Arden Theatre Company presents its Spring 2006 Salons, a lively discussion series offers that behind-the-scenes insights from theatre professionals. Created to deepen the connection between artists and audiences, Salons provide an interactive, informal and entertaining opportunity for up-close-and-personal dialogue between the public and the region's premier theatre professionals. Salons are hosted by Arden Associate Artistic Director Amy Dugas Brown, who founded the four-year-old Salon series. Schedule Ensemble Acting Monday, April 3 Featured speakers: Dancing at Lughnasa cast members Grace Gonglewski, Suzanne O'Donnell and Megan Bellwoar It's one thing to have a lead role -- Hamlet, Blanche DuBois, Willie Loman -- and another to work as part of an ensemble. Great actors strive to create on-stage synergy no matter how big or small their role. Come learn the art of building a great ensemble with three of Philadelphia's finest leading ladies! Season Selection Monday, April 10 Featured speakers: Arden Theatre Company's Terrence J. Nolen, Producing Artistic Director and Co-Founder, and Amy Dugas Brown, Associate Artistic Director Meet the people who choose the plays performed at the Arden! What drives them to choose a piece of work? What practical decisions must be considered? What gets chosen first? Are there ever any regrets? Why choose a classic over a new play? What are the risks of producing world premieres such as Opus and The Dinosaur Musical? Painting with Lights Monday, May 1 Featured speaker: Barrymore Award-winning lighting designer John Stephen Hoey Lighting design employs a fickle canvas: thin air. The quality of that air transforms a theatre space with color, angle, and intensity. Meet award-winning designer John Stephen Hoey (Sweeney Todd, Dancing at Lughnasa), who reveals the mysteries of his beautiful art (What are all those lighting fixtures hanging in the theatre?) and his secret for combining electrics with a painterly aesthetic. Slapstick Comedy Monday, May 8 Featured speakers: Aaron Cromie, Dave Jadico and Rob McClure Nothing makes 'em laugh like slapstick! Join three actors from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum who are masters of the pratfall, the prank and the double take. Jadico can juggle anything he can hold; Cromie is an expert in Commedia dell'Arte; McClure does rope tricks. These popular, accomplished Philadelphia actors will discuss creating their own new comedic works rooted in improvisation and physical theatre -- and if urged, they'll perform a slapstick demonstration! The Commission Mission Monday, May 22 Featured speakers: Playwrights Michael Hollinger and Michael Ogborn Arden loved Hollinger's hit drama Opus and comedy Red Herring and Ogborn's musicals Baby Case and Café Puttanesca so much that it commissioned them to co-write a brand new musical. Come learn about the process of these two geniuses and get an update on their progress! Perhaps they'll even share a new song with us. Musical Comedy Monday, June 5 Featured speakers: Tony Braithwaite and Tom McCarthy What could be funnier than Tony Braithwaite and Tom McCarthy in a room together talkin' comedy? The stars of Forum -- and arguably the funniest actors in Philadelphia's history -- share stories that are sure to have you rolling in the aisles. Get a backstage glimpse of the highs and lows of performing musical comedy, and learn how two celebrated actors approach their work.