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Marlan Warren is a free-lance publicist who promotes entertainers and book authors (Roadmap Communications and Book Publicity by Marlan, respectively). She is also a film maker (Roadmap Productions), Reiki Master/Teacher (Light Hands Reiki Studio and Institute), Screenwriter, Novelist, PhotoJournalist, Tai Chi practitioner. 

L.A. NOW & THEN

You can check out but you can never leave...

WHAT'S THIS ABOUT?

My life, your life, our lives inside and outside of Los Angeles and its angels.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Edtech publisher Colvard Learning offers free early-literacy apps to Utah schools


SALT LAKE CITY, Utah—The California-based edtech publisher Colvard Learning (CL) is offering its early literacy software programs—Pup’s Quest for Phonics® and Professor Pup’s Phoneme Farm®—to any Utah school wishing to try out CL apps through the end of this year.

"We are very impressed with Utah schools' advocacy of educational technology and their progressive approach to education," said Robert Ketterer, Colvard Learning CEO. "We would welcome the opportunity to partner with Utah schools in helping children learn to read with our successful interactive software that focuses on phonemes and phonics awareness training."

Colvard Learning edtech products have been placed in 40 schools in California and Louisiana since the startup's inception seven years ago.

About Colvard Learning

So kids don’t see English as a chaotic mess, but a code that can be mastered. 
--Dr. Michael Colvard, Founder of Colvard Learning 

D. Michael Colvard, MD
  • In 2010, multiple award-winning eye surgeon, humanitarian and author, D. Michael Colvard, MD, founded Colvard Learning out of concern for the millions of U.S. students left behind academically due to poor reading skills.

  • Dr. Colvard teamed up with animators, app developers, and teachers to produce unique early literacy edtech software programs that are rooted in the neurobiology of reading, and influenced by the highly effective early-reading methodology of phoneme awareness advocate Dr. Diane McGuinness, author of Early Reading Instruction: What Science Really Tells Us about How to Teach Reading (MIT press). “In teaching reading, we’ve found the decoding approach is easily understood and effective," said Dr. Colvard. "So kids don’t see English as a chaotic mess, but a code that can be mastered.”

Colvard Learning Programs (Tablet-Based with Off-Tablet Supplements)
  • Professor Pup’s Phoneme Farm® (Pre-School) focuses on phonemic awareness. A phoneme is the smallest distinct unit of sound in language. Reading researchers agree that a strong foundation of phonemic awareness is the greatest indication of later reading success.

  • Pup’s Quest for Phonics® (K-2) encourages interactive learning with a patented "Touch Text to Sound" feature. Moving a finger across a set of letters blends the sounds into a word.
Testimonials
We are noting very marked gains at the TK, K, and 1st Grade levels. The children are having such a great time, they don't realize they are learning.—Catherine Carvalho, Principal, St. Bruno School, Whittier, Calif.

Our younger grades have seen significant increases in Early Literacy! This year we had a 73% SGP (Student Growth Profile). We credit much of this to the Pup's Quest programs.—Denise M. DeSantis, Director of Development, St. Raphael Elementary School, Los Angeles, Calif.

I love how the children have to tap the microphone, say the sound, and then write the sound. They love the dancing...the music...the writing race with Professor Pup.—Robin Dean Grantham, Reading Intervention Specialist, Morehouse Parish School District, Bastrop, Louisiana

Dr. Michael Colvard and the Colvard Learning team members welcome interviews from all media hosts, reporters, bloggers and event organizers.

About the Colvard Learning Founder

Colvard Learning founder, Dr. Michael Colvard, is a multiple award-winning eye surgeon, USC professor, author, and philanthropist. In 1989, he founded the charitable non-profit, Friends of Vision. Since 1997, he regularly volunteers with SEE (Surgical Eye Expeditions), and has been on 20 humanitarian expeditions to Namibia in Africa, where he has restored sight to 5,000 men, women, and children, completely free of charge. A dedicated philanthropist, Dr. Colvard received the SEE International Humanitarian Award in 2009.

