Trish and Harold's Weblog

News, information, and random thoughts from the busy lives of Trish Egan and Harold Phillips.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Escape From The Island

Hey folks

Long time no... uh... blog. Swiss Family Robinson closed with a great final weekend, and this past week has been spent getting caught up with all the things that "sagged" during the run. Now that Saturday's here and I've (gasp!) got a pretty open day, I figured it was time to update you on what's been happening at "casa de Trish and Harold" these days.

>> Theatre: As mentioned above, Swiss Family Robinson closed at Northwest Children's Theatre on Sunday to capicity crowds. I have to tell you, this show was attended better than any other show I've been part of in recent years... ah, the sales-power of children's theatre! By the time the lights went down Sunday, I was feeling like this guy to the left... the run really took its toll on me! Aside from the exhaustion of doing ten shows a week (back-to-back school shows on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, evening show on Friday, matinee and evening show on Saturday and a matinee Sunday), I ended up with a long-running cold, an infected wound in my leg (bashed my shin against a tree house ladder), a gash in the top of my foot (from running into a barrel when the lights went down), my still-healing separated shoulder, and various scrapes and contusions. Director Sarah Jane Hardy and I joked that when I write my memoirs, one chapter will start out with "My body's decline all started during Swiss Family Robinson...).

And ya know... I wouldn't have traded the experience for the world. Seriously, this show was amazing; as I said the crowds were huge and very appreciative. The looks in the kids eyes when they met us down in the lobby really warmed my heart - I felt like I'd taken them along on a journey that they were going to remember for quite some time. Also, Northwest Children's Theatre is a great place to work. Seriously, if any of you actors or technicians get a chance to work with Sarah Jane, Roger, Melody, Paul, Matt, or any of the staff there you should jump at it. They are so professional and committed to putting on the best show they can, while still having a good time and sharing a laugh. I also really loved working with the other actors in the show, both professionals and young performers. Each of them put their hearts and souls into the show - and in many cases their voices :) I'd happily work with any of them again.

That's it for my theatrical endevours for a while... Trish is currently in rehearsal for Wonder of the World, which opens Friday June 8th at Theatre! Theatre! (produced by Integrity Productions). It's a wacky show by recent Pulitzer Prize winner David Lindsay Abair, set at Niagra Falls. Samantha Van der Merwe is directing, and it promises to be a lot of laughs. Of course, Trish isn't laughing that much right now... she's going into tech week (that awful period of the rehearsal process where the cast moves onto the set and starts worrying about things like lights and sound... it can change up everything you've worked towards over the first three weeks of the rehearsal process), but it promises to be a VERY funny show.

>> Film/ TV/ Etc.: Things have been VERY busy on this front!

If you've been by my web site at, you've seen that several films I'm in are having showings over the next couple of months... in Portland, Chicago and Salt Lake City! The team behind How To Breathe have really been gunning hard to get the film shown at festivals nationwide, and it's paying off! Way to go Noah and Skyler!

At long last, the final cut of Sum of the Parts is having its World Premier! Director Raymond Steers has been working on this film for ten years now (he should do a documentary on what it took to get the fim to this point!), and it's finally ready to be shopped around to the festivals. If you saw the test screening last year, I think you'll be surprised at how much the film has been tightened up. Stop on by the Hollywood Theater at 9PM on July 14th and check it out!

The Hollywood is also going to be playing three other short films I'm in, as part of the Art Institute of Portland's senior thesis show on June 14th at 7:00 pm. I'm especially looking forward to seeing the film that's going to ruin any chance I have of a career in Hollywood - God Has No Religion. After all, I DO play L. Ron Hubbard in that one - and not in the most flattering light. Any chance of Tom Cruise or John Travolta calling me up to offer me a bit part in their next movie just went up in smoke. Speaking of smoke, another film I'm in (Holy Rollers) will keep me from doing the next Left Behind sequel with Kirk Cameron. I'm just killing my career by leaps and bounds :)

The third film showing on June 14th, The Yard, should at least make me popular with the big corporations that currently own the media. I'm a mid-level manager locking his workers out of a mill they're trying to work out. Oh sure, I get pummled by rocks and run like a little girl until the cops get there... but at least I do a little work for "the man" and stick it to the prolitariate :)

(Side note on The Yard - Galvin Collins, the director of photography, just won a Telly Award for another film he worked on. I'm SO happy to have fallen in with the crew at Screaming Inside Films - these are top-notch professionals! If you get the chance to work with these guys, it's totally worth it).

But wait, there's more!! Trish recently shot a regional commercial for Regence Blue Cross Blue Sheild that should be shown here in the Pacific Northwest in the next month or so...

I just got cast in a local commercial for Grover Electric and Plumbing Supply (no idea when that's going to show - we shoot on June 14 - or even if it's going to show in Portland... Grover is a Vancouver, WA company)...

