Local & regional news

Photo from Buffalo State College

WBFO salutes Theatre Talk co-host Anthony Chase.  He is being honored by the National Federation For Just Communities.  He is among more than 30 individuals and organizations to be honored at the 2012 Community Leader Awards Luncheon will be held on Thursday, January 19, 2012 at the Buffalo Convention Center. 

Photo from Buffalo Philharmoic Website

The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra has just released a new compact disc that celebrates the works of four Polish composers. 

WBFO's Michael Mroziak has listened to the CD and spoke with the BPO's conductor JoAnne Falleta  to find out more about the music.

Historic V for Victory from Kleinhan's Music Hall

Dec 23, 2011
File Photo / WBFO News

Music has  the power to touch the heart, to move you, to make memories that can last a lifetime. Nobody knows that better than Gene Setel of Buffalo. As a teenager, he was an usher at Kleinhans Music Hall. That was a long time ago. He started at age 12, but he was 16 when he ushered for a concert event that he will never forget.  “Never seen anything like that night,” he says. “It was just overwhelming


It was may eighth, 1945. Hitler was dead. The Japanese had yet to surrender. But it was the beginning of the end of the Second World War. British Prime Minister Winston

O'Connell and Company Theatre performs Celtic Christmas

Dec 13, 2011
Photo from O'Connell and Company's Website

A local theatre company is featuring a holiday celebration --  Once Upon a Celtic Christmas -- continues at the O'Connell and Company Theatre at ECC's North Campus through this Sunday. 

WBFO'S Eileen Buckley met in studio with the theatre's artistic and executive director Mary Kate O'Connell.  She says her holiday performances are a blend of music, song, dance and stories mixed with Irish traditions.

You can find out more about the holiday performance at O'Connell and Company's Website at http://www.oconnellandcompany.com/.

"Vivien: The Triumph and madness of Vivien Leigh"

Oct 21, 2011
New Phoenix Theatre photo

A one-woman show is now on stage at the New Phoenix Theatre in Buffalo.  It is about the story of legendary and award-winning actress Vivien Leigh,  best remembered as Scarlet O'Hara in Gone with the Wind.   

Local actress, Josephine Hogan of the Red Thread Theatre, portrays Leigh in "Vivien:  The Triumph and madness of Vivien Leigh".   WBFO'S Eileen Buckley talks to Hogan and her director Darleen Pickering Hummert about the performance.  

Theatre Talk

Oct 21, 2011
Jewish Repertory Theatre of Western New York

Jim Santella and Anthony Chase conduct their weekly round up of area theatre and more!

This week they begin with a review of Imagining Madoff by Deb Margolin on stage through November 13 at the Jewish Repertory Theatre of Western New York. 

Neglia returns from star-like treatment in Argentina

Oct 17, 2011
Negali's facebook photo

Ballet dancer Sergio Neglia has returned from his native Argentina where he performed a tribute in honor of his late father at the Colon Theatre.

Neglia says he is re-energized as he prepares for this weekend's performance of Baba Yaga. Neglia was treated like a movie star as he danced before an audience who recalled his father's ballet career 40-years-ago.

"It was unbelievable. I mean it was incredible 3,500 people screaming the Neglia name again after 40-years. It was the most powerful thing I felt. I was shocked of all the power of the massive crowd," said Neglia.

Theatre Talk

Oct 14, 2011

WBFO'S Theatre Talk takes us to several venues. This week local theatre critic Anthony Chase tells us about attending Poor Behavior at LA's Theatre Company in California.

Chase and WBFO's Jim Santella also takes us through on-going local shows including Enron on stage at Buffalo State College 

Buffalo, NY – Visit Buffalo Niagara continues moving forward with its "Buffalo.For Real TV" Webisode series.

As WBFO'S Eileen Buckley tells us, the agency released its latest video about Allentown First Fridays.

This latest video to promote area tourism features Buffalo musician Nelson Starr displaying an upbeat Allentown District.

Buffalo, NY – Western New York restaurant owners are having a collective sale this week. Now through Monday, September 28, hungry foodies can get a good deal on a good meal at about 150 local independently owned restaurants. WBFO's Joyce Kryszak talked with Peter Longo, the president of the Western New York chapter of the state restaurant association. He gives us a taste of the specials that are out their for diners.

Photo: Nancy J. Parisi

Buffalo, NY – Storming the stage in a white three-piece suit, purple tie and stylish fedora, Tommie Babbs became the winner of the first UB Idol singing contest during the Bulls Backyard Bash in Alumni Arena.

