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Arts and Leisure

Arts and Leisure

Monday, January 11, 2010

Preparing for Season Debut of “Play With Your Food”

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Artistic Director Carole Schweid (r) rehearses cast members (l-r) Barbara Rhoades, Sean Hannon, and Richard Leonard;for this week’s season debut performances of Play With Your Food at Westport’s Toquet Hall. The popular series, which runs Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, begins with a buffet lunch by Abbondonza at noon, and is followed by readings of three one-act plays, “American Gothic” (Michael McKeever); “The Precipice” (William Mastriosimone), and “The Agreement” (Janet Neipris). While the Toquet Hall series is sold out, the program will be repeated at the Fairfield Theatre Company on Tuesday, Jan. 19. For information, visit playwithyourfood.org. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 11:02 PM
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Westport Sketchbook: Horse in the Snow

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Westport artist and illustrator Elaine Clayton spotted some horses in a paddock on Maple Avenue North. This was one of them. See more of her work at illuminara.com. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Elaine Clayton for WestportNow.com

Posted 03:23 PM
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Large Turnout for Arts Center Hinton Film Showing

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More than 90 persons attended today’s Westport Arts Center discussion and screening of the 2002 award-winning documentary “Keeping Time: The Life, Music & Photographs of Milt Hinton.” The showing was part of the Center’s winter season devoted to jazz history, art, and music. Currently on display are an exhibit of Hinton’s photographs of famous jazz musicians. Gallery Executive Director Nancy Heller welcomed the crowd. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Lefkowitz for WestportNow.com

Posted 12:11 AM
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Jazz Talk

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The Westport Arts Center screening today of the documentary “Keeping Time: The Life, Music & Photographs of Milt Hinton” was followed by a discussion that included producers of the 2002 award-winning work—David G. Berger (c) and Holly Maxson (r). They were joined by Brian Torff (l), the Center’s artistic director for jazz, in discussing the life and photos of Hinton, one of the most recorded musicians of all time and the dean of American bass players. He died in 2000 at the age of 90, leaving behind more than 60,000 photos of fellow jazz musicians taken during his seven-decade long career as a musician. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Lefkowitz for WestportNow.com

Posted 12:06 AM
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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Stamford Symphony Opens Westport Mozart Series

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The Steinway Piano Gallery of Westport today hosted the debut of the Stamford Symphony’s fifth season of Mozart and Friends piano concerts. The Symphony’s principal pianist, Emily Wong (at piano), performed duos with fellow pianist Jean Schneider (r) simultaneously on the same piano and on then on two pianos. More than 80 people attended, according to Elaine Carroll, Symphony general manager. The remaining two performances in the series are scheduled for Feb. 7 and March 14, both at the Steinway Gallery. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Posted 11:00 PM
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Music @ the Library Features Guitarist Frank Vignola

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It was standing room only today for the Westport Public Library’s “Music @ The Library” series featuring Frank Vignola (c), a multi-dimensional guitar player, as he celebrated European jazz musician Django Reinhardt. The band also includes Vinny Raniolo on guitar, Gary Mazzaroppi on bass, Julien Labro on accordion, and Zach Brock on violin. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Posted 09:13 PM
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Broadway Sound at Senior Center

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The Westport Indoor Music Festival Concert today at the Westport Center for Senior Activities featured Maureen Hamill & Company performing “Broadway Moments.” The show was presented by the Friends of the Westport Senior Center from a grant from the Mortimer Levitt Foundation.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Posted 08:56 PM
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Westport Pianist Plays at Pequot, Carnegie Hall

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Dalia Lazar: Westport artist performing two concerts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Westport pianist Dalia Lazar will perform two recitals later this month, one at the Pequot Library in Southport and the other at New York’s Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.

The Pequot event will take place on Friday, Jan.  22 at 8 p.m. and the Carnegie program on Wednesday, Jan. 27 at 7:30 p.m.

The program includes works by Scarlatti, Chopin, Levitzki, Brahms, and Liszt. The concert is dedicated in memory of pianist Maria Curcio, who recently died.

