The Big Read 2014: Ridgefield Reads The Great Gatsby

Join The Ridgefield Playhouse for Movies and the Performing Arts and the Ridgefield Library this fall as we organize a community-wide reading initiative of The Great Gatsby under the auspices of The Big Read. See below for a list of lectures, movie screenings, book discussions, live music and more, to take place in October and November 2014.

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment. The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. Support has also been received from Connecticut Humanities (CTH), a non-profit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities that funds, creates and collaborateson hundreds ofcultural programs across Connecticut each year.  This program is also made possible with support from Liz and Steven Goldstone.   The 2014 Big Read in Ridgefield is presented by The Ridgefield Playhouse for Movies and the Performing Arts and the Ridgefield Library, along with numerous community partners.

 PDFCheck out our The Big Read: The Great Gatsby brochure

  Listen to a recording of the lecture What's So Great About the Great Gatsby with Dr. Mark Schenker

  Listen to a recording of the lecture World War I and Modernism with Dr. Mark Schenker

  Listen to a recording of the lecture So We Read On with Maureen Corrigan

Contact: Mary Rindfleisch, Assistant Director, 203-438-2282 x1009 mfrind@ridgefieldlibrary.org


Program Sponsors & Partners | Upcoming Programs & Events |Library Materials | Other Resources | Past Events

The Big Read in the News

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.  The Ridgefield Playhouse, in partnership with the Ridgefield Library, is one of 77 not-for-profit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.  The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf
The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.  The Ridgefield Playhouse, in partnership with the Ridgefield Library, is one of 77 not-for-profit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.  The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf
The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.  The Ridgefield Playhouse, in partnership with the Ridgefield Library, is one of 77 not-for-profit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.  The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf
The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.  The Ridgefield Playhouse, in partnership with the Ridgefield Library, is one of 77 not-for-profit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.  The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf

NEA Announcement about 2014- 2015 Big Read Grantees
Press Release in The Ridgefield Press
The Ridgefield Playhouse receives Connecticut Humanities grant to support The Big Read coming this fall on HamletHub 9/12/14
Romancing "The Great Gatsby" in Ridgefield in The News-Times 11/20/14


Library Materials



Kick-off and Keynote Events

The Kick-off Event for Ridgefield's Big Read of "The Great Gatsby"
Smooth shiny instruments all in a row, red-hot lyrics, silky smooth ensemble work, spicy brass harmonies,a joyful audience bouncing and swaying to irresistible rhythms, and the sound of “Hi Di Ho!” filling theaters on cue: These have been the classic trademarks of concerts by The Cab Calloway Orchestra ever since the 1920s. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf

The Kick-off Event for Ridgefield's Big Read of "The Great Gatsby"

Concert: The Cab Calloway Orchestra @ The Ridgefield Playhouse
Friday, October 10, 7:30 PM  |  Tickets $38

Directed by Cab Calloway's grandson C. Calloway Brooks.  Smooth shiny instruments all in a row, red-hot lyrics, silky smooth ensemble work, spicy brass harmonies, a joyful audience bouncing and swaying to irresistible rhythms, and the sound of “Hi Di Ho!” filling theaters on cue: These have been the classic trademarks of concerts by The Cab Calloway Orchestra ever since the 1920s. They are the ingredients that made the orchestra a hit when it played the Palais Royale in downtown South Bend in 1939, and it’s the same mix that gives the group its energy and popularity today…more

 

The Keynote Event for Ridgefield's Big Read of "The Great Gatsby"

So We Read On: How The Great Gatsby Came To Be and Why It Endures with Maureen Corrigan @ Ridgefield Library - Co-sponsored by Books on the Common
Sunday, October 19, 2 PM | Free |
Please register

  Listen to a recording of the lecture

Join us for an afternoon with Maureen Corrigan, book critic for NPR's Fresh Air, and critic-in-residence and lecturer at Georgetown University. She is an associate editor of and contributor to Mystery and Suspense Writers (Scribner) and the winner of the 1999 Edgar Award for Criticism, presented by the Mystery Writers of America.  Tonight she will discuss  So We Read On, her forthcoming book on the extraordinary "second act" of The Great Gatsby (Little, Brown, September 2014).

