Janet in the Press...

Janet Miller Launches Good People Theater from BroadwayWorld.com

"Today, a newly formed Board of Directors joined with Producing Artistic Director Janet Miller to announce the launch of a non-profit theater venture-the Good People Theater Company (GPTC)-and its opening show, LA's first fully staged production of A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE."
                                              ~ read the full article

BWW Interviews: Hollywood Fringe Spotlight from BroadwayWorld.com

"...I asked Janet why she chose this show as the first production for GPTC and she said she'd been hoping to do this show for ten years. "I love the music. I love the story. I love what it has to say about being true to yourself, about the importance of finding your authentic self, and living that life - the life that's true to who you are, especially at mid-life."
                                              ~ read the full article

Wonderettes Opens at Merry-Go-Round from BroadwayWorld.com

"...Janet Miller, the choreographer from the Off-Broadway production of the show, will choreograph and Mark Goodman returns as Musical Director. From "Stupid Cupid" to "It's My Party" to "Son of a Preacher Man" to "Respect," this song-packed show is sure to please audiences of all ages..."
                                              ~ read the full article

Meet the Marvelous Wonderettes from AuburnPub.com

...Choreographer Janet Miller wrote the dance steps for the first show in Los Angeles in 2001, she spent much of last week putting the cast through "'Wonderette' boot camp" to get the moves just right.

"We'll be using most of the choreography from the original show, but because we've got a whole new cast here I was able to tweak a few things that I've been wanting to experiment with," Miller said Wednesday during a break from the rigorous rehearsal schedule. "It's great to have a fresh, new way to look at things and the freedom to change a few things around."

Miller said she got most of the inspiration for the moves for the show's 33 musical numbers from the variety shows she watched as a girl.

"They are all very iconic steps that anybody from that era would recognize," she said. "They do the pony, the hand jive and the bat watousie. Believe it or not, one step came from 'Let's Make a Deal,' using the moves Carol Merrill used to do when she was showing the boxes."...
                                              ~ read the full article

Directors Lab West 2011 LA Stage Times

"Steve Cisneros and Janet Miller of Phantom Projects talked about how they go about producing shows that are directly relevant to a school's curriculum and provide teachers and administrators a chance for students to connect to their classroom material through the magic of live theater."
                                              ~ read the full article

LA Stage Insider: January 27th, 2011 from LA Stage Times

Phantom Projects Theatre Group... a group that concentrated on matinees for school audiences, now offers regular public performances of its teen-oriented fare — beginning with the stage adaptation of... The Giver, ...helmed by Ovation Award winner Janet Miller, Feb. 23-24 at La Mirada Theatre.  Miller is also staging Phantom's next project, The Bluest Eye, adapted from the 1970 novel by Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison, in April at Miles Playhouse in Santa Monica…"
                                              ~ read the full article

2010 Ovation Nominee Profile: Janet Miller from LA Stage Times

"Janet Miller is a 2009/2010 Ovation Nominee in the Choreography category for her work on The Marvelous Wonderettes with Musical Theatre West. As an Ovation Award Nominee, LA Stage asked Janet Miller the following questions..."
                                              ~ read the full article

Directors Talk About How They Relate to Actors from LA Stage Times

"Janet Miller agrees a director is responsible for creating a safe space for actors. 'As director it's up to me to set the working climate. It is very important my actors feel safe and supported.'"
                                              ~ read the full article

Top Tips for Acing a Dance Sequence? from Backstage Online

"They need to make acting choices in the choreography. If I say something like, "We're going to do this little grapevine here, but we're going to act like we're falling," they need to make choices about how their character would interpret something like that..."
                                              ~ read the full article

Choreographer Found Feet in Long Beach Long Beach Gazette

"Janet Miller's career as a renowned choreographer was set into motion when her 5-year-old self slid on her first pair of dance shoes at a small studio in Long Beach.

    Though she said she's traveled as far as China and Thailand to teach and choreograph dance, the Long Beach native has returned home as the choreographer for Musical Theatre West's production of The Marvelous Wonderettes, playing through May 2 at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center..."

                                              ~ read the full article

SHOW REVIEWS
The following is a list of show highlights.  For more details, contact Janet directly.

A Man of No Importance

"...an Astounding Inaugural...What a treat to see a brand new theatre Company present such a fine opening show like A Man of No Importance!"
            
~ Don Grigware, BroadwayWorld.com (click to read full article)


"BroadwayWorld Special Coverage: SUMMER STAGES – Our Picks for Summer’s Best Around the World! Los Angeles listing of five shows leads off with GPTC’s A Man of No Importance"
     
~ Don Grigware & Ellen Dostal, BroadwayWorld.com (read full article)


"...(an) enthralling production... Good People nailed it right out of the gate."
                 
~ Tony Frankel, Stage and Cinema (click to read full article)


"...Miller elicits extraordinary ensemble work..."
                           
~ Les Spindle, Frontiers LA (click to read full article)


"...a beautifully polished production in every regard... a triumph..."
                                         
~ Musicals in LA (click to read full article)


"...Miller's staging is as a fluid as her handling of the actors is sensitive..."
                              
