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Arts and Leisure

Arts and Leisure

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Classical Guitar at Arts Center Image
Croatian virtuosa classical guitarist Ana Vidovic performed today before an enthusiastic audience at the Westport Arts Center. A child prodigy, she started playing guitar at the age of 5. She has given more than 1,000 public performances since first taking the stage in 1988 at age 8. At the age of 11, she was performing internationally, and at 13 became the youngest student to attend the prestigious National Musical Academy in Zagreb, Croatia. Vidovic, 34, frequently tours internationally. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for

Posted 08:20 PM
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“Lady in Gold’ Author Draws Overflow Crowd Image
There was an overflow audience at Westport’s Temple Israel today to hear best-selling author Anne-Marie O’Connor. Her “The Lady in Gold: The Story of Gustav Klimt, Jewish Vienna, and the Restitution of his Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer” is her true account of the masterpiece gold portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer, the beautiful Muse who Gustav Klimt painted into history as a sensual Mona Lisa of turn-of-the-century Vienna. It tells the story of Jewish Vienna’s patronage of Klimt; the painting’s bizarre fate under Nazi rule; and the restitution battle that secured the painting, which now hangs in the Neue Galerie in New York. The letters and journals written by Gustav Klimt and his enigmatic intellectual portrait models shed new light on the artist, whose erotic drawings and notorious love life scandalized turn-of-the-century Vienna—but is now considered Austria’s finest painter. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for

Posted 02:05 PM
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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Susan Granger At the Movies: ‘Monkey Kingdom,’ ‘Child 44,’ ‘Unfriended’

By Susan Granger

“Monkey Kingdom” is the eighth Disneynature live-action eco-documentary – and one of the best. Narrated by Tina Fey, it follows a toque macaque monkey in Sri Lanka on her journey up the social ladder. Image

Since Disney movie-makers routinely anthropomorphize animals, giving them names, the heroine is Maya. She and her simian troop live in abandoned Buddhist temple ruins, now overrun by jungle.

Poor Maya is at the bottom of the social order. Which means that - while Raja, the alpha male, and a trio of favored females can climb to the top of a fig tree and eat the ripest fruit - Maya and the other low-born must remain on the ground, foraging for scraps.

One fine day, a male macaque named Kumar comes visiting. Tina Fey wryly dubs him “hunky monkey.” Kumar is banished by Raja but not before impregnating Maya, who gives birth to a baby called Kip.

More "Susan Granger At the Movies: ‘Monkey Kingdom,’ ‘Child 44,’ ‘Unfriended’"

Posted 11:57 AM
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Friday, April 24, 2015

On the Red Carpet Image
UPDATE The Westport-produced documentary “Hey Bartender” was nominated for a James Beard Award for best special/documentary and on the red carpet tonight at the James Beard Award Ceremony at Chelsea Piers in New York City were (l-r) director Douglas Tirola and producer Susan Bedusa both of Westport, star Stephen Carpentieri of Dunville’s in Westport. and co-producer Danielle Rosen of Weston. Later, it was announced the award went to “Food Chains” with Forest Whitaker. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 08:45 PM
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Thursday, April 23, 2015

WN on the Scene: Preview of New Whitney Museum

New York’s Whitney Museum welcomed VIP guests Wednesday night to its new $422 million home at 99 Gansevoort St. in Manhattan’s hip Meatpacking District, ahead of its official May 1 opening. The 220,000-square foot space, including 18,000 feet unencumbered by structural columns and 13,000 feet of outdoor terrace galleries, doubles its former home on the Upper East Side. Among the guests was Helen Klisser During, artistic director at the Westport Arts Center and WestportNow contributing photographer who provided this preview. Helen Klisser During for

Posted 08:00 AM
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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Playhouse Adds 1,000 New Subscribers Image
Michael Ross, managing director of the Westport Country Playhouse, told the Westport Rotary Club Tuesday the Playhouse has added 1,000 new first time season subscribers in advance of its five-play season opening May 5 with “The Liar,” a comedy by David Ives. He said for the first time, the Playhouse will have a three-week preview run of A.R. Gurney’s new play “Love & Money” beginning July 21 prior to its opening at New York’s off-Broadway Signature Theatre. During the run, to which no critics have been invited, Gurney and the producers will have an opportunity to make adjustments to the play based on audience feedback prior to its New York opening, he said. “It’s something new for us,” Ross said. CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 11:25 AM
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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Learning to Adapt Image
The Rev. Michael Lapsley, known as Father Michael, signs copies of his book, “Redeeming the Past,” for guests at the Westport Arts Center tonight. The Anglican priest active in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa said despite losing an eye and both hands in a letter bomb attack, he has managed to adapt and now devotes his life to the Institute for Healing of Memories which “seeks to contribute to the healing journey of individuals, communities and nations.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for

