Local Arts Scene Springs to Life in March

Tuesday, March 6, 2012
It’s March:  Spring, St. Patrick’s Day, March Madness!  The ARTS community of Southern Maryland has many diverse offerings to enjoy. What’s noted below is just the “tip of the iceberg” as more events are already listed and others are being added to the calendar on a regular basis.  Reminder:  Be sure to check out www.somdarts.com for up-to-date listings of arts and culture events.  Submit your arts and culture events there, too!
Note:  A variety of arts classes and workshops are also being offered during the month of March, so consider expanding your horizons and sign up for one of these.  Find them at www.somdarts.com.
·    The PURDUE UNIVERSITY VARSITY GLEE CLUB from West Lafayette, Indiana will be in town to present a family concert sponsored by the Chesapeake Choral Arts Society (CCAS) and hosted by New Life Church (9690 Shepherds Creek Place, La Plata, MD) on Tuesday, March 13th from 7-8:30 pm. This is a unique opportunity to hear this renowned men’s singing group.  The final song of the concert will include about 180 voices as the Glee Club is joined by members of the CCAS and local high school choirs from McDonough, La Plata, Henry E. Lackey, North Point, Thomas Stone, and Chopticon High Schools.  Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.  For online ticket purchasing, visit www.chesapeakechoral.com.
·    On Friday and Saturday, March 23rd and 24th, the College of Southern Maryland (8730 Mitchell Road, Fine Arts Center (FA Building), La Plata, MD) presents its annual JAZZ FESTIVAL, under the direction of Randy Runyon.  The festival includes 2 evenings of public performances at 8 pm Tickets for each performance are $5 advance purchase, $7 at the door. BxOffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828 or www.csmd.edu/arts.
·    On March 24th and 25th the CHESAPEAKE CHORAL ARTS SOCIETY will present its annual Pops Concert.  This year’s concert is entitled “Humor in Music” which will be performed in two different venues:  Saturday, March 24 at New Life Garage Church in La Plata at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, March 25th at the College of Southern Maryland’s La Plata Campus at 3:30 p.m.   Purchase tickets online at www.chesapeakechoral.com .
·    If acting is your scene, or even a deeply seated interest of yours, there are some AUDITIONS coming up that you just might want to attend:
o    The Hard Bargain Players have announced auditions for Fuddy Meers by David Lindsay-Abaire on Tuesday, March 6 at 7 pm; Thursday, March 8 at 7pm; and Saturday, March 10 at 10am. All auditions will take place at the Fine Arts building at the College of Southern Maryland La Plata Campus.  For information, visit: www.hbplayers.org.
o    The Port Tobacco Players announce auditions for the musical, The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, Saturday, March 24 at 9:00 am, Monday, March 26 at 6:30 pm, and Thursday, March 29 at 6:30 pm.   Callbacks and dog auditions will be Saturday, March 31. The first hour of each audition will be for children, ages 8 – 15. No children under 8 will be allowed to audition. Be prepared with a song to sing – bring sheet music or a CD/cassette without vocals. Dress comfortably to move and expect to perform cold readings from the script. For more information, call Rick at 301-752-3787 or Lynne at 301-848-0016. 

·    If watching others perform is more to your liking, opportunities abound:
o    The College of Southern Maryland (8730 Mitchell Road, Fine Arts Center (FA Building), La Plata, MD) presents Raggedy Ann & Andy by Patricia Thackray. Raggedy Ann, America's most endearing and enduring folk doll, comes to life in a production that captures the imagination. A newcomer has arrived in the playroom, a fancy French doll named Babette. But that very evening, a certain prince Leonard-the-Looney-Hearted comes by and whisks her away to Looney-land. Raggedy Ann and Andy climb out the window into the "deep, deep woods" to fetch Babette back home. Performances are March 9 at 7 p.m. and March 10 at 10 am and 2 p.m. Tickets are $7 for adults and seniors and $5 for youth in high school or younger. For reservations contact bxoffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828, or www.csmd.edu/arts .

o    The Port Tobacco Players (508 Charles Street, La Plata, MD 20646) present the comedy, HARVEY. Elwood P Dowd’s best friend is Harvey; the trouble with Harvey is that he’s a pooka, an invisible, six-foot-one-and-one-half-inch tall, Celtic spirit, in the form of an anthropomorphic rabbit. Elwood’s social-climbing sister, Veta and her daughter, Myrtle Mae, are not having it. Veta makes the momentous decision to have Elwood committed to Chumley’s Rest Sanitarium, and things go very, strangely wrong. Veta ends up committed, till a judge straightens the matter out. Now the family, the judge, two doctors, and a very angry orderly search every bar in town for Elwood and Harvey, but they have their work cut out for them, because "Harvey knows this town like a book." Make your reservations for this popular comedy now! This production runs March 23-April Fridays & Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 3pm. $17 - Adults; $14 - Students/Seniors/Military www.ptplayers.org, 301-932-6819.
o    CSM’s Cause Theatre Company presents THE LARAMIE PROJECT, a play by Moisés Kaufman and the Members of Tectonic Theater Project about the real-life story of Matthew Shepard, who was kidnapped, severely beaten and left to die, tied to a fence in the middle of the prairie outside Laramie, Wyo. The production is a theatrical collage that explores the depths to which humanity can sink and the heights of compassion of which we are capable. Tickets are $5. Production is not suitable for younger audiences. BxOffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828 or www.csmd.edu/arts.
·    If you like to dance, then don’t miss “Christ Church Contras” (Christ Church, 112 E Charles St, La Plata, MD) for adults and teens from 7:00 until 10:00 pm on Saturday, March 17th. No experience or partner needed. The evening begins with a free half-hour beginner lesson. Admission is $8 at the door. For details, contact KOProductionsUSA@gmail.com, or 301-535-8231.
·    CSM’s Connections Literary Series welcomes Maryland Poet Laureate, Stanley Plumly to read from and discuss his work at the Prince Frederick Campus on Fri, March 23, at 7:30pm. Tickets are $3 advanced sale through the CSM box office (301-934-7828) and $3 at the door with a student ID. General admission at the door is $5. www.csmd.edu/connections.

