Monday, December 27, 2010

Library of America: "Snow-Bound" The Poem for a Winter Storm






Follow this link to read The Library of America's blog post about John Greenleaf Whittier's poem "Snow-Bound." The poem for a winter storm!

The Library of America
calls Michael Maglaras's reading of this poem "The best recording of Snow-Bound...".
















Michael Maglaras recorded this poem in 2007 as part of 217 Records' Whittier Bicentennial Recording Project.

Listen to an excerpt at this link.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

"Barbara Frietchie" read by Michael Maglaras

In this video, Michael Maglaras reads John Greenleaf Whittier's poem "Barbara Frietchie."

video

This performance was recorded before a live audience at the St. Lawrence Arts Center in Portland, Maine on Sunday, December 12, 2010.

More about Michael Maglaras, executive producer Terri Templeton and their audio recordings and films can be found at www.two17records.com and www.two17films.com.

Monday, December 20, 2010

217 Records celebrates 150 years of Longfellow's "Paul Revere's Ride"



Many people can still recite from memory these words from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s great poem Paul Revere’s Ride: “Listen my children and you shall hear / Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere.”

Listen to Michael Maglaras recite this masterpiece of American poetry; this still-resonating call to citizen action.

video

On April 18, 1775, Paul Revere made his famous ride across the farming communities just outside Boston. His one command, “one if by land and two if by sea,” was met with two signal lights in the tower of the Old North Church. Paul Revere’s Ride celebrates the call to arms he sounded that began the American Revolution.

Paul Revere’s Ride was more than a call to action, it was and remains a call to citizenship. I can’t think of a better time for us to remember the important events of April 1775 that changed the face of the world,” said Terri Templeton, executive producer of 217 Records.

On December 20, 1860, 150 years ago today, the Atlantic Monthly published Paul Revere’s Ride in its January 1861 edition. “Since then,” commented Templeton, “this wonderful poem has occasionally become trivialized in its old-fashioned reminder of the importance of each individual’s responsibility as a corporate member of our democracy.”

In honor of the Longfellow Bicentennial, in 2007 Maglaras also brought the story of Hiawatha - more than 6,500 lines - to life for a modern audience when 217 Records released a limited edition 5-CD recording of this epic poem, complete with a soundtrack of Native American drums, flutes, vocals, and a host of sound effects. Read the Associated Press story about this recording at this link.

The Song of Hiawatha is a great story populated with fantastic characters - monsters, demons, witches, and animals that speak. Hiawatha himself was America’s first superhero,” said Templeton. “It is great literature, wonderful theater, and an absolute celebration of our American heritage.”











MORE ABOUT MICHAEL MAGLARAS: Michael Maglaras is an independent businessman, filmmaker, classically-trained musician, and founder of 217 Records in Ashford, Connecticut, a label devoted to celebrating the American artistic experience through recordings of American poetry as well as alternative rock and jazz.

In 2007, Maglaras performed The Song of Hiawatha live in its entirety - all 6 ½ hours of it - in a special marathon public reading in Portland, Maine. Since that time, he has performed excerpts from this epic poem at the Maine Festival of the Book, Maine Historical Society in Portland, Maine and The Longfellow House in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

View a video clip of Michael Maglaras reading The Song of Hiawatha at this link.

On the Web:

www.two17records.com

###

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Snow-Bound at the St. Lawrence

On Sunday, December 12 Michael Maglaras of 217 Records performed John Greenleaf Whittier's "Snow-Bound" to a sold out audience at the St. Lawrence Arts Center in Portland, Maine.

View photos from the performance at this link.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

'Snow-Bound' comes to Portland arts center



'Snow-Bound' comes to Portland arts center
December 5, 2010
From staff reports


PORTLAND - Actor, director and filmmaker Michael Maglaras will perform John Greenleaf Whittier's masterful poem "Snow-Bound" at 3 p.m. Dec. 12 at the St. Lawrence Arts Center, 76 Congress St.

It will be an hour-long reading, with Charles Ives's "Concord Sonata" as a musical backdrop. Donna McNeil, director of the Maine Arts Commission, will introduce Maglaras. 217 Records is sponsoring this performance as a benefit for the St. Lawrence. All proceeds will go directly to the arts center.

Whittier wrote "Snow-Bound" in Amesbury, Mass., during the summer of 1865. The Civil War had just ended, and the nation was grieving the assassination of President Lincoln.

