Friday, August 31, 2007

Art Contest Winners!

So.....thanks to EVERYONE who entered my "Senator Craig's Crazy Antics" art contest. Since the scandal broke, and I announced the contest, I have been FLOODED with entries! But there had to be a winner....and the winning submission came from: Brandon Dixon in Sacramento, California! Brandon will win a bag of Idaho potatoes, tickets for 2 to the BSU Homecoming game, Grand Marshall responsibilities at the Shelly Spud Days parade, and the chance to take Senator Craig's senate seat after the Senator resigns, but before the state of Idaho elects a new Senator in 2008.
Thanks, again, to EVERYONE who entered!

OK honestly....there wasn't an art don't feel like you missed something. I just thought it was funny how QUICKLY Senator-Craig-themed emails started flying around the world wide web. And what was even MORE funny to me was how I am evidently the ONLY person from Idaho that many of you know. As the stories unfolded, I got emails, phone calls, text messages, instant messages...hell, I'm pretty sure SOMEONE put up a billboard that said "MATT....YOU'RE THE ONLY PERSON I KNOW FROM IDAHO, SO YOU'RE GETTING THIS MESSAGE: YOUR SENATOR IS A CLASS ACT!" In a strange way, I feel honored to be your lone link to Idaho. It's a great state and a nice place to call home. It just currently happens to be in the search for a new not-so-frisky-or-sketchy Senator.

I guess if there is "POSITIVE" side to this, he DID attempt these things in a public restroom when he wasn't working and on the people's dollar... and not in his office given to him by the people....on the people's dollar...with an intern....

I'm just saying....

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Bronco Fans Of All Ages

One of our readers in Newnan, GA wanted to make sure they got THEIR little Bronco Fan ready for the big game!

Charlie "Tripp" Gonzalez couldn't be happier the season is kicking off TONIGHT!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Thank Goodness It's Friday!

Friday Night Lights, that is, SUCKERS! Season 1 on DVD is now MINE! And only $19.99 at Target. PLUS....if I don't like it? (Which will NEVER happen since I saw every episode when they aired originally.) The first ever 'Money Back Guarantee' on a TV Series DVD set. You think I'm lying? Not so. Check it out HERE! I mean just can't go wrong. And I DIDN'T go wrong...I went oh-so-right when I made THIS impulse buy.

And is it a COINCIDENCE that I came across this gem-of-a-show the NIGHT before the 2007-2008 NCAA College Football season kicks off? And my Boise State Broncos play their first game on Thursday night? Well....maybe. But it's a fortuitous coincidence! It's time to kick the college football season into high gear! So plan your tailgate parties, get out your team sweatshirts and poms and stadium chairs, and get ready to welcome in clear blue skies, and crisp autumn Saturday afternoons. The fight songs are playing....the whistles are blowing...and the smell of stadium hot dogs is drifting through the air. It's time for the kick-off...who will YOU be cheering for? Let me know!


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

F#$@ this SH&T!

I have a confession to make. I went to a movie today. Alone. was 'The Nanny Diaries.' And I'm ok with it. I mean I'm ok with going to the movies alone. When I lived in Korea teaching English (1995-1997), I went to a lot of movies alone...and I became very comfortable with it. The movie itself, I'm kind of indifferent to. If you loved the book, don't waste your time with the movie. It's not's just not as good as the any stretch of the imagination. Laura Linney is pretty dang amazing as Mrs. X. Big I digress....

So today. I went to an afternoon movie to see 'The Nanny Diary' at Mazza Gallery, and it started out to be a pretty normal, if not quiet, movie experience. There ended up being about 30 or so people in the large theater, and I was sitting in the front row of the stadium-seating-area, as I like to do, so I could put my feet up on the bars. About 2 minutes before the previews started, I noticed a young man (guessing 19-23 years old) walk in to the theater and sit down in the front row also, at the very end. He had on a sideways hat, a white t-shirt and had another shirt slung over his shoulder, and it appeared to me that he was maybe an employee of the theater, on a break or coming in early to catch up on his movies. Thinking nothing more of it, I turned as the previews began, and I made mental notes to see The Kite Runner, Martian Child and (sadly), perhaps even Amanda Bynes new movie, Sydney White. But again, I digress....

'The Nanny Diaries' is about 1 hour and 55 minutes...and for the first 1 hour and 45 minutes, the movie unfolded pretty much like you think it would...everyone in the theater seemed to be laughing at the right places and ooh-ing and aaaah-ing at the right places. And then, just as the movie started to finish, and Annie the Nanny started to FINALLY find resolution to her life and situation, the young man at the end of my row stood up, said very loudly and angrily "Man....F#$@ this SH%T!" and walked out of the theater.

