Originally created 10/25/98

Arts roundup: Survivor's triumph featured in 'Reader's Digest'



AGAINST ODDS -- Trial by Fire, featured in the November issue of Reader's Digest, is a story about Augustan Shirley Badke and her family written by Dr. James Garvey, a professor of English at Augusta State University.

Mrs. Badke suffered third-degree burns on 80 percent of her body after a plane crashed into the office where she worked on Old Savannah Road in 1995.

She participated in the Olympic torch relay through Augusta in 1996, and the Southeastern Firefighters Burn Foundation retreat is named after her.

HAVE GLASS WILL TRAVEL -- A stained-glass-window depiction of an angel from Sacred Heart Cultural Center, 1301 Greene St., will be displayed in an exhibition, Glory in Glass: Stained Glass in the United States, opening Nov. 12 at the American Bible Society gallery on Broadway in New York. The window on display from Sacred Heart is from the choir loft. It was imported from the Franz Mayer Studios in Munich, Germany, and installed in 1900. Regular glass has been installed in the loft and will remain until the artwork is returned.

MAGNUS CARTA -- Ballet Master John Magnus, an instructor at the Joffrey Ballet School, is teaching at the Augusta Ballet School. Mr. Magnus, who trained at the University of Cape Town Ballet School in South Africa and performed with the Cape Town Ballet Company, came to the United States in 1980 to work as ballet master for the Nevada Dance Theatre. He also taught classes for the Metropolitan Opera Ballet and the New Jersey Ballet Company. He has taught at Joffrey for 12 years. Mr. Magnus teaches ballet, pas de deux, men's class and choreography, from children to advanced and professional levels.

AFRICAN-AMERICAN LITERATURE LECTURE -- The Paine College English Department is playing host Wednesday and Thursday to a literary conference that examines the scope of contemporary literature, particularly contributions of black Americans. Tina McElroy Ansa, author of Baby of the Family, Ugly Ways and The Hand I Fan With, will be keynote speaker for the event in the Paine College Odeum. Call Dr. Lola Richardson at 821-8220 or Marva Stewart at 821-8208.

MORE IN STORE -- Augusta-Richmond County Library director Richard Leach reports that the library's 150th anniversary gala featuring guest speaker John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, was successful enough for the library to try similar ventures in the future. "I think if we bring in another big-name author, it would be well received," said Mr. Leach. "I think we will definitely try to do something like this again." Only 120 people attended the $50 per head library fund-raiser at the Bell Auditorium, but it was "120 enthusiastic people," Mr. Leach said. The event managed to make money, minus Mr. Berendt's engagement fee. "We made money for the book budget," said Mr. Leach, who said it was too early to tell how much was raised.

Kent Kimes covers arts and entertainment for The Augusta Chronicle. He can be reached at (706) 823-3626 or kkimes@augustachronicle.com.