The Art Roundup 21/08/05

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

A legacy of supporting the arts: Artist and lifelong supporter of the arts in Nashua Meri Goyette died at her home on July 23, according to an obituary released by Farewell Funeral Service. She was 95 years old. Goyette was a founding board member of the Nashua Arts and Science Center in the 1960s and created a space for artists to show their work in the grand lobby at the Hotel Meridien in Boston in the 1980s. In 2008, she co-founded the Nashua International Sculpture Symposium, an annual event during which three renowned sculptors spend three weeks in Nashua creating outdoor sculptures for permanent installation in the city. Goyette served on the advisory board for City Arts Nashua and founded the organization’s Meri Goyette Champagne Art Awards Luncheon to help raise funds for the arts in Nashua. In 2020, the Wall Street Journal awarded Goyette its Lifetime Achievement Award for being a Patron of the Arts. This past spring, Goyette showed her own art publicly for the first time. The exhibition, “Geometric Abstraction through Cut and Paste,” was on display in the windows and lobby of the Nashua Telegraph offices and featured statement collages and collectible greeting cards that she crafted from paper, fabric and glue during the pandemic. Contributions in Goyette’s honor can be made to the Nashua International Sculpture Symposium or Nashua City Arts, according to the Farewell Funeral Service’s website. Visit farwellfuneralservice.com/meri-r-goyette to read the full obituary.

First group art show: Concord artist and gallery owner Jess Barnett presents the first group art exhibition at her gallery (located in the Patriot Investment building at 4 Park St., Suite 216, Concord) from Aug. 6 through Sept. 3. Barnett, who does primarily abstract art, opened the gallery in December 2019 to provide a venue for herself and other local and regional abstract artists to show their work. The exhibition, titled “Summer Haze,” invited regional artists to submit work in a variety of media, including paintings, drawings, collage, encaustic, fiber art, digital art, book and paper art, textiles, mixed media, photography, printmaking and 3D art. Five artists will be featured: Kathy Bouchard of Nashua, Karen Mehos of Boscawen, Jason Michael Rielly of Auburn, New York, Lorna Ritz of Northampton, Mass., and Barnett herself. An opening reception will be held at the gallery on Friday, Aug. 13, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Call 393-1340 or visit jessbarnett.com.

Uncommon Art fair. Courtesy photo.

Uncommon Art: Goffstown Main Street will host its 13th annual Uncommon Art on the Common arts and crafts fair on Saturday, Aug. 7, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., rain or shine, outside on Goffstown’s Main Street and at Night Owl Quilting Studio, located at 35 Main St. The fair will feature more than 40 area artists and artisans displaying and selling paintings, photography, prints, jewelry, pottery, beads, fiber arts, mixed media pieces, sculpture, glasswork and woodwork. Additionally, visitors can take part in the Uncommon Bling Project, collecting unique beads and handcrafted items from participating artists, which can be strung together on a cord to commemorate the day. Admission is free. Call 497-9933 or visit goffstownmainstreet.org.


Exhibits

• “FRESH PERSPECTIVES” Exhibit features works by New Hampshire artists Peter Milton, ​Varujan Boghosian, Robert Hughes and others. New Hampshire Antique Co-op (323 Elm St., Milford). On view in the Co-op’s Tower Gallery now through Aug. 31. Visit nhantiquecoop.com.

• “THE BODY IN ART: FROM THE SPIRITUAL TO THE SENSUAL” Exhibit provides a look at how artists through the ages have used the human body as a means of creative expression. On view now through Sept. 1. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “TENSION: PROCESS IN THE MAKING” The Surface Design Association’s (SDA) New Hampshire Group presents an exhibit featuring fiber art and textiles by New Hampshire artists. Now through Sept. 4. Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen). Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

• “DON GORVETT: WORKING WATERFRONTS” Exhibit features more than 60 works by the contemporary Seacoast printmaker. The Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view now through Sept. 12. Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

GALLERY ART A new collection of art by more than 20 area artists on display now in-person and online. Creative Ventures Gallery (411 Nashua St., Milford). Call 672-2500 or visit creativeventuresfineart.com.

ART ON MAIN The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce present a year-round outdoor public art exhibit in Concord’s downtown featuring works by professional sculptors. All sculptures will be for sale. Visit concordnhchamber.com/creativeconcord, call 224-2508 or email tsink@concordnhchamber.com.

• “SUMMER HAZE” Concord artist and gallery owner Jess Barnet hosts her first group art exhibit. Gallery located in the Patriot Investment building, 4 Park St., Suite 216, Concord. On view Aug. 6 through Sept. 3. Visit jessbarnett.com.

Fairs and markets

CONCORD ARTS MARKET Outdoor artisan and fine art market. Every third Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Now through October. Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Visit concordartsmarket.net.

Theater

Shows

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Wed., Aug. 4, and Thurs., Aug. 5, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

TELL ME ON A SUNDAY The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through Aug. 14, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 7:30 p.m., plus a matinee on Thursday, Aug. 5, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth). Now through Aug. 15, with shows daily at 7 p.m. Visit prescottpark.org.

•​ CABARET The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Now through Sept. 5. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

RAPUNZEL The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 10, through Thurs., Aug. 12, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

CINDERELLA The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 17, through Thurs., Aug. 19, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

•​ MAD HAUS The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Sun., Aug. 18, 8 p.m. Tickets cost $15. The show is also available to livestream. Visit seacoastrep.org.

Concerts

SUZUKI STRINGS Violin students perform. Canterbury Shaker Village(288 Shaker Road, Canterbury). Sun., Aug. 15, 4 p.m. Suggested donation $10 per person.

An artisans’ affair

League of New Hampshire Craftsmen celebrates return of its annual fair

After a year without an in-person fair, artisans from the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen overwhelmingly agree about one thing: They can’t wait to see the crowds and their fellow artisans at this year’s annual fair at Mount Sunapee Resort.

“The craftspeople are as excited to be back at the mountain as you can possibly imagine,” said Laury Nichols, a woodcarver from Chichester.

Lisa DeMio of Hampstead, who makes fiber wearables, echoed that sentiment.

“The artists are super excited to be back there,” she said. “It’s one of those places where I feel very at home. … This particular show has so many amazing artists. I’m looking forward to being able to see and touch and feel everything and connect with friends.”

The 88th Annual Craftsmen’s Fair is happening Saturday, Aug. 7, through Sunday, Aug. 15, and is one of the few arts events of its scope and size this year, according to Miriam Carter, executive director of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen.

“We’re in New Hampshire and we’ve gotten through Covid in a way that a lot of states haven’t,” Carter said. “I’m expecting a great response from the public.”

The fair will look a little different, with booths spaced farther apart and fewer artisans, and visitors are encouraged to buy their tickets online to get through the gate quickly. But beyond that, the fair should be everything it has been in past years — and then some.

“[The artisans have] had a year off to create work, so I’m really excited to see what they’ve done in that time,” Carter said.

She said she’s already seen some of the work that will be in the Art, Craft & Design Exhibition —‌ a gallery that’s set up in the middle of the fair —‌ and it’s some of the best she’s seen.

“I think they took advantage of their time off the road to … be creative and innovative,” Carter said.

There will be demonstrations this year, Carter said, following Covid precautions. Instead of the more intimate clay turning booth, for example, they will have precreated clay tiles, which people can use to create a textured piece that they can bring home and paint. Many of the demonstrations and hands-on activities are free, Carter said.

There’s also the Art, Craft & Design Exhibition and the Sculpture Garden, plus new food offerings, and, for the first time, alcohol will be available for purchase on the fairgrounds. The Adventure Park at Mount Sunapee Resort will be open, and the lift will be running for people who might want to ride up and hike down. But that’s all gravy.

