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Arts and Leisure

Arts and Leisure

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Granger at the Movies: ‘Deepwater Horizon,’ ‘The Magnificent Seven,’ ‘Storks’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

When an explosion on April 10, 2010, ignited the “Deepwater Horizon” oil rig, the blowout lasted 87 days, leaking 4.9 million gallons into the Gulf, resulting in the worst ecological disaster in American history.

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Told through the perspective of Chief Electronics Technician Mike Williams (Mark Wahlberg), it begins as he bids goodbye to his wife (Kate Hudson) and young daughter, hoping to snag a ‘dinosaur bone’ for her to show to her class in school.

Preparing to be transported to the enormous rig, just off the Louisiana coast, he greets co-worker Andrea Fleytas (Gina Rodriguez) and reports for duty to Captain “Mr. Jimmy” Harrell (Kurt Russell), who, ironically, is presented with a workplace Safety Award, just before the “well from hell” bursts.

Conversing in terse, indecipherable, technical jargon, it’s obvious that certain “negative pressure tests,” along with other maintenance procedures, were not properly performed because of monetary pressure.

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09/28/16 06:10 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Family Winners in Photo Competition

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The Westport Arts Center and the Westport Farmers Market tonight announced the winners of the second annual Young Shoots student digital photography competition at a gallery-like reception at Sugar & Olives Restaurant, Norwalk. The competition, jointly sponsored by the two Westport nonprofits, was designed to provide an opportunity for students to demonstrate their creativity through the digital photography medium, and to showcase the local color and vibrancy of the market.The winners included Claire Langdon (c), first place for “Fungal Forrest,” ages 15-18, and Emma Langdon (r), fan favorite, “Untitled,” for ages 11-14. At left is mom, Lori Langdon. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Leslie LaSala for WestportNow.com

09/27/16 08:03 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, September 26, 2016

After Fire, Positano Back to Regular Hours

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Fernando Scarpati, Positano Ristorante chef/co-owner, checks out the site of a fire in a dining room wall, which closed the restaurant Sunday night. He said Positano is now open and operating on regular hours. He said the hot stove on the opposite side of the wall built up heat to a point that it ignited a portion of the wall. “Fortunately, the construction of the wall had a fire-stopper panel that stopped the progress of the fire,” Scarpati said. Firefighters quickly extinguished the flames. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/26/16 11:55 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Reception Celebrates Larry Silver N.Y. Photo Exhibit

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Westport photographer Larry Silver today addresses a reception at the New York Historical Society where his exhibit “Photographs by Larry Silver, 1949-1955,” opened July 1. The exhibit showcasing 45 photos of post-war New York City life by the Bronx-born photographer runs until Dec. 4. The Society is at 170 Central Park West (77th Street). Silver is a 43-year resident of Westport and a recipient of the Westport Arts Achievement Award in the Visual Arts in 2006. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Douglas Healey for WestportNow.com

09/25/16 07:04 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Reuniting With Old Friends

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Westport photographer Larry Silver (c) embraces his friends Gloria and Howard Paul of Nyack, N.Y.  today while posing for a photograph in front of his own photographic work. Silver photographed the couple at her grandmothers house in Bronx N.Y. on their way to the prom in 1955. A reception to celebrate “Photographs by Larry Silver 1949-1955” was held at the New York Historical Society 170 Central Park West. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Douglas Healey for WestportNow.com

09/25/16 06:59 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Oktoberfest in Westport

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Westport’s Rothbard Ale + Larder European Gastropub celebrated Oktoberfest today in the alley and front of the Old Town Hall at 90 Post Road East. The festivities continue until 11 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

09/24/16 05:26 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Offering a Taste

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A guest at today’s Okotberfest celebration at Rothbard Ale + Larder, 90 Post Road East, offers up some brew to a four-legged celebrant. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

09/24/16 05:21 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Suzuki School Opens at New Location

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Students at the Suzuki Music School of Westport perform today at the official opening of the school’s new 7,000 square feet location at 246 Post Road East in the Colonial Green complex, former home of the Music Theatre of Connecticut MainStage (MTC). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/24/16 12:17 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Cutting the Ribbon

