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Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

It’s a two for one as we visit Gemini Handmade in downtown Grand Rapids as part of our Artisans of Michigan series.

The boutique-studio-workshop is home to two businesses. Jacob Vroon’s company is Harbinger Leather Design. Elyse Welcher owns Littlewings Designs.

The two artisans are married.

Stateside 8.16.2018

Aug 16, 2018

Today on Stateside, many were surprised when Aretha Franklin took over for Luciano Pavarotti at the 1998 Grammys — but not her Detroit opera teacher Mary Callaghan Lynch. Plus, a conversation with one of the scientists helping NASA launch a mission to "touch the sun." 

To hear individual conversations, click here or see below: 

Aretha Franklin is embraced by her opera coach of more than 20 years, Mary Callaghan Lynch.
Courtesy of Mary Callaghan Lynch

The world lost the “Queen of Soul” this morning. Aretha Franklin, 76, passed away from pancreatic cancer at her home in Detroit.

Franklin's voice helped create hits like “Respect,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” and “I Say a Little Prayer.” She was the first woman ever inducted into the national Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

While she is most well-known for her gospel and soul recordings, Franklin’s voice and talent also extended to opera.

Aretha Franklin sings "My Country Tis of Thee" at Barack Obama's 2009 inauguration.
WikiCommons

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, has died. She was 76.

Reports of Franklin's declining health began early Monday, with family members confirming that the singer was gravely ill and hospitalized in Detroit.

cover of Rosie: a Detroit herstory
Wayne State University Press

A new children’s book from two Metro Detroit women uses the iconic image of “Rosie the Riveter” to teach kids about the roles that women and the city of Detroit played in winning World War II.

Ruby red theater curtains with lights
Vitor Torres / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

It’s time for another edition of Theater Talk with David Kiley, editor-in-chief of Encore MichiganKiley joined Stateside to preview and review plays opening around Michigan this month.

Kiley says the end of summer always seems to go too fast. Soon kids will be heading back to school, and families will be packing away their beach chairs.

Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Many cultures use storytelling as a way to pass down their history and heritage.

Native American cultures are known for their rich oral traditions. So here's one to consider. 

Have you heard of the term counting coup?

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A new federal grant will help Detroit expand the historic district around the site of an iconic civil rights battle.

That battle took place in 1925, when African-American doctor Ossian Sweet’s family moved into a new home on Garland Street on Detroit’s east side. At the time, it was an all-white neighborhood.

Derek Smith
Sarah Leeson / Michigan Radio

When you think of a mandolin, you may think of Europe during the Renaissance or bluegrass music from the South. But it turns out the mandolin actually has roots right here in Michigan.

This past weekend, mandolin enthusiasts descended on Marshall, Michigan for the Marshall Mandolin Summit. Visitors spent the weekend sharing their love for the instrument and learning under world-renowned mandolin players like Don Julin, author of Mandolin for Dummiesand Mike Marshall (no relation to the town).

Coaches, referees and gym teachers are probably better authorities than we are, but we've got a feeling that whistles probably aren't very clean.

Think about it. It's a small, tight device that you force your hot, moist breath through to produce a sound. That doesn't sound like the foundation for a sterile environment, does it?  

statue of Robert E. Lee atop a horse
Public Domain

One year after the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, another white nationalist rally will be held this weekend in Washington D.C.

Filmmaker Deeyah Khan was at the Charlottesville rally and walked with the white nationalists. She was embedded with the National Socialist Movement – neo-Nazis – while filming portions of her documentary, White Right: Meeting the Enemy, which is now available on Netflix.

Detroit Athletic Club
Michael Hodges

The Detroit skyline and the University of Michigan would not be the same if it weren’t for the work of one of Detroit’s most famous architects, Albert Kahn. Kahn also played a large role in the development of the Soviet Union in the early twentieth century.

Michael Hodges, a fine arts writer for the Detroit News, joined Stateside to discuss his new book, Building the Modern World: Albert Kahn in Detroit.

Interlochen Center for the Arts

At the Library of Congress later this month, five teenagers from across the country will be honored as National Student Poets.

Among those five is Darius Atefat-Peckham, a senior at Interlochen Arts Academy.

James Sofranko dancing
Erik Tomasson

James Sofranko has spent decades dancing on stages from Florida to New York to San Francisco.

After growing up in Cincinnati, he went on to study at Juliard. He's trained with dance legends, some of them students of the iconic dancer and coreographer Martha Graham.

Now, after 18 years with the San Francisco Ballet, James is returning to the Midwest. He officially began his position as artistic director with the Grand Rapids Ballet on July 1.

A screenshot from the Get Up North app with a car driving on a snowy road, avoiding a deer and a pothole
Joey Stinson

Some video games take you to outer space. Others take you back in time.

