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West Michigan’s Entertainment Guide for 28 years » September 2016

Free! / Music / culture / Dining / Beer

Artist Jeff Kraus

Fogs of color


Arts Issue A complete arts season preview for 2016–2017

Local Artist Profiles Anna Lisa Chris Cox Henry Arthur Brown James Lacroix Jessica Benson Lisa Walcott Loralee Grace Lydia Boda Miranda Brouwer Nick Szymanski

2 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

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REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |






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REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


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REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


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What’s Inside

September 2016 | Volume 28, Issue 9

SCENE: 15 What’s Going on this Month 18 Biz Beat 20 Eclectic: Clinton Zimmerman

SOUNDS: 23 Local: Solid State Sounds 24 Local: Nashon Holloway 26 WYCE Playlist 28 Art Rock Albums 32 Touring: Frank Turner


The Arts Issue


34 Season Previews 48 UICA Turns 40 50 Artist Jeff Kraus 52 GR Symphony’s Marcelo Lehninger 54 Local Film Artists 56 Photographer James Lacroix 58 Actor Steve Hutchins 60 Artist Lisa Walcott 62 Photographer Chris Cox 64 Curator Paul Amenta 66 Tattoo Artist Miranda Brouwer 68 Illustrator Anna Lisa 70 Artist Lydia Boda 72 Artist Jessica Benson 74 Artist Loralee Grace 76 Artist Henry Arthur Brown 78 Artist Nicholas Szymanski 80 Museum Guide 82 Broadway GR’s Record-Setting Season

SIGHTS: 85 86 88 90 92 94

Indie Film Style Notes Comedy: Kathleen Madigan Comedy: Hannibal Buress Magic: Bill Blagg Lit Life: Z.G. Tomaszewski

DINING & DRINKING: Creston Brewery

104 56

James Lacroix

97 Restaurant Guide 102 The Artistry of Food 104 Beer: Creston Brewery

Letter from the Publisher To our readers: In your hands you’re holding Revue’s eighth annual Arts Issue, and it’s a behemoth. At 112 pages, this month’s magazine is the single-largest issue we’ve ever printed and it’s packed with solid journalistic coverage of West Michigan’s thriving cultural arts scene. The 2016 Arts Issue is also a preview of what’s to come in Revue. Starting this month, we are launching a new initiative to cover the region’s arts scene thoroughly, credibly and 52 weeks a year. We plan to pack the magazine with previews, feature stories, interviews, photos and listings in a special Revue Arts section that you’ll find in each issue. We’ll also be using revuewm.com and our weekly e-newsletter to share breaking news and critical reviews of performances and exhibitions. Our goal is to be your go-to resource for news and information about West Michigan’s cultural arts activities. We’re able to make this happen thanks to the support of a couple-dozen arts organization from around the region that stepped up as sponsors for this effort. Thanks to our friends at: ArtPrize, Ballet Arts Ensemble, Holland Symphony, Tulipanes Latino

Art & Film Festival, Wharton Center, University Musical Society, Broadway Grand Rapids, Muskegon Civic Theatre, Muskegon Museum of Art, Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids Ballet, Actors’ Theatre, Miller Auditorium, Opera Grand Rapids, Pigeon Creek Shakespeare, Gilmore Theatre/ Western Michigan University, Grand Rapids Public Library, Theatre Kalamazoo, and Van Singel Arts Center. In line with our increased commitment to arts journalism, we’re making some changes on the masthead. Rich Tupica will become the associate publisher, with responsibility for making sure Revue is an excellent read, that it’s profitable and that people can find it around town. Editor and Beer Czar Joe Boomgaard will play an expanded role in directing our overall editorial coverage, and Josh Veal has been named associate editor with responsibility for leading our arts coverage team. So, whether you’re an artist, performer, arts executive, donor, volunteer or a fan of the arts, we’d like to encourage you to let us know what’s going on around West Michigan’s art scene. You can reach us at editor@revuewm.com.

W es t M ichigan ’ s E n t ertainmen t G ui d e

Editorial Publisher Brian Edwards / brian@revuewm.com Associate Publisher Rich Tupica / rich@revueholding.com Editor Joe Boomgaard / joe@revuewm.com Associate Editor Josh Veal / josh@revuewm.com Copy Editor Claire Boomgaard Design Creative Director Kim Kibby / kim@revuewm.com Ad Design Rachel Harper, Phil Artz Contributing Writers Missy Black Dana Casadei Ameera Chaudhry Mark Deming Tamara Fox Anastasia Hauschild Dwayne Hoover

Audria Larsen Eric Mitts Troy Reimink Nicole Rico Josh Spanninga Elma Talundzic Kayla Tucker

Sales / 616.608.6170 / sales@revuewm.com Kelli Belanger / kelli@revuewm.com Digital Editor Kim Kibby / kim@revuewm.com

Be good,

Find us online! Brian Edwards, Publisher Website: revuewm.com Twitter: twitter.com/revuewm Facebook: facebook.com/revuewm Instagram: instagram.com/revuewm

Upcoming issues

Revue is published monthly by Revue Holding Company. 65 Monroe Center, Ste. 5, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 Office: 616.608.6170 / Fax: 616.608.6182 ©2016, Revue Holding Company. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part granted only by written permission of the publisher in accordance with our legal statement, fools.

October: The Beer Issue

A thorough guide to the local craft beer scene, with an extensive brewery guide, beer face-offs, trends and more.

November: The drinking Issue Celebrating local pubs, taverns, distilleries and more.

On the cover: Jeff Kraus’ painting Megalith. See story on page 50, and the full Arts Issue on page 33.

To AdvertisE: Call (616) 608-6170 or email sales@revuewm.com. Space reservation is the 15th of the month before publication.

10 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016



FireK Casin


Sept. JOB















THE B-52s


Tickets available now at the FireKeepers Box Office, FireKeepersCasino.com or 877.FKC.8777.



Must be 21 or older. Tickets based on availability. Schedule subject to change.

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/// best bets

what’s Going on this month

Frontier Ruckus at Pyramid Scheme

ArtPrize opens Sept. 21

friday 9/2

friday 9/9

wednesday 9/14

saturday 9/17

Frontier Ruckus

Adam Green

Avenged Sevenfold

Mariachi Flor De Toloache

Michigan-based Frontier Ruckus stops by the Pyramid Scheme Sept. 2, bringing its unique blend of folk rock and powerpop along for the ride. The group’s style is densely lyrical, telling stories of Americana, which has received critical acclaim from Rolling Stone, Under The Radar, CMJ and Paste Magazine. Also on the bill are Samantha Crain and Ohtis.

As one half of the now defunct Moldy Peaches, Adam Green wrote bizarre lo-fi pop songs like “Who’s Got The Crack?” alongside Kimye Dawson. His new sound is more akin to Lee Hazlewood and Jonathan Richman, though. Green’s also made a few films, specifically Aladdin and The Wrong Ferrari, that starred Pete Doherty, Macaulay Culkin and Devendra Banhart, among others. Fans of Daniel Johnston and Leonard Cohen should take time for this one.

Former Hot Topic kids of Grand Rapids will rejoice to hear Avenged Sevenfold is stopping by Van Andel this month. With influences like Pantera, Korn, NOFX and Bad Religion, Avenged Sevenfold’s sound has been described as heavy metal, metalcore and hard rock. You may remember them from the 2005 hit “Bat Country,” which was inspired by Hunter S. Thompson’s novel Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

Pyramid Scheme, 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids Sept. 2, 8:30 p.m. $12 advance, $14 day of, ages 21+ pyramidschemebar.com, (616) 272-3758

Louie’s Back Room, 629 Walbridge St., Kalamazoo Sept. 9, 8 p.m., $10, 18 and over louiesbackroom.com

Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Sept. 14, 7 p.m., $29-$55 avengedsevenfold.com, (616) 742-6600

thursday 9/15

Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas

Bell’s Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Sept. 15, 7 p.m., $12 advance, $14 day of bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332

Bell’s Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Sept. 7, 8 p.m., FREE bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332

Nostalgia fanatics will appreciate this double feature of Spielberg’s Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Both movies have received years of critical acclaim and are considered classics. Fans of Shark Week and Ancient Aliens will not want to miss this either. The event is free and starts at dusk in Bell’s Beer Garden. Attendees are encouraged to bring a blanket or chairs.

Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas at Bell’s

Detroit’s Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas are playing Bell’s Eccentric Café Sept. 15. The soul-and-pop group released its first full-length album, Secret Evil, in 2014 and spent the latter half of 2015 touring with both Robert Plant and one of Hernandez’s favorite bands, Gogol Bordello. Check out who Paste Magazine calls “an ascendant star” at this standing-room only gig.

The Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival celebrates the contributions of Latinos to art, film and music. This September marks the sixth-annual year and features a performance by New York City’s all-women mariachi group Mariachi Flor De Toloache. The group is Grammy nominated and will be performing at Hope College Sept. 17.

Of Montreal

Pyramid Scheme, 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids Sept. 17, 8 p.m. $20 advance, $22 day of, all ages pyramidschemebar.com, (616) 272-3758 Of Montreal has made a name for itself with its pastiche of musical styles, running the gamut from glam and punk to folk rock and country. The latest album, Innocence Reaches, is inspired by sound collage and musical acts like The Beach Boys and Arca. The show begins with Ruby the Rabbitfoot.

Continued ➤

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

wednesday 9/7

Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts, Hope College, 221 Columbia Ave, Holland Sept. 17, 7 p.m. $12 adults, $2 children 18 and under tulipanes.org, (616) 218-2309


/// best bets wednesday 9/21 ArtPrize opens

Various venues, downtown Grand Rapids Sept. 21–Oct. 9, FREE artprize.org The world’s most well-attended public art event returns to downtown Grand Rapids this month. With 1,453 works of art on view, you might feel overwhelmed, but if you don’t vote, you can’t complain. Check out the Jurors’ Shortlist event on Sept. 26 and “Critical Discourse: Why these final-

ists?” on Oct. 3 and 4 to round out your ArtPrize experience with an expert critique.

noted he was perhaps too much of a romantic. Chuck Cannon opens this acoustic show.

Shawn Mullins

monday 9/26

Seven Steps Up, 116 S. Jackson Street, Spring Lake Sept. 21, 8 p.m., $45-$55 pindropconcerts.com, (231) 557-7687 Best known for his 1998 Grammy-nominated hit “Lullaby,” Shawn Mullins continues to write heartfelt songs concerning his failed relationships. His My Stupid Heart album chronicles the end of his third marriage, to which Mullins

How To Dress Well

Pyramid Scheme, 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids Sept. 26, 8:30 p.m., $15, all ages pyramidschemebar.com, (616) 272-3758 How To Dress Well released the album What Is This Heart? to favorable reviews from both Pitchfork and Paste

SchulerBooks&Music 34 years as your local, independent bookstore! SEPTEMBER 2016

THURS 09/01, 8, 15, 22, 29 10AM MON 09/08 7PM TUES 09/13 9AM

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

WED 09/14 7PM

SAT 09/28 7PM


Kanye West at Van Andel Arena Magazine. The music is a mix of R&B and electronic music, with Spin calling it “as meditative as it is evocative ... conjuring fractured memories of Shai or TLC.” Its newest album, Care, is out via Domino Records on Sept. 23. Opening the show is Ex Reyes.

tuesday 9/27

Open Play Scrabble

Kanye West: The Saint Pablo Tour Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Sept. 27, 8 p.m., $29.50-$129.50 kanyewest.com, (616) 742-6600

Scrabble club meets in the community area at the rear of the store. All ages and all skill levels welcome. Chapbook

Local Author Night

Join us for a panel presentation by accomplished authors from the state of Michigan. Featured authors are Maureen Dunphy, L.J. Nowak, Sandra Warren and Samantha Wilcoxson.

Unstoppable Women Networking

We invite you to renew your energy for your purpose-based business with a network of Unstoppable Women. Our goal is to provide a community of support that offers simple tools for motivation and inspiration. meetup.com/Womennetworking

Grand Rapids author Kristina Riggle presents Vivian in Red

We love welcoming fiction author Kristina Riggle to the store, so we were delighted to hear of the release of her new novel Vivian in Red, which has been getting fantastic reviews!

Cribbage Game Night in the Community Area! Join Dave Aiken, editor of Cribbage World Magazine, on the last Wednesday of every month as he hosts a game night dedicated to the game of cribbage! All ages and skill levels welcome.

Visit www.SchulerBooks.com for a complete list of events. All events are subject to change. 2660 28th Street SE 616.942.2561

16 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Celebrate the #taylorswiftisoverparty with a trip to see

Kanye West at the Van Andel. West has been named one of Michigan Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world Postcards twice. He’s also won 22 Grammys and sold more than 30


million albums worldwide. Check him out on the Saint Pablo Tour before he goes back to collaborating with Louis Vuitton or kicking up more controversy.

friday 9/30 Amy Speace

Seven Steps Up, 116 S. Jackson St., Spring Lake Sept. 30, 8 p.m., $25-$35 pindropconcerts.com, (231) 557-7687 Folk singer Amy Speace stops by Seven Steps Up this month. The East Nashville native is reminiscent of Joan Baez and has been named a leading voice in the new generation of American folk singers. Her newest album, That Kind Of Girl, has been called brutally honest as it documents a relationship from the perspective of “the other woman.” Opening the show is Ben de la Cour.

Ongoing Morris From America UICA, 2 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Sept. 2-20, times vary $4 UICA members, $8 public uica.org, (616) 454-7000

Directed by Chad Hartigan, this coming-of-age comedy centers around Morris Gentry, a 13-year-old Notorious B.I.G. fan who’s suddenly relocated to EDM-obsessed Germany. The Office fans will also be happy to see Craig Robinson in the role of Gentry’s single father. n

—Compiled by Nicole Rico

Relax at Rosa MAY 5 - SEPTEMBER 15 Free Musical Lunch Breaks Every Thursday. Noon - 1:30 PM. Rosa Parks Circle.







ESME May 19




AN DRO July 14










d o w t o w n g r. o r g

Please visit our facebook page for a list of band performances and food options organized by the Grand Rapids Food Truck Association.


/// news

west Michigan

biz beat


Over at community radio station 88.1 WYCE, Quinn Matthews (of indie-folk duo Channing & Quinn) has been announced as the new station manager, while longtimeemployee Nicole LaRae stepped down as Community Relations Coordinator.

A Roundup of Openings, Closings and other Business News OPENING:

The drive up M-37 (aka Alpine in Grand Rapids) just keeps getting more delicious, with Fuego: A Fusion Kitchen (21 W. Main St., Grant) now serving up an eccentric mix of tacos, sushiritos and flatbreads. Not too far off, Bier Distillery (5295 West River, Comstock Park) has opened its doors, featuring original spirits like Pumpkin Whiskey and Forbidden Apple Brandy. Just a couple miles down the road, Elk Brewing is scheduled to open its second location this month, less than two years after setting up shop on Wealthy Street in Grand Rapids. The Sovengard (443 Bridge St., Grand Rapids) is a new downtown biergarten with a unique concept. All drinks

The Waldron Public House (58 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids) has turned into an events-only venue. The three-story restaurant never quite caught the public eye as much as BarFly’s other ventures, despite extensive renovations and rebranding earlier this year.

are locally sourced and the Swedish food menu changes seasonally. The name is Norwegian for “sleep farm,” according to Google Translate. So… there’s something. Bombadil Books (315 Division Ave., Grand Rapids) is now open. The small, “community-based” bookstore sets itself apart with binding and repair services alongside zines and handmade journals. Stop by to get your book fix while getting your book fixed. (I came up with that myself.)


Kalamazoo’s very own One Well Brewing (4213 Portage St., Kalamazoo) is doubling in size thanks to the adjacent Snap Fitness’s departure. What does that mean for you? More seats, more events and most importantly, more arcade games. Elsewhere, the brewery is expanding its

CLOSING: The Sovengard production facility to 15 barrels to keep those additional glasses filled. Further north, Cellar Brewing Co. (500 E. Division St., Sparta) received a $250,000 performance-based grant from the Michigan Strategic Fund to move from the edge of Sparta to downtown, hopefully attracting more visitors to the area.

Similarly, Smash Wine Bar & Bistro (415 W. Western Ave., Muskegon) has closed altogether. The restaurant, located in the Frauenthal Center for Performing Arts, was open for three years. Frauenthal’s event nights kept Smash busy, but those only occurred once or twice a week on average. n —Compiled by Josh Veal If you have any closings, openings or other business news for REVUE, e-mail josh@revuewm.com.

A F e e - O n l y We a l t h M a n a g e m e n t G r o u p


Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene


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FOR TICKET INFORMATION Call 269-345-1181 or visit: www.kazoohumane.org/raffle

Travel unscripted with LASIK KEIL LASIK VISION CENTER p. 616.365.5775


www.keillasik.com REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


/// Eclectic

Clinton Zimmerman

Mover, Shaker & Body Healer |  by Audria Larsen

Clinton Zimmerman is an entrepreneurial man of many passions. They just so happen to all converge in his newest Big Rapids-based venture, Red Fox Market. From performance artist and naturopath to bodyworker and business owner, Zimmerman has carved out a distinct niche for himself and the community at large. Revue asked the trailblazer about his past, present and prospective future.

What sets apart your new grocery store from other local businesses? We are offering a very modern feel in a very old (building). We’re a progressive grocery store that’s Michigan focused, natural food grocery and education driven. I know you and your partner worked to renovate the building. Tell me about your DIY process. We bought the second oldest building in Big Rapids. It was built in 1882 and has had a very rich history. When we took the building over, it had 40 years of neglect and was in a big state of disrepair. Nicholas, my partner, is a historic preservationist and has been a key component in the restoration project of the building, as well as helping me maintain my sanity. We have also been very fortunate to have had a couple other of my friends put in many volunteer hours. They came with a huge tool belt of carpentry skills and gumption. Is there a singular moment that you knew you wanted to launch your business? This has always been a dream of mine. I worked at our small health food store here in Big Rapids when I was 17, and I think ever since then it’s been a dream. I have (also) worked in several retail health related stores in my day. Yes, with each one you learn many different things. Why did you decide to launch this business in your hometown? A couple years ago, my Dad passed away and my Mom was struggling to pick her life back up again after 52 years of marriage. After waiting a year to see how she was doing, I decided it was time to move back home (from Ann Arbor) and start a project, because I couldn’t live in Big Rapids without a project. I know you practice some medicine out of your new space. What are your titles? I’m a board-certified naturopathic doctor, certified traditional naturopath, licensed massage therapist, and a bodywork practitioner. How long has that been part of your life? I’ve been practicing for almost 20 years as of now. I did a few pre-med classes through Ferris State University, then decided that wasn’t the route I was looking for. I grew up in a very naturalistic type of family. We lived off the land a lot. Also, when I lived in the Netherlands as an exchange student, my host mother was very influential in my studies for ‘always something better.’ I decided to pursue being a naturopath, because herbs were always interesting to me. I went to school for five years all together.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

I first met you through performance art, from butoh dance (we’ll explain later) to burlesque. What’s the origin story there? I went to a street art show in Eastown of Grand Rapids that a couple friends invited me to and I saw a group of butoh buskers performing. As I watched them, I was highly intrigued by the story they were telling. It was so great to watch the audience and the crowd of people. They had so many reactions, from interest to uncomfortable to confusion. I thought, “This is art!”

