When Things Get Small Sweeps at Emmy Awards

(Press Release) LA JOLLA, CA – It’s true that UCSD-TV’s When Things Get Small a program that takes a comical look at nanoscience and features a world-renowned physicist playing a wacky version of himself on-screen, falls outside the expectations of mainstream science-for-television fare. Nevertheless, this unusual approach to explaining important science concepts to the public […]

(Press Release) LA JOLLA, CA – It’s true that UCSD-TV’s When Things Get Small a program that takes a comical look at nanoscience and features a world-renowned physicist playing a wacky version of himself on-screen, falls outside the expectations of mainstream science-for-television fare. Nevertheless, this unusual approach to explaining important science concepts to the public was recognized Saturday with a total of five Emmy Awards –- in every category it was nominated.

Recipients of this prestigious award from the Pacific Southwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences included UCSD physicist Ivan Schuller and UCSD-TV producer Rich Wargo in the Health/Science Program category, UCSD-La Jolla Playhouse MFA alumnus Adam Smith in the On-Camera Talent/Performer category, Matt Alioto in the Photography category, Michael Shea and David Bouzan in the Animation/Graphic Design category, and Peter Kreklow in the category of Lighting Direction. The award-winners were on-hand to accept their statuettes at the ceremony held Saturday, June 3 at the Omni Hotel in downtown San Diego.

UCSD-TV will re-broadcast “When Things Get Small” this Sunday, June 11 at 7:30 p.m. and again on June 28 at 8:30 p.m. The program can also be viewed “on-demand,” as a video podcast, or on Google Video at http://www.ucsd.tv/getsmall, and is also available for sale.

“When Things Get Small” uses a variety of comic inventions and special effects to take viewers on a comically corny romp into the real-life quest to create the smallest magnet ever known. Host Adam Smith travels alongside physicist Ivan Schuller, visiting locations ranging from Petco Park to a steaming hot tub to make sense of several important “nano” concepts. UC president Robert Dynes and Major League Baseball’s San Diego Padres owner John Moores also drop by for cameo appearances.

“When Things Get Small” was funded in part by the National Science Foundation, and produced by UCSD-TV in partnership with the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2) and the UCSD Division of Physical Sciences.

“When Things Get Small” is the first in the ‘When Things Get…” series, produced by Not Too Serious Labs, the creative collaboration of UCSD-TV producer Rich Wargo and physicist Ivan Schuller. Not Too Serious Labs’ mission is to make science funny and entertaining so you end up learning while you’re laughing. The duo is planning its next production “When Things Get Big,” a comical exploration of the gigantic machines used to investigate matter.

The purpose of the Emmy Awards is to recognize outstanding achievements in television by conferring annual awards of merit in the Pacific Southwest region. The Pacific Southwest region includes San Diego County and the television markets of Bakersfield, Oxnard, Palm Springs, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Santa Maria, California, and Las Vegas, Nevada.

Behind-The-Scenes Photos from the Emmy Awards

UCSD-TV’s “When Things Get Small” Emmy winners display their statuettes (l to r) David Bouzan (Animation/Graphic Design), Matt Alioto (Photography), Adam Smith (On-Camera Talent/Performer), producers Ivan Schuller and Rich Wargo (Health/Science Program), and Peter Kreklow (Lighting Direction).

The creative team behind the award-winning “When Things Get Small” included producer Rich Wargo (l), host Adam Smith (center) and producer/star Ivan

The big screen says it all during the Emmy Awards ceremony in San Diego on June 3, 2006.

UCSD-TV Shows the Method Behind the Madness as Donizetti’s Bel Canto Masterpiece Lucia di Lammermoor Comes to San Diego Opera


Maestro Richard Bonynge rehearses with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra

Baritone Dalibor Jenis
 
Gaetano Donizetti’s bel canto masterpiece Lucia di Lammermoor opens as the second opera of the 2006 International Season on Saturday, February 18, 2006 for four performances. Lucia di Lammermoor features an all-star cast led by the world’s preeminent bel canto scholar, Maestro Richard Bonynge on the podium.
 

