'The Charitable Sisterhood' April 5-7

The final performances of "The Charitable Sisterhood of the Second Trinity Victory Church," a heartwarming comedy by Bo Wilson, will take place on Friday and Saturday, April 5 and 6 at 7:30 p.m. as well as Sunday, April 7 at 2 p.m. in the main theater.

The roads are flooded, the bridges are washed out, and less generous souls are staying safely indoors, but it takes more than a little rain to keep the ladies of the Charitable Sisterhood from fulfilling their sworn mission. Bea Littleton (Sara Kessler, Hudson) is the pastor's wife, Lorraine Jensen (Darcy McDowell, Stillwater) is the tireless mother of nine, Tina Yates (Cayla Wolpers, Fridley) is the transplanted Yankee, and Janet Murchison (Kaitlin Klemencic, St. Paul) and Riley Reynolds (Hannah Robb, River Falls) are the newest arrivals.

When these ladies meet to organize a relief effort for homeless Guatemalans, they are greeted with a small mountain of community donations. One woman's junk is another woman's treasure, and that pile of stuff in the Second Trinity Victory Church basement is hiding a thing or two. These five angels of mercy do their best to help the victims of global disaster, spiritual deprivation and, most of all, one another.

Tickets are $26 for adults and $19 for students of any age, with a $2 discount for seniors on the Sunday matinee.

Ballroom dance parties

Ballroom dance parties are offered on the first and third Saturday of every month October-May, and the third Saturday of every month June through September, from 7-10 p.m. in the dance studio.

Tom Larson will offer a dance lesson during the first hour. The tango and samba will be featured April 6. Country two-step and triple swing will be taught April 20. This is an opportunity to have fun trying out new dance skills in a relaxed and comfortable environment. Dancers of all experience levels are welcome. Admission is $12 per person.

Larson has taught at The Phipps since 2003 and owns the Ballroom and Wedding Dance Studio in Minneapolis. He performed for five seasons with The Continental Ballet Company.

Experiencing clay class

Experiencing Clay, a three-week class for teens and adults, will be offered Tuesdays, April 9-23, from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

The instructor comments, "If you are interested in enrolling in a Pottery on the Wheel class, but are not sure you are ready to commit to eight weeks, or you want to try your hand at multiple approaches to working with clay, Experiencing Clay is a great class for you. Students will gain firsthand experience as they approach multiple facets of the ceramic-making process, including wheel-throwing, hand-building functional pottery, and creating sculptures in a variety of methods."

The fee for this class is $79, including materials.

Open house, tours, food, entertainment April 11

Everyone is invited to attend "Encore!," a community celebration, on Thursday, April 11.

"Everyone is invited to this first-time special event: volunteers, patrons, families, and especially those who have never been to The Phipps Center. Bring a friend to enjoy food, fun, and find out what The Phipps has to offer," says John H. Potter, executive director.

There will be an open house 5-7 p.m. with tabletop presentations by the six councils in residence at the center: Children's Theater, Dance, Drama (community theater), Music, Visual Arts, and Volunteer. This is an opportunity to find out about each council's offerings as well as how to become involved. Tours will be given every 15 minutes.

Complimentary food will be provided by San Pedro Café, Seasons Tavern, and Urban Olive and Vine. In addition, Pier 500 gift certificates and theater tickets will be given as door prizes.

There will be a program in the main theater 7-8 p.m. to acknowledge the center's hundreds of volunteers as well as its supportive audience members. Performing arts and visual arts programming for the 2019-20 season will be announced. In addition, prize winners will be selected.

For more information about the many classes, exhibitions, plays, and concerts offered, visit ThePhipps.org, The Phipps Facebook page, call 715-386-2305, or write info@ThePhipps.org.

