Up.St.Art Spring 2016

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P O P - U P WA R D by JIMI HAHA 2 | Spring 2016

photography by MARK PERIA

“Bowie “ Mark Peria, marker on vellum

I Jonathan Stone performing “Sea Song” Charles Lawrance acrylic on canvas “Protector” Mark Peria Smoke on wood

t’s New Year’s Eve 2015. I am sitting inside 45 West Street, applying little bits of paper—die-cut from art auction catalogs into the shape of guitar picks—to a canvas. Bob Marley is coming into shape. I am looking back on a great year, thinking about the aweinspiring things created in the Annapolis Arts and Entertainment District, and reveling in it all. Toward the end of the year, a group of artists approached Brian and Sarah Cahalan, the owners of 49 West Coffeehouse, Winebar & Gallery, about their vacant space two doors down. They graciously let us create a pop-up art gallery that has become my favorite place to hang out and create. If you wandered around the first block of West Street, you might have had the pleasure of seeing artists at work and their wares on display: Charles Lawrance working on a shark painting

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Black Rhinoceros performing

A busy night in the gallery

The scene at 45 West Street is a snapshot in time, a place to commune and create. It inspires, teases, and intrigues the many people who pass by or linger. It also proves to be a great use of vacant space. It will undoubtedly be filled, once again... Street view

Charles Lawrance at work on “Chunks on the Edge� Oil on canvas

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Works by Mark Peria

Gingerwolf w/ Jason Zeckowski

O P P O S I T E PA G E “Elvis Guitar Picksilation” Jimi Haha Paper on canvas

“Mona Texter” Jah-Haha Collaborative Art Oil on Panel

“Marley Guitar Picksilation” Jimi Haha Paper on canvas

“Arresting Gaze” Mark Peria Mixed media on wood

meaning behind his hand’s purpose, while Michelle Lillie’s glassworks illuminated the imagination of passersby. You might have had the pleasure of sipping on a glass of wine from Great Frogs, our local winery. Or caught Jonathan Stone, Black Rhinoceros, Gingerwolf, Dominic Fragman, Humble Trimble, Jason Zeckowski, or Johnny Kling performing sets of their original music. Perhaps you were immersed in a performance by one-man theatre Omar Said, or overheard a conversation between Joe Gormley and Gavin Buckley about plans to promote the arts in Annapolis. The scene at 45 West Street is a snapshot in time, a place to commune and create. It inspires, teases, and intrigues the many people who pass by or linger. It also proves to be a great use of vacant space. ArtFarm will be moving in later in March to the keep with flavor of our rich Arts and Entertainment District. However, my hope is that, in the future, we will see more landlords granting use of temporarily dormant spaces for similar wondrous endeavors. Sipping some more wine, I daub my brush on a bit of paper with a portion of Andy Warhol’s “Marilyn” to help color Bob’s bottom lip. I watch people pass by on the street. I fall deeper in love with this town and its people. And I look forward to seeing what 2016 holds for all of us. I raise my cup to all of you. Thank you for making our town better and our experiences richer. Artward and Upward. █


or explaining the fish prints that he created from his many angling excursions, Mark Peria washing color onto one of his fanciful faces on vellum, Alison Harbaugh editing or adapting her one-off photograph transfers framed with found objects. Derek Arnold’s metal sculptures, which peppered the space with industrial beasts, might have jutted into your view, or Erin Schweers’ large abstract pieces might have pulled you in off the street to discover their stark and colorful movements. Stewart Weiss’ wooden moons dangling in the window hinted at the lunar god that rules his heart. Eric Roberge’s meticulous paintings on crab and oyster shells paid homage to the grand body of water our picturesque town embraces. A piece by Jah-Haha Collaborative Art ( Jeff Huntington and me), “I Wee Wee with Ai Wei Wei,” stared at oglers from the back hallway. Christopher Pagent’s wooden sculptures and collages beckoned viewers to create their own

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get to


4 1 0 . 5 4 4 . 5 4 4 8 | t h e p o i n tc r a b h o u s e . c o m | 7 0 0 M i l l C r e e k R oa d A r n o l d , M a r y l a n d 2 1 0 1 2

CONTENTS 8 | Spring 2016

Volume 3


Issue 1



A Pop Upwards By Jimi Haha



The Prints of Tides By Julia Gibb



St. John's Passion By Leah Weiss




Fearless Storytelling By Melanie McCarty





Paul Reed Smith's Mathematical Gene By Leah Weiss




All in Good Spirits By ZoĂŤ Nardo



Out of the Mundane, Art of Incandescent Quality By Desiree Smith-Daughety



Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre By Patty Speakman Hamsher



A composite of three images ,untitled, by Alison Harbaugh.

Portrait of the Artist as a Very Young Lady By Leigh Glenn



An Interview with Minnie Warburton


Eminent Settlers of Annapolis Neck

By Samantha Warburton

AGO By Sydney Petty



Lighting Up the Arts & Entertainment District By Tom Levine

Editor’s Inkwell

Publisher’s Note

When I grow up I want to be . . .


hen I was a little girl, I thought I would grow up to be a veterinarian. I even volunteered at a local veterinary hospital. I soon learned that animals were destined to be a big part of my life, but not beneath the scalpel. I entered college as a psychology student with a minor in English. Several years in I learned that, while I loved studying personalities and social bonds, working in a clinical climate wasn’t for me. My passion for words and hunger for learning needed to marry in a different environment. Even now, as a magazine editor, I continue developing other interests. In fact, much of my non-editing time is spent teaching yoga, practicing Reiki, and volunteering, because now, when I grow up, I want to be vital! In the vein of this famous third grade essay topic, we’d like to know what you want to be when you “grow up.” Whether you’re living the dream, planning to expand on your current endeavors, contemplating a career change, or still trying to figure out what to do with your life, write an essay discussing what you want to be when you grow up, however you define “be” or “grow up.” May your writings take on the tone or voice that commands your pen! Submit your essay entries by April 15, 2016. Include your first and last name, email address, and phone number. Essays should be 500 words or less. One essay will be chosen for publication in a future issue of Up.St.ART.

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“Elevate Your Craft”



Central Marine Construction | 410-798-1693 | Charlie@centralmc.com



Publisher & Creative Director Jimi Davies jimihaha@gmail.com Editorial Director Andrea Stuart upstarteditor@gmail.com Copy Editor Leah Weiss Associate Editors Leigh Glenn Katherine Matuszak Jackie Narup Contributing Editors Desiree Smith-Daughtey Leigh Glenn Julia Gibb Tom Levine Melanie McCarty Patty Speakman Hamsher Zoë Nardo Sydney Petty Samantha Warburton Leah Weiss

Art Director Cory Deere cdeere@gmail.com Contributing Photographers Karen Davies Alison Harbaugh Dan Hill Marie Machin Mark Peria Melody Volkman Allison Zaucha Advertising Jimi Davies jimihaha@gmail.com Kim O'Brien up.st.artkim@gmail.com

facebook.com/UpstartAnnapolis twitter.com/upstartnaptown instagram.com/UpstartAnnapolis

Mailing Address: Up.St.Art Annapolis P.O. Box 4162 Annapolis, MD 21403 410.212.4242 SUBMISSIONS: For article submissions, email proposal to upstarteditor@gmail.com. Up.St.Art Annapolis Magazine is published quarterly. Address: P.O. Box 4162, Annapolis, MD 21403. Subscription rate: $40, payable in advance. Single copies $4.99. Back issues, if available, $15 (includes shipping and handling). POSTMASTER send address changes to Up.St.Art Annapolis, P.O. Box 4162, Annapolis, MD 21403. Entire contents © 2016 by Up.St.Art Annapolis Magazine™ unless otherwise noted on specific articles. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part is strictly prohibited without Publisher permission.

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W R I T E R S Leah Weiss

Sydney Petty

Tom Levine

Melanie McCarty

Julia Gibb

ZoĂŤ Nardo

Leigh Glenn

Samantha Warburton

Desiree Smith-Daughety

Patty Speakman Hamsher upstart-annapolis.com | 13




photography by MARIE MACHIN

eil Harpe’s home in downtown Annapolis serves as a fitting metaphor for the multifaceted artist. From the outside it is charming and unassuming, its front porch painted with touches of soft tropical color, subtly hinting at the creativity contained inside. Harpe resides there with his wife, Alexandra Fotos, and their two small dogs, Dino and Yianni. The couple’s home serves as a living space, gallery, printmaking and painting studio, and, until recently, a workspace for Harpe’s business repairing and restoring vintage Stella guitars. Enter, and an ever-evolving display of paintings rendered in watercolor and acrylic paints, along

with prints created with several printmaking methods, greets you. In the next room, you’ll find more art, books, and a printing press. Around the corner: an office with flat files full of artwork. For decades, Harpe has participated in solo and group exhibits, locally and internationally. Still, what the artist’s home reveals is only a glimpse of the massive body of work and vast experience behind this native Annapolitan’s long career in the arts. With characteristic humility, Harpe explains that he enjoyed drawing as a youngster but didn’t think of himself as a visual artist. “I could draw, but what’s so unusual about that?” he says. Instead, he focused on music, “Nocturne” – Acrylic on canvas (14” x 8”)

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starting guitar lessons when he was in fifth grade. In his teen years, he jammed with the town beatniks and St. John’s College students. These older friends frequently traveled to the southern United States to collect hard-to-come-by blues records. Among them was folk musicologist Tom Hoskins, who returned from one such trip with blues legend Mississippi John Hurt. Having access to such authentic resources instilled in Harpe a lifelong love of blues music, and he has been performing blues on guitar and vocals ever since. He cut several CDs, both solo and collaborative, created a series of portraits of famous blues artists, and provided illustrations for Ted Gioia’s Delta Blues, a nonfiction book about America’s blues masters. In 2005, Harpe authored The Stella Guitar Book, an informative volume about the instrument so integral to the history of early American blues. It wasn’t until Harpe found his circuitous way to the Corcoran School of Art in 1965 that he became serious about being a visual artist. He had spent a year at American University, but couldn’t resist the lure of downtown galleries such as the National Gallery of Art and the Corcoran Gallery of Art. Upon transferring to the Corcoran, he found himself in the middle of what is

