Arts & Culture

Arts & Culture
10:00 am
Fri December 28, 2012

Detroit Library to catalog Coleman A. Young's papers

1989: Coleman Young stands atop the Riverfront Apartments
Wayne State University/(Free Press photo by Tony Spina)

DETROIT (AP) - The Detroit Public Library is preparing to organize and catalog the papers of late-Mayor Coleman A. Young.

The Detroit Free Press reports that the project will begin next month and take about two years to complete.

An $87,400 Council on Library and Information Resources grant will pay for the work. Young's communications with Detroit residents, departments, local, state and federal officials is held in 1,175 boxes.

Part-time archivists on the project plan to report interesting findings on online blogs.

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Arts & Culture
1:58 pm
Sun December 23, 2012

University of Michigan project to explore role of race in US

American Anthropological Association

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - The University of Michigan is embarking on an effort to explore the role of race in U.S. society.

The Ann Arbor school's "Understanding Race Project" is an ongoing initiative during the January to April semester. It's dedicated to public and academic discussion about scientific, historical, cultural and individual perspectives on race as a social construct.

There are nearly two-dozen exhibits and nearly 90 events planned. They will look at race from both national and global perspectives.

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Arts & Culture
12:07 pm
Sun December 23, 2012

Michigan man transforms vacant fire station into homeless shelter

Fire stations across the state are being left abandoned as fire departments shrink and consolidate. Now a man hopes to transform one of those vacant stations in Flint into a homeless shelter.

John Bone says he's transforming an eye sore into a place where up to 100 people in need can find a bed and a shower.

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Arts & Culture
11:54 am
Sun December 23, 2012

Michigan museum fighting feds to keep lighthouse lens

The Pointe Aux Barques lighthouse on Lake Huron
Pointe Aux Barques Lighthouse Society

PORT AUSTIN, Mich. (AP) - The operator of a museum in Michigan's Thumb wants to keep a rare 19th century lighthouse lens.

The federal government is suing Huron City Museums, saying it lacks approval to store and display an old lens that was used in the Pointe Aux Barques lighthouse on Lake Huron. The U.S. Coast Guard gave it to the city of Harbor Beach in 1970s under certain conditions.

Arts & Culture
4:58 pm
Fri December 21, 2012

A Michigan memorial procession for Sandy Hook

The memorial procession is scheduled for January 5th
kfjmiller Morgue File

Steve Major doesn’t have a lot of time for breakfast these days.

“I actually had two Reese’s Peanut cups and um, a Mountain Dew,” he laughs, a little bashfully. “I had to meet for an interview at 8 o’clock and I’ve pretty much been up and running around since 6:30 this morning.”

A former law enforcement official and firefighter, Major now runs an emergency vehicle company. Lately though, he’s busy organizing a Michigan memorial procession for the victims of the Connecticut school shooting.

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Arts & Culture
5:27 pm
Thu December 20, 2012

Stateside: Gifts For 20 recognizes those lost in Sandy Hook tragedy

This week's local hero, 11-year-old Noah Hudson-Peralta, started Gifts for 20 to honor the victims of the Sandy Hook shooting.

11-year-old Noah Hudson-Peralta wants to remember the young boys and girls who lost their lives in the Sandy Hook tragedy. 

He came up with the idea of Gifts For 20 in honor of the twenty children who passed away.

On Saturday, December 22nd, "Sandy Hook Day", Noah encourages everyone to give presents to disadvantaged children by donating to the Toys for Tots drive in their local area.

Listen to our interview with Noah and his father Ryan Hudson-Peralta above. 

Music
6:17 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Songs From Studio East: A classical revolution

Rick Robinson with CutTime and Classical Revolution Detroit.

Listen to the full interview above.

Rick Robinson is a bassist, arranger, composer and artistic director of Cut Time. John McLaughlin Williams is a violinist and Grammy award winning conductor.

Both musicians are part of Classical Revolution Detroit. Their mission is to take classical music to the people, whether in bars, clubs, or cafes, to demystify classical. The group will celebrate its second anniversary at The Majestic in Detroit Sunday December 16, from 7 to 10 pm. Go here for more information.

Here's a video of Rick and John performing a Beethoven Duo, in Studio East. Check back for more videos of the performance soon.

Arts & Culture
9:19 am
Thu December 13, 2012

From Gang Member To Hip-Hop Church Leader

Pastor Troy Evans of Edge Urban Fellowship in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Edge Urban Fellowship

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 9:03 am

Troy Evans preaches at Edge Urban Fellowship in a rundown Grand Rapids, Mich., neighborhood known for prostitution. Inside what looks like an abandoned office building are walls covered by graffiti. There are tattooed people wearing baseball caps and jeans. Three 20-year-old men holding mics get ready to bust out some elaborate dance moves.

