December 19, 2018

‘Cities of Peace’ on View at Lyme Academy Through Sept. 8

Lhasa: 10 Directions (Tibet), Cities of Peace, 22-karat gold leaf, egg tempera on Belgian linen, 69 x 104″, 2005, is featured in the ‘Cities of Peace’ exhibition at Lyme Academy.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts hosts an opening reception this evening in the Chauncey Stillman Gallery from 5 to 7 p.m. for “Cities of Peace: A Living Monument to Cultural Heritage Preservation.’  All are welcome and there is no charge for admission.
This historic exhibition features monumental paintings illuminating the heart and soul of 10 cities around the world that have suffered major conflict and trauma—Baghdad, Beijing, Hiroshima, Jerusalem, Kabul, Lhasa, Monrovia, New York, Sarajevo, Yerevan — and how the community collaboration behind the creation of each of these paintings demonstrates the power of art as cultural diplomacy and ambassadors of peace.
The founder and artistic director of the Cities of Peace project is Ellen Frank, Ph.D. of the Ellen Frank Illumination Arts Foundation, Inc., Cities of Peace®.  The exhibition curator is Christina Mossaides Strassfield.  For more information on the ‘Cities of Peace’ project, visit this link. 
The exhibition sponsors are Connecticut Humanities, Anonymous, Dr. John & Donita Aruny, Becky and Ted Crosby, Clo and Stephen Davis,  Lee and John Pritchard, Saybrook Point Inn/Fresh Salt, and Barbara and Dick Shriver.
The exhibition will be on view through Sept. 8, 2018.
The gallery is open Monday through Thursday, from 10 a.m.to 4 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
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‘American Waters’ Exhibition, Hudson Valley Art Association Juried Show on View at Lyme Art Association

‘Bottoms Up’ by Richard Stevens is one of the signature paintings of the ‘American Waters’ exhibition.

Visitors of all ages will enjoy American Waters, the Lyme Art Association’s (LAA) summer exhibition of work by the area’s premier maritime artists. The show will be on view in the LAA’s sky-lit galleries from June 15 through Aug. 3. The opening reception for both exhibitions will be held on Saturday, June 23, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the LAA, 90 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, Connecticut. Music and refreshments will be offered and all are welcome.  There is no charge for admission.

Gallery Manager Jocelyn Zallinger notes, “The lovely peaceful interior of the Lyme Art Association is the perfect venue for marine-inspired art. The artwork, by member artists, takes inspiration from the sea in all its manifestations. Children playing by placid shorelines, boats in raging storms, solitary fishermen, and waves crashing on beaches are likely to be among the works represented.”

American Waters will be juried by Monique Foster, director of the Mystic Maritime Gallery at Mystic Seaport.

‘Windswept’ by Judy Perry is another featured work in the ‘American Waters’ show.

Concurrent with the American Waters exhibition, the Hudson Valley Art Association (HVAA) will present its 85th Annual Juried Exhibition. This exhibition includes the finest representational paintings, drawings, prints and sculpture from HVAA’s member artists.

Lyme Art Association Board President Katherine Simmons comments, “American Waters continues an LAA tradition of exhibiting the best of fine contemporary American marine art. We are also very pleased to welcome back the Hudson Valley Art Association and what is sure to be a very impressive show. We would especially like to thank our presenting sponsor, Suisman Shapiro.”

The Lyme Art Association 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 a national historic district. Admission is free with contributions appreciated. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 10 to 5 p.m.

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

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Sing for Joy! Cappella Cantorum Hosts Vocal Camp in Old Saybrook, July 23-27

Bring the joy of singing to your summer by attending Cappella Cantorum’s Summer Vocal Camp July 23 to July 27 from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at St. Paul Lutheran Church on Great Hammock Road in Old Saybrook.

Founder of the Salt Marsh Opera and Cappella’s music director Simon Holt and nationally known tenor Brian Cheney will lead instructive sessions on improving singing skills and how to sing in a choral environment.

Physical therapist Bonnie Brenneman will talk on strengthening diaphragm muscles to improve breathing.

Each evening will consist of two workshops – one in vocal production and one in music theory. A short concert will be given by participants at the end of the week. Camp will be limited to 100 singers. Anyone interested in improving their singing from high school students to adults are encouraged to come and perfect their art.

The church is air conditioned. Cost will be $85. For more information or to register, visit CappellaCantorum.org. or e-mail wrspearrin@yahoo.com.

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Major Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition on View in Old Lyme Through Summer

Looking across Gilbert Boro’s Sculpture Grounds towards his own Studio 80, the sculptures shown in the photo are all by Boro himself.

OLD LYME — Gilbert Boro, owner and curator of Studio 80 + Sculpture Grounds in Old Lyme, will host Summer Sculpture Showcase 2018: An Exhibition of Unique Landscape Sculptures on his property in the center of this historic town. Boro’s towering studio is also on the beautiful four-and-a-half acre landscaped grounds, as well as his home.