20 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

How did you get personally involved after that? I then found out about classes being offered through the UICA, every Sunday evening. At the time, I was suffering from some very deep and crippling anxiety and depression, but something told me internally that this would help face some internal challenges. So I made myself go, every week, even through the panic attacks. Because after every class I felt more connected to myself and more empowered. How would you succinctly describe butoh to a stranger on the street? Butoh is a meditative moment. You are thinking about the story you wish to tell, and you move to that story as you meditate. You are always remaining in connection with the elements surrounding you, because from those elements comes your energy, not yourself. Drawing from those elements, use that energy, follow the flow, and create your story that you need to tell to the world. What’s next? I’d like to write a book, travel more, and grow a really nice and successful business that helps enrich people’s lives and their community. I always am working on new performance stuff in my head, and on paper. I love doing small venue performances, and I do hope to get back to teaching Butoh workshops again. n

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |










Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene



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22 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016




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/// local Music

Solid State Sounds

Local music news and shows for September including Super Happy Funtime Burlesque, Joose The Conqueror and Gunnar & the Grizzly Boys |  by Eric Mitts

Joose the Conqueror

Super Happy Funtime Burlesque


alamazoo post-hardcore standouts The Reptilian return home from a tour with a show at Louie’s Back Room (629 Walbridge St.) on Sept. 2. Opening is touring Chicago outfit God Alone, as well as Kalamazoo bands The Short Life and Vines. The Reptilian is also releasing the group’s new LP, End Paths, on Sept. 16. Grand Rapids rapper Joose The Conqueror releases his new album Insomnia Sept. 2. Joose is a co-founder and member of the Grand Rapids-based digital label and artistic collective known as AGO Music, aka The Astronaut Gang Organization.

A lso on Sept. 10, Founders Brewing Company presents the first-ever Tribute on the Grand at Ah-Nab-Awen Park (299 Pearl St. NW). The free, all-ages event helps raise funds for Grand Rapids Whitewater, a nonprofit organization set on restoring the

rapids to the Grand River. In addition to offering lots of local beer, Tribute is featuring a performance by Grand Rapids’ own David Bowie-tribute band Brother Wolf and the Wolf Pack From Mars, as well as L.A. Vation, a U2-cover band from Los Angeles, and Free Fallin’, a Tom Petty-tribute band from Minnesota. Meanwhile in Muskegon, on Sept. 10 the Rock Against Abuse Benefit Concert takes place at Hackley Park (350 W. Webster Ave.) and Unruly Brewing Company (360 W. Western Ave.). The community concert is featuring local bands Lakeshore Drive, Two Heded Chan, Product of Society, Of All We Cherish, Kill Tomorrow, Biffy the Beat Slayer, Blanca Luz, and Minus Two. All proceeds from the event benefit the Muskegon County Child Abuse Council. Those looking to make a trek northward this month should look no further than the annual Earthwork Harvest Gathering held Sept. 16-18 at the Earthwork Farm (4399

N. 7 Mile Rd. in Lake City). Founded by Michigan musician and Grand Rapids regular Seth Bernard 15 years ago, the three-day family-friendly festival features free onsite camping and over 90 musical acts this year, including such West Michigan roots music favorites as The Crane Wives, Big Dudee Roo, Valentiger, Red Tail Ring, Lindsay Lou & the Flatbellys, and many, many more. Grand Rapids hard-rockers Dirt Chili release the long-awaited LP, Shot & A Smoke, during a show at The Stache (133 Grandville Ave. SW) on Sept. 17. Veteran Hastings metalheads 6 Prong Paw and Grand Rapids rock band The Holy Warheads open. The West Michigan Jazz Society is offering up some fresh flavor with the return of the popular monthly Monday Night Jazz Gumbo series on Sept. 19 at The Guest House (634 Stocking Ave. NW). The evening features the signature gumbo served with a side of bluesy jazz standards from The Amy Williams Quintet, featuring Mark Kahny

on keys, Freddy DeGennaro on guitar, Rob Jewett on bass and Bob Thompson on drums. Long-running Grand Rapids troupe Super Happy Funtime Burlesque is retiring the cult-favorite ArtPrize: The Musical this year, and will premiere an all-new musical as an official ArtPrize 2016 entry on Sept. 24 at The Pyramid Scheme (68 Commerce Ave. SW). The super-secret performance will have two shows at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. and is open to those 18 and older. Don’t miss out — this one is sure to have lots of shocks and surprises. Grand Rapids’ own Gunnar & the Grizzly Boys hit up The Intersection (133 Grandville Ave. SW) on Sept. 30. The rising country stars just spent the summer crisscrossing the entire country on tour and are celebrating their return home with this revved up show. n

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

An annual fall favorite, the Eastown StreetFair returns on Sept. 10. The free community event features all local art, food, and music on three stages, beginning at 11 a.m. on its outdoor family-friendly mainstage located in the Hub Lot on Wealthy Street. Performers include: The Triumph Music Academy, Bootstrap Boys, Olivia Mainville, Cardboard Swords, Potato Babies, The Legal Immigrants, Valentiger, Brother Adams, and Lady Ace Boogie. Local hotspots Billy’s Lounge (1437 Wealthy St. SE) and Mulligan’s Pub (1518 Wealthy St. SE) are also hosting live music on their stages during the event. The lineup at Billy’s includes Kathleen & the Bridge Street Band, I Believe In Julio, Silverstiles, Lipstick Jodi, Moto, Red Legs, Paddlebots, and the GR Soul Club. Open to those 21 and older, Mulligan’s has Thomas Gun, Charlie Darling, Dance Contraption, Antilogical, Cosmonaut, Blackgate, and Teething.


/// local Music

Homeward Bound Nashon Holloway returns to Kalamazoo for LP release |  by Eric Mitts

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene


hen you walk into the Great H a l l of Ch ic ag o ’ s U n ion S tat ion, you ca n ’ t m iss t h e marble floor and soaring Corinthian columns lining the five-story atrium. The stunning architectural landmark isn’t just a gem of the city – it’s one of the many unusual places you’ll now find Kalamazoo native Nashon Holloway singing with complete strangers. “The sound echoes in such a way that you can perform a duet with someone from across the room,” Holloway told Revue. “Imagine looking up and someone 30 feet across the room can speak in a normal voice and you hear them amplified loud and clear.” The experience is emblematic of Holloway’s whole philosophy on music, one where the idea of harmony should extend into all of life, well beyond music. In this philosophy, music itself serves as the truest form of connection. Holloway recently wrote a song about the station’s transcendent acoustic phenomenon. It’s one of many new experiences she’s soaked in since relocating from Kalamazoo to Chicago earlier this summer, when the 26-year-old singer-songwriter got a day job working at a fitness company. Her ties to music, however, go back way before working a 9-to-5 job or busking in the Windy City back to when she first began singing with her family over 20 years ago. The earliest duets came courtesy of her sister Adrienne, who she says is a better singer, and her mother, who turned down a recording contract from Columbia Records years ago.

24 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Nashon Holloway (center) and her band

because I’m learning what love is. Strength doesn’t just happen “Folks are walking around with perfect pitch, can play any instrument and sing anyone under a table,” Holloway said of grow- — neither does peace.” Holloway formed her first group, The Blend, while at WMU. ing up in her very musical family. “I’m a novice at best in my tribe.” Later, she met her boyfriend and collaborator, guitarist Bryan Her first musical memory followed church on a Sunday when Blowers. she was about three years old. She was in Ryan’s Restaurant in Since graduating in 2012, she’s performed her unique combiKalamazoo when the Patsy Cline classic “Crazy” came on the radio. nation of rock, soul and jazz with Blowers and her backing band, “My family was eating and laughing, and suddenly I start crying The Soul Messengers, all over the area. and causing a scene,” she remembers. “Apparently, they asked me “Ultimately, Bryan and I moved for music and [to] build our what was wrong and I said, ‘This song! This song makes me feel career, and also to stay close enough to remain committed to like I’ve done something wrong, but I haven’t done anything!’ My the Kalamazoo community which raised us from the beginning,” mom had to explain to me that Patsy Cline was sad, and that I Holloway said of living in Chicago. wasn’t. I now realize that God blessed me to empathize.” Outside of West Michigan, she has played Holloway carried that sensitive spirit and as far away as Lincoln Center in New York with artistic nature with her throughout high school, Gold Company, and even Dubai, where her sister but never studied music traditionally. Even while The Palace & The Hut lived, in 2014. a student at Western Michigan University, she Album Release Show “In Dubai, I remember walking out on this majored in English and Philosophy, enrolling in w/ Kalamazoo Funk Collective terrace overlooking the city. It was just me and a few music courses but never auditioning for the Bell’s Eccentric Café my guitar, and there was this breathtaking view School of Music. 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo of the entire city,” Holloway recalled. “I didn’t think I could get in!” she said. Sept. 30, 8 p.m., 21+ That experience directly informs the name Still, her roommate convinced Holloway to $5, bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332 of her debut album The Palace & The Hut, which participate in WMU’s American Idol-style comshe took from the title of a short story by Khali petition, which she won freshman year. Only Gibran. afterwards did she audition for and join WMU’s Holloway recorded at Overneath Creative Collective and La acclaimed vocal jazz ensemble Gold Company. The experience Luna Recording & Sound, both in Kalamazoo, and will return to was terrifying and heartbreaking for Holloway. She could barely Kalamazoo for a string of shows this month culminating in the read music, yet every day she stood next to other performers who LP’s release at Bell’s Eccentric Café on Sept. 30. had studied their whole lives. “There will be a horn section, background singers, two drum“Past all the fear and pain there, it became the catalyst for some mers, bass, guitar, keys and me singing something I believe in,” of the greatest professional experiences and personal relationships she said. n in my life,” Holloway said of Gold Company. “God bless [former director] Dr. Steve Zegree. I love it more and more as I grow older

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/// playlist

Songs We Like, Vol. 13 by Pete Bruinsma and Morgan Hayden, WYCE

How to Dress Well, “Lost Youth, Lost You”

(Pyramid Scheme 9/26) Tom Krell is the artist behind How To Dress Well, a singer who boasts a Ph.D. in Philosophy as well as several critically acclaimed releases prior to his upcoming September release, Care. His experimental music stays relatable for anyone listening and his evocative lyrics reach out to many fans.

Julien Baker, “Brittle Bones”

(Ladies Literary Club 9/16) Julien Baker is the singer of sad songs, poet of past mistakes and patron saint for the emotionally expressive. The small troubadour has captured the hearts of fans around the country with her newest release, Sprained Ankle, where she tackles issues as intimate as past drug use and her (at times dysfunctional) relationship with religion.

Eskimeaux, “Broken Necks”

(Pyramid Scheme 9/15, WMU 9/17)

This is a sonic collaboration among Revue, WYCE and AMI Jukeboxes. Play this mix as a playlist on AMI Jukeboxes, read about it here every month and stream it on wyce.org. From Grand Rapids, to the world! Each of the bands featured will be performing in Grand Rapids during September. Go see them!

This single is off the singer’s latest EP, Year of The Rabbit, which was released earlier this spring. Lyrics that hesitate and leap across eardrums, starting small, leading to loud crescendos, dive into the topics of uncertainty and doubt in relationships.

Of Montreal, “Fugitive Air”

(Pyramid Scheme 9/17) The psychedelic rock band that has been around more than 20 years is still innovating and creating new work. The group’s recent forays into progressive rock is melding with an added element of EDM in the latest release, Innocent Reaches.

Frightened Rabbit, “I Wish I Was Sober”

(Pyramid Scheme 9/20) Painting a Panic Attack is the the fifth Frightened Rabbit album produced by The National’s Aaron Dessener. One can hear his influences in this song; however, the band is sure to distinguish themselves on their own merit.

Against Me!, “333”

(Intersection 9/14) This coming album, Shape Shift with Me, will be the band’s seventh album release. The punk band addresses issues of transgender transition and dysphoria; as evidenced in the title of its previous, release Transgender Dysphoria Blues. Immediately after lead singer Laura Jane Grace came out as transgender to her band, she felt like she had just “dropped kicked them in the face.” The fear that she faced and sings about provides an important outlet for others who are going through the same.

Ruby the Rabbitfoot, “Nicola la”

(Pyramid Scheme 9/17) This artist has recently made waves with her carefully crafted pop songs. The newest album from the songwriter is called Divorce Party and boasts of some dark gems, but also this confident song, where even lines such as “I’m gonna let you hurt my feelings” come across with strength. n



Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene


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26 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016



T I C K E T S:

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Destination Vienna November 10, 2016

Fauré and Brahms January 26, 2017

French Virtuosity March 16, 2017

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Langhorne Slim

Renown bluesy folk-rock singer-songwriter November 17, 2016

Stayed tuned... more to come!

San Francisco Jazz Collective Top all-star jazz ensemble! May 4, 2017




Art Rocks

The classic albums that pushed music to new frontiers | by Mark Deming


Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

ock ‘n’ roll is supposed to be tough, gut-level music that speaks from the hear t, but that doesn’t mean smart people can’t play it. In the mid-1960s, as the psychedelic movement began to change the way rock was performed and accepted by its audience, bands began introducing more complex and exploratory elements to their music. This led to the twin musical tributaries of art rock and progressive rock. Since we’re talking about art in this issue, let’s look back at a few noteworthy albums that took rock ‘n’ roll rebellion and filtered it through an advanced degree of imagination and instrumental skill. The Beatles: Revolver (1966, Capitol/EMI) One can argue endlessly about who invented art rock, but The Beatles likely introduced the notion to the average rock fan with 1966’s Revolver. The stoned drift of “I’m Only Sleeping” and the psychedelic philosophizing of “She Said, She Said” were certainly ahead of the curve in pop music, as was George Harrison’s exploration of Indian instrumental flavors in “Love You To.” But the striking modalities and tape-loop structures of “Tomorrow Never Knows” made it obvious the Fab Four were moving past teen anthems into something new and unusual.

The Third Power: Believe (1969, Vanguard/Light In The Attic), SRC: Milestones (1969, Capitol) Michigan was the home of high energy, ass-kicking rockers like The MC5 and The Stooges in the late ’60s, but there were also bands on the scene adding more cerebral sounds to the mix. The Third Power’s sole album, Believe (recently reissued by Light In The Attic), featured future Bob Seger guitarist Drew Abbott

28 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

and a striking back-and-forth between hard rockers like “Gettin’ Together” and quieter, more exploratory pieces such as “Lost in a Daydream” and “Crystalline Chandelier.” And SRC could rock hard when necessary, while also boasting imaginative arrangements and guitar work from Steve Lyman and Gary Quackenbush that anticipated prog rock by several years. SRC was also the only band that regularly played the Grande Ballroom with “In The Hall of the Mountain King” in the repertoire. Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band: Trout Mask Replica (1969, Reprise) Many acts in the art rock scene were aiming for sounds that were beautiful and refined. Captain Beefheart was not one of them. Beefheart’s best music was a roaring, surreal howl from the heart of the blues, fueled by an engine that clanked and sputtered as it miraculously sailed down the road. But no artist of his day had as strong and clear a vision of his own aural universe as the Good Captain, and Trout Mask Replica was his ultimate achievement, a wild and passionate testimony to all that Beefheart found beautiful and troubling. (Trout Mask Replica is Beefheart’s boldest and most unfiltered achievement, but beginners might try the somewhat more user friendly Clear Spot or The Spotlight Kid.) Jethro Tull: Thick as a Brick (1972, Chrysalis) Progressive rock bands seemed to take an unusual pride in the length of their songs, and with Thick as a Brick, Jethro Tull threw down the gauntlet with an album devoted to one song lasting all of 44 minutes. Of course, the tune in question plays a bit more like a song cycle or a medley than one proper melody, but the album still found Ian Anderson and his partners showing off their gymnastic technical skills as they spun together hard rock, jazzy melodic twists, and the warmth and whimsy of British folk music. And the fact a brew this complicated could connect with the

mass audience says a great deal about Tull’s estimable skills as showmen. David Bowie: “Heroes” (1977, RCA/Virgin) As David Jones matured from another blue-eyed British soul singer into the ambisexual Glam Rock chameleon known as David Bowie, he made it very clear he was clever, talented and willing to try different things. But Bowie took his most satisfying music risks with a trio of albums recorded in Berlin in partnership with producer and musical theorist Brian Eno. “Heroes” isn’t necessarily better than Low or Station to Station, the other albums in the Berlin Trilogy, but its title song was arguably the most anthemic and emotionally powerful song to come from this period, while the ambient tone poems that form the album’s second half rank with the most forward-thinking work either Bowie or Eno produced in the 1970s. Sonic Youth: Daydream Nation (1988; Blast First/Geffen), Slint: Spiderland (1991, Touch & Go) The rise of punk and alternative rock was widely imagined to have killed off progressive and art rock, but the truth is, the new artists simply bent the styles around in different and innovative ways. On Sonic Youth’s epochal Daydream Nation, the sprawl of Thurston Moore and Lee Renaldo’s detuned and detourned guitars manifested themselves in lengthy jams that took the band in different and dazzling melodic directions. And Slint rewrote the book on how a band could approach dynamics on the groundbreaking second effort, Spiderland. The album’s tunes eased from whisper quiet to shards of howling fury, and the finale “Good Morning Captain” is dazzling in its mingled subtlety and force. If these two albums weren’t always cited as landmarks of art rock, both were the work of rockers with a genuinely artistic sensibility and proved to be massively influential. n

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Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

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/// On tour “It’s weird having my name in lights, on backdrops and T-shirts and so on. It certainly feels like an entity that is separate from me at times, which is something I have trouble with.”

