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Easton Choral Arts Society’s “Home for the Holidays” concerts will include traditional music of Christmas, plus holiday works of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and island music from both coasts of our country. Performances will be on Thursday, December 7th at 7:30pm and Sunday, December 10th at 4pm, both at Christ Church in Easton.
The audience will travel across America through a festive journey of musical styles, from Southern gospel and Midwestern folk to Northeastern crooners and West Coast Hollywood flare. Even the islands of Hawaii and Puerto Rico will share their Christmas spirit. A group of professional instrumentalists will accompany many of the songs. You’ll even hear guitar and ukulele!
Songs of Kwanzaa include “Umoja” and “Kuumba” and will be accompanied by percussion, including rain stick. “Eight Days of Light” will be sung partly in Hebrew and will be accompanied by piano and string quintet.
Old favorites will include a powerful “O Come All Ye Faithful”, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”, “Home for the Holidays”, “Sleigh Ride”, a rollicking spiritual arrangement of “Go Tell it on the Mountain,” a jazzy “We’re Gonna Decorate the Christmas Tree”, and “Love’s Pure Light” – a gorgeous new arrangement of “Silent Night”. The closer will be the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah.
Tickets are available at the ECAS website: EastonChoralArts.com “Get Tickets”
This concert is supported in part by the Maryland State Arts Council, Talbot Arts and the Mid-Shore Community Foundation
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The Mid-Atlantic Symphony’s “Holiday Joy” concert is the first concert of MSO’s three offerings in December. This annual favorite of audiences on the Delmarva Peninsula features Soprano Claire Galloway and Baritone Rob McGinness in a dazzling cornucopia of Christmas and Holiday music that spans genres and generations!
“We are delighted to present this special Holiday three-concert series, the first of which features two incredibly talented soloists who will add a unique and captivating dimension to our performance,” said Jeffrey Parker, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony. “Audiences can expect an evening filled with the sounds and songs of the season as we celebrate the holidays with a rich tapestry of holiday favorites.”
Renowned soprano Claire Galloway and acclaimed baritone Rob McGinness will join the MSO orchestra — under the baton of Grammy-award winning Music Director and Conductor, Michael Repper — to delight audiences with performances of beloved songs from many eras, composers, and traditions in the “Holiday Joy” concert.
From the opening of the program with Leroy Anderson’s “A Christmas Festival”, to its closing with Bill Holcombe’s “Twas the Night Before Christmas”, there is something for everyone as the program showcases selections such as Anderson’s “Bugler’s Holiday” & his perennial “Sleigh Ride”, Robert Wendel’s “Hanukah Overture”, Adolph Adam’s “O Holy Night”, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, and dances from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker”.
Soprano Claire Galloway and Baritone Rob McGinness will perform as soloists and in duets in Christmas and Holiday standards such as Irving Berlin’s beloved “White Christmas” (Galloway), Gustav Holst’s “In the Bleak Midwinter ” (McGinness), and the traditional “We Wish You A Merry Christmas” (duet).
Information on the MSO’s “Holiday Brass” and the New Year’s Eve concert will be available in the coming weeks.
Scottish-American soprano Claire Galloway is the current Artist in Residence in Music at Bard College where she teaches voice and coaches the opera workshop production. This season she is a featured artist with Baltimore Musicales, Bach in Baltimore, Mid-Atlantic Symphony, and Opera Henriette. Her Grieg and Nordic Fairytales virtual recital will be presented by Wilmington Concert Opera.
Ms. Galloway is known for her innovative recital programming with a special interest in French and Nordic repertoire. Her operatic roles include works by Mozart, Poulenc, Massenet, and Bernstein that she has performed in venues including Lidal North in Oslo, Saltworks Opera, Baltimore Concert Opera, Savannah Opera, Bel Cantanti Opera, and Stillpointe Theatre. She has premiered roles in works by Arnold Saltzman, Steven Crino, Jonathan Dove, and Frances Pollock. She has commissioned new works for voice and chamber ensembles.
Ms. Galloway currently is based in Baltimore, Maryland where she is a professor of diction and repertoire courses at the Peabody Conservatory.
Rob McGinness, a recent graduate of Arizona Opera’s Marion Roose Pullin Opera Studio, holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory and the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. His current season includes solo appearances with Washington National Opera, IN Series, and the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra. His operatic credits include the title roles in Eugene Onegin and Don Giovanni and Marcello and Schaunard in La Bohème. He has performed leading roles in operas such as Tsar’s Bride, Sadko, Iolanta, Lucia, Le nozze di Figaro, and Die Fledermaus.
Mr. McGinness has premiered roles in Frances Pollock’s award-winning opera Stinney, The Ghost Train by Paul Crabtree, and the lead role in Shining Brow, Daron Hagen’s opera about Frank Lloyd Wright. His own compositions include vocal, theatrical, and orchestral pieces.
Mr. McGinness has been a featured soloist at important music venues such as the Kennedy Center Concert Hall and Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium. An award-winning performer, he placed first in the Sylvia Greene Vocal Competition, second in the Piccola Opera Competition, and received the Patricia A. Edwards Award in the Annapolis Opera Vocal Competition.
