March 28, 2017

Cappella Cantorum Late Registration/Rehearsal Tonight for ‘Phantom of the Opera’ Medley, ‘Les Mis,’ & Choral Showcase

Tomorrow, Monday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m., Cappella Cantorum will hold a non-auditioned, late registration/rehearsal for Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and a Choral Showcase including: For the Beauty of the Earth-Rutter; Precious Lord, Take My Hand, and Come to the Music, Lift Thine Eyes.  (This Choral Showcase has replaced Johann Strauss’ Die Fledermaus.)

Rehearsals will generally be held at 7:30 p.m. at John Winthrop Middle School in Deep River.

Soloists will be chosen from the chorus.

The concert will be held on Sunday, March 26, in John Winthrop Middle School.

Registration is $40. Prices for individual pieces are Les Miserables, arr. Lojeski: $4,  Phantom of the Opera. arr. Lojeski: $4. Pay at rehearsal or www.CappellaCantorum.org  

For further information, call Barry at 860-388-2871.

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Essex Winter Series Opens 40th Season Sunday with Musical ‘Tour de Force’

Essex Winter Series Artistic Director Mihae Lee.

Season Includes Dan Levinson’s Roof Garden Jass Band, Garrison Keillor, Chanticleer

Known for its unique concerts of world-class talent and diversity, Essex Winter Series plans to celebrate its 40th anniversary year with a robust schedule for the winter months. The season-opener on Jan. 8 at 3 p.m. at Valley Regional High School in Deep River is a musical tour de force led by Artistic Director and pianist Mihae Lee.

Lee has carefully curated a program featuring breathtaking music that spans over 600 years. She will be joined by audience favorites William Purvis, Patricia Schuman, Randall Hodgkinson, the Attacca Quartet, as well as emerging young artists.

The concert begins with a celebratory fanfare of Copland, then a high spirited string quartet by Haydn, wonderful cabaret songs and jazz ballads. The first half ends with the ultimate crowd-pleaser, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue arranged for piano four-hands and performed by Ms. Lee and Mr. Hodgkinson.

The second half begins with beautiful Renaissance music for brass, then an aria from the opera Carmen and the finale movement of Brahms Piano Quartet in G minor, both in a passionate gypsy style. The concert will end with a bang with hot jazz performed by Jeff Barnhart, Vince Giordano, Paul Midiri, Joe Midiri, and Jim Lawlor.

The season continues on Feb. 19 with the Stu Ingersoll Jazz Concert featuring Dan Levinson’s Roof Garden Jass Band performing a centennial celebration of recorded New Orleans Jazz. On March 5, it’s Garrison Keillor and “Stories in Mind, Poems by Heart.” The beloved raconteur, author, and entertainer will share his unique brand of wisdom and humor in what is sure to be an unforgettable afternoon.

Chanticleer, an orchestra of voices, returns to the series on April 2 to perform the program “My Secret Heart” which includes a world premiere by Finnish composer Jaakko Mäntyjärvi, Cole Porter and Noel Coward standards, and the return of Augusta Read Thomas’ “Love Songs” to the repertoire.

All performances take place on Sunday afternoons at 3 p.m. with the Jan. 8 and Feb. 19 concerts at Valley Regional High School in Deep River, and March 5 and April 2 concerts at Old Saybrook High School. Individual tickets are $35 and $5 for full-time students with savings offered for subscriptions to all four performances. Seating is general admission. To purchase tickets or learn more, visit www.essexwinterseries.com or call 860-272-4572.

The 2017 season is generously sponsored by The Clark Group, Essex Meadows, Essex Savings Bank, Guilford Savings Bank, Jeffrey N. Mehler CFP LLC, and Tower Laboratories. Outreach activities are supported by Community Music School and donors to the Fenton Brown Circle.

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Holiday Pop-Up Art Gallery Opens on Lyme St. Through Dec. 31

A ‘Holiday Pop-Up Art Gallery’ hosted by Paynter Fine Art will be held Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 16 Lyme St., Old Lyme, through Dec. 31, 2016.

Five percent of all sales will benefit the Shoreline Soup Kitchens & Pantries.

For more information, visit paynterfineart@gmail.com

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Women Playwright’s Initiative Taking Shape at Ivoryton Playhouse, Director Submissions Now Sought

In February 2016, Laura Copland, Director of Play Development, and Jacqui Hubbard, Executive/Artistic Director of The Ivoryton Playhouse, began talks about creating a safe environment for women playwrights to workshop their plays with professional actors and directors. The Ivoryton Playhouse is excited to announce the 2017 inaugural festival of the Women Playwright’s Initiative. The workshopping festival runs from Feb. 26 to March 4, 2017. Staged readings of the winning scripts will take place on Friday, March 3 and Saturday, March 4, 2017 at The Ivoryton Playhouse, 103 Main Street, Ivoryton, CT, followed by discussions with playwrights, actors and directors.

A call for one act plays went out on the League of Professional Theatre Women’s website and was picked up across the country. By the submission deadline of Sept. 15, the Initiative received 183 scripts. The scripts hailed from all over the United States and Canada, even Israel.

For Ms. Copland, who read all of the plays, this experience has been humbling and inspiring. “All these women!  All these women expressing in dialogue and conflict, their passion, intelligence, yearning, anger, hurt, love, and humor. Women are a force! It has been my honor to read their work.”

The time constraints of one week rehearsal and two nights of staged readings permitted no more than two hour-long plays, and two shorter plays. After wrenching deliberation, thirteen plays were under consideration. Many fascinating plays with potential had to be eliminated. The small committee included Ms. Copland, Ms. Hubbard, Susan McCann, Box Office Manager at The Ivoryton Playhouse, Margaret McGlone Jennings, director, teacher and actor and Brooks Appelbaum, director and theatre critic.

Four terrific plays were selected. The committee is proud of the choices and looks forward to working with the playwrights, cast, and directors in what we hope will be a successful inaugural season of the Ivoryton Playhouse’s Women Playwright’s Initiative.

The Playhouse is now seeking submissions from local directors. The deadline for resume submissions is Nov. 30, 2016. Submit to Laura Copland at laurac@ivorytonplayhouse.org. (Calls for local actors will be in January, 2017.)

