Artist Spotlight: Stacee Tweedlie

(This article contains excerpts from an article by Patrick Brien published in the Press Enterprise on March 10, 2014)

                                                                                                                                                                                            /CONTRIBUTED IMAGE Stacee Tweedlie, seen here in December 2013, teaches musical theatre classes through the City of Riverside Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department at the Orange Terrace Community Center.

/CONTRIBUTED IMAGE
Stacee Tweedlie, seen here in December 2013, teaches musical theatre classes through the City of Riverside Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department at the Orange Terrace Community Center.

Stacee Tweedlie remembers the specific moment when a teacher’s love for musical theatre opened her eyes to a whole new set of possibilities. That is the moment she decided to become a teacher. “I knew right then I wanted to be that person for someone,” she says with a smile. “I wanted to share my love of theatre with kids and help them see that it’s more than just singing, dancing and acting. Theatre is teamwork, social skills, life lessons and, most importantly, fun.”

While still pursuing her BA in Theatre Education at Cal State Fullerton, Tweedlie began teaching private singing lessons and working at various children’s theatres in Orange County. After graduating and moving back to Riverside, where she had grown up, Tweedlie established her own studio, the Tweedlie Center for the Arts. She also began teaching musical theatre classes through the City of Riverside Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department at the Orange Terrace Community Center.

 /CONTRIBUTED IMAGE   This April 2013 production of "Aristocats" was held at the Orange Terrace Community Center in Riverside where Stacee Tweedlie teaches musical theatre classes.

/CONTRIBUTED IMAGE
This April 2013 production of “Aristocats” was held at the Orange Terrace Community Center in Riverside where Stacee Tweedlie teaches musical theatre classes.

Tweedlie talks about how her dream is not for her students to end up on Broadway. She says “I just want theatre and the arts to make a positive impact in their lives,” she says. “Whether they do one show with me or every single one until they leave for college, I hope that each student’s time spent in my classroom helps them become a better, more well-rounded and well-spoken, independent individual. Anything beyond that is a bonus.” Tweedlie, is also a performer with an extensive list of credits that includes such companies as Candlelight Pavilion, Downey Civic Light Opera and Huntington Beach Playhouse, believes that it is important to continue performing in order to remain relevant for her students. Shows in which she has appeared include “Seussical” (Gertrude), “The Full Monty” (Susan) and “Company” (Marta). She is also currently stage managing the Gestalt Theatre Project production of Neil LaBute’s “The Shape of Things,” which opens in April at The Box in downtown Riverside.I love working with kids, but there is something amazing about watching experienced actors in their element, especially in such a cool place as The Box,” says Tweedlie. “Not to mention I am quite a fan of Neil LaBute and the play, itself.”

It is individuals like Tweedlie who are demonstrating their love of theatre and arts, which reflects in her passion for community involvement. She says, “I’d also like to become more involved with the city of Riverside”. “I am falling in love all over again with this town. Our downtown area is becoming even more magical with the new convention center, The Box and all the great new restaurants, plus the Mission Inn. I want to help make sure that continues.” For more information on Stacee Tweedlie or the Tweedlie Center for the Arts, visit www.TCARiverside.com. To read the full article click here.

Mission Inn Ranked In Conde Nast Traveler Magazine

(This article contains excerpts from from an article by Richard K. De Atley, published in the Press-Enterprise on February 28th, 2014.)

The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa in Riverside has scored three times recently with Conde Nast Traveler magazine.  In the publication’s 2013 Readers’ Choice Awards, with nearly 80,000 taking part in the survey, the historic inn made the Top 25 list in the highly competitive best hotel list for Southern California.

