Friday, April 15, 2016
The Westport Arts Center (WAC) is set to present “Two Steps Forward: Contemporary Cuban Art,” an exhibition of work by emerging and established Cuban artists.
An opening reception will be held Friday, April 29, from 6 to 8 p.m.
The exhibit of works collected via trips to Cuba over the past decade by Greenwich residents Terri and Steven Certilman, runs through June 4.
“The unique political, social and economic conditions in Cuba have combined to catalyze what may be the world’s highest concentration of artistic talent,” said Steven Certilman.
The Westport Historical Society (WHS) will launch a new exhibit “The Beautiful Pond” based on the book of the same title by local artist and author Judith Orseck Katz on Sunday, May 15, from 3 to 5 p.m.
Like the book, the exhibit features watercolors of the Sherwood Mill Pond and its environs.
According to Barbara Peck, WHS assistant director, the circa 1705 mill pond played a pivotal role in the development of the town.
“As the first working mill and first commercial enterprise in what is now part of Westport, the pond’s grist mill gave the area the commerce required to be chartered,” says Peck.
Thursday, April 14, 2016
The Westport Historical Society (WHS) again this year will mark Tryon’s Raid, the Revolutionary War engagement that began with 1,800 British troops landing at Compo Beach on April 25, 1777.
The raid will be the topic of a WHS lecture by history buff Ed Hynes on Thursday, April 28, at 7 p.m.
The lecture comes just three days after the 239th anniversary of the British landing for their march to Danbury where Colonists had stored munitions.
WHS officials noted that during the four-day raid, British troops led by Maj. Gen. William Tryon, royal governor of the New York province, burned Patriot supplies, meeting Colonial force resistance with two battles along the way.
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Westporter Mar Jennnings’ television show has received two nominations in the 39th Boston/New England Emmy Award competition.
One was for Lifestyle Program/Special while the show’s director, Chris Panton, was nominated for Director in the Non-Live (Post-Produced) category.
Jennings’ eponymous television show features his unique prescription for casual luxury design and lifestyle. It is in its first season with a second in production.
Jennings has starred in Emmy-nominated programming in the past, but this is the first such distinction for his personal production, “Life on Mar’s: The Home Makeover Show,” which airs on WTNH, the ABC New Haven affiliate.
By Susan GrangerSpecial to WestportNow
You can see Melissa McCarthy’s best bits from “The Boss” in the trailer.
As brash Michelle Darnell, she’s a self-made financial guru – “the 47th wealthiest woman in America” - who gets arrested and convicted for insider trading.
When she’s released from prison, she’s so broke that she’s forced to bunk in with her former assistant, Claire (Kristen Bell). A hard-working single mom, Claire lives in a cramped, second-floor apartment with her tween daughter, Rachel (Ella Anderson).
“You’re dressed like someone who grocery shops at CVS,” Michelle tells Claire as she’s preparing for a date.
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
By Dave Matlow
The Luxe Wine Bar, 190 Main St., closes at the end of business on Sunday, according to owner Dave Morton, a Stratford resident.
Morton, who reopened the business in November 2013 after acquiring it from prior owner Robert Reilly, has sold it to Sammy Alanz, a Trumbull resident.
Alanz said he will open the space around the end of May as Bankside Social, which he described as a Mediterranean restaurant. He said it will have table service, a full tapas menu, a full bar, and be open seven days a week.
He said it will seat about 25 to 30 not counting the patio which will be open in season. The Bankside name comes from the early bankside farmers of Westport, he said.
