Budget boost must benefit businesses

first_imgBudget boost must benefit businessesOn 30 Apr 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. There is no clearer sign of this Government’s backing for Investors in People than the extra funds announced by the Chancellor during his Budget statement.He said: “I can today respond to joint work by the CBI and TUC by announcing an additional £30m so more businesses can reach Investors in People standards.”This new money the Government is pumping in will be used to encourage take-up of the Standard within small firms and should answer critics in the business community who may have doubted its commitment to the Investors in People Standard.The money in the Budget is on top of the £2.5m already allocated this year to raise the profile and boost the delivery of Investors in People in the shorter term (News, 9 April). And the number of companies committing to working towards the Standard is on the up again – nearly 2,100 organisations in the four months to January this year, almost back to the levels of the same period in the previous year (2,400). And we can expect Investors in People recognitions to rise accordingly.However, I want to put a special emphasis on increasing the number of small businesses achieving the Investors in People Standard. They employ 44 per cent of the country’s workforce but less than 1 per cent are working towards IIP status. I realise that the smaller the company, the harder it often is to find the time, money and expertise to invest in your workforce.But the Standard can bring benefits to any size of firm and must be made available to all. The new money will directly benefit firms employing less than 50 people through measures such as the development of beacon status businesses.These beacons will spur other businesses to follow in their footsteps and achieve Investors in People recognition through a mentoring and support programme. Clear targets will also be set so that the improvement in uptake is transparent and reflects the size of the investment.Why am I such a strong supporter of the Standard? Because the bottom line is that it works. Investors in People is the best workforce and business development standard we have. Employers with Investors in People status recognise that success in businesses comes from a motivated and well-trained workforce – as the 25,000 who have received the standard during its first decade will testify.In a recent study, 73 per cent of IIP companies surveyed said that it helped them to meet their business objectives. Half reported a positive impact on business growth or performance. More than half said they had seen customer satisfaction improve.By the end of this year we want 45 per cent of organisations in England with more than 50 employees recognised as Investors in People, and an additional 10,000 smaller organisations. We must meet these targets and move well beyond them in future years.More than a third of UK employees now work for a company that either has or is working towards the standard. But if we want to raise the skills levels of our workforce to match the best in the world by 2010, mobilising more employers – large and small – must be our priority.Raising skills levels is essential to our economic growth. Firms with higher levels of training have higher productivity. The challenge we face is to embed workforce training and development in all businesses large and small – and Investors in People has a central role to play in this.John Healey is Education and Skills Ministerwww.investorsinpeople.co.uk Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

HR holds the solution for women to reach potential

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Surprise, surprise, another report shows that women are failing to achievetheir potential because of management attitudes and unfavourable workpractices. The research by Catalyst and Conference Board (News, page 1) findsthat male executives are unconsciously stereotyping the genders. The solutions lie with HR. First, HR must take a lead in tackling the longhours culture. This is not just an issue for women, but talented staff of bothgenders, whether or not they have a family. Organisations that encourage andreward long-hours working are discouraging the many talented individuals whowant to have a life as well as a job. The other key responsibility for HR is to develop a robust and credibleperformance management process, as Helena Feltham, Marks & Spencer’s HRdirector points out. This is how you ensure an objective approach to successionplanning and career development and maximise the number of people of bothgenders who can achieve their potential. It’s not about equality – it’s aboutorganisational effectiveness. Chicken outfits not always a good idea In an effort to instill passion and fun into work, and boost the motivationand performance of staff, companies have introduced all sorts of wacky ideas.Dressing up as a chicken or having an ‘Elvis Day’ has probably helped achievethese goals in particular companies. The problem is that corporate efforts toget people to be more ‘creative’ or ‘individual’ can sometimes result inhalf-baked social engineering. Often the most talented individuals tend not to respond to forced spontaneityand jolly japes organised from the top. As our feature on TV’s Inspector Morsesuggests, your next brilliant business innovation is as likely to come from thegrumbling trouble-maker in the corner as from the bright-eyed and bushy-tailedstar from the top business school. By Noel O’Reilly HR holds the solution for women to reach potentialOn 18 Jun 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. last_img read more