Kimber Licitra, a receptionist, stands in Kelly's Spa at the Mission Inn on Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014. The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa scores with Conde Nast Traveler magazine's reader poll: No. 25 in the Top 25 list of best hotels in Southern California; No. 10 in the top 50 best spas in the world, according to the November 2013 issue.  Photo Credit: Kurt Miller

Kimber Licitra, a receptionist, stands in Kelly’s Spa at the Mission Inn on Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014. The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa scores with Conde Nast Traveler magazine’s reader poll: No. 25 in the Top 25 list of best hotels in Southern California; No. 10 in the top 50 best spas in the world, according to the November 2013 issue. Photo Credit: Kurt Miller

 

It’s in the company of Beverly Hills’ The Peninsula (No. 1) and L’Ermitage (No. 7) ; Los Angeles’ Hotel Bel-Air (No. 3); Sunset Marquis Hotel & Villas (No. 22) ; and San Diego’s Tower 23 Hotel, which missed matching its name by coming in at No. 24 . The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa was No. 25.  A separate survey for Top 50 Hotel Spas in the United States has Kelly’s Spa at the Mission Inn rated No. 10. The Readers’ Choice Awards were announced in November.

The magazine more recently recommended The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa as a romantic vacation proposal destination, where suitors can arrange for a walk along the inn’s rotunda staircase that winds up at a small table with candles, champagne and roses for popping the question as flowers rain down.  All of the outstanding rankings, and vast selection of sites and activities at the historic Mission Inn, make this destination a true location of choice.  In the heart of Riverside, The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa is an elegant place where anyone can go relax and have a good time.

The inn’s largest draw has been the annual Festival of Lights, a Thanksgiving week-through-New Year’s celebration. The 21st edition featured 4 million lights decorating the inn along with holiday-motif characters on its balconies. An estimated 50,000 people attended the fireworks opening, and the festival attracted shoulder-to-shoulder crowds during its run.

Duane Roberts, co-owner and CEO, also moved to add restaurants to the inn’s standing lineup of the Mission Inn Restaurant and the Presidential Lounge. Duane’s Prime Steaks and Seafood just earned its 18th consecutive AAA four-diamond rating, which Roberts believes is unmatched.

The inn “is not a chain operation, so we are able to do special things, and we are able to do things the way we want to,” Duane Roberts said.

To read the full article, click here.

Remodeled Convention Center Brings High Hopes

(This article contains excerpts from an article by Alicia Robinson, published in The Press-Enterprise on February 14th, 2014)

Riverside’s renovated convention center hasn’t yet opened but is already eliciting the “wows” city leaders hoped for in 2012 when they ponied up an extra $4.6 million dollars for a more attractive design.  A large scale renovation of the Riverside convention center has been long overdue, and on March 1st, 2014 the new convention center is scheduled to open it’s doors.  Loaded with state of the art technology and high end capabilities, the convention center will become a choice for new markets such as biomedical and pharmaceutical conventions, financial services events and corporate meetings. We will have the opportunity to showcase the City as a location of choice to many new visitors.

Now it sports a custom chandelier hanging in the 66-foot-high glass entry tower, a 40 percent larger exhibit hall, building-wide Wi-Fi and hundreds of smart phone charging stations, giving city and tourism officials hope that the center has everything a 21st century convention needs.

Photo credit: Kurt Miller/ staff photographer

Photo credit: Kurt Miller/ Staff Photographer

Riverside officials had been planning for nearly a decade to update the convention center, which opened in 1976 and had its last major touch-up in the late 1990s.  “It was a little worn before,” said Councilman Mike Gardner, who represents downtown.

Officials have said they got complaints about inadequate restrooms and a lack of “breakout rooms” for smaller sessions, and the center didn’t meet current earthquake standards. It also had a boxy, nearly windowless, dated design that didn’t command attention.

The redesigned center has a larger exhibit hall, two ballrooms, more small meeting rooms, a modern kitchen, a glass-walled entry tower, and the first escalator in a Riverside city building. Officials with the city and Raincross Hospitality Corp. said the furnishings – cherry wood paneling and a variety of carpet patterns in brown, beige and colonial blue – are meant to evoke a boutique hotel.

Photo Credit: Kurt Miller/ Staff Photograpgher

Photo Credit: Kurt Miller/ Staff Photographer

Riverside officials are banking on the kind of results Palm Springs has seen, after a $34 million upgrade completed in 2005.  Business has come back stronger than ever after dipping in 2008 and 2009 due to the recession, said James Canfield, executive director of the Palm Springs Convention Center and the city’s bureau of tourism.

