Phone:(703) 503-3384


Print a condensed .pdf copy of this newsletter, two web pages per sheet of paper.

Chili Cook-off at Reston, Featuring the OLLI Players; October 21

October 28, 2016

Editor of the Week: John Nash

Table of Contents

Alerts & Notices

– OLLI Annual Town Hall Meeting, Friday, November 4, 10:00, Tallwood TA‑1. Updates on program, facilities, activities; light refreshments. All members welcome.

– Reminder: at Tallwood, if you are able, please use the pool parking lot to leave more spaces in the upper lot for less mobile members; please use the front path from the pool lot, and avoid walking down the drive.

Back to Top of Page

Participate in Important
OLLI Membership Survey

Please provide your feedback on this organizational survey regarding your experiences and expectations at OLLI. Please click on the following below to link to our Survey Monkey survey. It will only take a few minutes of your time and your answers will be of significant value. If you prefer to fill out a paper version of the survey, copies will be available from site assistants at OLLI’s three locations: Reston, Loudoun, and Tallwood. Return surveys when completed to your nearest site assistant. Many thanks!

October Board Meeting Summary

By Nancy Scheeler, Board Member

The Board of Directors met on October 21 in the Rose Gallery of the Reston Community Center, Lake Anne, in conjunction with OLLI Reston’s annual Chili Fest. After the Board meeting, the OLLI Players joined Board members and other OLLI members attending the lunch and performed an Octoberfest skit written for the occasion by Kathie West.

President Ray Beery announced that OLLI is on track to renew its 5-year affiliation agreement with George Mason University with no expected changes. Under legal review by Mason now, the renewed agreement will be ready for sign-off next spring. Mason provides the Tallwood and Signal Hill facilities in Sterling for OLLI’s use under this agreement. Maintenance services are not explicitly called out in the agreement, but Mason has been generous in providing them, particularly this year with the new parking lot at Tallwood. If Mason begins to call upon its departments to cover their own utilities costs, however, then it is almost certain that OLLI will have to do the same. This will have an impact on the OLLI budget.

Executive Director Jennifer Disano announced that as of fall term 2016, OLLI has 1175 full members and 67 trial members for a total of 1242 members. At this time last year, OLLI had 1241 members. She observed that so far “2016 is presenting as a flatter year in terms of growth.” For winter term, when dues increase to $425, 338 current OLLI members are up for renewal and 67 trial members are due to upgrade to full membership. She has determined that 292 renewed or new full memberships at $425 will provide sufficient funding to cover projected expenses. She announced that OLLI staff executed 698 individual class and event set-ups for the fall term across all three OLLI campuses.

The Board passed a resolution allocating $2,846.50 in Friends of OLLI funds to Technology Project #21. This sum will cover installation of necessary cabling and equipment to use updated equipment in TA‑3, acquisition of a BluRay player for TA‑2, and acquisition and installation of necessary cabling in TA‑1.

The Board also passed a resolution approving transfer of $20,000 from the Reserve Fund into the Working Capital Fund to cover unanticipated expenses for additional venue rental, increase in publications costs levied by the catalog publisher, relocation of the staff to the Cottage, and a shortfall in membership growth. The Board will discuss whether to reimburse some or all of this sum from the Friends of OLLI Fund to the Reserve Fund at a later date.

OLLI Treasurer Michelle Blandburg, Finance Committee Chair Stan Schretter, and Executive Director Jennifer Disano presented a preliminary 2017 budget for the Board’s early review. The current draft projects a possible budget of $630,000, up 7.7 percent over 2016. The draft budget will be presented to the Board at its November meeting and the final 2017 budget will be submitted at the January 2017 meeting for Board approval.

The Board continues to review and discuss possible changes to managing and spending donations to Friends of OLLI and other funds such that established for the collection of monies to give to the Office of Military Services to celebrate OLLI Mason’s 25th anniversary. The Board debated and then tabled several resolutions offering proposals for collecting, managing, and spending these donations. The review and discussions will continue at the November Board meeting.

