South End - Bay Village neighborhood notes

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There are plenty of tulips and daffodils to enjoy in Boston. This is what the South End looked like last year.

‘TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever’                                                       

The SpeakEasy Stage Company, in partnership with Boston Conservatory at Berklee, will stream “TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever” through Thursday, May 13.

In this wildly irreverent and whip-smart satire, award-winning playwright James Ijames dissects a sordid slice of American history with the goal of reimagining the future.

When Sally, a young Black college student, is faced with unwanted advances from TJ, her college’s white Dean of Students, she sets out, amidst a swirl of marching bands, beauty pageants and bubbly tour guides, to dismantle the legacies that bind us.

Content advisory: “TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever” contains scenes involving strong language, sexual harassment, slavery and Black trauma. Viewer discretion is advised. Run time: 1 hour and 35 minutes.

Visit www.speakeasystage.com/tj-loves-sally for more information and tickets ($30 + fees).

Firebird ballet

Abilities Dance Boston will premiere a new Firebird ballet livestreamed from the Wimberly Theatre at the Calderwood Pavilion at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 14 and Saturday, May 15.

Disabled and nondisabled artists from across the country will infuse their artistry into this innovative ballet.

Visit www.abilitiesdanceboston.org/events for more information and registrations (Free; $35; $50).

‘Boston in Ten’

Fresh Ink Theatre Company (at BCA) will present Boston in Ten, a virtual festival of eight 10-minute plays from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 15.

Go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/boston-in-ten-tickets-149621890101 for more information and registration (Pay-What-You-Can).

Rosie's Place Safe and Sound Chef Showcase

Join Rosie's Place for an evening of food, friends and philanthropy at their first ever Safe & Sound Chef Showcase livestreamed from 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, May 19.

This special night, hosted by Jack Lepiarz and Susan Wornick, will feature the best of Boston’s culinary talent: Karen Akunowicz of Fox & the Knife, Andy Husbands of The Smoke Shop BBQ, Fran Quarm of Rosie’s Place, Owen Royce-Nagel of Tres Gatos and Rob Wong of o ya. Wine pairings from Dan Michaud of Ruby Wines, Inc. are also on the menu.

Watch as each chef is challenged to create a unique dish highlighting an ingredient from Rosie’s Place’s Food Pantry.

All proceeds from the Safe & Sound Chef Showcase allow Rosie’s Place to continue providing help and hope, emergency services and long-term support to thousands of poor and homeless women.

Tickets and sponsorship opportunities available.

Visit www.rosiesplace.org/who-we-are/news-events for more information and reservations.

‘Songs for A New World’ performance benefit

Join SpeakEasy Stage for a special benefit production of Jason Robert Brown's classic Songs for a New World, a moving collection of powerful songs about life, love, and the choices that define our lives. This spectacularly theatrical event will stream from Wednesday, May 26 through Tuesday, June 1.

Directed by SpeakEasy Producing Artistic Director Paul Daigneault, and featuring a Boston cast, this exquisitely-crafted song cycle weaves characters and history together for a look at the importance of self-discovery.

All proceeds will support SpeakEasy Stage as they prepare to invite audiences back to the theater this fall.

Visit https://www.speakeasystage.com/spring-benefit for more information, sponsorships and tickets.

‘The Mother Figure’ + ‘Crowd me, I’m Alone’ artwork

Cibeline, The Art Gallery, 460C Harrison Ave., Suite C6 will showcase the artwork created to honor the important women in the life of Contemporary Abstract Artist Jean Saurian.

The smaller "The Mother Figure" vignette will be on display alongside the current exhibit "Crowd me, I'm Alone" through Sunday, May 16.

Visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/150749813751 for more information and registration.

‘ACCESS: Art’ at the BCA

BCA presents ACCESS: Art, an online group exhibition that explores topics of access and audience through artistic practice, curated by Amanda Contrada on view through Sunday, May 30. The nine participating artists are Boston recipients of the Red Bull Arts Microgrant.

Learn more at https://bostonarts.org.