Riverside Convention Center officials expect the upgrade puts them in a better position to compete with convention centers in Ontario and Pasadena and the Pechanga Resort & Casino near Temecula. They also say it enables them to go after a higher caliber of events.

To read the full article, click here.

TEDx Comes To La Sierra University: “Ideas Worth Spreading”

(This article includes excerpts from the TEDx La Sierra website)

On April 24, 2014 La Sierra University will kick off the first TEDx event in the Tom and Vi Zapara School of Business building, offering participants to accept the challenge…to imagine, to design, to prove the possible.

possible orange

Photo Credit: http://www.tedxlasierrauniversity.com/

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California almost 30 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. The theme of the upcoming event at La Sierra University celebrates the visionaries, the designers, the champions of “The Possible.”

The featured speakers are those which have challenged the perceived limits of their own potential, inspiring viewers to join them in imagining, creating, and demonstrating just what is possible in our world today.  The TEDx presentation is sure to spark inspiration, and serve as a catalyst for innovation.

If you are interested in speaking and sharing your story, please feel free to visit www.tedxlasierrauniversity.com and apply.  You can also find a link to tickets and registration here.

The schedule for the event on April 24 will be arranged into four segments:

  • Imagine the Possible - Talks which inspire and invite you to see the world differently and explore new ideas.
  • Design the Possible - Talks which engage you in the process of design and innovation, making ideas tangible.
  • Share the Possible - Lunch Break. Use this time to share and discuss ideas with the speakers and other attendees.
  • Prove the Possible - Talks which present the struggle and success of turning ideas into impact, demonstrating the outcome of a quest to prove the possible.

Click here for more information about TEDx at La Sierra

 

 

New Theater Company Bringing Musicals to The Box

(Excerpts from this post were taken from an article published on PE.com on January 1o, 2014.)

A new professional company, Riverside Repertory Theater, will produce musicals starting this March at The Box in Downtown Riverside.

The Rep is a group of theater professionals, business people, and directors, designers and technicians committed to creating professional musical theater in the Inland Empire.

“Riverside Rep celebrates traditional musicals by challenging the traditional ways of producing them,” said Artistic Director Matt Neves, formerly of Performance Riverside. “We’re thrilled to debut our new approach of breaking tradition with a musical steeped in it.”

The Box Theater in Riverside.

The Box Theater in Riverside.

Starting March 14 and running weekends through March 30, the groupwill produce “Fiddler on the Roof.”

Fiddler and the group’s second show (premiering in May) will be performed in the city’s newest theater, The Box at the Fox, in Riverside. Tickets can be purchased by calling 951-808-5566 or by visiting the website at www.riversiderep.org.

“We saw a demand for locally produced, quality professional theater,” says Riverside business owner and Rep Managing Director, David St. Pierre. “We’ll be producing well-known blockbusters as well as exciting new work and we think The Box is an incredible space to launch our vision.”

Adding artistic and cultural performance groups like this falls in line with Seizing Our Destiny’s Location of Choice and continues to solidify Riverside as a City of Art and Innovation.

Click here for the article.

The Curtain Rises On A New Professional Theater

(This article contains excerpts from a Press Release issued on January 6, 2014)

A new professional company, Riverside Repertory Theater (or Riverside Rep for short), will produce daring, innovative and high-quality musicals starting this March at The Box in downtown Riverside.  The Rep is a group of theater professionals, business people, and award-winning directors, designers and technicians committed to creating professional musical theater in the Inland Empire.

“Riverside Rep celebrates traditional musicals by challenging the traditional ways of producing them,” says Artistic Director Matt Neves, formerly of Performance Riverside. “We’re thrilled to debut our new approach of breaking tradition with a musical steeped in it.”

riverside rep

Starting March 14th and running weekends through March 30th, Riverside Rep will produce Fiddler on the Roof, in a production their website declares will be “unlike any other you’ve seen!”  Fiddler and the Rep’s second show (premiering in May) will be performed in the city’s newest theater, The Box at the Fox, in downtown Riverside.  Tickets can be purchased by calling 951-808-5566 or by visiting the website at www.riversiderep.org.