“HOLIDAY JOY”CONCERT INFORMATION
WHEN and WHERE
This concert will be performed at three venues on three days on the Delmarva Peninsula.
Thursday, November 30, 2023 – 7:00 PM – Avalon Theater, Easton, MD
Saturday, December 2, 7:00 PM – Cape Henlopen High School, Lewes, DE
Sunday, December 3, 3:00 PM – Performing Arts Center, Ocean City, MD
Individual tickets for this concert are $55 per person at each venue and are available at midatlanticsymphony.org. The site also has information on group purchases and free tickets for students 18 years and under.
Previews for each program in the season and for special MSO events are available on the MSO Web site at midatlanticsymphony.org/podcast. Podcasts are posted on the site 7 to 10 days before a concert or event.
For additional information about the 2023-2024 season, or to order tickets, please visit www.midatlanticsymphony.org. Tickets may be ordered by telephone at 888-846-8600.
ABOUT THE MID-ATLANTIC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
The Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra is the only professional symphony orchestra serving southern Delaware and Maryland’s Eastern Shore with a full season of programs. The MSO is supported in part by the Maryland State Arts Council; the Talbot County Arts Council; the Worcester County Arts Council; the Sussex County, DE Council; and the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore, Inc.
A complete schedule of the 2023-2024 season’s Masterworks and Ensembles programs, venues, times, and other information is available at www.midatlanticsymphony.org.
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The Avalon Foundation has annouced their schudule from December to
For more information and/or pictures, please email Tim Weigand at The Avalon Theatre at [email protected]
Antje Duvekot – Friday, December 1, 2023 Doors: 6:30 p.m.; Show: 7:00 p.m. Stoltz Listening Room, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, MD
According to the Boston Globe, Antje Duvekot “has gotten hotter, faster than any local songwriter in recent memory. Her songs feel at once fresh-faced and firmly rooted, driven by the whispery sensuality of her voice. She believes in the redemptive power of the shared secret and is utterly unafraid to mine the darkest corners of her life for songs that turn fear into resilience and isolation into community.” As one of Boston’s top singer-songwriters, Antje has won some of the top songwriting awards around, including the Grand Prize in the John Lennon Songwriting Competition, the prestigious Kerrville (TX) “Best New Folk Award,” and, in one of the nation’s top music markets, she won the Boston Music Award for “Outstanding Folk Act.” Neil Dorfsman (the producer of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Sting) says, “When I first heard Antje I knew I was witnessing something very special. She creates an entire, detailed world in verse, and takes you there with beautiful and understated melody. https://antjeduvekot.com/
Jazzy Holiday with Sara Jones Trio – Saturday, December 2, 2023 Doors: 6:30 p.m.; Show: 7 p.m. Stoltz Listening Room, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, MD
Join the Sara Jones Trio in the Stoltz for a cozy, holiday show filled with jazzy good cheer! Jazz vocalist/pianist Sara Jones has performed as a soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, and on the Esplanade with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra. In the Baltimore/Washington area, Jones was a featured vocalist with the Jazz Ambassadors and has graced the stages of the Hippodrome Theater, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Strathmore Mansion, and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. She will be joined on the Stoltz stage by Matvei Sigalov on guitar and violin, and Max Murray playing bass.
ELF, The Holiday Musical – December 7 – 17 Show Times Vary Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md.
The Avalon Foundation presents the musical comedy ELF! Buddy, a young orphan, mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts and is transported to the North Pole. The would-be elf is raised, unaware that he is actually a human until his enormous size and poor toy-making abilities cause him to face the truth. With Santa’s permission, Buddy embarks on a journey to New York City to find his birth father and discover his true identity. Faced with the harsh realities that his father is on the naughty list and his half-sister doesn’t even believe in Santa, Buddy is determined to win over his new family and help New York remember the true meaning of Christmas. This modern-day holiday classic is sure to make everyone embrace their inner elf. After all, the best way to spread Christmas Cheer is singing loud for all to hear. Join us for the Avalon Foundation’s annual holiday celebration and fundraiser starring over 100 of your friends and neighbors. All ticket proceeds go toward the Foundation’s year-round mission to provide diversified arts and educational programs that improves the quality of life here on the Eastern Shore.
THE MET: LIVE IN HD, FLORENCIA EN EL AMAZONAS- Saturday, December 9 Doors 12:30pm Showtime 1pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md.
Sung in Spanish and inspired by the magical realism of Gabriel García Márquez, Mexican composer Daniel Catán’s 1996 opera tells the enchanting story of a Brazilian opera diva who returns to her homeland to perform at the legendary opera house of Manaus—and to search for her lost lover, who has vanished into the jungle. The December 9 performance stars soprano Ailyn Pérez as Florencia Grimaldi, with Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin on the podium to lead a spellbinding new production by Mary Zimmerman that brings the mysterious and magical realm of the Amazon to the Met stage. A distinguished ensemble of artists portray the diva’s fellow travelers on the river boat to Manaus, including soprano Gabriella Reyes as the journalist Rosalba, bass-baritone Greer Grimsley as the ship’s captain, baritone Mattia Olivieri as his enigmatic first mate, tenor Mario Chang as the captain’s nephew Arcadio, and mezzo-soprano Nancy Fabiola Herrera and baritone Michael Chioldi as the feuding couple Paula and Álvaro. This live cinema transmission is part of the Met’s award-winning Live in HD series, bringing opera to movie theaters across the globe.
