Friday, May 06, 2016

Kids and Kites Festival, Saturday, May 7 at Montrose Harbor (Cricket Hill) 10am-4pm - FREE(Chicago,IL)

18th Annual Chicago Kids and Kites Festival

WHAT:       Kids and Kites Festival – FREE Admission

WHEN:       Saturday, May 7
, 10am-4pm

WHERE:     Montrose Harbor/Cricket Hill in Lincoln Park (Montrose and Wilson) Chicago

HIGHLIGHTS: (see below)

Once again, the City of Chicago will provide FREE kite kits for children to build, decorate and fly, while supplies last. Other activities include face painting, balloon artists and crafts.

One of the most popular highlights of the festival is the Big Kite Candy Drop, which is a piƱata-like kite filled with candies that drop from the sky, taking place during the afternoon, weather permitting.

Kite Harbor will be onsite for kite buyers, and professional kite flyers will demonstrate their skills with oversized and uniquely-shaped kites.

Mother’s Day Spa Special at Johnathan Breitung Salon & Luxury Spa (Chicago,IL)


Autism Awareness Carries on Beyond April for Revolutionary Special-Needs-User-Friendly Piano Method

Autism Awareness Carries on Beyond April for Revolutionary Special-Needs-User-Friendly Piano Method

With a Special-Needs-Piano Curriculum on sale at 15% off through April & May and a Recital Planned in Melville, NY in June, Occupational Octaves Piano™ is Helping Those with Autism Spectrum Disorders Experience Real Musicianship every month, every season, and every year!

With April being Autism Awareness Month behind us, Special Needs Music Educator and Musician Lee Stockner, along with Guy Brogna- Bass Player for several world renowned rock bands and owner of All Music Inc.
- are the founders of "Music Lee Inclined Guy, Inc." are keeping the topic in the spotlight with the revolutionary book series Occupational Octaves Piano! OOP is designed for students with Autism and other special needs to be able to easily and effectively play the piano, now with training and certification available for instructors of various backgrounds related to the worlds of Special Education, Music Education, Music Therapy, Occupational Therapy and more. On June 26 at 12:30PM EST, Lee will be hosting a recital at the Steinway Piano Gallery in Melville, NY featuring only students on the Autism Spectrum. It will be carried via live stream on Facebook, YouTube, Periscope and other live streaming platforms, and 15 students with Autism and other special needs are slated to perform!
Since 2004, at least 1 in 68 children have been born with an Autism Spectrum Disorder which causes varied deficiencies among those diagnosed in areas such as speech, communication, socialization, comprehension, living skills, physical strength, balance, emotional expression and more. While the Autism Spectrum is broad and many with this diagnosis are able to achieve great things, these individuals are usually considered "high-functioning,” such as Temple Grandin. Few programs exist that are truly SPECIAL-NEEDS-USER-FRIENDLY, meaning that the students who are considered "low-functioning" can use it as well.

In a groundbreaking manner, Lee Stockner has reinvented the language of music for people with severe disabilities stemming from Autism and other Special Needs so that as never before, virtually anyone who can match colors and letters can become a musician! Occupational Octaves Piano™ is the very first full piano education curriculum written in a Special-Needs-User-Friendly language of music, which was created by the author, and is named Lee Stockner's Music Box Method™.

David and San Lu Yu of Great Neck, NY are the parents of Brendan, who is 5 years old and diagnosed with Autism. His cognitive and communicative skills are considered 'low functioning' and he attends a special school for students with similar issues who also require constant individualized attention, adapted education, and therapy. Although he lacks the skills to properly read traditional music and/or be able to advance with it, he excels at the piano using Lee’s program. 6 months into lessons, David says “Brendan was non-verbal at age 4 when he took his first piano lesson with Lee. He responded incredibly well to Lee's Occupational Octaves Piano system and ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) teaching style. Not only is Brendan now able to play many piano pieces from Occupational Octaves Piano books 1-3 (over 100 pages of material), he develops self-confidence and his attention span every time through getting so many notes right with specific fingers and counting. Each week Brendan looks forward to his lesson and as Special Needs parents, it brings us great joy to see him becoming more communicative and expressive through these lessons. He regularly requests the colored rings, markers, books and specific songs used during lessons. He also loves to sing Old McDonald at the end of every lesson! We see Lee's program as an important tool for our son in dealing with autism and connecting with the world. Watching Brendan perform beautiful music to the applause of our friends and families is another joy to behold.” 


