Monday, November 5, 2012

College Arts Events to Benefit Food Pantry Starting Nov. 16 with the Play Pterodactyls

Admission is free, but please do bring a Food Pantry donation!
CHESTERTOWN, MD—The Washington College departments of Drama and Music, together with the student-led Music Collegium, will feed both body and soul with a Festival of the Arts series of performances that will collect donations for the Kent County Food Pantry.

Leading off the Festival events is the drama production “Pterodactyls,” a dark comedy by Nicky Silver. The Music Department follows on December 2 with a joint concert by the Symphonic Band and the new Washington College Chorus, and closes the series two days later with a String Ensemble performance.  

“The events are are free,” notes Assistant Professor of Music Jon McCollum. “All we request is that you bring either a non-perishable food item or a cash donation to the food pantry. The faculty and students involved in the arts here at Washington College wanted to start a tradition of giving back to the community, to have the arts help provide for those in need.”

Donated items should be healthful, non-perishable foods un-opened and in their original non-breakable packaging (no glass).  Please check expiration dates before donating.  Among the most-requested items at the Food Pantry are canned meats such as tuna, stew and chili; canned vegetables, pasta and pasta sauce, beans, healthy cereals, peanut butter and jelly.

Following is a brief description of each event in the series:

Pterodactyls by Nicky  Silver
Directed by Nina Sharp ’13.
Friday, Nov. 16, and Saturday, Nov. 17
8 p.m., in Tawes Theatre

Playwright Nicky Silver.
First performed in 1993, Pterodactyls has been described as an “absurdist tragicomedy” for mature audiences. Human failings in extreme doses bring down members of the dysfunctional Duncan family in ways that seem to foretell the demise of the human species, itself.  TheaterWeek described the play as “clever, sharp, witty — it’s a play that takes aim at the main-streamed, moneyed, conventional American family and buries it under one satiric jibe after another.”

Nina Sharp, a senior from Centreville, Md. who won the 2012 Mary Martin Drama Scholarship, is directing Pterodactyls as her senior thesis.  The self-described “theater geek” has been involved in all levels of theater in the area, from early roles at Centreville Middle School to acting and directing in productions at Church Hill Theatre and Washington College.  

WC Chorus music
director Doug Byerly.
Washington College Symphonic Band/Chorus Concert
Sunday, Dec. 2
6:30 p.m., Decker Theatre

A mix of holiday favorites and classical music will be performed by the student musicians in the Washington College Concert Band, conducted by Keith Wharton, and the more than 50 voices of the campus chorus, led by 
Douglas Byerly.

Washington College String Ensemble
Tuesday, Dec. 4
8 p.m., Hotchkiss Recital Hall

 Kimberly McCollum.
The seventeen students in the Washington College String Ensemble will perform a variety of selections, including arrangements of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3, “Greensleeves” by Ralph Vaughan-Williams, “Palladio” (“Diamond Music”) by Karl Jenkins, and “Three English Dances” by Joshua Missal.  In addition, student violinist Elizabeth Ransom will perform the first movement of the Concerto in A minor by J.S. Bach, and faculty members Grace Kim (piano) and Kimberly McCollum (violin) will perform Mozart’s Sonata in G Major, KV 301.

For more information on the Arts Festival, contact Dr. McCollum at


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