Jamie McLean Band – Thursday December 28 Doors 6:30pm Show 7pm Avalon Theatre
“Jamie McLean has soaked up quite a bit of America’s musical DNA. McLean provides a fascinating cross-section of sounds that merge the yearning and romanticism of Tom Petty, the air-tight instrumental proficiency of Nashville and the rugged independent streak of alt-country.” – Guitar World Magazine From listening to their recordings, you get a good sense of the Jamie McLean Band’s spicy musical gumbo of New Orleans soul, middle Americana roots, Delta blues and New York City swagger. But their captivating live show is where they really turn up the heat! The band has played at Bonnaroo, Mountain Jam, and the Ottawa Blues Fest, and shared the stage with the likes of Gregg Allman, Aaron Neville, Dr. John, Taj Mahal, Tedeschi Trucks Band, and Los Lobos, to mention just a few. McLean’s fiery guitar has joined the ranks of Derek Trucks, his blue-eyed southern soul vocals ooze real emotion, and his top-line songwriting chops have crafted profound, honest and heartfelt songs that will keep you singing along, dancing along and feeling like the song was written about you!
JANET PAULSEN JAZZ TRIO “JOYFUL SONG – A TRIBUTE TO ROSEMARY CLOONEY” Friday December 29 Doors 6:30pm Showtime 7pm Stoltz Listening Room, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md.
“Joyful Song, A Tribute To Rosemary Clooney” is a true labor of love by jazz/pop vocalist Janet Paulsen. Known for her carefully curated shows, thoughtful interpretation of lyrics, and passionate delivery, Janet will be celebrating the legendary Rosemary Clooney’s glorious voice and love of the Great American Songbook in a wonderful evening of entertainment that closes out the year with style. Featured songs from Clooney’s pop/jazz repertoires include “Tenderly,” the opening number on Clooney’s 1950s television show; her novelty tunes (such as “Mambo Italiano”), which brought her fame; and the sultry love ballads she was best known for. A highlight is the evening’s exciting medley of songs from Clooney’s classic film, “White Christmas”! An evening of entertainment with the Baltimore-based Janet Paulsen is always a joyful, swinging, and inspiring occasion. With her sparkling stage persona and warm, welcoming style, she brings her heart and soul to every performance. Joining her onstage will be Anthony Pocetti on piano and Jon Pineda on upright bass.
Eric Byrd Trio – Saturday, December 30, 2023 Doors: 6:30 p.m.; Show: 7 p.m. Avalon Theatre 40 E. Dover Street Easton, MD Tickets:
It has been a stellar, 20-plus year career for The Eric Byrd Trio, one of the Avalon’s long-time favorite jazz bands…and it would appear they are just getting started! Not only are they winners of The Maryland State Arts Council $10k Independent Artist Award (IAA) for notable artistic achievement but for over two decades, pianist/vocalist Eric Byrd, bassist Bhagwan Khalsa, and drummer Alphonso Young, Jr., have traveled the world as enthusiastic ambassadors of jazz. Rooted in swing and bebop. The Trio also embraces gospel and the blues as core elements of their expansive performance style. They have performed with the great Wynton Marsalis and their latest recording, “Twenty”, won last year’s Washington Area Music Award (Wammy) Jazz Recording of the Year.
DAN NAVARRO – January 5 Doors 6:30pm Showtime 7pm Stoltz Listening Room 40 E. Dover Street, Easton.
Dan Navarro has had quite an eclectic career over the past 40 years. As a songwriter, he composed Pat Benatar’s Grammy-nominated classic, “We Belong,” as well as songs for The Bangles, Dave Edmunds, and other popular artists. After 20+ years with the acclaimed duo Lowen & Navarro, he released his first studio-recorded solo album, “Shed My Skin”, to rave reviews, going on to record several acclaimed albums and performing thousands of concerts. As if all that isn’t enough, the man has done voice acting in films like Oscar-winners “Coco” and “Happy Feet”, TV series “American Dad” and “Brea”, and even video games (Fallout 4 and Red Dead Redemption II). Navarro, the personification of the engaged Renaissance artist, insists that art is food, music is love, and sleep is for babies.
The Met: LIVE in HD NABUCCO – Saturday, January 6 Doors: 12:30pm / Show: 1:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton,
On January 6, ancient Babylon comes to life in a classic Met staging of biblical proportions. Baritone George Gagnidze makes his Met role debut as the imperious king Nabucco, alongside soprano Liudmyla Monastyrska reprising her thrilling turn as his vengeful daughter Abigaille. Mezzo-soprano Maria Barakova and tenor SeokJong Baek are Fenena and Ismaele, whose love transcends politics, and bass Dmitry Belosselskiy repeats his celebrated portrayal of the high priest Zaccaria. Daniele Callegari conducts Verdi’s exhilarating early masterpiece, which features the ultimate showcase for the great Met Chorus, the moving “Va, pensiero.” This live cinema transmission is part of the Met’s award-winning Live in HD series, bringing opera to movie theaters across the globe.
