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@Garyowencomedy Back at #ClevelandImprov Starting Tonight...

@Garyowencomedy Back at #ClevelandImprov Starting Tonight...

 

We hope you're ready to get you laugh on Cleveland! It all starts tonight, with the return of comedian Gary Owen. 

It's sure to be a weekend of gut-wrenching laughs, as Owen is back here in the city to perform a lineup of 7 shows between tonight and Sunday! Thinking of each and everyone of his past shows, this is definitely an occasion you do not want to miss out on. It's not too late to get your tickets either. Simply log on to www.clevelandimprov.com and order your regular or GOLD seating packages. Typically, Gary's shows are a sold-out affair, so you surely want to act fast!

In other Gary Owen news, he's also gearing up for the release of the new film Get Hard, in which he is featured alongside fellow comedians and actors Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell. 

For more information and continuous updates on Gary Owen, visit his official website at www.garyowen.com

A Night at the Improv with Jay Phillips...

A Night at the Improv with Jay Phillips...

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Tonight's show at the Cleveland Improv was definitely one to remember.  The show featured comedians Rob Ward, Patrick Melton, and headliner Jay Phillips. Phillips is no newcomer to comedy, having been all over HBO comedy specials and Def Comedy Jam. He also carried a leading role in the 2008 film Semi Pro alongside Will Ferrell, Woody Harrelson, and Outkast's Andre Benjamin. He's now a part of the new BET sketch series The Xperiment! 

Rob Ward emcee'd the show, offering his own unique brand of comedy that had the audience at ease. Ward often emcees a number of shows here at the Improv, and continues to build his following with each show. He always does a fantastic job with warming the crowd up. 

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Patrick Melton followed Ward with a hilarious set that had the audience laughing energetically from the start. There wasn't necessarily one thing that Melton focus on. He talked about a variety of topics, but it was more conversational. That's what made him easily relate with the crowd, ultimately wining them over, Both Ward and Melton were the added bonus of the night, as with the Improv, only the headliner is advertised. You don't necessarily know who you're getting with the openers, so being completely honest, the show could go one of two ways. Tonight was definitely one of those nights where each comedian rocked hard.

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Following the trend of the night, Jay Phillips commandeered the crowd with no trouble whatsoever. His often animated delivery made for a fun time, and his style, also conversational, definitely won the audience immediately. It was basically like he was spending the night talking with friends, and nothing was off limits. One of the things that stood out for me was his impression of President Barack Obama. Anyone in the audience would say he was "spot on" with the President's dialect. We definitely can't give too much away in reference to what he joked about, but we emphatically say that Phillips is absolutely hilarious, and you'd be doing yourself a disservice by not going out to see him, wherever the is.

Phillips will be here in Cleveland throughout the remainder of the weekend performing with both Patrick Melton and Rob Ward at the Cleveland Improv. For more info or to purchase tickets, contact 216-696-4977, or visit www.clevelandimprov.com

Jay Phillips can be found on both Twitter and Instagram with the handle: @jayphillipslive

Patrick Melton can be found on both Twitter and Instagram with the handle: @pmelt

Rob Ward can be found on Instagram with the handle: @robwardcomedy

 

Russell Simmons Presents The Scenario...A New Musical...

Russell Simmons Presents The Scenario...A New Musical...

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NEW YORK, March 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Hip-hop pioneer, Tony Award-winning producer and multi-hyphenate entrepreneur Russell Simmons has announced the development of The Scenario, a new stage musical that will be driven by the music that defined a generation: the greatest hits from a two-decade span of hip-hop – from the "golden age" of the mid-80s to mid-90s "when it seemed that every new single reinvented the genre" (Rolling Stone), to the chart-topping artists at the turn of the millennium.  Simmons, who is widely credited with ushering in a hip-hop cultural revolution with the launch of Def Jam Recordings in 1984, and creating the trailblazing Def Comedy franchise in 1989, will produce through his Los Angeles-based production company Def Pictures, alongside Tony Award-winning Broadway producer Big Block/Scott Prisand (Rock of Ages, Heathers, Gentleman's Guide To Love And Murder)The Scenariowill feature an original story written by acclaimed author and hip-hop historian Dan Charnas (The Big Payback), and aims to premiere in New York City in late 2016. 

