Artfully Edmonds: News of exciting arts events on horizon as end of summer nears

Creative Age Festival of Edmonds (CAFE) has chosen Dr. Anu Taranath to launch its new series, “Imagine”.

Mega events are nothing new to the Edmonds arts and events scene, so it probably won’t surprise readers that this week Artfully Edmonds features two very popular events that will arrive rather quickly, considering the Labor Day holiday, back-to-school preparations, and the start of the 2017-18 performance season.

This week’s column provides details of a new series being unveiled by the Creative Age Festival of Edmonds (CAFE) and artist profiles and links for artists participating in the upcoming Edmonds Art Studio Tour (EAST):

CAFE expands its stage by introducing a series of single-issue topics

Founded in 2016, CAFE held its second annual two-day festival this past April with Dr. Gloria Burgess keynoting the festival.

While the April festival featured 25 workshops and activities, CAFE is introducing a new series that will showcase high-profile speakers exploring in-depth topics, scheduled every other month [e.g. September, November, January].

Imagine is the theme for CAFE’s inaugural “series” which is intended to complement Edmonds Senior Center’s program, Tapping Our Talent.

The first segment of the series will take place at the center (220 Railroad Ave.) on Saturday, Sept. 16 at 9:30 a.m.

To launch the series, Dr. Anu Taranath has accepted CAFE’s invitation to present her talk, When We Speak About Diversity, What Are We Actually Talking About?

In preparing audiences for her presentation. Dr. Taranath explains that the objective of her workshop is to challenge participants to “develop critical capacity and deepen [the] conversation on issues of difference, diversity and social justice.”

CAFE provides further introduction here: “Dr. Anu Taranath brings passion and expertise to her work as a speaker, facilitator and educator. Since 2001, she has taught at the University of Washington Seattle about global literature, identity, race and equity. She received several regional distinctions, including Seattle Weekly’s “Best of Seattle” designation and the University of Washington’s Distinguished Teaching Award, as well as multiple national Fulbright awards and fellowships. A facilitator and consultant known for “pushing the conversation without pushing folks away,” she engages with schools, colleges, libraries, community organizations and government agencies to deepen social justice and global consciousness.”

Cost of the Saturday, Sept. 16 workshop is $20 ($15 for Edmonds Senior Center members). You may register at this link, or via email to

Memoir coach, Janette Turner is scheduled to lead CAFE’s November’s workshop. Photo credit:

November’s Series Speaker

Charter member of EPIC Group Writers, community arts advocate and memoir coach Janette Turner will present a memoir writing workshop in November as the series’ second speaker.

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Edmonds Arts Festival, which features “Edmonds Art Studio Tour 2017,” offers this collage of art from participating artists.

Saturday and Sunday
Sept. 16 – 17

10 a.m.– 5 p.m.

Edmonds Art Studio Tour (EAST)

Arts enthusiasts are expected to arrive in Edmonds from miles around to attend mid-September’s 12th annual Edmonds Art Studio Tour, presented by the Edmonds Arts Festival.

This year the tour features 19 private studios and five gallery spaces. The free self-scheduled tour gives art lovers an opportunity to visit the private studios of well-known local artists, meet and talk with them about their art passions, and view works in progress, as well as newly finished pieces available for purchase.

Over the upcoming four weeks, Artfully Edmonds will provide background quips and artist quotes for each of the participants in this year’s arts studio tour:

Meredith Arnold. Photo courtesy Edmonds Arts Festival.

Meredith Arnold

Always envisioning something new, mixed media artist Meredith Arnold has been working on designs for collage necklaces to showcase in this year’s tour.

She explains, “I am making each of the key elements that will be combined into the chain of each necklace that include small, handmade metal shadow boxes with tiny collage compositions inside under resin; escutcheons I made from opaque resins; wire-framed, resin-covered papers and handmade beads.”

Arnold has become actively involved with the Museum of Special Art (MOSA) in Bothell’s Country Village. MOSA, formed for artists with disabilities, began by having their open studios twice a month at ArtWorks in Edmonds. As the manager of the ArtWorks space, Arnold was able to help the artists secure donations, learn how to hang a show, and help produce an annual exhibit.

Angela Bandurka

Painter Angela Bandurka agrees. “This is the best opportunity for me to meet with collectors and artists in an informal setting,” she said. “Usually as an artist, you’re alone in your studio day after day and, while I love the quiet time, it’s great to talk to folks about art and the process of making it.”

Bandurka has had a particularly good year, having achieved Master Signature status in the International Society of Acrylic Painters (ISAP). She received the first place prize for The Artist’s Magazine’s “All Media Art Competition” in 2016,” after last year’s tour.

Ellen Chappelle. Photo courtesy Edmonds Arts Festival.

Ellen Chappelle

Interviewed by Lynn Hensley regarding the state of her studio, Ellen Chappelle reveals:

“If you entered my studio today, you’d find 10 strands of big, beautiful pearls that I’m making into jewelry to benefit Threads of Hope, a livelihood ministry serving the poor in the Philippines.  On my Limelight page you’ll also find some sparkly Swarovski crystals I plan to capture in chain maille for pendants. These are available on my website and well as available during the tour, unless they’re all sold out!”

