Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Walk Through the Arts!!

On Saturday, October 20,2007, Alliance for the Arts held it's 4th Annual Walk Through the Arts Event. With thirty companies partcipating, around fifteen demonstrations and ten performances, not even the rain could stop this event from being a huge success!! Family and friends gathered from all around to see what Southwest Florida arts has to offer.
Many people walked around the grounds to different tables for fun, entertainment and education. Here is a picture of the Aboriginals:Art of the First Person table.

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Weavers of Char-Lee were also a huge hit with their demonstrations of Weaving and Spinning.

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Guests also wandered into the Foulds Theatre for performances by Dance Bochette, Cypress Lake High Orchestra, Creative Theatre Workshop, Hot Flashz, Young Artists Awards, Ring of Emerald School of Irish Dance and Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre.
Here are some pictures of Irish Stepdance, a scene from the Wizard of Oz from Creative Theatre Workshop and the winner from last years Young Artists Awards Scholarship.

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Outside, the Schoolhouse Theatre and the Gulf Coast Symphony performed in the drizzling rain!

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There were many amazing demonstrations such as Organic Floral Art, Book Binding, Fold-Forming, Storytime, Painting/Transfers, Acrylic Painting, Portrait Oil Painting, Art Quilts, Watercolor, Calligraphy, Watercolor, Weaving and Spinning, Clay Building and Wire Wrapping.
In this next picture, this guests had a little help from the instructors glasses to make sure that he was sewing his quilt just right!

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Thanks goes out to all of the participants that helped to make Walk Through the Arts 2007 an amazing experience for all ages!Also a big pat on the back to Amy Smith for all of her hard work and dedication to this event!

Megan Jones, Events Intern

Play it again, Sam.

Well, it wasn't "Casablanca," but it was a classic evening. The audience who gathered to hear ABC Newsman Sam Donaldson make political predictions and off the cuff remarks enjoyed a refreshing and relaxed time. Several members submitted questions that local ABC Anchor (and one of the Gulfshore Life bachelors gracing the pages of the September issue) Len Jennings posed to Mr. Donaldson following his initial remarks.

Among his predictions: Hilliary Clinton will win the Democratic nomination, and it's unclear who will get the Republican nod, though he gives best odds to Mitt Romney. Donaldson also stands up in favor of compromise as the best method to move forward on issues such as immigration.

So what did all this have to do with the arts? The political climate in which we live is a heated, highly contested, and opinionated one. It seems just about every one you meet has a strong thought or persuasion about at least one issue: economy, global warming, pollution, religion, feminisim - you name it. These opinions are part of the cultural fiber of our world, our nation, and our communities. Because the arts reflect emotions, messages, and other conversation starters, these issues inevitably turn up on a canvas, in a play, inside song lyrics. The Alliance for the Arts organzed an event that helps start conversations on topics within our community that become part of our cultural identity. Art is everywhere.

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Art, in the literal sense, was also present at Cultural Conversations. Above is one of 12 editorial cartoon contest student winners, Chelsea Manning of Cypress Lake Middle. News Press Cartoonist and local artists Doug MacGregor displayed is and other political cartoons created by Lee County Middle School students as part of a Ding Darling days contest, and Art Royale Artists lead by Steve McCarney, dressed as world political leaders and demonstrated a new game called "In Power," which is about navigating and negotiating current events. Just a couple of examples of how political culture infuses the local creative landscape.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Taking a Walk..

Well this past week has been pretty busy at the Alliance for the Arts. We have been working hard on getting the Art Royale invitations folded, sealed and sent out! I just can't wait for the November 17th event!!
Amy Smith has also been busy with the event that is happening tomorrow, Walk Through the Arts. This family event is going to be a blast. We have performances scheduled, demonstrations and amazing raffle prizes! We also have food and drinks and many of your local companies will be present with information for you!! So make sure you come out and take a walk through the arts! TOMORROW!!!

Thanks...Megan Jones, Events Intern

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Spotlight on the Arts Week!

October 14 - October 20 is...

Spotlight on the Arts Week: Creativity in Lee County Takes Centerstage

Because of the incredible season of offerings across Lee County, the Alliance for the Arts appealed to the Board of County Commissioners to proclaim a special week to really highlight our local arts scene. They agree that this is a great way to recognize all there is to do.

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Above is a photo of Arts Coalition members (left to right) Sharon McAllister, ArtFest Fort Myers, Jason Parrish and Rachel Burtram, Florida Repertory Theatre, Kathleen Moye, Alliance for the Arts, and Michelle Patrick, Sidney and Berne Davis Arts Center with the Lee County Commissioners accepting the Proclamation this past Tuesday.