UMMMM.....ok...seriously? Did you SIT through the first hour and forty-five minutes thinking she was going to open fire on someone or there was going to be a high-speed car chase or Mrs. X's apartment was going to blow up or something? WHY wait until the last 10 minutes to curse out the movie in frustration and storm out? Even without SEEING the movie, you can pretty much surmise from the title and the movie poster that it's going to maybe focus on a 20-something girl , maybe in a large city, who ends up being a child-care-giver to maybe a bratty child and she maybe, just maybe, decides to write her experiences in her journal. Maybe.

I mean DO your research, buddy. Love or hate the movie, there is NO need to curse out the screen solely based on a lack of preparation on your behalf. Especially 9/10 of the way THROUGH the movie. Plus, I'm PRETTY sure you left before we all found out that Mrs. X's real name is Alexandra. Come to think of it.....maybe THAT'S why you stormed out in the first place: you didn't think they were going to to tell us. Well F#$@ that SH%T, sir...they DID tell us! So the jokes on you!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Answers MUST Be In English, Please

So...these next 48 seconds will both delight and confound you...both her answer AND the fact that she SOMEHOW still got 3rd runner up (or 4th place). Which means 47 other contestants finished AFTER her. But don't wait any longer....just push play to roll footage, U.S. Americans.

I know this video made its rounds Monday....but I'm including it here because even if you DID see it, it's still worth a good laugh again now.'s a good resource to come back to, maybe after you've done something or said something ridiculous, and watch and say, "Well...atleast I didn't do that." Indeed you didn't.

And a HUGE thanks to Christine Shainin for bringing this to my attention. You = rockstar.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Picture THIS!

So the CD of our family pictures came in the mail on Saturday. When everyone was home in Boise in early July, we went to an amusement park in Utah for the day and a photographer met us there and took a series of family pictures for us...before everyone headed off to ride the rides!

Having a brother who has done a homestay/cultural exchange program with Korean students in American/Idaho homes for the past 10 years or so, we are all used to having a few extra kids around when we have family gatherings. Many of these kids come pretty young (9,10,11-ish), and have varying skill levels in English comprehension and conversation. But they are nice kids, good sports and quick learners....and always seem to adapt well to the Anderson mob-madness. This summer, there is a little guy, who chose the American name TONY, living with my brother Jeremy. Tony seemed, upon first meeting, to be a little slower, socially and generally, than some of the other kids they have had. I'm pretty convinced that you could tell Tony to jump off a cliff, and he would either set out to FIND the nearest plateau, OR just look at you and say, "Huh?"

So on picture day, Tony patiently stood off to the side, watching everyone and seeming a little bit lost. As the photographer started taking individual family pictures, and sets of kids, it got to my sisters family and her 4 kids. As her kids were standing up to get their picture taken, Jeremy jokingly said to Tony, "Tony....your turn. Hop in the picture." Well, Tony didn't even hesitate. Looking determined, if not a bit confused as to why he would be in a picture with my sisters kids, he quickly moved to the picture sisters kids quickly became a little confused...and the photographer, in his speed and wisdom, caught the whole magical split-second on film.

Now, I have NO IDEA if the story or the picture will delight any of you - or even make sense - but I have laughed so hard at it over the past 24 hours that I figured I would put it on here on the off-chance that it brings one of you as much joy as it has brought me. Because on a Monday morning, who couldn't use a little unsolicited joy?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Family Bonding

So, while I was home in Boise, there were a lot of things that we did as a family. We went to an amusement park, we had family pictures, we went to Temple Square and heard the Mormon Tabernacle Choir sing, we had lots of meals together, we watched movies was endless amounts of fun and memory-making. But there was ONE thing, above all others, that we did together that probably brought us all together closer than any thing else. And that was watching these 2 YouTube clips together...a couple of nights, over and over and over again. Nothing says 'We Are Family' like gathering EVERYONE around a living room coffee table, from 5 year olds to 65+ year olds, and laughing, sometimes uncontrollably, at the Japanese.

So gather your loved ones around you TODAY...and enjoy a little family-bonding secret...from our family to yours.




***both videos start out with the same animated explanation of the game...but the body of both videos are different. And don't worry about the language barrier...38.7 seconds into it, you should be caught up to what the object of the game is just from watching. Like I've always said, 'You want a game show designed RIGHT, leave it to the Japanese.' Enjoy....

