June 20 | Frederick’s Favorite Films

Since the dawn of movies in the 1890s, people have flocked to theaters and shelled out their cash in the hopes of escaping to a different world, if only for a few hours. Even though most movies provide that craved escape, they may not be particularly memorable or worth re-watching. But some films transcend time and circumstance. They are so moving — or funny, or shocking, or unique — that we carry them with us through our lives and look to them for comfort when we need them most. The art of storytelling through film, when executed masterfully, has the power to captivate audiences generations apart. Let’s take a look at some of Frederick’s favorite movies, and why people consider them to be “classics:”

Rona Mensah, Maryland Ensemble Theater and Weinberg Center for the Arts
“I love Raising Arizona. It’s so quirky. Holly Gunter yelling at Nicholas Cage always makes me laugh. It’s just so different, and I love it.”

Colin McGuire, Frederick News-Post
“My favorite classic movie is also my favorite movie of all time: Casablanca. Humphrey Bogart’s cynicism and wit is unmatched in any form of any era of American cinema ever and he’s at the absolute top of his game here. Meanwhile, Ingrid Bergman plays the One Who Always Gets Away with the perfect amount of charm, seduction, ambivalence and strength. Plus, it’s a love story. And who doesn’t like love stories?”

Marlene England, Curious Iguana
“I love The Sound of Music. When I was in fourth grade I played the role of Marta in my town’s production — I still remember the words to the songs!”

Keri Amorosi, Celebrate Frederick
“A classic movie to me is one that no matter at one point I wonder across it I just have to watch it.  For me that is The Shawshank Redemption. I have always been a fan of watching a book or short story adapted to big screen and Shawshank did not disappoint. An intriguing driving story set against amazing locations and memorable score make this not so short movie one of my favorites.”

Whitney Hahn, Digital Bard
I would have to say that the movie I have probably watched (and quoted) the most is the The Princess Bride. I love the action, the comedy and the characters. For pure looks, it would have to be Blade Runner. Dystopian movies are fairly common now, but in 1982, it was edgy, and the world Ridley Scott created was so rich, gritty and real.”

Melissa Joseph Muntz, Visit Frederick
“If I had to pick a favorite classic movie, I don’t think I could choose between Mary Poppins and The Wizard of Oz. I have easily watched both of these movies more times than I can count and I still love everything about them. The music, the costumes, the nostalgic feeling they evoke. I also love the fascinating stories behind the making of these classics. There is something to be said for films that are so brilliant that they don’t need modern technology to impress audiences over 50 years later.”

Grace Cassutto, New Spire Arts
My favorite classic movie is Raiders of the Lost Ark. I love Raiders because Indiana Jones is a Nazi-punching, whip-wielding, artifact-saving archeology professor. Add in a bada** love interest, a John Williams score, and a Wilhelm scream and you’ve got a perfect classic movie.”

Leigh Adams, Ausherman Family Foundation
“One of my favorite movies is Hook starting Robin Williams as Peter Pan. I think I could quote the entire movie!”

Branden McGee, Flying Dog Brewery
“One of my favorite classic movies is Good Will Hunting.  How can you not like the line ‘Do you Like Apples? Yeah. Well, I got her number. How do you like them apples?’”

Tom England, Dancing Bear Toys
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is my favorite classic film. It’s just such a bizarre movie and I’ve always appreciated Dick Van Dyke’s acting.”

Leeann Dickerson, Downtown Frederick Partnership
I’ll watch Under the Tuscan Sun anytime, anywhere, with anyone. Accidentally moving to Tuscany, then buying (and restoring) a villa has to be the single greatest accident a person can make. I don’t think it’s possible to watch this movie without at least a slight desire to pack your bags and head out on the next ‘Gay Tour of Italy.’”

Bob Miller, WFMD
Raiders of the Lost Ark would have to be my favorite classic movie. It combines everything I like in a movie. It has a throwback feel of your Saturday matinees. It also combines humor, adventure, and great special effects. It’s a great curl under the blanket with a bucket of popcorn movie.”

Stacey Collins, PNC Bank
1999’s The Matrix. The movie that gave action movies a futuristic makeover. And, it opened up a whole new perspective on the time space continuum and what could be possible. Favorite quote: ‘Throughout human history, we have been dependent on machines to survive. Fate, it seems, is not without a sense of irony.’”

This year, we’ll play host to the Frederick Film Festival yet again. The event aims to provide access and exposure to the art of film, and to cultivate film appreciation through exhibition of films and other film-related educational activities. Come join us from June 23-25 and get a look at the best up-and-coming film directors. Who knows? Maybe you’ll see work by someone who is destined to direct a “classic.”

See you at the theater!

June 13 | A Day in the Life: Manager of Development

What does a Manager of Development do all day? What even IS a Manager of Development? Here at the Weinberg Center for the Arts, Rebecca O’Leary handles memberships, sponsorships, grants, and other fundraising duties in an effort to generate dollars in support of our mission and programming. We couldn’t present the world-class live events that we do without our members and sponsors… or without our Manager of Development! Sneak a peek as Rebecca shares her typical day.

9:00am: When I arrive at the Weinberg Center, I chat for a few minutes with Ashley, the Manager of Marketing and Jef, the Box Office Manager, before checking my email and voice messages. Today I have a request from a member to update their email address on file. Maintaining up-to-date contact information for our members is really important so that members receive communications from us, such as thank you letters, greeting cards, and renewal notices. In addition, members enjoy special perks – such as early access to new shows! – and their access codes are communicated to them via email.

