Tag Archives: Virginia G. Piper

Christmas concerts

Normally we follow a strict “no talk of Christmas until after Thanksgiving” rule at our house. It’s a reflection of the philosophy we embrace year round — First, give thanks.

But I discovered, while researching Christmas concert options, that several are fast approaching — and decided to run with the Christmas music vibe a bit early this year.

The Phoenix Children's Chorus performs Dec 3 in Higley

The Irish Cultural Center in Phoenix presents “An Irish Christmas” with song, dance and more Nov. 27. www.azirish.org.

The Phoenix Symphony presents “Holiday Pops” Dec. 2-4 and “Family Holiday Concert” Dec. 3 at Phoenix Symphony Hall. Valley Youth Theatre performers are taking part in the pops concert. www.phoenixsymphony.org.

Mesa Arts Center presents a Heritage Academy Performing Arts Dept. holiday concert Dec. 2, the “Dave Koz & Friends Christmas Tour” Dec. 14 and “Holiday Pops: Salt River Brass” Dec. 18. www.mesaartscenter.com.

The Phoenix Children’s Chorus presents “Start the Season with Song” Dec. 3 at Higley Center for the Performing Arts. www.higleyarts.org.

Chandler-Gilbert Community College presents a “Christmas Concert” Dec. 4 at Velda Rose United Methodist Church. www.cgc.maricopa.edu.

The Orpheus Male Chorus presents “Holidays with Orpheus” Dec. 4, 11 and 13 at various Valley locations. www.orpheus.org.

The Sonoran Desert Chorale presents “Passage of Joy! Noel!” Dec. 10 (Mesa) and 11 (Paradise Valley). www.sonorandesertchorale.com.

Center Dance Ensemble presents “Spirit of the Season” with Jeffrey Hatrick and Nicole Pesce Dec. 12 at the Herberger Theater Center. www.herbergertheater.org.

The Blind Boys of Alabma perform Dec 10 in Scottsdale

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts presents “Go Tell It On The Mountain: The Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show” Dec. 10 and “Big Voodoo Daddy’s Wild and Swinging Holiday Party” Dec. 21.  ww.scottsdaleperformingarts.com.

Rosie’s House presents their “Holiday Concert” Dec. 12 at Central United Methodist Church in Phoenix. www.rosieshouse.org.

Tempe Center for the Arts presents “Performance with a View: SaxMas Morning” featuring the ASU Saxophone Studio Dec. 13 and “Lakeshore Jazz Series: Phoenix Boys Choir Christmas Tour” Dec. 23. www.tempe.gov/tca.

Mesa Community College presents a “Songs of the Season” concert and reception Dec. 16 at MCC’s Red Mountain campus. www.mesacc.edu.

The Phoenix Boys Choir presents “Spirit of the Holidays” Dec. 16 at the Virginia G. Piper Performing Arts Center at Xavier College Preparatory in Phoenix. www.boyschoir.org.

Actors Theatre of Phoenix performs a concert version of “A Christmas Carol” Dec. 24 at the Herberger Theater Center. www.actorstheatrephx.org.

Several Valley groups are performing at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix — click here to read a post featuring their holiday concert options.

If your Valley arts organization is presenting a Christmas concert not noted here, please comment below to let our readers know — thanks!

— Lynn

Note: For a comprehensive list of family events for the holiday season, check out the December issue of Raising Arizona Kids magazine and click here to visit their online calendar.

Coming up: Holiday dance delights, Three nights in Bangkok, Circle time


Ode to the Arizoni Awards

The Homestead Playhouse gang gathers after the 2011 Arizoni Awards youth ceremony (Photo by David Martinez)

While others sat glued to “Dancing with the Stars,” I enjoyed a festive evening with Arizona “theater folk” — attending Monday night’s Arizoni Awards at Tempe Center for the Arts. It’s actually two ceremonies, one for youth and another for adults.

This allows younger actors to finish homework and make their bedtimes. It also lets the hosts turn loose a little bit with off-color humor and language during the second half of the evening.

The 21st annual Arizoni Awards — formally known at the Arizoni Theatre Awards of Excellence — featured “dream hosts” Yolanda London, Robert Kolby Harper and Kurtis Overby. All looked fetching in their white sequin gowns and mostly-blue evening attire (Overby, sporting a red tie, didn’t get that memo.)