An interview with Angela Gilbert

Moving the scenery
 
Lucia di Lammermoor also marks the house debut of sensational newcomer and finalist of the “Singer of the World” competition, Angela Gilbert. She is joined on stage by San Diego Opera and Metropolitan Opera favorite Richard Leech. Also making his house debut in this production is exciting new baritone Dalibor Jenis who is joined by returning bass Reinhard Hagen. 


Reinhard Hagen laughs during his interview

Studying the cue sheets
 
Lucia di Lammermoor is a passionate tragedy that follows the story of the Ashton and Ravenswood families high up on Scottish moors. A blood feud between these families has gone on for generations and there is only one member of the Ravenswood family left, Edgardo (Richard Leech). Enrico Ashton (Dalibor Jenis) faces bankruptcy and demands his sister Lucia (Angela Gilbert) marry the rich bachelor and family ally Arturo (Bryan Register). Lucia is in love with Edgardo however and when Enrico finds out he vows revenge. So begins a treacherous plot of deceit and passion in one of opera’s most heartbreaking tragedies. A bel canto opera written to showcase the human voice, Lucia di Lammermoor features one of the most famous scenes in all of theatre history – the Mad Scene – as well as one of the greatest ensembles ever written for opera, the sextet of Act 2. 


Kenneth Morris waits for the cue to join the rehearsal onstage.

Director Andrew Sinclair

Soprano Angela Gilbert

Videotaping a rehearsal

UCSD-TV Cameras Capture Colorful Carmen


Mezzo-Soprano Marina Domashenko

A view from backstage
 

Georges Bizet’s immortal masterpiece Carmen, opens as the third opera of the 2006 International Season on Saturday, March 25, 2006 for five performances. This new production of Carmen, designed by Tony© Award Winner Michael Yeargan, features an all-star cast including the house debut of Siberian born mezzo-soprano Marina Domashenko who has sung this role at The Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Arena di Verona, Berlin and Vienna as well as having been immortalized on film in Franco Zeffirelli’s version of Carmen and in a new complete CD recording opposite Andrea Bocelli for Decca Records. She is joined on stage by returning tenor César Hernández, baritone Malcolm MacKenzie and soprano Barbara Divis. San Diego Opera Resident Conductor Karen Keltner leads the orchestra for these performances and American stage director Mark Lamos makes his house debut to direct.


Setting up the tavern for Act II

Tenor César Hernández
 
Carmen is a tragic story of obsessive love set in the passionate backdrop of Seville, Spain. Tempted away from his girlfriend Micaëla (Barbara Divis) by the gorgeous Carmen (Marina Domashenko), handsome solider Don José (César Hernández) is used and manipulated by Carmen and her friends to assist in a smuggling operation at their mountain hideaway. Carmen has fallen for the bullfighter Escamillo (Malcolm MacKenzie) however and her passion ignites and flames. No longer amused by Don José, Carmen casually dumps him but Don José’s obsession creates an emotional bonfire that threatens to destroy them all.


Interviewing Director Mark Lamos


Dropping the cyc

 
Chorus Master Timothy Todd Simmons and Maestro Karen Keltner
during rehearsal and the UCSD-TV Spotlight interview
 

Carmen is one of the most loved and most performed operas of all time with music that is instantly recognized by young and old alike. It features two of opera’s most endearing arias “L’amour est un oiseau rebelle” (Love is a rebellious bird) and “Toreador en garde!” (Toreador, be careful!).


