Category Archives: Moby-Dick

Herman Melville Family Day, July 28

Celebrate the 193rd birthday of Moby-Dick author, Herman Melville, at the Museum on Saturday, July 28 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. with free children’s activities -indoors and out – including a whale of a birthday cake.

The annual celebration features special guests, art, music, poetry, and story reading for children 12 years and younger and takes place in the Jacobs Family Gallery and museum plaza. Regular admission applies to museum galleries.

Children’s arts and crafts activities scheduled from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. include creating soap scrimshaw, sailors’ valentines, whale hats, bookmarks and magnets.

Kids can also make their own floatable toy model of Captain Ahab’s ship, Pequod. Wading pools on the plaza will allow young shipwrights to test their vessel’s seaworthiness before they take them home.

At 2:00 p.m. kids of all ages are invited to join in a “Happy Birthday” sing-along and enjoy a slice of birthday cake.

Special activities include: 10 am to 11am, Moby-Dick tour; 10:30 am to 12:30 pm, Harpoon throwing contest; 11 am to 1 pm, Kids’ poetry workshop; 11:30 am, Special reading of Moby-Dick (popup version); 11:30 am to 12:30 pm, Go below deck on the Lagoda; 11:30 am to 12:30 pm, Learn sea chanteys while weighing anchor; 11:30 am to 1:00 pm, Blubber tossing; 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm, Take your photo next to a sperm whale; 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm, Go on a whaling voyage aboard the Lagoda with Captain C. Weade; 1:30 pm, Happy Birthday sing-along and birthday cake.

Regular admission rates apply to programming in the museum galleries, including the Moby-Dick tour, Lagoda Below Deck tour, Weighing Anchor, and Captain C. Weade.

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Drawings to win family memberships will be given throughout the day. The Museum Store will also hold a summer tent sale.

Moby-Dick Marathon set records

A capacity crowd gathers in the Jacobs Family Gallery to hear the conclusion of Moby-Dick

The 16th Annual Moby-Dick Marathon is now one for the history books, in so many ways. High media interest and unseasonably warm weather for January encouraged record numbers of visitors to drop in for a look-see. Over the course of the weekend (January 6-8, 2012) more than 2,900 visitors came to the Museum. Many stayed and listened longer than ever before to the book often described as the greatest work of American literature.

Among the more than 150 readers, many notables particpated, including Congressman Barney Frank, Congressman William Keating, Mayor Jon Mitchell and several former New Bedford Mayors, as well as Peter Whittemore, the great, great grandson of Herman Melville.

Nearly 100 guests enjoyed the ticketed buffet dinner in the Jacobs Family Gallery on Friday evening (January 6), which kicked off a weekend of activities surrounding the Marathon.

Following dinner, a lecture titled “Moby-Dick in American Popular Culture,” presented by the Melville Society’s Dr. Timothy Marr (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), was attended by 187 Melville fans in the Cook Memorial Theater.

Melville Society scholars were kept busy with questions throughout the event, holding court in the Wattles Family Gallery, discussing all matters Moby-Dick and Melville. With much good humor, they were also peppered with perplexing queries of the widest sort, posed by the public in the Stump the Scholars II program on Saturday morning. General order and alacrity of the proceedings were ably kept by the moderator, Michael Dyer, Maritime Curator, with laughs aplenty throughout.

Congressman Barney Frank

One highlight of the weekend was a performance at the Seamen’s Bethel by the critically acclaimed tenor, Jonathan Boyd. He performed the hymn from Chapter 9 to music by Philip Sainton, penned for the film score for John Huston’s 1956 film. Boyd will star as “Greenhorn” in Jake Heggie’s new opera, “Moby Dick,” set to premiere at the San Diego Opera in February. A contingent of museum trustees and members will travel to the West Coast to see it.

Rev. Dr. Edward R. Dufresne delivered an inspired reading of Father Mapple’s sermon on Jonah and the Whale in the Bethel.

And again, this year’s Marathon was live streaming on the museum’s website and was viewed by unprecedented numbers; more on that in another post.

Moby-Dick Marathon weekend features acclaimed tenor, Jan. 6-8

The 16th annual Moby-Dick Marathon celebrates the 160th anniversary of Herman Melville’s literary masterpiece with a 25-hour nonstop reading of the book during a weekend of activities and events, January 6 – 8, 2012, including a performance by the critically acclaimed American tenor, Jonathan Boyd. Admission is free.

On Friday, January 6 at 5:30 p.m. the weekend kicks off with a ticketed buffet dinner and cash bar in the Jacobs Family Gallery. For tickets to the dinner ($25), call (508) 997-0046 ext. 100.

