Guests Gail Perry and CJ Dion help welcome ‘The Munro Review on CMAC’ back into the studio

We’re back in the studio!

Here’s the latest episode of The Munro Review.

For the first time in way too long, “The Munro Review on CMAC” returned to the CMAC studios to shoot an episode. If you recall, I had to get creative in terms of filming the show during the pandemic. I filmed intros and episodes in all sorts of places: outside the Saroyan Theatre, the Forestiere Underground Gardens, North Fork, the 2nd Space Theatre, Fresno Veterans Memorial Auditorium and more. The strangest experience was filming myself with my laptop outside my condo’s swimming pool last summer while smoke-choked haze from the fires filled everything around me.

In this episode, I feature three major stories:

Gail Perry, who won the Best in Show award in the 2021 Arts Alive in Agriculture juried competition, talks about her winning painting. She talks about the powerful draw of art throughout her life, the Armenian work ethic, the role of agriculture in the central San Joaquin Valley, and more. [Story starts at 3:30]


• I filmed a Facebook Live video earlier this summer at a reception celebrating the start of UR Here Theater. This nonprofit arts collaborative is committed to “creating opportunities for under-represented populations to share their stories on stage and beyond.” A reminder: The next UR Here event is a staged reading of John Guerra’s “The Last, Best Small Town” at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug, 14, at the 2nd Space Theatre. [Story starts at 12:20]

• Speaking of theater news, CJ Dion is founder of 63rd Street Productions, which he describes as a new community collective educating in Theatre, Dance, and Technical Stage Arts. He joined us in the studio along with one of his students, Reyna Estes, who also gives a short performance of two monologues. [Story starts at 15:40]

Hope you enjoy.

The Munro Review has no paywall but is financially supported by readers who believe in its non-profit mission of bringing professional arts journalism to the central San Joaquin Valley. You can help by signing up for a monthly recurring paid membership or make a one-time donation of as little as $3. All memberships and donations are tax-deductible.

Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

Comments (1)

  • Jackie Ryle

    Thank you, Donald. I thoroughly enjoyed this show. Love the new set and format, and you look wonderful! Appreciated hearing Gail’s story. I noted several of her pieces were on set and was sorry not to see closeups and a little description. Loved the piece on U R HERE and look forward to being back to see the production. Also excited about C J’s venture. Question: did he come view the set then go out and get that fabulous jacket to wear on the show? And finally, thanks for the taste of Reyna’s wonderful talent! Great all around! And please keep bringing in field pieces!


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