"Well, education has always been undervalued in the West, hasn't it?"
-Song Liling, from M. Butterfly
Tony Award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang is scheduled to visit Dickinson College this fall as the recipient of The Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program award.
Hwang will present a lecture, followed by a book signing, on Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m. in the Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium. He will receive the award that evening, according to a news release from the college.
Throughout his 30-year career, Hwang has explored the complexities of forging Eastern and Western cultures in a contemporary America.
He is best known as the author of “M. Butterfly,” which ran for two years on Broadway, won the 1988 Tony Award for Best Play and also was a finalist for the 1989 Pulitzer Prize.
His off-Broadway plays “Golden Child” and “FOB” also garnered OBIE Awards along with 2008’s “Yellow Face,” which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.
Hwang’s Broadway musicals include his new book for Roger’s & Hammerstein’s “Flower Drum Song,” which earned him his third Tony nomination in 2003.
He co-wrote the book for Disney’s international musical “Aida,” with music and lyrics by Elton John and Tim Rice, which won four 2000 Tony Awards and ran for more than four years on Broadway, and was the book writer of Disney’s “Tarzan” with songs by Phil Collins.
Hwang’s newest play “Chinglish” recently opened on Broadway and he is serving as executive producer of the feature film “White Frog,” which is currently in production, the school said.
The Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program is a gift from Jean Louise Stellfox, a 1960 graduate of Dickinson who was inspired to become an English teacher after meeting Robert Frost during the poet’s visit to the college in 1959.
When Stellfox died in 2003, her estate provided $1.5 million to the college to continue her mission of inspiring students by bringing renowned literary figures to campus. Stellfox named the program in honor of her parents, Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox.
While in residency at Dickinson, the distinguished recipient visits classes, holds a seminar for aspiring writers, gives readings and presentations and shares meals with students and faculty.
Previous Stellfox award recipients include Booker Prize-winning author Margaret Atwood, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Russo, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee and Pulitzer Prize-winning poets Maxine Kumin and Rita Dove.
For more information, call 717-245-1239.
Chambersburg celebrates cars for First Friday
Chambersburg’s Downtown Business Council partners with CenturyLink and the Council for the Arts to present First Friday on September 7 from 5-8pm, with live music, children’s activities and more than 20 regional artists displaying their works along Main Street.
September’s First Friday art walk will feature the 3rd Annual “Cruisin’ Car Show”, with classic cars parked along Main Street, competing for cash prizes of $100, $50 & $25.
Car owners should call 263-8529 to pre-register, for best parking locations.
The popular band The Road Toads will play on the Courthouse Plaza from 5-8pm, and C&C Coffee will also present live music, at 15 North Main Street.
Continuing with the car theme, the children’s craft at Kerrstown Square, 166 South Main Street, will be a small wooden car for kids to decorate.
Miss Penelope’s face painting will also be at Kerrstown Square, and the Council for the Arts, across the street at 159 South Main, will host a meet-the-artists reception from 5-8pm, for their new exhibit “New Wave: Paintings by Sam Dalious, Luke Jones and Kelly Neibert”.
Veteran musicians Mike Sneeringer, Rick Smith, Corey Orendorff and Steve Seymore are the members of The Road Toads.
All four have extensive experience in the music field, but the band was formed in February of 2012 with the goal of creating a new and professional group with skilled vocals playing a wide variety of music from the 60’s through today.
C&C Coffee will feature Erin and Alyssa Regan during September’s First Friday. The sisters are Delaware natives, and have been singing and playing music, both together and apart, for 20 years.
They come from a family of musicians and music lovers, with a mother who taught piano lessons in their home. “We were constantly surrounded by music,” they explained, “leaving us no choice but to fall in love with it and create some of our own!”
Alyssa has her Bachelors degree in Music Education from University of Delaware and is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Music Therapy from Immaculata University.
Erin has her BFA in Musical Theatre from Shenandoah Conservatory and is currently the Contemporary Worship and Youth Minister at Central Presbyterian Church in Chambersburg.
Artists interested in participating in First Friday’s should call Anne Finucane at 717-267-1396. For more information about First Friday events, call Penny Shaul at 263-8529.