Haizlett Examines New River

Northern Panhandle artist Rosalie Haizlett has been chosen as the guest artist for the New River Gorge Creative Residency, which is now underway in south-central West Virginia.

As creative artist-in-residence. Haizlett is living and working at Lafayette Flats Boutique Vacation Rentals in Fayetteville now through mid-March.

Haizlett, who grew up on a farm near Bethany, is a world traveler and illustrator. She specializes in watercolor nature and travel illustrations. She graduated from West Liberty University in 2016 with a degree in visual communication design.

Organizers of the winter residency said Haizlett plans to depict the patterns of the Nuttall sandstone in the New River Gorge, study the colors of the river rocks that fill the New River and document the flora and fauna in the region.

At 5 p.m. Thursday, Haizlett will be featured at “Meet the Makers,” a monthly event featuring artists, musicians, brewers and producers, at The Station in Fayetteville.

In addition, Haizlett will conduct a public nature watercolor workshop, “Learning to Paint Wild Mushrooms,” at the Historic Fayetteville Convention and Visitors Bureau from 10 a.m. to noon on March 9. The workshop is limited to 15 artists and there is a cost to participate.

In 2017, Haizlett spent a year traveling around the state as a recipient of the Tamarack Foundation for the Arts Emerging Artist Fellowship. In early 2018, she served as an artist-in-residence at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. A few months ago, Haizlett traveled in Jordan and documented her adventures for KEEN Footwear.

Amy McLaughlin and Shawn Means, co-owners of Lafayette Flats, hosted the New River Gorge Winter Writer’s Residency from 2015-18. This year, they expanded the residency to include visual artists.

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Contemporary American composer Kenneth Fuchs, whose work is well known to Wheeling audiences, won a 2019 Grammy in the Best Classical Compendium category.

What makes this award significant to local listeners is that Fuchs’ entry featured Piano Concerto (Spiritualist), a 2016 work that was co-commissioned by the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra and the Springfield Symphony Orchestra.

The three-movement piece was premiered in Wheeling on May 20, 2016. The work was performed by the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra with Andre Raphel as conductor and with Jeffrey Biegel as piano soloist.

The Grammy-winning record is titled “Fuchs: Piano Concerto ‘Spiritualist’; Poems Of Life; Glacier; Rush.” The recording of Fuchs’ works was performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and conducted by JoAnn Falletta, music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.

Meanwhile, the Wheeling Symphony will perform another work by Fuchs, “United Artists,” during a Masterworks concert at 7:30 p.m. May 17 at the Capitol Theatre. Silas Huff, one of the five finalists for the position of WSO music director, will be the guest conductor for the program.

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Singer and musician Peter Walker, son-in-law of Marc and Cheryl Ryan Harshman of Wheeling, was nominated for two 2019 Grammy awards in the Best Choral Performance category. Unfortunately, neither entry captured a Grammy.

Walker performed as part of two groups that were nominated. The nominations were for the Clarion Choir’s recording, “Kastalsky: Memory Eternal,” and Skylark’s recording, “Seven Words from the Cross.”

In addition to maintaining a busy schedule of recitals and performances, Walker and his wife, former Wheeling resident Sarah Jayne Harshman, have formed a duo called Chapter House. Their first official performance will be “Launcelot: Sword and Sorrow,” to be offered at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Church of St. Vincent Ferrar in New York City.

Linda Comins can be reached via email at: lcomins@theintelligencer.net

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