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August 8, 2002

John Montgomery & Michael Baker
Many, Many of you will want to know that John Montgomery and Michael Baker are doing well. Michael had a liver transplant in early July and is steadily improving. But he and John have much ahead of them in this slow process of recovery. Those who would like to be in touch or send greetings & good wishes can contact John at the following address and phone. I did check this out with John to make sure that it was OK for all to be in touch - so - don't be shy! John and Michael have been such a special part of the NCDA family - they will truly appreciate your support! And at this critical time for Michael he needs all of our love and prayers and contact to remind him to keep up his fight!

John Montgomery
736 186th Street, #2J
New York, NY 10033

ART 2002
The first production of the ART 2002 Season opened August 2nd! Thanks to the many friends, family and alum who attended the opening night - which was magnificently catered by Sushiko in DC! (Awesome food - if you love sushi and Japanese food go there right away!) We hope to see many more alum and friends for the run of the show!

The Marriage of Bette and Boo
by Christopher Durang
directed by John Vreeke
August 2 - 11: Wednesday - Saturday @ 8 pm
Saturday & Sunday @ 2 pm.

Thanks to
Alum Rhonda Carter and to Paul MacWhorter for participating as guest artists in this production!

The ART 2002 Company includes:
Jan Boulet, Brooks Brown, Rhonda Carney, John Crews,
Eco Lopez, Joe Mancuso and Chance Parker.

The house is nearly packed for this wonderful, dark comedy so make your reservations soon!

New NCDA Catalogue
Many thanks to the many of you who responded to the request for quotes for the new NCDA catalogue! The response was overwhelming and everyone who responded will be represented in the new catalogue expected out this fall. Your thoughts will mean so much to those who are thinking about embarking on this long and incredible journey.

New NCDA Web Site
Many Thanks to long time NCDA friend Grant Rice for creating a new home for us on the web! There is still much work to do (he did this while on "vacation" at my house on July 4th) but the new site is gorgeous! We have many plans for its completion. Check it out at!

And let me know your ideas and input - but remember...I'm web challenged!

StarVing Artists
Alum Letricia Hendrix is starting her own business and it could be of service to you! StarVing Artists is a temp agency which will employ artists to fill temporary assignments with local businesses and for other short-term office work, home maintenance and improvement, landscaping etc. The idea is to help artists find the work to pay their bills and to allow them the much needed flexibility to pursue auditions, shows etc. For more information contact Letricia at: or 301-927-8289. She already obtained all the legal stuff like business registration, tax ID, insurance and bonding etc. - this could be a serious opportunity for those who can manage the rigors of temp work!


Alum Melissa Wesley and Alum Magda Dupalis are working on an independent film - A Shepherd of Pure Heart with Desselb Productions. The film is written and directed by Keith Garside.

Alum Krista (Brown) Robbins is in her sixth year as Production Supervisor for the New York International Fringe Festival. This year the festival will mount 220 shows in 21 venues, over a sixteen day period! The hit Broadway musical Urinetown stated there two years ago, and three of the Fringe shows from last year have transferred to Off-Broadway, and another on its way to Broadway. For more details about the New York Fringe Festival go to

Alum Estuardo Rodriguez just got his SAG card, which makes him currently short on cash! He attended a casting seminar in New York recently and has begun a freelancing arrangement with HWA Talent Representatives there.

Alum James Benkard is working with the EMU Theatre Company in Lawrence, Kansas this year working on Curse of the Starving Class by Sam Shepard and Oleanna by David Mamet. The theatre's current project is a ten-minute play festival consisting of plays written and directed by company members. James contributed his own play Higher Ground to the festival and will be directing and appearing in it. He will also direct another piece entitled Jaylang Rantai for the festival. If you're in that part of the world - check it out!

Alum Rhonda Carter will be working as an extra on the new Chris Rock movie Head of State (which is shooting some scenes in a middle school here in your editor's little town of Westminster!) Rhonda is also currently appearing as Father Donnelly in the ART production of The Marriage of Bette and Boo, directed by John Vreeke - which runs through August 11th. See above for more details!

Alum Robin Tripp has ventured into the screenwriting biz and recently returned from the Las Vegas Screenwriters Conference where she was able to meet and talk with Christopher Lockhart (ICM), Jack Allen, Robert Kosberg, Jeff Arch and Fred Levy. She is currently working with a manager and polishing up a script to shop. She will also attend the Writer's Expo in LA in November.

Alum Sean Fri is currently appearing in Murder In Green Meadows, directed by Wil Love at Totem Pole Theatre in PA. I had a chance to see this in final dress and it was awesome. Show dates are: Wednesday - Saturday @ 8:00 pm, Wednesday and Saturday @2:30 pm and Sunday @ 3 pm - through August 11th. Tickets are $20 - $28. For info and tickets call: 717-352-2164 or 1-888-805-7056.

Alum Cynthia Rollins recently completed an independent film wish was shown at the Dahlonega International Film Festival and won the audience award for Best Comedy. Cynthia also won an award for Best Actress for - to quote - "Her touching and forceful performance" The festival included films from as far and wide as Australia, Poland and Ecuador.

Alum Sarah Melinda (Eron) is wrapping up her summer performing in Stonewall Country at Theatre at Lime Kiln. Running back and forth from Lexington to DC to do fight choreography for the Sondheim Extravaganza at the Kennedy Center - she did choreography for Sweeney Todd, Company and A Little Night Music. For her next gig she will choreograph physical violence for the upcoming Signature Theatre production of What the Butler Saw which opens in September. Sarah also joins the faculty of NCDA this fall as an assistant instructor with Michael Johnson teaching Stage Combat.

Alum Ricardo Evans has been appearing in Voyage of the Jumblies at Imagination Stage @ BAPA. The show runs through August 22: Sat. & Sun. @3:00 pm and Tuesday & Thursday @ 10:30 am. Tickets are $7.50 for this fun for the kids and family show! Call 301-881-5106 for info and tickets. But - Ricardo's performance ends on August 6th (so hurry) because on the 7th he flies to Edinburgh (Scotland) to work on the American High School Theatre Festival and is excited to be there while the Edinburgh Fringe Festival is in full swing!

Alum Alvaro Gonzales is still in New York and very busy. He has a new producing project coming up which I was not able to catch all of the details of during our recent conversation - but you can check him out at

Alum Krista Welter has become and Artistic Associate with Project Y (who produce their work at the DCAC space in Adams Morgan.) Her work with them includes branching out into her love for dramaturgy.

I hope to hear from even more and more and more of you soon and to see your bright, smiling faces at NCDA soon.

Keep me up to date with your projects, what you're working on and projects - any and all - not just acting stuff!

Nan Ficca