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Monday, August 4, 2014 at 2:52 pm

Photos: Fire hydrant painting downtown

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, downtown, Vibrant Batavia

Local artist Brandi Bruggman has been comissioned by Vibrant Batavia to paint two of the fire hydrants downtown. Here she paints the one at Main and Bank, in front of Seymour Place (GO ART!). She said this hydrant will have a colorful paisley design on it. Her other hydrant will be painted like a lighthouse.  

Below, a hydrant on Center Street completed by another artist.

UPDATE: Amanda Earl submitted these photos of Brandi's hydrants from later in the day.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014 at 3:41 pm

Batavia Concert Band move's tonight's show to GCC

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, Batavia Concert Band, entertainment, music

Due to the likelihood of rain, the Batavia Concert Band's performance this evening is moved to the Stuart Steiner Theater at GCC.

From the announcement:

Tonight's concert will feature bandmembers' and conductor John Bailey's favorite pieces from this Summer and years past. It'll be an audience (and musician) pleasing mix of movie themes, Big Band and Broadway tunes, and of course -- marches!

Friday, June 27, 2014 at 11:13 am

Nik Wallenda brings world class variety show to Darien Lake

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, darien lake, entertainment, nik wallenda

This week, Nik Wallenda opened his new show in the Gallaxy Theater at Darien Lake Theme Park, and those who have attended the first few shows have been treated to exactly what Wallenda promised -- first class entertainment.

Besides Wallenda and his family performing a high wire act, the show includes performances by dancers, hula hoop artists, a rope gymnast, comedians and jugglers (both the type who toss objects and those who toss each other).

It's Ed Sullivan without The Beatles. It's vaudeville without the travel.

"Me and my wife love vaudeville," Wallenda said. "Her family actually came over from Australia to perform on vaudeville. There's definitely a passion for that. We talked about it a lot and said, 'you know what, let's do a show where we incorporate a bunch of other acts.' "

The idea for the show has been percolating some time, Wallenda said, and after he walked a wire over Niagara Falls, he knew he wanted to come back to Western New York. He said the support he received from the community during the process of getting permission for the walk was so strong, he wanted to do something to give back to Western New York.

From his career in live performance, and with his family's rich history and all of the connections he has with the world's top acts, Wallenda thought he should bring it all together to create a special show.

"I was like, you know let's all get together and make an awesome show for Western New York," Wallenda said. "You heard me at the end, and I mean that, I love this place. I doubt you'll find a show of this volume, this variety at any other amusement park anyplace else in the country, probably not around the world."

At least three times while we talked, Wallenda said, "I love Western New York."

"I get opportunities to perform all over the world, but I love it right here," Wellenda said. "The people love me. I love the people here because they were so supportive."

The 10-week run for the show is the longest Wallenda has stayed in one place in nine or 10 years, he said.

"Ever since I walked over Niagara Falls, I said I wanted to have a permanent place here in WNY," Wallenda said. "A year went by and I was busy, but nobody from Western New York really stepped forward and said, 'hey, we want you here.' The casino offered a little bit. They wanted, but then they couldn't fulfill. So many places reached out, but never followed through, then Darien Lake was like, 'we want to do it. We're going to follow through. Let's do it.' "

Vincent Nicoletti, marketing director for Darien Lake, said the folks at Darien Lake feel really fortunate to bring a show of such world class caliber to Western New York.

What's so cool about it is if you remember Lena, the way she did the hoops, just the music that she used, it had the classic kind of vaudeville sound, but it was modernized with some hip-hop beats," Nicoletti said. "It's a really cool variety show. A lot of people don't know what to expect when they come here for this show. 'What am I going to go see?' and it's such a big surprise. The level of talent they have in each act is just phenomenal."

Wallenda hopes people from all over the region will come out and see the show. He hopes to make it more than a one-summer-and-done event. He wants to keep coming back.

"We put a lot of money into this," Wallenda said. "I'm used to making a lot more money, but to me it was like, I promised to bring something back here, so let's do it, let's do it in a big way, let's do it right and hopefully we'll be invited back."

Performers included: Sergio & Martha Martinez, the Dancing Gauchos; Nik and Erendira Wallenda, swaypoles; Lianna Ashton, hula hoops; Nick Slimick, on silk ropes; Giuliano and Fabio Anastasini, foot jugglers; Ty Tojo, juggler; Nik, Erendira, & Delilah Wallenda, Alec Bryant, Nick Slimick in the finale, a high wire act. Philippe Thibadeau had a recurring comedic role, including an audience participation routine. Ty McFarlan was the MC.

Performances are Tuesday through Sunday at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets are free to park guests and VIP packages, which includes a tour after the show, a meet-and-greet with Wallenda and front-row seats are available.

Nick Slimick

Giuliano and Fabio Anastasini

Sergio Martinez

Philippe Thibadeau

Lianna Ashton

Philippe Thibadeau playing the incorrigible romantic in an audience participation routine.

Ty Tojo

The finale.

VIP guests get their picture taken on stage with Nik Wallenda.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 9:18 am

Genesee Chorale preparing to perform Dvorak on Friday and Sunday

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, entertainment, Genesee Chorale, music

Under the direction of Ric Jones, the Genesee Chorale will perform Antonin Dvorak’s "Requiem Mass" on Sunday at St. James Episcopal Church, Batavia.

Featured vocal soloists are Maureen DeGolyer, soprano, Pat Fussell, alto, Mark Ross, tenor, and Jim Ellison, bass.

Tickets for the 4 p.m. performance will be available at the door and are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.

On Friday, the chorale will perform at 7 p.m. in Albion's Pillars Estate in the Grand Ballroom. There will be complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 and available online at geneseechorale.com or at the door. The Pillars is located at 13800 W. Country House Road, Albion.

