Artfully Edmonds: Foreground/background – the forces of a community’s arts effort

Foreground, background: These two complementary forces bring art into being. Whether it’s the artist, complemented by the gallery owner; the singer, complemented by a studio; or an actor, supported by their director; volunteers of museums, playhouses and arts festivals, no foreground artist can reach star power success without curators, teachers, mentors, directors and volunteers.

This week’s Artfully Edmonds includes: A “call to volunteers” from Cascadia Art Museum – the strength behind a premier art museum; a nod to one of our region’s most popular directors – Eric Lewis; and a reminder that it is a community effort that keeps Art Walk Edmonds and all of Edmonds’ other arts initiatives alive and thriving.

Shall we?

– – – –

Friday, Feb 17
8 p.m.

Enchanted April by Matthew Barber

Directed by Paul Fouhy

Driftwood Players at
Wade James Theatre
950 Main St.

The vital importance of girlfriends, love, and escapes to the Italian Riviera – all set on a sun-basked stage – is what the Driftwood Players are offering us for Valentine’s Week.

But, that’s not all. Driftwood Players has paired up with none other than inspired-by-Italy Girardi’s Osteria to set theatregoers in just the right mood before seeing Enchanted April (or after, if it’s a matinee setting).

Purchase your dinner-and-a-play tickets, or your performance-only tickets at this link.

The story:

Like many of us, Londoner Lotty Wilton is suffering a depression from the long bone-chilling winter. When an ad captioned, “for those who appreciate wisteria and sunshine,” catches her eye (and its accompanying opportunity to rent an Italian villa for the month of April) she jumps at the chance to escape her weary existence.

Off she goes, girlfriends in tow!

As her month on vacation passes, verdant sun-drenched San Salvatore, Italy works its magic.

Experience what Lottie, and all the other women who have dashed away from home, have experienced! Get your tickets for an enchanted occasion, thanks to The Driftwood Players and Girardi’s Osteria. Enchanted April plays through Sunday, March 5. Buy Tickets Here!

~ ~ ~ ~

Director of The Phoenix Theatre production, “The Last Romance” Eric Lewis

Plays at The Phoenix Theatre through March 5

The Last Romance

Directed by Eric Lewis

The Phoenix Theatre
(Upper level of the Firdale Shopping Plaza)
9673 Firdale Ave. 

The director of The Last Romance and many other productions staged at The Phoenix Theatre received a bushel of love on Valentine’s Day from the Edmonds-area theatre community and cast members of his current project. Artfully Edmonds would like to add our admiration of director Eric Lewis to the chorus of well-wishers who are proclaiming his directorial efforts a smash hit.

When he is not directing plays, Lewis teaches theatre and acting at Tim Noah Thumbnail Theatre, is the creative genius behind Gilligan’s Island in the Parking Lot; and has been involved with Historic Everett Theater, Driftwood Players, Sky Performing Arts.

Eric founded the Snohomish Theater Project at the Carnegie in Snohomish, and has produced countless productions since receiving his BFA in Acting at University of California Santa Barbara in 1985.

– – – –

The director of a stage production is the individual who is responsible for interpreting the intentions of the playwright, and how those intentions are portrayed by the cast. Novelists refer to this exercise as “Show, don’t tell!”

One cannot imagine an actor proclaiming to the audience, “I’m going to be angry now!” before stomping across the boards. It is the role of the director to guide actors through the body language, tone of voice, stance and “off camera” behavior that forms the essence of a character.

But it’s so much more than that: The director makes the final decision on who will comprise the cast, and usually after extensive auditions; how the set will look – depending on the company’s resources; as well as coordinating the lighting, scene changes and managing the rehearsals and schedules. In other words, all of what the audience sees once they are seated and the production begins.

Two cast members from The Phoenix Theatre’s current run, The Last Romance, wanted to take the Artfully Edmonds stage in praise of their director – a long-time friend and mentor to both.

This is what actors Melanie Calderwood and Michael Gene McFadden have to say about Eric.

Melanie, who plays “Carol Reynolds,” says “Eric is one of my oldest friends as well as one of my favorite directors.  He always comes to rehearsals extremely prepared and pushes me to be better. Thanks to his insight and direction The Last Romance is turning out to be another hit for the Phoenix Theatre.  He has taken a stellar cast and made us all better with his patient and supportive leadership.”

From Michael (who portrays Ralph Bellini) we hear, “Eric has certain rules he directs by. ‘Play the intention’ is first; ‘expectation’ is next. As way of explanation, McFadden says, “Playing the intention allows the actors to totally commit to the moment and experience it as the character. Reacting to that unique moment in time as though it just happened. The true emotional response is then generated and the audience feels it resonate based on their own life experiences.”