Corrigan served as a juror for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction. Her literary memoir, Leave Me Alone, I'm Reading! was published in 2005. Corrigan is also a reviewer and columnist for The Washington Post's Book World. In addition to serving on the advisory panel of The American Heritage Dictionary, she has chaired the Mystery and Suspense judges' panel of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

How 'Gatsby' Went from a Mouldering Flop to a Great American Novel
Maureen Corrigan Interview on NPR's Fresh Air, September 8, 2014


Other Upcoming Public Programs & Events
Check here for programs that have already taken place

Boats Against the Current: Westport and the Origins of "The Great Gatsby"
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, Novemer 20, 7 PM | Free | Please register

Join us for an evening of discussion with filmmakers Deej Webb and Robert Steven Williams as they share their journey of discover about the summer of 1920, when Scott and Zelda lived in Westport. Premiering a short clip from their film, their findings have already surprised the international Fitzgerald community. 


The Great Gatsby (1974) PosterFree Film Screenings of The Great Gatsby

@ Ridgefield Playhouse
Sunday, November 23, 4:00 PM | Free

Directed by Jack Clayton, starring Robert Redford and Mia Farrow (1974, PG, 114 minutes)

 

 

Free Film Screenings of The Great Gatsby

@ Ridgefield Playhouse
Sunday, November 23, 7:30 PM | Free

Directed by Baz Luhrmann, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan (2013, PG13, 143 minutes)

 

 


The Generator - Ridgefield Arts Council Networking Event
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, Monday, November 24, 7:30 PM | $5 online/$10 at the door | Please register

Great F. Scott ... it's a November meeting of The Generator!  The Ridgefield Arts Council invites local artists and creative professionals to the next installment of “The Generator.” The networking event, presented in partnership with the Ridgefield Library as part of The Big Read 2014: Ridgefield Reads The Great Gatsby, will be held at 7:30pm, Monday, November 24th at the Ridgefield Library’s Program Room.

During the event, artists, writers and performers gather with the goal of learning, sharing, and networking with others to enhance both their creative process and their careers.  The events are managed via the website Meetup.com and feature innovative speakers, arts demonstrations and presentations geared toward the creative community.

Jazz dance students from the Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance will present a short class from combinations inspired by the Great Gatsby. Choreography by Danielle Marie Fusco and Allison Sale. And Ken Needleman, of Fodera Fine Art Conservation, will discuss the Jazz Master’s Series, a music performance series which takes place monthly at a local venue.

Following the brief presentations, members of The Generator will be encouraged to mix and mingle with presenters and each other. Creative types who live in and around Ridgefield are welcome to attend. Cost of attending The Generator is $5 for pre-registration (via meetup.com/The-Generator-Ridgefield-CT) or $10 at the door, which covers the cost of wine and light snacks.


Past Public Events

Dance Classes @ Founders Hall
Thursdays, September 18 for 8 Weeks, 2 PM | Register

Mira Cherkezova from Fred Astaire Dance Studio will be teaching an eight week course which will include Foxtrot, Waltz, Rumba, Swing, Mambo and some basic Charleston.  The class is open to Founders Hall members. The group will demonstrate the Charleston at the Founders Hall Tea on November 14.


Facilitator Training: Workshop for The Great Gatsby Discussion Leaders
@ Ridgefield Library
Monday, September 29, 10 AM | Free |
Please call Mary at 203-438-2282 x1009 to register
Thursday, October 2, 7 PM | Fre
e | Please call Mary at 203-438-2282 x1009 to register

Library staff and other experienced facilitators lead an orientation and networking session for The Big Read discussion facilitators.


