Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: What a Wonderful Year At the Edge

For the last 12 months, The Edge Center for the Arts in Bigfork has tried to include as much new programming as possible while keeping in mind that it serves many audiences. We have included student art and education, Native American exhibits/programs, thought provoking plays, a touch of history with classic movies, nationally prominent entertainment, plus lots of music and laughter. Next year we hope to repeat the experience and possibly add a whole new category of “literary art” education for the young and old.

Of paramount importance to The Edge Center is being part of our young people’s education. The Edge Center is part of and attached to the Bigfork School by design so students can participate in this process. During the year some artists participating in Edge Center events also include student classes as part of their activities. Also, The Edge Center is utilized throughout the school year for numerous school activities.

All of what we do is only possible with the continued support of you, without which we would not exist. From our large and expanding group of volunteers, to the community as a whole, and to each individual supporter, thank you very much and we hope we can make 2013 even more of an enjoyable artistic experience.

In 2012 The Edge Center's community work revolved around its Art Gallery, On Stage Performances and hosted Bigfork School Activities (volunteers doing stage set-up shown below).


In 2012 in the Art Gallery, with your help, The Edge Center presented a variety of events with each accompanied by an opening reception such as shown below:

April – Edge of the Wilderness Art League Show

May – Bigfork School Student Show (below)

June – Joe Geshick – Journeys, Native American paintings (set up below)

July – Art on the Edge: 8th Annual Juried Show (award below)

August – Al Kruger - Wildlife (set up below)

September – Jackie Solem - Migration to the Edge, photography (below)

October – Mary Lingen - Landscapes, paintings (below)

November – 8th Annual Holiday Gift Show (goodies below)

In 2012 On Stage, with your help and a very ample stage, The Edge Center presented performances ranging from classic movies, to music, to thought provoking plays. Below is a photograph from this year's giant puppet show in June.

Sunday January 15th - Sam Black, pianist, with Josh Aerie, cellist, - Chamber Music (below)

January 12 – “The Mark of Zoro” Classic Movie

January 29th - Polar Revue #7 - Local Talent Show

February 8 – “Robin and Marian” Classic Movie

February 23, 24, 25, and 26 - EdgeWild Players present Circle, Mirror,
Transformation (below)

March 2, 3, 4 - "I am Anne Frank" presented by the Nautilus Music-Theatre of St. Paul

March 8 – “White Heat” Classic Movie

April 12 – “Some Like It Hot!” Classic Movie

April 24th – 29th: -TU Dance returns with a School performance plus Community performance and Saturday Dance Movement Class

May 6 - Itasca Symphony Orchestra (below)

June 21-24 - Almanac with Big Puppets, with Master puppeteer Theresa Linnehan,
were in the Wilderness Parade and filled the stage. (below)

July 13, 14 - Stages Theatre of Hopkins is coming to the Edge with the
                     musical, "Seussical" (below)

August 11 - Piano Bar with the Northern Lights Trio (below)

August 25 - John Perkins, local song writer (below)

September 9 - Pretenders and Friends – 50’s; and 60’s Rock n Roll (below)

September 13 – “Cabaret” Classic Movie

September 16 - Art Redhorse and Nico - Native American Grass Dance
                         and Native Flute (below)

October 11 – “Dr. Strangelove” Classic Movie

October 13 - "8 The Play" BellWether's performance

October 6 - SAM MILTICH trio and CHARMIN MICHELLE (below)

October 25 - Theatre "Stories for the Stage" and Diary of Anne Frank

October 26 - Monroe Crossing, nationally famous bluegrass music

November 8 - “Meet John Doe” Classic Movie

November 16-18: EdgeWild Players present Love, Loss & What I Wore (below)

December 13 - "Shop Around the Corner" Classic Movie

December 15 - Great Northern Radio Show (below)


In 2012 Edge Hosted Bigfork School Activities included:

January - On-going violin lessons through June

January - 18, 25 High School communications class

January - 19 Community Education

February - 1 “Alice Unwrapped,” Nautilus Music-Theatre of St. Paul, school & comm.

