Emmaus area residents dominate Allentown Arts Ovations
Arts Ovation 2014 recipients include several Emmaus area residents for their contributions to the Allentown area arts scene.
Recognized at the 26th annual luncheon, noon May 8, The Palace Center, 623 Hanover Avenue, Allentown, will be Sanford T. Beldon, Sharon Lee Glassman, both of Lower Macungie Township; Gretchen Klinedinst Furst of South Whitehall Township; Barnaby Ruhe of Emmaus, and Scott Stoneback of Alburtis.
The awards and recipients are:
Special Recognition Award: Sanford T. "Sandy" Beldon was chairman of the board of trustees of the Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley for nine years. During his tenure, he led the museum in the development of the Community Arts Park along Fifth Street, which connects the Allentown Art Museum, Allentown Symphony Hall and The Baum School of Art.
Literary Arts: Sharon Lee Glassman and Gretchen Klinedinst Furst, Lehigh Valley educators, wrote a tribute about their own mothers and mother figures in their original play, "Mommalogues," which went from a sold-out, world premiere in Civic Theatre of Allentown's black-box theater in 2012 to an Off-Broadway debut in 2013.
Visual Arts: Barnaby Ruhe is a performing artist whose signature wide, vibrant brush strokes have captured area personalities on canvas. He often donates his time as well as a portion of his proceeds to nonprofit organizations in the Lehigh Valley. As a member of the Artists' Council of Mayfair Festival of the Arts, he helped launch The Gallery at Mayfair and The Pig Pen Project: Experimental Arts in 2013.
Contribution: Scott Stoneback, executive producer-president of the national award-winning film and broadcast video production company, The Media People, formed in 1975, has provided broadcast videotaping services to numerous arts and cultural nonprofits in the Lehigh Valley. For 25 years, Stoneback and his company have produced the video presentation by recipients seen at the annual Allentown Arts Commission's Arts Ovation awards luncheon.
Service: St. Thomas More Summer Theatre Magic, with artistic director Natalie Seng Pionegro and assisted by Tim Clark, began as a charitable outreach of the Salisbury Township church's adult choir in 1999. It has raised nearly $350,000 for area charities through musicals presented in its Family Center.
Performing Arts: William Allen High School Chorale, started in 1970 by the late George Boyer, evolved as a year-round, audition-based show-jazz-chamber choir under the direction of Patrick Brady. Now led by Brandon Remp, it includes 20-plus students whose community service averages up to 70 performances annually.
Emerging Arts: Allentown School District Foundation was created in 2009 to expand arts opportunities for its 17,500 students. It funds programs in theater, dance, visual arts and music for grades K-12. The Foundation works with the Baum School and Community Music School for artists' and musicians' residencies and awards student scholarships to college-bound seniors.
Arts-related scholarships to high school students in the City of Allentown also will be presented.
Reservations: Arts Ovation co-chairwoman Susan Rutt, 610-791-3497