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Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

Some of you may not remember much from the calculus courses you took in high school or college.

But there are other uses for the word "calculus," and they don't involve integrals or derivatives. 

A listener named Jerry recently wrote to us with a question about one such use:

"When and how did the mathematical term 'calculus' come to refer to political thinking?"


Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

This week, Cheers! is out of the studio and on the road. We visited Reserve Wine & Food to learn about a new addition to its cocktail menu.

Rob Hanks named it the “Lovers’ Quarrel” because he and fellow bartender Megan Knapp had a spat about whether to add a vodka cocktail. Some bartenders are not fond of vodka because it brings no flavor to the drink, just alcohol.

“(I) fought her tooth and nail,” Hanks said, adding, “Then I got bored one night, started using some stuff left over in the kitchen and here we are.”

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.

Dennis Potter holding up a fish, standing in the Au Sable River
Courtesy: Dennis Potter

  

Dennis Potter is still doing what he discovered he loved in 1977. He ties flies for fly fishing. He says he still remembers tying his first one.

“To take that fly that I tied – I can show you within six inches on a log where I caught my first trout on the Au Sable River almost 40 years ago,” Potter said.

Dennis Potter was hooked.

He took a fly-tying class, but he says his real education came from being fortunate enough to know a lot of good fly tyers.

He studied their patterns and techniques. He also studied the insects fish prey upon.

a pair of headphones
chrisjtaylor.ca / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

West Michigan is turning out many talented artists and many styles of music these days.

Editor and publisher John Sinkevics has been covering West Michigan’s music scene on his Local Spins website to share music he felt wasn’t getting covered enough by local publications.  

Wayne State University Press, 2016

  

Michael Delp’s newest collection of poems, "Lying in the River’s Dark Bed", reads like a surreal, post-apocalyptic novel-in-verse.  The characters who narrate the collection, the Dead Man and the Mad Angler, serve Delp’s themes of ecological awareness, spiritual darkness, and political anger well. 

Last week on That's What They Say, we had so much fun talking about "factoids" we thought we'd answer another fact-related question this week.

A couple weeks ago, English professor Anne Curzan gave a talk at Glacier Hills Senior Living Community in Ann Arbor. Following the talk, a woman asked a question  Curzan had never considered.

She wanted to know, "Why is everyone now talking about the fact of the matter? Why can't they just talk about facts?"

Good question. 


Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Four years ago Imbibe Magazine and the makers of the liqueur, Campari, started Negroni Week. This year it runs from June 5-11. Many cocktail bars will offer a Negroni (Campari, gin, vermouth; recipe here) and give part of the proceeds to a charity.

Dzanc Books, 2017

"Poetry is good food."

That's the lesson award-winning writer Peter Markus has been teaching to kids in Detroit for years.

He taught creative writing in the Detroit Public Schools and he is the senior writer with the InsideOut Literary Arts Project, which places writers in public schools to hold creative writing workshops.

The Detroit Repertory Theatre is wrapping up its 60th year with a production of "Countdown to the Happy Day" by Thomas W Stephens
EncoreMichigan.com

As part of our ongoing series Theater Talk,  David Kiley from Encore Michigan joined Stateside for a look at what's on stage from professional theater companies around Michigan right now.

Mark Lavengood
John Hanson

There's an irresistible energy and life to bluegrass music.

The non-stop rhythms of the banjo, mandolin, fiddle and bass, plus the vocal harmonies that make this music so rich, can make just about anyone want to jump up and dance.

Unless you've managed to avoid all forms of media this year, you're probably well aware of the ongoing debate over what constitutes a fact.

Frankly, we have no desire to open up that powder keg. However, we thought this would be a good time to talk about "factoids."

If someone were to ask you for an example of a factoid, what would you say? Many of us would probably start rattling off parallels between Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy or pull up a Buzzfeed list or some other collection of random, interesting facts.

Here's an interesting factoid. The word "factoid" used to mean something else.


The University of North Carolina Press, 2001

When looking at 20th century history in Detroit, there’s been a lot written about cars and labor, specifically men who were hired.

There’s been a lot less written about women, and even less about African-American women in Detroit.

drawing of a bird
Tom Pohrt, "The Bird-while" reprinted with permission of Wayne State University Press

Keith Taylor is a naturalist as well as a poet. Every summer, he spends several weeks at the University of Michigan’s Biological Station.

The poems in his newest collection contain a close, almost scientific, attention to detail. This is a collection that delves into the truth of beauty, evanescence and life through communion with the natural world.

international space station
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center Follow / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

School kids in the 1960s thought it was super cool if they could watch a space shuttle launch on one a TV rolled into their classroom on a cart.

