Lehigh Valley to host symposium providing inside look at entertainment industry

Denise Ogden
August 21, 2018

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. — On Oct. 12, Penn State Lehigh Valley will host the VIP All-Access Business of Entertainment Symposium from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tickets are $95 or $125 (includes special meet-and-greet with speakers) and are available at crspsu.org.

The symposium focuses on the business aspects of the unpredictable entertainment industry, including Broadway and cinema. Speakers include:

Pat Addiss is a theatre producer who is currently producing the off-Broadway hit, "Desperate Measures," which was nominated for 15 awards. The show won the coveted Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Musical and the Drama Desk awards for Best Musical and Best Lyrics. Addiss has produced more than 18 plays on and off-Broadway such as "Chita Rivera," "The Dancers Life," "Spring Awakening," "39 Steps," "A Christmas Story," "The Musical," "Eclipsed," "Dinner with the Boys," "Buyer and Cellar" and many more. Addiss is an advocate for women’s equality and is a sought-after speaker. She co-hosts YAYA Dinners with Magda Katz to network and empower women. She is a member of the League of Professional Theatre Women and NJ Rep boards.

Susie Krajsa is president of Broadway Across America (BAA). A veteran of the Broadway industry, Krajsa has been with BAA for 27 years in various positions, most recently serving as executive vice president, presenting. In this capacity, she oversees BAA's business and the network of 44 markets where BAA has a presence. She also collaborates with Broadway partners in various venues in each market and with local staff and management to develop long-term relationships.

Frank Megna is a director, actor and writer from Los Angeles. He studied at the renowned HB Studios under the tutelage of Uta Hagen, Bill Hickey and Herbert Berghof, among others. His first play, "Leather Heart" was produced off-Broadway, which led to writing for such TV shows as "Crime Story," "Wiseguy" and "Veronica Claire." In both New York and Los Angeles, he has worked on numerous theater productions in various capacities. With his partners in Opening Minds Productions he has revived Steve Allen’s award-winning PBS series "Meeting of Minds" as live theater, updating the original scripts.

Angela Shelton is a movie actor, director and producer. She made her directorial debut with the award-winning documentary, "Searching for Angela Shelton," where she interviewed other Angela Sheltons in an effort to survey women and inadvertently put a spotlight on sexual abuse when she discovered that 70 percent of her namesakes had been victims. This led to appearances on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," "Larry King Live," "48 Hours Investigates," NPR, Lifetime Television and the cover of the New York Times. Shelton wrote and directed her first feature film "Heart, Baby!" which brings light to an untold, historical true story. Her second feature was "The Eagle and the Albatross" (2018). She is working on a TV series and two other films.

Lauren Yarger reviews Broadway and Off-Broadway theater in New York and professional theater in Connecticut for Reflections in the Light, The Connecticut Arts Connection and other sites. She is a contributing editor for BroadwayWorld.com. She is a voting member of the Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association and the CT Critics Circle. She is a member of the League of Professional Theatre Women and is Co-Founder of the Connecticut Chapter. Yarger is a playwright and theater producer and a script consultant for Gramercy Park Productions. She has worked in arts management for Masterwork Productions, Inc., The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.

Bryan Tuk is a writer, attorney and musician. His law practice represents clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey and focuses on arts and entertainment law matters, copyrights, trademarks, nonprofit organizations, startups and entrepreneurs. In Tuk’s transactional practice, he has closed hundreds of deals with an aggregate deal volume in excess of $3 billion. He has advised actors, record labels, recording artists, recording studios, songwriters, producers, professional symphonic performers and music industry entrepreneurs. In 2017, Lehigh Valley Magazine named Tuk a "Local Legal Leader" in the areas of arts and entertainment law, nonprofit organization law and commercial transactions law.

Jack Maxwell is a professional actor and host of the Booze Traveler, a Travel Channel series. Booze Traveler explores diverse cultures through the various drinks consumed by the locals. Maxwell makes friends, discusses religion and politics, and learns about the history and culture of the places he visits. He grew up in the projects in South Boston and shined shoes around bars when he was a kid. He recognized the power of socializing and sharing stories in a relaxed atmosphere. He eventually moved to Los Angeles to begin his acting career, having appeared in several television shows, including "Lost," "24," "Franklin and Bash," and "Ugly Betty." Maxwell also enjoys theatre and has had roles in "Lovers and Other Strangers," "Meeting of Minds," and "Wild Salome" (with Al Pacino) to name a few. He is a member of the Actor’s Studio.

The event is sponsored by the Council for Retail and Sales (CRS) which is located at Penn State Lehigh Valley in Center Valley, PA. The CRS is part of PSU-LV’s Innovation Center and works in conjunction with the Penn State Lehigh Valley LaunchBox. CRS works with the retail and sales communities to stimulate interest in retail and sales careers. The council is a leading authority on issues and solutions that face the retailing and sales industries. In addition to professional education, CRS connects students to entry-level retail and sales opportunities. For group tickets, contact Doc Ogden at 610-432-6252.

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Last Updated August 21, 2018