Wednesday, July 20, 2016
The cast of the Westport Country Playhouse production of “The Invisible Hand,” a riveting and relevant new thriller by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Ayad Akhtar, author of Broadway’s “Disgraced,” rehearses for Tuesday night’s first preview performance. The play, a recent off-Broadway production, is based on an American futures trader who finds himself kidnapped and held hostage in Pakistan, knowing the only way to get home is to do what he does best: play the market like his life depends on it. “The Invisible Hand” opens on Saturday and runs through Aug. 6. Pictured (l-r): Eric Bryant, Jameal Ali and Fajer Kaisi. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
By Susan GrangerSpecial to WestportNow
Taking ‘helicopter parenting’ to a new extreme in “Captain Fantastic,” Ben Cash (Viggo Mortensen) is raising his six children off-the-grid in the Pacific Northwest forest.
Ten years ago, Ben and his Buddhist wife, Leslie (Trin Miller), became survivalists, teaching their kids to be self-sufficient, stalking and killing game and homeschooling them in philosophy, history, literature, science and five languages.
Subjected to strenuous exercise, they sleep in a yurt, do chores in adjacent tree houses and teepees, and play musical instruments around a campfire at night. Unconventionally counter-cultured, they ignore Christmas, celebrating Noam Chomsky Day, honoring the leftist ‘60s icon.
Each child has a unique name: Bodevan (George MacKay), Kielyr (Samantha Isler), Vespyr (Annalise Basso), Rellian (Nicholas Hamilton), Nai (Charlie Shotwell), and Zaja (Shree Crooks).
Monday, July 18, 2016
Mitchells of Westport tonight hosted a reception for New York Times best-selling Westport authors Jane Green (l) and Lauren Weisberger to celebrate publication of their new books—Green’s “Falling: A Love Story” and Weisberger’s “The Singles Game.” Weisberger is best known for her 2003 debut novel “The Devil Wears Prada,” later made into a movie starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway. Green has had 16 New York Times bestsellers and her books have been published in more than 25 languages. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
The Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts has announced that its annual fundraising gala this year will headline CHIC featuring Westporter Nile Rodgers, Grammy Award-winning musician, composer, arranger, producer, philanthropist, and writer.
The Summer Gala Concert on Thursday, Aug. 11 helps underwrite the Pavilion’s 50 nights of free concerts.
CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers was organized during 1976 by Rodgers and bassist Bernard Edwards.
Its commercially successful disco songs include “Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)” (1977), “Everybody Dance” (1977), “Le Freak” (1978), “I Want Your Love” (1978), “Good Times” (1979), and “My Forbidden Lover” (1979).
Sunday, July 17, 2016
The Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts was filled tonight for a performance by Vince Giordano & the Nighthawks. Grammy Winner Giordano’s music evokes the height of ballroom perfection, combining jazz elegance and swingin’ (or rumba-in’ or cha-cha-cha-in’) style, along with renditions of 1920s and 1930s chestnuts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
In response to an audience request, Vince Giordano & the Nighthawks performed the “Tea for Two” cha-cha tonight as the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
There was a full house tonight for the Westport Cinema Initiative screening of the 2005 film “The War Within” at the Westport Country Playhouse Barn. Written by Ayad Akhtar, a Pulitzer prize-winning playwright, the film provides insights into the Muslim experience in the United States. It was held in conjunction with the Playhouse production of “The Invisible Hand” by the same author and included a talkback with its director, David Kennedy, and Westport filmmaker Doug Tirola. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Today’s second and final day of the Westport Fine Arts Festival drew hundreds of visitors despite temperatures in the 90s. A number of artists queried said they were pleased with sales at the event. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J. C. Martin for WestportNow.com
Jerusalem-born artist Yoram Gel, a resident of Old Jaffa, Israel, shows his artistic creation of Adam and Eve today at the second and final day of thr Westport Fine Arts Festival. Gal and his son, Nimrod, 16, are in the United States for three weeks to participate in art shows in Westport, Stamford, and Geneva, Ill. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Longtime Westport Library volunteer Dick Lowenstein today rearranges the enclosed display of “highly valued or fragile” collectibles in the McManus Room on the second day of the library’s annual summer book sale. Lowenstein said the highest price single item purchased this weekend was a first edition, signed copy of “Ghosts Along the Mississippi,” a photography book authored by Clarence John Laughlin. The photographs capture Mississippi River relics, and was influenced by French photographer Eugene Atget. The buyer paid $275. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Among Westport Library summer book sale buyers today in the McManus Room were Westport residents Sheela Hari and sons, Yashi, 11, (l), a sixth grade student at Coleytown Middle Schoo,l and Jay, 8, a third grade student at Kings Highway Elementary School. They purchased mostly classics and children’s books. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Saturday, July 16, 2016
