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Retiring Woodstock School of Art board members Paula Nelson & John Kleinhans look back on legacy

Retiring Woodstock School of Art board members Paula Nelson & John Kleinhans look back on legacy

“We haven’t really quit the board, you know. We simply have not run for reelection. We’ll continue to be still involved with the school.” Thus does Paula Nelson – one of the surviving founders of the Woodstock School of Art, and a mainstay of its operation for more than five decades – downplay the recent decision by herself and her husband, John Kleinhans, to step down from WSA’s Board of Directors. Nonetheless, it’s nice to pay tribute to people who have contributed a great deal to a community while they’re still alive and kicking. So, this action seems as good an excuse as any to remind readers how much work and commitment it took to keep this amazing cultural resource alive for all these years.

Mid-Hudson theaters take baby steps toward reviving live performance as pandemic wanes

Mid-Hudson theaters take baby steps toward reviving live performance as pandemic wanes

The reopening of live theater perches anxiously on the cusp of a reintroduction of in-person performances in 2021, awaiting signals that audiences can feel safe sitting in the same indoor space. Long-suppressed desire for the collective experience of art remains at war with lingering fear of contracting an illness that can turn the lining of one’s lungs to the consistency of concrete. But spring is here, summer looms nearer and presenting venues need to make decisions, pronto.

Renovated, winterized Byrdcliffe Theater set to reopen by June

Renovated, winterized Byrdcliffe Theater set to reopen by June

As with most other performing arts venues in our region, the flow of live concerts at Woodstock’s Kleinert-James Arts Center and stageworks at the Byrdcliffe Theater dried up more than a year ago, due to the pandemic. But the gradual arrival of the Covid vaccines has got hosts for such events thinking about their resumption. Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on March 3 that theaters and concert halls could begin admitting audiences at 33 percent capacity effective April 2, with a limit of 100 people indoors or 200 outdoors. Not every venue will be able to break even presenting live performances under those limitations, but it’s clear that a process has begun that will make it possible for us all to see plays and hear music again, up close and personal, in the foreseeable future. Even for introverts and homebodies, that’s happy news.

Sally Grossman, icon of Bob Dylan cover art, dies at age 81

Sally Grossman, icon of Bob Dylan cover art, dies at age 81

On the morning of March 12, Sally Grossman, the widow of Bob Dylan’s foremost manager, Albert “the Baron of Bearsville” Grossman, failed to answer her locked front door. A spare key was fetched, and the baroness was found at peace in her bed. While cause of death has not been determined, Sally recently gave up cigarettes and — to one and all — seemed an unstoppable force at 81.