‘There’s a little bit of extra sizzle’: A.J. Puk has wild debut, Liam Hendriks records five-out save in Athletics win

first_imgOAKLAND — A chorus of mockeries and jabs harmonized with the post-game victory music blaring in the A’s clubhouse. Oakland beat the Yankees, 6-4, to claim the series and their fifth win over their last six this home stand (against the Astros, too). But jokes must still fly.“This guy throws a 99 mph slider and an 88 four-seam fastball,” one unidentified A’s player shouted. He was, of course, referring the inaccurate scoreboard readings on A.J. Puk’s first major league pitches.Let the official …last_img

Full text of cabinet appointment

first_imgPresident Jacob Zuma delivering hisinauguration speech at the Union Buildingsin Pretoria on Saturday 9 May 2009.(Image: BuaNews)The following is the full text of President Jacob Zuma’s statement on the appointment of South Africa’s new cabinet on 10 May 2009. Members of the media,Good afternoon and thank you for joining us.We have since the launch of the ANC Manifesto indicated the type of new administration we envisaged in terms of size, shape and political focus.We went into an intensive process through the ANC’s National Executive Committee to discuss the type of government structure that would best serve our goals. We wanted a structure that would enable us to achieve visible and tangible socio-economic development within the next five years.It should be a structure which would enable us to effectively implement our policies.The structure of Cabinet and national departments has therefore been re-organised to achieve better alignment between the structure, our electoral mandate as per our election Manifesto, and the developmental challenges that need to receive immediate attention from government.In summary, some of the changes in the structure of government are the following:Following extensive research on international models on how governments in other parts of the world plan and monitor performance, we have decided to establish a National Planning Commission which will be based in the Presidency.The NPC will be responsible for strategic planning for the country to ensure one National Plan to which all spheres of government would adhere.This would enable us to take a more comprehensive view of socio-economic development in the country.We have also created a monitoring and evaluation competency in the Presidency, to monitor and evaluate the performance of government in all three spheres.There will therefore be two Ministers in the Presidency, one responsible for the NPC and the other for Monitoring and Evaluation as well as administration in the Presidency.Other changes are the following:The Department of Minerals and Energy will be split into two separate departments of Mining and of Energy, each with a MinisterThe Department of Education will be split into separate Ministries, one for Basic Education and the other for Higher Education and Training.The Department of Housing will be called the Department of Human Settlements to take on a more holistic focusThere will be a new department of Rural Development and Land Affairs, which are part of our key priorities for the next five yearsThe Department of Water affairs and Forestry becomes the Department of Water and Environmental Affairs.A new Department of Economic Development has been established to focus on economic policymaking. The implementation functions will remain with the Department of Trade and IndustryA new department of Tourism has been createdAgriculture becomes Agriculture, Fisheries and ForestryThe Department of Provincial and Local Government becomes Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.A new Ministry has been created for Women, Youth, Children and People with Disability, to emphasise the need for equity and access to development opportunities for the vulnerable groups in our society.The Cabinet that will fulfill our objectives is composed as follows:The Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa will be Mr Kgalema Petros Motlanthe.The rest of Cabinet in alphabetical order is as follows:1. Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister: Tina Joemat-PetersonDeputy Minister: Dr Pieter Mulder2. Arts and Culture Minister: Lulu XingwanaDeputy Minister: Paul Mashatile3. Basic Education Minister: Angie MotshekgaDeputy Minister: Enver Surty4. Communications Minister: Siphiwe NyandaDeputy Minister: Dina Pule5. Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister: Sicelo ShicekaDeputy Minister: Yunus Carrim6. Correctional Services Minister: Nosiviwe Mapisa-NqakulaDeputy Minister: Hlengiwe Mkhize7. Defence and Military Veterans Minister: Lindiwe SisuluDeputy Minister: Thabang Makwetla8. Economic Development Minister: Ebrahim PatelDeputy Minister: Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde9. Energy Minister: Dipuo Peters10. Finance Minister: Pravin GordhanDeputy Minister: Nhlanhla Nene11. Health Minister: Dr Aaron MotsoalediDeputy Minister: Dr Molefi Sefularo12. Higher Education and Training Minister: Dr Blade Nzimande13. Home Affairs Minister: Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-ZumaDeputy Minister: Malusi Gigaba14. Human Settlements Minister: Tokyo SexwaleDeputy Minister: Zou Kota15. International Relations and Cooperation Minister: Maite Nkoana-MashabaneDeputy Minister (1): Ebrahim Ismail EbrahimDeputy Minister (2): Sue van der Merwe16. Justice and Constitutional Development Minister: Jeff RadebeDeputy Minister: Andries Nel17. Labour Minister: Membathisi Mdladlana18. Mining Minister: Susan Shabangu19. Police Minister: Nathi MthethwaDeputy Minister: Fikile Mbalula20. Public Enterprises Minister: Barbara HoganDeputy Minister: Enoch Godongwana21. Public Service and Administration Minister: Richard BaloyiDeputy Minister: Roy Padayachie22. Public Works Minister: Geoff DoidgeDeputy Minister: Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu23. Rural Development and Land Reform Minister: Gugile NkwintiDeputy Minister: Dr Joe Phaahla24. Science and Technology Minister: Naledi PandorDeputy Minister: Derek Hanekom25. Social Development Minister: Edna MolewaDeputy Minister: Bathabile Dlamini26. Sport and Recreation Minister: Makhenkesi StofileDeputy Minister: Gert Oosthuizen27. State Security Minister: Siyabonga Cwele28. Minister in The Presidency (1) National Planning Commission: Trevor Manuel29. Minister in The Presidency (2) Performance Monitoring and Evaluation as well as Administration in the Presidency: Collins Chabane30. Tourism Minister: Marthinus van SchalkwykDeputy: Thozile Xasa31. Trade and Industry Minister: Rob DaviesDeputy Minister (1): Thandi TobiasDeputy Minister (2): Maria Ntuli32. Transport Minister: Sbusiso Joel NdebeleDeputy Minister: Jeremy Cronin33. Water and Environmental  Affairs Minister: Buyelwa SonjicaDeputy Minister: Rejoice Mabhudafhasi34. Women, Youth, Children and People with Disabilities Minister: Noluthando Mayende-SibiyaWe stated clearly during the campaign that we want an efficient, caring and effective administration, which will be accessible and responsive to the needs of the people.We reiterate that we will not tolerate laziness and incompetence, and that we will emphasise excellence and achievement from the Cabinet and the public service.With these objectives in mind, I am confident that the new structure of government will enable the state machinery to speed up service delivery.Civil servants will not lose their jobs as a result of these changes. This is a matter of principle in terms of the country’s labour relations dispensation.I however want to stress to our public servants that the era of hard work has begun. Public servants who do their work diligently and efficiently have nothing to worry about.I wish the new team all the best with their responsibilities.We request the South African public and all key sectors of our society to support them in their national service.Let me also take this opportunity to wish all South African mothers well on Mother’s Day today.Mothers are the backbones of our families, communities and our nation.We truly appreciate their role in our society, in both the public sphere and within families.I thank you.Source: The Presidency – Republic of South Africalast_img read more