McFadden continues, “Eric is very good about pointing out the difference between playing intention, and playing emotions. And he is the most prepared director [an actor] will ever work with. We joke about the volumes of research he brings to first read through.

“Eric has been an acting mentor to me and has provided me with amazing roles and opportunities.  This show is another example of his talent. The rehearsal process for it was such a joy. Granted, we had a great script plus a solid cast and tech, but the quality of the show is a direct reflection of Eric’s vision, direction and attention to detail.”

A Hit!

The Last Romance has been proclaimed a hit by a number of Edmonds-area reviewers, including My Edmonds News. Tickets are available at The Phoenix Theatre online ticket outlet.

~ ~ ~ ~

Art Walk Edmonds

Thursday, Feb. 16
5-8 p.m.

Downtown and at Salish Crossing

Art lovers have reason to rejoice with 18 merchant’s hosting shows at this month’s Art Walk. Make the decision not to be housebound by this rain, grab your umbrella and come out to the fun of Art Walk Edmonds.

– – – –

“On the Road Again” by Doug Lofstrom. Acrylic. Courtesy of the artist.

Café Louvre

Doug Lofstrom

201 5th Ave. S.

Always looking for the new and exciting, Artfully Edmonds is thrilled that popular gathering spot, Cafe Louvre is featuring colorful contemporary work by Doug Lofstrom.

We understand that music is also a passion of the Lofstrom family and AWE strollers who visit Café Louvre will be treated to the accompaniment of David Kinney and Rodney Kinney, sons of the popular new artist.

David and Rodney Kinney, sons of the artist will provide musical accompaniment at Cafe Louvre for the art walk.

My Edmonds News interviewed Lofstrom last month and was impressed by the enthusiasm and verve that literally jumps out in each of Lofstrom’s fast-selling works.

– – – –

Local author Paddy Eger will hold her book release event during art walk in celebration of “Letters to Follow”, a ballet trilogy. 

Paddy Eger

Edmonds Bookshop
115 5th Ave. S.

In her My Edmonds News column Edmonds Booktalk, Elaine Mattson speaks of the upcoming AWE appearance of Edmonds author Paddy Eger and the release of her third novel, the completion of a trilogy set in the ballet world: “Letters to Follow: A Dancer’s Adventure”.

Lynne’s Adventures through Letters and Cards

Professional ballerina Lynne Meadows begins a grand adventure when she travels to Paris on a dance exchange. Her move to a wacky boarding house is not a good fit for an outspoken American dancer but it creates humorous encounters with the tenants. At the end of the exchange, Lynne becomes the travel companion for her harebrained Uncle Leo. She sends postcards and letters to Marta to retell her madcap adventures.

Ms. Eger informs Artfully Edmonds that the format for her Art Walk Edmonds appearance will be to present five 5-minute topics and reads at the bookshop. Her highlight topic will be “Why ‘Letters to Follow’”?

Visit Paddy in the cozy environment of Edmonds Bookshop, go to her website or view her book trailer for all kinds of great information about how her career as a novelist is developing.

– – – –

Art by kids, inspired by Dr. Seuss is showing at Coldwell Banker Bain for Art Walk Edmonds this month.

Coldwell Banker Bain – Edmonds
108 5th Ave. S.

Dr. Seuss Inspires!

The students of Edmonds Elementary and Sherwood Elementary Schools are enjoying their annual arts spotlight thanks to the generosity and encouragement from Coldwell Banker Bain – Edmonds. CBB-Edmonds featured artwork by Edmonds’ youngsters is guaranteed to tug at your heartstrings!

– – – –

“Desert Vista” (L) and “Winter Blue” are just two of the many pieces by Andy Eccleshall being shown at Cole Gallery.

Andy Eccleshall

Cole Gallery
107 5th Ave. S.

“Breathe” opens at Cole gallery Edmonds at this month’s art walk and celebrates the vision, success, and popularity of artist and muralist, Andy Eccleshall.

Eccleshall’s newest collection consists of eight paintings – closely related to the same theme.

Cole Gallery, long the anchor of Art Walk Edmonds really is a must-stop along the art walk route. With its carefully chosen musicians, generous “pours”, and stunning dessert displays you will really want to put a star at this address – for art walk, or at some less boisterous moment later in the month.

– – – –

408 Main St.

Coining the term, “HEARTspot,” owner of ARTspot Tracy Felix is showcasing Pollock-inspired pieces created at the studio of Creative Connection by teens and adults with disabilities. Creative Connection is an initiative of Lynnwood’s Alderwood Community Church.

Ms. Felix, who has long supported the development of young artists, is donating 100 percent from the sale of Creative Connection works the evening of Feb. 16 in order to benefit two very worth causes: The VOICE (Vocational Opportunities In Community Experience) program, and the Lynnwood High Life skills program.