A few fashion trends of note: purple shirts for the gentlemen and long blue gowns for the ladies. My “best dressed” picks include Eric Chapman, president of the executive board for the Arizoni Awards, who rocked a black and white jacket with a jumbo check pattern and red lining.

Also Rebecca Hammer, one of four presenter assistants for the youth ceremony, who wasn’t afraid to share with me in the lobby that her royal blue gown with tasteful silver trim at the waist was a “My Michelle” from JC Penney.

Two shoe trends of note — flip flips and gladiator sandles. I’m not sure which is worse. Footwear that looks like a glittering granola bar or shoes that appear they could easily double as a weapon. (This from a woman who thinks black Fossil flats qualify as evening wear.)

The youth ceremony included performances by Greasepaint Youtheatre (“Bare Necessities” from “Disney’s The Jungle Book”), DFT Gecko Teatro (“Biggest Blame Fool” from “Seussical, Jr.”) and Actor’s Youth Theatre (“One Day More” from “Les Miserables School Edition”). Think lots of animal print and red, white and blue.

A gathering of Actor's Youth Theatre after the Arizoni Awards youth ceremony

It’s impossible, it seems, to curb excessive displays of enthusiasm during such ceremonies — but many of the grown-ups I chatted with were genuinely concerned it might takes days to regain full use of their throbbing eardrums. Maybe we should all try a little harder to emulate the calm of the Tony Awards we all hope to see our children participate in one day.

Director Chanel Branham (in blue) with Arizoni Award nominees Cambrian James (L), Andrea Martinez and David Vigari (R) (Photo by David Martinez)

Director Chanel Branham (in blue) with Arizoni Award nominees Cambrian James (L), Andrea Martinez and David Vigari (R) (Photo by David Martinez)

Results of the 2011 Arizoni Awards should be posted online once folks recover from the after-party, which landed a corporate sponsor for the first time this year. Thanks to the Arizona Ford Dealers Association — and a wag of the finger to those of you still driving Chevys to auditions and rehearsals.

If you followed the Arizoni Awards on Twitter last night, you’ve already got the scoop on big winners — which included Childsplay’s “The Borrowers.” Audience members seemed especially delighted when young actress Sara Matin was honored for her portrayal of Helen Keller in Desert Stages Theatre’s production of “The Miracle Worker.”

Alaina Beauloye, Jimmy Shoffman and the cast of Desert Stages’ “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” performed “Love is My Legs” during the adult ceremony. And Fountain Hills Community Theater performed “Along Came Bialy” from “The Producers” — complete with well-endowed grannies rocking tap-dancing walkers.

But the most applause went to Dion Johnson and D. Scott Withers, who performed “Timeless to Me” from the Phoenix Theatre production of “Hairspray” that resulted in awards for both Withers and Phoenix Theatre. Withers, who somehow made time to serve as director for this year’s Arizoni Awards, was teary- eyed as he accepted the award. Waterproof mascara is such a blessing.

Alex Slocum, Camille Gibbons, Jason Washburn, Brenda Goodenberger, Jennell Angel, Sydnie Greger and Victoria Fricker at the Arizoni Awards

Folks who offered thank yous chose the usual suspects — parents, children, fellow theater folk and volunteers. One thanked the ‘moms and dads set construction union,’ another the siblings ‘who never get jealous,’ and another the make-up artist who bestowed a full head of hair. Two thanked God for their ‘amazing talent.’ (God knows it’s there, no need to share.)

Four students received Arizoni Award scholarships during the youth ceremony — all ASU students, one in a doctoral program. The Virginia G. Piper Trust was honored during the adult cermony for its ongoing and outstanding support of Arizona arts and culture.

Chuck Disney, Linda Ferington, Patrick Moyse, Alexander Blilie and Ross Collins of Fountain Hills Community Theater (Photo by Patty Torrilhon)

Before leaving for the evening, I handed my business card to several folks gathered for impromptu picture-taking. I’ll update this post as their handiwork rolls in (and more gems from the ceremonies come to mind).

Congratulations to every Arizoni Award nominee and winner. You make it fun to sit atop the fifth wall.