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likely the most important visual art movement ever to spring from the District of Columbia: the Washington Color School. In reaction to New York City’s energetically gestural abstract expressionist movement, the artists of the Washington Color School created orderly abstract compositions through the use of color theory—hard-edged geometric shapes, stripes, or circles, often rendered in bright acrylic paint colors. The Corcoran was a hotbed of key figures in the movement, and being a student at that time “was a little intimidating, because there was so much going on, and you’re just this little thing down here,” he says. But Harpe thrived in the highly stimulating environment. As a student, he enjoyed full access to the Corcoran Gallery, two Corcoran Biennial Exhibitions, and his instructors, including artists Alexander Russo, Thomas Downing, and Ed McGowin. After earning a four-year diploma at the Corcoran and his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore, Harpe went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts degree at George Washington University (GW ). There, he

continued sharpening his etching skills, but his appetite to learn lithography had been whetted during his time at MICA. Because GW did not offer lithography classes, Harpe attended University of Maryland as a visiting graduate student, where he studied with master lithographer Tadeusz Lapinski. After graduating, Harpe taught college art classes for seven years, first at the Corcoran, then at Northern Virginia Community College and University of Maryland University College. Among the many mediums Harpe has mastered is Mylar® lithography, which he studied in depth at Atelier North Star in Burlington, Vermont, with artist Mel Hunter, author of The New Lithography. In traditional lithography, the artist draws directly on stone, which is then chemically treated, inked, and used to make prints on paper. Mylar® offers the advantage of transparency: the artist draws on the film, able to achieve accurate registration of many layers of colors. The transparencies are used to create aluminum plates, from which prints can be created. This technique gave Harpe the freedom to create colorful representations of people, musical instruments, and workboats of the Chesapeake Bay.

“1939 Ford” – Mixed media on paper (30” x 22”)

“Twisted Davis” acrylic on canvas 32” x 40”

Neil at Home.

As a representational painter, Harpe is mostly self-taught, as the bulk of his instruction at the Corcoran was in abstract painting. He has developed his own vocabulary with acrylics. Once he becomes interested in a subject, he will stick with it for a long time—he painted compositions that included a bit of beach, ocean waves, and sky for an entire year. Recently, though, he has returned to his Corcoran training, painting abstract compositions in the Washington Color School style. He cuts Gator board (rigid foam board with wood fiber veneer) into geometric shapes, wet mounts canvas onto them with archival glue, and paints vibrant stripes in carefully deliberated patterns and colors using masking techniques. Some of this work

exhibited in January at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, where he now teaches etching. He feels both challenged and liberated by the practice of painting without having to choose subject matter and other intricacies of working representationally. “You feel like you’ve been set free from all [those] things,” he reflects, “and you can just do art.” █


In the 1980s, Harpe discovered local painter Dick Harryman’s downtown Annapolis studio and Chesapeake Bay-themed artwork. Harpe recognized the commercial potential of the subject matter and made sizeable series of Mylar® lithographs depicting watermen and boats in action. Researching these subjects firsthand, Harpe took early morning trips to the Eastern Shore. “I had to get up in the morning at two, and after a couple cups of coffee, grab my cameras and away I’d go,” he recalls. Harpe eventually got used to the routine, and still mines the several hundred photographs he took for source material. “These photographs ought to be shown,” he says. “One picture I took out on the Choptank River [shows] in one frame about twenty skipjacks. There aren’t even that many skipjacks afloat today.”

“Blue Skinner” – Mixed media on paper (30” x 22”)

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We the People

THE ANNAPOLIS COLLECTION GALLERY on gallery row in historic annapolis

www.AnnapolisCollection.com 18 | Spring 2016

55 west street 21401 410 - 2 8 0 - 1414

watercolor by Greg Harlin

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“One—Hello. Two—Goodbye. Three—We’re gonna miss you.”

With those words and a smile, Eric Stoltzfus introduced three songs to a packed house in the McDowell Building’s Great Hall at St. John’s College last December. A group of students, faculty, and staff had sung two madrigals—“Bonjour Mon Coeur” (Hello, My Heart) by Orlando di Lasso and “Adieu Délice de Mon Coeur” (Goodbye, Delight of My Heart) by Jacob Clemens non Papa—and was to launch into the American folk song “Shenandoah.” During the student-run concert, called Collegium, nearly 40 pieces were performed by 28 groups or individuals. The line between audience and performers blurred as people got up to sing and then sat back down to listen. In the balcony, an overflow of students, standing three deep around the railing, leaned in to listen intently and then clapped and cheered in enthusiastic support. Stoltzfus’ playful opening captured not only the songs’ essences, but also the spirit of how music is learned and celebrated at St. John's. The small liberal arts school, founded in 1696, sits on 36 acres across from the U.S. Naval Academy near downtown Annapolis. St. John’s is well known for its academic program in which all students take the same series of classes, studying the Great Books of Western Civilization and learning through conversation. Lesser known is the school’s rich musical legacy. Where else can 450 students burst into lush four-part harmony at the drop of a note? What other school can boast such alumni as Francis Scott Key, who penned the lyrics to the “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Ahmet Ertegun, founder of the legendary Atlantic Records, and Jac Holzman, who started two major recording labels and launched the careers of luminaries such as Judy Collins, The Doors, Queen, and The Stooges?

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photography by ALISON HARBAUGH

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Sophomore year music tutorial is much like a laboratory. “But in place of experiments, we sing,” says Kalkavage. The class spends time examining how altering a single note, chord, or rhythm can change the mood of a piece. “I’ll have students trying to waltz to a march, or march to a waltz . . . to hear how that just doesn’t work.” They spend a month discussing melody. Using a string mounted on a board and a meter stick, they apply mathematics to discover how to divide the string to get different musical intervals. “Students are allowed to re-experience the Pythagorean experiment of discovering that the octave will always result from an exact bisection of the string,” Kalkavage beams. “Zuckerkandl thought of music tutorial as a way of learning to read or listen carefully to music in such a way that it would be equivalent to reading a book,” says Zuckerman. After delving into harmony, chords, and cadence, the pinnacle of sophomore year is a study of Bach’s "St. Matthew Passion." Students investigate such intricacies as the multiple dance rhythms that Bach used and how the music mirrors the words or adds meaning to them. “It’s a very complicated work and the analysis is hard. The students invariably love it,” says Kalkavage. Music seminars continue during junior and senior years with the study of Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” and Richard Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde.” “It’s often the case that students without any music training are the most open to the way we study it and have the best questions,” says Kalkavage. “Why is music the way it is? Why do those intervals have this quality and others don’t? What do we make of how dissonance is used in music? What is rhythm? What is musical time? How is that different from time measured by seconds on a clock? What is music’s effect on us? Is it something we should


“For the most part, students come here thinking the same way that everybody does, that music is a special gift or aptitude for the few, and that many can listen from the distance,” says Stoltzfus, St. John’s Music Librarian and a parttime tutor. “So for students to have the idea that music is a part of them, that’s something that needs to be nurtured.” The music program, which is central to the college’s curriculum, was developed by Austrian music theorist Victor Zuckerkandl. He posited that by understanding music more deeply, we would understand ourselves better. “It’s not music appreciation. And it’s not music theory of the sort you’d have in a conservatory, although there are some similarities,” says Tutor Emeritus Elliot Zuckerman. “The first year, everybody sings,” says Tutor Peter Kalkavage. In freshman chorus, which is mandatory, students sing and experience pieces that will be helpful for a theoretical study during their sophomore year. The group learns Gregorian chants, hymns by Johann Sebastian Bach, a motet by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and sixteenth-century Renaissance polyphonic works (having multiple lines of independent melody). By year’s end, the students have a basic knowledge of music, shared repertoire, and the powerful experience of singing in a large ensemble. Twice a year, the freshman chorus performs in the Great Hall. These and other performances on campus are well attended. A sing-along always follows, typically with Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina’s “Sicut Cervus,” Ludvig van Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy,” and Mozart’s “Ave Verum Corpus”—not your standard college fare. “We relish it as if it were the most popular, recent music imaginable,” chuckles Kalkavage.

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rejoice in always? Should we be a little suspicious of it because of its enormous power? Does it shape us?” Many college- and student-sponsored music groups, some of which are open to the college community, meet on a weekly basis. For years, students have gathered on Wednesday afternoons for five minutes in a resonant stairwell to sing “Sicut Cervus,” and it is not unusual to hear it sung spontaneously on campus. The St. John’s education helps students to be inquisitive and take risks. “They are not afraid that they do not know,” says Kalkavage. “This turns out to be not only a beautiful and deepening experience, but also a useful one. Students go on to do all sorts of things.” Indeed they do.

Jac Holzman, who grew up on New York’s Upper East Side, did not intend to go to St. John’s. His sights were on

Reed College in Oregon, but his father insisted his wayward son stay closer to home. In 1948, Holzman landed on campus the day he turned 17, with no idea of the college’s curriculum. “I hadn’t read the catalog,” he says. “I was thrown off at the deep end. The idea of reading a book for each seminar just threw me. It took me a long time to be able to catch up on the reading assignments, but I did.” He arrived at St. John’s with a keen interest in the technology of radio and recording. His grandmother was a correspondent for CBS news, and he had often sat with her in the studio when she was on the air and got to see the state-ofthe-art disc recording equipment of the time. The music on campus piqued Holzman’s interest: “Windows open, everybody playing what they wanted,” he says. “As a result, I formed a great attraction to Baroque music, which you could hear coming out of the

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Jac Holzman, 1973. Holzman Family Archive

“ They are not afraid that they do not know,” says Kalkavage. This turns out to be not only a beautiful and deepening experience, but also a useful one. Students go on to do all sorts of things.