Featuring 20 works by both established, nationally renowned sculptors, as well as fresh new faces, the summer-long show opens June 4. A meet-the-artist opening reception is set for Saturday, June 9 from 5 to 7 p.m., which will feature a live jazz band and a performance by David Dorfman Dance. There is no charge for admission and all are welcome.

Competition to exhibit was keen, with 120 submissions from around the country. Entries were evaluated for concept, execution, creative process, artistry, and how it would fit in the landscape. Boro, a nationally acclaimed sculptor in his own right, hosts this annual show to provide a venue for both young and mid-career sculptors to showcase their work to a diverse audience.

Boro also holds a firm conviction that art and viewer should be interactive. His Sculpture Grounds are an environment where viewers are not only permitted – but encouraged – to touch sculptures. “I really think that three-dimensional art should be handled, touched, pushed, and experienced in three dimensions,” he says. “It’s the only way you can understand it.”

The exhibitors accepted for the Summer Sculpture Showcase embrace this concept. Acclaimed exhibitor artists from Connecticut, the northeast region, and around the country are represented in the show.

‘Lustration’ by Sarah Haviland is one of the features works in Summer Sculpture Showcase 2018.

New York sculptor Sarah Haviland, who received a Fulbright Award to study in Taiwan this fall, had two pieces selected: Lustration, a contemplative female figure of aqua resin and mirrors, and Seraphim Mirror, a butterfly-shaped wall hanging created with galvanized mesh, resin, and a mirror. Haviland’s abstract work explores female identity and is exhibited both nationally and internationally.

Aether by Andreas von Huene is on display at Studio 80 + Sculpture Grounds.

Miguel Castillo Hernao, a native of Colombia, evolved to sculpting after university studies in literature and philosophy. Hernao explores geometry, color and repetitive forms in his works composed of stone, wood, metal and plexiglass. His seven-foot tall entry, Composition #28, is formed of painted riveted aluminum.

Chicago artist Ruth Aizuss Migdal’s bold and striking Radiate, standing more than eight feet tall, also plays with female forms and is composed of patinated bronze gilded with gold leaf.

Connecticut-based artists include Deborah Hornbake, whose Running Man is a fusion of wood, pipe, copper tubing, wire and stones; Eric Camiel, who has works in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and The Library of Congress, and whose film work has received numerous Emmy and Academy Award nominations, will have his aluminum sculpture, Sail Dream, on display; and Denis Folz’s monumental 11- foot steel sculpture, Feathered Resting Spot.

Boro is committed to supporting and exhibiting promising new artists. This year he presents Shelli Weiler as the featured indoor artist, with her photography exhibit titled Intimate Exchange. Weiler, a native of Scarsdale, NY, is studying photography at Wesleyan University in Middletown. Her photography explores the deep hidden character of people through ground-breaking and provocative poses and settings. Boro is presenting her work in the small, freestanding ESB Gallery, created in honor of his late wife, Emily.

Situated halfway between Boston and New York, Summer Sculpture Showcase 2018 is set on Boro’s four-and-a-half acre estate in the heart of Old Lyme’s historic village. In addition to special exhibits, the permanent display consists of approximately 100 works strategically placed around the park-like grounds.

Now in its 14th year, the Sculpture Grounds host more than 5,000 visitors a year. Visitors are welcome to bring their own picnic to the cafe. The grounds are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, year-round, admission is free, and touching the sculptures is encouraged.

The show runs through Oct. 26 and is curated by Gilbert Boro, and Exhibitions Coordinator and photographer, Christina Goldberg.

For more information about Studio 80 + Sculpture Grounds, visit www.sculpturegrounds.com. The David Dorfman Dance group performs and holds workshops around the country and will be in residence at Conn College in New London June 6-11.

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‘A Night with Janis Joplin’ Opens at Ivoryton Playhouse

Paige MacNamara plays Janis Joplin in the production about the legendary singer’s life opening at Ivoryton Playhouse, May 30. Photos by Curtis Brown.

The Ivoryton Playhouse will present the 2014 Tony Award-nominated 2013 Broadway Musical A Night With Janis Joplin, written and directed by Randy Johnson, from May 30 to June 24.

Born in Port Arthur, Texas, in 1943, Janis Lyn Joplin challenged racial and sexual stereotypes, and created a sound and a style that has become legendary. She exploded onto the music scene in 1967 and, almost overnight, became the queen of rock and roll. The unmistakable voice, filled with raw emotion and tinged with more than a touch of Southern Comfort made her a must-see headliner from Monterey to Woodstock

Her unique sound, however, was originally created as a result of her love for some of the greatest African-American singers of all time. Now, theatergoers can share an evening with the Queen of Rock and Roll and her musical influences in A Night with Janis Joplin

On Jan. 12, 1995, when she was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, her profile proclaimed, “Janis Joplin’s star rose fast, burned bright and burned out too soon. The blues-influenced rocker had one of the most powerful voices of the Sixties. Her voice is equal parts tough and vulnerable, a shout into the void that resonated with a generation.” Joplin biographer Myra Friedman added, “It wasn’t only her voice that thrilled, with its amazing range and strength and awesome wails. To see her was to be sucked into a maelstrom of feeling that words can barely suggest.”

