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Friday Night Dialogue: Peter Waldner, Leah Friedman and the creative spirit

The Shelter Island Public Library’s next Friday Night Dialogue will be a discussion of art, playwriting, and cartooning in the lives of two extremely interesting, creative people, on Oct. 7 at 7 p.m.

Peter Waldner, a cartoonist, artist, writer and playwright — his award-winning Paw Print cartoon series can be found every week in the Reporter — will be speaking with another local playwright and artist, Leah Friedman.

Leah and her husband Victor bought a house here in 1969, continuing to be weekenders for decades. Peter and Leah have been close friends for 15 years and have collaborated on plays in the past.

They’re currently working on a short film together. The initial suggested title for this discussion was “I’m 91 years old … What Do You Want From Me?”

Given the relationship between these two, I think it should be called: “60 minutes Sharing Creativity and Laughter.”

Much of Leah’s art has been influenced by her childhood experiences, memories of her mother, and the Holocaust. A question to ask is how she was also influenced by her late husband Victor, one of her favorite artists.

They were married for about 70 years. Victor was a renowned photographer and photojournalist, whose work is displayed in many museums. He was also a hairdresser to the stars for 50 years at the Kenneth Salon in New York City.

According to Peter, Leah is full of fun and mischief, living life with positivity and laughter. Her greatest joy, she’s said, is the process of creation. It doesn’t matter if the medium is pen and paper as a writer, or acrylic on canvas as a painter, the result is all a joy to her and her audience.

She is a storyteller in either medium and will keep you engrossed in her captivating tales. Everyone is welcome to join for a night of joy, insight and creative conversation.

To register, please call 631-749-0042 or visit silibrary.org.

The following Friday Night Dialogue will take place on Oct. 14, featuring Heather Reylek, Shelter Island songwriter, vocalist and musician.