WBFO Arts & Culture Desk

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

Michel Euler / AP

The passing of Toni Morrison has prompted recollections from all around the world. In Buffalo, the Nobel Prize-winner is remembered for her appearance here in 2017 as part of Just Buffalo Literary Center's Babel Series. The center's Artistic Director Barbara Cole shared the stage with Morrison that night. According to Cole, Morrison appeared here 50 years to the day from the Buffalo visit of Martin Luther King, Jr. The historic significance, Cole says, added to a memorable evening for those attending Morrison's talk.

National Comedy Center

Based on advance ticket sales, visitors from 45 different states will make their way to Jamestown this week for  the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival. For Journey Gunderson, Executive Director of the National Comedy Center, the numbers add to the Center's reputation as a driver of economic development. The festival, which begins today, features a number of events and several nationally-known comedians, including John Mulaney, Sebastian Maniscalco and Lewis Black.  


Jay Moran

It's become a rite of summer along the Buffalo Riverfront: Torn Space Theater using Silo City for one of its massive, site-specific productions. This weekend they'll debut FEAST on the grounds which are home to the rusty and crumbling remains of a once-bustling grain storage operation. Unlike past productions at Silo City, FEAST will focus less on the industrial relics and more on the new ecology that has emerged.


Photo courtesy of Buffalo Spree

The Erie County Fair begins Wednesday. In this week's Press Pass with WBFO's Mark Scott, Buffalo Spree Editor Elizabeth Licata says her favorite part of attending the fair is stopping by the livestock barns to see the animals.


Greg Funka, Chautauqua Institution

If you haven't seen LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST at Shakespeare in Delaware Park, or FIRST DATE at MusicalFare, or MOMMIE QUEEREST at the Alleyway, then by all means, go, go, go. But, if you're interested in an August road trip, then you want a "destination" with lots to do such as The Chautauqua Institution, or The Stratford Festival (or the Shaw Festival) or Broadway!

Megan Bennett / lightyearsahead

Composer and pianist Murray Hidary is the creator of MindTravel, an abstract musical experience that focuses on connecting one another without words. He’s holding a SilentHike Saturday at Goat Island in Niagara Falls. WBFO’s Nick Lippa spoke with Hidary about his style of music and how it accompanies a SilentHike.

File photo

There are film projects aplenty ongoing in Western New York, from major studio films to TV series. The growing popularity of the area with film producers is generally regarded as positive and is helping to create and support jobs in film production and related services, with Western New York becoming a “go-to” cinematic location. But recently there has been some pushback by one locality, seemingly designed to discourage filmmaking within its borders. WBFO’s Pat Feldballe discusses the issue with Buffalo Niagara Film Commissioner Tim Clark on Press Pass.


Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Over the weekend, people wandered much of Buffalo unfolding and folding a giant map, looking for those large yellow signs saying "front yard," "side yard" and "back yard" and eventually winding up in some place offering cold liquids on what was a hot day.

Thomas O'Neil-White

Mark Twain’s history in the City of Buffalo is well-documented. From 1869 to 1871, he was an editor at the Buffalo Express newspaper and lived on Delaware Avenue. The Buffalo and Erie County Public Library has a room of his manuscripts and letters.

shawfest.com

The Chautauqua Opera Company is gaga for the 18th century, wrapping up their opera trilogy  - BARBER OF SEVILLE and ¡FIGARO!(90210)  - on Saturday with THE GHOSTS OF VERSAILLE, all based on plays by Beaumarchais. At the Bratton Theatre, they've updated Goldoni's ONE SERVANT, TWO MASTERS with ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS. And the discussion continues about theater specialites which are more in demand - the dramaturg and the dialect coach.


Thomas O'Neil-White

The City of Buffalo and the Olmsted Parks Conservancy have agreed to further their partnership. Thursday morning, at Delaware Park's Hoyt Lake, Mayor Byron Brown and members of the conservancy signed a new agreement through 2030.

Kyle S. Mackie/WBFO News

Where can you eat pierogi poutine and a loganberry funnel cake corn dog on the same day? The Erie County Fair, of course. This year’s fair is coming up on Aug. 7-18, and there will be plenty of options to vote for in the New Food Showdown.


New York State Fair

If your favorite food group is deep-fried, then the New York State Fair doesn’t disappoint. Make your way to the Fried Specialties booth, and you’ll be transported to a deep-fried fantasy that would stop the heart of a cardiologist.

