Virtual entertainment: Local events and activities to check out online 

Courtesy photo

Brianne Beatrice, right, Northern Essex Community College theater professor, directs Zaida Buzan, left, of Somerville, and Gwynnethe Glickman, of Newbury, during remote rehearsals for "Rabbit Hole." The drama will presented via Zoom on Monday, May 11, at noon.

Northern Essex to present play virtually

As they say in show business, “The show must go on,” and Northern Essex Community College theater students are living this adage. The Top Notch Players will present a Zoom performance of David Lindsay Abaire’s "Rabbit Hole" on Monday, May 11, at noon.

The free performance, which is expected to last approximately two hours, will open with a "curtain" speech by Brianne Beatrice, NECC theater professor. Students will play their parts from the safety of their homes.

The cast has been in rehearsal since February under the direction of Beatrice and NECC alumnus and assistant director Benjamin Beveridge, of Lawrence. 

"I know the cast is excited to share their work," Beatrice said. "While initially, they rehearsed in the theater on campus, the pandemic forced the rehearsals online. They rose to the occasion and adapted quickly."

"Rabbit Hole," the 2007 Pulitzer Prize winner for drama, follows a couple who have everything a family could want, until a life-shattering accident turns their world upside down and leaves them drifting perilously apart. The play charts their bittersweet search for comfort in the darkest of places and for a path that will lead them back into the light of day.

The cast includes Zaida Buzan, a liberal arts major from Somerville; Christian Doyle, a liberal arts major from Newburyport; Gwynnethe Glickman, a two-time Kennedy Center award winner and liberal arts major from Newbury; Aileen Corniel, a liberal arts major from Lawrence; and Nickey Pereyra, a business transfer major from Methuen.

For the Zoom link or more information, email bbeatrice@necc.mass.edu.  

Check in on Annie and Squam the ospreys

Essex County Greenbelt Association's osprey pair, Annie and Squam, have once again returned to their nest on the salt marsh near Lobsta Land Restaurant in Gloucester and have already produced their first egg of the season.

Greenbelt's live-streaming osprey cam is trained on the nest where the pair has been present since 2017. Annie and Squam, as they were named last year, laid eggs for the first time in 2019, fledging one chick named River. The pair has been attracting renewed attention since returning to the nest in early April.

“We are so excited to have this active osprey nest livestreamed each day to our website for our members and the general public to view," Greenbelt president Kate Bowditch said. "It’s great fun to watch the nesting season drama unfold." 

Since late March, when Greenbelt's Osprey Program received the first reported sighting in the county, osprey pairs have been returning to nest sites from Salisbury to Boxford to East Boston, and many are already incubating eggs. 

“It is always a thrill to see these majestic raptors return to our region each spring,” Greenbelt’s Osprey Program director Dave Rimmer said.

Already in 2020, 25-30 dedicated volunteer citizen scientists have been busy, rain or shine, watching close to 50 nesting pairs and have submitted over 400 online nesting activity reports.

To watch the live osprey cam and view a virtual history of Greenbelt’s Osprey Program, visit https://ecga.org/Osprey-Program. To report osprey activity or learn more about the program, contact Rimmer at dwr@ecga.org or 978-768-7241, ext. 14. 

Raise a glass with 'Cabin Fever Cocktails'

Join the New England Indie Authors Collective for "Cabin Fever Cocktails" on Tuesday, May 12, from 7 to 7:45 p.m. on Zoom.

The video presentation will ask the musical question: "What happens when you keep four creatives in quarantine?"

The collective includes Newburyport resident and Salem native Jenny Pivor, an artist and writer whose books include the novels "OMG" and "The Closing" and the nonfictional "Boston Dogs." She will be joined by novelist, humorist and performer Randy Ross; memoirist and one-man-show creator Judah Leblang; and novelist and journalist Jason Rubin. 

The four love to talk about their craft, perform their works, and entertain and enlighten their audiences. They will each give up a peek of what they've been up to since sheltering in place.