A Night with Janis Joplin made its Broadway debut, under the direction of Randy Johnson, on Oct. 10, 2013 at the Lyceum Theatre, where it played for 140 performances before closing on Feb. 9, 2014. Mary Bridget Davies, who made her Broadway debut in the title role, earned a 2014 Tony Award nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical, and won a 2014 Theatre World Award for her critically acclaimed performance.

Aurianna Tuttle plays Etta James in ‘A Night with Janis Joplin.’

Sharing the lead role of Janis Joplin in this production are Francesca Ferrari* and Paige McNamara*. The cast also includes Aurianna Angelique*, Jennifer Leigh Warren*, Tawny Dolley*, and Amma Osei* who take on the roles of the many women who influenced Janis – Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Bessie Smith, Nina Simone and many more.

A Night with Janis Joplin opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on May 30 and runs through June 24. Original direction by Randy Johnson, original set design by Brian Prather, original lighting design by Ryan O’Gara, original projections by Darrel Maloney, original costume designs by Amy Clark and original wig designs by Leah Loukas. This production is co-directed by Tyler Rhodes. Musical Director is Michael Morris.

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 purchased before June 1 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 the Playhouse’s website at www.ivorytonplayhouse.org. After June 1, tickets are $55 for adults and $50 for seniors. (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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University of New Haven Announces $1.1 Million Bequest from Diana Atwood Johnson to Lyme Academy

The late Diana Atwood Johnson.

The University of New Haven announced yesterday that Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, one of the University’s six colleges, has received a $1.1 million bequest from the estate of Diana Atwood Johnson, a longtime benefactor.

The gift will support three initiatives:

  • The Sill House, a historic building encompassing studio space, the Lyme archives, and the Sill House Gallery, will receive $500,000.
  • An additional $500,000 will go toward scholarships that benefit minority students.
  • The remaining $100,000 will support the Diana Atwood Johnson Leadership Award, presented annually to a senior at Lyme who shows great promise and exemplifies the values of the institution.

Atwood Johnson, who died in January, served on Lyme’s Board of Trustees. As chair, she was the driving force in helping Lyme earn its initial accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and she played a key role in initiating the affiliation that made Lyme the University of New Haven’s fifth college.

“Diana Atwood Johnson was a pillar in our community and involved in every element of Lyme over the past three decades,” said Todd Jokl, dean of Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. “Her generosity over those decades in both her leadership and her generous financial contributions will enable us to provide support for our diverse student body, attract the strongest art students to Lyme, and continue to support our campus buildings. Most of all, Diana leaves a legacy that will remain a strong part of this institution in perpetuity.”

In addition to this donation, Lyme has received nearly $3 million in gifts in the past five months as part of its capital campaign.

Founded in 1976 in scenic Old Lyme, Conn., Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts is a community of emerging and established artists.

Its Bachelor of Fine Arts program offers drawing, illustration, painting, and sculpture, attracting some of the brightest and most talented artists from around the world. Offering one of the most immersive fine arts educations available, Lyme students grow individually through intensive engagement with their craft and lively, profound exchanges of ideas and work.

For more information, visit www.newhaven.edu/lyme.

The University of New Haven, founded on the Yale campus in 1920, is a private, coeducational university situated on the coast of southern New England. It’s a diverse and vibrant community of more than 7,000 students, with campuses around the country and around the world.

Within its five colleges, students immerse themselves in a transformative, career-focused education across the liberal arts and sciences, fine arts, business, engineering, and public safety and public service. More than 100 academic programs are offered, all grounded in a long-standing commitment to collaborative, interdisciplinary, project-based learning.

For more information, visit www.newhaven.edu.

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New Interior Design, Home Décor & Antique Store Opens in Old Lyme

Beautiful fabrics, cushions and interior furnishings fill the Artemisia store in Old Lyme.

Artemisia is a new destination shop on Lyme St. behind The Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme specializing in fine textiles, pillows, antiques and decor items for the home from the team of Rosemarie Padovano and Marcello Marvelli. 

Padovano is an artist and interior designer, and Marvelli is an art dealer and art historian from Florence, Italy. Together, they share a mutual love of art and design. They started the Artemisia Inc. in New York City in 2012 and recently moved it to Old Lyme.

The shop will feature a selection of unique objects and furniture that reflect their design sensibilities as well as the sophisticated collection of pillows, placemats, and ottomans that are designed and produced by Artemisia. Featured in all of the most important décor magazines, they are a trusted resource for some of the finest interior designers worldwide.

The Artemisia shop will also feature a collection of antique fabrics (Ikat and Suzani, and European silk velvets) as well as unique antique furniture, lamps, and objects selected with a discerning and fresh eye.

The shop is also the location of Studio Artemisia, a full service interior design firm led by Padovano and Marvelli.  Together they create soulful interiors with a refined and artistic mix of modern and antique furnishings.  Vibrant colors and luxurious fabrics are paired with a cultivated selection of antiques, adding visual excitement and warmth to every project. 

