Arts & Culture

Rob Edelman: Stallone

Feb 15, 2016

If there is one sure thing at the upcoming Academy Awards, it is that Sylvester Stallone will walk off with the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his performance in CREED. In the film, he revisits the character that made him a star: Rocky Balboa. In CREED, Rocky is the ex-heavyweight champ who trains and mentors the son of Apollo Creed, his deceased friend and ex-rival.

Any Questions #233

Feb 12, 2016

 

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel make that hotline bling.

Rogovoy Report For February 12, 2016

Feb 12, 2016

The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include Angelique Kidjo and Richard Nonas at MASS MoCA; reggae legends at the Colonial in Pittsfield; jazz and 10-minute plays in downtown Pittsfield; more jazz at Spencertown Academy; Georgia O’Keefe at Norman Rockwell Museum, and much much more…

  Ally Sheedy, a highly accomplished actress perhaps best known for her roles in The Breakfast Club, War Games and Short Circuit, is directing an amazing one-woman performance based on the 2015 award winning memoir, Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom: My Story of the 1965 Selma Voting Rights March by Lynda Blackmon Lowery.

The performance will take place at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 13th at M.C. Smith Intermediate School in Hudson, NY. It will feature the Hudson High School Choir, who will open the event by performing songs from the Civil Rights era.

The story recounts the experiences of a young Lowery growing up in Selma, Alabama during the height of the Civil Rights Movement. Lowery was jailed nine times before her 15th birthday as a result of her participation in marches for voting rights. The show stars actress Damaras Obi. Damaras and Ally Sheedy join us in studio this morning and Lynda Blackmon Lowery joins us via phone from NYC.

  

  Shawn Stone joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

  The 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival returns to downtown Pittsfield for the fifth year from February 11-21, 2016, and features music, theatre, dance, film, visual art, spoken word, comedy and more.

Barrington Stage Company, the award-winning theatre in Downtown Pittsfield, MA, will present 10-minute plays for the 5th Annual 10X10 New Play Festival, part of the 2016 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival.

Here to tell us more are Barrington Stage Artistic Director Julianne Boyd and Pittsfield's Director of Cultural Development Jen Glockner.

  The Proctors' Key Private Bank Broadway Series has been unveiled. The season includes An American in Paris, The Sound of Music and Cabaret among six touring musicals. Capital Rep's slate of original productions will consist of five shows, from a tribute to Janis Joplin to an adaptation of Homer's Iliad.

In another first, an offering on Capital Rep's season, Beautiful — The Carole King Musical, will be presented at Proctors and will be a touring show, not an original production mounted by Capital Rep. Subscribers to either theater will have the option of adding tickets to the touring production of Wicked, returning to Proctors for two weeks in March 2017.

There is a lot going on and we welcome CEO Philip Morris to tell us more.

Nate Wooley At EMPAC

Feb 9, 2016

  Trumpeter Nate Wooley will be performing a new composition “For Kenneth Gaburo” on Feb. 12 at the the Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (110 8th St., Troy). The show begins at 8 p.m.

Wooley is known for “extended” trumpet techniques that allow him to access a larger scope of sounds. For this project, he will be vocalizing texts written by Kenneth Gaburo through his instrument.

Nate Wooley joins us along with EMPAC’s Music Curator Argeo Ascani.

Rob Edelman: Oscar Frontrunners

Feb 8, 2016

Of the eight Best Picture Academy Award nominees, the two that are the frontrunners are THE REVENANT and SPOTLIGHT. Both films are well worth seeing-- and contemplating.

Muppeteers and Big Bird
http://www.iambigbird.com/

  The Northampton Arts Council presents a special screening of I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story on Friday February 12th at the Academy of Music Theatre in Northampton.

The film will be followed by a Q&A session at which Mr. Spinney, his wife Debra and a very special guest will be discussing their journey and answering questions.

The documentary chronicles the life of Caroll Spinney, the man who has been Sesame Street's Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch since 1969. For over 4 decades, Caroll's characters have been cherished by generations of children. At 81 years old, the tenacious and enthusiastic performer has no intention of slowing down.