To sign up for the free interactive party, visit neiac.org/cabin-fever-cocktails. To watch a trailer, visit youtu.be/1f56yWmlMtY.

Keep up with Maritime Gloucester

Maritime Gloucester is now offering weekly virtual features, including Maritime Mondays, Throwback Thursdays and Front Line Fridays.

Mondays will feature a look at the collections and what's happening on the waterfront and harbor. The first one, posted on May 4, features a video put together last year by Masconomet Regional High School student Joseph Dox, who researched through the campus and archives, interviewed staff, and wrote the script.

Thursdays will celebrate the organization's 20th anniversary with memories from the past two decades. And Fridays will honor Maritime Gloucester members who are working on the front lines during the pandemic, from nurses and doctors to police and firefighters to teachers and delivery people.

To view the features and for more information, visit maritimegloucester.org, where you can also check out live webcam views of the railway and harbor.

A spring favorite returns in a new format

The fourth annual Tulip Festival hosted by the Stevens-Coolidge Place in North Andover will bloom online this year.

The virtual event is running through Sunday, May 10, on the property's social media pages and The Trustees of Reservations website, thetrustees.org. There will be colorful close-up photos, sweeping videos of the gardens and aerial views featuring the patchwork of color created by these plentiful spring blooms.

Special programs include a tulip gardening tutorial on Facebook and Instagram on Saturday, May 9, at 10 a.m.

For more information, visit facebook.com/events/627427478062393.

Art and nature at Gloucester gallery

Jane Deering Gallery in Gloucester is continuing to host virtual exhibitions during the pandemic and has launched its second one, "Green Space," featuring the works of Vanessa Michalak.

The show will be on view online through Friday, May 15, at janedeeringgallery.com.

The title stems from Michalak’s plein-air art show that was held in the woods of Gloucester’s Dogtown last fall. Those paintings are included in the virtual exhibit.

Michalak earned a Master of Fine Arts from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tuft University in 2013. She also holds a degree in nursing from the University of Maine in 2004. In 2014, she was awarded the Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in Painting. 

Regional Juried Show colors the web

The Newburyport Art Association's newest exhibit, the 23rd annual Regional Juried Show, is available to view online through June 30.

Juror Ruth Greene-McNally, curator and collections manager at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art in Maine, selected 149 pieces — including oils, acrylics, pastels, watercolors, drawings, photographs, sculptures, prints, digital art, fine crafts and mixed media works — from 512 submissions. 

"Art in the time of coronavirus commands more committed levels of attention in addition to new kinds of 'performance' in the realities of online exhibitions," Greene-McNally wrote in her show statement. "Nevertheless, the experience of viewing art, regardless of our access, is valuable now more than ever."

All works are for sale, with pickup to be arranged at a later date.

To see the show and for more information, visit newburyportart.org.

Theater group presents a little night music

TTS Players, a community theater group based in Byfield, is hosting a Virtual Musical Cabaret on the next two Friday nights — May 8 and 15 — at 7 p.m.

Members can submit videos by 6 p.m. on the Wednesday before to be included. Email to coachmikefay@gmail.com.

To view the shows, visit facebook.com/TTSPlayers or facebook.com/ByfieldCAC.

Beverly residents encouraged to show off

All Beverly residents are welcome to enter "Beverly's Got Talent," a contest hosted by the Ryal Side Civic Association.

Record your special talent, and compete for the gift card prizes that will be awarded to the top three winners. Not-so-impressive talents are welcome, too.

Send your video or YouTube link, up to two minutes long, to ryalside@gmail.com. Include your name and age, and remember that it is a family-friendly show. All submissions must be received by Sunday, May 10. 

The episode will debut online at a later date. For more information, visit facebook.com/ryalsidecivicassociation

Get ready to display your vocal talents

Amesbury Community Theatre is hosting another Virtual Open Mic Night via Zoom on Saturday, May 16, at 7 p.m.