Back to Top of Page

Music, Music, Music

By John Nash, E-News Editor

One of the gems of OLLI classes these past spring and fall semesters is the Music Sampler (F104 this fall). Coordinated by Dr. Kathryn Hearden, professor of vocal studies at Mason, this eight-week program presents some of the outstanding musical talents at Mason, both students and faculty members.

So far this semester, OLLI members have been treated to (1) excerpts from Dr. Dave Porter’s dissertation on applying vocal breathing to horn sounds…absolutely fascinating; (2) a cello string trio performed by three members of “The President’s Own” U.S. Marine Corps band – Char Prescott, Carrie Bean and Marcio Botelho, who is a former professor at Mason; (3) a violin and piano duet of Beethoven’s Kreutzer Sonata by Professor of Violin/Viola Dr. Elizabeth Adams and pianist Melinda Blair which was so magnificently performed as to receive a standing ovation; (4) the piano virtuosity of Mark Irchai, a junior piano performance major in the studio of Dr. Anna Balakerskaia, who played works by Mozart, Scriabin, and others (Irchai is a Friends of Music at Mason scholarship recipient and one of 25 University Scholars); (5) the Mason Flute Choir, comprised of Jenna Warfield, Robert Kachur, Jeongwon Bae, Helen Landers, and Hannah James and under the direction of Dr. Jennifer Lapple, who explained the interaction and communication among the flutists, and then performed beautiful examples of those interactions, and (6) this week’s jazz vocal exhibition presented by Director of Jazz Studies Dr. Darden Purcell and selected students of the jazz studies program.

“OLLI audiences are wonderful! They are knowledgeable and interested in the outstanding music being created in the Mason School of Music,” said Dr. Hearden. “The Music Sampler is an excellent opportunity for our musical artists to perform and display their incredible talents before an appreciative audience.”

Asked if she will continue to coordinate such a “musical feast” for OLLI, Dr. Hearden said, “Of course. As long as there is an interest in and appreciation for the beautiful music generated by our Mason School of Music, we’ll be here. Plus, I enjoy the performances as much as the OLLI audiences!”

There is still time for OLLI members not registered for this event to attend the last two performances. The Music Sampler is offered each Tuesday morning from 9:30 (note time) to 10:55 at the Fairfax Lord of Life church ending Nov.8. There is plenty of room in the sanctuary to enjoy this beautiful music. (photos by John Nash)

OLLI Veterans to be Honored on Friday, November 11
By Martha Powers, Board MemberOLLI’s Second Annual Veterans Day Celebration will be held in TA-1 on Friday, November 11, from 1:00–2:30. The agenda includes:
– Fairfax Police Ceremonial Honor Guard presenting the colors and our national anthem.
– OLLI’s Poetry Workshop co-moderator, Col. Mike Mc Namara, USA (Ret.), reading a new poem composed especially for this occasion.
– Recognition of all veterans present for this event.
– Viewing of “Arlington: Field of Honor,” a highly rated documentary about The Tomb of the Unknowns and the elite Army guards who watch over it.

Those who attended last year’s Veteran’s Day Celebration will recall its success, culminating in showing the documentary, Honor Flight. The event received a cover story in the Connection newspapers which you can still read by clicking on the following link:

Please join us for this special celebration of OLLI’s veterans and our nation’s heritage by signing up for special event #983. Space is limited.

Back to Top of Page

Photos Promote Mason Theater Projects

By John Nash, E-News Editor

Recently, several OLLI Photo Club members stepped forward to help the Mason theater department prepare some promotional photographs of fall productions. Coordinated by OLLI member Tom Simpson, photo club members Lou Mazzatenta, Dan Feighery, Tom Simpson, Ed Marion, John Nash, Bob Kelberg and George Bradshaw met with theater department representatives and students to take much-needed portrait headshots of new theater students as well as promotional and archival photos of fall productions: The Laramie Project and The Threepenny Opera.

“Theater lighting is a very tricky environment for photographers because of the high contrast between bright lights and dark shadows,” said Dan Feighery. The photograph by John Nash shows these conditions of extreme lighting and shadows where Dan is photographing cast members of The Threepenny Opera. (NOTE: The Threepenny Opera is being performed this weekend at the Center for the Arts and next weekend at the Hylton Center; tickets are still available. See Arts and Music at Mason calendar below.)

