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Texas man pays tribute to classic Twain

Mark Twain impersonator Richard Salassi will bring his one-man act to campus in two public performances Nov. 29 and Nov. 30, plus offer a professional development workshop for teachers.

Performances begin at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 29, and at 10 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 30. Both performances will be in the R.J. Wills Lecture Hall, located on the second floor of the Campus Center. Performances are free and open to the public. Each presentation will last about an hour.

The presentation is supported by the Mid-America Arts Alliance with generous underwriting by the National Endowment for the Arts; the Arkansas Arts Council, an agency of the Arkansas Department of Heritage; and foundations, corporations and individuals throughout Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas.

Pulaski Technical College's Ottenheimer Library, Fine Arts and Humanities Division, and Student Life and Leadership are co-sponsoring the event.

Salassi, who lives in Texas, has been touring with his show, "A Visit with Mark Twain", for the past 11 years.  He has appeared in a number of plays, movies and television shows, including "The Music Man," "South Pacific," "Hamlet," "The Taming of the Shrew," "As You Like It," "The Merchant of Venice," "There Should Be Roses," " Run for Your Wife" and "Big River."  He appeared on screen in "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" and "In the Mood."  His television credits include "Our House," " Valerie's Family" and "Shelley Duvall's Tall Tales."

During his visit to Pulaski Tech, Salassi will conduct a professional development workshop from 1-3 p.m. on Nov. 29 for K-12 educators on "Teaching Mark Twain." The workshop will include a discussion and examination of the teaching of Twain in secondary schools. While geared toward K-12 educators, the workshop is open and free to anyone wishing to attend.

Also on Nov. 29, Salassi will visit with children from the Centers for Youth and Families and clients of Big Brothers/Big Sisters during a Mark Twain-themed birthday party celebrating the birth of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain.

Clemens, born on Nov. 30, 1835, is well known for his many classics, including The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County (1865), The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876), The Prince and the Pauper (1882) and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884). Clemens died in 1910.

For information about Richard Salassi's performances, call Summer Tumbleson at (501) 812-2750 or e-mail her at stumbleson@pulaskitech.edu. For more information about the professional development workshop, call Amy Baldwin at (501) 812-2262.

Mid-America Arts Alliance Performing Arts programs are generously funded by Community Foundation of the Ozarks; Cooper Foundation; Carolyn Dillion; DST Systems, Inc.; Karen and J. Robert Duncan; Arvin Gottlieb Charitable Foundation; Gilbert M. and Martha H. Hitchcock Foundation; Helen Jones Foundation, Inc.; Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation; Nancy Lee Kemper; William T. Kemper Foundation, Commerce Bank, Trustee; Kirkpatrick Family Fund; Carl McCaffree; McCasland Foundation; Nancy Meinig; Raymond D. Nasher; Judith and Frank Sabatini; Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts, Commerce Bank, Trustee; TierOne Foundation; TricorBraun; John Steele Zink Foundation; and the following public agencies:  Institute of Museum and Library Services; National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Arkansas Arts Council; Kansas Arts Commission; Missouri Arts Council; Nebraska Arts Council; Oklahoma Arts Council; and the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Pulaski Technical College
3000 West Scenic Drive
North Little Rock, AR 72118
Phone: (501) 812-2200

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