Chris Coleman Voices of the Armory

ISBN 13: 9781424321513

Voices of the Armory

 
9781424321513: Voices of the Armory
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Voices of the Armory is the thrillingly told and gloriously photographed chronicle of one of Portland's greatest 19th century buildings, used by generations of people from all walks of life for all manner of reasons, and its transformation against considerable odds as a majestic example of historic preservation, sustainability, performance space and community values. A narration by Chris Coleman, Artistic Director of Portland Center Stage, the Armorys new resident, is complemented by testimonies of professionals and community members who conceived, advised, politicked, financed, designed, excavated, plumbed, wired and greened this landmark project. Featuring a generous collection of gallery-quality photographs, Voices of the Armory is a remarkable document of an extraordinary effort to enhance a creative community.

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About the Author:

Chris Coleman joined Portland Center Stage as Artistic Director in 2000. Since then, he has directed King Lear, Things of Dry Hours, Bat Boy: The Musical, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Man and Superman, Outrage, Much Ado about Nothing, The Seagull, Flesh and Blood, The Gimmick, A New Brain, A Christmas Carol, The Devils, West Side Story and Misalliance. Before coming to Portland, he was Artistic Director at Actor's Express in Atlanta, a company he co-founded in the basement of an old church in 1988. He has directed at major theaters across the country, including the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, A Contemporary Theatre in Seattle, The Alliance Theatre, Dallas Theatre Center, Asolo Center for the Performing Arts, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Pittsburgh Public Theatre, New York Theatre Workshop and Center Stage in Baltimore. In April 2004, Portland Family of Funds financed the construction of a new theater complex in the historic Portland Armory building. Portland Center Stage moved in to its new home in the Gerding Theater at the Armory in the fall of 2006. During the 2005/06 season PCS' overall ticket sales rose 15 percent, and in 2006/07 season, they rose again, by 30 percent.

Review:

More than just a pretty coffee table book, this lavishly illustrated book offers a rare glimpse of Portland insiders as they collaborate on one of Portland's most ambitious renovations. The book is held together by a narrative tale spun by Portland Center Stage's Artistic Director Chris Coleman. A young man who started a theater company in a church basement, Coleman now maneuvers through the unfamiliar labyrinth of developers, architects, financial wizards and politicians in the two-year journey that leads to a new cultural icon in Portland's Pearl district, the Gerding Theater at the Armory. Coleman's story offers a rare glimpse of the dealmakers in Portland who make things happen, how they saved the Armory from demolition, and collaboratively created an institution which reflects the progressive values of the Portland community. Some of these movers and shakers contribute their own words and thoughts in 33 first-person accounts. The photographs, in rich and luxurious detail, document the transformation over the two-year construction period. Although the story starts out simply enough, it has all the drama you'd expect from a world-class theater company. --RobMelt

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Coleman, Chris
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