(STOCKBRIDGE, Mass.) – An exhibition showcasing the work of R.O. Blechman, an award-winning illustrator, animator, children’s book author, graphic novelist, and editorial cartoonist, opens on Saturday, May 11, 2013, with a reception from 6 to 8:30 p.m., at Norman Rockwell Museum, as part of the Distinguished Illustrator Series. Blechman will be in attendance at the opening reception, and is scheduled to offer remarks at 6:30 p.m. The exhibit, R.O. Blechman: The Inquiring Line, will remain on view through June 30, 2013. With a career spanning the past six decades, R.O. (Bob) Blechman has become well known for his memorable advertisements for Capezio and Alka-Seltzer (featuring a talking stomach), and for his witty and expressive cartoon illustrations for the New Yorker, New York Times, and the Huffington Post. Along the way he has received many prestigious professional honors, including membership in the Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame, Designer’s Hall of Fame, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from The National Cartoonists Society.
SHANNON MCNALLY to SHINE LIGHT on BOBBY CHARLES at CLUB HELSINKI
(HUDSON, N.Y.) – While Bobby Charles is hardly a household name, the late songwriter is known by many through songs he wrote including “See You Later Alligator,” “Walking to New Orleans” and “But I Do.” Fans of The Band, with whom Charles collaborated, know him through his performance of “Down South in New Orleans” at the Last Waltz, and Band bassist-singer Rick Danko recorded Charles’s “Small Town Talk” on the former’s solo album, the song that singer-songwriter Shannon McNally made the title track of her new tribute album to Charles, recorded with Dr. John. McNally will perform many of these tunes as well as her own popular favorites at Club Helsinki Hudson on Friday, May 10, 2013, at 9pm.
NEW DANIEL KLEIN PLAY PREMIERES at BERKSHIRE THEATRE FESTIVAL
(STOCKBRIDGE, Mass.) – The Jewish Jester: A Fable with Music by local playwright and author Daniel Klein, with original music by Jesse Putnam, will have its world premiere at Berkshire Theatre Festival’s Unicorn Theatre in Stockbridge beginning on Thursday, May 9, 2013, and running through Sunday, May 26, 2013. Beloved and well-known regional actors Jonathan Epstein and Robert Lohbauer star as the Jester and the King, respectively, in a production directed by Bruce T. MacDonald and presented by New Stage Performing Arts. Set in medieval times, The Jewish Jester: A Fable with Music is a two character comedy that tells the story of an anti-Semitic King and his jester, who, unbeknownst to him, is Jewish, and who for different reasons find themselves locked in a dungeon together, and therefore must renegotiate their relationship.
PHOTOGRAPHS of ABANDONED MENTAL INSTITUTION on DISPLAY at HOTCHKISS SCHOOL
(LAKEVILLE, Conn.) – On any train trip or car drive north through New York’s Harlem Valley, it is impossible to ignore the abandoned, imposing campus of the Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center in Wingdale, N.Y. Avery Danziger was the last photographer authorized to enter the site and will exhibit his photographs at The Hotchkiss School’s Tremaine Gallery from May 14, 2013, through June 16, 2013. There will be an artist’s reception on Saturday, May 25, 2013, from 4 to 6 p.m. The images contained in Avery Danziger – The Judicious Palette of Time: New Work from the Harlem Valley/Wingdale Project convey an environment in extreme decay, with its own bizarre grandeur and beauty. Danziger was the last photographer authorized to enter the buildings of the Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center in Wingdale, N.Y., which closed in 1994. The resulting images are investigations into the cycle of time, chaos, order, entropy, and renewal. Through Danziger’s perspective, an unexpected and paradoxical beauty emerges from these strange and toxic ruins.
(AMHERST, Mass.) – A Bintel Brief, an exhibit of illustrations by graphic novelist Liana Finck, based on letters to the Forverts newspaper’s advice column in the early 20th century, is on display in the Brechner Gallery at the Yiddish Book Center through September 2013. The exhibit’s illustrated panels are excerpts from a graphic novel by Finck, to be published by Ecco Press in the winter of 2014. Each of the eleven stories in the book is based on a different letter written to the Bintel Brief, a beloved Yiddish advice column published in the Forverts beginning in 1906. The column was the brainchild of the newspaper’s founding editor Abraham Cahan. The letters, written by recent immigrants to America, expressed a heightened sense of reality full of tragedy, hope, sweetness and humor.