10:00am: Speaking of thank you letters, I have a lot to get into the mail today! Thank you letters and receipts go out once a week for folks starting a new membership or renewing an old one. It’s really extraordinary that so many great folks want to support the arts in Frederick, and the Weinberg Center – so, I want to make sure that they know they are a valued part of the Weinberg Center family.

12:00pm: Mail call! Several membership renewals have come in the mail today. Membership renewals are processed once a week, so I take the renewals that came in today’s mail and make any necessary updates in our database before placing them in a folder with renewals that came in the mail earlier in the week. Tomorrow, I’ll process them all through our system.

1:00pm: Part of the funding that makes it possible for the Weinberg to present quality arts programming comes from grants, and one of our grant applications is due today. I double check that the application is completely filled out and that all of the signatures are in place, and that all of the attachments (such as our budget, proof of being a non-profit, and a list of our Board of Directors) are included. Fortunately, the foundation administering the grant is located in downtown Frederick, so I get to enjoy a walk in the beautiful spring weather and hand-deliver the grant package. On the way back, I meet Ashley at Rex’s to grab a huge chicken Caesar salad – it’s been a busy first part of the day, and I’ve worked up an appetite!

2:00pm: After spending all winter doing research, writing a script, and training tour guides, we’ve recently launched free backstage tours of the Weinberg Center that let visitors take a look at areas that are normally off limits to the public. There are over 40 people gathered in the lobby for today’s tour! While I’m upstairs checking out the number of participants, I notice that the invitations for an upcoming Tivoli Society pre-show reception have arrived, after being designed and sent to the printers last week. I grab the box and head back downstairs to start stuffing and addressing the invitations.

3:00pm: While I’m getting Tivoli invitations ready for the mail, our intern is hard at work alphabetizing autographed photos from many of the famous faces who have graced the Weinberg stage over the years. When he finishes alphabetizing, the photos will be placed in chemically inert polyester sleeves and housed in an archival binder, thus ensuring that they will be preserved for generations of future Weinberg visitors to enjoy. This is a process we began almost a year ago, and has been made possible by a kind grant from the Community Foundation of Frederick County.

4:00pm: After the Tivoli invitations are ready to go out in tomorrow’s mail and Ashley and I head over to Voila to take our (almost daily) tea break, I take on the final project of the day: brainstorming sponsor pairings for next season. The Weinberg Center is also very fortunate to have a number of generous corporate donors as well as individual members and foundation gifts. With the current season winding down, and the next quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to start thinking about which shows on the calendar our corporate partners might be interested in sponsoring. This part of my job is a little bit like matchmaking!

5:00pm: At the end of the workday, I answer any final emails and head out the door. I want to catch a group class at the gym before heading to my electric bass guitar lesson. After that, it’s home to cook dinner with my husband and catch up on some reading, or maybe some Netflix binging.

See you at the theater!

Tape Face

“If you see one comedian…this is the one!”
-Adelaide Sunday Mail

Every so often, something magical reminds us that we all have an inner child yearning to be entertained. Through wry, charming humor and hilarious mime, this “America’s Got Talent” finalist has created an international phenomenon that must be seen up close and personal. You’ll laugh, you’ll scream, you’ll ultimately end up like Tape Face himself: lost for words.

You may also like: Red Green: I’m Not Old, I’m Ripe Tour and Colin Mochrie & Brad Sherwood: Two Man Group

June 9 | We Want to Hear From You!

Our season is drawing to a close, and we’d love to hear from you about which series of shows you enjoyed the most. Here’s a quick refresher…

Live! Series

Our Live! Series brought a variety of entertainment to the Weinberg stage, with shows ranging from a performance of Dark Side of the Moon to William Shatner himself! Mandolin Orange, Straight No Chaser, The Sicilian Tenors, David Sedaris, and more world class acts graced our stage (and signed our green room wall!) this past season with the Live! Series.

Family Series

Wholesome entertainment for the entire family is brought to the Weinberg stage in our Family Series. From Disney favorite Choo Choo Soul to our perennial Tuba Christmas, the entire family was enjoying our shows this season, which also included Dinosaur Zoo Live, The Aluminum Show, and Seussical! Our Family Series was a well rounded delight to young and old!

Tivoli Discovery Series

Your favorite genres, emerging artists, any price to enter. Our pay-what-you-want Tivoli Discovery Series highlights up and coming artist and brings them to the Weinberg stage! In a more intimate setting, patrons are able to discover a new favorite artist or style of music as some of you did this season with the Quebe Sisters, Zora String Quartet, or Girls Guns and Glory. Our Tivoli Discovery Series is sure to keep bringing unknown yet extremely talented artists to the Weinberg!

Frederick Speaker Series

The Frederick Speaker series is an open door to thought-provoking conversation, fresh ideas, and entertaining evenings. This past year we were very fortunate to welcome Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Elizabeth Smart, Dr. Bennet Omalu, and of course, Bill Nye! The Frederick Speaker Series has been and will continue to be a highlight amongst the Frederick community in seasons to come.

Silent Film Series

Accompanied by our mighty Wurlitzer organ, classic silent films are shown at the Weinberg, harkening back to our original days as a silent movie theater. This season we showed silent classics such as The Freshman, The Iron Mask, and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on Halloween with a costume contest in tow! We even celebrated our 90th anniversary with the same film that was screened on opening night in 1926: The Strong Man!

Flying Dog Film Series

A good time is in store for anyone attending our Flying Dog Film Series! Screenings of “cult classic” films such as Top Gun, Happy Gilmore, Fargo, and Footloose are held and we partner with Frederick’s own Flying Dog brewery for a pre-film happy hour!

There it is! Which of the series did YOU enjoy the most? Let us know your thoughts here and stay tuned to find out what we have in store for you in our upcoming season!

See you at the theater!