Sunday, December 10, 2023


Arts and Leisure

Half-Price Day at Library Book Sale Image
Bargain hunters were attracted to the traditional half-price sale today held on the third day of the Westport Library annual book sale. Jennifer Bangser, Library staff member, said, “The selection is still very good. This is the sole book sale we’re holding his year so our inventory was larger than usual.” She reminds everyone that all books are free with a $5 per bag or box donation on Tuesday, the final day of the sale. There will be another book sale inside Nov. 22-24. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Granger at the Movies: ‘Lion King,’ ‘Maiden,’ ‘Stuber’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

Why another “Lion King” after the original animated feature (1994), the Broadway musical adaptation (1997) and more than 20 spinoff international productions? Because new, eye-popping photo-animation makes the fable look as if it’s live-action. Image

Computer animation has become so advanced, so realistic that the result is “virtual cinematography,” meaning the African animals look as if they were photographed on-location. Credit veteran cinematographer Caleb Deschanel, working with visual supervisors Robert Legato and Adam Velez, who previously collaborated with director Jon Favreau on “The Jungle Book.”

Jeff Nathanson’s screenplay begins with King Mufasa (James Earl Jones, reprising his original role) and his mate Sarabi (Alfre Woodard) introducing newborn Simba to the savannah - much to the consternation of his jealous brother Scar (Chiwetel Ejiofor).

Awhile later, after young Simba warbles “I Can’t Wait to Be King,” conniving Scar lures him into a steep ravine where malevolent hyenas launch a wildebeest stampede. After making sure Mufasa takes a fatal plunge, treacherous Scar slyly convinces Simba that it’s all his fault - leaving him no choice but to flee.

Playhouse Suffers A/C Problems: The Show Did Not Go On Image
Disappointed opening night ticket holders at the Westport Country Playhouse tonight file out after “Hershey Felder as Irving Berlin” was canceled due to air-conditioning problems. Managing Director Michael Barker initially told the audience the curtain would be delayed 15 minutes, then 10 minutes later distributed complimentary water bottles when the air-conditioning still did not work properly, and 10 minutes after that said the performance was canceled. He said multiple elements of the production would be compromised by lack of air-conditioning, including the piano. To a chorus of boos, Barker said tickets could be exchanged for another performance.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for

Disappointed Ticket Holders at Playhouse Image
Ticket holders for the opening night Westport Country Playhouse performance of “Hershey Felder as Iriving Berlin” leave tonight after problems with the air-conditioning forced cancellation of show. The audience, used to sometimes chilly temperatures in the auditorium, knew something was wrong as soon as they entered and experienced heat and humidity. Managing Director Michael Barker initially told them the show would be delayed 15 minutes while the air-conditioning units were rebooted. But after another 20 minutes, he announced the heat would impact production elements, including the piano, forcing a decision to cancel. The announcement brought boos as Barker said tickets could be exchanged for a future performance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Anthem Reggae Sound at Levitt Image
The weather appeared to take its toll on tonight’s performance by the Bridgeport-based reggae band Anthem at the Levitt Pavilon with a sparse attendance early on. But the crowd grew much larger after the first half hour. Before long, dancers appeared at the stage and it became a high energy performance despite the heat and humidity. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for

Getting a Close Look Image
The 46th Westport Fine Arts Festival, which opened today, features 175 juried artists exhibiting in a range of categories. The Downtown Merchants Association is sponsoring the two-day event in partnership with the Silvermine Arts Center, the Drew Friedman Foundation, The Artist Collective of Westport, and the American Society of Interior Designers, Connecticut Chapter. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for