Tickets for the Pequot performance are $25, seniors $20, students free. Tickets for Carnegie Hall are $25 and are on sale at the Carnegie Hall box office, by calling CarnegieCharge at (212)247-7800, or by visiting the Carnegie Hall Web site.

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Posted 05:22 PM
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Saturday, January 09, 2010

Curtain Call for “Willy Wonka”

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The youthful cast of the MTC MainStage Kids Production of “Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka: Junior Edition” takes a bow at the end of its performance today at the Westport Country Playhouse as an overflow crowd expresses it appreciation. The show, based on Dahl’s book “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” was performed for overflow audiences on Friday and today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Posted 11:25 PM
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Thursday, January 07, 2010

“I Will Not Remember Anything That Happened Tonight”

By Phyllis Groner

A Westport man told a packed Westport Public Library audience tonight of his battles with memory loss that echo a book chosen as this year’s WestportReads selection.WestportNow.com Image
Doug and Patti Brill at the library tonight with two of their four children—Nicole, 16, who attends Staples High School, and Kenny, 10, a student at Long Lots Elementary School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Doug Brill, 48, has lived in Westport with his wife Patti for 12 years, sharing the ups and downs of coping with memory loss just as the main character in the book, “The Housekeeper and the Professor” by Yoko Ogawa.

Brill, a successful banker and father of four, was stricken with a virus that hit his brain in 2002. He was in intense pain. He first went to Stamford Hospital which then released him.

Next he was rushed off to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York where he spent several months and was diagnosed with an auto-immune disease that left him with short-term memory loss, just as the professor in the book.

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Posted 03:30 AM
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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Westport Arts Center Names Director of Visual Arts

The Westport Arts Center today named Helen Klisser During of Weston as director of visual arts.WestportNow.com Image
Helen Klisser During: “deep love” for community. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Klisser During, a longtime resident of the area, is a private art advisor, curator and photographer, working primarily with major artists, art galleries, auction houses, museums and art fairs internationally.

She will be responsible for curating three or four themed exhibitions a year and overseeing the Center’s solo and group member exhibitions, an announcement said.

To complement the exhibitions, Klisser During will work with the Center staff to develop integrated arts programs, such as youth education initiatives, film screenings and literary events, it said.

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Posted 04:12 PM
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Sunday, January 03, 2010

Making Music

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Two youngsters show off their funky instruments created today at the Westport Arts Center’s WACky Family Day set against the photographs by jazz great Milt Hinton. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Posted 11:45 PM
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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Caricaturist David Levine Dies at 83; Had Westport Ties

Caricaturist David Levine, best known for his work published in The New York Review of Books and whose output has been coordinated by his son from his Compo Beach-area home in Westport, died today. He was 83.WestportNow.com Image
David Levine in a photo from a Web site coordinated by his son, Matthew, a Westport resident and artist who, like his father, has painted many Westport scenes. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Davidlevineart.com photo

Levine died at New York Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan of prostate cancer and complications from other ailments, according to Robert Silvers, editor of The New York Review. He called Levine “the greatest caricaturist of his time.”

Levine, who also painted numerous watercolors of Westport scenes, was known for his drawings of politicians, celebrities, writers and historical figures that typically had large heads and exaggerated features. In one well-known image from 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson pulls up his shirt to reveal a gallbladder-operation scar shaped like the map of Vietnam.

The drawings defined the look of The New York Review, which sold them on calendars and T-shirts.

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Posted 12:04 AM
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Monday, December 28, 2009

Westport Sketchbook: Compo Blue Ribbon

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Westport artist and illustrator Elaine Clayton watched the “mutt mitts” at Compo Beach create a blue ribbon flying in the wind. See more of her work at illuminara.com. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Elaine Clayton for WestportNow.com

Posted 04:46 AM
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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Westport Reads

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Providing some bright color on a dreary day, a banner across Westport’s Main Street announces the Westport Public Library’s selection of the 2010 WestportReads program. The featured book is “The Housekeeper and The Professor” by Yoko Ogawa. It is the story about a brilliant math professor who loses his ability to retain recent short term memories. The book explores his relationship with his housekeeper and her 10-year-old son. Copies of the book are available for individuals and book groups at the library. For more information, visit the library’s Web site. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com

Posted 05:15 AM
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