G-20 spouses to take in Warhol art, arts education

September 25, 2009 8:02:53 AM PDT
From the pop artistry of the late Andy Warhol to the work of student performers, a display of arts was in store for the spouses of world leaders on the final day of an international economic summit.

First lady Michelle Obama, the hostess for the global gathering, was to take her counterparts on tours of the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School and the Andy Warhol Museum on Friday.

Art and arts education in school are subjects of interest to Mrs. Obama.

Pittsburgh CAPA, a nationally recognized magnet school similar to the one in the movie "Fame," has more than 800 sixth- through 12th-graders majoring in dance, acting, instrumental and vocal music and other creative arts.

Spouses will visit various classrooms to watch students rehearse performances. They also will see a show organized by Mrs. Obama featuring performances by students and such noted musical artists as cellist Yo-Yo Ma, country superstar Trisha Yearwood and singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles.

Afterward comes a tour of the Warhol museum.

The seven-story museum houses the art collection and archives of the late 20th century pop artist and Pittsburgh native. The spouses will get a chance to try the silk-screen printing technique Warhol popularized and peruse items from one of more than 600 cardboard "time-capsule" boxes Warhol used to store his keepsakes.

In one of those boxes, archivists found $17,000 in cash. The big discovery in another box was a piece of crusty cake from Caroline Kennedy's 1986 wedding to Edwin Schlossberg.

On Thursday, Mrs. Obama opened two days of spouse events by sharing her passion for eating locally grown food. She treated the group to dinner at Rosemont Farm, which is owned by Teresa Heinz Kerry, wife of Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. She also is the widow of Sen. John Heinz, R-Pa., of the Heinz ketchup family.

The working farm grows produce and raises livestock. Salad greens and apples grown there were on the menu for the private dinner on the property located in Fox Chapel, just outside Pittsburgh.

The women ate at a long, rectangular table with Mrs. Obama seated between the spouses from Brazil and Indonesia. The Pittsburgh Philharmonic Orchestra's Jazz Trio played throughout the meal. The ladies were joined by Heinz Kerry, White House social secretary Desiree Rogers and Susan Sher, Mrs. Obama's chief of staff.

Mrs. Obama wore a sleeveless cocktail dress by Thakoon, one of her favorite designers, patterned in taupe, pink and green and gathered at her right hip. She accented it with a long strand of pearls, pearl earrings and pink patent leather heels. She pulled her hair into a fluffy ponytail.

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