– – – –

Curt Labitzke

Zinc Art + Objects
102 3rd Ave. S., Ste. B

Seattle artist and UW Associate Professor of Printmaking Curt Labitzke brings to February’s Art Walk Edmonds his highly textural and classically inspired works on paper.

“Ancient Vases – New works on paper” by Curt Labitzke is featured at high energy ZINC Art + Objects. Image courtesy of the gallery.

In addition to his artistic endeavors, Labitzke is a UW professor who currently resides in Snohomish but is a former Edmonds resident.

Showing through Saturday, March 11.

– – – –

Northwest Pastel Society

Gallery North
401 Main St.

Northwest Pastel Society in its first ever “Mixed Media” exhibit. 24 pieces of art from 16 artists from Washington, Oregon and California.

– – – –

Dave Peterson featured at

Edmonds Realty
111 Main St.

Love the Pacific Northwest? You will love it even more, and appreciate its grandeur, after viewing the art work of painter Dave Peterson.

– – – –

Mixed media artist Jan Clem will be presenting a collaged paper dress “fashion show” featuring dress styles inspired by the 1960s and made with “vintage ephemera and found papers.”

The Northwest Collage Society

Cascadia Art Museum (CAM)
190 Sunset Ave.

 The Northwest Collage Society presents its Winter 2017 Show at the Cascadia Art Museum in conjunction with the museum’s Northwest Social Realism and the American Scene: 1930 -1950 exhibition.

In its CAM show, members of the society were asked to create up to three works of collaged two-dimensional art inspired by one of the following Northwest artists: Kenneth Callahan, Pieter Van Dalen, Fay Chong, Yvonne Twining Humber, Abe Blashko, Anne Kutka McCosh, Irwin Caplan, David McCosh or other Northwest artists of the 1930-1950 era.

Cascadia Art Museum’s curator David F. Martin has chosen 55 collages by 33 artists for this show.

– – – –

Cascadia Art Museum

Call for Volunteers!

Saturday, Feb. 25
10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Cascadia Art Museum will be hosting its first volunteer open house on Saturday, Feb. 25. Learn from veteran volunteers about volunteer opportunities that include; Admission desk and museum store attendants; gallery attendants; docent positions and special events and education outreach volunteers.

The open house will include a tour of the galleries led by a veteran docent.  This is a wonderful opportunity to get involved with one of the Northwest’s premier art museums.

For more details visit the CAM Facebook event page.

Museum hours are Wednesday – Sunday 11-6 p.m.  Additional detailed information about the museum is available at

– – – –

afterAWE, a new feature of Art Walk Edmonds that encourages an after-hours cafe crowd includes Chanterelle Hometown Bistro and Salt & Iron for January’s Art Walk Edmonds.


After strolling Art Walk Edmonds with your sweetheart or friends, take in “afterAWE” the newest feature of a very popular downtown phenom where fascinating people meet at fascinating places to discuss the topics of the day.

Now serving more fun at these locations:

  • 190 SunsetIf you’ve ended your art walk at Cascadia Art Museum, what could be more convenient than the 10% discount (with AWE participant’s card, which is available at Cascadia Art Museum.)
  • Chanterelle: Free dessert with the purchase of an entree. Must present the AWE map.
  • Salt & Iron: $1 Pacific Oysters all night and $5 glass of Chateau Bigotiere Muscadet wine.
  • Girardi’s Osteria: 10% off entire Happy Hour or dinner bill. Must present the AWE map.
  • Las Brisas: 15% off entire bill. Patrons must present the AWE map to receive this discount.
  • A Very Taki Tiki Bar & Grill: 15% off entire bill. Patrons must present the AWE map to receive this discount.
  • Epulo Bistro: 10% off entire bill. Patrons must present the AWE map to receive this discount.

~ ~ ~  ~

Edmonds Arts’ Ambassadors

By Whitney Buckingham. Courtesy of the artist.

We love it when our Edmonds artists show their work in town; but sometimes they are called upon to show off in locales nearby. Here is a list of this month’s artists who will be acting as arts ambassadors and where they will be showing this month as the weather clears and thoughts of weekend jaunts take form.

“Where is Whitney?”

Whitney Buckingham is often out and about and we keep up with her wanderings by doing the click! click! to her Facebook page.

– – – –

By Elizabeth Barrett. Image courtesy of the artist.

Edmonds artist Heidi Barnett is showing in Kirkland’s Parklake Gallery (130 Park Lane). Ms. Barrett has titled her exhibition, “Passion and Devotion” in celebration of Valentine’s season.

