Silence that phone!

By now, everyone knows about the “I-Phone Marimba” moment that temporarily stopped the New York Philharmonic’s performance of Mahler’s Ninth Symphony.  For the record and as continuing reminder to concert and theater goers everywhere, here’s the whole cringe-inducing story.

Why support non-profit arts and the United Cultural Fund

Broome County Arts Council’s United Cultural Fund opened its 2012 Campaign on November 3rd with “An Artful Evening with NPR’s Susan Stamberg, a fundraising event at the Binghamton Riverwalk Hotel, featuring National Public Radio’s premier arts correspondent. UCF 2012 is the only combined campaign for the arts in the region and seeks to raise $308,325 for competitive grants to non-profit arts and cultural organizations, community non-profits and individual artists in Broome County. In a speech to Binghamton Rotary #64 yesterday (December 13th), BCAC’s Executive Director Sharon Ball explained how the UCF helps sustain arts non-profits for the benefit of the entire community.

Thank you very much. I’m grateful for the invitation to speak to you this afternoon. I know the good work that Rotary does all over the world and I commend you for the good work that Rotary does here in this community.

What a year it’s been for our community! First the economy, then the economy, then the economy, and then the second 100 year flood in 5 years. Another hit, another blow to the body of this already challenged region and the people who are determined to stay here, to do business here, care for their families and friends here, and maintain their neighborhoods – right here in the once renowned “valley of opportunity”. Read the rest of this entry »

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In Memorium: Genevieve Cerwonka

The community has lost a great talent and a huge spirit with the passing of artist Genevieve Cerwonka.   Please take a moment to share your remembrances of her life and her work.

An appeal to parents and patrons

I’m wearing many hats as I write this editorial: Editor of BAMirror, arts patron and parent. On Tuesday, you will be voting on the budget for your local school district. This has been a rough year for school boards, trying to cut budgets yet maintain programs. Doubtless, some of you will be looking strictly at the bottom line and casting your vote to reflect your opinion of your tax rate. I understand that; I’m a taxpayer, too. Others of you may be casting protest votes against a budget that reduced or eliminated your favorite program. Again, I understand your frustration. I only ask you to consider a more reasoned approach as outlined by the Union-Endicott PTSA president in Friday’s Press & Sun-Bulletin (May 13) — — and keep in mind that any subsequent versions of a budget won’t restore any cuts.
For that reason, I appeal now to parents, artists and arts organizations to start thinking about ways to compensate for losses such as field trips and enrichment programs. When BAMirror began, Sharon Ball and I expressed our hope that the blog would serve as an online salon, a place where artists and those who love the arts could exchange ideas. Here’s the perfect opportunity. Let’s start a dialogue on how we can continue to bring arts to students (the next generation of arts patrons) and bring students to the arts.

Barb Van Atta

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When you miss the arts

Another day, another lingering cough from “the thing that’s going around,” another missed opportunity to enjoy the arts. Sniffles and snowfalls seem to be getting in my way when I want to embrace the arts in Binghamton. Soooo … who would like to join the BAMirror conversation and tell me what I missed last weekend at the first First Friday of 2011? 

And speaking of missing out on something: How many of you felt a little less complete on Dec. 31, 2010, when you didn’t have a First Night celebration to attend? How about sharing your First Night memories and what you missed most now that Binghamton’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration has been disbanded?

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The passing of artist Armondo Dellasanta

A. Dellasanta 1998

Dellasanta at his easel in 1998

 It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved artist, Armondo Dellasanta, who died on Dec. 21, 2010 at the age of 94. He was a great friend who will be missed by family, his many friends and admirers. In his oil paintings, etchings and drawings, he captured the special places and history of Binghamton, New York City and Susquehanna, Pa., where he stood guard duty in 1941. He was deeply honored by the recognition he received during his lifetime, which included a star on Binghamton’s Walk of Fame and his Lifetime Achievement Award from our Broome County Arts Council. A very humble man, he nevertheless enjoyed watching his profile which aired frequently on public TV station WSKG in a program called “Expressions- – the Art and Soul of the Southern Tier.” He started to paint in the late 1950s and carried a sketch book with him in France during World War II.  As an infantryman, he fought in both France and Austria and received the Bronze Star. As an artist, he was influenced by the “Ashcan School” whose artists painted scenes of everyday life.  He developed his own unique Impressionistic style over the years and was referred to by admirers as “Binghamton’s Van Gogh” and an “urban Monet.” Read the rest of this entry »

Public art with a timely message

A statue to The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. now stands on Binghamton’s River Walk at the Court Street Bridge at the head of the Peacemakers Trail. Unveiled Wednesday (Nov. 17), the life-sized sculpture captures the civil rights martyr in dynamic action. Sculptor Stan Watts of Atlas Bronze Casting of Kearns, Utah, said he wanted to portray the civil rights martyr in full exhortation, arm raised in a call to action, mouth open to utter the words “I have a dream today …”   Watts said he wanted the art work to speak for itself.  He was commissioned to create the bronze statue  by the Broome County Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission headed by Reverend Arthur Jones and his wife, Camille Jones, who raised some  $30,000 for the project.  Read the rest of this entry »
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