Sunday, May 31, 2009

Stomp Stomps Back to Pittsburgh


STOMP, the international sensation, is making its triumphant return to Pittsburgh’s Benedum Center, September 15 – 20, 2009. The return of the percussive hit also brings some new surprises, with some sections of the show now updated and restructured and the addition of two new full-scale routines, utilizing props like tractor tire inner tubes and paint cans.

“After creating new routines for STOMP OUT LOUD in Vegas, [co-creator] Luke Cresswell and I decided it was time to rework elements of our main production, STOMP,” said co-creator Steve McNicholas. “STOMP has evolved a great deal ever since its first incarnation at the Edinburgh Festival. Every reworking has involved losing some pieces and gaining new ones, but has always stayed true to the original premise of the show: to create rhythmic music with instantly recognizable objects, and do it with an eccentric sense of character and humor.”

The changes that can now be seen in the tour of STOMP are the biggest since the late 1990’s. A new piece “Paint Cans” evolved out of the “Boxes” routine in the Las Vegas show and “Donuts” is a piece that implements huge tractor tire inner tubes, worn around the waist on a bungee cord. For many years, the creators had looked for a STOMP equivalent of the Latin percussion instrument the guiro, a gourd-shaped open-ended instrument with ridges along the side that are rubbed by a wooden stick to create its sound. The climactic trashcan sequence “Bins” has been restructured to include a guiro-like new found instrument: strip-lighting recycling containers.

From its beginnings as a street performance in the UK, STOMP has grown into an international sensation over the past fourteen years, having performed in over 350 cities in 36 countries worldwide. STOMP continues its phenomenal run with the ongoing sell-out Off-Broadway production at New York's Orpheum Theatre, a North American tour, and two productions overseas - a London company and a European tour.

STOMP, an overwhelming success marked by rave reviews, numerous awards and sell-out engagements, is the winner of an Olivier Award for Best Choreography (London's Tony Award), a New YorkObie Award, a Drama Desk Award for Unique Theatre Experience, and a Special Citation from Best Plays. The young performers “make a rhythm out of anything we can get our hands on that makes a sound,” says co-creator/director Luke Cresswell. Stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra; Zippo lighters flip open and closed to create a fiery fugue; wooden poles thump and clack in a rhythmic explosion. STOMP uses everything but conventional percussion instruments – trashcans, tea chests, plastic bags, plungers, boots, and hubcaps – to fill the stage with compelling and infectious rhythms.

Critics and audiences have raved: “STOMP is as crisp and exuberant as if it had opened yesterday,” says The New York Times. The San Francisco Chronicle declares “STOMP has a beat that just won’t quit!” The Los Angeles Times exclaims: “Electrifying! Triumphs in the infinite variety of the human experience.” “A phenomenal show! Bashing, crashing, smashing, swishing, banging and kicking – a joyous invention!” says the Chicago Tribune.

STOMP is directed and created by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas.

The smash hit returns to Pittsburgh’s Benedum Center from September 15 to 20, 2009. Performance schedule is Tuesday – Thursday at 7:30PM, Friday at 8:00PM, Saturday at 5:00PM and 9:00PM, and Sunday at 3:00PM and 7:00PM. Tickets range from $21.00 - $49.00, and are available by calling 412-456-6666, visiting the Box Office at Theater Square [665 Penn Avenue] or online at

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Senate Bill 850 Cuts Key Services for Women and Children in the 2009/2010 PA State Budget

The Pennsylvania Commission for Women thought it important to let women across this state know that the PA Senate has passed a Bill that would substantially reduce funding for critical programs that serve women and children. Yes, this is the same Bill that proposes to eliminate the PA Commission for Women. In devaluing the needs of women and children, the Senate is debilitating families and the communities in which they live.

It is time to protest on behalf of women and families in this commonwealth. Call your legislators and make your voice heard.

Senate Bill 850 will dramatically cut the following services:

PA Commission for Women, cut 100%
Medical Assistance- Obstetric and Neonatal Services, cut 100%
Community based family Centers
Childcare Services
Childcare Assistance
Teen Pregnancy and Parenthood education
Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening
Maternal and Child Health
Accessible Housing
Public Library subsidy

We ask that you call, write or email your Senator and your State Representative. In particular, please also call, Senators Dominic Pileggi, Jake Corman and Joseph Scarnati, sponsors of the Bill, and demand that they reinstate funding for these critical, much-needed services, and reinstate the PA Commission for Women budget for 2009/2010.

