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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Arts and Leisure

Arts and Leisure

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Westport TV Travel Series Earns 5 Emmy Nominations

Westport-based “Born to Explore with Richard Wiese,” the ABC/Litton adventure/travel television series, has earned five daytime Emmy nominations from The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

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Westport-produced “Born to Explore” with Richard Wiese is now also available on Hulu. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

The series was nominated for Outstanding Travel Program; Outstanding Lifestyle/Travel/Children’s Series Host; Outstanding Writing Special Class; Outstanding Sound Mixing – Live Action, and Outstanding Music Direction and Composition.

The Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards gala will be held on April 24 in Los Angeles.

In the previous three seasons (2011-2014), “Born to Explore” earned six Daytime Emmy nominations and won the 2013 Emmy Award for Outstanding Single-Camera Cinematography.  The series has now earned a total of 11 Emmy nominations. 

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Posted 04:51 PM
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Friday, April 03, 2015

Susan Granger At the Movies: ‘Effie Gray,’ ‘Home,’ and ‘Run All Night’

By Susan Granger

Since proper Victorian society would not tolerate homosexuality or divorce, it was truly scandalous when “Effie Gray” left her husband, influential art critic John Ruskin, after a loveless six-year marriage, for painter John Everett Millais.

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Teenage Euphemia’s (Dakota Fanning) story begins in Scotland in 1848, when she marries Ruskin (John Wise). Arriving in London, Effie discovers to her dismay that they’re to live with his prim, domineering parents (Julie Walters, David Suchet).

Worse yet, after viewing lovely Effie’s naked body, Ruskin coldly refuses to consummate their marriage.

At a Royal Academy of Arts dinner, Ruskin supports the new Pre-Raphaelite movement, convincing the president of the Academy, Sir Charles Eastlake (James Fox), to allow young artists, like John Millais (Tom Sturridge), to exhibit there.
That same night, Effie’s befriended by Eastlake’s outspoken wife, Elizabeth (Emma Thompson), who recognizes her naïveté and angst, eventually serving as her confidante.

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Posted 09:12 AM
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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Meeting the Artist

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Westport artist Leonard Everett Fisher addressed a packed audience tonight at the Westport Arts Center where his exhibit, “Leonard Everett Fisher: A Retrospective, is on display through April 25. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com

Posted 07:30 PM
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Play With Your Food Opens Final Series

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The Play with Your Food lunchtime play reading series today began its its final series at Westport’s Toquet Hall. The three short plays drew a full house. Afterwards, the actors engaged in a talk back with the audience Performances continue on Wednesday and Thursday in Westport and .  And in Fairfield on April 7 and in Greenwich on April 8 and 9. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Posted 02:27 PM
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Monday, March 30, 2015

Orphenians Perform in San Francisco

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The Staples Orphenians performed today in San Francisco’s Davies Symphony Hall as part of the National Youth Choral Festival. They were among 10 high school choral groups from across the country selected to participate by the Grammy award-winning choir Chanticleer. They appeared with an orchestra conducted by Ragnar Bohlin, the music director of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Mathias for WestportNow.com

Posted 10:41 PM
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Westporter’s Cookbook Wins National Award

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Winner in Children, Youth, and Family category. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Westporter Ramin Ganeshram’s “FutureChefs: Recipes by Tomorrow’s Cooks Across the Nation and the World” was named Children, Youth, and Family best cookbook of the year Sunday by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

The award to the Westport journalist, author, and trained chef was announced at the group’s annual conference in Washington, D.C.

Considered the gold standard among cookbook awards, IACP’s Cookbook Awards have been presented for more than 25 years to promote quality and creativity in writing and publishing and to expand the public’s awareness of culinary literature.

The book, with editors Dervla Kelly and Elissa Altman and photographs by Ganeshram’s husband, Jean Paul Velotti, was published last October by Rodale Books.