(IN)Between + Still Life at Bromfield Gallery

The exhibitions – (IN)Between by Lesley Cohen and Still Life by Elizabeth Strasser – will be on view through Sunday, May 30 at the Bromfield Gallery, 450 Harrison Ave.

Artist Strasser will be in the Gallery from 1 to 4 p.m. on Thursdays.

– This new body of abstract drawings, (IN)Between, explores the ambiguity of transitional space in which definitions are suspended, and boundaries are blurred. These drawings serve as a metaphor for the “meanwhile-times” when people are left to follow an unfamiliar route that tests who they believe they are. Once the unknown is revealed and people transition to this new path, they begin to uncover a new layer of themselves. Even the familiar becomes new again.

– The paintings and ceramics in Still Life focus on still life in two senses: first, the traditional art idea of capturing interior forms in a moment of time and second, celebrating the ongoing pulse of life in its turmoil and uncertainty. The content of the paintings, ceramics and still life arrangements reflect both the stillness and the disturbing contradictions of a locked-down society.

Visit www.bromfieldgallery.com for more information.

One Together exhibition

The exhibition One Together by Danna Ruth will be on view at the Chase Young Gallery, 450 Harrison Ave. (No. 57) through Monday, May 31.

Although some may only see the trees, flowers, or sparrows in the paintings, the artist uses these images to carry the content, because like many other living things in God’s Creation, they are beautiful and willing metaphors for our human condition including all our varied emotions.

By combining oil, wax and paper with specific techniques, the result is translucent, like looking into ice.

Visit www.chaseyounggallery.com for more information.

Float exhibit

The solo exhibition by artist Lori Mehta, Float, will be on view at Beacon Gallery, 524B Harrison Ave. through Sunday, June 13. 

Float brings together a collection of Mehta’s most recent work. These pieces explore the artist’s studied investment in light, shape, and form through portraiture and moving and molded fabric. Working in oil, Mehta paints ordinary moments, yet her rendering allows the quotidian to become extraordinary. Mehta captures the gestural quality of moving people and objects through her attention, showcasing her subjects within line and shadows. 

Full of both bright and sensitive color, Beacon Gallery’s presentation of Float invites visitors to see their surroundings as Mehta does, and find the beauty in the everyday.

Visit https://beacongallery.com for more information.

SoWa is open                                                

The art studios, galleries, and boutiques at SoWa Art + Design District (450-460 Harrison Ave.) maintain their own open hours, but most are open with limited capacities, including the SoWa Art Guild (450 Harrison Ave.). The normal attire “masks” are required as well as physical distancing.

– First Friday from 5 to 9 p.m.

– Second Sundays from noon to 3 p.m.

– SoWa Vintage Market: open year-round from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays and from 5 to 8 p.m. on First Fridays

– SoWa Farmers Market: Sundays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 2 through Oct. 31 (will also include some Arts Market wares)

– SoWa Arts Market, Food Trucks, and Beer Garden are currently postponed until further notice.

Visit www.sowaboston.com and/or www.sowaartists.com for more information, including the SoWa Artist Directory.

‘Imagine Van Gogh’

Imagine Van Gogh, more than 200 of the Dutch artist’s paintings, is making its debut in Boston on Tuesday, Dec. 21 at the SoWa Power Station, 550 Harrison Ave.

The exhibition – spanning more than 24,000 square feet – brings Van Gogh’s canvases to life in a vivid and spectacular way. The audience will enter the artist’s world of dreams as visitors are transported on a journey to the heart of the artist’s work.

The exhibition, which will be on view through Sunday, Feb. 20, 2022, is a contactless experience, with a limited number of guests allowed in on a timed-entry basis, adhering to all safety guidelines established by the Commonwealth.

Visit www.imagine-vangogh.com for more information and tickets (starting at $33.99).

Virtual YMCA                                                                     

Go anytime, anywhere with your all-access pass to health and fitness from the YMCA of Greater Boston which includes access to all YMCAs across the Commonwealth. 

Get the full YMCA GO experience for free!

