What an evening of acoustic music. We just held our 14th Annual Gathering of Singers and Songwriters at the Dietrich Theater, and I can tell you that Lorne Clarke and the gang did not disappoint.
It was great to hear music from Clarke’s new album as well as some old favorites like “Gold.” The musician has a way of bringing the simple moments in life to the forefront through his music.
Another musician who is a mainstay of our annual Gathering of Singers and Songwriters, Tom Flannery, was at the ready with his wit, humor and fantastic lyrics. His song “The Show,” about an aging baseball player, which he performed was just so moving.
Each year Flannery and Clarke invite two newcomers to the Gathering of Singers and Songwriters, but believe me, the artists they choose are not newcomers to the music scene. This year Bret Alexander and Shannon Marsyada took the stage with them and wowed the crowd. Bret is a phenomenal singer/songwriter from our region who was part of the band The Badlees and now performs solo and with his new band Gentleman East. Last night he played “Fear of Falling,” one of his hits from the ‘90s and “We Will,” as well as a few other powerful songs. He puts on a great show.
For a listing of his upcoming shows, visit bretalexanderonline.com.
Rounding out our performers for the evening was Shannon Marsyada. What a voice. She has a great sound — kind of Amy Winehouse-ish. Her song “Ocean,” which she wrote for her kids, was one of my favorites of the evening. We would like to thank the performers and audience members for making it a wonderful night.
Our next concert will be bluegrass with the Hickory Project. Join us for this free show at 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 30, featuring national mandolin champion Anthony Hannigan, banjo phenomenon Dave Cavage, Steve Belcher, Josh Sudigala and Jillian Hannigan. Donations will be accepted.
What a great way to end August, right?
Looking to September, the Dietrich’s artist-in-residence Steve Colley will offer a couple of new art classes. Inspired by his recent Korean War Memorial Sculpture, Steve wanted to share the process of creating a sculpture with his students, so he is offering a Sculpture for Beginners class at 7 p.m. on Mondays, Sept. 14 through Oct. 5. During these classes, Colley will share the basics of creating art in the round from design to working with sculpting tools, to texture, proportion and gravity.
Admission is $65 for the series and all materials will be provided.
Then, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays starting Sept. 15, Colley will invite adults and students ages 13 and up to explore Mosaics. In this four-session class, students will learn how create a mosaic wall hanging from design to completion. Along the way, they will learn how to cut tile, grout and more. I have always wanted to make my own mosaic. They always look so intricate and beautiful. If you would like to give this art form a try too, call the Dietrich at 570-996-1500 for more information or to register.
For younger artists, Amy and Steve Colley will be bringing back their popular Pottery for Kids series in September.
In these classes, students will learn different techniques to create pottery, including coiling, pinching and slab construction. They will be encouraged to apply creativity and to develop hand-building skills at their own pace while exploring various ways of creating functional and sculptural objects. I’m always amazed by how quickly students learn how to work with clay.
For students ages 5 to 12, classes will be held from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Fridays, Sept. 11 through Oct. 2. Admission is $40 for the series. There will also be a preschool class on the same dates in the mornings from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Admission is free, thanks to the generosity of the Dietrich’s Fundraising Committee. To sign up, call the theater.
As you can see, the Dietrich is so much more than the movies!