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San Diego Fringe Festival Presents MISS M SAVES THE UNIVERSE!, 7/5-12

San Diego Fringe Festival Presents MISS M SAVES THE UNIVERSE!, 7/5-12
by BWW News Des
June 22, 2014


Breakthrough Workshop Theatre, a rising San Diego-based educational theatre, announces the World Premiere of MISS M SAVES THE UNIVERSE!

This semi-autobiographical satirical fantasy travels through time as we experience significant breakthrough moments in the life of our protagonist. Along to assist is Miss M, a “divine” guardian angel inspired by the showbiz persona of the legendary Bette Midler.

Following the sold out performance of THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT in 2013, BWT Founding Artistic Director Ira Bauer-Spector has re-worked his original short piece, BETTE AND I into this new play and will write, direct and star as “Miss M” in the World Premiere production at the 2nd Annual San Diego International Fringe Festival.

The piece will be performed at the 10th Avenue Theatre Cabaret Theatre on: Saturday, July 5th at 2pm, Sunday, July 6th at 6:30pm, Saturday, July 12th at 8pm

San Diego International Fringe Festival is a project of Contact Arts, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in 2003 along with Actors Alliance of San Diego with the purpose building a network of creativity & communication. Contact Arts & AASD aim to connect ideas with social action through progressive performance & community engaged projects.

IRA BAUER-SPECTOR founded BWT in 2012. He studied theatre at the University of Colorado at Boulder and earned an MFA in Musical Theatre (Directing) from San Diego State University in 2010. His favorite BWT credits include THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT, THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, DEAR HARVEY at the 1st San Diego Fringe Festival and most recently, “BWTinRep,” which consisted of two productions of YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN and DOG SEES GOD: CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE BLOCKHEAD, both of which he directed in repertory. He has worked professionally throughout the San Diego area at San Diego Junior Theatre (including JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, HONK!), Diversionary, The Old Globe (THE FIRST WIVES CLUB), North Coast Repertory, American Rose Theatre (SPRING AWAKENING) and ACT-San Diego. An accomplished actor, Bauer-Spector’s favorite roles include Charlie Brown in YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN, Prior Walter in ANGELS IN AMERICA, Zanna in ZANNA, DON’T! (Bailiwick Repertory, Chicago Premiere), David Gold in THE TWILIGHT OF THE GOLDS (CU & BWT), Ensemble in DEAR HARVEY (Diversionary at FringeNYC) and Bette Midler in THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT (BWT). He will be writing/directing/starring in Breakthrough Workshop Theatre’s World Premiere of MISS M SAVES THE UNIVERSE! at the 2nd Annual San Diego Fringe Festival, being performed at the 10th Avenue Theatre Cabaret Theatre.

The cast includes actors from various generations, bringing together artists of different backgrounds and experience levels including: IRA BAUER-SPECTOR (see above), PIERRE COZIC (San Diego Junior Theatre; BWT’s THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT), RICHARD MORRISON (SDJT; BWT’s THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT, DEAR HARVEY, THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK), BENJAMIN SHAFFER (SDJT; BWT’s DEAR HARVEY, YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN) and JUSTIN WARREN MARTIN (Circle Circle dot dot, BWT’s DEAR HARVEY, DOG SEES GOD).

MISS M SAVES THE UNIVERSE! will be Assistant Directed and Stage Managed by BWT Producing Director NATHAN BAUER-SPECTOR (BWT’s THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, DEAR HARVEY, YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN) and will feature the work of San Diego-based Makeup & Wigs Artist/Stylist FRANCIA COHEN (SDJT, BWT’s THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT). All media (graphics, videos) will be designed and created by IRA BAUER-SPECTOR.

BREAKTHROUGH WORKSHOP THEATRE was founded in October 2012, and during the first year, presented two “Breakthrough Workshops” including the World Premiere of THE BETTE MIDLER PROJECT. They also presented the SD Fringe Award-Winning DEAR HARVEY at the 1st San Diego Fringe Festival, the week following the Supreme Court’s landmark DOMA decision and THE BREAKTHROUGH REVUE 2013 at the Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park. During the first season, BWT provided opportunities for 39 artists.

In 2014, BWT has taken up residence at The Ocean Beach Playhouse & Arts Center and has completed three successful “Breakthrough Workshops”: the sold out performance of THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, the thought-provoking play THE TWILIGHT OF THE GOLDS directed by Los Angeles-based artist Clay Pruitt and the 2nd Annual “Breakthrough Workshop” of DEAR HARVEY directed by BWT Producing Director Nathan Bauer-Spector during the anniversary week of Harvey Milk‘s birthday. BWT also produced “BWTinRep,” which consisted of two fully-realized productions in repertory of YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN and DOG SEES GOD: CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE BLOCKHEAD.

BWT is also the proud recipient of a 2014 San Diego LGBT Pride Grant.

The Process – “Breakthroughs”
During traditional BWT workshops, artists from different cities and of varying experience levels come together to work on a show in an intensive-type rehearsal process. They work on ensemble building while exploring the characters and text. The work is focused on accomplishment achieved through personal challenges – or “breakthroughs” – and their hard work culminates in a one-time only performance. For “BWTinRep” and our productions at the Fringe Festival, there is slightly more rehearsal, but still not a traditional rehearsal process, therefore allowing the artists to achieve the “breakthroughs” that set BWT apart from other theatre companies in town.

“Breakthrough Workshop Theatre was created to give artists unique opportunities and challenges that aren’t available to them elsewhere,” said Bauer-Spector. “At the beginning of every BWT project, I ask each participant the following question: ‘What is your breakthrough?’ Everyone comes to us with different life experiences, so it is amazing to see the individual journeys that occur throughout the process. It’s especially rewarding to see artists come back to BWT and watch them evolve as artists with the company, one breakthrough at a time.”

Mission Statement
The mission of Breakthrough Workshop Theatre is to educate, challenge, celebrate and empower artists by providing them with unique opportunities in a collaborative, ensemble based environment.

Our Vision
Breakthrough Workshop Theatre is an education-focused company with an emphasis on producing socially relevant dramatic works pulling from repertoire that fits into one or more of the following categories: LGBT Theatre, family friendly fare, musical theatre and Pulitzer Prize-winning works. The intent of Breakthrough Workshop Theatre is not to produce time and cost-intensive productions, but rather to provide theatre artists of all ages, backgrounds and experience levels with a chance to explore characters and material that they would otherwise be unlikely to encounter. A “Breakthrough Artist” is someone who has a deep-rooted passion for creating theatre. Due to the unique nature of the BWT process, a “Breakthrough Artist” is forced to challenge themselves and perform in the moment, while relying on and trusting their instincts. The work of Breakthrough Workshop Theatre is intended to highlight the necessity of breaking through an obstacle, whether it be a personal struggle or a critical movement in society.

The BWT Team
Ira Bauer-Spector, Founding Artistic Director
Nathan Bauer-Spector, Producing Director

2014 BWT Advisory Board
Lesley Kolb
Lori Morse
Clay Pruitt
Mike Spector
Breakthrough Workshop Theatre presents
at the 2nd Annual San Diego International Fringe Festival

A World Premiere Play Written and Directed by Ira Bauer-Spector

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at

at the
10th Avenue Theatre Cabaret Space
930 10th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Ira Bauer-Spector
Pierre Cozic
Richard Morrison
Benjamin Shaffer
Justin Warren Martin

Nathan Bauer-Spector (Assistant Director/Stage Manager)
Francia Cohen (Makeup & Wigs Artist/Stylist)
Ira Bauer-Spector (Media Design)


Instagram @breakthroughworkshop

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