Piccadilly Arts is excited to share the wonderful news that roster artist Lyle Cogen has received the Parent's Choice Gold Award for her newest audio recording, "Bully, Bystander, Bullied - Which One Are You?"
The award is followed with a terrific review by Parent's Choice and says, "This EP (five songs/one poem/18 minute length) takes a decidedly modern, urban approach to educating children about the problems of treating people with disrespect." The review also mentions Lyle's one-woman play Sticks & Stones, and goes on to say, "This is a very important album, which should be shared, and discussed in classrooms and at home."
Read the entire review here.
I'm excited to announce that Piccadilly Arts hired the creative team at MKJ Creative (Doylestown, PA) to reimagine the brand imagery. It had been three years since the brand identity had explored and over the course of three years, so much has changed and evolved and it felt time to revisit things. The brilliant team at MKJ took the famous logo as well as our navy/turquoise colors and kicked them up - a lot. There are new business cards, new stationary, and a new Mailchimp email template that I'll be unveiling in a few weeks. Additionally my fantastic web designer will be updating this site to reflect the new look and the new site will be up in late April.
It's been a fun three months of conversations around brand - the look, the values, the personality, positioning, how things have changed and what can best reflect Piccadilly Arts for the next three years.
Stay tuned. As soon as the cards and stationary arrive, I'll be posting pictures.
This February 2, my Facebook feed was chock full of friends screaming early spring...that furry rodent did not see its shadow and even though we've maybe had 7-10 days of frigid weather in January, Facebook was a buzz with winter haters announcing the news, so much so that I missed my usual local news and weather updates and drove into Berks County in the midst of a snow storm. I was pissed that I was unprepared but then again, giving that rodent a mental high five for his clever tricks. It's February after all. Winter time. And wouldn't you know it, but we've had more snow dumped on us in the past week.
The repeating of situations.
So many topics to discuss with that thought, everything from government to healthcare to gun laws to education to unemployment. Regardless of your personal stance on any of the aforementioned topics, we can all agree that it sure feels like we are rehashing so many of the same days and very hard lessons. Some days it doesn't feel like we've made much progress in a few years let along 50. I don't believe we can be a society without some amount of conflict but I do ponder how we can transcend it responsibility. How do we grow and evolve as a civilized society?
I don't have any answers in this moment. But I think it's worth serious thought - as a whole and as individuals.
More pictures from the two winter conferences. Thanks Pic Monkey.
(above: IPAY 2013, Philadelphia, PA; below: APAP 2013, New York, NY)
Back from a very crazy whirlwind of a few weeks. Well, to be accurate, more like a whirlwind of a few months. I caught a little break in the late fall but I think it lasted about a week. One thing ends and it's time tostart on another project.
IPAY was here in Philadelphia this year. This is the conference that is purely focused on programs for young audiences. Modeled like an international festival, it's days of back to back shows - and full productions of the shows - with some down time and business time. I usually find this to be the most inspiring conference, loving many of the works I see, but this year I was little underwhelmed. I'm not sure what it was - maybe personally, I was looking and craving something else or something more.
There were three lovely full pieces that I enjoyed - The Megaphone Project, a site installation piece, I experienced with my son (pic below) - great for any outdoor festival or park environment; Me & My Shadow, a touching theater piece that used visual art in the performance to explore relationships; and finally, Alvin Sputnik: Deep Sea Explorer. This last piece was a solo show with shadow puppetry, music, and media and all I can say about this - because I think everyone needs to see and experience it - is just wow. I was sobbing by the end. It was the most exquisite piece of theater I've seen in such a long time. It was poignant and relavent and captured the human condition beautifully.
I thought there were some great poets and storytellers this year as well as some terrific spotlight showcases including my own Leland Faulkner. I love the 10-15 model - even though it's short, it's a nice sampling. I came home with a few new kindie music CDs for my son too.