·       Director of Colvard Eye Center in Encino, California
  • ·       Clinical professor of ophthalmology at USC Keck School of Medicine
  • ·       Named to the Super Doctors® list and chosen by independent consumer groups as one of America’s Top Ophthalmologists.
  • ·       Author of the textbook, Achieving Excellence in Cataract Surgery
  • ·       Author of over 50 articles and papers in medical literature
  • ·       Editor of several medical journals
  • ·       Recipient of the prestigious Honor Award and Senior Achievement Award by the American Academy of Ophthalmology recognizing his lifetime contributions to teaching and scientific advancements in ophthalmology.
Media Contact:
Publicist│ Marlan Warren │(323) 347-6762│roadmap.girl@hotmail.com│
Twitter: @MarlanWarren_PR

Colvard Learning Media Kit: http://colvardlearningpresskit.blogspot.com

For more edtech details, videos, photos and bio info:
Colvard Learning│info@colvardlearning.com
Twitter: @ColvardLearning

Thursday, April 20, 2017

This Sunday @1pm: Monty Warren & The Friggin' Whatevers Rock Out at Hooligan's (West Palm Beach, FL)


Event: Rock & Roll, BBQ Ribs & NASCAR Party
When: April 23 @1-6pm EST 
Where: Hooligans 
8344 Garden Road
West Palm Beach, Florida 33404
Phone: (561) 842-0336

(West Palm Beach, Fla.) This Sunday, starting at 1 p.m., roots rockers Monty Warren and The Friggin' Whatevers will be featured in the entertainment lineup for Hooligans' "BBQ and NASCAR Party." 

"We'll be playing our own stuff," said Warren. "And some heartfelt tributes to Chuck Berry, the Stones and Beatles." 

With the exception of Warren (who writes and sings the roots rock-inspired original tunes, and plays rhythm guitar) the "Whatevers" tend to be...whatever. This time around, the lineup will include East Coast music scene veterans William Meredith on drums, lead guitarist Roderick Kohn, and Ron DeSaram on bass. 

The group has produced three successful albums: “Far Out Close Up,” “Trailer Park Angel,” and “Let’s Go to Therapy.” All three have been named to The Palm Beach Post’s annual Best Music List.

“I always look forward to these gigs with Monty,” said Ron DeSaram, who played in the CBGB House Band, Crossfire Choir, in New York during the '80s and '90s. “He stays true to his rock roots while continuing to reach for new ground.” DeSaram also plays lead guitar with his main group, The Cravens, in the Palm Beach, Fla. area.

“Indy Week” stated that Monty Warren & The Friggin' Whatevers "retroactively bridge the gap between '70s pub rock/power pop and the arrivals of Tom Petty, Graham Parker and Elvis Costello."

“Putting together albums has its own rewards,” said Warren. “But nothing can take the place of the high-octane giving-out and giving-back that happens with a live audience.” 

Not content to rest on its laurels, the group is hard at work on a new album.

"I'm collaborating right now with Phil Wolff," Warren said. "He'll be coming over from Spain to record with me." Wolff is the popular singer-songwriter with We R Comin' in Mallorca, Spain.

And if rocking to the beat of Monty and the Friggin' Whatevers is not incentive enough, Warren adds:

"Hooligans will have some seriously killer barbecue."

For more info:

Twitter: @montymonty60
Facebook: Monty Warren & The Friggin’ Whatevers Music

All Monty Warren & The Friggin' Whatever albums are available on iTunes, Spotify, CD Baby, Sound Cloud and Amazon.




Sunday, April 9, 2017

Video Clip: My 10-Minute Play: Staged Reading by Athena Cats Theater Collective (Santa Monica)


UPDATE: Nope, you cannot see the video because Athena Cats producers and the actors made me remove it. In fact, what has transpired since my play was performed in a staged reading turns out to be quite a little 10-min. play in itself. More will be revealed.

PREVIOUS POST:

Thank you so much, Athena Cats, for including my 10-min. play, Chasing Sangha, in your New Works Festival yesterday (4/8/17) at the City Garage in Santa Monica! Here's a very brief (approx. 2 min.) video clip that I managed to capture near the beginning. Wish it could have been longer. The director, Katherine James, did an awesome job of directing these wonderful actors: D.J. Harner (Sheila), Katherine Griffith (Barb), and Alan Blumenfeld (Noh Player/Multiple Roles). A staged reading with a couple of rehearsals, but they nailed it! Very grateful!

Chasing Sangha Summary:

Sheila, after her divorce and a self-imposed exile, longs for sangha (the Buddhist concept of home). "If a mountain lion leaves her fellow lions -- her sangha -- and goes down to the village alone, she will be killed." After she meets Barb at a Buddhist ashram, Sheila impulsively offers to chaperone Barb on her quest in the wilderness.

More info:

If you'd like to contact me directly, please send me a message via this blog. Thank you! 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

L.A. Playwright Marlan Warren's "Chasing Sangha" Featured at Athena Cats New Works Fest (4/8/17)





Los Angeles playwright Marlan Warren's play, "Chasing Sangha," has been selected for Athena Cats' New Works Festival of 10-Minute Plays, and will be performed as a staged reading Sat., April 8, at the City Garage in Santa Monica's Bergamot Station Arts Center. The event ties in with SWAN (Support Women Artists Now) Day.