“We saw a demand for locally produced, quality professional theater,” says Riverside business owner and Rep Managing Director, David St. Pierre.  “We’ll be producing well-known blockbusters as well as exciting new work and we think The Box is an incredible space to launch our vision.”  This theater will add to the many reasons Riverside is known as a Location of Choice for entertainment options.

Matt Taylor, Head of Lighting and Sound at UC Riverside, serves as the President of the Board of Directors. “Our planning meetings have been completely inspiring.  Everyone is committed to doing something new, exciting and first-class.”

Riverside Repertory Theater board members include community leaders Jane Carney, Tera Harden, Carrie Miller, Aaron Norris and Janice Rooths, as well as theater professionals John LaLonde, Valerie Rachelle, Diane David, Alexis Jacknow, Jason Graham and Russell Currington.

Contact: David St. Pierre, Managing Director david@RiversideRep.org 951-808-5566

For a link to the Press Release, click here.

Riverside City College’s Band to Perform in London on New Year’s Day

(Excerpts from this article were taken from the Riverside Community College District website – www.rccd.edu – on December 20, 2013)

Riverside City College’s band, the Marching Tigers, will celebrate the New Year by performing in London as part of the city’s 30th annual New Year’s Day Parade. The performance will be the band’s fourth time in London. The two-mile parade, a major European event, is televised and will include 8,500 performers this year. Upwards of a half million spectators, including the Lord Mayor of Westminster and dignitaries from around the world, are expected to view the Parade, which began in 1987.
RCC-Tuba-Xmas-Tree
London’s New Year’s Day Parade will be aired online at www.myworldevents.com/parade/london-new-year.html, beginning at 4 am. The Marching Tigers will be featured twice during the parade and during the grand finale. The band will celebrate the 50th anniversary of James Bond, the fictional British agent, and the 75th creation anniversary of Superman, by playing music from their hit movies.  In addition to participating in the Parade, the RCC band will be featured on BBC’s Breakfast, one of the most popular morning shows in the UK.
“We are the ‘visible classroom’ for Riverside City College and give our young performers a unique opportunity to present our SoCal style of entertainment while absorbing the culture of the United Kingdom – a tremendous educational experience,” said marching band Director Gary Locke. “The cost of this trip is easy to figure out, but the value is incalculable.” This trip is a great opportunity to showcase the City of Riverside’s commitment as a city of “Arts & Innovation”.
The Marching Tigers are referred to as “Hollywood’s Band” following countless appearances in movies, TV shows, and celebrity parties. For more information about the RCC Marching Tigers, visit their website at http://www.rccband.org/.

Nightmare Before Christmas Bike Ride Draws 300!

Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey’s Bike with the Mayor program took a new twist with a night time bike ride on December 13, 2013.  Over 300 bikers showed up at City Hall to take a bike tour of the downtown holiday lights and the lights in the surrounding neighborhoods.  This is such a great healthful activity that unifies the community.

bikes

The Inland Empire Biking Alliance (IEBA) helped organize the event which offered cash prizes for best light display, costume and kid’s costume.

Bike with the Mayor is held every other month and lead by the Riverside Bicycle Advisory Committee.  It’s a great Fit, Fresh and Fun opportunity to enjoy a morning bicycle ride while exploring our beautiful city. They make several stops along the way to enjoy conversation and some places of interest.  The next ride is scheduled for Saturday, February 8, 2014.  To find out where to meet and access the rest of the 2014 schedule, click here.

La Sierra University Professor Receives International Emmy

(This article contains excerpts from an article written by Laurie Lucas and published on pe.com on December 2, 2013.)