It was great to connect with so many colleagues many of whom have become such good friends in the past few years.
I was no sooner back and I had to pack and head to NYC for APAP, the national conference. It would be a bigger deal this year for me -- on my own, showcases going on, and bringing in reinforcements. My colleague Jill came to IPAY with me and she joined me for APAP as well. I also had the joy of working with a wonderful intern, Sarah, from SUNY Potsdam, and sans the two of them, I'd have been overwhelemd. It was a smart move on my part.
Our showcases took place at the Marjorie Deene Little Theatre at the West Side Y, my home away from home for two days. Treehouse Shakers, Parallel Exit and Lee Faulkner showcased as part of the first ever youth and family showcase. It was a blast to be part of this "inaugural" event and even better to see how many of our presenter colleagues made the trek to see the work. It's hard when you don't self produce and give up a lot of the control but at the same time, having so many other agents on board with all of us promoting it certainly help draw a crowd. Power in numbers. We're all pleased with how it went and look forward to next year. What I hope is this is a platform for our American youth and family artists to showcase and do so well at the national conference. It was a long time coming.
It turned out to be a great conference, perhaps the better one, just given the amount of time to network and do business.
Outside of a trip to Joe's Pub, I didn't make it off site to see anything fun and exciting. But I did return with a rekindled love of jazz - thanks to the Hot Sardines and The Turtle Island Quartet and Nellie McKay.
I have my work cut out for me these next few weeks but it's been good follow up and business thus far.
I'm a little late to the resolutions post - so many did this last month! - but here are a few as they pertain to the agency:
To be more productive and efficient in the coming months -- my new database is in the works as I type and it will no doubt streamline so many business processes. Also on my to-do list is hiring an intern and finding/securing office space. All the above mean growth but in growth there is a period of confusion as we figure out how to get out of the proverbial weeds of suddenly having so much going on that we don't know how to manage it well.
The year of involvement -- I was recently nominated to the NAPAMA board and made the slate and my wonderful peers voted me in so being a voice on the managers/agents side of things is a position I'm looking forward to in 2013. I'm also on the professional development committee for Arts Midwest Conference with colleagues and it promises to be a fun three months crowd sourcing and pooling our resources as we come up with education sessions for the September conference. One other area I'd like to be more involved is NC Presenters so I'm thinking of meaningful ways to do more with them sans spreading myself too thin.
Performances -- I see a lot of great work but I realized in the last three years I've seen primarily great TYA work. It makes sense given the agency's focus to this point and that I have a small child but it's a goal of mine to expand my horizons and see more new plays, off-Broadway pieces, world music and jazz.
Conferences -- I exhibit a lot and this year I'll add Western Arts to the mix. But I'd also like to explore either revisiting NAMP (American's for the Arts' National Arts Marketing Project Conference) or this international circus festival in Montreal over the summer. I need to be an attendee every once in a while too.
Tours -- I have watched this goal slowly take shape over the last 18 months and it's exciting. Building a full out tour is hard work - and sometimes it just doesn't work. I've realized two things: A lot is based on people seeing the work and more is based on relationships and trust. My goal is create more tours (vs a run out) in specific areas over the coming 12-18 mo.
Vision, Mission and Brand -- Vision, Mission and Brand are always evolving and working documents and I've witnessed little changes over the last 18 mo and I can see that I've evolved. It's time to revisit some things as they pertain to the vision and mission and determine what that means for the agency's brand. Lucky for me I have some great folks helping me here.
Website - Related to the aforementioned point, this site will get a new look in the coming months. It was created in 2010 and part of it is that it's time - needs freshening up. Part of it is it needs to reflect where I'm headed.
As Wayne Gretzy said, "I skate to where the puck will be." I heard that quote 5 years ago and it resonated then and stil does.
What are your resolutions, goals, promises?