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

Perpetual Performance

Frank Turner Takes the Stage (Again) at Bell’s Brewery |  by Eric Mitts


ve ry o n e o f Fran k Tu rn e r’s live shows means as much to him as the one before. In fact, the British folk singer-songwriter has kept a running tally of all the shows he’s ever played, and he’ll hit 1,966 when performing in Kalamazoo on Oct. 1. “I started keeping a list of shows in my old band, Million Dead,” Turner said. “Once the band was done (in 2005) I was very happy that I’d done it, because it gave me a record of

30 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

what we’d achieved as a group. So when I started playing solo, I kept a list. That has certainly developed into something of a monster now.” Turner has now played more shows solo — and with his backing band The Sleeping Souls — than he ever did with the post-hardcore Million Dead. And while his 2000th show is approaching, at this point that milestone isn’t anything more to Turner than a comforting reminder of his refusal to grow up or settle down. It also means that his performance at Bell’s beer garden will be every bit as momentous as his mainstage slots at major festivals like Reading and Leeds in his native country or the

massive Lollapalooza festival in Chicago. It’s also part of a short run of headlining shows he’s doing in the U.S. this fall, following his stint opening for Flogging Molly here this summer. “My choice of venues is very much governed by accessibility,” Turner said about keeping his punk-rock ideals intact. “I don’t want to be someone it’s hard to go and see live, or, god forbid, that you have to be ‘cool’ to get access to.” In the decade since he’s gone solo, Turner has become a major star back home across the pond. His fourth LP, 2011’s England Hold My Bones, brimmed with British pride and took his brand of bar-room acoustic punk to some of the country’s biggest stages, including the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Stateside, his song “Recovery” off 2013’s Tape Deck Heart brought him onto the American airwaves. Still, he’s continued to maintain most of his loyal following through tireless touring all over the world. “It’s weird having my name in lights, on backdrops and T-shirts and so on,” Turner said of the commodification of his identity. “It certainly feels like an entity that is separate from me at times, which is something I have trouble with. I don’t want to be disassociated from the art I make. That said, it can also be psychologically helpful to walk away from it from time to time. I don’t want to have my public face Frank Turner & on all the time.” The Sleeping Souls Turner released his latest LP, w/ The Arkells, Will Varley Positive Songs for Negative People, Bell’s Eccentric Café last summer. It’s his fourth 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., album with his backing band Kalamazoo Oct. 1, 7 p.m., 21+ and he feels it’s their pinnacle of $25 advance, $30 day of show playing together. bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332 “We’ve been touring as a unit for eight years now,” Turner said. “We all push each other in terms of performance. As a songwriter, well, I still technically work alone, but knowing who will be playing the parts to accompany the songs I’m writing certainly pushes me in certain directions.” Artistically, Turner is a lot harder on himself. He is his own worst critic, and recently self-imposed something of a songwriting ban to break himself from writing about his own personal heartache. Thankfully for fans, he has now all but lifted the ban and returned to his guitar for more. “I felt like after six studio albums in a row, it was time to have some clear creative water between the past and the future,” Turner said. “Every time I finish a record I think about taking a break once we’re done with the touring cycle. And every time I have something ready to go at the end of that time. I have a whole lot of new stuff on the way, but it’s pretty different, in places, to what has come before.” n



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Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule



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Jonathan Girard, guest conductor Hope College, Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2016 – 7:30pm Sibelius: Karelia Overture, Op. 10 Miller: Madame Bovary Cello Concerto Alicia Eppinga, cello Dvořák: Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88 HOLIDAY CONCERT

Holland Symphony with the Holland Chorale Hope College, Dimnent Chapel (general seating) SATURDAY, DECEMBER 10, 2016 – 3:30 & 7:30pm Family Concert


Zeeland East High School, DeWitt Auditorium (general seating) SUNDAY, MARCH 19, 2017 – 3:30pm 2:30pm, Children’s pre-concert fun Norbert Mueller Concerto Competition Winner 2017 Bernstein: “Mambo” from West Side Story Holst: “Jupiter” from Planets Williams: Star Wars Theme Dvořák: Symphony No. 9, IV. Allegro con fuoco Stravinsky: “Finale” from Firebird Suite Ginastera: Estancia – Malambo Classics III


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Special section

The Arts Issue

Back again for the eighth year, the annual Revue Arts Issue celebrates all sectors of the bustling artistic community in West Michigan. While a certain yearly arts competition may get the most headlines, the vibrant local scene exists in our communities 365 days a year. To spotlight the rising stars taking up that charge, we set out to profile some of the emerging DIY visual artists, actors and arts organizations who contribute to West Michigan’s cultural fabric. Along with those stories and Q&As, we also detail the forthcoming 2016–17 season for the area’s many fine-art museums, symphonies and big-budget Broadway musicals. Turn the page to read on. Photo: James Lacroix (See story on page 56.)

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

and grasses) are prominently featured throughout the grounds. There will also be fall-themed activities for the family. Rounding out the year is Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World. Featuring nearly 400,000 lights, carolers and reindeer, this event celebrates the holiday season and its many global traditions. There’s 40 international trees presented, as well as an Eid ul Fitr display, celebrating the end of Ramadan. Ai Weiwei at Meijer Gardens: Natural, State begins in January, marking Ai Weiwei’s first upper Midwest showing (and at a botanical garden, no less). Ai Weiwei is well-known for his art and activism and is a definitive voice in the 21st century art world. Check out work like the large-scale Iron Tree, acquired by Meijer Gardens for its 20th anniversary last year.

Ai Weiwei, Iron Tree

at Frederik Meijer Gardens

visual art

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Compiled by Nicole Rico

(106) Gallery and Studio (Calvin College)

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

106 S. Division, Grand Rapids calvin.edu/centerartgallery/studio, (616) 526-6271

(106) Gallery begins the fall with Inked, Pressed, Cut & Sewn. The exhibit features 13 ArtPrize artists who used natural fibers to create two- and three-dimensional works. The result showcases how material affects overall design and creates an artistic foundation. You can meet the artists and partake in refreshments at the opening reception, Sept. 23 from 6-8 p.m. Inked, Pressed, Cut & Sewn, Sept. 9-Oct. 9

Broad Art Museum

547 E. Circle Dr., East Lansing broadmuseum.msu.edu, (517) 884-4800 Kicking off Broad Art Museum’s season is Drowning World, a collection of photos by Gideon Mendel. Drowning World charts the effects of climate change on humanity and our domestic abodes. The images stress a shared responsibility across our cultural divides.

34 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Broad’s Yan Xing exhibit highlights important work from the artist’s career, which spans from photography and video to installations and performance. The exhibit also includes a new piece specifically created for the Broad Art Museum. Sam Jury’s video and audio installation To Be Here continues its run at Broad through Nov. 27. The footage was recorded during her stay near Tindouf, Algeria with exiled Sahrawi refugees, accompanied by an audio recording of a young female resident musing as to what the future holds. Fire Within: A New Generation of Chinese Women Artists turns its focus toward an emerging group of women artists from China. The themes within the exhibit run the gamut, including gender identity, interpersonal relationships and sociopolitical dynamics. Beginning Nov. 5 is 2116: Forecast of the Next Century, which features work by 16 contemporary Irish artists. Their work contemplates the “country’s changing society in an increasingly globalized world across a range of media.” And then starting on Dec. 17 is Kate Terry: Suspended Space. Terry’s site-specific installations are created using thread and pins. These ordinary materials are meshed with calculated geometry in an attempt to question the perception of space.

Almost Home: Grand Rapids in Focus (ArtPrize at Meijer Gardens), Sept. 16-Dec. 31 Chrysanthemums and More!, Sept. 16-Oct. 30 Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World, Nov. 22-Jan. 8 Ai Weiwei at Meijer Gardens: Natural, State, Jan. 27-Aug. 20

101 Monroe Center, Grand Rapids artmuseumgr.org, (616) 831-1000

Gideon Mendel: Drowning World, through Oct. 16 Yan Xing, through Oct. 16 Sam Jury: To Be Here, through Nov. 27 Fire Within: A New Generation of Chinese Women Artists, through Feb. 12 2116: Forecast of the Next Century, starting Nov. 5 Kate Terry: Suspended Space, starting Dec. 17

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

1000 East Beltline Ave. NE, Grand Rapids meijergardens.org, (888) 957-1580 Almost Home: Grand Rapids in Focus presents work inspired by Grand Rapids. Artists used the city as their conceptual foundation. Though the pieces range in material and form, they are united in their reflections of the town. A symbol of happiness and longevity, the mum has always been a beloved flower. Check out Chrysanthemums and More! this fall, where yellow chrysanthemums (along with blue asters, ornamental kale

The Grand Rapids Art Museum traverses the fashion world with Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion. Dutch fashion designer van Herpen has created cutting-edge designs for Bjork, Beyonce and Lady Gaga using 3-D printing and unusual items like umbrella ribs and synthetic boat rigging. Collectors will want to check out Finders Keepers: West Michigan Collects. The exhibit questions the human impulse to collect objects and offers up some of the best hidden treasures in West Michigan. Hundreds of collected objects — including everything from fine art to Pokemon cards — will be on display. Starting May 21 is The Art of Rube Goldberg. The American cartoonist and illustrator is well known for his invention drawings and graphic techniques. On display at the GRAM are more than 75 of his drawings, photographs, sketches and animated films. Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion, Oct. 23-Jan. 15 Finders Keepers: West Michigan Collects, Feb. 5-April 30 Michigan Artist Series: Leo Zulueta, Feb. 5-April 30 The Art of Rube Goldberg, May 21-Aug. 27

SEPT 21 OCT 09, 2016


S E PT 26 — 7:00p: Jurors Shortlist Announced O CT 02 — 1:00p: Final 20 Announced O CT 03 — 7:00p: Critical Discourse: Why Part 1

O CT 04 — 7:00p: Critical Discourse: Why Part 2 O CT 07 — 7:45p: Eighth Annual ArtPrize Awards O CT 09 — 6:00p: ArtPrize Venues Close

1 , 4 53 WORKS O F A RT 1 , 4 53 OPPORTU N I T I E S TO PRACTI C E E M P A T HY 1 , 4 53 INDIVIDUA L O P I N I O N S , VALUES, E X P R E S S I O NS & R I S KS — 1 70 V E N U ES 170 INVI T A T I O NS 1 70 H O S TS

THE ARTPRIZ E MOBILE AP P – Get Important ArtPrize Updates Navigate the ArtPrize District Find Must-See Events View Artist and Venue Profiles Vote! Download free for iOS & Android REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts 314 South Park St., Kalamazoo kiarts.org, (269) 349-7775

It’s a busy schedule this season at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, chock full of exhibitions, classes and family events. Running until Sept. 18 is Waiting in the Sky II, an exhibit of paintings by Barbara Takenaga. Following that, Eternal Beauty revisits the old technique of egg temper painting via Fred Wessel’s renaissance-style portraits. And in October you can check out Renée Stout: Tales of the Conjure Woman, an exploration of African culture and spiritual traditions through Stout’s work as alter-ego Fatima Mayfield, a hoodoo-practicing healer. Next up is Reaching Into Infinity, which features Chul Hyun Ahn’s light sculptures in a darkened gallery and Scaled Up, largescale sculptures by Marcia Wood. Finishing up this year and running into 2017 are three exhibits. Wadada Leo Smith: Ankrasmation, The Language Scores, 1967-2015 presents a musical score as a work of visual art. Then Poetry of Content: Five Contemporary Representational Artists explores familiar spaces through representational imagery. Finally, Luminescence: From Salvage to Seascape, Sculpture by Sayaka Ganz questions our relationship to the natural world

through organic sculptures created from repurposed household items.

Festival. Closing out the season is the Lowell Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concerts.

Waiting in the Sky II: Barbara Takenaga, through Sept. 18 Eternal Beauty: Egg Tempera Paintings by Fred Wessel, through Oct. 2 Renée Stout: Tales of the Conjure Woman, through Oct. 23 Reaching into Infinity: Chul Hyun Ahn, through Nov. 6 Scaled Up: Sculpture by Marcia Wood, Oct. 1-Dec. 3 Wadada Leo Smith: Ankrasmation, The Language Scores, 1967-2015, Oct. 15-March 5 Poetry of Content: Five Contemporary Representational Artists, Nov. 5-Feb. 19 Luminescence: From Salvage to Seascape, Sculpture by Sayaka Ganz, Nov. 19-March 19

Moving to Main Art Auction, Sept. 13-Oct. 1 Fallasburg Arts Festival, Sept. 17-18 The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie, Oct. 28-30 and Nov. 4-6 Holiday Artists Market, Nov. 18-Dec. 24 Family Matters: A Playwright Festival, Feb. 17-19 West Michigan Art Competition, March 4-April 15 Lowell Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concerts, June 15-Aug. 24

Muskegon Museum of Art Kelly Allen, Garden, UICA

LaFontsee Galleries 833 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 410 W. Center St., Douglas lafontsee.us

LaFontsee Galleries have been a West Michigan fixture for 30 years, carrying works from more than 50 regional and national artists. LaFontsee will wrap up its

2016 season with a group show titled Toast at the Douglas location. Stop by during the opening reception on Sept. 4 from 12-2 p.m. to see Megan Klco and Justin Kellner paint in person. On Nov. 11, LaFontsee starts its annual Fall Exhibition in Grand Rapids. Toast, Sept. 4-Oct. 9 Fall Exhibition, starting Nov. 11


Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

149 South Hudson St., Lowell Moving to 223 W. Main St., Lowell lowellartsmi.org, (616) 897-8545

Reaching into Infinity: Chul Hyun Ahn, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

36 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

LowellArts has several events to keep you busy. The first is the Moving To Main Art Auction. Artists have donated more than 40 pieces of work to be auctioned off, with proceeds going toward LowellArts’ move to Main Street. You can check out the work in the gallery and purchase it online via silent auction. If you miss the auction, you have two more opportunities to buy a unique piece of art. First is the 48th Annual Fallasburg Festival for the Arts. Taking place in Fallasburg Park, the free event has craft booths, live music, food and a children’s area. Next is the annual LowellArts Holiday Artists Market. Attendees can purchase artwork and handmade items by more than 50 artists at LowellArts’ new 223 W. Main Street location. Local artists will want to check out LowellArts’ West Michigan Art Competition. The 30th Annual event features work by West Michigan artists. Artists must be at least 18 years old and live in the lower West Michigan area. LowellArts also has a few theater events, The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie and Family Matters: A Playwright

296 W. Webster Ave., Muskegon muskegonartmuseum.org, (231) 720-2570 Muskegon Museum of Art’s 2016-2017 season begins with Circular Abstractions: Bull’s Eye Quilts. The exhibit runs through Nov. 6 and features 51 colorful quilts by artists both local and abroad. Artists created “a four-quadrant design with a bull’s eye at the center of each quarter” and were told to “push the possibilities of the machinepieced quilt to the extreme.” Following that is Studio Brew: The Colors of Beer, which runs through Oct. 30. For this exhibit, 25 artists were tasked with replicating different hues of brews, from the palest ales to the darkest stouts. From Sept. 8-Dec. 11 you can check out David Deming: Sculpture. Deming’s abstract sculptures are recognized internationally and the subjects range from rockers and flora bellas to tri-pods and centurions. Arriving in November is The Preacher and His Congregation: Photographs by James Perry Walker. The photos were taken in the late ’70s when Walker traveled through Marshall County, Mississippi alongside preacher Reverend Louis Cole. The photographs document the people and their shared religious experience. Get ready for the holidays with Muskegon Museum of Art’s Festival of Trees. The 12th annual festival takes place from Nov. 17-27 and showcases themed trees designed by professionals. Get there early to check out the Teddy Bear Breakfast or just take in the music, holiday shopping and raffles. They’ll also have visits from Santa on Saturdays. Circular Abstractions: Bull’s Eye Quilts, through Nov. 6 Studio Brew: The Colors of Beer, through Oct. 30 David Deming: Sculpture, Sept. 8-Dec. 11 The Preacher and His Congregation: Photographs by James Perry Walker, Nov. 10-March 5 Festival of Trees, Nov. 17-27



ArtPrize Neighborhood HUBs New for the eighth annual event, ArtPrize visitors will find eight HUBs throughout the ArtPrize district. HUBs are ArtPrizeoperated service locations at seven major venues and the original ArtPrize HUBs serve as welcome centers, voter registration locations and guideposts for visitors looking for real-time information on the venues and events specific to each HUB’s neighborhood. All HUBs are stocked with ArtPrize Eight Merchandise*, Maps, Event Guides, and Metro Passes.

St HUBs carry limited merchandise.

ArtPrize Passport Program Each and every ArtPrize Neighborhood HUB services a distinct area of the ArtPrize district. Visit them all to learn more about self guided tours, events and featured venues in each HUB service area. Get passport stamps from any five of the eight HUBs to be entered to win prizes from ArtPrize and Founders Brewing Co. Once you have your five stamps, show them at HUB/HQ to be entered to win.

Circular Abstraction: Bull’s Eye Quilts, Muskegon Museum of Art

Saugatuck Center for the Arts 400 Culver St., Saugatuck sc4a.org, (269) 857-2399

Not My Circus, Not My Monkees, through Oct. 7 Corridor Series: Jillian Dickson - Just as Wild, through Oct. 7

Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts 2 Fulton W., Grand Rapids uica.org, (616) 454-7000

Coming Home, Nov. 11-Jan. 8 US IS THEM: Art from the Pizzuti Collection, Jan. 27-May 14 Here + Now, Jan. 27-March 31

* Only available at the Founders tent during the ArtPrize Awards viewing party at Rosa Parks Circle from 5:00–11:00p on October 7.


HUB/HQ @ ArtPrize 41 Sheldon Blvd SE


Heartside HUB @ UICA 2 Fulton St W


Hillside HUB @ Women’s City Club 254 Fulton St E


Center City HUB @ GRAM 101 Monroe Center St NW


Westside HUB @ Gerald R. Ford Museum 303 Pearl St NW


Monroe North HUB @ DeVos Place 303 Monroe Ave NW


Rumsey St HUB @ SiTE:LAB 333 Rumsey St SE


Meijer Gardens HUB @ Frederik Meijer Gardens 1000 East Beltline Ave NE


ArtPrize Voyager Medallion Founder’s Brewing Co. tent during the ArtPrize Awards

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

Saugatuck Center for the Arts jumps into October with Not My Circus, Not My Monkees. This art installation involves sock monkeys, marionette puppets and narrative quilts that “come to life” when you step into the gallery. Running concurrently is Just as Wild, also through Oct. 7. As part of the Corridor Series, Just as Wild showcases the work of Jillian Dickson as she addresses the relationship between her body and the natural world.

UICA presents Coming Home, a series of exhibits featuring work by both emerging and established Michigan artists. The Coming Home exhibits include work by Kelly Allen, Mike Andrews, Nayda Collazo-Llorens, Bob Marsh, Dylan Miner, and Diane Zeeuw and run from Nov.11 until Jan. 8. Next up is US IS THEM: Art from the Pizzuti Collection. Presenting work from 42 international artists, US IS THEM looks at politics, religion and racism through paintings, sculptures, photography and video. The exhibit focuses on unity and is organized geographically. Last but not least is Here + Now. Running from Jan. 27-March 31, Here + Now is a series of solo exhibitions, performances and community events featuring work by emerging and mid-career African American artists. Artists featured include Nakeya Brown, Rashida Bumbray, Mario Moore and Janice Bond.