February - 3 English class political debates

February - 7-8 Winter Fest, prep & coronation

February - 25 Speech Tournament awards ceremony

March - 9-11 Bigfork School's presentation of Tom Jones

March - 29 Community Speech night

March - 30 D.A.R.E graduation

April - 11 Honor Society Induction

April - 18 Elementary spelling bee

April -20-21 Prom prep and Grand March

May - 1 Itasca Sheriff’s Drug Lyceum

May - 10 High School Academic Awards

May - 14 Strings Recital, school and community

May - 16 High School senior reception

May - 24 High School athletic awards

May - 23-31 Five days of giant puppet building 3rd-6th grades

May - 31 Kindergarten graduation

July - 24-25 Grand Rapids HS Band at Edge

September - Piano lessons begin for elementary students each week
                    Violin lessons continue for elementary students each week

September - 14 Violin demo for students

September - 25 School & community meeting

October - 9-10 Homecoming prep and coronation

September - 16-17 English class presentation

November – 28 Elementary Talent Show

December 11-12 HS Winter concert & prep

Sunday, December 16, 2012

“Snow Radio”…From GNRS On The Edge

What a great way to end the programming year for The Edge Center in Bigfork. The Great Northern Radio Show’s live broadcast on KAXE Saturday December 15th made the drive in the snow worthwhile. Lots of songs, jokes, tall tales and real history added to the cider and cookies to put the audience in a good Christmas spirit. Here are some pictures of the evening’s fun…pick out the people you know, enjoy the rest, remember that some may have been missed (sorry) and listen to the whole broadcast on the KAXE web site when it is posted later this week at:

The show was a great learning experience for typical theatergoers. Doing a live radio show means the most important thing is what goes on the air and not performing for the audience. That means you don’t get to see all of the performers up front, that you may get to see only the backs of some, that you need to be aware of any noises you make (except laughing, clapping, whistling, hollering, etc.), and that you’d better take a bathroom break before the show starts or you may miss something fun. The Bigfork show was the fifth one in the series and the KAXE staff has perfected the process. They are a very talented group of people. If you get a chance to see a performance…do it and you will find it very entertaining. After two hours, I didn’t want it to end.



Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Great Northern Radio Show Takes Holidays to the ‘Edge’

Radio (91.7 KAXE), heads to Bigfork on Saturday, December 15. The The Great Northern Radio Show, a popular variety program produced by Northern Community show will be broadcast live from the Edge Center for the Performing Arts in Bigfork from 5-7 p.m. on 91.7 KAXE on the Iron Range and across northern Minnesota, 89.9 Brainerd and 90.5 KBXE Bemidji. The program will also be streamed live at Admission to the live performance is free, but reservations are requested by calling KAXE at 218-326-1234. Audience members are asked to be seated by 4:30 p.m. Walk-ups are welcome on a first come, first served basis.

Written and hosted by Iron Range writer Aaron J. Brown, the Great Northern Radio Show features music, stories and comedy about modern life off the beaten path.  “We’re really excited to come to Bigfork,” said Brown. “It’s our first try at a holiday show and the Edge Center is such a wonderful theater. I’m excited myself because, while Bigfork might be the ‘edge of the wilderness’ to everyone else, I live in Balsam Township and it’s just a short drive for me.”

The Great Northern Radio Show is a true radio variety show, featuring an eclectic mix of material fit for audiences of all ages and styles of humor. What makes it different is its strong focus on northern Minnesota and the way it includes the location of each show as a central part of the program.

December 15 also is the last day of The Edge Gallery Gift Show and Sale. The gifts on sale in the gallery are all hand made by local artists. These gifts can help make giving different and special while still being affordable. Different and special because no one else will get the same thing and affordable because this year there are more inexpensive treasures than in the past.

The Dec. 15 show will feature the Sam Miltich Trio playing a mix of Eastern European folk, jazz and holiday music. Bigfork-area musicians Kim Harrington, Maggie and Kristen Anderson, Jerry Hagen, Terry Price, Harold Boege, Alycia Johnson, and the Celebration of Grace Band from Grace Community Church under the direction of Karen Wetzel are among the expected performers, along with some surprise additions.

The Great Northern Radio Players, a rotating group of actors from towns around Minnesota, will feature local actor Marshall Oelmann, among others. Howard Pittson of Effie will tell stories about the Effie Rodeo. A western-themed holiday special will be presented, along with material celebrating the history of Bigfork, Effie, Togo and other parts of the region. Guests from popular Northern Community Radio shows are also likely.

The mix of local talent performances include Jerry Hagen, Harold Boege, Terry Price, Marshall Oelmann plus Maggie Anderson performing "Bigfork Valley World", which is an original song written by Jerry about the area.

Marshall Oelmann will sing “Don’t go to Togo and possibly more. Marshall will be accompanied on the Togo song by Dave Evenson, Marlene Sethney and Julie Ingstad..

The song was written by Todd Harper from Minneapolis. He wrote it for a 100th anniversary of Bigfork melodrama that was at the Edge in 2008. Terry Price will perform a special song he wrote for this event. "Jack-the-Horse".

Karen Wetzel, pianist from Grace Community Church, will direct a group of people from different churches called the Celebration of Grace Band and will sing three polka Gospel songs. The “band” includes Harold Boege-accordion, Terry Price-banjo, Jerry Ingstad- guitar, Karen Wetzel- piano, and Jerry Hagen on bass guitar. Voices for for this include Julie Ingstad, Dean Springer, Marlene Sethney, Donna Loosebach, and Alycia Johnson.

