Guatemalan Textile and Photography Exhibit | 8.11
WISE presents Fourth Cultural Art Imbizo | 8.11
Spirits of Peace
Open Theatre Presents A Thousand Cranes
Nova Classical Academy presents Bye Bye Birdie
| |Guatemalan Textile and Photography Exhibit On August 12, Cherokee Park United Church is launching Richard Nelson’s exhibit “Guatemalan Rainbows,” featuring indigenous Mayan textiles and photographs of the country and its crafts makers. He has been traveling to Guatemala for more than 30 years, taking many photographs, learning to weave himself, and becoming knowledgeable about the ancient culture that still manages to survive. He has organized exhibits at local venues, including the Goldstein Museum of Design on the University of Minnesota’s St. Paul campus.The exhibit opens with an informal tour at 5:30pm followed by Latin and Mexican folk music, sample food from Guatemala and Central America 6:30-8:30pm and a chance to meet Richard Nelson.Cherokee Park United Church is located at 371 West Baker St. See cherokeeparkunited.org or phone 651-227-4275 for further information.
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| |WISE Presents Fourth Cultural Art ImbizoWomen’s Initiative for Self Empowerment, Inc. (WISE) is a nonprofit organization that serves as a vehicle for social, economic, and leadership empowerment for immigrant women and girls. Its mission is to empower immigrant women and girls to succeed.At last year’s Cultural Art Imbizo, WISE brought together people from Laos, Thailand, Burma, Liberia, the Congo, Uganda, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, Nigeria, India, United States, and many other countries. The event included the WISE Summer Arts Program, at which immigrant and refugee girls in high school learned about visual arts through fundamental instruction and creating physical expressions of their ideas on race, gender, and identity. Girls were taught by professional artists in the community and were able to make personal collages, Talking Suitcases, batik, tie dyed shirts, and book arts. The girls’ artwork was displayed at the Imbizo. This year’s Cultural Arts Imbizo takes place on August 26, 4 to 8 p.m. at the park of Hamline Park Plaza, 570 Asbury St., St. Paul.WISE is inviting artists to display and sell their work at the Imbizo, which includes many cultural performances, activities for children, and food vendors. There is a $25 table fee. Please see www.womenofwise.org for more information about the Imbizo. Please contact Tanaegh Haddad at 651-646-3268 if interested.back to top
Spirits of Peace | 5.11Partners for Violence Prevention (PVP) Reflections by Marlene JezierskiLittle is assured, yet one thing we knowfollowing sunset, a sunrise will glow.Just fourteen years past, creative minds birthedan idea. A caring cadre of leaders envisioned PVPand gifted its beginning. And so it happened.PVP’s stream of peace began as a trickle — fed by existing nuggets of peace — it expanded and flowedfrom boardrooms into community centers, neighborhoods, hospitals, clinics, fire stations, and classrooms. A greater spirit of peaceemerged, thrived, and grew. Children learned peaceful ways and taught their teachers as they learned.Good sports proliferated in the West Seventh neighborhood.Gentle canines brought comfort and unconditional love to children displaced by violence. A welcoming play room brought parents and children together. Nurses, doctors, firefighters, teachers, and volunteers joined, and offered hope and peace — one relationship, one family, one class, one school, one neighborhood — at a time. The stream’s force gained momentum. There were activists and artists, victim advocates, dreamersand organizers, leaders and workers, specialists and generalists, ecologists and community health experts,elected officials and media professionals, who freely shared a glorious rainbow of skills, energy, fidelity,and faiththat this greater spirit of peace would empowerand strengthen the community. All held a deep respect and empathy for the faces and circumstances of troubled people. All were driven by the belief that neighborhoods could and must be sanctuaries of respect, love and peace. All carried an unflagging commitment to the belief that the world can only survive through pursuits of respect, love and peace. And so the stream widened and became a river, flowing and growing ever more swiftly, healing and enriching as it went. Now, the river is changing shape and direction, but the dream of a greater and more complete peace, the work that was done, spirits of peace — live on in the leaders, social workers, advocates and activists, and in those touched by this work — women who escaped violence and now live in peace, children who model to friends, family and on fields of sport, the peaceful ways they learned. Spirits of peace grow through caregivers as they reach out and through community leaders whose civic work is informed by spirits of peace. Each carries the spirit forth in pursuit of ways to engage neighbors and community.Spirits of peace will live on through giving of time and talents.Energy and faith in the power of peace will keep the river flowing. The glow of peace will nurture new life and propagate PVP’s beginnings to greater heights. Dedicated to:
The grade school girl who remembered the message she placed on the tile she made and lived her message wherever she went.The little boy who didn’t speak in the shelter until Juleen the therapy dog came to him and showed him her love. The woman who knew her clinic was safe so wrote a call for help and put it in the lab slot. Helped to freedom from abuse, she told others her story to help them get free. The many others whose stories are not known. Marlene Jezierski, RN, BAN. Family Violence Prevention Educator, Writer is a consultant, educator, lecturer and author. She has spoken widely on family violence in the U.S. and New Zealand, has taught family violence classes to health care professionals, faith community members and many others, and worked for PVP for more than five years as an educator and consultant. She has received many awards, including the Spirit of Peace award from Partners for Violence Prevention in 2007 and Changemakers Award from the Minnesota Women’s Press.
