Newspaper Archive of
Quoddy Tides
Eastport, Maine
January 26, 2018     Quoddy Tides
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January 26, 2018

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26 January, 2018 ouDv Tn s Pnge 25 Benefit show for historical society slated Imagine a wide variety of acts compet- Cook will host. ing for rehearsal time on the stage. Who The show will raise money for renova- will get to use the piano, the bright lights tions at the Quoddy Craft Shop in East- and even the sound system at the busy port, which is one of the ongoing projects Eastport Arts Center (EAC)? That's the of the Border Historical Society (BHS). puzzle to be unraveled at a benefit show, Those who can't attend can send dona- "Rehearsal Gone WrongL" at 6:30 p.m. tions to BHS, P.O. Box 91, Eastport, ME Friday, February 9, at the EAC. Dona- 04631. tions at the door are $10. The craft shop, which is open every The cast is composed of pianist John summer, also houses the demonstration Newell, singer/song writer Melissa Cush- model of the Quoddy Dam - a large-scale ing, Manuela Brice and Steve Koenig per- tidal power project, never completed, in forming songs from the great American Downcast Maine. The shop provides the songbook, composer Greg Biss playing primary source of income for maintenance two original piano rags, Barbara Smith of buildings and other historical items im- singing "It's an Art" from the show Work- portant to Eastport's past. The BHS main- ing and Gene Nichols with the University tains the Barracks Museum and the old of Maine at Machias Ukulele Club. Robb powder house. Drama group readies for regional festival by Susan Esposito October," reports director Caryn Chaha- The Mixed Nuts actors from Sheadnovich. "It is about three sisters who live High School will be performing a dark together and each have different quirks. comedy for this year's Maine High School They are struggling to cope with the death Drama Festival in Millinocket during the of their mother and each carry on their weekend of March 10 and 11. "We have mother's qualities in different ways." been rehearsing Squish since the end of "There is a lot of love and clashing between everyone with a stress on family Paper orchestra dynamics without taking it to extremes," she says. "And the fourth character is their coming soon at EAC pet bug Roger, hence the play's name." The Paper Orchestra program, led by Audrey Bradbury, Laura Lane and Sara Alice St. Clair, director of Eastport Bartlett play the sisters, and the latter also Strings, will be the Eastport Arts Center's designed this year's set, which Chahanov- KinderArts offering for February. The ich describe; as "so big it's exciting and hands-on program is designed to engage terrifying." younger children in the magic of music The Mixed Nuts troupe is still looking making and will introduce stringed instru- for more crew members and some donors ments and include singing, movement and to help fund the trip to Steams Regional crafting with the help of caregivers. High School. "We can always use volun- KinderArts programs are free and in- teers," adds Chahanovich. tended for children up to age five; partici- The Mixed Nuts will perform Squish pants must come with a parent or on Wednesday and Tt~ursday, March7and 8, at 6 p.m. in the Shead band room before caregiver. Funding for KinderArts is pro- vided by the Maine Community Founda- departing foJ the festival. tion and the Crewe Foundation. For more information, Alison Brennan Open Mic Nights at . The to resume at EAC class policy is that if AOS 77 schools are cancelled, the group will follow suit. The Eastport Arts Center is excited to announce that winter Open Mic Nights Tunes at Noon to will resume, with events occurring on the be offered at UMM fourth Saturday of each month from 6 to 8 p.m. The January 27 open mic has been The University of Maine at Machias sponsored by the First National Bank. Student Engagement and Inclusion orga- Spectators aid performers of all ages are nization has launched a monthly concert invited to jon in for the family-friendly series "to take place in Kilbum Commons. event, whichis held downstairs at EAC. Tunes at Noon will feature a different mu- Entertainers of all types are welcome to sical artist each month and will take place take the stage, including musicians, poets from 11:15 to 12:30. Students, staff, fac- and dancers. The maximum time allotted ulty and community members are all wel- to each performer is 15 minutes. The for- come to attend the free program, though mat is acoustc, though an electrified act is lunch is not included, welcome if he group brings their own January's music, on Monday, January gear. EAC rill offer a barebones micro- 29, will be provided by Philadelphia- phone and