Arts & Culture

  Tonight through Sunday, Vassar & New York Stage and Film's Powerhouse Theater presents a staged-reading of Rain - a new musical with book by Sybille Pearson and music and lyrics by Michael John LaChiusa. The musical is based on a 1920s short-story by Somerset Maugham and is directed by Barry Edelstein. Two stars of this weekend’s performances join us now - Jennifer Westfeldt and Jason Danieley.

Jennifer Westfeldt is a Tony Award nominee for her work in Wonderful Town. She’s also the writer and star of the indie-hit film Kissing Jessica Stein and the writer, director, and star of the film Friends with Kids. In addition to performing in Rain while in Poughkeepsie, Jennifer is also mentoring as part of Powerhouse’s eight-day Filmmakers' Workshop.

Jason Danieley played Frederich Kuhn in the recently closed Kander and Ebb musical The Visit on Broadway - a role he also played last summer at The Williamstown Theatre Festival. His other Broadway credits include Next to Normal, Curtains!, Full Monty, and Candide. Jason also frequently performs as a soloist with the nation’s leading orchestras.

Courtesy of Bard College, Peter Aaron '68/Esto

  Now in its 13th season, Bard SummerScape presents eight weeks of stellar events in opera, music, theater, dance, film, and cabaret.

The prime focus of these offerings is the 26th annual Bard Music Festival, which this year examines the life, times, and creative output of the 20th century Mexican composer, conductor, and educator Carlos Chávez. whose compositions synthesize Indian, Spanish, and Mexican elements together with trends in European musical modernism.

Metroland 7/9/15

Jul 9, 2015

  Shawn Stone, the Arts Editor of Metroland, lets us know what is coming to area stages and screens this week.

  The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival engages the widest possible audience in a fresh conversation about what is essential in Shakespeare’s plays. Founded in 1987, HVSF’s primary home is a spectacular open-air theater tent at Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, NY.

This season they present The Winter's Tale, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and The Tempest by The Bard; The Arabian Nights by Mary Zimmerman, adapted from The Book of the Thousand Nights and One Night; and HVSF’s first solo show starring Kurt Rhoads in An Iliad by Lisa Peterson and Denis O'Hare, adapted from Homer's Iliad.

Davis McCallum is Artistic Director of HVSF - appointed in May 2014. He joins us now along with actors Susannah Millonzi and Jason O’Connell.

  Deathtrap is a classic piece of theatre – a two-act, five-character play written by Ira Levin that garnered a 1978 Tony Award nomination for Best Play and was awarded a Special Edgar Award by Mystery Writers of America.

It holds the record as the longest-running comedy-thriller on Broadway and was adapted into a 1982 movie starring Christopher Reeve, Michael Caine and Dyan Cannon.

It is now the latest production from the Berkshire Theatre Group on the Fitzpatrick Stage in Stockbridge, running through July 25th. Here to tell us more are two of the stars of the show: Gregg Edelman who plays Sidney Bruhl and Tom Pecinka who plays Clifford Anderson.

  As immigration policy is hotly debated around the country in terms of national and cultural security Crossing the BLVD: strangers, neighbors, aliens in a new America presents the human stories of why immigrants and refugees have migrated to the US and what their experiences have been since they came here pre- and post- 9/11.

Based on Warren Lehrer and Judith Sloan’s critically acclaimed book, actor/writer Judith Sloan channels many of the people that the couple interviewed on their three-year journey around the world through the borough of Queens, New York.

Crossing the BLVD will open The Ko Festival of Performance in Amherst, MA on Friday, July 10th.

Judith Sloan joins us now to tell us more.

Art Omi Weekend 2015

Jul 8, 2015

  The Art Omi Weekend is a celebration with 30 artists who hail from 24 diverse countries. It is an annual event attended by hundreds of art professionals, art lovers, neighbors and friends.

On Saturday, they will lead private tours of selected artist studios. At night, you can kick off your shoes and grab a glass of wine to celebrate the culmination of this years' artist’s residency.

On Sunday, a buffet Country Brunch takes place in an outdoor tent overlooking The Fields Sculpture Park. The brunch is followed by a short walk down the road for the Open Studio Tours, where visitors will see the work the artists have been making for the last four weeks.

To tell us more we welcome Ruth Adams, Omi's Administrative Director, and two artists in the Art Omi residency program. The artists are Tirzo Martha from Curacao - the first resident they've had from there and Anna Kubelik from Switzerland/Germany.

  Matilda: The Musical - based on the book by Roald Dahl, opened at The Shubert Theatre in April of 2013. There have been over 900 Broadway performances of Tim Minchin’s delightfully dense lyrics and memorable melodies. The book of the musical is by Dennis Kelly and it’s directed by Matthew Warchus.

Christopher Sieber vaulted into the role of the horrible, nasty headmistress, Miss Agatha Trunchbull in April of 2014.

Sieber’s previous Broadway credits include Beauty and The Beast, Chicago, Triumph of Love, Thoroughly Modern Millie, the 2002 revival of Into the Woods, Spamalot, Shrek: The Musical, the 2010 revival of La Cage aux Folles, and the most recent revival of Pippin. He earned Tony Award nominations for Shrek and Spamalot.

He’s appeared in films and on television - though notably not on any incarnation of Law & Order. He frequently works with Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids, performing in Broadway Bares and emceeing at The Broadway Flea Market. He’ll be at this year’s Broadway Barks on July 11th.

Anastasia Chernyavsky / http://www.donatocabrera.com/

  The New Hampshire Music Festival’s 2015 summer season runs through August 6 in Plymouth, NH and the surrounding communities of New Hampshire’s Lakes Region.

With a theme of “American Landscapes,” the festival’s 63rd season will explore and celebrate American music and the great outdoors. The Silver Center for the Arts at Plymouth State University is the festival’s primary venue, where it will offer full orchestra performances on Thursday nights and Tuesday night chamber music concerts.

Rob Edelman: Jackie Robinson, 1947 & 2015

Jul 6, 2015

Given the recent, sad, disturbing events in Baltimore, Ferguson, Staten Island, and elsewhere across the country, the impact of Jackie Robinson becoming the first black man to play major league baseball in the 20th-century is well-worth recalling-- and discussing. This is a milestone that transcends sports. It is one of the bellwether occurrences of what at mid-century was the soon-to-burgeon civil rights movement. Cinematically-speaking, the travails of Jackie Robinson have been detailed in two films. One of them, titled 42, came to theaters in 2013. The other, titled THE JACKIE ROBINSON STORY, was released way back in 1950.

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