Princeton University awarded degrees to 1,128 undergraduates and 753 graduate students at its 262nd Commencement Tuesday, June 2. In addition, the University conferred honorary doctoral degrees upon five individuals for their contributions to civic engagement, performing arts, engineering and sustainability: Meryl Streep, Ernesto Cortés Jr., an influential community organizer; Ruby Dee Davis, a renowned actor and civil rights activist; Irvin Glassman, a leading figure in combustion and energy research and Princeton’s Robert H. Goddard Professor Emeritus of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; and Alice Waters, a celebrated chef and proponent of sustainable cuisine. Some pictures from the event can be found here with more to follow soon at Simply Streep. My most generous thanks to everybody who has sent in notes on this!
Academy Award winner Meryl Streep will take part in an upcoming by-invitation-only reading of Don Cummings’ A Good Smoke. Hare/Deux Productions will present the June 14 reading at the Public Theater. Show time is 7 PM. Actress Streep will be joined onstage by Henry Wolfe Gummer, Grace Gummer, Tony winner Debra Monk, Joe Paulik and John Rothman. Pam MacKinnon directs. “Mom isn’t the center of attention anymore,” according to A Good Smoke press notes. “Will she stop at nothing to regain that position? Mom drops her meds – cold-turkey – the day her daughter gives birth, resulting in severe drug withdrawal. As her daughter is wheeled into delivery, Mom is hauled off to the psych ward. Dad and their two sons are trying desperately to cope, but this family is functioning at its worst when it needs to be at its best.” Kevin Spirtas is producing manager of the reading. The Public Theatre is located in Manhattan at 425 Lafayette Street.
The Literature to Life program of The American Place Theatre will kick off its newest campaign, Project 451, with a celebrity gala to be held at Theater at St. Clement’s, May 17 and 18, where Ray Bradbury, author of Fahrenheit 451, will be honored. A verbatim performance of this classic novel, directed by Wynn Handman, that has been developed by Literature to Life, will debut at the Gala, acted by Rich Orlow. The program will conclude with readings of very short passages from other works of great literature by distinguished guests. Celebrities such as actors Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin , Sam Waterston , John Hockenberry and Kathleen Chalfant, Eric Bogosian, Jessica Lange, Anna Deavere Smith, Chris Cooper and Marion Seldes and poet laureate Billy Collins will contribute to the Project 451 campaign by recording clips for the Project 451 Living Library. Following the Gala, guests will be given the opportunity to do the same. Tickets begin at $100. Call 212-594-4482 x 16. More info, including a video message by Meryl Streep, can be found at www.americanplacetheatre.org.
Meryl Streep will receive the Golden Marc’aurelio Acting Award at the Rome Film Festival. The announcement was made by the festival’s president, Gian Luigi Rondi. Meryl Streep will meet the public and the press in a special event when the festival runs from October 15 to 23. Exact dates and more info will come closer to its opening. Many thanks to Terry for the heads-up!
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Morgan Freeman and James Earl Jones join Meryl Streep, Robert De Niro and Dame Judi Dench as part of the 15 film veterans chosen for this year’s Actors Hall of Fame. The list of honorees, which the organization’s president, Rusty Citron revealed Thursday, also includes Robert Duvall, Kirk Douglas, Gene Hackman, Olivia de Havilland, Hal Holbrook, Anthony Hopkins, Angela Lansbury, William H. Macy and Maggie Smith. The Actors Hall of Fame honors career achievement in theater, film and television. Criteria for nomination include peer recognition and awards, humanitarian contribution to the dramatic arts and education and a demonstrated advancement of the craft of acting. The new inductees join the 38 charter members of the hall. An induction ceremony and celebration will take place this year in Los Angeles. Thanks to Cindy for the heads-up.
On May 01, “Streep: A Life in Film” will be released in UK book stores. It’s the first English written biography on Meryl since 1987. Writer Iain Johnstone has studied her work since the 1970s and has interviewed her four times in depth. The team behind “Streep” is offering Simply Streep visitors a fantastic opportunity: You can buy your copy of the book and get a “fan discount” granted on your purchase! For more information, please visit www.celebrationstreep.com
Meryl Streep has won this year”s Pantene Best International Actress Award for her performance in Mamma Mia! at the IFTAs which are due to be be held tomorrow in The Burlington Hotel in Dublin. The awards also will be broadcast on RTÉ One tomorrow night. The category is voted for by the general public and celebrates the outstanding female talent in the film industry. The other nominees in the category were Kristin Scott Thomas (“I loved You So Long”), Angelina Jolie (“Changeling”) and Emma Thompson (“Brideshead Revisited”). Stars of film and television are expected to attend tomorrow”s ceremony which will be hosted by RTÉ”s Ryan Tubridy.
Meryl Streep can add yet another trophy to her shelf. This morning she was awarded with the Goldene Kamera in Germany, in the category of Best International Actress. In the wake of the current German financial crisis, the founders of the Goldene Kamera award, the Axel Springer AG – one of the largest newspaper publishing companies in Europe – have decided to not hold a ceremony this year, for the first time in its history. Instead, much in the tradition of last year’s Golden Globes, the winners were announced this morning at a press conference.