Caroll Spinney joins us this morning.

Any Questions #232

Feb 5, 2016

Is your spider-sense tingling? It's time again for WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel.

Bob Goepfert Reviews "Naked Influence"

Feb 5, 2016

“Naked Influence,” a play being given its world premiere by Capital Repertory Theatre in Albany, is one of those works that might be unfairly be overlooked or even dismissed by the public.  

  Molly Ringwald’s Twitter Bio line reads: actress, writer, singer, mother, your former teen-age crush. Indeed, I will admit, I had a crush on Molly Ringwald in the mid 1980’s when she starred in the John Hughes classic films Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club. We were both teenagers then. In fact, we are the same age. Yes, she knows her fan base.

A lot of that fan base will, no doubt, be getting together this Saturday night at Proctors Theatre in Schenectady for the event: Molly Ringwald Revisits the Club - The 30th Anniversary Screening of The Breakfast Club. She will be part of an on-stage discussion and Q&A following the movie.

The Breakfast Club is known as the “quintessential 1980s film” and is considered one of the best films of the decade. The film was ranked #1 on Entertainment Weekly’s list of the 50 Best High School Movies. Molly Ringwald was ranked #1 on VH-1’s 100 Greatest Teen Stars. And to prove my job doesn’t get much cooler than this: we welcome Molly Ringwald to The RT this morning.

Across the decades, so many films of different genres pit the good guys against the bad guys. The good guys are the stalwart heroes: the town sheriff in a western, for example, or the determined cop in a crime film. The bad guys are the villains: the ruthless and soulless killer, the greedy robber, the mad scientist intent on world domination. If these films are well-made, well-written, and well-acted, they work as first-rate entertainment. 

Any Questions #231

Jan 29, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are two of a kind, but their show this week comes in threes.

The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include a rising star in the comedy world, an acclaimed pianist performing a free solo concert, the kickoff of a new jazz series, and a longstanding favorite of the folk-roots jam scene.

  A dancer’s past. A woman’s future. The seductive and lucrative world of strip clubs sets the stage for Naked Influence, a tale about a charismatic exotic dancer who finds herself engulfed in a doomed relationship with a congressman.

The show opened at Capital Repertory Theatre in downtown Albany and runs through February 14th.

The favorite of last year’s NEXT ACT! New Play Summit 3, Naked Influence showcases author Suzanne Bradbeer’s intelligence in examining contemporary stories ripped from the headlines.

Robert Newman plays Dennis, a congressman with a heart of stone. Newman is familiar from a 28-year run as Joshua Lewis on the longest running program in broadcast history, Guiding Light. A two-time Daytime Emmy Award nominee, Newman recently guest starred on Homeland, Criminal Minds, NCIS, and Law and Order: SVU. He has an extensive off-Broadway and regional theatre resume.

  In 2013, The New Black Fest in New York City commissioned six very diverse playwrights to write 10-minute plays on the topic of Trayvon Martin, race and/or privilege. This commission resulted in a collection of one-acts titled Facing our Truth which continue to be presented around the country, often around February 5th, Trayvon Martin’s birthday. Facing Our Truth's purpose is to spark serious discussion in our collective communities around these urgent issues.

Multicultural BRIDGE, WAM Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Group and Yvette “Jamuna” Sirker are joining together to present a reading of Facing Our Truth on Saturday, February 6 at 7:30PM at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA with a moderated panel and community discussion to follow.

Here to tell us more are Kristen van Ginhoven, Artistic Director of WAM Theatre, and Gwendolyn Hampton-VanSant, CEO and Founding Director of Multicultural BRIDGE.

  Shawn Stone, formerly the Arts Editor of the late Metroland, returns to our show after a brief absence to tell us about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region. 

  The Hyde Collection in Glens Falls, NY opened two new exhibitions this month, Norman Rockwell in the 1960s, and 60 from the 60s: Selections from the George Eastman Museum.

The Rockwell show features 21 illustrations and original magazine covers by Rockwell, the Eastman show features photographs – both explore the turbulent decade that marked the generational changes in America during the 1960s.

Erin Coe is the Director of The Hyde Collection.

