Summer officially begins June 21, and the Norton Museum of Art is looking to celebrate. As the longest day of the year begins, the Norton is tapping into the pagan midsummer festivities with a party of its own, Summer SOULstice, extending the popular Thursday night event, Art After Dark, for a summer solstice jamboree. Summer SOULstice is taking over the museum with live music and entertainment by some the area’s hottest bands and musicians, laying out a spread that would make even Bacchus blush and is filled with activities (family-friendly) to keep the spirit of the solstice alive well into the night.
The event, which is co-hosted by 97.9 WRMF, will incorporate the entirety of the museum, setting up a stage in the Maze Garden with activities like a drum circle and belly-dance performance, fire-dance performances and live acts from Ladies & Gentlemen, Max Dubose and Damon Fowler all on the docket. The Theater Stage will host main acts Melissa ‘Moonchild’ Stokes, The People Upstairs, Suenalo and the Spam Allstars, while the Central Courtyard will hold an open mic hosted by Ric Pattison around an "acoustic campfire," face-painting for children (and adults) and cap with a performance by the Hot Java Band. The Atrium will start its festivities with performances from the Stars of the Future (music and entertainment for kids and by kids), followed by steel drum lessons for kids and a Silent Disco with DJ Rumble, while the lobby will have various acoustic troubadours roaming the marble. And as with all Art After Dark events, the DIY Art will be a hive of activity, this week revolving around Huichol Yarn Art Suns and the popular Sketchbook Thursdays.
- Summer SOULstice will run from 5 p.m. to midnight (museum galleries will close at 9 p.m.) and costs $12 for adults, $5 for students, free for members.
Not only the longest day of the year, June 21 also marks the opening of the Norton’s latest exhibition, “Clubs, Joints and Honky-Tonks: Photographers Experience the Music Scene.” Curated by the Norton’s William and Sarah Ross Soter curator of photography, Tim B. Wride, “Clubs, Joints and Honky-Tonks” is a collection of more than 75 photographs and images from photographers who found the energy of the crowd at live shows and concerts to be just as enthralling, if not more, than the acts on the stage. The imagery depicted in this latest exhibition trains the lens on the crowd, venue and ambiance of the live performance, shifting the focus from the often celebrated performer to the energy created by the crowd and the pervasive effect a sense of place can have on a live show. The exhibition will also include essays from photographers Jeff Dunas, Lynn Goldsmith, Henry Horenstein, Elliott Landy, Moby and David Scheinbaum, helping convey the sense of the moment captured by the camera. Also part of the exhibition is a look into the life of diehard Judas Priest fans with the 1986 documentary Heavy Metal Parking Lot by Jeff Krulik and John Heyn. The exhibition crosses musical genres, from rock ‘n’ roll and country to hip-hop and blues, delving into the subcultures with an anthropological glimpse of the people and places that makes the music matter.
- “Clubs, Joints and Honky-Tonks: Photographers Experience the Music Scene” runs from June 21 through September 30.
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