Antarctic studies of the coupled ionosphere-magnetosphere system

first_imgThe southern polar region offers many significant advantages over its northern counterpart for studies of the interactions of the solar wind, magnetosphere, ionosphere and thermosphere. These mainly arise from the much wider separation of the geographic and geomagnetic poles in the south compared with the north. These displacements lead to hemispheric asymmetries and to considerable longitudinal structure in the high-latitude ionosphere and magnetosphere, which is particularly striking in the south. Examples of these effects are given. In addition, observations of geospace from Antarctica have made a valuable contribution per se. Suitable illustrations are provided from invariant latitude ca. 45° to the invariant pole. Possible areas for future research, and the experimental methods that are likely to be used to overcome the logistical difficulties, are discussed.last_img read more

UK: HMS Iron Duke Hands Over Gulf Duties to St Albans

first_imgBack to overview,Home naval-today UK: HMS Iron Duke Hands Over Gulf Duties to St Albans View post tag: HMS Share this article View post tag: News by topic View post tag: Albans View post tag: Iron View post tag: over View post tag: Gulf View post tag: Hands View post tag: St.center_img View post tag: Navy View post tag: Naval July 7, 2011 Ploughing through seas whipped up by the monsoon season, HMS Iron Duke and St Albans perform a traditional sail past in the Indian Ocean as one Portsmouth-based frigate hands over Gulf duties to another.The two ships – Iron Duck on the left here, the Saint on the right – saluted each other with jets of water, a few banners of ribald encouragement, and quite a few matelots in fancy dress on the outgoing Type 23… including Iron Duke’s own Kate Winslet complete with bright red ‘dress’, ginger hair… and a bit of paunch right at the bow.This has been Iron Duke’s very first deployment to this part of the world, despite being in service for nearly 20 years; most of her time to date has been spent in the North and South Atlantics.Her five months in theatre have spanned a rather momentous period – for in addition to events sweeping the North Africa, the Levant and Middle East, the Royal Navy’s Iraq mission has finally concluded after nearly a decade.It fell to the ship to conduct the last patrol of Iraq’s oil platforms which are both the mainstay of the country’s economy and have been the raison d’être for RN frigate deployments to the Gulf since 2003.With the Iraq mission done, Operation Telic is no more and a wider duty for the substantial RN presence east of Suez (generally never fewer than ten surface ships, RFA support vessels and normally one submarine) has emerged – Kipion, a combination of the old Operations Telic and Calash, patrols of the Indian Ocean.The Kipion remit is counter drugs/piracy/smuggling/terrorism, plus working with the sizeable Allied naval force in the region, plus friendly nations.All of which St Albans is getting used to right now. She’s arrived in the area fresh from a dramatic high seas rescue which saw her Merlin pluck all souls from a stricken tanker in the middle of a monsoon.She’ll be away from home until the year’s end, while Iron Duke is making godspeed for Portsmouth on her 6,000-mile journey back to the Solent.[mappress]Source: royalnavy, July 7, 2011 View post tag: Duties UK: HMS Iron Duke Hands Over Gulf Duties to St Albans View post tag: UK View post tag: Dukelast_img read more