All ages are welcome to participate. Videos can be new recordings or from past performances. Audio should be clear and shorter than four minutes.

Email your video to Andrea.Liacos@gmail.com by May 10. Please include your name, age, and name of the song or monologue.  

Andover-based composer showcases 'Sense of Wonder' 

In lieu of what was to be an Earth Day performance on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the Capitol Hill Chorale has released a video showcasing its performance of a choral piece by Andover-based composer Kevin Siegfried. 

Titled "The Sense of Wonder," the piece uses text drawn from the writings of pioneering American conservationist Rachel Carson. 

"It is a positive and affirming piece that speaks to our time," Siegfried said.

The video's release last month coincided with the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Siegfried had been scheduled to conduct the choral piece on the National Mall as part of a celebration before the event got canceled.

To hear "The Sense of Wonder," visit https://youtu.be/5Z7txjddGNY or go to capitolhillchorale.org/news/chc-celebrates-earth-day-with-the-sense-of-wonder to learn more about the piece. To get better acquainted with Siegfried, visit kevinsiegfried.com

Andover church hosting 'Deeper Than the Skin'

The Social Justice Coalition of South Church Andover will host an online presentation of "Deeper Than The Skin: A Musical Presentation on Race in America" by Reggie Harris and Greg Greenway on Saturday, May 9, at 7 p.m.

The program highlights the unique story shared by Harris and Greenway, who together and individually have brought the issue of race to audiences around the world.

Born three days apart, in Richmond, Virginia, they are now on a pilgrimage together that began three decades ago. The racial divisions that are the reality of America started them in two different worlds, but the bonds of music, mutual respect and shared vision have brought them together as friends and colleagues.

Described as an authentic, hopeful time of song and storytelling, their presentation will be interactive and there will be time at the end for discussion.

Harris is a Woodrow Wilson Scholar and co-chairman of the Living Legacy Project of the Unitarian Universalist Association, co-leading tours through the historic sites of the civil rights movement in the South. Both solo and in the duo of Kim and Reggie Harris, he has led hundreds of programs on race and social justice.

Greenway has been heard on NPR’s "All Things Considered," "Mountain Stage" and "Car Talk." He’s played Carnegie Hall in New York and for two years saw his song played whenever someone opened rosaparks.org.

For more on the program, contact South Church by email at scand@southchurch.com or call 978-475-0321. Learn more at deeperthantheskin.com, as well. 

Stories, music and more with Creative North Shore

Creative North Shore is keeping busy with a series of livestreams.

"The Hobbit: An Unexpected Reading" is a series being held Tuesdays from 3 to 4 p.m., through May 12. Part English class, part dramatic reading, part reflection, Tolkien's classic is being explored chapter by chapter as the group contemplates how the text can inspire today. Visit https://bit.ly/2RThobk.

Kati Nalbandian hosts "Reasonably Well" every Wednesday, through May 27, from 11 to 11:45 a.m. She will focus on how COVID-19 and social distancing is reteaching and reimagining life. Visit https://bit.ly/2xOgTZk.

Costume story times and singalongs take place Mondays and Wednesdays from 2 to 2:30 p.m., and Salem singer-songwriter Ashley Skeffington leads a solo acoustic hour of blues, folk and classic rock on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Visit creativenorthshore.com for details and more events.

Solace and inspiration from the sea

In an effort to provide some solace from the sea to those marooned at home, the staff and board of the Schooner Adventure in Gloucester have put together a list of nautical literature to enjoy. The list includes something for everyone, young and old, sailors, history buffs and landlubbers alike. All these books will inspire you with tales of the seven seas. Check out the list at https://bit.ly/3cCg0lE.

The crew of the Adventure has also teamed up to support local, independent bookstores to provide the titles. Partners in the effort include The Bookstore of Gloucester and The Book Shop of Beverly Farms for new books and Dogtown Books in Gloucester and Manchester by the Book for used titles.

