Art, Galleries & Museums
The Classics at Brucemore: The Night of the Iguana PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Tara Richards   
Friday, 22 June 2012 14:25

The Classics at Brucemore: The Night of the Iguana

Let a live mariachi band transport you to Puerto Barrio, Mexico, the setting of American playwright Tennessee Williams’s drama, The Night of the Iguana. This year’s Classics at Brucemore performances are July 12-14 and 19-21 at 8:00 p.m. in the natural amphitheater near the pond on the Brucemore estate. Gates open at 7:00 p.m.

Tennessee Williams, considered one of the greatest American playwrights, is most known for two Pulitzer Prize dramas, A Streetcar Named Desire (1947) and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955).  Debuting on Broadway in 1961 and winning the New York Drama Critics Award, The Night of the Iguana is the last of Williams’s major successes. Set at a Mexican hotel in the early 1940s, the drama presents several character portraits in an exploration of what it means to be human.

“We chose this show for the Classics because it has all the great hallmarks of a Classics show,” said Artistic Director Jason Alberty, “a gorgeous outdoor setting, compelling characters, a classic literary pedigree, and themes that reach out to all of us.”

Sponsored by Rockwell Collins and the Corridor Business Journal, The Night of the Iguana features a cast of the area’s finest actors. Ten return to the Classics stage, including Heather Akers, Richie Akers, Megan Turner Ginsberg, Scott Humeston, Jim Kropa, Nathan Nelson, Marty Norton, Katy Slaven, Hannah Spina, and Len Struttmann. Making their Classics debut are Andrew Clancey, Olivia Frisch, Kivan Kirk, and Skyler Mathias.

Audiences for the Classics at Brucemore are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets, picnics, and beverages to enjoy pre-show revelry from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m.  A trio from Mariachi de Colores, an Iowa based ensemble founded in 2010, will enhance the experience and set the tone for the show with traditional music. The full ensemble numbers 11 musicians from Mexico, Panama, and the United States. For more information about the band, please contact the director of Mariachi de Colores, Ed East, at (319) 504-2122.

Advance tickets are $18 for adults and $15 for Brucemore members and students. All tickets at the gate are $20.  Tickets may be purchased at the Brucemore Store or by calling (319) 362-7375. Parking is available on the grounds. For additional information, please visit the Brucemore website,

The Classics at Brucemore began as collaboration between Torchlight Theatrics and Brucemore in 1996, thus launching outdoor theatre in Eastern Iowa. The Classics celebrates a rich history of quality live theatre, from Greek tragedy to Shakespearean comedy and twentieth  century American drama. Much more than a play performed outdoors, the Classics fully utilizes the site as the natural amphitheater provides a lush backdrop and the outdoor environment is incorporated into the action — actors emerge from the woods, get dunked in the pond, and help themselves to the audience’s picnics.

Experience Brucemore, an unparalleled blend of tradition and culture, located at 2160 Linden Drive SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. At the heart of the historic 26-acre estate stands a nineteenth-century mansion filled with the stories of three Cedar Rapids families.  Concerts, theater, programs, and tours enliven the site and celebrate the heritage of a community.  For more information, call (319) 362-7375 or visit


Dubuque's ART Gumbo tomorrow! PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Paula Neuhaus   
Wednesday, 20 June 2012 13:58
Mark your calendars for the most innovative (and affordable) way to be a patron of the arts...ART GUMBO Soup Dinner! This week, Thursday, June 21 from 6-8 PM at St. Mark Community Center, 1201 Locust St.

What is it?
ART GUMBO is a quarterly soup dinner that offers a new way for artists to help fund their projects and for art patrons to invest in our arts community. Mixing the localvore movement with microfunding, ART GUMBO pairs local art with local food.

How does it work?
Artists/Creatives submit a brief proposal of their project. YOU are invited to the Art Gumbo Soup Dinner, pays $10  to review the grants, slurp soup, and vote for YOUR favorite proposal.  All proceeds collected go into the ART GUMBO microfund for the night. The proposal with the most votes is awarded the microfund. It's that easy! (Proposal packet it attached to this us to save paper & resources by printing your own copy & bringing it with you to the dinner!)

