Tag Archives: Scott Bryce

Roundup: COVID Tests, Scott Bryce & Jodi Stevens, Animals …

==============================================

A hearty “06880” thank you to all who donated to this year’s “pledge drive.” Your support of our online community — and of me, personally — is greatly appreciated. (And yes, there’s still time — click here!)

To the reader who sent an anonymous note saying “calling us moochers won’t get us to contribute” — sorry. Sounds like you were just looking for a reason to not help out.

But hey — at least you paid for a stamp.

=====================================================

In related COVID news, former Food & Drug Administration commissioner — and Westport neighbor — Scott Gottlieb told “Face the Nation” yesterday that 70% of Americans 75 and older, 60% of those 65-plus, and nearly 20% of all American adults will be vaccinated “probably by the end of this week.”

He also noted growing evidence that all vaccines prevent transmission of the coronavirus — not just symptoms.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb

====================================================

St. Vincent’s on Long Lots Road has closed. But there’s a new COVID testing center nearby.

Sameday Testing has opened at 1260 Post Road East (near Fortuna’s, Greens Farms Spirit Shop and Vivid-Tek).

Founded just a few months ago, the startup of doctors, scientists and engineers has ramped up to test thousands of people every day, across the country. They offer employer-sponsored programs too.

Click here for an appointment. To learn more, email evan@sameday-testing.com
or call 203-520-7734.

=======================================================

With a name like “Celebrity Parents,” I expected fluff.

But the current issue features an in-depth, insightful interview with Scott Bryce and Jodi Stevens.

The Westport stage and screen actors talk about how they met (several times); their relationship; raising an athletic son; Staples Players; Scott’s work with the New Paradigm Theater, and Jodi’s pivot to teaching in her home studio during COVID.

Click here for the very entertaining story. (Hat tip: Bobbie Herman)

Scott Bryce and Jodi Stevens (Photo courtesy of Celebrity Parents)

====================================================

MoCA Westport’s Winter Lights Festival lit up the town on Saturday.

Highlights included a walk-through light path (in collaboration with the Up | Next Teens organization; a maker space for families to create decorations together, and the high school student art exhibition “Hindsight is 2020.”

MoCA’s Winter Festival light path (Photo/Joel Triesman)

=======================================================

Horses are back at Sherwood Island State Park. A group regularly trailers in their animals, for walks along the beach and through the beautiful paths. This shot was taken in the grove on the Sherwood Mill Pond side, near the fire gate to Compo Cove.

(Photo/Chris Swan)

=======================================================

Another animal: This guy was happy to pose yesterday, for a Weston photo op:

(Photo/Steve Rothenberg)

=======================================================

And yet more animals: Yesterday’s story about dog photographer Jim Boisvert reminded Matthew Mandell of a video he produced in 2013.

Part of the “What’s Up Westport” series, it’s title is “Dogs on the Beach.” Fifi, Fido, Fluffy: Here’s your 4 minutes of fame.

=======================================================

And finally … Happy International Women’s Day!

A “Hunchback,” With A Twist

It’s not called the New Paradigm Theatre for nothing.

The Stamford-based non-profit company’s production of “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” includes a disabled character playing the role of Quasimodo. Patrick Tombs was born with arthrogryposis, which causes atrophied muscles and stiff limbs.

And though the novel and musical are thought to be male-driven, New Paradigm emphasizes the strengths and talents of women — onstage and off — to tell a story of love and hope.

Westporters don’t have to go far to see this intriguing show. It’s August 18 and 19, at Fairfield Theatre Company’s Warehouse space.

That’s right around the corner too for Scott Bryce. The Emmy-nominated actor (and 1976 Staples High School graduate) co-directs the show with his wife, Jodi Stevens.

It’s also close for Westporter Paul Bogaev and Westonite Scarlet Tanzer. This is the 3rd New Paradigm show for both. They were in previous productions of “Oliver” and “Peter Pan.”

(From left) Paul Bogaev, Scarlet Tanzer and Scott Bryce. (Photo/Tara Tanzer)

New Paradigm is known for non-traditional and inventive casting. Besides Tombs, “Hunchback” features several actors with special needs or disabilities, and performers of many cultural backgrounds.

