and more. She has been featured in The New York Times; Time Out New York; The Brooklyn Paper; Family Circle; The Sun Times Chronicle; and Fitness.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Last weekend, Mike and I took our bikes on the ferry and traveled over to Governor's Island.

Our friend Cecilia Andre's artwork was being in FIGMENT and we wanted to support her.

What a magical trip! After biking around the island through thick humidity, we reached the mini golf section Cecilia had mentioned on the phone. It wasn't ordinary mini golf - each mini golf structure was designed with a theme. My favorite incorporated what looked like a paper mache pineapple.

As we ate lunch on the grass, we saw wild things like a Disco Golf Cart and bicyclists disguised as pirates on pirate ships yelling as they rode wildly onto the lawn.

The FIGMENT installations and performing artists stretched on for what seemed like miles.

After a while, I said "This reminds me of a more family-oriented version of Burning Man." When I did a little digging, I found out that David Koren, Figment's founder, has been very involved in Burning Man.

For more info about FIGMENT, go to their website.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


I had a great time at Brooklyn Blogfest 2010. In past years, I was an organizer of the event. This year, I came as a guest and enjoyed myself greatly. Highlights included:

  • Adrian Kinloch's tribute to photo bloggers
  • Blue Barn's film tribute to Brooklyn bloggers
  • Dramatic reading from various Brooklyn blogs
  • Dancing to the awesome tunes played by DJ Van Vader
  • Hamming it up for Hugh Crawford's portable photo studio
In the photo, L to R: Allison Lasky from F.O.K.U.S, Elizabeth Palmer from Midnight Cowgirl, Eleanor Traubman from Creative Times, Melissa Lopata from Momasphere, Larry Lopata, Atiba Edwards from F.O.K.U.S and Fresh Industries. Front: Michael Sorgatz of Art in Brooklyn.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Dear Tony Awards Fan,It’s almost showtime! The Tony Awards will be broadcast live on CBS at 8 p.m./7c (and 8 p.m. on time delay PT). Tonight is Broadway’s biggest night! Of course, you probably already know this. So this final pre-Tonys email has lots of tips for behind-the-scenes access before and during the show.Exclusive Webcasts on TonyAwards.comGet ready for the telecast by logging on to for exclusive coverage of the following:

6:00 p.m. ET – The Red CarpetBroadway and Hollywood celebrities arrive early to meet the press--and walk the Audemars Piguet Red Carpet. We'll be webcasting their arrivals beginning at 6:00 p.m. ET via live video, courtesy of NY1 News.

7:10 p.m. ET - The Creative Arts AwardsThen at 7:10 p.m. ET, you'll be able to watch our live webcast of the first portion of the Tony Awards Ceremony. The InterContinental Hotels® and Resorts Creative Arts Awards, hosted by past-winners Karen Olivo and Gregory Jbara, includes awards in 15 categories that are given out immediately before the CBS telecast.

The Main Event – The 64th Annual Tony AwardsThe main event begins at 8:00 p.m. ET: the 2010 Tony Awards telecast, live on CBS. Sit down with friends and family and tune in to see Broadway’s biggest stars shine on national television!You’ll see musical numbers from all four Best Musical nominees (American Idiot, Fela!, Memphis, and Million Dollar Quartet) and Best Musical Revival nominees La Cage aux Folles featuring Kelsey Grammer, A Little Night Music featuring Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Ragtime featuring Christiane Noll. Also taking the stage will be Green Day, Glee's Lea Michele and Matthew Morrison, and many more stars!

Hunter Bell Will Tweet Backstage from @TheTonyAwards During the Live Telecast!Hunter Bell, 2009 Tony Nominee for Best Book of a Musical for his musical [title of show], will be tweeting live from backstage at the Tony Awards! If you followed Hunter’s hilarious and touching “Why the Tony Awards Matter” email series, then you know why we are so excited that he is joining us backstage.


Here's a great article by Jen Chaney over at The Washington Post

Anyone who even casually follows the Broadway scene usually pays attention to the Tony Awards. The trophies, handed out to the best productions to splash on to New York stages during the past year, are important to theater people for a couple of reasons. One: they can sometimes have a positive impact on ticket sales, at least in the short term. (This year, revenues went up around the time nominations were announced, then slumped again.) And more importantly, they are an honor for any budding actor, writer, director, producer or otherwise theater-affiliated person to receive.

That said, the average person -- you know, someone who doesn't know all the lyrics from the soundtrack of "Spring Awakening" -- may avoid tuning into the Tonys because he/she assumes that the ceremony won't be interesting to anyone who resides outside of Manhattan and/or has never yearned to belt out a tune from "Cabaret." As an awards show junkie, I am admittedly biased. But I think the Tony Awards, especially this year, are worth checking out. Here are five reasons to watch this Sunday night.

1. You will recognize many of the nominees.
As this photo gallery demonstrates, some big-name Hollywood types are included among this year's group of worthy contenders. Among them: Denzel Washington, Scarlett Johansson, Jude Law, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Laura Linney. Most members of the stage community, understandably, don't want the Tonys to turn into a facsimile of the Academy Awards. But the star power definitely makes the occasion a little more glamorous to TV viewers who don't know the difference between stage left and stage right.