One-day introduction to oil painting class

Introduction to Oil Painting will be offered on Saturday, April 13, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The instructor comments, "Would you like to learn to paint but aren't sure about the initial investment or where to start? This one-day class is a fabulous choice. The class starts with the basics exploring painting materials, handling oil paints and the various mediums available. We discuss different brushes, hog hair, sable or synthetic, and what works best in various situations. Paint application, mixing paints, and achieving specific values are all topics covered. All critiques are given on an individual basis, so every level of experience is welcome. This class prepares you for the next level of painting and allows you to work in a safe environment under the direction of an experienced instructor."

Instructor Sharon Diedrichs Stadther has been drawing her whole life. Her artistic education started at an early age and became much more focused in high school, where she was submerged in all mediums available. She has been trained by great artists throughout her life, including at the College of Art & Design in Oakland, Calif., and at the Atelier in Minneapolis, Minn.

The workshop fee is $98, plus $35 payable to instructor for materials.

The Phipps Choral Society features area singers

The Phipps Choral Society will perform "Opera & Oratorio Encores" on Sunday, April 14 at 2 p.m.

Selections will include "Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves" from "Nabucco," "Brindisi" from "La Traviata," and "Triumphal Scene" from "Aida," all by Giuseppe Verdi; "Humming Chorus" from "Madama Butterfly" by Giacomo Puccini; "The Promise of Living" from Aaron Copland's opera "The Tender Land;" and "Make Our Garden Grow" from Leonard Bernstein's opera "Candide."

The ensemble will also perform a couple of choruses from the oratorio genre to round out the program of encore caliber works.

The chorus of 50 voices from the St. Croix Valley area is under the direction of Music Director Thomas Dahle. Accompaniment will be provided by Heather Tank, piano, as well as a few instrumentalists.

The chorus consists of: Laura Church, John E. Grzybek, and Don Lundequam of St. Paul; Marcy Flotten of White Bear Lake; Karen Sullivan of Woodbury; Julie Cambronne of Maplewood; Karen Flodquist of Lake St. Croix Beach; Mary Lou Clymer of Afton; Elvira Antonson, Randy Bach, Gayle Parizino Huser, Joe Lundequam, Joanna Schneider, and Joyce Simonson of Stillwater; Denise Orf of Somerset; Mary Anderson, George Gfall, Bill Leahy, David Lee, Dana Lepien, and Judith Remington of New Richmond; Dave Bunch and Karen D. Bunch of Ellsworth; Sandy Brace, Lee Engebreth, George Hansen, Dean Loney, Kelly Richison, and Gina Skule of River Falls; and Andrea Adornato, Shannon Anderson, Terry Bogenhagen, Nancy Burman, Carol Dahle, Sandra DeMars, Adele Dolan, Jody Eisch, Peter Eisch, Julie Emmons, Lori Finegan, Gloria Gillette, Don Klassen, Melissa Oscanyan, Tom Oscanyan, Lori Papineau, Bobbi Pominville, Cheryl Richardson, Jeanne Sames, Veronica Stine, Chris Tank, and Monica Weekes of Hudson.

Tickets are $22 for adults and $15 for students of any age.

Values-based estate planning workshop April 24

A free values-based estate planning workshop will be offered on Wednesday, April 24, 9:30-11 a.m. Refreshments will be served.

There are numerous benefits to creating a comprehensive estate plan. Advanced planning for the transfer of one's assets ensures that one's wishes are carried out. It also makes the transfer more efficient, less complicated, and less costly. Having a clear plan in place can protect loved ones from needless worry and expense, reduce transactional costs, and allow one to avoid unnecessary tax liability.

The workshop will address these frequently-asked estate planning questions:

• What estate planning documents do I need?

• How can I minimize or eliminate estate taxes?

• How can I pass stock income-tax free to my heirs?

• How can I use Roth IRAs and Roth conversions as a family legacy tool?

• What is an inherited IRA and how can I use my 401(k) and IRA to extend tax-deferred status to my children, grandchildren, and other heirs?

• How can I avoid probate?

• Do I need a trust?

• How can I most effectively include charitable gifts in my estate planning?