Published in February 1866, "Snow-Bound" was an immediate success, selling 20,000 copies in the first few months. From that point, Whittier became a national hero. Cities and streets were named in his honor. His birthday became a public holiday.

"Yet today," Maglaras said in a news release, "most people have not read his poetry."

Whittier was one of the most famous men in America. Held in high esteem by Emerson and Longfellow, this modest Quaker lived a life of great simplicity while carving out a position in American life as an important statesman, abolitionist, and one of the founders of the Republican Party. His poems were read and memorized throughout America and much of the English-speaking world.

" 'Snow-Bound' is one of the great poems of the English language," Maglaras said. "This intense poetic masterpiece still resonates with as much power as the day it was published."

"Snow-Bound" captures a sense of a special time and place. It recounts a New England blizzard from Whittier's childhood that isolated the young poet and his family in their Haverhill home for almost a week before a team of oxen could free them.

As the fury of the blizzard rages outside, the family and their guests huddle before the great fireplace, knowing they will soon be cut off from the outside world. Inspired in this intimate setting, they begin, one by one, to open their hearts.

Each person tells a story from his or her life -- revealing a depth of experience and spirit -- all seen through the eyes of Whittier as a 10-year-old boy, and remembered by him as a mature man, in this masterpiece of American literature.

An excerpt of Maglaras reading "Snow-Bound" is available at www.cdbaby.com/cd/maglaras. The full text of "Snow-Bound" is available as a free download on the 217 Records website, www.two17records.com.

PREVIEW

"SNOW-BOUND," performed by Michael Maglaras

WHEN: 3 p.m. Dec. 12

WHERE: St. Lawrence Arts Center, 76 Congress St., Portland

TICKETS: $15; www.stlawrencearts.org

Saturday, December 4, 2010

"Snow-Bound" -- An Appreciation









"Snow-Bound" -- An Appreciation
by Michael Maglaras, 217 Records

John Greenleaf Whittier's "Snow-Bound" is his signal work of genius. Whittier wrote many poems of unassailable quality...but "Snow-Bound" is without equal among his poems. It is a work of towering imagination and incandescent beauty. "Snow-Bound" also captures, at once, Whittier's best qualities as a poet and as a man. It is clearly a nostalgic poem. It is, of course, also much more than that. For Whittier's command of lyricism is no better evidence than in this great masterpiece: a poem intended to tug at our hearts, while calling us vigorously to action.

In "Snow-Bound," Whittier speaks passionately about "the hell of prison torture." Since that particular kind of hell is still with us 144 years after "Snow-Bound" was written, his work can still resonate on many levels and in many ways. When he began the emotional and intellectual journey that culminated with the publication of "Snow-Bound" in February of 1866, he was still mourning the loss of his sister Elizabeth: the two of them had formed a special bond that was hardly understandable by the outside world. (We have dedicated Volume 2 of the Whittier Bicentennial Recording Project to Elizabeth Whittier's memory.)

I know of no other poet who can seduce the ear like Whittier, and a moment later slam his fist down in front of us, reminding us of how we must do better and why we must not settle for interminable indignities...particularly those perpetrated by men against their brothers.

"Snow-Bound" captures a time that we, in the 21st century, only have a hint of understanding. Imagine a two-day blizzard (in the days when we still had two-day blizzards). Imagine a family and their friends brought unexpectedly together, entombed by the snow in a Haverhill, Massachusetts farm house for almost a week, before plows, drawn by teams of oxen, reach them. Imagine a time when a group of persons, forced together by the "shrieking of the mindless wind" in a combination living-dining-and-kitchen area less than 26 feet in length, would have been able to sustain each other, happily, through a week of conversation, fellowship, and mutual understanding...without once having to go "online" to escape boredom. And now, lastly, imagine that experience impressed on the mind of a ten-year-old boy of exceptional talent, sensitiviity, and perception -- this young boy growing into a man able, in his late middle age, to invite us to "stretch the hands of memory forth," so lovingly in "Snow-Bound."

Whittier's hands of memory are more than the hands that reach back into the past; they are also the hands that subtly draw the curtain back and reveal simple lives (or, in the case of Harriet Livermore, a not-so-simple life), and show us how self-sufficient people of intelligence and dignity coped with a storm, the likes of which would most probably reduce us, in our own time, to at best, whining, and at worst, hysteria.