Harnessing the Power of Rehearsal for Your Film and Video Projects

first_imgIt’s time we highlight the importance of the rehearsal, as well as the actors’ performances, in your film and video projects.We live in a truly great era for film and video professionals. Not only do we have unprecedented access to cameras, gear, and equipment — thanks to a thriving market — we also have the vast powers of the internet at our fingertips to research, study, and hone our knowledge and skillsets for film and video production.Yet, for every camera buy-guide or Premiere Pro tutorial, there’s one aspect of the film production that often goes ignored on these filmmaking channels: the highly important role of the filmmaker in rehearsing and directing actors and their performances.If you’ve ever watched film school students’ short films, or just worked on some DIY projects of your own, you’ll notice wooden performances and awkward faces and reaction shots that seem much different from their big budget and TV screen counterparts.In some ways, this may be a reflection of the actors and their skill level and professionalism. However, it’s really a reflection of the filmmakers and directors who have the job of conveying, coaching, and bringing out these performances.Look at some of your favorite classic and modern films as examples. More than likely, you’re watching the final products of months of rehearsals, deep character conversations, and endless takes searching for those perfect line deliveries and reactions. So, for the sake of your next project, please heed this advice and give your actors, their performances, and the highly important rehearsals the diligence they are due.Hand out Character PacketsLet’s start at the very beginning of your filmmaking process. You have an idea for a short or feature film. You may not even have a script written, but you have an idea of the characters, the events, and/or the conflicts involved. As you develop your story and refine your script, keep in mind that you’re creating characters that actors will need to understand, make their own, and portray in front of the camera.Many film productions, especially when dealing with auteur writer/directors, will give perspective actors character packets or other materials to help the actor start to understand his or her character and role. These can be whatever you want them to be — background story, images from a magazine, clips from other movies, and so on.The goal is not only to write a script and hand it to an actor to read the lines, but also to start thinking about it as creating a character who can exist in this cinematic world. Help your actor share this vision, making it his or her own as well.The Table ReadIn many productions, the first rehearsal (of sorts) is the all important table read. Ideally, you’ll have the full cast present (as well as the majority of the people involved with the production) to really start hammering out the script and what’s going to need to happen for each scene. Unfortunately, while table reads are helpful, they are rather stunted in how much of a “rehearsal” they actually can be. Your actors are stuck sitting at a table, not in wardrobe, hair, makeup, or often character.The table read really should be the most rough of rough drafts, not your first and only rehearsal. It’s just to make sure everyone knows the full story and that there are no obvious problems with the script. It’s also highly important for everyone to take lots of notes! Ideas will start forming here and they’ll need to actually be addressed once you begin real rehearsals.Rehearsals and BlockingOn the biggest budget of features and on projects where talent can be given the time it needs to rehearse, you’re looking at several weeks of intensive rehearsals and blocking. (And even much longer than that if you’ve written complex action or stunt sequences.)However, that might not always be available for many indie or DIY productions. Still, at the very least, you should dedicate one or two “rehearsal weekends” where you can spend a full day or two working with your actors on their performances.Blocking is another huge aspect of the filmmaking process that can be just as complex and important as the lines and deliveries. If you can start rehearsing on the same set you’re filming on, that will be a huge help. If not, you should have a strong understanding of what the sets will look like, where you’ll want your actors to go, and what you want your actors to do.The Emotion ScaleImage by FGC.A nice trick of communication a filmmaker or director can have with his or her actors is the “emotional scale” exercise. At any given time in a scene, an actor’s character will be feeling and conveying an emotion(s). Whether that’s anger, fear, love, desperation, or even a combination of multiple emotions.As a director, it’s your job to convey to the actor what level of these emotions you want to see and capture on camera. It’s a great warmup and also very helpful in rehearsals to have your actors practice going through these emotions at different ranges (one being the lowest visible level and ten being the highest extreme level). When in a scene, it can be a quick way to check in and convey at what level your actor’s character should be at.Treating the Camera as a CharacterFinally, while you should absolutely focus on your actors and their performances, as a filmmaker or director you should also be just as focused on your camera and how it too will be interacting within a scene. We rarely see the static camera simply capturing performances as if they were a play.Instead, the camera is often very much a part of the action. Whether it’s on dollies, gimbals, or even straight handheld, having the camera’s movements and blocking planned out is important, not just for capturing dynamic shots, but also the safety of your camera and actors, as well.I’d go as far as suggesting, in those earliest days of rehearsals, to have your camera (or a camera stand-in) in those sessions. Begin rehearsing where the camera will be at any given time and what the framings will be for the different scenes, sequences, and shots.Cover image via FrameStockFootages.For more acting and filmmaking tips and tricks, check out these articles below.The New and Non-Actor’s Crash Course: Part One5 Filmmaking Tips for Acting and Directing (at the Same Time)Directing Challenges: How to Communicate Effectively with ActorsTips for Working with Child Actors on a Film or Video SetThe Practical Guide to Managing Actors on a Low-Budget Shootlast_img read more