I'm currently working on an "Industrial" (that's industry-speak for an educational video... an "industrial" can be produced for schools, a particular industry, etc. Those videos you watched when you were training for your last job? Those were "industrials.") for DealerPeak - a company that supports car dealerships...

Finally, I just got offered a lead role in a short film directed by Colby Smith, another Art Institute student who works with the Screaming Inside guys a lot. It'll be an interesting film... we're shooting it today in Tigard.

So, yeah... things have been busy in the electronic media portion of our lives...

>> Gaming: ... so busy, in fact, that I'm not doing such a good job at keeping up with the other electronic media portion of my life. My dwarf rogue Shadenjof is only level 24... he'll never catch up with Trish's characters at THIS rate. Luckily she's going into tech this week... maybe I'll be able to make some levels while she's not at home.

I'm sure you were just dying to know that... god I'm such a geek :)

>> The @#$&$*@ Duplex: Oh, this has been a freakin' roller coaster. Ok... when last we left our heroes, the deal we'd had pending with an out-of-town buyer had fallen through (after we dropped thousands of dollars into the place on repairs). We'd signed with a new agent, but we were feeling pretty glum.

Well... that glumness continued for a couple months. Some folks came to look at the place, but no offers were forthcoming. Since we've been leaving half the duplex empty (to make the place more attractive to buyers who might want to live in one half), our income from the property was cut in half... and we've been forced to live a little skinny to make up for that.

Then, about two weeks ago, we heard that some folks from here in Oregon wanted to buy the duplex, and had put in an offer. They still wanted to see the occupied side, and inspect the place... but things looked very bright. We signed the paperwork and they went to walk through the other side of the plex... and then we waited. And waited. And waited. Eventually, after some prodding, their agent contacted our agent and told us that they'd decided against the purchase. We were pretty devastated - we thought that after a year-and-a-half, we'd finally found our buyer.

(Side note: if you're really depressed about something, put MirrorMask into your DVD player. Seriously. It'll help with your mood a great deal. And if you haven't seen it yet, go out right now and rent it. It's freakin' amazing!)

Just as we were about to sign the paperwork releasing them from the sale, the buyer's agent contacted us again! "Don't sign the release" he said. "They want it after all!" They buyers were purchasing our duplex as part of a 1031 Exchange, you see, and the other properties they were going to flip their money into decided not to sell to them. So now the sale is back on.

Ugh... I'm never selling another house again! Do you hear me? I'm gonna DIE in this house, and never sell it!

At this point, we're moving forward... they've done the home inspection, and they want us to replace one of the water heaters. Other than that, though, there don't seem to be any impediments to the sale (of course, that's what we thought last time...). Keep your fingers crossed for us - we really want this one to go through so we can be DONE with this!!!

Family (and other things): Whew!! Have I exhausted you yet with this info dump? Well, we're almost done... just a couple more items to let you in on:
I'm officially an uncle! Well, ok, I already was... in the sense that Trish has several siblings and other family members with kids (heck, I'm even a grandfather if you count her son Jesse's biological and step-son)... and my brother James married a wonderful lady with two great young girls, so I'm their uncle too.

James' wife Laurie, however, just gave birth to James' first biological son (Christopher Rowan Phillips) last month. Unfortunately, I was already in performances of Swiss Family Robinson, so I couldn't go up there to attend the blessed event. We haven't been up to see the little guy yet... but we're hoping that we can head up there in the next week or so (once Trish opens her show) to say hi.

Speaking of blessed events, Trish's son Jesse and his girlfriend Jessie (yes it gets confusing) are getting married, after a number of years together. They're planning their wedding for somewhere around September 1st, though that date hasn't been firmed up yet. They've had their ups and downs over the years, but it's great to see them taking this step... they truly are good together.

We did have a little scare earlier this week with one of our newest family members, Amber... we took the dogs into our vet to get their annual vaccinations on Wednesday. We were warned that pug dogs can have an allergic reaction to some vaccines, and they pre-treated both Baby and Amber with IV Benadryl to try and counter any such reaction.
Well, Baby did fine with the vaccines. Amber, though, was a mess the next day. She was running all over, barking at nothing, and rubbing her face and body all over any surface she could find. At one point she came up to me in our home office and stared at me, doing the little barks she does to get my attention. When I looked down, I saw that her face was swollen up to almost twice its normal size (which, in a pug dog's case, means it was even MORE wrinkled!). I called the vet and we had to take her back in for more IV antihistamines and some steroids. She's ok now... but it was pretty spooky.
WHEW!!! Ok, tell the truth... did anyone really read down this far?
Well, that's pretty much all the news I've got to share for now. Now that Swiss Family Robinson is done, I should have a little more spare time (and energy) to keep the blog up on a more regular basis... which will hopefully cut down on voluminous posts like this one. Time for me to sign off and start getting into this character I'm playing...
Hope you're all doing well...