It may be January but the Trenton arts community is springing into life with art, theater, and music events — including a free April concert featuring one of classical music’s major superstars.
On the walls
Artworks Trenton is presenting two exhibitions, running from January 22 through February 21. “Beyond Mark Making — Star Wheel Printers” features work of the Philadelphia-based collective of professional printmakers “who aim to support, promote and share printmaking with other artists and communities in the Philadelphia, New Jersey, and New York City” areas. This exhibition “celebrates the individual’s use of mark marking to create a visual impact.”
And “People in Geometry,” by noted area architect and photographer John Clarke, is an international look at the relationship between people living in geometric surroundings. An opening for both is Saturday, January 26, from 7 to 9 p.m.
Future exhibitions include “High and Soft” by Pennsylvania based artists Peggy and Gene Hracho and “Distance and Happiness, Dreams and Time — Group Exhibition,” curated by Trenton artist Jeff Evans, March 12 through April 13. And “The Shared Meal” group exhibition curated by regional artist Lora Durr and “All in the Family,” another group exhibition and coordinated by Ewing artist Laura Beard, running from April 30 to June 1.
Artworks Trenton, 19 Everett Alley. 609-394-9436. www.artworkstrenton.org.
A main floor and an upstairs gallery are highlight the art of collecting. One focuses on the Museum Foundation — formerly the Friends of the Museum — and the objects that acquired for the museum through fundraising. The other is from various acquisitions and community gifts. No matter, both show off some unusual treasures from New Jersey, ranging from fossils to Colonial era silver to Davy Crockett lunchboxes, ceramic dolls, and artwork and more artwork.
New Jersey State Museum, 205 West State Street. 609-292-5420. www.statemuseumnj.gov.
The Garden State Watercolor Society 49th Annual Juried Show featuring artists from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York continues through Sunday, January 20. Related programs include live painting demonstrations on Sunday, January 6; a “Painting from Photos” artist talk led by award winning artist Richard Hoffman and another “Framing Your Work” by award winning artists and exhibition juror James Toogood, Sunday, January 13; and a artist demonstration led by participating artist Marilyn Rose on Sunday, January 20. Admission to the museum is free.
Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie Mansion, Cadwalader Park. 609-989-3632. www.ellarslie.org.
In the air
Trenton’s orchestra starts the year with something new: a “Youth Orchestra Festival” consisting of 30-minute performances by three young performing groups. The concert, which combines musicians from several area youth orchestras, is Saturday, January 26. American composer Florence Price’s “First Violin Concerto” is on the bill for February 24; a concert featuring harpist Cheryl Cunningham is set for March 9; and young violinist Joseph Hsia and members of area youth orchestras will participate in the season finale on Saturday, May 4.
Capital Philharmonic, Trenton War Memorial. 609-558-2292. www.capitalphilharmonic.org
Princeton University Concerts brings internationally known orchestra conductor Gustavo Dudamel to the Trenton War Memorial to lead a free concert with the Princeton University Orchestra and Glee Club on Saturday, April 27, at 4 p.m. The celebrated conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Dudamel comes to Trenton to bring attention to the importance of music education in the Trenton Public Schools, especially the Trenton Music Maker’s El Sistema Program — the program in which the famed conductor participated as a student in his native Venezuela.
Princeton University Concerts, Trenton War Memorial. 609-258-2800. www.princetonuniversityconcerts.org
Trenton’s only professional theater company continues its annual solo flight, single person, productions with “To My Unborn Child: A Letter from Fred Hampton,” about a Black Panther murdered by the Chicago police (February 8 through 10), and “Bicycle Face,” a look at a feminist theory class taught 150 years in the future (February 15 to 17).The look for the main stage production “Morir Sonynado,” where a mother and daughter confront long-buried pain when the mother is released from prison. It runs May 2 through 19.
Passage Theater Company, Mill Hill Playhouse, 205 East Front Street. 609-392-0766. www.passagetheatre.org.
This article was originally published in the January 2019 Trenton Downtowner.