·    Sunday, March 25that 2:00pm, the Calvert Marine Museum’s “Sunday Conversations with Chesapeake Authors” (14200 Solomons Island Road, Solomons, MD 20688)presents the author of Saving Squeak: The Otter Tale.  Annapolis resident, Jennifer Keats Curtis has masterfully woven a tale that teaches children the importance of rescuing and rehabilitating wildlife while delighting the reader with details about Calvert Marine Museum's own otter, Squeak. Special guest appearance by Linda Hanna, the aquarist featured in the book, and the CMM otter. 
·    For a variety of area book discussion groups, visit www.somdarts.com and check out the calendar of events.

·    Mattawoman Creek Art Center (Smallwood State Park, 5565 Upham Place, Marbury, MD) is showing an exhibit of artwork by Charles County Art Teachers!  This exhibit closes March 11th, so don’t delay.  The gallery is open Friday-Sunday from 11 am – 4 pm. This exhibit will be followed by one entitled, “Rural America” which is an open show for members and nonmembers alike.  A reception will take place on March 18th. Visit www.mattawomanart.org or call 301-743-5159 for more information.

·    Habre de Venture: Dwelling Place of the Arts - Thomas Stone National Historic Site Visitor's Center, 6655 Rose Hill Road, Port Tobacco, Maryland;  This statewide juried visual art exhibition,  thru June 2012, is a partnership between the Charles County Arts Alliance and Thomas Stone National Historic Site (TSNHS). The gallery is open during park hours:  Wednesday - Sunday, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm; after Memorial Day, daily, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm.  For more information, call CCAA Office, 301-392-5900 or TSNHS, 301-392-1776.

·    Lorina Harris's exhibit titled, Eclectic Journeys: A Visual Account of Life, is a reflection of a range of times and places throughout Lorina's artistic exploration and career. The exhibit is reflective of everything from figurative to abstract artworks that all wrestle with the dilemmas of connecting a physical world with numerous abstract ideas. The show will be on display at Quality Printers and QP2 Creative's Southern Maryland Creative Cultural Center Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 4:30 pm thru March 31 with a special open house event on Saturday, March 17, 6:30 - 9:30 pm.  In an effort to help end hunger in Southern Maryland, please bring food items (non-perishable canned or packaged food) to donate to the Southern Maryland Food Bank.  For more information, visitwww.qp2creative.com or call (240) 349-2953. 

Additionally, other exhibits and classes are held at Mattawoman Creek Art Center (www.mattawomanart.org), Smallwood State Park, 5565 Upham Place, Marbury, MD 20658 and at other county art centers/galleries such as Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center (www.annmariegarden.org), 13480 Dowell Road, Dowell, MD 20629.  Visit www.somdarts.com for information about many of these.

Enjoy all that the ARTS & CULTURE community of Southern Maryland has to offer you in February 2012 and beyond!


Therese Thiedeman, wife of Edwin and mother of two adult children, has lived in Charles County, Maryland off and on since 1993.  While here, she has been actively involved in the arts community for work and play!  She taught music at St. Mary, Star of the Sea School in Indian Head for three years, and music-directed the Port Tobacco Players Encore Kids for four years before her Coast Guard family was assigned to New Orleans for a two year tour.  Upon reassignment to the Washington, DC area, the Thiedemans returned to Charles County and Therese picked up where she left off.  She was back with the Port Tobacco Players as an actor, director, producer, music director, pit musician, Board member, publicist, Encore Kids Director, and Encore Teens Director.  She worked in an arts administrative capacity for the Charles County .Arts Alliance for four years, an experience which broadened her horizons and introduced her to the arts community in Southern Maryland and across the state as well.  Currently, Therese is a part time Ticket and Event Sales Specialist at the College of Southern Maryland, volunteer publicist for the Black Box Theatre in the Indian Head Center for the Arts, active member of Port Tobacco Players, music minister (choir member and guitarist) and Christmas play director at Our Lady Help of Christians Church in Waldorf, and an alto with the Chesapeake Choral Arts Society.  Beyond that, she is actively involved in trying to build true community among artists, arts patrons, arts organizations, and arts businesses through her website, Southern Maryland Arts & Culture (www.somdarts.com).