The Chamber of Commerce of Newtown has expanded its fundraising for the 30th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at Ram Pasture, scheduled this year for Friday, December 5. A few weeks ago, The Tree Lighting Committee members announced that they have decided to use glow sticks inside the white bags, replacing tea light candles that have been traditionally used. With that decision, however, also comes a larger bill than in years past for the one of the first events in town of the holiday season. Chamber President Timothy Haas said this week that the cost of putting on the tree lighting ceremony has gone up “significantly” due to the decision to use glow sticks.
The opening night of Alan Ball’s "Five Women Wearing the Same Dress," celebrated last Friday night at Ridgefield Theatre Barn, was well received by a fully sated, sold out audience. The cabaret style seating lent itself to the camaraderie and and intimacy of the piece. The audience felt like flies on the wall of the bedroom set, so much so that audience members even felt compelled to chime in. And despite the title, this play is not for women only. The performances and the humor are quality fare for adults of both sexes.
The Brookfield Theatre of the Arts production of Larry Kramer’s "The Normal Heart," under the direction of David Bass, is pretty much flawless. Full disclosure here, I love this play. It pulls back the curtain on on a dark time in American history, when many were willing to turn a blind eye to a plague striking an entire population deemed to be different. Because of their preferences, they were marginalized in their time of suffering and need. Tissues should be provided with the tickets.
There were undoubtedly a lot of Country Music fans glued to their TVs on November 5, the night of the 47th Annual CMAs – the Country Music Association’s annual awards ceremony. But there were probably few as excited as local family members of former Newtown resident Matt Wheeler, whose work as a Nashville recording studio engineer was featured on seven CMA nominated albums and songs by Miranda Lambert, Eric Church and Keith Urban. As the awards ceremony wrapped up, Wheeler was proud to learn that he was recognized for his engineering skills on Lambert’s CMA winning Album of the Year Platinum, and for his work as Assistant Engineer on her CMA winning Song of the Year, “Automatic.”
Two 'brothers from other mothers' and one of the hottest Texas Blues guitarists in the nation will converge in a supergroup configuration November 29 on the stage of Danbury's Palace Theater. Michael Allman, Charles Neville, and Jeff Pitchell and his band Texas Flood will be coming together performing a night of rock and blues that is sure to include popular favorites from across those two genres and beyond. Allman, son of Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Greg Allman, and Neville of the legendary Neville Brothers, both talked about what fans and music lovers will be seeing and hearing in exclusive pre-tour interviews with The Bee.
Newtown High School will present Lend Me a Tenor, Thursday, November 20, to Sunday, November 23. Written by Ken Ludwig, Lend Me a Tenor is a comedy that takes place at the Cleveland Grand Opera Company in 1934. When the general manager attempts to welcome a famous tenor for a one-night-only engagement, problems ensue. Performances on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday are at 7 pm, and Sunday is a matinee at 2 pm. Tickets are general admission and will be sold at the door. Ticket prices are $7 for students and faculty, $12 for adults, and $10 for seniors. The performances will be held in the Newtown High School auditorium, located at 12 Berkshire Road.
A special birthday party took place Monday morning, November 17, when former and current drivers, and board members of Newtown Meals on Wheels gathered in the meeting room at C.H. Booth Library to celebrate 40 years of service to the community. Since its inception, Meals on Wheels has worked to provide healthy meals, five days of the week, to community members needing short or long-term assistance. Some recipients are elderly, others have recently returned home from surgery, or are temporarily or permanently unable to prepare their own meals. Whatever the reason, for four decades volunteers have worked diligently to make sure that those in need do not go hungry any day of the week, or on holidays. “Meals on Wheels services more people than you would think,” said Marg Studley, who is co-president of the organization, along with Pat Barrett.