Swanky Speakeasy Soiree
@ Founders Hall

Thursday, October 2, 5 PM to 7 PM | For members of Founders Hall


Cass Gilbert’s Speakeasy
@ Keeler Tavern Museum Cass Gilbert Barn

Thursday, October 2, 7 PM to 9 PM | Free Admission - Cash Bar

Come and enjoy Gatsby-inspired cocktails in the Cass Gilbert Barn of the 1920s.


Travel Back in Time to the Gatsby Era on Long Island's Gold Coast
@ Ridgefield Historical Society
Saturday, October 4, 8:30 AM to 6 PM | $55 for members, $60 for non members

The Ridgefield Historical Society presents a trip to two early 20th century estates on Long Island:

Old Westbury Gardens

Built in 1906 this Charles II style mansion is the former home of John S. and Margarita Phipps. The house is fully furnished with English antiques and is surrounded by 200 acres of gardens and woodlands.

The Vanderbilt Mansion, Eagle's Nest

The summer home of William K. and Rosamund Vanderbilt was built in 1910 in Centerport LI and overlooks  Northport Bay. This 24 room Spanish Revival mansion is "a living museum" filled with artwork and personal possessions of the Vanderbilt family.

The bus leaves St. Mary School"s south parking lot at 8:30 AM and will return at approximately 6 PM. The cost for members is $55 and $60 for non-members. Lunch will be at the Westbury Majestic Diner. The cost does not include lunch. To reserve your seat email us at ridgefieldhistory@sbcglobal.net or call us at 203-438-5821.


Book Discussion: Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Fowler
@ Founders Hall
Thursday, October 9, 3 PM | For members of Founders Hall | Free

Assistant Library Director Mary Rindfleisch leads a discussion open to all members of Founders Hall. Registration is not required.


The Shutterbugs: Photography Group @ Ridgefield Library
Saturday, October 11, 9 AM | Free

Join the Shutterbugs photography group as they go on a field trip to photograph architecture from the 1920s.


Concert: The Bearcats @ Ridgefield Library
Sunday, October 12, 2 PM  |  Free | Please register

One of the Northeast's favorite Jazz and Swing bands, The Bearcats were formed in 1977 by Joe Hanlon and Dick Van Gorder to preserve one of America's national treasures - traditional jazz. After achieving wide local recognition, The Bearcats were soon performing for jazz societies and festivals throughout the US. The members of The Bearcats are devoted and skilled musicians with a style firmly rooted in the New Orleans tradition and a flair also for the variations known as Chicago and West Coast.  For dancing, the repertoire also reaches to Glen Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Ellington, Basie and Louis Prima.


Lecture: What's So Great About The Great Gatsby with Dr. Mark Schenker
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, October 16, 7 PM  |  Free | Please register

  Listen to a recording of the lecture

Mark Schenker, Dean of Academic Affairs in Yale College, lectures on Fitzgerald's masterpiece by placing in the context of its historical moment—it was published in 1925—and in the broader context of the American Dream. By focusing on the literary aspects of the work (first-person narration, symbolical realism, Fitzgerald's style) and on its central theme of the tension between idealism and materialism, Schenker will comment upon what the novel has to tell us about our nation, our history, and ourselves.

Mark J. Schenker has been at Yale College since 1990.  He is currently a senior associate dean of the College and dean of academic affairs.  In 2001, he received the Wilbur Cross Award for Outstanding Humanities Scholar, presented by the Connecticut Humanities Council.


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Fall in Love with Ridgefield Weekend @ Downtown Ridgefield
Friday, October 17 to Sunday, October 19

Many town merchants will be celebrating The Great Gatsby over Fall in Love with Ridgefield weekend. Watch for more details, and make a note of these other Big Read events during this festive celebration.


Gatsby-Inspired Dance Performance
@ Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance, 440 Main Street
Saturday, October 18, 1 PM | Free

The Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance present a selection of short Great-Gatsby inspired works performed by students.