Ken & Brad Kolodner – Saturday, January 6 Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E.Dover Street, Easton, Md.
Join these fan favorites at the Avalon as they make their 10th appearance on our stage! The dynamic father-son team Ken & Brad Kolodner weave together a captivating soundscape on hammered dulcimer and clawhammer banjo that blurs the lines of Old-Time, Bluegrass and American Roots music. Regarded as one of the most influential hammered dulcimer players in North America, Baltimore’s Ken Kolodner joined forces in 2009 with his son Brad, a renowned clawhammer banjo player. They’ve sculpted their own brand of driving, innovative, tasteful acoustic roots music with a “creative curiosity that lets all listeners know that a passion for traditional music yet thrives in every generation” (Dulcimer Player News). The hypnotizing groove of the percussive hammered dulcimer and rhythmic clawhammer banjo is the core of their sound. They are joined by bassist Alex Lacquement who locks everything together with his commanding presence and the dynamic multi-instrumentalist Rachel Eddy on fiddle and guitar. The quartet won 1st place in the 2019 Neo-Traditional Band Contest at the Appalachian Stringband Festival!
“1964” THE TRIBUTE – Friday January 12th Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E, Dover Street, Easton, MD.
“Best Beatles Tribute on Earth!” Rolling Stone As Ed Sullivan said back in the day when he first introduced The Beatles to America, “This is a really big shew!” “1964” focuses on the quintessential moment in history when The Beatles actually played before a LIVE audience. The Fab Four toured the world in the early 1960s, but now only a precious few remain who actually saw them LIVE…who actually felt the “mania” that brought these lads from Liverpool to world acclaim. Today, all that remains are a few scant memories and some captured images in pictures and on poor quality film and video. But fear not…HELP is on the way! “1964” meticulously re-creates the “MAGIC” of those LIVE Beatles’ performances with artful precision and unerring accuracy. For those that never saw The Beatles perform LIVE and always wanted to know what it must have been like, ”1964” The Tribute is as close as anyone could possibly get to…FEELING the MAGIC!
STATESBORO : A TRIBUTE TO THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND – Saturday, January 13th Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:00pm Avalon Theatre
Statesboro is a totally amazing nostalgia-inducing band. Not just a genuine recognition of the Allman Brothers but a card- carrying tribute to Duane Allman’s magical guitar work. Close your eyes, sit back and relive those heady days at the Fillmore East!
THE MET: LIVE IN HD, CARMEN – Saturday, January 27th Doors: 12:30pm / Show: 1:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md.
On January 27, acclaimed English director Carrie Cracknell brings a vital new production of one of opera’s most enduringly powerful works, reinvigorating the classic story with a staging that moves the action to the modern day and finds at the heart of the drama issues that could not be more relevant today: gendered violence, abusive labor structures, and the desire to break through societal boundaries. Dazzling young mezzo-soprano Aigul Akhmetshina leads a powerhouse quartet of stars in the complex and volatile title role, alongside tenor Piotr Beczała as Carmen’s troubled lover Don José, soprano Angel Blue as the loyal Micaëla, and bass-baritone Kyle Ketelsen as the swaggering Escamillo. Daniele Rustioni conducts Bizet’s heart-pounding score.
HIGH VOLTAGE AC/DC TRIBUTE Saturday, February 3rd Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md
Baltimore’s own High Voltage is the nation’s premier AC/DC tribute band – five veteran musicians putting it all on the line every time they take the stage, enabling audiences to enjoy as authentic an AC/DC live performance as possible. High Voltage is the most entertaining AC/DC live show you will see, next to the real thing. For over 10 years, they have delivered the pure energy, excitement, and concert experience that true AC/DC fans around the world have grown to expect. This tribute band performs the very best AC/DC songs and the most recognizable hits, spanning the full range of epic hit songs from the Bon Scott-era through the days with Brian Johnson at the helm. High Voltage gives you the biggest hits: “You Shook Me All Night Long”, “Highway To Hell”, “Back In Black”, “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap”, “Hells Bells”, to the other big fan favorites such as “Shoot To Thrill”, “Sin City”, “For Those About to Rock”, “Shot Down In Flames” and so many more!
ROBERT CRAY BAND Thursday, February 15 Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:00pm Avalon Theatre 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md
Since 1974, The Robert Cray Band has been touring and recording their unique groove, born from a love of Soul, R&B, Gospel, Blues, and Rock n Roll. With over twenty acclaimed albums that have sold millions worldwide, the five-time Grammy winner has also been inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame and earned the Americana Music Awards Lifetime Achievement for Performance. With Cray’s distinctive guitar style and impressive vocals, the band has also had many opportunities to perform with legends like Albert Collins, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, as well as The Rolling Stones, Tina Turner, and Eric Clapton.
