WBFO Arts & Culture Desk

WBFO's Arts & Culture Desk is funded by the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site.

PHOTOS: October 2019 Buffalo Blues Bash

Oct 8, 2019
Eileen Elibol / WBFO

The fall 2019 WBFO's Buffalo Blues Bash concert featuring headliner Ms. Hy-C & Fresh Start and opening act Blues Daddios was another big success! A sold-out audience enjoyed a night of music, dancing, food and drink. WNED | WBFO photographer Eileen Elibol captured the event in this photo gallery.

K C Kratt

Of all the arts, theater often embraces diversity first. America's struggle to diversify is a strong theme in the ongoing PIPELINE at Ujima and LADIES SWING THE BLUES at the Paul Robeson Theatre, as well the upcoming SUPERIOR DONUTS and a number of shows closing this weekend, including the musicals HAIRSPRAY and WEST SIDE STORY, and one person shows BRIGHT COLORS AND BOLD PATTERNS and KNOCK KNOCK, JESUS CALLING. For details, see the listings below.

Nick Lippa / WBFO

Thursday night marks the 37th Annual Buffalo Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony. One of the six inductees this year is singer Cynthia Moore, also known as “First Sister.” Moore performed throughout the '80s with Buffalo’s Unity Band. Ron Lasker, a Unity Band member who also traveled with James Brown, suggested Moore should audition for the “Godfather of Soul.” As she told WBFO’s Nick Lippa, that recommendation changed her life forever.

Drama in Lock 69 / Lee Williams, Lockport, NY

Twelve images that capture the beauty and character of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor have been selected as winners of the 14th Annual Erie Canalway Photo Contest. Judges selected first-, second- and third-place photographs from nearly 250 entries and another 12 photographs received honorable mention.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Dozens of local veterans have expressed their stories - and the private battles they are still fighting - by creating images and words now available for public viewing in Buffalo's Market Arcade.

Jesse Dayton

Jesse Dayton spent his early days playing alongside country legends Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash, and Willie Nelson. Over the course of his career, he’s incorporated his punk, rock, and Americana influences to create a style that had him touring with heavy metal artist Rob Zombie a few years ago. Dayton spoke with WBFO’s Nick Lippa ahead of his performance Tuesday night at Mohawk Place.


Union leader feels "shunned" by the Albright-Knox

Sep 30, 2019
File photo

In just about a month, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery will be shutting down to prepare for a major expansion project. But an area labor leader is concerned the work is not going to include unionized skilled workers.  


Aquarium of Niagara

The Aquarium of Niagara has announced its third major expansion project in the last three years. Executive director Gary Siddall talked to WBFO's Mark Wozniak about plans for the aquarium's M&T Bank Shark & Ray Bay.


Nick Lippa / WBFO

The Colored Musicians Club has announced the lineup for its upcoming jazz festival. Starting Oct. 11, the three-day festival will feature local talent along with vocalist Cyrille Aimee and saxophonist Brent Birckhead.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Buffalo's Uncrowned Queens celebrated their 20th anniversary by honoring local people and groups who help make sure all segments of the local community are recognized and remembered.

Ujima Theatre Company

Playwright Dominique Morriseau has a knack for presenting relevant current situations with realistic dialog (DETROIT '67, SKELETON CREW) and Ujima Company's current production of her play about the "school to prison pipeline" continues their fine theatrical tradition, now in their new theater space on Buffalo's West Side.

Borderland Festival 2019

Borderland Music and Art Festival returns East Aurora this weekend for its second straight year. The two-day event boasts a lineup of over 25 bands at Knox Farm State Park playing Americana, bluegrass, blues and rock. That includes Canadian rock band the Sheepdogs.  Lead singer and guitarist Ewan Currie spoke with WBFO’s Nick Lippa and festival co-founder Jennifer Brazill on what to expect this upcoming weekend.

Gene Witkowski photographer

Although the annual start of the Buffalo theater season sees many openings, in fact, a number of plays and musicals have been up for a few weeks, including HAIRSPRAY, which is dazzling audiences young and old, from all backgrounds. Director Carlos Jones has added a twist, a second role in drag, "Motormouth Maybelle" sung by operatic tenor Shawn Parnell.

Throughout its brief history, the Buffalo Humanities Festival has explored big ideas. This year's festival, which runs Thursday through Saturday, takes on the theme of "Democracy."  David Castillo, Director of the Humanities Institute, has his concerns. "Democracy is unsustainable. I would even say, unthinkable, without a self-aware, critical citizenship."