“The best part of the fair is you get to meet the artists and you get to see what they’ve been up to,” Carter said.

Meet five of those artists, who talked about their work, what’s new this year and why they can’t wait for the fair.

Clay

Pottery by Michael Gibbons.

Michael Gibbons of Derry

What he makes: Functional stoneware for everyday use, like coffee mugs, bowls and teapots. “I’ve been making pottery since about 1980 and I love doing it,” Gibbons said. “I love the fact that it starts off as almost nothing and transforms into something nice and functional.” Gibbons’ work focuses on nature, with mountains adorning many pieces and a line of products made with white clay that look like birch bark.

What’s new this year: With a year off from fairs, Gibbons said he focused on producing, and he developed some new glazes. “My color palette is much broader than it was two years ago,” he said. “I have a red raspberry glaze, and I have a green glaze that I introduced. … I came up with a different glaze for my birch [products] too —‌ less shine and more matte.”

Why he can’t wait for the fair: “It’s the highlight of my year just being around so many talented, great people,” he said. “I’m also excited to see how well-received the new colors are.”

Fiber wearables

Lisa DeMio of Hampstead

Bag by Lisa DeMoi.

What she makes: Accessories, predominantly for women, like handbags, totes and cosmetic bags. They feature hand-printed linen, leather, cotton and waxed canvas. DeMio started sewing years ago, and as her four children got older, she became interested in fabrics and textiles. She found a handbag pattern and made one for herself, then was promptly asked by one friend after another to make bags for them. “It’s one of those things that everybody needs,” she said. “Everybody needs to [carry stuff], and you might as well look good doing it.”

What’s new this year: “I have some new hand-printed fabrics that I’m really excited about,” DeMio said. She said one of the artists that she admires has started to make hand-printed fabrics again, so she’s been able to create some of her products using those. “I have a very limited number of those bags,” she said.

Why she can’t wait for the fair: “Just seeing people again —‌ this is the first live event I’ll have done since February of 2020,” she said. “It’s one of those places where I feel very at home —‌ with my products in my booth and [on the fairgrounds].”

Fine jewelry

Kristin Kennedy of Concord

What she makes: One-of-a-kind jewelry pieces made with precious metals and gemstones. Her inspiration is based on nature and her outdoor experiences, like hiking the mountains and swimming in the ocean.

What’s new this year: Kennedy has a few new collections, including the Everlasting collection that features pieces with rose-cut emeralds and London Blue topaz, and a Nuevo Deco collection that features pieces with rose-cut aquamarines, step-cut chocolate diamonds and champagne diamonds.

Why she can’t wait for the fair: “I’m definitely looking forward to seeing lots of familiar faces, being able to celebrate being together, enjoying art together,” she said. “Most of my customers I’ve had for 20 years, so it’s fun to see them.” Kennedy said she typically checks out the fair herself on the last day. “It’s fun to get to know the artists and handpick some of their special designs,” she said. “It’s a great opportunity to support local artists and appreciate some of the finer things.” This is Kennedy’s 20th year at the Craftsmen’s Fair, and she said it’s the only one she participates in. “I think it’s one of the most highly acclaimed art shows in the country.”

Wood carvings

Laury Nichols from Chichester

Badger by Laury Nichols.

What she makes: Whimsical woodland animal characters and custom woodcarving projects. The carvings are mainly characters she designs herself, and she has a few characters from children’s books like The Wind in the Willows and Beatrix Potter’s tales. With the carvings just inches tall, Nichols said she’ll be bringing about 500 of them to the fair.

What’s new this year: Nichols said she always has new carvings, and this year her booth itself is brand new. She took an online wooden puppet making class during the pandemic, so she’ll have a few puppets and will be taking orders for them. She has also created cards with pictures of her woodcarvings, but since she’s juried as a woodcarver, she’s not allowed to sell anything but woodcarvings. So instead, she’s giving away a free pack of “Celebrate” cards to anyone who asks.

Why she can’t wait for the fair: “I’m so excited to see everyone again, and I know the public is excited to be back to the fair,” Nichols said. “I [especially] love it when children come into my booth. They are so great. … I make free stuff for kids —‌ I was an art kind of kid, and talking to real artists was very inspirational and influential.”

Wood sculptures

Donna Zils Banfield of Derry

What she makes: Sculptural art made out of wood. “Most of my work will appeal to about 10 percent of the people who will be at the fair,” Zils Banfield said. “It’s sculptural art —‌ it’s not utilitarian, it’s not functional.” One example is her Wood Ffolkkes, a community of sculptural wood people that come in various shapes and sizes, with different moods, personalities, wardrobes, loves and hates, but all created from the same core. “At our basic core, we’re all the same,” she said. Zils Banfield started participating in the Craftsmen’s Fair in 2012 as a bowl turner. “I’ve slowly moved into the more nonfunctional artwork,” she said. “I knew early on that I had to be more than a bowl turner.” Zils Banfield said this kind of work is much more intricate, taking days, weeks or months to complete one piece, so she usually has several pieces going at a time. “Nothing is done quickly, which is unusual for the wood turning world,” she said.

What’s new this year: “I have a new sculptural piece that is going to be titled ‘Cityscapes,’” she said. It features 3D images carved into the wood with small particles of 24k gold leaves and silver leaves for the skyscrapers and the stars.

Why she can’t wait for the fair: “Seeing the people that I miss, both my fellow peers and the people who come to the fair to see me and to see my work,” Zils Banfield said. She said she loves showing her new pieces to past customers. “Every year I have at least one new idea that appears in my booth.”

More than a craft fair
Woodcarver Laury Nichols shared her recommendation for how to approach the fair.
“If you go to the fair only to buy stuff … you miss a huge amount. If you look for only acquisition you will miss the staggering artwork and craftwork. If you go with the mindset to just marvel … it is just amazing. … If you buy something and you’ve talked to the person who made it … there’s something about knowing that it’s handmade and knowing the face of the person who made it and having the conversation with that person.”

The 88th Annual League of New Hampshire Craftsmen’s Fair

Where: Mount Sunapee Resort, 1398 Route 103, Newbury
When: Saturday, Aug. 7, through Sunday, Aug. 15, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, rain or shine
Cost: General admission for one day is $16 for adults, or $24 for two days. Seniors are $14, and children under 12 get in free. Online ticket sales prior to the event are encouraged at nhcrafts.org.

Featured photo: Wood Ffolkkes by Donna Zils Banfield. Courtesy photo.

The Art Roundup 21/07/29

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

.


Outdoor Shakespeare: The Dana Center (Saint Anselm College, 100 Saint Anselm Drive, Manchester) presents a Shakespeare on the Green production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream on Friday, July 30, and Saturday, July 31, at 7:30 p.m. The play will be performed outside on Founder’s Green in front of the theater. Bring your own lawn chair or blanket. General admission tickets cost $25. Visit anselm.edu/dana-center-humanities or call 641-7000.

NH antique art: The New Hampshire Antique Co-op (323 Elm St., Milford) has an exhibit and sale, “Fresh Perspectives,” on view in the Co-op’s Tower Gallery now through Aug. 31. It features works by New Hampshire artists Peter Milton, ​Varujan Boghosian, Robert Hughes, Robert Hauser and others, including paintings, prints, sculptures, assemblages and collages. Visit nhantiquecoop.com or call 673-8499.

A memoir on grief: The Toadstool Bookstore in Nashua and Peterborough presents a virtual author event with Cathleen Elle on Thursday, July 29, at 6 p.m. Elle will discuss Shattered Together: A Mother’s Journey From Grief to Belief. A Guide to Help You Through Sudden Loss. The memoir documents the author’s 10-year journey of finding healing, meaning and forgiveness after the unexpected death of her son. Register online for the free event, which will be held over Zoom. Visit toadbooks.com or call 673-1734.

