It’s been a while since we’ve rounded up some links of interest to the Massachusetts arts community. Friends, there is much to share, so click to your hearts content on the following stuff.
I love the premise behind the California-based Sustainable Arts Foundation: help artists and writers who also happen to be parents to create their work. “Too often,” says the org, “creative impulses are set aside to meet the wonderful, but pressing, demands of raising a family. The foundation’s goal is to encourage parents to continue pursuing their creative passion, and to rekindle it in those who may have let it slide.” Until May 20, they’re accepting applications for $6000 grants to support artists/parents!
Closer to home, Playwrights’ Commons, an organization formed by dramaturg Ilana Brownstein, has developed a number of programs to serve the unmet needs of local playwrights. Commons is currently accepting applications for its Freedom Art Theatre Retreat, which will give emerging Boston-area playwrights the chance to be matched with designers and dramaturgs for an intensive, play-blossoming retreat in a remote, New England setting, this August. The organization also has intriguing plans for its Donut Hole Lab, which will aim to support playwrights “who are no longer young or new enough to be considered by producing theatres as emerging, and yet who are also not yet considered established…” More details to come.
On May 21 and 22, a conference in Cambridge called Play-jurisms will explore the complex thicket of copyright, appropriation, ethics, and creativity. All events are free, including discussions with intellectual property lawyers and artists, performances, and a film screening. The conference, organized by David Taber and Tim Devin, and will be held at the Democracy Center near Harvard Sq.
The Emerging America Festival, a partnership between The American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.), Huntington Theatre Company, and the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston to present “groundbreaking performance by American artists,” starts tonight and continues this weekend. Along with new theatre by local dramatists like Jay Scheib (recent Guggenheim awardee) and Ryan Landry, the festival has commissioned a fascinating library of podcast plays by artists like Kirsten Greenidge, John Kuntz, and recent MCC Fellow Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro.
Congratulations to Boston-area playwright Lydia Diamond for winning the Wimberly Award from the Huntington Theatre Company for her play Stick Fly! She also recently received an IRNE (Independent Reviewers of New England) Award for “Best New Play from a Large Theatre Company” Watch the YouTube clip at the top of the post to see her gracious response.
Boston-area novelist Jane Roper frequently gets asked, “Is your novel fictional?” So, like, is it?
Still kneeling on a bed of uncooked macaroni to punish yourself for not making Salamander literary magazine’s Fiction Contest submission deadline? Well, kneel no more! The deadline has been extended until May 31. Jim Shepard is judging. Contest guidelines.
But George, the Man with the Yellow Hat told you not to get into any trouble! And yet Harvard Square’s iconic Curious George children’s bookstore is in trouble. Actually, it’s no laughing matter; without help, they may have to shut their doors. The store was launched with the help of the late Curious George co-creator (and Cambridge resident) Margaret Rey.
Recently, we discussed the many artist open studios taking place around Massachusetts this Spring. This weekend, there are open studios events in Newton, Dedham, Boston (the SoWa Art Walk), and central Cambridge.
And finally, a few updates on some past MCC Fellows: while Jamie Cat Callan (Fiction/Creative Nonfiction Fellow ’10) is entertainingly interviewed over at Grub Daily, Joan Wickersham (Fiction/Creative Nonfiction Fellow ’08) prepares to join authors Elizabeth Searle, Andre Dubus III, and Elyssa East for a live, power-packed Four Stories reading on May 23, in Cambridge (all proceeds will be donated to children orphaned in the recent earthquake disaster in Japan). Meanwhile, Jeff Zimbalist‘s (Film & Video Fellow ’05) latest film Bollywood: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told (a documentary co-directed with Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra), is about to premiere at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival! Watch a trailer.