Weekly Conversation On The Arts

Thursdays 4:50p.m.

Weekly Conversation On The Arts is your window into the Vermont arts community. Every week, we talk with authors, actors, playwrights, musicians, artists and the people who make the arts happen in our area.

Artist Sarah Van Arsdale

When asked whether she falls into the camp that believes the catamount still roams Vermont's woods, author/illustrator Sarah Van Arsdale sees herself among those who fervently want to believe it's true.

Courtesy, Julia Kitonis

When Julia Kitonis chose a final project for the NEXUS program at Champlain Valley Union High School in Hinesburg, the senior knew she wanted to focus on accessibility to the arts. And coupled with her own theater background and a revival of her favorite musical, Spring Awakening that included both hearing and non-hearing actors, the seed of an immense idea was born.

Courtesy, David Schein

What began as a theater space in the Ethiopian city of Awassa to educate community members about HIV/AIDS has strong Vermont ties.

Beltrami Studios

Finally heeding her then pre-teen daughters' book recommendations to read the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, Montpelier author Laurie Forest devoured and loved the books. And then she stepped into a writing realm that was entirely new to her: Fantasy fiction.

top, Steve Solberg, from r to l, courtesy Seven Days, Caleb McKenna and Karen Kevra

This weekend, Marshfield classical composer and musician Evan Premo will premiere a song cycle he's written, which sets late Vermont writer David Budbill's poems to music. Budbill, a poet and playwright and musician, died in the fall of 2016.

courtesy

Before her tribe was recognized along with three others in Vermont in 2011 and 2012, Vera Longtoe Sheehan wasn't able to call herself an "Abenaki artist."

K-Films Amérique

The Global Roots Film Festival is a program of the Vermont International Film Foundation which aims to bring movies made about and by many diverse cultures. This year, the movies screening in downtown Burlington will focus on the cinema of Québec.

Courtesy, Catamount Arts

Registration is now open for Tap Into Film: 48-Hour Student Film Slam, an intense, two-day event, presented by Catamount Arts in St. Johnsbury and The School Of Creative And Performing Arts.

Elvira Tripp

Next Saturday, the mezzanine at Burlington International Airport will become a runway lined with models donning locally designed clothing in The Fashion Show 2017. And 20 of those models are new Americans.

hookmedia / VPR

A series of discussions put on by the Arts Council of Windham County will explore the therapeutic properties of art — and the connection between creating and healing.

Courtesy, artist Tim Brookes

Six years ago, writer and Champlain College professor Tim Brookes carved letters into wooden planks to give to family as holiday gifts. The presents were well received and Brookes enjoyed his new hobby. He added new and different alphabet letters and languages to his hand-carved signs. Then, by chance, Brookes learned just how many of the globe's writing systems were disappearing and a project was born: The Endangered Alphabets Project.

Matthew Thorsen

Ben Cadwallader grew up in Vermont's classical music scene, both as a musician and as a patron. Since returning to Vermont from California to serve as the executive director of the Vermont Symphony Orchestra a year ago, Cadwallader shows his passion for new and innovative programs that appeal to many audiences with the series, JukeBox, co-produced with local performance space, ArtsRiot in Burlington.

Max Garcia-Conover

Composer and performer Ben Cosgrove writes music about natural landscapes he encounters as he drives around from place to place all over North America. But last fall, when he was the artist-at-sea onboard the Research Vessel Falkor with the Schmidt Ocean Institute, he found the only thing surrounding him was the endless ocean.

Courtesy, Todd R. Lockwood

Just days before passing away, Vermont author Howard Frank Mosher accepted the 2017 Herb Lockwood Prize In The Arts at his home in Irasburg.

Kristen M. Watson

By day, Joseph Pensak is a Presbyterian minister and he also serves as the curator and director at the now four-year-old New City Galerie on Church Street in Burlington.

Courtesy, Sally Linder/artist

Burlington artist Sally Linder says she feels a deep connection to the natural world and expresses it through her works. The subject of her latest exhibit, titled "White Magnetism," is one that most of us will never see in their native environment: the polar bear.

Courtesy, Anne Guay/Old Brewery Mission

The Old Brewery Mission in Montréal has a motto: "Voyez le fin de l'itinérance" or "See the end of homelessness." And since 2009, clients, visitors and volunteers can also see art.

Courtesy, Jack Mayer

Jack Mayer wears many hats: He is a pediatrician in Middlebury, a speaker with the Vermont Humanities Council, an instructor in pediatrics at the University of Vermont School of Medicine and a writer. But it's his role as a son and grandson of a family who fled World War II-era Germany and the Holocaust, he says, that has informed his latest book.

Elsie Smith

Elsie Smith and her identical twin sister, Serenity Smith Forchion, were seemingly born to fly. She and her sister began their careers in the circus arts at a young age and started teaching others early too.

Courtesy, Fay Webern

In the opening chapter of her new book, Montpelier author Fay Webern reveals to the reader, in frank language, the devastating origins of her given name. And throughout the rest of the book's 42 chapters, the 89-year-old writer conjures up a clear picture of her family life and the warm, creative, resourceful people who resided alongside them in the Utopian housing community known as Lavanburg in 1920's New York City's Lower East Side.

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