Pine Nuts: Culture, Chautauqua and Nevada’s birthday party |

Pine Nuts: Culture, Chautauqua and Nevada’s birthday party

I ask, what do you get when you partner Mark Twain and Toccata? You get the grand reopening of the Mark Twain Cultural Center & Toccata Guttman Music Hall on Oct. 25. The Bohemian of the Sagebrush (humbly yours as Mark Twain) will kick off a yearlong party celebrating Nevada’s 150 years of statehood — our sesquicentennial.

As a nonprofit performing arts center, we will count on everyone to let us know what they would like to see and what they would like to hear. The ghost of Mark Twain looks forward to launching this grand celebration at 760 Mays Blvd. No. 10, Village Center, Incline Village. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The trouble begins at seven. Tickets are $20 and reservations can be made at 775-833-1835. Seating is limited to 60.

The Wild Humorist of the Pacific Slope will be followed two weeks later by the popular music of “Six Pac” on Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12. Rebecca Layne will soon offer ballroom dance lessons, including East Coast Swing, at the center.

And just here I would like to offer some of my favorite quotes about the arts:

“Art is not a mirror held up to reality, but a hammer with which to shape it.”

– Bertolt Brecht

“It is a gift to be able to paint a particular picture or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look. To affect the quality of the day — that is the highest of the arts.”

– Henry David Thoreau

“He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.”

– St. Francis of Assisi

“There is no way to success in art but to take off your coat, grind paint, and work like a digger on the railroad, all day and every day.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“If you ask me what I came here to do in this world, I, an artist, will tell you. I am here to live out loud.”

– Emile Zola

“Art is not simply works of art; it is the spirit that knows beauty, that has music in its soul and the color of sunsets in its handkerchief, that can dance on a flaming world and make the world dance too.”

– W.E.B. Dubois

“The future is what artists are. Art is what makes the life of each citizen a sacrament and not a speculation.”

– Oscar Wilde

“Music washes from the soul the dust of everyday life.”

– Berthold Auerbach

“An artist cannot fail; it is a success to be one.”

– Charles Cooley

“Chautauqua is the most American thing in America.”

– Theodore Roosevelt

And finally these powerful words from the father of our country, George Washington: “To encourage literature and the arts is a duty which every good citizen owes to his country.”

Learn more about McAvoy Layne at

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