During this week, we'll have lots going on...check back for a detailed listing, but for now, save the dates for Cultural Conversations on Oct. 18th (http://www.artinlee.org/special_events/culturalconversations.html) and Walk Through the Arts (http://www.artinlee.org/special_events/walkthroughthearts.html) and get set for one AMAZING year in the arts!

Local Business Leaders at the Alliance

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Wednesday October 10, 2007 was a busy day! Business leaders from Lehigh Acres traveled to the Alliance for the first half of their day full of arts and non-profit organizations learning. It's a part of the Lehigh Chamber of Commerce Leadership Development program: Leadership Lehigh.

First thing, the Southwest Florida Symphony presented to them about the opportunities in Symphonic Music. Then Gulfshore Playhouse talked about what it takes to start and grow a theatre. The Alliance for the Arts spent time telling them about the arts in Lee County in general.

Among the many brochures and fliers, one thing they mosts certainly took with them is a firm sense that there is PLENTY to do and get involved with around this area.

Also, contrary to popular saying, arts and culture is not the icing on the cake...it's the yeast in the dough that makes a community and its businesses grow and rise. That's certainly a cause worth supporting!

By they way, the play "Life (x) 3" closes tomorrow night at the Foulds. Be sure and get your tickets! The Lehigh Leadership group is posing on the play's set!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Pots, Prints, and Paintings OH YEAH!

Last night's opening reception featuring Artists Barbara Yeomans, Tim Lienhardt, and Stephen Johnson was stellar at the Alliance for the Arts.

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Charlie Matthews and Barbara Yeomans

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Tim Lienhardt and Madeline Plummer

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Stephen Johnson

The Bettie Page Boys rocked the house...

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And we learned that Art Apreciation starts early...

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Overall, it was fun to see a few familiar faces from exhibits last year, including artists Jeff Mudgett and Dorothy Causey.

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The next opening is on November 30th, for our juried show "Transmissions." There's also still time to get your artwork into this show, if you'd like. Just click on this link to download a prospectus! http://www.artinlee.org/special_events/upcomingexhibits.html

Till next time...

Friday, October 5, 2007

The Season at the Foulds...unfolds!

Thursday Oct. 4th was the very first performance in the 2007-2008 Season at the Foulds!

Kristen Coury with the Gulfshore Playhouse did an outstanding job in directing "Life (x) 3" a contemporary play by French playwright, Yazmina Reza. A VIP crowd of around 100 gathered for the opening night along with a reception afterward with the actors. We were rubbing elbows and thoroughly enjoying the fast-paced show in the newly renovated space. Lots of photos were taken, but my favorite was one of me and Bev MacNellis, volunteer extraordinaire for Gulfshore Playhouse.

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Bev has worked tirelessly to help behind the scenes, coordinating many of the volunteer-strong events and activities for the brand new troupe. I think she deserves a little tony of her own!

By the way, if you're looking for a great night out, definitely add Gulfshore Playhouse featured at the Foulds Theatre to your "to-do" list. Click on this link: http://www.gulfshoreplayhouse.org/ to find out more. Learn more about what's happening at the Foulds later on this season, click on this link: www.artinlee.org/special_events/seasoncalendar.html.

Enjoy the show!
Kathleen Moye

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Hi, everyone! This past few weeks have been really exciting for the Alliance. We have completely redone the lobby for the opening of the first season at the foulds theatre.

The walls have been given a fresh coat of light green and beige paint. Also, new furniture including a cream colored couch, and a matching rug, tables and chairs help make the room more welcoming for guests when they come to the Foulds Theater.


Hello again!!

The annual meeting for the Alliance for the Arts was Monday, September 24, 2007. And I have successfully finished the scrapbook of all of the publicity in the local newspapers, magazines for September 2006 to September 2007.
Including in the scrapbook were articles from Art Royale 2006, Angels of the Arts 2007, many gallery openings and previews, class schedules, Asia Fest 2006 and much more! It turned out to be a colorful and informative book of everything that the Alliance for the Arts has had published. I worked very hard and long on this scrapbook and I feel that it turned out excellent and it just shows how amazing the Alliance really is.
I don't want to see another pair of scissors or glue for a while!!

Dance Alliance also launched recently on September 20, 2007. The opening party was a huge success with Janice Barringer as the guest speaker, along with the other teachers. After the lecture in the theatre, lite refreshments and delicious snacks were provided in the gallery. The turnout was great as well as the company!
Dance Alliance continued the next two days at Cypress Lakes High School with a ton of energy and a whole lot of dancing! Instructors and students learnt many new techniques and dancing styles throughout the weekend and concluded on Saturday afternoon.
Lori worked extremely hard to get this program started and at the end of the day, she deserves a well earned pat on the back. Dance Alliance was a huge success and now hopefully this can become an annual event!

Walk thru the Arts is upcoming!! Until then...take care!
Megan Jones