Coastal arts and culture news

The Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra opens its 25th season on October 23

PORTSMOUTH – The Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra opens its 2022-2023 season on the Main Stage on Sunday, October 23 at 3 p.m. at the Music Hall in Portsmouth, NH There is a free pre-concert talk with Music Director John Page at 1:45 p.m.

Filled with emotion, color, energy and intimacy, the PSO opens its 25th season with Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 and George Walker’s Lyric for Strings. Mahler’s giant work traces the emotional journey from funeral march to radiant optimism, while Walker’s brief but deeply intimate work is dedicated to his grandmother, a former slave who died while Walker was composing the piece. Seemingly opposite in size and origins, these two profound works are reflected in their ability to convey the complexity and intensity of human experience.

“This season, the PSO will present a collection of deeply evocative pieces – beginning with Mahler and Walker – that will inspire both musicians and audiences to explore the full range of human emotions,” Page said.

Individual tickets with assigned seating for performances held at the Music Hall are $35/$25 for adults (price depends on section); $30 for seniors; and $20 for students.

The 25th season of the PSO continues on December 17 and 18 with two Family Holiday Pops concerts at Portsmouth High School. The following performances will take place on December 31 with a New Year’s Champagne Pops! concert at the Music Hall, and winter and spring concerts on March 12 and June 4 respectively. Subscriptions for the full five-concert season, which includes Family Holiday Pops! are available.

More information on the PSO’s 25th season and tickets are available at

The Music Hall and NHPR Present the Writers on a New England Stage Series

PORTSMOUTH — On Tuesday, October 18, John Irving, international bestselling author and New York Times No. 1, visits the virtual Music Hall Stage as part of the Writers on a New England Stage series, presented in an intimate online format . He will talk about his first book in seven years, The Last Chairlift, which follows Adam, the son of former skier Rachel “Little Ray” Brewster, as he travels to Aspen in search of answers to the checkered past that his family eludes.

The 7 p.m. event will include an interview with author Rick Ganley, host of NHPR’s morning edition, followed by a Q&A with the audience. The October 18 event falls on the day of publication and includes a copy of the book. Tickets are $49 and include a copy of The Last Chairlift ($38 hardcover). Packages can be purchased online at, by phone at 603-436-2400 or in person at the B2W Box Office at the Historic Theatre, 28 Chestnut St. Portsmouth.

Loomis Gallery presents ‘Suspended Animation’

Andrew Chulyk's Night Swimmers.

KITTERY, Maine – The Loomis Gallery presents the new exhibition ‘Suspended Animation,’ from October 6 through November 19 at the Loomis Gallery, 121 Dennett Rd., Kittery, Maine. The Suspended Animation exhibition features the work of Andrew Chulyk, Rosalind Fedeli, Bess French and David Random. The works selected for this exhibition aim to offer perspectives on everyday life and our connections to the spaces and structure of our daily lives. Andrew Chulyk’s paintings offer beautifully rendered glimpses of the surreal geometry present in figures moving through space. Rosalind Fedeli’s assemblage work uses found materials to tell stories of intrigue and fertility. Bess French offers her ironic and playful perspective on domestic themes in her assemblage work using vintage materials and toys, and David Random takes us into space, fashioning vehicles made with manufactured parts from eras. gone. The works presented in this exhibition are also available on the gallery’s website,

Exhibition “Change of seasons” at the Franklin Gallery

ROCHESTER – The Franklin Gallery at RiverStones Custom Framing, 33 North Main Street in Rochester, will host an exhibition during the month of October titled Change of Seasons. Change of Seasons is a multi-artist exhibition featuring the following local artists: Roseann Meserve, Gerry Bresnahan, Carol Poitras, Collete Fath Malerba, Gwen Morgan, Joanne Lewis-McCoy, Marie Benton, Masako Buck, Nancy Hunt, JoAnn Rohde, Aleka Artemis Munroe and Bob Goudreau.

Sunflowers by Gwen Morgan

These artists are from the Seacoast region; some have been painting and creating for over 25 years while others are relatively new to the process. Many of these artists come together on Wednesdays to create and surrender to the artistic process. “I love being part of the artistic life of these diverse people,” says Roseann Meserve, a local artist from Dover. “We come together to encourage each other, support each other, and enjoy each other’s good company as we all create. Seeing everyone’s work evolve is a great experience and every week is an adventure.

Artists use a wide variety of artistic mediums, including watercolor, encaustic, acrylic, and oil, as well as a few more unique mediums used in scraping art and flower hammering. “I’m thrilled with this exhibit,” says Kris Ebbeson, owner of RiverStones Custom Framing and Franklin Gallery. “I love how each artist brings their own personality and style to their art, and how they all work together in a cohesive exhibition.”

Sailing on Robert Goudreau's lake

RiverStones Custom Framing and the Franklin Gallery are open Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information about this exhibit and other RiverStones events and services, call Kris or Tom at 603-812-1488 the RiverStones website or Facebook page.

Sole City Dance presents The Nutcracker

Sole City Dance performs The Nutcracker at Rochester Opera House, 31 Wakefield St., Rochester on Thursday, December 1 at 7 p.m., Friday, December 2 at 7 p.m., Saturday, December 3 at 2 and 7 p.m., and Sunday, December 4 at 2 p.m. h

ROCHESTER – Sole City Dance presents The Nutcracker at the Rochester Opera House, 31 Wakefield St., Rochester on Thursday, December 1 at 7 p.m., Friday, December 2 at 7 p.m., Saturday, December 3 at 2 and 7 p.m. and Sunday, December 4 at 14h

This classic holiday tale has become a regional favorite! This soaring story, framed by Tchaikovsky’s legendary score, captures the wonder and anticipation of Christmas Eve when a mysterious gift sets off an extraordinary journey.

Follow Clara as she embarks on an adventure filled with colorful characters, majestic settings and breathtaking costumes. You’ll find your heart dancing as Clara and the Nutcracker Prince overcome obstacles on their way to Candy Land. From the captivating dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy to the iconic snow scene, this delightful holiday classic continues to wow audiences of all ages. Whether you’re seeing it for the first time or as an annual treat, start your holiday season off big with the ones you love.

Buy your tickets online at Tickets are $24 for seniors and students and $28 for adults.

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