Choirs are seeing a resurgence in popularity the last decade or more. It’s no wonder – choirs are groups filled with amazingly diverse people who are all sharing one common goal – making beautiful music.
If you are looking for a reason to join a choir, perhaps the Mansfield Symphony Chorus (wink, wink, nudge, nudge), read on for a few really good reasons.
Before you get your hopes up, the answer is “No, Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture will not be on the upcoming Mansfield Symphony Orchestra’s “Russian Spectacular” concert on February 9.” [The crowd begins to shriek and gasp!]. Seriously – the Renaissance Theatre just can’t possibly afford the damage caused by five cannons!
With all kidding aside, this work is to most people THE masterpiece of Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s, or at least in the top three. With our inspired all-Russian concert coming up, I thought I would briefly review this masterwork, as it happens to be the piece that inspired me to become a musician.
Battle of Borodino 1812
According to a 2016 study by the League of American Orchestras, “Overall, [symphony] audiences declined by 10.5% between 2010 and 2014…”. However, there is overwhelming evidence of a plethora of health benefits to listening to classical music.
I feel confident the majority of people want to feel and be healthy. So the question becomes, why aren’t you going to the symphony?
“Every day, American young people spend more than 4 hours watching television, DVDs, or videos; 1 hour using a computer; and 49 minutes playing video games. In many cases, youths are engaged in two or more of these activities at the same time. Little wonder this era has become known as the “digital age,” and Americans born after 1980 have become known as ‘digital natives’.”
It has taken three long years, but in six weeks a new theatre in Mansfield, OH will be born -Theatre 166, The Black Box Theatre of the Renaissance Performing Arts Association.
I recently read a blog post (for inspiration) which was titled “How to NOT become famous”. This did indeed give me inspiration on the chances of becoming famous, and in particular in the performing arts. This is where the perspiration comes in….
Think back to your favorite teachers. Were they teachers who sat at their desk and had you read while they nodded their head and hoped you were understanding? Were they teachers who stood in front of a chalkboard and just read from a book while you looked dazed and confused? Or were they one’s who gave you information and then began to story-tell in different ways such as having you create a play based on a topic, or took you to a museum to explain great art? Most likely it is the latter. I am positive not all teachers want to be just a talking head, they want to be memorable so you learn! However, teachers often need to learn themselves in order to not just be a talking head, and that is why programs like the Kennedy Center Partners in Education Arts Integration Institute are so important.
By Nik Demers
I have loved Theatre as far back as I can remember. Whether it’s acting, designing, building sets, stage managing, etc., I love getting to see a show come together from the ground up. Seeing live theatre was what sparked that love for me when I was a little kid, and the first shows I ever saw were right here at The Renaissance Theatre. Despite coming to see many shows over the years, Newsies is the first production I have gotten involved with and I’m so glad that I finally did. It is home to a wonderful and incredibly talented group of people that we are so lucky to have in our community.
The Newsies set
“Clothes Make a Statement, Costumes Tell a Story”
At the Renaissance Theatre, we take great pride in the beautiful costuming being presented onstage each show. But where do these costumes come from and who’s behind the magic of creation?
Many costumes at the Renaissance Theatre are made by our very own staff! For example, the fabulous Ursula costume featured in last year’s production of “The Little Mermaid” was made by our Teaching Artist and Education Assistant at the Renaissance, Dauphne Maloney.
I love dogs. No – let me rephrase: I LOVE DOGS!! To me, they are the best companions. They are loyal, they have wicked senses of humor, they are great listeners…and they offer a protection that is very comforting.
However, few things in life are worse than a dog gone bad. In To Kill a Mockingbird, there is a very poignant scene in which Atticus kills a rabid dog that has come into town. Every time I read or see that scene I want to cry because I bet that dog was a good dog at one time. Maybe even had a human companion that loved it very much.
Cujo on the other hand…well, this dog is just downright terrifying in the way that only the great master, Stephen King, can create. It is not my favorite story or even movie of King’s, but with it coming to the Renaissance on July 19th, I wanted to see if there were any facts about it that might draw me in. I certainly did find some! Keep reading to learn some very interesting things about everyone’s most frightening beast.