dorms, and which later lead to the creation of Nonesuch Records 16 years later, in 1964.” “Listening to what my friends played got me interested in folk music,” says Holzman. Bob Sachs, who lived down the hall, had a good collection of folk music records that he invited Holzman to sample. In the late 1940s, it included a broad group of singers and artists such as Josh White, Pete Seeger, Woody Guthrie, and Huddie William Ledbetter (Lead Belly). “I began to get that feeling for a music I had never heard in my somewhat posh Madison Avenue life,” he chuckles. That year, Holzman stumbled across an article in a Life magazine lying on a table. It pictured Peter Goldmark, Chief Scientist of CBS and Columbia Records, standing next to a seven-foot tall stack of standard 78 rpm shellac albums. Goldmark was holding the equivalent music, contained on long-playing

was that the old pressing plants were not obsoleted.” They could press an LP in onefifth the time it took for shellac records. With the radio’s FM band opening up, he saw another opportunity. When Woody Guthrie performed on campus in 1950, Holzman wanted to record him but felt out of his league. He approached Georgiana Bannister and John Gruen after their recital of lieder (German songs), and they agreed to be recorded. After Holzman opted to send the tapes out


records (LPs), comfortably under his right arm. “And that’s when it clicked. I knew I wanted to make records.” It was a time of great technological change that opened up the field of recording. Recording companies had pressed in plants nearby because the shellac 78s were breakable and had to be immediately replaced. The new vinyl LP was sturdier: “You had to attack it with a claw hammer to break it,” says Holzman. “And the beautiful thing of the technology

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Photo courtesy of Holzman Family Archive

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in 1966. Holzman recalls a moment that year when, as a member of the St. John’s Board of Visitors & Governors, he was driving to Annapolis: “I was passing through Baltimore, and I had the radio tuned to the local pop music station, and for the first time I heard a record of mine on pop radio.” It was Love’s “My Little Red Book.” “I pulled over to the side of the road and just cried. I did not know that was ever going to happen.” Elektra became a standout label, producing an impressive catalog: The Doors, The Stooges, Bread, The Incredible String Band, Queen, Carly Simon . . . the list goes on. After leaving Elektra in 1973, Holzman’s career continued to flourish with Warner Communications (he was instrumental in getting the company into the emerging cable business), Panavision, and others. He was awarded the NARAS Trustee Grammy for Lifetime Achievement and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, receiving the Ahmet Ertegun Award for Lifetime Achievement. “St. John’s is all over everything I do to this day. And I take the ethics aspects of the program much to heart.” His gratitude is evident in his close relationship with the college and his gift of the Fine Arts Building on its Santa Fe campus. “St. John’s informed what I did in many ways that I did not realize at the time. I learned to ask a lot of questions; I was not satisfied with a weak-kneed answer. I set standards for myself. I wanted to run the company very ethically, and that’s tough to do in the music business. But we succeeded at Elektra, we did very well by running it honestly.” Holzman evokes Kalkavage’s theme about the timelessness of music. “My concern is less on people buying music and more directed to people being able to hear the music, to bring its vitality and language into their lives.” █


for mastering and was dissatisfied with the results, he took charge of the task. He subsequently produced ninety percent of his first two hundred records. New Songs by John Gruen, released during Holzman’s junior year in March 1951, heralded the birth of Elektra Records. “I sold nothing, but I had learned a lot,” he says. He named the company after the Greek mythological figure Electra. “I turned two Ms on their sides to make the distinctive early Elektra 'E' A tobacco shop on Maryland Avenue provided the mailing address. How Holzman passed his enabling exams at the end of the year eluded him, as much of his time was spent in an electronics lab on campus, exploring all manner of gear. Dean Jacob Klein informed him that the school didn’t think he was ready for senior year and suggested he take a year off. Holzman moved to New York, set up a small record shop, and started recording folk singers in their homes. Elektra’s second release, of Appalachian singer Jean Ritchie, sold roughly a thousand copies, providing funds to make the next record. He worked in this handto-mouth manner for years, keeping his ears open, recording what he wanted, and carving out a niche for himself in folk and world music. Theodore Bikel became a label mainstay, and when three of his records became hits, Holzman paid off all debts. “I was interested in the odd and the kind of material that people would not normally record,” says Holzman. He created a Morse code course for ham radio operators and a massive sound effects library that sold over nine hundred thousand 12-inch LPs. Elektra became more successful when it diversified into electric music, starting with The Paul Butterfield Band and Love’s eponymous debut album, released

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49westcoffeehouse.com 49 West St. Annapolis, MD 21401 | 410-626-9796 28 | Spring 2016

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tand up on tables! Lay on your belly! Do whatever you’ve got to do to get your angle!” says Alison

Harbaugh. It’s a warm January morning, and a small group has gathered for Harbaugh’s Beginner’s Camera Workshop. The class is held at ArtFarm, the classroom and gallery space in the Annapolis Arts and Entertainment District that Harbaugh runs with friend and fellow artist Stacey Turner. During the class, Harbaugh shares images from her impressive portfolio. Although she uses the photos to demonstrate concepts such as aperture and shutter speed, students keep interrupting to ask, “Where is that?” or to utter a simple “Wow.”

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You can’t blame them. Harbaugh’s images are striking: birds taking flight in a public square; a waterman at dusk, his silhouette so crisp that you can make out the contours of his beard. She often uses light to convey mood or express something fundamental about her subjects, whether a portrait of the popular Annapolis band Pressing Strings taken at sunset, their long shadows reaching towards the viewer, or a photograph of a train station in Paris, the travelers transformed into anonymous, moving shadows by the station’s dim lighting. Although her subject matter varies, one constant is her unflinching eye. She approaches the people and places in her photographs with genuine interest and documents them with care.

A composite of three images taken by Alison Harbaugh. -Beach scene outside of Havana, Cuba -Street scene in New Delhi India -detail of a cart of oranges in Havana, Cuba

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SNAP continued... “I like to tell stories,” she tells me. “I’m fascinated, learning about people. I like to understand what makes them tick.” Raised in New Oxford, Pennsylvania (about ten miles outside of Gettysburg), Harbaugh became interested in photography at an early age but wasn’t sure how to pursue it. At Philadelphia University she majored in graphic design, which seemed like a good bet for future job prospects, yet she couldn’t shake her attraction to photography. During senior year, she begged her teachers to allow her to pursue a photojournalism project—a hard sell for a design major. The result was the impressive book-length work The Fox and the Gentleman, composed of interviews and photographs of two Philadelphia boxers-in-training. She photographed them fighting at the legendary Blue Horizon boxing venue. “It was my first photojournalism experience,” Harbaugh says. “I had no clue what I was doing with the camera . . . I didn’t even really know what photojournalism was.” Months later, the book served as a portfolio and helped launch her professional career. Phil Hoffmann, Director of Photography for the Naval Academy Athletic Association, offered Harbaugh her first photography job. “I recognized right away [that she was] very passionate about photography,” he says. “She had boundless energy and was totally willing to learn. She just absorbed everything.” A pattern emerges when you delve into Harbaugh’s background. Passion, hard work, and big ideas rule the day. She 32 | Spring 2016

doesn’t wait for permission to take on a project or experiment with a new medium; she does it, learning as she goes, and then leverages the experience to achieve her next big idea. That is how the film Swampcandy: Midnight Creep came

possible in still photography. “It’s neat to see your subjects come to life,“ she says. “Instead of me writing the captions to tell the story, they’re telling the story themselves.” Today, video production makes up a large portion of the work undertaken by Harbuagh’s multimedia

The Fearless Girls campers surround Alison after an afternoon photojournalism session/lesson at the Chesapeake Children's Museum during the summer camp. Photo by Joshua McKerrow

about. Harbaugh and collaborators Joe Karr and Rebecca Saunders documented the Annapolis-based band Swampcandy as it recorded its third album (Harbaugh is married to the band’s singer and songwriter, Ruben Dobbs). Though none had made a film before, Harbaugh and her collaborators dove in. The documentary received favorable reviews and was screened at several film festivals, including the 2014 Annapolis Film Festival. Harbaugh credits Midnight Creep with helping her to realize the possibilities for storytelling available in film that aren’t

production company, Sugar Farm Productions. In addition to her creative endeavors, Harbaugh also teaches. The aptly named Fearless Girls Photography is a monthly workshop for girls aged 12 to 17 that is run by Harbaugh and fellow photographer Lisa Shires. In the era of the selfie, Fearless Girls empowers young women to own their image, encouraging them to consider how they want to be seen and what they want to convey, rather than blindly copying poses and behaviors that they see online.

The workshops–which Harbaugh and Shires call “meetups”–often include hands-on training in the technical aspects of photography. For instance, at one meetup, the girls went outside and learned to shoot in the dark using slow shutter speeds. At another, they worked together to shoot an ad for Annapolisbased jewelry and accessories boutique, Sparrow. Other times, Harbaugh arranges for successful female photographers to speak to the group, such as Karine Aigner, a world-traveling wildlife photographer, or Lori Gross, a photographer who has led expeditions into Antarctica. Harbaugh chooses women who are passionate about their craft, respected in their field, and, often, who have achieved success by taking a non-traditional path. In addition, Harbaugh shares some of the lessons she’s learned along the way, such as the necessity of learning the business side of the arts and the role of constructive criticism in growing as an artist. Her work has garnered her an enthusiastic group of young women who consider her a mentor. When asked about the future, Harbaugh pauses. She speaks warmly of her fearless girls. She mentions plans for Sugar Farm Productions, and relocating ArtFarm to 45 West Street, a part of Annapolis’ Gallery Row, in early spring. However, no matter the task, it’s clear that Harbaugh’s greatest passion is telling stories. “I like to share people’s lives,” she says. “I don’t know what else I would do.” █

A composite of three images taken by Alison Harbaugh. -Woods landscape -A Paris Metro station (underground) -A paris doorway and railing

Akhil Bharatiya Mahila is a 66 year old Ashram in Dehradun, Uttar Pradesh, India with four points of focus : a medical dispensary, and elderly women's home, a school for up to 5th grade and an education foundation for 50 girls who live on the ashram site. They provide a hostel for 50 girls from poor areas all over India as well as food, clothing and education until they complete 12th grade.

Two woman prepare their leaf bowl offerings alongside the Ganges River in Rishikesh, India, while another douses herself with the healing waters of the sacred river.