Art House Productions announces INKubator playwrights Each writer will team up…

first_imgArt House Productions (Meredith Burns, Executive Director) is proud to announce the 2020-2021 cohort of its INKubator Program. INKubator is a year-long generative process for a select group of 6 playwrights in residence at Art House Productions. This year’s playwrights are Andrea Coleman, Izzi D’Esposito, Madeline Dennis-Yates, Nathaniel Foster, Aja Nisenson, and SMJ.Playwrights will meet on a monthly basis alongside program director Alex Tobey to share new work, receive feedback, and develop a first draft of a new play. Meetings will begin virtually, but are expected to transition to in-person when it’s safe to do so. × In the spring, each writer will team up with a director and actors to present a public reading in May as a part of the annual INKubator New Play Festival. In addition to monthly meetings, INKubator playwrights will receive free admission to performances, mixers, and other events at Art House Productions.Playwrights will also have the ability to schedule time in both the theatre and classroom for any meetings, rehearsals, and readings as needed for free. The 3rd Annual INKubator New Play Festival, a six-day marathon festival that serves as the culmination of the residency will take place in May 2021. Audiences who attend the festival will also have the opportunity to participate in conversations with the writers, directors, and actors following each performance.This year’s submissions were evaluated through a process coordinated by Art House Productions’ INKubator Program Director, Alex Tobey, in partnership with Art House Productions’ Meredith Burns, playwright and director Kevin R. Free, Art House Productions’ Courtney Little, and playwright Lia Romeo.The following finalists were also honored in this year’s submission process: Avery Deutsch, Bixby Elliot, Vince Gatton, Amy Gijsbers van Wijk, Steven Hayet, James Kennedy, Grant MacDermott, Matt Minnicino, Max Reuben, Amalia Oliva Rojas, and Emma Catherine Watkins.Meredith Burns, Executive Director of Art House Productions, says, “I think playwriting is more important than ever before. The traditional playgoing theater experience is mostly on hold, but when all is fully safe, I believe theater will experience a renaissance by bringing people together to cathartically explore ideas in the same room again. A few of the selected playwrights will incorporate virtual options for audiences and we’re thrilled to support new, traditional, and hybrid forms of theater. We at Art House know how difficult this period in time is for theater artists and we’re continuing to look for ways to support. We encourage all of the playwrights that applied this year to keep creating. The theater will come back and your voice will be needed.”Andrea Coleman is a Brooklyn based writer, performer and lawyer originally from Virginia. She writes sketch comedy, standup comedy, screenplays and stageplays. Her Medium articles have been viewed online over half a million times. The law comedy show she created and stars in, Woke Laws, has been featured in The New York Times, TimeOut NY, NPR and aired on PBS. In New York, Andrea has performed standup at Comedy Cellar, Comic Strip, Gotham and Caroline’s. She’s toured her standup at SF Sketchfest, Women in Comedy Festival and Austin Sketch Fest. She is an Actor on a UCB Maude Team and a writer on an Armory Sketch team. Andrea has written and executive produced 5 short films which have been Official Selections at 16 Film Festivals and her feature script was in IFPs 2010 Film Week and her Woke Laws podcast was selected for IFP’s 2020 Audio Lab. She is in her 14th year as a Senior Trial Attorney at a Fortune 100 company.Izzi D’Esposito (she/her) is a New York based playwright, and songwriter.  Her work has been produced or developed at The Playwrights Realm, Workshop Theater, Homegrown Theater, the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, Ars Nova, Arts Tristate, Carnegie Mellon University, Horizon Theater, Boise Contemporary Theater and more. Isabella received her MFA in Dramatic Writing at Carnegie Mellon University, studying under Rob Handel, and a degree in Playwriting and Screenwriting from Purchase College, studying under Christina Anderson and Sylvan Oswald. She has a podcast called lowercase sober about being sober in your 20’s (out now on all podcast platforms), and she releases new music under the name Bizzi.Madeline Dennis-Yates (she/her) is a playwright and screenwriter whose most recent project, this is not the reunion, was a commissioned play for Stagefemmes at Kenyon College. She studied playwriting at the National Theater Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. She’s also worked in the literary office at the O’Neill, as well as at Abingdon Theatre Company. Her work has been produced and received readings at the New Short Play Festival (playwright ensemble member), the Source Festival, New York Winterfest, Manhattan Repertory Theatre, D.C. Shorts Film Festival, and others. She’s also studied at Upright Citizens Brigade and Second City. Madeline attended George Washington University in D.C., where she was an art history major and captain of the equestrian team. (She likes horses.)Nathaniel Foster is a New York City-based Playwright, Performer, and Dramaturg. He is a 2017 Kennedy Center New Play Dramaturgy Fellow, 2018 ASTEP Artist as Citizens Fellow, a 2018 Cape Cod Theatre Project New Play Development Fellow and a 2019 New Play Development Apprentice at The Public Theater. He was the recipient of the 2018 Kennedy Center Ken Ludwig Young Playwright Award. He served as an associate producer for Loading Dock Theatre’s 2020 Forklift season and is currently an associate producer for Black Lives, Black Words. His plays have been seen or developed at The Kennedy Center, The Workshop Theatre, New York Theatre Festival, The Brick, Fort Collins Fringe Festival, Southern Utah University, Pharmacy Theatre and The Tank.Aja Nisenson is a playwright and performer originating from New Jersey. Her plays include: Slap (Take Ten, National MFA Playwrights Festival), Park Slope Under Water (Iowa New Play Festival), The Wait (Iowa New Play Festival), Funk (Iowa Playwrights Workshop), Piccola Cosi (FringeNYC, soloNOVA Arts Festival, Triad Theatre), Daja Vu, A French Cabaret Gone Awry (Eugene O’Neill Cabaret Conference, FringeNYC, Flute Bar Gramercy), My Life  is a Woody Allen Film (United Solo Theatre Festival, EstroGenius Festival), Five Years Later (Salem Theatre). Her play Love was part of the 2020 Kennedy Center MFA Workshop. She is a MacDowell fellow and has held fellowships at the Eugene O’Neill Cabaret Conference and The Marble House Project. She is published in Theater Masters’ Take Ten Vol.4 with Samuel French, and received the Jane Chambers Student Playwright Award. Aja received her BA from Brown University and MFA at the Iowa Playwrights Workshop.SMJ (they/them) is an NYC-based, mixed, and non-binary playwright, mime, and theater educator originally from Mount Vernon, Ohio. Their work has been seen in various forms in New York, Connecticut, Texas, Ohio, and the UK. SMJ is a mime of 13 years with training from Gregg Goldston, Rick Wamer, Lorie Heald, and Stephen Chipps. They’ve been a resident artist at Access Theater, the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, NWPR in Grand Lake, CO, and Dragon’s Egg Studio. They’re a proud graduate of the BFA Acting program with a Dance minor at Otterbein University and the National Theater Institute.Art House Productions is generously supported by The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, MACK-CALI Realty, SILVERMAN, Manhattan Building Company, CoolVines, and Congressman Frank Guarini.Art House Productions is committed to accessibility and inclusivity in all the public programming presented by our organization at our newly constructed performance venue. Art House Productions produces work with a shrewd sense of social responsibility and challenges the idea of “universal” mind and “universal” body in each artistic endeavor.About Art House ProductionsArt House Productions is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to the development and presentation of the performing and visual arts in Jersey City, NJ. Art House Productions presents theater, performing and visual arts festivals, arts events, visual art exhibitions, and adult and youth art classes For more information about our programs, please visit our website at www.arthouseproductions.org. Follow us on social media @arthouseproductions @arthouseprods.last_img read more

