Archive for August, 2012


Georgia Ensemble Theatre newsletter

Georgia Ensemble Theatre

As we launch into our third decade with our exciting 20th Anniversary Season, we are also launching a new fundraising campaign that’s easy on your wallet and incredibly helpful to us:  The $20 for 20 Years Campaign!  With this new initiative, we are asking patrons to donate just $20, that’s only a dollar for every year of theatre at GET!  And our goal is … what else?  $20,000! 
We are extremely humbled and fortunate to still be here despite these difficult economic times.  We pledge to you to continue in our efforts to provide excellence onstage, in the classroom, on tour and through our outreach programs. 
Thank you so much for your patronage, and here’s to another 20!

$20 for 20 Years! 


Here’s How to Donate:
– Simply CLICK HERE to donate online.
– Call us at 770-641-1260 to make your donation over the phone.
– Mail a check written to GET to our mailing address at P.O. Box 607, Roswell, GA  30077-0607.
Georgia Ensemble Theatre is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.  Your donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowable by law.
Trivia Time!!!!
Ready for a GET Trivia Game?
Can you name what GET production this picture is from?  Correct answers will be entered into a drawing to win a pair of tickets to the grand opening of our Emerald Anniversary Season on September 6th (includes attendance at the patron and cast party after the show)!
Hint: you can jog your memory by perusing the titles listed on the Past Productions page of our website.
Simply send your response, your name and contact information to with a note in the heading that reads “Trivia #3 Answer”.  We will notify you if your answer was correct.  One drawing will be held each week from all correct replies to that week’s Trivia Question.
Generously sponsored by Bank of North Georgia and
Northside Hospital.
For tickets:
call 770-641-1260 or
 Georgia Ensemble Theatre is the Official Resident Professional Theatre Company of the Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St., Roswell, GA  30075. 

Free workshops and classes



1. FREE JD Lewis Workshop at Hilton Atlanta Northeast

J.D. Lewis has worked with actors who have been either nominated or won Academy Awards, Emmy Awards, SAG Awards, Golden Globes and Tony Awards. During this FREE workshop Mr. Lewis will discuss the business of acting. His studio is one of the most well respected and recognized names in Hollywood. JD Lewis’ studio has been home to many working actors in Los Angeles.

Kids and Adults – Ages 8 & Up

Saturday, September 8

2:30p – 4:30p

Space is Limited

RSVP Now at – Subject line – Free JD Workshop


2. FREE Master Class at Charisma Studios – Kennesaw

Already familiar with the basics of acting? Are you ready to start sharpening those skills? Have a monologue or scene you are working on or an audition coming up? Bring it in, and let’s work. While you’re at it bring in your resume also. If we have time, we’ll be covering resumes too.

Adults – Ages 18 & up

Wednesday, August 29

7:30p – until

Space is Limited

RSVP Now at – Subject line – Free Master


3. FREE Kid and Teen Acting Class at Charisma Studios – Kennesaw

All Levels. Interactive class. Your children will enjoy building their confidence while being introduced or reintroduced to the exciting world of acting, and will meet other kids who share the same passion. Parents will learn about how to help these young actors Make Acting Happen by learning about our upcoming fall schedule.

Kids and Teens – Ages 8 – 14

Saturday, September 1

11A – 12:30p

Space is Limited

RSVP Now at – Subject line – Free Kids Class


4. FREE Basics Class – Adults at Charisma Studios – Kennesaw

In this interactive class, you’ll enjoy building your confidence while being introduced or reintroduced to the exciting world of acting and will meet others who share the same curiosity and passion. You’ll also learn about how you can continue to Make Acting Happen during our fun goal-setting segment.

Adults – Ages 18 & up

Thursday, August 30

7:30p – until

Space is Limited

RSVP Now at Subject line – Free Basics


Catch Houghton’s Craig Meyer in Almost Elton John!

Almost Elton John & the Rocket Band return to Atlanta for One Night Only!
Meyer Entertainment Group


Almost Elton John & The Rocket Band with Special Guest Yacht Rock Schooner

Join Us For Our Only Atlanta Appearance This Year!



Gates open at 5:30pm
Yacht Rock Schooner 7pm

Almost Elton John 8pm

After spending the last year on the road,
return home for their only Atlanta appearance this year!

Tickets available at

Click here to go to our FaceBook Fanpage
and “LIKE” us for a special discount code only for our Fans!

Grab a picnic dinner, bring your favorite beverage and all your friends as we send Summer off with a BANG! 

We look forward to seeing you at this celebration!


