Arts & Culture

Arts & Culture
12:12 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

MSU Wind Symphony performs Pulitzer winner

Kevin Sedatole conducts the MSU Wind Symphony.
Credit Courtesy Michigan State University

The Michigan State University Wind Symphony Orchestra performs Thursday night at the Wharton Center.  Current State's Peter Whorf speaks with MSU director of bands Kevin Sedatole about the concert.

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Arts & Culture
1:11 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Book review: Marja Mills "The Mockingbird Next Door" | WKAR

After the enormous success of her book "To Kill a Mockingbird", the world belonged to Harper Lee. She could have done anything, the possibilities were endless. And yet, all she wanted to do was escape to her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama and be left alone. For more than 40 years, the world could only speculate about this important and very silent American novelist. Was she writing? Was there maybe something more serious psychologically going on? Why did she hate the attention so much? It is because of Harper Lee’s long self-exile that makes "The Mockingbird Next Door", a new memoir by Marja Mills, so initially seductive.

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Arts & Culture
12:59 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

A thousand (more) places to see before you die

Travelers across the country and around the world have been using the book “1,000 Places to See Before You Die” as a guidebook for more than a decade now. The book is author Patricia Schultz’s effort to encourage people to get out there and see the great big world around us. Now, there’s a second edition of the book, and she will talk about the new edition of her book on Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Schuler book store in the Meridian Mall.

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Arts & Culture
11:14 am
Fri October 10, 2014

Local artist's provocative work in ArtPrize finals

Henry Brimmer's ArtPrize entry this year is called 'there’s something happening here…'
Courtesy - Henry Brimmer

ArtPrize is probably Michigan’s top arts event. It began in 2009 in Grand Rapids as what organizers describe as a “radically open international art competition”. The event takes over three square miles of downtown Grand Rapids for 19 days each year and draws hundreds of entries and thousands of visitors.

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Arts & Culture
12:33 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

NOLA musical legend Toussaint visits East Lansing

Allen Toussaint
Credit Courtesy - Michael Wilson

Some legendary New Orleans musicians will be in East Lansing tonight. The Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Allen Toussaint play at Wharton Center at 7:30. Allen Toussaint has pretty much done it all.

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Arts & Culture
11:16 am
Thu October 2, 2014

Visiting Ethiopian director on race, film in America

An image from the Haile Gerima film 'Teza'.
Credit http://www.tezathemovie.com

An Ethiopian filmmaker whose films deal with themes of displacement and powerlessness is in East Lansing this week. Haile Gerima is best known as the director of "Sankofa", and his most recent film, "Teza", will be shown along with an earlier work, "Bush Mama", over the next few days.

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Arts & Culture
10:54 am
Wed October 1, 2014

MSU students produce Bollywood film in India

MSU's 'Beyond Bollywood: Taste of Indian Media' study abroad program made a Bollywood film in India this summer.
Courtesy - Amol Pavangadkar

India has one of the most vibrant filmmaking communities in the world. The Indian movie industry is often referred to as Bollywood. Their movies are known for elaborate musical productions and eye-grabbing colors. What better place to send MSU students who want to learn about the craft of movie-making?

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Arts & Culture
11:16 am
Tue September 30, 2014

Michigan attorney defends Sherlock Holmes copyright

Benedict Cumberbatch (left) and Martin Freeman star in TV's 'Masterpiece Mystery!' series 'Sherlock'.

"The game is afoot". That's one of many recognizable phrases from the Sherlock Holmes stories written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. John Bursch is a Grand Rapids lawyer who has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on eight occasions. Now, one of his most unusual clients is the Doyle estate.

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Arts & Culture
12:42 pm
Mon September 29, 2014

East Lansing tinkerers get new maker spaces

Meg Croft of Woven Art, with East Lansing Public Library director Kristen Shelley, in the library's new Maker Studio.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

For a long time, libraries have embraced change, becoming much more than simply a place to find a book. Music, movies, you name it. Libraries try to keep up with the demands of their visitors. The East Lansing Public Library’s newest effort is a maker studio.

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Arts & Culture
11:04 am
Thu September 25, 2014

Premier string quartet comes to Ann Arbor

The Emerson String Quartet
Credit Courtesy - Lisa Mazzucco

It’s safe to say that the Emerson String Quartet is among the top such ensembles on the planet. In their more than three decades of existence, the Emerson’s  achievements include more than thirty acclaimed recordings, nine Grammys, the Avery Fisher Prize, Musical America’s "Ensemble of the Year" and collaborations with many of the greatest artists of our time. The Emerson Quartet performs as part of the University Musical Society series at Ann Arbor’s Rackham Auditorium this Saturday night at 8 p.m.

