Zappa statue celebration planned

A weekend-long celebration featuring live music, a symposium and art exhibit will celebrate the dedication of the Frank Zappa statue in Baltimore, organizers said.

Zappa Plays Zappa, a tribute act fronted by Zappa's son Dweezil, will perform; Zappa's widow, Gail, will give a symposium; and the Southeast Anchor Library will launch an exhibit in conjunction with the Sept. 19 statue dedication, according to producer Sean Brescia.

"It's going to make it what it should be," Brescia said. "It's going to be a cool tribute weekend."

His wife is putting together a symposium at the library on First Amendment rights, his son is planning a master class and the library will launch an exhibit tentatively titled "What's New in Baltimore: The Best of Baltimore's Contributions to the Performing Arts," Brescia said. The exhibit will include music and literature from Baltimore natives such as Zappa and John Waters.

Brescia hopes to round out the celebration with other live bands and move the party to the Creative Alliance at the Patterson after the dedication. He's working with the Southeastern Community Development Corporation to help coordinate the events.

"It's already starting to brew that energy and collaboration on the community level," Brescia said. "I'm excited about it."

The bust of Zappa, a Baltimore native, was a gift from a Lithuanian fan club. After much deliberation, the city decided to place it in Highlandtown, outside the library. His wife said Zappa would have liked the location, because his mother, Rose Marie, was a librarian.

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