For more information about the Women’s Playwright Initiative, contact Jacqueline Hubbard, Executive Director, The Ivoryton Playhouse, at 860-767-9502 or jhubbard@ivorytonplayhouse.org

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Lyme Art Association’s ‘Deck The Walls’ Exhibition on View Through Jan. 6, 2017

'Early Morning Light' by Pamela Reese is one of the signature paintings of the 'Deck the Walls' exhibition that opens Friday at the Lyme Art Association.

‘Early Morning Light’ by Pamela Reese is one of the signature paintings of the ‘Deck the Walls’ exhibition that opens Friday at the Lyme Art Association.

The Lyme Art Association’s (LAA) annual festive art exhibition and sale, Deck the Walls, is open this afternoon from 12 to 5 p.m.

More than 200 original works of art by member artists are on display and priced to sell as holiday gifts. All subjects and mediums are featured.

“For Deck the Walls, the Lyme Art Association features a wide variety of appealing subjects at affordable prices that are great for holiday shopping. We hope to help solve those gift giving dilemmas – a beautiful piece of artwork is always appreciated!” says Jocelyn Zallinger, Gallery Manager.

The LAA is open Wednesday through Sunday, from 12 to 5 p.m., and by appointment. The building is located at 90 Lyme Street in Old Lyme, at the corner of Halls Road.

Call (860) 434-7802 for more information, or visit www.lymeartassociation.org.

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Cooley Gallery Hosts ‘All Paintings Great and Small’ Through Holiday Season

This painting, 'Storytime', is the signature image of the 'All Paintings Great and Small' exhibition, which opens tonight at The Cooley Gallery.

This painting, ‘Storytime’, is the signature image of the ‘All Paintings Great and Small’ exhibition, which opens tonight at The Cooley Gallery.

The Cooley Gallery hosts an opening reception for the annual holiday exhibition All Paintings Great and Small this evening from 5 to 8 p.m.

The exhibition features historic and contemporary works of art 12″ in size or smaller and for many in the area, this annual exhibition and opening celebration, which features 30 artists for its 30th year, has become an undisputed kick-off to the holiday season. Artists from around the country, with a concentration of works by artists in Connecticut, participate in this annual show.

For this year’s exhibition, the gallery is featuring select works by 30 contemporary artists. Each artist has been given “a wall” for their work. Gallery owner Jeff Cooley notes, “This show will be 30 little exhibitions within the holiday exhibition of select small works of art — these will be in addition to the upstairs gallery hung with historic small paintings. This slightly modified approach will offer an immediate overview of an artist’s work and may make this wonderfully large show a little bit easier to navigate.”

As in years past, All Paintings Great and Small offers a wide variety of subjects and media carefully chosen by the staff at the gallery.  Three of the four galleries at 25 Lyme Street are hung “salon-style” with multiples by each artist hung from floor to ceiling and a wealth of varied artwork. Prices range from the low hundreds on up giving collectors at all levels a chance to acquire some truly wonderful original works of art.

In addition to the holiday show the gallery will feature recent acquisitions and paintings from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

As in years past, All Paintings Great and Small offers a wide range of subjects and media carefully chosen by the staff at the gallery. Cooley notes, “We are a small operation. Everyone gets involved in everything here but especially with this exhibition: discovering artists and choosing their favorites. Lorre Broom, our gallery manager, orchestrates the logistics and artists. Nancy Pinney our website guru and an artist in her own right, makes sure the images are perfect and gets it all posted in time for people to get a start on their holiday shopping.”

The galleries at 25 Lyme Street are hung “salon-style” with multiples from floor to ceiling, and a wealth of varied artwork. Prices range from the low hundreds on up giving collectors at all levels a chance to acquire some truly wonderful original works of art.  The other exhibition in the back gallery features recent acquisitions, paintings from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The show runs through Jan. 7, 2017.

Founded in 1981 and located in the heart of historic Old Lyme, the Cooley Gallery specializes in fine American paintings from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries, including the Hudson River School, American Impressionism, and select contemporary artists.

Visitors are welcome and encouraged Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays 12 to 4 p.m. or online anytime at www.cooleygallery.com

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View “4th Dimension” Exhibition of Jan Dilenschneider’s Exceptional, Evolving Work at Lyme Academy

Jan Dillensheider (right) discusses her work with writer Nicole Prevost Logan

Jan Dilenshneider (right) discusses her work with writer and art critic Nicole Prevost Logan

This is the final week to view artist Jan Dilenschneider’s stunning exhibition titled, “4th Dimension,”which comprises 30 of her recent works on view in the Sill House Gallery at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven.  The not-to-be-missed exhibit will run through the end of the day on Saturday, Nov. 12.

Dilenschneider gave a fascinating talk Oct. 27 to a large audience of artists and art-lovers.  An engaging public speaker, she was both amusing and articulate, and her audience was clearly captivated by her remarks.  

Explaining that the title of her exhibition speaks to her wish to invoke the participation of viewers into her paintings, Dilenschneider expressed her hope that the “4th Dimension” will, “keep you guessing,” thus creating a desire to look longer at her paintings and therefore experience a more intense emotional reaction to them.  

She mentioned the Leonardo da Vinci technique of sfumato that she uses in which a fine shading is meant to produce a soft transition — in her words, “the mystery of the shadows,” — between colors and tones.  Dilenschneider described the overall effect of the technique as  creating an image that is, “misty in the distance.”

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A view of Dilenschneider’s “Impressionist Room” within the Sill House gallery.

Dilenschneider talked first to her audience in what she dubbed the “Impressionist Room” in the Sill House Gallery before moving into the second room where more of her abstract pieces are hung, including a vertical triptych.  She describes herself as, “An Expressionist who like Impressionism,” saying, “One cannot exist without the other.”

Some of her main themes were — to quote Confucius — that “there is nothing that does not have beauty in it.” She expands on that philosophy saying what everything you see around you is, in reality, “a work of art from which one can pull out the aesthetic.”  She notes there are four main themes to her work, “Color, relationship, design and gesture,” adding, “Color is the joy … gesture is the passion.”

Jan Dilenschneider stands in front of a dyptych - a pair - of her paintings in the Sill House Gallery.

Jan Dilenschneider stands in front of two of her paintings in the Sill House Gallery.

Dilenschneider often does paintings in pairs … or more, noting, “If you find a motif you like, paint it and paint it and paint it again …”  She is also captivated by color, saying, “I work on color … the theory of color … what is known as, ‘simultaneous contrast,'” adding, “If you get [the right] two [colors] together, they sing,” or to put it another way, she likes the colors to “vibrate” together by the juxtaposition of strong, clear or complimentary color schemes.