Reporting in Time to speak up for bread

first_imgAs ever, January sees the diet season kick off, with a plethora of different plans in national media and monthly magazines. In recent years, bread has come in for a bit of a pasting, with Atkins (and variations such as the south beach diet) followed in 2011 by the similar Dukan diet, promoted by a French doctor. Like Atkins, this has come under attack from many dietitians, who warn that cutting out carbohydrate containing foods such as bread can lead to a seriously unbalanced diet.Then, there are many variations such as the paleo diet, real woman diet and so on enough diets for every day of the year, frequently using a celebrity for promotion and some of whom are ’bread-friendly, others less so.Given the contradictory messages, it is not surprising that people are confused. In an effort to ensure that any comments about bread are based on accurate information, Nabim and the Federation of Bakers regularly commission research and reports from independent experts for example into wheat allergy and intolerance, the nutritional value of bread made in different ways (there’s no significant difference) and, most recently, bread and bloating. This work is intended to head off excessively negative comment about our products, but will only make a difference in the long run. However, there are promising signs, perhaps aided by the success of programmes such as the Great British Bake Off.In parallel, the whole industry needs to speak up and promote a positive image for bread. This can be done in all sorts of ways through links with schools, local groups, promotional activity, breakfast clubs and so on, and also through collective efforts. Everyone has a role to play, and now is the time to explore the possibilities.last_img read more