Padovano and Marvelli seek a cultured atmosphere in all they design, honoring both past and present.  They have designed residential interiors for clients in New York City, Westchester County, Miami and Connecticut.

Padovano and Marvelli are restoring a 1755 colonial house and Olmsted Brothers historic garden in Old Lyme.

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Annual Elected Artists’s Show on View at Lyme Art Association Through June 8

Cape Cod Bay by Kim Muller-Thym is one of the signature paintings of the LAA Elected Artist’s Show.

An opening reception will be held on Friday, May 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Lyme Art Association (LAA) for the ’97th Annual Elected Artists’s Show’ and ‘Contemporary Look.’  This annual showcase features the best new works of art by LAA Elected Artists Members. These artists are professionals of note and significance whose works are known, collected, and exhibited throughout the country, as well as along the Shoreline. 

Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and by appointment.

Admission is free but a $5 donation is suggested. The Lyme Art Association is located at 90 Lyme Street, Old Lyme

For more information, call (860)434-7802 or visit lymeartassociation.org

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Florence Griswold Museum Launches Online Learning Portal for Educators

To engage students about the painting process, a video featuring McKenzie West, an art student at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts was filmed on location at the Museum by the staff of website designer Julia Balfour, LLC.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme, Conn., has launched SEE/change, an immersive website that will help equip Connecticut elementary educators with new ways to teach a variety of subjects by tapping into the Museum’s content-rich collection of American art. SEE/change offers multiple tools designed to help teachers draw upon a single work of art for meaning on various relevant topics—from state and national history to geography to ecology. SEE/change challenges students to change the way they SEE paintings.

SEE/change was led by the Museum’s Director of Education and Outreach David D.J. Rau who was inspired by the change that is underway in America’s schools. “Connecticut teachers are being called upon to reboot their entire educational approach—moving away from teaching facts and figures towards inquiry-based instruction that encourages students to think critically and with deepening complexity, states Rau.  “It’s our hope that SEE/change helps educators and students see a change in the way they investigate subjects using primary sources and various points of view.”

The project was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. It focuses on the Museum’s 1853 painting,Seven Miles to Farmington by Connecticut artist George H. Durrie. The popular genre scene of travelers arriving by sleigh to a rustic country inn on a winter’s day is steeped in historical content.

For over a year, the Museum worked closely with students, educators, and content and curriculum specialists. Staff visited elementary school classrooms to talk about the painting. Students were asked them to describe what they thought was going on in the painting and what kinds of learning activities they would enjoy doing on the computer.

Museum staff sought the council of content and curriculum specialists to develop content that is age-appropriate, applicable to teachers’ needs and concur with specific connections to the state Social Studies Framework. The end result is a dynamic set of web pages designed by Julia Balfour, LLC, that feature visually rich essays about the artist, the painting, the inn in the painting, and the landscape.

Users learn more about the artist, his life in New Haven, and his artistic career. The site features a portfolio of Durrie’s work, a timeline, a visual glossary, and lesson plans. Three engaging videos include a guided tour of the painting, a demonstration featuring Leslie Evans, Director of the Avery-Copp House Museum in Groton, making a pounded cheese from a recipe from the period, and a short painting lesson based on Durrie’s dogs. There is also a fun section of games and learning-to-look activities.

Students can make the scene come alive by pressing buttons that link to things you might hear such as a rooster crowing, crunching snow, or a snoring traveler. Educators praise the learning tool, “SEE/changehas created a stellar one stop workplace for educators to bring their classes to a piece that seamlessly integrates the arts and history, notes Dana Nelson, curriculum team member and 5th Grade Teacher at Tuttle Elementary School in East Haven, Connecticut. “My students can time travel to the 19th century to become one with a painting.”

Although the portal is designed for teachers and students to connect art and history in their classrooms, any virtual visitor can enjoy exploring the mysteries behind this iconic work of American art by logging on to FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org.

The recipient of a Trip Advisor 2016 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. Its seasonal Café Flo was recognized as “best hidden gem” and “best outdoor dining” by Connecticut Magazine.

The Museum is located at 96 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, CT.

Visit FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org for more information.

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So Close … Lyme Art Association Nears $364K Goal, Donations Doubled Until April 30


Lyme Art Association, striving to reach a goal of raising $364,000 by April 30 for donations to be doubled, is 95 percent of the way there.

Pictured in the photo at left, Carrie Walters, Campaign Chair and Board member, adjusts the thermometer to reflect the latest donations and hopes to raise the thermometer $18,200 by month’s end.

Visit this link to see our article about the renovation project currently underway at the Lyme Art Association and the associated fundraising efforts.

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AAUW Hosts Fundraising Luncheon Today Featuring Best-Selling Authors Brunonia Barry, Randy Susan Meyers

The Lower Connecticut Valley branch of AAUW (American Association of University Women) will sponsor a luncheon at the Saybrook Point Inn on Saturday, April 14, from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Randy Susan Meyers, author of the bestseller, The Widow of Wall Street, and Brunonia Barry, author of the novels The Lace Reader and The Fifth Petal, will discuss their books and their writing process.