Rhythm and blues band Billy and the Showmen, featuring Billy Frenz, band leader and guitar, and Billy Foster, lead vocals and emcee, had the Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts rocking tonight. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com
In a change this year, the Westport Fine Arts Festival, which opened today, is contained entirely in Parker Harding Plaza. The parking lot of the adjacent Gorham Island office building, which housed some booths in past years, is now designated for festival parking. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
A visitor to the 43rd annual Westport Fine Arts Festival today gives a glance to one of the artists’ booths. In a change this year, all the artists are exhibiting in Parker Harding Plaza and parking is provided in the adjacent Gorham Island buiilding lot, which had housed some booths in years past. The show continues Sunday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Artist Denise Mumm of Staten Island, N.Y. shows off her tango-themed artworks today at the Westport Finr Arts Festival. “I have been dancing Argentine tango socially for about 10 years,” she says on her website. “I bring my passion for the dance to my art in the form of prints, collages, and paintings using images from the dance.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Miggs Burroughs, Westport Library artist-in-residence, was at the library’s booth today at the Westport Fine Arts Festival along with the library’s Chris Timmons. On display were works from the Westport Artsits’ Collective. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Mimi Greenlee, Westport Library book sale volunteer coordinator, shows off a poster saying the sale this year is dedicaated to the late legendary Westport artist Howard Munce. Books from Munce’s personal collecton, were amont items for sale in the McManus Room. He died at age 100 in March. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Bill Harmer, Westport Library executive director, shows off his Led Zeppelin album he found today at the libray’s summer book sale. Harmer said he collects old vinyl records and was a disc jockey in college at Wayne State University. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Westport Library summer book sale enthusiasts crowd the aisles at the the start today of the annual event. Some book lovers were on line since 2:30 a.m. waiting for the 9 a.m. start. There were 400 persons on line at the main tent and about 100 for the main building and its McManus Room sale, said Heli Stagg, who was counting guests for the library. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Steve Atkinson, a book collector from Springfield, Mass., was an early shopper at the opening day of the Westport Library’s summer book sale. He said it was his sixth year at the Westport event. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Book dealers Sue and Frank O’Brien of Westfield, Mass. were first on line today as the Westport Library’s summer book sale began. The couple said they arrived outside the sale tents at 2:30 a.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, July 15, 2016
DJ Rekha, a London-born musician, DJ, producer, curator, and activist, was the headliner tonight at the Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. She has been credited with pioneering Bhangra music in North America, the roots of which date back to the early 1980s when several Punjabi bands started experimenting with Western styles as well as traditional Punjabi music. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com
DJ Rekha led the Levitt Pavilion crowd in dancing tonight to South Asian sounds. She performs at a monthly event known as Basement Bhangra at SOB’s on Varick Street in Manhatttan. Since its launch in 1997, Basement Bhangra has popularized the traditional-modern bhangra blend, making the genre a part of the New York City club scene. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com
Artists set up their booths late today in preparation for the weekend 43rd annual Westport Fine Arts Festival sponsored by the Westport Downtown Merchants Association. Hours on Saturday and Sunday at 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The festival coincides with the Westport Library Giant Summer Book Sale. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Fellow artists from the Doylestown, Pa. area Christopher McCall (l) and Ron Prybycien assemble their exhibit booths late today in preparation for Saturday’s opening of the 43rd annual Westport Fine Arts Festival in Parker-Harding Plaza. MaCall, a still life and floral artist who is exhibiting at booth No. 70, said it is his 20th year at the event. Prybycien said it is his 14th year. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com