ArtPrize Voyager Are you the ultimate expert in the art of ArtPrizing? Would you like a grand prize package from ArtPrize and Founders Brewing Co.? Collect all eight passport stamps as well as the exclusive ArtPrize Medallion sticker* to be entered to win an exciting VIP grand prize package.


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

Motown the Musical,

Broadway Grand Rapids

performing arts

Compiled by Dana Casadei

Actors’ Theatre of Grand Rapids

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

160 Fountain St. NE, Grand Rapids actorstheatregrandrapids.org, (616) 234-3946

Actors’ 36th season is presenting five shows throughout the year, beginning with Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play. After civilization collapses, a group of survivors try to piece together The Simpsons episode “Cape Feare” while sitting around a campfire. The show then jumps seven years, and later 75 years into the future, as the post-apocalyptic society tries to hold onto its past, and explores how the pop culture of one era might evolve into the mythology of another. The season continues with the Green Day rock opera American Idiot, a musical that follows three men looking for meaning in life. Other shows this season include Hand to God, Disgraced and Hit the Wall. Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play, Sept. 29-Oct. 8 American Idiot, Oct. 27-Nov. 12 Hand to God, Feb. 16-March 4 Disgraced, April 13-22 Hit the Wall, June 15-24

38 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Black Arts and Cultural Center

359 S. Kalamazoo Mall Ste. 202, Kalamazoo blackartskalamazoo.org, (269) 369-0908 After a successful first season, Black Arts and Culture Center’s Face Off Theatre Company is carrying on strong, presenting three more shows during its second season. First up is the Tony-award winning musical Dreamgirls, where three singers follow their dreams to make it big, which ends up being much harder than imagined as both professional and personal relationships are tested. Next up is Detroit 67, written by Detroit native Dominique Morriseau. The season concludes with the family-centric show, Brave No World: Community. Identity., with standup comedy by Laurie Brooks. Dreamgirls, Nov. 2016 Detroit 67, Jan. 2017 Brave No World: Community. Identity., April 2017

Broadway Grand Rapids

122 Lyon St. NW, Grand Rapids broadwaygrandrapids.com, (616) 235-6285

Established in 1988, Broadway Grand Rapids continues with another season of some of the best touring Broadway productions around. Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella will start the season off, putting a few twists on the classic princess tale. There’s also going to be two musicals based on 1980s movies, A Christmas Story: The Musical and Dirty Dancing. In February, The Sound of Music tells the story of Maria, which the world has been watching for more than 50 years now. Following the VonTrapps is the 20th Anniversary Tour of rock musical Rent, which changed the landscape of theater and is also celebrating a big anniversary. Rounding out the season is Motown the Musical, which features more than 40 classic hits such as “My Girl” and “Stop! In the Name of Love.” Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Sept. 27-Oct. 2 A Christmas Story: The Musical, Dec. 27-30 The Sound of Music, Feb. 21-26 Rent: 20th Anniversary Tour, March 14-16 Motown the Musical, May 2-7 Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story On Stage, June 6-11

Calvin Theatre Company

3201 Burton SE, Grand Rapids calvin.edu/academic/cas/ctc, (616) 526-6282 Calvin College’s 2016-2017 season combines new shows with old favorites. In September, the theater company is presenting a newer version of You Make a Difference, a bullying prevention play aimed at middle schoolers about three friends being bullied at school. The Philadelphia Story is a comedy following a Philadelphia socialite’s second foray into matrimony. Tracey is thrilled to be marrying into Philadelphia society but it may be more than she bargained for, between a very handsome reporter, press coverage of the wedding, and the arrival of a charming ex-husband. Calvin’s season closes with the Charles Dickens classic Nicholas Nickleby. This version will have actors playing multiple parts, original music, and a style based loosely on German expressionism. You Make A Difference, Sept. 22-24 The Philadelphia Story, Nov. 17-19, Dec. 1-3 Nicholas Nickleby, April 20-22, 27-29

Farmers Alley Theatre Kalamazoo

Grand Rapids Ballet Company

One-upping last year’s schedule, the Farmers Alley Theatre will be producing eight shows this season. With the buzz from Broadway’s mega-hit Hamilton and an upcoming election, kicking the season off with 1776 could not be more fitting. The show takes viewers inside the room where our founders fought for freedom and signed the Declaration of Independence. The season continues with the winner for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Disgraced. Then there’s one of the most memorable recording sessions ever, Million Dollar Quartet, followed by The Toxic Avenger, which is based off of the 1984 cult film of the same name.

Grand Rapids Ballet’s 2016-2017 season has a few very familiar shows and a world premiere. First up is MOVEMEDIA: Made in America, which celebrates American choreography. Back-to-back in the winter, holiday-favorite The Nutcracker returns, followed by Black & White: Swan Lake. The season will close with the world premiere of Alice in Wonderland.

1776, Sept. 30-Oct. 16 Disgraced, Nov. 4-13 Million Dollar Quartet, Dec. 2-18 The Toxic Avenger, Feb. 3-19 Buyer & Cellar, March 10-19 The Andrews Brothers, April 21-May 7 It Shoulda Been You, June 9-25 Peter and the Starcatcher, July 21-Aug. 6

Junior Company: Peter Pan, Oct. 21-23 Mini Tales and Bolero, May 19-21

221 Farmers Alley, Kalamazoo farmersalleytheatre.com, (269) 343-2727

Gilmore Theatre/WMU Theatre 1903 W. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo wmich.edu/theatre, (269) 387-3227

Baby with the Bathwater, Sept. 23-Oct. 2 Romeo and Juliet, Oct. 7-16 The Foreigner, Oct. 28-Nov. 6 Show Boat, Nov. 11-20 Next Stop, Broadway! Starring Broadway’s Emily Skinner, Dec.1-3 Women of Lockerbie, Jan. 27-Feb. 5 Water by the Spoonful, Feb. 10-19 Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher, March 10-19 The Wiz, April 7-22

MOVEMEDIA: Made in America, Oct. 7-9 The Nutcracker, Dec. 9-11, 16-18 Black & White: Swan Lake, Feb. 10-12 MOVEMEDIA: World Premieres, March 10-12 Alice in Wonderland, April 28-30, May 5-7

Good People, Sept. 9-25 Holes, Oct. 21-30 Beauty and the Beast, Nov. 18-Dec. 18 The Philadelphia Story, Jan. 13-29 Ragtime, Feb. 24-March 19 Fancy Nancy, April 21-30 Thoroughly Modern Millie, June 2-18 The Never Ending Story, July 29-Aug. 6 Hairspray Jr., July 28-Aug. 5

GVSU Fall Arts

gvsu.edu/fallarts, (616) 331-2183

30 N. Division Ave., Grand Rapids grct.org, (616) 222-6650

For the 14th year, GVSU is celebrating the arts of West Michigan with its annual Fall Arts Celebration. This year’s art exhibit makes the second collaboration between GVSU and SeoulTech, allowing guests to experience international cultural exchange firsthand. The annual event also includes: a performance by the Ying Quartet; An Evening of Poetry and Conversation with Oliver de la Paz and Kay Ryan; Beethoven’s only work for the ballet stage; a lecture by Rebecca Solnit; and Handel’s Messiah.

One of the country’s oldest community theaters will begin its 91st season with the 2011 Tony Award-winning play Good People, which tells the story of single mom Margie Walsh who has just lost her job at the Dollar Store. In an act of slight desperation, she reaches out to her high school ex-boyfriend — now a prominent doctor — for work. The 2016-2017 season

GVSU and SeoulTech Art and Design Faculty Exhibition, through Nov. 4 Emerging Romanticism: the Ying Quartet Performs the Early Viennese Chamber Music of Beethoven, Sept. 12 An Evening of Poetry and Conversation, Oct. 13 Beethoven’s The Creatures of Prometheus Ballet, Oct. 24

Grand Rapids Civic Theatre

Grand Rapids Ballet Company

Seeing the Invisible: Journeys Through the Overlooked, Unheard, Outside, and Insurrectionary, Nov. 14 Handel’s Messiah, Dec. 5

GVSU Theatre

290 Lake Superior Hall gvsu.edu/theatre, (616) 331-2300 GVSU is kicking off its season with Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure as part of its annual Shakespeare Festival. Considered one of Shakespeare’s darkest comedies, Measure for Measure follows the aftermath of a city and its people as the Duke of Vienna hands over power to Lord Angelo, a man who quickly enforces long forgotten codes of chastity. In the winter, GVSU Opera Theatre will present Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, a musical about the title character — an unjustly imprisoned barber — and his quest for revenge on the judge that put him away. On his path, Todd meets Mrs. Lovett, a failing piemaker, and then things get deliciously murderous. Measure for Measure, Sept. 30-Oct. 9 Shakespeare Festival, Oct. 7-9 Good Kids, Nov. 11-20 GVSU Opera Theatre presents Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Feb. 3-12 Performance Studio Series, Feb. 17-19 Helen, March 24-April 2

Holland Civic Theatre

50 W. 9th St., Holland hollandcivictheatre.org, (616) 396-2021 The Holland Civic Theatre begins its season with The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, a play about the creative team for a recent Broadway flop (where a few people were murdered by the “Stage Door Slasher”) as they assemble for a backer’s audition of their new show at the estate of a wealthy “angel.” The season continues with A Charlie Brown Christmas, in which Charlie Brown becomes the director of the school Christmas pageant, and The Lion in the Winter, which tells the story of the Plantagent family, who are competing to inherit a kingdom. The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, Oct. 6-8, 14-16, 20-22 A Charlie Brown Christmas, Nov. 25-27, Dec. 1-3, 8-10 The Lion in Winter, Jan. 26-28, Feb. 3-5, 9-11 Moon Over Buffalo, March 30-April 1, 7-9, 13-15 Steel Magnolias, May 18-20 Tulip Time Showings, May 6-7, 9-13 Dorothy in Wonderland, July 13-15, 20-22 Dracula: The Musical?, Aug. 10-12, 17-19

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

As with past seasons, Gilmore Theatre is featuring a wide variety of shows this year, with everything from Shakespeare’s most famous romantic tragedy to a sixthgrader raising a dragon. (Told ya there was variety.) Kicking off the season is Baby with the Bathwater, a satirical and comedic look at the journey of parenthood. One of Shakespeare’s most famous plays, Romeo and Juliet, will follow. In December, they will continue their annual cabaret event with the Music Theatre Performance class of 2017 sharing the stage with Broadway actress Emily Skinner. Closing the season is The Wiz, a musical retelling of The Wizard of Oz that will have you dancing in your seat.

341 Ellsworth Ave. SW, Grand Rapids grballet.com, (616) 454-4771

will also include three Tony Award-winning musicals: Beauty and the Beast; Ragtime, a story about the American experience; and Thoroughly Modern Millie, taking viewers back to 1922 as Millie Dillmount tries to make it in the Big Apple.


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

Jewish Theatre Grand Rapids

2727 Michigan NE, Grand Rapids jtgr.org, (616) 234-3595 Jewish Theatre is presenting three shows this season, further educating West Michigan with Jewish themes through their productions. First up is Brill, the story of a 16-year-old girl sharing a studio with an older songwriter during the Tin Pan Alley days. Brill is based on a building in New York that had offices and studios home to Carol King and Paul Simon, among others, during the early ’60s. In the winter comes Irena’s Vow, a true story about a young Polish woman who was the housekeeper of a Nazi officer and helped Jewish families by hiding them in her employer’s basement. JTGR will close their season with Seniors of the Sahara, a comedy about an arthritic genie who keeps encountering residents of a New Jersey senior’s apartment complex. Brill, Sept. 7-18 Irena’s Vow, Jan. 12-22 Seniors of the Sahara, May 18-28

Kalamazoo’s Civic Theatre 329 S. Park St., Kalamazoo kazoocivic.com, (269) 343-1313

Between September and May, Kalamazoo’s Civic Theatre will offer a whopping 13 productions. There are big, splashy musicals, including Oklahoma!, the iconic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical about life at the turn of the century in the Indian Territory; A Christmas Story: The Musical, based off the 1983 cult classic film; and Sister Act, about former nightclub singer Deloris Van Cartier in witness protection at a convent after witnessing a murder. The season will also include classic plays like Shakespeare’s farce about two couples in Much Ado About Nothing and the highly anticipated To Kill a Mockingbird, based off of Harper Lee’s powerful novel. The Civic Auditorium: Oklahoma!, Sept. 23-Oct. 9 The Parish Theatre: Much Ado About Nothing, Oct 7-22 The Civic Auditorium: Pirates of Penzance, Oct. 28-30 The Parish Theatre: Ramona Quimby, Nov. 4-12 The Civic Auditorium: A Christmas Story: The Musical, Nov. 25-Dec. 11 The Civic Auditorium: Sylvia, Jan. 13-28 The Parish Theatre: Side Show, Jan. 27-Feb. 12 The Civic Auditorium: To Kill a Mockingbird, Feb. 17-March 5 The Civic Auditorium: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr., March 24-31

The Parish Theatre: By The Way, Meet Vera Stark, April 7-23 Carver Center: The Dining Room, April 21-30 The Civic Auditorium: Sister Act, May 5-21 The Parish Theatre: The Borrowers, May 19-27

Miller Auditorium

2200 Auditorium Dr., Kalamazoo millerauditorium.com, (269) 387-2300 Headlining Miller Auditorium’s PNC Broadway in West Michigan Series this season is The Book of Mormon, the satire musical about two young Mormon missionaries as they try to spread the gospel in a remote village in Uganda. Season subscriptions are now available for the Lake Michigan Mailers Spotlight Series, and additional shows will be announced as the season continues. 2016-17 PNC BROADWAY IN WEST MICHIGAN SERIES: Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story Told On Stage, Oct. 1-2 The Book of Mormon, Oct. 18-23 Rent: 20th Anniversary Tour, Nov. 11-13 Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, March 24-26 Motown the Musical, May 9-14

2016-17 LAKE MICHIGAN MAILERS SPOTLIGHT SERIES: Peppa Pig Live!, Oct. 12 Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, Nov. 26 MercyMe, Nov. 30 Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, Dec. 6 Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Jan. 17 Little River Band with special guests Ambrosia, Jan. 21 Annie, Feb. 16 DRUMLine Live, Feb. 23 Menopause the Musical, Feb. 25 The Willis Clan, March 22

Muskegon Civic Theatre

425 W. Western Ave., Muskegon muskegoncivictheatre.org, (231) 722-3852 The only theater in Muskegon County will be starting the season with A Murder is Announced, an Agatha Christie-esque play following Miss Marple as she tries to solve the case. Next up is Hands On A Hardbody, a musical inspired by true events in which ten contestants willingly endure four sleepless days trying to win a brand-new Nissan hardbody truck. The catch? Their hand has to stay on it the whole time and the last person to let go wins. The season ends with the always popular Mary Poppins, where a spoonful of sugar goes a long way. Beardsley Theater: A Murder is Announced, Sept. 16-18, 22-25, 29-30, Oct. 1 Beardsley Theater: Hands On A Hardbody, Nov. 18-20, 25-27, Dec. 1-4 Frauenthal Stage Black Box: The Drawer Boy, Jan. 20-22, 26-28 Beardsley Theater: I Hate Hamlet, Feb. 17-19, 23-26, March 2-4 Frauenthal Theater: Mary Poppins, May 4-7

Opera Grand Rapids Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

1320 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids operagr.org, (616) 451-2741

40 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Opera Grand Rapids, the longest-running professional opera company in Michigan, is producing six shows during the season, including María de Buenos Aires, which combines tango and opera, and The Barber of Seville, Gioachino Rossini’s comedic masterpiece. Opera Grand Rapids is also continuing its tradition of the Collegiate Vocal Competition Concert in late fall, which showcases West Michigan’s finest budding vocal artists.

Dirty Dancing,

Broadway Grand Rapids and Miller Auditorium

Betty Van Andel Opera Center: María de Buenos Aires, Oct. 14-15 Betty Van Andel Opera Center: Collegiate Vocal Competition Concert, Nov. 20

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

EMOH by Loren Naji

ArtPrize Time Based Category

Vote: 62624 Visit Loren living inside his art during ArtPrize! Kilwin’s Chocolate & Ice Cream on their outdoor

patio, near Rosa Parks Circle 146 Monroe Center St NW Grand Rapids, MI 49503 Loren Naji: (330) 414-5706

EMOH (home spelled backEMOH, ward) is made of debris from demolished houses. It represents our earth & backward system regarding homelessness, vacancy and the fragile environment. To convey his message, Loren is living inside his 8-foot spherical art for one month at ArtPrize 2016.