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Posted 11:23 AM
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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Full House for a Cantor Playing a Cantor

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There was a full house at Westport Town Hall today for a performance sponsored by Temple Israel of Westport and Temple Shalom of Norwalk for “Cantor Arik Luck is Moishe Oysher.” Luck, a cantor in Evanston, Ill, starred in the production about the life of Oysher, an unorthodox cantor of the 1930s and ‘40s who played in Yiddish theater and films. He died in 1958 at age 51. Luck appeared with his sister-in-law, Sari Greenberg, who played Oysher’s wife and performance partner. Cantor Dan Sklar of Temple Israel led the accompanying band and marveled at the turnout. “Can you believe we are in Westport Town Hall?,” he asked at the outset. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 04:55 PM
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Young Actors in the Making

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Children attending today’s Westport Country Playhouse Family Festivities series production of “Curious George” were entertained in a preshow acting workshop conducted by Norwalk resident Jennifer Katona, director of the graduate program on educational theater at The City College of New York. They await the rise of an imaginary stage curtain before acting out their roles. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Posted 04:45 PM
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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Staples Orphenians Burst Into Song in San Francisco


The Staples Orphenians are in San Francisco for the National Youth Choral Festival and traveled to the Twin Peaks overlooking the city and burst into “Dominus Vobiscum” by Sydney Guillaume, a young Haitian-American composer of contemporary classical music and film music. The Grammy award-winning choir Chanticleer chose the Orphenians to be part of the festival based on a performance a year ago. The Orphenians, who also serenaded their Jet Blue crew on arrival (see video here) are the only East Coast group to be invited. More than 200 student singers in 10 high school choirs from across the country are participating. The four-day choral immersion will place the visiting choirs in close, intensive interaction with the members of Chanticleer, who will coach them in all areas critical to the choral art. The final event of the trip is a concert on Monday at Davies Symphony Hall conducted by Ragnar Bohlin, the music director of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, in which the Orphenians will perform. Martin Gitlin/YouTube.com

Posted 07:49 PM
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NY Times Columnist Takes on College Admission Mania

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There was a standing room only crowd at the Westport Library today for a talk by bestselling author and New York Times columnist Frank Bruni. He challenges the importance many place on attending elite colleges in his new book “Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania.”  Bruni, who noted the crowd contained more parents and grandparents than college-bound youngsters, said that students today are working to get into the best schools and not focusing on what they are hoping to achieve in their education. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Posted 06:03 PM
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Friday, March 27, 2015

Miggs Burroughs Birdhouse Goes for $7,200

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A lantern birdhouse by Westport artist Miggs Burroughs called “Inside Out” with lenticular pieces built into the window frames went to a top bidder for $7,200 at tonight’s Project Return Birdhouse auction in Wilton. Burroughs, who won the lantern at last year’s Birdhouse Auction raffle, said each of the four window panes depicts images of North American birds. They all turn into one image of a young girl’s face peering out of her “prison” of despair.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 10:25 PM
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‘Time to Fly’

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Bobbie Herman of Fairfield shows off her “Time to Fly” artwork contribution to tonight’s 20th annual Project Return Birdhouse Auction in Wilton. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Posted 10:13 PM
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Self Portrait

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Audrey Seo, 17, a junior at Westport’s Staples High School, poses tonight in front of a self-portrait on display at the Westport Arts Center in its Project Space. She was selected as the winner of the first Tracy Sugarman Award to a promising young local artist. The award is sponsored by Westporter Alan H. Nevas, retired senior U.S. District Court judge, and Janet Nevas in honor of the Westport artist who died in January 2013 at age 91. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com

Posted 09:20 PM
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‘Happy Father’s Day’

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Katie Craymer of Westport poses tonight in front of her painting “Happy Father’s Day ” at the Westport Arts Center. She is a junior at Interlochen Arts Academy in Interlochen, Mich. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com

Posted 09:18 PM
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A Thank You From Leonard Everett Fisher

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Westport artist Leonard Everett Fisher, 90, thanks friends and supporters for attending the opening reception tonight of the Westport’s Arts Center’s “Leonard Everett Fisher: A Retrospective” exhibit. The collection of 38 works reflects Fisher’s ability to blur the lines between design, illustration and art, and reveals the long-lasting impact that he has made in his lifetime, according to Helen Klisser During (l), WAC’s artistic director who curated the exhibit. “I don’t even remember painting some of them,” Fisher quipped. The show runs through April 25.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com

Posted 09:15 PM
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