2. The presenters? You will recognize many of them, too.
Will and Jada Pinkett Smith. Daniel Radcliffe. Katie Holmes. Paula Abdul. Triumph the Insult Comic Dog ... okay, I was just kidding about that last one. But the other people I mentioned will all walk the Radio City Music Hall stage on Tony night.

3. One word: "Glee." Two more: Green Day.
"Glee" has made it somewhat fashionable -- or at least acceptably nerdy -- to belt out showtunes. So it makes perfect sense that Broadway vets and "Glee" stars Lea Michele and Matthew Morrison will appear to sing a duet -- something more lavish Broadway musical and less Journey, I'm guessing. And for those who break out in a hot rash at the mere mention of the words lavish, Broadway and musical in the same sentence, Green Day also plans to make an appearance to perform a song from their Tony-nominated musical, "American Idiot."

4. Sean Hayes is hosting.
Ordinarily that piece of information would mostly be of interest to longtime admirers of "Will and Grace." But given that Hayes inadvertently stood at the center of a recent controversy over gay actors playing straight roles, thanks to a much-dissected piece in Newsweek, it will be interesting to see what, if anything, the actor has to say about the matter. (He was more than mum during a conference call with reporters earlier this week, according to our colleague Emily Yahr. But he also hinted that he just might have something to say during the show.) He's also nominated for his turn in "Promises, Promises"; if he wins, I have to think he'll also have some choice words for Newsweek in his acceptance speech.

5. Unapologetic musical numbers!
Uh-oh. Just when I had you considering at least DVRing the Tonys, I had to scare you away with the musical numbers. Honestly, though, the Tonys live for this sort of things. Whereas the random interludes during the Oscars often seem maddeningly tangential, especially when the show is already running an hour behind, the ones at the Tonys serve a purpose. And since they're made by the people on Broadway, for the people on Broadway, they can often be show-stoppers. So go on, let your showtune-loving, gleek flag fly. If you're that embarrassed, you can always tell all your friends that the only reason you really watched was to see ScarJo and Denzel.

By Jen Chaney June 10, 2010; 2:52 PM ETCategories: Celebrities , Pop Culture Tags: Award Shows


Photo Credit: Shannon Hummel/Cora Dance by Steven Schreiber

BAX is now booking performance rental packages for the 2010-11 Season. Dates are available September 2010-June 2011

As part of its Visitors Program, BAX offers low-cost full service performance rental packages in its intimate and well-equipped theater. Conveniently located in Park Slope, Brooklyn, BAX's 650 square foot theater, seats 70. Package includes BAX's Technical Director/Lighting Designer as well as Front of House staff.

BAX provides publicity through its website and email blasts in addition to signage in the BAX Building.

For more information please visit or contact Vanessa Adato, Managing Director, at or (718) 832-0018 Interested artists should download and fill out an application here. Past artists have included Rachel Thorne Germond, Surface Area Dance Theatre, Dissonance Dance Theatre, Piper Theatre, Virginia Repertory Dance Company, Tree House Shakers, Marie-Christine Giordano Dance Company, Maurice Fraga/PM Danz among many others.

"Thank you BAX, for your professionalism and customer service! We will be back"
-- Shawn Short, Artistic Director, Dissonance Dance Theatre

Know someone who might be interested in having their next show at BAX? You can share this email on your favorite Social Media platform by clicking the "SHARE" button below; OR you can click the "Forward email" link and send this eBlast to your friends the "old fashioned way." THANKS.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Summer is such a great time to re-visit childhood pleasures. Remembering the fun of Mad Libs, I bouoght the Diva Girl version at a neighborhood book store. I did them with my 31-year-old husband and also with 15-year-old Lizzy.

What were some of your childhood summer pleasures?

Friday, June 11, 2010


Several years back, while visiting Seattle, I came across some funny greeting cards by a guy named Edward Monk. Ed now has some other products, but these babies caught my eye. You can find them here.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010


As a professional organizer for the past 10 years, I have been sharing lots of tips, tricks and tools with my clients to help them get and stay more streamlined. I want them to feel empowered to focus on the things that matter most to them – their passions, their projects, and the people they want to spend time with.

What I’ve learned over the last decade of personal experience is that the best tool for staying organized and focused is not a product – it’s not a basket, shelf, or a caddy............................

To read the rest of the article, Silence: The Best Organizer of All, come on over to Simple Productivity Blog.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010


For source of photo CLICK HERE

Quick Quiz:

When you open your closet doors, do you:

(a) shield yourself as mountains of random objects come crashing down on your head?

(b) rummage through a bunch of haphazard piles to get to what you need?

(c ) think: gee, I'll sort this thing out one of these days (and days have turned into years)?

(d) wonder where that bag of holiday gifts is that you hid for safekeeping last December?

(e) wish the space looked a little less like a stoop sale and a bit more like the mock closets at The Container Store ?

If you responded "Yes" to any or all of the above answers, never fear! Clean Out Your Closet Month is here - here being over at Inspired Organizing.

Send your email address to, and I will send you this list:

Want a hand from a veteran organizer in getting those closets whipped into shape? Call 917-499-7395.