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Sally Wern Comport, artist and owner of Art at Large inc. in the Arts District and curator/co-founder for a non-profit public art organization, ArtWalk. Comport is Visit Annapolis.org’s featured artist for this Up.St.Art issue. artatlargeinc.com | annapolisartwalk.org


Download the App! 34 | Spring 2016

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Paul Reed Smith’s M AT H E M AT I C A L G E N E by LEAH WEISS



lassical scholars may only describe the connection between geometry and music through the quadrivium— four of the seven arts associated with a liberal-arts education—but Paul Reed Smith lives within that nexus. Smith is a respected master luthier and the founder and owner of PRS Guitars. His state-of-the-art factory produces finely crafted, high-end instruments that are played and endorsed by such prominent musicians as Carlos Santana and Howard Leese. Last year, news broke that Smith had created something different—a technological advancement in image resolution that could be groundbreaking in medicine and other fields. Smith is a born craftsman. He enrolled in multiple shop classes while attending Bowie High School so he could get his hands on the machines. “It was the only way I could learn how to use a lathe, or a milling machine,

Less radiation is needed to generate X-rays because the images can be enhanced with Smith's technology.

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A transition occurred when he set up his workshop in a garret at 33 West Street in Annapolis, he no longer saw himself only as a guitar maker and repairman...

Master luthier and inventor Paul Reed Smith

or a band saw,” he says, “It was all very important stuff.” He was curious and interested, and his first experiences creating objects from wood felt very natural to him. “It did not feel like something that was difficult,” he recalls. “It was like going on the beginning of a journey. It was joyful.” Smith wanted to play music but didn’t have the money to buy a guitar, so he applied his woodworking skills.

“I didn’t see it as art at the time. But everybody else was making cutting boards, and I was making bass guitars in shop.” He did the same with gear, measuring a speaker cabinet, buying 15-inch speakers at Radio Shack, and building his own version of an Electro-Voice Eliminator speaker. A transition occurred when he set up his workshop in a garret at 33 West Street in Annapolis, he no longer saw himself only as a guitar maker and repairman, and began to feel the artistry of his work. His design process is both intuitive and cerebral. “My parents were both mathematicians, and I didn’t understand that I carried the gene,” he explains. Smith hated arithmetic and algebra with a passion. But applied three-dimensional mathematics, such as geometry and trigonometry, came naturally. “I could rotate a [guitar] neck in my head easily to see all the different parts. I could see the speaker cabinet from all angles in my head. It was easy. Once I measured it, I could make it. It’s very much graphic math.”

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"You could turn the X-rays down by fourf ifths and still be able to get a good image."

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The mathematics of sound waves led Smith to his latest discovery. While trying to create a guitar synthesizer, he spoke with his father, who had studied with the theoretical physicist George Gamow at George Washington University. He asked how to possibly accelerate the time it took to know the frequency of a tone, and his father responded, “Just measure the high harmonics; you’ll know before the first [oscillation] goes by.” That sounded implausible to Smith but reasonable to his father. A physics lesson ensued. His father explained that graphic displays of sound signals over frequency and time are typically displayed as a waterfall pattern on a surface. He posited that the surface is not real, and hence sound measurements could be derived without it. The next day, they were in the patent office. “We had so many ideas about the way we could change things. It took us ten years of talking about it to figure out what we’d even run across.” Smith’s "aha" moment came one night, seven years ago, during a hurricane. “I was all by myself in the house, no kids, no wife, no power, and the trees were going nuts in the backyard. And I’m lying there with nothing to do. And I realized that everything my father taught me applied to images.” Then he went to work.

The result: a set of algorithms that can be applied to developed images to enhance them, so that X-rays, CAT scans, and PET scans look clearer. “You could turn the X-rays down by four-fifths and still be able to get a good image, even though there would be way less radiation hitting the plate,” he says. Using gaming computers, which according to Smith work twenty thousand times faster than a supercomputer, the images can be enhanced in one onethousandth of a second. Partnering with an advisory board of scientists and physicians, Smith introduced his imaging company, Digital Harmonic LLC, in November 2015. It’s a highpowered team that includes serious software developers and an applied mathematician. The recent hire of a chief executive officer— an accomplished businesswoman—allows Smith to fully dedicate his time to PRS. Digital Harmonic plans to have field-ready equipment available in spring 2016. While his waveform imaging efforts are about to become realized, Smith’s creative juices continue to flow and focus around guitar development and innovation: “We’re getting ready to release something in the next couple months that I have been up to my eyeballs in!” █


The standard x-ray image (left) is not well defined, but after Digital Harmonic's technology is applied, the processed image (right) is much clearer.

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isa Bolter was known to say that the key to her successful marriage was never seeing her husband, Brian. He worked evenings as the main anchor at Channel 5 in Washington, DC, and she worked during the day at the Comptroller of Maryland’s office in Annapolis. For them, the schedule worked. If they were told 15 years ago that, in 2016, they would be working side-by-side every day, they would have laughed. To their surprise, the Bolters have gracefully avoided stepping on each other’s toes since July 2011, when they opened Red Red Wine Bar on Main Street. It was their first restaurant endeavor, but not their last: on New Year’s Day 2014 they opened Dry 85, just a few doors

up from the wine bar. Never did they think that they would be restaurant owners, but when Brian reached his twentieth year in the television news business and saw the industry continue to struggle, the possibility of a job relocation loomed. Lisa, a Maryland girl through and through, felt that leaving Annapolis was out of the question. A speakeasy and a wine bar may seem like a his-and-hers business venture, but each space is just as much Brian’s as it is Lisa’s. Brian is to thank for making Annapolis one of the first cities in the Mid-Atlantic to have wine and moonshine on tap. Lisa has mastered healthy options that silences screaming stomachs, but also created Dry 85’s Bacon Brunch.

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Red Red Wine Bar is far from being a cookie-cutter wine bar. Its strict no-wine-snob atmosphere is enforced by a sign behind the bar that reads, “Be Nice or Leave.” Brian calls wine “a trip around the world in a glass,” and with more than fifty wines to choose from, the spread truly backs that opinion. Sipping on a red from the Republic of Georgia or a white from Slovenia while sitting in a room that could been decorated by an eighteenth-century Victorian rock star who just finished reading Alice in Wonderland, it’s easy to forget that historic Annapolis is just outside. It’s where college friends come to chug tall boys of National Bohemian and watch football while members of the Maryland General Assembly mill around, waiting for the new legislative session to begin. Dads nibble on cheese platters, and moms slurp the remains of their bowls of the Maryland crab soup that the bartender swears is the best thing on the planet. Dry 85 is named for the 85 days in 1934 when the District of Columbia was still in prohibition purgatory (thanks to the Sheppard Bone-Dry Act of 1917) while most of America was cheering with legal alcohol. It can still feel like laws are being broken after pulling back a hefty factory door and entering into the modern-day speakeasy. Dim lights and low ceilings, sheet metal, and grey wooden beams contrast the vibrant colors and high-hanging chandeliers found over at the wine bar, but Dry 85’s drinks and meals are far from bland. Lisa creates

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an ever-changing southern style gourmet menu with fried green tomatoes and other appetizers, and shrimp-and-grits-type entrees that are made to pair with a glass of brown liquor or local craft beer. Drinks vary, from shots of Fireball Whiskey poured from a tap to a classic Manhattan, made with an orange twist that’s cut with such precision that it looks like a work of art. There are 150 whiskeys to sift through, with 65 bourbons, 12 beers on tap—almost all sourced locally—and 11 craft cocktails that change seasonally. Customers of all legal ages crack smiles as they order cocktails named El Chapo’s Escape or My Homie Dre and Tanqueray. Just as Red Red Wine Bar has a unique selection of wines that few people would be familiar with if not for Brian’s knowledge, skills, and palate, Dry 85 offers six private whiskey blends. Brian refers to these creations as “world-class expressions of whiskey.” And don’t forget about Pappy Van Winkle: at Dry 85, a glass can always be poured over a handmade ice ball. The Bolters’ personalities shine through many of the unique aspects of their establishments. Lisa loves bacon, so she puts it in a Bloody Mary and dedicates an entire day to it. Brian, a natural storyteller, writes quirky, playful descriptions that enhance the drink selection experience. Just as the Bolters didn’t realize what a unique partnership they would have working together, Annapolitans didn’t realize the effect that exploration of libations would have on their dining experiences. █

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cul·tur·al ˈkəlCH(ə)rəl/

adjective of or relating to the ideas, arts, customs, and social behavior of a society.

ex·change iksˈCHānj/

noun an act of giving one thing and receiving another (especially of the same type or value) in return.

Art Project Management Artists Management Art Consultation Art Sale

Roberta Pardo

410 905-6858 rpardo@urbanwallsbrazil.com www.urbanwallsbrazil.com

upstart-annapolis.com | 47



Art of Incandescent Quality by DESIREE SMITH-DAUGHETY


reativity, if stifled, will erupt. How appropriate, then, that the tool seminal to Dan Hill’s invention of “griddle art” is made of pyroclastic material. In April 2015, at the end of a long shift as chef on a liftboat (a wide barge that puts down legs upon reaching its destination) in the Gulf of Mexico, Hill created a unique visual arts medium. While performing a task he’s done innumerable times in his 19 years as an executive chef—purging a commercial griddle of the day’s debris—he noticed an interesting pattern as he worked with a little oil and a brick of black pumice stone. The cleaning process had left behind a dark, oily film overlaying the silver sheen of the griddle. Hill next did

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photography by DAN HILL

what countless people who encounter interesting surfaces have done throughout human history: he drew in it. Intrigued by the result, he took a picture of it and then did what many of his contemporaries do: he shared it on Facebook. Little did Hill know this would be the launch of his nascent visual arts career. A couple of hundred people “liked” and commented on that post, asking, “Wow, what is that?” “It has surprised the hell out of me, because I haven’t so much as doodled since I was about ten.” Hill’s creativity had long been expressed through guitar playing, music writing, and food plating. After working as chef at The Main Ingredient for 12 years he traveled to Baltimore to help

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50 | Spring 2016

the texture he’s seeking. The unique canvas presents Hill with a challenge. Because the paintings are temporary, he documents his work by photographing them with his Canon T2i (he uses a small Fuji waterproof camera when traveling). But after posting his pictures on Facebook,

has a unique look to it.” Wanting colors—they had to be foodderived—he started applying spices to the paintings. Hill strives to create one piece daily, but some days nothing is there to inspire him. The hot griddle creates a liquid surface with the oil and, depending on the oil used, the griddle canvas will be a little grainy and either more liquescent or fairly dry. Hill usually has no preplanned idea, he just steps up and lets it appear. A pattern may present as a horse’s face, for example. “I create a lot of wildlife images,” he says. Hill’s tool kit is an eclectic mix that includes a butter knife, a wooden skewer, his fingers, and a sausage—anything that gives him

people started requesting prints. Currently, he has about seventy griddle paintings that he has transferred onto canvas. One popular work features a drawing of a plate, knife, fork, spoon, and napkin—with an actual egg that he cooked on top of it. He recently started puzzling over how to make permanent paintings.