Tickets are $50 and help to provide scholarships for local women pursuing higher education. There will also be silent and chance auctions.

For more information, visit http://lowerctvalley-ct.aauw.net.

If interested in attending, call Sara Keaney at 860-395-4298.

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2018 Senior Studio Exhibition on View at Lyme Academy College Through May 11

The signature work of the 2018 Senior Studio Exhibition is ‘The Watcher’ by Rani Rusnock, who will graduate with a BFA in Illustration in May.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven hosts an opening reception from 5 to 8 p.m. this evening in the Chauncey Stillman Gallery for its 2018 Senior Studio Exhibition.  All are welcome.

The seniors whose work is featured in the exhibition are studying for a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and will graduate in May 2018.

The Senior Studio experience at the College allows students to refine their vision and develop a skill set in order to create a body of work that exemplifies their individual interests, talents, and artistic sensibilities.

The 2018 Senior Studio Exhibition reflects the culmination of this project.  Students will be present at the opening reception and available to discuss their work.

The exhibition will be on view in the gallery through May 11.  Admission is free Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The sponsors of the exhibition are Overabove and Saybrook Point Inn/Fresh Salt.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven is located at 84 Lyme St. in Old Lyme.

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Tickets on Sale Now for Community Music School’s 35th Anniversary Gala, April 27

Making plans for this year’s 35th anniversary CMS gala are, from left to right, CMS Music Director Tom Briggs, CMS Trustee and Gala Sponsor Bruce Lawrence of Bogaert Construction, CMS Trustee and Gala Sponsor Jennifer Bauman of The Bauman Family Foundation, and CMS Executive Director Abigail Nickell.

Community Music School’s (CMS) largest annual fundraiser is the CMS Gala and this year the organization is  celebrating its 35th anniversary with For the Love of Music! The event takes place on Friday, April 27, at 6:30 p.m. in Deep River at The Lace Factory and includes fabulous musical entertainment provided by CMS faculty and students. Enjoy cocktail jazz and an exquisite dinner show, as well as gourmet food, dancing, silent auction, fine wines and more.

Featured faculty and student performers include Music Director Tom Briggs, Noelle Avena, John Birt, Amy Buckley, Luana Calisman-Yuri, Audrey Estelle, Joni Gage, Silvia Gopalakrishnan, Martha Herrle, Ling-Fei Kang, Barbara Malinsky, Matt McCauley, Kevin O’Neil, Andy Sherwood, and Marty Wirt.

Support of the Community Music School gala provides the resources necessary to offer scholarships to students with financial need, as well as weekly music education and music therapy services for students with special needs.

For The Love of Music sponsors include The Bauman Family Foundation, Bob’s Discount Furniture, Bogaert Construction, Clark Group, Essex Savings Bank, Essex Financial Services, Grossman Chevrolet Nissan, Guilford Savings Bank, Jackson Lewis, Kitchings & Potter, Maple Lane Farms, Reynold’s Subaru, Ring’s End, Shore Publishing, Thomas Alexa Wealth Management, Tidal Counseling LLC, and Tower Labs LTD.

Early bird tickets for the evening are $125 per person ($65 is tax deductible) by April 13 and $135 thereafter. Event tickets include hors d’oeuvres, gourmet food stations, wine and beer, live music, and dancing. Tickets may be purchased online at community-music-school.org/gala, at the school located at 90 Main Street in the Centerbrook section of Essex or by calling 860-767-0026.

Community Music School offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 35 year tradition of providing quality music instruction to residents of shoreline communities. The 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.  To learn more, visit www.community-music-school.org or call (860)-767-0026.

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Last Chance to See ‘Once Upon a Mattress’ at Lyme-Old Lyme High School

Reharsing a number from the show are, from left to right, Hannah Morrison, Lauren Mitchell, Katie Reid, Haley Stevens, Emma Bass, Heather McGrath, and Grace Edwards.

Hear ye, hear ye! The dates for the Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) spring musical are rapidly approaching and the whole community is invited!

This year, the Old Lyme Players are tackling the classic comedy Once Upon a Mattress. The musical reveals the untold stories of The Princess and the Pea as the audience discovers that the “lost princess” was actually royalty in the swamp lands, not a girl wandering through a storm, who stumbled upon the castle.

Princess Winnifred, nicknamed “Fred,” falls in love with the dapper Prince Dauntless and must pass the Queen’s virtually impossible royalty test before she and Dauntless can get married, but Queen Aggravain plots to sabotage Fred so that she and Dauntless cannot be together. Meanwhile, Lady Larken and Sir Harry, an unmarried couple living in the kingdom, are expecting a child, and they wait anxiously for the royal wedding since no one in the kingdom is allowed to get married before Prince Dauntless.

The musical is directed by Jim Motes with musical direction by Kristine Pekar, choreographed by Bethany Haslam, and conducted by Jacob Wilson. The show also features sets by William Allik along with costumes created and organized by Denise Golden.