• How can long-term care partnership laws help protect my assets?

The workshop presenters are Dwight P. Cummins and Todd S. Gillingham.

Cummins is an attorney whose primary practice focuses on long-range planning and transactions. For over 30 years, Cummins has helped his clients complete transfers of wealth that are less complicated, more efficient, and less burdened with taxes and transaction costs. He focuses on estate planning for individuals and families, using trusts, wills, and charitable planning, as well as assisting with probate and trust administration after death. He also serves on a number of nonprofit boards, including the St. Croix Valley Foundation and the Lakeview Health System, of which he is chair.

Gillingham, JD, CFP®, ChFC, is a wealth advisor with the Landmark Group with over 30 years of experience with Thrivent Financial. His responsibilities include investments, wealth management, and estate and charitable planning. Gillingham has helped Thrivent Financial representatives across the country with estate planning cases and has spoken extensively on estate and charitable planning topics. He has also served as a source on financial-planning issues for several media outlets, including The Wall Street Journal. Gillingham is the past board chair of the St. Croix Valley Foundation and The Phipps Center for the Arts.

There is no cost to attend, but please register by April 19 by contacting Pam at The Phipps Center at 715-386-2305, ext. 101, or pehrnreiter@ThePhipps.org.

'Flat Stanley Jr.,' features area students

"The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley Jr.," with the book by Timothy A. McDonald, lyrics by McDonald and Jonathan K. Waller, music by David Weinstein, Waller, McDonald, and Stephen Gabriel, based on the book "Flat Stanley," by Jeff Brown, with illustrations by Scott Nash, will be performed by The Phipps Children's Theater April 26 through May 5.

The beloved children's book is a literary and pop culture phenomenon, delighting readers all around the world. Now it has been adapted into a musical filled with infectious songs and non-stop adventure.

Stanley Lambchop (Michael Wirth, Hudson) is an ordinary, everyday 10-year-old until the bulletin board (Riley Culver, River Falls) on the wall above his bed comes loose and falls right on top of him. The next morning, Stanley wakes up flat. His parents (Conner Boorman, New Richmond, and Emma Hatch, Houlton) and sister (Stella Hayward, Hudson) enlist the help of Doctor Dan (Dane Olson, Hudson) and Nurse Betty (Ava Blackwell, Hudson) to try and restore Stanley after he endures teasing by the Cool Kids (Emma Wallraff, New Richmond, and Joel Fraser, Roberts). When the doctor and nurse's attempts fail, Stanley embarks on a whirlwind musical travelogue, scouring the globe for a solution to his unusual problem.

Stanley is stamped, posted, and canceled from Hollywood and France to Honolulu and beyond, all in an effort to become a three-dimensional boy once more. He is assisted in this quest by the mail carrier (Alivia Kelly, Hudson) and his cousin, Sophie (Eli McCabe, Hudson). His adventures include brushes with Hollywood agents (Olivia Turnbull and Michaela Hasapopoulos, Hudson), an art director (Mary Rother, Hudson), a sneaky thief (Addie Mc Cabe, Hudson), Mona Lisa (Faith Kaslow, Hudson), and Napoleon (Luc Douglas, Hudson). He also meets a flock of bird dancers (Heather Derrick, Molly Weber, Sonja Bell, and Francis Foster, Hudson).

Performances will be given April 26 through May 5 on Fridays at 7 p.m., Saturdays at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m., as well as Sundays at 2 p.m. on the main stage.

Tickets are $21 for adults and $16 for children.

Adult and child clay workshop

A Spring Clay Workshop for adults and children ages 4 and older will be offered on Saturday, April 27, from 10 a.m. to noon.

Adults and children will work closely together as they learn basic hand-building techniques, such as pinching, coiling, and clay slab-construction to make vases, flower pots, and hanging garden ornaments.

The instructor will cover creations with a food-safe glaze of the participants' choosing, and then have them fired and ready to pick up and take home on Saturday, May 11 in time for Mother's Day.