He met the former manager of a machine shop, who gave him a thin fourteen-by-fourteen piece of steel to experiment with, making a creation on it and then preserving it. To date, all of his business transactions—including selling a griddle art calendar he created—have been through Facebook and more recently an Etsy account. New to visual art beyond the plate, Hill describes experiencing “the progression of ideas that leads to better art. The last twenty [pieces] are the best I’ve done out of the lot, I feel.” Hill’s sense of humor infuses his work. He created one piece that he describes as a “Pollock inside of a Pollock.” While Hill sometimes finds his art hard to scrape up, he understands one crucial thing about where he is in his process of offering the actual original piece of artwork to sell through his business Graisse Chaudage (“the art of the griddle”): “I can’t buy the griddle.” █

To see more of Hill ’s work, visit etsy.com/shop/griddleart or facebook.com/griddleart


a friend open a restaurant, then switched focus back to Annapolis to help other friends open West End Grill. He planned to venture out on his own, but when financial supporvvvtt from potential backers didn’t materialize, fate presented an enticing opportunity. He was hired as a chef on a liftboat servicing smaller offshore oil rigs, feeding up to fifty people three times per day. Hill always wanted to travel to different places as a chef. He loves his rig gig and how it has opened the world to him. The job provides generous amounts of time to explore. One gig in South America started in Panama and, according to Hill, boosted his Spanish-language capabilities about forty percent. A possible stint in Antarctica at a polar research station is on the horizon. “The oil industry is worldwide. I plan to keep moving around as much as I can—tthe poor man’s Anthony Bourdain!” This new career path led Hill to his art because, happy as he was, something was missing. Working offshore, the creative part of cooking isn’t present. He doesn’t get to sit down and come up with interesting dishes; it’s mostly down-home comfort food for the workers. And the 15-hour workdays allow little time for playing guitar before dropping off to sleep. Hill’s need for an easily accessible creative release finally found its outlet at the end of a pumice stone. “I started doing one [creation] every day while cleaning. At first, it was abstract, and then moved into something else. What makes it interesting is the medium; it

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Luma Theater

Tuesday April 12 | 7:30 pm

Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts is the Community’s Arts Center Purchase Tickets, Register for Classes, Visit us at www.marylandhall.org

Juanito Pascual New Flamenco Trio

Friday April 22 | 7:30 pm

Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble Saturday April 30 | 7:30 pm


2015 - Catch Me If You Can - Joshua McKerrow

54 | Spring 2016





here is a place where the house lights go down when nature dictates, and where hundreds of volunteers come together each summer to present community theatre with a distinctive air of professionalism. Since its first production, in 1966, Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre has been consistently providing live stage experiences and hands-on production opportunities not only to those with theatre backgrounds, but also to anyone interested in learning the craft. “It’s a family; we’re a family of people doing something we like,” says Carolyn Kirby, the organization’s current president who, has been with the theatre for 29 years. “We have people who have volunteered for a long time, and we have new people every season. It’s like community theatre is supposed to be— always changing, never the same every year.” The earliest supporters and founders of the theatre were Joan Baldwin, Tony Maggio, Al Tyler, and Ed Hartman. Building an outdoor stage with no enclosures, they sought to supplement the area’s community theatre opportunities and attract students who were home on

college break as well as any actors who didn’t want to take the summer break that local theatres took. They launched two shows—Brigadoon and You Can’t Take it With You—at Carvel Hall Hotel. The response to the shows and the new outdoor show space was so overwhelming that the group quickly looked for a permanent location for its productions. It identified the vacant Shaw Blacksmith Shop on Compromise Street, renting and then later leasing the building from the local Board of Education and Anne Arundel County. The group put in hours of elbow grease and sweat equity over the years to create the perfect permanent location. Fifty years later renovations are still ongoing, as the historic structure requires a lot of tender loving care to maintain building standards. Most recently, the group put over $200,000 into outdoor renovations. The theatre hopes to raise close to $1.5 million to support additional projects such as adding heating and air conditioning indoors, where the box office, dressing rooms, restrooms, and storage and meeting rooms are located. “There’s something really special about the history, the people, and the

upstart-annapolis.com | 55

1960s - 143 Co mpromise Stre et Before It Was ASGT

evolution of the organization,” shared Melody Volkman, the current volunteer coordinator. She orchestrates the involvement of willing and excited volunteers in various tasks, from tearing tickets at the door to managing props backstage during a show. Volkman and the rest of the board of directors are excited about this year’s events as Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre celebrates its fiftieth anniversary. First on the agenda is a gala event at the William Paca House on May 7 that will include a concert version of Brigadoon. The first of three musicals chosen for the summer takes to the stage on Memorial Day weekend. The Wedding Singer, based on the popular comedy film that stars Adam Sandler, will run through June 15. The compassionate Rent, which turns 20 this year, follows, running through July 23. And Mel Brooks’ The Producers plays through September 4, rounding out the theatre’s biggest, most ambitious season. As an added bonus, 50 Years Under the Stars, A Musical Retrospective will run during the second and third weekends of September, just after The Producers closes. Thanks to the launch of convenient online purchasing, more season tickets than ever

2014 - Theatre Building Exterior Lauren Winther-Hansen

have already been sold for the 2016 season. And once the theatre’s new website is launched—another capstone of its fiftieth year celebration—patrons will be able to navigate schedules, ticket sales, and volunteer opportunities with the tap of a finger or the click of a mouse. With workshops, educational programs, and a season of Broadway musicals on the playbill, Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre provides great opportunities for an evening of theatre culture. As Rent teaches us, there are many ways to measure a year: spending a few summer nights near City Dock surrounded by history and the passion and talent from the Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre family sounds just about right. █

2015 - The Mystery of Edwin Drood Dressing Room 2 - Alison Harbaugh

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2015 - ASGT Volunteer Director Melody Volkman, and ASGT President Carolyn Kirby

2015 - The Mystery of Edwin Drood Dressing Room - Alison Harbaugh

2015 - The Mystery of Edwin Drood 2 - Alison Harbaugh

2011 - Chicago - Photography by Alexander

2015 - The Addams Family 3 - Alison Harbaugh


2014 - 42nd Street - Alyssa Bouma

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plein air

Competition & Exhibition M ay 3 0 - J u n e 1 2 www.paintannapolis.org



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upstart-annapolis.com | 59


Portrait of the




photography by MARIE MACHIN

round Annapolis, eightyear-old Vivien Kaplan may be best known for belting out “Let It Go” from Disney’s Frozen for a holiday commercial as well as for her appearance as Molly in The Colonial Players’ Annie. But her interest in the arts goes beyond music and theatre. She embodies what some ancient Greeks termed the daimon—a mythic sense of calling, unique to each of us, that shapes us as we shape it. Kaplan’s calling may be to entertain. Kaplan’s mother, Melanie Loughry—whom Kaplan calls her biggest influence—named her for actress Vivien Leigh and played music to her while she was still in the womb, everything from classical pieces to songs from

60 | Spring 2015

Hollywood’s Golden Age of film. After a successful audition for All Children’s Chorus of Annapolis, Kaplan spoke about her passions and pursuits. As a toddler, she watched old musicals with her mom. Among the first was Singin’ in the Rain. She walked around the house, singing, acting, and dancing. “I also like trying to dance like people in Busby Berkeley films,” says Kaplan. Loughry sought classes and teachers to nurture Kaplan’s interests, including the Music Together program, music theatre at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, and vocal studies at Naptown Sings. Grandmother Kathy Larrabee arranged for weekly piano lessons.

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Kaplan likes visual arts, too, and has done so since attending Artstart at age four, when she made “Blossom Tree” and finger-painted a red crab with googly eyes—work that adorns the family dining room. More recently, she took classes at ArtFarm, including one where students created a Day of the Dead project. Kaplan paid tribute to her late father, Jeff Kaplan, an internationally known sound engineer whose love of travel whetted his daughter’s appetite for adventure. “I painted my dad’s face on rocks, one to give away—the teacher hid it downtown, and one was to keep, so that one I kept.” After performing in Annie in December 2013, she traveled with her father to New York City’s theatre district on Broadway for the first time to see the play there. She entertained the singing waitstaff at Ellen’s Stardust Diner, joining them for a rendition of “Cabaret.”