Odisha Governor orders probe

first_imgOdisha Governor Ganeshi Lal has ordered a probe against S. Pasupalak, current Vice-Chancellor of Orissa University of Agriculture Technology (OUAT), a premier agriculture university of eastern India, for his alleged involvement in a corruption case.Stating that the corruption issues raised in a petition appeared to be genuine and serious, the office of the Governor directed Chief Secretary A.P. Padhi to get the allegation probed by the vigilance department.Pradip Maharathy, Minister for Agriculture and Panchayati Raj and pro-chancellor of OUAT, had received two petitions that detailed alleged manipulation of records for personal benefit, erroneous advertisement for recruitment in Krishi Vigyan Kendras, manipulation of records and abuse of position for undue personal benefits. The same petitions were forwarded to the Governor’s office.“After going through the documents, the Governor has directed an in-depth inquiry by State vigilance department. The inquiry report may be submitted within six weeks for taking appropriate action in the matter,” the Governor’s office said.Allegation of corruption and manipulation is not new in the OUAT. Two former Vice-Chancellors of the university had also faced allegations of corruption.last_img read more

Ind vs WI: Time is on my side: Harbhajan

first_imgOnly the third Indian bowler to touch the 400-wicket mark in Test cricket, off-spinner Harbhajan Singh said his best is yet to come as tweakers tend to get better after turning 30.”I’m only 31…and even though the last seven wickets have made me work harder, (I’m hopeful) the next 200 will come very soon,” said Harbhajan after the end of second day’s play in the third and final Test against the West Indies here.Harbhajan accounted for Darren Sammy (20) and Carlton Baugh (60) within a space of 9 balls to reach the milestone, a summit which only two other Indians and 10 bowlers overall have ever managed in the history of the game.Harbhajan, who has spent over 13 years in international cricket, then went down the memory lane and recalled the difficulties he endured to come thus far.”I have faced a lot of ups and downs in my career -mostly downs. I’ve worked hard for these wickets. Spinners mature with age. Most of them, be it Anil (Kumble) bhai, Shane Warne, (Muttiah) Muralitharan took a lot of wickets after they turned 30.”Time is on my side; I am still very young and there is a lot of cricket left in me. I have to start doing even better for Team India and start taking a lot of wickets. If I keep myself fit, I will be able to do it.”It’s not easy to take even one wicket in international cricket. Batsmen are watching you all the time. You have to keep adding variations. Just line and length is not enough.You have to make sure you are not left behind. Off-spinners now are coming to bowl from round the wicket. You have to keep trying new things,” Harbhajan said.advertisement”Batsmen these days come and play their shots. I remember 10 years back, all the bowlers were averaging 25, 26 or 27. These days the normal average is 30 plus.”When I have my good days, I take wickets. On bad days, I try not to give too many runs,” he added.The ‘Turbanator’ looked back at the last few years; the seasons when he bowled without Anil Kumble at the other end. “Anil bhai was a very big bowler for Team India. After he left, there’s been a lot of responsibility. The good thing is that Zaheer has been there to take it.”I have the greatest of regard for Anil bhai. It was he who made us believe that we could win Tests abroad. We had a meeting in Sri Lanka where he said we should be number one in two years time. Exactly two years later, we are number one,” he said.”I respect him the most. He was a great bowler and a greater individual. He has helped me a lot to become what I am today. I know when I need his help, he is just a phone call away. “In the same breath, Harbhajan also remembered how his friend, the iconic Sachin Tendulkar, helped him add variations to his bowling.”Whenever I bowl to Sachin in the nets, I ask him what I should be doing. When I tour Australia or New Zealand, I take his advice. He showed me how to bowl a slider, a kind of outswinger, which I have used in ODIs and even taken wickets in Tests. But a slider can only be bowled with a new ball.”Bhajji remembered his former captains and the support he has had from some outstanding fielders in the close cordon.”My first captain was (Mohd) Azharuddin. Then I played a couple of games under Sachin. When Sourav became captain, he gave me a lot of confidence. I took a lot of wickets under him. He supported me all the way. (Mahendra Singh) Dhoni has been great with Team India. I just hope he continues doing what he is doing. Under each captain, I know I have given my 100 per cent.”During my time, Shiv Sunder Das was very good in close-in cordon. Sadagopan Ramesh normally sleeps a lot but that day he was awake to take a blinder offered by Warne. It gave me a hat-trick. Aakash Chopra was outstanding. Cheteshwar Pujara was very good in South Africa.”Then Rahul Dravid is very special. He has taken 50 catches off me. I hope another 50 will come very soon.”  With inputs from PTIlast_img read more