Betty Van Andel Opera Center: Polydora Ensemble, Jan. 19 Betty Van Andel Opera Center: Il Duo Lirico: Debut Album Release Concert, March 19 DeVos Performance Hall: The Barber of Seville, May 12-13 Betty Van Andel Opera Center: Opera Grand Rapids Emerging Artists, June 8

Van Singel Fine Arts Center

8500 Burlingame Ave. SW, Byron Center vsfac.com, (616) 878-6800 Audiences will head back in time with The Hit Men Time Travel Tour, a quintet whose members have performed with household names like Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, Carole King and Elton John. The group performs and shares behind the scenes stories of what it was like to work with those legends. The season also includes One-Man Star Wars Trilogy, a oneman parody of one of the most popular film franchises of all-time. The Hit Men Time Travel Tour, Oct. 16 Miracle on 34th Street, Dec. 17 Pump Boys and Dinettes, Jan. 26 The Freddy Cole Quartet, March 2 One-Man Star Wars Trilogy, March 16 Cool Jazz, April 28 Mallory Skilling: Back Home Again, May 18

Wharton Center for Performing Arts

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

750 E. Shaw Lane, East Lansing whartoncenter.com, (517) 353-1982

42 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Nestled in the campus of Michigan State University, the Wharton Center for Performing Arts’ season has something for everyone. There’s eight Broadway hits, starting with Mamma Mia!, which features a lot of ABBA music, and ending with Fun Home, based on Alison Bechdel’s autobiographical graphic novel. Other musicals include Wicked, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, and Cabaret. Whose Live Anyway?, Sept. 15 Lewis Black, Sept. 17 Yefim Bronfman, Sept. 18 Ken Burns, Sept. 23 Reduced Shakespeare Company: Election Edition, Sept. 28-29 Punk Rock, Sept. 30-Oct. 9 Sutton Foster, Oct. 1 Art of Time Ensemble, Oct. 6 Hasan Minhaj: Homecoming King, Oct. 7 The Adventures of Bella & Harry, Oct. 9 Mamma Mia!, Oct. 14-16

Wicked, Wharton Center Aziza, Oct. 20 Wicked, Nov. 9-27 The Tempest, Nov. 10-20 Iqbal Khan, Nov. 14 Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, Nov. 30 Freshman Showcase: Carnival of the Absurd, Dec. 1-4 Canadian Brass Holiday, Dec. 2 Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Dec. 8 A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Dec. 13-18 Beautiful – The Carole King Musical, Jan. 10-15 Prague Philharmonia, Jan. 18 Sheryl Wudunn, Jan. 23 Blood at the Root, Feb. 3-12 A Brown Bear, A Moon, & A Caterpillar, Feb. 4 Jarrod Spector & Kelli Barrett, Feb. 14 Inlet Dance Theatre: Among The Darkest Shadows, Feb. 16-19 Black Violin, Feb. 17 Theatre2Film, Feb. 17-26 Cabaret, Feb. 21-26 Pete the Cat, Feb. 25 Jessica Lange Dance, Feb. 28 Moscow Festival Ballet: Swan Lake, March 14 Rent: 20th Anniversary Tour, March 17-19 Laura Ingalls Wilder, March 19 17 Border Crossings, March 26 The Hot Sardines, March 30 STOMP, March 31-April 2 Ta-Nehisi Coates, April 3 Alton Brown Live: Eat Your Science, April 7 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, April 11-16 Urinetown, The Musical, April 14-23 Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, April 18 Wayne Shorter Quartet, April 21 Fun Home, June 6-11

Patricia Barker, Artistic Director

Company B Choreography: Paul Taylor Music: The Andrew Sisters

Light Rain

Choreography: Gerald Arpino Music: Douglas Adamz & Russ Gauthier

Serenade Choreography: George Balanchine Music: P.I. Tchaikovsky


REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Season Preview

Barrage 8, Hope College

music Compiled by josh veal

Fontana Chamber Arts

The Gilmore

Fontana aims for unique, but accessible, musical experiences hosted all over Kalamazoo. Modern takes on jazz and classical music like brass big-band The Hot Sardines and the young experimental organist Cameron Carpenter are taking the stage, along with string quartets and veteran pianists.

If you’re wondering why the following is just a list of names, The Gilmore’s whole thing is showcasing incredibly talented up-andcoming pianists, reaching all the way to places like Israel and South Korea for that talent. Toss “Piano Master” Marc-Andre Hamelin in the mix and you’ve got enough ebony-and-ivory talent to last the season.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

359 S. Kalamazoo Mall Ste. 200, Kalamazoo fontanachamberarts.org, (269) 382-7774

Brad Mehldau & Joshua Redman, Sept. 24 Bretrand Chamayou, Oct. 1 Stephanie Blythe, Oct. 28 Inon Barnatan, Anthony McGill & Alisa Weilerstein, Jan. 27 The Danish String Quartet, Feb. 10 Cameron Carpenter, March 25 The Hot Sardines, March 31 The Ebene Quartet, April 7 Shapespeare a Capella, May 5

44 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

359 S. Kalamazoo Mall Ste. 101, Kalamazoo thegilmore.org, (269) 342-1166

Sean Chen, Sept. 18 Emmet Cohen, Oct. 16 Marc-Andre Hamelin, Nov. 5 Pavel Kolesnikov, Dec. 4 Roman Rabinovich, Jan. 22 Seong-Jin Cho, Feb. 19

Grand Rapids Symphony

300 Ottawa Ave. NW Ste. 100, Grand Rapids grsymphony.org, (616) 454-9541 This season introduces Marcelo Lehninger as the official new music director of GRS, beginning with Rachmaninoff’s Paganini Variations in October. For a trip down memory lane, however, come back on Nov. 18 when former director David Lockington takes the podium once again. Throughout the year, the symphony is also scoring movies (E.T.), performing the classics (Sibelius, Mozart, Mahler, etc.), and bringing in the next generation with shows like Video Games Live and Harry Potter in Concert. Rhapsody in Blue, Sept. 16-17 The Piano Men, Sept. 23-25 Rachmaninoff’s Paganini Variations, Oct. 7-8 The Classical Coffee Concert, Oct. 21 The Classical Concert: Mostly Mozart, Oct. 21 Dreamworks Animation in Concert, Oct. 22 Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, Oct. 28-29 E.T. - Movie + Score, Nov. 4-6 Lockington Conducts Dvořàk, Nov. 18-19 The Snowman, Nov. 19 MercyMe, Nov. 29 Holiday Pops, Dec. 1-4 Cirque de Noel, Dec. 22-23 The Romantic Coffee Concert, Jan. 6 The Romantic Concert: Schumann & Brahms, Jan. 6

Cecile McLorin Salvant, University Musical Society

Video Games Lives, Jan. 7 Sibelius Symphony No. 5, Jan. 14 Barbra Streisand Hits, Jan. 20-21 Peter and the Wolf, Jan. 21 Harry Potter in Concert, Jan. 27-28 Mozart, Mahler & Marcelo, Feb. 3-4 Symphony with Soul, Feb. 18 The Baroque Coffee Concert, Feb. 24 The Baroque Concert: Respighi, Handel & Fireworks, Feb. 24 Pictures at an Exhibition, March 3-4

Grand Rapids Bach Festival, multiple dates St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, March 17-19 The Little Engine That Could, March 18 Saint-Saens Piano Concerto, March 24-25 The Emperor’s New Clothes, March 25 Beethoven & Bernstein, April 21-22 Classical Mystery Tour: Sgt. Pepper’s 50th Anniversary, April 28-30 Beethoven’s Eroica, May 19-20

Hope College Great Performance Series 141 E. 12th St., Holland hope.edu/gps, (616) 395-7860

Piano trios, string quartets, jazz quintets, violinist… octuplets? No. It’s octet. The Great Performance Series brings groups of all genres and styles to Hope College. Barrage 8 even includes Eve Panning, a 2015 Hope alum, so you know they’ll be bowing, plucking and striking with everything they’ve got. Limon Dance Company, Sept. 30 Trio Con Brio Copenhagen, Oct. 14 St. Lawrence String Quartet, Nov. 12 Reduced Shakespeare Co., Jan. 20 Dave Douglas Quintet, Feb. 17 Barrage 8, March 30

Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra

359 Kalamazoo Mall Ste. 100, Kalamazoo kalamazoosymphony.com, (269) 349-7759 The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra continues its tradition of beloved classics and featured guest performers. Also check out unique programs like the collaboration with Wellspring - Cori Terry & Dancers, a musical/dance production taking place four nights in a row. Or, for the libation lovers, Classics Uncorked and Classics On Tap pair the finest wine and beer with your listening experience.

S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo kazoostate.com, (269) 345-6500 Known for bringing Grammy Award-winning artists to Kalamazoo, the State Theatre continues its tradition of big names with Swedish metal group Ghost, the legendary fast-rapping Tech N9ne, and classic rock band Kansas, to name a few. Ghost w/ Popestar, Oct. 4 Loreena McKennitt, Oct. 13 Tech N9ne w/ Krizz Kaliko & JL, Oct. 16 Colbie Caillat w/ High Dive Heart & Justin Young, Oct. 18 Halestorm w/ Lita Ford & Dorothy, Oct. 25 Kane Brown w/ Jordan Rager, Nov. 3 Kansas, Nov. 6 The Robert Cray Band, Nov. 10 The Brian Setzer Orchestra’s Christmas Rocks! Tour, Nov. 16

St. Cecilia Music Center 24 Ransom Ave. NE, Grand Rapids scmc-online.org, (616) 459-2224

This intimate, historic venue in the heart of Grand Rapids is known for its various ongoing series, such as the Acoustic Cafe Series (e.g. Langhorne Slim), the Spectacular Jazz Series (e.g. Cecile McLorin Salvant), and the collaborative Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Series (e.g. Faure & Brahms). Keep your eye on some of these, because the music center only expects the schedule to grow as the year goes on.

Kamasi Washington & The Next Step, Sept. 30 Beethoven’s Quartet Cycle by Takacs Quartet, Oct. 8-9 Denis Matsuev, Oct. 16 Berlin Philharmonic, Nov. 12-13 A Venetian Coronation 1595 by Gabrieli, Nov. 15 Jake Shimabukuro, Nov. 16 Handel’s Messiah, Dec. 3-4 The King’s Singers Christmas Songbook, Dec. 10 Prague Philharmonia, Jan. 19 On Behalf of Nature by Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble, Jan. 20 Beethoven’s Quartet Cycle by Takacs Quartet, Jan. 21-22 Inon Barnatan, Anthony McGill & Alisa Weilerstein, Jan. 29 Bruckner Orchester Linz, Feb. 2 Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Feb. 3 M-Prize Winners: Calidore String Quartet, Feb. 5 Budapest Festival Orchestra, Feb. 10 Jelly and George by Aaron Diehl & Cecile McLorin Salvant, Feb. 19 Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, March 11 Snarky Puppy, March 16 Steve Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians, March 18 Mitsuko Uchida, March 24 Beethoven’s Quartet Cycle by Takacs Quartet, March 25-26 DakhaBrakha, March 29 Michael Fabiano & Martin Katz, April 1

Sanam Marvi, April 15 King Sunny Ade, April 21 Yo-Yo Ma, Edgar Meyer & Chris Thile, April 22 Handel’s Ariodante, April 25

West Michigan Symphony

425 W. Western Ave. Ste. 409, Muskegon wsso.org, (231) 726-3231 The West Michigan Symphony is known for its intensely involved staff, from music director Scott Speck to composer-in-residence Austin Wintory, who wrote EP!C, a tribute to grandiose film scores. Classics like Vivaldi, Beethoven and Rachmaninoff return, along with the WMS Pops series, including Classical Christmas and Heroes & Villains, with music from more than 10 unforgettable films. Heroes & Villains, Sept. 30 EP!C, Nov. 11 Classical Christmas, Dec. 16 Vivalid’s Four Seasons, Jan. 13 Beethoven Triple, Feb. 3 Classical Music for Everyone, March 10 Great Ladies of Swing, April 28 Rachmaninoff No. 3, May 19

Destination Vienna, Nov. 10 Langhorne Slim, Nov. 17 Cecile McLorin Salvant, Dec. 8 Faure & Brahms, Jan. 26 French Virtuosity, March 16 Joey Alexander, March 23 San Francisco Jazz Collective performing Miles Davis, May 4

University Musical Society

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Bronfman plays Tchaikovsky 2, Sept. 16 The World of Rossini, Oct. 9 Barber and Bartok, Oct. 29 Ray Charles, Motown & Beyond!, Nov. 5 Terry Riley Collaboration, Nov. 10-13 Emmanuel Ceysson, Nov. 18 Christmas with Angel Blue, Dec. 3 The Night Before Christmas, Dec. 18 The World of Smetana, Jan. 15 Classics Uncorked : Winter Evening, Jan. 27 Classics On Tap: Winter Evening, Jan. 28 Mahler’s 6th Symphony, Feb. 3 Mozart’s Magnificent Voyage, Feb. 19 Disney & Pixar Ratatouille in Concert, March 11 Cameron Carpenter, April 1 Classics Uncorked: Spring Evening, April 14 Classics On Tap: Spring Evening, April 15 Play it again Marvin!, April 28 Don Giovanni, May 26

Kalamazoo State Theatre

Burton Memorial Tower 881 N. University Ave., Ann Arbor ums.org, (734) 764-2538

While outside of our typical West Michigan coverage, the University Musical Society schedule is just too good to pass up. There’s an amazingly diverse lineup of contemporary jazz, world music, string quartets, chamber choirs and so much more. Especially unique is the Takacs Quartet performing the entirety of Beethoven’s Quartet Cycle in one season, a six-day feat only accomplished twice before in UMS’s history.

Kamasi Washington, University Musical Society REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Season preview


museums & culture Compiled by nicole rico

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum

303 Pearl St. NW, Grand Rapids fordlibrarymuseum.gov, (616) 254-0400

classes & workshops


Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Creative Writing

The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum has several events running through December. The first is the 9/11 Never Forget Mobile Exhibit, running from Sept. 9-11. Created by the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, this free mobile exhibit is a tribute to all who passed away on Sept. 11. Included within the exhibit are steel beams from the towers, documentary videos and recordings of the first responder radio transmissions. You can also catch For the Love of Their Brother, a 9/11 film, on Sept. 10. Oct. 25 brings David Priess, author of The President’s Book of Secrets: The Untold Story of Intelligence Briefings to America’s Presidents from Kennedy to Obama. The book addresses “50 years of stories about these presidents and their daily book of secrets.” Admission is free. The Annual Outdoor Tree Lighting happens Nov. 17. This event is accompanied by live music and a sing-along. You can follow that up with the Holiday Open House on Dec. 4. Stop by with the family to meet Santa, Mrs. Claus and their reindeer. Stiller Exhibit - 9/11 Never Forget Mobile Exhibit, Sept. 9-11 For the Love of Their Brother, Sept. 10 Annual Scout Salute and Community Day of Remembrance, Sept. 11 David Priess, Oct. 25 Annual Outdoor Tree Lighting, Nov. 17 Holiday Open House, Dec. 4

Grand Rapids Public Museum 272 Pearl St. NW, Grand Rapids grmuseum.org, (616) 456-3977

Visual Arts For more information or to register online visit: college.interlochen.org

46 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Explore the ocean’s large inhabitants at Whales: Giants of the Deep. Children can crawl through a life-size replica of a blue whale heart and gaze at sperm whale skeletons. Visitors can also learn about whale biology and their evolution. Fans of Peanuts will want to check out Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!. This exhibit tells the story of the animated classic A Charlie Brown Christmas and features video of Charles Schultz detailing the process. There also will be 50 Peanuts comic strips and various Peanuts-themed holiday events, such as a Santa letter-writing station.

Grand Rapids Public Museum

Night at Your Museum sees all your favorite exhibits come to life for an interactive evening of fun. Making appearances are Betsy Ross, the Queen, Civil War soldiers and more. This event offers a chance to see knights battle or to ride the carousel with Cleopatra. The price of admission covers the event and dinner. Whales: Giants of the Deep, Oct. 22-April 9 Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!, Oct. 29-Jan. 29 Night at Your Museum, Dec. 28

Holland Museum

31 W. 10th St., Holland hollandmuseum.org, (616) 392-9084 This month, the Holland Museum debuts Taller de Gráfica Popular: Twelve Works from the People’s Print Workshop of Mexico City. The Taller de Gráfica Popular (TGP) was an idealist artist collective formed 1937 in Mexico City. The collective created posters, prints, portfolios and illustrations inspired by the sociopolitical causes of the time. Following that is For the Future Peace: WWII and Holland on the Homefront. This exhibit features personal stories from locals who lived through World War II — both those on the frontline and people who participated in civilian efforts. For the Future Peace will run for exactly one year. Taller de Gráfica Popular: Twelve Works from the People’s Print Workshop of Mexico City, Sept. 15-Dec. 15

For the Future Peace: WWII and Holland on the Homefront, starting Oct. 13

Kalamazoo Valley Museum 230 N. Rose St., Kalamazoo kvm.kvcc.edu, (269) 373-7990

Check out Sustainable Shelter: Dwelling Within the Forces of Nature at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum this month. The traveling exhibit “explores biodiversity, human and animal architecture, ecosystems, and energy and water conservation.” Running until Jan. 8, Sustainable Shelter presents metal cast ant colonies and large-scale models of animal homes. It’s also interactive, providing attendees the ability to test-build their own sustainable shelters. Let’s Dance! starts Oct. 15 and takes a look at the history of dance bands, dance halls, and dancing in Kalamazoo, as well as fashion from the 1920s-1980s and the accompanying music of the times. Then running from Jan. 21 through June 4 is And Still We Rise. This exhibit features work inspired by the “enduring American tradition of narrative storytelling through the textile art of quilting.” Sustainable Shelter: Dwelling Within the Forces of Nature, Sept. 14-Jan. 8 Let’s Dance!, Oct. 15-Jan. 16 And Still We Rise, Jan. 21-June 4 n

Cathleen Huling, Artistic Director

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REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Venues

UICA looks back on 40 years of challenging Grand Rapids by Troy Reimink


Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

he specter of a 40th birthday often marks a turning point, whether it be easing contentedly into middle age or plunging headlong into a self-destructive midlife crisis. Grand Rapids’ Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts fits neither profile. The UICA in 2017 will celebrate its 40th year of bringing forwardthinking multidisciplinary art to the city’s downtown, and the vibe is both reflective and restless. “While nearly 40 years old, UICA is still developing into its full potential,” Executive Director Miranda Krajniak told Revue. Indeed, the institute’s story is one of constant growth and evolution. UICA was founded as a nonprofit in 1977 by a group of artists with a shared goal of challenging audiences and supporting new forms of creative expression. Its first space on Front Street is now a parking lot for the Gerald R. Ford Museum. Following that, the institute occupied locations on Race Street near the Ford Freeway, then closer to downtown on Monroe Avenue before landing in its longtime home at 41 Sheldon Blvd. The institute remained there for 13 years before moving in 2011 to its current headquarters, 2 W. Fulton Ave. Now firmly ensconced in a spacious, state-of-the-art $8 million facility at the literal center of the city, the UICA curates ambitious traveling exhibitions, performance art and site-specific installations throughout its 28,000 square feet of gallery space, along with dozens of art-related public and member events each year, such as the Odd Ball and Live Coverage fundraisers. Its lower-level theater presents 16 film

48 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

screenings per week — mostly first-run independent and art films, documentaries and works of foreign cinema. “UICA has had my back for 10 years now,” said Grand Rapids filmmaker Joel Potrykus, who has received critical acclaim, festival attention and national distribution in recent years for his films “Ape,” “Buzzard” and the forthcoming feature “The Alchemist Cookbook.” The UICA hosted the first screening of his short film “Gordon” in 2007. “UICA is by far one of the most valuable, and oftenoverlooked, spots in this city,” he said. “There’s days I almost feel like Grand Rapids doesn’t deserve a cinema with such perfect programming taste.”