Now there's an app that keeps you right here in Michigan, doing something we all know all too well: getting ourselves up North while avoiding a seemingly infinite number of potholes. 

Diners at a table
Courtesy of Valaurian Waller / https://www.picvwdetroit.com/

From Yemeni lamb to Polish perogies, metro Detroit is home to a rich variety of international cuisines. But there's one cuisine that's a little harder to find here in Michigan: Filipino food.

Dorothy Hernandez is trying to change that with Sarap Detroit. The pop-up restaurant holds events all around metro Detroit, where diners can experience Filipino-inspired farm-to-table food.

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.

Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Stateside returns with another campfire story told by Jenifer Strauss, a professional storyteller based in Traverse City.

Jen spent her summers attending Tamarack Camps, a Jewish summer camp run by the Fresh Air Society in Bloomfield Hills. It was during these adolescent years when she first heard the urban legend, “Bloody Mary.”

Some things in English seem intuitive. Take the verbs "proceed" and "precede," for example. They sound so similar, they must be etymologically related, right? 

A listener named Ron says he was helping his fifth grader study for a spelling test when they came across "precede" and "proceed."

"He struggled with why two nearly identical words are spelled so differently," Ron says. "I thought I could provide him with a simple explanation of their origin -- I cannot."

Don't worry Ron. That's why we're here.

jackson mine in negaunee
Andrew Jameson / Wikimedia Commons http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

This weekend, the town of Negaunee in Michigan's Upper Peninsula will be filled with the sound of wheezing bellows and ringing hammers hitting anvils.

The Michigan Iron Industry Museum is holding its Artisans at the Forge festival, which includes blacksmiths and other craftspeople.

quilt from project
Courtesy of Migrant Quilt Project

An Arizona quiltmaker is exploring one of the most contentious issues in the U.S. today: immigration.

Her traveling exhibition, “Beyond the Border Wall: The Migrant Quilt Project,” will open next week in Grand Haven’s Loutit District Library. 

Cheers! We've got a honey of a Michigan cocktail for you.

The website for Bløm Meadworks suggests, “…if the word ‘mead’ automatically conjures a drinking hall filled with Vikings for you, think of ours as its friendly, approachable descendants, without the pillage and plunder.”

Cute.

But we’re taking the Vikings to Mexico.

Traverse City Film Festival theater and banner
Michigan Municipal League / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

The motto of the Traverse City Film Festival gets right to the point: "One Great Movie Can Change You." 

The 14th annual festival is underway now and runs through Sunday, August 5. 

Meg Weichman, creative director of the Traverse City Film Festival, joined Stateside to tell us a little bit about the most exciting films in this year's lineup. 

Lollygagging, screwing around, goofing off – whatever you call it, we can all agree there a lot of ways to talk about wasting time in English. 

Kalen, who previously asked us about "druthers," says "I tell my kids all the time to not lollygag, doodle or dilly dally. They are fun words, to be sure, but where do they come from?"

They are most definitely fun words. But watch out for "lollygag." It seems innocent at first, but then things get kind of racy.

Stateside 7.26.2018

Jul 26, 2018

Today on Stateside, nearly all the migrant children separated from their parents at the southern border and brought to Michigan have been reunited with their families. Plus, a festival in Michigan's Thumb that celebrates America's most beloved lunchmeat.

To listen to individual interviews, click here or see below: 

Headshot of Katie Else in the woods
Courtesy of Katie Else

With plaintive, lovely songs, Katie Else brings us the shared history between Ireland and Michigan's Beaver Island.

Stateside 7.25.2018

Jul 25, 2018

On today's Stateside, Nassar survivors' reaction to interim MSU president John Engler's testimony in front of Congress. Plus, why Mustard's Retreat is still "defiantly optimistic" after decades of playing folk music.

To hear individual interviews, click here or see below: 

Little, Brown and Company

Megan Abbott has been writing crime fiction for more than a decade. With two major TV adaptations in the works, many in the industry are calling Abbott Hollywood’s next big novelist. Abbott grew up in the Detroit area before graduating from the University of Michigan and heading to New York University for her Ph.D in English and American Literature.

Mustard's Retreat
Facebook.com

 

For more than 40 years, Mustard's Retreat has been carrying the banner of folk music. The group's newest album Make Your Own Luck is out now. 

Band-members Libby Glover, Michael Hough, and David Tamulevich joined Stateside’s Cynthia Canty to talk about their long career in folk and the group's Defiantly Hopeful tour. 

Jack at Wikipedia / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

 

It’s time for another edition of Theater Talk with David Kiley, editor-in-chief of Encore MichiganKiley joined Stateside to preview and review plays opening around Michigan this month.

 

 

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