JONATHAN RICHMAN Tuesday, March 12 Doors: 7:30pm / Show: 8:00pm Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Md
“Richman is one of America’s most unique and dynamic songwriters…” – Nashville Scene Called the Godfather of Punk, Jonathan Richman and his former band The Modern Lovers have influenced everyone from the Sex Pistols and Iggy Pop to the Violent Femmes and They Might Be Giants. After his pop profile was boosted later by appearing on Late Night with Conan O’Brien and in the film “There’s Something about Mary,” Richman is still going strong in the new century and remains as dedicated as ever to crafting new music, like his latest album, “Want to Visit My Inner House?” (2021). According to Jonathan, his new music is always his main focus: “Please do not expect old songs. Many singers my age do a retrospective; this show is not like that. It’s mostly stuff made up in the last 3 and 4 years…One last thing, my idea of a good show has nothing to do with applause. It’s about if all the songs I sang that night were ones that I felt.” Prepare to share a unique experience with Jonathan Richman when he takes the intimate Avalon stage!
An Evening with Tom Rush (accompanied by Matt Nakoa) Friday, March 15, 2024 Doors: 7:30 p.m.; Show: 8 p.m. Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, MD
Tom Rush is a gifted musician and performer, whose shows offer a musical celebration…a journey into the tradition and spectrum of what music has been, can be, and will become. His distinctive guitar style, wry humor, and warm, expressive voice have made him both a legend and a lure to audiences around the world. His shows are filled with the rib-aching laughter of terrific story-telling, the sweet melancholy of ballads and the passion of gritty blues. Rush’s impact on the American music scene has been profound. He helped shape the folk revival in the ’60s and the renaissance of the ’80s and ’90s, his music having left its stamp on generations of artists. James Taylor told Rolling Stone, “Tom was not only one of my early heroes, but also one of my main influences.” Country music star Garth Brooks has credited Rush with being one of his top five musical influences. https://www.tomrush.com/
Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain Tuesday, April 2, 2024 Doors: 6:30 p.m.; Show: 7 p.m. Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, MD
“In short, the show was light and fun, yet heavy with talent and impeccable comedic timing. English humor is not everyone’s cup of tea, but every joke was a hit with the whole audience, keeping everyone laughing while also enjoying incredible music.” The State News Formed in 1985, the current ensemble has been playing together for over 20 years, and has become something of a national institution in their homeland. The Ukulele Orchestra has given thousands of sold-out concerts across the world. Their music has been used in films, plays, and commercials, while they have collaborated with an eclectic array of performers and institutions, including Madness, David Arnold, The British Film Institute, The Ministry of Sound, Yusuf Islam (aka Cat Stevens), and The Kaiser Chiefs. https://www.ukuleleorchestra.com/
Madeleine Peyroux Saturday, May 4, 2024 Doors: 7:30 p.m.; Show: 8 p.m. Avalon Theatre, 40 E. Dover Street, Easton, Maryland
Madeleine Peyroux’s style was shaped by that of classic jazz vocalist Billie Holiday, and her singing uncannily resembles that of the famous Holiday. Yet Peyroux couldn’t be called a Billie Holiday imitator. She played the guitar, and there’s a folk singer’s attitude in her music. Like Norah Jones, whose success paved the way for her, Peyroux has recorded not just jazz and pop compositions, but also songs from other sources such as classic country and folk-rock—and from her own pen. Her stage presence, a deadpan—slightly distant slice of California cool—differs greatly from Holiday’s world of sophisticated hurt. And this contradiction—Holiday channeler yet independent artist—was just one of several that Peyroux has embodied: she’s American and French, retro yet something of a rebel, and a classic stylist yet an artist who agonized over finding her own voice.
The Academy Art Museum is pleased to announce the annual Members’ Exhibition Award Winners. The Museum’s annual Members’ Exhibition invites artists to submit imaginative, traditional, and experimental works in any medium made between November 2022 and November 2023. Each year, the Museum invites a judge to award prizes through a blind jurying process which are awarded on the evening of the opening reception. Many of the pieces in the exhibition are for sale, and can be purchased at the Museum. The exhibition is open through November 26, 2023.
This year’s juror is Peter Nesbett, an art historian, curator, designer, and editor. He is currently the Director of the Mitchell Art Museum at St. John’s College in Annapolis, which, along with AAM, is one of five nationally accredited art museums in the state of Maryland. Previously, he worked at Christie’s and Gagosian Gallery (New York), the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, the Seattle Art Museum, and the Washington Project for the Arts. From 2001-2010, he co-directed Triple Candie Gallery. He also published artonpaper magazine, which focused on artists’ editions, multiples, photography, and ephemera. He is the co-author/editor of The Complete Jacob Lawrence (University of Washington, 2000), a two-volume publication, that includes the first catalogue raisonné on the work of an American artist of African descent. He holds an MA in art history from the University of Washington and a BA in Visual Studies from Cornell University.
“The Museum has organized an annual Member’s show since our founding year in 1958. It’s a wonderful testament to our exceptionally creative community and the unusually high concentration of talented artists who live in the region,” commented Director Sarah Jesse.