“Looking for Seashells,” a painting by Maryclare Heffernan. Courtesy photo.

NHAA artists in Manchester: The New Hampshire Art Association will feature work by two of its artist members at its new exhibit venue, Creative Framing Solutions, located across from the Palace Theatre at 89 Hanover St. in Manchester, during August. Joe Flaherty of Portsmouth is an oil painter whose paintings “aim at being curious, mysterious and peculiar before they aim at being representational or affirmative,” he said in a press release. Maryclare Heffernan of Candia will present a series of paintings titled “A Spray of Sea Salt.” “This body of work is about the essence of the ocean, of the feelings that arise in us when we’re near the sea,” Heffernan said in the release. An opening reception will be held on Friday, Aug. 13, from 5 to 8 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call 320-5988 or visit nhartassociation.org.

Small town tale: The Peterborough Players (55 Hadley Road, Peterborough) returns with a production of Our Town Aug. 4 through Aug. 15, with showtimes Wednesday through Sunday, at 5:30 p.m. Performances will take place at the Players’ outdoor theater space, located off Phoenix Mill Lane in downtown Peterborough. The 1938 play by Thornton Wilder tells of love, life and death in the fictional small New Hampshire town of Grover’s Corners. According to the Players’ website, the company first produced the play in 1940 with consultation from Wilder himself. It has since become the Players’ most produced play to date. There will be a talkback immediately following the show on Sunday, Aug, 8. Tickets cost $47. Visit peterboroughplayers.org or call 924-7585.

Art

Exhibits

• “FASHION FORWARD: AFRICANA STYLE” Exhibit showcases Black fashion and explores connections between African American and African design aesthetics from past to present. The Seacoast African American Cultural Center (located inside the Portsmouth Historical Society, 10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view now through Sept. 1. Gallery hours are Monday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; visitors must reserve a 45-minute time slot in advance. Walk-in guests will be accommodated as space permits. Tickets cost $10 for the general public and $5 for Historical Society members and are available through eventbrite.com. Visit saacc-nh.org.

• “THE BODY IN ART: FROM THE SPIRITUAL TO THE SENSUAL” Exhibit provides a look at how artists through the ages have used the human body as a means of creative expression. On view now through Sept. 1. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN IMPRESSIONISM” Exhibit showcases New England painters and masters of impressionism Alice Ruggles Sohier and Frederick A. Bosley. On view now through Sept. 12. Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “ROBERTO LUGO: TE TRAIGO MI LE LO LAI – I BRING YOU MY JOY” Philadelphia-based potter reimagines traditional forms and techniques with inspiration from urban graffiti and hip-hop culture, paying homage to his Puerto Rican heritage and exploring his cultural identity and its connection to family, place and legacy. The Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St., Manchester). On view now through Sept. 26. On view now. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “TENSION: PROCESS IN THE MAKING” The Surface Design Association’s (SDA) New Hampshire Group presents an exhibit featuring fiber art and textiles by New Hampshire artists. July 24 through Sept. 4. Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen). Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

• “SUMMER HAZE” Concord artist and gallery owner Jess Barnet hosts her first group art exhibit. Gallery located in the Patriot Investment building, 4 Park St., Suite 216, Concord. On view Aug. 6 through Sept. 3. Visit jessbarnett.com.

Fairs and markets

CONCORD ARTS MARKET Outdoor artisan and fine art market. Every third Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Now through October. Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Visit concordartsmarket.net.

CRAFTSMEN’S FAIR Nine-day craft fair featuring work by hundreds of juried League of NH Craftsmen members. Sat., Aug. 7, through Sun., Aug. 15. Mount Sunapee Resort (1398 Route 103, Newbury). Visit nhcrafts.org.

Theater

Shows

THE LITTLE MERMAID The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Wed., July 28, through Thurs., July 29, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

TELL ME ON A SUNDAY The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. July 28 through Aug. 14, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 7:30 p.m., plus matinees on Tuesday, Aug. 3, and Thursday, Aug. 5, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

DANI GIRL The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through July 31, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 4 p.m. Tickets cost $29 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth). Now through Aug. 15, with shows daily at 7 p.m. More information is TBA. Visit prescottpark.org.

•​ CABARET The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Now through Sept. 5. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 3, through Thurs., Aug. 5, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

RAPUNZEL The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 10, through Thurs., Aug. 12, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

CINDERELLA The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 17, through Thurs., Aug. 19, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

•​ MAD HAUS The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Sun., Aug. 18, 8 p.m. Tickets cost $15. The show is also available to livestream. Visit seacoastrep.org.

Concerts

SUZUKI STRINGS Violin students perform. Canterbury Shaker Village(288 Shaker Road, Canterbury). Sun., Aug. 15, 4 p.m. Suggested donation $10 per person.

Art by all

Creative Union bringing Nashua community together

Nashua’s arts scene is expanding in the coming months as the whole community teams up for Creative Union, an art project designed to bring people together and showcase all of the programs the city has to offer.

“We’re amplifying and highlighting Nashua’s diverse community and the history of the city and the spirit of the city,” said Samantha Cataldo, Curator of Contemporary Art at the Currier Museum of Art, which co-organized the project as part of the museum’s Nashua Endowment, created to support Currier-organized arts programming for Nashua. “Everything about the project is in and for the communities of Nashua.”

Creative Union got underway in June, and the free workshops have been a success so far, Cataldo said. There are still five public workshops left, and anyone in the city can come create festive paper sculptures and handmade decorations.

“The theme of the work is this idea of a community garden, so people have been making things like large-scale flowers that are made out of papier-mache,” Cataldo said.

The first workshop took place during the Black Lives Matter Nashua Juneteenth Celebration. Cataldo said that more than 100 people made paper freedom flowers and leaves.

Everything created during these workshops, which are Phase 1 of Creative Union, will be part of a final celebration happening this fall.

“By the end of the summer a downtown space that will have been [vacated] will be filled with all of these sculptures that the community has made, from the freedom flowers to the growing vines that people made at the farmers market,” Cataldo said. “It will be an explosion of color, of these really fun paper sculptures and decorations.”

That final installation is part of Phase 2, which will also feature nine days of community programming that may include performances, dance parties, community dinners, artmaking workshops and more. Cataldo said the exact location of the final art installation can’t be revealed just yet, and the exact dates are still being determined as well, though it will likely be sometime in October.

For now, the focus is still on getting the community together to create these paper works of art. Along with the public workshops, Cataldo said the Currier has been working with specific community groups, like kids’ camps, to create the paper flowers and decorations. The kids at Nashua Community Music School’s summer camp, for example, made bigger flowers on which they wrote the things they like about living in Nashua, and then made a smaller flower to write about what they think the community needs more of.

“It’s art-making, but everything has kind of a conversation piece,” Cataldo said. “It’s sort of encouraging … people to think about what’s special about their community and also be more engaged with what’s going on and what’s impacting them.”

For anyone who can’t attend any of the remaining five workshops, there are take-home kits for making triangular bunting, with special markers, blank shapes and instructions. Cataldo said so far about 150 kits have been given out.

The Currier is co-organizing Creative Union with the City of Nashua as well as Elisa Hamilton, a multimedia artist from the Boston area who was brought on to develop the project.

“Whenever I’m working with a new community it’s incredibly important to me to learn about that community before developing a project idea,” Hamilton wrote in an email.

Hamilton has worked closely with the Mayor’s Office throughout the process.