Once Upon a Mattress stars Natalie Golden as Princess Winnifred, Caroline LeCour as Queen Aggravain, Jacob Olsen as Prince Dauntless, and Lauren Mitchell as the Minstrel. Additionally, the show features Sean Spina as the king, Elyza Learned and Liam Clark as Lady Larken and Sir Harry, Haley Stevens as the Jester and Sophia Griswold as the Wizard

The cast auditioned for the show in December and has been rehearsing weekdays from 2:45 to 5:30 p.m. with additional Sunday choreography rehearsals from 4 to 6 p.m. The company has devoted a great deal of time and energy to the production and is eagerly anticipating sharing the production with the audience.

Old Lyme Players encourage audience members to arrive ready to sit back, relax and enjoy this lighthearted musical comedy set in a fairy-tale world, which the cast and crew magically create onstage.

Once Upon a Mattress opens at LOLHS on Thursday, March 22, at 7 p.m.  There are also 7 p.m. performances on Friday, March 23 and Saturday, March 24.  In addition, there is a matinee performance at 2 p.m. on the Saturday.

Tickets, sold online at this link  and at the door, are $12 for students and senior citizens and $15 for adults. For more information, call the high school at 860-434-1651.

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‘Exhibition in Four Acts’ on Show at Lyme Art Association


Four new exhibitions, each with a different theme, will be on view in the Lyme Art Association (LAA)’s beautiful historic galleries from March 18. “A Show in Four Acts” features a separate exhibition in each gallery: Interiors/Exteriors, Animal Kingdom, Holding Still, and Faces and Forms run concurrently.  An opening reception for all four exhibitions will be held on Sunday, March 18, from 2 to 4 p.m.

“A visit to the Lyme Art Association to see the A Show in Four Acts feels like visiting four different galleries.  There is a variety and a shift in mood as you move from one gallery to the next,” states gallery manager, Jocelyn Zallinger.  “This show also allows a visitor to focus on each genre in a way that is not possible in other exhibitions.”

The Lyme Art Association 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 Sunday12 to 5 p.m. 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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Major Preservation Project Now Underway at Lyme Art Association, Gifts Made by April 30 Matched

Removing old dilapidated shingles and rotted millwork on the west side of the Cooper-Ferry Gallery over the Studio.

In 1914, the American Impressionist painters of Old Lyme formed an association and dreamed of building their own gallery to exhibit their work. For the sum of one dollar, Ms. Florence Griswold deeded a portion of her property to the artists; where, in 1921, the Lyme Art Association (LAA) Gallery opened its doors.

Sadly, nearly a century later, this landmark gallery had the same shingles, deteriorated and literally falling off the building, and rotted woodwork coming apart.

There was simply no choice; the three Rs – repair, restoration, and renovation – had to begin.

But makeovers take money, and so the LAA’s Second Century Capital Campaign was launched to bring the historic building back to life. Generous contributions have put the Association close to the $364,000 goal, and the progress of the project has been amazing.

“Just as the original artists raised money to open the Lyme Art Association’s doors, we, too, find ourselves working to ensure that our historic landmark gallery will thrive for the next 100 years,” said Kathy Simmons, Board President of the Association. As of mid-February, generous donations have brought the Association to within $68,292 of their $364,000 goal.

First course of cedar shingles going up on the west side of Goodman Gallery.

Restoring this building is important for so many reasons. Today the LAA continues its commitment to advance the cause of representational fine art, while maintaining and preserving its historic building and galleries. It is a vibrant art center and gallery where professional and developing artists mount major exhibitions year-round – open to the public and free of charge. The Association also has a robust schedule of art classes, workshops and lectures. The landmark means a great deal to artists, those who appreciate art and, of course, the community.

“The Lyme Art Association takes immense pride in its cultural, educational and historical significance in our community,” explained Gary Parrington, LAA’s Development Director. “We are grateful for the financial support we have received already, and are excited to showcase the progress thus far made possible by our donors.”

“For those who give by April 30th, your gift will be doubled by a generous couple. Every donation will be matched, dollar for dollar, up to $25,000,” Parrington points out.

Carrie Walters, Capital Campaign Chair, Board Member, and the “go-to person” for the exterior restoration stated, “I’m honored to have the position because it’s a wonderful building. It’s been the source of incredible art for so many years and it just deserves to exist for many more.”

Simmons said, “The Lyme Art Association building, designed by world-renowned architect Charles Platt, is an integral part of Old Lyme’s historic district and stands as a reminder of Old Lyme’s important place in the history of American art.” She adds, “Every day, I am inspired by the thought that as we repair and restore the exterior of this grand, historic building, we honor Old Lyme’s place in the history of American art.”

We encourage our readers to visit the gallery, see the immense progress, the stellar job and quality of work, and to be part of this major preservation project. Parrington points out that generous gifts from donors today will help complete the exterior restorations.

The LAA, located at 90 Lyme Street in Old Lyme, at the corner of Halls Rd., is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and by appointment.

For more information, call (860) 434-7802 or visit www.lymeartassociation.org.