In "Snow-Bound," Whittier's use of language and image is without peer. It is Whittier at his finest...and Whittier at this finest is without equal in the American experience. On Whittier's 80th birthday he was presented with a birthday greeting signed by the President and Vice President of the United States, every member of the United States House, Senate, and Supreme Court. Schools closed in his honor. Streets and towns were being named for him while he was still alive.

Tonight, as we celebrate Whittier's 203rd birthday year, and as you hear "Snow-Bound" read aloud in its entirety (and to hear Whittier read aloud is to take the ultimate joy from his work) and not in some reduced, expurgated edition or performance, I hope you become inspired to take up the cause of Whittier again, so that the depth of his human understanding and the profoundness of his universal message can be passed to a new generation.

~ Michael Maglaras

Copyright (C) 2007-2010 217 Records. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

John McDonald interview Michael Maglaras

Follow this link to listen to John McDonald's interview with Michael Maglaras about the December 12 benefit performance of John Greenleaf Whittier's "Snow-Bound."

100% of proceeds from this performance benefit the St. Lawrence Arts Center.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cleophas at the Crocker

Cleophas and His Own will screen at the Crocker Art Museum on Thursday, December 2 at 5:30pm as part of the Museum's new Thursdays 'til 9 series. Art lovers will recall that this film made its west coast premiere in 2006 at the Crest Theatre in conjunction with a gallery talk at the Crocker during its Marsden Hartley retrospective. Director Michael Maglaras will introduce the film.

"Hypnotic...this haunting film illuminates Hartley's life and work with a nearly Bergman-like gravitas." ~ Victoria Dalkey, Sacramento Bee

More information about the December 2 screening at this link.

Read more about Thursday 'til 9 at this link.

Read more about Cleophas and His Own at this link.

The Films of Michael Maglaras

Buy local! Purchase the films of Michael Maglaras at the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Maine.

Can't make it to the museum gift shop? You can purchase online from Amazon at the links below:

Cleophas and His Own

Visible Silence: Marsden Hartley, Painter and Poet

John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Get and Give: Help 217 Records help the St. Lawrence Arts Center

GET: Purchase a ticket for Michael Maglaras's December 12th performance of Snow-Bound, sponsored by 217 Records. FMI at this link.

GIVE: 100% of your ticket purchase benefits the St. Lawrence Arts Center.

WHY? Check out today's article in the Portland Press Herald to learn more about the $17 million dollars the Friends of the St. Lawrence are working to raise.



Rebuilding the Sanctuary on Munjoy Hill


November 13, 2010

By Tom Bell tbell@mainetoday.com
Staff Writer

PORTLAND - Razed two years ago after a partial roof collapse exposed a fatal structural flaw, the stone sanctuary of the St. Lawrence Church may rise again at the top of Munjoy Hill.

The Friends of St. Lawrence Church have quietly begun to raise money to rebuild the sanctuary.

The campaign began last week, after the City Council approved a contract zone that essentially allows the group to build a replica of the iconic building on the site where the old building stood -- now an empty lot at the corner of Congress and Munjoy streets. CONTINUE READING

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Behind the Scenes with Mark Stone: Delius Songbook Project




Banker Mark Stone Turns Baritone, Sets Up His Own Record Label: Interview

By Warwick Thompson
Nov 2, 2010


It’s a sad fact that classical recording contracts are as rare as shy sopranos or well-read tenors. Baritone and former accountant Mark Stone, passionate about English songs, isn’t fazed. He founded his own label.

Set up in 2008, Stone Records already has four well-received releases to its credit, and a fifth on the way....Fortunately, Stone has found many people willing to help him. For a forthcoming complete recording of songs by the English composer Frederick Delius (1862-1934), Stone has a benefactor in the U.S. businessman Michael Maglaras.

“I put out an appeal for help in the Delius Society’s journal, and Michael replied,” he says. READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

Mark Stone and pianist Stephen Barlow at a recording session. For a forthcoming recording of the complete songs of Frederick Delius, Stone has found sponsorship from the American businessman Michael Maglaras. Photographer: Thomas Stone/Stone Records via Bloomberg

Monday, October 25, 2010

"Cleophas and His Own" returns to Sacramento

Movie Portraying Legendary Painter Marsden Hartley "Cleophas and His Own" Returns to Sacramento













What they're saying about "Cleophas and His Own":

"Hypnotic...this haunting film illuminates Hartley's life and work with a nearly Bergman-like gravitas." ~ Victoria Dalkey, Sacramento Bee READ THE REVIEW