A sorta repost from last year's Favorite Things around this time of year - nice given the time celebrating with family and friends and looking ahead to a new year. Here are my favorite things, inspired by one of my favorite movies, The Sound of Music.
I am about to watch a Bogart and Bacall flick momentarily - those two have had a recurring theme the last few weeks here and I have never watched a Bogart movie. Earlier this season, I watched Meet Me In St. Louis and The Sound of Music. My Pop Pop introduced me to classics when I was young and I think of him with each one.
I started earlier that usual this season with a trip to Longwood Gardens to see Danu and made some time to walk around for a bit and take it all in. Longwood has an incredible display this time of year and I am looking forward to going back this week - after the rain and icky weather and before the chaos of conferences. The light show at Macy's slid in days before Christmas and there's still our local park which does a sweet display. This year my little guy was into "colorful lights." I could never stand colored strings of lights but I gave in and strung the tree with a hue of blue, green, red, pink, yellow and we had a blast decorating this year together.
Cookies - and lots of them
Another thing that started early in November and wound up continuing through Thanksgiving and Christmas - chocolate chips and sugar cookies. This year I have my son and niece their own slab of dough, the rolling pin and cookie cutters and let them go to town. Unsupervised messy fun. They did an amazing job - for a preKer and Kindergartener.
It's so rare but one hopes. This year on Christmas Eve we were treated to a dusting. Enough to coat windows and leave a little light blanket of white on the green lawns and trees. It's December and by God, it should be cold.
I'm a pretty simplistic holiday gal, not one to get caught up in pomp and circumstance, although a little of it here and there is OK but I prefer finding magic in the simple moments: seeing my guy anticipate Santa, ask questions about the meaning of the holiday, ring bells, eyes lighting up, telling Santa his Christmas list, singing Rudolph, and more. After years of craziness as a kid, teen, and young adult (and I'm not complaining - I loved my childhood Christmases), I sometimes missed the magical moments.
These are just a few of my favorite things...I created a Pinterest board with more fun holiday inspiration. If I look around I can see a little piece of each in my holiday decor, mood, and spirit. Piccadilly wishes you all a wonderful holiday season. May you find the time to rest and recharge, be with your friends and family and to quote one of my favorite bands, "Be here now." Enjoy and be grateful for the gift of the present moment.
Silence and reflection are often under rated today as the need for instant gratification, sharing and the need to know are everywhere, for better or worse. I've been silent for over a week because I simply couldn't write, and write something meaninful, or feel OK writing something trite, following the unfathonable tragedy in CT earlier this month.
It has hit me hard and I probably haven't been this shook up and anxious since 9/11. But I know the families and that community are in it, living the aftermath of evil. I've spent many a day and night thinking, sobbing and praying for them all and praying for my own family.
On the heels of Hanukkah, a celebration of miracles, forging through the Winter Solstice, the longest darkest day of the year, and in anticipation of Christmas in two more days, a celebration of Christ's birth, who came to us in the darkness of night, I think of that community, of our nation, in a long dark place, grieving, hoping for a miracle. I think of what I can do - locally and nationally - and how I can live a more meaningful life in 2013. I think of miracles, of hope, of resiliance and of persevering and love.
The 26 Acts of Kindness is a wonderful movement that has gone viral in the last 10 days. I want to do more for those beautiful children though, something that can last a little longer, and into the New Year. I've decided on 26 Runs. I chose the run because for me, it has the power to heal, and I too need that right now. I also don't run everyday, but maybe 3 times a week, and I like that this is something that can extend into 2013 and keep their memory alive in the coming months. Because we can't ever forget what happened.
Many moons ago, even before 9/11, I was in late teens, and I came face to face with the aftermath of sudden and horrific loss, and its toll on those left behind. I remmebered today these words and this album that comforted me then as they do now.