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Cutting the symbolic ribbon today at the new home of the Suzuki Music School of Westport were (l-r)  Sheila Ward, school board member; Sarah Smale, assistant director; Amadeo Rodriguez, board chairman; First Selectman Jim Marpe, and Andrew Smith, director, Suzuki Music Schools.  Marpe said today’s performance by the young musicians reminded him of his younger days when he performed on the clarinet. “It gives me much pleasure to see so many youths skillfully playing the violin and developing the very important music discipline at an early age,” he said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/24/16 12:12 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, September 22, 2016

To Dramatize Message, Drunk Driving Victim Turns Playwright

By James Lomuscio

Westporter Mike Krysiuk could be describing an event in real time when he recounts being in a sportscar doing 100 mph and driven by his friend drunk at the wheel.

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Mike Krysiuk: in coma seven weeks. Contributed photo

“My friend and I were coming out from New York, coming down Route 123 in New Canaan,” he recalled about the incident 42 years ago. “We went across the line to buy some beer in Vista, N.Y.”

It was Sunday, Jan. 31, 1974, a time when Connecticut Blue Laws prohibited alcohol sales on Sunday. Kyrsiuk says both he and his friend Ted Reynolds were drunk.

“It was a two-seater Triumph GT6,” Krysiuk said. “He tried to downshift. The gears locked, the brakes locked, and we went skidding and heading head for a pile of dirt and a big black shadow next to the pile of dirt.

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09/22/16 07:45 PM Comments (1) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

The Cottage Restaurant Expanding

Chef Brian Lewis of Westport’s The Cottage restaurant, widely praised by reviewers, announced today he is expanding it by adding space next door.

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Chef Brian Lewis: dining, bar, and kitchen areas will expand. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

An announcement said work began this week on adding 800-square feet to his existing 1,500-square feet in at 256 Post Road East in Colonial Green. The site was formerly Le Farm Restaurant.

“I could not be more grateful for the love and support the Town of Westport and all of Fairfield County and beyond has given to us since we opened nearly a year ago,” said Lewis in the announcement.

“While we have big plans for this additional space, our number one priority is to continue to offer the same comfortable atmosphere, delicious cuisine and warm hospitality that we are proud to be known for.”

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09/22/16 05:14 PM Comments (1) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Granger at the Movies: ‘Bridget Jones’s Baby,’ ‘Hands of Stone,’ ‘War Dogs’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

“Bridget Jones’s Baby,” the long-awaited third installment, begins as charmingly awkward, accident-prone Bridget (Renee Zellweger) is celebrating her 43rd birthday – alone, once again – with Celine Dion’s “All By Myself.”

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A funeral flashback reveals that Bridget’s caddish boss, Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant), has died and her longtime lover, successful barrister Mark Darcy (Colin Firth), is married to a woman named Camilla.

Bridget is a successful TV news show producer and her best friend, anchorwoman Miranda (Sarah Solemani), has concocted a plan to launch her back into the dating world during a weekend at the Glastonbury Music Festival.

That’s where American billionaire Jack Quant (Patrick Dempsey) gallantly pulls her out of a mud puddle. He’s CEO of an online dating website. Later that night, he and Bridget hook up in his ornate yurt.

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09/20/16 12:51 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monica Lewinsky in Cyberbullying Talk at WAC

Monica Lewinsky, now an anti-bullying advocate 20 years after she endured worldwide ridicule when her affair with President Bill Clinton was revealed, will speak at the Westport Arts Center (WAC) next month about bullying, it was announced today.

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Monica Lewinsky delivering a March 2015 TED talk, “The Price of Shame.”  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Her appearance on Thursday, Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m. coincides with the current WAC exhibit, “MORE Than Words,” which examines the topic of bullying.

VIP tickets for $200, including a reception, are on sale to WAC members today and will be available to the public beginning on Friday, an announcement said. It said the event is closed to the press.

Lewinsky, 43, will speak on “bullying, cyberbullying, resilience and reclaiming your narrative,” the announcement said.