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Price Of Fame: 40 cents

So tonight, I had plans to meet 2 of my old co-workers (from my days at the Washington Speakers Bureau), Shanna and Christine, downtown for dinner. (Shanna's husband, Collin, was also invited...but he never actually GOT the invitation...which is a whole different story completely!) We had plans to meet at 6pm at a new-er restaurant in Chinatown called Matchbox. It was GREAT to see them both, the food was absolutely delicious and reasonable, and we had fun laughing and catching up. On our way out, I took a few pics of the building and the area and the girls. Not a lot else going......

Christine and Shanna are all smiles as we leave Matchbox.

Outside the building, Shanna sees fire....

...and then plays with fire.

The girls....just walking down the taking candids.....

Well, not a lot else going on UNTIL I decide to take a picture of Christine on the corner of 7th Street and H Street - with the Chinatown gate in the background. As I'm taking the picture, I notice a very homeless-looking-man coming towards us, and at first, all I hear is that he is yelling. I'm not quite paying attention to WHAT he is yelling...but as Christine put it, "he sounded like Fat Albert....without the whole HEY! HEY! HEY!" So as we quickly snap the picture, we notice the guy is coming towards us pointing at me....saying he saw me on TV last night! And he didn't just leave it at that.....very loudly, he was pointing out that he saw me on that 'talent show' that was on TV last night. And he kept saying this...pointing....over and over again. I'm baffled....and a bit embarassed that we've become the target of this guy, and quite frankly, a little bit scared for the girls....and myself. HAHAHA.

ABOUT the time things got crazy. Our friend is JUST out of the left side of the picture....

I look at Christine....who is still registering what is going on at this point...and then I turn to Shanna, to see her response...and as I do, I realize that Shanna is not backing away, not turning to walk, BUT STARTING TO AGREE WITH THE DERANGED HOMELESS MAN! And she's starting to say, "YES! America's Got Talent! Cas Haley! You DO look like Cas Haley!" So at THIS POINT - I'm now even more confused...because I have Christine laughing hysterically on my right, and now Shanna AND Homeless Joe pointing out that I seemingly have SOME connection to Cas, who evidently was on America's Got Talent last night.

Not wanting the scene to get out of hand, I ASSURE Homeless Joe that I was NOT on TV last night, and that according to my friend (and his new co-conspirator), Shanna, I just LOOK like someone that was on the show. And as we started to walk around him, Homeless Joe kept saying, "MAN! I could've sworn it was you who was on that show last night."

As we pass him, the girls walk up ahead of me, laughing hysterically, and then HJ gets a little closer to me and says, "Hey look man. It's cool. But I really need 40 cents to get my double cheese." Having COMPLETELY slipped into a realm of some bizarro-world somewhere, I sadly report to him that I don't have any money, BUT, as a consolation, I hand him over the to-go box I had with 2 left-over pieces of pizza, and say, "...but you can have this pizza. Trust me, it was really good." HJ takes the box, tucks it under his arm, and then says, "the pizza is fine man. But I really need 40 cents to get that double cheese." I politely and quickly say I'm sorry I can't help him, and start to shuffle off up the street, towards Christine's car...and our path to freedom.

By this point, HJ has decided that if he just TALKS some more, I might stop, so as he starts to follow us UP the block, he starts yelling "Are you SURE you weren't that guy who was on TV last night? I could've SWORN you were him! I could've SWORN you were that guy on that talent show! LAST NIGHT! I swear you were on TV!" And, as we head towards the car, people passing us staring, I calmy assure them all that I was NOT on TV last night...and that the homeless man behind us, following us up the block (with a blanket slung over his shoudler) was just a little crazy. All the while, Christine and Shanna are beside me AND beside themselves with laughter.

The girls laughing, while being pursued...up the block...

HJ gives up his pursuit....soon after he started it, actually...and we make it to Christine's car. As we all hop in, pull out and drive down the block, we notice HJ sitting against the building on the corner, THOROUGHLY enjoying our 2 slices of pepperoni pizza. (Or 'Pepp', as Shanna called it.) I give him a big wave, and say, "Enjoy the pizza." And as we drive off, I hear the strains of HJ's voice, crying out, "ARE YOU SURE YOU WEREN'T ON TV LAST NIGHT!? I SWEAR IT WAS YOU!"

The pictures a little dark...but there he is...Homeless Joe. In all his glory...and with all our pizza.

It took us to the next corner for the laughter to die down, and Shanna suddenly asked the most probable question at this point: HOW did a homeless man have a TV to watch the finale of America's Got Talent? Inquiring minds want to know.