~ Bob Verini, Arts in LA (click to read full article)


Stage Scene LA (which gave the show it’s "Wow" rating)
"...Only the highest praise can suffice to describe Miller's dream cast..."
              
~ Stephen Stanley, Stage Scene LA (click to read full article)


"...(Janet Miller's) production beams..."
                             
~ On Stage Los Angeles (click to read full article)


"...treat(s) the tale with the respect it deserves."
                     
~ Don Shirley, LA Stage Times (click to read full article)


The Bluest Eye

"Janet Miller's crisp direction heightens the whirling narrative with striking tableaus, powerful staging and multimedia text imposed on a clothesline."
                      ~ MR Hunter, EyeSpyLA.com (click to read full article)


"Director Janet Miller's carefully choreographed staging gives us strong pictures here; she handles the play's darkest moments effectively, with kid gloves."

                      ~ Jennie Webb, Backstage.com (click to read full article)


"Danika Butler rounds out the cast in director Janet Miller's solid staging. Miller struggles to compensate for a few weak links among her mostly excellent performers and largely succeeds..."

                      ~ F. Kathleen Foley, L.A. Times (click to read full article)


"Director Janet Miller, obviously aware of the talky nature of the text, has livened the play with pantomimed sequences and characters appearing in silhouette, creating a cinematic effect that enhances flashbacks and works well for a couple of explicit scenes."

          ~ Lynne Bronstein, Santa Monica Mirror (click to read full article)


"While the story is told to the audience by the main narrators, more importantly the story is shown to us by the language of the looks on their faces, a shift in their eyes, by the sound of their voices, and the flow of their body movements. Director Janet Miller plays a subtle, restrained hand with this powerful material and it is all the better for it. She doesn't let anyone overact."

                        ~ Ceebs Bailey, LA Splash (click to read full article)


Interview w/Director, Janet Miller
"It is said that love is the greatest gift of all.  But unfortunately the gift of love is not always given.  All of us somewhere in our soul yearn for love, in The Bluest Eye, presented by Phantom Projects we begin to see the desire for us all wanting that basic human need of love and acceptance.  I recently talked with the director of the play Janet Miller, who was the original Choreographer for the Marvelous Wonderettes and now brings the words of Toni Morrison to the stage."               ~ LA Urban Scene (click to read full article)


The Marvelous Wonderettes

Recap of the 2009 Lortel Nominations and Awards, including Janet Miller for Choreography

"Janet Miller's choreography is endless(ly) resourceful."
                          ~ Merry Go Round Playhouse (click to read full article)


"And Tanguy is neatly aided by choreographer Janet Miller, who gets the girls in motion, and provides a professional gloss to this production."
                          ~ from Syracuse New Times (click to read full article)




"Calling themselves the Marvelous Wonderettes, the quartet work their way through more than a dozen 1950s hits in the first act (accompanied by hilariously awkward dance steps choreographed by Janet Miller)"
                          ~ from NCTimes.com (click to read full article)


"Then there's Janet Miller's justly award-winning choreography, which features different steps and arm movements for each song (as was de rigueur for any '50/'60s girl group)."

                          ~ from StageSceneLA.com (click to read full article)


"For choreography, Miller worked from this supposition: If you were a high school girl in 1958, what would the song lyrics mean to you if you and your pals were jumping around your parents' basement rec room on a sleepover? It's not unlike the "Look at Me, I'm Sandra Dee" scene in Grease."

                          ~ from The Star Tribune, MN (click to read full article)


"Roger's piece is very clever, and he wanted me to come up with interesting things for the girls to do while singing behind the microphones," Miller said. "It's interesting, because I had to make them seem a little awkward. After all, they didn't win the (State Song Leaders) competition. They came in third. So they are good, but not that good"..."

                          ~ from Daily Breeze, LA (click to read full article)


"Adding to the fun is choreography by Janet Miller that highlights the  constant synchronized movement that characterized the vocal groups of  those bygone days."

                          ~ Rita Moran, VC Star (click to read full article)


"But with more than 30 catchy and enduring songs sung by a quartet of true vocal stylists, and Miller's comical dance steps, this "Marvelous Wonderettes" does what it's supposed to do. It entertains fans of a bygone musical era, presenting them with a liberal coat of nostalgic varnish….There aren't complex dances, but Miller's choreography provides plenty of laughs through staccato hand gestures and exaggerated shoulder shrugs. Oftentimes, the singers provide a literal charade-like translation of the lyrics, which is both funny and reminiscent of the girl groups of that time."