But today, school kids do a lot more than just watch a shuttle launch. They can play an actual role in research being done aboard the International Space Station from their own classroom.

It’s all because of a Michigan-based program called Orion’s Quest.

There's nothing like a brand new car.

They're clean and shiny. The seats are free from stains and potato chip crumbs. The carpet isn't caked with dirt or piled high with fast food bags. And of course, there's that great smell.

Unfortunately, the newness wears off. This reality of car ownership will never feel more harsh than the first time you walk outside and find a ding in  one of your formerly pristine doors.

The thing you have to remember is that "ding" used to be a much more violent action than it is today.


charles mcgee
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Painter Charles McGee is a Detroit icon whose art can be seen everywhere from the Detroit Institute of Art to the People Mover's Broadway station. 

His latest work is a mural called “Unity” that is being painted on a new redevelopment by Bedrock, one of Dan Gilbert’s companies.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

The Bullshot just might be the most popular drink to ever come out of Detroit. In the 1950s, it was even more popular than the Last Word from the Detroit Athletic Club or the Hummer from the Bayview Yacht Club.

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.

Lizzy Shell is a newcomer to Michigan’s music scene. 

The singer/songwriter has roots in Ypsilanti, but grew up in Tempe, Arizona.  Now, she's back in Michigan and out with her debut album Seed.

In the interview Shell talks about her faith, struggling with depression and dropping out of college. For Shell, healing came through writing and making music.  

Archives of Michigan

 


 

May 18 marks the 90th anniversary of largest school massacre in U.S. history. On that day in 1927, in Bath, Michigan, 38 elementary school children and six adults were killed and nearly 60 others were injured. Andrew Philip Kehoe had packed 100 pounds of dynamite and blown up half of a school. 

Michigan Opera Theatre will present Cyrano de Bergerac with music by David DiChiera and a libretto by Bernard Uzan, after Edmond Rostand’s play, from May 13 through May 21.
EncoreMichigan.com

There are plenty of shows to see this time of year from professional theater companies across the state. David Kiley from Encore Michigan joined Stateside to talk about a few of the highlights.  

States of Motion - Stories by Laura Hulthen Thomas
Wayne State University Press, 2017

Thomas generously gives us the whole messy life. This is deeply satisfying, but you have to pay attention.

-erin / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

 


The Flint Institute of Arts has been a center for arts and culture in Flint since it was established nearly 90 years ago, in 1928.

It's the second-largest art museum in Michigan and one of the biggest art museum schools in the nation. Today, the FIA is still growing and evolving.

A listener recently wrote to us with a seasonably appropriate question. Tom from Grand Rapids asks:

"I feel really passionate about supporting farmers and eating locally grown produce. 

Stateside 5.12.2017

May 12, 2017

Today, a Grand Rapids woman encourages people struggling with mental health issues to get out and run. And, the QLINE streetcar in Detroit officially launched service today. We hear why this "sleek, modern streetcar" could be the first step toward improving transit in Detroit.

Stephen Edwards with his mother, Rosalie Edwards, in 1980.
Harlan Underhill / RequiemForMyMother.com

Ann Arbor native and Hollywood composer Stephen Edwards owes his successful career of creating scores for movies and TV to his mother, Rosalie Edwards. She was a well-schooled musician trained at the University of Michigan, so Stephen was immersed in music from a very young age.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

This week, Artisans of Michigan stops in southwest Detroit, at the Diseños Ornamental Iron company.

In the shop, people are welding fences, bending, hammering orange hot – you know, even hotter than red hot – lengths of steel into ornamental scrolls. Others are grinding down welds, smoothing it out to make it look good, and prepping the sculpted steel for powder coating.

Pegasus Books, 2016

In Lorraine Boissoneault’s book, The Last Voyageurs, the author immerses the reader into the 1977 reenactment of La Salle’s expedition and the perils of the Great Lakes.

Reid Lewis, a French teacher from Elgin, Illinois conceived of the modern odyssey. He wanted to prove that young men could live under the same primitive conditions as the 17th century voyageurs. Starting in Montreal, six adults and sixteen teenagers paddled 3,300 miles down to the mouth of the Mississippi River.

Lake Michigan has a way of conjuring up days gone by

May 10, 2017
Tamar Charney / NPR One

Lake Michigan is a giant time capsule. It swallows stuff up and spits it back out somewhere down the line, both in time and place.

All sorts of things get pushed up on the beach by waves in summer and by the freezing and thawing of ice in the winter. When the snow melts in spring, there aren’t that many people combing through the odds and ends in search of lost treasure or even just cleaning up the trash. That means it's easier to see how Lake Michigan is its own special sort of time capsule coughing up treasures up and down the shore.

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