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Music Alive Grant Awarded to DPAA

Here’s some exciting news! The League of American Orchestras and New Music USA have awarded a Music Alive grant to composer Stella Sung and the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance.

The grant will result in a series of signature events that will integrate the three art forms — ballet, opera, symphony. Sung will compose new pieces including a one-act opera, a chamber work for dance, and music for educational performances.

Local audiences will remember Sung’s “Rockwell Reflections” that were part of the 2011-2012 season for the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor Neal Gittleman says the composer has a gift for writing music that’s “fun to play, fun to hear and sing-able.”

Only five organizations in the United States were chosen to participate in the special project, designed “to help orchestras increase new music opportunities for audiences, artists, and administrators; to identify model practices for sustained partnerships between artists and communities; to help orchestras fully and comprehensively achieve their missions; and to enrich orchestral repertoire with fresh and inventive music of our time.”

Since 2003, Sung has been using digital and multimedia applications in her concert and symphonic compositions, as well as in music for dance and ballet. As a collaborative artist, her large-scale and award-winning work, ‘The Circle Closes,” calls for the use of digital lighting design which is synchronized with the music.

Currently, Sung is working on a full-length opera, “The Red Silk Thread” that will feature several technological aspects in the production, including the use of advanced projection.

The special collaboration will begin this summer and continue over the next three seasons. Sung will also become part of an educational program that reaches more than 50,000 students annually and will create works that integrate dance, vocal and instrumental music.

Dinosaur Exhibit Opens at Cinci Museum Center

A new breed of dinosaurs is now on display at the Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminal. 1301 Western Ave.

The exhibit “Ultimate Dinosaurs: Giants from Gondwana” features dinosaurs unknown to North Americans because they evolved in isolation in South America, Africa and Madagascar.

We had a chance at the press opening to view the exhibit with Douglass W. McDonald, CEO of the Museum Center, and Glenn Storrs, the curator of vertebrate paleontology. In an upcoming Sunday arts feature, we’ll be sharing lots more information about the neat exhibition.

The show will be on display through the summer; a closing date has not yet been announced. Also new is an Omnimax theater presentation that features the massive historic beasts.

Springfield violinist wins top award

Congratulations are in order for violinist Kanako Shimasaki, a Springfield native who has recently won a prestigious Yamaha Young Performing Artists award and will join 10 other winners at an all-expenses-paid weekend retreat at Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., from June 22-24, where she will participate in workshops and a concert.

Shimasaki studies at the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati on a full scholarship under the tutelage of Dr. Won-Bin Yim. She has participated in leading summer festivals across North America including the Aspen Music Festival, Mimir Chamber Music Festival and the Kennedy Center’s National Symphony Summer Music Institute, where she received the Levine Award and made her Kennedy Center solo debut as winner of the 2011 Concerto Competition.

She has appeared on 88.1 Classical WDPR, at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall and the Millennium Stage Concert Series at the Kennedy Center, as well as solo performances with the CCM Artaria Orchestra, CCM Philharmonia and the Wright State University Symphony Orchestra. Shimasaki has been invited to perform as a soloist with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra in January of 2014.

Concerts Slated at Underground Railroad Museum

Two upcoming live performances are slated for the National Underground Railroad Center in Cincinnati.

A one-woman show, entitled “Harriet Tubman” The Chosen One,” is written and performed by Gwendolyn Briley-Strand, and is designed to take audiences on one of Harriet Tubman’s many journeys on the Underground Railroad. The actor changes into more than a dozen characters as she becomes those people who helped Tubman along the path to freedom and those who tried to stop her.

The show includes the singing of spirituals, the secret language slaves used to communicate and escape to freedom.

* “One Noble Journey” will be performed at 2 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 13.

Actor/ playwright Mike Wiley shares two quests for freedom: the stoy of “Box” Brown, featured in the permanent exhibits at the Freedom Center who shipped himself North in a wooden box in order to escape slavery, and the story of Elizabeth Craft, a light-skinned woman who was born a slave and disguised herself as an elderly white man in need of medical treatment as she made her way North to freedom.

Tickets to the shows are $15 each for general seating and may be purchased by calling (513) 333-7500. The museum is located at 50 E. Freedom Way in Cincinnati.

Sale of Art Supplies Planned

Six Front Street artists who dub themselves “professional hoarders” will be selling some of their surplus supplies at a Flea Market from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 29 at the Front Street Galleries, corner of East Second Street and Front Street.

They’ll be clearing out materials for jewelry-making, metalsmithing, enameling, beading, lapidary, glass and sculpture.

Look for:

* Jewelry supplies: Cabochons, beads (antique and vintage), gemstones, metal, findings, copper, wire, solder, lampwork supplies, faceted stones, rough lapidary slabs, rock and mineral specimens, etc.

* Tools and Equipment: Torches/tanks, centrifugal casting machine, three Covington labidary grinding/polishing machines, hand tools, polishing machines, vises, little torch, faceting machines, jewelry pliers, kilns, diamond saw, trim saws, three barrel tumbler, etc.

* Display cases (large floor model case, and smaller table-top cases), display forms and fixtures, cabinets, jewelry books, magazines, etc.

* Enameling and glass supplies: kilns, copper shapes, bowls, sheet, enamel, firing forks.

From Front Street and Second, go to the North end of building, turn right at dead end and you’ll see the sale set up on the large dock.

Spaces are also available for $15 for anyone who would like to set up and declutter their workplace/studio. For info: Pat Westby,, (937) 475-1427, or Dave Brand, (937) 304-1348.

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