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Amid state arts cuts, town grantees find reasons to celebrate

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Folk music and folksy words of praise shed light inside the dimmed theater at the Arlington Center for the Arts as a spectrum of the town's arts community showed up to receive their awards.

Before a number of the 17 recipients of grants totaling $12,300 spoke, Rep. Sean Garballey had his say. The son of a Boston art teacher tried to paint the best face on the news: Out of a $40 billion proposed state budget, $10 million had been allotted for the arts.

"It's not a pretty picture," he said, adding that he hoped for a budget amendment to raise the total to $20 million, an amount he said would return arts funding to its 2008 level.


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On stage April 11, as about 35 people watched, members of the Creek River String Band performed and then waited their turn to be recognized for their grant, for a concert at the Old Schwamb Mill.

Elisabeth Taylor, chair of the Arlington Cultural Council, introduced various introducers for recipients of grants ranging from $200 to $1,500, with an average grant of $724. Grantees were chosen from 30 competitive applications.

The 2017 grant recipients represent a wide range of the arts and culture, in music, visual, film and literature. Those present were introduced by Arlington Arts Council members Asia Kepka, David Harris, Kimberly Harding and Jeff Timperi.

Here is a list of recipients. Where a representative was present, that person is named:

Arlington Center for the Arts (ACA) presents Arlington Porchfest, an outdoor community music festival, where local bands play on porches in a daylong celebration of music and community. Accepting were Linda Shoemaker, executive director of the ACA, and Bruce Hoppe, who said the June 3 event includes the Heights, covers 40 porches and has as many as 80 bands to date.

Arlington Children's Theatre's Summer Season Actor Financial Aid for two August productions, to assist Arlington child actors in need of financial assistant to participate. Josh Bell represented, enthusiastically, director Matt Lundeen.

Arlington Commission on the Arts and Culture's Pathways and Arlington Public Art are collaborating to commission two artists to create temporary public artwork along the Minuteman Bike Path this spring. Cecily Miller, an arts consultant, said the art includes 100 Plexiglas butterflies.

Laura A. Kiesel will coach Writing for Survival ("Where I Come From and Where I am Going") -- expressive-writing sessions at Young Adult Vocational Program in Arlington Heights and Wayside Youth's STEP program in Arlington Center this winter and early spring. She said she received the grant as herself, not as Writing for Survival. Find out more at these links: here and here.

Cantilena, for the commission of Ellen Gilson Voth’s "Of a Sun She Can Remember," based on Eleanor White’s poem about Helen Keller's remembering the sun after learning the "word" for water. Its premiere is set for the choir's May 7 concert "Radiant Sister," at Arlington UU Church. Vera Ryan Greeg represented.

Claudia Donnet (Seyyide Sultan), with Sarab-Mirage Dance Company, under the direction of Seyyide Sultan, will present a staged dance performance consisting of dances of the Middle East this spring at the Arlington Center for the Arts. Donnet, with three group members, accepted.

Dan Fox will present the sixth annual Arlington Jazz Festival, previously the A-Town Jazz Festival, from April 27-30 at various Arlington venues. It will include free and ticketed events featuring professional musicians, as well as adult amateurs and students from Arlington High School.

Creek River String Band will perform a concert at the Old Schwamb Mill. Stroker Rogovin accepted.

Nayda A. Cuevas had a pop-up art show titled "Puerto Rico and the United States," the untold and forgotten histories of my Puerto Rican heritage in March at Art Lounge.

Old Schwamb Mill will present Musical Storytelling Programs on Saturday, Sept. 30, as part of its annual open house. Ed Gordon accepted.

Powers Music School in Belmont performed Musical Storytelling Programs in Arlington in February at Robbins Library and the Arlington Center for the Arts: musical versions of two books by Doreen Cronin: "Click, Clack, Moo: Cows that Type" and "Click, Clack, Surprise!" Jessica Firing accepted.

True Story Theater will present "Protecting Our Loved Ones," four events about how to recognize and address abuse in intimate relationships, at Robbins Library. Chris and Anne Ellinger presented.

Andrea Nicolay, town library director, hosts the Arlington Author Salons quarterly at the Kickstand Café, with local authors reading from and discussing their works.

Steve Henderson presented the original play "Mabel and Jerry" in February at the Arlington Council on Aging.

Delvena Theatre Company will perform "Truly Eleanor," a candid look at our greatest first lady, at Robbins Library.

Belmont World Film Family Festival presented 15 programs of animated and live-action short- and feature-length film programs from countries around the world during Martin Luther King Day weekend. Leland Stein, co-owner of of the Regent Theatre, where the event was shown, offered to represent the festival.

Marc Gurton presents a Día de los Muertos artist residency, at 13Forest Gallery, with an installation to coincide with National Hispanic Heritage Month and Capitol Square's annual celebration of Day of the Dead, from 4 to 6 p.m. Oct. 29.

Rep. Garballey delivered a proclamation for the recipients with Selectman Joseph Curro Jr.


This news announcement was published Saturday, April 22, 2017.

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