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Arts and Leisure

Arts and Leisure

Monday, August 07, 2017

Comings & Goings: Match Burger Lobster to Saugatuck Image
The red and white signs in the window are kind of hard to read sideways, but they say “Burger Lobster,” heralding the opening of Match Burger Lobster at 580 Riverside Ave. in Westport’s Saugatuck area. Offering a new fast casual concept, the new restaurant is in space formerly occupied by Fleishers Craft Kitchen, companion to Fleishers Craft Butchery, which remains. According to Fleishers manager Guy Sealey, the new eatery will open in weeks, will have a few tables for indoor dining, and an outdoor patio in addition to the takeout option. The menu will feature lobster rolls, whole lobsters, a variety of burgers, local Copps Island oysters, Fleishers hot dogs, onion rings, donut milk shakes, wine and beer. Sealey said the new eatery is designed so that patrons can walk through the connection between Match and Fleishers. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


08/07/17 07:20 PM Comments () • Permalink

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Sultans of String Entertain at the Levitt Image
The Sultans of String entertained tonight at the Levitt Pavilion, serving up a mix of gypsy-jazz, Arabic, Flamenco, Celtic and Cuban rhythms. A belly dancer, Ghada Makuch of Norwalk, joined them for part of their performance. She originally is from Beirut, has been dancing since the age of 7, and has belly danced professionally. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


08/06/17 09:19 PM Comments () • Permalink

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Levitt Rocks With Wendy May Band Image
Blues rock country singer Wendy May and the Wendy May Band entertained tonight at the Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. May has been entertaining audiences at fairs, festivals, clubs, and concerts, for more than 20 years.  She has performed with musical legends such as, Charlie Daniels, Kenny Chesney, Mark Chestnut, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams Jr. Marty Haggard, Hank Thompson, and countless others. Her band was one of two headliners on the program; the other was the Doug Wahlberg Band. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


08/05/17 09:37 PM Comments () • Permalink

Doug Wahlberg Band at Levitt Image
The Doug Wahlberg Band was part of a two-headline concert tonight at Westport’s Levitt Pavilion – the other was the Wendy May Band. Offering up a unique brand of classic guitar rock and roll numbers, the band has been an audience favorite for years. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


08/05/17 09:32 PM Comments () • Permalink

Guest Announcer Image
Westport artist Miggs Burroughs was guest announcer tonight at the Levitt Pavilion introducing the double bill of the Wendy May Band and Doug Wahlberg Band. Burroughs knows both artists well. Wahlberg and May were featured in Burroughs’ 2013 music video “What If?,” which was inspired by, and is the musical companion to his book “What If? Book of Questions.” While Wahlberg and May collaborated on the video, they never were in the same place at the same time while working on it, making tonight’s reunion especially notable for Burroughs. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo


08/05/17 09:25 PM Comments () • Permalink

Alexander Platt Returns Home to Curate Concert Series

The Westport Arts Center (WAC) has announced its new 2017-18 concert series led by curator and Westporter Alexander Platt. Image
Alexander Platt: coming home to curate concert series. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo by Matthew F. Witchell

WAC has combined its previously distinct jazz and chamber music programs into a singular concert series, an announcement said.

The five concerts will be held on Friday and Saturday evenings between September and May 2018 at the Arts Center.

Platt will serve as a guide for concert attendees, sharing his perspective and insights at each of the performances. He takes over from his twin brother Russell, who has led the programs in recent years.

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08/05/17 07:18 PM Comments () • Permalink

Friday, August 04, 2017

Dancing to Grateful Dead Sound Image
Terrapin, which calls itself the region’s best Grateful Dead experience, performed at the Levitt Pavilion tonight, enticing many in the audience to get up and dance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


08/04/17 09:49 PM Comments () • Permalink

‘Hamilton’ Star Steps in to Headline Playhouse Gala

“Hamilton” Tony Award nominee and Grammy Award winner Jonathan Groff has stepped in to headline Westport Country Playhouse’s 2017 Gala on Saturday, Sept. 9, the Playhouse announced today. Image
Jonathan Groff:  played King George III. Photo by Jeff Vespa/Contour by Getty Images

Groff will replace previously announced Matthew Morrison who is no longer available to perform at this year’s gala due to a scheduling conflict.

Groff ascended to Broadway royalty with his Tony Award-nominated and Grammy Award-winning performance as King George III in “Hamilton.” He is also known for roles in the film “Frozen,“ television’s “Glee,” and his Tony-nominated role in “Spring Awakening.”

Groff last appeared at Westport Country Playhouse in a Script in Hand playreading of “Butterflies Are Free” with Blythe Danner in 2010.

