TheatreSquared is sponsoring 15th Arkansas New Play Festival

Somewhere in England, Maj. Charity E. Adams of Columbia, S.C., and Capt. Abbie N. Campbell, Tuskegee Institute, Tuskegee, Ala., inspect the first contingent of Black members of the Womens Army Corps assigned to overseas service. The documentary “The Six Triple Eight,” focusing on the work of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion during World War II, screens Tuesday at the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History. (National Archives)

Elsewhere in entertainment, events and the arts:


New Play Festival

Five plays will receive staged reading performances as part of TheatreSquared's 15th Arkansas New Play Festival, today-June 25 in Fayetteville, Springdale and Bentonville.

The plays:

◼️ "Saturday Mourning Cartoons" by Iraisa Ann Reilly

◼️ "Nancy" by Rhiana Yazzie

◼️ "I Am Delivered't" by Jonathan Norton

◼️ "The Grove of Forgetting" by TheatreSquared Artistic Director Robert Ford

◼️ "Raices|Roots" by the LatinX Theatre Project.

The festival will also include the 2023 Arkansas Young Playwrights Showcase and the Apprentice Company performance of "Rust" by Basil Parnell.

Performances will take place at the Momentary, 507 S.E. E St., Bentonville; The Medium, 214 S. Main St., Springdale; and at TheatreSquared, 477 W. Spring St., Fayetteville. A complete schedule and information on New Play Passes, $50, which grant access to all performances, are available at arkansasnewplayfest.com. Call (479) 777-7477.

Jonesboro season

Jonesboro's Foundation of Arts kicks off its 2023-24 theater season with Meredith Willson's "The Music Man", Sept. 22-25 at the Forum Theatre, 115 E. Monroe Ave, Jonesboro.

The rest of the lineup (except as noted, all shows at the Forum):

◼️ Oct. 27-30: "Freaky Friday: The Musical" (music by Tom Kitt, lyrics by Brian Yorkey, book by Bridget Carpenter, based on the novel by Mary Rodgers and the Disney films)

◼️ Nov. 16-21: "The Nutcracker" (Peter Tchaikovsky ballet)

◼️ Dec. 15-18: "A Very Merry Christmas," original musical production

◼️Jan. 27-29: "Charlotte's Web," based on E.B. White's classic

◼️ Feb. 10-11, 15-17: "Chicago" (music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, book by Ebb and Bob Fosse), Stage, Too (Main Street and Monroe Avenue)

◼️March 9-11, April 12-14: "Anastasia" (music and lyrics by Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens, book by Terrence McNally)

◼️ May 17-19: "Snow White" (ballet)

◼️ June 7-9: "A Year With Frog and Toad Kids" (music by Robert Reale, book and lyrics by Willie Reale, based on the books by Arnold Lobel)

◼️ June 27-30, 2024: "Beautiful – The Carole King Musical"

◼️ July 19-23, 2024: "Finding Nemo Jr." (music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, book by Lindsay Anderson, adapted from the Disney animated film).

Visit foajonesboro.org.


'Inspirational' opera

Opera in the Ozarks, the Eureka Springs-based summer music festival and prominent opera training program, begins its 72nd summer season at 7:30 p.m. Friday with Gaetano Donizetti's "The Elixir of Love" at Inspiration Point, 16311 U.S. 62 West, five miles west of Eureka Springs.

The season, continuing through July 21, puts together young singers and an orchestra of professional musicians from across the country for 22 fully staged and costumed opera performances.

"The Elixir of Love" is also onstage at 7:30 p.m. June 28 and July 1, 5, 12, 15 and 21 and 3 p.m. July 9.

The rest of the lineup:

◼️ Aaron Copland's "The Tender Land," 7:30 p.m. June 24 and 29 and July 3, 7, 11 and 20; and 3 p.m. July 16.

◼️ Jacques Offenbach's "Orpheus in the Underworld," 7:30 p.m. June 27 and 30 and July 6, 8, 14 and 19; and 3 p.m. July 2.

Beyond the 22 mainstage performances in Eureka Springs, the company will also stage more than a dozen performances of "Cinderella," this year's children's outreach production, at venues throughout Northwest Arkansas.

Orchestral players will provide a chamber music concert July 17 at Inspiration Point and the singers will present two "Broadway Cabarets," 7 p.m. July 13 at Mount Sequoyah in Fayetteville, with heavy hors d'oeuvres, and 6 p.m. July 18 at Eureka Springs' Crescent Hotel, including dinner (both cabaret venues will have cash bars).

Single opera tickets are $25-$30, with discounts for children and students under 18. Tickets for the cabaret performances are $50 in Fayetteville, $70 in Eureka Springs. Chamber music tickets are $20, also with discounts for children and students under 18. Call (479) 253-8595 or visit opera.org.

Jazz Celebration

Jazz musicians Thomas East (2020 Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame inductee), keyboards/vocals; Byron Yancey, bass; and Bryan Withers, drums, will be the featured players for the Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation's Jazz Celebration, 6;30 p.m. Monday in the second-floor ballroom at U.S. Pizza Co., Hillcrest, 2710 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock. Other Arkansas Jazz Hall of Famers and special guests will sit in; there will be a silent auction and the admission price – $40, $20 for foundation members (cash or check only) – includes "U.S. Pizza favorites." Call (501) 661-1604 or email info@arjazz.org.


