Best Of Baltimore - Page 46 - People and Media (4)

Best Of Baltimore
- Page 46
People and Media (4)

generation how to do the same through her etiquette classes for teens.




Watching Carl Schurr portray an elderly, dimwitted—and determined — butler named Merriman setting a table for tea last fall was a master class in comic acting.


In Everyman Theatre’s production of “The Importance of Being Earnest,” Merriman held the tablecloth in both hands, pawing the ground like a bull taking the measure of its opponent. Then he took off at full, creaky-legged tilt, gathering enough speed to hurl the fabric square over his wooden nemesis. Winded, Merriman lost his balance, landed face down on the tabletop and sent a spoon flying.


The butler lowered himself painfully to the ground, taking a full minute to reach his destination. He picked up the spoon, and — finding a speck — fogged the utensil with his breath. Not satisfied, he wiped the offending spoon on his lapel before returning it to its place on the table as the horrified tea guests watched.


Schurr, a member of Everyman’s resident company with half a century of stage experience, pulled it off without a syllable of dialogue.


“Ninety percent of that business, Carl came up with himself,” the show’s director, Joseph W. Ritsch said. “And it made an impression. People still talk to me about that scene.”




Though the Korean-born artist Eunice Park slathers her canvases with alarming reds and yellows and insistent blues, there’s nothing cheerful about them. They grab you by the shoulders and stop you in your tracks.


The 60-year-old Parkville resident was one of six finalists for the 2018 Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize. Though Erick Antonio Benitez took the top award, Park’s paintings— disturbing but, above all, urgent and utterly original—are near-impossible to forget.


In one, a man’s perfectly egg-shaped head emits a cloud of steam. In another, the space between a woman’s open lips is just wide enough to contain a miniature human torso.


At times, the artist, who dropped out of art school in the 1980s and supported three children through a series of dry cleaning jobs, speaks as though her paintings were her enemies. She scrubs canvases that displease her with a bathroom brush.


In an email, she wrote: “Sharing the images makes me feel shameful, to be honest.”


That’s OK as long as Park keeps painting. Like it or not, she’s the real deal. Recently, she reluctantly yielded to her children’s arguments and set up a website with contact information where the public can view her work:


— Mary Carole McCauley, John- John Williams IV and David Zurawik