It is important to note that there is a companion Bill in the House of Representatives (House Bill 1416) which would restore funding for these essential services. We strongly urge you to contact your legislators immediately to support HB1416.

Who’s my Senator or State Representative? Identify your Legislators and find their contact information here.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Brownsville, Pa Man is Prolific Author and Photojournalist

Uniontwon, Pa. August, 2009

WHO: Richard G Wells, former Brownsville resident-Brownsville High School graduate 1949
WHAT: Author of several books- Richard will be doing a book signing of his newest release of OVER THE SIDE
WHEN: August 8, 2009 at 11AM until 1PM
WHERE: Flatiron building 69 Market Street in the Heritage Center
WHY: To meet the author of the newly revised version of OVER THE SIDE. . .a person able to overcome an obstacle in life and accomplish a dream. Personally signed Books will be available to purchase.
BIO: Richard is an example of overcoming obstacles to fulfill a dream. From a shy young man with a speech problem of stuttering, Richard now is a public speaker, accomplished author and has achieved many awards and instructor of photography for 15 years.
Richard’s love of photography started in the Brownsville schools when his seventh grade science teacher, Mrs. Williams, taught the class how to make a photographic print. This interest led to his neighbor Joseph Caglia building a photo lab for him in the basement of Richard’s home on Grays Lane.
During the Korean War, Richard enlisted in the US Navy and attended photo school at Pensacola Florida. Later he was transferred to the aircraft carrier USS YORKTOWN CVA-10, (1953-54) Richard began his photography experience with many of these photos as subjects in the books
After the Navy stint, he enlisted in the U.S. Marines and continued photography. It was during this time that Richard was able to overcome his speech problem.
He retired in 1987 as a Reliability Engineer from General Motors in Michigan. This part of Richard’s interesting life is contained in the book: OVER THE SIDE
The unusual photography and related stories from airplane crashes, narrow escapes and a excellent love story (written in good taste.) A lot of humor where appropriate (Obvious and subdued.) and a lot of tragedy not shown before are available in his new release.
Over 3,000 books have been sold in the last eight years. The newer version that just came out in December 2008 has been selling very well in many places such as the USS INTREPID in NY.NY, the USS YORKTOWN in Charleston, SC, NAS Jacksonville, FL, Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola FL, AIRZOO and YANKEE AIR FORCE in Michigan. Currently, He is currently negotiating with the Aviation Museum at Ford Island in Pearl Harbor, HI.
It is a "good read" for anyone but especially sea faring people, flyers, photographers and people with speech problems. The book is written in the vernacular of young people and with printing conducive to mature eyesight. It is printed on high gloss paper to enhance the photography that was recorded with 4X5 Speed Graphics and other high quality cameras.

Photo Journalist's pictures may be viewed at:

Richard G. Wells PHC (Hon),
Combat Aircrewman USN
Charter Life Member of the National Assn of Navy Photographers
Life Member Marine Corps League
Life Member VFW and DAV
Society of Photographic Consultants
Assn. of Navy Chief Photographers
FMI contact Richard phone: 810 686 6432

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Pa Governors Conference for Women

The 2009 Pennsylvania Governor’s Conference is less than four months away, and we hope you'll join keynotes Suze Orman and Tory Johnson, dozens of expert speakers, and thousands of professional Pennsylvania women for this amazing event on September 17 in Philadelphia.
Register by May 27 to receive a discounted fee of $115 per person/$1150 per table. This includes the networking breakfast, all keynote speeches, all breakout sessions, keynote luncheon, and our new ReWork Career Fair. The fee increases to $125 on May 28 and $135 on August 18. You can find more information or register at

Early registration discounts available through May 27

Register NOW for the best price
Questions? Email

When and Where
September 17, 2009
Pennsylvania Convention Center
Philadelphia, PA
7:30 am to 5:30 pm
Schedule subject to change at anytime

Keynote Speakers
Suze Orman
Deemed a "one-woman financial advice powerhouse" by USA Today, Suze Orman will share her insights on the challenging economic climate and provide tips on how best to weather the storm. [read more]

Tory Johnson
Career-savvy expert Tory Johnson is the founder and CEO of Women For Hire, which is the only producer of high caliber recruiting events for women. She is the Workplace Contributor on ABC’s Good Morning America, where she reaches millions of viewers on a wide range of job-related issues and challenges. [read more]

Get Involved!
For information about becoming a Pennsylvania Governor’s Conference for Women sponsor, click here.