"Maglaras is mesmerizing as Hartley. 'Cleophas and His Own' channels the artist's passion and suffering-and vision-with remarkable grace and drama, heightening our appreciation of the painter, writer, and man." ~ Carl Little, Art New England

"There's no film like it." ~ Prairie Miller, WBAI New York City

Director Michael Maglaras of 217 Films returns to Sacramento to screen "Cleophas and His Own" at the Crocker Art Museum. Art lovers will recall that this film made its west coast premiere in 2006 at the Crest Theatre in conjunction with a gallery talk at the Crocker during its Marsden Hartley retrospective




December 2 -- 5:30pm
"Cleophas and His Own"
Crocker Art Museum
216 O Street
Sacramento, California
More info HERE

Director Michael Maglaras, who also plays the role of Marsden Hartley, tells the magnificent story of “Cleophas and His Own” using Hartley’s text in its entirety, preserving the poem’s original thirteen-chapter structure. Twenty-four paintings and drawings by Hartley, as well as flashbacks to his Nova Scotia experience, illuminate the days leading up to and following the great Atlantic hurricane of September 19, 1936 when Hartley lost the young man who had become the great love of his life. This powerful and evocative movie had its world premiere in June 2005 in Hartley’s hometown of Lewiston, Maine, where hundreds of people turned out to see this portrayal of the world-renowned painter. (Not rated / 147 minutes)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

"Snow-Bound" Performed by Michael Maglaras

Read press release at this link.

More about the St. Lawrence Arts Center's fundraising campaign at this link.











WHAT: “Snow-Bound” read by Michael Maglaras
WHEN: December 12 – 3:00pm
WHY: Special benefit for the St. Lawrence Arts Center

Remembered for his legendary 2007 complete performance of Longfellow’s “The Song of Hiawatha,” actor, director, and film maker Michael Maglaras returns to the St. Lawrence to perform John Greenleaf Whittier’s masterful poem “Snow-Bound.” Charles Ives’ piano masterpiece “A Concord Sonata” is the musical back-drop for this hour-long reading.

Sponsored by 217 Records, 100% of ticket sales will benefit the St. Lawrence. A special reception will follow the performance.

“Snow-Bound” captures a sense of a special time and place. It recounts a New England blizzard, from Whittier’s childhood, that isolated the young poet and his family in their Haverhill home for nearly a week before a team of oxen could free them. As the fury of the blizzard rages outside, the family and their guests huddle before the great fireplace knowing they will soon be cut off from the outside world. Inspired in this intimate setting, they begin, one by one, to open their hearts. Each person tells a story from his or her life -- revealing a depth of experience and spirit -- all seen through the eyes of Whittier as a ten-year-old boy, and remembered by him as a mature man, in this masterpiece of American literature.

Tickets are $12 if purchased by November 22 and $15 after that date.

Purchase online at this link.
Purchase via phone: 207-347-3075

All proceeds from this benefit performance will go to the St. Lawrence.

Directions at this link.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

This Friday: John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! screens at The Grand

The historic Grand theater in Ellsworth, Maine is under scaffolding as its magnificent art-deco tower is fully restored.

217 Films
is honored to screen John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! there this Friday. Filmmaker Michael Maglaras will introduce the film.




WHAT:
Screening of 217 Films' new essay in film -- John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!

WHEN:
Friday, October 22 -- 7:00pm

WHERE:
The Grand, 165 Main St., Ellsworth, Maine

COST: $7 Adults / $6 Seniors / $5 Members

FMI:

Box Office -- 207-667-9500
Administrative Offices -- 207-667-5911

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Where John Marin Found His Voice

Don't miss today's Maine Sunday Telegram article by Bob Keyes about how American modernist painter John Marin found his voice in Maine. Click HERE to read the story.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Grand presents "John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!"

Read press release at this link.

WHAT: Screening of 217 Films' new essay in film -- John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! Filmmaker Michael Maglaras will introduce the film.

WHEN: Friday, October 22 -- 7:00pm

WHERE: The Grand, 165 Main St., Ellsworth, Maine

COST: $7 Adults / $6 Seniors / $5 Members

FMI:
Box Office -- 207-667-9500
Administrative Offices -- 207-667-5911

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Announcing the Delius Songbook Project – Volume One


Filmmaker, actor, and record producer Michael Maglaras has announced that 217 Records will be participating in a major classical music release: Volume One of a planned two-volume set of all 61 surviving songs for solo voice and piano by the English composer Frederick Delius (1862-1934).

