Arts Updates, Interviews, Calendar, Calls for Artists and Volunteers, Auditions --- It's All Here in Arts Blast, Arts Blast on the Air, and on Facebook.

Supporting The Arts & Arts Councils Everywhere

Volume 4 No. 23 | July 1, 2022

Notes from the Editor:

Holiday edition of Arts Blast! Have a safe, fun 4th of July weekend.

Coming soon to Arts Blast: What Are You Reading? Readers are welcome to send in brief (125-150 words) POSITIVE reviews of books enjoyed and recommended. Include title, author, publisher. Acceptance will be in keeping with the Arts Blast policy our mothers taught us — If you can't say something nice, ... . 

Acceptable: "Intriguing plot but a couple of the characters could be just a bit more convincing."

Not so much: "Interesting plot but what on earth was the author thinking with those completely unbelievable characters?" 

We'll see how it goes. 

Arts Blast is now on summer schedule, alternating with On the Arts Blast Calendar. As usual, there will be an extra Arts Blast thrown in from time to time and updates on Facebook.

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Arts Blast on the Air with Willi Miller

This week hear Dick Golden talking about Russian immigrant Irving Berlin's God Bless America and more; Angelina Dubois and David Calahan talk about Footloose, coming to Vero Beach Theatre guild. Listen to or download the podcast now or listen on the radio — 101.7FM ON THE TREASURE COAST —Sunday evening at 7.

Note: Arts Blast on the Air podcast is now uploaded to more than a few sites:





Podcast Addict



Bookmark On the Calendar at for frequent updates. Calls for Artists, Auditions, & Volunteers are now online.Catch up with events at Willi Miller's Arts Blast on Facebook and pick up some laughs and interesting info on the Willi Miller's Arts Blast Extras page. And now there's a Facebook Arts Blast on the Air!

In This Issue


Irving Berlin sings God Bless America

The Many Sides of Jacob Craig

Masters in Black & White at VBMA

Brazilian Guitarist in Coral Gables

Footloose at Vero Beach Theatre

Cattle Drive Sculpture Dedication


The 4th at Edison-Ford

Jazz Jams in Fort Pierce

Lake Wales History Museum

Maltz Tours

Flashdance at The Barn

Brevard SO Summer Evenings

No Live in the Loop or Comedy Zone Experience this weekend at Riverside Theatre

First Friday Gallery Strolls/ArtWalks are happening!

Vero Beach Museum of Art will be CLOSED on July 4th but open this weekend!

In July Gallery 14 will Present Summer Squared II: 

An Invitational of Great Proportions 

Reception on Friday July 1st, 5-8pm

For Jazz Appreciation Month, Dick Golden very generously contributed weekly features on icons of the genre. One was Irving Berlin, a Russian immigrant who wrote some of our most familiar popular music, including God Bless America. Here's the YouTube link Dick shared: Irving Berlin singing that patriotic piece on the Ed Sullivan television show, backed by a huge chorus of Scouts. Listen here.

Vero Beach Theatre Guild

The Many Sides of Jacob Craig

Jacob Craig has become a formidable force in the music community in Indian River County, centered in his position as Director of Music and Arts at First Presbyterian Church in Vero Beach. A member of the congregation, Phil LoGiudice, wrote a profile of Jacob for a recent church newsletter and has given Arts Blast permission to share it here.

Dr. Jacob Craig is responsible for conducting, leading, and overseeing all worship, music, and arts programs. These include the Chancel Choir, Handbell Choir, Youth String Orchestra, PRIMO School of Performing Arts, Galleries at First Pres, Concert Series, and Special Services. Jacob received his Bachelor of Music Education and Piano Performance degree from Shorter University in Rome, GA before moving on to Tallahassee, FL to receive his Master of Music in Choral Conducting and Literature under Dr. Andre Thomas at Florida State University. As of 2019, Jacob completed his Doctoral Degree in Sacred Music (DSM) in Performance at the Graduate Theological Foundation and Oxford University. He serves as Director of the Vero Beach Choral Society, ACTS Choristers, Sea Oaks Chorus, John’s Island Singers, and Silver Tones community choirs. Jacob is also a competitive highland Bagpiper and Pipe Major of the Vero Beach Pipes and Drums. Many of you already know about Jacob’s role with our church, but his early life is probably not as well known.