The program is a full 8 book series from Mary Had a Little Lamb to Mozart, featuring a #SpecialNeedsUserFriendly #NewLanguageOfMusic with fun and colorful #RingsOnTheFingers! Books 1-3 are available to the general public (check below for discount information) while books 4-8 are exclusively for Occupational Octaves Piano™ Certified Instructors. In an E-MAIL ONLY SALE, Books 1-3 are available at a 15% discount through April, which is Autism Awareness Month, and May to honor the idea that Autism Awareness shouldn’t only be a public focus in April. Message
to place your order!
Understanding how to play the piano and read traditional music notation does not equal understanding how to teach it. This standard idea is even more important for a Special Needs Piano Lesson, so Lee began training and certifying Occupational Octaves Piano™ instructors, worldwide! Now, a new crop of Occupational Octaves Piano™ certified instructors is growing and with each one, dozens of worldwide special learners have an opportunity to play the piano! Teachers are located in schools and private programs through New York, Florida, California, Texas, Ireland, Bahrain, and Jordan with more to come!

Occupational Octaves Piano™ will also soon be accepting entrants for a contest to have a school or individual who you may think could be an Occupational Octaves Piano™ instructor receive a free training and certification! Check back at
or Occupational Octaves Piano on Facebook
for more information this summer.
With past recitals have been held at the Queens Museum of Art and Franklin Roosevelt Building, the June 26th recital at the Steinway Piano Gallery in Melville, NY (12:30PM) is the perfect opportunity for 15 students with Autism and other special needs to let their musicianship shine thanks to Occupational Octaves Piano™!

For More Information On Occupational Octaves Piano™ (featuring Lee Stockner's Music Box Method), VISIT:


For More Info on All Music Inc., VISIT:


Chicago Farmers Markets Kick Off, May 12 at Daley Plaza (Illinois)

Thursday, May 05, 2016

ART>>The Summer of Women (Miami,FL)



© Corita Art Center, Immaculate Heart Community, Los Angeles

The Summer of Women begins May 14 at the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum FIU, and runs through September with three original exhibitions featuring women artists.

In the Beginning was the Word: Works by Corita Kent tops the marquee with a fresh look at the activist artwork of the rebel-nun/Pop Art pioneer. Also opening May 14 is the exhibition Suddenly Last Summer featuring three South Florida-based (Donna Haynes, Leah Brown and Michelle Weinberg) each given a room within the museum's Grand Galleries to create site-specific installations based on the hit song by The Motels. The opening reception for both exhibitions is free and open to the public on Saturday, May 14 (4-7 p.m.). The museum is located on the campus of Florida International University (map and directions).

On June 18, the  new exhibition Resonance/Dissonance debuts, featuring video art by women artists from the de la Cruz Collection. The opening reception is free and open to the public on Saturday, June 18 (4-7 p.m.).

Also on June 18, the museum inaugurates the new Art and Health series of community events with the luncheon presentation of Her Body of Art, sponsored by West Kendall Baptist Hospital. Exploring the nexus between art and health, the new series of artful conversations pairs medical experts and practitioners with art historians and visual artists ($35 per person includes lunch).

(Donna Haynes, from Objects of My Affection, performance and installation, 2010)

Opens Saturday, May 14 (on view through Sept. 25)
Curated by AdrienneRose Gionta

Brings together the work of three South Florida-based artists - Donna Haynes, Michelle Weinberg and Leah Brown - as they are asked to listen to the song Suddenly Last Summer by The Motels and create site-specific installations inspired by the song and their designated rooms within the Grand Galleries of the museum. The song evokes melancholy (longing for things lost such as summer love, nature, freedom, daydreaming, rituals, journeys and places).

