Essays

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Page 5
When Theatre Horizon’s ‘The Agitators,’ starring Steven Wright and Charlotte Northeast, opened on March 4, 2020, the artists had no idea what was coming. (Photo by Daniel Kontz.)

One year later: Philly theater artists open up about the first shutdown

The nights the lights went out

A year after theaters around the country suspended in-person performances due to the pandemic, Cameron Kelsall speaks with Philadelphia theater artists about looking back and moving forward.
Cameron Kelsall

Cameron Kelsall

Essays 5 minute read
This Broad Street McDonald's was the perfect dinner spot for the CAPA students pouring past the pillars across the street. (Photo by Alaina Johns.)

CAPA alums lost an old friend when the McDonald’s at Broad and Carpenter closed

Firsts, lasts, and cheeseburgers

CAPA students made the McDonald’s across the street a second home between classes and concerts, where the drama never stopped and nobody went hungry. Isabel Soisson remembers.
Isabel Soisson

Isabel Soisson

Essays 4 minute read
The masks? They’re everywhere. (Photo by Anndee Hochman.)

After a year of pandemic life, how do we measure the distance between then and now?

A year ago…

How have we weathered the last year? Let us count the ways. Births. Zooms. Funerals. The hugs we missed. Anndee Hochman is still realizing that anything can happen.
Anndee Hochman

Anndee Hochman

Essays 5 minute read
Is a thump-and-swish wake-up what everybody wants? (Image via PxHere.)

Stuck between a good neighbor and a noisy neighbor at seven in the morning

I only have ears for you

Especially when many of us are spending extra time at home, what does being a good neighbor really mean? Roz Warren listens in.
Roz Warren

Roz Warren

Essays 5 minute read
Last year, PAAFF and the Japanese American Citizens League presented ‘American Peril: Faces of the Enemy,’ which explored anti-Asian and anti-Islamic propaganda and its impact today. (Photo by Justin Chiu.)

The Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival stands against anti-Asian violence, and so can you

No place for anti-Asian hate

When a board member of SAG-AFTRA shared a blatantly anti-Chinese meme earlier this year, the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival responded strongly. Marta Rusek talks with festival director Selena Yip and suggests ways for everyone to step up.
Marta Rusek

Marta Rusek

Essays 6 minute read
The bar at Passyunk Avenue; pasted along the back wall are dollar bills, posters, and a neon Budweiser sign.

Fitzrovia’s Passyunk Avenue restaurant takes South Philly flavor abroad

London’s taste of brotherly love

After New Jersey native JP Teti realized he couldn’t get a cheesesteak in London, he dreamed up a restaurant that takes an authentic South Philly vibe abroad. Emily Savidge stops in.
Emily Savidge

Emily Savidge

Essays 5 minute read
Life’s ultimate goal: writer Kelly Conrad (left) performs with an improv teammate in ‘Not Yet Rated.’ (Image courtesy of Kelly Conrad.)

On my Philly Valentine’s day, here’s what being a hopeless romantic really means

My own romantic comedy

In between performances of the annual ‘Not Yet Rated: An Improvised Rom-Com,’ writer and performer Kelly Conrad reflects on what romantic comedies have taught her about life.
Kelly Conrad

Kelly Conrad

Essays 4 minute read
With art projects, there’s something more important than following directions. (Photo by Cass Lewis.)

Can arts education save American democracy?

Creative intervention

As a parent, writer, and lover of the arts, Cass Lewis says we need an intervention of arts education to help prevent events likes the January 6 Capitol insurrection.
Cass Lewis

Cass Lewis

Essays 6 minute read
Thanks for the thanks. (Photo by Alan Tennyson, via Wikimedia Commons.)

Stop calling essential workers heroes and start actually helping us

The myth of the tireless worker

Michelle Nugent is an essential worker, not a hero. For everyone who wants to thank an essential worker today, she explains who the real heroes could be, if they stepped up.
Michelle Nugent

Michelle Nugent

Essays 5 minute read
A popular title. (Image courtesy of the author.)

What happens when bringing up the truth just gets you blocked?

Trashed on Twitter for something I didn’t do

Twenty-one years ago, Roz Warren edited a book called ‘Eat, Drink and Remarry.’ Seven years ago, another author published a novel by the same title. So why did she accuse Roz of theft?
Roz Warren

Roz Warren

Essays 4 minute read