Fire It Up
We always recommend following your passion. And often that is easier to do in our region, especially once you get the hang of it. Do your own art, keep your costs low, start your own festival, put yourself out there. And set yourself on fire.
We’ve created a new show that zeroes in on the spark created by two masters of contemporary art & music: When Andy Met Lou debuts at Jilly’s Music Room in Akron this Sun 9/22, and includes a “Velvet Brunch” at one of the hottest venues in the region. We hope you can join us.
FireFish Festival is one of our favorites, rising up on Broadway in Downtown Lorain, filling the streets, alleys and storefronts like no other event in the region. Rescue farm animals rarely warm the heart like cats and dogs, but this weekend Lasa Sanctuary throws a benefit at The Kent Stage, and we spoke with founder/director Joy Smetzer. The Rock Hall turns it up for Mavis Staples with their new Rock Hall Honors.
Artist and curator Dan Miller has had some challenges: motorcycle accidents, family deaths and divorce, compounded with his own mental illness, but through his burning passion, he’s overcome all that to produce Some Disassembly Required at Waterloo Arts. Do what sets you on fire. –Thomas Mulready
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After a sensational weekend in Cleveland at BOP STOP (pictured), this unique show moves to the fabulous Jilly’s Music Room in Akron at noon on Sun 9/22.
Each “Velvet Brunch” ticket includes the presentation, live music performance and buffet brunch featuring scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, waffle bar, mini-muffins, fresh fruit, garden salad, plus a specially-priced $5 Mimosa and Bloody Mary Bar. As always, a full bar is available. Jill Bacon Madden took over the former Northside Bar and Grille, a bastion of live music in Akron’s Northside neighborhood where Chrissie Hynde originally invested in a residence and restaurant, removed all the dated copper and wood, rearranged the stage, and beefed up the sound system for live, local, original music. “I wanted to build a place that was chic and comfortable, where adults would want to hang out and experience live music.” With its built-in projection screen and excellent sight lines, it’s also a great place to experience “When Andy Met Lou,” with presentation and live music set by Vanity Crash.
Thomas Mulready has created a multi-media presentation featuring rare video, needle drops, and recently unearthed photos focused on 1966-67 and the context around the intersection of two of the most iconic artists of the 20th century, Andy Warhol and Lou Reed, and the innovative live show they created with the Velvet Underground called The Exploding Plastic Inevitable.
When Andy Met Lou introduces unforgettable real-life characters like underground filmmaker Barbara Rubin, who first saw a nascent Velvet Underground at the Cafe Bizarre and implored Andy Warhol and his assistant Gerard Melanga to check them out. Warhol liked what he saw, immediately signed on to be their manager, and made The Velvet Underground the centerpiece of his new live show, and brought along his Factory “Superstars” with all their resplendent talents: Edie Sedgwick, Nico, Bibbe Hansen (singer Beck’s mother), plus various and sundry adult film performers, drag queens, socialites, drug addicts, musicians, and free-thinkers, including Holly Woodlawn, Jackie Curtis, Candy Darling and others name checked a few years later in Reed’s epic hit, Walk On The Wild Side. Reserve tickets now for Jilly’s Music Room in Akron for your Velvet Brunch at noon on Sun 9/22.
Lots of people want to adopt adorable rescue pups and kitties. There aren’t as many options for rescued cows, pigs and other farm animals. That’s where Lasa Sanctuary comes in. The Ashtabula County-based organization has 150 animals, representing 17 species, in its care. It was founded in 2010 by Joy Smetzer who says, “I learned that when farm animals are rescued from a cruelty case, there is nowhere for them to go. They require specialized care, a lot of land.”
To support its work, Lasa is holding a benefit concert at the Kent Stage, with acoustic improvisational guitarist Michael Kelsey. “People are happy to give to fuzzy little dogs that need surgery, but it’s harder to convince people to have that same compassion for animals that they’ve been taught to really not pay attention to or care about,” says Smetzer. Check out the concert on Fri 9/20.
Don’t know how many noticed but the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame hasn’t held its signature educational event, the Music Masters series, since 2016. In each of the previous 20 years, it devoted a week to studying and honoring an inductee. It went on hiatus in 2017 while the Rock Hall looked at whether it was an effective us of resources.
The event has now been revived in condensed form as Rock Hall Honors, with Mavis Staples as the first honoree. The 80-year-old gospel/soul/folk/pop vocalist will be the central performer at a Playhouse Square concert Fri 9/20, with a handful of special guests. On Thu 9/19 there’s a panel about her legacy at CWRU. Sat 9/21 is Mavis Staples Fan Day at the Rock Hall with a variety of programming.
