Island books, comedy, Provincetown art, theater

The Martha’s Vineyard book series this summer will feature seven conferences with authors on a variety of topics, with organizers describing the events as “provocative discussions with some of the country’s leading voices.”

All events take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Chilmark Community Center, except the final one – Amor Towles discussing his latest bestseller “The Lincoln Highway” – will take place at Martha’s Vineyard Performing Arts Center in Oak Bluffs.

The festival kicks off July 7 with Georgia Senator Raphael Warnock, Georgia’s first black senator whose historic election overthrew control of the U.S. Senate in 2021, will talk about his journey and his newly released memoir “A Way Out of No Way”.

On July 10, Pulitzer Prize winner Geraldine Brooks will discuss her new book “Horse,” which neared the top of the New York Times bestseller list last week and tells the story of the black horsemen behind the huge horse racing industry in the pre-war South. On July 14, cultural historian Peter Guralnick will talk about his 2020 “Looking to Get Lost: Adventures in Music and Writing,” which includes profiles of blues, gospel, country, and rock musicians.

On Thursday, July 21, the author will speak with New York Times writer Eric Kim about his new cookbook “Korean American: Food that Tastes Like Home,” which is described by Martha’s Vineyard Book Festival as “a tribute to what it means to be Korean American, with recipes that honor the past and present.On August 4, Dawnie Walton will talk about her novel “The Final Revival of Opal and Nev” which deals with the racism and sexism of the music industry and a talent agency.

Best-selling author Amor Towles will speak August 14 on Martha's Vineyard about his book

Towle’s talk on Aug. 14 will focus on “The Lincoln Highway,” his 2021 hit story about two brothers and the people they meet on an unexpected 10-day trip after their father’s death. Towle’s other novels are “A Gentleman in Moscow” and “Rules of Civility”.

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The ticket price for each event, $45, includes a signed book. Some authors will pre-sign, others will do a book signing, according to festival information, and anyone having a book signed will have to wear a mask. All attendees are encouraged to wear masks at every event. Full program and information:

Art pays homage to the past and future of Mary Heaton Vorse

An art exhibit honoring legendary Provincetown patron of the arts, Mary Heaton Vorse, will be on view July 14 through August 11. 7 at his former home at 466 Commercial Street. An opening reception for “Mary’s Friends: An Artist’s Reunion” will be held from 5-7 p.m. on July 14 at the house recently purchased and restored to Vorse’s time as an arts center by designer Ken Fulk.

The artwork in the exhibit was curated by Berta Walker of the self-proclaimed Provincetown Art Gallery and Mary Heaton Vorse House Exhibitions Director Gene Tartaglia to create a “one-of-a-kind exhibit” to support the life-size sculpture recently commissioned from Vorse by Penelope Jencks. The house is open to visitors from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday through Sunday and by appointment by emailing

The exhibit will honor both Vorse and Jencks by featuring many Provincetown artists who knew Vorse from his 1907 arrival in Provincetown until his death in 1966, as well as several of Jencks’ sculptures. The exhibit is part of fundraising efforts launched in 2021 by the Provincetown Public Art Foundation which commissioned the sculpture. In collaboration with Provincetown Arts SocietyVorse’s life-size bronze should be installed near the door at the front of the house.

This model shows Penelope Jencks' planned statue of writer and patron of the arts Mary Heaton Vorse to be installed in Vorse's restored home on Commercial Street in Provincetown.

Vorse was a journalist, labor organizer, war correspondent, editor, and patron of the arts who co-founded the Provincetown Players and donated her former fisherman’s cottage in 1915 as a home for their plays. His home after World War I became a haven for many artists and writers, including modernist artists encouraged to come to town by the famous Professor Hawthorne, according to historical accounts. Vorse was an author whose book “Time and the Town, a Provincetown Chronicle” became a classic.

Among the fifty or so pieces in the new exhibition will be works of art (reflecting both the figurative and modernist schools of art in the city’s cultural history) by Hawthorne, Ross Moffett (“Still Life with Lilacs”, 1929), Salvatore Del Deo, Robert Henry, Paul Resika, Brenda Horowitz, Kyra Markham (an original performer with the 1916 Provincetown Players), Blanche Lazzell (considered the first non-objective female artist in America, according to event information ), Reynolds Beal, William Boogar, Dorothy Lake Gregory, Tod Lindenmuth, Ione Walker, Oliver Chaffee, Agnes Weinrich, Marsden Hartley, Karl Knaths, Lucy L’Engle and Selina Trieff.