The notable English baritone Mark Stone, accompanied at the piano by the renowned composer and conductor Stephen Barlow, will begin recording Volume One at the end of August in England, with a probable CD release date in the first quarter of 2011. The recording will be released under the Stone Records label.

“Stephen and I are delighted Michael Maglaras has decided to sign on as Executive Producer of this historic recording,” said Stone. “Michael, as a trained concert singer, has a deep appreciation for the art song repertoire and for English music in particular, and we expect him to bring much to this collaboration.”

Frederick Delius is an important English composer who -- although he lived most of his life outside of England -- captures for many the best of the soul and spirit of the great English musical tradition.

“That no one has recorded the complete songbook of Frederick Delius has been, at least until now, one of the great omissions in classical music,” said Maglaras. “Mark Stone is one of the most important singers of our time, and will bring, as he has brought to his other important recordings, an elegant musicianship and deep intelligence to this project. I am delighted to be lending the resources and support of 217 Records to bring this first volume to its completion.”

Volume One will feature 28 songs, including “Seven Songs from the Norwegian” as well as three songs set to texts by the poet Shelley.

“Delius spoke several languages. He was among the most cosmopolitan and experienced of the important composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries,” commented Maglaras. “Mark and Stephen have chosen well for this first volume from the existing 61 songs. Lovers of art song and lovers of Delius will be enchanted by this recording.”

Scrupulously researched, and including historical commentary on each of the songs, Volume One will include the complete lyrics of each song as well as background notes to assist in the listener’s understanding.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Schoodic Arts Festival presents John Marin film


Filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films will screen their new Maine-made film “John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the Schoodic Arts Festival in Winter Harbor, Maine on Saturday, August 7 at 7:00pm.

Written, narrated, and directed by Michael Maglaras, this film tells the story of John Marin -- one of the most important artistic figures of the first half of the 20th-century, and one of the undisputed fathers of American Modernism.

“From 1914 until his death in 1953, John Marin captured the visual and spiritual essence of the Maine coast in watercolors and oils that have no peer in American art,” said Maglaras. “At Cape Split, from 1934 until the end of this life, Marin took comfort and inspiration from the beauty and imagery of the coast of Down East Maine.”

This screening marks the third time Maglaras has presented his films in Winter Harbor. His first two films, “Cleophas and His Own” and “Visible Silence: Marsden Hartley, Painter and Poet,” focused on American Modernist Marsden Hartley, who also painted in the Down East area. Read more HERE.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

DVD Released: John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!

Filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films announce that their new film “John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!” is now available on DVD. Written, narrated and directed by Michael Maglaras, this 95 minute essay in film tells the story of John Marin -- one of the most important artistic figures of the first half of the 20th century, and one of the undisputed fathers of American Modernism. Read MORE.

This DVD has a suggested retail price of $20.00 and is available through online retailer Amazon.com at this link.

This Saturday: John Marin film featured at National Gallery of Art

Filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films will screen their new documentary John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the National Gallery of Art this Saturday, July 3 at 3:00pm.

Read the Fosters Daily Democrat article at this link.

View the film listing at this link.

View the full summer film schedule at this link.

WHERE: National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, 4th Street at Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC.

TICKETS: Admission is free

FMI: (202) 842-6799

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Michael Maglaras Remarks on His Work

Watch a behind the scenes interview with filmmaker Michael Maglaras of 217 Films. He talks about what inspires him to create the films he makes, why he selects the topics he does, the creative process and thought behind his work, and his unique personal style of storytelling through "essays in film."

video

Saturday, June 26, 2010

August 1: Visible Silence to air on Maine Public TV

(Marsden Hartley photographed by George Platt Lynes. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. Used by permission.)
217 Films' documentary Visible Silence: Marsden Hartley, Painter and Poet which illuminates the life and work of world-renowned painter Marsden Hartley, will air on the television stations of MPBN on Sunday, August 1 at 11:30pm.

This is the first documentary ever made about this American master. It was written, directed, and narrated by Michael Maglaras of 217 Films and filmed entirely in Maine. This documentary will be shown as part of MPBN’s Community Films series which showcases the people, regions and culture of Maine.