Go to ymcago.org for more information and registration.

Third Piece Online knitting classes                                                            

Third Piece (631 Tremont St.), a South End yarn shop welcomes virtual crafters of all levels at their online knitting classes. The sessions are offered at various times throughout the week. Fees vary; some free. 

To learn more, go to www.thirdpiece.com.

Dance with Parkinson’s

Urbanity Dance offers free classes from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. on Tuesdays via Zoom designed for people with Parkinson’s Disease to keep individuals moving in a fun, welcoming, and safe environment.

Certified Urbanity’s instructors will guide participants through exercises designed to enhance and maintain mobility, flexibility, balance, posture, coordination and strength, which are all easily modifiable for various levels of mobility.

In this social, creative outlet, participants can discover or rediscover the joy of movement. Caregivers and loved ones are welcome to attend, although not required. All are welcome; no previous dance experience required.

Visit urbanitydance.org for more information and Zoom registration.

Children's Mental Health Story Time                                           

Families with young children are invited to the Children’s Mental Health Virtual Story Time from 3:30 to 4 p.m. on Thursdays through June 24 over Zoom, co-hosted by the Vital Village Network Mental Health Committee and the Boston Public Library.

Together, they bring families together for book readings and activities focused on social-emotional learning, inspired by the Children's Mental Health Story Time Toolkit.

Sessions are designed for children, 3-8 years old, however, younger and older siblings are welcome to join the fun.

At the end of the session, there will be an opportunity for Q&A and resource sharing with parents/caregivers.

Visit vitalvillage.org for more information.

Register at https://cutt.ly/child-mental-health-story to join the group.

Social Fridays

IBA – Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción – will host a social hour from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. on Fridays via Zoom to spend quality time with their neighbors. Virtual Bilingual Bingo will be held from 1:30 to 2 p.m.

Go to www.ibaboston.org/events/social-fridays for more information and Zoom registration.

MFA Playdates at Home                                                        

Enjoy MFA Playdates through 15-minute videos posted online every couple of weeks. Toddlers and caregivers enjoy story time, look at art together, and participate in an art-making activity led step-by-step by a Museum educator. Each MFA Playdate focuses on a specific theme. Recommended for children, ages 4 and under, with adults. Art-making activities use materials commonly found at home. In addition to watching the video to see exactly how to make your art project, you can download the art-making instructions or read them online.

Visit mfa.org/programs/kids-and-family-programs/mfa-playdates/mfa-playdates-at-home for more information.

Urbanity dance classes

Urbanity Dance offers adult digital dance classes for all levels in a variety of styles. Taught by top faculty, including Urbanity Professional Company dancers and guest artists, these classes are designed to be taken on a drop-in basis or through 8- to 12-week seasonal sessions.

Go to urbanity.org for more information.

Free ‘grab-and-go’ meals/food resource information                              

Boston Eats provides free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth – 18 years of age and under. No ID or registration required.

Visit www.boston.gov/departments/food-access/boston-eats or phone 1-800-645-8333 for a list of meal locations. A list of food pantries and soup kitchens, along with other information is also included.

Visit foodpantries.org for a list of current food pantries, food closets, food banks, soup kitchens, congregate meal locations, food boxes, vouchers, etc.

If you need additional food resources, contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333.

AFH Virtual Gallery

The Artists for Humanity’s Social Distance Gallery showcases one of the largest collections of teen-created fine art in Boston and perhaps the nation. They hope that this artwork uplifts you and deepens your connection with the engaging young minds of their teen employees and the AFH’s mission.

Visit www.afhboston.org for your daily dose of art on Instagram @AFHBoston and to inquire about purchasing artwork.

‘Combahee’s Radical Call’ public installations and conversations

Combahee's Radical Call: Black Feminisms (RE)Awaken Boston continues with the conversation series and new call-and-response installments of the Roots the Bind, from Arielle Gray through Wednesday, June 30 at https://bostonarts.org.

Boston Gay Men’s Chorus at Home   

Boston Gay Men’s Chorus continues to “create musical experiences in inspire change, build community and celebrate differences.”

