Tysons Corner, VA

A musical about how women won the right to vote is coming to the Town of Vienna for a sold-out preview ahead of a national tour.

19: The Musical” chronicles the struggles of women suffragists, including Alice Paul, Ida B. Wells, Susan B. Anthony, Carrie Chapman Catt, and Inez Milholland.

Ratified Aug. 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment made it illegal to deny U.S. citizens the right to vote on the basis of sex. The show’s national tour for this fall coincides with the amendment’s centennial next year.

From the musical’s website:

The inspirational story of these fearless women is brought to life through jazz, traditional musical standards style, spoken word, hints of gospel and dance. 2020 is the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment; our goal is to get a full production of 19 up and running, and onto a stage by the end of 2019.

The show’s book and lyrics were created by Jennifer Schwed and Doug Bradshaw, the cofounders of the Alexandria-based Through the 4th Wall. The show’s music is by film composer Charlie Barnett.

All 200 tickets got snapped up for the special preview performance at the Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street SE) on Friday (May 17), according to the musical’s Facebook page. The preview will include songs, dance and narration from the first and second acts of the show.

Photo via Facebook

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Vienna’s version of “American Idol” is winding down auditions ahead of the semi-finals during ViVa Vienna.

Vienna Idol showcases local talent, while also raising money for the Khristin Kyllo Memorial Fund, which honors the memory of a local Vienna resident who died suddenly due to a sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP).

The last audition slots for the eighth annual music competition will be held on Wednesday.

Here’s where hopeful contestants can audition:

  • Today (May 14): 7-9 p.m. at Whole Foods (143 Maple Avenue E.)
  • Tomorrow (May 15): 7-9 p.m. at Caffe Amouri Coffee Roaster (107 Church Street NE)

Up next, the semi-finals will take place in the parking lot of Caffe Amouri during ViVa Vienna next Sunday, May 26.

The winner gets chosen by attendees, who vote for their favorite “Idol” during a concert on the Vienna Town Green (144 Maple Avenue E.) on Friday, June 7.

The first place winner will receive $700 and eight hours of professional recording studio time. The contestant in second place will walk away with $500, while the contestant in third place will get $250.

Image via Facebook

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The Tysons branch of an educational service centers chain had a short-lived closure after the franchise owner was arrested on charges of sexually assaulting two students.

A spokeswoman for the Huntington Learning Centers said its branches in Tysons and Springfield both reopened on April 26, one week after they closed.

“They were reopened after we could be assured that the Springfield and Tysons centers were not involved in the incidents alleged,” the spokeswoman said.

Franchise owner Jeffrey Cummins faces eight felony counts of indecent liberties by a custodian against children, and the abuse allegedly occurred inside Cummins’ home in Annandale.

Eileen Huntington, the chief executive officer of the Huntington Learning Centers, said in a statement:

“Our focus has always been to provide a safe and supportive environment for students. Upon learning of the situation reported, the centers were immediately closed until we could be assured that the Springfield and Tysons centers were not involved in the incidents alleged, that all students were safe, and that they will continue to be in the future. After confirmation, both centers reopened. We look forward to continuing our mission to provide every student with the best education possible.”

The Tysons facility operates in the Centennial Plaza shopping center at 8290 Old Courthouse Road. According to the company’s website, the facility has been open for 23 years.

The spokeswoman did not respond to questions from Tysons Reporter about how many kids were affected by the closure.

Meanwhile, the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney said that because the victims in the case are under the age of 18, the case is first going to the juvenile domestic court for a preliminary hearing scheduled for August 22.

After the preliminary hearing, depending on the judge’s determination, the case could be sent to the circuit court.

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A new education-oriented music studio, called Crescendo Studios, just opened in Merrifield, near the Mosaic District.

Eddie Fuentes, director of the studio, said the goal is to provide individualized music lessons and to teach students to be creative thinkers in a diverse, nurturing environment.

“Our mission is to bring culture, diversity and a wealth of experience to the education of our students,” Fuentes said. “Too many times education of the arts is homogenized and every individual is treated the same. This method of teaching can work for some but there are many students who become unmotivated and underwhelmed because they are not being engaged the right way.”

The studio opened inside the old MHz Studio at 8101 Lee Highway. Fuentes said the facility has seven private lesson rooms, four band rooms, and a recording studio.

Private music lessons at Crescendo Studio are $35 for a 30-minute lesson or $65 for a one-hour lesson. Small group classes for 6-9 year olds are $35 for one-hour lessons and the Prelude Piano Program for 5-7 year olds is $35 for a one-hour lesson.

The studio is planning to host an open house on Saturday, April 27 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m., giving prospective students, parents or instructors a chance to tour the building and meet the studio’s teachers.

“Our initial goal is to establish ourselves as the go-to location for music education,” said Fuentes. “In our second phase, we aim to bring other art forms into our school such as dance, musical theater, canvas art and more.”

Photo via Facebook

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Vienna’s Windover Heights Historic District is a little secluded, but on Sunday, April 28, the neighborhood is throwing open its doors to the public for its annual A Walk on the Hill.

The small neighborhood is located just northwest of the Maple Avenue near Lawyers Road. This year marks the 40th anniversary of Windover Heights being designated as a historic district.