anplifier. Admission is free, based artist Joy Ike, whose music, voice with donations gratefully accepted, and and writing have drawn comparisons to hot beverages and snacks will be avail- female musicians such as Norah Jones and able. Pleast call 853-4650 or email Fiona Apple. Upcoming artists in the ahead of Tunes at Noon series include Freemont time if you have questions about your act. Street String Band, Timber Creek and the Open Mic Nights will also be offered in Gothard Sisters. February and March. EASTPORT ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS worked with Figures of Speech The- atre visiting artists Inn Bannon, Dave Noyes and Devon Kelley-Yurdin to create shadow puppetry of their own on January 22. EES students create shadow puppet plays by Lora Whelan During a five-day intensive starting on January 22, Eastport Elementary School (EES) students worked with Portland- based Figures of Speech Theatre to create three shadow puppet plays based on local stories. The culmination of all that work is a presentation to the entire Eastport school system at 1 p.m. on Friday, January 26, at the Eastport Arts Center (EAC). While there won't be room at the second-floor performance space for community mem- bers, they are welcome to come and view the live-streaming performance on a screen that can be viewed from the com- fort of the first floor space, comfy couches included. Just about every elementary school stu- dent participated, with the seventh and eighth graders as the primary movers and shakers in the production of the plays. Fig- ures of Speech Director of Education Ian Bannon explains that he received 80 oral history stories that had been collected by former Island Institute Fellow Naphtali Fields while she worked at the EAC, win- nowed them down to 10 and handed them off to Kayla Barber, the EES teacher work- ing with the seventh and eighth graders. Barber in turn winnowed the 10 down to three. On the first day of work, the 15 seventh and eight graders arrived at the arts center at 11:30 a.m. and stayed until 1:30 p.m. It was the first of five such mid-day work sessions, and while it started out in the way that can be expected - students shy about raising their hands and expressing themselves - by the time the first morning ended the volume had turned up consider- ably with students engaged with the shad- ow screen, lighting and filtering devices. Initially the students sat around Bannon and learned about the nature of shadow puppetry. They watched a shadow puppet play put together by school children from island'schools along the state's coast and . talked about character, story-line, memo- rable moments, close-ups and zoom-outs, V V V V V ~ V V V VV V V V V pace and more. In whirlwind fashion the students then. ~fALENTINE ~,~~~, ' ~----~~ formed three groups, were assigned one of the three' stories, read them and then fo- H C LATE EST il/ cased on a few key questions to help them V To benefit Down East Hospice Volunteers ,O 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. V' 4 Corners Shop n Save in Columbia va Fill a gift box with II aeliciou, chocolate treats for SS. ' dg 4ff oaut, ,a oba ot VVVVVVVVVVVVVVV would use in their plays. Each day had its own set of accom- plishments, including creating the shadow puppets with visual artist Devon Kelley- Yurdin, who worked at the EAC for two years a few years back, and arranging mu- sical accompaniment with Dave Noyes, who, among many accomplishments, is a member of Rustic Overtones. Another day was devoted to bringing it all together to shape the plays into performance-worthy material, with the last day before the grand unveiling a time to refine and smooth out any last minute kinks. JAMIE SMALL of Eastport Elementary School works to create a shadow puppet. Bannon says that adapting a story to the stage builds a variety of skills in the stu- dents, not the least of which is their in- creased aptitude as storytellers and the ability to flow from one storytelling mode to another. While the skills learned from exposure to new art forms and techniques are concrete and easy to see, more subtle are the skills learned in assessing different perspectives and deciding how they should be portrayed. Barber spoke with Bannon before the week started to pin- point some learning specifics for her stu- dents. Barber explains, "We are going to try to incorporate a lesson over authors' purpose. They will also be learning about an overall theme with the stories." She shared her enthusiasm for the week-long experience. "I am excited for them to be able to work with Figures of Speech The- atre. I think they will be able to let their artistic abilities shine." ROBIN FARRIN HAS SPECIALIZED IN LIFE'S CELEBRATIONS SINCE tl992 207 853-9211 coastalmephotography@g www,