Sharon Litwin

Host of Notes From New Orleans

Sharon Litwin is the founding president of NolaVie.com, the only daily cultural not-for-profit website of its kind in the United States devoted to exploring all aspects of the quirky, diverse culture of New Orleans. Sharon, along with Renee Peck, NolaVie Managing Editor, wrote, and NolaVie received, a grant from the J-Lab Project of American University, funded through the McCormick Foundation in Chicago, allowing NolaVie to launch in February, 2011. Since 2012, Sharon has produced Notes from New Orleans, a weekly on-air cultural news segment for WWNO that is complemented by her weekly “culture watch” column on NolaVie.

Sharon Litwin retired in 2011 after a 12-year career with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra serving first as Executive Director and then as Senior Vice President for External Affairs. Prior to joining the LPO, Sharon spent more than a decade as an Assistant Director of the New Orleans Museum of Art, responsible for raising more than $26 million to build out three new wings and upgrade the original historic building in City Pak.

Sharon’s other professional positions have been as a feature writer for the Living Section of The Times-Picayune newspaper and executive producer with WYES-TV, Public Television in New Orleans. Sharon continues to write features and articles for newspapers and magazines nationwide on a freelance basis and is also the editor of the New Orleans Zagat Restaurant Survey, a position she has held for the past 20 years.

Sharon is the past president of the Contemporary Arts Center, Committee of 21 and Mental Health Association of Metropolitan New Orleans; a past board member of the Arts Council of New Orleans and the Community Access Corporation; and is the founding president of the Crescent City Farmers Market.

Ways To Connect

On this week’s Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin talks with local photographer Frank Relle about his recent experience inside Moscow’s art world during the height of the Crimea and Ukraine crisis.

Relle curated an exhibit called "New Orleans in Photographs" for the Moscow House of Photography. To read more about his experiences, visit NolaVie.com.

Thomas Walsh

George Dunbar is an Uptowner who finished school at 17, joined the Navy and served in World War II. After the war, he went to art school, traveled through Europe, and then came home when a family member got sick. That was more than 50 years ago.

These days, he lives and works in an older part of Slidell that overlooks the bayous and surrounding marsh land. George is one of the South’s most accomplished contemporary artists and the subject of this week’s Notes from New Orleans

Adi Nadimpalli

War brings countless injuries to the human condition. One of the most devastating consequences of conflict is disruption of basic medical services. These days it seems there are more and more stories on the radio and in newspapers about brave medical teams going into war-torn areas to treat the wounded and the needy.

On this week’s Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin talks with one physician who calls New Orleans home when he’s not on a mission with Doctors Without Borders.

Tulane Public Relations

What makes an artist into an entrepreneur? For jewelry designer Mignon Faget, it was less the kindness of strangers and more the assistance of friends. Mignon, now in her 81st year, still lives in the house she grew up in along Bayou St. John and is the subject of this week’s Notes from New Orleans.

It wasn’t that long ago that the idea surfaced to use the power of the Mississippi River as a source for energy. But it turns out that turbines placed near New Orleans weren’t going to be that effective after all. So some smart folks at Tulane University have come up with other ideas.

Genie Tidy

New Orleanians have always found ways to transform the mundane into something a little more festive and lively. Atop the list of monotonous things in this world — sitting in traffic. Next time you’re stopped at a traffic light, look right and look left because you might see something.

Thomas Walsh

It’s impossible to wager how many angry children have told their parents they’re running away to join the circus. Switzerland-native Meret Riyhner never had such a violent outburst with her parents, but she ended up in the circus anyway. Now, she’s the circus arts teacher at the International School of Louisiana located on Camp Street, and the subject of this week’s Notes from New Orleans.

Thomas Walsh

In 2011, a group of more than 25 artists created the Music Box, a house made of found objects designed as a laboratory for musical expression. By the time it closed in Spring 2012, it had been visited by more than 15,000 people.

On this week’s Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin talks with artist Dawn Dedeaux about the return of the Music Box project.

Vincent & Bella Productions\flickr

Over the course of 31 years, New Orleans' French Quarter Festival has grown from a small event to the largest free music festival in the United States. Along with Jazz Fest and Mardi Gras, it's become one of the crown jewels in Louisiana's cultural economy.

On this week's Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin speaks with executive director Marci Schramm about the festival's growth and its plans for the future. 

Jeffrey Rouse/rouseforcoroner.com

Of all the people running in the most recent Orleans Parish elections, only one of the winners was a true newbie. On this week's Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin talks with Dr. Jeffrey Rouse, the new coroner, about his first personal encounter with the facts of political life.

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