Dilenschneider’s vibrant landscape paintings, inspired by a passionate confluence of impressionist and expressionist styles, speak to the Old Lyme landscape that gave birth to American Impressionism. This idyllic setting is as appealing to artists today as it was when viewed over a century ago by Barbizon School painter Henry Ward Ranger, who called it a “landscape waiting to be painted.”

Lyme Academy College Campus Dean Todd Jokl chats with the artist.

Lyme Academy College Campus Dean Todd Jokl chats with the artist during the Opening Reception.

Emerging from a family of artists, Dilenschneider has painted all her life.  Yet, she never had a desire to exhibit or sell her work until the spring of 2013, when a friend insisted on buying two paintings.

Soon afterward her studio doors opened to the world. She was offered a solo show at the prestigious Galerie Pierre-Alain Challier in Paris’ historic Le Marais district, which started a remarkable chain of events: Three additional annual solo gallery shows in Paris followed by a solo museum show at the Bellarmine Museum in Fairfield, Conn. that broke attendance records.

Recently, she exhibited at the Art Paris Art Fair at the Grand Palais and the European Art Fair – Monaco (EAF-Monaco), which opened on July 19th at the Grimaldi Forum in Monte-Carlo. In addition to her participation in the Art Paris Art Fair and EAF Monaco, Dilenschneider will also be among the artists who will be part of a trip to Toledo, Spain, this fall under the auspices of the Springfield Museums in Springfield, Mass.

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Paintings on display in Dilenschneider’s “Abstract Room.”

Dilenschneider’s training includes studying at the North Shore Art League in Chicago, the National Academy of Design in New York and the Silvermine Art Center in Connecticut.  She has a BS in Fine Arts Education from Ohio State University.

Since she started exhibiting her work three years ago, Dilenschneider has sold more than 50 of her paintings, and developed a unique style of expressionistic painting.  Her inspiration comes from the ever-changing landscape around her Connecticut home on Long Island Sound. Living by the sea, she is inspired by shore grasses bending in the breeze, blue skies reflected in the cool water and extraordinary trees silhouetted against green lawns.

Vice President of development Fritz Jellinghaus with the artist.

Lyme Academy College Vice President of Development Fritz Jellinghaus, who conceived the idea of the exhibition, stands with the artist.  Both are members of the Connecticut Arts Council.

Philanthropic work is also an essential part of Dilenschneider’s life. She is a member of the board of the Connecticut Arts Council and is also a board member of Family Centers, Inc. in Greenwich, Conn. and Catholic Charities. She has been honored with the Helen Gratz Rockefeller Award for Outstanding Volunteerism and the Family Champion Award from the Connecticut Council of Family Service Agencies. She has also been honored by the Catholic Academy of Bridgeport for her artwork and her service.

looking_at_paintings

Visitors to the exhibit view Dilenschneider’s work in both galleries of the Sill House.

Dilenschneider established the Janet Hennessey Dilenschneider Scholar Rescue Award in the Arts, which is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE), a world leader in the international exchange of people and ideas that oversees the Fulbright Scholars program and helps rescue artists from countries in turmoil. The program she created with IIE recently relocated a Syrian artist and her family to New Jersey, where the Syrian is now a professor at Montclair State University and has applied for political asylum.

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World Premiere of Old Lyme Native Emily Zemba’s Play on Stage in Chicago Through Dec. 4

Playwright Emily Zemba

Playwright Emily Zemba

A play written by Emily Zemba, who graduated from Lyme-Old Lyme High School in 2006, opened Saturday in its world premiere at Chicago’s Den Theatre, where First Floor Theater is the resident theater company.

Zemba’s “Deer and the Lovers” is a bold new farce about being lost in love, lost in the woods, and forging a new path when life veers off track. Qiana and Peter take a romantic weekend getaway to New Hampshire only to find that a deer has crashed through the window and died. Things really go off the rails when Peter’s brash sister, Marnie, and her daft husband, Felix, show up unannounced. The dead deer, a mysterious animal control officer, and nightfall in the forest expose the harsh truths of each lover’s life.

First Floor Theater’s 2016-17 season features comedies from three women playwrights, with Zemba’s play having the opening spot from Nov. 5 through Dec. 4. First Floor Artistic Director, Hutch Pimentel comments, “I am so thrilled to have this astonishing collection of new plays by women in our fifth season. All of these stories of personal revolution are pulse-pounding, brutally honest and unbelievably funny. They are a testament to how we find humor, hope, and rebirth even in our darkest moments.”

Zemba, who currently lives in Brooklyn, N.Y., graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 2010 and completed her MFA from the Yale School of Drama in 2015.

Proud parents, Catherine Frank and Kurt Zemba of Old Lyme, were on hand in Chicago to celebrate opening night with their daughter.

Congratulations, Emily!

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See CT Premier of ‘Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical’ at Ivoryton

Michael Marotta and Kim Rachelle Harris in 'Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical,' which opens Wednesday at the Ivoryton Playhouse.

Michael Marotta as the Doctor and Kim Rachelle Harris as the title role in ‘Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical,’ which opens Wednesday at the Ivoryton Playhouse.

IVORYTON – Based on the life of Rosemary Clooney, American’s favorite girl singer comes to life on stage in this exhilarating and inspiring musical biography.

Kim Rachelle Harris makes her debut as Rosemary Clooney.

Kim Rachelle Harris makes her debut as Rosemary Clooney.

Tenderly is not a typical “juke-box musical.” It offers a fresh, remarkably personal, and poignant picture of the woman whose unparalleled talent and unbridled personality made her a legend. With her signature songs woven in and out, we learn both the story of her successes on film, radio, and TV, as well as the struggles in her personal life.

“I’d call myself a sweet singer with a big band sensibility,” Rosemary once wrote. She  came to prominence in the early 1950s with the novelty hit “Come On-a My House”, which was followed by other pop numbers such as “Mambo Italiano”, “Tenderly”, “Half as Much”, “Hey There” and “This Ole House.”

Clooney’s career languished in the 1960s, partly due to problems related to depression and drug addiction, but revived in 1977, when her “White Christmas” co-star Bing Crosby asked her to appear with him at a show marking his 50th anniversary in show business. She continued recording until her death in 2002.

