Editorial – Fun September on the horizon

Published 6:37 pm Tuesday, August 30, 2022

In case you’re inclined to forget what a cultural jewel is the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts, pay attention in September.

The second Suffolk Plein Air Festival runs Sept. 6-11, including a come-one-come-all “Quick Draw” event from noon to 2 p.m. Sept. 10 during the Taste of Suffolk downtown street festival. The competition asks artists to complete an entire piece of Plein Air artwork in just 120 minutes.

What is Plein Air painting, you might ask. Artists get out of their studios and paint in an outdoor setting. They have to work fast as the light is always changing. The Quick Draw event gives artists the opportunity to paint on the streets of downtown Suffolk while the Taste of Suffolk event is going on, providing lots of great compositions to choose from.

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Suffolk Plein Air Quick Draw is open to all ages and abilities. Pre-registration and complete rules are available online at www.suffolkpleinair.org or those interested may register in person beginning at 11 a.m. on the day of the event. There is a $10 registration fee and each artist must provide all of their own painting supplies.

The Suffolk Plein Air Festival will feature some “pros” as well, some 45 artists traveling from across the United States and as far away as the Netherlands to “Paint Suffolk Virginia.”

After three days of painting, juror James Warwick Jones has the daunting task of reviewing over 120 works of art to select the winners. On Friday, Sept. 9, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., artists and patrons will gather at the Center for Cultural Arts for the much-anticipated Wet Paint Sale and Awards Reception. Attendees will have the chance to meet the artists, view all their new artwork and purchase Suffolk-themed artwork to adorn your home or business. Purchase tickets online at www.SuffolkPleinAir.org.

Later in September, the Suffolk Center will host the Kyiv City Ballet of Ukraine as part of a premiere 12-city fall tour of the United States. It will be the ballet’s only Virginia stop.

Sept. 19-22 will bring educational events and performances, culminating with the popular, full-length ballet “Swan Lake” on Thursday, Sept. 22. Tickets are on sale at www.SuffolkCenter.org.

In February, the day before Ukraine was invaded by Russia, the Kyiv City Ballet unknowingly took one of the last flights out of Kyiv — to Paris to begin a long-planned tour. They have not returned home since, performing to sold-out crowds throughout Europe since the invasion began. We’re impressed that Suffolk is on the U.S. itinerary.