Peach Fest Hosts Legendary Tribute To Gregg Allman And Butch Trucks, Widespread, Mule, And More

first_imgPhoto: Keith Griner On Saturday, The Peach Festival in Scranton, Pennsylvania, came to its head, with the Peach Tribute to Butch Trucks and Gregg Allman serving as the weekend’s crowning jewel. Since its inception back in 2012, The Peach Festival has always served as an extended family gathering for the Allman Brothers Band—year after year, the event has hosted the band, its members’ various side projects, and their expansive musical family to join together and celebrate. Following this year’s losses of Butch Trucks and Gregg Allman, The Peach Festival became a place for catharsis for both artists and fans alike, with the event’s lineup sporting numerous tributes to the historic Southern rock band. However, of the various tributes, scheduled or not, that have gone down over the weekend, none was more anticipated than Saturday’s Peach Tribute, which was put together by the masterful former ABB keyboardist Chuck Leavell, who served as the tribute’s musical director.Peach Music Festival Kicks Off With Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Dopapod Orchestra, And MorePeach Festival Sees MMJ Cover ABB, Lettuce With Chaka Khan, And More [Video/Audio/Photo]The tribute sported an unreal lineup of legendary musicians, with many of those on tap related to the Allman Brothers Band by blood or musically and making the set function as a family gathering in the truest sense of the word. ABB members Jaimoe, Oteil Burbridge, and Marc Quinones were all in attendance, along with Butch’s nephew and Widespread Panic drummer Duane Trucks, Gregg’s son and guitarist Devon Allman, and Butch Trucks’s son and guitarist Vaylor Trucks. In addition, former ABB guitarist Jack Pearson, keyboardist Bruce Katz (who formerly toured with both Butch and Gregg’s bands as well as Les Brers), Lamar Williams Jr. (son of former ABB bassist, Lamar Williams, and vocalist of Les Brers), Les Brers guitarist Pat Bergeson, musical director of the Gregg Allman Band and guitarist Scott Sharrard, rising guitarist and vocalist Marcus King, GAB keyboardist Peter Levin, and Berry Oakley Jr. (son of original ABB bassist Berry Oakley) all participated in the massive tribute set.However, while this line-up in and of itself is already the stuff of legends, as to be expected, the set hosted a number of spectacular unannounced sit-ins, including those by Warren Haynes and Widespread Panic’s Jimmy Herring and Dave Schools among others. For the duration of the performance, Duane was stationed in Butch’s place behind the kit, along with Jaimoe and Marc—mirroring the original Allman Brothers Band set-up—with Oteil holding down the bass for the majority of the set save Schools’ various sit-ins. Chuck Leavell also played for the duration of the tribute, while Katz and Levin traded off in Gregg’s spot. The performance also offered a tribute to another fallen brother lost this year, Col. Bruce Hampton, with a rendition of “Yield Not To Temptation.” You can check out videos from this epic tribute to Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks below.“Come And Go Blues” [Video courtesy of Michael Sylvester]“Lawyers, Guns, And Money”[Video courtesy of Sean Roche]With The Peach Festival serving as an extended family gathering for the Allman Brothers Band, it’s clear this year, it went above and beyond in carrying on the memory of the two rock legends the band lost this year. The Peach Tribute set was one of legends and a fitting way to help both musicians and fans alike celebrate the lives and legacies of Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks. With this tribute as the day’s centerpiece, Saturday at The Peach Festival was an all-around unreal day of music that will be remembered and relistened to for years to come. The Peach Festival wraps up its final day today with an additional performance by Widespread Panic, as well as sets by Joe Bonamassa, Mike Gordon, Les Brers final performance, and more.You can check out photos of what went down at The Peach Festival yesterday below, courtesy of Phierce Photo by Keith G. (Instagram: @PhiercePhoto).Peach Festival | Day 3 (Saturday) 8/12/17 | Photos via Phierce Photo by Keith G. [Video courtesy of Sean Roche]Panic’s set featured a heavy helping of classic Panic favorites including the particularly fiery “Big Wooly Mammoth” > “Pilgrims” > “Party At Your Mama’s House” > “Ribs & Whiskey” run that served as the meat of the set, and also saw the band channel their inner ZZ Top by covering the first two cuts off 1973 classic Tres Hombres: “Waiting For The Bus” and “Jesus Just Left Chicago.” Perhaps the most notable highlights featured two of the finest young guitarists in the game—Brandon “Taz” Niederauer and Marcus King—who joined them onstage in turn for a pair of thrilling sit-ins. Taz joined the band for an extended take on “Surprise Valley,” the opening cut from their 1999 LP ‘Til the Medicine Takes. Following Taz’s appearance, vocalist John Bell welcomed King, who helped the band through thrilling renditions of Robert Johnson blues mainstay “Me and the Devil Blues” and Talking Heads’ “Life During Wartime.” To close out their show, Widespread Panic performed Warren Zevon’s “Lawyers, Guns, and Money.”Widespread Panic with Brandon “Taz” Niederauer, “Surprise Valley”center_img Load remaining images [Video courtesy of pwm112]“Yield Not To Temptation”[Video courtesy of Sean Roche]“Midnight Rider”[Video courtesy of pwm112]“Southbound”[Video courtesy of thegrassman]While the Peach Tribute to Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks served as a focal of Saturday’s festivities, yesterday, The Peach Festival by no means began with the evening’s all-star tribute set. Lettuce and Soulive’s Eric Krasno joined up with the Marcus King Band during the group’s daytime set at the Mushroom Stage, while later in the day, Rusted Root hosted the young guitar prodigy, Brandon “Taz” Niederauer, during their own show. Ahead of the tribute set on the main Peach Stage, Umphrey’s McGee primed the stage, with their super-heavy set offering something different in comparison to the Southern rock stylings that ruled the majority of the day and night.Marcus King Band with Eric Krasno, “Rita Is Gone”[Video courtesy of Sean Roche]The tribute set to Butch Trucks and Gregg Allman welcomed in the night, which saw performances by Widespread Panic, an additional set by Umphrey’s McGee, and Gov’t Mule and friends, including John Scofield among others. Opening with three originals, following the title track off their latest album—Revolution Come, Revolution Go—Gov’t Mule moved into a cover of The Marshall Tucker Band‘s “Can’t You See”, which featured sit-ins by Marcus King and Jack Pearson. As an appropriate tribute to the Allman Brothers Band following this sit-in, the band moved into a heartfelt rendition of “Soulshine,” which segued into “Night Time Is The Right Time.” John Scofield came out for renditions of “Devils Likes It Slow,” “Which Way Do We Run?,” and a cover of his own “Hottentot.” Closing out their set, the group covered Allman Brother Band’s “Kind Of Bird,” which saw a reprise of “Traveling Tune” ahead of the final song—a cover of Neil Young’s “Cortez The Killer,” that saw both Widespread Panic’s John Bell and Jimmy Herring end out the set.Gov’t Mule with Marcus King and Jack Pearson, “Can’t You See”last_img read more

