NORWAY — “Piece Work: Voices from American Quilters” is a unique readers' theatre program that combines both quilts and music at the Norway Memorial Library on Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. In their own words, quilters over the last 200 years tell why quilting was so important to them. Their heartfelt stories are both ordinary and profound, and together they present a snapshot of an important American folk art.
The readers of these stories are Kellie Sanborn, Leah Haney, Bill Libby and Kathy Davis, all experienced local actors, who have performed with each other in various productions. Musicians Fawn Palmer and David Knightly perform songs throughout the program that reflect and enhance the readings.
Some quilts will be on display. As part of the evening, the audience is invited to bring their own quilts and share stories about them.
Regardless of when the quilters lived, they all express that making a quilt brings them peace and joy, that it is a labor of love and that many are given as gifts to friends and family. They feel pride in their creativity and their skill, and they cherish heirloom quilts that connect them to their past.
To prepare for the long and difficult journey in wagon trains, pioneer women relate how they sewed many quilts to be used in practical ways. However, the quilting also gave them ways to express their fears about going West with their families to a new home and their sorrow of leaving their old one.
In both the North and the South, women and children tell about making thousands and thousands of quilts to send to their soldiers in the Civil War, especially the sick and wounded. Later, during World War I and II, women also supported the war efforts with quilts. Today both men and women often use quilts to commemorate and memorialize various causes.
Beth Allen from Tailor Made is furnishing costumes. Doris Ray provides technical assistance with projections of many beautiful and important quilts. The program, created by Sally Jones, is another in her “For the Love a Song” series.
Refreshments will be provided following the concert. This program is free and open to the public. The doors will open at 6:30 p.m.
PREPARING FOR PROGRAM — David Knightly and Fawn Palmer rehearse the music they will play for “Piece Work: Voices from American Quilters,” a unique readers' theatre program that combines both quilts and music at the Norway Memorial Library on Nov. 1 at 7 p.m.