Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

An opportunity to celebrate 'Our Town'

April 11, 2013

Arts Alive and the Big Read 2013 will again be celebrated in Lake Geneva with a series of events focused this year on the featured play “Our Town” by Thornton Wilder.

The Geneva Lake Art Association (GLAA) spring art exhibit “Our Town” brings to life the spirit of Wilder’s story of a small town set in the last century. This quarterly members’ exhibit is currently displayed in the GLAA Gallery at 647 W. Main Street in the North Shore Pavilion, and will run through Sunday, April 28.

The gallery will also be the setting for the Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra, which will be using music to interpret art based on the current exhibit, between 5 and 6 p.m. on Friday, April 19.

“A Simple Gift” is a graffiti art project created by members of the GLAA, consisting of a collection of small bags of art, which will appear in public places throughout the month. Entitled a Simple Gift from Lake Geneva, the bags can be taken, passed on to another, or left where they were found.

Other events

“Our Town” book discussion led by Roberta Rohdin Killian, Tuesday, April 16, 6:30 p.m., Lake Geneva Public Library. For more information:

“Thornton Wilder: A Life., luncheon and program with presenters Tappan Wilder, nephew and literary executor, and Penelope Niven, biographer of Wilder April 18 at 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Lake Lawn Resort, 2400 E. Geneva St., Delavan. Sponsored by Geneva Lake Branch of AAUW and Walworth County Arts Council. Reservations required by April 11. Cost: $20. For more information:

As Wilder and Niven point out, Wilder was a multifaceted man — son, brother, student, soldier, teacher, novelist, playwright, lecturer, actor, musician, man of letters, international public figure. A very private man, he possessed a remarkable gift for friendship, and the biography offers portraits of friends he made as he traveled the globe.

The play itself with John McGivern will be performed at the Young Auditorium, Whitewater, Sunday, April 21 at 2 p.m. and Monday, April 22 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $19 and $17. To order tickets online, go to:

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. Also sponsored by the UW-Whitewater Inclusive Excellence Initiative Grant.

Participating communities also receive educational materials to supplement each title, which also are available for download on Reader’s Guides include author biographies, historical context for the book and discussion questions.

Teacher’s guides are developed with the National Council of Teachers of English and State Language Arts standards in mind and include lesson plans, essay topics and classroom handouts.

The Big Read audio guides feature readings from the novel along with commentary from renowned artists, educators and public figures such as Michael Chabon and Ed Harris, and Big Read authors such as Ray Bradbury and Amy Tan.

For more information about The Big Read visit

The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at

Arts Midwest promotes creativity, nurtures cultural leadership and engages people in meaningful arts experiences.

For more information, visit