                  ~ Jeff Favre, The Daily Breeze, LA (5/10/2010)


"The choreography cleverly mimics the standard moves we all expect while reflecting the awkwardness of the four learning to perform together"

                  ~ Jean Gabler, Twin Cities Daily Planet


" Janet Miller's choreography also contributes greatly to restaging the Wonderettes dance routines, keeping them connected with the audience on all sides. "

                  ~ Bill Burgua, Sacramento Press 2010


"Janet Miller's choreography is superb, from things as sublimely silly as goofy shoulder thrusts to the ornate collection of moves illustrating the story in "Leader of the Pack."
                         ~ Terry Morgan, The Daily Variety (October 2006)


"Each lyric, "bung, bung, bung," and "shoop, shoop" is coordinated with dippy arm gestures, bends, kicks and swoops (a delicious effort by choreographer Janet Miller, wickedly realized by the cast)."

                                  ~ Lynne Heffley, LA Times (October 2006)


"Miller's inspired choreography is a scrumptious pastiche of yesteryear's styles, tinged with just enough exaggeration to work as affectionate camp."

                                    ~ Les Spindle, BackStage (October 2006)


"...Janet Miller has some great moves for the ladies. For those of us who recall the 50's, groups were very big into hand gestures and lots of little steps.  Miller has them down to perfection..."
                                              
~ from Steady Style, Chicago


"You won't find a more delightful girl-group than Suzy, Missy, Cindy Lou and Betty Jean...The fun never stops with Brian Baker's musical arrangements and Janet Miller's hilarious inventive group choreography.  Every hand gesture and shoulder bounce is perfectly in place..."
                                        
~ AP Review (Sept, 2008), Off-Broadway


"Then there's Janet Miller's justly award-winning choreography, which features different steps and arm movements for each song (as was de rigueur for any '50/'60s girl group)."

                             ~ Steven Stanley, StageScene LA, April 22, 2010


"A loudspeaker announcement from the principal introduces the title songbirds, opening with (what else?) "Mr. Sandman." Their loopy yet pitch-perfect reading establishes the show's satirical replication, with Janet Miller's witty choreography worth volumes of era footnotes."

                  ~ by David C. Nichols, Special to The Times (3/15/2003)


ROAR OF THE CROWD: Voted Member Favorite:

"The real star is Miller's choreography. Her humor and wit within the dance steps is truly hysterical and inspired. In her bio I read she has won numerous awards for this shows, and they are all well deserved. This show is all music and creative dance steps the riff on the basic girl group routines of the era. I was often watching the backup girls and not the main singers because it was so hysterical! BRAVO!"

                                                                           ~ Goldstar.com


Urinetown

"...about as perfect as musical comedy gets..."
                                              ~ Press Telegram (April 2008)

"...Urinetown came to Long Beach a few years back with a Broadway touring company in a production that was a bit flat and road-worn.  This one is as dangerously cutting as a well-honed knife edge and as funny as a pratfall, with a message to boot...This production is about as good as it gets, and is highly recommended, one of the best shows this season locally."


Sally Spectre


"Director Janet Miller stages the show with economy and inventiveness, focusing the work and animating it to great effect."

                      ~ Edge Los Angeles (click to read full article)


"Sally Spectre the Musical by David P. Johnson has returned two years after its original production with a streamlined book, new music, and an intimate staging by director Janet Miller at NoHo Stages. The story about a little girl with an axe embedded in her head feels much cleaner this time around…"

                      ~ Musicals In LA (click to read full article)


"Janet Miller's direction and staging is tight and pithy. Every move and beat is exactly right."

                      ~ NoHoArtsDistrict.com (click to read full article)


"Sally Spectre The Musical kept me mostly charmed and entertained, thanks in great part to Janet Miller’s assured direction and delightful choreography."

                      ~ Stage Scene LA (click to read full article)

"Director Janet Miller gives this off-the-wall material a sprightly, brightly inventive staging..."
                      ~ Backstage.com (click to read full article)


The Fantasticks

"Director Janet Miller conveys the fragile, wise and funny core and nuances that make The Fantasticks universal."
                                              ~ click to read the full review


South Pacific

One of the top 5 shows of the season: "A great year for local theater..."


"...Director Janet Miller and the Torrance Cultural Division are making waves with polished production values and a high standard of professionalism...Miller and her talented ensemble of performers and strong production team emphasized the powerful Rogers and Hammerstein theme: No man is an island..."

        ~ Season Recap, Best-Of Review - Beach Reporter, January 2003


"I was thinking that elements in the script dated this musical theatre gem, relegating it to period piece status.  Then came a straightforward staging so true as to reaffirm its rights as an enduring classic...Janet Miller's supple, unobtrusive direction proves again that less can be more and simpler is better.  She gets professional effect without pretension, without an Equity cast--so much for labels--and her version affords comparison with the recent Broadway/LA tour starring Robert Goulet..."

                            ~ Back Stage West, Polly Warfield - August, 2002


Pirates of Penzance

"But the real star of the production is not on stage...

It's Miller. Working with a dedicated cast of players, who loyally show up for six weeks of rehearsals ("for FREE!" as Inferrera pointed out in her introductory remarks), Miller creates some real stage magic. Her direction and choreography is consistently savvy, the pacing of the show bounces right along, and her use of the tight quarters is masterful. Give her a big ARRRRRRG!"
                                                        ~ Jim Farber, Daily Breeze