Howard Magazine - Page 6 - Editor's Note

Howard Magazine
- Page 6
Editor's Note

Creative process

An inside look at Howard County’s arts and entertainment scene


When I called Lee Andersen in early March, I expected her to tell me the FantasyWood Festival was still in the idea-generation stage.


I should have known better.


I’d stumbled upon the Facebook page for this “magical 3 day experience” touting mermaids, fairies, knights and unicorns, all conveniently located in Columbia on Memorial Day weekend. But because any schmuck can make a Facebook page with a smartphone and a few minutes to spare, I was skeptical —until I saw that Andersen was involved.


ManneqArt, her Laurel-based nonprofit, is locally famous for its out-of-this-world wearable sculpture competition, drawing about 1,000 spectators annually. If anyone could pull off a fairyland-meets- Renaissance festival, I thought, it would be Andersen.


The first few minutes of my call confirmed as much. She rattled off the planned attractions: a 40-foot smoke-breathing dragon with eyes that open and close; a 20-foot crash-landed alien spaceship; a TARDIS, because “time-travelers are welcome;” a plethora of magical creatures (“We just confirmed our unicorns!”); and even Santa’s elves, hired to check bracelets because “they don’t work during the summer.” The list goes on. We find out how Andersen and the FantasyWood team will pull it all off on page 40.


Also in this issue, we explore the impact of another new development in the local arts and entertainment scene; Merriweather Post Pavilion announced in March that Soulful Symphony will become its new resident orchestra. The group of mostly black and Latino musicians—traditionally underrepresented in orchestras — is changing the face of classical music (page 28).


And for a change of pace, we veer from new developments to a local tradition — a Toby’s Dinner Theatre actor who has appeared in 56 shows and counting. Read more about Robert Biedermann on page 34.


The county is brimming with creativity this season, and Howard Magazine is here to give you an inside look.


Rachel Cieri Mull