Inside OLLI-Mason

Meet Professor John G. Turner

By Kathryn Russell, Program Committee

As you may have noticed, our fall term is loaded with classes taught by Mason professors. We’re fortunate that so many have volunteered their time to enrich our program. One of these outstanding instructors, Professor John Turner, comes to us from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences where he teaches religious studies.

Part of Professor Turner’s course, “Religion in American History,” reflects his current research on the pilgrims’ experiences in the New World. A recipient of the prestigious Fenwick Fellowship this year, he will receive $5000 to support his research project and is currently writing a book to be published in 2020.

Professor Turner’s passion for his subject—sprinkled liberally with wry humor—has engaged and entertained OLLI students with tales of people and events in Plymouth Colony. We learned of the struggles in a hostile environment, but we also heard of political intrigue and gossip that engaged the “separatists.”

Moving forward in the overview of religious history in America, Professor Turner continues with the emergence of historical issues of Mormons, Jews and Catholics, and finally into the movement of the religious right in the present day.

The course (F604 and L609 videoconference) meets on Wednesday, 9:40. Seats are still available at both Tallwood and Loudoun.

Back to Top of Page

Alan Rems to Speak at the History Club

By Beth Lambert, History Club Coordinator

The next meeting of the History Club will take place on Wednesday, November 2, at 2:15 in TA-1. Our speaker will be Alan Rems, who was selected by the US Naval Institute as 2008 author of the year for his article in Naval History magazine. Alan will give evidence that contradicts the official version of the death of Marine Major General Charles Barrett who was reported as accidentally falling to his death after meetings at Vice Admiral “Bull” Halsey’s headquarters to discuss the upcoming invasion of Bougainville. Alan’s research uncovered two unpublished letters indicating the truth of Major General Barrett’s death was much more tragic than the official version.

All OLLI members are invited to attend History Club meetings. Come to this one and discover how research into primary materials can change official records; in this case the subject is the death of Marine Major General Charles Barrett.

Poet’s Corner
Courtesy of the Poetry Workshop

Chances Are

Chances are
We won’t make it
The zombies are catching up fast
Frankenstein is circling back
With awkward but long strides

On top of all this
The Klingons’ sensors are on us
Our flashboot batteries are close to gone
Invisibility suits useless
Torn by the brambles

Chances are we won’t make it
Unless Susie’s mom quickly
Makes a batch of magic chocolate milk
And we have time
To down a big glass each
Tony Rounds

Back to Top of Page

Arts & Music at George Mason

Performances, next ten days
By Shelly Gersten, OLLI E-News Staff WriterFor tickets for either Center for the Arts (CFA) or Hylton, call 1-888-945-2468, buy tickets online through the event calendar (see links below), or visit the venue’s box office. For more information, see the CFA ticket page or the Hylton ticket purchase page.

At the Fairfax Campus Venues

Shanghai Acrobats of the People’s Republic of China: Shanghai Nights
Fri, Nov 4, and Sat, Nov 5, 8:00
Sat, Nov 5, 2:00
Pre-performance discussion: Ms. Zhao Shuangwu, director of the company.
Concert Hall
Admission: $50, $43, $30

Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble
Sun, Nov 6, 2:00
Pre-performance discussion: Member of the company.
Concert Hall
Admission: $60, $51, $36

Mon, Nov 7, 8:00
Concert Hall
Admission: $45, $30

Back to Top of Page

Mason Student & Faculty Performances

(see for additional student recitals)

Mason’s School of Theater and School of Music: The Threepenny Opera
Fri, Oct 28, Sat, Oct 29, 8:00
Sat, Oct 29, 2:00
Sun, Oct 30, 4:00
A Talk Back/Q&A with the cast will take place after the Friday performance.
A Friends of Music reception also follows the Friday performance; cost $20
Concert Hall
Admission: Adults, $30; seniors, $15
Laurie Sokoloff Flute Master Class
Oct 29, 10:00
DeLaski – Room 3001
Admission: Free