Supporting Organizations
To learn how your professional or community group can become a supporting organization of the Conference, click here.

For more information on exhibiting at the Conference, click here.

For information on volunteer opportunities at the Conference, please see our online volunteer form.

Hosted by the Governor Edward G. Rendell and the Pennsylvania Commission on the Status of Women, this groundbreaking event offers an incredible opportunity for connection, education, and inspiration! Please help us spread the word.

There’s never been a better time to focus your goals, explore new opportunities, and network and connect with women who can help you rethink, resolve, and renew!

The Pennsylvania Governor's Conference for Women
P.O. BOX 37635 #22975
phone: 866-251-3537 • fax: 866-747-2857

Monday, May 4, 2009

Pittsburgh Mom's Business Vote in Top 200 Leading Moms in Business

For Immediate Release

Contact: Judy Masucci

A Mother's Boutique Voted One Of Top 200 Leading Moms In Business In StartupNation Competition

PITTSBURGH – MAY 4, 2009 – A Mother's Boutique announced today that it has been recognized as one of the top 200 mom-owned businesses in StartupNation's 2009 Leading Moms In Business Competition ( The competition, sponsored by VerticalResponse, recognizes the achievements of mothers across the country who run outstanding businesses.

A Mother's Boutique is an on-line store that specializes in maternity and breastfeeding attire, nursing bras and nursing accessories. Selling to new and expectant mothers all over the world, A Mother's Boutique helps moms get what they need quickly and easily—exactly as boutique owner Judy Masucci planned it. Four years ago, Masucci herself became a new mom, and found it surprisingly difficult to locate maternity and nursing items that were suitable and stylish. Her business was started to help other moms avoid the same frustration; a solid formula that has kept her profitable in business for two years and counting.

"Moms across America were honored in this year's ranking, showing that they're capable of starting and running successful businesses while managing to balance family, career, home and self," said Rich Sloan, co-founder of StartupNation."Well over 600,000 votes were cast in support of several thousand contestants. What an incredible achievement to be named a winner, and what an inspiration for anyone looking to start their own business."

"It's challenging for anyone to start and run a successful business – particularly in this economy. These women are setting the standard for innovation and creativity," said Janine Popick, founder and CEO of VerticalResponse.

StartupNation ( launched the first annual Leading Moms in Business Competition in January with the support of VerticalResponse ( to recognize the achievements of mom entrepreneurs across the US. Winners were selected and ranked according to public votes accumulated from January through March, 2009. The elite 200 win bragging rights, promotional support, and digital winner's emblems recognizing their achievements as the Leading Moms in Business.

About A Mother's Boutique
Based out of Pittsburgh, A Mother's Boutique provides expectant and nursing mothers with a unique, personalized approach. We carry everything you need to prepare for pregnancy and nursing: clothing for maternity and breastfeeding, nursing bras, breast pumps, slings, accessories and more. Visit our online store to find out why our selection and service are exactly what a busy mom deserves!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

A Mother's Boutique And Annee Matthew Expand Relationship


April 29, 2009

Contact: Judy P. Masucci, Ph.D.
A Mother's Boutique

A Mother's Boutique And Annee Matthew Expand Relationship

PITTSBURGH—Tightenin g the belt may be a trend for many businesses today, but for A Mother's Boutique owner, Judy Masucci, success has come in the exact opposite shape. Expanding middles are more her style—especially when that means outfitting expectant mothers.

Launched online two years ago, A Mother's Boutique "provides suitable and stylish clothing for expectant and nursing mothers," Masucci notes. Within six months, her boutique was already turning a profit and in April of 2008 she signed an exclusive distribution deal for the U.S. with Annee Matthew Maternity & Nursingwear of Singapore.

That distribution deal has just been renewed for 2009-2010, and has even been expanded to include Canada on a non-exclusive basis. Over 24 wholesale clients now sell this line across the U.S. and Canada and more are on the way.

Wholesale client BabiesNBellies. com explains just why this line is so popular with expectant and new moms, "The quality of the garments is excellent as well as the sizing. I have been doing really well with the entire line and am excited to see what new things continue to come in! The nursing items that double as maternity items offer a longer range of wearability that really draws in the customer. It is such an excellent selling point."