The fee for this workshop is $22 per person, including materials.

Irish tenor Anthony Kearns with St. Croix Valley Symphony Orchestra

The St. Croix Valley Symphony Orchestra (SCVSO), with very special guest Irish tenor Anthony Kearns, will perform in concert on Sunday, May 5 at 4 p.m. at St. Patrick Church, 1500 Vine Street presented by The Phipps Center for the Arts.

The popular orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Kristin Tjornehoj, with a rare solo appearance by one of The Irish Tenors, the PBS supergroup, will perform an outstanding program of favorites, from "Bring Him Home" to his signature interpretation of "Grenada."

The SCVSO has continuously provided music to the six border counties of Minnesota and Wisconsin since 1960. It is comprised of approximately 50 members from the greater St. Croix Valley community, as well as students attending the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. The ensemble explores a wide variety of repertoire. It has been fortunate to perform with excellent local, national, and international musicians over the years.

An active guest conductor, clinician and adjudicator, Dr. Tjornehoj has served in these capacities throughout the United States and Canada, and in China, the Czech Republic, England, France, Iceland, Scotland, and Spain. She has led performance tours throughout the United States and abroad. Recent experiences include bi-annual World Music and Music Appreciation study tours in Scotland, England, and France, plus the Three Rivers Concert Band tour of Spain in 2014.

Kearns took American television audience by storm as a member of the wildly popular Irish Tenors, which he continues to tour with twice a year. His international solo career includes high-profile celebrity engagements, television appearances, concert tours, operas, and collaborations with the finest orchestras, including the Boston Pops, the Chicagoland Pops, Grand Rapids Pops, and the National Symphony Orchestra at the National Memorial Day Concert in the U.S.

General admission tickets are $25 for adults and $18 for students of any age.

Summer art camp classes for teens

Summer Art Camp classes are open for enrollment. The camp runs from June 17 through August 9 with classes for ages 4 through teens in visual art, pottery, art & nature, theater, and dance. Fees range from $44 to $379, depending on the class.

There are several visual arts classes available for teens, including Teen Pottery on the Wheel (ages 13 and older), Oil Pastels (ages 12 and older), St. Croix RiverFest: Deluxe River Exploration (ages 8 - 14), Advanced Jewelry Design (ages 11 and older), Raptor Studies (ages 12 and older), Stained Glass (ages 15 and older), and more for ages 7, 8, or 9 and older, including two Interior Design classes, three Exploring Photography classes, a Duct Tape class, and three Weaving classes.

Dance technique classes this summer

Dance technique intensives and workshops will be offered by Leta Triebold, Greta Lewis, and Stephanie Campbell this summer.

Triebold will offer ballet intensives on six Thursdays, June 27 through Aug. 8, with no class July 4: 1-2 p.m. for ages 7-9 for $66, 2-3 p.m. for ages 9-12 for $66, and 3-4:30 p.m. for ages 13 and older for $99.

Triebold has been dancing professionally since graduating high school, performing with Continental Ballet, St. Paul Ballet, Ballet Minnesota, Metropolitan Ballet, and Minneapolis Ballet Dancers.

Lewis will teach the following workshops Monday through Wednesday, July 22-24: tap for students entering second and third grade 1-1:45 p.m. for $25, tap for students entering fourth and fifth grade 1:45-2:30 p.m. for $25, and jazz for students entering fourth and fifth grades 2:30-3:15 p.m. for $25.

Lewis has been a dance instructor for over 10 years. She has taught at The Phipps since 2015 and is a director of The Phipps Junior Dance Company alongside Mackenzie Lewis. Greta has a B.S. in Elementary Education and minor in Dance Education from University of Wisconsin-River Falls. She is a company member of The Phipps Dance Theater and has performed with them for seven seasons.