Art Photograph - The Barn by Gregory Crewdson
Gregory Crewdson

  Photographer Gregory Crewdson’s career has spanned three decades. His work has been exhibited widely in the United States and Europe and is included in many public collections, including The Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Brooklyn Museum, The Los Angeles County Museum and The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Crewdson’s newest body of work entitled, Cathedral of the Pines, will premiere at Gagosian Gallery in New York City this Thursday - January 28th.

Comprised of 31 digital pigment prints, this series was made during three productions in and around the rural town of Becket, Massachusetts. 

Any Questions #230

Jan 22, 2016
DJ Jazzy Jeff
DJ Jazzy Jeff

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch sides for a quiz that'll make you think about "Summertime."

Rogovoy Report For January 22, 2016

Jan 22, 2016

This weekend’s cultural highlights in our region include a couple of roots music concerts, an opera workshop, a regional premiere, and a reading by one of my favorite authors.

    In this week's Classical Music According to Yehuda, Alan Chartock and Yehuda Hanani continue their discussion about Igor Stravinsky, hearing a selection from Les Noces.

  The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College is celebrating its Fifteenth Anniversary year with a Spring Opening Celebration on Saturday, February 6th, featuring three new exhibitions and a dialogue about the work and legacy of the artist Alma Thomas, and a concert on Thursday, February 18, featuring the acclaimed Bang on a Can All-Stars in a performance that will include a new work commissioned by Jack Shear and the Tang for the occasion.

The shows opening on 2/6 are Alma Thomas, Borrowed Light: Selections from the Jack Shear Gift, and Elevator Music 30: Critter & Guitari.

Ian Berry is the Dayton Director at The Tang and he joins us now. 

  This Friday, the Dogs of Desire, the Albany Symphony’s rock-inspired new-music ensemble, and Music Director David Alan Miller will perform a concert of American composer David Mallamud’s most successful commissions for the ensemble over the past ten years, including his homage to Parisian music hall culture, Last Call at the Folies Bergere, the Glam-Metal Opera Lizardman, Victorian Parlor Songs, a salsa-drenched Latin Daytime Soap “Opera,” and an Irish-inspired piece Immram. The ensemble will also record the music.

Both the public concert and private recording session will take place at Skidmore College’s Zankel Hall in Saratoga Springs, NY with several notable vocalists participating. The public concert is taking place this Friday, January 22, 2016 at 8:00pm.

Kaitlyn Davidson
Credit: Robert Mannis

  Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella is the Tony Award-winning musical from the creators of South Pacific and The Sound of Music that's delighting audiences with its surprisingly contemporary take on the classic tale. This lush production features an incredible orchestra, jaw-dropping transformations and all the moments you love—the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball and more. The show is at Proctors in Schenectady, NY this week.

The show boasts Rodgers and Hammerstein's most beloved songs, including "In My Own Little Corner," "Impossible/It's Possible" and "Ten Minutes Ago."

Kaitlyn Davidson plays Ella in the musical on the road with Cinderella where she was also part of the Broadway cast. She also starred in Broadway’s Nice Work If You Can Get It and the national tour of White Christmas.

LATHAM – There are few things in theater more satisfying than a mystery.  The good ones keep you engrossed as you try to match wits with the playwright as each new twist and turn leads you down a confusing labyrinth of mystery.   The very best usually have plenty of humor to keep things light.

Rob Edelman: Best Performances

Jan 18, 2016

Oscar nomination or no Oscar nomination, the vast majority of the high-profile performances-- both leading and supporting-- of the recently concluded year were given by actors who have won nominations and statuettes in previous years. This list includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Cate Blanchett, Helen Mirren, Kate Winslet, Saoirse Ronan, Johnny Depp, Michael Fassbender, Rooney Mara, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Shannon, Mark Ruffalo, Eddie Redmayne...and Jane Fonda...and Sylvester Stallone. However, in 2015, a host of non-Oscared performers deservedly earned kudos for their screen work. Some are celluloid novices, while others have been around for decades. 

Any Questions #229

Jan 15, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel stick to the rules this week.

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