Exhibit: Banking in the Twentieth Century
@ Fairfield County Bank
Saturday, October 18 to Saturday, November 22 | Free

The locally-based bank will mount a historical exhibit about banking, with emphasis on the Roaring Twenties and featuring vintage photos and memorabilia from the era. Open to public during banking hours. M-F 8:30-5:00. Sat  9-12.


Self-guided Gatsby Era Graveyard Tour presented by the Ridgefield Graveyard Restoration Committee
@ Mapleshade, Ridgefield, and Fairlawn Cemeteries
Saturday, October 18, 1 - 4 PM | Raindate Sunday, October 19, 1 - 4 PM | Free

The Ridgefield Graveyard Committee is planning a tour on Saturday Oct 18 from 1-4 pm featuring a dozen or so graves of Ridgefielders who were prominent in the Great Gatsby era. Maps for the self-guided tour will be provided, leading participants from grave to grave. A brief sketch of of the life of those featured will be at each memorial.  The following day, Sunday Oct 19, will be the raindate, at the same time.


Third Saturdays: Family Art Experiences: Art of the 1920s
@ The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
Saturday, October 18, 10 AM to 12 PM for children ages 2 to 5 with a chaperone
Saturday, October 18, 1 PM to 3 PM for children ages 6 to 10 with a chaperone (siblings
always welcome) | Free for members - Free for the price of admission for non members

Travel back to the roaring twenties through the work of early 1920's surrealist artists Max Ernst, Juan Miro, Salvador Dali, and Rene Magritte. Be inspired by their imaginative landscapes and unique creatures, and explore your own whimsical worlds through drawing, painting and collage.


Art Deco Motif: Printmaking Workshop with Carol Solinger
@ Ridgefield Guild of Artists, 34 Halpin Lane
Sunday, October 19, 1 - 4 PM | $25 for workshop, all materials included

Inspired by Erte's striking Art Deco designs and motifs, discover the art of printmaking and create some unique pieces with the distinctive look and feel of the roaring twenties.  In this workshop you will learn the process of one-color printing and move onto three--color block prints.  Students will walk away with either Art Deco designed stationery and/or a piece of artwork.  As an introduction to the workshop, graphic designer Antonio Munoz will share his knowledge of Art Deco designs to help inspire your creations!  Contact Pam Stoddart, 203 438 8863 or director.rgoa@gmail.com.


Book Discussions: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
@ Ridgefield Library
Tuesday, October 21, 7 PM | Free

Dorothy Pawlowski, the Library's Head of Adult Services, will lead this discussion. All are welcome. Free copies of the book are available for participants at the Library's Circulation Desk.


Book Discussion: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
@ Ridgefield Library
Wednesday, October 22, 10:00 AM | Free

Mary Rindfleisch, the Library's Assistant Director, will lead this discussion. All are welcome. Free copies of the book are available for participants at the Library's Circulation Desk.


Book Discussion at Ridgefield Crossings: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
@ Ridgefield Crossings
Thursday, October 23, 10:30 AM | Free

Dorothy Pawlowski, the Library's Head of Adult Services, will lead this discussion at Ridgefield Crossings.


Exhibit: Prohibition
@ Ridgefield Historical Society, Scott House, Sunset Lane, Ridgefield
Saturday, October 11, 1 - 4 PM to Friday, October 31, during normal opening hours | Free

The Ridgefield Historical Society presents an exhibit about Prohibition. Amendment 18 – National Prohibition – was passed by three fourths of the states in 1919. Ridgefield had both proponents of the law and those who developed methods to remedy the lack of potent beverages.  Ridgefield’s diverse population at that time provides some fascinating stories of conflict between law enforcement and their opponents, and the ingenious methods they developed to subvert that law.


