The Scene In and Around Boston . . .
By Hilda M. Morrill
November 4, 2005

Marian Christy, right, welcomes Dr. Howard Gotlieb and Vita Paladino to the opening preview of her exhibition of Expressionist watercolors, which was held at Habitat in Belmont. (Photo © Hilda M. Morrill)

We recently had the pleasure of attending the opening reception for a “Solo Exhibition of Expressionist Watercolors” by Marian Christy, which was held at the Mass Audubon Habitat Education Center & Wildlife Sanctuary in Belmont. 

Now, we’ve known Ms. Christy for many years and have greatly admired her many journalistic credits – first as a fashion writer and then as a celebrity columnist for the “Boston Globe”; as a book author; a columnist for the “New York Times” Syndicate; her celebrity columns for magazines such as “Arts & Entertainment”; and her television show “Lifestyles with Marian Christy,” just to name a very few.

What we didn’t know, however, was that our friend is also an accomplished artist. “This is the new ‘me,’ ” she said. And, from the looks of the exhibit, and the remarks of the visitors, the new Marian is a winner – again! Seven of the paintings were sold before the exhibit officially opened.

The setting for the exhibition was especially appropriate, as nature was the major theme in the paintings, which incidentally, represented one year’s work. Marian’s fashion sensibilities came through, too, as noted in some of the titles such as “All White Wedding,” “Autumn Fashion Palette,” and “Trees Making a Fashion Statement: Pink is In.”

Among the many distinguished guests enjoying the preview reception were Dr. John Silber, President Emeritus of Boston University; Vita Paladino, Managing Director of the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University; Dr. Howard Gotlieb, Founding Director of the Center; and the charming, gracious and ever debonair Robert French.

Marian Christy is not resting on her laurels. She’s recently finished a book manuscript called “Letters,” and we understand that there’s also a children’s book in the near future. Congratulations and Best Wishes, Marian!

……. Incidentally, the location of Marian Christy’s exhibit is the former estate of Ruth Hornblower Atkins Greenough Churchill. According to information given to us by Michael Acciavatti, one of the teacher/naturalists at Habitat, “The house, built in 1914, was a wedding present from her father-in-law Edwin Atkins. The estate was originally called ‘The Cedars’ and the Olmsted Brothers landscaping firm worked on the property between 1916 and 1960.

“Ruth Churchill planned and developed the various individual habitats – the pond, the meadow, the pine woods – to attract birds and other wildlife. The sunken garden won gold medals from the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 1952 and 1960…. The property now comprises 87 acres, including The Cedars original 26 acres; Highland Farm, which had been owned by Mass Audubon since 1965; and Weeks Pond…. The aim at Habitat is ‘for people … to come out and find some connection with the natural world.’ ”

We plan on going back to visit the elegant house and incredible gardens. Maybe we’ll see you there at the next Marian Christy exhibit? For information about Habitat in Belmont, please call 617-489-5050. You’ll be glad you did.

……. This week The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, had a rare visit from the King of the Asante people of Ghana, His Majesty Otumfuo Osei Tutu II—officially known as the Asantehene. His Majesty was the guest of honor during a reception at the MFA, accompanied by a delegation of his palace officials. 

The King’s visit to Boston, organized in collaboration with Harvard University, marks the MFA’s opening of the exhibition “West African Gold: Akan Regalia from the Glassell Collection.” The royal dress and gold adornment on display in the exhibition are among the most spectacular in Africa.

“We’re honored that the Asantehene has chosen to visit Boston for the first time in order to attend the opening of the stunning West African Gold exhibition,” said Malcolm Rogers, Director of the MFA. “His visit provides an extraordinary opportunity to experience the grandeur of Asante kingship and the beauty of royal regalia.”

For more information, please call the MFA at 617-267-9300.

……. The traditions of circus, comedy, and experimental clown theater are coming to the stage of Boston’s Shubert Theatre for three shows only, on Saturday, November 19 (1 p.m. and 7 p.m.) and Sunday, November 20 (1 p.m.). We are told that “rooted in a unique style of theatrical clowning, ‘AGA-BOOM’ combines the unbridled silliness of slapstick, physical comedy, goofy mime, theatrical expressionism, poetry, and European avant-garde.” 

An experience for the entire family, “AGA-BOOM” has been nominated for the Ovation Award, in the category of best touring show, along with “The Producers,” “42nd Street,” “Lily Tomlin” and “Elaine Stritch.” 

Tickets are on sale at The Shubert Theatre Box Office, 265 Tremont Street, Boston, online at, or by calling at 1-800-447-7400. Discounted tickets are available for groups of 20 or more by calling 617-532-1116. 

……. The Handel and Haydn Society is pleased to announce that the eminent British conductor, Sir Roger Norrington, has been appointed Artistic Advisor for Handel and Haydn Society’s 2006-2007 and 2007-2008 seasons. Grant Llewellyn, who is currently in his fifth season as Music Director, becomes Principal Conductor for 2006-2007. Christopher Hogwood continues in his role as Conductor Laureate. 

Executive Director Mary Deissler said, “As the Society plans its future, we are thrilled to have assembled this musical dream team.” Ms. Deissler continued, “We are delighted that Grant Llewellyn will continue as principal conductor for next season. Grant’s musical leadership has inspired our musicians and engaged our audiences and the cultural community at large. We can’t thank him enough for what he’s done for us.” 

A native of Oxford, England, Roger Norrington has been a pioneer in the field of historically informed performance, since he founded the Schutz Choir in 1962. He is in great demand by symphony orchestras worldwide and regularly conducts orchestras in Berlin, Vienna, Salzburg, Amsterdam, Paris, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and London. Since 1998 Sir Norrington has been Chief Conductor of the Radio Symphony Orchestra of Stuttgart, and of the Camerata Salzburg.



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