Artist: Mary Southard, CSJ, marysouthard.com, courtesy of ministryofthearts.org, Congregation of St. Joseph.
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Open Theatre Presents A Thousand Cranesback to top
| 5.11 The possibility of building world peace from small, individual acts is explored and practiced in Open Theatre’s presentation of “A Thousand Cranes” followed by a multidisciplinary performance of student work from both elementary and secondary students called “A Celebration of Peace.” This features student performers in a peace choir, dance works, visual art and spoken word by Open World Learning Community poets.
“A Thousand Cranes” is an award-winning narrative based on the true story of Sadako Susuki, who developed leukemia (known in Japan as “atom bomb sickness”) ten years after the war ended. In her struggle against the illness, she began folding paper cranes, relying on the ancient tale that states if a sick person folds one thousand paper cranes, the gods will grant her wish and make her healthy again. Although Sadako’s life was taken before she completed folding the thousand cranes, her friends and classmates finished this task for her, and helped build a monument to Sadako and all the children who were killed by the atomic bombs.Audience members will also have a chance to learn about local peace initiatives and to take part in folding paper cranes for peace to send to the Children’s Peace Memorial in Hiroshima.Steppingstone Theatre, through a Minnesota State Arts Board grant, is providing a scenic artist and a lighting designer to help Open Theatre’s stage technicians to create sets, props and lighting effects. Dr. Walter Enloe, professor at Hamline University, is advising the project. He has extensive experience is Japanese culture, paper cranes and international peace initiatives.Performances at Open World Learning Community, 90 Western Ave. S., are May 18-20 at 7 p.m. with a 2pm matinee May 21. Tickets are $5 adult, $3 students/seniors. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to a charitable organization serving children. For info, call 651-293-8670.This is the last Open Theatre performance to be held on the festive stage at Jefferson School. It is also the last performance for many seniors who have been highly involved in theater during their tenure, and it’s the last production directed by Pam Larson, who is retiring at year’s end. It is also the last chance to enjoy Open Theatre’s popular café tables (May 19-20 only) in the current setting. Upfront tables for four include tickets, desserts, and beverages served at intermission. Reservations must be received by May 12. (l-r) Derrick Le-Tran, Tom Barrett, Chante Neal, Sonja Youngquist, Alex Casebeer, Mai Yer Vue, KaYing Yang, Gabrielle Brown, Meredith Shimek, Frances Verner, Leo Veach. Cast not shown: Julie Xiong, Velonika Burnett, Matt Shay, Chue Khang, Peter Moua and Julia Iwaszek. Pam Larson at final OWLC production. Photos: Lou ‘The Photo Guy” Michaels.
Nova Classical Academy presents Bye Bye Birdie | 5.11
The Nova Classical Academy Drama Department is offering Bye Bye Birdie as their spring musical production. This is the drama department’s third production, following Romeo and Juliet last spring and A Midsummer Night’s Dream last fall. The Bye Bye Birdie cast includes 35 students from grades 6-10, and rehearsals are in full swing. In addition, many members of the Nova community participate in the production as a part of the student and parent crews.
Performances are Friday, May 13 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, May 14 at 3 and 7 p.m. The performances are held in the gym at Nova’s upper campus at 426 Osceola Avenue (old SFSJ school building). Information on advance ticket sales (adults $8, children $5) can be found at novaclassical.org or email email@example.com. Tickets are also sold at the door (adults $9, children $6). Bye Bye Birdie, a musical satire of American life in the 1950s, was a Tony Award winner when it opened on Broadway.
Nova students rehearsing dance numbers for Bye Bye Birdie