Artists team up for B&A Trail

Musical to benefit mural work

June 04, 2008|By Mary Johnson | Mary Johnson,Special to The Sun

Performing artists are reaching out to mural artists in an exchange of talents to help a Severna Park nonprofit enhance a section of the B&A Trail.

ASPIRE, or the Association for Severna Park Improvement Renewal and Enhancement, is raising money for its Centennial Murals project, commissioned artworks depicting the community's history that will be painted along the commercial section of the trail.

The only completed murals are behind the Carr Building at Riggs Avenue and B&A Boulevard, where artist Cindy Fletcher-Holden has created a stunning rendition of the railroad that once ran through Severna Park, and around the corner is her tranquil beach scene.

Other planned murals include a depiction of vintage photographs by Jane Caha, a wildlife scene by Kathy Ryan Gardiner and a 1940s scene by Phyllis Saroff showing the inside of the former Winkelmeyer's Hardware store. The total projected cost of the project is $70,000, of which about half has been raised.

Helping to close that gap will be a presentation at 7:30 p.m. June 21 of the musical Amelia's Journey, with music performed by the Londontowne Symphony Orchestra. All ticket sales will benefit the mural project.

Local attorney and composer-lyricist Doug Schenker's musical concentrates on the nine-year relationship between pilot Amelia Earhart and publisher-promoter George Palmer Putnam from when they met in 1928 until her disappearance in 1937. During that time, Putnam made Earhart a celebrity and helped her attain her dream of flying around the world.

It premiered in the Studio Theatre of Chesapeake Arts Center in July 2004 to favorable reviews and returned the following July for a second successful run.

For the one-show benefit at Severna Park High School, Mary Spencer will reprise her role as Amelia Earhart, and Scott Tanski will again play George Palmer Putnam. Both are excellent singers who seemed inspired choices when they first played the leading roles and grew even more comfortable with their characters the second time around.

Anita O'Connor will again be music director. Schenker's longtime music collaborator and co-composer, John E. Starr, will play electric bass with a three-piece combo on stage. Starr also created the arrangements and orchestrations for 21 musicians from the Londontowne Symphony.

Other additions include stronger choreography and a larger cast of supporting players that includes Spencer's son, Carter Simmons, and her daughter, Nikki Simmons. Director Christy Stouffer, previously seen as Earhart's flying competitor Annie Page in this production, will play her lifelong friend Gwen Bowen.

Stouffer's daughter, Jessica Everett, is one of the dancers, and Sue Bridgett, who plays a secretary and DAR member, has a daughter, Jenny Webster, dancing in the show.

Beth Terranova plays Amelia's flying rival, Annie Page, and Joan Hamilton plays Putnam's secretary, Louise Applebaum. Stephen Dienenger plays Duke Munroe, Earhart's flying instructor, and Tim Sayles plays reporter Mike Harris.

Jason Kimmell is the choreographer and a dancer, along with Anwar Thomas.

Tickets are $25 and may be purchased by calling Susan Nolte at 410-647-2525. Checks should be made payable to ASPIRE and mailed to Susan Nolte at 462 Oak Circle, Severna Park 21146.


Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.