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Arts in October: Annapolis has a lot going on this weekend and beyond

Updated: Jan 14, 2021

From an online film screening and an opera event this weekend, to painting under the stars throughout the month, and a drive-in movie at the end of October, Annapolis is alive with the arts this month.


The weekend gets started with an online screening and discussion of the short film “Ashes to Ashes”. The film follows the true relationship of two friends as they work to expose the dark legacy of lynching in America, including one of them who was a victim.

Panelists include Mr. Winfred Rembert; Dr. Shirley Jackson Whitaker, the film's producer; Ms. Tina Johnson and; Ms. Taylor Rees, the film's director. The discussion will be moderated by Allie the Conversation Starter.

The event is presented by Maryland Hall. You can register here.


The annual fundraiser for the Annapolis Opera “Passing the baton” takes place online Saturday, October 17, starting at 6 p.m.

Billed as a “gala celebration” honoring Ronald Gretz who has been Artistic Director and Conductor of the Annapolis Opera for 37 seasons.

The event also welcomes Craig Kier the new artistic director who the opera describes as an American conductor who has already received high praise for his ‘Tesla-like intensity’ and ‘impeccable orchestral support’ while leading performances throughout the United States and on international stages.

Tickets and information for the event can be found her.:


Coordinated with Dinner under the Stars, the Annapolis Arts Alliance is offering “Plein Air”, an evening of painting under the stars with the Annapolis Arts Alliance. Wednesday through Sunday evenings from 5-10 p.m. Painters can take inspiration from beautiful and historic downtown Annapolis, Maryland. Alliance member artists can set up to paint on West Street or Main Street, and each week the Annapolis Arts Alliance will display participants' work for sale in the new Gallery 57 West. Completed works can be dropped off at Gallery 57 West during gallery hours. (11 a.m. - 7 p.m.) Membership in the alliance costs $35. Artists can sign up here. Things to Note:

  • All are welcome to participate, but you must be a member of the AAA to display your work in the AAA Gallery 57 West.

  • Participation is FREE

  • AAA commission for any sales made through Gallery 57 West is 20%.

  • Space is limited in the gallery, so works under 11x14 are recommended.

Alliance president, Elizabeth Ramirez, said part of the Plein Air goal was to add to the creative atmosphere of Dinner under the Stars.

The gallery is an Annapolis Arts Alliance venture. Previously the alliance hosted five months of pop-up galleries around the city. They we able to get an opportunity for a year-around gallery at 57 West Street starting in August.

“The gallery’s been a blessing,” Ramirez said. “We’ve been able to have a gallery for 20-plus artists that sell their work. The gallery is a co-op so the artists have to work it. It’s been awesome. I really think the draw is that the artists are working it, because people really like to meet artists.”


Pip Moyer Recreation Center will be hosting a drive-in movie showing of the Disney Halloween classic film “Hocus Pocus”. The 1993 film features Bette Midler and Sarah Jessica Parker as Salem witches reincarnated accidentally in the 1990s. The spooky plot pits them against children of the late 20th century community. The film is rated PG, and 96 minutes long.

Tickets cost $10 per car. Proceeds go to supporting Annapolis Recreation and Parks programming. The vehicle decked-out in the best Halloween attire will win a prize. Space is currently limited to 30 vehicles. Event organizers are exploring the possibility of a bigger venue if demand is high.

“I’m really excited,” said event coordinator Ron-Shaye Clark. “We didn’t know if Halloween was going to be cancelled this year. We’re just trying to fing things to keep the kids engaged, as well as the families. When you come on to the Pip Moyer Center it will look very Halloweenish —family friendly. We’ll go from there—just have fun. All of the staff is going to dress up.”

Every child will receive a pre-made goody bag and pre-packaged bag of popcorn, which staff will bring to each car wearing masks and gloves prior to the movie starting.

Those attending must remain in vehicle (no sitting in the parking lot). Truck beds may be used, but attendees must remain in them. If watching from a truck bed, masks must be worn as well as outside of the vehicle. Bathrooms will be available which staff will clean after every use.

Space is limited. Pre-registration is required at • Code #1929 For more information call 410.263.7958 or email or


October also saw the introduction of more grant opportunities for Annapolis:

The Arts in Education Program invites accredited public and private schools in Anne Arundel County to apply for no more than two (2) grants per school (i.e. one of each grant or 2 residency grants or 2 auditorium grants) per fiscal year.

These grants are used to fund either in-person or virtual artistically driven educational programs. Funding for performances is limited to artists in the ACAAC Arts in Education Directory or those listed on the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC), Young Audience of Maryland or Artivate teaching artist registry.

All applications will be reviewed by the ACAAC Arts in Education Committee and funding for as many programs as possible will be approved based upon our annual program budget.

It is the responsibility of the applicant to book the artists and secure any additional funding needed. All applications must be completed in full, along with the required proposal from the artist or the artist’s representative to be considered. ACAAC grants received through the Arts in Education Program should be acknowledged in the school’s newsletter, crediting the ACAAC, the MSAC, City of Annapolis, and Anne Arundel County.

For FY2021 applicants only: In recognition of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on schools and the arts, schools will be asked within the application to explain how their grant activities will comply with current public health guidelines. We encourage applicants to develop creative proposals for projects that can be delivered safely, whether virtually or utilizing social distancing measures.

Arts in Education Grants FY2021 applications will be available Monday, October 5, 2020 through Friday, October 30, 2020 by 5 pm. S

The grants are through the Arts Council of Anne Arundel County More info can be found clicking this LINK.

Happy October!