Andy Eccleshall

The work of artist and muralist Andy Eccleshall is displayed throughout Puget Sound. Eccleshall is an in-demand muralist, and you can view many of his projects at downtown Edmonds locations such as at Spangler Books Exchange, where much larger-than-life book spines herald the shop owned by bookseller James Spangler.

Eccleshall displays his finished landscapes locally at Cole Gallery, but is welcoming visitors to his studio for the tour.

Janis Graves

“The tour is a weekend of fun and friends,” says Janis Graves, a painter who has been a participant in the tour since its inception. [EAST] “is a time to reconnect with patrons who come every year to say hello and search for new art works, … to meet people from all walks of life.”

Mike O’Day. Say the name and creative whimsy comes to mind. Photo courtesy of ARTspot.

Mike O’Day

Delighting the young-at-heart with his whimsical, fantasy-inspired ceramic sculptures, Mike O’Day will be meeting visitors this year at Mona Fairbanks Studio. O’Day’s finished pieces are a regular attraction at ARTspot on Main Street.

Sue Robertson

“Nothing makes me happier than to talk about art in general and my art in particular with people who are interested in discussing art,” says painter Sue Robertson, one of the founders of EAST.

“The studio tour provides the opportunity to do just that with hundreds of visitors. In particular, I enjoy talking with young people who are creating art and asking questions about how to get their art seen or about my studio set up. It is a joyful weekend for me.”

Nancy Thompson

Passion for Nancy Thompson translates to art forms in acrylic and mixed media. Nancy will show her work at the Joyful Art Studio along with Meredith Arnold, Janis Graves and Sue Robertson.

“Joie de Vivre” the work of local artist and sculptor, David Varnau, continues to garner awards, most recently from the City of Auburn.

David Varnau

Bronze sculpture artist David Varnau will be displaying his lifelike figurative bronze sculptures and answering questions from his studio on Driftwood Lane.

Varnau’s Joie de Vivre has won the People’s Choice Award for Auburn, Wash. 2016-17 Downtown Sculpture Gallery. My Edmonds News covered the story when, in September, Varnau won the “People’s Choice” award in Olympia for the same sculpture.

Says the Auburn Arts Commission of Vanau’s work on this most recent achievement, “In his sculptures, David Varnau strives to capture your interest from all sides of the piece. It reflects the moments of our lives when all is well, our senses are heightened and we feel the grace of being alive.”

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Taking the tour? The advantages are: No tickets to purchase, no curtain time to adhere to! Yet, you are guaranteed to enjoy thought-provoking paintings, breathtaking sculptures, intricate jewelry, exquisite wood pieces and carvings, intriguing glasswork, pretty pottery, weavings and fabric work.

For an online, take-it-with-you map of the studio and gallery locations go to this link.

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This time of year is what would be referred to in the travel industry as “shoulder season” for the Snohomish County arts and events calendar. Summer stock, kids camps and lawn concerts are coming to an end. But there are still plenty of events to choose from this week, in and around Edmonds. 

Edmonds Arts Commission’s final free, public concert will take place in the lovely setting of Hazel Miller Plaza on Thursday, Aug. 24.

Concerts in The Park and

Concerts on The Plaza

Let’s give this dynamic music program an Edmonds-Kind-Of send off as Concerts in The Park and Concerts on The Plaza pack it in until next season with this last free, public concert.

Thursday, Aug. 24 ~ 5 p.m.

Hazel Miller Plaza at 5th Avenue South and Maple Street.

20/20 A Capella, which features pop music presented a capella style, was founded in 2014 and features Ellensburg, Wash. band members Emelia Blunt, Theo Olson, Ben Rice, Isaiah Ragland, Matt Mayrhofer, Jacob Cecil.

They are featured in this YouTube video performing Gavin DeGraw’s “I’m In Love With a Girl”. Expect sunshine in one of Edmonds loveliest settings.

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Friday, Aug. 25
9 p.m.

Richard Allen & The Louisiana Experience

Engel’s Pub
113 5th Ave. S.

If by “Louisiana Experience” you mean Cajun-hot accordion chords, raw harmonica riffs, and the beat of cowboy boots stomping to that back-home, swampland music; then the name of this band resonates with Artfully Edmonds.

Richard Allen & The Louisiana Experience is now on our radar. Watch for a performance review the next time we catch up with Richard Allen.

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Red Classic Rock sets the Engel’s crowd on their ears this Saturday, Aug. 26. Grab your bar stool by 9 p.m. and rock on! It’s going to be fun.

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Saturday, Aug. 26

For kids who want to rock out!

School of Rock ~ Summer of Love
4200 196th St. S.W.

Not your grandparents “Rock Out!” – but pretty close

This throw-back tribute to the ’60s, hosted by Lynnwood’s School of Rock music school, celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love with a series of nostalgic activities.

Two years before the “happening” known as Woodstock, the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival opened, thus setting the stage for the Summer of Love and a musical and cultural movement that swept the country.

