On Thursday, March 4 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, UMass Dartmouth CVPA will present the fifth edition of the CVPA Star Series, featuring Spoken Word artists Alex Machado, Steph LeBlanc, Katie Gregory, Nick LeBlanc and Rick Finneran. The lineup will be interspersed with sound art, and custom imagery projected onto the background on the walls and ceilings including photography from Anna Gallo '18.
Students from Sculpture: Public Art and Installation will lead off the first 15 minutes with a sneak peak of their GROWTH exhibition now on display in the Star Store's Purchase St. windows.
The CVPA Star Series is a 13-week sequence of programs designed to highlight the work of CVPA students, past and present, engage artists in the community, and contribute to New Bedford’s cultural richness. The Series is curated in collaboration with Don Burton Media and Beatriz & Company with support from UMass Dartmouth and the City of New Bedford’s #NBfestive Winter Places project. In-kind support provided by Chase Canopy and Lightworks Productions Inc.
Join the audio and visual delights, free of charge, from outside the street-level windows of the Swain studio at the corner of Purchase and Union Streets in Downtown New Bedford or tune in via live stream at: www.facebook.com/umassdcvpa/live
Nick LeBlanc is a writer, artist, and public-school educator from New Bedford, MA. He is the founder and editor of Domesticated Primate, an independent publishing venture. He is also the President of The Performing Arts Collective’s board. He has just finished his first full-length novel and is in the process of querying and workshopping. You can find him on Instagram @nickdleblanc and @domprimpub.
Joseph (Rick) Finneran
Weymouth high school grad, former eagle scout who in 2012 rescinded award in protest to Scouts’ discrimination of homosexuals and atheists. Since 2003 a resident of New Bedford with his wife Jessamyn and their children. All the kids attended New Bedford public schools. In 2016, Rick hiked the Appalachian trail with his youngest son, travelling from Maine to Georgia in under four months. Active member of horizon glass poetry group which meets every two weeks at the Rotch Jones Duff house and garden museum. Employed at the RJD as facilities manager including care of over three hundred roses. As a member of the Friends society with the Spring Street meeting house located in downtown New Bedford. 2021 graduate of URI master gardener core training. Also involved with the James Arnold mansion, Rhode Island rose society and until recently the official bell ringer at the First Unitarian church of New Bedford, The inscription on the bell read “ring out a thousand wars of old, ring in a thousand years of peace.”
Katie is a fairly new writer, hailing from the incredible city of New Bedford. She spends her Mondays to Fridays as an ophthalmic technician, and loves to cook and travel in her free time. You’ll typically find her on stage singing or acting out what other people have written, as theatre is one of her truest loves and what keeps her going. She spent four years hanging out and rehearsing in the CVPA, or Group 6 as they called it then, and remembers her years spent in the UMD Theatre Company, or TCo, as some of the best of her life. She is a founding member of The Collective NB, an inclusive Nonprofit arts organization based in New Bedford, and currently sits on the board for the Friends of the New Bedford Free Public Library.
Stephanie LeBlanc (Paquette) is an author from New Bedford, MA. She is finishing her first collection of poetry, The Flint, centering on childhood memories that took place in that neighborhood in Fall River. Stephanie published her first romance novel, A Set of Strings, in 2019 with Domesticated Primate under the pseudonym Alice Michael White. When not writing, you can find her with her husband and two cats watching movies.
A transplant from citrusy Riverside, CA, Alex now resides in downtown New Bedford, MA with her partner and cat, Dijon. A self-proclaimed bartender poet, she make fancy cocktails, sometimes pretending she is one, and then writing poetry about it. She is currently an English/Creative Writing MA candidate at Bridgewater State University. She is most concerned with stream – of – consciousness, moody feminist writing and all the glorious intersections those processes and themes arrive at. Pre – COVID, she would perform her work in New Bedford, MA with The Collective, a lovely theatre/art group. Her passion lies in poetic prose, creative non-fiction/memoir, and performance poetry. She is currently working on a collection of essays about guilt that circulates childhood trauma. Her poems and essays have appeared in The Merrimack Review, Breadcrumbs, Rag Queen Periodical, Boshemia, Domesticated Primate and The Bridge.