Arts Previews

  • UMass Amherst Theater opens its new season on Oct. 10 with “Baltimore,” a story about racial conflict on a college campus. The play runs through Oct. 19. Submitted photo

Friday, October 04, 2019
UMass Amherst Theater opens new season

At a time when racial divisions and tensions are an issue across the country, “Baltimore,” the first play presented this fall by the University of Massachusetts Theater Department, examines how the issue can surface on a college campus.

The production, which opens Thursday, Oct. 10 and runs through Oct. 19 in the Rand Theater, explores what happens when a resident advisor, Shelby, must confront a racially tinged incident that divides her first-year students. With pressure mounting from “residents, the new dean, and even her best friend, Shelby must decide if she will enter the fray or watch her community come apart at the seams,” as publicity notes put it.

Each presentation of “Baltimore,” directed by second-year graduate student Josh Glenn-Kayden, will be followed by post-show discussions about the issues the play raises. Tickets range from $5 to $15 and can be purchased by calling 1-800-999-UMAS or visiting umass.edu/theater/ and following the links for tickets.

New music series begins on Sunday

The Norwottuck Chamber Concerts (NCC), a new music series that will offer nine concerts in South Hadley between now and May 2020, will have its inaugural concert on Sunday, Oct. 6 at All Saint's Episcopal Church at 5 p.m. The program includes music by by Purcell, Handel, Krebs, Mendelssohn, Mouret, and Martinu, with an emphasis on trumpet, organ, voice, violin, and viola.

Some 10 area musicians, many with connections to the Five College community, will play. Organizers say the NCC series is designed both to give regional classical musicians another outlet to perform and to produce that music in a less-formal setting than a typical concert hall.

All Saints’ Episcopal Church, which will host all the NCC concerts, is a “warm, intimate architectural venue for chamber music, with generous acoustics and excellent musical instruments,” says Dr. Ernest May, the NCC artistic director and a professor emeritus of musicality and organ at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

A reception will follow Sunday’s concert, and proceeds from the show (admission is by donation) will benefit the inaugural NCC season. Visit allsaintsallwelcome.org/season-schedule for more information and to reserve a ticket for the Oct. 6 concerts, as well as for future shows.

Lunchtime tunes

Smith College’s “Music in the Noon Hour” continues on Wednesday, Oct. 9 at Sweeney Concert Hall with performances of Robert Schuman’s “Adagio & Allegro, Op. 70,” a chamber music piece, and Yehudi Wyner’s “Horntrio.” The two performances, from 12:30 to 1 p.m., will be presented by Joel Pitchon, violin; Joshua Michal, French horn; and Judith Gordon, piano.

The “Noon Hour” recitals are offered by Smith College music faculty and friends to “refresh you midweek with solo and chamber music treasures and discoveries,” according to publicity notes. All events are free and open to the public.

Additional performances in the series this fall take place Oct. 16, Nov. 13 and Dec. 11.

Small works show at Hopes & Feathers

Hope & Feathers Framing and Gallery in Amherst is calling for submissions from artists for its 9th annual “Small Works Show,” in which participants have a chance to display an original work of art on either a 6x6- or 5x7-inch panel.

The shop and gallery provide a birch panel of either size; a $25 entry fee includes one panel, a frame, and glass. A variety of ready-made frames will be available for artists to choose from when they drop off their entries (frames are first-come, first-serve).

Submissions will be accepted beginning Monday, Oct. 7 through November 25. The show will run Dec. 4 through Jan. 11, 2020. An “Opening & Holiday Pie Party” takes place Dec. 5 from 5 to 8 p.m. Full details can be found at hopeandfeathersframing.com.