Back to Top of Page

At the Hylton Center

Mason School of Art: Alumni Exhibition
Through Nov 6
The Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00 – 6:00, Thu, 10:00 – 8:00 and two hours before performances.
Buchanan Partners Art Gallery
Admission: Free

Prince William Little Theatre: Bat Boy: The Musical
Fri, Oct 28 and Sat, Oct 29, 8:00
Sun, Oct 30, 2:00
Gregory Family Theater
Admission: Adults, $25; children, $20

Reduced Shakespeare Company: The Complete History of America (abridged): Election Edition!
Fri, Oct 28, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Austin Tichenor and Reed Martin.
Merchant Hall
Admission: $44, $37, $26

Manassas Symphony Orchestra: Il Virtuosi
Oct 29, 7:30
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $15

Matinee Idylls: Marcolivia: Symphonic Conversations
Tue, Nov 1, 12:30
Violin-viola duo Marcolivia with cellist Vasily Popov and pianist Ralitza Patcheva.
Gregory Family Theater
Admission: $45 (12:30 lunch and concert), $25 (concert only – begins 1:30)

Mason’s School of Theater and School of Music: The Threepenny Opera
Thu, Nov 3 – Sat, Nov 5, 8:00
Sat, Nov 5, 2:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $30; seniors, $15

XVIII Saya Caporal Dance Competition
Sun, Nov 6, 5:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $15

The Arts and the Military: Moving through Memories of Service and Conflict
Nov 7, 2016 – Dec 11, 2016
Buchanan Partners Art Gallery
The Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00 – 6:00, Thu, 10:00 – 8:00 and two hours before performances
Gallery Reception: Thu, Nov 10 from 6:00 8:00. RSVP to
Buchanan Partners Art Gallery
Admission: Free

Back to Top of Page

For further details on any of the above events, please see the CFA event calendar and the Hylton Center event calendar

Back to Top of Page

Meetings & Clubs

The following list covering the next two weeks is extracted for your convenience from the master online calendar maintained by the office, with direct web links added when available. The list is accurate as of mid-week but to check anytime for the latest information, please view the latest forecast of upcoming events on our website (News/OLLI Calendar). Note: All OLLI members are welcome at, and encouraged to attend, meetings of the Board of Directors, committees and resource groups, kickoff coffees, etc. (bolded below).

Sat Oct 29 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Wed Nov 2 1:30pm
Mah Jongg Club–TA-2
Bridge Club–TA-3
Special Events Committee–Annex
History Club–TA-1
Fri Nov 4 10:00am Town Hall Meeting–TA-1
Sat Nov 5 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Wed Nov 9 1:30pm
Tallwood Book Club–TA-1
Bridge Club–TA-3
Spanish Club–TA-2
Fri Nov 11 9:00am
Recorder Consort–TA-3
Photography Club–TA-1
Craft and Conversation–Annex
Classic Literature Club–TA-2
Religious Studies Club–TA-2

Back to Top of Page

About OLLI E-News

OLLI E-News was created by Rod Zumbro, who served as its editor from 2005 to 2013.

Editorial Staff
Chief Editor: Paul Van Hemel
Technical Editor: Irene Osterman
Associate Editor: Sheri Siesseger
Weekly Editorial Team: Jean Boltz, John Nash, Sheri Siesseger, Leslie Vandivere,
Paul Van Hemel

Proofreaders: Rebecca Jann, Lorna Moran, Marilyn O’Brien, Susan Van Hemel
Backup Chief Editor: Alice Slayton Clark

Submissions. Members are encouraged to submit letters to the editor, letters to Ms. Ollie Ettakit (on etiquette matters), OLLI-related news items, articles and photos. Submit material to:
Deadline – 6:00 Tuesday for that week’s issue (6:00 Monday for letters to the editor); early submissions are greatly appreciated. Please limit articles to about 250 words.
Note: You can view past issues of OLLI E-News on the DocStore. To search the content of issues, use Search Our Site or put your search term in Google followed by “” without the quotes.

Back to Top of Page