Composers at Mabel’s and Flowers, Birds, Wind, Moon: The Music of Marty Regan

Composers are no strangers to the Mabel Dodge Luhan House. In 1931 Mabel hosted two prominent ones: Carlos Chavez and Leopold Stokowski. At the time both were revered: Chavez as Mexico’s greatest modern classical composers, Stokowski as the greatest American composer of his time. Known for popularizing classical music, the latter also performed and recorded compositions across the musical spectrum. His mission in Taos was to study and record Taos Pueblo songs. Ever open to new musical forms, Stokowski had traveled to Asia prior to staying with Mabel. He had always wanted to introduce aspects of eastern music to the western hemisphere.

Now, some ninety years later composer Marty Regan, currently residing in Taos as a Helene Wurlitzer Foundation Fellow, introduces a new flavor of Japanese music to Taos. On Sunday August 9th from 5:00-6:30 p.m. at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House conference center, he will present a concert of contemporary works for traditional Japanese instruments. Performing with him are internationally known guest artists Duo YUMENO: Yoko Reikano Kimura (koto/Japanese 13-string zither, and voice) and Hikaru Tamaki (violoncello). Regan himself will perform on the shakuhachi, the end-blown Japanese bamboo flute

Read More

Mabel and Taos artists centennial celebration

This period marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Taos Society of Artists. On July 15, 1915 Ernest Blumenschein, Bert Geer Phillips, Eanger Irving Couse, Oscar Berninghaus, Joseph Henry Sharp and William Herbert “Buck” Dunton created the Taos Society of Artists (TSA). The organization had several goals, among them to develop a high standard of art and, through exhibitions, to bring their art before the public.

Read More

The Passions of Mabel Dodge Luhan

When it comes to theater productions, not often does the public get to converse simultaneously with actor, playwright and director. Now audiences will have that opportunity. On Wednesday, July 8, 2015 actor and playwright Leslie Harrell Dillen will present a 20-minute segment of “The Passions of Mabel Dodge Luhan.” Following the performance, director Kent Kirkpatrick joins Leslie to discuss the creative process of writing, acting and staging a one-person show.

In the first part of the program, Leslie as Mabel conducts one of her famous “Evenings” with the audience. This performance centers on her December 1918 arrival in Taos. The piece continues with Mabel meeting Tony Lujan at Taos Pueblo, and ends with the beginning of their relationship. For the second half Dillen talks about the research and writing that led to performing her play. She first encountered Mabel at Yale’s Beinecke Library twenty years ago.

Read More

Mabel Dodge Luhan – New Era, New Blog

In February 2015 the Mabel Dodge Luhan House website got a new look. In April new staff came on board. Julie Keefe, General Manager, and I, in the newly created Community Engagement position, agreed to co-host a new blog. Julie will cover the day-to-day happenings at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House. I’m charged with Mabel. That may sound simple but is actually as complex as the woman herself.

Who was Mabel Dodge Luhan? She was one of the early 20th century’s most significant and under-recognized cultural figures. And she’s about to get her due. She is key to Mabel Dodge Luhan & Company: American Moderns and The West, a travelling exhibition that opens in Taos at the Harwood Museum of Art in May 2016. The exhibition shows Mabel’s long reach. She was a “political, social and cultural visionary, salon hostess, and collector of genius in almost every field of modern endeavor.”

Read More