Hartley was born in Lewiston and the Bates College Museum of Art is home to the world’s largest collection of Hartley artifacts. Visible Silence includes many pieces from this extensive archive, including drawings and photographs.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Art New England - Meet John Marin

"The work we see in John Marin: Let the Paint Be Paint! does feel alive and fresh, and many viewers will discover Marin for the first time." ~Ethan Gilsdorf, Art New England (July 2010)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

National Gallery of Art -- John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!

Filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films will screen their new documentary John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the National Gallery of Art on Saturday, July 3 at 3:00pm.

Written, narrated and directed by Michael Maglaras, this film tells the story of John Marin -- one of the most important artistic figures of the first half of the 20th century, and one of the undisputed fathers of American Modernism. Director Michael Maglaras will introduce the film

WHERE: National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, 4th Street at Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC. Directions at this link.

TICKETS: Admission is free

FMI: (202) 842-6799
film-department@nga.gov
www.nga.gov

Upcoming screenings include three stops in Maine where this documentary was filmed:
July 23: Stonington Opera House, Stonington, Maine
Aug. 7: Schoodic Arts Festival, Winter Harbor, Maine
Oct. 22: The Grand, Ellsworth, Maine

Michael Maglaras at Stonecoast


On Saturday, July 10 Michael Maglaras will present a masters class for summer residency students at the Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing program.

MASTERS CLASS:
3:00pm -- Stone House, Freeport, Maine
Poetry Aloud: Nuance and Meaning -- A Master Class with Michael Maglaras
Michael Maglaras – actor, writer, film maker, and performance artist – will conduct a class on reading poetry aloud. He’ll provide ideas about how best to communicate the meaning of a poem through the use of voice, gesture, and body language. The class will examine W.H. Auden’s poem Musee des Beaux Arts, and he will choose readers of this poem from among attendees to illustrate his points. This will be an interactive and thought-provoking session.

READING:
8:30pm -- Bowdoin College, Moulton Student Union
Michael Maglaras Reads the Poetry of Longfellow and Annie Finch
Michael Maglaras will read selected poems of Longfellow and Annie Finch. A performance by one of America’s most distinguished readers of American poetry. Not to be missed.

LISTEN:
Listen to Michael Maglaras read poetry by Annie Finch at this link.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Stonington Opera House to screen new film on John Marin

Filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films will screen their new Maine-made documentary “John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the Stonington Opera House on Wednesday, June 23 at 7:00pm.

“Marin’s summers in Stonington were a great inspiration to him,” noted Maglaras. “With the exception of 1929 and 1930, he spent every summer painting in Stonington and elsewhere in the area during the years 1919 through 1933...when he discovered Cape Split in South Addison. This is very significant, because it was on the Maine coast where he created his most profoundly beautiful work.”

Three watercolors of Stonington feature prominently in the film, including a panoramic view of the village titled “Stonington, 1923,” a 1924 downtown street scene, and a painting of a cottage Marin rented with his family.

Utilizing more than 70 of Marin’s paintings, drawings, and etchings, including works in the private collection of the Marin estate which have seldom been exhibited, Maglaras tells the story of Marin's life, from his beginnings in New Jersey, and his early experiments in watercolor, to his summers in Stonington where he began to reexperiment with oils, and, at last, at his summer home and studio on Cape Split in Addison, where, with his late oils, he established himself as one of the preeminent masters of American art.

“John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!” follows Marin’s development as a man and as an artist, from his early years as a young architect struggling with his own artistic identity, to his first moments of self-discovery as an etcher and painter, to his final years as the painter and man (in his eighties) whose unending quest for the new never ceased, and who served as the creative example to painters as diverse as Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock.

WHAT: Screening of new documentary “John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!” Director Michael Maglaras will introduce the film.

WHEN: Wednesday, June 23 at 7:00pm

WHERE: Stonington Opera House, 1 School St., Stonington, Maine

TICKETS: $6 for adults

FMI: 207-367-2788
www.operahousearts.org

“John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!” is currently on a national tour. Upcoming screenings include:

July 3: National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
Aug. 7: Schoodic Arts Festival, Winter Harbor, Maine
Oct. 22: The Grand, Ellsworth, Maine

Image credits for the above paintings:
“Stonington, 1923” by John Marin, watercolor and charcoal on paper, 21 3/4 in. x 26 1/4 in. Courtesy of Colby College Museum of Art, gift of John Marin Jr. and Norma B. Marin.