It may seem like a hip-hop show, but it's actually church.

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Culture
2:00 pm
Sun December 9, 2012

“Priceless items” that belonged to former President Ford, Betty Ford, head to auction

A signed, color photo of Gerald Ford with George H. W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, and Richard Nixon
Courtesy photo Heritage Auctions

This week the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation is auctioning off a bunch of memorabilia and personal items that once belonged to the former president.

“This is a rare opportunity for people that want to have part of President Ford or Mrs. Ford’s legacy,” Joe Calvaruso said. He’s President of the Gerald R. Ford Foundation.

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Arts & Culture
6:01 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Stateside: Detroit's Tashmoo Biergarten offers European take on beer drinking

Tashmoo in Detroit is an open-air beer garden
tashmoodetroit.com

There is beer to be consumed outdoors in Detroit.

Michigan Radio's Ellen Kortesoja provided a sonic document of Detroit's Tashmoo Biergarten.

Listen to Kortesoja's piece in the podcast above.

Arts & Culture
4:35 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Stateside: Detroit firefighters documented in "BURN"

"BURN" opens in the Detroit area tomorrow at the AMC20 in Livonia and Forum30 in Sterling Heights
detroitfirefilm.org

Firefighter Walter Harris was killed in 2008 while attempting to put out a blazing abandoned building.

The headlines surrounding Harris’s death caught the attention of Tom Putnam and Brenna Sanchez.

Both filmmakers agreed a story deserved to be told about Harris and other Detroit firefighters.  

“Tom and I knew there was a story here that hadn’t been told about firefighters,” said Sanchez.

The story manifested into the new film, "BURN."

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Arts & Culture
4:17 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Efforts for Freeing Son Inspired Music at Mott

Photo of Amir Hekmati
(courtesy of FreeAmir.org)

Musical inspiration comes in a variety of ways.  For Dr. Mathew Packer, it came from the imprisoned son of a colleague at Mott Community College.

Amir Hekmati was taken prisoner in Iran – accused of being a spy after travelling there to visit his ailing grandmother.  His family is now working to get him freed.

Packer, a music professor at Mott, heard about the family’s efforts to free him and created a song called “I WILL FLY” which is being performed and recorded for sale to benefit the Hekmati family on Friday afternoon.

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Arts & Culture
4:46 pm
Wed December 5, 2012

Jazz great Dave Brubeck dies at age 91

Jazz legend Dave Brubeck at a concert in 1972.
Heinrich Klaffs flickr

In 1954, jazz went to college.

That's thanks to music legend Dave Brubeck.

He was looking for a way to bring jazz to a wider audience, and decided on a North American tour of colleges and universities.

One of those schools was the University of Michigan.

The tour resulted in the album Jazz Goes to College, with five of its seven tracks recorded in Ann Arbor. Here's one of the tracks recorded on the campus of the University of Michgian, The Song is You:

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Arts & Culture
10:07 am
Mon December 3, 2012

The past and present of Detroit's Packard Plant

The location of the Packard Plant in Detroit.
Google

In the roaring 1920s, workers at the sprawling Packard Plant churned out luxury cars for Americans willing to spend.

Today, the plant is the poster child for urban blight. This shell of America's industrial past is a haven for urban explorers, graffiti artists, metal scrappers, vandals... the list goes on.

This morning, the Detroit Free Press released a special report, The Packard Plant: Why It Has to Go.

As one resident who lives next to the plant puts it...

"Because right now, the building as it is, it represents the future. And it's nothing. So we need somebody to turn our nothing into something."

Check out this stunning video on the Packard Plant from the Freep.

Arts & Culture
4:16 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor Comes to Ann Arbor

Michigan Radio and the Ann Arbor Summer Festival will welcome America's favorite storyteller, Garrison Keillor, to Ann Arbor on Saturday, June 1, 2013, at 5:45 p.m. for a special live performance of A Prairie Home Companion. The show will take place at Hill Auditorium on the campus of the University of Michigan, as part of that historic venue’s 100th anniversary celebration.

The celebrated radio variety show regularly airs Saturdays at 6:00 PM on Michigan Radio, and is repeated at 12:00 PM on Sundays.

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Arts & Culture
3:35 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

EMU students take part in 'Hijab Day'

Participants at this year's Hijab Day gathering
Zaineb Al-Kalby Eastern Michigan University's Muslim Student Association

Forty Eastern Michigan University students spent a day this week dressed as Muslim women as part of "Hijab Day."