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08/04/17 04:44 PM Comments () • Permalink

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Mill River Band Entertains at Levitt Image
The popular local Mill RIver Band entertained at the Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts tonight. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


08/03/17 09:39 PM Comments () • Permalink

Dancing Under the Stars Image
Audience members dance to the Mill River Band tonight at the Levitt Pavilion. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


08/03/17 09:34 PM Comments () • Permalink

Compo Family Movie Night Image
The Westport Parks and Recreation Department tonight presented the first of two family movie nights at Compo Beach. Tonight’s film was “Inside Out,” a comedy-adventure set inside the mind of an 11-year old girl produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. The next family movie night is Thursday, Aug. 17 and the film is “The Boss Baby,” a 2017 computer-animated comedy. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


08/03/17 08:43 PM Comments () • Permalink

Granger at the Movies: ‘An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,’ ‘Wish Upon’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

Not long after President Donald Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the historic 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, a crack in Antarctica’s ice shelf caused a 1.1-trillion-ton block of ice to calve, forming a colossal iceberg, which is already breaking into huge chunks. Image

Couple that with the increasing threat of mega-fires, worsening floods, deeper droughts and worldwide temperatures hitting a record high for the third year in a row. So to call “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” a follow-up to 2006’s Oscar-winning documentary “An Inconvenient Truth,” timely is an understatement.

Former Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize-recipient Al Gore updates his observations with advances in climate science, encompassing enlightened global energy policies and the latest in technology.

“Mother Nature is telling us, and people are noticing it,” Gore maintains.

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08/03/17 07:43 PM Comments () • Permalink

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Chasing Away the Clouds Image
Emmy Award-winning Alex & the Kaleidoskop chased away the clouds tonight at the Levitt Pavilion’s Wednesday night children’s series. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo


08/02/17 07:17 PM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Trio con Brio Copenhagen at Levitt Image
The Trio con Brio Copenhagen performed at the Levitt Pavilion tonight. The chamber music trio is comprised of Korean sisters Soo-Jin Hong and Soo-Kyung Hong and Danish piano wizard Jens Elvekjaer. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo


08/01/17 07:49 PM Comments () • Permalink

Monday, July 31, 2017

WHS to Host Encore of ‘The High School That Rocked’

On the heels of a sell-out July 15 screening “The High School That Rocked” documentary, another showing is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 26, at 5 p.m. at the Westport Historical Society (WHS), Barbara Peck, WHS assistant director, announced today.

The documentary showcases the classic rock legends that performed at Staples High School during the 1970s, including the Doors, Cream and the Yardbirds.

The screening will be followed by a talk with the film’s producer Fred Cantor and local filmmaker Douglas Tirola.

The showing is a joint venture of the WHS and the Westport Cinema Initiative.

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07/31/17 06:55 PM Comments () • Permalink

Library Groundbreaking Set for Sept. 14

The Westport Library announced today that the groundbreaking ceremony for its $19.5 million renovation project is set for Thursday, Sept. 14, at 6 p.m. Image
A rendering of the Westport Library’s Great Hall in its forum setup. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed graphic

The work, which will be done in phases to keep the library open, is expected to last between 18 and 21 months, officials said.

“For nearly a decade, the Library has been evaluating plans to transform our existing facility into a reimagined space that better meets the community’s needs,” said Bill Harmer, executive director. “As we prepare to officially break ground on the project, you can feel the excitement.”

The work will be done in three phases, the first being the Riverwalk Level designed to house the permanent adult book collection, to be used as quiet space, and it will feature a newly designed entrance. The work is expected to last eight months.

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07/31/17 11:48 AM Comments () • Permalink

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Gallery: Sinatra Music at the Levitt

Scenes from tonight’s Levitt Pavilion performance by James Langton and his New York All-Star Big Band playing “75 Years of Sinatramania.” J.C. Martin for and photos


07/30/17 10:02 PM Comments () • Permalink

‘Sinatramania’ at the Levitt Image
James Langton and his New York All-Star Big Band entertained tonight with “75 Years of Sinatramania” at the Levitt Pavilion. Many in the packed crowd danced to music spotlighting the 75th anniversary of Frank Sinatra making his record-breaking appearance at New York’s Paramount Theater. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/30/17 09:40 PM Comments () • Permalink

Dancing to the Big Band Sinatra Sound Image
Many audience members were up and dancing tonight at Westport’s Levitt Pavilion as James Langton and his New York All-Star Big Band entertained with music of Frank Sinatra. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/30/17 09:35 PM Comments () • Permalink