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09/20/16 10:17 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, September 19, 2016

Gallery: 2016 Westport Playhouse Gala


Scenes from tonight’s 2016 Westport Playhouse gala, “The Night They Invented Champagne: Celebrating Lerner & Loewe..” Dave Matlow and J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com and WestportNow.com photos. Performance photos by Steve Walter Photo.

09/19/16 10:23 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Standing Ovation for Playhouse Gala Performance

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There was a stamding ovation tonight for the Westport Country Playhouse’s 2016 gala, “The Night They Invented Champagne: Celebrating Lerner & Loewe.” Actor Richard Thomas hosted a variety of artists who performed the music of the legendary Broadway composing team. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

09/19/16 09:53 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Honored With Playhouse Leadership Award

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Jill and Alex Dimitrief of Westport receive the 2016 Playhouse Leadership Award tonight at the Westport Country Playhouse 2016 gala from Barbara K. Streicker (l), chair of the Playhouse board of trustees. Dimitrief, senior vice president and general counsel of GE who joined the Playhouse board of trustees in 2010, told the audience he and his wife were most appreciative of the award and hoped to return often to the Playhouse. He and his wife are moving to Massachusetts where GE has moved its corporate headquarters from Fairfield. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo by Steve Walter Photo

09/19/16 09:48 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Formal Introduction for Playhouse Managing Director

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Michael Barker, new Westport Playhouse managing director, and wife Heidi pose at tonight’s Playhouse gala. Anne Keefe, associate artist, made the onstage formal introduction of Barker to the gala audience, noting he was a new Michael, a reference to his predecessor, Michael Ross, who left in June after seven years in the post. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/19/16 09:43 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Up for Auction

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Guests at the 2016 Westport Country Playhouse gala tonight check out some of the auction items available. They included tickets to theater and sporting events, stays at luxury accommodations, and items donated by Westport merchants and residents. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

09/19/16 09:38 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Chiara String Quartet at Westport Arts Center

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The Chiara String Quartet performed today at the Westport Arts Center (WAC).  In addition to playing without printed music, the quartet, based in Lincoln, Neb., is also known for performing in a variety of unusual venues, including bars. The group performed a program of Britten, Bartok and Brahms and was complimented by the commentary of chamber music co-curator Alexander Platt. The concert is the first in the 2016-17 WAC Performing Arts concert series. The next chamber music performance will be on Oct. 30 featuring Jenny Lin, a Taiwanese-born American pianist. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Leslie LaSala for WestportNow.com

09/18/16 05:07 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Cutting the Ribbon at Vine Wine Room

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The Vine Wine Room had its official opening today at 190 Main St. in space formerly occupied by Luxe Wine Bar, which closed in April. Among those doing the honors: (l-r): co-owner Sammy Alanz, Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce (WWCC) Board Member Adam Faillace, WWCC Executive Director Matthew Mandell, Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe, and co-owner Heather Buchheit-Ferrari. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

09/15/16 08:45 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Getting Ready for Playhouse Gala Monday

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Workers today prepare the main tent for the Westport Country Playhouse’s annual fundraising gala Monday, “The Night They Invented Champagne: Celebrating Lerner & Loewe.”  It features artists Richard Thomas, host; Britney Coleman, Kristen Hahn, Robert Sean Leonard, Stephen Mark Lukas, Howard McGillin, Ciara Renée, Mary Testa, Richard Troxell, Max von Essen, Nicholas Ward, and members of the New York Theatre Ballet and begins with a cocktail reception at 5:30 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/15/16 03:00 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Granger at the Movies: ‘Snowden,’ ‘Morgan,’ ‘The Disappointment Room’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

Timed to coincide with the release of Oliver Stone’s docudrama “Snowden,” the American Civil Liberties Union and Amnesty International launched an initiative to get Edward Snowden a presidential pardon from President Obama.

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So is whistleblower Snowden a 21st century hero or traitor?

Director Stone (“The Walk,” “World Trade Center”) believes that knowing the backstory of the contractor who leaked classified documents about the National Security Agency’s enormous invasions of privacy will influence your opinion.

