Artists in Action: November brings artists, artisans and dancers
Oct 27, 2013 | 3715 views |  0 comments | 100 100 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Pam Smith/Special to The Star
Pam Smith/Special to The Star
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The wow factor of the local arts community was definitely heightened at “An Evening of Fine Arts” by Cheaha Creative Arts. An audience of about 200 saw young string players and dancers perform while guest performers showcased their acting and literary skills as well. The excitement generated by the evening, including several requests to make it an annual event, provides a springboard into some early November happenings that will bring together enthusiasts of art, crafts and ballet.

Talented youth showcased at ‘Evening of Fine Arts’

The ages on stage at the Anniston Performing Arts Center on Oct. 19 ranged from 6 to 68, but the focus was on the youth, said Rose Munford, coordinator of the Cheaha Creative Arts fundraiser “An Evening of Fine Arts.”

Performers included CCA after-school arts students as well as private music students.

“I see lots of positive factors coming from teaching art to the young,” Munford said. “They deserve the opportunity to learn and to perform. We need to invest in our children’s future. This ‘Evening of Fine Arts’ was one way to show them that we believe in them.”

The mission of CCA is to provide an affordable fine arts education to children and adults in Calhoun County.

Winter Market features artists and artisans

Crystal jewelry, photography, soapstone vessels, prints and pottery — there’s a craftsman’s touch at every turn of Winter Market Weekend Nov. 8 and 9 at the Anniston Museum of Natural History. The free event will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. With 23 contributing artists, the show and sale offer much to see, and it’s always interesting to hear the creators tell how they turn ideas into objects.

Six participants are new to the event this year. One, photographer Pam Smith, is capturing some of the country’s most beautiful fall scenery through her lens.

A native of Alabama, Smith holds a bachelor’s, master’s and education specialist degrees in music education from Jacksonville State University. After a 28-year career as a director of bands in the public school system, she retired in June 2011 to pursue her interest in nature photography.

While wildlife and photography were always an interest, it was a photo safari to Africa in 2002 that awakened in Smith a serious passion for nature photography. Since then she has returned to Africa five times — visiting Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa — as well as the Galapagos Islands, London, Costa Rica, British Columbia, Canada, and the Yellowstone and the Grand Teton National Parks. And of course she has spent time photographing our local natural beauty.

Smith combines her love of music and nature to produce educational, travel and motivational DVDs. She hopes to inspire others to value the natural world through her print photography.

Market vendor Heidi Woehler is both an artist and artisan. Semiprecious stones follow a design in Woehler’s collection of necklaces and bracelets, and her painted notecards, enhanced by sequins, are attractive enough to frame.

Woehler grew up in Heidelberg, Germany. Aside from a few classes she took when her career in the U.S. Army led her to Puerto Rico, Woehler considers herself a self-taught artist. Claude Monet comes the closest to being her teacher, she said.

Lesa Cummings, coordinator of the Winter Market, invites everyone to come in and browse.

“This is a way to see the art trends in the community,” Cummings said. “And the artists benefit from the viewers’ reactions.”

‘Nutcracker’ holiday tradition returns

The Alabama Ballet will again perform “The Nutcracker” this year at the Anniston Performing Arts Center Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. Seeing the cherished fairy tale has become a tradition with area audiences.

Tickets are $12 for children 12 years and under and $20 for adults and can be ordered now by calling Pam McKenzie, ticket chairman, at 256-832-4554. Tickets will also be available Nov. 1 at the Chamber of Commerce in Anniston, Couch’s Jewelers, Noble Bank & Trust in Anniston and Oxford, The Rabbit Hutch, Tyson Fine Wines & Things and Bank of Wedowee.
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