Odds & Ends: New Beauty and the Beast Footage & More

first_img Here’s a quick roundup of stories you may have missed today.Get Even More Excited for Beauty and the BeastNot that we’re counting down or anything, but there are 70 days left until Disney’s Beauty and the Beast live-action remake hits theaters. The latest TV spot includes new footage from the film, including one of Emma Watson’s glorious up-dos and some light flirting between Belle and the Beast (“Thanks for not letting me get eaten by wolves.”). Unfortunately, there’s still no sign of Audra McDonald as Garderobe, but that’ll make seeing the actual film that much more magical on March 17. Check out the sneak peek below! Kevin Kline & Emma Watson in ‘Beauty and the Beast'(Photo: Disney) View Commentscenter_img Frenchie Davis & More Set for The View UpStairsA musical about a ‘70s gay bar in New Orleans starring Frenchie Davis? We’re there. Max Vernon’s new musical The View UpStairs will begin performances at off-Broadway’s Lynn Redgrave Theater on February 15. The show centers on a young fashion designer who begins a journey of self-exploration when he buys an abandoned space that was the site of an attack on the LGBTQ community in 1973. Scott Ebersold directs the cast, which also includes Michael Longoria, Jeremy Pope, Nathan Lee Graham, Benjamin Howes, Ben Mayne, Doreen Montalvo, Randy Redd and Anthony Alfaro. The production, which opens February 26, features choreography by Al Blackstone. The limited engagement will run through May 21.Yen’s Lucas Hedges Among BAFTA NomineesManchester by the Sea standout and star of off-Broadway’s Yen Lucas Hedges is nominated for a BAFTA (think an Oscar, but in the U.K.) for Rising Star. Joining him in the category is Tom Holland, who you may know as Marvel’s next on-screen Spider-Man or as the adorable title star in Billy Elliot at London’s Victoria Palace Theatre. Ruth Negga, Anya Taylor-Joy and Laia Costa round out the Rising Star Award nominees. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards will take place on February 12.Michele Pawk & More to Present William Inge WorksThe Transport Group will present two plays performed in repertory from Pulitzer Prize winner William Inge. Helmed by Artistic Director Jack Cummings III, Picnic and Come Back, Little Sheba are set to begin performances on February 23 at the Gym at Judson. The ensemble cast features Tony winner Michele Pawk, Tony nominees John Cariani and Emily Skinner, Hannah Elless, David Greenspan, Joseph Kolinski, Ginna Le Vine, Heather Mac Rae, David T. Patterson, Jennifer Piech, Krystal Rowley, Jay Russell and Rowan Vickers. Opening night is scheduled for March 26 and the engagement will run through April 16.Allegiance Will Return to the ScreenThere’s still a chance to catch Allegiance, which shuttered on Broadway last year. The musical’s screen stint nabbed an encore presentation, scheduled for February 19. The production, starring George Takei, Lea Salonga and Telly Leung, was filmed and initially presented by Fathom Events at movie theaters nationwide on December 13, 2016. The new date coincides with the 75th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, known as the Day of Remembrance, which marked the beginning of the forced relocation and internment of 120,000 Japanese Americans during WWII.P.S. The Humans (set to close on January 15) finished the year off strong as the top-grossing play of 2016; the Tony-winning drama garnered over $23 million in ticket sales. The last week of the year was the show’s best yet at $814,555. With this and a whopping 24 productions grossing over $1 million, Broadway celebrated its highest attended and highest grossing week in recorded history.last_img read more