'Small Works' sought

July 21 is the deadline for artists who are members of the Arkansas Artist Registry to submit up to three works of art on paper, no larger than 18-by-24 inches, for the Arkansas Arts Council's 2024 "Small Works on Paper" exhibition. Works must have been completed within the last two years. Fee is $15, $20 for two entries, $25 for three entries. Membership to the registry is free and open to all Arkansans age 18 or older. Submit entries online at arkansasarts.org.

Juror Laura Blereau, curator of exhibitions at the Newcomb Art Museum at Tulane University in New Orleans, will select a maximum of 40 pieces for the exhibition, which will tour the state starting in January at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center in Little Rock.

Women's art sought

The Arkansas Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts invites Arkansas artists who identify as women to apply for its online biennial Juried Artist Registry, via acnmwa.org/juried-artist-registry-application. Application deadline is Aug. 1. Original current work in all media is eligible. Artists whom juror Matthew Bailey, gallery director and faculty member in the Art and Design department at the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, will be featured on the committee website from September 2023 to September 2025. The current registry is online at acnmwa.org/artists-21-23.


Starshine Summit

The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and Reimagine Arkansas host the Starshine Narrative Summit, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. June 30 at Robinson Center Performance Hall, 426 W. Markham St. at Broadway, Little Rock, featuring nationally recognized bestselling authors, politicians and business leaders discussing the power of narratives centering on social justice and equity.

The keynote speakers include:

◼️ Rev. Cory Anderson, chief innovation officer at the foundation

◼️ Former Arkansas state Sen. Joyce Elliott

◼️ New York Times bestselling author Ayana Gray

◼️ Dr. Carmen Rojas, president and chief executive officer of the Marguerite Casey Foundation

◼️ Arkansas state Sen. Clarke Tucker

◼️ Harvey Williams, co-founder and CEO of Delta Dirt Distillery.

Admission is free. Register at starshinesummit.com.


'Six Triple Eight'

The MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, 503 E. Ninth St., Little Rock, screens the documentary "The Six Triple Eight," focusing on the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion, the only all-Black female battalion to serve in Europe during World War II, at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, part of its "Movies at MacArthur" series. Admission, popcorn and beverages are free. Call (501) 376-4602.


Potluck & Poison Ivy

Artist and caregiver Jennifer O'Brien, who cared for her doctor husband through stage IV metastatic cancer until his death, "headlines" this month's Potluck And Poison Ivy on Thursday at The Joint, 301 Main St., North Little Rock. Doors open at 6. Tickets, $35, include dinner. Visit potluckandpoisonivy.org/buy-tickets.

Catalyze grants

The Mid-America Arts Alliance's Catalyze program is handing out grants of $10,000 to each of 25 Central Arkansas artists, performers and crafters, as well as professional development training to support their needs as working artists. The program combines money, mentorship and management toward the recipient's overall creative practice. Funds can be used for any purpose that supports the continued development of creative work, including studio rent, child care and equipment. A grant from the Windgate Foundation funds the program.

The list:

◼️ M Shelly Conner (writer, filmmaker)

◼️ Antonio "Bruce" Carpenter (painter, craftsman)

◼️ Kai Coggin (poet/author)

◼️ Mitchell Crisp (interdisciplinary artist)

◼️ Princeton Coleman (aka Yuni Wa) (music producer & DJ)

◼️ Virmarie DePoyster (multidisciplinary artist)

◼️ Aaron Farris (bluegrass musician)

◼️ Jennifer Gerber (filmmaker)

◼️ Ben Grimes (actor, director)

◼️ Ryan Howard (filmmaker/photographer/musician)

◼️ Cheryl Humphrey (singer/songwriter/performing arts coach)

◼️ Chris Long (music producer)

◼️ Dazzmin Murry (performer/composer/multimedia artist)

◼️ Denise Parkinson (author and filmmaker)

◼️ Yelena Petroukhina (visual artist)

◼️ Tiffany Pettus (multimedia specialist)

◼️ Jennifer Perren (ceramic artist)

◼️ Andy Sarjahani (documentary filmmaker)

◼️ Derek Slagle (photographer)

◼️ Katherine Strause (painter)

◼️ Jonathan Wright (printmaker)

◼️ Anna Wagner (ceramic artist)

◼️ Mark Wittig (photographer)

◼️ Veronica Wirges (musician)

◼️ Katie Wilson (visual & performing artist)

Biographies and photographs of the recipients are available at tinyurl.com/645fux8z.

Criteria for selection include artistry, intended use and impact of the funding in their art practice and the creation of a balanced peer cohort. The selectees will attend a Saturday-June 25 professional development retreat in Little Rock and receive ongoing small group support and mentorship throughout the following year. Another 25 $10,000 Catalyze fellowships will be awarded in 2024. Applications open later this year.