Read Aloud of The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald by students and faculty.
@ Ridgefield High School
Thursday, October 29, 30 and possibly 31, 8:10 AM until the book is finished! | Not a public event


Film Screening of Baz Luhrman's The Great Gatsby for Ridgefield High Schoolers
@ Ridgefield Playhouse
Friday, October 31 | Free

Members of the Ridgefield High School 11th grade take a field trip to the Playhouse to view the 2013 Baz Luhrman film of The Great Gatsby, in conjunction with their required reading of the text in their English classes.


The Life and Art of Dorothy Weir in the 1920's with Adrian Zeck, Interpretive Ranger and Jessica Kuhnen, Museum Technician
@ Weir Farm National Historic Site, 735 Nod Hill Road, Wilton, CT
Saturday, November 1, 10 AM | Free

Weir Farm National Historic Site will offer a one-hour program focused on the life and work of Dorothy Weir Young, including a presentation and behind-the-scenes look at some of the park's collections.  The 1920s represent a turning point in the lives of many women, including Dorothy Weir.  She was a shining example of a modern woman in the 20s - not a flapper girl, but an independent, driven and respected woman, a woman whose ambition and hard work led to the preservation of Weir Farm National Historic Site and made an impact in the art world that continues to resonate.


Book to Movie Discussion: The Great Gatsby with Mark Edwards
@ Ridgefield Library
Saturday, November 1, 11 AM  |  Free | Please register

Join us for a "book to movie" discussion, led by Mark Edwards, on The Great Gatsby. Short excerpts of both the 1974 film starring Robert Redford and the 2013 film starring Leonardo Dicaprio will be shown and discussed.

Mark Edwards teaches film and media studies at Sacred Heart University. His book Pirates on Dinosaur Island was published in the spring of 2012 by Gemma Media, and his play Ladies in Hats was a Kennedy Center semi-finalist and was performed in the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre Marathon in 2010.  Edwards is currently writing a column on science fiction television for Space and Time magazine, and teaches an Art of Science Fiction and Fantasy writing course for the M.F.A. program at Lesley University.  Mark Edwards has presented many popular “book to movie” discussions at the Ridgefield Library, which have ranged from film screenings and talks on works by Shakespeare and Dickens to The Hobbit and Game of Thrones.


Friends of the Ridgefield Library Intergenerational Book Discussions: The Great Gatsby led by Ridgefield High School Students
@ Ridgefield Library
Monday, November 3 | Time TBA | Free
| Please register

@ Ridgefield High School
Tuesday, November 18, 6:30 PM | Free | Please register

The Friends of the Library will sponsor two book discussions, one at the Library and one at Ridgefield High School. The discussions will be led by Ridgefield High School students and will be interactive, inter-generational exchanges that will probe the meanings and history of this great novel. 


Book Discussion: Anything Goes: A Biography of the Roaring Twenties by Lucy Moore
@ Ridgefield Library
Tuesday, November 4, 7 PM | Free

Nancy Boersma will lead this discussion of Anything Goes by Lucy Moore. The glitter of 1920s America was seductive, from jazz, flappers, and wild all- night parties to the birth of Hollywood and a glamorous gangster-led crime scene flourishing under Prohibition. But the period was also punctuated by momentous events-the political show trials of Sacco and Vanzetti, the huge Ku Klux Klan march down Washington, DC's Pennsylvania Avenue-and it produced a dizzying array of writers, musicians, and film stars, from F. Scott Fitzgerald to Bessie Smith and Charlie Chaplin.

 


Book Discussion: Careless People: Murder, Mayhem and the Invention of The Great Gatsby by Sarah Churchwell
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, November 6, 1 PM | Free

Join us for a discussion of a new work of non-fiction chronicles the infamous 1922 New Jersey “murder of the century” that drew the attention of F. Scott Fitzgerald as he was working on The Great Gatsby. 


ARTalk: Art From the '20s and '30s from the William Benton Museum with Carla Galfano
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, November 6, 7 PM | Free | Please Register

Carla Galfano, Curator at the William Benton Museum at UCONN, Storrs, will show a rich collection of art works from the 1920s and 1930s from the museum's collection. This illustrated presentation will demonstrate artistic, social and economic aspects of the time period. The presentation is based on the exhibit: Millionaires and Mechanics, Bootleggers and Flappers: Speaking of The Great Gatsby that was shown at the museum in 2013. 