— Lynn

Note: Visit the Arizoni Awards online at www.arizoniawards.com. If you have photos of last night’s ceremony to share, feel free to send them my way at rakstagemom@gmail.com. A selection will be featured in an updated version of this post.

Coming up: Conversations with Arizoni Award winners, Shopping takes center stage, Musical instrument photo opp, For the love of Lilly!

Remember and act: Japan

Enjoy beautiful music Saturday night while supporting victims of recent earthquakes in Japan

I learned just this morning of a classical concert to benefit earthquake victims in Japan. It’s taking place at 7pm on Sat, May 7, at the Virginia G. Piper Performing Arts Center at Xavier College Preparatory in Phoenix.

The concert, titled “Pray for Japen–Sound of Cherry Blossom,” is made possible by “the generous and voluntary support of the performers and the collaboration of Xavier College Preparatory.”

The two-hour event features pianist Naoko Garrison and friends, who’ll present a piano solo, piano duo, small ensemble and voice solo.

Performers include Rosabel Choi (piano), Stephen Cook (piano), Naoko Garrison (piano), Jennifer Shinyoung Ju (piano), Sukhyun Jung (piano), Allison Stanford (soprano), Jennifer Waleczek (piano) and Jessica Yam (piano).

All proceeds of the evening will be donated to Catholic Relief Services “to help the victims of the earthquake in Japan.” Click here for event and ticket info.

As we’re all mindful this week of victims of the 9/11 tragedy and our nation’s commemoration of Holocaust remembrance week, let us not forget those in other parts of the world who need us to remember and act.

Victims of natural disasters in Japan, Haiti and other parts of the globe. Americans still living with the aftermath of Katrina, the Gulf oil spill and recent natural disasters that cut across a sizable swath of our own country. And those worlds away struggling to end genocide or to usher in freedom.

Too often we feel powerless, and so we turn away and do nothing — even when small opportunities to make a difference exist so close to home.

The “Pray for Japan” concert is one way you truly can help those in need. It’ll only cost you the price of a ticket, which is nothing compared to the price people in Japan are paying now for all sorts of things beyond their control.

Remember Japan — and act.

— Lynn

Note: The Virginia G. Piper Center for the Performing Arts at Xavier College Preparatory is home to all sorts of dance, music and theater events — including one act plays (“Frosh Follies”) taking place at 6pm this evening. Admisson is free, so consider a trip tonight to check out this amazing performing arts venue before you return Saturday to enjoy the “Pray for Japan” concert.

Coming up: Homeless youth bring their stories to the stage

The world of film

I rarely strike up a conversation these days without it leading somehow to the topic of film. Recently I attended an event at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, where I sat at a table with several MIM volunteers.

There wasn’t a boring one in the bunch, and I felt a whole lot smarter walking out the door than I’d felt walking in.

One of the remarkable volunteers I chatted with beamed when telling me the story of her son in law’s move from a career with Goldman Sachs to a career in screenwriting.

She clearly applauds his decision to follow his heart.

It reminded me that I’ve long wanted to write about the MIM’s first annual film series — which begins with a screening of “BACH & Friends” on Oct 23 (a reprise screening is scheduled for Oct 28 @ 6:30pm).

Here’s a brief rundown of upcoming film offerings at the MIM — which are free with museum admission:

Laya Project. Sat, Nov 6 at 2:30pm. Features “the peoples of coastal and surrounding communities in the 2004 tsunami-affected regions of Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, and India.”

Sound Tracks: Music Without Borders. Live with host Marco Werman. Sun, Dec 5 at 2:30pm. Features “the adventures of travel and the sould-satisfying, hip-shaking pleasures of great music.”

Mighty Uke. Sat, Jan 8 at 2:30pm. Features insights into “why so many people of different cultures, ages, and musical tastes are turing to the ‘uke’ to express themselves, connect with the past, and with each other.

nomadak tx. Sat, Feb 5, 2:30pm. Features two musicians as they “embark on an extraordinary quest to Mongolia, India, Lapland, and the Sahara in search of sounds and voices.”

Note by Note: The Making of Steinway L1037. LIVE with filmmaker Ben Niles. Sun, March 20 at 2:30pm. Features “the hand-crafted creation of one concert grand (#L1037) from forest floor to concert hall” and “the relationship between musician and instrument.”