Potrykus hosts the recurring Open Projector Night series, which showcases short films, specifically emphasizing local and regional work. “The Alchemist Cookbook” has its official debut run at the UICA Oct. 14-27. That overlaps with the final days of UICA’s ArtPrize 8 exhibition, “Future Talk,” a collection of works by 16 artists in digital and new media. The UICA has been a marquee venue since ArtPrize’s inception, and its former Sheldon Blvd. location now houses ArtPrize’s headquarters. Two years after the move to its new space, the UICA merged with Kendall College of Art and Design. Slower than expected membership growth and admission revenues left the UICA with a $4 million debt. Kendall itself is part of Ferris State University, which paid off the debt as part of the merger agreement. UICA retains curatorial independence, but shares operational and administrative resources with Kendall, Krajniak said. Its existence secured, the UICA has assumed the curious role of an established institution whose uniqueness for a city the size of Grand Rapids tends to be overlooked. It is, for instance, one of only 11 non-collecting art institutions in the United States — in other words, it doesn’t house a permanent collection. The focus is solely on the new (such as “superusted,” an exhibition of Midwestern art running until October), the provocative (like “Unloaded,” a recent exhibition of work exploring gun violence) and the engaging (such as its Contemporary Kids and ArtWorks programs). “A contemporary art institute can be the place where new ideas and challenges to conventional thought are first broached as artists reflect upon the world around them,” Krajniak said. “Original forms of artistic expression are inherently challenging because we as viewers are experiencing something that’s never been apprehended before. There’s no ‘right answer’ for how a work is supposed to make the viewer feel, or what to think — no textbook entry has been written yet.” That mission has expanded outward. The UICA is spearheading an ongoing effort to place street art in several of the city’s public spaces. So far, the partly crowdfunded “Exit Space Project” has commissioned five large-scale outdoor murals in Grand Rapids neighborhoods. One such mural covers the Lincoln Lodge at Lincoln Park on the city’s West Side. Its creator, Kelly Allen, has worked extensively with the UICA for the past dozen years as a volunteer, instructor and exhibiting artist. “The UICA has been a major reason why I enjoy living in GR, as it has been the most professional, inspiring, forward-thinking art institution outside of Detroit, as far as I’m concerned,” Allen said. Her mixed-media work has been featured in several shows, and in November, Allen will debut an exhibition of solo work on the UICA’s fifth floor. She said the institute “helps Grand Rapids feel like a valid contender as a vibrant, contemporary, creative city.” The UICA accomplishes this by continuing to (here’s that word again) challenge its audience until the abnormal seems normal, Krajniak said. “It’s significant that the West Michigan community has supported and sustained such a place for new, unconventional and challenging ideas for almost 40 years,” she said. “What may seem ‘challenging’ at UICA today may be ‘safe’ or commonplace in years to come.” n

Left: UICA’s Mid-Century Alchemy exhibit. Above: A film screening at UICA. PhotoS: Courtesy of Kendall College of Art and Design, Ferris State University (KCAD). Photography by Matt Gubancsik.

G R A N D VA L L E Y S T A T E U N I V E R S I T Y P R E S E N T S T H E 1 4 t h A N N U A L

Fall Arts Celebration 2016 Grand Valley’s Fall Arts Celebration features distinguished writers, poets, musicians, artists, and scholars of our time. Please join us this fall for inspiring entertainment that is the hallmark of our signature events.


“Emerging Romanticism: the Ying Quartet Performs the Early Viennese Chamber Music of Beethoven”

Enriching the Arts and Humanities in West Michigan


The Francesca Harper Project and GVSU Dance present “Beethoven’s The Creatures of Prometheus Ballet” MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 7:30 P.M. LOUIS ARMSTRONG THEATRE PERFORMING ARTS CENTER ALLENDALE CAMPUS






“An Evening of Poetry and Conversation with Oliver de la Paz and Kay Ryan” THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13, 7 P.M. 2ND FLOOR, L.V. EBERHARD CENTER ROBERT C. PEW GRAND RAPIDS CAMPUS

Rebecca Solnit “Seeing the Invisible: Journeys Through the Overlooked, Unheard, Outside, and Insurrectionary” MONDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 7 P.M. 2ND FLOOR, L.V. EBERHARD CENTER ROBERT C. PEW GRAND RAPIDS CAMPUS


“Musical Tradition and Timeless Memories: Handel’s Messiah” MONDAY, DECEMBER 5, 7:30 P.M. FOUNTAIN STREET CHURCH 24 FOUNTAIN STREET NE GRAND RAPIDS, MI

All events are FREE and open to the public. Want to know more about upcoming Fall Arts Celebration events? Please visit gvsu.edu/fallarts and provide us with your email address or call (616) 331-2183.

Media Sponsor:

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile


The ambiguous world of enigmatic domains by Josh Veal and Nicole Rico


imple shapes, large swaths of color and quasipatterns dominate the abstract landscapes of Jeff Kraus’ canvases. But the 31-year-old Grand Rapidian doesn’t want to tell you how to interpret his work. Rather, Kraus enjoys “the fact that

each person can look at it and associate different things from their life onto it.” The art, which has been shown in galleries from Los Angeles to New York, is meant to be

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

experienced rather than deciphered.

50 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

For the last two years, Kraus shared a studio space with local vintage furniture store Hunt & Gather. There, his large pieces caught the eyes of unsuspecting customers, destined to find themselves temporarily lost in a multifaceted world of his design. Now, Hunt & Gather has closed up shop and Kraus is returning to his former studio at 1111 Godfrey Ave. That is, once he gets back from touring (as drummer) with his avant-garde post-punk band, Child Bite, from Detroit. Here’s his story.

Are there any common themes throughout your work? Fear, loneliness, contentment, anxiety … because that is what I know and experience as a human. Life is full of uncertainty.

‘Fogs of Color’

What inspires you, both in life and art? Obviously, being a musician, music inspires me most. Performing live music is such an emotional release. I channel that same type of release in my studio. I almost never work in silence, oftentimes listening to the same record on repeat several days in a row.

We asked Jeff Kraus to describe his work to someone new. Never one to boast, Kraus deferred to his friend Mag Kim’s elegant characterization: “From afar, each painting is a fog of color, haunting and absorbing. Tiny drawings are either painted onto the forefront or scratched into the surface, cutting through layers of paint and exposing the remnants of old colors, worn and hidden away. The drawings are strange and intentionally amateur, as if drawn by the non-dominant hand. These skinny, messy lines can look like skinny houses, trees or electrical towers, giving depth to the arrangement of brush strokes and impressionably eerie tone.”

What else goes into your artistic process? Lots and lots of looking, whether it be staring out of the van window while on tour, taking the dog for a walk, riding my bike, sitting in the yard. I bring all of that back into the studio. Due to my full-time touring schedule, I work in concentrated blasts when home. … I work through several ideas on multiple surfaces all at once, constantly bouncing back and forth. It is a controlled chaos. What do you want people to experience with your art? It’s an interesting thing, because I’m making these things I want people to care about and enjoy, but then I’m also terrified to be in the limelight. I think it comes out in the paintings a little, where I’m not telling people exactly what they’re supposed to be looking at or exactly what’s going on behind the work. ... It’s not necessarily like, “This is how you’re supposed to react to it. This is what it means.” I want to have a broad interpretation to it. Everything’s kind of masked with layers.

You’ve been doing this for quite some time now. How has your work changed? My work is constantly evolving. The more I create, the more I learn what works and what doesn’t. Sometimes I rework old paintings and ideas to help push them

What are you working on now? I am taking a break from the usual and exploring a new body of work using spray paint on plastic stretched like canvas. The work investigates ideas that I hope add to the current conversation in contemporary painting. I don’t want to give too much away. I am looking to show the work in a local gallery early next year.

For more info: jeffkraus.net/ tappancollective. com/collections/ jeffrey-kraus

And what’s next after that? I always want to be working on things that challenge and frustrate me. If it’s too easy, it’s boring. I don’t ever want to do things just because that is what has worked in the past and I know will work in the future. If I already knew what I wanted to be working on in the future, there would be no point in making it. n

TOP: Portrait of Jeff Kraus by Adeshola Makinde

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

What are the ups and downs of being an artist in Grand Rapids? Studio space is very affordable and there is a great community of artists working alongside each other. (But) there needs to be more people showing work in galleries and more awareness of what is happening in the city besides ArtPrize. There are several galleries on South Division Avenue that I feel don’t get the attention they deserve.

forward. A lot of the work I make goes into storage for months to years. I like to bring it back out after I have forgotten about it and present it as something new.


The Arts Issue | profile

MARCELO LEHNINGER Getting personal with the maestro By Josh Veal


or the first time in 17 years, the Grand Rapids Symphony has a new music director. His name, Marcelo Lehninger, reflects his unique heritage. With a Brazilian pianist mother and a German

violinist father, Lehninger grew up in Rio de Janeiro surrounded by classical music. After meeting (and falling for) his Coloradan wife, the two moved stateside, beginning a long journey of conducting in various cities all over the U.S. Now, Lehninger has been selected as the music director — replacing David Lockington, who held the position for 16 years — after guest conducting in both February 2015 and April 2016. While his family currently lives in Florida, they’re

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

moving to Grand Rapids next summer. Meanwhile, Lehninger’s first official performance as new director will be in October, conducting the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2. Revue talked with Lehninger about his interests, his musical philosophy, and his plans for the symphony.

52 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

So, getting personal, what do you like to do with your free time? Free time? What is that? [Laughter] You know, I travel a lot for work. So when I am home, my idea of fun stuff is actually very simple. I like to stay in, cook with my wife, watch a movie, open a bottle of wine. I do like some outdoors stuff, like swimming and bikes. We also enjoy people a lot, meeting new people, going out with friends, having a drink and discovering new restaurants. And I like fashion. … When I move to Grand Rapids, I need to find a house with a big closet. What are you most excited for, moving to Grand Rapids? Many things, actually! A lot of people ask me if I’m scared about the winter, but not really. I did live in Boston for five years. Actually for me, being from

Brazil, it’s exotic when it’s snowing and it’s cold and you have to put a coat on. Here in Florida … it’s too hot and too humid. I’m excited about moving to a place where you have the four seasons. Oh! And also, the beer. I’m German and I love beer. What classical music would you suggest our readers listen to? A composer that I really enjoy and am going to be programming often is Heitor Villa-Lobos. He has some crazy pieces, some that I don’t like, but some beautiful pieces that I love. He was a very creative guy so he composed a lot. The good stuff is really good. There’s a set of pieces called Bachianas Brasileiras — Bachianas is a word he created, which means basically, “in the style of Bach.” And then Brasileiras of

people want that and they’re great pieces! But having a healthy balance is something that I like to do. You’ll be with the symphony for at least the next five years. What big plans do you have? I’ll be investing my time and energy trying to connect with a younger audience for sure. My dream — and I have to talk to the staff and administration to make sure we can — but it’s to create a concert experience directed at a specific age group. I’m not sure what yet. Maybe some pre- and post-concert events, something that would be more appealing to leave their house on a Friday or Saturday night. I also want to make friends of my own age and connect with people and meet new people, especially since I’ll be a part of this community and make Grand Rapids my home. What makes for a good conductor? It’s interesting. I think actually to ask that question to a conductor is dangerous. [Laughter] It’s better to ask a musician.

“You have a lot of artists in this country who are struggling. They’re struggling with contract negotiations, with a budget, with fundraising. Grand Rapids in this year … has a great budget to do interesting things.” course means Brazilian. Those are beautiful and there’s nine of them.

Based on your experience, what’s the symphony here doing right? Actually, that had a great impact on me deciding to take the position — the fact that the symphony, both artistically and financially, is in such a great space. It’s really, really wonderful. You have a lot of artists in this country who are struggling. They’re struggling with contract negotiations, with a budget, with fundraising. Grand Rapids in this year finished the $40 million endowment campaign, accomplished a 5-year contract with the musicians, and has a great budget to do interesting things.

As music director, you’ll not just be conducting but choosing which pieces to perform. What factors play into those choices? A big part of my style of programming is to have a nice combination of old and new — ‘new’ meaning both music that has just been composed and older music that the orchestra has never played before. Right now, I’m studying the symphony’s performance history from the past 10 years just to see what they played and didn’t play and what got people excited to attend the concerts. In each city, that’s a little different.

What’s your personal philosophy on conducting? I remember my father telling me, ‘You should never perform a concert just for the sake of performing a concert. Every concert needs to be a special event. You need to perform every single one as if it’s the first and last concert of your life.’ That’s how you have to do it. Because people are buying tickets, investing their money to listen to a performance and you need to be respectful of that. So I commit myself completely in the time of the concert. n

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

What other kinds of music do you like? That’s a funny question. Because I love Brazilian popular music, bossa nova and things like that, but I also love jazz. I have a great admiration for jazz pianists like Oscar Peterson, Erroll Garner, Frank Sinatra sometimes and Miles Davis. I really like that style of jazz ... especially when I want to relax. Also, there’s a person named Tom Jobim, I love his music. It’s mellow, romantic and beautiful. I listen to him a lot.

How was it working with our musicians? They’re great, really powerful musicians. Such a friendly, nice group of people. We played a lot of difficult pieces, as well as some that I’m sure some of these musicians have played 100 times. But still, they’re willing to play it as though it’s the first time and give the score a fresh reading.

Let’s pretend you’re a musician for a second. Same question? I think what most musicians really look for is if that person will be able to inspire them. At the end of the day, you get your instrument, you go to your rehearsals and you play concerts. You do that and of course it’s your job and how you earn your money, but the reason people become musicians is because they love music. So they’re just trying to find a conductor that inspires them. … What that person’s expecting is to go to rehearsal and play with joy and leave there happy.

What about your personal tastes? I always try to bring some South American composers too, of course. I mean, I don’t see any problem playing a Beethoven or Tchaikovsky symphony. A lot of

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profiles

The Art of Film: local filmmakers and actors discuss their craft

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

by Josh Spanninga

With fast-paced blockbusters and comic book movies dominating the movie market, you may be tempted to think of films as nothing but mindless entertainment. Throughout the history of cinema, however, movies have been more than just cheap thrills and explosions — they’re an art form. Hell, the great auteur Ingmar Bergman himself once said, “No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark room of our souls.” Keeping with this tradition of celebrating film as art, it seems only appropriate to highlight some local talents who’ve made it their prerogative to explore filmmaking in new and interesting ways.

Joel Potrykus

Daniel Falicki

Mariea Luisa Macavei




irector Joel Potrykus started turning heads in 2012 with his first feature Ape, then further solidified his reputation as an up-and-coming guerilla filmmaker with the highly praised Buzzard in 2014. This year, he released The Alchemist Cookbook, a film that will make its West Michigan debut in October. All of Potrykus’ works tend to teeter between the realistic and the absurd, a style he says harkens back to his younger days of making short films. “I take something weird and try to approach it in a realistic way,” Potrykus said. “It’s not really something I do consciously. It’s usually something where you look back and kind of realize what your style is, and that’s just kind of the road I’ve been going down.” One of the ways Potrykus has been able to hone his own personal style is by writing all of the scripts himself, giving him full creative control from beginning to end. “I don’t think I’d ever want to direct someone else’s work,” Potrykus said. “It would just feel like a job to me. It doesn’t feel like I would be able to say as much as I want to say.”

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ocal director Daniel Falicki burst onto the local film scene in 2010 with his first feature GR30K. Since then he’s been going full throttle, releasing multiple movies each year, all on a shoestring budget. His secret? Improvisation. “People who are so tied down to scripts, it just seems that their dialogue is so forced,” Falicki said. While directing, Falicki allows the actors freedom to explore their roles on their own terms, stepping in occasionally to offer advice. “I’ll stop a person in mid-sentence and say ‘OK, I like where you’re going. Let’s go a little bit further,’” Falicki said. “I’ll conduct them and they always get the hang of it.” He also prefers to cast local talent and non-actor friends in all of his films, insisting that while working with friends you know what to expect. And as far as auditions go? “I did auditioning sessions twice in my life, and it’s just a waste of time,” Falicki explained. Falicki recently finished his latest film, Alien Implant, and hopes to get back behind the camera soon to work on one of his many ideas.

hile directors run the show, let’s not forget about the talent on screen. Up-and-coming local actress Mariea Luisa Macavei is no stranger to performing in front of the camera. She’s popped up in all kinds of local productions, from short films like Recycling Lies to the feature length Rumors of War. “It feels absolutely insane trying to pursue acting as a career but it’s the one craft I have that truly inspires me to push myself in ways I can’t quite articulate,” Macavei said. While it’s clear she has a passion for acting, Macavei says it wasn’t always this way. In fact, she stumbled on this career path almost by accident. “I took a random theater class in college just to try it out and part of me hoped it would get me out of my shell,” Macavei said. “Little did I know that one class would get me hooked.” Since then, she’s been busy scouting out new projects and trying to navigate a film scene where paid work can be hard to come by. Just last year Macavei signed on with three agencies who’ve helped fill her calendar with various roles. Her latest project, For All It’s Worth, is currently in post-production. She’s also set to appear in local director Ryan Lieske’s upcoming film Remotion. n



ROMEO AND JULIET By William Shakespeare

OCTOBER 7 – 16




Music by Jerome Kern Book and Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II

NOVEMBER 11 – 20

NEXT STOP, BROADWAY! A cabarert event featuring Broadway’s finest!


WOMEN OF LOCKERBIE By Deborah Brevoort


WATER BY THE SPOONFUL By Quiara Algería Hudes

FEBRUARY 10 – 19

GILMORE THEATRE COMPLEX For Tickets: 269-387-6222 www.wmutheatre.com #wmutheatre

JEREMY THATCHER, DRAGON HATCHER Adapted for the stage by Tucker Rafferty Based on the book by Bruce Coville

MARCH 10 – 19


Book by William F. Brown Music and Lyrics by Charlie Smalls

APRIL 7 – 22

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

James Lacroix Serenity in Simplicity

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

by Nicole Rico

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he 29-year-old freelance portrait and product photographer James Lacroix earned his BFA in photography from Kendall College of Art and Design. His minimalist photos are interesting vignettes

of polished perfection that occasionally employ some sort of repetition. When he’s

not daydreaming in his spare time, Lacroix draws most of his inspiration from movies, Instagram and Tumblr.

So why did you decide to become a photographer? I’m not sure I ever decided I was going to be a photographer. I pursued photography because it interested me and I went to college because I wanted a creative career. I’m not sure it was a decision based in sound judgment, but rather a way to continue exploring a field that I loved. Looking back, I might have pursued photography outside of my profession. Photography motivates me and whether I would have pursued this lifestyle professionally or not, it’s something I’ve always loved doing. Shooting product photography, it seems like you’d do a lot of work in the studio. Do you prefer that versus outdoors? I actually don’t prefer one over the other. I enjoy shooting in the studio and outdoors equally as much. I like to combine elements found in both environments. I love working with natural light. That’s something that really energizes me.

Is there a photo that you like more than others? I’m not sure that I have a favorite, but the images that are the simplest to create are usually the ones that I feel are most successful and closest to my original idea.

