January 31, 2013 - 12:08 PM
January 24, 2013 - 1:52 PM
In 2012, the the Arts Services Initiative of Western New York, under the direction of Tod A. Kniazuk, has been working on a number of projects aimed at improving the health of the region's cultural vitality. It's tough work, but according to the organization's 2012 annual report, released this week, ASI (still in desperate need of a better name) has been making progress. Check the report out here.
January 3, 2013 - 3:13 PM
The Buffalo Small Press Book Fair, launched in 2007, will expand its schedule frome one to two days this year, according to fair co-founder Chris Fritton.
"The growth of the fair continues, and its incredible pace made it necessary to extend the event," Fritton wrote in a Facebook post. "It's my sincere hope that this will give more artists and more visitors a chance to experience the fair."
The fair will be held on April 6 and 7 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum at 453 Porter Ave.
December 31, 2012 - 12:05 PM
Last week, the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library System released its annual list of the most popular materials of the year. Here it is:
1. "The Litigators," John Grisham
2. "Private Games," James Patterson and Mark Sullivan
3. "The Innocent," David Baldacci
1. "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resistance, and Redemption," Laura Hillenbrand
2. "Killing Lincoln: the Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever," Bill O'Reilly
3. "In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin," Erik Larson
Young adult / teen
1. "Catching Fire (The Hunger Games)," Suzanne Collins
2. "Mockingjay (The Hunger Games)," Suzanne Collins
3. "The Hunger Games," Suzanne Collins
1. "LEGO Star Wars: The Visual Dictionary," Simon Beecroft
2. "The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary: How Greg Heffley Went Hollywood," Jeff Kinney
3. "The LEGO Ideas Book: Unblock Your Imagination," Daniel Lipkowitz
"Explosive Eighteen," Janet Evanovich
"Too Close to the Falls," Catherine McClure Gildner
Most requested books
1. "Fifty Shades of Grey," E.L. James
2. "Gone Girl," Gillian Flynn
3. "Fifty Shades Darker," E.L. James
September 8, 2012 - 1:54 PM
I am looking forward to Tom Wolfe's new novel, "Back to Blood," coming out this fall. Above is a documentary, or a trailer for a documentary, I found about him and this new book, which is set in Miami.
Line I love: "You'd think he would be conspicuous in that white suit, but somehow he manages to blend into the background."
Hahahaa. I believe that!
It is funny to think of people in Miami chewing on what it means to have Tom Wolfe write a book about them. What if Tom Wolfe ever wrote a book about Buffalo?
Anyway. I loved Tom Wolfe's last book, "I Am Charlotte Simmons," which came out -- yikes -- eight years ago. It kind of bugs me that, in their coverage of the new book, journalists are disparaging "I Am Charlotte Simmons," using words like "disappointing." It is hard to think of where exactly I have read this but it has been in at least three or four different places.
How many of these writers actually read "I Am Charlotte Simmons"? I bet none of them. I think they are just parroting someone else. Me, I thought it was an excellent book. I passed it to my brother George and he agreed. We talk about that book to this day.
Anyway, do check out "I Am Charlotte Simmons." It is a magnificent book.
Here's hoping this next one will be, too.
-- Mary Kunz Goldman
July 16, 2012 - 4:09 PM
Later this week, look for my Gusto story on the upcoming Infringement Festival, which runs in an estimated 72 venues from July 26 to Aug. 5. In the meantime, check out the festival's full (and very much subject-to-change) schedule, just posted at infringebuffalo.org.
July 13, 2012 - 11:46 AM
Apparently the leading man in the book is really into classical music and also is an extremely accomplished pianist.
Just now I went on Amazon and did that thing where you peek inside the book, and I was dismayed by how tawdry it sounded, and how badly written I thought it was. You know, I had heard the title kicked around for I want to say a few months, but I had never wondered what the book was about. Of course it's about sex, you know?
But more power to her, pleasing the least common denominator. I had a roommate a long time ago who used to look at me and say, "If you're so smart, why aren't you rich?"
Back to the classical music. I guess I am happy for anything that helps people discover how easy it is to love classical music. I have always loved it and though I know classical music is intimidating to some people, I find it hard to get into those people's shoes.
June 11, 2012 - 12:01 PM
May 14, 2012 - 10:07 PM
Earlier this evening, members of Buffalo's cultural community dominated an hour-long public hearing of Buffalo Common Council. The cultural funding advocates, responding to a city budget that includes no funding for the arts, echoed and in many cases built upon the eloquent arguments of last year's Erie County cultural funding crisis.
Together, they made a strong collective case for the restoration of a small and stable level of funding to benefit the myriad cultural organizations within its limits. Buffalo cut the majority of arts funding out of its budget during the economic downturn that followed the Sept. 11 attacks and has not restored it since --though, after much haggling, it did provide emergency funding to arts groups during last year's county funding crisis.
Some highlights from the evening's remarks follow. (Please excuse the shaky camera work and note that most speakers or their organizations are members of the Greater Buffalo Cultural Alliance.)
Tod Kniazuk, executive director of the Arts Services Initiative:
Fortunato Pezzimenti, producing director of the Irish Classical Theatre Company:
Meg Quinn, artistic director of Theatre of Youth
Laurie Dean Torrell, executive director of Just Buffalo Literary Center:
Randall Kramer, executive and artistic director of MusicalFare Theatre:
Edmund Cardoni, executive driector of Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center:
Jamie Moses, publisher of Artvoice:
Molly Quckenbush, executive director of the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site:
May 10, 2012 - 2:58 PM
In 2009, two important cultural figures celebrated their 80th birthdays. One was Mickey Mouse. The other was Maurice Sendak.
To mark the occasion of Mickey's 80th, Edward Summer, the director of the Buffalo International Film Festival, organized a celebration in Shea's Performing Arts Center featuring rare cartoons, prints and a talk by the ever-engaging Mickey expert John Culhane. That tribute, to my mind, was one of the most underrated cultural events of the last several years. (My story about it is here.)
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