So what of the financial whiz turned film maker? Turns out his talents mirror his instincts. He’s Jon Hurwitz, writer for several “Harold & Kumar” films — whose “American Pie 4” project is expected to hit movie theaters in 2012.

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts opens its 2010-2011 “Talk Cinema” season this week — on Tues, Oct 19 at 7pm — in their lovely Virginia G. Piper Theater.

The monthly film series features screenings, discussions and opportunities to offer feedback on featured films.

I can’t share the titles because they’re kept under wraps until shortly before showtime for patrons who prefer the element of surprise (others can go online to read a spoiler shortly before each film’s screening).

I’ll have to miss “Talk Cinema” this month because I’m already scheduled to see and review Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” on opening night at ASU Gammage — but I’m eager to attend future screenings.

Student tickets run just $10 (with current student ID) so it’ll be easy to take along any of my kiddos (now in high school and college) who can manage to tear themselves away from homework for the night.

Film as an art form is coming into its own — with a following far beyond those with the financial resources to cross the globe from one film fest to another.

I’m delighted to have these two remarkable venues, and several others in the Valley, for enjoying some of the finest that filmmakers have to offer.

— Lynn

Note: Several museums, including the Phoenix Art Museum and the Heard Museum, offer film selections — as do local libraries, community colleges and other venues. To learn more about the fine art of film criticism, save the date: “Film Criticism with Harlan Jacobson” comes to the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts on Tues, Jan 18, 2011 from 5:30-6:30pm. Admission is free (first come, first served).

Coming up: Award-winning storytellers take to Valley stages, Kennedy Center tours Arizona

Fun with film

I rarely pause to consider what life might be like as a lottery winner. It’s rather a moot point since I’m not much of a player, but something I read the other day got me to thinking. If I had extra time and money on my hands, how might I want to spend it?

Reading more books. Giving to favorite causes. Traveling the globe. These things have long been on my wish list. But something else now strikes my fancy — exploring the wonderful world of film festivals.

I could start close to home with the Scottsdale Film Festival — taking place this year from Oct 1 to Oct 5 at Harkins Camelview Theatre near Scottsdale Fashion Square, a longtime movie theater favorite for me and my kids (who all favor somewhat out of the ordinary fare).

The festival actually kicks off Friday evening with an opening film, “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest,” followed by an opening night party. Festival offerings include Arizona premieres and Oscar contenders, as well as three “spotlight on Mexico” films and four “spotlight on France” films.

Scottsdale also is home to a festival-style experience termed “Talk Cinema.” It’s a film series presented at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, and the 2010-2011 series kicks off Oct 19. All films are shown on Tuesday evenings at 7pm in their Virginia G. Piper Theater.

“Talk Cinema” film selections are kept under wraps until “shortly before each screening” and viewers have the option of going online to read a “spoiler” ahead of time or attending without knowing what to expect. All screenings are followed by moderated conversations with distinguished critics, and viewers get to write their own film reviews.

Paradise Valley Community College presents “Film Festival at PVCC” — a series of film events held monthly (Wednesday evenings at 6:0pm). The next film they’ll show is the 1985 Swedish movie titled “My Life as a Dog” — a PG-13 flick scheduled for Sept 29 at the PVCC Center for the Performing Arts.

PVCC also will present films from Germany, France, Norway and other countries — as well as two PVCC Student Film Festivals during the academic year. Student film festivals — scheduled for Dec 10 and May 9 — take place at 7:30pm and admission is free.

The Arizona Humanities Council presents “The Paul Espinosa Border Film Festival” on Saturday, Oct 2, from 4pm-10pm in Yuma. The free event, which explores “the dynamics of southwestern border history and culture,” features three award-winning films.

This festival takes place at the Yuma Arts Center and historic Yuma theatre. Films are introduced by filmmaker Paul Espinosa and followed by a discussion with experts and the filmmaker.

Finally, a film I wish every parent would see — the documentary “Race to Nowhere,” to be shown Nov 9 at 4:30pm and 7:30pm at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Amado (south of Tucson).  It’s rated PG-13, runs just 85 minutes and has Spanish subtitles.

“Race to Nowhere” is “about the pressures faced by American school children and their teachers in a system and culture obsessed with the illusion of achievement, competition and the pressure to perform.”