Michael Marotta revisits the role of the Doctor in the Ivoryton Playhouse production.

Michael Marotta revisits the role of the Doctor in the Ivoryton Playhouse production.

This production was developed and premiered by The Human Race Theatre Company and produced at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. Michael Marotta* will be revisiting the role of the Doctor that he helped develop and Kim Rachelle Harris* will be making her debut as Rosemary Clooney. The production is directed by Brian Feehan, musical directed by Dan Brandl, set design by William Stark, lighting design by Marcus Abbott and costumes by Rebecca Welles.

Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on Oct. 26 and runs through Nov. 13. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m.

Tickets are $50 for adults; $45 for seniors; $22 for students and $17 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting www.ivorytonplayhouse.org  (Group rates are available by calling the box office for information.)

The Playhouse is located at 103 Main St. in Ivoryton.

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Kate’s Kid’s Camp Presents “Toys!”

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center — ‘The Kate’ — and Community Music School are partnering again under the umbrella of their performing arts summer camp, “Kate’s Camp for Kids,” to present a winter program and show entitled “Toys!”  This exciting program takes place at The Kate, 300 Main Street in Old Saybrook, and runs for six weekly sessions on Wednesday evenings from 4 to 5 p.m. beginning Wednesday, Oct. 26.

Launched in 2013, Kate’s Camp for Kids is a performing arts camp for children in grades K-5 incorporating music, dance, theater, and visual art.

Directed by Martha Herrle, a 15-year member of the Community Music School faculty and certified Kindermusik educator, this year’s camp theme will be “Toys!”  Students will be acting out the personalities of their favorite toys, all the while discovering that “Christmas dreams, large or small, can come true, for one and all.” Featuring five original songs and easy-to-learn rhyming dialog, the program culminates in a lively performance for friends and family.

Tuition for this camp is $125 and scholarships are available for families with a financial need.

For additional information and to register, visit www.community-music-school.org or call 860-767-0026.

Community Music School offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 30 year tradition of providing quality music instruction to residents of shoreline communities. CMS programs cultivate musical ability and creativity and provide students with a thorough understanding of music so they can enjoy playing and listening for their entire lives.  Learn more at visitwww.community-music-school.org or call (860)767-0026.

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Artist Jan Dilenschneider Featured in Exhibition at Lyme Academy

"Trees with broken color" by Jan Dilenschneider

“Trees with broken color” by Jan Dilenschneider is a signature painting from the exhibition opening today at the Sill House Gallery in Old Lyme.

Artist Jan Dilenschneider, just back to the U.S. from acclaimed exhibitions in Paris and Monaco, will exhibit upwards of 20 recent works in a major exhibition in the Sill House galleries on the Old Lyme campus of Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven.

The exhibition, “The 4th Dimension,” will open on Friday, Oct. 7, with a reception with the artist from 5 to 7 p.m. and is part of Lyme Academy College’s Center for Arts Programming fall events. The exhibition, in the 1817 federal-style Sill House, will be on view through Nov. 12. Gallery hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The exhibition is free and open to the public.

“We at Lyme Academy College are very proud to be exhibiting Jan’s exquisite paintings,” said Todd Jokl, campus dean. “Her sensitivity to the lushness, the colors and movements, of the landscape at a certain moment both reminds us of those great painters who first memorialized the Old Lyme area and also looks beyond the moment she captures so imaginatively to the timeless qualities of light and color.”

A classic work by Jan Dilenschneider.

A classic work by Jan Dilenschneider.

In Paris and Monaco, Dilenschneider’s landscape paintings met with critical acclaim. She was the only living American artist who had her work displayed at the recent European Art Fair – Monaco. Marguerite d’Aprile, director of the Center for Arts Programming at Lyme Academy College, noted, “We are quite honored and pleased to host an artist with such an extensive international exhibition record. Ms. Dilenschneider’s paintings, in both subject and color, breathe life into her landscape canvases.”

In an ideal marriage of art and place, Dilenschneider’s vibrant landscape paintings, inspired by a passionate confluence of impressionist and expressionist styles, speak precisely to the Old Lyme landscape that gave birth to American Impressionism.

This idyllic setting is as appealing to artists today as it was when viewed over a century ago by Barbizon School painter Henry Ward Ranger, who called it a “landscape waiting to be painted.” The landscape of Long Island Sound outside her studio windows in Darien, Conn., has provided a similar inspiration for Dilenschneider’s work.

Dilenschneider will also be giving a gallery talk at the exhibition site on Thursday, Oct. 27 (reception 6 p.m. to 7 pm; lecture at 7 p.m.).  The talk is open to the public ($15 per person) and seating is limited. Reservations must be made by contacting Kristen Brady at 860 434 3571 ext. 121kbrady@lymefs.newhaven.edu.

The exhibition and gallery talk are highlights of the fall schedule of the Center for Arts Programming. For more information about the fall schedule of classes, lectures, film screenings and special exhibitions, visit http://www.lymeacademy.edu/index.php/community-engagement.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts is a college of the University of New Haven.  Its mission is to educate aspiring artists through a rigorous studio curriculum rooted in figurative and representational art.  The college offers a comprehensive liberal arts education essential for advanced critical and creative thought.  For more information, visit: http://lymeacademy.edu/

 

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Letter From Paris – No, Now It’s Essex!  A Brave, New Museum Opens in DC

Nicole Prevost Logan

Nicole Prevost Logan

Editor’s Note:  Our popular writer from Paris, Nicole Prevost Logan, is back in Essex, CT, for the winter.  She does not normally write for us from Essex, but this year, she is making an exception and will be continuing to contribute articles to ValleyNewsNow.com and LymeLine.com during the winter months.  Here is her inaugural column from Essex about the opening of  a very special museum in Washington DC.

The Grand Opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) will take place in Washington DC this coming Saturday, Sept. 24.  The NMAAHC, the 19th and newest of the Smithsonian museums, was established by a bi-partisan Act of Congress in 2003.

The Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, Nov. 6, 2015. (Photo by Michael Barnes from http://newsdesk.si.edu/photos)

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, Nov. 6, 2015. (Photo by Michael Barnes / Smithsonian Institution.)

The massive structure occupies a prime location next to the Washington Monument and contrasts with the 555 ft. slender obelisk.  The dark bronze-colored metal lattice that covers the ‘Corona” also stands out from the white marble classical architecture of most of the other museums standing on the National Mall.