Thomas O'Neil-White

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Monday to mark the completion of $50 million in renovations to the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Darwin Martin House.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Buffalo's Niagara Square was filled with food booths and music played on a giant stage, as the annual Galbani Italian Heritage Festival returned to where it started.

Juice

The seven person rock, r&b and hip-hop influenced group 'Juice' is coming to Mohawk Place this weekend. Two members of the group, violinist and vocalist Christian Rose and guitarist Daniel Moss, spoke with WBFO's Nick Lippa about the groups diverse persona and identity as they continue to grow in popularity.

tallarico.com

For 17 years, Video Games Live has bought the music of Zelda, Pokemon and other well-known games to sold-out symphonic stages across the world. The production will be playing with the BPO Saturday night at Kleinhans Music Hall. The show’s creator, video game composer and guitarist Tommy Tallarico, has been writing music for games for over 30 years. He spoke with WBFO’s Nick Lippa about his storied career, his family in Niagara Falls and VGL’s success.

Albright-Know Art Gallery

If you like the current Albright-Knox Art Gallery, there are just a few months left to see it on Elmwood Avenue. The gallery plans to close at the end of this year for two years of construction and expansion, while installations, special events and performances will move to the Northland Beltline Corridor.

buffalo united artists

Anthony is in NYC, but before he left, both he and Peter enjoyed FIRST DATE starring Marc Sacco and Marie Michelle Roberts at MusicalFare as well as MOMMIE QUEEREST, BUA's "summer camp" send up of the movie "Mommie Dearest." On Broadway, Anthony's seen WHAT THE CONSTITUTION MEANS TO ME (a quirky but successful play); AIN'T TOO PROUD (a jukebox musical about The Temptations); and ROLLING STONE (inspired by Arthur Miller's THE CRUCIBLE).

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Buffalo and Western New York are hosting a delegation from Poland that has come to this region in search of strengthened ties and new business and cultural partnerships between their homeland and Polonia communities worldwide.

Sandy Honig

Ira Glass—the creator, producer and host of the popular public radio program and podcast “This American Life”—will speak at the Chautauqua Institution on Saturday, July 20. WBFO caught up with him before his visit to Western New York.


Madeline Little / WBFO News

Buffalo’s Galbani Italian Heritage Festival is returning to its roots in the city’s downtown.

North Park Theatre

Movies about hope have been around since the image started moving on a screen. Now there is a new local film about hope and children undergoing major medical treatment.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Under a blue sky, with temperatures what they should be in mid-July, hundreds of thousands of people ate and drank and listened to music in between noshing at the 2019 Taste of Buffalo.

Photo by Mark Scott / WBFO News

Large crowds turned out Saturday for day one of the 36th annual Taste of Buffalo downtown.

chq.org

Fans of the musical HAMILTON are quite comfortable with 18th century figures singing about issues which still impact us today, so it shouldn't be too much of a leap to enjoy three operas in a row, July 25, 26, and 27 at the Chautauqua Institution, all based on plays by a hero of the American and French revolution - Beaumarchais!

Nick Lippa / WBFO

Genocide. Active shooter drills in school. Abortion. These are the topics Buffalo students are exploring in a new art exhibit that opens tonight at Squeaky Wheel. It’s part of the film and media art center’s new educational program called Saturday Café. WBFO’s Nick Lippa spoke with some of the artists and their educators about their work and journey to opening night.

Thomas O'Neil-White

The Buffalo Zoo introduced Indian one-horned rhino Mohan to the public Friday morning.


The Shaw Festival

Even though society may look down on her, she's still in control, and we could be talking about the flower girl, "Sonya," in THE RUSSIAN PLAY by Hanna Moscovitch or Margy, the prostitute in Mae West's SEX, both of whom forego money for love, but "it's complicated." These two seemingly different plays just opened and continue the conversation started when Shawfest presented GBW's MRS. WARREN'S PROFESSION several seasons back.

JoAnn Perritano, Used with Permission

"A Quiet Place," a thriller directed by John Krasinski, was a surprise hit last year and production on the sequel is underway here in Western New York. WBFO's Howard Riedel spoke with Executive Producer JoAnn Perritano, who said that while much of the first film was shot farther downstate, a lot of the sequel will be filmed in Western New York. "A Quiet Place 2" is tentatively scheduled for a March 2020 release.


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