Out & About

FENNELLY: Hellos, goodbyes mark midstate cultural scene

The great day has come. At long last the Tubman Museum’s extraordinary new home is opening. I urge you not just to see it but to buy a membership and visit multiple times. There’s so much to see, and a family membership is just $50. Let’s help ensure that the new 49,000-square-foot Tubman’s fame spreads throughout the land -- as it so richly warrants.


Blessed as this community is with top-notch music programs, it is nonetheless frightening when we lose some of the talent that keeps our musical pistons pumping. Last weekend’s concerts by the Macon Symphony Youth Orchestra -- performed to capacity crowds -- reminded me yet again why our talent pool seems so limitless and why this is a great place to raise kids.

The only sad note in this end-of-the-year celebration was the announcement that Connie Davis is stepping down as head of the MSYO. She has provided inspiring leadership during her eight years, and her departure will be a blow to the entire community as well as a loss to a young violinist at my house.

Another blow to Macon’s musical community is the retirement of fabled strings teacher (and recently fine arts head) at Central High School, Pat McCall. Untold thousands of students have come to love music in her hands. There must be something in the water at Central, for that was the home of the well-known Bob Barnette, who like McCall is known as a performer as well as a teacher.

I recently read an interview with Bob Dylan in which he said if he had to do it over again he’d be a teacher. It’s reassuring to know that Mercer’s Townsend School of Music is passionately creating the band and orchestra leaders of tomorrow. In a recent interview in an Atlanta arts blog, midstate resident, world famous businessman and keyboardist Chuck Leavell reminds us that education in music and the arts is essential to all.


This is our final weekend to see “The Importance of Being Ernest” at Macon Little Theatre. The Oscar Wilde classic is one of the great comedies of all-time. At Forsyth’s Rose Theatre “Southern Hospitality” opens tonight, followed next weekend by Theatre Macon’s Tony Award-winning “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike.”

Contact Larry Fennelly at LarryFennelly@avantguild.com.