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arts and culture

betty ford dancing with husband
Gerald R. Ford Museum

 


Today on Stateside, what does Governor Rick Snyder's agreement with Enbridge Energy actually mean for the future of the Line 5 pipeline? Plus, a conversation with the author of a new book on First Lady Betty Ford's legacy.

Bird electric scooter
April Van Buren / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, why the auto industry is breathing "a sigh of relief" after President Trump announced the trilateral trade deal that will replace NAFTA. Plus, an Oscoda resident shares his experience of being affected by PFAS contamination, kicking off Michigan Radio's week-long series on contamination by the chemicals across the state.    

author steve hamilton
Franco Vogt / Courtesy of Steve Hamilton

 


This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Alex McKnight mystery series, and author Steve Hamilton is still turning out new books.

His most recent, the 11th in the series, is Dead Man Running

Hamilton joined Stateside’s Cynthia Canty to discuss this new novel and his surprising journey to becoming an award-winning writer.

Courtesty artist Sheefy McFly

Michigan has gotten plenty of mileage out of Tim Allen's voice spreading the word about Pure Michigan as a travel destination.

Now, the talents of a Detroit artist will lure Chicagoans to come visit Michigan's big cities.

Brotha James

This month’s check-in with Local Spins editor and publisher, John Sinkevics, takes a look at musicians plying their trade in the northern climes of the Lower Peninsula.

Sinkevics joined Stateside to highlight new work by Jake Allen, Brotha James, and Joshua Davis.

1969 Ann Arbor Blues Festival
Baron Wolman

This summer begins a year-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Ann Arbor Blues Festival. The festivities kick off with a photo exhibit at the Ann Arbor Art Fair next week. The photos feature behind-the-scenes images from the 1969-1970 festivals.

A group of Sae Jong Campers
Sae Jong Camp

 


Summer camp means many things to campers, outdoor fun or just a chance to get away from parents and siblings.

For kids who come to Sae Jong Camp on Higgins Lake, it is also chance to be with others who share their heritage.

Sae Jong Camp is the nation's oldest continuously running Korean-American overnight summer camp.

It's held each year at Camp Westminster in Roscommon drawing campers from all around the country. This year marks the 44th anniversary of Sae Jong Camp.

painting of man on table with doctors above him
Mario Moore / Courtesy of David Klein Gallery


Is it possible for a black man to rest in an institutionally oppressive society? 

That is the question Mario Moore wants to tackle in his art. 

Moore is mixed-medium artist and a Detroit native. He sat down with Stateside to discuss his new exhibition “Recovering” which opens this weekend at the David Kline Gallery in downtown Detroit. 

still from cartoon Big City Greens
© 2018 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved.

The Disney Channel has just rolled out a new animated kid series called Big City Greens.

Chris and Shane Houghton, brothers and co-creators of Big City Greens, grew up in Clinton County, Michigan in the small town of St. Johns.

The television show is about a family that moves from the countryside to the big city. The family’s trajectory is not unlike that of Chris and Shane, who moved from a small town in Michigan to the big metropolis that is Los Angeles.

Mercedes Mejia/Michigan Radio

“When I first go on stage I’m nervous, but as I go I feel exhilarated. I feel like I am the only one out there and that’s amazing.”

the band nessa
Nessa

Let’s talk about Celtic music. Nessa, a Southeast Michigan band, re-imagines the ballads and dance tunes of the old Celtic world, bringing in a wide range of musical styles.

The ensemble is led by Kelly McDermott, who plays the flute and sings. She joined Stateside to talk about her musical influences, Celtic fusion, and the release of her new EP, Travel Walk to Celtica, produced by Brian Bill.

Wikimedia Commons / Van Vechten Collection at Library of Congress

 

 

This time, David Kiley of Encore Michigan brings us an eclectic mix of shows from theaters across Michigan.

 

Listen above to hear Kiley’s previews of the following shows:

Sheila Y / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Tonight, silent French films from the early 20th century will play at the Max M. Fisher Music Center in Detroit as part of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s French Festival. But there’s a twist: the films won’t actually be silent. They will be accompanied by the live performance of original scores by the Andrew Alden Ensemble

Courtesy of Ice Dreams Sculptures

For most of us, working in subzero temperatures doesn’t sound like the dream job. But the cold doesn't seem to bother World Championship ice carver Tajana Raukar.

Raukar is the owner of Ice Dreams Sculptures in Plymouth. It's cold in her studio, and she's wearing full on winter gear. 

actors on stage
Lisa Gavan

 


Each time a show opened at the Ann Arbor Civic Theatre, Alexandra Berneis would send an email. As the theater's executive director, Berneis had a strong relationship with Jen McKee, the local critic at The Ann Arbor News. It was a symbiotic one: invitation, access, coverage, repeat.

Then one day in January 2016, she didn’t get an email back. The critic and other colleagues lost their jobs. Mainstream arts coverage in Ann Arbor was gone.

Michigan communities have been experiencing this with increasing frequency over several years. As the internet changed how people got their news, media entities shifted and consolidated, and arts communities across the state are feeling the loss.

actors in god of carnage on stage
Sean Carter Photography / Courtesy of the Purple Rose Theatre

Theater happenings around Michigan this week range from a sequel to the Phantom of the Opera to a show about systemic racism.

