Jennifer's Top Five

Is it too soon to think about the weekend? Arts Council Marketing Director Jennifer Gelband offers her top five arts picks for this week, going into next. These come from our member organizations and are also featured in The Arts Council's weekly newsletter. To subscribe to that, click here.  

This is a good cartoon. We want your bad cartoons. Seriously. REINALDO GOEYENECHEA for LA VOZ HISPANA. 

This is a good cartoon. We want your bad cartoons. Seriously. REINALDO GOEYENECHEA for LA VOZ HISPANA. 

The Arts Paper's Bad Cartoon Contest, Deadline EXTENDED TO JAN. 26! 

Do you have what it takes to be bad? Not get-arrested-and-your-embarrassing-mug-shot-becomes-a-meme kind of bad (okay, maybe), but the artistic kind of bad. If yes, here's your chance to enter the first ever Arts Paper Bad Cartoon Contest!

We're looking for the best of the worst. So bad it’s good. There’s no fee to enter and the prize is minimal: Fame, bragging rights, and personal glee from seeing your craft in print. 

Cartoons can be a single-panel or a strip. The winning cartoon will be selected by an esteemed panel of judges. The winner must commit to providing 10 cartoons on publication schedule for The Arts Paper, which will be published both in print and online.

Artists and non-artists of all ages and skill levels are encouraged to enter. Here are a few details:

• We need hard copies. 
• All entries must include name, address, phone, email on back. 
• Winner must commit to 10 submissions for the entire year, one cartoon for each issue of The Arts Paper. Should the winner be unable to perform the duties of Contest Winner at any point during the year, the runner-up will be asked to carry on from there. 
• Entries are due at Arts Council Headquarters no later than 5 p.m., Friday, Jan 26. We’re located at 70 Audubon St., Floor 2, New Haven, CT 06510.  

Neighborhood Music School's Greater New Haven Youth Ensembles, Jan. 6, 2 & 4 p.m., Yale's Battell Chapel.

An afternoon of heartwarming music with two highly anticipated concerts by the acclaimed Greater New Haven Youth Ensembles. 

The Greater New Haven Concert Orchestra begins with Entrance of the Queen of Sheba by Georg Friederich Händel. Then Haydn’s Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in C Major, featuring 2017 NMS Concerto Competition winner, 14 year-old Mateo Balbarin (violin) of New Haven. The Concert Orchestra will also perform Brahms’ Academic Festival Overture. 
Following the Concert Orchestra is a showcase performance of the All-City Honors Symphonic Band, the result of an evolving partnership between NMS, Yale’s Music in Schools Initiative and New Haven Public Schools (NHPS). 

The second concert features The Greater New Haven Youth Orchestra. Kara Friedman, 17, of Bristol, plays the virtuosic clarinet solo. She is also a 2017 NMS Concerto Competition winner. This accomplished group will also perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8 and Arturo Márquez’s Danzon No. 2.
Tickets: $10; $5 seniors and children 12 and younger. 

More info: (203) 624-5189 or

Wikimedia Commons. 

Wikimedia Commons. 

The New Haven Free Public Library is starting off the year with a ton of free and interesting events, which is exactly how we all want to start the year, right? Check out this smattering of options, then go to its website for the full list at all of the branches around the city.  

• Urban Life Experience Book Discussion Series: They Can't Kill Us All: Ferguson, Baltimore, and a New Era in America's Racial Justice Movement By Wesley Lowery, Jan. 6, 12 p.m., Wilson Branch.
• Board Game Saturdays for Adults, Teens and Kids, Jan. 6, 13, 20 & 27, 2-4 p.m., Mitchell Branch.
• Afternoon Book Club, J by Howard Jacobson, Jan. 8, 1 p.m., Mitchell Branch.

Picks four and five are wrapped into one biggie: Art Classes Everywhere! This is some of what we know:

  • Winter Art Classes at Artsplace, Cheshire, include Natural Elements Workshop for teens and adults, Jan. 6 & 7, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., taught by Emmy Award winning TV host and writer David Dunlop. Plus drawing, colored pencil, pastel, oil and acrylic painting, watercolor, more classes! Programs are appropriate for students of any artistic level; beginner, intermediate or advanced. Classes typically run for 7 weeks and are offered Mondays-Thursdays, 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m. and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. More info: or (203) 272-ARTS/2787.
  • 6th Annual Free Open Arts Day, Jan. 7, 1-3 p.m., Guilford Art Center. The Art Center’s studios and classrooms will be open with instructor artists demonstrating their crafts and offering hands-on art projects, including pottery, blacksmithing, painting, drawing, stone carving, kids’ classes, and more. No reservations or registration necessary.
    More info: (203)453-5947 or
  • Classes & Enrollment Start Jan. 8 at Creative Arts Workshop. Register online, by phone, or in person for Wintersession, Jan. 8-Feb. 25. Open Enrollment, Jan. 8-14, is the time to sit in on a class (or several) to see if you'd like to enroll. Browse classes here.
  • January Art Classes at Branford Art Center include Winter Paint Nights, Saturdays, Jan 13, 20, Feb. 10; Figure Drawing Open Studio, Thursdays 6 weeks starting Jan. 4; and Meditative Art Classes to Boost Creativity, Fridays 5 weeks starting Jan. 5. For more info, contact Yvonne Gordon-Moser, (860) 334-4642, or
Jennifer Gelband