It has been a long struggle for the supporters, such as Congressman John Lewis (D-Georgia), to make the project a reality.  They needed to overcome the resistance from several senators who advocated another location. The final approval  was more than a triumph — it might be considered a miracle.  It succeeded in making a strong statement as to the importance of Black history and culture in the American nation.

The lead designer was David Adjaye, son of a Ghanaian diplomat and the lead architect Philip Freehon, who died in 2009.  Founding Director Lonnie B. Bunch III is the visionary and driving force of the project.  During some of the many interviews he gave to the press and to a variety of audiences, including select ones like the Aspen institute, he explains the building process and his objective with a very contagious enthusiasm.

The NMAAHC is not intended to be a Holocaust museum, he explains . Its mission is to show the pain but also the joy and the creativity of African-Americans.  A daunting fund-raising goal of 450,000 million dollars had to be reached.

The three-tier effect of the construction incorporates elements from African culture, such as the Yoruban crowns from Nigeria.  Inside the building, high tech designs and the enormity of the space will make it possible to be versatile in organizing several exhibits simultaneously.

The collections had to be created from zero.  It required a treasure hunt into the attics, trunks and basements of the population.  To date 35,000 artifacts have been collected.  A segregated train from outside Chattanooga (TN) was lowered by crane and the museum built around it.  All traffic stopped on Constitution Ave. when an oversized truck delivered the control tower from a federal prison.

Artifacts showing the terrible fate of the slaves are very moving.  Such is an amulet created by the Lombi tribe in the form of a shackle.  More tragic still were the shackles for children.

But fun and the world of entertainment are also present in the displays , such as Louis Armstrong and his trumpet, Lena Horne or Marianne Andersen . The film archives will be essential to build up history, from Harriet Tubman to the human rights movements of the 1950s and 1960s.

According to Washington insiders , the opening of the new museum is the hottest event in a decade.  More than 150,000 special tickets have been distributed to dignitaries while long lines of visitors gather at the entrances of the building to purchase tickets for general admission after the opening.

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OL Library & St. Ann’s Host Art Show, Lecture Series on Plum Island

This signature painting for the 'Natural Beauty of Plum Island' exhibition is by John Sargent.

This signature painting for the ‘Natural Beauty of Plum Island’ exhibition is by John Sargent.

The Old Lyme–Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library and St. Ann’s Church announce their collaborative program series,The Natural Beauty of Plum Island: Sea, Seals  Sunsets and More beginning in September. The partnership will hold concurrent art exhibits and a lecture series.

The first art opening reception at the OLPGN Library will be held on Friday, September 16 from 5 to 7 p.m.  St. Ann’s will host an art opening luncheon reception at 11:45 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18 following services.

In addition to the art exhibitions, a lecture series to educate the public about the island’s history, habitat and its preservation will be presented. The public is invited to attend the events and experience an amazing breadth of images of Plum Island in acrylics and pastels by painter John Sargent and photographs by Robert Lorenz.  The two exhibits will run until Nov. 23.

Experience the unprecedented access given to Sargent and Lorenz that allowed them to create works depicting beaches, rocky shorelines and coves, wildlife and the occasional visitors who come by boat and ferries. Sargent is a retired art teacher with a studio at his Quaker Hill home and Lorenz a retired commercial photographer, who divides his time between Old Saybrook and New York City.

The lecture series offers four distinct perspectives on the island by experts who will share their insights and knowledge of its importance to our region.  All programs begin at 7 p.m. and are free and open to the public. Note the location for each lecture.

Thursday, Sept 22 at OLPGN Library:

Preserving Plum Island for Future Generations” by Chris Cryder, Special Projects Coordinator for Save The Sound and Outreach Coordinator for the

Thursday, Oct 6 at Saint Ann’s Church:

Survey of the History of Plum Island” by Amy Folk, Collections Manager Southold Historical Society and co-author of the book “A World Unto Itself, The Remarkable History of Plum Island, New York”.

Thursday, Oct 27 at OLPGN Library:

Plum Island’s Place in the Geological History of Southern New England” by Ralph Lewis  Connecticut State Geologist Emeritus, and currently part-time Officiate of The Long Island Sound Resource Center  at the University of Connecticut- Avery Point   and a professor in residence in the Marine Studies Department  at UCONN- Avery Point.

Thursday, Nov. 10 at Saint Ann’s Church:

Plum Island’s Biodiversity, Birds, Bats, Bugs, and Basking Seals” by Matthew D. Schlesinger, PhD, Chief Zoologist New York Natural Heritage Program and Adjunct Assistant Professor, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

Registration is expected for all lectures.

For programs at the Library, visit www.oldlyme.lioninc.orgfor the online calendar of events or call 860-434-1684 and ask for the Reference Desk. To register at St. Ann’s Church, call 860-434-1621 or email office@saintannsoldlyme.org.

The Library is located at 2 Library Lane, off Lyme Street in Old Lyme. Hours are Monday and Wednesday, 10am to 7pm; Tuesday and Thursday, 10am to 6pm; Friday, 10am to 5pm and Saturday, 10am to 4pm.

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Final Week to View “The Artist’s Garden” at Florence Griswold Museum

Exterior view of the Florence Griswold Museum, which hosts a Free Day for New London residents on Sunday.

Exterior view of the Florence Griswold Museum on Lyme Street.

This is the final week for the exhibition, The Artist’s Garden: American Impressionism and the Garden Movement, 1887–1920. The exhibition is on view through Sept. 18, and its presentation at this museum is supported by a grant from Connecticut Humanities.

Organized by the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, The Artist’s Garden tells the story of American Impressionists and the growing popularity of gardening as a leisure pursuit at the turn of the 20th century. Paintings and stained glass from the Pennsylvania Academy are blended with paintings, sculpture, prints, books, and photographs from the Florence Griswold Museum’s permanent collection, as well as selected private loans. Drawing on new scholarship, The Artist’s Garden considers the role of artists and designers in defining a cultivated landscape in an era of new attitudes toward leisure, labor, and a burgeoning environmentalism.

The Artist’s Garden is the first exhibition to situate discussions of the growth of the Garden Movement within the politics of the Progressive era, with which it overlapped at the turn of the twentieth century. The Progressive era was marked by intense political and social change. Along with the surge of nationalism and patriotic optimism came growing concerns over mass immigration, women’s suffrage, and urbanization. The Garden Movement proposed that the creation of public parks and the hobby of gardening could provide beauty and balance within this fast-changing world.

