Arts/Culture

The WBFO Arts & Culture News Desk is co-funded by Arts Services Initiative of Western New York and the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site.

Walking the red carpet at the 27th annual Artie Awards

Jun 9, 2017

It was a brand new red carpet when WNED|WBFO became the new presenter of the Artie Awards for 2016-2017. Ok, the carpet wasn’t actually new but the interviewers were. Marc Sacco, Dudney Joseph and I had the honor of taking over the reins this year from Jimmy Janowski, without whom there would have never been a red carpet at the Artie awards in the first place. In fact, we had the privilege of giving out the first-ever “Golden Hanger Jimmy Award” for Outstanding Statement Ensemble of the evening, which went to Sarah Blewett.

Eileen Elibol, WNED|WBFO

The ARTIE AWARDS, produced by WNED|WBFO were a huge success in terms of fun, for honoring excellence in theater, and to raise money (over $14,000 and counting) for the ECMC Immunodeficiently Clinic. Some recent Shaw outings have been less than hoped for, but that's not the case for Shaw's SAINT JOAN which is powerful theater and for a tragedy, surprisingly funny. It's at the large Festival Theatre in Niagara on the Lake and makes full use of the stage to astound the audience. Opening tonight: FREE FRED BROWN! with Ujima Company at Paul Robeson Theatre on Masten Avenue.

Lorna C. Hill, Founder and Artistic Director of Ujima Company, now celebrating their 38th year, continues to build a community to address issues that affect "front line communities" such as Buffalo's East and West sides. "The challenge for the poor is huge. The responses have been minimal." She spoke about the play FREE FRED BROWN! presented this weekend by Ujima in the Paul Robeson Theatre in the African-American Cultural Center on Masten Avenue as a good way to start conversations about moving forward.

WRVO's Payne Horning

Officials working on the Harriet Tubman Home in Auburn, which Congress established as a national historical park in January, say there's a lot in store for the facility over the next few years.

Artie Award winners announced

Jun 6, 2017

The Artie Committee proudly announces the 2016-17 ARTIE AWARD winners, recognizing excellence in theater in Buffalo.

WBFO's Mike Desmond

All you had to do this weekend was be in the vicinity of Delaware Avenue and Utica Street and hear the music on the breeze and you knew the summer festival season has begun in Buffalo.

You don't have to go out of town to catch good theater in June and some lovely leading ladies. Tonight's long awaited openings include Noel Coward's HAY FEVER with Josephine Hogan at the Irish Classical, LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA with the Second Generation Theatre's Debbie Pappas Sham at the Lancaster Opera House, and GET HAPPY with Sára Kovacsi, a celebration of Mr. "Over the Rainbow" Harold Arlen, Buffalo's own, which opens at Theatre of the Mist.

Nick Lippa/WBFO News

There are unseen heroes in the orchestra family. Some of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s heroes work in the basement of Kleinhans Music Hall, but now they are being brought out into the light.


Mark Mullville, Buffalo News

Second Generation Theatre Company opens LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA on Friday at the Lancaster Opera House, but next year they'll have their own theater.

OLd Fort Niagara

If you’ve ever wondered how being in the military has changed over the course of time, Old Fort Niagara is sponsoring a series of events that begin Saturday.

Anthony and Peter enjoyed meeting theater fans at the WNED studios for coffee and donuts and "Theater Talk Live" where they talked about the summer season, including the Shaw Festival, Chautauqua, and Shakespeare in Delaware Park, and were treated to live performances from Second Generation Theatre whose LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA opens next Friday as well as MusicalFare, whose PRETTY FUNNY opens in July.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

A blending of dance and music will be presented this evening at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley attended a rehearsal of the Buffalo Chamber Players and Lehrer Dance for their collaborative performance Thursday evening at 7:30 p.m. 

Now in their fifth year, Raíces Theatre Company has found the sweet spot where resources and mission match the founders' original vision. 

The Artie Awards

May 22, 2017

Monday, June 5, 2017

Shea’s 710 Theatre

Red Carpet/Bar open at 7:00 p.m.

Ceremony begins at 8:00 p.m.

