Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Cry, the Beloved Country

I just saw one of the most wonderful films I've every seen: Cry, the Beloved Country. It is a story of grace, peace and reconciliation powerfully, tastefully, beautifully, and poetically told.

Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

NYC MasterWorks Auditions

If you're in the NYC click here for a hi-rez version of the poster, and then print it and post it where potential MasterWorks students may see it.

Thanks!

Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Dr. Wayne Roberts' Memorial

When my grandmother died in 1988 I mentioned to Dr. Wayne Roberts that Grandma prayed for me every day. Dr. Wayne said, "Well, Rich, Bertie and I pray for you every day." It had such a huge impact on me at that point in my life. He was never a teacher of mine in any official capacity, but he and Bertie were some of my greatest mentors. He died in August, and I'm glad to have just found his memorial service. If you have the time to listen you'll see why he had such an impact on me and so many others.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Joyce preaches on Simeon

Joyce preached on Luke 2:25-35 this morning at our church, Westchester Chapel. Opening prayer and announcements by Pastor Linda Warren. Closing prayer by Liz J.



"Go Tell It on the Mountain" sung by the congregation. Words: John W. Work, Jr., Folk Songs of the Amer­i­can Ne­gro (Nash­ville, Tenn­es­see: 1907).
Music: Af­ri­can-Amer­i­can spir­it­u­al

This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

Photo courtesy of NicolettiPhoto.com.

Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Torry Martin will make MasterWorks laugh

I first met Torry at a conference where we were both performing probably twelve years ago now, and I'm still laughing at the stories he told! He's a writer, actor, stand-up comic, and he's going to be a MasterWorks MasterClass instructor this year!



He's going to perform improv with our students, and then roll into some of his own humor in teaching and testimony: "Discovering Your Calling/Finding Your Gift". He'll also do some stand up for a faculty recital. You seriously don't want to miss it!

Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Roger Nelson Recommends the MasterWorks Festival

Roger Nelson performed most of his one-man play The Confession of St. Patrick for a Sunday morning service, an excerpt from his one-man play The Man from Aldersgate at a faculty recital, and coached honors recital winners at The MasterWorks Festival. In his Journal he made the following observations:


I highly recommend the MasterWorks Festival to any young person who is serious about developing his/her talent in music, dance, or theatre. A professional and friendly atmosphere pervades the campus. Most of the students are enrolled in the music program, but the dance and theater programs are just as strong. The faculty are all professional Christian artists, who bring much experience as well as knowledge to the table. Students and faculty take their meals together in the cafeteria. Halfway through the lunch hour a 15-minute devotional is shared by a ... faculty member. In addition to that, Bible study attendance is required three nights a week with faculty members leading the studies. Almost every evening a concert or recital can be heard, giving students and faculty alike the opportunity to perform with the ultimate goal of bringing the love of God and the message of Jesus Christ to the classical performing arts world. 

Roger teamed with me in April of 2006 to rent the same Off-Broadway theatre (Theatre 315) in which The MasterWorks Festival Theatre Program will perform again this July.

You can read more about Roger's worldwide adventures, including his performance at our home church, Westchester Chapel and his reflections on my career, which was inspired by his, in his latest Journal at A1ManPlay.com.

Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Monday, January 06, 2014

The Prophetess Anna

Yesterday Joyce performed "The Consecrated Prophetess", a monologue in which she portrayed the Prophetess Anna, who saw the Christ Child, when He was being presented at the Temple.

Pastor Linda Warren did the biblical research and wrote the piece, and she preached on Luke 2:22-38. Sandy R. opened with prayer, and I prayed over the children as they left the main service, and read the scripture. I also directed the drama and helped Joyce fine-tune the script.





This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

WCCC Christmas by RichS on Grooveshark
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Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Sunday, January 05, 2014

New Birth Portrait Series: Ellie Ellsworth

I got to know Ellie Ellsworth on a drive from NYC to Toronto for a Christians in Theatre Arts conference in 1999. Playwright Patti Souder was also on that trip, and the three of us talked about the Lord and using theatre to awaken people's awareness of their need for Him all the way up and all the way back... when we weren't praying. I'm so delighted to stumble across Ellie's testimony:



Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Have a scientific Epiphany!

Some scientists have created software that recreates the night sky at any point in history (or in the future), based on what is known about the movement of planets, stars, etc. We just watched a DVD about a fellow who recreated what the magi saw at the conception of Jesus and at their arrival in Bethlahem. Fascinating: The Star of Bethlahem.

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Christians Involved in Movies

A list of Christians involved in the film making industry was published on IMDb.com, the Internet Movie Database. Several of my colleagues from the films in which I've performed and several of our MasterWorks faculty, including myself, are on the list:

Christians involved in movies


Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

The Unexpected Bar Mitzvah


We just watched Donald James Parker's The Unexpected Bar Mitzvah, in which Joyce and I play husband and wife.

It was shown on Daystar Television Network, but you can order the DVD now.

The Dove Foundation gave it a great review: Dove Family-Approved. The review said, "This one has earned five Doves, our best rating."

We're so pleased to be a part of this film that boldly speaks Truth.

I wrote that last sentence months before The Unexpected Bar Mitzvah was nominated for seven Truth Awards: Best Film, Best Director (Chip Rosetti),  Best Original Screenplay (Donald James Parker won), Best Inspirational Story (won), Best Supporting Actor (Jeff Rose won), Best Supporting Actress (Donna Botts), and Best Actor (Rich Swingle). It also won Best Evangelistic Film at the GloryReelz Christian Film Festival.

Joyce mentioned our experience with the project:



That is from a sermon, which you can hear in its entirety here.

Like the film on Facebook.

Screenwriter and producer Donald James Parker interviewed me on his show, Wielding the Sword of the Spirit, which has been my most visited blog post.





Have a blessed New Year!




Now taking applications for the MasterWorks Festival theatre program: www.RichDrama.com/MWFTheatre. Training and performances in IN, PA and NYC, including an Off-Broadway theatre!