Jacob was born in Blairsville, North Georgia in the heart of the Blue Ridge Appalachian Mountains. The family was 12 miles out from town and had five acres in that mountainous area. Early on, his father instilled an idea of success based on a strong work ethic and intelligence. By the age of seven, Jacob had his first job on a nearby farm. He was paid in fresh vegetables, which he then sold to people in a local RV camp. He and his two younger siblings - a brother and sister - were homeschooled. Their parents had to inform the local superintendent and get permission to operate as a private school. This was possible because Georgia law did not define “private school”.

As a child, Jacob had no real interest in playing musical instruments, but that changed at age five when it was decided that he would take piano lessons from the preacher’s wife. After two years, his teacher reported that he played piano better than her! Then he was enrolled in a music school in Cleveland, GA - 90 minutes from home. His parents would drive him to lessons until he was old enough to drive himself.

Jacob’s Scottish heritage has always been a big influence. At age eight, he started playing bagpipes and continues to play to this day. Music became a requirement in his life. After high school, he had an opportunity to play piano as an accompanist for some friends when they auditioned to attend Shorter College in Rome, GA. Jacob was asked if he was trying out and he said, “oh no, I am joining the Air Force to be a pilot”. They suggested he play for them anyway and when he finished, they offered him a full scholarship. He got his master’s degree at age 22. He wanted to continue to a PhD program, but Dr. Thomas recommended he teach for two or three years so his resume would be stronger. Dr. Thomas had just the place: Ridgeway High School, an inner-city school in an underserved area of Memphis. Jacob taught there three years.

After teaching, he was ready for a change. A friend told him of a job opening on a Celebrity Cruise ship. Jacob negotiated for a six-week contract as the jazz orchestra conductor. Jacob was very interested in a “shore” job when a friend advised him that First Presbyterian Church was looking to hire a music and arts director. He applied and got the job. On the second Sunday in November of 2012, his son Landon was born 2 months premature. He is now a very healthy 9-year-old and has done well. 

In the ten years we have been blessed with Jacob’s presence, he has become accomplished in many different activities- he is SCUBA Rescue certified, trains in competitive boxing, and also recently received his Private Pilot’s License in order to participate in aerobatics competitions in a Yaklovev Yak-52 Russian Trainer Aircraft co-owned by Colonel Pritchard. He is also an accomplished horseman who has specialized in desensitization training for hunting horses and leisure trail riding.

Photos supplied by FPC

Masters in Black & White at Vero Beach Museum of Art

Masters in Black & White showcases a selection from the photography collection of Elizabeth Stewart of Vero Beach. A long-time collector, she has generously gifted and loaned to the Vero Beach Museum of Art over the years. The exhibition includes major photography artists, including iconic masters of the past, like Ansel Adams, Henri Cartier-Bresson and André Kertész, but also contemporary, living masters, such as Sebastião Salgado and Mark Steinmetz. All works in the exhibition are made in the gelatin silver print medium. In this analog process a print is produced on photographic paper, introduced in the 1880s. The process yields an image with deep blacks, organic texture and a timeless look.

André Kertész (Hungarian-American, 1894 – 1985), Washington Square Park, 1954. Gelatin silver print, 7 x 10 inches. Collection of Elizabeth Stewart.

From Lake Okeechobee News - Katrina Elsken

Okeechobee will celebrate the National Day of the American Cowboy on July 23 with the dedication of the Cattle Drive Sculpture in Cattlemen’s Square (Flagler Park #5) on SR 70 in downtown Okeechobee.