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Arts & Culture
11:03 am
Thu September 25, 2014

Book Review: for Banned Book Week, Mark Twain's "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" | WKAR

American history is not always pretty. Sometimes it’s hard to accept that, but it is true. As Americans, there are blemishes there we don’t like the mirror to remind us of. For over 130 years, “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain has held up that mirror and dared us to look at the reflection.

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Arts & Culture
11:05 am
Mon September 22, 2014

Epic MSU Symphony season highlights Mahler, Beethoven

MSU Symphony conductor Kevin Noe
Credit http://music.msu.edu

Orchestral works of epic proportion dominate this year’s MSU Symphony Series. Mighty Symphonies by Mahler, Beethoven and Prokofiev will be featured on the stage of the Wharton Center as conductor Kevin Noe leads his Michigan State musicians.

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Arts & Culture
12:23 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

MSU Library features Latino experimental art

DOC/UNDOC is an experimental art book on display at MSU's main library.
Credit http://docundoc.com

When you think of sitting down to read a book, you probably aren’t expecting blinking lights, musical accompaniment, and Mexican wrestling masks. But that’s exactly what you’ll get with "DOC/UNDOC", a recent collaboration of book, performance, and sound artists, including renowned Latino performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña.

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Arts & Culture
12:45 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Summer Circle Theatre dedicates new performance space

Friends of Theatre president Jackie Babcock and MSU Department of Theatre chairman Kirk Domer
Scott Pohl, WKAR

Today, the MSU Department of Theatre will dedicate the new home of Summer Circle Theatre. If you've ever attended a Summer Circle Theatre performance at MSU, the experience wasn’t always pleasant. Being near the Red Cedar River next to the MSU Auditorium, Summer Circle was often plagued by water, mosquitoes, and traffic noise. The new space will be much more comfortable and will host events beyond these student productions.

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Arts & Culture
1:32 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Audiobook superstar comes to Okemos

George Guidall
Credit georgeguidall.com

Tonight, an Audie-Award winning audiobook reader will visit Okemos to talk about his craft. George Guidall has read the audiobook versions of titles like John Irving’s “A Widow for One Year” and Wally Lamb’s “I Know This Much Is True”. He’ll be at the Okemos Public Library at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Guidall has narrated 1,200 unabridged books.

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Arts & Culture
11:36 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Ten Pound Fiddle's 40th season features Yarrow, Mabus

Peter Yarrow will play a Ten Pound Fiddle concert on March 6, 2015.
Credit www.tamulevich.com

The Ten Pound Fiddle concert series that starts this weekend is the 40th for the East Lansing acoustic music institution. Pretty much everybody who’s anybody in folk music has performed for Ten Pound Fiddle over the years, many of them coming to town numerous times.

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Arts & Culture
11:31 am
Fri September 12, 2014

LSO kicks off season with Tchaikovsky

Violinist Yevgeny Kutik performs with the Lansing Symphony Orchestra tonight.
Credit yevgenykutik.com - Corey Hayes

Tonight’s Lansing Symphony Orchestra concert launches their 85th season. The program includes works by Gandolfi, Bruch and Tchaikovsky.

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Arts & Culture
11:57 am
Thu September 11, 2014

Book Review: Lauren Owen's 'The Quick' | WKAR

Credit randomhouse.com/

It’s not an easy thing to pull off a twist in a story. And there are two important ground rules that must be followed if an author wants to attempt this difficult literary feat. First, there has to be enough of a surprise so that the readers jump, but also enough hints so that the readers don’t feel the author is pulling a fast one. For readers will go back to see if they missed something in the telling if a twist works. You can’t just have aliens arrive on Main Street, unless there have been conversations about weird lights in the sky earlier.

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Arts & Culture
1:01 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

One-woman plays honors 'world's first superstar'

Carol Dunitz brings 'Bernhardt on Broadway: The Musical' to East Lansing on Saturday.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Actress and writer Carol Dunitz calls Sarah Bernhardt “the world’s first superstar”. Dunitz brings her one-woman show inspired by the turn-of-the-last century stage and silent film star to East Lansing. “Bernhardt on Broadway: The Musical” will be at the Hannah Community Center in East Lansing at 7:30 p-m Saturday.

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Arts & Culture
12:53 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Documentary focuses on 'Reel Bad Arabs'

Dr. Jack Shaheen
Credit www.reelbadarabs.com/

“Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People” is a documentary film inspired by the book of the same title by Dr. Jack Shaheen. It chronicles the stereotypical depiction of Arabs in movies and on television. Next week, on the anniversary of the 9-11 attacks, Shaheen will attend a screening of the film on the MSU campus.

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Arts & Culture
11:38 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Book Review: Francine Prose's 'Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932' | WKAR

Paris in the 1920's and 1930's is the stuff of literary legend. It is hard for book lovers not to get lost in the mythology of it, imagining Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald discussing books over drinks at a club, while couples dance to the greatest jazz music. Francine Prose is one such author captivated by this period and in her new book “Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932,” she takes us through the fall of this great city, from its decadent and free heyday to its occupation under Nazi Germany. The book makes you feel like you are breathing the air of that city, walking those same rain-swept and romantic streets.

