Art Notes: Coming up in January | Arts & Theatre

Puppets, Music and Joy

E&M presents “The Joshua Show” with puppeteer Joshua Holden on Jan. 30 at 1 and 3 p.m. at the Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center.

Hailed as “The Ambassador of Joy” and “A Hipster Mr. Rogers,” Holden creates heartwarming entertainment using live music, puppetry, physical comedy, and tap-dancing to make the world a better, happier place. With a message of celebrating our differences, finding joy in everyday life, and respecting the feelings of others, The Joshua Show aims to spread kindness, love, and warmth.

Masks will be required. For tickets and more information, visit

Auditions for ‘Romeo and Juliet’

The Napa Valley College Theater Arts Department is accepting audition videos for the spring production of “Romeo and Juliet.” The deadline to submit audition videos is Saturday, Jan. 15 at 11:59 p.m.

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Directors Olivia Cowell and Jennifer King are teaming up to direct the work. King, who re-imagined “Romeo and Juliet” on Zoom in 2020, said she is eager to collaborate with Cowell to create an “exciting, fun and meaningful” in-person production in the Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center Main Theater.  “Our collaboration will allow us to blow open the infinite possibilities of storytelling through dance, music, technology, and, of course, Shakespeare’s text,” she said.

“I loved the online’ Romeo and Juliet’ production Jennifer directed during the shelter-in place-order and I cannot wait to join forces to explore an in-person interpretation,” Cowell said. 

A video (YouTube or Vimeo) submission is required as an audition. In the video, those auditioning should recite their name, mention if they sing, dance, or play a musical instrument, and present a 45-second to one-minute Shakespeare speech or monologue. Memorized speeches are preferred but not mandatory. Upload the video to YouTube or Vimeo and send the video link to [email protected]

Those cast in the production must be 16 years or older and must enroll in the corresponding Napa Valley College Theater Arts course. Students will be required to provide documentation that they are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 vaccination or request an exemption to be enrolled in the course. For information about signing up for a vaccine, visit

Actors will be invited for in-person callbacks the week of Jan. 17, and rehearsals start in February. Performances will be in late April.

“Students and community members who do not have a lot of experience with Shakespeare are welcome”, said Cowell.

“Those who are less experienced are sometimes the best actors of Shakespeare because they are open to new ways of exploring the text,” added King.

For more information, visit or email [email protected].

Call for artists for Napa County library shows

The Napa County Library invites California artists to apply to a juried competition to show their works in the Napa Main Library, in monthly shows from January 2023 through December 2023. All two-dimensional work including photography, paintings, drawings, digital, mixed media, fabric art, chalk, ink, pastels, wax, graphite, and printmaking can be entered for consideration.

To apply, submit a cover letter and up to five digital images. The cover letter should include your name, address, e-mail, and phone number, a brief bio (250 words or less), and a list of the submitted artwork including the title, medium, and dimensions.

The digital image files should be submitted in jpeg format via Dropbox to [email protected]. Label all image files (title, name, medium, dimensions). Artwork should not have watermarks or other identifying markers. Contact Stephnia Pramuk (707) 253-4223 for more information.

The application deadline is March 31.

An Art + Nature Hike at di Rosa

Join di Rosa’s guides on a hike through the Sculpture Meadow and up the northern side of the property from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 9. This moderate hike is approximately 2.5 miles round trip with a slight elevation gain and offers sweeping vistas.

Space is limited; advance tickets are required. Purchase tickets at For more information, call 707-226-5991 ext. 25 or email the Tours office

Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Bring water, wear appropriate footwear and note that large portions of the hike are in direct sunlight.

di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art, at 5200 Sonoma Highway, Napa, is open to the public from Friday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information visit

The works of John Simkins

Napa artist John Simkins has released an online show of his works titled “Elephant in the Room,” a collection of 38 paintings created during the 10-year sojourn he spent living and painting in the ghost town of Andrews, Oregon. 

“The paintings are the culmination of a dedicated effort to explore and express,” Simpkins said. “It was a decade spent looking deeply, listening, and dreaming freely. Most of the paintings speak about the Earth and its many lifeforms.”

The online exhibit uses technology created by German company Ikonospace to bring viewers into a 3-D virtual museum space that conveys the size, vibrancy, and detail of each painting in a life-size context. Navigating from room to room, the viewer can zoom in on any of the paintings for a closer look or zoom back to see the full scale of the many large format pieces.

 “The paintings flowed onto the canvas ‘intuitively,’ Simkins said. “I did not plan them. They manifested over time, some taking six months to complete while others came quickly.”

For information and to view the works, visit

Robert G. Mull

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