Cast members range from 8 to 75 years old. Broadway pros work alongside local adult and youth actors.

For “Hunchback,” Bryce and company are partnering with the CT Burns Care Foundation, to raise money and awareness. Like Quasimodo, burn victims are often treated like outsiders.

New Paradigm is an important part of the local arts scene. Just as importantly, it’s a theatre with a social conscience.

(“The Hunchback of Notre Dame” will be performed on Saturday, August 18 at 3 and 8 p.m., and Sunday, August 19 at 1 p.m., at Fairfield Theatre Company. Click here for tickets and more information.)

Love Letters

Like many dual-career couples, Scott Bryce and Jodi Stevens lead hectic lives.  Their professions — both are actors — complicate things further.  They usually work different schedules, in different theaters.  When one is rehearsing, the other may be in mid-production.  When one is opening a show, the other is closing one down.

But for the next 3 weeks, they’ll work together.  And they’ll do it right here in Westport.

The show is “Love Letters” — A.R. Gurney’s evocative, touching yet humorous play about a 50-year love affair carried on primarily through letters.

It debuts at MTC MainStage in Colonial Green this Friday (Feb. 4), and runs weekends through Feb. 20.

Scott Bryce and Jodi Stevens

Working together — on a play about love, right in their back yard — was serendipitous, says Bryce, a Staples Players (Class of 1975) alum who earned 2 Emmy nominations for “As the World Turns.”

The couple had been onstage only in “On Golden Pond” (Bryce’s mother Dorothy, a noted actress, was in the show too).  But when Stevens’ most recent show — she played the female lead in “Dietrich and Chevalier:  The Musical” — was closing, they talked casually about the possibility.

A couple of days later, at a Christmas party, Music Theatre of Connecticut MainStage co-founder Kevin Connors mentioned “Love Letters.”

The show is appealing on many levels — including its setting in this area.  There are references to local institutions, like I-95 and Silver Hill.

Bryce also welcomes the chance to perform in the small MTC theater.  “It’s such an intimate space,” he says.  “There’s not a bad seat in the house.  It’s really sweet.”

“It’s a beautiful script,” Bryce adds.  “What better way to spend Valentine’s month than on stage with my wife?”

And, as Jodi says:  “There’s no commute!”

(“Love Letters will be performed Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., with matinees Saturdays at 4 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m., at MTC MainStage Theatre on the lower level of Colonial Green.  For tickets, click here or call 203-454-3883.  Each performance is followed by a wine and cheese receptions, where the audience can meet the actors and production team.)

Steamboat Soaps

What do you get when you cross “The Office” with “All My Children“?

Steamboat:  The Series.”  It’s one of the most popular comedy offerings on YouTube — and a smash hit for Westporter Scott Bryce.

Scott Bryce

“Steamboat” is a soap satire.  Scott — a veteran actor who directed all 5 episodes — calls it “a behind-the-scenes look at the last desperate, dying days of a daytime soap opera.”

He shot “Steamboat” in just 1 day, at Norwalk’s Palace Digital Studios and the SoNo Academy.

Scott’s soap bones are strong.  He played Craig Montgomery on 113 episodes of “As The World Turns“; he’s been on other soaps, and his father — Ed Bryce — starred (off and on) as Bill Bauer on “Guiding Light,” from 1959 to 1983.

It was Ed’s TV “grandson” — Dr. Rick Bauer, played by actor Michael O’Leary — who called Scott last year, when “Guiding Light” was canceled after a 57-year (!) run.

Scott put together a cast of soap actors — many from “Guiding Light,” some from “As the World Turns” and other shows — and put them in roles that were the antithesis of what they were known for.

The response to the 5 webisodes has been great.  Sound and Fury, for example, called it “a loving look at the unseemly backside (and darkside) of producing a daytime soap.”

Scott is pitching the “Steamboat” series to anyone he can think of:  Comedy Central, the Soap Network, ABC, Ben Silverman.

Scott is hopeful it will get picked up by a distributor even bigger than YouTube.

“‘Steamboat’ is a metaphor for our entire world,” he says.  “It’s about the downsizing of all of us.  As budgets get sliced, egos get sliced too.”

But there’s hope.  “Even non-soap fans get it,” he adds.  “And they laugh.”