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Arts & Culture
2:18 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

New Wharton season: From classics to contemporary ... 2CELLOS

Broadway performers prefer the Wharton Center's continental seating layout because it creates more intimacy, says Bob Hoffman, communications director.
Credit Courtesy of Wharton Center

Four weeks from tonight, East Lansing’s Wharton Center opens its new season.  It features a rich array of live music, theater, dance and speakers. Highlights include the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Roseanne Cash, Blue Man Group, Michelle Norris, 2CELLOS and many more.  Up first, the Lansing Symphony Orchestra’s traditional Masterworks opener featuring violinist Yevgeny Kutik.

Wharton Center is just about ready to offer single ticket sales.  Wharton’s Public Relations Manager Bob Hoffman joins us.

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Arts & Culture
12:14 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Book Review: 'Andrew's Brain' by E.L. Doctorow

When your mind often swims in the written words of others, sometimes the water can get a bit muddy. You don’t mean for this to happen, but plots might intermingle in your head, characters might meet up even though they are in different stories and sometimes, honestly, you might point the finger at a possible murderer, not realizing right away that they are from another book and, of course, perfectly innocent. That is sometimes how my brain works.

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Arts & Culture
12:19 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

Renegade Theatre Festival offers first glimpse of new works

Melissa Kaplan and Chad Badgero say spoken word artists and soap box performances are a small sample of what will be at the Renegade Theatre Festival this weekend in Old Town.
Credit Courtesy - Renegade Theatre Festival

The Renegade Theatre Festival will be back in Old Town Lansing for a ninth year this week. On Thursday through Saturday, there will be a variety of theatrical events in several Old Town locations, and a number of local theatre companies are again taking part.

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Arts & Culture
1:36 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

Michigan wines getting better with age

Guest wine judge Courtney Casey samples a collection of local wines at the 37th annual Michigan Wine Competition at MSU.
Credit WKAR/Kevin Lavery

As the farmed cherry harvest in Michigan is finishing up, viticulturists are preparing to collect grapes in a couple of weeks. Michigan’s wine industry is in a state of steady growth. 

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Arts & Culture
12:34 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

EL considers special fee to foster public art

East Lansing boasts of abundant public art, like 'Cassiopeia' on Grand River Avenue.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

The city of East Lansing bills itself as the "City of the Arts." City officials are considering a measure that some say could strengthen that image. On Wednesday, the city council is expected to take up a proposal dubbed the "Percent for Art."

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Arts & Culture
2:57 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Book Review: Christopher Moore's 'The Serpent of Venice'

Moore takes on rewriting Shakespeare in his new novel 'The Serpent of Venice.'
Credit www.chrismoore.com

“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.” While some would take this quote from Shakespeare as merely insightful into human nature, author Christopher Moore takes it as gospel. Moore’s character named Pocket turns out is the very same fool from the great Bard’s “King Lear.” And this fool is the wisest person in any throne room.

Pocket first appeared in Christopher Moore’s wonderful satire “Fool,” reinventing the classic Shakespeare tragedy from the perspective of this intrepid character. In that novel, Pocket is the mastermind for the undoing of King Lear and his two wicked daughters.

Now Pocket has returned in a new book, “The Serpent of Venice.” In this comedy adventure Pocket is stuck in Venice, and it begins with him trapped in a cellar preparing to experience a slow and horrible death. From there the story grows to include mermaids, a best friend named Othello, a merchant named Shylock and a villain named Iago, who really doesn’t have a chance against a brain like Pocket’s.

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Arts & Culture
2:24 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Novel: Murder on the MSU campus

McGiveron says the project took two years of diligent writing to complete.
Credit www.rafeeqmcgiveron.com

Rafeeq McGiveron is not just a counselor at Lansing Community College, he is also the author of new book about a murder set on the MSU campus titled "Student Body."

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Arts & Culture
12:36 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

RoadBelly offers colorful coverage of Michigan food and drink

The cover of RoadBelly Magazine's fourth edition.
Credit roadbelly.com

The passions of farming, cooking, brewing and much more are all a part of RoadBelly Magazine. The Grand Rapids based publication is about to enter its second year as it expands its scope beyond western Michigan.

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Arts & Culture
12:53 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Tilted Axes to shred Detroit

Credit Courtesy of Patrick Grant

Detroit-area native, composer and musician Patrick Grant has created seasonal musical celebrations in his adopted home of New York City. His event titled "Tilted Axes" rung in the winter equinox of 2012 with dozens of electric guitarists hooking portable amplifiers to their belts and walking the streets of Manhattan to observe winter's arrival.

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