Dinner will be followed by a free public lecture titled “Moby-Dick in American Popular Culture,” presented by Dr. Timothy Marr, at 7:15 p.m. in the Cook Memorial Theater. Co-editor of “Ungraspable Phantom: Essays on Moby-Dick,” Professor Marr teaches American Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He serves as an executive member of the Melville Society Cultural Project and is a contributor to the Melville and the Digital Humanities project of the Melville Electronic Library.

On Saturday, January 7 at 10:00 a.m., “Stump the Scholars II,” returns by popular demand – a free program in which the audience is invited to pose questions to Melville Society scholars on all matters Moby-Dick in the Cook Memorial Theater. Patterned after NPR’s popular quiz show, “Wait, wait, don’t tell me,” prizes will be awarded to those who can stump the scholars.

At 11:30 a.m. in the Bourne Building, Melville Society members will read many of the 80 brief Extracts related to whales and whaling, which Melville included before Chapter 1.

At noon, the Moby-Dick Marathon begins with “Call me Ishmael” – the most famous opening line in American literature. With more than 150 scheduled readers, the marathon will continue through the night, ending early Sunday afternoon. All reading slots have been booked. The public is cordially invited to come and go at any time during the marathon, or stay for the entire 25 hours and win a prize.

On Saturday at approximately 1:30 p.m., marathon participants will walk next door to the historic Seamen’s Bethel (est. 1832) – located at 15

Tenor Jonathan Boyd will sing at the marathon, Jan. 7. Boyd stars in Jake Heggie's new opera, Moby-Dick, which premieres at the San Diego Opera in February. (photo: http://www.uzanartists.com)

Johnny Cake Hill for the reading of Chapters 7, 8, and 9, titled “The Chapel,” The Pulpit,” and “The Sermon” – all three chapters take place in the original “Whaleman’s Chapel.” This segment will feature a performance by Jonathan Boyd, the critically acclaimed American tenor starring in the San Diego Opera’s co-production of Jake Heggie’s “Moby-Dick,” a new opera hailed “a triumph” by the Dallas Morning News. Boyd has made recent notable debuts at Opéra de Nice and Opéra de Toulon, and has performed with opera companies throughout the United States. He will sing the hymn from Chapter 9.

Readers and guests are also invited to “Chat with a Melville Scholar” from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the Wattles Family Gallery or take a guided tour of the “Imagining Moby!” exhibit with Dr. Robert Wallace, Northern Kentucky University.

Chapter 40, “Midnight, Forecastle” will be performed in the Cook Memorial Theater by members of Culture*Park, a theater and performing arts collaborative.

The Museum’s website http://www.whalingmuseum.org will provide live streaming of the marathon throughout the weekend. Tweet the marathon with hashtag #MDM16.

Three related exhibits during the marathon include, “Imagining Moby!,” “Visualizing Melville” and the 1956 Moby-Dick publicity panels. “Imagining Moby!” showcases the collection of Melville scholar, Dr. Elizabeth A. Schultz, including works by Leonard Baskin, Richard Ellis and Rockwell Kent in the Centre Street Gallery, Level 2. “Visualizing Melville” pairs items from the Museum’s collections with Melville’s vivid text, including “Quakers with a vengeance” and “a heathenish array of monstrous clubs and spears” in the Changing Gallery, Level 2. The 1956 Moby-Dick publicity panels feature movie memorabilia displayed in the windows of the Research Library.

Images related to the book will also be projected in the Cook Memorial Theater throughout the marathon, presented by the Museum’s youth apprentices.

A midwinter tradition, attracting hundreds of Melville fans from around the world, the marathon marks the anniversary of Melville’s January 1841 departure from the port of New Bedford and Fairhaven aboard the whale ship, Acushnet.

Refreshments will be available throughout the Marathon.

This year’s marathon is a program of MOBY! – a partnership of the New Bedford Whaling Museum, the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center and New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park to celebrate the iconic tale of the ‘Great White Whale’ and is funded through a grant from the Education through Cultural and Historical Organizations (ECHO), administered by the United States Department of Education, Office of Innovation and Improvement.

Moby-Dick Marathon Weekend Schedule of Events

Friday, January 6

5:30 p.m.: Ticketed buffet dinner and cash bar, Jacobs Family Gallery.

7:15 p.m.: Public lecture, “Moby-Dick in American Popular Culture,” with Dr. Timothy Marr, Cook Memorial Theater.

Saturday, January 7

10:00 a.m.: Stump the Scholars II, Cook Memorial Theater.

11:30 a.m.: Moby-Dick “Extracts,” Bourne Building.

12:00 noon: Moby-Dick Marathon begins, Bourne Building.

1:30 p.m. (approx.): Chapters 7– 9 in the Seamen’s Bethel with tenor Jonathan Boyd.

2:30 p.m. (approx.): Marathon continues, Jacobs Family Gallery.

3:00-5:00 p.m.: Chat with a Melville scholar, Wattles Family Gallery.