BGMC has a host of videos from a variety of tours, local concerts and music; among them are 

eight new videos at bgmc.org and nearly 400 musical videos on http://www/youtube.com/BGMC1982 that have been viewed by more than 57 million viewers, many virtually created since the pandemic started.

Help the Friends help the Boston Homeless                      

The Friends of Boston’s Homeless supports Woods Mullen Women's Shelter and Southampton Men's Shelter (formerly Boston's Long Island Shelter) in Boston’s South End.

The Friends serves more than 800 people experiencing homelessness every day by providing safe dignified care and basic emergency services (a nutritious meal, hot shower and a warm bed). The Friends also support solution-oriented programs that help people move beyond shelter to live peaceful, stable lives in our community including vocational training and employment services and transitional and permanent affordable housing.

Two ways to help: Participate in the Operation Sock Drop and/or Create Housewarming Baskets.

Go to fobh.org/how-you-can-help for more information.

Give to Rosie’s Place

In this time of uncertainty, Rosie’s Place’s doors remain open, offering sanctuary and support to the women with nowhere else to turn. They hope you will consider making a gift today so that they can continue to provide critical services and compassion to all who seek their help.

You can support Rosie’s Place with a monthly donation, tribute gift, events, or donated items. 

Visit rosiesplace.org for more information and links to donate.

Support Haley House & Haley House Bakery Café

During this period of social distancing, here are a few ways you can continue to support the Haley House community:

– Donate to their Emergency Fund – Since they switched their soup kitchen (23 Dartmouth St. in the South End) to take out, members of the Live-In Community have served more than 1,000 meals each week. Funds will be used to purchase food and materials for their take-out meals and as emergency support for their staff.

– Purchase Gift Cards or Order Take Out/Delivery at Haley House Bakery Cafe (12 Dade St. Roxbury) – Make sure to follow them on social media for live-streamed events and ways to support artists through virtual programming.

– Donate Non-Perishable Food or Sanitizing Items – See the list of in-kind donations and/or Amazon Charity Lists.

For more than 54 years, the Haley House has and continues to believe in #FoodWithPurpose and the #PowerOfCommunity. Visit http://haleyhouse.org/covid19response for more details.

MTW book/textile donations (drop offs and pickups) and online purchases

More Than Words stores are still accepting donations of books, CDs, DVDs, and video games along with gently used clothing and shoes to keep their youth-run business in operation. Monetary donations are also appreciated. Donations can be dropped off at one of their facilities or donation bins or can be scheduled for a contactless pickup.

You can also shop online for books, music, home goods and décor, collectibles, and other fine products.

All donations are fully tax deductible. Every donation and purchase support their mission to empower youth!

Visit mtwyouth.org for more details, including the locations and links to purchase items.

Help keep BGMC’s mission alive                                                               

Individual and corporate contributions fulfill the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus’ mission of creating musical experiences to inspire change, build community and celebrate diversity. Your gifts allow BGMC to perform in great concert halls and theaters, serve our community, tour to new places, and support their volunteer members. Your donation – in whatever amount is appropriate for you – is greatly appreciated.

The power of their voices will amplify the value of your gift many times over, helping to create a world that values its LGBTQ citizens.

Visit www.bgmc.org for ways to make your tax-deductible donations.

Support the parks – give the gift of membership                                                  

Give the gift of membership to ensure that the beloved parks - the Boston Common, Public Garden and Commonwealth Avenue Mall - remain icons of Boston and continue to receive the protection, care and management that they need.

Donations can be made at friendsofthepublicgarden.org.

South End Neighborhood Aid Network

The Neighborhood Aid Network, coordinated by The Human Network Institute at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has a simple goal: To provide a central place where neighborhood digital platforms can aggregate and standardize and where volunteers receive information and training.

The South End neighborhood is part of that network and is here to help. For more information, go to The South End Coronavirus Support (Need help) // Ayuda para Coronavirus en el South End (Necesita ayda/Quiere ayudar) online through www.humannetworkinitiative.com.