Christoph Silber, an acclaimed screenwriter and adjunct film and television professor at La Sierra University, was among television’s top talent to receive a coveted International Emmy last week. His film was selected from a field of only four nominees worldwide in the “TV Movie/Mini Series” category.  Many of Riverside’s universities showcase great talent in the area of Art and Innovation.   Silber’s achievement reflects Riverside’s commitment to lifelong learning and uses film as his artistic medium.

Chris Silber, a screenwriter who teaches at La Sierra University, won an International Emmy in the TV Movie/Mini Series category. (Contributed Image)

Chris Silber, a screenwriter who teaches at La Sierra University, won an International Emmy in the TV Movie/Mini Series category. (Contributed Image)

In between television projects, Silber teaches two television screenwriting and writing classes each quarter at La Sierra University, his first experience with regular classroom instruction. He arrived in 2012 at the behest of the program’s director and professor Rodney Vance. The two met last year at the SonScreen Film Festival in Simi Valley where Silber conducted a question-and-answer session with students.The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences presented two special awards and 10 Emmy statues during the 41st International Emmy Awards gala in New York City on Nov. 25. In total winners represented six countries – Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The event was attended by more than 1,000 international television professionals and was hosted by John Oliver.

The 10 awards for programs and performances included an Emmy for “A Day for a Miracle,” an Austrian-German television movie that aired in Austria and Germany earlier this year to a record audience. Drawn from real-life events first portrayed in “The New Yorker” magazine, the story relays the trauma experienced by a Christian farm couple who discover their four-year-old daughter floating in an icy pond. Although deemed clinically dead by medical personnel, a young, inexperienced doctor decides in the face of strong opposition and terrible odds to try to save her.

Nearly 75 percent of the movie takes place in the hospital operating room, capturing in detail the heroic efforts of the physician as he pulls out all the stops under extreme stress to revive the child during a short window of time in which such recovery might be possible.

“It’s a story of this doctor who makes that call and says, ‘I’m not going to give up on this girl.’ He hangs in there,” Silber said.

The story attracted Silber because it addresses “this huge moral question, about how far can we interfere with life, do miracles exist, or can we, through our own resilience for hope, make something miraculous happen by not letting go,” he said. “We’re leaving it up to the viewer to decide.”

For the full article, click here.

 

New Fox Operator Promises Refreshing Mix of Entertainment Options

(This article includes excerpts from the article written by Alicia Robinson and Vanessa Franko, Staff Writers, and published in the Press Enterprise on November 27, 2013.)

Now that concert industry behemoth Live Nation has officially taken over management of Riverside’s Fox Performing Arts Center, we can expect to see company officials not just at the theater, but around town.

“The smaller venues, the clubs, the theaters, it’s a high-touch business,” said Ben Weeden, chief operation officer of Live Nation’s House of Blues division. “You have to be reaching out to the community.”

Riverside's Fox Performing Arts Center is under new management effective December 1, 2013, when concert industry giant Live Nation officially takes over. Company leaders said they will be visible in the community and want to make shows at the Fox a valuable experience.  /File Photo, PE.com.

Riverside’s Fox Performing Arts Center is under new management effective December 1, 2013, when concert industry giant Live Nation officially takes over. Company leaders said they will be visible in the community and want to make shows at the Fox a valuable experience. /File Photo, PE.com.

In an interview, Weeden, Excecutive Vice President of Clubs and Theaters Arich Berghammer and Joseph Cahill, general manager for the Fox and the Riverside Municipal Auditorium once Live Nation takes over the venue in March, all pledged to be visible and accessible and to increase the number of events at the Fox.

That should be music to the ears of some concert goers.  Survey results from Riverside’s Community Quality of Life Survey conducted earlier this year reflected a need for more entertainment.  Of the survey participants asked, 84.1% see the community as a good place to enjoy and participate in festivals, theater, music, dance and film.  However, Riverside is the City of Arts and Innovation, so raising this figure is important.  In order to attract business to Riverside, we’ve got to demonstrate a wide variety of entertainment and Live Nation’s management of the Fox should accomplish that.

For the full article, please click here.