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Lyme-Old Lyme High School Students Win Major Awards at CT Scholastic Art Contest

This incredible work by Claudia Mergy was awarded a Gold Key in the Connecticut Scholastic Art Awards.

Four Lyme-Old Lyme High School students were recognized at this year’s Connecticut Scholastic Art Awards. In the painting category, senior Claudia Mergy of Old Lyme received two Gold Keys for individual works and a Gold Key for her portfolio.  She also received generous scholarship offers from both the University of Hartford Art School and Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven in recognition of the quality of her portfolio.

Senior Emily Archer won a Gold Key in the printmaking category for the excellent work shown above.

Junior Mya Johnson won a Silver Key in the Ceramics category for this exceptional piece.

Junior Kathryn Atkinson earned an Honorable Mention for the alluring work shown above in the Drawing category. 

Works that are awarded Gold Key will now go forward to be juried at the national level.

Many congratulations to all these talented artists!

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The End of an Era … but the Journey Continues: Jeff Andersen Retires From the FloGris Museum After 41 Years

Retiring Florence Griswold Museum Director Jeff Andersen stands between State Senator Paul Formica (left) and State Rep. Devin Carney holding the State Citation with which the two legislators had presented him.

There wasn’t a parking spot to be found Sunday afternoon at the Florence Griswold Museum, nor come to that at the Lyme Art Association. And the reason?  Despite torrential rain, it seemed as if the whole town had come out to say a fond farewell to Jeff Andersen, the much beloved Director of the Florence Griswold Museum, who was retiring after an amazing 41 years in that position.

Jeff Anderson stands with Charter Trustee George Willauer and New York Times best-selling author Luanne Rice alongside the Willard Metcalf painting, “Kalmia,” which the board has now dedicated to Andersen in honor of his 41 years service.

The Museum hosted a wonderful party to celebrate Jeff and his wife, Maureen McCabe, and both Marshfield House and the tent situated in the courtyard outside were packed almost to capacity. Federal, state and local dignitaries were there along with Museum trustees, staff, volunteers, friends and pretty much anyone who had ever had a connection with Jeff, Maureen or the Museum — well over 400 people in total.

The formal segment of the event was emceed by Charter Trustee Jeff Cooley, who opened the proceedings by introducing Senator Richard Blumenthal. Describing the Florence Griswold as “a world-class Museum,” Blumenthal went on to present Andersen with a Certificate of Recognition from the US Senate, which he noted to considerable laughter, “was approved by an overwhelming bi-partisan vote.” He thanked Andersen warmly for, “Your immense public service … and your values.”

State Rep. Devin Carney says, “It all started with just one … and that was, you, Jeff.”

State Senator Paul Formica (R-20th) and State Representative Devin Carney (R-23rd) stepped up next the podium and Carney noted poignantly, “It all started with just one … and that was you, Jeff.”  Carney was referring to the fact that 41 years ago, Andersen was the Museum’s first — and only – employee whereas now the Museum has 20 staff, 255 volunteers, 3,000 members and 80,000 visitors annually.

Saying, “I truly want to thank you, Jeff, for doing so much good for the economy as a whole,” Carney pointed out that many of the visitors to the Museum, “come, stay and shop,” in Old Lyme and the surrounding area, adding, “You did a great job at the Museum … but you also stopped a train!”  This latter was a reference to the Federal Railroad Administration’s proposal to route a high speed train through the center of Old Lyme, which Andersen actively worked to defeat.

State Sen. Paul Formica reads the Citation from the state in honor of Jeff Andersen.

Formica then presented Andersen with a Citation from the Connecticut House and Senate, which recognized Andersen for his “passionate dedication directing, restoring and revitalizing the Florence Griswold Museum,” noting, “For 40 years you shared your vision and inspired countless volunteers and workers to help fulfill this vision expanding exhibits, gardens and collections making it into the reputable attraction we know today.” The Citation concluded, “We want to thank you for your tireless leadership and congratulate you on your retirement.”

Following the legislators was Old Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder, who immediately confessed, “Frankly, I have to say I didn’t think there would ever be a time when Jeff wouldn’t be here.”  She continued, “It’s good for him [Jeff] and all of us to be aware of all you have done.  You’re part of our DNA, you’re the heart of our culture,” and then announced that the Town of Old Lyme was declaring Feb. 11 as “Jeff Andersen Day,”  adding to loud applause and much laughter that it was a unanimous vote.

Andersen mingled freely with the more than 400 guests gathered to say their goodbyes.

She read a Proclamation from the Town which stated, “Since he began working with the Museum in 1976, the Florence Griswold Museum has grown from a small seasonal house museum where he was the only staff member to a nationally recognized center for American art.” The Proclamation also noted that, “Jeff is recognized today as the pre-eminent scholar on the historic Lyme Art Colony … and has helped grow the Museum’s modest collection of works of American Impressionism into a deep and distinguished regional collection of American art.”  Describing Andersen as a “visionary Leader,” with a “thoughtful devotion to excellence,” Reemsnyder concluded, still reading from the Proclamation, that Andersen’s, “tireless advocacy for the Museum and its uniquely Connecticut story has transformed the Florence Griswold Museum into one of the state’s most important and beloved cultural destinations.”