It sounds like a great excuse to grab some fellow parents or teachers for a grown-up field trip that’ll lend itself to plenty of lively discussion on the drive home.

If you stop on the way for lottery tickets, just make sure you promise to share the bounty.


Poetry for all ages

"The Letter P" by Peter Blake

One of my favorite poems was written by my daughter, Lizabeth, after she received a poetry assignment in an English class.

She’s been writing poetry for pleasure almost since she was old enough to write — but the suggestion that she produce poetry on demand wasn’t well received.

The resulting poem, on writing for another rather than oneself, was biting but brilliant.

I’m guessing she never turned it in — fearing her teacher wouldn’t understand her dispassion for poetry prompts. She read it to me just once, and I haven’t seen it since. I certainly hope it still exists somewhere because I found it truly breathtaking. I was equally prolific in writing poetry as a teen, but not nearly as talented.

So my interest was piqued when I learned of poetry writing courses offered by the Piper Writers Studio at the ASU Virgina G. Piper Center for Creative Writing in Tempe. It just so happens there’s an eight week session starting Sept 27. It meets at the Piper Writers House on the Tempe ASU campus.

The poetry session, “Eight Poems in Eight Weeks” with instructor Leah Soderberg, runs Sept 27 to Nov 15 with classes on Monday nights from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. Overachievers can make dinner, write their little hearts out and still be home for storytime. The rest of us will simply relish being missed one night each week.

The studio also offers online sessions and one-day classes — including “Coloring [Inside] the Lines: The Practice of Poetry” with instructor Elizabeth A. Hiscox (online starting in October) and “The Conjugation of Breath” with instructor Jessica Burnquist (Oct 1).

The University of Arizona has a Poetry Center, which is currently celebrating its 50th year. Center programming includes readings, lectures, classes, workshops, discussions, book club meetings, art exhibitions and more.

Upcoming offerings include a library exhibition honoring the center’s founder, Ruth Stephan, and an art exhibition honoring the center’s first director, LaVerne Harrell Clark (both opening Sept 27). On Oct 4 they’ll present “Shop Talk: The Poetry of Gary Snyder.” The center describes Snyder as “a writer, Buddhist, and bioregionalist” whose interests include the environment and eastern philosophy.

For the 4- to 10-year old set, they offer the “Poetry Joeys” program. “Poetry Joeys” features teaching artists inspiring love of language through creative movement, reading and writing poetry. The next event takes place this Saturday, Sept 25, from 10am-11am at the U of A Poetry Center in Tucson.

I adored taking my children to similar events when they were younger not just because they were fun, but because they always inspired me to more creative uses of language and the arts with my children at home.

High school teachers eager to encourage poetry appreciation can register to participate in an annual program called “Poetry Out Loud,” a free national program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation.

The program is administered in Arizona by the Arizona Commission on the Arts in collaboration with two regional partners — the ASU Young Writers Program and the U of A Poetry Center.

The Arizona Commission on the Arts notes that the program “encourages youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance, which help students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about literary heritage.”

Schools interested in participating must register with the Arizona Commission on the Arts by Oct 15. Participating teachers receive free multimedia curriculm materials including a poetry anthology, audio guide, teachers’ guide, posters and more.

Students who win recitation contests at participating schools can compete to advance to regional, state and national levels. In 2010, Poetry Out Loud awarded more than $100,000 in prizes to students and schools at the state and national levels, according to the Arizona Commission on the Arts.

Plenty of other poetry resources exist throughout the Valley and state, so keep an eye out for poetry-related events and opportunities offered by your local museums, libraries, book stores, performing arts venues and youth organizations.

Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, for example, offers a 7pm “First Friday Poetry Night” each month, which features “a local or national poet reading original work (published or not) followed by open reading.”

Remember too that fostering an early love of poetry can be as simple as reading daily with your child, including books of poetry among your family’s reading collection, and having paper and pencil (or crayons) at the ready when your child feels inspired to write.


Note: Thanks to my hubby James for sharing a link to “The Paris Review” — which has an exceptional ‘interview’ section currently featuring “Five Playwrights on the Art of Theater.” Featured playwrights include Arthur Miller, Eugene Ionesco, August Wilson, Lillian Hellman and Harold Pinter. It’s a “must read” for writers and theater folk.