Tickets $15 at the door

Please join this annual celebration of excellence in the Buffalo theater community!

Cheer on your favorite performers and hear numbers from the nominated musicals.

 

Facebook

Friends turned out Sunday to give Susan Tanner a musical sendoff in Babeville, where she worked for years with Righteous Babe Records.

WBFO's Mike Desmond

Expect some changes for this summer's concert series on Buffalo's waterfront: a $5 entry fee and a new name.

Anthony and Peter are doing the first (of more, we hope) "Theater Talk Live" event – A Summer Theater Preview next Thursday May 25 at 10:30 am at the WNED-TV Studios! We'll provide an overview of musicals and plays being staged this summer across WNY and Southern Ontario.

Call it marketing, or branding, or just plain knowing your audience, but Buffalo theaters this week are delighting their niches with finely chosen fare.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Neglia Ballet Artists is preparing for their annual Dancing to Live Gala to be held Thursday, May 18th. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley says the event will premier two new ballet dances featuring world-renowned artists.   

The Tony Award nominations are out, and Anthony is pleased to report that this year no London performances were nominated.

Scott Sackett

There is no sound perceptible to the human ear in outer space, so it might seem an improbable subject for a sound art installation. But that is exactly what sound artist Tom Kostusiak is creating.


This week on Theater Talk, Anthony sings the praises of three women currently on local stages (coincidentally about 300 feet from each other in Buffalo's Theatre District): Joyce Stilson in I'M FINE at the Alleyway Theatre, Kate LoConti in THE WINSLOW BOY at Irish Classical Theatre Company, and Mary Gordon Murray in the touring updated CABARET at Shea's Performing Arts Center.

WNY media icon Larry Levite dies at 77

Apr 27, 2017
Buffalo Spree

He is well known for his long history in Western New York media. Larry Levite, publisher and CEO of Buffalo Spree Publishing, passed away Wednesday after a short illness. He was 77.

Albright-Knox Art Gallery

The Albright-Knox Art Gallery has long been renowned for its collection of modern art, both purchased in the art market and donated by artists and gallery benefactors like John Albright and Seymour Knox Jr. Gallery Director Janne Siren announced Tuesday that the collection is expanding again with an amazing gift.

WBFO's Buffalo Blues Bash: Photo Gallery

Apr 24, 2017
Eileen Koteras Elibol

A sellout crowd attended WBFO’s Buffalo Blues Bash on April 22 in the WNED|WBFO studios in downtown Buffalo.

Derek Gee / The Buffalo News

Tim O’Shei of The Buffalo News has been traveling around the country visiting Western New Yorkers who have had a big impact on pop culture. His latest feature in The Buffalo Connection series, which hit print Sunday, is a profile of Cirque du Soleil Composer Seth Stachowski. Stachowski’s big dreams and instrumental talent have taken him from across North America and back again.


WBFO's Mike Desmond

Erie County's election-year budget is not due until the middle of October, but the quest to include some money in that budget for arts and culturals brought out around 70 agencies Thursday to the WNED|WBFO studios.

It's not a pared down touring CABARET that comes to Shea's next week; it's the real Broadway show. For something a lot quieter, THE CEMETERY CLUB is a bittersweet comedy about three widows and a widower at O'Connell and Company. Anthony saw GROUNDHOG DAY the musical in New York and both Peter and Anthony agree that the set, sound, and lights at THE TRIAL OF TRAYVON MARTIN are exceptionally well crafted.


Colored Musicians Club announces expanded jazz festival

Apr 18, 2017
Michael Mroziak, WBFO

One of Buffalo's historic cultural institutions celebrates 100 years of existence this year. To help mark their centennial, the Colored Musicians Club will host an expanded jazz festival this summer.


Scott Sackett

Take a look at any guide to starting a business and you’re likely to find first among the recommended steps, to research your market and then formulate a business plan. But some entrepreneurs find success without a plan and instead follow their hearts, use their smarts, and catch a trend. WBFO’s Arts & Culture Desk producer Scott Sackett visited with a local performance artist who did just that, opening a studio in Buffalo for a cinematic style of dance that’s gaining enormous popularity worldwide.


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