Setting 'Midnight in the Garden' to jazz Book: The Washington Performing Arts Society will present stories from the best seller by John Berendt, with music by Johnny Mercer and appearances by an array of stars.

Arts Notes

November 03, 1996|By Kenya M. Brown | Kenya M. Brown,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The Washington Performing Arts Society will present a jazz concert based on the book "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" by John Berendt. The event, which also celebrates the songs of jazz musician Johnny Mercer, will be held at 8: 30 p.m. Friday at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall, off West Virginia and New Hampshire avenues Northwest, Washington.

"Books become movies and plays, but this is the first time a book has been turned into a jazz concert," Berendt has said.

"Midnight " was first presented with music in a concert at Lincoln Center as part of a New York Jazz Festival. Performers included Gerry Mulligan, Bobby Short and Margaret Whiting.

The story, which takes place in Savannah, Ga., is a colorful tale of the gossiping ladies of Married Women's Card Club; Minerva, the voodoo priestess; the Lady Chablis, a comic drag queen; Jim Williams, the irritable antiques dealer and owner of Mercer House; Emma Kelly, "The Lady of 6,000 Songs"; and an elderly porter who sings Mozart's "Hallelujuah" in a falsetto and walks an imaginary dog up and down Bull Street.

Berendt will tell the story, which will be integrated with songs by Johnny Mercer.

Vocalists in the program will include Margaret Whiting, Julius La Rosa, Cynthia Scott and vocalist/guitarist John Pizzarelli; and actress Carrie Nye.

Tickets are priced from $22 to $40 and are available through Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600, or at the WPAS Box Office, 2000 L St. N.W., Suite 810, Monday-Friday, 9: 30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call (202) 833-9800 for more information.

Art on CD-ROM

The National Museum of American Art has produced a comprehensive CD-ROM of American art and artists. The CD-ROM was created by the museum and Macmillan Digital USA along with creative director Nina Tovish and more than 25 curators, writers, editors and technicians.

Its features include more than 760 objects from the National Museum of American Art's permanent collection and supplemental illustrations, commentary by artists and curators, text and images of six museum collection catalogs and more than 600 artist biographies.

The CD-ROM contains 62 multimedia elements totaling nearly two hours of supplementary video, audio and slide shows with voice-overs. It is designed to perform best on a 486PC or better, Macintosh 040, and PowerPC. The disc can operate on Windows 3.1, Windows 95 and Macintosh 7.1 or higher. PC and MAC versions are the same. The program requires eight megabytes of free RAM, which can include virtual memory.

The disc is available in the museum shop and at computer and electronic-merchant retail chains nationwide for $39.95, $31.95 for NMAA members. It can also be ordered by calling the Publications and New Media Office at (202) 357-4647 using Visa, MasterCard or Discover.

For more information, try the NMAA World Wide Web site at http: //www.nmaa.si.edu.

Reading by Kotto

Actor Yaphet Kotto, star of the hit NBC series "Homicide," will perform a dramatic reading of the children's book "Can a Coal Scuttle Fly" accompanied by jazz pianist Ellis Larkins, with interpretive movements by Flair Dancers. Sponsored by the Eubie Blake Cultural Center, the performance will be held at the Gordon Center for Performing Arts, 3506 Gwynnbrook Ave., Owings Mills, 4 p.m to 6 p.m. Nov. 24. Tickets are available from the Maryland Historical Society, Coppin State College and the Eubie Blake Office. Call (410) 625-3113.

Careers in music

The Music Registry and Referral Service will hold a free seminar titled "Your Career in Music" for vocalists, musicians, songwriters, lyricists, music producers, managers, music publishers, vocal instructors, audio engineers, and audio and recording studio owners. There will be a panel of producers, entertainment attorneys, business consultants, music publishers and vocal instructors at the YWCA, 128 W. Franklin St. (at the corners of Park Avenue and Franklin Street), Nov. 9. Doors open at 1: 45 p.m., and the program begins at 2 p.m.

Topics of discussion are artist development, song and demonstration submission format, copyright law, sampling, royalties and music publishing. The general public is invited, and the first 25 people to appear will receive a free CD and poster. To reserve your seat or for more information, call the Music Registry and Referral Service at (410) 385-3352.

Kwelismith performs

Performance artist Kwelismith, dancer, singer and actress will exhibit her talents in dramatic readings sponsored by the African Alliance, UMOJA, in conjunction with the Office of Residence Life at Goucher College at 8 p.m. Thursday in Heubeck Dining Hall, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road. For more information, call (410) 337-6424.

Auditions

The Spotlighters Theater, 817 St. Paul St., will conduct auditions p.m. to 9 p.m. Nov. 12-13 for the February 1997 production of "Engaging Strategies" by Marivaux. Four men and three women ages 20 to 40 are needed. Auditions will consist of readings from the script. For information or an appointment, call (410) 882-4611 or (410) 631-3076.

Theatre on Hill of Western Maryland College in Alumni Hall, 2 College Hill, Westminster, will hold auditions 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 10 for its holiday production of "Christmas Toys." Experienced actors are sought for the family show, which runs Dec. 20-22. All roles are open and paid. Dress should be comfortable for movement during the audition. To schedule an appointment, call (410) 857-2599.

Pub Date: 11/03/96

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