WUNDERKIND 62 | Spring 2015

In late 2014, Kaplan was one of ten people—out of four thousand—chosen for the Disney and Kohl’s Sing Your Heart Out contest. Her father was headed to California for work, so Kaplan flew with him. She sang a portion of “Let It Go,” earbuds in and TV

cameras on cranes whirring close to her face. She had been on TV before—cheering for the Orioles and as a toddler in a public-safety ad—but this was new territory for her. Back at the hotel, her father put on a click track and urged her into his “gigantic sneakers.” Using

“Really, I feel like what helps is if you act like nobody’s there and act like you’re just singing like you usually do— like you’re practicing and don’t think you’re going to mess up, just go on.” a flashlight as a spotlight and a toilet plunger as a mic—the handle end, not the plunger end, Kaplan is quick to point out—he had her sing. “He was hilarious,” she says. Live or recorded, Kaplan is never bothered by nerves. “Really, I feel like what helps is if you act like nobody’s there and act like you’re just singing like you usually do—like you’re practicing and don’t think you’re going to mess up, just go on.” Kaplan likes being behind the camera, too. She created a short film with her dolls in silent-film style, complete with player piano. Whether she’s picking out tunes on her ukulele and putting words to them or writing for American Girl (she says she wants to be an author when she grows up), she sees the world as a place rich in meaning. The arts provide a feast for Kaplan’s imagination. “Sometimes when you’re in the arts, you notice things a lot more,” she says. “An example is, someone might look at something— this hair clip,” she says, taking a clip with a large black bow from her hair. “This looks like a face, and this looks like an eye, and there’s the mouth with a giant bow on the head, and it’s talking.” Her infectious laughter catches. “You find that your hair clip looks like a face—with lots of teeth!” █

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Samantha: We were talking about how, when you became a mother, you became aware of this life inside of you. How does that work with stories and characters? Talk about how a work of art comes to life inside of you, how you become aware of it, and how you nurture it and bring it out of you. Minnie: Poems usually start with an image, although it can start with a single word, a phrase, even a title. Novels tend to start with ideas or themes I am wrestling with, questions I can’t answer. The piece that I read at 49 West [Café, Winebar & Gallery, in Annapolis] last spring, What Happened on the Denton Road, is eleven poems, “chapters” in a story about a serial killer who is murdering very young girls, eleven to seventeen years old. It began with an

photography by ALLISON ZAUCHA

image . . . a man driving a truck on a country road toward a stand of trees, twilight turning into evening. I began to follow the image, by which I mean I began to write words down. As I write, one image leads to another image; the sound of a word triggers the sound of another word. I follow the images, I follow the sounds, I follow the visuals almost like on a movie screen. What I was seeing was pretty awful, and I thought, “I don’t want to write this . . . ” The first poem was from the killer’s point of view. Then I thought, “what about the townspeople, how did they see him?” And I thought of the stories we hear of serial killers, the people who knew them . . . “You know he was just a good guy, I mean we would never have . . . ”

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I thought, “What if I tell the townspeople’s point of view?” Then I thought, “You have to have at least one parent in there,

a mother who doesn’t even know her child was murdered. There’s no evidence, no body. All she knows is one day her child was there and the next her child was gone. She has no idea what has happened to her daughter.” Then I thought, “I want a girl’s point of view . . . not at the moment this horrible thing is happening to her, but the moments before . . . what makes her decide to get into this man’s truck.” So this whole thing evolved with each voice revealing something new. In seventh grade, I had an English teacher who had us read Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. We were assigned to write a twentypage short story with no less than ten characters, three main characters, and all the rest minor characters. You had to have all 66 | Spring 2015

these different plotlines going, and you had to wind them all up, Dickens style. That was the first time I learned to write from many voices and to pull a whole storyline together with a lot of characters. Year later, in the ’80’, I wrote for daytime television—The Guiding Light and several other soaps. In that kind of story writing, the questions are, “What if, whose voice, whose point of view?” In What Happened on the Denton Road, we get the killer, we get the parents, we get the girls, we get the deputy sheriff on the case, Big Angus, and we get the retired sheriff, Old Tom. Samantha: It sounds like what came into your mind, unbidden, was an image, one character, and from there your work of nurturing it was to create a whole story, to bring out all the different pieces that would turn that into something that is complete and whole and robust in a way. Is that . . . does that sound right? Minnie: Yes. In What Happened on the Denton Road, the challenge was not just getting inside that character, but writing in such a way that their voices reach from their gut to yours. When I read that piece to an audience, people cried. I believe it touched their personal grief. That’s what happens if you get to the emotional truth of a character or story. An emotional truth will be universal. It will be shared by other people. When I wrote the novel Mykonos (Coward, McCann, & Geoghegan, 1979) I wanted to write a book that tackled being fifteen years old the way I had experienced it, the way I had lived it. I wanted a fifteen-year-old

Samantha and Minnie together: “‘Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents,’ grumbled Jo . . . ” Minnie: You’re IN IT! You are instantly in any story that begins with a line of dialogue. You’re there. So how do I hold you? Someone else has to say something. Keep the dialogue going, or if you’re not going to, then give me a piece of action. Children’s novelists—great children’s novelists—knew how to get kids reading. Samantha: What strikes me is that the emotional truths that you tell, they’re not typically the easy ones, the pretty ones, right? The emotional truths that you tell often are ones that can be

The same is true in a novel. The punctuation, the spacing of a page—it’s all for the ear. What do you hear as you read. In my world, you better hear dialogue! Think of the opening line of Little Women:

hard to sit with, so the aesthetics, the story, the rhythmic-ness of it, those are the things that draw you in. By using those elements to create beauty and an immersive


girl reading it to say, “Somebody knows what it feels like . . . ” The craziness of being a teenage girl, the angst, the confusions, the raging sexual hormones, the loneliness, the isolation; for my character Delphine, the constant battles with her sister and her mother . . . I started with that. Midway through, another force came into play. This girl believed, as every fifteen-yearold girl must, that she was autonomous and independent, making her own choices. So when she looks at a boy and decides to have sex for the first time, she honestly believes she’s made this decision all by herself. She has no idea that everything from her conception on . . . her birth, her early childhood, have preordained that decision. At least that’s how I saw it at that time and how I still see it to a certain extent. That engendered a section of the book that one reviewer referred to as “the longest flashback in literary history!” Samantha and Minnie both laugh. Minnie: I wasn’t writing a young adult novel. I was writing an adult novel for fifteen-yearolds. I also wrote out of my personal understanding of what shapes us, our actions and our decisions. When I write, my stories, be they poems or novels, are going to be based on not just my emotional truth but certain truths I have come to accept for myself. They may not be your truths, and you may disagree. Samantha: You’re also incredibly aesthetic. When you’re working on poetry, your editing is not just word choice, it’s also placement on the page. It’s spacing. How do the aesthetics

intersect with that sense of moral and ethical obligation? Minnie: I work in stages from rough draft to final edit, be it poem or novel. Form is the aesthetic but it’s also the guide in a novel, a story or a poem. Form has to serve the story. The form has to keep the reader moving. You don’t want the reader to get bogged down somewhere. Poems, I have to read aloud. Yours, mine, anyone’s. I have to hear them. So the final stage of my poetry editing is to make sure that my eye is being given the beats and pauses, which tell me the sound of the piece. The oral performance dictates the form on paper. Sound is the essence of poetry.

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experience, it’s almost like it makes space for you to sit with those truths. Minnie: I write some very violent scenes. I write about the effects of violence on family members. Mario Puzo (The Godfather) was a master at writing violence. But there’s a difference between describing violence and describing the horror of being a victim of violence. The discovery of a violent act can be terrifying and traumatic. In the novel I am working on now, a little boy is going to discover what has been done to his mother. As the reader, you are with him every step of the way as he gets up the courage to get out of bed, to walk down the long hall to the kitchen . . . That kind of scene I learned how to write from Stephen King. No one

experience everything from that singular point of view, and we’re with the character, waiting for that thing to happen. Samantha: We’ve been talking about the core of emotional truth and that thread of moral obligation that goes through your written work. I’m curious … is there a parallel for that in your visual art? Minnie: Around the same time I started writing the poems for What Happened on the Denton Road, I realized I wanted to do a series of very small paintings, fiveby-five inches, six-by-six inches. All of girls—12, 13, 14, 15 [years old]—in that moment where they’re on the edge of their lives. If they’re sitting, they’re thinking about where they want to go. If they’re walking, they’re walking the road that they’ve always

INK has mastered the art of keeping that suspense, the fear of “what’s going to happen?” the way he has, and he does it by going way inside the character. We see and 68 | Spring 2015

walked but they’re thinking about the road they’re going to walk one day. They’re not there yet. They’re not gone. But they’re getting ready

to go. They’re in that formative period. And I knew that I didn’t want the viewer to see the girls’ faces. They are turned away. They are moving away from us. When I did the first one, I had already done two of the poems for What Happened on the Denton Road, and I had this awful feeling. I looked at the girl in the painting and thought, “Oh my god, what if she’s one of the girls?” And that was horrendous to me, the idea that I might have painted a girl that even fictionally was killed by this man. And I thought, “Is there some way I can save this girl’s life?” Like, if I made a painting for sale and somebody bought it—okay, magical thinking—it would save her life. But then I thought, if I sold the paintings and I donated the money to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) or to CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children, which takes care of our children in the foster care system, then that donation to NCMEC or CASA might in fact save a child’s life. And that’s when those paintings began to pour out of me. I just started doing one after another. As I painted, this sort of web of superstition evolved. One of the final ones was this girl in her jeans and her cowboy boots, striding across a country road, looking straight in front of her, her hair falling over her face, and way down the road is the back of that truck. She got away. All these girls got away. Those paintings suddenly became very bound in with the whole story, but they were counterpoint, not illustration. The whole idea was that these paintings could contribute to saving lives.

Samantha: In your visual art, is that another way of getting at a universal experience? Because those moments of those girls I’ve experienced, I see places and parts of my life in those paintings. Minnie: I started writing very young. I started journaling at ten years old. I wrote, every single day. I inadvertently trained myself to be a writer. I wrote continually most of my life. In the ’70s, I spent a summer in an art school in Greece. I always drew and painted, but I never had confidence in my work. In 1986, I started taking art classes in Newport, Rhode Island. My teachers there gave me technique and built my confidence. In the ’90s, in Sewanee, Tennessee, I opened an art gallery, which I supported by selling my own paintings and drawings, enabling me to take a very low commission on sales of work by artists I represented in the gallery. Around that time, I looked at my paintings and thought, “When I write, I write an autobiography of pain. When I paint, I paint an autobiography of beauty.” My painting is all the wonders and beauty I’ve gotten to see in my life. In my writing, I go to this place inside me that is painful and scary and oftentimes dark. It comes out of the childhood abuse, it comes out of being raised in an abusive, alcoholic home, and the recovery, which has given me the willingness to say, “If telling that story, sharing my experience helps one other person, then I will tell the story . . .” I have pages where every single time I work on them, I sit there with tears running down my face. That doesn’t happen in my painting.

