Art is in the Air

Artisan food, new band
to highlight Madison

‘Big Leg Emma’ to bring
new sound to festival weekend


(September 2013)
Read previous Don Ward columns!
Don Ward

The Madison Chautauqua Festival of Art this year will bring in new artisan food producers to add to the selection of exhibitors during the Sept. 28-29 event on the riverfront.
“Looking at the Madison Chautauqua and how we might grow it, artisan foods is something that we have not done in the past,” said festival coordinator Georgie Kelly. “We have worked with or gotten advice from several artisan food producers to learn, from their perspective, the different aspects and requirements of showing and selling their product. All products must be one-of-a-kind food creations by the exhibiting artisan.”

Big Leg Emma

Photo provided

“Big Leg Emma” will replace The Doctors Band this year at the “Music in the Park” concert as part of the Madison Chautauqua. The band hails from Chautauqua, N.Y., and consists of (from left) Kev Rowe (lead guitar), Corey Kurtzie (drums), Steve Johnson (guitar), John Neidrauer (bass guitar) and Charity Nuse (electric mandolin).

Another new addition is the band, Big Leg Emma, which will perform at the Saturday night concert Sept. 28 at the Broadway Fountain. The locally based Doctors Band had been a staple for many years at that concert, but the committee is bringing this very talented band from Chautauqua County in western New York state to perform this year. Big Leg Emma made an unscheduled appearance last spring on the patio of the Broadway Hotel & Tavern. Kelly attended the performance with Chautauqua entertainment committee members Allison Hall and Jenny Youngblood, and she said they were all very impressed with the band’s talent.

Georgie Kelly

“We decided to try something new this year, and this band was very impressive,” she said.
Big Leg Emma bills itself as “an institution for high quality, original, Americana roots rock music.” Based both in traditional music like folk, bluegrass, country, psychedelic and contemporary rock, the band is a high powered, eclectic music-making machine.  The band formed in 2001 in Jamestown, N.Y., with long-time friends and musical partners Steve Johnson and Charity Nuse. Kev Rowe joined the band as lead guitar. The group also includes John Neidrauer (bass guitar) and Corey Kertzie (drums) as a powerful “make you want to dance” rhythm section.
The band has shared the stage with Rusted Root, Donna the Buffalo, Little Feat, Del McCoury 10,000 Maniacs, Max Creek, and Hot Tuna to name a few. The group has performed in more than 25 states from New York to Colorado, and all the way down to the Florida Keys.

Madison Chautauqua

• 10 a.m. - 5 p.m Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 28-29, in Madison, Ind.

• Poster signing: 6-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, at Gallery 115, 115 E. Main St., Madison

• Information: www.MadisonChautauqua.com

“Opening Act” will perform prior to Big Leg Emma beginning at 6:30 p.m. the band features local musicians Ryan Nix and Whitney Wyatt. The annual “Music in the Park” concert is co-sponsored by the Madison Main Street Program as part of its summer-long concert series. Wyatt serves as the Main Street Program director.
The concert is free and those attending are urged to bring chairs or blankets.
For art aficionados, the 2013 Chautauqua show will feature more than 200 exhibitors representing all forms of art media. The two-day show also provides a food court and live musicians playing at various locations throughout the show grounds, which is from Broadway Street to Vine Street and from Main Street to Vaughn Drive on the riverfront. Show times are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days.
Entering its 43rd year, the show is produced under the auspices of VisitMadison Inc., the city’s tourism bureau. Several hundred volunteers work at the annual juried art show, which is planned by a committee headed by Kelly.
Each year, the committee selects an artist to paint the Chautauqua art-print poster. This year’s poster was created by Madison artist Eric Phagan, a painter and sculptor who sells his work at his own Gallery 115 on Madison’s Main Street. His full color poster features the Milton-Madison Bridge from the Kentucky side of the Ohio River, and only 250 prints are made and sold for $45 each while they last. Phagan will be available to sign the poster at a Chautauqua signing event, scheduled from 6-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, at Gallery 115, which is located at 115 E. Main St. While signing, Phagan will offer live music by Brook Reindollar on the piano and wine for sale by Madison Vineyards at his gallery. Light snacks also will be offered and the Gallery 115 café will be open.
Any remaining posters will be available for sale at the Lanier-Madison Visitors Center, 601 W. First St., beginning Sept. 21 and at the Broadway Street Information Tent at the show. Chautauqua T-shirts are now on sale for $15, long sleeve shirts for $20 and sweatshirts for $25 at the Visitors Center and will be available at the show.
Residents and visitors to Madison may also notice the new mural that was painted on the western wall of Shooter’s Restaurant in early August. The Chautauqua-sponsored project features a painting by Phagan that was taken from the poster design but in sepia tones. The painting was covered with a special UV coating to help preserve it. The wall was provided by Shooter’s co-owners Harry Dobbins and Stacey Fields. In addition to Phagan, local artists Kevin Carlson, Bob Saueressig and Steve Bickis helped paint Phagan’s image on the wall over the period of one week in early August.
The new mural replaced a previous vinyl mural established by the Chautauqua committee in the same location during the 2009 Madison Bicentennial. Various sections of the first mural were created by 16 different artists, and the Chautauqua committee is considering a silent auction to sell the 2009 vinyl mural at the upcoming show.
To assist in parking, the Chautauqua again will provide shuttle service for $1 per ride from the Madison Consolidated High School on the hilltop to the show grounds both days. This year the committee has contracted with Klug Bus Service of Cincinnati to provide this service.
Organizers estimate that the Chautauqua annually attracts more than 50,000 people to Madison over the two-day show. The weekend also includes the Pilot Club of Madison’s Old Court Days around the Jefferson County Courthouse and Lanthier Winery’s “Harvest Celebration” at 123 Mill St. Many churches, fire departments, civic organizations and the Jefferson County Public Library also hold events that weekend in the downtown.

• Don Ward is the editor, publisher and owner of RoundAbout. Call him at (812) 273-2259 or email: Don@RoundAbout.bz.


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