Saturday, August 25, 2012
Scenes from tonight’s Levitt Pavilion gala starring Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. There was a pre- and post-show reception for VIP guests. Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Friday, August 24, 2012
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
By James Lomuscio
Westporter Clay Garner, 18, says answering all of his Twitter followers, about 2,000 a day, can be tiring, but he does his best not to disappoint his fans despite the amount of responses and the obvious time lag since they are on the other side of the world.
“I try to answer all of them,” says Clay, who will be a senior at Greens Farms Academy (GFA) in September.
Such are chores that come with being China’s new teen idol, albeit an American one.
Clay, or Gaoshon as he is as known by millions of fans, has skyrocketed to fame over the past two years thanks to the Internet, Youku (China’s version of YouTube), his penchant for writing songs and playing music, three years of studying Mandarin at GFA, and practicing the language on waitresses at local Chinese restaurants.
The popular Texas-based Brave Combo tonight kicked-off the final week of the 2012 summer season for Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. The band, founded in 1979, energized the attendees with a range of dance music from the hokey-pokey to a waltz. The Levitt season’s final week includes a ticketed gala on Friday featuring Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Monday, August 20, 2012
Westport’s River House restaurant tonight hosted a lobster clambake featuring Weston’s Jose Feliciano, just back from Memphis, Tenn. where he entertained at Graceland as it marked the 35th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley. Feliciano, who says Presley was a boyhood idol, performed selections from his just released album “The King…by Jose Feliciano.” Produced by Presley’s longtime friend George Klein, the Presley tribute album features not only Feliciano playing 12 handpicked songs but also playing all of the instruments and performing the vocals in the background. Among those looking on are Kevin Burns (pink shirt), co-owner of River House. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Scenes from Friday night’s ArtCafe Happy Hour at the Westport Arts Center. Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
The threat of inclement weather did not deter the vast following of the DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) rock band which entertained tonight at Westport’s Pavilion for the Performing Arts and continued through the heavy rain. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
The mostly doctors Westport-based DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) band performed at Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts tonight despite the threat of rain, which eventually came. The program was sponsored by Matsu Sushi Japanese restaurant located on nearby Jesup Road. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, August 17, 2012
Thursday, August 16, 2012
(Editor’s Note: Carole Schweid of Westport, artistic director of the popular lunchtime play reading series Play With Your Food, appeared in Marvin Hamlisch’s “A Chorus Line” on Broadway. On Tuesday, she attended his New York funeral. He died Aug. 6 at the age of 68.)
By Carole Schweid
Temple Emanu-El on 66th and Fifth was packed to the rafters. But then, Marvin pretty much always played to a full house. The temple was overflowing with the likes of Richard Gere, Robert Klein, Liza, Joe Torre, musicians and dancers, singers and statesmen.
A chorus of 200 Broadway voices, including mine, joined Idina Menzel in singing “The Way We Were,” “At The Ballet” and, of course, “What I Did For Love.”
Bill Clinton was the first to speak. He talked about how rare it was to have a friend who was not only a genius, but who was absolutely hilarious. A friend who was equally brilliant conducting for Barbra in front of thousands or behind closed doors making up parodies of musicals for 20, and how much help he had been to him and to his foundation.
I knew Marvin before “A Chorus Line.” He was the rehearsal pianist on “Minnie’s Boys,” my first Broadway show.
Tonight’s early evening rain did not deter some loyal fans of the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts who showed up with umbrellas for Bari Koral’s Family Rock & Roll Band. However, the outdoor performance on this every-Wednesday kids’ night ended early as rain continued to pour. Huddled under an umbrella were Levitt executive director Freda Welsh and daughter Carleigh, marketing communications director. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Despite tonight’s rain, the Bari Koral’s Family Rock & Roll Band went ahead with its performance at Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. However, the rain did not let up and the performance finally was ended early. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
By Phyllis Groner
There may have been a low turnout at the polls today but that definitely was not the case tonight at the Westport Public Library which had a winner in New York Times sports columnist Harvey Araton.
He talked about his book “Driving Mr. Yogi; Yogi Berra, Ron Guidry, and Baseball’s Greatest Gift” in which he tells about the enduring friendship between former Yankees catcher Yogi Berra and pitcher Ron Guidry.
This bond between them, Yankee legends of different generations, Araton explained, began after their playing days were over. It’s the story of a younger player and his idol who became his best friend.
It is written with love and a great deal of warmth. It is obvious in the telling that author Araton admired both men.
An intimate size crowd tonight enjoyed the bluegrass and Irish traditional music of the award winning Brock McGuire Irish Band at the Saugatuck Elementary School auditorium. The Levitt Pavilion performance was moved indoors due to the threat of rain. The band’s founding members, accordionist Paul Brock and fiddler Manus McGuire are two of Ireland’s most celebrated traditional musicians and have been at the forefront of Irish music for many years. In introducing the program, Levitt communications director Carleigh Welsh said the band’s appearance in Westport is the first stop on a U.S. tour. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Due to the weather forecast for tonight, the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts has moved the concert by Brock-McGuire, a four-piece traditional Irish music band, indoors to Saugatuck Elementary School’s air-conditioned auditorium, 170 Riverside Ave.