The Countdown Continues to GET’s Exciting 20th Anniversary Season! 
Only 16 Days…
until the Grand Opening of our
20th Anniversary Season!
Act One:
Come to Opening of
September 6th
Champagne Toast at 7:30pm
Performance at 8pm
Post Show Reception with Cast, Crew, Board and Staff!
Call 770-641-1260 or purchase online at
(Already a subscriber?  We’re thrilled!  We look forward to seeing you on your regularly scheduled performance night.)
The Man Who Came to Dinner is generously sponsored by
Act Two:
Continue the Celebration on Saturday night,
September 8th with GET’s Annual Gala

One Enchanted Evening 2012

Join us for our annual black-tie optional gala fundraiser!  This fun evening will include cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a silent auction, a four-course meal, a live auction, and dancing to the fabulous band, BacktraX.  We will also be presenting the GET Legacy Award to the Rotary Club of Roswell.  In celebration of our 20 years, this year’s event will also include a red carpet arrival complete with papparazzi to welcome you and your guests.


One Enchanted Evening  

 Saturday, September 8th


Atlanta Country Club

500 Atlanta Country Club Dr.,

Marietta, GA  30067


Individual Tickets: $150

Call 770-641-1260 to make your reservation.

Trivia Time!!!!
Are You Ready?


Correctly name the actor shown in the photo above, and be entered into a drawing to win a pair of tickets to the grand opening of our Emerald Anniversary Season on September 6th (includes attendance at the patron and cast party after the show)! 
Hint: This actor has appeared in many shows here at GET since our very first year.
Simply send your response, your name and contact information to with a note in the heading that reads “Trivia #2 Answer”.  We will notify you if your answer was correct.  One drawing will be held each week from all correct replies to that week’s Trivia Question. 
Join Our Facebook Page where we will have more chances to win fun Trivia games throughout our 20th Anniversary Season!
Like us on Facebook
 Georgia Ensemble Theatre is the Official Resident Professional Theatre Company of the Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St., Roswell, GA  30075. 

Chez Group – fall workshop program

Shay Griffin and the Chez Group are very excited to be bringing in Los Angeles Producer, Writer, and Actor Matt Battaglia. He will apply his perspectives as a professional producer, actor, and writer to work with our actors. He also brings a lot of insight about actors who live and work on both coasts. With so many films, episodic productions, and commercials now filming in Georgia, it is now more imperative than ever that we present prepared Southeastern talent to Hollywood directors and producers.


Matt will be joining us on the weekend of Sept 22nd and 23rd. The whole class will consist of either two morning sessions or two afternoon sessions.


We anticipate that this class will fill quickly so please reply to this email as soon as possible with your interest!



(Emmy Winning Producer, Writer, Actor, Philanthropist)


Battaglia is an Emmy winning producer, has co-produced a two time Golden Globe nominated film and has been an actor in over 90 films, network pilots and television shows.


Battaglia Executive Produces the television show “Last Shot with Judge Gunn”, which he sold straight into syndication with 130 episodes in season one (2011). He was nominated and won the Emmy in June 2012 as Executive Producer for it’s first season on the air. The show also won an Emmy for Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Drama. It was both his and the show’s first nomination and first win.


Battaglia served as Co-Producer on the two time Golden Globe nominated film Brothers, starring Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal and Oscar winner Natalie Portman. The film was directed by six-time Academy Award nominee Jim Sheridan, from a script written by David Benioff (“Game of Thrones”) and was distributed by Lionsgate.


Battaglia was also a Co-executive producer on the 2009 horror film Kill Theory, directed by producer Chris Moore.


His production company has optioned the national and international bestsellers “Bad Monkeys” by Matt Ruff, which is currently set up at Fox Studios, and “Or I’ll Dress You in Mourning” by Larry Collins and Dominque Lapierre. In 2011, he also Executive Produced the documentary “Do As You Likey”, currently in post-production.


As an actor, Battaglia has acted in over 90 films and television shows.  Battaglia appeared in the Paramount Studios/Marvel tentpole film “Thor”, starring Chris Hemsworth (the star of “Avatar”), Natalie Portman, Samuel Jackson, Renee Russo & Anthony Hopkins for director and Oscar winner Kenneth Branaugh.


Matt is often remembered for his memorable role as the fireman Vince, a boyfriend of Lisa Kudrow’s character on NBC’s hit sitcom “Friends”. Other recent notable guest stars include recent stints on “The Mentalist”, “The Client List”, “Longmire”, in addition to two episodes on “24” with Keiffer Sutherland, two episodes of HBO’s “Big Love”, “Shark”, “CSI-NY”, “Bones” and “CSI-Miami” just to name a few.