When & Where?
Thursday | June 21| 6-8 p.m.
St. Mark Community Center, 1201 Locust St.
$10 (goes to the winning art projects)

Soup Du Jour?
  • Soup & Bread by L May Eatery
  • Sweet Treats by Cathy Dolphin
  • Craft Brew Tasting by Dubuque Society of Brewers

Want to read the proposals ahead of time?
  • March 22 proposal packet is attached to this email or visit the AG Blog to download.
  • You must attend the event in order to vote.

What's New?

  • Proceeds are awarded in a 70/30 ratio. 70% to the project with the most votes. 30% to the runner up.
FYI: Since our launch in September 2010 AG has funded 7 projects raising a total of $5,650for Dubuque art projects!  (Visit the AG Blog for all the news.)

See you tomorrow!!!!

AAM President to visit the Figge during Statewide Tour PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Susan Horan   
Wednesday, 20 June 2012 13:55

Davenport, IOWA (June 2012) On Sunday, July 1, 2012 the American Association of Museums (AAM) President Ford W. Bell will visit the Figge Art Museum in Downtown Davenport, Iowa.  Mr. Bell is on a statewide tour of accredited museum and is scheduled to arrive at the Figge at noon.  During his museum visit, Mr. Bell will meet and listen to museum leadership about the issues they are facing, as well as share how being an accredited museum is an outstanding accomplishment in the museum field.  Mr. Bell will available to speak with the media at 2pm, after a museum tour and a lunch with members of the Figge staff, Board of Trustees and community leaders.

The Figge was awarded re-accreditation from the American Association of Museums in 2010.  Accreditation from the AAM is the highest national recognition for a museum and signifies excellence to the museum community, to governments, funders, outside agencies, and to the museum-going public.

Mr. Bell is scheduled to visit four other Iowa museums: Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Cedar Rapids; The National Czech and Slovak Museum, Cedar Rapids; Grout Museum of History & Science, Waterloo; and MacNider Art Museum, Mason City.

Ford W. Bell began his tenure as president of the American Association of Museums in June 2007. He brings to AAM a lifelong passion for museums, and a clear understanding of the important role which museums play as places of lifelong learning and inspiration.

Bell has a longstanding relationship with the museum community. He helped raise $103 million as co-chair of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts’ “Bring Art to Life” capital campaign, completed in 2006 and he served as chair of the organization’s board from 2003 to 2005. A board-certified veterinary oncologist, Bell credits his many childhood visits to the Bell Museum at the University of Minnesota with fostering a lifelong love of nature and science.

Bell has more than 30 years experience as a nonprofit executive, board chair, donor, trustee and educator. A candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2006, he was president and CEO of the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation, a prominent clinical cardiovascular research organization and a nationally recognized provider of community heart health education.

From 1982 to 1995, Bell served on the staff of the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine, where he taught and did clinical research in comparative oncology. He served as trustee and elder at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Minneapolis, and co-chaired that institution’s $16 million capital campaign. From 1993 to 2007, he served as chair of the James Ford Bell Foundation.  An educator for much of his career, Bell also served as a trustee of Connecticut College in New London. CT from 1998 to 2007.

About AAM

AAM was founded in 1906 to represent the entire museum field. Today AAM has some 20,000 members, including 3,000 museums, zoos, aquariums and public gardens. Its stated mission is “to enhance the value of museums to their communities through leadership, advocacy, and service.” The largest museum organization in the world, AAM serves the field by promoting standards and best practices; gathering and sharing knowledge; and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the museum community.

For more information about AAM visit

Intimate Recordings of Music Legends Donated PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Library of Congress   
Monday, 18 June 2012 13:54

Joe Smith Donates Recorded Interviews with Music’s Who’s Who to the Library of Congress

More than 25 years ago, retired music executive Joe Smith accomplished a Herculean feat—he got more than 200 celebrated singers, musicians and industry icons to talk about their lives, music, experiences and contemporaries. The Library of Congress announced today that Smith has donated this treasure trove of unedited sound recordings to the nation’s library.