Footnote: Following the experience, on the drive home, Shanna did a Google-search on her Blackberry and found a picture of Cas Haley. And although I would NEVER mistake him for my twin, I guess I can see how Homeless Joe, at 7th and H, thought it might have been me. I mean, it was getting dark, and he just did a quick glance at me. Shanna DID assure me that I am not anywhere near as large as Cas appears in this picture....but the camera does add a few maybe HJ took that into consideration when he decided to make my evening so exciting by yelling out to me, and to everyone else, in Chinatown. Or maybe I was just the closest person around who looked like he might have 40 cents. I mean, whatever else happens, a guy NEEDS his double cheese. It's just that simple.....

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Headshots want to be an actor, huh? Well, one of the things you're going to need to have to really get started is a headshot to take in to auditions...that shows your face/head (naturally). It's really your calling card and your first chance to make an impression on directors, producers, casting agents, etc. And, as SOMEONE learned this past year, sometimes, it's the ONLY factor that some casting directors will use when deciding who to invite into the building to audition. (ME. Avenue Q auditions. Los Angeles. WOW. What a story. Ask me about it sometime.....)

So for the past 5 or so years, I've been using the same headshot when I have gone in. And let me say now that it's not a bad's just not RIGHT for, if I'm being completely honest, it's an awful lot of FOREHEAD. Here. Look for yourself.

Why hello there, Matt. You serious, dramatic, dark, sulty, large-forehead of a man.

Well, I'm happy to report that those days are LONG GONE! When I was home in Boise, I was talking to my old high school pal, Tyler Cazier, and we were talking about headshots and how pricey they are in NYC...and he, being an award-winning photographer who specializes in senior pictures, family and wedding pictures, said I could come to his studio, we could try a few things, and if I wasn't happy, I didn't have to buy anything. Couldn't beat that offer. So I showed him some of the work of some headshot artists in NYC, and he said he would do what he could.

Now here I am, to share the shots with YOU....because not only did he deliver...but I am THRILLED with them....and for me to add THRILLED to a sentence about pictures of myself is unheard of. I'm NEVER happy with pictures of me....I always end up pulling a strange face...or looking like the escaped balloon from the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. It's never a good thing. And yet....Tyler worked it me to relax and produced some pretty knock-out pictures, IF I do say so myself! (I mean...'knock out' in context of previous shots.....of me...hahahahaha!)

A few different shots...color & b/w selections.

Different shades and contrasts of what I like to think of my 'Artsy Shot'.

A couple of smile variations.

So there they are....and like I said, I'm thrilled. If you're in the Boise area, and need pictures for ANY reason, get a hold of Tyler at CPX - his photography business. His awesome mom, Mary, is the receptionist, so when you call, tell her Matt sent you! And if you're an actor on the East coast, and you might like to get some starter-headshots, great quality at a BEYOND reasonable price, let me know! Maybe we can get a handful of folks together and get Tyler to come out to DC for a few days for some shots. It's worth looking into.
And a HUGE thanks to Tyler! Seriously though Tyler....what are the chances that we'd both run in to "HIM" - both at church - on opposite coasts - all these years later? LIFE, my friend, is funny. And not HA-HA funny. More INTERESTING funny. Like sleeping-on-a-church-lawn funny. HA!

Monday, August 20, 2007

And now, for something completely different...

So, when I was home in Boise this past month, I had the chance to talk to my good friend, Josh Campbell, who is working at Tokyo Disneyland right now! You can read more about his adventures in Nippon by simply clicking HERE! But I digress. Whenever Josh and I talk, we share with each other the most funniest YouTube clip we have recently come across. Well, I wasn't prepared for what Josh brought to me the day we talked...and it has taken me a couple of weeks to REALLY process the genius of the performance you are about to see.

Now before you push play, I just want to lay out a few things to watch for:
1. Don't let the SUPERMAN guy throw you off...he's just a bit player iwho keeps appearing in a much larger adventure, staring Miss Tandi Dupree as WONDER WOMAN, I guess.
2. WHAT. AN. ENTRANCE! I think I may just write this in to all my future contracts as how I want to come into every show. (Minus the splits......)
3. Tandi pulls out some SLICK moves...but see if you can spot my 3 favorite. (I'll give you some hints.....1 is off the shoulders of Superman, 1 is on the runway after she gets the audience to clap, and 1 is near the end and all I'm going to say is that one of these superheroes ends up flying through the air.)
4. And finally, after all that action we get a DRAMATIC ending? Tandi DELIVERED THE MAGIC, people! And I think, you will agree, that you are all just a LITTLE better because of it.

Now everyone pick your jaws up off the floor, wipe your eyes if you need to and say THANKS to Josh....and be sure and let me know YOUR favorite part of the number.

And thanks, Tandi....where ever you are!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

On Sale Now!

Hey Folks...