Matt  Battaglia co-founded “The Mint Jubilee” charity event in memory of his mother Nancy Van Cleve Battaglia whom he lost to cancer in 1993.  It has successfully raised millions of dollars for cancer patients and has provided financial resources to scientists, cancer centers and hospitals committed to finding cures and controls for cancer. The annual black tie gala takes place in Louisville, Kentucky the night before the Kentucky Derby. It has become a world class event attracting high profiled celebrities, entertainers and dignitaries from around the globe and was televised worldwide in over 130 countries and over 200 million homes. As a producer, Battaglia was successful in having portions of The Mint Jubilee covered on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Entertainment Tonight, E! News Daily, E! Entertainment’s “FYE” and “Wild On Dixie”, ESPN, NBC, ABC and FOX. It has in itself become part of the Kentucky Derby tradition.


Born in Tallahassee, Florida, Matt grew up in the towns of Tucker and Lithonia, Georgia, two suburbs of Atlanta but his family currently resides in Roswell, Georgia. A football scholarship led him to the University of Louisville, where he became an All-American and All-South middle linebacker, leading the nation in tackles his senior year, and breaking former All-Pro Otis Wilson’s college tackling record. He was team captain his junior and senior year and was voted Most Valuable Player by his teammates and coaches. Matt went on to play in the N.F.L. with the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles.



The Chez Group
2221 Peachtree Rd NE
Suite D, Box 335
Atlanta, GA 30309
404-771-1361 (C)


Interview with Francine Locke!

Check out this interview with Houghton’s own Francine Locke about her role in “A Cry for Justice.”


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New post on CJ’s Corner


Interview with Francine Locke Starring in “A Cry for Justice”

by CJ Powers

I had an opportunity to chat with Francine Locke who stars in a new feature film due out this fall. Here is how our conversation went…

1. In your recent role playing Jackie Carpenter in the film “A Cry for Justice” you play a distraught mother who had to fight trumped up charges against her son. How did you prepare for such a role?

I believe as a mother, you have built into you an ability to fight against any odds for your children. I envisioned every possible emotion would hit Jackie at one point or another in her struggle; hopelessness, anger, fear, disbelief. Her journey was not one continuum, but a cacophony of situations and emotions. Although not fighting a legal system, my background had given me a taste of each, from which I pulled out the ultimate intense, personal response, that had a life or death urgency. Michael McClendon, who both wrote & directed it, was so in tune with her struggles, he knew exactly where Jackie was at each point and he made it “easy”.

2. During the film your character visits her son who was framed for a felony murder in jail. What did you do to play Jackie authentically based on the combination of faith and depression she faced?

It was a surreal experience. It happened so quickly, she didnʼt have time to think about what was happening, she was just going through the motions, walking, breathing. I was like a pressure cooker, If I had admitted to myself that I was really there to see my son in prison, that he was locked away from me, that I couldnʼt touch him, I would have gone crazy. It wasnʼt until I saw him behind the dirty glass, that emotions and fears were allowed to break through.

3. Did you play the character with a southern accent or in your own voice?

I had a southern accent, but not typical. I worked with a vocal coach to prepare, and he had listened to several of Jackieʼs interviews to hear her vocal qualities. Scarlett OʼHaraʼs “Gone With the Wind” drawl & intonation is really not accurate for most of Georgia. There really is an “r” in Georgia! Part of my vocal preparation was the different pronunciation, part was the cadence & then there is a huge difference in pitch variation compared to the midwest. I had silly sentences that would focus on specific sounds, then I also marked my script for words that consistently had a unique pronunciation.

4. I understand the film was on a fast schedule based on the tight budget. What were your shooting days like and did you have enough time for each scene?

We had a terrific crew, the cast was so focused, Michael had a vision, he instilled confidence and was always reassuring rather than criticizing, everything flowed. Having trust in and respect for your director means everything. I knew he saw each scene in his mind & wouldnʼt stop until he got what he set out for. I felt confident that I could explore different ways to approach the scenes, and he would direct me if I was off track.

Due to the out of sequence shoot order, it could have been a disaster. Michael joked about how the first several days I was pulled in so many different directions, but even that, while exhausting, sort of worked in my favor. I had no time to really think about exactly what I would be thinking and feeling, it was much more instinctual. As Jackie, I was in such a state of emotional frenzy, aways just on the edge. In the midst of all this, there was one particular scene with my son, we were having a quiet moment, which set the stage for our relationship, and it really took some doing to adjust and just relax and enjoy the warmth of the scene. Once we did, it was such a joy!