The list of noted artists and executives is a veritable who’s who in the music industry.  They include Artie Shaw, Woody Herman, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Barbra Streisand, Little Richard, Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Elton John, Paul Simon, David Bowie, Billy Joel, Sting, Tony Bennett, Joan Baez, James Taylor, Dick Clark, Tina Turner, Tom Jones, B. B. King, Quincy Jones, David Geffen, Mickey Hart, Harry Belafonte and many others.  All types of popular music are represented—from rock ‘n’ roll, jazz, rhythm & blues and pop to big-band, heavy metal, folk and country-western.

While president of Capitol Records/EMI, Smith recorded 238 hours of interviews over two years, excerpts of which he compiled and presented in his groundbreaking book, “Off the Record,” published by Warner Books in 1988.  These candid and unabridged interviews have been digitized by the Library and initially will be accessible in its Capitol Hill reading room.  Some of the recordings also will be streamed on the Library’s website ( later this year.

The Joe Smith Collection is an invaluable addition to the Library’s comprehensive collection of recorded sound,” said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. “These frank and poignant oral histories of many of the nation’s musical icons give us unique insights into them as artists, entertainers and human beings.  The world knows these great musicians through their songs, but Joe Smith has provided us an intimate window into their lives through their own words.

”Smith’s career in music started in the 1950s at the dawn of the rock ‘n’ roll era.  Following his graduation from Yale, Smith worked as a sportscaster and later as a disc jockey at WMEX and WBZ in Boston.  He transitioned into record promotions when he moved to Los Angeles in 1960 and rose to legendary status in the industry as president of three major labels—Warner Bros., Elektra/Asylum and Capitol/EMI.  Smith signed such notable artists as the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Van Morrison, Frank Zappa, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt and the Eagles.

His relationship with the industry’s creative community over four decades enabled him to compile a history of popular music by presenting the artists’ stories in their own voices.  One critic wrote that “Joe Smith has done what no historian, musician, pop critic or rock writer has been able to do. He’s compiled a history of popular music, ranging from the big bands of the ‘20s to the chart-toppers of today … a paper jukebox that’s chock-full of pop.”

A couple of decades following the success of his book, Smith (now 84) envisioned sharing his original unabridged interviews with scholars, researchers and the American public. “In recent years, it dawned on me that, if anything, the significance of recollections from Jerry Lee Lewis, Mick Jagger, Smokey Robinson, Ahmet Ertegun, Herb Alpert, Ruth Brown and all the other notables I was fortunate enough to interview, are truly part of the fabric of our cultural history,” said Smith. “I wanted to share this treasure trove with any and all who might be interested. The Library of Congress is, clearly, the venue most appropriate and best equipped to do just that now and into the future.  I hope that generations to come will benefit from hearing the voices of these brilliant artists and industry luminaries recounting their personal histories.  I'm just thrilled that the Library of Congress has agreed to preserve and safeguard these audio artifacts.”

As an insider, Smith connected with the artists on a personal level, leading to some interesting revelations.

• Bo Diddley talking about his own death
• Mickey Hart’s revealing story about his father
• Steven Tyler’s problems with drug addiction
• Peter Frampton’s short-lived popularity
• Bob Dylan’s surprising assessment of the turbulent ‘60s
• David Bowie’s description of Mick Jagger as conservative
• Paul McCartney’s frank admission of professional superiority
• Les Paul’s creation of an electric guitar in 1929
• Motown’s restrictive work environment
• Herb Jeffries’ and Dave Brubeck’s recollections of working in a racially segregated society

The recordings in the Joe Smith Collection will be housed in the Library’s Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation in Culpeper, Va., a state-of-the-art facility that was made possible through the generosity of David Woodley Packard and the Packard Humanities Institute, with benefaction from the U.S. Congress.  The Library’s Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division’s collections include nearly 3 million sound recordings.

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, programs and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at

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The Putnam Museum will have the first in the world! PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Jenna Smith   
Friday, 15 June 2012 12:23
On June 29 the Putnam will reveal the new affiliation with a highly respected organization and their world renown brand. The Putnam will be the first Giant Screen Theater in the world to launch this relationship that promises to attract people to the Quad Cities from around our region.

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