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    Critic's Picks

    - ACME Schmacme, presented by and at the ACME Comedy Theatre, 135 N. La Brea Ave., Hollywood. Through July 25. (213)

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    VOTER - Don Nelson's Busy Year

    Between Sept. 1, 1996 and Aug. 31, 1997, 250 theatre productions in Los Angeles County registered for Ovation consideration. Ovation voter Don Nelson saw 202 of them. Roughly calculating, that means Nelson saw an average of four shows a week--sometimes all on the weekend, in various matinees and occasional morning ...

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    A.R.T./NY Offers Grants for Small Theatres

    The Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./NY) has received a first-year gift of $40,000 to create a new fund for general operating grants to small

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    GOD'S GIFT: Acting is in F. Murray Abraham's bones, but he still takes it with a grain of salt.

    If any actor belies the myth of the overnight success, it must be F. Murray Abraham, who received a Best Actor Oscar for his searing performance as Salieri in 1984's Amadeus but soon returned to the grind of being a busy character actor onstage and in films and

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    - DANCE DIARY Pilar Rioja: Enthralling Spanish Dance

    Wherever in the world would you find a Spanish dance soloist who can return to New York for 24 seasons and not only hold audiences enthralled, but manage a two-month

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    LETTERS: A Few Weeks Ago

    Last week we listed a bit part we're casting in Back Stage West/Drama-Logue for the TV pilot The Aqua Girls (8/6/98). We have gone through Breakdown Services, Ltd. exclusively to cast the rest of the show, but since this is a nice part for a newer ...

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    NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINES BROADWAY SHOWS

    Jean Ann Ryan (prod.) will hold auditions for Smokey Joe's Café, Guys and Dolls, and A Cameron Mackintosh Salute. Six-month contracts run on Norwegian Cruise Lines. There is pay.

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    CASTING

    FILM & TVRED HOOK

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    New "State Fair" Equity Contract Drops Pay 50-75%

    Actors' Equity Association has specified a heavily reduced pay scale for the "potentially groundbreaking special agreement"--including wages, health and pension contributions--for "State Fair" 's controversial national