3:00-5:00 p.m.: “Imaging Moby!” tour with Dr. Robert Wallace, Centre Street Gallery.

7:00 p.m. (approx.): Chapter 35 to Chapter 40. “Midnight, Forecastle” performed by Culture*Park, Cook Memorial Theater.

8:00 p.m. (approx.): Marathon continues, Jacobs Family Gallery.

Sunday, January 8

1:00 p.m. (approx.): Marathon concludes with the Epilogue.

Ongoing related exhibits: “Imagining Moby!,” “Visualizing Melville” and the 1956 Moby-Dick publicity panels. Moby-Dick slide show, Cook Memorial Theater.

Moby Dick Marathon Call-In Line

Anyone interested in reading in the Moby Dick Marathon can call in to (508) 997-0046 x151, starting after midnight tonight, as Sunday, November 13 turns into Monday, November 14.   All callers are asked to leave their names, to spell their last names, leave phone number, preferred reading time and two alternate times.

The MDM is less than two months away.  The event begins with a dinner on Friday, January 6 at 5:30. Tickets are available for $25, through our Front Desk, x100. Following the dinner there is a free lecture in our Cook Memorial Theater, at 7:15, by Dr. Timothy Marr. The next morning we invite you to Stump the Scholars at 10:00 am. The reading begins at noon on Saturday, January 7 and continues on through Sunday, January 8 at approximately 1:00 pm.

For specific questions about the Moby Dick Marathon, call x149.

Imagining Moby! opens Nov. 4

"Ahab" by Leonard Baskin, from his "Moby Dick Suite" of lithographs, 1970.

MOBY! – The New Bedford Whaling Museum and the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center come together to celebrate the iconic tale of the great white whale November 3-5.

Imaging Moby!, an exhibition of contemporary art inspired by Herman Melville’s novel, “Moby-Dick” opens at the Museum on Friday, November 4 at 5:00 p.m. and includes works by Rockwell Kent, Leonard Baskin, and Richard Ellis. Admission is free to the exhibit.

Imaging Moby! is drawn from the collection of Elizabeth Schultz, scholar, poet, professor emerita at the University of Kansas, and author of “Unpainted to the Last”: Moby-Dick and Twentieth-Century American Art (1995). Dr. Schultz has been collecting art inspired by Moby-Dick for decades. A member of the Melville Society, she donated her collection of twentieth-century paintings, prints, and other graphic works to the museum earlier this year.

Dr. Schultz noted, “the special joy of having the collection at the Whaling Museum is that, along with the Melville Society Cultural Project, I imagine working with many committed groups to develop new ways of using these visual images to present Moby-Dick and the stories of whales to diverse audiences – children and adults, Americans and people from other cultures.”

A reception in the Jacobs Family Gallery in honor of Dr. Schultz will follow the exhibit opening.

The Imaging Moby! exhibit is part Moby! – a series of related programs in art, on screen, in the community and on stage to mark the 160th anniversary of Melville’s classic – in partnership with the Zeiterion Performing Art Center, the New Bedford Whaling Museum and New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park.

Whaling Museum & Zeiterion launch “Moby!” partnership

Whaling Museum & Zeiterion  launch “Moby!” partnership

The Zeiterion Performing Arts Center and the New Bedford Whaling Museum have announced a coordinated partnership designed to heighten New Bedford’s profile as a cultural and historical destination utilizing “Moby-Dick” as a universal identifier for the city in a four-month program titled “Moby!”.

The partnership between two of New Bedford’s leading cultural institutions will focus on author Herman Melville’s 1851 novel, “Moby-Dick,” considered the greatest work in American literature. During four months of related programs and activities, “Moby!” will encompass the many facets of Melville’s creation, spanning whaling history, literature, theater, and popular culture.

“Moby!” Schedule:

Wednesday, October 19
Moby! Preview: “Why Read Moby-Dick?”
Lecture and book signing with Nathaniel Philbrick. Free. Sponsored by Baker Books.

Thursday, November 3
Welcome Reception for the Mayor of Youghal, County Cork, Ireland.
Zeiterion Performance Center, 6:00 p.m.

Film Screening: “Moby Dick” (1956) Starring Gregory Peck, Directed by John Huston.
Zeiterion Performance Center, 7:00 p.m.

Friday, November 4
Exhibit opening of “Imagining Moby!”
New Bedford Whaling Museum, 5:00 p.m.
An exhibit including original works by Leonard Baskin, Richard Ellis & Rockwell Kent demonstrating the ways artists have explored aspects of this great American novel.

Stage Performance “Moby Dick” by Gare St. Lazare Players of Ireland.
Zeiterion Performance Center, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 5
Moby! Cartoon Festival
11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Cook Memorial Theater, New Bedford Whaling Museum
A children’s film festival of animated films inspired by Moby-Dick, including an animated puppet version, a Spanish version, and others.  Free.