"I'm thrilled Athena Cats invited me to be part of this afternoon of 10-minute plays," said Warren. "Athena Cats--with its focus on women playwrights and directors--is like a dream come true for me."

Athena Cats is the brainchild of playwrights/screenwriters Debbie Bolsky and Laurel Wetzork. This collective of Southern California area female playwrights and directors formed to bring unrepresented works written by women to the stage.

According to the Athena Cats website, the statistics for female playwrights are grim. Twenty-three percent of plays produced during the 2011-2014 season were written by women, according to a Female Playwrights Institute study.

"Our goal is to redress this imbalance," said Athena Cats co-founder Laurel Wetzork.

When Warren's one-act "Bits of Paradise" showcased at The Marsh in San Francisco, it received praise from "Asian Week":

"Based on letters written between Japanese American girls and women in the U.S. internment camps and Japanese American soldiers during World War II, Bits of Paradise places its footprint on the timeline of a much needed theatrical examination of the Asian American journey."

"Chasing Sangha" focuses on a Night in Hell in the California winter desert where two brand new women friends try to achieve mystical enlightenment according to a Shaman Certification course one of them is taking, but Murphy's Law comes along with them. "Sangha" refers to the Buddhist concept of finding strength and protection by bonding with like-minded people.

So is the piece autobiographical?

"It's practically verbatim," laughs Warren.

The festival's 10-minute staged readings are performed in two separate groups with women directors. "Everyone involved sounds amazing," Warren said. "The shows are split into two groups. We come on last at 3pm, but we get to watch everyone else's plays all afternoon. I can't wait to meet them all and experience their work. "

Athena Cats Presents New Works Festival
Date: Saturday, April 8, 2017

Times: (see below for show synopses)
1pm: First Group of Plays
3pm: Second Group of Plays

Location:
City Garage, Bergamot Station Arts Center, Building T1
2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90404

Free Admission

For more info:
Athena Cats Website: http://www.theathenacats.org
Phone: 310-564-9410
Reservations: rsvp@theathenacats.org
RSVP separately for each show

Shows:

1:00 to 2:20 pm

"Visitation" by Mildred Inez Lewis (Caron Tate, Director): Two foster sisters, Shavonne and Gina, struggle against obstacles to visit Shavonne's incarcerated boyfriend.

"Break Time" by Desiree' York (Lesley Asistio, Director): Three nurses hope to escape life and death under an invisible tree with just a pack of cigarettes.

"A Grave Situation" by Sandra de Helen (Desiree' York, Director): Just before Christmas 1951, a bereaved mother visits her recently deceased husband’s grave with suicide on her mind. Her young daughters are asleep in the car.

"The Salmon Mousse" by Elisa Manzini (Katherine James, Director): After a suicide murder, a married couple has to deal with the woman in charge of the Pearly Gates.

"A Place Like This" by Meagan Daine (Caron Tate, Director): Two college students take refuge in a Secret Garden following a tragic event on their campus. Inspired by the playwright's experience as a college student on the night of 9/11, the play asks how we, as individuals, cope with the trauma of senseless, broad-scale violence.

"Sugar and Spice" by Allie Costa (Allie Costa, Director): Adult siblings seek out the secret family recipe in this heartwarming story.

3:00 pm

"Eleventy-Hundred" by Liz Kerin (Mary Sampson, Director): In the wake of a tragic school shooting, an estranged husband and wife reunite at the funeral of their son and must confront the person he became vs. the person they expected him to be.

"Muse Me" by Katherine James (Katherine James, Director): "Muse Me" examines the question of artistic inspiration: where does it come from? In this tale, twin sisters -- one born living and one born dead -- have spent 60 years intertwined in creating art. And life. Dedicated to the playwright's sister, Laura Ellen, who lived and died one day in 1955 but whose absence, influence and "what if-ness?" is with her always.

"The Pendlewood Witching" by Jen Kenyon: Poppy Pendle wants to expand the family moonshine business, but younger sister Sass is wary of the danger of bootlegging during prohibition. Oldest sister June is comforted by herbs, owls and the Old Ways, but it'll take mechanical magic to inspire Sass' full participation in the enterprise.

"Doctor's Appointment" by Lauren Gorski (Elena Campbell-Martinez, Director): First-time parents are eager to learn the sex of their baby, but find instead their lives are about to get more complicated.

"Chasing Sangha" by Marlan Warren (Katherine James, Director): Sheila, after her divorce and a self-imposed exile, longs for sangha (the Buddhist concept of home). "If a mountain lion leaves her fellow lions -- her sangha -- and goes down to the village alone, she will be killed." After she meets Barb at a Buddhist ashram, Sheila impulsively offers to chaperone Barb on her quest in the wilderness.

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