The festival is planned to include live music and photography exhibits, in addition to tours of the historic neighborhood. During the celebration, visitors are also invited to stroll through 50 participating yards and landscaped gardens.

Several homes in the neighborhood date back to the late 19th century, with the local history going back further with stories of Union soldiers using the area as a cavalry outpost during the Civil War.

According to town documents, notable historic spots on the tour include:

  • 214 Lawyers — The original First Baptist Church was built here in 1887 by the black community on land deeded for $1 by Major O. E. Hine, Vienna’s first mayor. The material was from the Union Army barracks of the Civil War. This was the first church in Vienna and was also used as a school until the 1890s.
  • The Barn at Windover — The barn was originally part of the Salsbury dairy farm on the hill. Handmade wooden pegs have continued being used in the building’s preservation and the original design is maintained.
  • The West End Cemetery — The land was deeded in 1884 by Capt. Harmon Salsbury and his second wife, Susannah Freeman, to the small black community that had grown up around the Salsbury farm. Many of the tombstones date to the turn of the century and before. Thomas and Daniel West, prominent black citizens, are buried here. In 1987 Historic Vienna, Inc. rededicated the cemetery as a historic Vienna landmark.

The event is free and open to the public, with local residents providing punch and cookies during the celebration. Parking for the event is available at the Green Hedges School and at the Vienna Arts Society (243 Church Street NW).

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Christian Aliferis, a senior at James Madison High School and a saxophonist, has scored $2,000 in scholarships and is scheduled to solo at the City of Fairfax Band’s May 4 concert.

The City of Fairfax Band Association hosts an annual Young Artist Competition to encourage high school musicians to pursue a musical career. Three finalists competed in a recital in March, and the winner was chosen by a panel of judges.

“I’m thrilled to be performing with the band! This is my first time ever performing a concerto with an ensemble, and I’m super excited,” Aliferis said in a press release from the City of Fairfax Band. “My first solo was in sixth grade when I played the ‘Mario Brothers Theme’ with the band.”

Aliferis not only studies saxophone, but also clarinet and recorder.

At the concert in May, Aliferis is scheduled to perform ‘Tableaux de Provence” by Paule Maurice. The concert is themed around music evocative of various parts of rural America.

The concert is planned to take place at 7:30 p.m. in the Ernst Cultural Center at Northern Virginia Community College (8333 Little River Turnpike). Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors, of free for students.

Photos courtesy City of Fairfax Band

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The Washington Revels, a musical group from Silver Spring, is planning a concert in McLean this weekend for a second annual celebration of a local church’s history.

Tomorrow (Saturday), the group is planned to hold a performance in the Historic Pleasant Grove Church at 8641 Lewinsville Road in McLean from 3-5 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public.

The church was established in 1896 by the descendants of freed slaves. Services at the church were discontinued in 1968, but today the site holds a museum and hosts several public events.

According to the group’s website, the performance will feature traditional music from African American congregations in the late 19th century and early 20th century.

The program is planned to open with a short presentation on the history of the church and the surrounding area, with refreshments and a social hour after the show.

Photo via Facebook

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The Filene Center at Wolf Trap has an extensive summer lineup featuring famous rockers and R&B groups from the 1970s, 80s and 90s, along with some well-known country artists.

Tysons Reporter rounded up the noteworthy concerts coming to the outdoor amphitheater.

Photo via Wolf Trap 

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Vienna’s version of “American Idol” plans to return for its eighth annual music competition.

Vienna Idol showcases local talent, while also raising money for the Khristin Kyllo Memorial Fund, which honors the memory of a local Vienna resident who died suddenly due to a sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP).

The contest has raised more than $80,000 for the fund, which sends several young people to college, purchases epilepsy seizure bracelets and monitors for people who can’t afford them and donates funds for SUDEP research, according to the competition’s website.

The semi-weekly auditions start the first week of April and will take place at either Caffe Amouri Coffee Roaster (107 Church St NE) or Whole Foods (143 Maple Ave E.) throughout the month.

The winner gets chosen by attendees, who vote for their favorite “Idol” during a concert on the Vienna Town Green (144 Maple Ave E.) on Friday, June 7.

The first place winner will receive $700 and eight hours of professional recording studio time. The contestant in second place will walk away with $500, while the contestant in third place will get $250.

Image via Facebook

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April performances at The Barns at Wolf Trap feature a mix of music, from folk to acapella to instrumental.

Omara Portuondo, an 88-year-old Cuban singer and dancer who has been compared to Billie Holiday and Edith Piaf, will bring her signature flair from April 23-24. Tickets start at $50.

The Secret Sisters (real-life sisters  Laura and Lydia Rogers) are set to bring their haunting folk songs to the stage on April 19. Their 2017 album “You Don’t Own Me Anymore” earned them a Grammy nomination for Best Folk Album. The stop at Wolf Trap is a part of the duo’s current tour. Tickets cost $25.

Singer-songwriter Storm Large will also take to the stage to perform a range of songs, from Cole Porter to Pat Benatar.

You might have seen her as a contestant on the CBS reality television show “Rock Star: Supernova.” Large has an eclectic background. She started as a rock artist before transitioning into the theater and cabaret world. Tickets are $55.

The list of Wolf Trap events in April:

The full Wolf Trap schedule is available online.

Photo via Wolf Trap 

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