“Early on, I learned so much about vibrant arts initiatives already happening in Nashua, as well as other great public programs such as the Sunday Farmer’s Market … [and] the many fantastic nonprofits for Nashua doing such terrific things,” she wrote. “My work is very much about bringing people together, so the idea of a ‘Creative Union’ — a joyful, creative centerpoint that would bring all of these groups together, along with the broader Nashua community — was really the foundational inspiration for this project.”

Cataldo encourages anyone of any age to come participate in the remaining workshops.

“It’s a really fun way to come together, be part of a whole,” she said. “Everything is provided, and no experience is necessary.”

Upcoming Creative Union workshops

Nashua Farmers Market, Great American Downtown
City Hall Plaza
Sunday, Aug. 8, and Sunday, Aug. 29, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

YMCA of Greater Nashua
24 Stadium Drive
Thursday, Aug. 5, 4 to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Aug. 7, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Grow Nashua
Community Garden on Spring Street
Thursday, Aug. 12, 6 to 8 p.m.

You can pick up the take-home artmaking kit at Arlington Street Community Center (36 Arlington St.) or at YMCA Greater Nashua (24 Stadium Drive in Nashua or 6 Henry Clay Drive in Merrimack). Art should be completed and returned by Aug. 6.

Featured photo: Community members make paper art at recent Creative Union workshop held at Nashua’s farmers market. Courtesy photo.

The Art Roundup 21/07/22

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

.


•​ Marriage comedy: The Majestic Theatre presents ’Til Beth Do Us Part on Friday, July 23, and Saturday, July 24, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, July 25, at 2 p.m., at the Majestic Studio Theatre (880 Page St., Manchester). Married for 27 years, Suzannah and her husband Gibby find themselves in a state of complacency as they adjust to life in their newly empty nest. Hoping to advance her career, Suzannah hires an assistant, Beth, to get her house — and her husband — back in order. When Beth begins weaseling into other aspects of the couple’s life, Gibby suspects she has ulterior motives. It becomes a battle of wits between Beth and Gibby as Beth tries to derail the marriage and Gibby becomes more determined than ever to save it. “There are a lot of surprises, a lot of twists and turns, a lot of misdirection and comedy that’s predicated on timing,” director Joe Pelonzi told the Hippo earlier this month. “It’s kind of in the same vein as a lot of the British farces, but without all the slamming doors.” Tickets cost $20 for adults and $15 for seniors age 65 and over and youth age 17 and under. Call 669-7469 or visit majestictheatre.net.

Heathers auditions: Manchester-based Cue Zero Theatre Co. is holding in-person auditions on Tuesday, July 27, at Granite State Arts Academy Public Charter School (19 Keewaydin Drive, Salem) for its upcoming production of Heathers The Musical. Interested performers must sign up on the Cue Zero website in advance for a 60-minute time slot between 6 and 10 p.m. Callbacks will be held on Thursday, July 29. The production is scheduled to run Oct. 22 through Oct. 24 at the Derry Opera House. Visit cztheatre.com or email cztheatre@gmail.com.

“Going with the Flow” by Jane Balshaw, featured in “Tension” exhibit. Courtesy photo.

Textile works: The Surface Design Association’s (SDA) New Hampshire Group presents an exhibit, “Tension: Process in the Making,” at Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen) July 24 through Sept. 4. It features contemporary fiber art by 15 artists juried by textile artist Jenine Shereos. “Reflecting on the past year, there has been a collective stretching; a pulling and tightening, beyond what we ever imagined was possible,” Shereos said in a press release. “The works in this exhibition feature New Hampshire textile artists as they examine the theme of tension in both form and concept.” An artists reception and jurors talk will be held at the gallery on Saturday, July 24, from 1 to 3 p.m. Current gallery hours are Thursday and Friday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, from noon to 4 p.m. Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

Community art for Nashua: The Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, in partnership with the City of Nashua, present “Creative Union,” a new community-centered art project conceived by Elisa H. Hamilton. A number of free, hands-on workshops for all ages are being held throughout the summer in Nashua, where participants can create festive paper sculptures and handmade decorations for a community celebration that will be held in downtown Nashua this fall. Workshop dates are Thursday, July 22, from 4:30 to 7 p.m., at the Arlington Street Community Center (36 Arlington St.); Thursday, Aug. 5, from 4 to 7 p.m., and Saturday, Aug. 7, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., at YMCA of Greater Nashua (24 Stadium Drive); Sundays, Aug. 8 and Aug. 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Nashua Farmers Market at City Hall Plaza; and Thursday, Aug. 12, from 6 to 8 p.m., at Grow Nashua Community Garden (Spring Street). Visit currier.org

Fashion art: The Seacoast African American Cultural Center (located inside the Portsmouth Historical Society, 10 Middle St., Portsmouth) has an exhibition, “Fashion Forward: Africana Style,” on view now through Sept. 1 that showcases Black fashion and explores connections between African American and African design aesthetics from past to present. See photos from Sapeurs: Ladies and Gentlemen of the Congo by London-based photographer Tariq Zaidi; vintage African fashion pieces from 1930s Liberia reflecting influences of Islam and African American immigration; and more than a dozen contemporary fashion and fabric art pieces created or owned by African and African American women living and working on the Seacoast and throughout the East Coast. Gallery hours are Monday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; visitors must reserve a 45-minute time slot in advance. Walk-in guests will be accommodated as space permits. Tickets cost $10 for the general public and $5 for Historical Society members and are available through eventbrite.com. Call 430-6027 or visit saacc-nh.org.

Art

Exhibits

• “FRESH PERSPECTIVES” Exhibit features works by New Hampshire artists Peter Milton, ​Varujan Boghosian, Robert Hughes and others. New Hampshire Antique Co-op (323 Elm St., Milford). On view in the Co-op’s Tower Gallery now through Aug. 31. Visit nhantiquecoop.com.

• “THE BODY IN ART: FROM THE SPIRITUAL TO THE SENSUAL” Exhibit provides a look at how artists through the ages have used the human body as a means of creative expression. On view now through Sept. 1. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “DON GORVETT: WORKING WATERFRONTS” Exhibit features more than 60 works by the contemporary Seacoast printmaker. The Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view now through Sept. 12. Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN IMPRESSIONISM” Exhibit showcases New England painters and masters of impressionism Alice Ruggles Sohier and Frederick A. Bosley. On view now through Sept. 12. Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “ROBERTO LUGO: TE TRAIGO MI LE LO LAI – I BRING YOU MY JOY” Philadelphia-based potter reimagines traditional forms and techniques with inspiration from urban graffiti and hip-hop culture, paying homage to his Puerto Rican heritage and exploring his cultural identity and its connection to family, place and legacy. The Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St., Manchester). On view now through Sept. 26. On view now. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “CRITICAL CARTOGRAPHY” Exhibit features immersive large-scale drawings by Larissa Fassler that reflect the Berlin-based artist’s observations of downtown Manchester while she was an artist-in-residence at the Currier Museum in 2019. On view now through fall. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

GALLERY ART A new collection of art by more than 20 area artists on display now in-person and online. Creative Ventures Gallery (411 Nashua St., Milford). Call 672-2500 or visit creativeventuresfineart.com.

• “TOMIE DEPAOLA AT THE CURRIER” Exhibition celebrates the illustrator’s life and legacy through a collection of his original drawings. On view now. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

ART ON MAIN The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce present a year-round outdoor public art exhibit in Concord’s downtown featuring works by professional sculptors. All sculptures will be for sale. Visit concordnhchamber.com/creativeconcord, call 224-2508 or email tsink@concordnhchamber.com.

• “SUMMER HAZE” Concord artist and gallery owner Jess Barnet hosts her first group art exhibit. Gallery located in the Patriot Investment building, 4 Park St., Suite 216, Concord. On view Aug. 6 through Sept. 3. Visit jessbarnett.com.

