To kick off the 21st annual Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival, “On the Wing,” a musical celebration of birds, holds its 10th annual performance at 8 p.m. May 9 at the Homer Theatre. Organized by musician Sunrise Sjoeberg with support from the Sourdough Bakery, the evening features original bird poetry, performances by the Homer Ukulele Group, the Seaside Singers and other local musicians. Sharon Friesen-Schulz performs a debut of “Alaska is My Home” from her new “Fireweed” CD.
In the grand arc of Mark Robinson’s teaching and musical career, Johannes Brahms’ “Requiem” serves as a personal touchstone from singing it at age 15 in high school choir to conducting it in a new performance this week.
“It’s a long history for me personally,” Robinson said of the choral work.
WHEN: June 14-18
WHERE: Land's End Resort
Keynote speaker: Naomi Shihab Nye
$375 through 5 p.m., May 4
$395 May 5 - June 14
Fee includes entry to all conference activities including opening dinner, workshops and luncheons.
"Nature Across the Genres: Breathing the Wild in Poems, Stories and Creative Nonfiction," with John Daniel
WHEN: June 18-20
WHERE: Kachemak Bay Wilderness Lodge
Cost: $400, includes housing, food, boat taxi
Although the Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference won't happen until June 14 to 18 at Land's End Resort, the early registration deadline with discount rates ends at 5 p.m. May 4. Besides, in years when the conference has sold out, many writers have been disappointed who didn't register quickly. Registration continues through June 14 until the conference fills up.
Reading Erin Coughlin Hollowell's first poetry collection, "Pause, Traveler," is like sipping single malt Scotch whisky, with its complicated and subtle tastes. Seasoned in New York and then matured in Alaska, the palate of her poetry evokes the nature writing of Robert Frost, the simplicity of Marianne Moore, the metaphors of Hart Crane, the imagery of Ezra Pound and the pure delight in language of Walt Whitman.
"If you go all the way back, like when I was young, I read Yeats," Hollowell said when told of the analogy. "That list could go on forever."
Homer Senior Citizens will present their annual talent show from 7-9:30 p.m. Saturday at Homer High School’s Mariner Theater. It is a benefit for the senior center.
Tickets are $10 per person or $15 per family and are available from Homer Senior Citizens and at the door.
The show promises to be hilarious, say the organizers.
Steve Mueller is the event’s emcee.
How does a young man who doesn’t even know his own name become part of a vision “that a blameless fool made wise through compassion will become the King of the Grail?” That’s the plot of Richard Wagner’s “Parsifal,” the next-to-last Live at the Met opera showing 6 p.m. April 25 at the Homer Theatre.
For the 2013 version, the New York Post called it “A magnificent new production ... an exquisite pleasure for the eye and ear, it’s also food for the soul.”
Several Homer area students received awards in the annual Youth Art and Writing Contest sponsored by F Magazine. Emily Inama, 7th grade, Homer Middle School, and Molly Mitchell, 9th grade, Homer High School, won honorable mentions for poetry. Mitchell also won an honorable mention for photography. Audrey Russell, 8th grade, Homer Middle School, won second place in the essay category. Sara Stuart, 7th grade, Connections Home School, won third place and honorable mention for entries in the short fiction category.
The annual Jubilee Youth Performance show is at 7 p.m. April 26 at the Mariner Theatre. Sponsored by the Homer Council on the Arts, the show features musical acts, dance and other performing arts. Admission is $5 youth, $10 HCOA members and $15 general admission. Tickets are on sale at HCOA, the Homer Bookstore, at the door and online at homerart.org. Proceeds benefit the Youth Summer Fine Arts Scholarship Fund.
As part of World Book Night, volunteers next Tuesday will be giving out free books around town. The national program, coordinated locally through the Homer Bookstore, will be giving away 500,000 books in 6,000 communities nationwide. Volunteers picked books from a list to distribute, and publishers donated books to give away. In Homer, volunteers pick up books at the Homer Bookstore to then give away around town at cafes, bars, etc.
An opening reception for the Kachemak Bay Campus student art showcase is 5 to 7 p.m. April 26 in the Campus Commons, Pioneer Hall. The show features art created by students in college classes.
Norman Vaughan, the explorer and Iditarod musher, used to say, “Dream big and dare to fail.” That could be the motto of Homer writer Dana Stabenow, who grew up in Seldovia.
In 1990, Stabenow was down to the last $1,100 of a grubstake from her North Slope oil work savings, trying to break into writing. Just before her 37th birthday, she sold her first novel, “Second Star.”
In the days of cell phone and digital cameras, where applications like Hipstamatic and Instagram create photo effects of the 1950s, Fairbanks photographer Adam Ottavi has gone back even further in his exploration of historic photography.
Pier One Theatre holds auditions this weekend for “The Clean House,” written by Sarah Ruhl and directed by Peter Sheppard. Auditions are 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday and 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday at the Mariner Theatre.
A Disney Nature featurette and preview has been released of “Bears,” a movie filmed at Hallo Bay Bear Camp and in Katmai National Park. Disney specifically requested Homer naturalist Simyra Taback-Hlebechuk of Hallo Bay to be the lead guide in the film.
Much of the brown bear footage seen from the preview was filmed on location in the summer of 2012 on the coast of Katmai National Park and at Hallo Bay Bear Camp by British wildlife cinematographers Gavin Thurston, Warwick Sloss and Sophie Darlington.
The Homer Youth String Orchestra Club performs its annual spring concert at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Homer Council on the Arts. The concert is free and open to the public. There also is a reception and dessert auction with the performance.
The Kenai Peninsula State Fair isn’t just about the annual three-day event that draws a crowd of thousands every August.
For instance, on March 29 there was a sell-out crowd of hundreds at the fair’s annual Celebrity Waiter Dinner with music by the Grammy winning musical group Beau Soleil and Michael Doucet of New Orleans. The dates will be announced soon for a summer of rodeo events. And on April 20-21, the Fiber Arts Festival will be held in the fair’s Chinook Bay Building from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Alaska Intuitive Arts
158 W. Pioneer Ave.
Spirit-ah-graphy by Joluna Love
11 a.m.-8 p.m.,
First Friday Opening
Intuitive artist Joluna Love shows her digital photography with kaleidoscopic images and more. Alaska Intuitive Arts reopens for spring after being closed for two months.
Bunnell Street Arts Center
106 W. Bunnell Ave.
With youth art shows at the Homer Council on the Arts, the Pratt Museum and Paul Banks Elementary School, April First Friday is all about the kids. The annual Jubilee art shows open at HCOA and the Pratt, and once again Paul Banks features its Art Extravaganza. Artist Gail Baker has been doing an artist’s residency at Paul Banks, inspiring students to create space-themed masks in association with the school’s read-a-thon.