Campbell will teach the following workshops Monday through Thursday, July 22-25: Ballet Tutu Fun for students entering kindergarten and first grade 9-11 a.m. for $95, Introduction to Jazz for students entering second and third grade 11:15 a.m. to noon for $33, and Introduction to Lyrical for students entering third & fourth grade noon to 12:45 p.m. for $33.

Campbell graduated with a B.F.A. in Dance from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. She has been involved with dance productions at The Phipps Center as a dancer and choreographer since 2004. This will be Stephanie's 14th season teaching dance at the center, and her 13th season being involved with The Phipps Dance Company in a variety of roles - this season as associate director.

Campbell will also teach the following lyrical workshops Monday-Wednesday, July 29-31: 9-10 a.m. for high school students for $33 and 10-11 a.m. for middle school students for $33.

Lewis will also teach the following jazz workshops Monday-Wednesday, July 29-31:

11 a.m. to noon for middle school students for $33 and noon to 1 p.m. for high school students for $33.

Entries sought for annual area high school exhibit

All high school-age students from Western Wisconsin and Eastern Minnesota are invited to submit one recent original work of art in any media - drawing, painting, collage, photography, sculpture, ceramics, jewelry, or other fine crafts - for display in the Annual Area High School Art Exhibition, which will run April 12 to May 5 in The Galleries. A closing reception will be held on Sunday, May 5, from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

All submissions must meet the specified guidelines and be dropped off at the center on Tuesday or Wednesday, April 9 or 10, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Entry forms with submission guidelines can be downloaded at ThePhipps.org. Students should follow the guidelines closely when preparing work to be submitted.

The Galleries hours are Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sunday noon to 4:30 p.m., as well as one hour before and through intermission of all performances in The Phipps theaters.

For further information, contact Anastasia Shartin, visual arts director, at 715-386-2305, ext. 103.

Final week of exhibitions

Sumi ink and pencil on mylar work by Lindsey Aleman (St. Paul, Minn.); sculpture and installation by Krista Anderson-Larson (St. Paul); paintings inspired by Abstract Expressionism by Lisa Anderson (Minneapolis, Minn.); steel sculpture by Judd Nelson (Wayzata, Minn.) and Craig Snyder (Plymouth, Minn.); stoneware pottery by Adam Smrcka (Neillsville, Wis.); mixed media work by Jane Wunrow (St. Paul); and a group exhibit of ceramics by St. Olaf College and University of Wisconsin-River Falls students, titled "Cross River Connections," presented as part of "Claytopia," the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts Conference (March 27 - 30), organized by Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, will be on view through April 7 in The Galleries.

The Galleries hours are Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sunday noon to 4:30 p.m., as well as one hour before and through intermission of all performances in The Phipps theaters.

Private violin lessons

Private violin lessons for students ages 7 through adult are offered throughout the year.

Instructor Sarah N. Bertsch has taught violin and coached ensembles for over 25 years. Previous positions include Northwestern College, Wooddale School of Music, Friendship School of Music, and Minnehaha Academy. She received her M.A. from St. John's University and her B.A. from St. Olaf College.

Bertsch has toured nationally with pianist Don Irwin and artist Fernando Ortega and has played concerts in Bulgaria, Romania, Macedonia, Japan, and Guatemala. She has recorded with Sara Groves and a number of regional church music groups. Bertsch enjoys playing and teaching a variety of musical styles. She plays violin in the Oakdale-based global music group Ensemble Aventura and enjoys collaborating in Hudson with pianist Layton James. Bertsch often performs in weddings as a soloist or in one of her string ensembles.

For further information on violin lessons, contact Bertsch at 715-381-5735.

Voice lessons

Tony Holt, a former member of the King's Singers, offers private voice lessons for ages 11 through adult on Thursdays at The Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson.

Holt, a native Londoner, was a boy chorister at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth. He was a choir member of Christ Church, Oxford, as well as Chichester Cathedral and St. Paul's Cathedral. Holt was then a soloist and chorus member of the Monteverdi Choir and the BBC Singers. For 18 years he toured and recorded as first baritone with the King's Singers.