Helen Simonson discussed her national best-selling novel, “The Summer Before the War,” today with Westporter Sybil Steinberg, Publisher’s Weekly contributing editor at the Westport Library. The audience was in for a real treat, not only did the interview produce some fascinating information, but Simonson was very humorous and had the audience laughing throughout the program. The novel takes place in 1914 in Rye, England, home to many famous authors, including Henry James. Said Woman’s Day of the book: “What begins as a study of a small-town society becomes a compelling account of war and its aftermath.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Sunday, April 10, 2016
The Westport Arts Center today featured a special program with the Borromeo String Quartet which played the first performance of a new composition by Russell Platt, WAC’s director of classical performances. Platt applauds following the performance by Nicholas Kitchen, violin; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello, and Kristopher Tong, violin. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
The group Brother Sun, consisting of Greg Greenway, Pat Wictor, and Joe Jencks, made another visit to Voices Café at the Unitarian Church in Westport today. Their lyrics and singing fused folk, Americana, blues, pop, jazz, rock and a cappella. Guitars and keyboard accompanied the three male voices. Brother Sun stirred the packed crowd to cheers and multiple standing ovations. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jane Sherman for WestportNow.com
The Westport Library today presented the Paul Morin Duet performing classical repertoire and new music from composer, artist and pianist Paul Morin and composer and violinist Patrisa Tomassini. Morin is a New York-based composer, contemporary artist and pianist. Tomassini is a graduate of the Mannes College of Music in New York City and the Accademia Musicale Ottorino Respighi in Italy. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Saturday, April 09, 2016
Westport Cinema Initiative, the nonprofit that hopes to return a movie theater to Westport’s downtown, today screened the 1987 romantic fantasy comedy film “Princess Bride” at Westport Town Hall. Afterward, a talk back featured Christopher “Chris” Sarandon, Jr. , who played Prince Humperdinck in the film, in conversation with Westporter Susan Granger, film critic for WestportNow and other publications. The Rob Reiner film—which aso starred Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, André the Giant, Robin Wright, Peter Falk, and Billy Crystal—was not a major box-office success, but it became a cult classic after its release to the home video market. “We had a good time doing this movie, but we took it seriously,” said Sarandon. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Among those in the audience for today’s Westport Cinema Initiative screening of “Princess Bride” at Westport Town Hall were Kerstin Warner Rao and her husband Vijay. Kerstin, a teacher at Westport’s Bedford Middle School, and Vijay, a computer programmer, were married in 2013 at the Inn at Longshore with “Princess Bride” as the theme of their wedding. The nuptials included acting scenes from the film. The marriage was performed by Bill Derry (l), the Westport Library‘s former assistant director of innovation and user experience who is also an ordained minister. Joining them was Chris Sarandon, who played Prince Humperdinck in the 1987 comedy, now a cult classic. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
The Westport Country Playhouse today hosted a 2016 Season Kick-off Block Party with various activities, games, prizes, special ticket offers, and a look at the Playhouse’s “backstage experience.” Among the displays was one from the Westport Library featuring a virtual reality experience. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, April 08, 2016
Claire Firlit, 4, of Westport points out her portrait today on display at the Westport Library at a reception to mark the Week of the Young Child. The exhibit of self-portraits is the sixth annual event by the library and its early literacy preschool outreach program. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Emanuel Linvald, 5, of Westport shows off his self-portrait today at a Westport Library reception marking the Week of the Young Child. The annual event is a celebration hosted by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) celebrating early learning, young children, their teachers and families. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Thursday, April 07, 2016
The Westport Library today launched a public awareness campaign whose goal is to connect people by highlighting their passions as well as communicate the vital role the library plays in the community. The campaign uses professional photographs of individuals showing what they “geek,” a word used as a verb to illustrate that everyone is passionate about something. Westporter Jessica Bram brought along an antique typewriter to show Bill Harmer, the library’s executive director, what she geeks. Photo sessions by photographer Pam Einarsen for those interested in participating are scheduled for Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Friday, April 15, 3 to 5 p.m., and Tuesday, May 17 6 to 8 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
A larger poster of Westporter David Pogue, technology writer, musician, and a man of many other talents, has been placed outside the Westport Library as part of its new awareness campaign called “What Do You Geek?” The library invited the public to participate in the campaign by having their picture taken (solid black tops only, please) with what they “geek” by professional photogapher Pam Einersen. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Scenes from tonight’s reception marking the launch of the Westport Library’s “What Do You Geek ?” campaign. The public awareness campaign aims to connect people by highlighting their passions as well as communicate the vital role the library plays in the community. Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
The Westport Community Theatre presents Noël Coward’s “Private Lives,” a comedy about the hilarious and tumultuous relationship between a divorced couple, from Friday through April 24. Performances are on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and at 2 p.m. on Sundays, with a Thursday performance on April 14 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $23, $21 for seniors and students, and can be purchased at www. westportcommunitytheatre.com or by calling (203) 226-1983. Westport Community Theatre is located in the basement of Town Hall at 110 Myrtle Ave. Pictured are John Bachelder, Ann Kinner, David Victor and Sam Pattinson. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Wednesday, April 06, 2016
By Susan GrangerSpecial to WestportNow
“Eye in the Sky,” starring Helen Mirren and the late Alan Rickman, is a timely British thriller about drone warfare that turns out to be a real nail-biter.