Lebanon government stands down over blast fallout

first_imgViolent protests The outgoing government is now due to stay on in a caretaker capacity, and fresh elections could still be months away.Before Diab’s announcement, four ministers had already decided they could no longer serve a government that has shown little willingness to take the blame or to put state resources at the service of the victims.At least nine lawmakers have also announced they would quit in protest, as have two senior members of the Beirut municipality.The blast, which drew comparisons with an  atomic bomb, was so enormous that it altered the shape of not only Beirut’s culture, whose masters are widely seen as bent on self-preservation and buck-passing.But it remained to be seen whether the disaster will also have a lasting impact on Lebanon’s entrenched post-war political culture.Diab on Monday blamed the blast on corruption by  former warlords from the 1975-1990 civil war who have exchanged their military fatigues for suits, or were replaced by relatives.”Their corruption created this tragedy,” said Diab. “Between us and change stands a thick wall protected by their dirty tactics.”During consecutive evenings of protests, the rage sparked by the explosion that disfigured Beirut and scarred so many of its residents had not relented.”The resignation of ministers is not enough. Those who are responsible for the explosion should be held accountable,” Michelle, a demonstrator in her early twenties, said on Sunday night. Lebanon’s Prime Minister Hassan Diab announced his government’s resignation Monday under a barrage of pressure over the catastrophic Beirut port explosion six days earlier that has reignited angry street protests.”I announce the resignation of the government,” Diab said at the end of a televised speech in which he tried to portray himself also as a victim of a corrupt political elite.The announcement was met with cars honking in the streets and celebratory fire in the northern city of Tripoli but it was unlikely to meet long-term expectations of Lebanese. Almost a week after the enormous chemical blast that wreaked destruction across swathes of the capital and was felt as far away as Cyprus, residents and volunteers were still clearing the debris off the streets Monday.International rescue teams with sniffer dogs and specialized equipment remained at work at the disaster’s charred “ground zero”, where the search has turned to one for bodies rather than survivors.The Lebanese have been left asking how a massive stockpile of volatile ammonium nitrate, a compound used primarily as a fertilizer, was left unsecured at the port for years.Top officials have promised a swift and thorough investigation — but they have stopped short of agreeing to an independent probe led by foreign experts as demanded by the protesters. ‘Direct’ aid Demonstrators said security forces had been using tear gas against blast victims instead of helping them clean their wrecked homes and find a roof.”We need an international investigation and trial to tell us who killed our friends and all the other victims,” said Michelle.Macron supported the idea when he visited last Thursday, but his calls for reform and transparency appeared to receive less attention among Lebanese officialdom than his offer to raise aid money.An online emergency support conference Macron chaired Sunday, attended virtually by a slew of world leaders including US President Donald Trump, came up with pledges for more than 250 million euros.Macron, who was given a hero’s welcome when he trudged through the rubble of ravaged old Beirut to meet distressed residents, stressed the aid would go “directly” to the population.Many Lebanese are skeptically waiting to see how the aid delivery will navigate a sophisticated and deeply entrenched system of local and sectarian patronage organized by political party barons.The Beirut disaster compounded what has become Lebanon’s annus horribilis, deepening a dire economic crisis which had dragged half of the country into poverty in past months.The obliteration of the port and its huge grain silos in a country hugely reliant on imports has sparked fears of food shortages in coming weeks.Adding to Lebanon’s woes, coronavirus cases are reaching new highs almost every day, putting further strain on hospitals that are treating blast victims and the dozens wounded in the repression of the protests.center_img Even as Diab spoke, security forces in central Beirut clashed for a third night with protesters demanding an end to an entrenched political system widely seen as inept, corrupt and dominated by sectarian interests and family dynasties.France, whose President Emmanuel Macron visited Beirut after the blast, called for the “rapid formation” of a new government.”The aspirations expressed by the Lebanese in terms of reforms and governance must be heard,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said, adding that a new government would have to “prove itself” to the people.According to the health ministry, at least 160 people were killed in Lebanon’s worst peacetime disaster, 6,000 injured and about 20 remained missing after the August 4 disaster blamed on official negligence. 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Governor Tom Wolf Responds to Tuesday’s Election