Nick Lippa / WBFO

Political cartooning has been impacted by many things over the past decade. The advent of social media. The change in how consumers receive their news. And more recently, President Donald Trump. Buffalo News’ Pultizer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Adam Zyglis spoke with WBFO’s Nick Lippa about what makes a great cartoonist in 2019.


Buffalo Rising

In his work for Buffalo Rising, contributing editor Dan Coughlin has placed the spotlight on two unique, local food businesses. Flat #12 Mushrooms has found such a demand for its locally-grown product that it is looking to expand production by almost 400 percent. Meanwhile, a new venture, Protein Responsibly, is gaining accolades and attention for its burgers which use mealworms as a base ingredient. They see it as an environmentally-friendly alternative to using beef.


Nick Lippa / WBFO

Jeanne Hebborn Cairns has amassed over 40 years of experience as an actor, director and producer in Buffalo’s theater community. She was honored for her career Friday night with a star in the Theatre District’s Plaza of Stars.

Thomas O'Neil-White

Leaders from across the City of Buffalo celebrated the dedication of the African-American Heritage Corridor Archway on Michigan Avenue on Monday. The archway is located between William Street and Broadway, a significant stretch of African American history in Buffalo.

Eileen Koteras / WNED | WBFO

Vocalist Jazzmeia Horn headlined WNED | WBFO's inaugural JazzWorks Live! concert Saturday, Sept. 14 at the WNED Studios in downtown Buffalo. Photographer Eileen Koteras captured the magical night in this photo gallery.

Photo by Mike McKay / WBFO News

An enthusiastic sold-out audience turned out Saturday night for the first ever Jazzworks Live! concert at the WNED | WBFO studios in downtown Buffalo.

Thomas O'Neil-White

Hispanic Heritage Month kicked off Friday at the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library. A soaring rendition of the National Anthem by Herman Badillo Bilingual Academy Assistant Principal Maria Cala was followed by remarks by local leaders including Congressman Brian Higgins.

Cheryl Gorski

While the gala dinner for Curtain Up! Friday night, September 20 is sold out, many restaurants can accomodate or you can just come for the street party on Main between Tupper and Chippewa with live music, food trucks, and fun until 1 a.m. (See the lyrics to Irving Berlin's "Top Hat, White Tie And Tails" below.)


Photo by Nancy J. Parisi / Buffalo Spree

Borderland is returning for its second year at Knox Farm State Park in East Aurora the weekend of September 21 and 22. In this week's Press Pass with WBFO's Mark Scott, Buffalo Spree Editor Elizabeth Licata says the music and art festival has quickly become popular.


Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation

A major new attraction is on track to make its debut at Buffalo's Canalside next summer.

Musicalfare Facebook posting

At some point in time, "operettas" became the uniquely American phenomenon known as "Broadway Musicals" and they excel at exposing the realities of life in the U.S. including racism. From the days of SHOWBOAT to BABES IN ARMS to the period pieces WEST SIDE STORY (which opened this week at Muscialfare) and HAIRSPRAY (opening tonight at the Kavinoky) there's intense drama when the characters on stage cross race lines.

Nick Lippa / WBFO

An art installation nearly three decades in the making is making its way to Silo City in Buffalo starting Friday. ‘Rio Negro II’ is a collaborative project that mixes rain sticks, sculptures, electronic music and robotics. Its focus is on humans examining their relationship with their living environment. WBFO’s Nick Lippa spoke with the artists involved as they spent this past week setting everything up.

TIFF.net

With 333 features scheduled over the coming days, the Toronto International Film Festival should have plenty to offer cinema lovers. Peter Howell of the Toronto Star encourages visitors to follow him for information and perspective on what's happening at the sprawling event. "A film festival is challenging you," Howell told WBFO, offering a warning to those in search of happy endings. "It's designed to make you think. That's the primaty mission."


Chris Caya / WBFO News

She doesn't have a business card yet, but Monica Pellegrino Faix is the new executive director of the Central Terminal Restoration Corporation.

Albright-Knox Art Gallery

There has been a change to Buffalo's landscape along Elmwood Avenue in front of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. The museum's set to close in less than two months for a major expansion project. And as WBFO's Chris Caya reports, the prep work includes moving a highly visible artwork. 


Eileen Koteras Elibol / WNED|WBFO

The annual Artie Awards, which honors the best of Buffalo theater, isn't just an excuse to get dressed up for a fun night on the town. It also serves a greater purpose and this year, that purpose was to raise funds for ECMC's HIV/AIDS and Immunodeficiency Clinic.

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