What keeps you in the area? Obviously, I’m still here and have made Grand Rapids my home. I’d love to stay. I think there is an overwhelming amount of possibility here. It’s all about balance and navigating your career and personal life. There is so much talent in this city and I think it takes some compromise and time. I hope to build my career, collaborate and work to support others here. What are you up to these days? I’m working on creating a new body of work for a potential gallery show by the end of the year. I’m collaborating with a few regional and out-of-state graphic designers on some projects that I’m really excited about. n

Follow James Lacroix: instagram.com/jameslacroix jameslacroix.tumblr.com

Portrait of James Lacroix by Chris Schoonover

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

Are you planning to pursue more portrait and product photography in the future? I’d love to be able to have a more stable career in photography and would love to collaborate more frequently with local brands. Portrait and product photography is what I enjoy most.

Are there any challenges to being a photographer in West Michigan? It’s difficult to be an artist in Grand Rapids. When it comes to product and portrait photography, the businesses looking for photographers tend to turn to a few tried-and-true photographers for their marketing needs. I don’t think it’s often that emerging artists are given the same opportunities as those who have been working in the field for 10 years or more. Until you’re recognized by those organizations or businesses — who can refer you to other clients with similar needs to increase and stabilize your creative business — it can be difficult to be an artist in this community.


The Arts Issue | profile


The lure of energy, audience reaction, and the smell of popcorn on the community stage By Joe Boomgaard


teve Hutchins got his first taste of acting when he participated in the drama club and earned a role in the musical “Oklahoma.” It was an experience that stuck with him through high school and beyond, including when he fronted the local band Exstacy, a rock-themed project formed with several buddies. Years after hanging up the mic, however, Hutchins felt a calling back to theater: “I loved the stage experience and being on stage, but I got away from it for several years, and I missed it.” Hearing about the Cedar Springs Community Players at his hometown Kent Theatre, Hutchins signed up and hasn’t looked back after nearly a dozen shows. His most recent role was Stone, an aptly named hippie in “A House Divided.” Hutchins chatted with Revue about his motivation to keep volunteering for acting roles and why community theater matters.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

After almost a dozen shows now, what keeps you interested in community theater? I’ll admit that the rehearsals can get mundane when you’re doing it for four or five weeks, but as soon as I smell the popcorn on opening night, it’s a great feeling. Then once you actually step on stage and get in front of that audience, it’s just a unique feeling and a unique energy that’s hard to describe. It’s what drives me.

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What’s the typical run for shows at the Kent Theatre? We like to do five shows over two weekends. We do six weeks total from the beginning to the end. Five weeks of that is rehearsal. It just depends on the show. How often are you rehearsing? Depending on the role you have, if you have a larger role, it’s four nights a week. That’s quite a time commitment. It is, because you’ve only got a limited amount of time to make sure everything is ready to go by opening night. Was it hard to get in the mode of memorizing lines, not having had an acting background? Absolutely. I tend to take a little longer to get off-book, so to speak, which is fine because I’m always ready to go by showtime. Usually, it takes me about a month to

memorize everything. Once I have my lines down, then I’m able to focus on my characterization. Were there any tips to nailing your lines that you learned along the way? Repetition. That’s the easiest way to put it. I can sit there and study a book all day long, and sometimes it just doesn’t stick, but it’s all repetition. The more I do it, the more I actually am up on stage going over the lines that way, then it usually sticks. What are the typical shows for the Cedar Springs Community Players? They’ve mostly been new shows. We have a wonderful person in Cedar Springs (Scott Phillips) who writes and directs his own plays. We’ve done a lot of those, and we’ve done some other well-known shows. We usually do comedies and musicals because that is what the audience around in this area is drawn to. We’ve done a couple of mysteries or more serious things like “The Devil and Daniel Webster,” and we just didn’t get the turnout that we usually get from the comedies and musicals. You seem to be a person more drawn to comedies and musicals anyway, right? Right. I’m not a drama person. I’d say I’m more suited for comedic roles. That is what I enjoy doing the most.

“You have to be able to be comfortable not only in front of an audience, but you have to be comfortable not being yourself. It’s not for everybody.”

What are some of your more memorable times on the stage? I pay a lot of attention to my costumes and how I present myself on stage as far as my delivery and my timing. I’ve gotten a lot of applause just by entering on stage because of my costumes, or by timing a line perfectly. To me, those are the reasons why I do it — to get that audience reaction and to feel that connection with them. Anytime I get that, I’m in the zone, so to speak.

there’s no place for ad libbing or going off the cuff like you would in a band experience.

Tell me about your last role as Stone in “A House Divided.” Usually, I’m typecast in roles where it’s a lot of ‘me,’ but (playing Stone) was a complete departure. I played this over-the-top hippie stoner who was eating marijuana brownies all the time. It was a lot of, ‘Whoa, man!’ I played it like a cross between “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure” and Shaggy from “Scooby-Doo,” and it worked.

Not coming from an acting background, what’s it like working with directors? Scott Phillips is a great director and a great writer. He gives you great material to work with, but he also gives you a lot of freedom with your character. He gives you direction and how to do certain things, but when it comes to the actual characterization, he pretty much lets you go and do what you want to do with it — which is a great feeling. That means that he trusts you. If he needs you to tone it down, he’ll tell you to tone it down and things like that, but for the most part, you get to run with it.

Compared to your band days, do you get the same vibe from acting as you did singing? In a band, it’s a lot more spontaneous, whereas when you’re in a show, it’s very structured and

Which is more thrilling? I enjoy the structure and I enjoy the character that I get to play because I get to be somebody else and I can be totally immersed in being that character for whatever length of time we’re doing the show. It’s an escape, and I enjoy being challenged to do different things with my character.

What’s your advice for someone who might be interested in acting or community theater? I don’t want to say it takes a special person, but it takes a different kind of person. You have to be able to be comfortable not only in front of an audience, but you have to be comfortable not being yourself. It’s not for everybody, but if you do have the itch, then we’d love to have them. Why is community theater a good place for an aspiring thespian to start? I was welcomed with open arms. In the beginning, I never once felt awkward or felt like I didn’t belong. I felt at home right away. … Every one of us does it not because we’re getting paid — which we’re not — we’re doing it because we love the theater and we love being on stage in front of an audience. There’s a great deal of camaraderie among us. Do you ever get butterflies in your stomach before a show? I don’t get any stage fright. Like I said, I’m ready to go as soon as I smell that popcorn. It’s just that energy. It’s something that you feel when you’re up there. n

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile


Capturing kinetics in living sculptures by Nicole Rico

With a bachelor’s in studio art and a master’s in sculpture, Lisa Walcott is well-equipped to capture both motion and the fluidity of time. When she’s not sculpting or mastering the universe, Walcott works as a studio technician at Hope College and is a self-employed photographer. Here’s what she had to say about the relationship between time, space and art. Detail of Lisa Walcott’s Breathing Room, from a past SiTE:LAB exhibition.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

Have any themes emerged in your recent work? I pursue themes of domesticity, daydreaming, frustration, transition, time and space. But I don’t necessarily choose to pursue a theme in the studio. I like to keep my practice open to new ideas and ways of making. How exactly do you present domesticity? Most of my pieces start from personal experience, intimate spaces or my imagination. Often, I create kinetic sculptures that animate familiar domestic objects, like a stack of blankets rising and falling as if breathing, a pull string — like those used to switch a light on and off — bouncing around as if it had just been tugged, or an aerosol can that sprays constantly into the space. Other moving pieces come from the desire to see an idea manifested in real life, like a restaurant table with tablecloth spinning like a dancer’s skirt. The sculptures are often combined to create moods or themes among themselves.

Lisa Walcott’s upcoming events: Drafts Makeshift Studio Residency & Gallery 326 W. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Through Sept. 4 makeshiftkzoo.com

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How do you keep track of all these ideas? I scrawl and jot ideas as I observe, percolate and collect from my everyday life. In the studio, I spend a decent amount of time arranging, looking at and playing with the objects I’ve collected from outside the studio. At times, I know exactly what I want an object to do and then the process is all about problem solving and machine building. More often than not, however, I try to allow the pieces to inform me. Do you incorporate found objects? I use many found objects in my work. I’m often looking for familiar things that viewers will be able to relate to in some way. I elimi-

nate details so they could be anywhere at any time. Sometimes this means sanding off a logo or choosing monochrome. Can you tell us about some of your work that employed these ideas? I just opened Aug. 5 at Makeshift in Kalamazoo. That exhibition, it’s called Drafts, allowed me to play with the process of making art or drafting ideas as part of the show itself. At the same time, ‘drafts’ referred to breeziness, subtly moving air and the infiltration of an enclosed space from the outside. Why are you interested in movement? I’ve been chasing the idea that transitional moments are beautiful because they can’t be held onto. The spaces between, relationships and time are what I have been trying to make work about for a long time. However, using motion in the last five to six years has allowed me to embody that idea rather than reference it in the pieces. Are there any particular pieces that stand out to you? I feel proud of some of the larger installations I’ve done, like Breathing Room for Site:Lab, Vice Versa at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, or Made Up at the UICA. But as an artist who casts attention toward details and the mundane, I’m equally attracted to the simpler, hard-to-miss pieces like On and On, Everything’s different when it’s over or Maybe it’s supposed to. What do you do when you’re not working on these sculptures? I had a baby last December, so that’s pretty much what I’m doing these days. n

2016 -2017 SEASON


– NY1


Photo: Joan Marcus



Andrea Goss and the 2016 national

touring cast of Roundabout Theatre

Company’s CABARET. Photo by Joan


The New York Times













Less Than

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

Chris Cox

Recycle. Revisit. Reprint. By Nicole Rico

Chris Cox questions the easily-distracted internet age with technocentric creations of his own. The 26-year-old Grand Rapids native uses flatbeds, scanners and tape to create organically glitched photos. A Cranbrook Academy of Art graduate, Cox recently received his MFA in photography and is an artist in residence at Hope College. Check out his work at Hope College’s Depree Art Center and Gallery (160 E. 12th St., Holland) this fall before a big move to New York. In the meantime, Cox passed along the following thoughts on art in the modern world to Revue.

Your photos seem engrossed with technology. How did that come about? I’m interested in how the networked world and technology affects how we see, understand and find meaning in images. With current access to technology, the once linear reading of history is now an instantaneously refreshed image bank where the user is free to access the index at whichever point they desire. This creates a distinctly contemporary condition that my work addresses.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

So how does that worldview play into your art? I recycle and reprint images from my personal archive and create compositions of these images that are then re-photographed in the studio. Each image undergoes several layers of re-imaging before the final piece is made. My work calls into question the increasingly mediated world we live in. Has your newest work deviated from this at all? I’m working on larger, more sculptural pieces, where the photographs become more of an object in the gallery than a flattened photograph. I’m scanning small pieces of paper, about two inches tall, and enlarging them to about eight feet tall, mostly images of limbs and bodies from my archive. That’s quite a difference from your earlier work. I used to take portraits in the field and now I’m taping together pieces of my old photographs and photographing them again in the studio. Since my work has developed, I’ve really enjoyed working in the studio. All of my images now take a bit of time to set up and I’m taking my time lighting the sets as well. I think I will be working in the studio for a while. You have photo books available online. Can you tell us about that? I’ve found that artist books are an excellent way to disseminate my work that is not in the gallery or on the internet. I think photographers have an inherent desire to get their work off the screen. A book is a great way to distribute your work while still having control of the form it takes. I’ve been

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Follow Chris Cox at: chriscox.studio instagram: coxchrisd

Chris Cox with a series of his work. fortunate enough to work with several talented designers and writers on publication projects in the past. My recent book, Future Research (revisited), is available for purchase through my website. I finished it this past May. What are the best and worst aspects of being an artist in West Michigan? The best is cheap studios, cheap beers and good friends. The worst: It seems like Grand Rapids is mostly interested in art as it relates to contests and commerce. I’m interested in how art creates provocative discourse around ideas. I’ll leave it at that. Other than art, what inspires you? My ever-supportive and powerful art family. Having a community of artists around me is integral to being productive. I’ve been fortunate enough to have artists close to me that I look up to and am truly inspired by. Do you have any exhibits coming up? I’m showing at University of Toledo’s Clement Gallery until Oct. 14. Then I have a solo show titled Infinite Replica opening at Hope College’s Depree Gallery on Oct. 21. That runs until Nov. 18. n

Sept. 16–Oct. 1

, 2016 , 20 4 . c e D – 8 Nov. 1


Jan. 20–28, 2017

Feb. 17–Marc

h 4, 2017


201 , 7 – y4


www.muskegoncivictheatre.org REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile


Going behind the scenes with the curator of SiTE:LAB by Elma Talundzic

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene


ay back in 2007, a group of sculpture students at Kendall College of Art & Design embarked on a project that’s since grown faster and larger than they ever could have expected. That project, first known as ACTIVESITE and later called SiTE:LAB, has been making a name for itself in the local arts scene. “It was an initiative to get students outside of the classroom and into the real world where we found a site,” said SiTE:LAB director and curator Paul Amenta. Not until the first show at 70 Ionia Ave. did Amenta and his eight students see the full potential for the project to develop into something much larger. “A little over 400 people showed up to that event and we thought, ‘Oh, this is interesting!’” Amenta said. With the arrival of ArtPrize in 2009, the group switched gears and tweaked the model in a space on Monroe Center. The following year, ACTIVESITE changed its name to SiTE:LAB. The event has only grown, both in terms of participants and attendants, every year. Now, with multiple awards to its name, SiTE:LAB gears up for ArtPrize 2016 on 333 Rumsey St., where the group also held its exhibits last year. Revue talked with Amenta about plans for the future, why SiTE:LAB is important, and what the general public should get out of it all.

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True to name, SiTE:LAB is all about the location. How do you pick one out? We’re a nomadic organization, in that we use different sites almost every time. We’re constantly looking for sites that are appropriate to use, but sometimes the sites find us. For instance, Habitat for Humanity reached out to us and asked if we would be interested in using this site. They purchased the property and didn’t have any plans to renovate until much later. How about what goes in the space — do you try and start with a theme? Theme is not quite the right word for me. To me it’s more about what does the site tell me? How do we respond to it as an organization and what does the site reveal? We might respond to a site because of the architecture of the building or we might respond to a site because of the history — past or current. The context of the site dictates the direction that we go. Does that all happen before or after the site is chosen? We often don’t know that until we start working in a space. For me personally as an artist, it takes a little bit of time to understand it. There’s research involved and there’s also just being in a site and letting it tell you the stories that are invented in that place. What are you doing with the Rumsey site this year? This year we’re working with “The Estate of Gordon Matta-Clark.” He’s a deceased artist that operated in the ’70s and was a pioneer in site specific interventions, particularly as it pertains to architecture. I’ve selected artists to work with who acknowledge him as an inspiration, in some way, with their work. With some it’s very specific and with others it’s less so. We’ll be doing many very aggressive interventions on the architecture here on site. You say ‘many’ interventions. How many artists are typically involved? I’ll give you an example from 2007. It was eight students, and they were my students from Kendall. But

Curator and artist Paul Amenta

in 2010 when we did “Michigan Land of Riches,” we worked with over 30 faculty members, 200 students and at least 10 other institutions. From eight students to over 200 in that project, it was quite the ramping up. We had nearly 5,000 people show up to the opening. We attracted an audience that was much broader than maybe your typical art audience. Has the Rumsey site changed the process from past years? [This year] we were here in a neighborhood, which is unique for us [since] usually we were in a downtown building or warehouse with nothing around it. It challenged us in a way where we felt the need to work with the surrounding neighbors or at least let them understand what we were up to. We always try to get as many people on board that are in the vicinity of a particular site. How would you sell a newcomer on the SiTE:LAB experience? I always tell people, if you don’t come and see the project, it’s really hard to take it all in. … I think

“We do things that would take museums or larger institutions millions of dollars to do, but we somehow are able to cobble together small sponsorships and large volunteer efforts and pull off things that you just can’t do logistically in other places.”

What’s been the biggest reward, being involved with SiTE:LAB? Personally, as an artist, I’m always looking to push myself to do more extraordinary things. I want to

work with the brightest and best people that I can. In terms of the day-to-day grind of these projects, it’s all about the community of people that we work with. It’s a really special thing. I can’t explain it completely. It’s kind of magic. ... This is not all me, this is a huge group of people that put in god knows how many hours just for the love of it. What’s coming up next? We do an art fair that happens in Miami Beach every year that’s part of the Art Basel event called “UNTITLED, Art.” For the last three years, we have participated in that fair and we’re going to participate again this year. So the Miami project is next. We’re

going to be showing one of the artists that we are working with this year for ArtPrize named Will Lamson. We’re also doing an additional SiTE:LAB project down there called “The Special Projects.” Then we’ll start gearing up for next year’s ArtPrize exhibit. And where will that be? I’m not quite able to reveal the site yet, but we have it picked out through an opportunity that came our way. I will tell you this, it’s a massive building that we’re super excited to use and it will be like nothing we’ve done before. n

Opening Party for ArtPrize 2016: SiTE:LAB Everything is Transformed 333 Rumsey St. SW, Grand Rapids Sept. 23, 6–11 p.m., Free, All ages, site-lab.org

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

people are blown away by what we’re able to achieve here in West Michigan and Grand Rapids. They come here and see what we achieve and they’re blown away by the fact that we can accomplish these things. We do things that would take museums or larger institutions millions of dollars to do, but we somehow are able to cobble together small sponsorships and large volunteer efforts and pull off things that you just can’t do logistically in other places.

Works from SiTE:LAB’s 2015 exhibition: Mark Dean Veca’s Pony Show; Richard Barnes, Amanda Krugliak and Jason De León’s State of Exception; Kate Gilmore’s Higher Ground.


The Arts Issue | profile

Miranda Brouwer

The Woman with the Tattoo Gun By Audria Larsen

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene


66 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

t seems like Miranda Brouwer has tattooed practically everyone in Grand Rapids. In fact, I met her because a friend, sporting the Wealthy Street Tattoo artist’s permanent work, sent me Brouwer’s way when I sought an artist last summer. At the time, Brouwer had just returned from New Orleans and was already set to dash off across the country before fall hit. Instead, she decided to stick around and tattoo a veritable who’s who of local personalities, from entertainers, creators and shop owners, to me, my kid sister, and that guy you always see at the bar. We recently sat down to talk about Grand Rapids, indelible body art and badass women. Hailing from Southern California, Brouwer found herself in Grand Rapids by way of Calvin College. After earning two degrees (art and English), she remained for a little over eight years. The bayou called and she moved to New Orleans, completing her apprenticeship and launching her tattooing career. After several years in the Big Easy and a stint in Seattle, Brouwer landed back in GR last July. Her tattoo gun has been humming away locally ever since. “One of the things that I found about Grand Rapids, that was hard to build in other places, was roots,” Brouwer said. “Because I had lived here for such a long time beforehand, I already knew a lot of people and had connections to people doing art. For some reason, the city has the right personality of people that allows me to work creatively on their skin and exist creatively as a person.” Connections are important to Brouwer, not only in everyday life, but in the way that she works. “I try to design tattoos that suit the person that’s wearing them,” she said. “So something that is mine can also be someone else’s. Every person who wears a tattoo has had different life experiences. I try to get to know the person.” That kind of creative freedom can manifest in surprising ways that often involves a lot of trust. Many of the tattoos Brouwer pens are that person’s first. While she notes there’s a lot of anxiety toward being marked permanently, lately many folks going under the gun for the first time have granted her a lot of leeway, whether it’s stylistically or even with freehand work. She credits that in part to working with people who are already familiar with her portfolio prior to booking an appointment. “People actually do their research these days,” she said.