It’s the fifth year for the two-day FireFish festival, which fills the streets, alley and storefronts around Broadway in downtown Lorain with an explosion of art and performance activities of all sorts. This year’s theme is pyrophytic plants, plants that can survive fire or even need it to flourish, perhaps a hopeful metaphor for economically hard-hit Lorain.
FireFish culiminates Saturday evening with a colorful procession of musicians, street performers and anyone who wants to join in, down to the riverfront where the 30 x 15 foot fish is ignited one darkness falls. In the meantime, there’s a lot to see & do, with an emphasis on hands-on and interactive activities. Fri 9/20-Sat 9/21.
SPONSORED: Their restaurant was named Best New Restaurant in Chicago. Now award-winning chefs Kurt Guzowski and Thomas Rice have opened Four Star Artisan, a sausage company. Join them Tue 9/23 at Tartine Bistro as they discuss their journey and prepare a fabulous four course meal. For reservations, visit ClevelandIndependents.com.
Dan Miller is an artist and curator of Rant Gallery at 78th Street Studios. In the past few years, he’s had some bad luck – motorcycle accidents, family deaths, divorce – that found confluence with his mental illness (a form of depression) to make his life a struggle. But out of that came Some Disassembly Required, on view at Waterloo Arts through Sat 9/21.
Even getting the show together was hard, but the result is striking and revealing. “I’ve tried very hard to harness this,” says Miller. “I have a renewed desire to help people. The single fact that people have reached out honestly to say how much it means to them matters so much.”
Anyone who goes to Third Fridays at 78th Street Studios has probably walked through the doors of Eileen Dorsey’s studio on the first floor and found her hard at work on one of her landscape paintings. This month, she’ll have a special show, 10 x 10, that looks at how her style as evolved over the 10 years she’s been at 78th Street. She’s also got a new book called Walk Through Wilderness which you can pick up from her next time you drop in. Fri 9/21.
* After eight hours of polka music and 2,000 sausages consumed by 1,300 people at the Slovenian Sausage Fest at Kirtland’s SNPJ Farm on Wed 9/11, Azman Quality Meat was declared the winner of both the jury and the people’s choice awards. They win the opportunity to be the sausage vendor at the annual Thanksgiving Polka weekend at the downtown Marriott.
Music on the Porches is a free, laid-back afternoon of mostly acoustic folk and American roots music at businesses, eateries, galleries and churches in the bucolic small town of Peninsula. Sat 9/21
The Choir of Trinity College Cambridge is a mixed-voice choir with roots in the 14th century which performs most of the year at its school chapel. But with its international reputation for quality, it also tours regularly, and will be coming to another Trinity – Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland – tonight.
Food Strong is a new nonprofit dedicated to educating people about eating healthy and local, and making that food accessible. Its Cornucopia fundraiser at Lago in the Flats raises money to expand its programs.
The F*SHO artisan furniture maker/designer show has passed into new hands: those of Soulcraft CLE founder Peter Debelak, and moves location against for its 11th year, into the Hamilton Collaborative where Soulcraft is located.
The Southerly Wastewater Treatment Center in Cuyahoga Heights is key player in assuring NE Ohioans have a reliable source of clean water. Once a year, it hosts its Clean Water Festival and Open House so people can see how they do it, and have some fun as well.
ARTneo’s annual benefit luncheon always honors a significant figure in NE Ohio’s visual arts scene. This year, it’s Douglas Utter, one of the most prominent working artists in the region. Guests will be able to snag a copy of the upcoming publication on Utter’s work.
There are only a few Slow Roll Monday night rides left so hurry and grab that bike. This week’s leisurely 10-mile ride begins and ends at Edgewater Park so you can see the improvements there and watch the sunset over the lake too.
Today is National Voter Registration Day. Even if you think you are registered, it’s a good time to check with your board of elections because Ohio’s secretary of state has been gleefully purging people for no good reason.
From today through March 1, 2020, the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage will be hosting a traveling exhibit called Leonard Bernstein: The Power of Music. Tonight, the Philadelphia-based creators of the exhibit host a discussion at the Maltz about how the show came together.
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While I have no proof, I do believe that her “red carpet riches” and sense of “white privilege” are playing a role in Lori Loughlin’s decision to go forth with a trial, something that every American is entitled to have. She must be of the belief that her entitlement places her above the law….
Read other stories from Mansfield Frazier here
A look back at the last week
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