Leah Brown
(Leah Brown, image from Lace Dear I, digital file, 2014)

Leah Brown is a Fort Lauderdale-based sculptor and installation artist. She was raised in Asheville, North Carolina where the woods she wandered in continue to inspire her aesthetic and dreams. She received a BFA with honors from the Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA in sculpture from the University of Miami. She is the director and co-curator of FATVillage Arts District in Fort Lauderdale.

Donna Haynes

(Donna Haynes, image from The Motherload of Invention, performance and installation, 2013)

Donna Haynes is a Fort Lauderdale-based artist and her work focuses on drawing, installation and sculpture. She is fascinated in meeting others and hearing their stories. The subject matter of her work includes interpersonal relationships, love, and recorded lineage. She is a recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA grant, and received an MFA in sculpture at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia.

Michelle Weinberg

(Michelle Weinberg, image from Masq, digital animation, 2016)

Michelle Weinberg is a painter who creates art for surfaces, interiors, architecture and public spaces. She received her BFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York and her MFA from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. She is the recipient of many prestigious awards, fellowships and residencies including a 2016 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award, the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and Fundacion Valparaiso in Spain.  She is the Creative Director of Girls' Club in Fort Lauderdale. 


Opens Saturday, May 14 (on view through Sept. 18)

© Corita Art Center, Immaculate Heart Community, Los Angeles

In the Beginning was the Word: Works by Corita Kent, ushers in The Summer of Women with an opening reception on Saturday, May 14 (4–7 p.m.), on view through September 18. This new exhibition (originating at the Frost Art Museum FIU) presents a collection of fifty works by Corita Kent (also known as Sister Mary Corita) bursting with color and meaningful text, selected to showcase the artist’s Pop Art legacy and memorable calls-to-action for social justice.

Part of the Pop Art canon, Corita Kent (1918-1986) is finally receiving overdue recognition and celebration.

(Corita Kent, Bell Brand, 1967, silkscreen print on pellon)

Her work had been considered as overlooked by many, until as recently as 2015 when the Andy Warhol Museum presented the first full-scale survey of Corita's work covering over 30 years of her artistic career.

An upcoming group exhibition at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London will feature Corita's work, and is titled YOU SAY YOU WANT A REVOLUTION? How have the finished and unfinished revolutions of the late 1960s changed the way we live today and think about the future?

Corita's work can be found in several art museums and private collections including the Whitney, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

In 1985, Corita Kent's famous "Love" postage stamp was commissioned for the U.S. Postal Service and became it's largest-selling stamp (with more than 700,000 stamps purchased, prompting many to unofficially proclaim Corita as the world's best-selling artist of all time). Read the complete press release about this Corita Kent exhibition at the Frost Art Museum FIU here, and to learn more about the artist visit

June 18 - Sept. 25
Featuring the works of women video artists from the de la Cruz Collection, including:
Susanne Winterry, Sarah Morris, Tracey Emin, Aida Ruilova, Dara Friedman and Beatriz Monteavaro.  Curated by the Frost Art Museum's Curator, Klaudio Rodriguez.


(Corita Kent, Come Alive, silkscreen print on paper)


The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum FIU, the Smithsonian Affiliate in Miami, opened its current 46,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art building in November 2008. Admission to the Museum is always free. The Frost is an American Alliance of Museums accredited museum, and is located on the FIU campus at 10975 SW 17th Street, across from the Blue Garage and adjacent to the Wertheim Performing Arts Center. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Sunday noon - 5 p.m. Closed on Mondays and most legal holidays. For more information, please call 305-348-2890 or visit,,  and  (map/ directions).


Chicago premiere of THE SUMMER HELP by award-winning filmmaker Melody Gilbert May 14 (IL)


Wednesday, May 04, 2016

LACDA 'Top 40' International Juried Competition (Los Angeles,CA)