The winners of awards given for this year’s Members’ Exhibition include:
Best in Show: Susan Schauer John, Cooper’s Cousin, 2023, fiber
Catherine Cripps, Cailleach the Scottish Winter side of the Celtic Triple Goddess, 2023, homegrown gourd, paper mache, paint
Nancy South Reybold Award for Contemporary Art: Gentry Pack, God’s Little Secret, 2022, acrylic on canvas
M. Susan Stewart Award for Best in Wood: Heidi Wetzel, Windswept, 2023, fiber
Trippe Gallery Award for Best Work on Paper: Peter Hanks, Pine Branches, 2023, graphite
The Jane Shanahan Hill Offutt Memorial Award for Painting: Laura Era, Jayden, A Cool Dude!, 2023, oil on linen
Robin Westre, Jasper and Greta, 2023, oil on canvas
Best Eastern Shore Scene (sponsored by the Working Artist Forum): Mona Birmingham, Grace Creek, 2023, oil
Best Landscape Award (sponsored by the St. Michael’s Art League): John Moran, Untitled, 2023, oil
Arielle Marks Award for Best Print (sponsored by Amy Haines and Richard Marks): Judith Wolgast, Wilderness, 2023, etching
Excellence in Photography (sponsored by Tidewater Camera Club): Cid Collins Walker, Petroglyph I, The Freemonts, Nine Mile Canyon, 2023, photography
February is not only Black History Month. It’s also the birthday of famous abolitionist Frederick Douglass, and his Eastern Shore descendants are planning a celebration in his honor.
Records in the Maryland State Archives show that Frederick Douglass was born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey in the northeast corner of Talbot County near the town of Queen Anne in February 1818. Douglass self-liberated from Baltimore in 1838, changing his name to avoid capture when he arrived in Massachusetts. He went on to become a renowned orator, author, abolitionist, and statesman.
To honor Douglass’s life and legacy, the Bailey-Grocè Family Foundation will host a 206th birthday celebration on February 17, 2024, in Easton, Maryland, featuring theatrical performances, music, and art. “Frederick Douglass spent his life fighting for the cause of freedom, and his influence is still felt today,” says Tarence Bailey, Sr., the five-times great nephew of Douglass and founder of The Bailey-Groce Family Foundation. “We are celebrating Black History Month by celebrating Frederick Douglass. This is our second year for this event, and we plan to make it a yearly celebration.”
Festivities will begin at the Historic Avalon Theatre at 3 p.m. when actor Phil Darius Wallace performs his original one-man play, Frederick Douglass: Lion of Thunder. Wallace will be joined by Millicent Sparks who will present The Harriet Tubman Living History Experience. Theo Wilson, host of The History Channel’s I Was There, will serve as master of ceremonies for the evening, and Push Play D.C. featuring Donnell Floyd will provide music.
After the performances, Frederick Douglass family members will host a VIP dinner at the Waterfowl Building, also in Easton. Saxophone player Azu, a.k.a. The Prince of Ghana, will provide music, and the work of Maryland sculptor Richard Blake will be on display. Attendees are encouraged to wear African-style clothing to honor Douglass’s heritage.2
All proceeds from the evening support Operation Frederick Douglass on The Hill and the work of The Bailey-Grocè Family Foundation, Inc., with the ultimate goal of building an African- American Cultural Center.
For more information, visit fdhill.org. Tickets are $85 for the performance only and $135 including dinner and can be purchased online at avalonfoundation.org/events. Donations can be made to The Bailey-Grocè Family Foundation, Inc. at Shore United Bank or can be mailed to P.O. Box 266, Newcomb, MD 21653.
The Academy Art Museum is pleased to announce its winter exhibitions: A Fire That No Water Could Put Out: Photographs of the Civil Rights Movement from the Collection of The High Museum and a solo exhibition by Baltimore -based artist Sebastian Martorana entitled Public/Private. An artist talk for Martorana will be held on Friday, November 17 at 5:30 pm.
A Fire That No Water Could Put Out: Photographs of the Civil Rights Movement from the Collection of The High Museum
November 30, 2023 – March 10, 2024
Taking its title from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s final speech before his assassination in 1968, A Fire That No Water Could Put Out: Photographs of the Civil Rights Movement from the Collection of The High Museum reflects on the 55th anniversary of this tumultuous year in American history. While Dr. King’s assassination is often described as the closing bookend on the civil rights movement, activism across the intervening 55 years has proven that the movement for racial equality and justice in the United States is not a finished story.
Drawn from the collection of the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, this exhibition underscores how photography can chronicle and even shape history. Historical works of iconic moments from the movement by Gordon Parks, Danny Lyon, Doris Derby, Ernest Withers, and others are juxtaposed with contemporary photographs by Dawoud Bey, Sheila Pree Bright, Matthew Brandt, and others that speak to the past’s reverberations into the present and future. These artworks demonstrate the wide range of artistic responses to the movement, from photo-journalism to conceptualism, from tender portraits to charged landscapes.