“Stonington, 1924” by John Marin, watercolor, charcoal and crayon on paper, 13 3/4 in. x 17 in. Courtesy of Colby College Museum of Art, gift of John Marin Jr. and Norma B. Marin in Honor of Hugh J. Gourley III.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

New Britain Museum of American Art: Connecticut Premiere

On May 27, 2010, Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films screened their new documentary John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the New Britain Museum of American Art. This red carpet gala marked the Connecticut premiere of this new film.

View photos from the event at this link.



Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Hartford Courant - Interview with Michael Maglaras

Follow this link to read Hartford Courant film critic Susan Dunne's behind the scenes interview with Connecticut filmmaker Michael Maglaras about his new film John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint which screens at the New Britain Museum of American Art this Thursday, May 27.


A Film Salute To John Marin
Documentary by Michael Maglaras Of Ashford Will Be Screened At New Britain Museum Thursday


By SUSAN DUNNE, sdunne@courant.com
May 25, 2010

When we last checked in with Michael Maglaras, in March 2007, he was at the New Britain Museum of American Art, presenting his documentary about American modernist painter Marsden Hartley. That film, "Cleophas and His Own," was the culmination of a years-long obsession Maglaras had with Hartley, a fixation that resulted in a second documentary.

Today, the Ashford filmmaker — who has a production company, 217 Films, with his wife, Terri Templeton — has found a new artistic soul mate. On Thursday, also at NBMAA, Maglaras will present his new documentary about another modernist: " John Marin: Let the Paint Be Paint!"

Modernist painters are a labor of love for Maglaras, 60, who in his "day job" is a risk-management consultant. He sat down to discuss his affection for this style and this artist:

Q. Where does the title of your film come from?

A. This is actually a quotation from a letter that John Marin wrote to Alfred Stieglitz.

Q. You were focused on Marsden Hartley for many years. What is it about John Marin that finally lured away your attention?

A. I am particularly interested in American modernism and in the kind of work that was done in what I consider to be America's "golden age,"...CLICK HERE to continue reading.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

May 27: New Britain Museum of American Art

Special Red Carpet Event
Connecticut Premiere

Thursday, May 27, 5:30pm
By reservation only

John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!
A new film by Michael Maglaras

Ashford, Connecticut-based filmmakers Michael Maglaras and Terri Templeton of 217 Films will debut their new documentary John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! at the New Britain Museum of American Art.

Guests will indulge in extravagent sweets and savories and then preview the Marin documentary, the first full-length documentary about the father of American Modernism.

5:30 -- Cocktails
6:15 -- Opening remarks
6:30 -- Film begins

Reservations required, limited seating, tickets are $20 per person, contact Heather Whitehouse at (860) 229-0257, ext. 203 or at whitehouseh@nbmaa.org .

John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint! tells the story of one of the most important artistic figures of the first half of the 20th century and the undisputed father of American Modernism. Utilizing more than 70 of Marin’s paintings, drawings, and etchings, including, those in the private collection of the Marin estate seldom seen anywhere, filmmaker Michael Maglaras tells the story of Marin's life, from his beginnings in New Jersey and his early experiments in watercolor, to his days at Cape Split in Down East Maine, where, with his late oils, he established himself as one of the preeminent masters of American art. Written, narrated, and directed by Michael Maglaras of 217 Films. 2009. Not rated. (95 min.)

NOTE: Encore screening Wednesday, June 9 at 1:00pm. FMI contact Heather Whitehouse at (860) 229-0257, ext. 203 or at whitehouseh@nbmaa.org .

Friday, April 30, 2010

Annie Finch on Michael Maglaras

Don't miss Annie Finch's post on the Poetry Foundation's blog: Audacity of Voice: The Poet as Actor, Michael Maglaras’ Hiawatha Marathon, and How I Made my CD.

An excerpt follows below:

Michael Maglaras is an professional reader-aloud of poetry. He trained as an opera singer, and he loves poetry, and one of the things he does is to go around and give readings. I met him when I introduced his six-hour reading of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s The Song of Hiawatha at a theater in Portland last year. How long will all these folks last, I confess I wondered cynically when I first walked in and saw the house was full. Yes, I confess to a slight feeling of superiority, earned from the hundreds (maybe thousands?!) of hours of poetry readings I’ve sat through. Did these people (realtors and plumbers and all kinds of other people, judging from my random queries, but not a single poet that I could tell) know what they were in for?