Showtime is 8 p.m. and admission is free.
With the exception of water, food and beverages are not allowed inside the school. For more details, visit http://www.levittpavilion.com.
Sunday, August 12, 2012
The Harlem String Quartet kicks off the Westport Arts Center’s new chamber music season today with a 3 p.m. concert at the Center, 51 Riverside Ave. The young ensemble reflects the African-American and Hispanic culture of its home neighborhood with a stated mission to advance diversity in classical music. It hopes to engage young and new audiences through the discovery and presentation of a varied repertoire, highlighting works by minority composers. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Friday, August 10, 2012
By James Lomuscio
Considering about 60 people each spent $35,800 to have dinner with President Barack Obama in Westport this past week, the lock of George Washington’s hair selling for $6,900 at Rockwell Art and Framing on Post Road East seems like a bargain to hear John Reznikoff tell it.
“It’s actually three things, his hair, his signature on a document and piece of his coat,” says Reznikoff, owner of University Archives, also in Westport.
Recently, Reznikoff, a worldwide dealer of collectibles, teamed up with internationally revered document authenticator Seth Keller, and Stephen Desloge, owner of seven Rockwell galleries in Fairfield County, to form the first of its kind in Connecticut: a retail outlet selling “history you can own,” according to Desloge.
“We’re developing a new brand for the marketplace,” says Desloge, a Wilton resident recently elected as president of Westport’s Downtown Merchants Association.
Pieces of history from Napoleon to Babe Ruth are on sale at the Rockwell Gallery. Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Thursday, August 09, 2012
The Westport Country Playhouse has announced “a celebration of laughter” with its 2013 season of five productions, playing next year from April through October.
A news release said comedy “will be king as the series ranges in style from wild farce to dark humor to charming sentiment, all centered on predicaments, conflicts, and bonds surrounding families.”
Under the artistic direction of Mark Lamos, 2013 will mark the theater’s 83rd season.
“The 2013 season will be a feast of fabulous theater for our audience and a testament to the genre of comedy,” said Lamos. “The five productions will continue our tradition of ‘theater worth talking about’.”
Wednesday, August 08, 2012
John Barricelli (l), owner/chef of SoNo Baking Company & Cafe, was lunchtime guest today on the deck of the Westport Arts Center. He offered thoughts on cookbooks and baking as well as delicious samples. The Summer Café Lunch-Escapes series is held in cooperation with the Westport Farmers Market. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Peter Van Heerden for WestportNow.com
Westporter Ina Chadwick’s MouseMuse Productions presented another Storymaster’s Jam Tuesday night at Two Boots in Bridgeport. Among those telling a story to the sell-out crowd was Maryann Villanueva of Bridgeport who works in Westport. She recounted her honeymoon leg injury story for the story theme “Love is in the Air.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Kathleen Burke for WestportNow.com
By James Lomuscio
By a 28 to 3 vote, Westport’s Representative Town Meeting (RTM) tonight approved a $6.7 million appropriation via bond and note authorization for a new Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. Of that amount, the town will pay $1.1 million, and the rest will come from private donations.
With the RTM’s approval, Levitt officials plan to begin construction on the new facility in September, said G. Kenneth Bernhard, Levitt board member and spokesman for the project. The design developed by Westport architect Peter Cadoux includes a new performance area, restroom facilities, a concession area, new plantings and an extended and widened river walkway.
The RTM action was followed by 30 to 1 vote for the town to accept a $3 million gift from The Friends of the Levitt Pavilion, Inc. to be deposited in a capital account for construction.
The votes came after more than an hour of mostly favorable comments from RTM members and the public.
Tuesday, August 07, 2012
Artist Jim Chillington of Newtown spent his time waiting for his daughter’s lesson at the Longshore Sailing School to be over by painting the colorful scene in front of him and using one of the Longshore instructors, Grace Olsen, 19, of Westport, as his model. His work is currently on display in the windows of Max’s Fine Arts in Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Monday, August 06, 2012
The Los Angeles-based Incendio band and its “Latin guitar world fusion” music tonight entertained a large Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts audience at Westport’s Saugatuck Elementary School. The performance, moved inside because of the rainy weather forecast, included a mix of salsa, samba, flamenco, pop and Middle Eastern sounds. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Sunday, August 05, 2012
The Westport Country Playhouse cast of “Tartuffe” takes a bow tonight in front of an overflow crowd on what was scheduled to be the final performance of the current run. However, due to high ticket demand for this production of Moliere’s timeless comedy, an extra performance has been added on Sunday at 3 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
An overflow crowd at the Westport Country Playhouse tonight expresses appreciation following the performance of Moliere’s timeless comedy “Tartuffe.” Originally scheduled to close tonight, the show was extended for one more matinee performance at 3 p.m. Sunday due to popular demand. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com