Fairs and markets

CONCORD ARTS MARKET Outdoor artisan and fine art market. Every third Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Now through October. Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Visit concordartsmarket.net.

CRAFTSMEN’S FAIR Nine-day craft fair featuring work by hundreds of juried League of NH Craftsmen members. Sat., Aug. 7, through Sun., Aug. 15. Mount Sunapee Resort (1398 Route 103, Newbury). Visit nhcrafts.org.

Tours

NASHUA PUBLIC ART AUDIO TOUR Self-guided audio tours of the sculptures and murals in downtown Nashua, offered via the Distrx app, which uses Bluetooth iBeacon technology to automatically display photos and text and provides audio descriptions at each stop on the tour as tourists approach the works of art. Each tour has 10 to 15 stops. Free and accessible on Android and iOS on demand. Available in English and Spanish. Visit downtownnashua.org/nashua-art-tour.

Theater

Shows

WIZARD OF OZ The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Wed., July 21, and Thurs., July 22, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

•​ ‘TIL BETH DO US PART The Majestic Theatre presents. Virtual and in person at Majestic Studio Theatre, 880 Page St., Manchester. Now through July 25, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. Visit majestictheatre.net or call 669-7469.

DANI GIRL The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through July 31, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 4 p.m. Tickets cost $29 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth). Now through Aug. 15, with shows daily at 7 p.m. Visit prescottpark.org.

•​ CABARET The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. July 22 through Sept. 5. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

THE LITTLE MERMAID Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., July 27, through Thurs., July 29, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

TELL ME ON A SUNDAY The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. July 28 through Aug. 14, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 7:30 p.m., plus matinees on Tuesday, Aug. 3, and Thursday, Aug. 5, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., Aug. 3, through Thurs., Aug. 5, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

Concerts

• “PURCELL TO PUCCINI OPERATASTIC!” The Piccola Emerging Opera performs a classic opera show. Part of the Piccola Opera Summer Festival. Fri., July 23, 6 p.m., at Franklin Pierce University (40 University Drive, Rindge), and Sat., July 24, 2 p.m. at Cathedral of the Pines (10 Hale Hill Road, Rindge). Tickets cost $15. Call 781-5695 or visit piccolaopera.net.

Eclectic artistry

Henniker illustrator, photographer, author keeps on creating

It was the barn that Jerry LoFaro fell in love with when he bought his property in Henniker 25 years ago. Since then, he’s used the space as a studio for painting, digital artwork, photography, writing and live music performances, sometimes sitting alone in his well-worn office chair and sometimes surrounded by friends during the intimate concerts that he and his wife Kathleen host.

“This barn — this is why we’re here,” he said of the building, which was built in ’91 and had been used as a dance school. “It was perfect for me, really kind of idyllic.”

With a resume as eclectic as it is long, LoFaro’s recent projects include working on a follow-up to his first book of photography, Abandoned Vehicles of New Hampshire: Rust in Peace, and taking behind-the-scenes and onstage pictures of musicians as the official photographer for Tupelo Music Hall in Derry.

The latter gig started with an iPhone and front-row seats to numerous shows. The self-proclaimed “music freak” would sit in front of the stage and take pictures with his phone, without giving much thought to their artistic quality. It was a far cry from his usual approach to art — LoFaro has been a successful painter and illustrator for years, with work that has graced the covers of books and magazines, advertising and promotional items for brands like Aflac, Coca-Cola and Disney, and, his proudest achievement, boxes of Celestial Seasonings tea. For that work, he uses techniques like airbrushing and digital art, but taking pictures had never really been a thing.

“Most of my photography [at that point] had been a [starting point] for my illustrations,” he said. “It was part of a process and wasn’t really a goal in and of itself.”

But LoFaro was posting his concert shots online, and people were commenting. Knowing that he had an audience, LoFaro started bringing a better camera to the shows, discreetly taking shots from his lap.

“I had no goal other than to have fun and take better pictures,” he said.

Tupelo’s social media director noticed the photos, though, and started posting them on Tupelo’s social media sites. When the venue moved from Londonderry to Derry in 2017, LoFaro was asked to be the official photographer.

“I kind of was grandfathered in,” he said, aware that he got the job over professional photographers with years more experience. “But I’m an artist — what I lack in skill, I make up for in editing and artistry.”

Abandoned Vehicles of New Hampshire, which was published earlier this year, is a new creative venture for LoFaro, one that started when he turned his camera toward rusty old cars he found throughout the state.

“It was just something that captured my interest,” he said.

One of his four Instagram accounts is dedicated to his rusted cars photography, and one of his followers happens to work for a publisher, America Through Time.

“I knew I had a book in me,” LoFaro said.

The star of the book is a Hudson Commodore, a car he found in the middle of a field in Loudon and later bought from the owner of the salvage yard for $200. The Hudson is now a centerpiece in his front yard.

LoFaro said the response to the book has been great.

“I was inundated with people sending messages and locations [of abandoned cars] all over the state,” he said. “I have so much material [for a follow-up book].”

In the meantime, LoFaro is working on a book of photography about Henniker — something never imagined doing when he left New York City in 1995, when he was still working with his agent and big clients in New York.

His favorite client was Celestial Seasonings; he did artwork for them for close to 20 years.

“The way they feature artists on the box, it really just spoke to me,” he said.

It started with redoing the image on the box of Morning Thunder, the company’s first caffeinated tea. LoFaro also, among other things, created several variations of the Sleepytime bear — and that’s when he started transitioning from painting by hand to digital art.

“I had no interest in digital art,” LoFaro said. “I’m in love with the process of painting: mixing the paint, preparing the boards, the tactile element.”

A good friend of his, though, owned what Lafaro says was a “pioneer” computer art school in Weare. After Sept. 11, 2001, LoFaro’s lifeline to work in New York City all but vanished, and he got no jobs for several months after. With extra time on his hands, he agreed to take computer art classes.

“I was the worst student in the class because I had no computer experience,” he said. “It was excruciating.”

But after he got past the initial learning curve, LoFaro realized how much he could do with digital art — and how good it could be.

“I reinvented myself. I was still painting, but I can do this a lot better,” he said.

LoFaro maxed out his credit cards to buy a used computer system, and the day he got it, he took a job making clouds for a video game — that had to be done the next day.

“That was my trial by fire,” he said.

Lafaro said the more he learned about the intricacies of digital art, the more he could relate it to his airbrush work.

“It really was an incredible natural evolution,” he said.

And then there’s the music. A band’s photo shoot in the barn morphed into a bigger idea; in 2016, the LoFaros started hosting concerts, with the musicians playing on a small stage that LoFaro built. They were well-attended, so he built a bigger stage, and they’ve had more than 100 people in attendance for some of the shows. Those stopped during Covid, but LoFaro is hoping to get them going again by fall.

He’s back at Tupelo, too, and looking forward to shooting a few good shows this season. Right now he and owner Scott Hayward are in the process of creating posters of the 52×60-inch mural on canvas of LoFaro’s photos that hangs on the venue’s front wall. That will be sold at the venue and online later this summer.

If that seems like a lot of balls in the air, LoFaro isn’t quite ready to stop juggling.

“I’m on this journey, and I’m open for anything,” he said.

Featured photo: Jerry LoFaro poses in front of the Tupelo tapestry of his photos. Courtesy photo.

The Art Roundup 21/07/15

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

“Perspectives,” a mixed-media sculpture by Philip Gauthier. Courtesy photo.

Saturday market: This month’s Concord Arts Marketwill take place on Saturday, July 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Rollins Park (off Broadway Street, with parking at 33 Bow St.). The outdoor artisan and fine art market features 50 vendors, live music and a food truck. It will continue on the third Saturday of each month through October, and during Intown Concord’s Market Days Festival, when it will be held Thursday, Aug. 19, through Saturday, Aug. 21, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Main and Pleasant streets. Visit concordartsmarket.net/summer-arts-market.