First Fridays: A Contemporary Cocktail Party
@ The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
Friday, November 7, 7 to 9 PM | Members $15, Non Members $20

Socialize with friends, explore the exhibitions on view, and enjoy a tasting menu from one of Ridgefield's finest eateries while sipping on a curated selection of signature roaring 20s Great Gatsby cocktails.  Enjoy the eclectic folk sounds of the duet Dancy performing live on ukulele, spoons, squeezebox and acoustic guitar.


The Discovery Center presents American Girls: The Roaring Twenties
@ Ridgefield Library
Saturday, November 8, 10 AM to 11:30 AM | $7

The Discovery Center presents a program at the Ridgefield Library for girls ages 5-10, part of its series called “American Girls” that takes girls through different times in history and shows them how daily life differed, yet was also similar in many ways. This program consists of a twenty minute slideshow overview of the 1920s, touching upon manufacturing and the economy, transportation, Prohibition, women’s rights, radio and film, “flapper chic,” jazz and the art deco movement.  Participants do three craft projects: a flapper headband, an art deco style door hanger, and also a sign like the suffragettes would have made, only promoting a modern day cause.  Then they learn a quick Charleston dance to the music of “Five Foot Two,” don their headbands and some beads, and perform the dance for their parents.  The program is about 90 minutes long, and lots of fun as well as informative.  

Please contact The Discovery Center at 203 438 1063 to register and for more information. This program is part of The Big Read in Ridgefield.


Lecture: World War I and American Literary Modernism with Dr. Mark Schenker
@ Ridgefield Library
Wednesday, November 12, 7 PM  |  Free | Please register

Mark Schenker, Dean of Academic Affairs in Yale College, will discuss the impact of WWI on a number of American writers, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, T. S. Eliot and Willa Cather, as these authors took up what one critic has called "the task of restoring freshness to a much-abused language."

Mark J. Schenker has been at Yale College since 1990.  He is currently a senior associate dean of the College and dean of academic affairs.  In 2001, he received the Wilbur Cross Award for Outstanding Humanities Scholar, presented by the Connecticut Humanities Council.


Book Discussion: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
@ Founders Hall
Thursday, November 13, 3 PM | For members of Founders Hall | Free

Assistant Library Director Mary Rindfleisch leads a discussion open to all members of Founders Hall. Registration is not required.


Talk and Film Screening - Alice Paul: Ridgefield Radical & Crusader for Equality with Lucienne Beard
@ Ridgefield Library
Thursday, November 13, 7 PM | Free
| Please register

Ridgefield League of Women Voters presents Ridgefield Radical. Did you know that a Quaker woman is responsible for securing the right of women to vote by using radical protest tactics such as civil disobedience and hunger strikes?  And did you know that this woman lived part of her life in Ridgefield?

Join us for a talk and film presentation by Lucienne Beard of the Alice Paul Institute.  We will learn about the pivotal role Alice Paul played in the women's suffrage movement, her Quaker roots, her Ridgefield residency, and her life-long work for women's equality around the world. Discussion and refreshments will be enjoyed after the presentation.


Reception: Jazz-Era Tea and Charleston Demonstration
@ Founders Hall
Friday, November 14, 2 PM | For members of Founders Hall | Free

Monthly social gathering features a Jazz Era them and Charleston demonstrations.


The Last Flapper: A Play Reading
@ Ridgefield Theater Barn
Sunday, November 16, 2 PM | Free

Join us for a play reading of William Luce's The Last Flapper, a one-woman play based on the writings of Zelda Fitzgerald, chronicling her unorthodox life and tumultuos relationship with F. Scott Fitzgerald. Light refreshments will be served.


