'Our creative industry': Money, music, dance prizes, Grindr and more Cape Cod arts news (2023)

Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll|Cape Cod Times

The Arts Foundation of Cape Cod earlier this month distributed a record $139,000 in funding to help 14 local arts nonprofit organizations in recovering from the pandemic. The support was made possible through a grant the foundation received last year from the National Endowment for the Arts.

“Temporary closings, the costs of implementing health and safety protocols, limits on capacity, and the continued uncertainty of the public to return to in-person events has placed a strain on our creative industry,” said Julie Wake, foundation executive director, in an announcement of the grants. “These grants are one step towards recovery and ensuring that arts and culture remain a critical piece of the Cape’s identity.”

The need for help, Wake said, was exemplified by the foundation receiving 26 applications, with groups seeking just under $390,000 in help. Resulting grants ranged from $5,000 to $20,000. Funds will be used for salaries, health and safety supplies, marketing and facilities costs, the announcement said.

The Cape Cod Theatre Co.in West Harwich, for example, is due toallocate its $20,000 grant for staff to increase programming and diversify its classes. Song Keepers, which focuses its artistic and educational experiences for Black and Brown artists, will use its $10,000 grant toward resuming mentoring programs.

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Additional grants awarded: $20,000 to Provincetown Art Association and Museum; $10,000 each to The Provincetown Theater, Provincetown Film Society, Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill, Twenty Summers in Provincetown, Wellfleet Preservation Hall and Woods Hole Film Festival; $8,000 to Historic Highfield in Falmouth; $6,000 to Hyannis Public Library; and $5,000 each to Falmouth Art Center, Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and Harbor Stage Company in Wellfleet.

The foundation will next open its fall grants cycle on Oct. 3 at https://artsfoundation.org/.

Watch musicians practice in open air

Informal outdoor concerts are back in downtown Orleans as local musicians participate in “Pop-Up Practices in Parish Park.” The music sessions take place from 1 to 2 p.m. Saturdays through Nov. 19 at Parish Park/the Old Firehouse, 44 Main St.

The working concerts are sponsored by the Orleans Community Partnership, in collaboration with the Orleans Cultural District, and are designed as family-friendly entertainment. The lineup: Sept. 24, Kathleen Healey, a local musician/songwriter who says she uses her experience of living and raising a family near the beach as inspiration for her songs; Oct. 1, Michael Holt, who has immersed himself in classical, folk, jazz, indie-rock, pop and many other styles of music; Oct. 8, Frank Poranski and Kami Lyle, offering eclectic guitar, trumpet and vocals; and Oct. 15, Chandler Travis, a prolific singer, songwriter and member of many bands, including the Incredible Casuals.

Later in the fall: Oct. 22, Sarah Burrill, trying out new material, both originals and covers; Oct. 29, singer-songwriter Catie Flynn, who’s moved back to her Cape home after time in Nashville and performs locally and around the Northeast; Nov. 5: Blu Central, with Poranski and Lary Chaplan, playing “from Rossini to Tom Waits and everything in between”; and Nov. 12, The Bitter and Broken Men's Chorus, which is Poranski, Tom Fettig and Andrew Fettig, who describe themselves as “a group of unapologetic Cape Cod blue collar shmoes … (whose) music reflects their love of community, punk rock, wry humor, Americana, and lefty politics.”

On Nov. 19, on- and off-Broadway actor/writer/director John Schuman will perform “An Afternoon with Moi?,” a one-man comedic presentation about his life.

Grindr helps two artists work in Provincetown

The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown this month launched a new residency for LGBTQ+ artists and writers, offering one-week residencies to one visual artist and one writer of fiction and/or poetry that resulted in a joint public presentation.

The new program was made possible through the support of Grindr, which describes itself as the world's largest social networking app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people.

The first LGBTQ+ visual artist resident, according to the announcement, wasSara Stern, an award-winning interdisciplinary artist from New York City who was a 2018-19 fellow at the work center. The inaugural poetry resident wasaward-winning poet and painter Sam Ross, a 2016-17 fellow.

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The residencies included work space and housing, as well as an artist stipend and reimbursement for travel expenses. The work center’s mission is to nurture writers and artists at critical moments in their creative development, and the first residents were selected following a July open call process.

“Supporting queer creators is fundamental to our work at Grindr,” spokesperson Patrick Lenihansaidin the announcement. “We’re honored to find common cause with the brilliant Fine Arts Work Center and glad we can help create space and time for these artists.”

During the work center residency, Stern expanded and produced a series of plein air stop-motion animations set against Provincetown’s dunes. Ross worked on a poetry manuscript that evokes the Möbius strip-like circularity of grief, time and memory.

Free theater company for young people opens new session

Cape Rep Theatre in Brewster will hold an informational session at 11 a.m. Oct. 15 for young people in grades 8-12 interested in being part of its Young Company. The program called YoCo provides free professional theater training to young local actors through an intensive rehearsal and production process. All interested students are welcome.

The informational session will be held in the Outdoor Theatre at 3299 Main St. (if it rains, the session will move to the Indoor Theatre, masks required). The 2021/22 company consisted of more than 40 young artists from Plymouth to Wellfleet, who learned, rehearsed and performed inside and outside in various locations across the seven-acre campus.

RSVP to 508-896-1888. Those unable to attend may email YoCo@caperep.org for more information.

Local dancers impress on national stage

A team of 10 dance students from Cape Cod and the South Shore participated in a national competition earlier this month and some returned with medals for their performance.

Teachers and professional ballroom dancers Adam Spencer of AdaminChatham and Angel Fox of Angel Fox Dance Company took 10 students to the United States Dance Championships in Orlando, Florida, which they describe as the longest-running and most prestigious ballroom competition in the United States, with some categories attracting dancers from around the world.

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Adele Bloomfield of Orleans was awarded third place in the American Smooth National Champion category in her age division and second place in American Rhythm National Champion in her age division. Maddie DeFrancisci of Barnstable was awarded sixth place in American Rhythm Junior Champion and eighth place in American Smooth Junior Champion.

Spencer, who lives in Orleans, was also awarded second place as top American Rhythm dance teacher. All students placed in their relative categories in at least one of their single dance heats, the group's announcement said.

Other students competing were Clara Mesonero of Osterville, Donna Morris and Nancy Wright of Brewster, Carolyn Kemp of Chatham, Barbara Wynter and Victoria Manni of Yarmouth, Daisy O’Neil of Wellfleet and Avery Lloyd of Duxbury.

To celebrate and show off their work, the group will host a ballroom team match at 1 p.m. Oct. 1 at Chatham Community Center to raise funds for the Studio 878 Trust. Information: https://www.adaminchatham.com/.

Contact Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll at kdriscoll@capecodonline.com. Follow on Twitter: @KathiSDCCT.

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