The American Impressionist works in this exhibition demonstrate the profound impact of theGarden Movement on the American culture. “Not only is the Florence Griswold Museum an ideal venue for this exhibition because of its history as a boardinghouse for artists and its restored gardens, but also because Connecticut women like Old Lyme’s Katharine Ludington played an important part in Progressive-era causes such as women’s suffrage while also tending a much loved garden,” said Curator Amy Kurtz Lansing.   

Many American artists developed their interest in gardens from their travels overseas. The outdoors became a major subject for Impressionists as they embraced painting outside, or en plein air. Not only does Daniel Garber’s Saint James’s Park, London, 1905 (on loan from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts – PAFA) demonstrate theImpressionists’ careful study of light and quick, loose brushwork, but an attempt to capture the tension within urban life between the realities of development and the desire for pastoral tranquility. Public parks like St. James’s were praised by critics as peaceful oases amid the hectic frenzy of city life.

The Progressive era was a time of important change for women. They became leaders of the Garden Movement who combined their creative interests in art and gardening with a passion for Progressive causes, such as women’s suffrage. By blending art, writing, and gardening in their careers, women like Anna Lea Merritt were at the vanguard of professionalizing women’s work. They used their public platform to engage social issues like environmental conservation and immigration through the metaphor and example of the garden.

Professional artists such as Cecilia Beaux, Violet Oakley, and Jane Peterson participated in these changes by coupling their interest in modern art with a love of the garden. Peterson wrote that she loved painting flowers for their “prismatic hues of therainbow.” In Spring Bouquet, ca. 1912 (on loan from PAFA) the steeply tilted perspective and sense of patterning inthe composition are variations on the stylistic principles of Post-Impressionism. Locally, practitioners like artist, gardener, and suffragist Katherine Ludington exemplified this trend.

The exhibition will include selections from FGM’s Ludington Family Collection that acknowledge the expression of the Garden Movement in Connecticut, as well as around the family’s other home base in Philadelphia, the epicenter of the Garden Movement.

'Crimson Rambler' by Philip Leslie Hale is a signature paintings of the exhibition.

‘Crimson Rambler’ by Philip Leslie Hale is a signature paintings of the exhibition.

Even as women were making inroads towards more equal status and finding personal and professional expression through the venue of the garden, images that presented a sentimental and idealized vision of women posed decoratively in nature were still very popular. Philip Leslie Hale’s The Crimson Rambler, ca. 1908 (on loan from PAFA) embodies this simultaneous tendency to equate women with the beauty of flowers. He pairs a flowering vine with a women by adding touches of rose red to the lady’s hat and sash, and by draping each across the porch or trellis. Hale’s blooms are considerably larger than the flowers actually grow, suggesting that he idealized the fashionable plant as much as the woman beside it.

Hale’s painting also demonstrates his knowledge of gardening. Many artists combined their devotion to painting flowers with the practice of planting and tending gardens. “An artist’s interest in gardening is to produce pictures without brushes,” Anna Lea Merritt observed in her 1908 book An Artist’s Garden Tended, Painted, Described. Artists’ gardens were personal laboratories for Impressionist studies of light and color. They were outdoor classrooms where painters could teach their students about form and composition.

Special emphasis is given in the exhibition to the many ways Miss Florence’s garden served as a space for creative expression, both for her as a gardener and for the artists who painted and taught there. Paint was not the only medium used to translate nature’s vibrancy. Peony Window Panel, 1908-1912 (on loan from a private collection) by Louis Comfort Tiffany shows his appreciation for color and pattern. As a glass designer, his distinctive floral aesthetic defined the era and was perhaps cultivated in his own Long Island garden where he enjoyed painting.

The grounds of the Florence Griswold Museum provide the perfect accompaniment to The Artist’s Garden. After walking through the restored 1910 garden on the Museum’s campus, visitors will see first-hand in the galleries how artists captured nature’s fleeting beauty on canvas. “Miss Florence’s” lovingly tended garden was a favorite subject for many of the artists of the Lyme Art Colony who stayed at her boardinghouse.

One of the paintings on view in the exhibition, William Chadwick’s On the Piazza, ca. 1908 (collection of the Florence Griswold Museum) shows a female model posing on the side porch of the boardinghouse. Chadwick first visited Old Lyme in 1902 and soon became a central figure in this artist colony, along with Childe Hassam, Robert Vonnoh, and other painters who sought the colonial-era architecture and gardens of Old Lyme and their nostalgic suggestions of a simpler, earlier time, far removed from hectic, modern city life. A walk to the Lieutenant River, on the grounds of the Museum, provides further examples of vistas painted by the nature-loving artists.

Visitors can tour the historic boardinghouse – the 1817 Florence Griswold House – where the artists of the Lyme Art Colony lived, played, and worked. Paintings in the home continue the story of the artists’ love of the landscape. A new Guide to the Historic Landscape encourages visitors to walk where the artists created some of their most enduring paintings.

The recipient of a Trip Advisor 2015 Certificate of Excellence, the Florence Griswold Museum has been called a “Giverny in Connecticut” by the Wall Street Journal, and a “must-see” by the Boston Globe. In addition to the restored Florence Griswold House, the Museum features a gallery for changing art exhibitions, education and landscape centers, a restored artist’s studio, thirteen acres along the Lieutenant River, and extensive gardens. TheMuseum is located at 96 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, Connecticut. Visit www.FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org for more information.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme hosts a celebration of the site’s historic gardens featuring special events, displays, demonstrations, and family activities. From June 3 through 12, visitors can enjoy a wide variety of activities for all ages and interests.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme hosts a celebration of the site’s historic gardens featuring special events, displays, demonstrations, and family activities. From June 3 through 12, visitors can enjoy a wide variety of activities for all ages and interests.

Garden lovers are invited to enjoy Café Flo Tuesdays and Saturdays from 11:30am-2:30pm and from 1-3:30pm on Sundays. Menu items are garden-fresh and family friendly. Dine on the veranda overlooking the Lieutenant River or pick up a basket and blanket and picnic along the river.

The Museum is located on a 13-acre site in the historic village of Old Lyme at 96 Lyme Street, exit 70 off I-95. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors, $8 students, and free to children 12 and under. For more information, visit FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org or call 860-434-5542 x 111.