“Many of the advancements of the civil rights movement can be credited to the arresting scenes that unflinchingly exposed the brutality of segregation and humanity of Black people. That is what this exhibition of civil rights photography celebrates, the photographers whose work didn’t just document the protests and political actions of the era but spurred social change. I’m thrilled to partner with the High Museum to bring an exhibition to the Academy that indisputably shows the capacity of art to change minds, and the world,” states Director Sarah Jesse.
Sebastian Martorana: Public/Private
November 10, 2023 – March 24, 2024 Artist Talk: Friday, November 17, 5:30 pm
Sebastian Martorana (American, b. 1981) creates masterful sculptural vignettes of public and private life out of the timeless medium of marble. Carving highly realistic yet unlikely textures such as those of an old mattress, a teddy bear, or the pages of a book out of stone, Martorana comments on sociopolitical realities and the human condition in his work. The stoic, classical appearance of marble connects his subjects to a social and artistic legacy that has been more hegemonic than welcoming for millennia, and Martorana wittily questions this through his focus on intimate subjects: Kermit the Frog’s unwavering eye contact with the viewer is a playful reflection on childish attachment, while a plush sheep evokes the human need for comfort. In his contrasting works depicting objects pertaining to public life, such as marble benches that will activate the Museum’s courtyard during the exhibition, Martorana explore s the power and possibilities of community.
Martorana received his BFA in illustration from Syracuse University, where he also studied sculpture, including a semester in Italy. After graduating he became a full-time apprentice in a stone shop outside Washington, D.C. He received his MFA at the Maryland Institute College of Art’s Rinehart School of Sculpture. Martorana is currently an adjunct professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art.
Martorana’s works have received numerous awards and are included in various private and public collections. His sculpture Impressions was featured in the exhibition “40 Under 40: Craft Futures,” at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The sculpture was acquired by the museum and is now part of their permanent collection.
Troika Gallery celebrates 26 years of showing The Finest of Fine Art opening on November 10 with a Champagne Reception exhibiting masterpieces of Troika’s regional, national and international artists. In 1997, artists Dorothy Newland, Jennifer Heyd Wharton and Laura Era opened the first gallery in Easton. The gallery’s success has been attributed to the fine artists exhibited in the gallery and the professional, friendly and knowledgeable owners. Troika specializes in commissioned portraiture, custom framing, appraisal referrals, personalized home curation and artists talks and demos during First Friday openings.
Whether an art collector, art lover, or an art browser, you are encouraged to stop in and see this fantastic exhibit, or click on our website. Professional artist and owner, Laura Era along with Gallery Manager, Peg Fitzgerald, welcome your visit or phone call and will happily address your questions. An added popular service that the gallery offers is to encourage clients to take a painting home “on trial”.
Works in oil, pastel, watercolor, acrylic, pencil, clay, bronze, and porcelain are on exhibit. This annual show is a favorite of collectors and gallery admirers. Laura and Peg are grateful for the community’s support for the past 26 years.
Troika Gallery is located at 9 South Harrison Street, in Historic Downtown Easton, the gallery is open
Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11:00 am until 6:00 pm, Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday by
appointment, 410-770-9190, www.troikagallery.com
Captions: William Storck, Twilight in New Hampshire, oil, 14×18
S.J. Doberstein, Brine and Shine, oil, 10 x 14
Stewart White, Sacre Couer, Paris, w/c, 20 x 14
Nature is far from passive in the artwork of Caitlin Gill and Bridgette Guerzon Mills. In their joint show, M(Other) Nature, on view in the Adkins Arboretum Visitor’s Center through December 23, dreams, nightmares and reality intertwine as two roosters decorated with dried flowers and intricate cut-outs of leaves attack one another in Gill’s “Cock Fight” and a bare, silhouetted tree sprouts up from the delicate embroidery of a vintage baby’s gown in Mills’s “Baptism.” There will be a reception to meet the artists and learn more about their work on Sat., Nov. 11 from 2 to 4 p.m.
The two Baltimore area artists had never met but when they got together at Mills’s studio to plan the show, they found they have a lot in common.
“We’re drawn to similar materials,” Mills said. “I found it interesting that we both use found natural materials in our work.”
“A big inspiration for us is materiality, texture, and nature,” Gill agreed. “We both seem particularly drawn to found objects, lace, insects and nests, and there’s a lot of exploration with textiles.”
Both artists have always felt a strong connection with nature, particularly its feminine creative power. The title of their show, M(Other) Nature, refers to our culture’s contradictory feelings about nature, that while we celebrate its beauty and creativity, we feel separate from it, as if we are something other than nature, and so have no qualms about exploiting its resources.
Both Gill and Mills explore the life-giving aspects of nature, underscoring their mutual interest in its feminine qualities by using materials associated with women—cloth, lace, doilies, and thread.
Gill said, “Mother Nature as a metaphor is contingent on the feminine ability to create life. I think the need for knowledge as a mode of control and dominance is something nature has endured, similarly to women, so for me, this is an exercise in reclamation and liberation.”
