Daily Archives: 04/10/2009

An Art Whisperer

(Community Matters) Ron Berry is an ART WHISPERER. Sipping cocktails, watching images of the performance art groups & events, Ron would say just a few words about each, in just the right tone, remembering in his minds eye what he saw that prompted the invitation and sharing the essence of their work – “the most sensual,” “one of only 6 humans 10 octaves,” “stand up comic, a one-man rock opera,” “intense & ethereal paired with a Japanese punk rock singer from the 70s,” “mesmerizing, electric & present.”

Arms, legs, bodies & tEEth from Israel, Portland, Austin, New York & France, in dance. Bodies in urban spaces. Puppetry. Site specific art installations. Walking fish. London, Austin & New York theater. Appendages held forth by balloons. Music – collaborative, mesmerizing, funky & soulful. Film.
Forced entertainment. Late night venues, everynight. a Seaholm performance. The FuseBox Festival launches in just 13 days.


“LeeSaar’s dances always require unwavering attention, they are powerful. “Geisha” is one of their strongest and most fascinating excursions into territory whose physical and emotional atmospheres are a coolly seething whole.” -Jennifer Dunning , The NY Times, 2008.
Julie Thornton and Art House are important collaborators, supporters and sponsors of the Festival. Julie’s production company, testperformancetest, is producing the performances of Geisha, Erection and Maxi Geil Playcolt.
Reggie Watts

Reggie Watts is a classically trained pianist and jazz singer, and one of six Americans in possession of full vocal range (ten octaves of tone plus 300 distinct vocal styles). Last year’s performances in the Rollins at the Long Center were spell bounding and sold out. Anothe r must see.

In 2008 Steven decided we’d dive deep into the festival by sponsoring and inviting all our friends, seriously. I think we invited 50+ friends to a dozen or so performances. Everyone loved it; we were hooked.

Steven wanted to help our dear friend Ron Berry even more. Ron is an actor, writer, director, producer and the FuseBox Festival founder, executive director, curator and chief bottle washer. Amazes us what he’s created with little financing the first four years and nearly all from family and friends. So, this year, ABPorter.org is underwriting FuseBox.

Ron & Steven decided to form a stand alone 501(c)(3) and have invited their most fun and hard working friends to join the board – Amy Bryant (who’s been helping Ron for years), Amy Rudy & Brent Hasty. Julie Thornton isn’t officially on the board, though you wouldn’t know it. She’s everybit the trojan worker with Ron, Steven, the Amys and Brent . . . . and Sam Webber, and Hank Cathey, and Shobie Partos and Palo Chalupka and . . .

Graham Reynolds

Austin’s most prolific & hip composer, musician and ubiquitous arts collaborator, Graham Reynolds, was commissioned and created a piece to launch FuseBox, Thursday, April 23. Parades, Processionals, and Percussion will proceed down Guadalupe from Waterloo Park to Ballet Austin for the inaugural performance of Erection (which a Dallas presenter warns would be too racey for his city).

@ last night’s Preview Party at Art House

The Portland-based company, tEEth, is performing Grub. According to the Portland Mercury, the work is “enthralling, demonstrating a self-awareness, offbeat humor, and pervasive anxiety that marked it as utterly contemporary. Calling Grub a “show” would trivialize it: This is a work, demanding of both the audience and performers, simultaneously a reflection of and comment on our culture.”

VIP Pass- Guaranteed Access & Festival Concierge, all shows

We are selling a very limited number of VIP FuseBox Passes – these ensure the best seating for any & all shows (best of house, VIP seating), private parties, backstage access & a private Festival concierge for two. Plus, it’s a great way to support artists and their art. The Festival’s board, ABPorter.org & testperformancetest have underwritten all administrative costs. Ticket and pass proceeds benefit the artists directly. $1,000 of the $1,500 VIP pass cost is deductible as a charitable contribution.
Contact me directly (eugene AT abporter.org) for the VIP pass

All Access Passesall shows

First reserved tickets to any & all FuseBox Festival performances
only $129
purchase here

ABPorter.org is underwriting FuseBox Festival
in honor of our 10 year anniversary.
I love you Steven!


(Community Matters) One of the ways I start each day off right is connecting with my young friends at Starbucks.

This am, was talking with a young man I’ve now known for nearly two years. He just celebrated his 24th birthday (and dreading the impending milestone of the deadly 25th 🙂 ). As we were talking about Easter weekend plans, I learned he’d been disinherited and kicked out of his home by his family for being gay. This still exists . . .

in response to Linda’s question, why Starbucks not a local?

b/c Starbucks is only one that opens at 5:30 am and is close by. I usually have my second cup from Medici at about 9:30

Stewart Mocking Rights’ Rage

(Community Matters) gotta see. John Stewart mocking Rights’ rage over President Obama

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart M – Th 11p / 10c
Baracknophobia – Obey
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic Crisis Political Humor

Chestnut Commons Affordable Housing Fund

(Community Matters) From the Meredith Family’s gift of 4 acres to a differently-affordable housing project on the Featherlite Tract on E. MLK, came a gift of $1,300,000+ to the Austin Community Foundation. The Entrepreneurs Foundation helped create the project and has helped manage the process. Late last year, ACF & EF granted $300k to Austin Habitat for Humanity for the creation of a new project to renovate & repair the homes of elderly, longtime residents of the Chestnut Neighborhood.

left to right: ACF’s Ken Gladish, Will Meredith, Rudy Green, Mike Cook, Tommy Meredith, AHFH Michael Willard & project manager, Caroline Marni

Today, we met with AHFH staff to tour two completed homes and the next two under construction.

the first home renovated

The home had sat on cedar posts as its foundation for its nearly 80 years. New cement foundation piers were seated, electrical and plumbing replaced, walls & floors repaired, insulation added and the kitchen & bathroom has been renovated.

Mrs. Heard & Tom Meredith

Mrs. Heard has lived in the house since she was 8 years old. At one time during the 40s, 13 adults and children lived in less than 500 square feet. Over time, the home was expanded. She’s thrilled the house is now in a condition to one day leave to her children.

Mrs. Slade

Mrs. Slade is also a very long term Chestnut resident. Got to know her 6 or 7 years ago when we started meeting with Chestnut residents while planning the Featherlite Development. She & Mrs. Ivory have been our most important point of contact in the neighborhood since 2002. They’ve long worked on behalf of the home owners within I-35, MLK, Chestnut Ave. and 12th Street

Austin Habitat’s Michael Willard, Austin Community Foundation CEO/Pres Ken Gladish,
Will Meredith, Mrs. Slade and Tommy

the start of Mrs. Slade bathroom renovation