The celebration will start at 10 a.m. and will include a short program, ribbon cutting, unveiling of the sculptures, a meet and greet with the artist, music and food.

The project is presented by the Okeechobee Main Street Arts & Culture Alliance. It was funded through donations.

The sculpture project includes ten bronze sculptures and will include a horse with rider, calf, dog, six head of cattle, and a cowboy on a fence. The sculptures represent a historical cattle drive celebrating the ranching lifestyle in Okeechobee County. The project also celebrates the 500 year anniversary of the first cattle brought to Florida. The anniversary was in 2021, but official statewide celebrations were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mike Block Comes to Town

The 13th Annual Vero Beach International Music Festival runs July 6 through July 9 at First Presbyterian Church of Vero Beach (520 Royal Palm Boulevard). This one-of-a-kind festival will feature performances by world-class musicians and singers in Americana, Rock, Celtic, Americana, World, and Jazz, as well as local and international students from the Mike Block String Camp. 


Wednesday, July 6th @ 7:30 pm: MAIN STAGE PERFORMANCES – Show 1 

Featuring Americana, Bluegrass, Brazilian, Celtic, Folk, Jazz, Pop, Rock, and more from the Faculty of Mike Block String Camp


Friday, July 8th @ 7:30 pm: MAIN STAGE PERFORMANCES – Show 2 

Featuring Americana, Bluegrass, Brazilian, Celtic, Folk, Jazz, Pop, Rock, and more from the Faculty of Mike Block String Camp



Followed by a Barn Dance with LIVE band


Celebrate Independence Day at Edison Ford - Fort Myers

Open from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. 


Celebrate Independence Day with us and learn about two famous icons that revolutionized life in America! Visitors may take guided tours or meander at their own pace on a self-guided tour, using an app downloaded to their phone. The Garden Shoppe will also be open and offers a wide variety of plants and trees available for sale. The homes will be decorated with red, white and blue bunting for the holiday. 

According to historical documents, Edison woke up early each Independence Day to spend time with his children and set off a giant firecracker in his yard. The children dressed in holiday costumes and they all tossed Chinese firecrackers. Edison even made his own fireworks with TNT added and called them "incendiary torpedoes." As part of the holiday celebration, the family enjoyed ice cream and watermelon, just as many American families do today. 

Chico Pinheiro - Jazz Guitarist with Helio Alves, pianist; Sam Minaie, bassist;

Alex Kautz, drummer

Thursday, July 7, 8:00 p.m.

Coral Gables Congregational 

          United Church of Christ 

          3010 De Soto Boulevard 

          Coral Gables, FL 33134

          (across from the Biltmore Hotel)

          Free and Convenient Parking! 

At the Lake Wales History Museum

Saturday Summer Fun Days

(Parents must be in attendance)

July 9 - Train Day

July 16 - City Day

July 23 - TBD

July 30 - Art History Day

August 6 - Last Day of Summer

Tour the new Maltz Jupiter Theatre any Monday this summer, June 13-Aug. 8. Tours begin at 2 p.m.

The Brevard Symphony Orchestra (BSO) is proud to announce the return of its Summer Evenings Series, hosted on Saturday evenings throughout the summer at the Suntree United Methodist Church at 7400 N Wickham Rd, Melbourne, FL 32940. This three-concert chamber music series begins on Saturday, June 18, 2022, at 7pm, with the remaining concerts taking place on July 16, 2022, at 7pm, and August 13, 2022, at 7pm.

Flashdance The Musical is at The Barn Theatre July 14-31.

Bookmark On the Calendar at for frequent updates. Calls for Artists, Auditions, & Volunteers are now online.

Catch up with events at Willi Miller's Arts Blast on Facebook and pick up some laughs and interesting info on the Willi Miller's Arts Blast Extras page. And now there's a Facebook Arts Blast on the Air!


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