A tiny rural town isn't necessarily the first locale you'd think of for great theater. But the community of Onancock on Virginia's Eastern Shore is defying that stereotype, supporting a thriving theater scene for more than 25 years. Bryan Russo heads to Onancock's North Street Playhouse to talk with the artistic director and actors bringing challenging theater to the coast.
Jan Kirsh is a sculptor who's been living and working on the Eastern Shore since the 1970s, and is getting increasing attention for her vibrant, voluptuous sculptures of fruits and vegetables. Bryan Russo visits her studio to talk about her work. Then, we'll head up to Selbyville, Dela., to visit the performing arts venue that's trying to bring the arts to a larger number of people on the coast.
A new documentary was recently released that explores the life of one of our nation's most enigmatic writers — J.D. Salinger. The film examines the impact of World War II on Salinger's writing, as well as Salinger's decision to stop publishing his work after 1965. Bryan Russo talks with Dr. John Wenke, a Salisbury University professor featured in the film, about Salinger's most famous work — The Catcher in the Rye — and why this novelist's life and writing have fascinated so many people.
In Annapolis, a fight over the redevelopment of a single building has become a larger dispute about the community's historic downtown. The building in question is the former home of Fawcett Boat Supplies, and sits in a prominent spot on the city dock. A coalition of businesses and preservationists fought a developer's plan for the site, citing concerns about building height and the precedent this project might set. We'll talk with both sides about what this struggle says about the future of Maryland's historic state capital.
Across the state of Maryland, there are thousands of acres of pristine land that make up a system of "wildlands." Many of these wildlands are home to rare plants and animals, and now the state is looking to add another 27,000 acres to that system. But not everyone is happy with that plan — especially in some parts of Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore, where some officials say the state needs to focus on economic development and tourism.
We wrap up our "Side Gigs" series by talking with Rich Bloch, a D.C. lawyer who has served as an arbitrator in high-profile legal disputes. Bloch is also a magician who's been entertaining audiences since he was 7 years old. He's done shows all over the world, including at Dickens Parlour Theatre, the venue he opened a few years ago in coastal Delaware. We'll talk with Bloch about juggling his two very different careers.