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Lori Warner Gallery Hosts ‘ART-ISTRY’ Featuring Work of David Rau from Flo Gris: Opening Reception Tonight

Detail from a featured work by David Rau in the ART-ISTRY exhibition opening Oct. 1 at the Lori Warner Gallery.

Detail from a featured work, ‘Untitled,’ by David Rau in the ART-ISTRY exhibition opening Oct. 1 at the Lori Warner Gallery.

ART-ISTRY, featuring new work by David D. J. Rau and Christopher B. Steiner, opens Saturday, Oct. 1, at the Lori Warner Gallery in Chester with a reception from 5 to 8 p.m. to which all are welcome.  On view will be three-dimensional assemblage pieces by Rau, and limited edition prints and original photomontage works by Steiner.

This exhibition will be a very special one since the Lori Warner Gallery invites artists to exhibit their work once per year and the selection process is highly competitive.

David D.J. Rau’s Vintage Hardware Drawer series, was inspired by 14 antique drawers that originally held screws, bolts, and plugs (according to the various labels). Rau transforms them into miniature surreal stage sets using vintage and antique pieces collected over the years. Inspired by the past, his aesthetic combines vintage photography, tattered paper, intriguing ephemera, and antiques into humorous, ironic, and most importantly, beautiful scenes. 

Rau is the Director of Education & Outreach at the Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme, Conn. Responsible for the public programs and making connections between the art and history and the Museum’s visitors. Rau holds a masters degree in Art History and a certificate of Museum Studies from the University of Michigan. Rau has worked at Cranbrook Art Museum.

Detail from "The Fall of Suburban Man" by Christopher Steiner.

Detail from “The Fall of Suburban Man” (2016) by Christopher Steiner.

Christopher B. Steiner has always been partial to artists with “a deep sense of wit and (twisted) humor.” His work has been described as “irreverent parody with a twist of dark absurdity.” Steiner deconstructs iconic or cliché images and well-rehearsed art-historical traditions in order to invite alternative readings. These interventions are meant to surprise, delight, destabilize, and sometimes even shock. His intent is to “reinvigorate familiar images by bringing to them new perspectives and insights through unexpected juxtapositions and non sequitur visual tropes”.

Steiner holds an undergraduate degree from the Johns Hopkins University, and a Ph.D. in anthropology from Harvard University. He is the Lucy C. McDannel ’22 Professor of Art History and Anthropology at Connecticut College, where he also serves as Founding Director of the Museum Studies Program.

Steiner is also a member of the board of trustees of the Lyman Allyn Art Museum, where he was also Interim Director in 2003-04. In addition, he serves on the Advisory Boards of both the Florence Griswold Museum and the Bellarmine Museum at Fairfield University.

The exhibition will be on view through Dec. 1, and is free and open to the public. The Lori Warner Gallery is located at 21 Main St. in Chester, Conn.

For further information, call 860-322-4265, email gallery@loriwarner.com and visit www.loriwarner.com or www.facebook.com/loriwarnergallery/

eum; the Henry Ford Museum and The Currier Gallery of Art. Rau also teaches Museum Studies at Connecticut College.

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Acclaimed Local Contemporary Artist Judy Friday Opens Gallery in Old Lyme

'February Sunrise' by Judy Friday.

‘February Sunrise’ by Judy Friday.

One of the area’s best known contemporary artists has opened her own gallery in Old Lyme. Judy Friday Gallery, full of Friday’s paintings, photography, weavings and sculptures, can be found at 10 Lyme Street.

Friday, a resident of Old Saybrook, explains that she opened the new gallery for a number of reasons, noting, “The first is that the space is so perfect for a gallery and studio combined.”

She says the second reason for opening her own gallery is, “… that I had too much work accumulating in my studio at home and I love organizing paintings and my hooked rug pillows in a clean, organized way.”

Friday adds, “The third reason is that I wanted to be able to show my work year-round versus one month here and there,” commenting, “I appreciate all the shows I’ve been given over the years.”

Judy Friday Gallery is open Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by chance or appointment. The phone number is 860.581.0116.

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‘Touching Water’ Exhibit by Roxanne Steed on View at Old Lyme Library Through August

'Looking South on the Connecticut River at Old Lyme' is the signature painting of the 'Touching Water' exhibition opening Friday at the Old Lyme Library.

‘Looking South on the Connecticut River at Old Lyme’ is the signature painting of the ‘Touching Water’ exhibition opening Friday at the Old Lyme Library.

The Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library is currently hosting a new exhibition titled Touching Water featuring artwork by Roxanne Steed.

Steed has lived in some of the most beautiful towns on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts as well as traveled to Hawaii, Singapore, Italy, France, England and Ireland.  Always in pursuit of new challenges, her works explore the local waterways painted en plein air.

Steed pursued her formal art education along the way at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts in Old Lyme, Conn.; The Art League School in Alexandria, Va.; and Watts Atelier in Encinitas, Calif.  Recent studies with colorists Leif Nilsson, and Camille Przewodek, students of renowned teacher Henry Hensche have enabled her to pursue the ever-intriguing study of the effects light on color.

The works of the American Impressionists have had a great influence on her work, particularly those of New England and California. Steed says, “There is nothing quite so satisfying as painting from life in the great outdoors. I find the textural quality of paint an exciting element of painting as much as design, composition, and color. Evoking an emotional response to a ‘sense of place’ is a great thrill; that connection with my viewer is priceless.”

Steed’s professional affiliations include Oil Painters of America, American Impressionist Society, Lyme Art Association, Mystic Art Center, CT Plein Air Painters Society and DailyPainters.com.

Her paintings are in private collections across the United States, as well as Canada, Ireland, UK, Germany, South Korea, Australia, and Dubai. Her most recent corporate collector is Bank of Hampton Roads (Virginia).

The exhibition will run until Aug. 31.

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State Troubadour Performs at Lyme Library This Evening

Connecticut State Troubador Kate Callahan gives a concert at Lyme Public Library Friday evening.

Connecticut State Troubador Kate Callahan gives a concert at Lyme Public Library Friday evening.

Friends of the Lyme Public Library will sponsor a concert presented by Connecticut State Troubadour, Kate Callahan, this evening, Friday, July 15, at 6 p.m., at the Lyme Public Library at 482 Hamburg Rd./Rte. 156, Lyme.