One thing I believe in as a writer is resolution. I don’t want to leave you in the darkness. I won’t leave you in that place. I will not do that to you. I do not believe in it. I need to give you catharsis. My high school English teachers taught us Greek tragedy and what catharsis meant. And I came to understand how important that is for a reader. You have to have that soul cleansing. Samantha: You are a fierce and relentless editor. There’s a tremendous amount of pruning, a stripping away of what doesn’t need to be there. The thing that I am curious about is whether you see editing as creativity in itself or as diligence. Is that just the hard work you have to put in, or both, or neither? Minnie: As a kid in school, editing was the boring part. The writers I read in my twenties, I didn’t really grasp what they were talking about until I’d done enough of my own editing. Yes, editing is the hard work, it is the diligence, but it’s become the work that I love. Editing is writing. Ultimately as an editor I am ruthless. If what I’ve written isn’t necessary to the story, I have to catch that. Samantha: Getting to an emotional truth is by nature a private experience, but it’s also a public experience when you’re doing that in writing, especially in performance poetry. Therefore, much of that editing, pruning, and research, that perfecting, must

be for an audience as well. So how does the knowledge of the audience shape what you do and give life to what lives inside you? Minnie: If I sent my poems out for publication, and I don’t, my approach to my poetry might be somewhat different than it is. Because I do my poetry only as performance, only to be heard, the knowledge of a listening audience very much dictates how I write the poem. I’m not into obscurity, I’m not into symbolism. I don’t want to lose you when I’m reading to you. Especially if I’m reading for 35 to 40 minutes. I need to keep you with me.

When I was pregnant with you, my agent got me work writing paperback romances. This was in the early 1980s, when there was a paperback romance boom. They were hitting the stands like comic books. I had to ask myself, “Who is my audience?” She was the night nurse on duty with a terminally ill patient. She was a thirteen-year-old girl reading under the bedcovers with a flashlight after she’d been told to go to sleep. She was the woman

in the neighborhood drugstore whiling away her time as her daughter bought makeup. My audience for the novel I’m writing now, in a way, is all of us. It is certainly the people who lived through the era of the Vietnam War—whether you fought or stayed home or left the country— we were all in it together, even if it didn’t feel that way at the time. And my audience is all of us now. We have lived through almost a decade and a half of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. We are all impacted by it. Samantha: Okay, is there anything that I haven’t asked about that you want to talk about? Minnie: Every good story must take on its own life. I have to let the characters be true to themselves even if I don’t like what they are doing. When I realized what that driver in the pick-up truck was doing to those girls, I didn’t want to write it. I told myself, “You have to go with it. You’re being given these images.” That’s where you get into the strange and mystical part of the whole process. If someone asks me directly what happens when I write: My fingers hover above the keyboard, I listen, and I watch. And then I transcribe. And my job is to transcribe in the best English I can, to serve the story that is being given to me the very best I can. I see the stand of trees. I see the dark earth. I see the sun going down. I feel the cold creeping up. I see it. And I write what I see. I have no memory of what I write, only what I saw and heard. █

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photography by KAREN DAVIES

he Annapolis Neck Peninsula is an alluring area, full of the natural beauty of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. It is also rich in history, as its residents well know. How a community of eminent African Americans settled in the area during the segregated “Jim Crow” era after the Civil War makes for an interesting story. Highland Beach, for example, incorporated in 1922—and the only incorporated town in Anne Arundel County outside of Annapolis—is a place of singular distinction. This famous community of prominent African American families began one fortuitous day in 1892, when Frederick Douglass’ son Charles, his wife Laura, and their son Haley visited the Bay Ridge Resort and Amusement Park, or the “Queen Resort of The Chesapeake,” as the now-residential community of Bay Ridge was known at that time. Mrs. Douglass, taken with the place, asked if there was housing nearby where she could board. In that time of segregation, she was directed to a bay-front farm adjoining Bay Ridge owned by the Brashears, 72 | Spring 2015

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a family of African American farmers. The Brashears agreed to sell the Douglasses a forty-acre parcel of land, which they quickly set about turning into a summer vacation retreat for family and friends. Douglass built himself a house there, and another, Twin Oaks—for his famous abolitionist father—with a balcony, “where he planned to sit and gaze out over the Chesapeake Bay to the Eastern Shore where he had been born a slave.”1 Unfortunately, Frederick Douglass did not live to see the house finished. This “isolated sanctuary,” as described by current Highland Beach mayor Bill Sanders, became the cherished summer vacation spot for a closeknit community of eminent African American

The street names of Highland Beach—names such as Dunbar, Crummell, Henson, Augusta, Douglass, Langston, and Washington—honor distinguished African Americans such as writer Paul Lawrence Dunbar and explorer Matthew Henson, who, after six attempts over 18 years with Robert Peary, was among the first people to reach the North Pole. The settlement grew to become an enclave of sixty beach cottages, many of which, like its neighboring bay-front communities, made the transition into lovely year-round homes. Twin Oaks is now known as the Frederick Douglass Museum and Cultural Center, and residents are duly proud of their town’s recent green initiatives, led by Mayor Sanders and his

doctors, writers, scientists, and educators from the Washington, DC and Baltimore areas—people such as Booker T. Washington, Harriet Tubman, Robert Weaver, Paul Robeson, Alex Haley, W. E. B. Dubois, Langston Hughes, and Arthur Ashe. Over the years, residents played rousing games of tennis on seven courts, held dances, built and launched boats onto the bay, fished, crabbed, and told stories at night around blazing campfires.

wife, Zora Lathan, both prominent ecologists (he is former director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s National Center for Environmental Research, she is director of the Chesapeake Ecology Center and was formerly with the National Audubon Society). “When we first visited here in 1998,” says Sanders, “it was so nice, we asked about homes for sale, and were told that most of them are passed down through families. But we got lucky—someone told us about one that was on the market.” The new Town Hall of Highland Beach, completed in 2006, was the second building in the county to achieve the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED

1 Highland Beach on the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland’s First African American Incorporated Town, by Jack E. Nelson, Raymond L. Langston, and Margo Dean Pinson, Donning Company Publishers, 2008. 74 | Spring 2015

platinum certification—the first being the world-famous Chesapeake Bay Foundation headquarters building across Black Walnut Creek in the Bay Ridge community. It achieved that premier status with exceptional insulation, a high-performing HVAC system, and a vegetated green roof and rain gardens that capture and contain all rainwater onsite, preventing runoff into nearby Oyster Creek and the Chesapeake Bay. Solar panels on the roof allow the town to produce energy. Other African American beach areas that came into being soon after Highland Beach include neighboring Venice

At its height, African American ownership of land in the Annapolis Neck totaled 246 acres.2 This included the famous Carr’s Beach, Sparrows Beach, and Bembe Beach, all adjacent to the community now known as The Villages of Chesapeake Harbor. Carr’s Beach started as a public beach in 1929, and people paid a ten-cent admission fee to swim, ride on a Ferris wheel, enjoy pony rides, and see the Chitlin’ Circuit musical acts of the day perform in an open-air pavilion. People by the hundreds danced to the beat of such luminaries as Fats Domino, Ray Charles, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Stevie Wonder, Little Richard, The Coasters, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, and Aretha Franklin. Sadly, rapid redevelopment of the area in the 1960s led to the demise of Carr’s Beach. Its last concert, in 1974, featured Baltimore’s own Frank Zappa. But Carr’s Beach

Beach, settled in 1922, Oyster Harbor, Bay Highlands, and nearby Arundel-on-the Bay, a community of 345 homes that attracted affluent African American families beginning in the 1940s. Residents included Aris T. Allen Jr., the son of husband and wife doctors Aris T. and Faye Allen (Dr. Aris Allen was also the first African American chair of the Maryland Republican party), and former Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke.

lives on in the memories of those lucky enough to have enjoyed it in its heyday. No matter the odds, humans strive for happiness. Charles Douglass, who served in the Union army during the Civil War, inherited his father’s tenacity and seized the opportunity to create a home here. It gave rise to a community rich in character, culture, and history. █


Photo by Sydney Petty

2 The Land Was Ours: African American Beaches from Jim Crow to the Sunbelt South by Andrew W. Kahrl, Harvard University Press, 2012.

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the Arts &

Entertainment by TOM LEVINE

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photography by MARIE MACHIN


p U g n i t Ligh

Photo by Joe Karr



ive years ago, The Light House homeless prevention support center vacated a set of row houses on West Street for a new, purpose-built space on Hudson Street in Parole. Since its founding as a homeless shelter in 1989, it has evolved. It is a journey, not a destination, providing a roadmap for people to rebuild their lives. Not only does it provide transitional housing at Hudson Street, but also, more importantly, tools and support to help clients gain confidence and achieve long-term security.

Shortly after the Hudson Street building opened, Elizabeth Kinney, The Light House’s executive director, met Chef Linda. Vogler, who worked at DC Central Kitchen. Also founded in 1989, DC Central Kitchen offers a revolutionary approach to feeding the hungry. Its keystone is a culinary training program, which now serves as a model for The Light House. Kinney and Vogler recently graduated their thirteenth class. Graduates leave with skills, certifications, and self-confidence that enable them to land and hold jobs in local

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restaurants and catering firms. Baroak, on West Street, where Chef Teddy Folkman has proved that mussels and blue cheese go well together, employs several graduates who are working in the kitchen and the front of the house. Baroak’s general manager, Jason Bacci, says they bring just what the restaurant is looking for: “They are skilled, have great attitudes, and are very dependable.” Vogler points with pride to Sheila Elgammal, a recent graduate. Elgammal learned about the culinary program while residing at The Light House. “[The program] exceeded my expectations,” she says. In Elgammal, Vogler saw a student who went above and beyond, not only for her own growth, but to support her classmates. The examination for the ServSafe certification, a nationally recognized credential in the food industry, is like a final exam for the program. It may be the hardest test, and it is not unusual for students to take it several times before passing. Vogler would have been rightly proud of Elgammal had she only passed on her first attempt, but she also spent hours tutoring a struggling classmate who also passed. If you had just spent four years teaching culinary skills, what would you want to do next with your program? What if you owned that building on West Street? Might you just decide to open a restaurant, a bistro, or a café? Guess what? That’s what’s happening. Barring any of the unexpected delays and detours that can derail any renovation of a hundred-year-old building, The Light House Bistro will be open for business by early summer 2016. Architectural plans, contributed by Cho Benn Holback + Associates of Baltimore, have been completed, city permits and licenses have been secured, and Brown Construction has been busy keeping the renovations on track.

