The Arts in brief

Marimba Madness slated

for Saturday at Elks Lodge

Homer’s annual celebration of African marimba music returns with four bands performing this Saturday at the Homer Elks Lodge. A fundraiser for the Homer Council on the Arts, new for this year is a Homer youth group, Vheneka, and Kodiak’s first marimba ensemble, Chitsuwa. Also performing are Homer groups Shamwari and an all-women group, Tamba Hadzi. The bands play a musical tradition that has its roots in Zimbabwe and came to North America in the 1960s.

Elder artist Toby Tyler featured

One of Homer’s most revered elder artists, R.W. “Toby” Tyler, gets some special attention in a show opening Friday at Ptarmigan Arts. “Surprises from Toby’s Attic” features treasures from a career dating back to 1961 in Homer, when Tyler opened the 8x10 Studio in a historic log building next to Alaska Wildberry Products. A former school teacher, Tyler, 89, has been a longtime gardener and naturalist, themes reflected in his scientifically accurate watercolor paintings of Alaska plants and flowers.

Arts in Brief

‘Living Alaska’ opens 

Friday at Pratt

“Living Alaska: A Decade of Collecting Contemporary Arts for Alaska Museums” opens with a reception from 5-7 p.m. Friday at the Pratt Museum. 

Curated by Sven Haakanson Jr., the exhibit opened Nov. 6 at the Anchorage Museum and features works collected by Alaska museums through the Rasmuson Foundation Art Acquisition Fund.  The Pratt exhibit features additional works from its collection purchased through the Rasmuson program.

Work = Art

When the Homer Council on the Arts put out a call for this month’s show, “Work = Art,” director Peggy Paver said at first she thought the art that came in might represent the craft side of creation.

“When the idea first started being bandied about, it was the logical choice of where you might go with ‘work equals art,’” she said. “It was the perception that welding is work, but you also can make some cool art with welding.”

There’s no place like Homer for ‘Wizard of Odds’ winter musical

It takes brains, courage and a lot of heart to put together “Stepping Out,” the Homer Council on the Arts annual variety show. Click those ruby Uggs boots together, and you’ll find there’s no place like, uh, Homer for fun, zany musical theater. 

“It’s a really-make-you-smile production,” said director Sally Oberstein of this year’s work, “The Wizard of Odds.”

The show plays at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday at the Mariner Theatre.

The Arts in Brief

Shut Up and Write! is Thursdays at Alice’s

“Shut up and write!” takes the writing experience from solitary to social. Sponsored by 49 Writers, writers are invited to work on writing projects in a social setting with other writers from 7-9 p.m. Thursdays upstairs at Alice’s Champagne Palace.

“No critiquing, exercises, lectures, ego, competition or feeling guilty,” writer and organizer Christina Whiting said. “Just a place to show up, shut up and work on your writing projects in the company of other writers.”

First Friday events

Bunnell Street Arts Center

106 W. Bunnell Ave.

Seven Years, installation by Desiree Hagen

5-7 p.m., First Friday Opening Reception; 6 p.m., artists talk
Noon-4 p.m. Feb. 13, 14, 28: Papercut workshops on stencils (Feb. 13), colored paper cut from photos (Feb. 14) and shadow puppets (Feb. 28)

The Arts in Brief

Saulitis memorial reading is Friday at KBC

The Kachemak Bay Campus sponsors a memorial reading for Homer writer Eva Saulitis at 6:30 p.m. Friday at the campus. Saulitis, 52, died Jan. 16 of breast cancer. People are invited to bring a short excerpt of Saulitis’ prose and poetry. Bring finger foods to share following the reading.

HCOA honors diverse group of artists

From a 16-year-old new artist to a 90-year-old outdoors and history writer, the 11th annual Homer Council on the Arts Arts Awards shine a light on leaders in the Homer arts community who have distinguished themselves as creators, teachers and arts advocates. 

The HCOA Board of Directors decides the awards based on nominations from the community.

HCOA presents the awards starting at 5:30 p.m. Friday at the HCOA offices on Pioneer Avenue. Its annual meeting follows.

The Arts in Brief

Homer Bookstore releases
its 2015 best-seller list

The Homer Bookstore has released its 2015 best-seller list of books sold at the independent bookstore last year. The list is compiled from overall sales figures. 

KPO rocks the house

Chock full of puns surrounding how an orchestra can rock — passing out literal rocks to musicians and hauling a rocking chair on stage — the Link Up concert with Kenai Peninsula Orchestra rocked the house in the Mariner Theatre on Friday, Jan. 15. 

MountainFilm back to cheer up gloomy town

In an alleged winter besotted by gray skies and cold rain, the Telluride MountainFilm On Tour festival has just the prescription. It actually includes two doses of “Nature Rx” — short films that could result in “authenticity, confidence, spontaneous euphoria or being in a good mood for no apparent reason,” as the films are described.

the Arts in Brief

Telluride Mountainfilm next week

For the 16th year, Telluride Mountainfilm shows in Homer. Two evenings of films show at 7 p.m. Jan. 14 and 16 at the Mariner Theatre. A fundraiser for Community Recreation, tickets for each show are $10, on sale at the Homer Bookstore or at the Community Recreation office at Homer High School. 

Healing rhythms: Homer residents part of CD release concert

If Anchorage Symphony Orchestra violinist Daniel Perry had been told a few weeks ago he would be chanting healing songs in front of an intimate crowd of people, he might not have believed it.

Yet the Homer resident who said his specialty is playing the classics found himself performing chants and songs from multiple cultures at the Sterling Community Center in late December as part of a release concert for the CD “Holy Ground.”

“It’s so different from what I do,” Perry said. “I’d say it’s a spiritual adventure. ... I’ve never chanted.”

the Arts In Brief

HCOA offers new classes

The Homer Council on the Arts offers several new classes this winter. Upcoming classes include:

• Beginning Metalsmithing and Jewelry Fabrication with Brett Glidden, 3:30-5 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays, Jan. 12-April 15 (13 weeks). For ages 10-18. The fee for HCOA members is $260 and $312 for nonmembers.

New Year's events

From Old Town to downtown to the Homer Spit, Homer’s bars offer New Year’s Eve celebrations from the sedate to the spirited. At AJ’s OldTown Steakhouse and Tavern, the night is young when AJ’s rings in the New Year on New York time — 8 p.m., live from Times Square. Other celebrations are more traditional, ringing in the year at midnight Homer time with champagne toasts and party favors.


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