From To The Faithful Departed – This album is dedicated to all those who have gone before us. Nobody knows exactly where these people are but I know we would like to believe it is in a better place. I believe it is a Human impossibility to obtain complete peace of mind in this dimension, there’s too much suffering and pain – particularly for children ‘Suffer Little Children’ To come unto me For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. To the faithful departed and those left behind, There is a light that never dies.”
- Delores O'Roirdan | The Cranberries
I’m descending upon Round II of conferences. In about 5 weeks I’ll be at it again and this time with all of 3 days of rest in between two. You’d think after all these years I’d stress less but there’s always so much to do to prepare. It brought me to this point – a simple blog post about conferencing best practices. Really though, these tips can be applied to any industry and any event.
It’s important to strategize ahead of time – a good year out – and look at all the various conferences that are available. Consider their mission, their reason for gathering, who attends, who speaks and keynotes, what topics and sessions are presented. Make a list of the ones that closely align with your business goals. Consider whether it makes sense to simply attend or attend and exhibit.
Next, what are your goals for attending? For me, it is agency visibility, prospecting new business, reconnecting with current clients and networking. The sessions are a second priority; they do not drive my reason for attending and exhibiting.
Consider the costs of attending – not just how much it costs to register and/or buy a booth, but your hotel, travel and per diem. What is your budget for such marketing or professional development? Maybe you start with one and build up to more.
Once you make your decision on what and where you’ll attend, next up is timing and preparations. I sure hope your conferences are spaced out because when they are not, well, be prepared for a marathon. Since my goals are sales driven, I am pulling lists, doing outreach and securing meetings and appointments with a few other goals in mind – introduction to me/the roster, discussing a few specific artists, considering a group of dates, booking. Ideally, I'm working this year round but I pull the attendee list a good 4-6 weeks prior and start hacking away at it.
The tactics include calls, emails, mailings, sometimes showcases, and speaking opportunities when appropriate. I’ll go after low hanging fruit first – people I know, then people I kind of know, and then prioritize the ones I do not. In the case of smaller tightly knit conferences where everyone knows each other, I may not hit it as hard – one mass email highlighting some news, a few emails to good colleagues and some calls to some folks I do not know but would like to – because I know we are all on the same schedule and will have opportunities to connect. It’s also small enough that those random opportunities to meet someone exist.
I try to pack smart too – not too many paper products but plenty of rosters and business cards, a laptop or tablet, and in my case, booth stuff (pop up and fabric banner). In a digital age, I try to be sustainable. When I'm not running around setting up a booth or in a meeting, I get myself to a few sessions - never underestimate those moments when you are sitting waiting for a speaker to start, moments in the ladies room, or sitting on a bus or a table waiting for your lunch - they are opportunities to make new friends.
My single biggest challenge is to fit all this outreach into what I’m already doing on a daily basis. I have to do it all. At the same time. I find what works for me is chunking it – a time management strategy I learned my freshman year in high school. For every 5 emails, make a round of 10 calls. Repeat. Try to save admin work for beginning or end of the day (this is a big hurdle for me, I admit).
All in all, go in with a positive attitude. Like anything, the more practice you have, the more efficient you become and the easier it gets. I’m a traveler and a lifelong learner so I’ve always embraced business networking events and conferences. Even when things get very busy and hectic, I have learned how to pace myself and how to set up systems to help me while on the road.
|Congrats to roster artist Lyle Cogen who is cleaning up on the press over the last month.|
In addition to a number of in-school performances, Lyle also performed for groups of students in southern Delaware through the Joshua Freeman Foundation and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Florida. Here are links to terrific write ups:
Eastern Suffolk BOCES newletter, The Star, features Lyle on page 3 under Program Profiles calls her program "larger than life."
"How do you keep 500 sixth-graders glued to their seats and their attention totally focused for 45-minutes? Invite Lyle Cogen to perform for them."
NBC10 local out of Hollywood, FL featured an interview with Lyle and local children about the challenges of bullying prior to the Broward performances along with a nice write up. Click here.
Congrats to Lyle!