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NEWS ARCHIVES June 2004

George Does Frost

Coming up this weekend, George Rosok makes his first appearance with Burien Live Theatre, playing various versions of poet Robert Frost in Memory Formation and Grapenuts. "It's a pretty fun part, and I even have a monologue," says George. "I think this is the fourth time I have had a monologue in a play."

The play was written by Russ Weeks and is being directed by Tineke Raak. BLT's website memory.jpg - 16171 Bytessays the play is "philosophy versus science and emotion versus nerve impulse. Scott and Sarah search for the process that creates memories and learn how to make a really good wine, with the help of the greatest minds in history: Aristotle, Robert Frost, and Gary Larson (yes, that Gary Larson)."

Grapenuts runs June 25-27, Friday and Saturday at 8 PM, Sunday at 2 PM. Seats are all $5, a bargain any day of the week!

George last worked with DIM as director for Homecoming in December 2002. Since then, he has been very active with Redwood Theatre and BLT.

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Laura Hangs with Sue Thomas

A few weeks ago, the students in Tyee High School's Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program got a treat when Deanne Bray stopped by for a visit. Better known as TV's "Sue Thomas: F.B. Eye," Bray is herself hearing-impaired and was a gbray.jpg - 9933 Bytesraduate of Tyee's program. She came back to visit as an encouragement to other students, who can become easily discouraged by what they see as a culture that doesn't care about them in the least. Laura Brunk got a chance to meet Deanne and her husband Troy Kotsur, who is also a hearing-impaired actor.

The Internet Movie Database provides a thumbnail bio of Bray: "Born mostly deaf from unknown cause (possibly German measles). Completely deaf in right ear, some residual hearing in left ear in which she uses a hearing aid. Enjoys reading, especially with Deaf children. Also enjoys attending Deaf community events. Role models include Phyllis Frelich, Linda Bove, Freda Norman, and Sue Thomas. In addition to acting, also teaches deaf and hard of hearing children."

The picture below is the class with which Laura has worked the last two years, and was taken during Bray's visit.

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Greg Speaks at NACC

The afternoon of July 8 in Phoenix, Arizona, Greg Wright will be presenting a workshop at the annual North American Christian Convention. This year, the convention's theme is "One Outrageous Opportunity: A Time Like No Other." In keeping with the theme, Greg's topic will be "Reaching an Image-Conscious Culture: Opportunities and Pitfalls." The following is an excerpt from Greg's paper.

"Almost every vacation destination world-wide sells a four-by-five card with four very familiar words: Wish You Were Here. Now, imagine receiving the generic version of this postcard in the mail: white paper, black ink, fifteen sans-serif characters and a period. Not a very compelling image, is it? Add a background that includes a glittering white beach, turquoise water, a cloudless sky and a few palm trees, and itís quite another matter.

"Thereís no denying the evocative and persuasive power of effective visual design. And we donít have to look much farther than the end of our remote controls to convince ourselves of its pervasive impact in American society.

"Before examining the opportunities and pitfalls of ministering to this visual culture, itís worth asking the question: Should the church adopt the tools of the culture? Do we want to do ministry the way MTV does music? After all, the Gospel is more than a sales pitch or a music video. Catering to the tastes of the video generation might well be the first slippery step on the road to syncretism.

"To put the answer to that question in the proper perspective, we would do well to remember how we got to where we are today. For the better part of sixteen centuries, the Roman church leaned heavily on visual ministry. Statuary, stained glass and iconography all accompanied the Latin mass as aids to conveying the meaning of Godís word to an illiterate flock. 'Anything Goes' was not the motto, however, and the iconoclasm of our Reformation found precedent in many a Roman controversy over the role of art in ministry."

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New Pieces at Hollywood Jesus

Next fall, Jenn Wright plans to return to school for postgraduate work, studying the interplay between the arts, culture and theology (God willing). Her ongoing work with the website Hollywood Jesus is proving a good training ground for her future studies. The website's hits number in the millions each day, and the range of cultural and theological issues addresed are quite broad. This Spring, Jenn has authored a number of new columns.

In her review of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Jenn observes that "the basis of the potter.jpeg - 6923 Byteswhole story" is "a mother and father who died saving their infant son from Lord Voldemort -- a bold sacrifice which gave the baby an unmatched source of power against evil. (Sound familiar?)" And if Harry Potter rewrites the Christ story, so also does Monty Python's Life of Brian, whose re-release Jenn found "poorly (if opportunistically) timed," especially "in light of Mel Gibsonís The Passion of the Christ." But if "Pythonís audacious parody appears brazen and crass," Jenn continues, "we must all realize that Monty Pythonís Life of Brian is all about misunderstanding -- misunderstanding everything from who the Messiah is to who the Enemy is -- and how each of us responds to such misunderstandings."

Jenn's June feature for the After Eden Journal at Hollywood Jesus is titled, "The Problem of Miracles." In this piece, Jenn examines our culture's fascination with the miraculous, and asks the tough questions: "What do we do when the miraculous remission from cancer turns into a relapse? What do we do when the miraculous dinner is over, and weíre hungry again? What do we do when the waters that were parted yesterday are stormy and threaten to dump the boat today?" Fellow After Eden columnists weigh in with their two cents.

This Friday, Jenn's review of the summer romance The Notebook will be posted. Read about Greg's talk with Notebook screenwriter Jeremy Leven, and check back for Jenn's review on Friday.

Copyright (c) 2002 - 2004  Greg & Jenn Wright  Updated 6/23/04