"Hip hop's explosion was fueled by a generation with an incredible hunger to discover new ways of expression," said Simmons. "These artists were always breaking the mold with new rhythms and new ideas, while at the same time telling so many important and timeless stories that over the decades have continued to remain just as relevant.  This is why the music continues to strike a chord with fans worldwide.  It felt like such a natural fit to weave the best of these sounds and stories into an energetic and thrilling musical that would transport audiences through one of the most innovative artistic movements of our time."

"Part of what made the Rock of Ages experience so incredible for theatregoers was the joy of hearing the most beloved songs of an era serve as the storyteller," said Scott Prisand. "Russell is the catalyst of all this extraordinary music that has already touched generations to the core around the world; we're taking those beats everyone knows and loves, and setting them into a fun original story."  

Added Jake Stein, who is shepherding the project on behalf of Def Pictures and will also produce with Simmons, "These classic songs, stories and rhythms will find a new audience on the theater stage.  We believe this show will be an entirely new entry point for appreciating hip hop as a transformative art that has shaped culture, fashion, music and entertainment of all forms, and we hope it will help open the door for other live theatrical experiences."

Entrepreneur, author, activist and philanthropist Russell Simmons has launched scores of groundbreaking careers and innovative enterprises in arenas as varied as music, film, television, fashion, comedy, poetry, digital platforms, theater and finance.  His lifelong mission has been giving a voice to extraordinary talent and empowering underserved communities as they in turn shape the mainstream of culture. 

After having produced or managed artists such as Kurtis Blow, Run DMC, Houdini and Jimmy Spicer, Simmons joined forces with producer Rick Rubin to found Def Jam Recordings. Under Simmons' leadership as Chairman, Def Jam signed acts including the Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, LL Cool J, Jay Z and Kanye West.  Simmons' long-running HBO series "Def Comedy Jam" helped make household names of comics including Jamie Foxx, Chris Tucker, Martin Lawrence, Bernie Mac, Dave Chappelle, Kevin Hart and JB Smoove. "Def Poetry Jam," also on HBO, won a Peabody Award and a Broadway version netted Simmons a Tony® Award. Simmons' numerous big-screen hits include The Nutty Professor, which grossed more than $273 million.

Simmons has written three New York Times best-selling books, including Success Through Stillness: Meditation Made Simple, which was published by Morrow in 2014. He has also launched a multitude of diverse business ventures including pop-culture website Global Grind, UniRush Financial Services, Simmons Jewelry, shoemaker Run Athletics and clothing subsidiaries Phat Farm, Argyleculture and American Classics. Most recently, he unveiled All Def Digital, a premium, multi-platform digital media company and entertainment hub, curating, developing and connecting a new generation of content creators to global fans.  He also co-founded the digital marketing firm Narrative. 

Dan Charnas is an acclaimed author, journalist, professor, producer and former record company executive, and is considered to be one of hip-hop's foremost historians. As part of a generation of young writers who created hip-hop journalism, Dan penned some of the first cover stories for The Source magazine, and is author of The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop (New American Library/Penguin) and the co-author of Def Jam: The First 25 Years of the Last Great Record Label (Rizzoli). Deemed "Pulitzer-worthy" by Spin and "Epic" by The Village Voice, The Big Payback received four stars from Rolling Stone, and accolades from publications including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly and The Atlantic.  Dan began his music business career in the mailroom of the seminal rap label Profile Records, eventually becoming Rap A&R and Promotion Manager — working with such artists as Run-DMC, Dana Dane, Special Ed, Rob Base, Special Ed and DJ Quik. As VP of A&R and Marketing for the Rick Rubin/Warner Bros joint venture American Recordings, Dan oversaw projects including Sir Mix-A-Lot's double-platinum single "Baby Got Back" (the #2 Billboard Pop Single of 1992), DJ Kool's gold anthem "Let Me Clear My Throat," and Chino XL's acclaimed "Here To Save You All," which influenced emcees from Eminem to 50 Cent. He is currently Associate Arts Professor at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, Tisch School of the Arts at New York University; and an executive producer of the upcoming VH1 movie, "The Breaks".

