2010-05-07 / Columnists

From The Artists Studio

Concert At RAA – A 400 Year Journey
Commentary by Susan Hartenstein

Photo of ‘Mannahatta’ from Dr. Eric Sanderson. It is a constructed image of Manhattan, part the forest Hudson saw sailing into New York, part modern skyscrapers. The Mannahatta Project, coming to RAA, traces the evolution of Manhattan’s environment. Photo courtesy of Markley Boyer/The Mannahatta Project/Wildlife Conservation Society. Photo of ‘Mannahatta’ from Dr. Eric Sanderson. It is a constructed image of Manhattan, part the forest Hudson saw sailing into New York, part modern skyscrapers. The Mannahatta Project, coming to RAA, traces the evolution of Manhattan’s environment. Photo courtesy of Markley Boyer/The Mannahatta Project/Wildlife Conservation Society. UPCOMING: Quintet of the Americas performing new music in multimedia sound-surround presentation about geologic evolution of NY. Sun., May 16, 2 p.m. See column for more details.

Save the Date: Exciting, fresh, newly composed music and an accompanying multimedia presentation come to RoCA @ Fort Tilden on Sunday, May 16 at 2 p.m. in a free presentation by a highly acclaimed woodwind quintet, whose performance venues include Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center.

To recreate for the viewer the environment and feel of New York 400 years ago when Henry Hudson sailed up the river eventually named for him, the viewer is enveloped in the natural sights and sounds of 17th Century New York City.

Quintet of the Americas presents “Mannahatta,” a concert and panel discussion on the environment on May 16 at 2 p.m. in sTudio 7. The new music the quintet plays for this concert was commissioned for its “Mannahatta” series and was inspired by the natural history of New York and the evolution of the environment. The works include “Mannahatta Windows” by Robert Deemer, “Quiet Tide” by Mark Dancigers and “Hudson River Quintet” by Christopher Kaufman that features surround-sound cries of whales, dolphins, bears, coyotes and birds, and video of the Hudson River and environmental paintings. All combine to evoke the ocean and river Hudson first encountered centuries ago – to place the audience in the New York of 1609. This thickly inhabited urban center was once covered in deciduous forest, marshlands and the like and supported a human and animal population millenia before the first Europeans came. Also featured is “Ellis Island” by Stuart Balcomb, as part of the musical journey from quiet seashore, to the bustle of that crowded immigrant portal to this country, to the industrial activity of the 20th Century.

The Wildlife Conservation Society’s “Mannahatta Project” reconstructs the ecology of Manhattan when Henry Hudson sailed into it in 1609, comparing it to what is known of the island today, discovering the environmental foundation of the city and giving hope for its future. It is a perfect free family event.

Next week: More about the performance, panel discussion, the Mannahatta Project and the internationally recognized Quintet of the Americas.

With perfect synchronicity, “40 Shades of Green” continues its run through May 23. Acting as a backdrop to the concert inspired by our environment, “40 Shades” explores the color and the ethos of green.

Final Call to Artists: “Left Brain/ Right Brain.” Deadline for submissions: May 7. Prospectus and entry form online at rockawayartistsalli ance.org

RAA CONTACT INFO: Phone: 718-474-0861; Fax: 718-474- 4373; e-mail: info@raa116.org; website: www.rockawayartistsalliance.org Fort Tilden Highlights

PRESENT RAA EXHIBIT: “40 Shades of Green” in sTudio 7, Rockaway Center for the Arts (RoCA) at Fort Tilden. On view through May 23. Gallery hrs: Sat. and Sun. 12-4 p.m. and by appointment. Free admission.

NEXT RAA GENERAL MEETING: Mon., May 10 in sTudio 7, 7:30 p.m. All are welcome. Bring your latest artwork; network with fellow artists. NEXT WRITERS GROUP MEETING: Sun., May 23 in [NB] sTudio 7, 4 – 6 p.m. ART CLASSES FOR CHILDREN AND TEENS: Classes include digital photography, drawing and guitar. Call RAA office for details. PAINTING CLASSES FOR ADULTS: “Painting With Geoff Rawling”: Tues. 7-9 p.m., Thurs. 10 a.m.-12 noon. sTudio 6. $15 per class, supplies included. “Experiencing Watercolor With Bob Bainbridge”: Wed., 7:30-9:30 p.m. sTudio 6. $20 per class or sign up in advance for four consecutive classes in one month for $75 (a $5 value), supplies included.

THURS. NIGHT OPEN MIC: Performing artists of all disciplines invited. sTudio 7 stage. Sign-up: 7:45 p.m. Start time: 8 p.m. Join us. Free.

kidsmART corner

If you haven’t already done so, please read last week’s column about the threatened de-funding of kidsmART due to city budget cuts.

You’ll find out what you can do to help in our efforts to sustain the program.

You may also call 718-474-0861 to speak to Marina Callaghan or Christine Mullally for more information.

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