Visitors may remember Mills’s site-specific sculptures in the Arboretum’s forest from several of the Outdoor Sculpture Invitational shows. A Master Naturalist, for last summer’s show, she created a large book with nuts, seedpods, bark and moss stitched onto its cloth pages that explored trees’ role in the health of the forest. Continuing this exploration, her materials for this show include similar found materials as well as cloth, lace, photo transfers of trees, birds and insects, paint, encaustic and actual hand-stitching so that her artworks bridge the real and the imagined. These are gentle works, lovingly made and carrying a sense of mystery and melancholy.
“I aim to reveal the fragile imperfection of life,” she explained. “Stitching in my work also references the universal idea that we are all connected.”
Like Mills, Gill explores the contrast between vulnerability and the power of the life force but with an often disquieting focus on the physical experience of exploitation. A pale grub, part painted and part collaged, curls up alone and exposed on the loose-knit fibers of a sheet of handmade paper, while a beautiful golden-red fox, also a fusion of paint and collage, seems at first glance to be running until you read its title, “Fox, roadkill.”
“The history of animal rights follows a nearly parallel trajectory to women’s rights,” Gill said. “All my work is directly or indirectly about the feminine experience and its relationship to nature and western culture.”
Much as women have historically been required to take passive roles, adhering to rules set by a male dominant society, Gill’s birds, insects and animals are isolated from their natural environments, alone and vulnerable to exploitation. It’s uncomfortable subject matter, but there’s an underlying sense that they possess a strength and resilience that will ultimately help them to survive.
Mills explained, “I think that both Caitlin’s and my work attempts to speak to our connection to the earth and to nature. It’s a fragmented relationship often at odds—natural/unnatural, connected/disconnected, beautiful/grotesque, creation/destruction and life/death. The list can go on and on!”
This show is part of Adkins Arboretum’s ongoing exhibition series of work on natural themes by regional artists. It is on view through Dec. 23 at the Arboretum Visitor’s Center located at 12610 Eveland Road near Tuckahoe State Park in Ridgely. Contact the Arboretum at 410-634-2847, ext. 100 or [email protected] for gallery hours.
Chesapeake Music’s YouthReach Program recently sponsored the return of the Kaleidoscope String Quartet of New York City to provide classroom visits at Chapel District Elementary School in Cordova and White Marsh Elementary School in Trappe. Students in the second, third, fourth, and fifth grades were able to hear the group perform in assemblies and provide small classroom instruction on its orchestral string instruments.
The YouthReach Program aligns with Chesapeake Music’s mission statement to “bring renowned musicians to delight, engage and surprise today’s audiences and educate, inspire and develop tomorrow’s.”
Kaleidoscope String Quartet has been coming to Talbot County twice a year. Last December, when the group visited it also offered a free community concert for the public at the Ebenezer Theatre and there are hopes it will do the same when it returns to Talbot County in February.
“At this time, the arts are having a difficult time continuing to attract young people at the level they have in the past. The pandemic contributed to that. In addition, audiences who appreciate chamber music are aging, so Chesapeake Music needs to invest in bringing younger people to experience and appreciate this type of music. This program is a way to build these audiences,” states Ed Smith, Chesapeake Music Board Member and YouthReach Committee Chair.
The performing members of the Kaleidoscope String Quartet were Caeli Smith on viola; Suliman Tekalli on violin; Erica Tursi on violin; and Laura Andrade on cello.
“The Quartet members shared with students how they can communicate with each other without words, and how they pick tempos and convey that tempo when they start a piece. They also talked about the role of a conductor in a larger organization and had a couple of the students volunteer to come up and conduct the Quartet and change the tempos. That was a lot of fun,” Smith adds.
Another thing the Quartet did was to talk with the students about how composers include elements of their personal history and culture in their music. Students talked about what’s special about Talbot County and their culture, including the environment, the cornfields, and the crabs. Quartet members created a musical theme for the elements the students suggested creating an improvised piece of music that sounded very contemporary.
“The students were very interested in the music even though it may not be as melodious or familiar as a Mozart or Beethoven piece. Part of what Chesapeake Music is trying to do is bring the classics and keep up with what’s going on in contemporary music as well,” Smith explains.
Chesapeake Music Board member Nancy Larson adds, “I will say that those of us who were observing were just so impressed with how the Quartet so easily engaged the students, drawing them in and encouraging their participation which they did very enthusiastically! It was such a joy to watch.”
“The remarkable people behind Chesapeake Music helped to bring the incredibly talented Caeli Smith and the Kaleidoscope String Quartet to two of our elementary schools. The classroom visits, along with the grade level concerts, have been invaluable in helping to shape our students’ love of music, and in particular, the string family. Most other musical experiences that our students participate in often do not feature the strings in any prominent way. Chesapeake Music has been instrumental in working to elevate chamber music in our schools. I hope to continue this partnership for many years to come,” adds James Redman, Title I Coordinator, Curriculum Supervisor, Talbot County Public Schools.
Friends of Chesapeake Music who lived in Oxford housed the quartet which gave them a local Eastern Shore experience.
Based in Easton, Maryland, Chesapeake Music is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to bring renowned jazz and classical musicians to delight, engage and surprise today’s audiences, and educate, inspire, and develop tomorrow’s. They have been doing it for more than 35 years! To learn more about Chesapeake Music, visit its website at https://chesapeakemusic.org/.