THE SCENARIO is produced by Russell Simmons; Def Pictures/Jake Stein; Big Block/Scott Prisand, Scott Benson, Tom Pellegrini and Jamie Bendell; Brian Sherand Stella Bulichnikov.


KeyBank to Give Away FREE pair of Season Tickets to Playhouse Square's 2015-2016 KeyBank Broadway Series!...

KeyBank to Give Away FREE pair of Season Tickets to Playhouse Square's 2015-2016 KeyBank Broadway Series!...

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Cleveland, OH – As Playhouse Square prepares to announce its 2015-2016 KeyBank Broadway Series, title sponsor KeyBank is preparing a special contest of its own.  To many theatre-goers, Playhouse Square’s annual Broadway Launch Party is the most eagerly anticipated entertainment event of the year.  Attendees will be the first in Northeast Ohio to discover which Broadway gems will be making their way to the stages at Playhouse Square, and the first in line to sign up for season tickets.  However, for the past several years, the event has been “invitation-only”…until now!

KeyBank has launched a contest that will allow 10 lucky winners to attend the KeyBank Broadway Series Launch Party with one guest on Tuesday, March 31at 7:30 p.m. st in the historic Connor Palace.  That evening, KeyBank will randomly select one Grand Prize Winner to receive a FREE pair of season tickets to the 2015-2016 Series, courtesy of KeyBank. 

To enter, visit playhousesquare.org/launchcontest.  Entrants may double their chances to win by visiting one of KeyBank’s 80 local Cleveland branches and enter-to-win in person.  Entries will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, March 22.nd  For complete details, see “Official Rules.”

OFFICIAL RULES

This promotion is open to all individuals, 18 years and older.  Chances to win depend on the total number of entries. 

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. Message and data rates may apply and each text message sent or received, may incur a charge as provided in your rate plan.

As an entrant, I understand and agree to abide by the following rules:

·         ELIGIBILITY:  This promotion is open to all individuals, 18 years and older. This contest is limited to residents of the United States.  By entering, participants affirm their eligibility and compliance with all contest rules and regulations.  In order to accept the prize, winner will be required to sign a form releasing Playhouse Square and any co-sponsors from all liability.  Winner and all guests must be 18 and over and provide proper identification.  Employees of Playhouse Square and all co-sponsors, and each of their immediate families (spouse, child, parents, siblings and their spouses) are not eligible to participate in the contest.

·         HOW TO ENTER: 

o       Entry Method: Access the Promotion website available online atplayhousesquare.org/launchcontest and follow the instructions provided to enter the Sweepstakes. To be eligible, entrants will be required to provide their full name, complete street address, phone number, date of birth and e-mail address.

o       Double your chances to win by visiting one of KeyBank’s 80 local Cleveland branches and enter-to-win in person.

·         PRIZE:  Ten (10) winners will receive two (2) tickets toattend Playhouse Square’s exclusive Broadway Launch Party on Tuesday, March 31 at 7:30PM.  One grand prize winner will be selected from these ten to win a pair of season tickets to the 2015-2016 KeyBank Broadway Series.

·         WINNER SELECTION AND NOTIFICATION:  All entries must be received by Sunday, March 22, 2015.  Winners will be notified by telephone and/or email on Monday, March 23, 2015.  Winner will have 48 hours to agree to prize or the next winner will be selected.

·         GENERAL CONDITIONS:  Winner can not win the same prize more than once.  One winner per household.  Submitting an entry and acceptance of the prize constitutes winner’s authorization for Playhouse Square to use the winner’s name and photograph for advertising and promotional purposes.This contest is subject to all federal, state, and local laws and is void wherever prohibited.  By submitting an entry, each entrant agrees to and is deemed to have accepted all of the terms, conditions, and regulations contained herein.

For more information on the promotion, go to playhousesquare.org/launchcontest