Hermitage Artist Retreat invites the public to join them on Friday, April 25th for historic campus tours, open artist studios and a beach reading with a Tony-nominated playwright, poets and musicians

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April 18, 2014

Contact Lisa Rubinstein, LDR Creative, Inc., 941-373-3803 or [email protected]



The Hermitage Artist Retreat invites the public to join them on Friday, April 25th for historic campus tours, open artist studios and a beach reading with a Tony-nominated playwright, poets and musicians. All takes place at the Hermitage Artist Retreat, 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood. The event begins at 6:00 pm with tours of the historic campus and access to two visual arts studios. The 7:00 beach performance will include readings and music. Participating artists-in-residence include Playwright Arthur Kopit, Watercolorist Michael Eade, Percussionist and Arts Educator Deborah Sunya Moore, andPoet Sandra Alcosser.

During the first hour, new visitors will enjoy tours of the campus and the historic Hermitage House. At the same time, two visual art studios will be open, one exhibiting Michael Eade’s most recent work, very much inspired by Manasota Key nature. The second studio will feature a continuous looped presentation of A Little Less Poison, collaboration between Eade and Alcosser, which includes poetry and video connected to the environmental movement started by Rachel Carson and her book Silent Spring. Both the sonnets and visual art include images inspired by Manasota Key. It was first presented in November in NYC when over 60 Hermitage artists contributed new work related to “the day before” the assassination of President Kennedy.

At 7:00 pm, the program moves to the beach directly in front of the Hermitage, for a program that includes poetry reading by Sandra Alcosser, a presentation by Arthur Kopit and a performance by Deborah Moore that includes Adam Walter’s The Temple in the Sea on a vibraphone while reading sonnets by Alcosser. Moore and Alcosser’s presentations are part of collaboration with Poetry Life and Bookstore1.

As anyone who has come to a recent open house event can tell you, we now use the Beach Reading term very loosely,” explained Bruce E. Rodgers, executive director of the Hermitage. “ Depending on what artists are in residency, we program the beach events to best display their talents. April 25th will be another unique experience.”

Sandra Alcosser is the author of many award-winning poetry books including The Blue Vein,A Woman Hit by a Meteor, and Except by Nature, which was selected for the National Poetry Series and received the Academy’s James Laughlin Award. Her poems have appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Paris Review, Poetry, and the Yale Review. Formerly the director of Central Park’s Poets-in-the-Park program in NYC, Alcosser has been a writer-in-residence at the University of Michigan and University of Montana, as well as Glacier, Yosemite and Wrangells St. Elias National Parks. She founded and directs the Masters of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing at San Diego State University and is also on the graduate faculty of Pacific University low-residency MFA in Oregon. Alcosser served as Montana’s first poet laureate and has received three National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships.

Michael Eade received his BA from Oregon State University and continued studies at NYU and in Stuttgart where he learned egg tempura painting technique, a medium found in much of his work. Among his honors are studio space at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts and multiple fellowships from the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop, the National Academy Museum and School of the Arts, Artist Fellowships Inc., and a short-listed finalist for the Basil H. Alkassi Award for excellent in Painting sponsored by the NY Foundation for the Arts. In addition, Michael was recently invited to be one of five artists presenting their work at the 2014 Artists’ Showcase of the Print Club of New York. 

Arthur Kopit is the author of numerous plays, including: Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma’s Hung You in the Closet and I’m Feelin’ So Sad; Indians (Tony Nominee, Finalist for Pulitzer Prize); Wings (Tony Nominee, Finalist for Pulitzer Prize); a new translation of Ibsen’s Ghosts; the book for the musical Nine (score by Maury Yeston; Tony Award for Best Musical, 1982; Tony Award for Best Musical revival, 2003); End of the World with Symposium to Follow; the book for the musical Phantom (score by Maury Yeston); the book for the musical High Society (score by Cole Porter); Road to Nirvana and BecauseHeCan.  Current projectsinclude Discovery of America, a play based on the journal of Spanish conquistador CabezadeVaca, to be produced in 2015/2016; an original screenplay, Norman in Wonderland, based on Kopit’s first venture in Hollywood working for Otto Preminger on a film about the hazards of cocaine; and two other new plays, Secrets of the Rich and The Incurables. Mr. Kopit is this year’s recipient of the Dramatists Guild Flora Roberts Award, and the William Inge Award for Distinguished Playwriting. He’s a member of the Dramatists Guild and The Lark Play Development Center, where he heads The Playwrights’ Workshop. 

Deborah Sunya Moore has a long history as an advocate of performing arts programs for children and youth.  Deborah is currently the Associate Director of Programming at the Chautauqua Institution and a National Workshop Leader for the Kennedy Center.  Having just moved from Trinidad, Deborah was the Arts Education & Community Engagement Specialist and an Associate Professor of Percussion at the University of Trinidad and Tobago 2010-2013.  She served as the Director of Education and Community Engagement for the Louisville Orchestra 2004 – 2009 and performs regularly with the Chautauqua Symphony (NY).  Deborah serves as an arts educator and consultant, having led Educator and Artist Training Workshops for organizations such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Florida State University, Oberlin Conservatory, Eastman School of Music, Cleveland Institute of Music, Boise Symphony, United States Marine Band and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.  Deborah was named a National Workshop Leader for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 2008. 

“Bring your beach chairs and refreshments and be ready to share a wonderful night of art and artists,” Rodgers continued. “There is no better way to end the week.”


About the Hermitage Artist Retreat: The Hermitage is a not-for-profit artist retreat located at 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood, FL. It invites accomplished painters, sculptors, writers, playwrights, poets, composers and other artists from all over the world for residencies on its beachfront historic campus. Artists are asked to contribute two services to the community during their stay. So far, Hermitage artists have touched over 12,000 Gulf Coast community children and adults with unique and inspiring programs. In addition, the Hermitage awards and administers the prestigious Greenfield Prize, an annual $30,000 commission for a new work of art, rotating among three disciplines: visual art, music and drama. The Hermitage also partners with the Aspen Music Festival and School to award the annual Hermitage Prize to a composition student during the Festival. For more information about The Hermitage Artist Retreat, call 941-475-2098 or visit the website at www.HermitageArtistRetreat.org.

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