Organizers announce next Region 2020 arts council meeting

Lively discussions sparked at a public meeting Sept. 24 of the proposed Arts and Cultural Master Plan have prompted organizers to schedule another gathering for Monday. At the September meeting, the second since Region 2020 initiated the plan in June, 90 arts leaders and others with a stake in the Birmingham arts community divided into eight focus groups to fine-tune issues such as arts funding, diversity, education and cultural tourism.

“We were reporting back what we’ve been hearing,” said Marc Goldring, Vice President of Wolf, Keens & Co., the Boston arts consultants overseeing the project. “Toward the end, someone stood up and said they really haven’t had enough time to delve into these issues. A show of hands showed that half of the folks would be interested in talking again.”

Northeastern_University_-_01The project’s steering committee, led by Lyndra Daniel, former chair of the Alabama State Council for the Arts, and Alabama Power CEO Charles McCrary, was presented with a synthesis of the plan’s progress on Oct. 22.

A final draft of the plan is expected in January. Goldring said its completion is dependent on input from the focus groups.

“The market research is completed, but financial research is reliant on data from the groups,” Goldring said. “We’re still gathering that. That will help us make decisions about some important pieces of the plan. I’m hoping to have it completed by mid-November.”

Monday’s meeting will be open-ended, but Goldring expects to break into three or four groups to discuss and summarize key issues. It will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at WorkPlay Theatre, 500 23rd Street South. The public is invited.

For more information, call Region 2020 at 326-1100. A detailed description of the entire plan is available at

IPC organ series:

Since 1965, Independent Presbyterian Church has invited some of the finest organists in the world 125 so far to perform on its 75-rank Aeolian Skinner instrument. The 38th annual November Organ Recital Series brings four more. The concerts take place in the church’s sanctuary each Sunday this month starting at 4 p.m. Admission is free. Call 933-1830 for more info. Here’s the lineup:

Today. Peter Sykes is an award-winning recording artist known for his performances on organ and harpsichord. He teaches at Boston University and New England Conservatory.

Next Sunday. Paul Lee has won the AGO Young Organists competition and the Chartres International competition in France. He lives in Hattiesburg, Miss., where he performs and directs choirs.

Nov. 17. Paul Jacobs has performed the complete organ works of Bach, Brahms, Franck, Durufle, Messiaen and Reger. And he’s only 25. He’s currently a graduate student at Yale University.

Nov. 26. Pierre Pincemaille has served as organist at the Cathedral-Basilica of Saint-Denis, France, since 1987. A multiple competition winner, recitalist and orchestral soloist, he’s also well known as an master of improvisation.


Two concerts this week explore the newest that Birmingham avant gardists have to offer. Today at 3 p.m., cellist Craig Hultgren plays acoustic compositions, electronic music and music for the e-cello in a free concert in Room 311 of Samford University’s Wright Center. Titles like “bare ruin’e choirs,” “H yx’a” and “Glossolalia” are among the seven works on the program.

On Saturday, local performance artist Jess Marie Walker combines sound, sculpture, video, text and movement in “Forestial: study a.1″ a work inspired by anything from tornadoes to trash, landscape to laundry and the interaction of humans and technology. Composer Patrick North provides the prelude and conclusion with his computer-generated music, “My Go Operator.” It starts at 2:30 p.m. in Steiner Auditorium at the Birmingham Museum of Art. Suggested donation is $5. Call 601-6166 for more information.

Bronfman with TSO:

Uzbekistani-Israeli-American pianist Yefim Bronfman joins conductor Hinik Hahm and the Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra Monday at 7:30 p.m. in the Moody Music Building on the University of Alabama campus. Twice a Grammy winner, Bronfman is renowned for his interpretation of the Russian masters. He’ll play Tchaikovsky’s popular Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor. Tickets are $7-$32. Call 205-752-5515 for tickets and info.