Babbs, senior academic advisor in Student Advising Services, performed a soulful rendition of "Always and Forever" by Luther Vandross.

Buffalo, NY – Erie County announced Tuesday that it is giving a parcel of land to a non-profit corporation that will build a boathouse designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

You can hear the story by clicking the "listen" icon above.

Buffalo, NY – Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Shaw Festival production of "Belle Moral."

Click the "listen" icon above or use your podcasting software to download Grant's review to your computer.

Buffalo, NY – Christopher Jamele presents the August 2005 almanac. Click the "listen" icon above to hear it.

Buffalo, NY – Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Shakespeare in Delaware Park production of "Hamlet."

Click the "listen" icon above.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss Romeo and Juliet at Shakespeare in Delaware Park, and they reflect on the role of tragedy in drama in the wake of this week's terrorist bombings in London. Tony cites the Greek tragedy Hecuba currently on a US tour.

Chautauqua Institution, NY – Oliver Thomas knows that his credentials are usually listed as Baptist minister, representative of the National Council of Churches and a lot of other big religious groups. But Thomas points out that he's also co-authored a handbook for the ACLU on religion in public schools, protecting the first amendment for everyone. A minister, lawyer, author and community leader, Thomas delivers next Friday's lecture at the Chautauqua Institution, "Church and State in America: Battle Ground or Common Ground."

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony play a selection from Spam-A-Lot as they discuss CDs from hit musicals. It can be helpful if tickets to the show are hard to come by, but then again not every musical is good. Also, a review of Romeo and Juliet, this summer's first presentation of Shakespeare in Delaware Park.

Buffalo, NY – Jim sings the praises of air conditioning, which makes for a more enjoyable summer theater experience. Jim and Tony discuss the musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, although neither has seen it! Tony also talks about his recent New York visit to see Constant Wife (which will also be at the Shaw Festival), Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf with Kathleen Turner, and The Paris Letter. Also, a list of some local offerings.

Kelli Bocock-Natale as Sophie Tucker

Buffalo, NY – Jim is upbeat about the return of the Louis Prima-inspired musical Zooma Zooma at Studio Arena. Tony discusses The Devils at the Mickiewicz Theater, and Tony admits he actually SANG at Monday night's Arties awards. Congratulations to all the winners, especially to WBFO Community Relations Associate Kelli Bocock-Natale and to frequent WBFO contributor Gary Earl Ross.

Adam Guettel

Buffalo, NY – WBFO's Christopher Jamele presents his almanac for June 2005. He continues his chronicles of the Lewis and Clark Expedition from 200 years ago. Chris also tells us June is known as National Dairy Month and National Accordian Awareness Month.

Click the "listen" icon above to hear more.

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario – WBFO Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Shaw Festival Theatre presentation of "You Never Can Tell," by George Bernard Shaw.

It runs in the Festival Theatre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario through November 26th.

Golden gives this production his highest rating, adding an "A" to his top rating of "KO," for an "A-KO." Click the "listen" icon to hear his review.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the revivals of Gypsy, which is featured at two different area locales. Also, Tony recommends Vanessa Redgrave in Hecuba at the Kennedy Center in Washington, and the guys remind you not to miss the Tony awards on Sunday.

Buffalo, NY – Here is the May 2005 almanac, written and produced by WBFO's Weekend Edition host, Christopher Jamele. Click the "listen" icon to hear it.

Buffalo, NY – Click the "listen" icon above to hear Christopher Jamele's presentation of his January 2005 Almanac.

One of Western New York's most acclaimed writers returns home to Buffalo Friday night. Internationally known, award winning poet Lucille Clifton is the special guest of the Locust Street Art Center. Clifton will offer a reading and share memories of her early years growing up on Buffalo's East Side.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony prepare their crowns, tiaras and toupees for tonight's Curtain Up celebrations in downtown Buffalo. They also pay tribute to Fred Ebb, and discuss the Kavinoky production of Anything Goes.

Buffalo, NY – The project is called "World of Voices," a collaboration to promote cultural awareness through literature. It's a three part collaboration. One part is the funder, the Oishei Foundation. Another part is the publisher, White Pine Press. And the final part is the literary center, Just Buffalo. The goal is to connect with high-need inner city students.

The first of 12 writers-in-residence is Native American author Maurice Kenny. Click the "listen" icon above to hear Mary Van Vorst's Spoken Arts.