Friends of the Ridgefield Library Intergenerational Book Discussions: The Great Gatsby led by Ridgefield High School Students
@ Ridgefield High School
Monday, November 18 | 6:30 PM | Free
| Please register

The Friends of the Library will sponsor two book discussions, one at the Library on November 3 and one at Ridgefield High School on November 18. The discussions will be led by Ridgefield High School students and will be interactive, inter-generational exchanges that will probe the meanings and history of this great novel. 


How Can I Participate?

PLAN AHEAD! Sign up to get all the latest updates on this exciting community reading project.

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.  The Ridgefield Playhouse, in partnership with the Ridgefield Library, is one of 77 not-for-profit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.  The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with Arts Midwest. - See more at: http://www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/cab-calloway-orchestra#sthash.suUd3YUF.dpuf

READ! Copies of The Great Gatsby are available for loan at the Library or for purchase at a discount at Books on the Common. Free copies are available for those registering for a new library card during the month of September.

DISCUSS! Sign up for one of numerous book discussions taking place around town, or register your book group to participate. Contact Karen Kazzi at the Library to get a special book group kit, including multiple copies to borrow, plus special facilitator and book group materials.

LEARN! Find out more about the book, the author and the times at one of many lectures, exhibits and other educational programs listed below.

ENJOY! The Big Read is not just about books. Don't miss related music, art and other cultural programs, including the special kick-off performance by The Cab Calloway Orchestra on Friday, October 10th at the Ridgefield Playhouse.


 

Participating Book Discussion Groups

At the Library (open to the public):

AM Book Group
Critics' Circle
Friends of the Ridgefield Library/Ridgefield High School
Murder by the Book - Careless People by Sarah Churchwell
The Nonfictioneers - Anything Goes: A Biography of the Roaring Twenties by Lucy Moore

Community Book Discussions:

All Booked Up Book Club
Founders Hall (open to all Founders Hall members)
Looking for an Excuse Book Group
Newcomers Evening Book Group
Phineas' Footnotes Book Club
Read between the Wines Book Club
Ridgefield Arts Council
Ridgefield Crossings
Ridgefield Library Staff & Board of Directors


 

Other Resources for Facilitators and Readers

The official Big Read website
The Big Read Reader's Guide on Fitzgerald and The Great Gatsby
- may be printed or downloaded as an e-book in several formats
The Big Read Guide for Teachers - may be printed or downloaded as an e-book in several formats
The F. Scott Fitzgerald Society
Literature Resource Center - Library card needed for log-in
Novelist Plus - Library card needed for log-in

Ridgefield Library Discussion Questions for The Great Gatsby
General Guidelines for Facilitating a Reading Group

How 'Gatsby' Went from a Mouldering Flop to a Great American Novel - Maureen Corrigan Interview on NPR's Fresh Air, September 8, 2014




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Program Sponsors & Partners

Ridgefield's The Big Read is made possible by the support of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, CT Humanities, the support of Liz and Steven Goldstone, Books on the Common, the Friends of the Ridgefield Library and numerous community organizations.

Project Partners:

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
Books on the Common
Discovery Center of Ridgefield
Downtown Ridgefield
Fairfield County Bank
Founders Hall
Friends of the Ridgefield Library
Keeler Tavern Museum
League of Women Voters
Ridgefield Arts Council
Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce
Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance
Ridgefield Crossings
Ridgefield Graveyard Restoration Committee
Ridgefield Guild of Artists
Ridgefield High School
Ridgefield Historical Society
Ridgefield Library
Ridgefield Music And Arts Center (RMAC)
Ridgefield Playhouse
Ridgefield Theater Barn
Sphere
Weir Farm National Historic Site

Media Sponsors

i95 FM, 98Q, WLAD, 95.5 The Fox, 99.1 FM WPLR, WHUD, WPLR, Star 99.9, Hearst CT Media, The Ridgefield Press, Morris Media Group, Ridgefield Patch, Ridgefield hamletHub


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