Saturday, May 31, 2014 at 1:43 pm

Improv duo performs at Richmond Memorial Library

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, Richmond Memorial Library

Children who came to the Richmond Memorial Library this morning had a chance to be entertained by and learn about improvisational acting.

Karen L. Eichler and Andrew M. Spragge, of Defiant Monkey Improv, told the children (and parents) about improv and performed skits. 

Above, Eichler, playing Billie Bob Horton, squirts a security guard for Billy Bob Thornton with a water pistol while trying to gain access to the actor's mansion. The scenario and scenes were suggested by the audience.

In the final skit, Eichler and Spragge were assisted by Jean Berry and Gina Bergman. Eichler and Spragge couldn't move their bodies on their own. Berry and Bergman had to manipulate their hands, arms, legs and heads appropriate to the dialogue, or at times initiating movements that drove the dialogue. In this scene Eichler is Spock and Spragge is Capt. Kirk and they've just encountered a one-eyed monster that apparently communicates through clicks.

Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 9:48 am

Le Roy business features art, coffee and community touch

 

New York-based artist Jim Hodges is known for his singular ability to infuse emotion and narrative into the objects of daily life. He once said, “When I make art, I think about its ability to connect with others, to bring them into the process." This precept is the driving force behind a new art gallery in Le Roy.

The conception of local artist and photographer Jim DeLooze, 58 On Main will come to fruition on June 16 when it officially opens.

“I own the building and am a professional photographer,” said the 30-year Le Royan. “I wanted to do something with photography and teaching, so opening the gallery came together as a culmination of ideas.”

There will be an art gallery, coffee shop, green screen photography studio, and a photography computer lab. There is also plenty of room to accommodate the classes DeLooze would like to offer.

“To be successful, we need to give the community what it wants,” DeLooze said.

His photography career began at Kodak in Rochester directly after high school. Later, he opened his own photography studio on Main Street, Le Roy, which catered to weddings and portrait work. He says he enjoys shooting anything to do with people.

After closing that business, his interest in art remained and led to a position at Le Roy's Jell-O Gallery Museum. It's there he began “kicking around the idea of opening a studio.” 

The art gallery is open to local artists and artisans to showcase their work. It offers a permanent home for as long as the artist would like to rent the space. And with the artist’s permission, 58 On Main will produce photographic reproductions for sale. Since there are no exclusive rights, the artist is welcome to display their work in other venues.

“The fees to display and sell an artist’s work (in 58 On Main) is very inexpensive by way of comparison of larger galleries. Each wire will hold up to 30 pounds of multiple pieces, while heavier work, a piece that can weigh up to 60 pounds, will use two wires for the charge of one.”

Artists can also access 58 On Main's Web site and electronic advertising.

The coffee shop, Barista’s, is natural accompaniment for an art gallery. D&R Depot restaurant co-owner Sean Valdes will run it and the menu will include gourmet coffee, espresso, tea, pastry, scones, and light lunches -- soups, salad and sandwiches.

Friday nights will be special at Barista's. Planned are "Wine and Dessert"; "Social Painting" -- where participants are given two-hour instruction in painting; "Music Night" featuring musicians;  "Travelogue" - for people to share their travels near or far; poetry readings, game night and more.

“We are a family friendly atmosphere," DeLooze said. "We want to give the community an option for their Friday nights.”

While the coffee shop has its individual name included with the business, the nomenclature for all the businesses at 58 Main Street, Le Roy, is 58 On Main.

“There are a number of businesses under one roof, so we decided utilizing the physical address (58 Main Street) as the main name for the gallery," DeLooze said. "We wanted to keep it simple and catchy.”

Saturday morning photography classes are also planned.

“We will be offering anything from photography basics to using Photoshop and HDR (high-density resolution) photography. It’s here for the community. Input is both welcomed and encouraged. We’d like to know what the community is interested in learning.”

58 On Main would also like the community to become actively involved and offer courses on their interests and expertise. DeLooze says drawing a diversified crowd and truly opening the gallery up to the community's interests is paramount for success.

“There will be a little bit of everything for people to enjoy. It’s a great place for parents to stop in while waiting for their child to get out of practice.”

58 On Main is seeking artists and artisans interested in displaying their work in the gallery. It is also working with the Jell-O Gallery Museum to put day-tour packages together to promote local businesses on Main Street.

For more information on 58 on Main visit their Web site at www.58onmain.com or contact DeLooze at [email protected] or 585-768-2402.

Thursday, May 8, 2014 at 10:37 pm

Photos: Batavia Society of Artists honors spring show winners

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, batavia society of artists

Linda Metcalf's painting "Hussies" was honored with the Best in Show ribbon in the 2014 Batavia Society of Artists Art Show at the Richmond Memorial Library.

Metcalf arrived at the reception this evening surprised to learn she won.

The show runs through May 28.

First place went to Kevin Feary ("End of the Season"), second to Terry Weber ("Poppy's Garden") and third to Dennis Woods ("Cosomos in Cosmos"). Honorable mentions: Carole LaValley, Kathryn Roblee and Maidul Kahn. Metcalf and Wood also received honorable mentions for their paintings "Finally Spring" and "Fancher Fill-Up."

Katherine Clark, pictured with Peter Mumford, won the Virginia Carr Mumford Award. Clark attends GCC and plans to pursue a career in art.

Terry Weber

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Batavia resident makes it to season finale of reality series Face Off

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia, entertainment

Batavia resident Rashaad Santiago, whom we featured in a story last month, is one of three finalists in the reality TV series "Face Off."

The show airs at 8 p.m. on the SciFi Channel. 

Santiago will be at City Slickers tonight for the season finale to celebrate the event and answer any questions people might have about the show.

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