Chorale reunited: The Concord Chorale’s virtual performance of Carmina Burana that premiered on July 10 is now available to stream on demand for free on the Chorale’s YouTube channel. The piece, composed by Carl Orff in the 1930s, is based on a collection of medieval poetry of the same name, particularly on the text’s recurring theme of “Rota Fortunae,” the theoretical “wheel of fortune” that determines every person’s fate. Its iconic opening movement, “O Fortuna,” will be “familiar to essentially everybody,” music director Jenny Cooper told the Hippo earlier this month. “It’s incredibly dramatic,” she said. “It’s been used throughout pop culture and in commercials and movies.” Fifty chorale members performed the piece together in person, joined by guest vocal soloists Lisa Cooper, soprano; Cailin Marcel Manson, baritone; and AJ Coppola, tenor; pianists Molly Lozeau and Elizabeth Blood; and a group of percussionists including timpanist Jonathan Hess and principal percussionist Matt Sharrock. The virtual concert also features the voices of chorale members who were not able to perform with the group in person; recorded audio of them singing at home was mixed into the audio of the performance video. Now rehearsing regularly in person, the Concord Chorale plans to perform for a live, in-person audience for their next concert in September. Visit concordchorale.org or call 333-5211.

Thriller author: The Music Hall in Portsmouth presents a virtual event with New York Times bestselling author Megan Miranda on Tuesday, July 20, at 7 p.m. as part of its virtual Writers in The Loft series. Miranda will discuss her new novel, Such a Quiet Place. The thriller centers on Hollow’s Edge, a once idyllic, close-knit neighborhood reeling after the shocking murder of two people. The resident implicated in the crime has returned home, having had the conviction overturned. Now, everyone is a suspect, and a series of mysterious notes suggests that it won’t be long before the killer strikes again. The author discussion will be moderated by local young adult novelist Paul Durham. An audience Q&A will follow. Tickets cost $5 to access the event, which will be livestreamed on Zoom via Eventive. Visit themusichall.org or call 436-2400.

Outdoor opera: The Manchester-based Piccola Opera presents its Summer Festival, with two shows at two outdoor venues in Rindge. First, the Piccola Youth Opera will perform a musical theater and light opera show, The Wonderful World of Music, on Friday, July 16, at 6 p.m. at Cathedral of the Pines (10 Hale Hill Road), and Saturday, July 17, at 2 p.m. at Franklin Pierce University (40 University Drive). The Piccola Emerging Opera will perform a classic opera, Purcell to Puccini — Operatastic!, on Friday, July 23, at 6 p.m., at Franklin Pierce University, and Saturday, July 24, at 2 p.m. at Cathedral of the Pines. Tickets cost $15. Call 781-5695 or visit piccolaopera.net.

.


Art

Exhibits

• “FRESH PERSPECTIVES” Exhibit features works by New Hampshire artists Peter Milton, ​Varujan Boghosian, Robert Hughes and others. New Hampshire Antique Co-op (323 Elm St., Milford). On view through Aug. 31. Visit nhantiquecoop.com.

• “FASHION FORWARD: AFRICANA STYLE” Exhibit showcases Black fashion and explores connections between African American and African design aesthetics from past to present. The Seacoast African American Cultural Center (located inside the Portsmouth Historical Society, 10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view through Sept. 1. Gallery hours are Monday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; visitors must reserve a 45-minute time slot in advance. Walk-in guests will be accommodated as space permits. Tickets cost $10 for the general public and $5 for Historical Society members and are available through eventbrite.com. Visit saacc-nh.org.

• “THE BODY IN ART: FROM THE SPIRITUAL TO THE SENSUAL” Exhibit provides a look at how artists through the ages have used the human body as a means of creative expression. On view through Sept. 1. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN IMPRESSIONISM” Exhibit showcases New England painters and masters of impressionism Alice Ruggles Sohier and Frederick A. Bosley. On view through Sept. 12. Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “TENSION: PROCESS IN THE MAKING” The Surface Design Association’s (SDA) New Hampshire Group presents an exhibit featuring fiber art and textiles by New Hampshire artists. July 24 through Sept. 4. Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen). Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

Fairs and markets

CONCORD ARTS MARKET Outdoor artisan and fine art market. Third Saturday each month, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Now through October. Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Visit concordartsmarket.net.

ARTS ON THE GREEN Arts and crafts fair will feature painters, potters, artisan jewelers, stained glass makers, bead workers, photographers and metal crafters. Presented by The Center for the Arts Lake Sunapee Region. Sunapee Harbor. Sat., July 17, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit centerfortheartsnh.org.

Tours

NASHUA PUBLIC ART AUDIO TOUR Self-guided audio tours of the sculptures and murals in downtown Nashua, offered via the Distrx app, which uses Bluetooth iBeacon technology to automatically display photos and text and provides audio descriptions at each stop on the tour as tourists approach the works of art. Each tour has 10 to 15 stops. Free and accessible on Android and iOS on demand. Available in English and Spanish. Visit downtownnashua.org/nashua-art-tour.

Theater

Auditions

HEATHERS THE MUSICAL Presented by Cue Zero Theatre Company. Auditions held Tues., July 27. Granite State Arts Academy, 19 Keewaydin Drive, Salem. Performers must be age 18+. Signups for a time slot in advance are required. Visit cztheatre.com.

Shows

PETER PAN The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Wed., July 14, and Thurs., July 15, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

SLEUTH The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through July 17, with showtimes Wednesday through Saturday, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $37. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

DANI GIRL The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through July 31, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 4 p.m. Tickets cost $29 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

•​ PIPPIN The Seacoast Repertory Theatre PAPA Jr. presents. Virtual and in person at 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Now through July 18. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth). Now through Aug. 15, with shows daily at 7 p.m. More information is TBA. Visit prescottpark.org.

WIZARD OF OZ The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., July 20, through Thurs., July 22, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

•​ CABARET The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. July 22 through Sept. 5. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

Acting normal

Marriage comedy opens at the Majestic Theatre

As life steadily returns to normal, the Majestic Theatre presents a play about the normal things in life — home, marriage, career — but with a farcical twist.

Til Beth Do Us Part opens for its two-weekend run at the Majestic Studio Theatre in Manchester on Friday, July 16.

Written by Jesse Jones, Nicholas Hope and Jamie Wooten — the comedy playwright trio known as Jones Hope Wooten — the show is, as director Joe Pelonzi describes it, “a situational comedy, where things don’t go as planned.”

“There are a lot of surprises, a lot of twists and turns, a lot of misdirection and comedy that’s predicated on timing,” he said. “It’s kind of in the same vein as a lot of the British farces, but without all the slamming doors.”

Married for 27 years, Suzannah and her husband Gibby find themselves in a state of complacency as they adjust to life in their newly empty nest. Suzannah hopes to advance her career but is bogged down by household duties, with which she gets no help from Gibby. Enter Beth, an assistant Suzannah hires to get her house — and her husband — back in order. Under the nose of an oblivious Suzannah, Beth begins weaseling into other aspects of the couple’s life, taking a special interest in Suzannah’s career, and in an upcoming business dinner that could be a big step forward for Suzannah. It becomes a battle of wits between Beth and Gibby as Beth tries to derail the marriage and Gibby, who has caught on to Beth’s ulterior motives, becomes more determined than ever to save it.

“It’s full of normal situations that most people have been in before and can really relate to,” Pelonzi said, “except, in the play, those normal situations end up going in a more comic direction.”

