Arts Around Town

Arts Around Town: Touchstone apprentices showcase new theater with 'Fresh Voices'

Touchstone Theatre's annual "Fresh Voices" showcase is like a breath of fresh air when original works-in-progress are presented by Touchstone apprentices, this time around with Sabrina DeWeerdt and Joe Ferraro of the 2016-17 season. This celebration of new theater takes place Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. at Touchstone Theatre, 321 East Fourth Street, Bethlehem.

The evening will be composed of three original works-in-progress: two solo pieces and one ensemble work.

DeWeerdt and Ferraro's collaborative work has the duo creating a clown piece, following the style of theater that Touchstone often utilizes for its annual holiday show, "Christmas Follies." DeWeerdt created the clown character of Little Yellow as part of "Follies." Ferraro also appeared in “Christmas Follies” and performs regularly with the Lehigh Valley improv group, The Associated Mess.

For "Fresh Voices," DeWeerdt's solo creation is "ArtBot" and a newly-created character, Doctor Calhoon, the genius behind the AI: Project Gemini. The project is hosting a public sneak preview of her latest creation: ArtBot, the first robot programmed to make art.

Ferraro's original solo work, "One Day at a Time," follows a unique story of addiction and redemption focusing on the past, the present, and the pushing forward.

Touchstone's apprentice program annually selects emerging and transitioning artists to study within the company and learn about life in a professional ensemble theater. Their work touches every aspect of the company and includes acting, stage management, playwriting, teaching, and prop making, plus more.

Emma Ackerman is Touchstone ensemble member and apprentice coordinator.

Friday's performance will have a post-show reception; a talk-back with the apprentices will follow Saturday's performance.

For further info: touchstone.org
 

ARTS ROUNDUP

The 27th annual World War II Weekend, "A Gathering of Warbirds," will be held Friday through Sunday at the Mid-Atlantic Air Museum, 11 Museum Drive, Bern Township. Gates open 8:30 a.m. each day, and the action is continuous.

It's living history before your eyes, also with much to hear from WWII veterans who served worldwide. Featured will be the Commemorative Air Force B-29 Superfortress, "Fifi," WWII air and vehicle shows, battle recreations, war front and home front displays, militaria flea market, and WWII personality impressions, including FDR in his 1936 Ford, General MacArthur, and PT 109 Captain JFK.

Entertainment will include live 1940s "Radio Shows" with the Spirit of the Airwaves Players, singer Theresa Eaman, America's Sweethearts, and The Martin Sisters Band.

For further info: maam.org

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Star of the Day Event Productions presents a spotlight cabaret with "Junior Divas" of the Lehigh Valley on June 8 at 7 p.m., at the Allentown Brew Works on Hamilton Street, with Jessie Dau, Mikayla Fuentes, Ashlee Galea, Rachel Knappenberger, Jadyn Lynah, Francesca Rhoads, and featuring Kirsten Almeida, Andrea Cartagena, Nina Elias, Brian Foley, and Kate Pistone.

The Juniors will sing songs made famous by Broadway divas now and then. Accompanist will be Amy Foeller.

A portion of the proceeds will support Mary's Shelter Bethlehem, which provides residential and non-residential services for pregnant women and women with newborns in need of a supportive environment due to a lack of suitable housing or favorable family relationships. The facility also prepares mothers with newborns for independent living and a vision of hope for the future.

For further info: staroftheday.org

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Irish composer and singer-songwriter Luke Slott will perform a "fireside" concert, "Music and Stories," on Wednesday at 7 p.m., hosted by Little Pond Arts Retreat, 92 South Penn Dixie Road, Moore Township, Northampton County. The concert is part of Slott's six-week tour of the East Coast teaching the Baha'i Faith through song and story. His appearance is being sponsored by the Baha'is of the Lehigh Valley.

Born in Dublin, Slott learned jazz trumpet from his father and later studied classical piano at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. He also took up the guitar and spent much of his formative years writing songs and singing in folk and rock clubs in Ireland. At 21, he embraced the Baha'i Faith and began incorporating the Baha'i Sacred Writings into his music. He has released five albums of both vocal and instrumentals and conducts music workshops worldwide.

In honor of the International Baha'i Community's 2017 celebration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Baha u llah, founder of the Baha'i Faith, Slott recently released a new album, "Year of the Nightingale."

Seating is limited; no charge for the concert.

For further info: bahailv.org

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The Bachmann Players are presenting their 2017 Colonial Dinner Theater production, "Easton, 1752: The Founding of a Frontier Village," on Friday at 7 p.m. and on June 18 (Father's Day) at 2 p.m., at the historic Bachmann's Publick House tavern on Northampton Street in Easton. All proceeds benefit Northampton County Historical and Genealogical Society. The Bachmann Players also partner with the Sigal Museum in Easton.

Step back in time as William Parsons, recognized as "The Father of Easton," along with friend, Benjamin Franklin, and other Easton notables, establish a town at the Forks of the Delaware.

Christopher Black portrays Franklin; Michael Hollingsworth is Parsons, and Robert Thena is Bachmann. Black is the researcher, writer and director of the play.

Seating is limited; reservations required.

For further info: 610-253-1222 or c.birgel@northamptonctymuseum.org

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The third annual Saucon Creek Arts Festival takes place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., rain or shine, at Heller Homestead Park, 1890-92 Friedensville Road, Bethlehem. (Parking available at Water Street Park across the street).

Live music is being sponsored by Godfrey Daniels and begins at 10 a.m. with Dave Fry, followed by 99 Strings Trio, Jason Hahn, Mike Holliday, and John Hufford.

Activities include children's art and historic home and garden tours.

A student photography contest and exhibit by the Saucon Valley School District will be on display. The juried photography contest had the theme, "Our Towns – Cultural and Historical Beauties."

For further info: sauconvalleyconservancy.org

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