first_img  SHARE  TWEET SHARE Email Facebook Twitter National Issues,  Remarks,  The Blog,  Videos Prior to this morning’s Pennsylvania Network of Care Service for Veterans announcement, Governor Tom Wolf delivered the following remarks in response to Tuesday’s election.I just want to say a few words about the election on Tuesday. For many people in Pennsylvania, as well as myself, there were candidates for office we supported that were successful, and some that were not.Specifically, I want to congratulate Josh Shapiro, Eugene DePasquale, Joe Torsella, and Pat Toomey on their wins and welcome the new lawmakers who will be joining us in Harrisburg. I look forward to getting to know you and to working with you and I will be reaching out in the coming days. On a national level, our President-elect is Donald Trump and we do have to give him a chance and hope he does well because he will be the leader of our country and our military. It should also be noted that many people across this state and country are still hurting – they do not believe the economy is working for them, and are looking for their elected leaders to hear their voices and take action to address these fundamental issues that are squeezing the middle class and working families.We should not ignore this reality, which is why, right here in Harrisburg, I am going to continue working with Republicans who already held historic majorities to make Pennsylvania stronger. Over the last two years, working together, we have accomplished historic increases in education funding totaling more than $640 million for education at all levels, a fair funding formula, the legalization of medical marijuana, historic reforms to our liquor system, providing unemployment insurance for 44,000 people, and we continue to make major progress in combatting the heroin crisis. In Pennsylvania, we have shown we can work across party lines to get things done and I am committed to continuing that bipartisan work. However, there is still more that we need to do. We must work together to reduce property taxes, protect Pennsylvania jobs from being sent to other states, invest in manufacturing and our economy, and ensure those who work hard can join the middle class. These priorities are values shared across our state, regardless of where you live or what party you belong to. It is something I have been dedicated to my entire life – when I drove a forklift at my family business, helped rebuild my kitchen cabinet company, shared-profits with my employees, and treated them with the respect and dignity they deserve.I also want to assure Pennsylvanians that I will continue to protect women’s health, and access to health care for the 700,000 Pennsylvanians now enrolled in Medicaid. I will keep fighting to staunchly defend the rights of minorities, the rights of people to vote, and for equal rights for the LGBT community. And I will strive to make government smarter and more efficient while also investing in everyone’s future – from our children to our seniors.Pennsylvania was founded on the principles of inclusion, tolerance, and fairness, and I look forward to continuing to work with Republicans, Democrats, and everyone in between to move our state forward. Governor Tom Wolf Responds to Tuesday’s Election November 10, 2016 Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolf By: The Office of Governor Tom Wolflast_img read more