“It’s the perfect [show] to come see after a year and a half of being deprived of our normal interactions and normal life,” actor Judy Mitchell added.

Mitchell, who has been acting in New Hampshire on and off for nearly 30 years, will reprise the role of Suzannah, which she played in a past production of ’Til Beth Do Us Part, also directed by Pelonzi, for Bedford Off Broadway.

“It’s a fun show, and I had a lot of fun playing Suzannah,” Mitchell said. “I was happy to do it again when Joe [Pelonzi] asked me.”

As is traditional for a farce, the characters in ’Til Beth Do Us Part are “a little bit over the top, almost caricatures,” Mitchell said, which calls for a less conventional acting approach.

“Rather than [reflecting on] my own personal experiences or looking at the depth of emotion like I would for a more realistic type of character, I look more at [Suzannah’s] actions and reactions,” she said. “The facial expressions and body language play as much of a part as any emotional development would for a character [in a non-farce].”

Til Beth Do Us Part is the Majestic Theatre’s second in-person show since the pandemic, and Mitchell’s first time back on stage.

“It’s a little anxiety-producing to get out in front of people again, so I kind of had to push myself and talk myself into doing it,” she said, “but I’m very glad I did, because I needed this. [Theater] is as much a part of me as breathing.”

’Til Beth Do Us Part
Where:
Majestic Studio Theatre, 880 Page St., Manchester
When: July 16 through July 25, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $20 for adults, and $15 for seniors age 65 and over and youth age 17 and under.
More info: Call 669-7469 or visit majestictheatre.net.

Featured photo:The Majestic Theatre presents ‘Til Beth Do Us Part. Courtesy photo.

The Art Roundup 21/07/08

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

Live poetry and spoken word return: After a 15-month hiatus, Slam Free or Die’s live events are back at The Stark Tavern (500 N. Commercial St., Manchester). The weekly series of open mic nights for poets and spoken-word artists takes place in the restaurant’s function room every Thursday, with doors open and sign-ups beginning at 7 p.m., and the open mic at 8 p.m. The series also features several poetry slams every month. The events are open to all ages. There is a cover charge of $3 to $5 at the door, which can be paid with cash or by Venmo. Visit facebook.com/slamfreeordie, e-mail slamfreeordie@gmail.com or call 858-3286.

Coming together with cranes: A new community art installation, “1,000 Cranes for Nashua,” will be on display in The Atrium at St. Joseph Hospital (172 Kinsley St., Nashua) starting on Thursday, July 8. It features more than 1,000 origami paper cranes created by hundreds of Nashua-area kids, adults and families since April. “We have cranes of all sizes, colors, styles and skills,” project organizer Kate Pritchard said in a press release. “When stringing them together, you get a personal sense of the hands that folded them all, which makes them feel so distinctive individually, yet so powerfully united as a whole.” An opening reception with food, drinks and music will take place at 6:30 p.m. Visit nashuasculpturesymposium.org.

Artists look at animals: “Fur & Feathers/Paws & Claws,” is on view now through Sunday, July 18, at Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen). The animal-themed art exhibit showcases paintings, drawings, prints, photography, jewelry and artist books by nine local artists reflecting on the world of domesticated pets and work and farm animals. “There is definitely quite an eclectic mix of styles and mediums,” gallery director Laura Morrison told the Hippo last month. Gallery hours are Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

Kids shows all summer long: The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents a series of shows at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester) with a Tuesday-through-Thursday run every week in July and August. The first show, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, is on stage now through Thursday, July 8. Peter Pan will run Tuesday, July 13, through Thursday, July 15, followed by Wizard of Oz, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Rapunzel, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. Showtimes are at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org or call 668-5588.

“Setting Sarah,” a painting by Lennie Mullaney, featured in the NHAA Sheafe Warehouse Exhibit and Sale. Courtesy photo.

All kinds of art in Prescott Park: The New Hampshire Art Association’s annual Sheafe Warehouse Exhibit and Sale is going on now through Aug. 29 at Prescott Park (105-123 Marcy St, Portsmouth). It features works in a variety of media by nearly 40 NHAA artists. “There’s a real sense of excitement on the part of our artists, who are anxious to share the new works of art they have been creating over the past year,” Renee Giffroy, NHAA Board President, said in a press release. The Exhibit and Sale is open Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday, from noon to 5 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, from noon to 7 p.m. Visit nhartassociation.org or call 431-4230.

.


Art

Exhibits

• “FRESH PERSPECTIVES” Exhibit features works by New Hampshire artists Peter Milton, ​Varujan Boghosian, Robert Hughes and others. New Hampshire Antique Co-op (323 Elm St., Milford). On view in the Co-op’s Tower Gallery now through Aug. 31. Visit nhantiquecoop.com.

• “FASHION FORWARD: AFRICANA STYLE” Exhibit showcases Black fashion and explores connections between African American and African design aesthetics from past to present. The Seacoast African American Cultural Center (located inside the Portsmouth Historical Society, 10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view now through Sept. 1. Gallery hours are Monday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; visitors must reserve a 45-minute time slot in advance. Walk-in guests will be accommodated as space permits. Tickets cost $10 for the general public and $5 for Historical Society members and are available through eventbrite.com. Visit saacc-nh.org.

• “THE BODY IN ART: FROM THE SPIRITUAL TO THE SENSUAL” Exhibit provides a look at how artists through the ages have used the human body as a means of creative expression. On view now through Sept. 1. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “DON GORVETT: WORKING WATERFRONTS” Exhibit features more than 60 works by the contemporary Seacoast printmaker. The Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). On view now through Sept. 12. Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN IMPRESSIONISM” Exhibit showcases New England painters and masters of impressionism Alice Ruggles Sohier and Frederick A. Bosley. On view now through Sept. 12. Portsmouth Historical Society (10 Middle St., Portsmouth). Gallery hours are daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7.50 for adults and is free for kids under age 18, seniors age 70 and older and active and retired military. Admission is free for all on the first Friday of every month. Visit portsmouthhistory.org.

• “ROBERTO LUGO: TE TRAIGO MI LE LO LAI – I BRING YOU MY JOY” Philadelphia-based potter reimagines traditional forms and techniques with inspiration from urban graffiti and hip-hop culture, paying homage to his Puerto Rican heritage and exploring his cultural identity and its connection to family, place and legacy. The Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St., Manchester). On view now through Sept. 26. On view now. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

• “CRITICAL CARTOGRAPHY” Exhibit features immersive large-scale drawings by Larissa Fassler that reflect the Berlin-based artist’s observations of downtown Manchester while she was an artist-in-residence at the Currier Museum in 2019. On view now through fall. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

GALLERY ART A new collection of art by more than 20 area artists on display now in-person and online. Creative Ventures Gallery (411 Nashua St., Milford). Call 672-2500 or visit creativeventuresfineart.com.

• “TOMIE DEPAOLA AT THE CURRIER” Exhibition celebrates the illustrator’s life and legacy through a collection of his original drawings. On view now. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester. Museum admission tickets cost $15, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, and must be booked online. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org.

ART ON MAIN The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce present a year-round outdoor public art exhibit in Concord’s downtown featuring works by professional sculptors. All sculptures will be for sale. Visit concordnhchamber.com/creativeconcord, call 224-2508 or email tsink@concordnhchamber.com.

• “TENSION: PROCESS IN THE MAKING” The Surface Design Association’s (SDA) New Hampshire Group presents an exhibit featuring fiber art and textiles by New Hampshire artists. July 24 through Sept. 4. Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen). Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

• “SUMMER HAZE” Concord artist and gallery owner Jess Barnet hosts her first group art exhibit. Gallery located in the Patriot Investment building, 4 Park St., Suite 216, Concord. On view Aug. 6 through Sept. 3. Visit jessbarnett.com.