Kim Harrington, musician and song writer, is going to be on the show and he will sing his original song "The Riverman", a local favorite about the canoe making legend Bill Hafeman.

“Each show is unique, exciting and unpredictable,” said Brown. “Whether you attend the live performance, where you get to see behind the scenes, or listen on the radio, you’ll have a great night of entertainment.” Great Northern Radio Show regulars include director Shelly Nowak and associate producer Kelly Gustavsson, both of Hibbing. House music is by Nickolai Koivunen of Zim. Longtime Iron Range broadcaster Scott Hanson provides foley sound. The show is written by Brown with additional material from Hibbing native Matt Nelson.

The Great Northern Radio Show started in 2011. After its Hibbing debut, the show has broadcast from the Chief Theatre in Bemidji, Central Lakes College in Brainerd and the Boardman Auditorium in Eveleth. In 2013, the Great Northern Radio Show heads to Hubbard and Grand Rapids, with more stops in the works. “Our show lives on the road,” said Brown. “Our only home is northern Minnesota and we hope to play every place here that remotely resembles a theater before we’re done.”

Aaron Brown also is the author of an entertaining book about the area titled “Overburden” describing how Iron Range culture is changing at a rate hard for us to absorb. Talking about the “history and mystery” of the range, it in includes biographies of the people and places creating a unique blend of characters and sites. Aaron, who has lived in the area nearly all of his life and as a columnist for the Hibbing Daily Tribune, is well qualified to write about it and has done so with humor a accuracy that could only be done by someone who calls the range home.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

“Shop Around the Corner” at The Edge in Bigfork

“Shop Around the Corner” is a 1940 movie about two workers in a shop who don’t like each other and both would prefer the persons they are anonymously corresponding with in letters. It is this month’s classic movie shown at The Edge Center in Bigfork. The movie is a wonderful romantic comedy perfect for the Holidays that will warm you up on a cold December evening. And, if the movie sounds a bit familiar, it should…if you add modern Email, make the shops bookstores, and name one of them “Shop Around the Corner” you might be talking “You’ve Got Mail”. The 1940 movie was so well liked and well done that it has been the inspiration for movies, musicals along with radio and television shows.

Learn more when you see it along with an informative discussion about the movie at The Edge Center Theater in Bigfork Thursday, December 13 at 6:30PM. The movie is presented by the CLASSIC MOVIE SERIES with a cartoon from the same year and a background presentation by Jack Nachbar. And while you are there you can “shop” in the gallery gift shop for a hand made treasure for your special person. Admission is free, with a cartoon from the same year and treats appropriate for the movie.

The 1940 “Shop Around the Corner” movie is an adaptation of a Hungarian play with Jimmy Stewart and Margaret Sullavan playing the leads. You’d think any two people hating each other as much as they do would never get together, but will “love conquer all” in this classic? Alfred Kralik (Jimmy) and a newly hired Klara Novak (Margret) not only loathe each other but also have fallen for their pen pals. No great leap for viewers to figure out early they are writing to each other, but the subplots and romantic intrigue carried the 1940 audiences very well and still does. The “villain” in this whole mess is said to have even garnered applause when he gets what’s coming to him.

If you come and see this Jack Nachbar selected movie you will learn a lot more about the movie, its stars, the pre-war times, in which this was popular, and why it has stood the test of time so well. And don’t forget The Edge Center Galley filled with hand made holiday will be the last week open this year.

If you want to learn more about the movie and not wait until you see it, here is part of the review published in the New York Times in 1940. The whole review can be found at:


The Shop Around the Corner (1940)

THE SCREEN IN REVIEW; Ernst Lubitsch Offers James Stewart and Margaret Sullavan in a Genial and

Tender Romance in The Shop Around the Corner' at the Music Hall


Ernst Lubitsch is offering some attractive screen merchandise in "The Shop Around the Corner" which opened at the Music Hall yesterday. "Ninotchka" appears to have used up his supply of hearty comedy for the time at least, but his sense of humor is inexhaustible. He has employed it to brighten the shelves where his tidy Continental romance is stored and, among the bric-à-brac, there are several fragile scenes which he is handling with his usual delicacy and charm, assisted by a friendly staff of sales-people who are going under resoundingly Hungarian names, but remind us strangely of Margaret Sullavan, James Stewart, Frank Morgan and Joseph Schildkraut. All told, they make "The Shop Around the Corner" a pleasant place to browse in…

…THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER, as adapted by Samson Raphaelson from a play by Nikolaus Laszlo; musical score by Werner R. Heymann; directed and produced by Ernst Lubitsch for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. At the Radio City Music Hall.