It begins in a Cabinet office in London, where Lt. Gen. Frank Benson (Rickman) and several officials have ascertained the exact location in Nairobi, Kenya, where several people on their Most Wanted list are convening, including a radicalized British woman with an Al-Shabaab militant.
High above is an American drone, piloted by Steve Watts (Aaron Paul) from a bunker in Nevada, while British Colonel Katherine Powell (Mirren) remotely commands a team of local Kenyan troops, hidden in a nearby warehouse, ready to capture, not kill, the woman and her conspirators.
But when an onsite operative, Jama Farah (Barkhad Abdi), flies a tiny drone, resembling a bug, into the target’s house, it feeds back pictures of terrorists’ preparations for an imminent suicide attack, perhaps at a crowded shopping mall, like before.
Westport artist Naiad Einsel died April 3 at home. She was 88. She is pictured in 2011 at a Westport Historical Society reception marking the opening of an exhibit called “Art From the Heart,” a retrospective of works she and her late husband Walter created and exchanged during their 47 years together expressing their love and admiration for each other. At left is artist Howard Munce, known as the dean of Westport artists, who died at his Westport home on March 5 at age 100. (See WestportNow March 8, 2016) See Naiad Einsel obituary here. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com
Westport artist Naiad June Einsel died April 3 at home. She was 88.
Born in Philadelphia on June 6, 1927, her lifelong love of art began in her father’s grocery store, where she drew on the brown wrapping paper.
After attending the High School of Music and Art in New York City, she graduated from Pratt Institute.
She met the love of her life, her late husband Walter, while they were both art directors – Naiad at CBS, and Walter at NBC. They were introduced when Walter applied for a job at CBS. “I didn’t get the job,” he said later, “but I got the girl.
Tuesday, April 05, 2016
Mary Poppins takes to the air today in a dress rehearsal of the Coleytown Company production of “Mary Poppins.” The play, under the direction of Benjamin Frimmer, will be presented Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7 p.m. with a 1 p.m. Saturday matinee. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Cast members of “Mary Poppins” perform in a dress rehearsal today of the Coleytown Company production which will be seen Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at Coleytown Middle School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Scenes from today’s final dress rehearsal of the Coleytown Company’s “Mary Poppins.” It will be presented Thursday Frday, and Saturday at Coleytown Middle School. Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Cartoonist Mike Lynch posted on his blog this tribute to cartoonist Dick Hodgins Jr. of Wilton, who died Sunday. In addition to “Half Hitch,” “Henry,” “Hagar the Horrible,” he served as an editorial cartoonist for The Asssociated Press, The New York Daily News, Fairpress, and the Westport News. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Courtesy Mike Lynch
Sunday, April 03, 2016
By Phyllis Groner
Famed pop artist Andy Warhol could have been a case study on the television show “Hoarders,” to hear science journalist Claudia Kalb tell it.
His home was so jammed with stuff, his rooms so unnavigable, that he never invited people over, Kalb said.
Kalb, author of “Andy Warhol Was a Hoarder: Inside the Minds of History’s Great Personalities,” held a rapt, overflow audience spellbound at the Westport Library’s McManus Room today as she recounted the idiosyncrasies and psychological quirks of 12 of the world’s great minds and personalities.
Kalb’s book suggests Albert Einstein was high on the autism scale, Charles Darwin was riddled with anxiety disorder, Frank Lloyd Wright was a narcissist and George Gershwin had an attention deficit disorder (ADD).