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The 2019 edition of Rasa -- Akshara's annual multi-arts, inspired by India festival -- hits the home stretch

Thu, 09/12/2019 - 12:45pm by christopherporter

Akshara dancers

The fall 2019 edition of Akshara's Rasa Festival is coming to a close, but not before it celebrates with four "multi-arts, inspired by India" events.

"Dances of India: classical and folk traditions" happens Thursday, September 19, at 7 pm, at AADL's downtown location. It will feature classical and folk dances from India, plus a discussion on the historical and cultural context of each.

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Brazilian mandolinist Danilo Brito returns to Ann Arbor with a new album and the history of choro at his fingertips

Wed, 08/28/2019 - 3:00pm by christopherporter

Danilo Brito

Brazilian mandolin wizard Danilo Brito is returning to the Metro Detroit area for what now annual performances in Ann Arbor (September 1 at Kerrytown Concert House), the Detroit Institute of Arts (August 30), and the GlasSalon in the Toledo Museum of Art (August 29). Brito (mandolin and tenor guitar) will be joined by Carlos Moura (7-string guitar) and Guilherme Girardi (6-string guitar).

Brito's new album, Da Natureza das Coisas (The Nature of Things), is bookended by two important works of Heitor Villa-Lobos, closing with "Melodia Sentimental" and opening with "Chôros No. 1 (Chôro típico Brasileiro)," which was composed for guitar in 1920 in tribute to composer Ernesto Nazareth. Villa Lobos grew up among choro musicians and said that the soul of Brazilian people is found in choro. Many classical guitarists play this work, but Brazilians such as Turíbio Santos play it with a distinctive verve absent in the others. Brito takes this a step further -- arranging the work for his mandolin in the lead voice with two guitars carrying the others. The bright, clarion sound of his mandolin riding the group's Brazilian drive leaves Brito thinking that it would make Villa Lobos smile. 

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Tagging the Spirit World: The Kelsey Museum explores "Graffiti As Devotion Along the Nile"

Tue, 08/27/2019 - 10:45am by christopherporter

Graffiti at the Kelsey

Top: Graffito of two horses and a bird. Bottom: Two bull heads with hooves. Images courtesy the International Kurru Archaeological Project.

The best-known graffiti in Ann Arbor is in an alley off East Liberty.

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Well-Read: A brief history of A2 libraries from the book "Vanishing Ann Arbor"

Thu, 07/18/2019 - 10:15am by christopherporter

Ladies Library Association, 1885

In 1866, 35 women had put in $3 each to start the Ladies' Library Association and pledged a dollar a year to purchase books for the public to borrow. After moving from one location to another, the Ladies' Library (since demolished) was built at 324 East Huron, on the south side west of Division in 1885. Frame location: Corner of State and Huron, Northwest. This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library.

The following is an excerpt from the book "Vanishing Ann Arbor" by Patti Smith and Britain Woodman.

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U-M music professor / Beatles expert returns to AADL to discuss the "White Album"

Mon, 04/22/2019 - 2:30pm by christopherporter

The Beatles' White Album

Walter Everett, professor of music theory at the University of Michigan and author of The Beatles As Musicians: Revolver Through the Anthology, returns to AADL on Thursday, April 25, to deliver a lecture titled "Children of Nature: Origins of the Beatles' Tabula Rasa" in honor of the Fab Faux's upcoming performance of the "White Album" at Michigan Theater on Saturday, May 11.

The Beatles continually reinvented themselves. In 1966, Revolver announced itself with a warped reinvention of the 1-2-3-4 count-off that had introduced their first album. A year later, for Sgt. Pepper's, they created another band in their own image. The slate was wiped clean again with the "White Album," not only by their desire to return to the natural state sought in their early-1968 Himalayan meditative rituals but also through their 180-degree turn from the lavish artifice of Pepper, an album high with artistic pretensions, groundbreakingly imaginative lyrics, radically colorful instrumentation, and a deep exploration beyond the limits of four-track recording, its extravagance marked by a groove intended only for dogs, all wrapped in a cover as opulent as it was mystifying.

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"Guardians of Detroit: Architectural Sculpture in the Motor City" documents the artistry and symbolism during the city's golden age

Mon, 03/25/2019 - 8:30am by christopherporter

Guardians of Detroit

A collection of guardian faces from various Detroit buildings.

Due to a fortunate confluence of water, geography and entrepreneurial vision, Detroit at the end of the 19th century was poised to experience unprecedented growth. Even before the Ford Motor Company was established in 1903, Detroit was a major industrial center and transportation hub. All this commercial activity and prosperity led to a building boom of incredible proportions at a time when the most popular architectural styles were Beaux Arts, Gothic Revival, Classical Revival, and Art Deco. Each of these styles typically required extensive ornamentation and because of this, Detroit became a treasure trove of architectural sculpture. 

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Jam on It: Chirp celebrates the release of its debut studio album at The Blind Pig

Wed, 03/20/2019 - 3:30pm by christopherporter

Chirp

When Pulp contributor Nicco Pandolfi spoke to the rising jam band Chirp in December 2017, singer-guitarist Jay Frydenlund said the Ann Arbor quartet was recording a studio album that would come out in 2018. 

Fast forward to March 2019 and that self-titled album has finally materialized, and Chirp will celebrate its release on Saturday, March 23 at The Blind Pig. 

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57th Ann Arbor Film Festival: Trailers for Tuesday, March 26 screenings

Mon, 03/18/2019 - 12:59pm by christopherporter

Still from Melissa Airy's The Stories Within

Still from Melissa Airy's The Stories Within.

TUESDAY, MARCH 26 TRAILERS & EVENT LISTINGS
OPENING NIGHT:

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57th Ann Arbor Film Festival: Trailers for Wednesday, March 27 screenings

Mon, 03/18/2019 - 12:58pm by christopherporter

Still from the Last Days of Chinatown

Still from the Last Days of Chinatown.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27 TRAILERS & EVENT LISTINGS:

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57th Ann Arbor Film Festival: Trailers for Thursday, March 28 screenings

Mon, 03/18/2019 - 12:57pm by christopherporter

Still from the documentary Meow Wolf: Origin Story

Still from the documentary Meow Wolf: Origin Story.

THURSDAY, MARCH 28 TRAILERS & EVENT LISTINGS: