February brings a number of excellent, interesting and quite worthwhile art and music events, a large number courtesy of William & Mary and its faculty and students.
A very special event takes place in the WCAC, starting Saturday — and running Feb. 11, 18, 25 and March 4 — with its 2023 spring session of Buddy Art. This is a free program of art activities for kids 6 and up with special needs or physical disabilities.
The program, a community outreach effort, resumed last fall after being canceled for two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Parents and kids were so happy to have it available again,” coordinator Karen Schwartz said.
A variety of art activities is offered based on the ages, ability levels and interests of the participating children. Each child is assigned a volunteer buddy to work with one-on-one, helping the child to explore the materials. Participants may stay in one area or engage in multiple activities during the duration of the class period.
There are several stations for activities such as finger painting; working with air-dried clay; doing collages (cutting or tearing and pasting colored papers and other objects); drawing with crayons, markers, pastels or colored pencils; and easel painting. There will also be special projects that could include printmaking, making self-portraits, playing with bubbles and using sidewalk chalk outside. Classes run 3-4 p.m. in rooms A and B.
The organization praises the help and support it has gotten from W&M students who volunteer to work with the youth, along with the James City County Recreation Center, which will host it at its 5301 Longhill Road facility.
To learn more about Buddy Art and to register for the spring session, visit visitwcac.org/programs/community-activities/buddy-art/. If registration is not possible online, families can register at the first class and can join at any point during the sessions.
For more information, contact Schwartz at Buddy.Art.Kids@gmail.com or 757-879-4328.
The W&M Botetourt Chamber Singers, a select, audition-only group of undergraduate singers, will offer its “Broadway Gala,” an evening of classic Broadway shows, Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kimball Theatre.
The evening’s theme is “Night and Day” and, appropriately, will feature familiar tunes such as “It’s a Grand Night for Singing,” “I Got the Sun in the Morning” and “I Could Have Danced All Night.” Additionally, expect a few newer songs such as “Seize the Day” from Newsies. The fun will be enhanced by music from Harris Simon, instructor and renowned player of jazz piano and harmonica. Tickets are $20 general and $5 student. All proceeds benefit the Botetourt’s musical initiatives such as its International Choral Tour. To purchase, visit: www.tix.com/ticket-sales/Kimball%20Theatre/6809/event/1310828 or events.wm.edu/event/view/kimball.
Music of a very different style from the Kadencia, which opened William & Mary’s Ewell’s spring performances a few weeks ago, comes with the Wren Masters’ Baroque Brilliance program featuring music by virtuoso composer-performers of the 18th century, such as Telemann, Marin Marais, Buxtehude and J.S. Bach. The concert takes place on campus on Feb. 24 in the Great Hall of the Wren Building.
Based in Williamsburg, the baroque Wren Masters specialize in historical performance of 17th and 18th century music played on harpsichord, recorder, baroque violin and viola da gamba. The talented players are highly skilled with pedigree-plus backgrounds and experience teaching and playing in orchestras across the country, including W&M, and ensembles for Colonial Williamsburg and beyond. Members include Tom Marshall on harpsichord, Ruth van Baak Griffoen on recorder, Susan Via on violin and Brady Lanier on viola da gamba and Baroque cello. The concert starts at 7 p.m.; doors open at 6:30 p.m. Free and open to the public.
The W&M theater department has a thought-provoking play coming up Feb. 23-26 in the Kimball. “Proof” was written by David Auburn and won the 2001 Tony for Best Play and Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
Essentially, “Proof” evolves around Catherine, the daughter and caretaker of brilliant mathematician Robert, albeit one with some mental instability, who dies — causing her to deal with her own “what if” and “unknowns” of potential shared qualities. Along the way, her estranged sister shows up, along with Hal, Robert’s former student, who turns out to be interested in more than just poring through the mathematician’s 103 notebooks looking for a valuable “proof.” It’s a long weekend of many, many discoveries.
The play was also adapted into a 2005 film with Gwyneth Paltrow, Anthony Hopkins, Jake Gyllenhaal and Hope Davis.
“Proof” will be directed by W&M visiting assistant professor Abbie Cathcart.
Showtimes are 7:30 pm. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $15 adults and $7 students/children; W&M students with ID are free. For tickets, visit events.wm.edu/event.
Have information about arts in the Historic Triangle? Contact John Shulson at firstname.lastname@example.org.