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SundayArts News 5/1/2011
Posted: May 2nd, 2011
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New York in the 1790s
The Morris-Jumel Mansion in Washington Heights was built as a summer villa in 1765 by British colonel Roger Morris and his American wife Mary Phillipse. Visitors to the Mansion can learn more about the period right after the Revolutionary War, when New York was the capital of the United States, in the current exhibition “Establishing a New Nation: New York in the 1790s.” It remains on view at the Mansion until May 30th.

The Young People’s Chorus of New York City
In music, New Yorkers will have several chances over the next couple of weeks to enjoy new orchestral and vocal music at bargain prices. The Young People’s Chorus of New York City gives children of diverse abilities and ethnic backgrounds an education in and opportunity for choral performance, but it also gives composers from all genres the chance to write work for the young voice. This week, the YPC Celebrates the 10th anniversary of “Transient Glory,” its commissioning program, with a world premiere by Michael Harrison and a retrospective of some of its most significant commissions. Tickets for the May 6th “Transient Glory” concert at the 92nd Street Y are priced at $10.

Spring for Music
At Carnegie Hall, 25 orchestras were invited to participate in a new programming initiative, which asked them to submit their most interesting repertory for consideration. Seven orchestras were selected for the inaugural Spring for Music Festival which will take place over nine days with tickets costing only $25 dollars. Orchestras from around the country will present adventurous programming and several New York premieres. These include the Dallas Symphony Orchestra playing Steven Stucky’s “Concert-Drama” and “August 4, 1964.” Carnegie Hall’s Spring for Music concerts run from May 6 to May 14. Music lovers who can’t score an affordable seat will be able to enjoy broadcasts live and streamed online by classical radio station WQXR.

Peter Pan at the New Victory
In theater, Mabou Mines returns to the New Victory to thrill a whole new generation of theatergoers with their inventive adaptation of the classic tale of Peter Pan. Karen Kandel revisits her OBIE Award-winning role as the Narrator of this fantastic story. As she embodies the character of Wendy and voices all the others — Peter Pan, the Lost Boys and Captain Hook are brought to life using banruku-style of puppetry. The play remains true to the original J.M. Barrie novel by blurring the boundary between a child’s adventure and a grown-up’s wistful reflections on the past. “Peter and Wendy” is in a limited engagement at the New Victory Theater from May 6 to the 22nd.

Last Folio
Sunday, May 1st was Holocaust Rememberance Day. A poignant and moving exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage is asking visitors to remember those who survived, those who did not, and the meaning of objects left behind. “Last Folio” features stunning photographs taken by Yuri Dojc of Holocaust survivors and once-vibrant Jewish communities throughout Slovakia. His photographic journey, captured in a documentary film that accompanies the exhibit, took him to the ruins of schools, synagogues, and cemeteries. At the center of the exhibition are Dojc’s strangely beautiful photos of books — remnants from a Jewish past. Dojc was first moved to take these pictures when he encountered an abandoned school where time had stood still since the day in 1942 when its students were taken to concentration camps. The books are the survivors, mute witnesses to a once-thriving culture. “Last Folio” will be on view at the Museum of Jewish Heritage through August 9th.

The Belarus Free Theatre
And finally, the Belarus Free Theatre is asking audiences to pay attention to its country’s struggle against the last remaining dictatorship in Europe today. The troupe fled Belarus in December during a crackdown by authoritarian president Aleksandr Lukashenko. With their political status still unclear back in their homeland, the company has accepted an artistic residency from the Public Theater and La MaMa, where it is currently performing “Being Harold Pinter” and other works in repertory. “Being Harold Pinter” was inspired by the late British playwright who in the final years of his life wrote a series of overtly political plays that served as critiques of human rights abuses. Presented in Belarusian and Russian with English supertitles, the play is a contemporary commentary on violence, oppression, freedom and human dignity. The Belarus Free Theatre will be at La MaMa through May 15th.

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SundayArts is made possible in part by First Republic Bank and by the Rubin Museum of Art. Funding for SundayArts is also made possible by Rosalind P. Walter, The Paul and Irma Milstein Foundation, The Philip & Janice Levin Foundation, Elise Jaffe and Jeffrey Brown, Jody and John Arnhold, and The Lemberg Foundation. This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Additional funding provided by members of THIRTEEN.