The Adventure is compiling a list of the public's favorite nautical books. Email info@schooner-adventure.org to have your pick included on the list and be entered into a drawing for a copy of "Adventure: The Last of the Great Dory-Fishing Schooners" by Joseph Garland.

A wealth of American art to discover at the Addison

The Addison Gallery of American Art on the campus of Phillips Academy in Andover is said to have one of the most comprehensive collections of American art in the world, including more than 23,000 objects spanning the 18th century to the present.

All of those items can now be viewed at the museum's website by searching for particular works, artists, themes or periods. There are suggestions at the website for art-related projects and activities that families can do together and a link to virtual tours of 10 great museums around the world.

In addition, the exhibits currently on display at the Addison can be viewed in a virtual tour on the website, where visitors can also watch interviews with museum staff.

Check it out at addison.andover.edu.

Gardening, history and more with Trustees

Virtual events are being hosted nearly every day of the week by Trustees of Reservations properties across the state.

Events include history chats via Facebook Live at the Crane Estate in Ipswich on Wednesdays from noon to 1 p.m. and Steward Saturdays, an online garden Q&A at the Stevens-Coolidge Estate in North Andover on Saturdays from 10 to 10:30 a.m. that attempts to answer everyone’s gardening questions.

In addition, the Stevens-Coolidge Place is offering a virtual firsthand look into the collection of Helen and John Coolidge’s personal archives and life on Ashdale Farm in weekly teas on Thursdays at 2 p.m. through the end of the month.

Virtual events are free, but donations are appreciated to support the nonprofit organization. To see the full schedule, visit thetrustees.org/things-to-do/month/virtual.html.

Fun fare from Theater in the Open

Theater in the Open in Newburyport is presenting "Adventures in Zoomland: A Stay-at-Home Panto!" every weekend.

Touted as a "virtual romp through Zoom," it features local actors in short episodes premiering live on Sundays at 4 p.m. on YouTube.

Theater in the Open, which has been performing family-friendly productions in Maudslay State Park for 40 years, also continues to stream daily storytelling sessions, music, jokes and theatrical performances online.

Dubbed “Social Distancing Storytime,” the offerings include artistic director Teddy Speck, joined by his daughters, reading and talking about both classic and lesser-known children’s books.

Tune in every day at 11 a.m. via facebook.com/theaterintheopen.

Whale watches, museum tours with Discover Gloucester

Discover Gloucester is sharing a selection of virtual tours that offer entertainment, art, history and education from the comfort of your own home.

Cape Ann Museum may be toured virtually at facebook.com/camuseum/videos/487062198670695/. The museum's Vimeo page offers access to past lectures, such as “Judith Sargent Murray: A Complicated Woman," available via capeannmuseum.org/video-links/. There is free access to the museum's library and archives, which boasts digital resources available to researchers such as Fitz Henry Lane Online and the Digital Commonwealth, the historical collections from libraries, museums and archives across the state. Go to capeannmuseum.org/research/news-library-archives/digital-resources for more details.

Cape Ann Whale Watch, which offers guaranteed whale sightings for every whale-watching tour out to Stellwagen Bank off the coast of Gloucester, is offering virtual tours at seethewhales.com/index.php?link=virtual, or catch some whales at seethewhales.com/index.php?link=videos. 

Music Man keeps entertaining children

Wenham musician Brian Doser performs children's music live on Facebook every weekday at 10 a.m.

Doser, better known as The Music Man, normally performs a drop-in music program for children three days a week at The Community House in Hamilton.

He is joined by his daughter Hannah, who sings and plays various instruments, for the 45-minute segments.

Doser has also been offering shows geared toward adults on weekends, featuring popular cover songs and some original tunes.

To check out his shows, visit facebook.com/briandosermusic

Virtual crafting at Haverhill library

The Haverhill Public Library is holding a virtual crafting hour through Zoom on Fridays at 2 p.m. The meetings let crafters working on projects at home connect with others and draw inspiration from their work.