His lessons concentrate on singing in a healthy way and enjoying a repertoire that can range from Bach to Broadway. He encourages singers to perform without tension, to communicate well, and to enjoy their singing.

The fee is $30 per 30-minute lesson.

Flute and piano lessons

Private flute and piano instruction for ages five through adults is available on Fridays.

Sue Christian, a K-12 music education graduate of Luther College, has taught privately since she was 16. One of her favorite teaching opportunities is that of the Hudson Middle School Band Camp, at which she works with budding young flutists.

A member of the Wisconsin Music Teachers' Association, she is involved locally with the St. Croix Music Teachers Association, offering piano performance opportunities to students of all ages. Also a member of the Upper Midwest Flute Association, Christian has tutored students who have won competitions in both organizations. One of her former flute students, as a sophomore in high school, earned the prestigious opportunity to perform in the top 12 for a national competition to solo with the Air Force Band. This student went on to pursue a career in flute performance at the University of Wisconsin - Madison.

Christian also has extensive experience in accompanying soloists and ensembles as a collaborating pianist in college-level recitals as well as festivals in area schools. In addition, she accompanied The Phipps Festival Chorus and The Phipps Oratorio Society for numerous years.

Tai chi

Tai chi classes will continue on Thursdays, from 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Andrew Weil, M.D., often seen on PBS and a world-renowned leader and pioneer in the field of integrative medicine, states, "I view tai chi as an effective form of mental and physical stimulation, and very beneficial for overall health. Like yoga, tai chi is a reliable method of stress reduction and relaxation, and it promotes flexibility, balance, and good body awareness. It is pleasing to watch and perform, and as [a recent] study suggests, it may be the best type of exercise to reduce the risk of injury from falls among seniors."

Meeting the needs of both the beginning and experienced practitioner, this class offers the Yang style long form of tai chi chuan. Certified tai chi instructor Mark Tomlinson, with 14 years of experience, conducts the classes.

Punch-cards may be purchased for $100 per eight classes. Classes are ongoing and may be taken at any time. Students only pay for the classes they attend.

Birthday parties

Celebrate your child's birthday or plan a creative outing for another group in the Ceramic Studio. With a Phipps ceramics instructor, participants will learn basic hand-building techniques to create bowls, cups, and small sculptures, and have a chance to work on the pottery wheel (ages 7 and older). The pottery will be ready to pick up within two weeks after the gathering.

The fee is $218 for up to 9 participants, $24 for each additional participant. The fee includes all materials and clean-up, one to two hours of working the Ceramics Studio, one hour for snacks and gift opening, plus a behind-the-scenes tour (theater production schedule permitting).

To schedule a Ceramics Studio birthday party, contact Anastasia Shartin, 715-386-2305, ext. 103 or ashartin@thephipps.org.


The Western Wisconsin Photography Club meets the first Wednesday of every month at 6:30 p.m. The club also schedules mid-month meetings to accommodate speaker's schedules and for hands-on learning opportunities. Photographers of all ages and abilities are welcome. For more details about upcoming programs and events visit www.wiphotoclub.com.

Healing Arts at Hudson Hospital and Clinic

Current artists on view are High School Posters Exhibit, Audrey Martin, Gabrielle April Sacha, Bernice Fiecek-Swenson, Thursday Morning Painters, Jill Van Sickle, Ryan Armbruster, Mary Kathleen Scott, Sister Arts Group Exhibit and Paul Winger.

Artwork can be viewed during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, from 6:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Maps are available at both information desks to help find artists' work.

Healing Arts at Westfields Hospital and Clinic

Current artists on view are Cathy Durso, Elynn Lepel, Elliesha Klingberg, Austin Koeckeritz, Healing Through Gratitude Westfields Hospital Staff Photography Exhibit, Joan Solomon, and Jill Van Sickle. Artwork can be viewed during regular business hours, Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.