Oil on canvas by Ross Moffett from 1929, "Still life with lilacs" will be part of an exhibition

Sculptor Jencks’ commissions over the years have been portraits of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and conductors and composers Serge Koussevitsky, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copeland and Seiji Ozawa. Announcing the exhibit, sculptor Romolo Del Deo, co-founder and president of the Public Art Foundation, called Jencks “one of America’s great portrait sculptors.”

What Ken Fulk created:A restored cultural center

A curator and gallerist for 33 years, Walker has her own history with Provincetown and Vorse. Walker’s grandparents, a writer and composer, arrived in town in 1915 and became close friends with Vorse, according to exhibit information. Berta Walker’s parents were among the founders of the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown.

Exhibition information: Information Information about Vorse House and the events there:

Staged readings will take place at the Provincetown Library

Live theater will return to Provincetown Public Library in a new series of summer plays, featuring costumed and staged readings of new works by Cape Town-based authors and playwrights. This season, there will be five one-act acts of different genres.

The shows will take place at 2 p.m. on Sundays from July 10 to August 7 at the library, 356, rue Commerciale, followed by a talk with the author or playwright. The program dates back to 2012 and will again be produced by actor/writer Bragan Thomas, in collaboration with library director Amy Raff.

First up on July 10 will be “Reverend Mother’s Final Confession,” a comedy by Lucy Blood about a nun sharing a “trinity” of secrets at her retirement party as principal of Immaculate Conception Elementary School. On July 17, emerging author John Hanright’s “The Finishing Touch” will be a drama examining the complex relationships between a dying woman, her daughter and her nurse, all bound by love, and the art of quilt making. .

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On July 24, the mood will turn satirical with a reading of Jonathan Scott Ryder’s “Summer Stalk,” based on 1980s “slasher” films with the story of a group of camp counselors spending the night in share their local legends and potentially face danger. On July 31, in Peter Creedon’s “A Rainy Night on India Street,” set in Nantucket in the late 1960s, four characters come together in “a dark and stormy night.”

The series will end on August 7 with a teaser presentation of the fantasy play “The Shadow Over Innsmouth,” adapted by Thomas from sci-fi/horror author HP Lovecraft’s classic 1927 novel about an aristocratic scholar who visits unexpected in a mysterious remote seaport somewhere along the Massachusetts coast.

Comedian and actor Kevin Flynn is the founder of the Nantucket Comedy Festival, which returns to the island July 13-16.

The comedians reunite for four nights of laughs in Nantucket

The Nantucket Comedy Festival will be back for the evenings July 13-16, with a variety of event types all raising funds for the ‘Stand Up & Learn’ comedy and public speaking program for children on the island launched by comedian and festival founder/executive director Kevin Flynn.

The kids are actually part of the festival, performing their own free “Stand Up & Learn Comedy Showcase” at 5 p.m. on July 15 at the White Heron Theater.

For professional acts at The Dreamland Theater, the festival opens at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, July 13 with the world premiere of “Nantucket Nights: A Filmed Special Starring Don Gavin” which was edited together after being televised for the first time since The Dreamland on Christmas Island last year. To stroll. This event will include a live opening comedy from Boston comedian Jimmy Dunn and a live Q&A with Gavin (described as “Boston’s godfather of comedy”), Dunn, Flynn and director Dan Driscoll.

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At 8 p.m. on July 14, it’s “Ladies’ Night,” headlined nationally by comedians Tammy Pescatelli, Marla Schultz, Bernadette Pauley and Carolyn Plummer. At 8 p.m. July 15 will be “A Night of Southern Comfort,” featuring Southern performers: comedians Ron Bullard, Tony Esposito and Karen Morgan and musicians from Brian Glowacki’s band, Perfect, to celebrate life by comedian Vic Henley.

On July 16 at 8 p.m., the Boston vs. New York Smackdown closes the festival with comedians from Boston and New York battling it out and ESPN’s Emmy Award winner Bob Ley officiating. Playing for Boston honor: Jay Whittaker, Brad Mastrangelo and Paul D’Angelo. For New York: Al Ducharme, Marla Schultz and Alex Babbitt.

Information and tickets for everyone:

Contact Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll at Follow on Twitter: @KathiSDCCT.

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