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Workshops instruct educators on Shakespeare

This summer Montana Shakespeare in the Parks will offer the workshop "Shakespeare in Performance: A Practical Approach to Teaching" to middle- and high-school English and drama teachers.

This workshop provides teachers with the skills used by actors and directors who perform Shakespeare. Because Shakespeare's plays were meant to be seen and not merely read, the workshop is an opportunity for teachers to present a fresh approach to the teaching of Shakespeare.

The course is offered as two three-day workshops, one in Billings July 21-23, and one in Helena July 28-30. The workshops are available for graduate credit through the Montana State University Extended Studies program and are open to anyone holding an undergraduate degree or any currently enrolled senior- level undergraduate student.

Joel Jahnke, Montana Shakespeare in the Parks artistic director, will teach the course, along with former Shakespeare in the Parks actress Bobbi McKean. McKean is a professor of theater arts at the University of Arizona. The workshops are being held in conjunction with the Shakespeare in the Parks performances in Billings and Helena and members of the 2003 acting company will help with the workshops.

Enrollment is limited. Registration is available online at or by phone at (406) 994-6683. For more course content information, contact Joel Jahnke at (406) 994-3903.

Bigfork sculptor again wins C.M. Russell honor

Eric Thorsen of Bigfork scored a "four-peat" at the 35th Annual C.M. Russell Art Show & Auction, winning for the fourth year in a row the Peoples Choice Award for Best Sculpture.

Thorsen's limited edition bronze "Sleepy Bear" was chosen by those attending the C.M. Russell Show in Great Falls, a fund-raiser for the C.M. Russell Museum. Thorsen has also been part of the C.M. Russell Art Auction since 1992.

Eric earned his first People's Choice Award for Best Sculpture in 2000 with a bronze sculpture titled "Bear Fishing from a Rock" fountain. In 2001, he won for his lifesize bronze "Sitting Bear." Last March, he won for a life-size bronze "Arab Colt."

Bigfork Art Exchange features artists of all genres

On April 1-26 the Bigfork Art & Cultural Center will be having its first-ever Art Exchange. Art collectors from all over the valley have brought in works to the exchange they wish to sell. The show features original oils, watercolors, etchings, and metal sculptures by artists such as: Marshall Noice, Lucille Abel, Valentino La Pier and Monte Dolack. The Art Center will receive a percentage of all works sold during the show.

A reception for the show is Friday, April 4, from 5:30-7 p.m. The show marks the re-opening of the gallery after its closure to install new wall covering.

The Bigfork Art & Cultural Center is open Tuesdays-Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For information, call 837-6927.

Livingston writer wins Montana Book Award

Diane Smith of Livingston is the winner of the first-ever Montana Book Award, founded by the Friends of the Missoula Public Library in 2002.

Smith's "Pictures from an Expedition," published by Penguin Putnam, recounts the adventures of a group of scientists, explorers and others who travel to the Montana badlands after the Battle of Little Bighorn.

Other winners include Debra Magpie Earling, for "Perma Red"; Jeannette Ingold for "The Big Burn"; and Tom Murphy for "Silence and Solitude: Yellowstone's Winter Wilderness."

A reception will be held at the 2003 Montana Festival of the Book to honor the 2002 award winners.

Compiled by Jamie Kelly and Mea Andrews, Missoulian

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