It appears that single tickets for Theater J's season are on sale NOW! To get a closer look at the season and show information, click HERE. On this page, you can also find subscription information for the entire season, PLUS information about GROUP DISCOUNTS! Just click on the link that says something like 'Plan Your Group Trip'. (I think if you have 10 or more people and you book before October 18th, you get 1 free ticket added to your group. But don't quote me on that.)

If you want to check out dates and times for both of my shows, you can click on the show titles below and be taken directly to each of their ticketing pages. Of course both shows are a ways out - 'David' especially - but I just wanted to make sure you had the info. (Also note that because Theater J is the Professional Jewish Theater in DC, there are no Friday night or Saturday matinee shows, in observance of the Sabbath.)

***as always, no one is EXPECTED to attend. As I always say, there will always be another show. But if you end up getting tickets, please let me know so I can say HI before or after the show! See you at the stage door!

Friday, August 17, 2007


Of course, as a supporter of the arts AND reality television AND pop culture, I couldn't get too far into this blog before I sent out my heartiest congratulations to the rightful winner of So You Think You Can Dance Season 3! SABRA JOHNSON rocked the house! And her mom lives in I'm even MORE happy to throw out my support to her. But seriously....for anyone looking for inspiration...this girl started dancing 4 years ago! And she's got mad skills. Glad she won...but SO sad the shows over. I all I can do is sit around and wait until Project Runway starts.....

And now....for some of my favorite Sabra-moments this season....

Sabra & Pasha and "The Wild Party"

Sabra & Pasha dance The Quickstep

Sabra & Neil and the Paso Doble

Sabra & Neil dance to "Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)" - and it ROCKS!

Sabra & Dominic dance The Jive

Sabra & Kameron dance a Contemporary piece - "Amazing Grace"

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Welcome to the MAnderson Report!

Family, Friends and Various Visitors....

The time has come to OFFICIALLY put my previous blog to rest. My amazing 2 years with the Willy Wonka Experience ended in May of 2007, and I am on to bigger and better things. Namely, at the time of writing, UNEMPLOYMENT. But that doesn't mean I'm sitting around, watching soap operas and eating bon-bons. I've been on the RUN this summer....visiting family and friends in NYC, Atlanta, Buena Vista and Boise! And along with all that visiting, I've been auditioning for shows anywhere I can find them. AND eating bon-bons.

I'm happy to report that earlier this summer, I did end up securing 2 jobs/shows for the upcoming 2007-2008 season - right here in Washington DC! The shows are BOTH musicals - both with Theater J...and both prove to be exciting, but very different and challenging, experiences. The shows and dates are as follows:

-SHLEMIEL THE FIRST: December 18, 2007 - January 17, 2008

Inspired by Nobel Prize winner I.B. Singer’s whimsical tales of Chelm, the Village of Fools, this theatrical “jolt of Joy” features rollicking klezmer music, slapstick comedy, and a grand tale of mistaken identity. This musical, the hit of last season’s Robert Brustein Residency, will be fun for the whole family over the holidays!

“Rollicking...propulsively tuneful music...and dazzling lyrics” - The New York Times

-DAVID IN SHADOW AND LIGHT: May 6 - June 22, 2008

An epic musical retelling of King David’s astonishing trajectory from boy shepherd, to superstar ruler, to aging king as he wrestles with the lowest and the purest of human impulses. This visually stunning production incorporates thrilling dance sequences and a post-modern frame through which the triumphs and travails of the Bible’s most charismatic character are brought into vivid relief.

For those of you who would like to read more on the Theater J season, please see THIS article that was on earlier this summer. (You can also have a silent little celebration, like I did, when you see my name appear around paragraph 6. It's my FIRST apperance on Playbill AND I'm in the company of what appears to be the Who's Who of DC Professional Theater. I'm pretty humbled and excited!)


So what to expect from The MAnderson Report? I hope that it is a little slice of my life, as I pound the proverbial pavement in pursuit of 'Living The Dream' - known from here on out as simply 'LTD'. I will keep you posted on auditions, castings (hopefully), and the various antics of my life as I'm back in DC and beyond! I'm planning on carrying over a couple of features from the GoGloop days....because The Case Of The Unfortunates (The COTU's) deserves to live on beyond tour. And you can BET if I taste a cheesecake that deserves reporting on, you're going to hear about it! You can also expect to get an endless slew of pictures and stories thrown at you - as I start to figure out what my life is going to be like now that I'm back!

Feel free to comment - ask questions - send suggestions - anything you want! I hope this finds you all safe and well....and in some way or another, LTD....whatever it may be for YOU!

Ciao for now, friends!