Arts & Culture

Music Reviews
4:21 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Canadian Group Fuses Bluegrass And Tchaikovsky On Holiday CD

Pipistrelle Music

Every year, radio stations are deluged with new Christmas albums, and Texas Public Radio is no different. This year, I came across one that made its way to the top of my listening stack. The Canadian group Ensemble Polaris boasts diverse instrumentation, including guitar, banjo, mandolin, bagpipe, musical saw, recorders and winds.

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Arts & Culture
4:17 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Broadway's Tony Award-Winning "American Idiot" Coming To The Majestic

"American Idiot" cast.
: Press photo

A hard-hitting multi-Tony award winning musical is coming to the Majestic Theatre.  "American Idiot," the highly-acclaimed musical that was borne out of the seminal Grammy Award-winning Green Day album of the same name, is coming December 13-14.

"'American Idiot' is about three disaffected teens growing up in a place called Jingletown, USA," said Dan Tracy, who plays Tunny in the production. "They’re all trying to find their way to a better life and each of them gets lost in their own way."

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Arts & Culture
11:04 am
Thu December 5, 2013

Urban-15 Gives The Holidays A Laser Light Treatment

San Antonio's performing arts group Urban-15 is known for its driving drumbeats and wildly creative costuming. Their longevity and unique calling has made them one of the city’s iconic puro San Antonio aspects. But every December they put away the drums and costumes, put on holiday music, and turn on the lasers.

"The holiday laser show is multiple lasers that are choreographed to some of the holiday favorites," said Urban-15 Music and Media Director George Cisneros.

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Television
4:57 pm
Wed December 4, 2013

Telemundo's 'Highly Unusual' Resurrection of 'El Señor'

Rafael Amaya plays drug lord Aurelio Casillas on El Señor de los Cielos.
Billy Coleman Telemundo/NBC Universal

Originally published on Wed December 4, 2013 5:22 pm

Telemundo recently announced that its telenovela El Señor de los Cielos (Lord of the Skies) will be back for a second season; production began this week in Mexico City. This resurrection sets it apart from almost every other telenovela because, unlike American soap operas, telenovelas have a clear beginning and a definitive ending, airing for a set number of episodes.

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Arts & Culture
3:13 pm
Wed December 4, 2013

Playhouse Rennovations Continue Amid Productions

Playhouse in progress
Asia Ciaravino

As if putting on large scale plays and musicals weren’t enough work, The Playhouse had to find a way to put itself back together after weather damage it suffered from a thunderstorm last May. A rain-damaged roof soaked through and ceiling plaster came raining down on the seats at their Russell Hill Rogers Theater.

As Playhouse CEO Asia Ciaravino notes, fixing a theater is tough work for people who just want to entertain you in one.

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Arts & Culture
12:54 pm
Wed December 4, 2013

Experience The U.S.-Mexico Border At New Blue Star Exhibit

Broken Landscape III
Future Arts Research (F.A.R.), ASU, Phoenix, AZ

A new exhibit at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum is getting some heated interest and the reason is probably because if its subject mater, and size. It’s not exactly something you can hang on your wall.

"The sculpture at Blue Star is approximately 70 ft. long," said Blane de St. Croix, the artist who created the sculpture he calls Broken Landscape III.

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Movie Interviews
5:24 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Despite Personal Heartbreak, 'Zuzu' Still Believes "It's A Wonderful Life"

Karolyn Grimes as Zuzu, and Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey
Paramount Pictures

Her line is one of the most iconic in all of film history: “Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings.”

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KPAC Blog
3:50 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Black Violin Talks High School Outreach Ahead Of Friday Performance

Black Violin performing for a showcase at SXSW 2013 in Austin last march.
Chris Eudaily TPR News

Black Violin, it's the Florida band which has staked out the unlikely intersection of hip hop and classical music. Band member Wilner Baptiste (Wil B) spoke to TPR about the band's outreach efforts in high schools.

"It's something that is very dear to our hearts because we understand," Baptiste said. "We were in a performing arts school that actually had an orchestra."

Baptiste talked about his Fort Lauderdale high school years where, due to budget cuts, he nearly missed being able to learn violin.

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KPAC Blog
12:56 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Conspirare Brings Special Guest Ruthie Foster For Holiday Performance

Conspirare Artistic Director Craig Hella Johnson.
Conspirare

Conspirare is a professional chamber choir from Austin that sings different types of music, from medieval to modern. The word itself may sound like it has sinister undertones, but Craig Hella Johnson, the group's artistic director, said it means, "to breathe together."

"We are so thrilled about our visit to San Antonio," Johnson said. "We are returning to a venue that we really enjoy singing in -- Laurel Heights United Methodist Church -- and we are singing this Friday."

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Holiday Performances
4:07 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

Downtown Tuesday Brings The Holiday Swing This Week

Photo: Christian Collins

In San Antonio’s huge array of holiday events, a few stand out apart from the others. This one though, definitely does.

"It’s a big band concert on Tuesday December 3 at the Empire Theater," said Brent "Doc" Watkins, talking about his upcoming show at the Charline McCombs Theater.

"I’ve got an 18-piece big band that’s going to be performing a number of holiday and Christmas classics --everything from "Jingle Bells" to "Charlie Brown’s Christmas," to things like "O Holy Night." I’ve got a variety of singers coming in, it’s going to be a really great show," Watkins said.

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