If you’ve seen Laura Poitras’ incisive, Oscar-winning documentary “Citizenfour,” you’re familiar with much of Snowden’s tale. Stone’s begins in 2013, when Snowden (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) meets with Poitras (Melissa Leo) and journalists Glenn Greenwald (Zachary Quinto) and Ewan MacAskill (Tom Wilkinson) in a Hong Kong hotel room.

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Teens Honored at Westport Arts Center

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Harrison Burke, 16, of Westport and his mother, author Jane Green, were among guests tonight at the Westport Arts Center (WAC) as it celebrated Moffly Media’s “Teens to Watch.”  Harrison was among members of the U.S. Junior National Team who won a bronze medal Aug. 28 at the world rowing championships in Rotterdam, (See WestportNow Aug. 28, 2016) The teens were selected for their achievements and for breaking boundaries in academics, athletics, volunteering and the arts. The teens, their families, teachers and counselors had an opportunity to celebrate their accomplishments and to view the current WAC “MORE Than Words” exhibit, which examines bullying in a broad cultural context. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Leslie LaSala for WestportNow.com

09/13/16 08:03 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, September 09, 2016

DNR in WVEMS Benefit at Levitt

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The popular (almost) all-physician band DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) performed at the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts tonight in balmy, 80-degree weather. The performance was a benefit for Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Services and first responders on the eve of the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. That’s Bob Altbaum,  Westport internist and the band’s keyboardist/vocalist, at the right. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

09/09/16 09:11 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Summer-Like Weather for Levitt Concert

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With temperatures in the 80s and high humidity, it seemed like a mid-summer night tonight at the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts in a special benefit concert by the DNR band for Westport’s WVEMS and first responders. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com

09/09/16 09:05 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Getting Together Backstage

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Yves Cantin, president of the Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Service (WVEMS), gets together tonight backstage with members of the DNR band before their Levitt Pavilion concert benefitting WVEMS and first responders. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

09/09/16 08:53 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Arts Center Opens ‘MORE Than Words’ Exhibit

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The Westport Arts Center (WAC) tonight held a reception to mark the opening of its “MORE Than Words” exhibit curated by Gerry Snyder (r), dean of the School of Art at Pratt Institute. With him is Laura Perese, a WAC board member and part of curatorial team. The exhibit is focused on the theme of courage, resilience, and empowerment in the face of bullying. They are standing in front of Donald Moffett’s “He Kills Me” (1987.)  The exhibit runs through Oct. 29. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com

09/09/16 08:45 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Opening Night at Arts Center

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Among those at the Westport Arts Center (WAC) reception tonight marking the opening of its “MORE Than Words” exhibit were (l-r) artist Nina Bentley, Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe, and Amanda Innes, WAC executive director. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Leslie LaSala for WestportNow.com

09/09/16 08:40 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Introducing New Playhouse Managing Director

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Michael Barker, recently appointed managing director of the Westport Country Playhouse (WCP) was introduced tonight to WCP patrons and board members at the “2016 Gala Benefactor Preview Party” at Steinway & Sons Gallery, 501 Post Road East. Tonight’s event presented a glimpse of plans for the Monday, Sept. 19 WCP gala, which celebrates composers Lerner & Loewe. Actor Richard Thomas will host “The Night They Invented Champagne” at which Broadway artists perform Lerner & Loewe music. The gala theme serves as a springboard for the Playhouse’s October production of Lerner & Lowe’s “Camelot,” directed by Mark Lamos. Playhouse artistic director. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/08/16 10:44 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

DNR in WVEMS Benefit Friday at Levitt

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Just when you thought the Levitt Pavilion season was over, there will be a special performance Friday night by the (almost) all-physician local popular band DNR in a 9/11 salute to the Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Service (WVEMS) and all first responders. The concert, sponsored by Westport’s Matsu Sushi restaurant, begins at 7:30 p.m. It will be the seventh successive year for the DNR benefit concert for WVEMS sponsored by Matsu Sushi. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

09/08/16 05:17 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

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