All Dressed Up for the Concert Image
Niccolo Suárez Paz, 11 months old, was all dressed up tonight in the arms of mom, Olga, for the Levitt Pavilion concert of Frank Sinatra music. Olga and husband Leonardo, tango artists from Argentina, performed at the Levitt on June 30 with Cuartetango, the only string quartet of its kind to devote itself to the music of tango. Their performance was delayed by rain and Olga said Carleigh Welsh, Levitt marketing and communications director, invited the couple to return to Westport on a sunny day—today.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/30/17 09:29 PM Comments () • Permalink

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Full House for The Sweet Remains Image
There was a ful house tonight at the Levitt Pavlion for The Sweet Remains. Its musicians include Westporter Greg Naughton, who told the crowd this was his 10th wedding anniversary and 10th anniversary of the band’s formation. He was later joined onstage by his wife, Tony Award-winner Kelli O’Hara, and his father, actor James Naughton. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/29/17 09:45 PM Comments () • Permalink

Joining In Image
Tony Award-winning actor Kelli O’Hara (c) joins in a number tonight with The Sweet Remains at the Levitt Pavilion. Her husband, Greg Naughton (l), is a member of the band. He told the audience he and his wife, who live in Westport, were celebrating their 10th anniversary tonight.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo


07/29/17 09:42 PM Comments () • Permalink

Harmonies from The Sweet Remains Image
The Sweet Remains entertained at the Levitt Pavilion tonight. Its musicians, each of whom contribute to the writing and three-part harmonies that define the band’s sound, include (l-r) Westporter Greg Naughton, Rich Price, and Brian Chartrand. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/29/17 09:35 PM Comments () • Permalink

Not Much Room to Spread Out Image
The Levitt Pavilion audience tonight for The Sweet Remains was packed in with not much room to spread out. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/29/17 09:30 PM Comments () • Permalink

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Old School Revue at Levitt Image
The Old School Revue With Tom Bowes (Tower of Power) and the Saugatuck Horns entertained at the Levitt Pavilion tonight. Their show featured Old School Revue’s production of “Summer Soul Serenade,“ a unique historical journey through five decades of American popular music. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/27/17 08:36 PM Comments () • Permalink

Pounding the Keys Image
Westport’s Bob Cooper was on the keyboard tonight as The Old School Revue With Tom Bowes (Tower of Power) and the Saugatuck Horns entertained at the Levitt Pavilion. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo


07/27/17 08:31 PM Comments () • Permalink

Granger at the Movies: ‘The Big Sick,’ ‘Despicable Me 3,’ ‘The House’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

With comic book adaptations and animation crowding the multiplexes, “The Big Sick,” a surprisingly witty, sweet-natured romantic comedy is a welcome change. Image

Based on the real-life courtship between Kumail Nanjiani and his wife Emily V. Gordon, it relates how a struggling Pakistani/American comedian (Nanjiani) in Chicago connects with flirtatious grad student Emily (Zoe Kazan), as what they both thought was a one-night stand develops into a real relationship.

Kumail’s devoutly Muslim family expects him to enter into a traditional, arranged marriage with an eligible Pakistani woman. So he avoids telling them about his growing affection for Emily because he knows his parents would disown him if he married a Caucasian.

It’s the classic dilemma of a trying-to-assimilate, second-generation immigrant caught between two worlds, and Kumail’s cross-cultural deception leads to their eventual breakup.

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07/27/17 07:13 PM Comments () • Permalink

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Up Close With the Crowd Image
A member of the Dirty Sock Funtime Band delighted the crowd tonight at the Levitt Pavilion with an up close encounter. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


07/26/17 09:16 PM Comments () • Permalink

Large Crowd for Levitt Children’s Series Image
It was a crowded lawn tonight as the Dirty Sock Funtime Band performed at the Levitt Pavilion as part of the Melissa & Doug-sponsored Wednesday night children’s series.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for


07/26/17 09:11 PM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Library Hosts Strategist Brian Reich on Aug. 7

The Westport Library will host strategist and speechwriter Brian Reich on Monday, Aug. 7 to discuss his new book “The Imagination Gap.” Image
Brian Reich: imagination makes the difference. Contributed photo

Reich argues in his book that imagination makes the difference between projects that succeed and those that don’t, and is the key ingredient that transforms an idea from interesting into world-changing.

The lecture will be held at 7 p.m. in the Large Reading Room. The evening will also feature “imagination challenges” designed for all ages, to encourage the use of imagination and include questions, prompts, and directives, an announcement said.

Reich, partner at little m media, is a strategist and speechwriter for executive leaders at global brands, media companies, startups, nonprofits, political, and advocacy organizations.

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07/25/17 02:47 PM Comments () • Permalink

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