The crew was great, they were so respectful, sort of kept their distance to let me stay in my personal place. And again, having a director who understood the process was terrific. He could take me aside, walk me through what was happening, Jackieʼs current state of mind, that I just let it wash over me & trusted him that he would let me know if he wasnʼt getting what he wanted.

There was one scene at the end of a long day, and I knew they were rushed to get this one in the can. Everything was set up, Michael talking me to where Jackie was in her universe, and then he said “Iʼm making too many words, you just go ahead and do it.” It was a very quiet scene, in the middle of the night and emotionally & physically I was alone, a small speck in the universe. We taped the rehearsal, and then did 2 takes, due to a sound issue on the first one, and they called out thatʼs a wrap. The hustle began to tear down the set, I was left to change out of wardrobe & get back to the hotel. I had some misgivings, thinking that because it was so late that they had “settled” for my one take, thinking I couldnʼt have done any better. I later found out that Michael had gotten exactly what he wanted & was quiet, reveling in the moment.

As to the work flow, I was on set an hour earlier to begin make up & wardrobe, then the crew arrived & when they had the basic set up ready, weʼd block the scene, then Michael would take us aside & walk us through what he was looking for. Back to Make up and wardrobe, which is the one area that when we had large scenes we could have used more time, but we all did what we needed to, all helped each other and got it done. The camaraderie & friendships begun on set have been nothing short of amazing.

5. Many times we hear about Christian films having miracles happen during the shoot. Did you witness any?

Just the fact that we accomplished all we did was incredible, but Iʼll give you a few examples where God was in the details.

We needed both a courthouse & a jail for many scenes. There had been a delay in the start date as they were trying to coordinate scheduling between two different locations which would have necessitated extreme delays of moving equipment from one location to the other. Out of the blue, the town of Carrollton offered up both in one shot! They had built a new courthouse, and would be finished moving into the new building by the 19th, so if filming could hold off, we would have full use of the old building, with a courthouse upstairs, a holding cell for the jail, a secure building, alarmed and closed to the public. Fantastic!

Another, as Michael and Pete Wages our cinematographer, were discussing camera angles to minimize the immense tangle of electrical cables from the telephone poles, the city told them, no problem, those poles & cables will be down a week before you film!

And, at the conclusion of our read through of the script weeks prior to shooting, Michael describes the final scene & says, “In a perfect world, the sun breaks through the clouds, the doves fly of in the distance. The End”. So we are filming the last scene, I exit the courthouse, and incredible to see, a flock of pigeons (ok, so they arenʼt exactly doves) fly overhead from the church to cross in front of the courthouse….. God IS in the details!

Copyright © 2012 By CJ Powers

CJ Powers | August 22, 2012 at 7:00 am | Categories: Filmmaking | URL:


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Casting for Non-Union Short film – “Five”

Casting for the short film, “Five.” Auditions will be held on Saturday, 8/25. Please read below for additional information.




Director: BJ Winfrey

Non-Union Short Film

Producers: BJ Winfrey & Syr Law

Writer: BJ Winfrey

Production Dates: 9/7 – 9/9/2012

Casting Director: Actors will go straight to Producer/Director for consideration.

Callbacks: N/A

Shoot/Start Date: 9/7/2012

Pay Rate: Copy, Credit, Meals

Location: Atlanta, GA


Principal Photography will consist of 3 day shoot, September 7th 8th and 9th. Not all actors need to be present all three days, but all actors need to be available for all three days.  The majority of the shoot takes place during daylight hours and we will follow all state laws regarding minors and film shoots. One rehearsal prior to the shoot will also be required. Date/time TBA. Shoot will take place in Milton, GA (close to Alpharetta).



FIVE will be submitted heavily to film festivals domestic and abroad, as well as IMDB.




20-30 years old.  African American.  Convicted murderer, former inner city gang member, drug dealer.  Tee is not a big man, but very intimidating in his attitude and mannerisms.



8-10 years old.  Caucasian.  Very chatty little girl.  The eldest of the sisters.  Has been through a very traumatic situation but not broken.



5-7 years old.  Caucasian.  No lines but can play very realistic emotions (including numb and emotionless) without saying a word.  The youngest sister.  Has been through a traumatic situation and is broken.



30 years +.  Clean cut likeable everyday guy.



STORYLINE:  “FIVE” opens on two little girls sitting at the back of an old house in the middle of nowhere with a recently escaped convict…who clearly is not a relative.  The girls, unharmed but clearly frightened, have a brief but vague conversation with the man, when a car pulls up, causing all three of them great alarm.


Submit headshots/resumes to