Arts and Leisure
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Rehearsing ‘The Liar’
The cast of the Westport Country Playhouse season opener “The Liar” rehearses today in the Sheffer Rehearsal Hall at the Playhouse. “The Liar,” which previews May 5 and opens May 9, is an adaptation by David Ives of French dramatist Pierre Corneille’s classic comedy that was first performed in 1643. Commissioned by the Shakespeare Theater Company in Washington, D.C., where it was originally staged in 2010, “The Liar” was composed in rhyming verse by Ives. Pictured are Rusty Ross (l) as Cliton and Aaron Krohn who portrays Dorante, “The Liar.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Town Hall to Host ‘TEA Talk’ on Sunday
Westport Town Hall on Sunday will host the Westport Arts Advisory Committee (WAAC) second “TEA Talk” (Thinkers, Educators, Artists).
Both the 2 p.m. event and a reception to follow at the Westport Historical Society are free and open to the public.
Entitled “Healing through the Arts,” TEA Talk will feature professionals in the visual and performing arts who utilize music and art therapy for veterans, cancer patients, and prison inmates and their families.
“As we thought about why the arts are so important to our community, we were struck by the psychological, physiological, and spiritual roles that visual and performing arts play in the healing process,” said Richard Epstein, a Westport dentist who is WAAC co-chair and local musician and radio host.
Monday, April 27, 2015
Brainstorming the Library at the Library
About 25 persons tonight attended the second of two Community Conversation forums at the Westport Library’s McManus Room about the Library. The forum, which followed a similar one March 29, explored strategies and gathered feedback on how the Library can enhance its facilities, services and programs to meet the community’s needs, now and in the future. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Taking Down Geiger’s Barn Piece-By-Piece
By Dave Matlow
The 1840s barn at the former Geiger’s Garden Center, 1135 Post Road East, is coming down piece-by-piece, much of it to be preserved in a process called deconstruction.
Joe DeRisi, owner of Hamden-based Urban Miners, works on the Geiger’s barn, 1135 Post Road East. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
A landmark, family-owned business at the 2.5-acre property since 1953, Geiger’s has been sold to make way for redevelopment to include 12 housing units, including two affordable, as well as a bank in the front. It was WestportNow’s Teardown of the Day on Oct. 31, 2013.
Joe DeRisi, owner of Hamden-based Urban Miners, a deconstruction, salvage and reclaimed goods business, is performing the work.
“We expect the entire barn will be deconstructed and removed by May 5,” he said, adding, “We’re saving historic materials such as roof sheeting, rafters, timber frames and siding that would usually be destroyed in a demolition.”
Preserving a Bit of Westport History
Scenes from the deconstruction of the Geiger’s Barn, 1135 Post Road East, to make way for apartments, retail, and a bank.v Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Sunday, April 26, 2015
Classical Guitar at Arts Center
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 WestportNow.com
“Lady in Gold’ Author Draws Overflow Crowd
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 WestportNow.com
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.
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.
Friday, April 24, 2015
On the Red Carpet
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
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 WestportNow.com
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Playhouse Adds 1,000 New Subscribers
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 WestportNow.com
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Learning to Adapt
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 WestportNow.com
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 WestportNow.com
Saturday, April 18, 2015
Remembering Susan Malloy at the Library
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 WestportNow.com
Book of Memories
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 WestportNow.com