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    Check Yourself: LL Cool J left his confrontational rap star image at the door to become a humble actor learning his craft.

    The name LL Cool J still triggers images of the pumped-up boast-rap prince who broke onto the scene at age 16, clad in his trademark Kangor hat and white Pumas, thick gold chain over a bare chest, rocking the mic with sex-charged rhymes. Always oozing innuendo, his music took surprising ...

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    Musical Will Go Directly to Vegas

    "Notre Dame de Paris," a popular French musical closely based on Victor Hugo's "Hunchback of Notre Dame," will go directly to Las Vegas from Europe instead of making the traditional stop on Broadway. The show will begin an open-ended run this January at the new Paris Las Vegas Casino ...

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    Correction

    In last week's report on the Drama Desk Awards, we omitted the winner in the category of Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play: Alfred Molina for his performance in "Art." He is also nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play and he and his fellow ...

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    BISTRO BITS: Howard Who?

    I'd never heard of Howard Fishman when I went to see the Howard Fishman Quartet at the Oak Room at the Algonquin. His name puts one in mind of an accountant-and with the exception of one haircut, the four gentlemen look like accountants. But they sure don't sound ...

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    The New Duality Acting Conservatory

    The New Duality Acting Conservatory, previously known as the Piero Dusa Acting Conservatory, has passed on the torch to Michael Vincent Doane, its new artistic director. Piero Dusa has moved west to train actors at the Dusa Playhouse in Santa Monica, CA. Fall courses include three on-camera classes, acting technique ...

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    TALENT BEAT

    Some fall shows currently in development for midseason:

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    Pew Trust Grants

    The Pew Charitable Trust, the philanthropic activities of which are concentrated in the Philadelphia area, has awarded its latest batch of

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    SAG/NY to Review Election

    Screen Actors Guild/New York's election committee will meet Wed., Dec. 16 with the union's counsel to review challenges to the recent national board of directors ballot

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    DO YOU NEED A MANAGER? ...A Personal Choice

    Being able to say "talk to my manager" no doubt has its allure for many performers who see a personal manager on one's payroll (imagine having a payroll) as a sign of a career on the