Fairs and markets

CONCORD ARTS MARKET Outdoor artisan and fine art market. Every third Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Now through October. Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Visit concordartsmarket.net.

ARTS ON THE GREEN Arts and crafts fair will feature painters, potters, artisan jewelers, stained glass makers, bead workers, photographers and metal crafters. Presented by The Center for the Arts Lake Sunapee Region. Sunapee Harbor. Sat., July 17, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit centerfortheartsnh.org.

CRAFTSMEN’S FAIR Nine-day craft fair featuring work by hundreds of juried League of NH Craftsmen members. Sat., Aug. 7, through Sun., Aug. 15. Mount Sunapee Resort (1398 Route 103, Newbury). Visit nhcrafts.org.

GREELEY PARK ART SHOW Annual outdoor juried art show hosted by Nashua Area Artists Association features a variety of artwork for sale. Sat., Aug. 21, and Sun., Aug. 22, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 100 Concord St., Nashua. Visit nashuaareaartistsassoc.org.

Tours

NASHUA PUBLIC ART AUDIO TOUR Self-guided audio tours of the sculptures and murals in downtown Nashua, offered via the Distrx app, which uses Bluetooth iBeacon technology to automatically display photos and text and provides audio descriptions at each stop on the tour as tourists approach the works of art. Each tour has 10 to 15 stops. Free and accessible on Android and iOS on demand. Available in English and Spanish. Visit downtownnashua.org/nashua-art-tour.

Workshops and classes

GENERAL ART CLASSES In-person art classes for all levels and two-dimensional media. held with small groups of two to five students. Private classes are also available. Diane Crespo Fine Art Gallery (32 Hanover St., Manchester). Students are asked to wear masks in the gallery. Tuition costs $20 per group class and $28 per private class, with payment due at the beginning of the class. Call 493-1677 or visit dianecrespofineart.com for availability.

DRAWING & PAINTING CLASSES Art House Studios, 66 Hanover St., Suite 202, Manchester. Classes include Drawing Fundamentals, Painting in Acrylic, Drawing: Observation to Abstraction, Exploring Mixed Media, and Figure Drawing. Class sizes are limited to six students. Visit arthousestudios.org.

Theater

Auditions

HEATHERS THE MUSICAL Presented by Cue Zero Theatre Company. Auditions held Tues., July 27. Granite State Arts Academy, 19 Keewaydin Drive, Salem. Performers must be age 18+. Signups for a time slot in advance are required. Visit cztheatre.com.

Shows

SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Wed., July 7, and Thurs., July 8, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

SLEUTH The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. Now through July 17, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 7:30 p.m., plus a matinee on Thursday, July 8, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $37. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

•​ PIPPIN The Seacoast Repertory Theatre PAPA Jr. presents. Virtual and in person at 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. Now through July 18. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth). July 9 through Aug. 15, with shows daily at 7 p.m. More information is TBA. Visit prescottpark.org.

PETER PAN The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., July 13, through Thurs., July 15, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

DANI GIRL The Winnipesaukee Playhouse presents. 33 Footlight Circle, Meredith. July 14 through July 31, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday, at 4 p.m. Tickets cost $29 to $39. Visit winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org.

•​ ‘TIL BETH DO US PART The Majestic Theatre presents. Virtual and in person at Majestic Studio Theatre, 880 Page St., Manchester. July 16 through July 25, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. Visit majestictheatre.net or call 669-7469.

WIZARD OF OZ The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., July 20, through Thurs., July 22, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

•​ CABARET The Seacoast Repertory Theatre presents. 125 Bow St., Portsmouth. July 22 through Sept. 5. Visit seacoastrep.org or call 433-4472.

THE LITTLE MERMAID The 2021 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Series presents. Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester). Tues., July 27, through Thurs., July 29, 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10. Visit palacetheatre.org.

A single voice

Concord Chorale performs together in person for virtual concert

After months of rehearsing from home over Zoom, and then from their cars in what became known as “driveway rehearsals,” the Concord Chorale is singing together under one roof again.

Last month, 50 Chorale members, along with an instrumentalist group of percussionists, pianists and vocal soloists, gathered in an empty church to perform and record a free virtual concert of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana that will premiere on the Chorale’s YouTube channel on Saturday, July 10.

A sneak peek at Concord Chorale’s virtual concert, premiering on July 10. Courtesy photo.

“Finally being able to hear everyone singing in harmony after spending a year apart was wonderful,” said Regina Wall, a second-year member, singing alto.

Carmina Burana’s iconic opening movement, “O Fortuna,” will be “familiar to essentially everybody,” music director Jenny Cooper said.

“It’s incredibly dramatic,” she said. “It’s been used throughout pop culture and in commercials and movies.”

The piece, which Orff composed in the 1930s, is based on a collection of medieval poetry of the same name, particularly on the text’s recurring theme of “Rota Fortunae,” the theoretical “wheel of fortune” that determines every person’s fate. It’s a timely theme for today, Cooper said.

“I find it really moving to hear the voices of people from so long ago who were also [thinking about] the lack of control that we have in our lives … and were experiencing many of the same feelings that we have now,” she said.

Wall agreed.

“It touches on universal themes … like having life kick you in the butt,” she said. “Even though the words were written hundreds of years ago, they’re still applicable to us today.”

Cooper encouraged members to reflect on the piece’s emotional content and use it as a springboard for cathartic discussion about the current state of the world.

“It really allowed us to dig into some of that anger and fear — fear of the unknown, fear of wondering what’s going to happen — that we’ve all been feeling over the past year and a half,” Cooper said.

Though the traditional arrangement for Carmina Burana includes a full orchestra, Cooper decided to simplify the instrumentation for the virtual performance, but there is one element that she wasn’t willing to trim down.

“The percussion in this piece is so central to the feeling of it,” she said. “Everything from the huge bass drums and the gong to the bells and the glockenspiel — percussion has the ability to give it that full range of feelings, from huge to tiny, from terrifying to intimate.”

The Chorale presented its first virtual concert in January (which is still available to watch online). Since they could not perform together in person, the members recorded themselves performing their individual parts of the piece, and those recordings were spliced together to simulate a unified performance. Cooper said she anticipated having to use the same method for the Carmina Burana concert, but CDC guidelines eased up three weeks before the performance date. The new guidelines permitted the Chorale to rehearse and perform together in person, indoors and unmasked, so long as all members present had received the Covid-19 vaccine.

For the five members who have not been vaccinated, Cooper made accommodations to ensure that they could participate in rehearsals and the upcoming performance; they’ve been joining the in-person rehearsals from home over Zoom, and, for Carmina Burana, they’ll be able to record themselves performing at home, just as they did for the January concert, and have their voices mixed into the audio of the in-person recording.

“I highlighted specific movements in the piece [in which] I thought it would be great to have those extra voices added in,” Cooper said.

The Concord Chorale will continue rehearsing in person and hopes to perform for a live, in-person audience for their next concert in September.

“It’s a conversation that will have to keep going as we see how the virus progresses and the efficacy of the vaccine,” Cooper said, “but I think we’re really well-informed and have been making safe choices, so the plan is to move ahead into a regular in-person season.”

Concord Chorale presents Carmina Burana
Where:
Virtually, available to stream on the Chorale’s website and YouTube channel.
When: Saturday, July 10, at 8 p.m., and Sunday, July 11, at 3 p.m. The concert will be available to stream after Sunday on demand for one year.
Cost: Free
More info: Visit concordchorale.org or call 333-5211.

Featured photo: The Concord Chorale. Courtesy photo.

Stay in the loop!

Get FREE weekly briefs on local food, music,

arts, and more across southern New Hampshire!