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There is much to be excited about with this new venture. People who need the opportunity and are committed to working for it will get invaluable on-thejob training. The food will be enticing. It will have a full bar, and there will be music. Vince Iatesta and his Annapolisbased Ceremony Coffee Roasters, which is rated in the top twenty nationally, will oversee the coffee bar. His brother David, whose local company has built furniture for

people like Oprah (well, not like Oprah, but in fact Oprah) is designing all the interior surfaces, including custom woodwork, gratis. Moreover, Annapolis will have another culinary milieu where people can go to eat, drink, listen to live music, peruse art, and hang out. The Annapolis Arts and Entertainment District has been burning brighter from both ends recently, and this will certainly help to light up the middle. █

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Photo by Dimitri Fotos

A&E DISTRICT CALENDAR Annapolis Symphony Orchestra

www.annapolissymphony.org | Box office telephone: 410-263-0907 | 801 Chase Street, Annapolis Symphonic Titans—March 4 & 5 at 8 p.m., Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, & March 6 at 3 p.m., Strathmore Music Center Unanswered Questions—April 1 & 2 at 8 p.m., Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts Orchestral Brilliance—May 6 & 7 at 8 p.m. at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts Family Concert! Toy Symphony & Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra—May 14 at 2 & 3:30 p.m. Ticket prices: $38-$68, students $10

Annapolis Collection Gallery

AnnapolisCollection.com | 410-280-1414 | on Gallery Row at 55 West Street, Annapolis Bill Payne of Little Feat Wednesday, March 23 Meet the artist, 10–11:30 p.m. Free, open to the public. Following his 8 p.m. Rams Head On Stage show, Bill Payne’s audience follows him down Gallery Row to see his art exhibit in the Annapolis Collection Gallery. Brush to Canvas Saturday, April 16 A collection of canvases by Annapolis Gallery artist Ann Munro Wood reveals several studies of portraits she’s painted throughout her career. Art reception 7–8 p.m. Free, open to the public. We the People Saturday, May 14 Signed and numbered limited edition watercolor prints by Greg Harlin from the book “We the People” exhibit in the gallery, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free, open to the public.

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Compass Rose Theater on the Westgate Circle is the anchor of the west end of the Arts and Entertainment District.

Ticket info: www.compassrosetheater.org | 410-9806662 | 49 Spa Road, Annapolis Shows run Thursday–Sunday, and times vary. Tickets are $23 for students, $33 for seniors, $38 regular price. Tickets may also be purchased at the door. The Diary of Anne Frank, by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett Opens Friday, March 18, 8 p.m., and continues until Sunday, April 17, with a closing show at 2 p.m. A powerful and moving play that resonates today; a compelling drama for our troubled times. Roar of the Greasepaint, Smell of the Crowd, a musical by Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley Opens Friday, May 6, 8 p.m., and continues until Sunday, June 5, with a closing show at 2 p.m. Beautiful score. From this play come two of the most famous jazz standards still performed today: “Who Can I Turn To?” and “Feeling Good.”

Rams Head On Stage

www.ramsheadonstage.com | 410-268-4545 | 33 West Street, Annapolis The Ann Wilson Thing Monday & Tuesday, March 28 & 29 8 p.m. show/doors open 7 p.m. America Wednesday & Thursday, April 20 & 21 8 p.m. show/doors open 7 p.m. Leftover Salmon Sunday, May 8 8 p.m. show/doors open 7 p.m.

Sally Wern Comport, Art at Large, Inc. artatlargeinc.com

Simon & Schuster Release of Ada’s Violin: The Story of the Recycled Orchestra of Paraguay Tuesday, May 3 Ada’s Violin is the latest Simon & Schuster children’s picture book illustrated by Annapolis Arts District artist Sally Wern Comport, telling the true story of Paraguay’s Recycled Orchestra.


WTMD.org | Metro Gallery | 1700 N Charles Street, Baltimore Ticket Info: https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/ event/1081925?utm_source=fbTfly&utm_ medium=ampEventBuyTix WTMD presents the Handmade Quarterly #5 with Pressing Strings, Higher Hands, Swampcandy, & Skribe Live drawing by Lindsay Bolin Lowery Tuesday, May 3, 8 p.m. Featuring local bands and artists. Ticket sales, limited edition merchandise, and art auction will directly benefit WTMD, Baltimore’s member-supported independent radio station.

Providence Center Inc.

providencecenter.com | 1254 Ritchie Highway, Arnold Providence Center Gifts That Give Store Grand Opening Saturday, April 23 The Gifts that Give Store Grand Opening is a fun community event featuring music, refreshments, kid’s activities, and local art for sale from Providence Center artists and HERE, a pop-up shop. Providence Center is an Anne Arundel County 501-(c)3 nonprofit serving adults with developmental disabilities.

49 West Coffeehouse, Winebar & Gallery

49westcoffeehouse.com Gallery | 49 West Street, Annapolis Live music every night, during Saturday and Sunday brunches, and Sunday afternoons. March’s artist: Tony J. Spencer, “TRYBE-ALL,” a combination of acrylic-on-canvas and archival prints. Showing March 1–30. Opening reception March 6, 5–7 p.m. tvivspencer@gmail.com April’s artist: Landis Expandis, lead singer of The All Mighty Senators, “Funky Brush Strokes To Dance To,” acrylic paintings on wood, Showing April 1–27. Opening reception April 3, 5-7 p.m. expandis@ allmightysenators.com. May’s Artist: Joanne Woodward Tew, “Light and Color,” Images both translucent and opaque, oil painting on glass and canvas. Showing April 28–June 1. Opening reception May 1, 5–7 p.m.


Info and registration: www.artfarmannapolis.com Friday, March 18 Fearless Photo Meetup (for girls ages 11–17). Monday, April 4 Spring Art Classes begin. After-school sessions for children: eight Mondays for ages 4–7, eight Tuesdays for ages 8–12 Monday, April 8 ArtFarm Grand Opening at its new location on Gallery Row at 45 West Street. Tuesday, April 19 Watercolor Workshop with Lindsay Bolin (ages 15–adult). Friday, April 22 Spoon Carving Workshop with Foxwood Co. Friday, May 20 Fearless Photo Meetup (for girls ages 11–17).

Annapolis Shakespeare Company

www.AnnapolisShakespeare.org | 111 Chinquapin Round Road, Annapolis | Box Office: 410-415-3513 Tickets $25–55 Annapolis Shakespeare Company is the premier professional theatre for Shakespeare and the classics.

The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged), by Long, Singer, and Winfield Directed by Sally Boyett, ASC Founding Artistic Director and Broadway veteran May 17 –September 27 Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m. in the outdoor courtyard at Reynolds Tavern

Arts in Public Places Summer Music Series: Thursday Night with the Stars brings summer music entertainment to the Annapolis City Dock. Enjoy the sweeping views of the Severn River with fine music from a variety of area musicians. 6:30–8 p.m. from June 30–September 1. June 30 Kings of Crownsville. A finalist in the Baltimore Blues Festival, this six-piece New Orleans music team opens the summer season on the City Dock. July 7 Mark Brine, award-winning folk-style country classic singer and songwriter recently returned to Baltimore from Nashville will share the songs of yesteryear and country greats. July 14 Them Eastport Oyster Boys, our local “Musical Goodwill Ambassadors,” bring a variety of music to celebrate life on the Chesapeake Bay . . . “good hat, good dog, good boat.” July 21 TJ Shaw, an ensemble with vocalist Tish Martinez, shares sultry sounds of the blues. July 28 Peacherine Ragtime Society Orchestra plays the ragtime sounds of the 1900–1920. A local group that has appeared at the Kennedy Center and venues up and down the East Coast. August 4 MEGA, the piano and vocal students of area music teachers strut their stuff. August 11 One Accord sings Christian and contemporary folk music.

The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde Directed by Sally Boyett, ASC Founding Artistic Director and Broadway veteran March 11–April 10 Fridays 8 p.m., Saturdays 2 p.m. & 8 p.m., Sundays 3 p.m.

August 18 Army Jazz Band (Unconfirmed)

Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare Directed by Richard Pilcher, ASC Resident Director and Broadway Veteran April 29–May 29 Fridays 8 p.m., Saturdays 2 p.m. & 8 p.m., Sundays 3 p.m.

September 1 The Sunset Band closes the season with the popular contemporary music of vocalist Tony Spencer.

August 25 Jazz Mosaic, contemporary blues and jazz with the Arthur brothers.

July 1, 1– 8:30 p.m. A variety of local musicians will capture the dock stage, including the Brothers and Sisters, the Annapolis Steel Band, and others. September 2, 6:30 p.m. The Army Jazz Band will perform at 6:30 p.m. This is another all Friday music fest, and others will share the day. Bring your comfy chairs and enjoy the views and tunes of the area’s popular musicians.

Annapolis Opera

www.annapolisopera.org | 410-267-8135 | Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts | 801 Chase Street, Annapolis | Victoria Rose Brown, Administrative Assistant Faust Friday, March 18 at 8 p.m., Sunday, March 20 at 3 p.m. Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts Tickets $67-82 (general), $27 (student) Loosely based on Goethe’s epic drama, Gounod’s Faust was conceived at the height of the French Grand Opera era. This fully-staged production presents timeless human themes of longing for love, the desire for salvation and redemption, and the costs of making a bargain with the devil. 28th Annual Vocal Competition April 23 at 10:00 a.m. (Semi-Finals), April 24 at 3p.m. (Finals) Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts Free admission. For over 27 years, Annapolis Opera’s Vocal Competition has given opera students and young professionals the opportunity to hone their craft by performing for a blue-ribbon panel of judges. The competition is fierce, with more than $10,000 available in prize money.

Inner West Street Association www.firstsundayarts.com

First Sunday Art Festivals at West and Calvert Streets Starting May 1, 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Free admission, easy parking. Over 100 local and regional artists and crafters. Live music, dance, theatre, and street performers. Street side café dining. Bring your family, friends and friendly dogs. Over 60,000 attended last year.

Maryland Federation of Art

www.mdfedart.org | 410-268-4566 | 18 State Circle, Annapolis Free admission, daily 11 a.m.–5 p.m. May 5–27 Spring Member ShowReception Sunday, May 15. Annual exhibition of diverse 2-D and 3-D artwork by MFA members.

Friday Fests Every second Friday, May–September, the Annapolis Tango will perform on the City Dock, 7–10 p.m.

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