– – – –

Through Tuesday, March 14

Edmonds Community College (EdCC)
Lynnwood City Hall gallery space
19100 44th Ave. W.

The City of Lynnwood will showcase the work of EdCC artists Dan Neish and Vincent Keele through mid-March.

Dan Neish is an art instructor at EdCC, and uses wall paper, color, images, and patterns to tell personal stories.

Vincent Keele a self-taught artist combines styles from old and modern masters.

– – – –

An Arts Workshop!

Mary Peterson at

Alderwood Community Church

At this arts workshop participants will have an opportunity to meet Mary Peterson, the force behind some incredible art making in our community. Mary will  be here to tell you about this incredible feel good event called Creative Connection, a community art outreach through Alderwood Community Church.

~ ~ ~ ~

You Won’t Want to Miss

“Thursday Trivia” at A Very Taki Tiki Bar & Grill begins at 6:30 p.m. every Thursday!

Family fun! Great date night idea!

Thursday, Feb. 16
6:30 p.m.
Thursday Trivia

A Very Taki Tiki Bar and Grill
518 Main St.

Artfully Edmonds did not realize how vibrant the trivia community is in Edmonds until a week ago when we made a visit to “Thursday Trivia” at A Very Taki Tiki Bar and Grill on Edmonds’ Main St. just east of the fountain.

Collaboratively sponsored by My Edmonds News, Edmonds Historical Museum, and Cascadia Art Museum this weekly institution is so fun! so funny! so friendly.

Plus! The prizes are amazing – front row seats at ECA events, swag from the promoters; and a great balance between the questions to which you can respond, “I’ve got this!” and “Huh?”

~ ~ ~ ~

Edmonds Tunes! The performers are really this cool. Pictured here is Scottie Sindora (at a late night venue).

Friday, Feb. 17
6 p.m.


Edmonds Tunes

Café Louvre
210 5th Ave. S.

This week at Edmonds Tunes the guitar mastery of guitarist Wayne Lovegrove is featured; and fans will be welcoming Scottie Sindora back to the line up.

Plus, Newton Kellogg returns to the intimate Café Louvre stage.

This is where you will want to be for an easy musical setting, great desserts, and a casual atmosphere.

~ ~ ~ ~

DeMeiro Jazz Fest — it’s like family.

March 2-4

Evening programs and

VIP treatment

41st DeMiero Jazz Festival

Edmonds Center for the Arts
410 4th Ave. N.

The DeMiero Jazz Festival is a music education event for more than 70 middle school, high school, and college jazz choirs.

Festival events are held at the Edmonds Center for the Arts and other nearby locations. Come enjoy this exceptional experience for young singers and musicians.

Click here to buy tickets for the evening programs, which will be presented at Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 4th Ave. N.

The VIP ticket option affords Jazz Festival fans an opportunity to attend a VIP Preferred tickets include preferential seating and entry to the VIP Reception after the concert. The VIP Reception is a cozy gathering in a private room after the concert. Come to the VIP Reception and mingle with our fabulous performing Artists!

~ ~ ~ ~

The New York “Gilbert and Sullivan Players” are coming to Edmonds — with Pirates!

Saturday, March 11
7:30 p.m.

Sell Out Alert!

Pirates of Penzance

New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players’ production of Pirates of Penzance is coming to Edmonds!

This exuberant musical theatre masterpiece is performed in its original format. Enjoy the over-the-top action of swashbuckling buccaneers, bumbling British bobbies, frolicsome Victorian maidens, and the delightfully dotty “model of a modern Major-General” for a rollicking romp over the rocky coast of Cornwall.

Tickets for Pirates of Penzance are available at the ECA online ticket outlet or by calling 425-275-9595.

– – – –

NIYAZ! With whirling dervish performance and Iranian folk music — go no farther than the ECA.

Friday, March 17
7:30 p.m.

featuring Azim Ali

Described by the Huffington Post as, “an evolutionary force in contemporary Middle Eastern music,” NIYAZ has created a 21st century global trance tradition, seamlessly blending poetry and folk songs from their native Iran and surrounding countries, with rich, acoustic instrumentation and state-of-the-art, modern electronics. Niyaz will perform with an electric/acoustic quintet and feature a classically-trained whirling dervish.

Another ECA Sell Out Alert! goes up for NIYA. Artfully Edmonds recommends that you purchase your tickets today.

— By Emily Hill

Emily Hill is the author of two novels and a short story collection. Emily is retired from a career in public information and news media relations. If you would like your event listed, or featured, in Artfully Edmonds, Emily invites you to contact her at


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Real first and last names — as well as city of residence — are required for all commenters.
This is so we can verify your identity before approving your comment.

By commenting here you agree to abide by our Code of Conduct. Please read our code at the bottom of this page before commenting.