The hijab is a scarf that covers the head and neck and is worn by some women who practice Islam.

"Hijab Day" was started three years ago by EMU’s Muslim Student Association who hoped to spread awareness about Islam.

Group president Zaineb Al-Kalby helped participants put on the scarf she wears every day.

When the non-Muslim students looked in the mirror, she said they were surprised at their reflections.

"I really feel like they had that second of 'I'm actually in her shoes,'" she said.

EMU senior Emily Keyes, who was raised Catholic, participated in the event. She says she got mixed responses while wearing the hijab; some strangers looked away from her, while Muslim classmates told her they appreciated the gesture.

"I think it opened my mind to the way people perceive people that wear hijabs," she said.

After spending one day wearing the headscarves, the women met up to discuss their experiences and learn more about Islam's history.

-Elaine Ezekiel, Michigan Radio Newsroom

Arts & Culture
4:29 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Stateside: Michigan's shores documented in the Fresh Coast Project

Ed Wargin's Fresh Coast Project captures the Great Lakes in all their glowing beauty
Ed Wargin

Photographer Ed Wargin is enchanted by the Great Lakes; he endeavors to document all 10,000 miles of their shores with his Fresh Coast Project.

The project's aim is to celebrate the beauty of the Great Lakes through the ephemeral medium of film photography.

"I've realized we often look at the Great Lakes in parts and pieces. The goal of the project is to try to look at the Great Lakes as one story," said Wargin.

Wargin hopes his shots of gleaming sunsets will  inform people of the state's abundant resources and thereby promote their preservation.

Hear Wargin further discuss his Fresh Coast Project on today's podcast.

There are two ways you can podcast "Stateside with Cynthia Canty"

Arts & Culture
3:46 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Stateside: Dana Falconberry's "Leelanau" soundscapes

Dana Falconberry's music draws from the lush landscapes of the Leelanau Peninsula
Alicia Vega

Listening to Dana Falconberry's lush music, it becomes clear the artist draws inspiration from Michigan's western coast.

We spoke today with Falconberry about her latest record, "Leelanau," and the role that Michigan's landscapes play in her music.

"It's so beautiful up there, it's easy to be inspired by the land," said Falconberry.

With track titles like "Pictured Rocks" and "Sault Ste Marie," Falconberry's latest is in many ways a musical homage to a state beaming with beauty.

Listen to Falconberry's interview and music in our podcast.

There are two ways you can podcast "Stateside with Cynthia Canty"

Culture
5:06 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

Tradition of the “Christmas ship” lives on, 100 years after sinking

The U.S. Coast Guard has loaded 1,300 Christmas trees aboard the ice cutter Mackinaw for delivery to needy families in Chicago.

Captain Dave Truitt of the Christmas Ship committee in Chicago says selling cheap evergreen trees from the northern Michigan woods to families in Chicago was a tradition a century ago.

“People would come down and get telegraphs of what ships were coming. They would look to the horizon and one of them would have a Christmas tree tied to the top. And people would yell and scream and the church bell it would start ringing and it was the beginning of Christmas for the entire community,” Truitt said.

Captain Herman Schuenemann’s ship, the Rouse Simmons, became known as the Christmas tree ship.

“One of the reasons (Captain Schuenemann) was so popular besides being a very good guy, he was a good businessman. He had an amazingly simple sign on his large schooner,” Truitt said, “It said ‘Christmas trees cheap’.”

75-cents was cheap. On land trees sold for a dollar a piece.

This year’s trip marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the original Christmas tree ship. It was last seen above water November 23rd, 1912 before a big snow storm. There are still many evergreens in the ship’s hull at the bottom of Lake Michigan.

Check out the wreckage footage below (narration begins around a minute into the video).

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Arts & Culture
4:50 pm
Wed November 21, 2012

Stateside: Thanksgiving spreads your great-grandmother would recognize

Turkeys were amongst a vibrant spread of dishes served throughout Thanksgivings of the 1800's
Rebecca Williams Michigan Radio

Cyndy talks with Bill Loomis, author of "Detroit's Delectable Past"

With the exception of a few wild selections, the Thanksgiving spreads of today closely resemble those of the 1800’s.


Bill Loomis, author of “Detroit’s Delectable Past,” claimed our ancestors had a taste for animals of considerable size- such as the bear.


During the 19th century, animals were killed specifically for the Thanksgiving meal.


Cuts of chicken, duck, fish, quail and squirrel were served with mounds of squash and other root vegetables.

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