David Kiley of Encore Michigan joined Stateside to talk about those shows and more.

two people standing at a microphone
Courtesy of Relato:Detroit / Facebook

The Metro Detroit area is incredibly culturally diverse. The region is home to more than 30 languages, and in more than 600-thousand homes, a language other than English is spoken at the dinner table.

The group Relato:Detroit wants to bring those immigrant or bilingual speakers into the storytelling fold.

Drawing of the Islamic Riad, a shared courtyard that will join repaired homes & businesses
Courtesy Ghana ThinkTank's website

Take a Detroit problem. In this case, neighborhoods that have suffered neglect.

Tackle that problem with a solution from a Third World Country, in this case, Morocco.

That's what an innovative effort called the Ghana Think Tank has done. The result is being launched today in Detroit's North End Woodward Community.

Four poets stand behind a mic to record their spoken-word album.
Brianne Carpenter / Creative Youth Center

It's been a relentless news cycle this week, so here's a break for at least a few minutes from politics, national security and healthcare. We turned the mic over to some students way outside the beltway.

Mural painted on a wall
wilansky / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

 

In Detroit, there are all kinds of artists and art projects happening organically. But, the City of Detroit doesn’t really have a vehicle to encourage or develop an arts culture.

The uncertain future of the Affordable Care Act is likely influencing some of the health care rate increases.
Gage Skidmore / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Michigan arts and humanities funding may soon be taking a hit. 

President Trump's proposed budget calls for an end to the National Endowment for Humanities (NEH), one of the largest sources of funding for arts and humanities funds nationwide.

The endowment provides more than $1 million in funding every year to the state of Michigan. 

people at sculpture exhibit
Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

A collection of carved wooden dogs received the most votes in this year’s ArtPrize. James Mellick, a craftsman from Ohio, takes home $200,000 for Wounded Warrior Dogs.

According to the artists’ statement, Mellick hopes the installation at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel raises awareness of wounded veterans.

Courtesy of Huberty Massey / www.hubertmasseymurals.com

One of the world's most famous examples of frescoes is the Diego Rivera work at the Detroit Institute of Arts. They’re called the Detroit Industry murals.

In that same tradition, artist Hubert Massey is preparing to paint a large mural, 30 feet by 30 feet, in the fresco style for Detroit's Cobo Center.

In John Smolens’ riveting new novel, Wolf's Mouth, the action begins in 1944, in Camp Au Train, a lumber camp near Munising, Michigan. But it’s not a typical lumber camp. It’s a Prisoner Of War camp, one of the many in Michigan during World War II. 

The prisoners are mostly Germans, with a smattering of other nationalities.

But even in an American-run POW camp, the Nazis secretly hold the reins, meting out a cruel justice to anyone who disobeys Kommandant Vogel, a man known for vengeance and violence.  

Yet one Italian soldier, Francesco Verdi, dares to defy Vogel.  It’s a choice that will have repercussions for the rest of his life.  He also happens to be the narrator of Wolf's Mouth.

The "button wall" at the University of Chicago's 2008 Humanities Day
flickr user Quinn Dombrowski / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Early last year we announced on Stateside the Michigan Humanities Council's pick for the 2015-2016 Great Michigan Read: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel.

Mandel sat down with us in February 2015 to talk about her fantastic futuristic novel set in post-apocalyptic Michigan. 

Shelly Kasprzycki is the executive director of the Michigan Humanities Council. Of books chosen for the Great Michigan Read so far, she told us Station Eleven is "probably the all-time hit."

 

Michigan Bookmark is a series that features Michigan authors reviewing Michigan books.

Doug Coombe

Carey Gustafson spent hours in her bedroom as a kid, sketching images of rock stars and actors and her favorite pop culture characters. She especially loved drawing Pac-Man and The Monkees and E.T. and Rick Springfield.

Gustafson says back then, she did not have a well-developed sense of identity. But she did have a good sense of humor. Plus she loved rock-n-roll and pop culture, and found plenty of inspiration in music and books and art.

Slatkin is the music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
Leonard Slatkin

Leonard Slatkin will step down as Detroit Symphony Orchestra music director at the end of the 2017-2018 season.

That doesn't mean he'll be putting down his baton for good.

"Fearless. Fresh. Made in Detroit.”

That's the motto of the Detroit Public Theatre, whose mission is to produce theater with top writers, directors, and actors in Midtown Detroit's growing cultural district.

The Detroit Public Theatre's inaugural season begins Friday at the Max M. Fisher Music Center, home of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

Stateside's Cynthia Canty spoke with Courtney Burkett and Sarah Winkler, founding co-artistic directors. 

Are the arts a luxury or an economic necessity?

Oct 19, 2015
Melanie Goulish

The Next Idea

Most of us have a sense that the arts contribute to a community’s economic well-being. Measuring that feeling in real economic terms, however, is quite difficult.

We know that arts and culture enhance where we live, but when it comes to determining where to invest money for our state’s future, it’s not clear how the arts really add up.

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