But I was laughing out of the other side of my poetic mouth three hours later when the house was still full, with people knitting happily and kids sitting on the edge of their seats and everyone rapt with attention, riding the trochees onward with all their variations and subtleties as Michael intoned the prologues and boomed the battles and storms and whispered the love scenes and wiggled like a squirrel and channeled Hiawatha and Pau-Puk-Keewis and Kahgahgee and Minnehaha and Laughing Water and Wagemin and Nokomis and the scores of other characters Longfellow had researched so painstakingly.

When I had to leave, regretfully, a couple of hours after that, many people still remained in the audience—after five hours—to hear the final controversial scenes of the poem. I was humbled, and excited, by the singular power of the perennial, metrical spine of poetry, surging its energetic currents among us, bringing images alive within a community of people. And when Michael looked at my own work and decided he wanted to perform some of my poems, I was excited too. Now my version of a poem from Calendars can be compared to Maglaras’ version of the same poem. If anyone wants to continue the Actor vs. Poet experiment begun on the podcast, where listeners were asked to compare an actor and a poet reading the same (free-verse) poem, I’d be curious what you think; would the experiment come out differently with a metrical poem?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Full house for Michael Maglaras poetry reading at Longfellow's Wayside Inn

View photos at this link.
On Sunday, April 18, Michael Maglaras, founder of 217 Records, performed a dramatic reading of excerpts from The Song of Hiawatha at the Longfellow Big Read at the Martha Mary Chapel at Longfellow’s Wayside Inn in Sudbury, Massachusetts. This hour-long reading was performed with a full score of pre-recorded sound effects and music by Native American musicians.

Michael also performed "Paul Revere’s Ride" as a special encore commemorating the significance of the 18th of April. 2010 marks the 150th anniversary of the publishing of this poem.

A LITTLE BACKGROUND:
In 2007, 217 Records released a limited edition 5-CD recording of The Song of Hiawatha to mark the Bicentennial of American master poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Accompanied by a soundtrack of Native American drums, flutes, vocals, and a host of sound effects, Michael Maglaras brings the story of Hiawatha (more than 6,500 lines) to life for a modern audience. Purchase the CD at this link.

Friday, April 16, 2010

This is not your grandmother's "Hiawatha"



Longfellow's best-loved poems to be read Sunday

By Chris Bergeron/DAILY NEWS STAFF
Apr 16, 2010

Though Henry Wadsworth Longfellow never spent a night at the Wayside Inn, the 19th century bard's verse will resound through the Martha-Mary Chapel Sunday afternoon in dramatic readings of two of his best-loved poems.

Former opera singer Michael Maglaras will recite four cantos, or books, from "The Song of Hiawatha" and "Paul Revere's Ride" in its entirety at 4 p.m. in the chapel of the Sudbury landmark as part of a series of events celebrating the legacy of one of the nation's most distinguished poets.

Read full article at this link.

Maglaras said Longfellow -- like his other 19th century favorites, poet John Greenleaf Whittier and author Mark Twain -- wrote verse and prose that reflected the optimism and confidence of their era.

"It was a confident time in our history when they were all alive. They were great poets and writers who never doubted their ability to set themselves a task and just do it," he said. "We can learn from that kind of wonderful exuberance."

Asked how a 21st century audience might respond to Longfellow's under-appreciated 19th century masterpiece, Maglaras replied without hesitation, "They'll walk out (of the chapel) feeling damn proud to be Americans."

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

April 18: Longfellow Big Read features Michael Maglaras














MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Sunday, April 18 -- 4:00pm
Michael Maglaras will perform a dramatic reading of excerpts from The Song of Hiawatha at the Longfellow Big Read at Longfellow's Wayside Inn in Sudbury, Massachusetts. This hour-long reading will be performed with a full score of pre-recorded sound effects and music by Native American musicians.

Michael will also perform "Paul Revere's Ride" as an encore commemorating the significance of the 18th of April. This is the 150th anniversary of the publishing of this poem.

MORE INFORMATION at this link.

ADMISSION: $10 adults / $5 seniors and students (Tickets can be purchased at the door or in advance by calling 978-443-1776)

READ the Associated Press Story

GO BEHIND THE SCENES with Michael Maglaras

HEAR Michael Maglaras talk about why he recorded The Song of Hiawatha

A LITTLE BACKGROUND: In 2007, 217 Records released a limited edition 5-CD recording of The Song of Hiawatha to mark the Bicentennial of American master poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Accompanied by a soundtrack of Native American drums, flutes, vocals, and a host of sound effects, Michael Maglaras brings the story of Hiawatha (more than 6,500 lines) to life for a modern audience.