To receive the Zoom invite to access the sessions, visit haverhillpl.org, or contact Brendan Kieran at bkieran@haverhillpl.org to learn more.

Bringing the Beverly library home

Beverly Public Library is connecting with the community through social media. Offerings include Facebook Live sessions of "Tea Time Children's Classics," featuring readings of chapters from classic children's literature, on Tuesdays at 4 p.m. and "Musical Mondays," with rhymes, songs and special guests, on Mondays at 10 a.m.

The library has also been using Zoom to host various book and film discussion groups. To check out the events, visit facebook.com/beverlypubliclibrary or beverlypubliclibrary.org.

Additionally, the library, in conjunction with Beverly Public Schools’ librarians, is launching Beverly Keeps Reading, a citywide challenge to read 5,000 books this spring. All ages can take part using the Beanstack app, which rewards readers with badges and keeps track of the collective goal. Participants will have a chance to win gift certificates to local businesses provided by the Friends of the Beverly Public Library. For details, check beverlypubliclibrary.org/remote.

Cape Ann Museum offers lectures

Cape Ann Museum seeks to continue its mission to tell the stories of the community and its contributions to American art and industry even though its doors are temporarily closed.

During this period, the Gloucester museum is sharing some of its offerings online. To take a virtual tour, visit facebook.com/camuseum/videos.

To access previous lectures, visit capeannmuseum.org/video-links. From this link, viewers can find programs such as "Redefining Women: The Impact of the Revolution on Gender Ideology," recorded on March 7; "Promises and Limits of the New Republic," recorded on Feb. 29; and "Judith Sargent Murray: A Complicated Woman," recorded on Jan. 25, among many other options.

Explore the Peabody Essex Museum

The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem now features a range of digital content at its website that allows visitors to explore its collection remotely.

Podcasts discuss recent exhibits and museum history, while stories reflect on the value and impact of art. There are also suggestions for crafts and activities for the whole family.

Clicking on the “Explore Art” button at pem.org allows viewers to examine highlights from several periods and categories in the museum’s international collection, while postings of art and objects at facebook.com/peabodyessexmuseum respond to each day at hand.

Be heard in Oral History Project

The Lawrence History Center is collecting stories about coming together in crisis.

“Remote Oral History: Physically Distanced. Socially Connected” highlights the lives of community members in a way that reflects the current reality.

File a two-minute story, a full-length interview via Zoom or submit a written story and photos to the center’s Dropbox account.

For more information, visit lawrencehistorycenter.org.

Going backstage with Stage 284

Stage 284, the theater program at The Community House in Hamilton, is presenting a series on Facebook called “Backstage at 284” that looks at what happens behind the scenes and off the stage in a production.

This features live, 30-minute “Lunch and Learn” sessions on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at noon with directors, performers, choreographers, lighting designers, sound designers and more.

Then on Tuesdays and Thursdays, viewers can dance along with performers or do yoga at 1 p.m. in sessions that last between 20 minutes and one hour.

All of the videos stay online at facebook.com/stage284, so they can be accessed any time. 

Lighten up with Memorial Hall Library

For anyone looking to lighten the mood, Memorial Hall Library in Andover is offering links through its website to comic strips, comedies on film and TV, collections of jokes, laughter yoga, and strange stories on NPR.

In addition, the library has contact information for online Dungeons & Dragons games being held for ages 6 through 12, virtual dementia dialogues for caregivers and people with dementia, virtual book chats, and much more. Access varies, with some programs available just to Memorial Hall Library cardholders, others to cardholders from any library in the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium. Visit mhl.org.

Also, all Massachusetts residents have access to Boston Public Library resources with an e-card available at bpl.org

If you have an event to add to this roundup, please email the details to Sonya Vartabedian, managing editor of features, at svartabedian@northofboston.com

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