That iconic festival featured musicians such as: Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, Buffalo Springfield, The Who, The Mamas and the Pappas, and Otis Redding. The School of Rock tells us they are excited to be able to bring the glory of the Summer of Love – 1967 to the Edmonds/Lynnwood area.

Tie dye is back!

1-3 p.m.

A free tie-dye t-shirt station will be set up for attendees to make their own 50th Anniversary commemorative T-shirt between the hours of 1 – 3 p.m. School of Rock organizers request that you bring your own tee short to dye; but if that’s not possible you may purchase one for $5 while supplies and sizes last.

Music director Zeke Trosper says of the School of Rock, “Our Performance Program puts students front-and-center on a real stage for real performances. Students get to show off their killer music skills while learning serious teamwork as they and their bandmates refine their abilities through some of rock and roll’s greatest hits. Lynnwood students will blow your mind.”

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Executive Director of Steel Magic Northwest Gary Gibson performing on stage.

Wednesday, Aug. 30
6 p.m.

Northwest Steel Magic at

Edmonds Adventist Church
8625 196th St. S.W.

Executive director of Northwest Steel Magic and steel pan instructor Gary Gibson invites the community to this community potluck party, steel pan demonstration, and Q&A session for those interested in the upcoming September steel pan classes.

Gibson will be posting updates regarding this steel pan party at this Facebook site.

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Call for auditions! Edmonds Driftwood Players’ success is often attributed to its well thought-out rehearsal schedules.

Places Everyone!

Sept. 17/18

Edmonds Driftwood Players are putting out the call for auditions for their November production, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

The curtain will rise for this production on Friday, Nov. 24 and there is lots of work to be done – beginning with director Andrew Coopman’s selection of the cast.

This resplendent love story was written in 1740 by French novelist Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve. We know that Driftwood producers Katie Soule and Rita Baxter, along with choreographer Molly Hall and music director Mark Press are about to bring another classic hit to the Wade James Theatre.

Become a part of the legacy of Edmonds Driftwood Players. Further audition information is available at this link.

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All That Jazz

News from Seattle Jazz Repertory Orchestra reassures us that the prestigious orchestra has booked three 2018 performance dates for Edmonds’ jazz enthusiasts.

Tickets for these three performances are available through ECA at 425-275-9595. 

Brubeck & Desmond: Inseparable

Monday, Feb. 19
7:30 p.m.

Composer-pianist Dave Brubeck and alto saxophonist Paul Desmond—the inseparable pair took the jazz world by storm with a special blend of sophisticated swing and a cool attitude. “Take Five” has been the single top selling jazz hit of all time, and is just one of the many Brubeck/Desmond chart-toppers you will hear in this concert, including “Blue Rondo a la Turk,” “The Duke” and “In Your Own Sweet Way.” This show will include special works composed by Desmond himself never before heard on the SRJO stage.

Ellington’s Such Sweet Thunder

Monday, April 23
7:30 p.m.

A lover of Shakespeare, Duke Ellington composed the “Such Sweet Thunder Suite” as his tribute to the Bard.

SRJO teams up with local thespians to present this special suite of works. Each movement—including Lady Mac, Sonnet for Sister Kate, and The Star-Crossed Lovers—evokes favorite Shakespearean characters or quotes. Guest thespians present selections from the plays and sonnets that inspired Ellington to create the musical work.

Dee Daniels

Dee Daniels: My Favorite Things

Monday, June 18
7:30 p.m.

Locally known, internationally popular, vocal star Dee Daniels joins the SRJO on stage for a concert of her favorite music—from the jazz hits of Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughn to great American songbook classics by Gershwin, Porter and Kern. Dee is a unique talent who transcends all musical boundaries as she shares her remarkable four-octave range and jazz styling infused with gospel and blues.

Tickets for these three Edmonds concerts, as well as SRJO’s Seattle and Kirkland appearances, are available through the SRJO’s website or by calling 206-523-6159.

Single tickets are $49 for the Seattle and Kirkland performances, and $35 for the Edmonds performances. Subscription series packages are available.

About the SRJO:

Now celebrating its 23rd concert season, the 17-piece SRJO is co-directed by saxophonist and arranger Michael Brockman, long-time faculty member of the UW School of Music and an authority on the music of Duke Ellington, and drummer Clarence Acox, award-winning conductor of the Garfield High School bands. SRJO includes many of the region’s best-loved jazz soloists and band leaders: trumpeters Jay Thomas and Thomas Marriott; bassist Phil Sparks; saxophonists Mark Taylor, Bill Ramsay, Travis Ranney, and Alex Dugdale; trombonists Dan Marcus, Scott Brown, and Bill Anthony, guitarist Milo Petersen and pianist Randy Halberstadt.

— 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

  1. I note that the Creative Age Festival (CAFÉ) has events on Sep 16 at the same time the Puget Sound Birdfest is happening. ( Many of the birders in the area are the same demographics that would participate in CAFÉ. It’s too bad that they have to compete against each other. Wish there was a better way for local organizations to look at potential dates (eg, a master Edmonds calendar) to keep things like this from happening.

    Ken Pickle

  2. That is the same weekend as the 12th Annual Edmonds Art Studio Tour. It has been on the same weekend since it began.

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