Coming up: A film every parent should see, My “Lucky Stiff” riff, Weekend events featuring arts fundraisers

Balanchine to butterflies

Normally I’m not much of a name-dropper, but today I can’t resist… 

George Balanchine. Sergei Prokofiev. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Ib Andersen. Never mind that three of the four are dead, because their artistry lives on in performances like “Balanchine Classics,” being presented this weekend by Ballet Arizona

Happily, Andersen is very much alive and celebrating the 10th anniversary of doing his thing with Ballet Arizona. His official title, of course, is artistic director. But that’s only because “visionary” might look silly on a business card. I’ve enjoyed Ballet Arizona performing Balanchine for years and it never disappoints. 

You’ll have four opportunities to see it performed this weekend with the Phoenix Symphony at Symphony Hall—including two matinees and two evening performances. Ballet Arizona describes various elements of the program as”exotic,” “powerful,” “riveting,” “elegant” and “intriguing.” I doubt it’s an oversell. 

The stage at the Virginia G. Piper Theater at the Scottsdale Center for the Arts will also be very much alive this weekend as one of Italy’s most innovative theater companies, Compagnia TPO (Teatro di Piazza d’Occasione), presents an interactive theater experience called “Farfelle” (Butterflies).

Audience members are seated on the stage surrounding TPO’s touch-sensitive “magic carpet” and “wing-like, sculptural set” as two dancers move through a “virtual landscape of sight and sound” to recreate a butterfly’s journey from wiggling caterpillar to flying adult. It sounds like a lot more fun than my usual encounters with farfalle, which involve eating pasta also known for its bow-tie shape. 

I suppose some of you might get butterflies attending a different performance this weekend, as Theater Works in Peoria presents Franc D’Ambrosio at the Peoria Center for the Arts. The Justin Bieber crowd may be unimpressed but the more mature among you may find yourselves swooning as “the world’s longes-running Phantom” performs in concert. 

This is a one-night-only deal, so set aside Saturday night, June 12, if you’re a fan of all things masked and melodic. The evening begins with a cocktail reception and silent auction, and features an artist reception/meet and greet following the concert. Proceeds benefit youth scholarships supported by the Scottsdale Foothills Rotary.

As always, your best resource for comprehensive information on family-friendly events in the Valley is the daily calendar available both online and in print from Raising Arizona Kids magazine—which regularly features everything from art exhibits and puppet shows to youth theater and storytimes. 

And so I leave you with just a few more options for weekend playtime… 

Arizona Designer Craftsmen presents the “50th Annual Juried Exhibition” (featuring the work of more than 50 artists) opening reception at the Mesa Arts Center June 11.

The Academy of the Performing Arts presents “Center Stage” featuring unique dance and music productions by a complete cast of 150 young performers and Academy staff at the Tempe Center for the Arts June 11-12. 

Dance Republic presents “Kings and Queens” June 12 at the Mesa Arts Center Piper Repertory Theater. 

Valley Youth Theatre presents your last opportunity to see their production of “Willy Wonka” through June 12 at VYT in Phoenix. 

And there you have it. Candy-themed theater. Masked men. Pairings of geniuses dead and alive. Butterflies that don’t startle. And more.

Don’t even think about staying home all weekend… 


Correction: Thanks to the keen-eyed reader who noted the incorrect day originally listed for the Theater Works performance featured above. This post has been updated to indicate that the concert is on Saurday (rather than Sunday). Alas–the “Phantom” has that effect on me…

Note: The week ahead also includes some special performances—including the Broadway hit “In the Heights” at ASU Gammage (June 15-20, with “talk-back” following the Saturday matinee), the “Israeli Scouts-Tzofim Friendship Caravan” in a free performance of song and dance (June 16), the start of The Metropolitan Opera summer “Live in HD” series (June 16 at select AMC and Cinemark Theaters in our area) and the opening of two community college theater productions (see future post for details).

Photos (top to bottom): “The Four Temperaments,” choreography by George Balanchine. Copyright the George Balanchine Trust. Photography by Rosalie O’Connor from balletaz.org; Butterfly Tree from dryicon.com; Frank D’Ambrosio as the Phantom of the Opera from theatre-musical.com; “Willy Wonka” from Valley Youth Theatre at vyt.com; “In the Heights” from asugammage.com.