Jeff Cooley (center) emceed thw formal proceedings at the party. His wife Betsy stands to his left.

Charter Trustees George Willauer and Cooley then unveiled the beautiful 1905 painting titled, “Kalmia,” by Willard L. Metcalf to which a plaque had been attached stating that it now honored Andersen’s 41 years of service during which he “transformed” the Museum “through his unswerving devotion to preserving the legacy of the Lyme Art Colony.”

Jeff Andersen addresses the at capacity audience.

A clearly emotional Andersen then addressed the audience, which by now was overflowing the tent, saying simply, “We are feeling the love …”  He gave a long list of thank you’s, noting that he and his wife had, “felt such affection and regard since announcing his retirement.” Andersen then shared his opinion that, “whatever you give to the Museum – whether time, talent or money – it is returned to you many fold.”  He said, “Not many get the opportunity to have a career in one place [in his case, from age 23 to 64] and for that I am deeply grateful and humble.  Stressing, “Be assured the future is bright,” he commented almost wistfully, “What an incredible journey this has been … but the journey continues.”

Jeff Andersen and his wife Maureen McCabe applaud the pianist after he played a tune to which they had danced together at the very end of the party.

And with that, Cooley proposed a toast to Jeff and Maureen, glasses were raised, Prosecco was drunk and then vigorous applause and loud cheers erupted all around.

Florence Griswold Museum docent Linda Ahnert points out a detail from the newspaper cutting to fellow doscents.  The cutting announced Andersen’s arrival as the Museum’s first director — and then only employee — 41 years ago.

We here at LymeLine.com can only add our deep and personal thanks to Jeff and Maureen for an extraordinary career in which so much given with such incredible warmth and humility.  Rep. Carney said it best so we’ll end by echoing his words, “The Florence Griswold is truly a treasure, but so are you … Miss Florence would be really proud of you.”

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Second Annual Festival of Women’s Plays Opens Season at Ivoryton Playhouse, March 2-3

Kathleen Cahill

The Ivoryton Playhouse has announced the dates of its Second Annual Women Playwrights Initiative – Passion, Power and Prose 2018.

The Initiative provides a safe, nurturing environment for the development of new, one-act plays by and about women and the issues that shape their live, including a week of intensive rehearsal with the playwrights, directors, and actors.

The workshop culminates in two evenings of staged readings which will take place on Friday, March 2 and Saturday, March 3, at The Ivoryton Playhouse, 103 Main Street, Ivoryton, CT, followed by discussions with playwrights, actors and directors.

Friday, March 2, at 7 p.m., there will be two readings presented:  

  • Henry, Louise and Henri by Kathleen Cahill and directed by Linda MacCluggage is an hilarious look at the different effects of art on an American couple in Paris.
  • Karen Howes

    To Fall in Love, Do This by Jennifer Lane and directed by Hannah Simms. Scientists claim that there are 36 questions you can ask to fall in love with anyone. But can this seemingly simple exercise save even Wyatt and Merryn’s marriage?

Saturday, March 3, at 7 p.m. there will be two readings presented: 

  • Blood by Yael Haskel and directed by Kathryn Markey. When a young woman elects to donate blood to a sick pastor and pillar of the community, hellish truths are exposed forcing a devastating decision for both her and the nurse.
  • The Gentleman’s Pact by Karen Howes and directed by Addie Gorlin. A witty, acerbic look at marriage, fidelity, and self-determination when Bill, a college professor, tells his colleague, Arthur, that he wants to marry Arthur’s wife, Evelyn. Can their pact survive Evelyn’s unexpected response?

To purchase tickets for the Friday, March 2 or Saturday, March 3 readings – each starts at 7 p.m. – call 860.767.7318 or visit www.ivorytonplayhouse.org

Tickets:

  • $20 adult each night: $15 senior each night; $10 student and LPTW.
  • Special two-day pass: buy tickets for Friday and Saturday night performances for $30.00 – call box office 860.767.7318 to book 2-day pass.

Yael Haskal

The Ivoryton Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street, Ivoryton, CT  06442.

For more information about the Women Playwrights Initiative, visit the Playhouse website or  contact Laura Copland, Director of New Play Development,  laurac@ivorytonplayhouse.org.

The Women Playwrights Initiative is generously funded by The Community Foundation of Southeastern Connecticut, the Community Foundation of Middlesex County, Laura Copland, Kathleen and Al Jaffe, and Rosalind Pressman.

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Cappella Hosts Spring Concert Featuring Haydn’s ‘Creation,’ April 22

Cappella Cantorum Masterworks Chorus will present their spring concert, Sunday, April 22. The concert will feature Haydn’s masterpiece, “The Creation,” that includes the well-known “The Heavens are Telling the Glory of God.”

It will be performed with professional soloists and orchestra with Simon Holt of the Salt Marsh Opera directing.

For more information visit www.CappellaCantorum.org or call 860-526-1038.

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