Organizing large numbers of chorus members and supernumeraries

Moving the set pieces

Join UCSD-TV backstage to watch the creation of Rossini's The Barber of Seville at San Diego Opera

Gioachino Rossini’s comic masterpiece The Barber of Seville opens San Diego Opera’s 2006 International Season on Saturday, January 28, 2006. The Barber of Seville features an all-star cast led by famed British baritone, Christopher Maltman as Figaro and exciting coloratura tenor and Sony recording artist Lawrence Brownlee. Sensuous American mezzo-soprano Kirstin Chávez, Argentine bass-baritone Eduardo Chama and the renowned Italian bass Ferruccio Furlanetto round out the cast. San Diego Opera’s Principal Guest Conductor Edoardo Müller conducts and former San Francisco Opera General Director Lotfi Mansouri directs.

The Barber of Seville follows the exploits of Figaro (Christopher Maltman), “barber by day, matchmaker by night” as he aids Count Almaviva (Lawrence Brownlee) in wooing the beautiful Rosina (Kirstin Chávez), ward of the manipulating Dr. Bartolo (Eduardo Chama) who intends to keep Rosina to himself and marry her. Figaro infiltrates Bartolo’s guarded estate with the Count, disguised first as a drunken sailor and then as a replacement for music teacher Don Basilio (Ferruccio Furlanetto). This riotous romantic comedy will keep audience members in stitches with fast action, pranks and instantly recognizable music.

 
Rehearsal Photographs

Interview with Christopher Maltman and
Kirstin Chávez

Maestro Edoardo Müller

Kirstin Chávez and Christopher Maltman
rehearse a scene

Christopher Maltman and Lawrence Brownlee

Upstage sets

Calling the show

When Things Get Small Makes Comical Sense of “Nano”

LA JOLLA, November 10, 2005–Nano is today’s “buzz” word, popping up in almost any exchange or news report about the future of technology. But what exactly does this word mean? UCSD-TV’s new half-hour program “When Things Get Small,” premiering November 30 at 8PM, addresses these and other questions about the field by taking viewers of […]

LA JOLLA, November 10, 2005–Nano is today’s “buzz” word, popping up in almost any exchange or news report about the future of technology. But what exactly does this word mean? UCSD-TV’s new half-hour program “When Things Get Small,” premiering November 30 at 8PM, addresses these and other questions about the field by taking viewers of all ages on an irreverent, madcap, comically corny romp into the real-life quest to create the smallest magnet ever known. Funded by the National Science Foundation, and produced by UCSD-TV in partnership with Calit2, When Things Get Small was created by Not Too Serious Labs, the creative collaboration of Rich Wargo, science producer for UCSD-TV, and renowned UCSD physicist Ivan Schuller.

The half-hour program addresses several important “nano” concepts with entertaining effects, humor and comic invention, and illustrates answers to such questions as ­ How small is nano? What happens when things get small? And, how do you make things small? With special appearances by UC President Robert Dynes and Padres owner John Moores (disguised as a peanut-seller at Petco Park), the program is a departure from typical science-for-television fare.

Early feedback on the program has been overwhelmingly positive. An invitation-only sneak preview audience screened the program at the October 28 opening celebration of UCSD’s Calit2 building. Guests laughed and learned and the program elicited enthusiastic responses: “Entertaining and interesting,” “I keep wondering what nano is and I found the answer today,” and “It’s ‘Good Eats’ for sciences,” commented another viewer, referring to a popular Food Network program.

“The preview response is very encouraging,” commented Rich Wargo, UCSD-TV science producer. “In developing the program, we found research indicating that people actually learn better when humor is involved. So there is a method, not just madness here, and it seems to be working.” Wargo continued, “But commenting about all that is boring and pretentious – just enjoy the show. As one of our muses once said: ‘That’s All Folks!’”

“This program is a terrific example of the blending of science and entertainment, ” stated Larry Smarr, Director of Calit2, who screened the film at the October 28 sneak preview. “It fits wonderfully with Calit2′s mission of helping the public understand what research organizations like ours are doing and how it might impact their lives.”

For more information about “When Things Get Small,” including additional air dates, behind the scenes photos, or to view the program and the “making of” special on-demand, visit www.ucsd.tv/getsmall.