Adds Annee Matthew, "A Mother's Boutique has successfully managed our line and obtained great market penetration. We are pleased to announce an expansion of our distribution relationship. While other companies in this industry have been scaling back, Judy—through A Mother's Boutique and her distribution site www.anneematthew. net—keeps on thriving. It's been great to grow with her across the U.S. and I look forward to continued success as she expands into Canada."

About A Mother's Boutique
Based out of Pittsburgh, A Mother's Boutique provides expectant and nursing mothers with a unique, personalized approach. We carry everything you need to prepare for pregnancy and nursing: clothing for maternity and breastfeeding, nursing bras, breast pumps, slings, accessories and more. Visit our online store to find out why our selection and service are exactly what a busy mom deserves!

Techno Granny HOnored as Small Business Administrations's National Journalist of the Year

News Release
PITTSBURGH DISTRICT OFFICE U.S. Small Business Administration

Release Date: April 13, 2009 Contact: Janet Heyl (412) 395-6560, ext. 103
Release Number: 09-05/PGH

Pittsburgh “techno granny” honored as the Small Business Administration’s National Journalist of the Year

PITTSBURGH -- Her byline has never appeared in a newspaper and she’s never hosted a radio show or worked at a television station, yet Joanne Quinn Smith recently was lauded as the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 2009 Journalist of the Year.

Smith twits, blogs and hosts podcasts – embracing the new medium – to promote Pittsburgh, technology, marketing and professional networking.

Our champion began her quest by winning at the district office level when she was chosen as the Pittsburgh District’s Journalist of the Year. Then, like the other 68 district winners, her nomination was forwarded to her respective regional office, in this case Region 3, which comprises 7 districts; Delaware, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and West Virginia . After becoming the regional winner, one of ten throughout the country, Quinn Smith’s package was sent to Washington, D.C. for the national competition and she was selected as the national Journalist of the Year.

Carl Knoblock, Pittsburgh SBA district director, stated that Quinn Smith’s innovation sets her apart from traditional print and broadcast journalists. “She’s not only using social networking but also strives to show persons how to use these new technologies,” he said.

Quinn Smith and nine other local small business owners and advocates will be honored at the Pittsburgh District’s May 21st awards luncheon which will be held at the Omni William Penn Hotel, downtown Pittsburgh.

Volunteerism led 59-year-old Quinn Smith into computer-based journalism. As a member of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) Pittsburgh Chapter, Quinn Smith, a marketer and former owner of a limousine company, was delegated to promote the organization – via the web. “I hosted my first Positively Pittsburgh Live podcast in 2007 and all of the NAWBO women jumped in to listen and offer support.

According to Quinn Smith, Positively Pittsburgh Live treats listeners to stories not found in Pittsburgh’s mainstream media. Each Monday, she interviews three or four guests to tout the town.



“Its news that slips through the cracks and its all positive items about Pittsburgh,” she added. “We’ve got a roving Pittsburgher segment which is a report of what happened that was fun and Steel Town Heroes that showcases volunteers. It’s a site for and by Pittsburghers”

In two years, Quinn Smith said her show has grown to an audience of 50,000 listeners and has spawned two spinoffs – the “Techno Granny Show” and “Monday Morning Marketeer”.
“Techno Granny updates people about 21st century technology,” she explained. “And Monday Morning Marketeer provides listeners with 15 minutes of guerrilla marketing tips – all for under $100.”

“It’s great to do something positive about Pittsburgh and receive national recognition for it”, she said.

Before her podcasts go to video in July, Quinn Smith will head to Washington, D.C. for the 46th annual celebration of National Small Business Week to attend a series of galas and events as the National Journalist of the Year.

Small Business Week will feature a series of forums on Energy (Going Green), Business Financing and Social Media, designed to help entrepreneurs with current, real-world issues that impact their business. In addition, there will be a town hall forum to discuss small business concerns. Small businesses nationwide will be able to view the forums and town hall via live webcast online. Also, the Small Business Week Cyber Café, sponsored by Trend Micro, will provide free Wi-Fi to all attendees.

Additional information on National Small Business Week, including a detailed schedule and registration information, is online at

Note: For more information on the SBA’s loan programs, please contact the SBA Western Pennsylvania District Office at 412-395-6560.

The U.S. Small Business Administration – helping small businesses start, grow and succeed.