Stage Performance “Moby Dick” by the Gare St. Lazare Players of Ireland.
3:00 p.m. Matinee, Zeiterion Performance Center

Moby! Memorabilia Exhibitions
5:00 p.m., Cook Memorial Theater, New Bedford Whaling Museum

The Mayor of Youghal will present a slide show of pictures from the filming of Moby-Dick in Ireland in 1955.  The Whaling Museum and the Zeiterion will present an exhibit on memorabilia from the New Bedford World Premiere of “Moby Dick” on June 26, 1956. Free.

Stage Performance “Moby Dick” by Gare St. Lazare Players of Ireland.
Zeiterion Performance Center, 7:30 p.m.

Monday, November 14
Moby-Dick Marathon Reader Call-in Day
Anyone may call in to request an 8-10 minute reading slot, beginning at 12:01 a.m. Be sure to give us three alternative times when you could read. Call 508-997-0046 x151.

Friday, January 6
Moby-Dick Marathon Preview
5:30 p.m. Pre-Marathon Buffet Dinner & cash bar
7:15 p.m. Museum Theater, Free Pre-Marathon Lecture: “Moby-Dick in American Popular Culture” with Melville scholar, Dr. Timothy  W. Marr. After Nov. 15, call 508-997-0046 ext. 100 to purchase tickets for the buffet dinner. The lecture is free.

Saturday, January 7
“Stump the Scholars!”
10:00 a.m., Cook Memorial Theater
As a prelude to the Moby-Dick, Marathon, the Museum hosts a truly Melville-centric event along the same lines as National Public Radio’s popular program, “Wait, wait, don’t tell me.” You will have the opportunity to quiz Melville Society scholars on all matters Moby-Dick and Melville. No questions are too tough. Free.

Saturday, January 7
16th Annual Moby-Dick Marathon
Noon, New Bedford Whaling Museum
The Moby-Dick Marathon kicks off the non-stop reading of the great American classic. Come at any time; leave at any time. All are welcome to this 25-hour event commemorating the anniversary of 21-year old Herman Melville’s voyage from New Bedford harbor aboard the whale ship Acushnet in 1841. Free.

February 22-25
“Moby-Dick” the Opera
Whaling Museum Members’ Trip to the West Coast to see the critically acclaimed new opera by Jake Heggie, “Moby Dick,” at the San Diego Opera House. Join the Whaling Museum for three days of activities, VIP receptions, and a visit to the San Diego opera to see their premier of Moby Dick! Contact Alison Smart for more details: (508) 997-0046 ext. 115 or asmart@whalingmuseum.org

For more information, contact:

Arthur Motta
Director, Marketing & Communications
New Bedford Whaling Museum
(508) 997-0046, ext. 153
amotta@whalingmuseum.org

Rosemary Gill
Assistant Director
Zeiterion Performing Arts Center
(508) 997-5664
rgill@zeiterion.org

Twitter hash-tag #MobyNB

Herman Melville Family Day, July 30

Herman Melville Family Day celebrates the 192nd birthday of the famed author of “Moby-Dick” at the Museum on Saturday, July 30 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. with a full day of free children’s activities including a whale of a birthday cake.

The annual celebration features special guests, art, music, poetry, and story reading for children 12 years and younger and takes place in the Jacobs Family Gallery, museum plaza, and the Cook Memorial Theater. Regular admission applies to all other museum galleries.

Highlights include music by members of the , art projects to take home, historical characters, fun learning activities, and birthday cake, too.

Special activities are scheduled throughout the day. From 10:00 a.m. to noon, kids can make their own floatable toy model of Cap’n Ahab’s ship, Pequod. Wading pools on the plaza will allow young shipwrights to test their vessel’s seaworthiness before they take them home.

A children’s poetry workshop will be offered from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. At 11:30 a.m. whaling wives, Ruth and Abby from the 1840s, will visit with children. At noon, the museum’s youth apprentices will lead a special sperm whale activity. From 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. kids can illustrate their very own version of Moby-Dick and from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., be photographed with Moby Dick’s statue.

At 1:00 p.m. members of the New Bedford Harbor Sea Chantey Chorus will perform toe-tapping tunes from Melville’s day and other fun favorites. At 2:00 p.m. the Chorus will belt out a timber-shivering rendition of “Happy Birthday,” with kids of all ages invited to join in the singing, and enjoy a slice of birthday cake.

Ongoing activities include make-and-take art projects – whale hats, whale tail bookmarks and magnets – and making chalk whale art. Moby-Dick cartoons will be featured in the theater and drawings to win a family membership will be given hourly. The Museum Store will also hold a Whale of a Tent Sale on the plaza.

Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Herman Melville Family Day is hosted by the museum’s education department in partnership with the Melville Society Cultural Project, New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council.