The concert will be outdoors on the lawn area near library patio.  Attendees are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets.  This is a family program and all are invited.

In the case of inclement weather, the event will be held at the Lyme Public Hall, 249 Hamburg Rd./Rte. 156, Lyme.  Refreshments will be available for a small fee.

As Connecticut’s 16th State Troubadour, Kate Callahan gives a concert of compelling original music plus songs by the Beatles, Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan.  Connecticut is one of the only states that honors a singer-songwriter with a formal position.

Callahan serves as an ambassador of music and song and promotes cultural literacy among Connecticut citizens.  She has shared stages with songwriter legends Judy Collins, Noel Paul Stookey (Peter, Paul & Mary) and Aztec Two Step.

Callahan has been  awarded the prestigious United Arts Campaign’s Featured Artist of the year in 2014 and named Connecticut’s Best Singer-Songwriter.  She has also received Hartford’s Woman of Character Award and has five albums including her 2014 release Two Doors, which was featured on WNPR.

The Boston Globe says “Kate has garnered an appreciative audience with her easy going vibe and mystical lyrics.”  She lives in Connecticut where she also leads a vocal improvisation workshop she created, called the Miracle of Melody.

For more information visit:  http://www.kate-callahan.com/#!home/mainPage andhttp://music.lafamos.com/katecallahan.

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“Chicago” Opens at Ivoryton Playhouse; Tickets Sold Out for Opening Week

Lyn Philistine (Ivoryton Playhouse photo)

Lyn Philistine (Ivoryton Playhouse photo)

Tickets are going fast for the steamy and sexy musical, “Chicago,” currently running at the Ivoryton Playhouse through July 24.  Winner of six 1997 Tony Awards, including Best Musical Revival, “Chicago” has everything that makes theater great:  a universal tale of fame, fortune and all that jazz;  one show-stopping song after another combined with frenetically energetic dancing.

Set in Prohibition-era Chicago, the musical (book by Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred Ebb) is based on a 1926 play of the same name by reporter Maurine Dallas Watkins based on actual criminals and crimes. The story is a satire on corruption in the administration of criminal justice and the concept of the “celebrity criminal” – as timely today as it was when it first opened on Broadway in 1975.

“Chicago” was revived on Broadway in 1996 and holds the record as the longest-running musical revival and the longest-running American musical in Broadway history, and is the second longest-running show in Broadway history, behind “The Phantom of the Opera.” The London revival ran for nearly 15 years, becoming the longest-running American musical in West End history.

Christopher Sutton* returns to Ivoryton in the role of Billy Flynn and will be accompanied by his wife, Lynn Philistine* in the role of Roxie Hart. CCC award-winning actress Sheniqua Trotman* also returns to Ivoryton, this time in the role of Mama Morton. She was last seen in Ivoryton as Effie in “Dreamgirls.” Stacey Harris* will be playing Velma Kelly, Z. Spiegel is Mary Sunshine and Ian Shain is Amos Hart.

Christopher Sutton (Ivoryton Playhouse photo)

Christopher Sutton (Ivoryton Playhouse photo)

The production is directed and choreographed by Todd Underwood and musical directed by Paul Feyer, with set design by Martin Marchitto, lighting design by Marcus Abbott and costume design by Elizabeth Cipollina. Executive producers are Michael A. Dattilo and Frank Perrotti.

Whether you’ve seen it before and want to recapture the magic or you’ve been thrilled by the Academy Award-winning film, “Chicago” always delivers.  Don’t miss the experience of this show live on stage at the Ivoryton Playhouse.

Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m.

Tickets are $50 for adults, $45 for seniors, $22 for students and $17 for children. They are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting www.ivorytonplayhouse.org. Group rates are available by calling the box office for information. The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.

*denotes member of Actors Equity

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LAA Hosts Two New Exhibitions, ‘American Waters’ and ‘Purely Pastel’

'Boundless Energy" by Anthony Davis is one of the signature paintings of the American Waters exhibition.

‘Boundless Energy” by Anthony Davis is one of the signature paintings of the American Waters exhibition.

The Lyme Art Association (LAA) hosts American Waters: A Marine Art Exhibition; Purely Pastel, and Celebrating Lyme’s Beauty will run concurrently with American Waters in sequential shows.

Visitors of all ages can enjoy American Waters, the LAA’s summer exhibition of work by the country’s premier maritime artists, which is on view in the LAA’s sky-lit galleries through Aug. 26. An opening reception for American Waters will be held this evening, Friday, June 17, from 5 to 7pm at the LAA, 90 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, Conn. Admission is free, all are welcome and refreshments will be served.

The exhibition features work by the American Society of Marine Artists as invited guests, alongside marine works by LAA artists. Russ Kramer, an internationally recognized marine painter, juried the exhibition. Kramer notes, “What better place for an exhibition of marine-inspired art than the Lyme Art Association … a true landmark in our region’s artistic history, whose proximity to the Lieutenant and Connecticut rivers and Long Island Sound has inspired artists for a century. “

He continues, “These new works in the exhibition American Waters are by many of the finest practitioners of marine art working today. To think the same subjects continue to inspire us a hundred years later is testament to this area’s enduring, irresistible allure.”

Concurrent with the American Waters exhibition, the Lyme Art Association will present two shorter exhibitions. From June 10 through July 15, the Connecticut Pastel Society presents Purely Pastel, their annual exhibition. Then from July 22 through Aug. 26, a juried show of paintings created during this year’s paint out at the Hamburg historic district will be shown in Celebrating Lyme’s Beauty.

Lyme Art Association Board President, Katherine Simmons, states, “American Waters continues an LAA tradition of exhibiting the very best of fine contemporary American marine painting. We are grateful to the members of the American Society of Marine Artists who are joining us as invited guests, and we would especially like to thank our premier media sponsor, The Day, and our presenting sponsor, Suisman Shapiro Attorneys at Law, along with juror Russ Kramer, for making this exhibition happen.”

The LAA was founded in 1914 by the American Impressionists and continues the tradition of exhibiting and selling representational artwork by its members and invited artists, as well as offering art instruction and lectures to the community. The Association is located at 90 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, CT, in a building designed by Charles Adams Platt and located within an historic district. Admission is free with contributions appreciated. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 10 to 5pm, or by appointment.

For more information on exhibitions, purchase of art, art classes, or becoming a member, call 860-434-7802 or visit www.lymeartassociation.org

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