Posted 09:11 PM
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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Remembering at the Senior Center

Scenes from today’s fourth annual version of “Try to Remember” performed at the Westport Center for Senior Activities. Phyllis Groner for

Posted 09:48 PM
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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Remembering Susan Malloy at the Library Image
The Westport Library has created a display in honor of Westport art patron, artist and philanthropist Susan Malloy, who died April 14 at age 91 (see WestportNow April 14, 2015). The public is invited to express remembrances of Malloy in an accompanying guest book, pointed out by staff librarian Connie Scalise. On display are three books composed by Malloy, “In the Studio,” “Recollections of Art in My Life,” and “A Young Person’s Guide to Paris.” Malloy was the benefactor of the library’s annual Malloy Lecture For The Arts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 12:04 PM
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Book of Memories Image
The Susan Malloy memorial display at the Westport Library includes a book for guests to write their memories of the late Westport artist, art patron, and philanthropist.  Library Executive Director Maxine Bleiweis said this is the second time the library has made a memorial display like this. “We did something similar to honor the memory of Paul Newman shortly after he died,” she said. “So many people want to express their affection publicly—this is an outlet for that.” She said the memorial book will be presented to the Malloy family. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 11:55 AM
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Friday, April 17, 2015

Larry Silver Sherwood Island Photo Exhibit Opens Image
There was an opening reception tonight in the Westport Library’s Great Hall to mark the opening of the exhibit “Sherwood Island, 1975-2015: Photography by Larry Silver,” which runs through June 24. The display of photos by the internationally known photographer and longtime Westport resident is being held i conjunction with the reopening of the newly renovated Sherwood Island Pavilion at the state park in Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Douglas Healey for

Posted 08:46 PM
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A Photographer Discusses His Works Image
Westport photographer Larry Silver tonight discusses his photos of Westport’s Sherwood Island State Park at the opening reception at the Westport Library of his exhibit “Sherwood Island, 1975-2015: Photography by Larry Silver.” Silver has returned again and again to Sherwood Island over the last 40 years to photograph the different seasons, visitors and the numerous activities taking place there. For many years, he shot in black and white and more recently began shooting digital color photographs, reflecting the changes taking place both in photography and in the park over time. Selections from both sets of images make up the exhibit. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for

Posted 08:41 PM
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Checking the Guest Book Image
Westport photographer Larry Silver checks the guest book comments tonight at the opening reception at the Westport Library for his exhibit “Sherwood Island, 1975-2015: Photography by Larry Silver,” which runs through June 24. Silver’s work is currently held in more than 29 museum collections, among them, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Jewish Museum in New York City, Brooklyn Museum, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Whitney Museum of Fine Arts, Yale University Art Gallery, New Britain Museum, George Eastman House and Smithsonian Museum of American Art, whose permanent collection includes “Sunset at Sherwood Island State Park,” which is part of the Westport Library exhibit. The New York Historical Society recently acquired for their permanent collection 57 of Silver’s New York images taken from 1949-1953, which will be exhibited in a one-man show in 2016. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for

Posted 08:35 PM
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Signature Photo Image
This photo of a man barbequing next to an umbrella is the signature photo of “Sherwood Island, 1975-2015: Photography by Larry Silver,” which opened with a reception tonight at the Westport Library. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo by Larry Silver

Posted 08:30 PM
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‘A Chorus Line’ Veteran Welcomes ‘Hamilton’ Image
In celebration of the 40th anniversary of “A Chorus Line,” original Broadway cast members including Play With Your Food Artistic Director Carole Schweid (3rd l.) were invited to a performance Thursday night of the sold-out new musical “Hamilton” at the Public Theatre in New York City where “A Chorus Line” originated. After their show, the cast of “Hamilton” sang a tribute to their ground-breaking predecessors and then both casts joined together to sing Marvin Hamlisch’s popular “What I Did for Love” Said Schweid: “Of all the ‘A Chorus Line’ celebration events I’ve attended over the years, this was by far the most moving for the actors. The show ‘Hamilton’ will change the face of the Broadway musical today the way ‘A Chorus Line’ did 40 years ago. It was just amazing.” Photo by Monica Simoes

Posted 05:01 PM
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