Tattoo artist Miranda Brouwer Photo: Jaimie Skriba

And sometimes people find their way to Brouwer because they want to sit for a woman artist, which is still not as common in the world of tattooing. “I apprenticed under a woman who was the first professional, black, female tattoo artist in the U.S., Jacci Gresham,” Brouwer said. “She owns the oldest shop in the state of Louisiana and has been tattooing for 40 years. She has existed as a woman in a male-dominated industry with bikers and criminals for such a long time. I learned from watching her how to speak with people and be a woman in an industry like this.” These days, not only can you find badass lady tattoo artists, but there is a greater prevalence of tattooed women — specially in the worlds of pin-up culture and burlesque. That’s not to mention the historic and enduring presence of tattooed gals in sideshow, who once upon a time were supremely shocking to the public. “I just love how those old pin-ups look,” Brouwer said. “They were the original rebels. Part of why so many women are heavily tattooed now is because they were inspired by those women and want to catch some of that rebellious nature.” Looking ahead, Brouwer hopes to travel and do more guest tattooing spots next year, with Japan and Melbourne, Australia high on the list. “Now is the age of the custom tattoo,” she said. “I’m always going to be striving to be a better artist and to be best artist I can possibly be. That’s something that should be a lifelong goal.” n Find Miranda Brouwer on instagram @thinning_air or by visiting wealthystreettattoo.com

Wealthy Street Tattoo

1129 Wealthy St. S.E. Grand Rapids, MI. (616)233-4848 wealthystreettattoo.com

The Arts Issue | profile


Getting uncomfortable with heartbutts, vomit, and other ‘weird shit’ by Ameera Chaudhry


hile the idea of a vomiting, double-headed woman or a mangled, three-eyed cat seems pretty cringe-worthy, Anna Lisa’s illustrations are so bizarrely beautiful one can’t help but embrace the fantastic absurdity. The 27-year-old Saugatuck native, who usually drops her last name (Schneider), majored in illustration at Detroit’s College for Creative Studies before returning to West Michigan to work as a graphic designer for New Holland Brewing. She will be participating in Grand Rapids Comic Con from Oct. 21-23, where she plans to sell comic books, art prints, stickers, buttons and patches. Revue spoke with Anna Lisa about her life and art, as well as her drive to make West Michigan a little weirder one illustration at a time.

You made some waves when you entered ArtPrize with a series of satirical illustrations called FartPrize. Talk a little bit about that. Tourists, venues, artists and even the founder of ArtPrize got made fun of. To be fair, I also did make fun of myself with a horrifically disgusting and “angsty” self-portrait. My dad hates looking at it when he visits.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

How would you describe your work to someone unfamiliar? Most of my illustrations are a slapdash of creepy, yet sort of cute lowbrow. It’s grotesque and weird, but it has a sense of humor in it. If I can make someone do a little snort of laughter out his or her nose, I feel like I’ve succeeded. I just draw weird shit that makes everyone a little uncomfortable and laugh a little bit. What are you currently focusing on these days? I am currently working on my webcomic, Inward Bound, (that) touches on mental health. I have super bad anxiety, and this project, combined with therapy, has helped me a lot, and I want this to inspire someone else to take care of his or her mental health. Plus, I get to draw monsters. … It’s a surreal inner journey about a young woman named Iris who gets trapped in her own mind by her inner demons. With the help of her childhood imaginary friend, Emilin, the two journey inward to save her sanity. It updates every Monday. How long have you been working on that webcomic? Inward Bound has been going on for about a year and a half now. I’m wrapping up chapter 3. It’s slow moving — I can only crank out a page a week, though I wish I could do more pages. Anything else you’re working on?

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What kind of reaction did you get? The feedback I got from the show was overwhelmingly great. People even hugged me for skewering ArtPrize. Do you have any plans for upcoming ArtPrize entries? I’m done with ArtPrize. It’s good for the community, but it’s too exhausting and, at this point, kind of boring. I’m over it.

Anna Lisa’s Heartbutts stickers

I also have work in Boss Rush, a themed show focused on the villains and bosses of video games. For that, I did a grotesque portrait of Twinrova from the Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

You’re also known for something called heartbutts. For the uninitiated, how do you describe that project? They’re a series of heart-shaped butts with different panties or lingerie that I did a few years ago. … I’m not the first artist to make heartbutts, and I won’t be the last. People will send me illustrations with asses and say, ‘Saw this, thought of you!’ There are worse things I could be associated with!

What’s your artistic process, and what materials do you use? I start with sketches and thumbnails, make a rough illustration, and spend hours inking on the computer. If I feel like I need color, I add that. Usually I just stick to black and white. The ranges of value you can get from those two colors are amazing. Black and white has always attracted me, and I think that could be because of my background reading so many comics. Black and white just feels more powerful. Do you ever change things up just to try something different? Inkgoober, my collection of illustrations from the Inktober drawing challenge, was a massive style change for me because I was primarily using digital ink at that point. I got a huge positive response from it. I was doing the webcomic before and getting a decent response — but this was to the next level. I found my thing — my gross, weird, lumpy thing. I found the medium that I liked the most. I connect with it better, and can get my lines perfectly right. My hands are shaky and I always seem to drop my brush or spill my ink all over my piece. With this, there’s no mess and I get to be as much of a control freak as I want with a piece. What’s it like being an artist in Grand Rapids? Grand Rapids is a conservative city. I am not always sure how some of my work will be received, given its content. As a result, I don’t see my stuff in an art gallery any time soon, and that’s frustrating. The weird, edgy galleries don’t

seem to stay open long here, either. I think the smaller size of Grand Rapids can be somewhat of an advantage, since you can meet people easily. It’s more direct. There are also new and growing opportunities, like Zinefest or Comic Con, to get more diverse projects out there. Little Grand Rapids is growing up. Of your work, which is your favorite? My webcomic, Inward Bound, is my favorite. It’s my baby. I’ve been thinking of that story for years and people also really like it. I occasionally get fan mail and fan art of the web comic. It makes me want to cry from happiness because people are really connecting with it.

“I just draw weird shit that makes everyone a little uncomfortable and laugh a little bit.”

What do you hope to be working on in the future? I want do more comic cons and start doing more freelance illustrations. I would also like to start to work for myself in a few years. … I would like to do more pop-up shows in Holland to show stuff other than landscape paintings that seem to be popular there. Don’t get me wrong — people do great landscapes, and I appreciate their talent, but I want to see the weird shit that’s really fascinating. I want to make Holland and West Michigan stranger. n

Follow Anna Lisa: annalisaillustration.com Instagram: annalisaillo Tumblr: annalisaillo.tumblr.com

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

Photo: Courtesy of Kendall College of Art and Design, Ferris State University (KCAD).

Lydia Boda

Exploring inner worlds and dreamscapes

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

By Nicole Rico

Lydia Boda, 24, uses found objects and a rigid set of rules to create sculptures that are fluid puzzles for the viewer’s eye. Originally from St. Louis, Mo., Boda won the inaugural UICA Fresh Pick Award last year for being “an emerging artist of exceptional promise.” Boda, who has a bachelor of fine arts in functional sculpture, talked to Revue about her projects and her passion for vintage science fiction.

Your work shows your fondness for patterns. How did that come about? Throughout my whole life, I’ve always been interested in finding patterns in how things work. I loved bricks when

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I was a kid. We had a pile of them in my backyard and I would spend hours coming up with new ways to create new problems I designed for myself. I love the math and science behind patterns. Visualizing the theory of different mathematical formulas always gave me chills. The problem is I’m dyslexic, so when there is no visualization, it’s pointless. What else inspires your work? The inner worlds within us all. The worlds we create to deal with trauma and memories. Our place we design to help us comprehend the real world. Dreams, daydreams and lucid dreaming are all organic filing systems to help us resolve problems and deal with stress or excitement. When I approach these concepts, I know they are an unsolvable puzzle. The mind and spirit is not bound by the three dimensions, so physically making these worlds is impossible. That’s my favorite part: It’s a problem I can never solve so I can keep trying until I die. Does creating these dreamy spaces involve a particular process? I usually like to create systems for myself to follow. I hardly ever keep anything the same way. I reuse objects as if they are just more material for the next thing. I hold no reverence for my own work because it’s always fluid in my mind’s eye.

Talk about your solo exhibit at UICA as part of the Coming Home series. My show at UICA was the one I hated and loved the most. It was so difficult to work on that scale having never done anything close to that big before. So much blood, sweat and tears went into making it happen. I felt so supported with so many of my friends helping with the installation, including my dad. As a St. Louis native, how was it relocating to Grand Rapids? My parents run a community center in St. Louis called Bridge of Hope. Every Thursday, we would go and make breakfast for all of the homeless community. One Thursday, I was struggling because I had just found out I got accepted to Kendall College of Art and Design on a scholarship. I was pretty terrified to leave the town I thought I was going to live in forever. I had mentioned it to one of the guys and he looked me in the eye and said, ‘Lydia, you need to live your life and do what you were born to do. We all love you but you’ve got to go.’ I never looked back since, and it still keeps me going four years later.

Follow Lydia Boda: lydboda.tumblr.com Instagram: @bodafett

Are you fussy about which objects you collect and use? I use anything I can get my hands on. I often have a hard time even remembering all the material I use in my work, so I boil it down to found objects and paper — lots of paper, receipts, cardboard, old drawings, letters. I’m a bit of a magpie, to be honest. My studio is like a nest of jewels and trash.

Other than art, what occupies your free time? I love science fiction, generally the older stuff because I love seeing how the technology they came up with then is now being made — Isaac Asimov, H.G. Wells, and George Orwell, just to name a few writers. I also love old science fiction movies. Soylent Green is my favorite. Any advice for aspiring artists? Hard work. … You can’t give up. When you get rejection letters, it should push you to try even harder. n

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

Jessica Benson

Honoring the lives of animals through art By Nicole Rico

Jessica Benson’s ethereal, anthropological work involves several trades and plenty of wood, animal teeth, pelt and fur — even intestines. Benson, 24, has a bachelor’s degree in fine art and is currently working toward a master’s degree in sculpture while simultaneously building her businesses, Samuel Brave and Third and Union. She spoke with Revue about how her use of objects seeks to honor the former living things from which they came.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

What attracts you to some of the more unconventional materials you use? Predominantly, my work focuses on craft-and-processoriented object-making. Traditional woodworking and fibers technique are also often a facet, along with natural and culturally stigmatized materials such as teeth, bones, gut and various found objects. Many of my pieces use traditional techniques such as paper-making, crochet and lace-making, combined with gut as primary material to create hauntingly beautiful works. Or, the use of teeth in an exploration of multiplicity — to create an intricate sculptural rendering of a flower, stimulating inquiry into the intrinsic relationship between life and death.

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Why is the natural world a common theme in your work? My family has always hunted, and from a young age, I have been exposed to both the beauty and pain of the ending of life for the subsistence of another. While my family used all they could for food, I noticed all that was left from this process and began collecting bones and teeth as a way of honoring the life that was lost. … Each animal or source is important and irreplaceable, intimately known to me and used in a way of honor, respect and exploration.

What do you hope to achieve through your sculptures? Creating works that are visually captivating and intricate out of seemingly contradictory or negatively stigmatized What are you exploring right now? materials is my personal way of effectively generating Textiles and block printing using organic and non-tradithought — for both the viewer and myself — pertaining to tional materials. I have recently been constructing knit gut the alteration of perception and object elevation. Using pieces of various size and patterning, usand reusing these materials articulates ing these as the carrier for plant-based the notions of awareness and respect dyes to press and print these patterns of the natural world, our perception of Follow Jessica onto fabric. it and ultimately our relationship with it.


jessicabensonstudio.com Tell me about your creative process. Out of all you’ve created so far, what samuelbrave.com It always begins with rigorous anthrostands out as a favorite? thirdanduniondesign.com pological and historical studies. I’m I would say the work I feel most proud Instagram: jb_craft interested in a particular material for of is my most recent thesis endeavor, its intrinsic properties — the elasticity Revision, which is a piece intended as and adhesive qualities in animal gut, personal body adornment. It’s a knit gut the healing and visual properties of natural plant dyes. I back plate attached to a hand-hammered copper shoulder study how other cultures over time have also observed piece. It’s covered with over 80 cast bronze buffalo teeth, and used these materials and how their particular ideoloone of which is inset with a garnet, my birth gemstone. I gies develop history and meaning around these objects. was able to pull together many different skills, techniques Then I create a composite history or myth around these and processes in order to bring this piece to fruition. I materials. I marry these techniques and processes from believe it effectively encapsulates the main themes of my various cultures into one, creating works that are as eerie body of work. n as they are beautiful.

OPERA | UNBOUND | TANGO | SPANISH An unconventional hybrid of tango, opera and surrealism.

Composed by Ástor Piazzolla | Libretto by Horacio Ferrer

MARÍA DE BUENOS AIRES OCTOBER 14, 15 | 7:30 PM BETTY VAN ANDEL OPERA CENTER TICKETS $40 in advance | $45 day of show Students $5 day of show only 616.451.2741 | ticketmaster.com

Photo courtesy Syracuse Opera | by Douglas Lee Wonders

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

Loralee Grace

Adding patterns and a bit of sci-fi to landscapes

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

by Nicole Rico Loralee Grace, 28, creates paintings that belong to another world. The sprawling landscapes are melded with artisanal patterns and usually tagged with an adventurer or two exploring the canvas. While she was born in Grand Rapids, her spirit is nomadic and thrives on new experiences and traveling. The 2010 Kendall College of Art and Design graduate holds a bachelor’s of fine arts degree in painting and has had her work displayed across Grand Rapids. Check out her most recent work at Richard App Gallery, 910 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids.

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How did natural landscapes, artisanal patterns and sci-fi elements all come to coexist in your paintings? I began to merge the sci-fi and environmental elements with my landscape paintings as a way of expressing concern about pollution and other environmental issues. These two elements were not inspiring enough for me after a while. I suddenly got the idea to add a pattern from the landscape location as well, which represents a spiritual or otherworldly presence — something a bit more hopeful and inspiring. Do you paint the patterns by hand? People sometimes think the patterns are digitally made or screen-printed, but they are all painted by hand — as well as the landscape. Lately, I’m moving intentionally away from perfection in the patterns. After painting a mural for the UICA along with 16 students from the Cook Arts Center, I was inspired to allow more variation — and thus feeling of energy

— into the patterns I paint. I also create avant-garde air filters for the figures that sometimes appear in my work, as a way of expressing my concern for the future of our environment while emitting a strangely whimsical feeling. Does your travel inspire your art? My paintings, and general mindset, have become a bit more hopeful and globally inspired in the six years since graduation from Kendall. Traveling through 16 countries abroad for a year was incredibly inspiring to my creative process. My husband and I were opened up to a world of exciting possibilities when we realized we could do it for less than it costs us to live in GR for a year. I never really got into painting landscapes until my first trip to Iceland in 2011. I like to say that Iceland turned me into a landscape painter. Ever since that trip, I’ve been searching out beautiful, mostly barren landscapes to paint. Something about the vast expanses

Follow Loralee Grace: loraleegrace.com facebook.com/ loraleegracevisualartist instagram.com/ loraleegrace

of mossy land and the magical lighting really drew me into trying to capture the magic of our natural world. Of your paintings, do you have a favorite? That’s like choosing a favorite country or child. But right now, I’m pretty fond of “The Pilgrimage,” which is an autobiographical piece of me walking through the Wadi Rum Desert in Jordan.

Did you always know that you wanted to be an artist and painter? I have always been the creative, odd child. Growing up, I was privileged to be able to create often, via drawing, many mediums of paint, pottery and wax, limestone carving. You name it, I likely tried it, although glass-blowing is still on my wish list. Is it important to earn a living as an artist? Despite my path choice, I don’t feel a desperate need to make a living off of my work. Painting is a huge passion and something I could do all day, every day, but I feel inspired to create certain work and wouldn’t want to zap away my creative vision by painting what I think would sell. I put most

Tell me about that film and photo work. As my day job, I freelance on films as a wardrobe or prop stylist, production designer or art director, depending on the job. I got into this line of work through my husband, filmmaker Philip Carrel. I really love how it gets me out of the isolation of the studio and working with other creative professionals. It’s also quite sporadic work, so I get plenty of time to paint. Is it hard finding an inspiring space to create? Sometimes I’ve been fortunate enough to have a free place to live for a month or more, once in a remote fjord in Iceland, then a few weeks in the countryside of Czech Republic — that really allows me to focus on my creative work and not worry about working to pay my rent. I’ve found that having a small overhead is ideal for my creative process and workflow. With all of your traveling around the world, have you exhibited your artwork at any far-away places? I’ve shown my work twice in a remote café in Iceland. I’ve wheat-pasted it, upon local request, on the streets of Athens, Greece; painted a mural in Montenegro; and (my work) is hanging in homes of people I stayed with while traveling abroad in Germany, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Ireland and Denmark, to name a few. I was also in a group show in Wicker Park, Chicago last autumn, which was a

benefit for UNICEF that I was honored to be a part of. And I’ve been invited back again this year. How about Grand Rapids? I’ve exhibited extensively in the Grand Rapids area, at places along the Avenue, including most recently the Collective Artspace. Other notable GR locations include the Green Well, almost every café in GR, Rowster, Madcap, Sparrows, as well as Richard App Gallery, Cascade Gallery, Flat River Gallery and the first couple of ArtPrizes. What downsides are there to showing your art in Grand Rapids? The difficulty of selling work. There is a pretty widespread consensus among most artists in GR that there aren’t enough active collectors in town. Especially if the artwork is a bit out of the box or not obviously Michigan-related — or even if it is, but with a unique twist — there seems to be hardly any demand for it. By investing in original artwork, you support the creative culture of your community. We need more of that mindset here in GR. Where will your travels take you next? I’m getting ready to head to New Zealand in mid-September with a one-year working visa. My goals are to paint murals, including on the camper van we plan to live out of, make many watercolor and gouache paintings, street art and generally continue expanding in my creative practice. I would love to get my work into galleries internationally and on the west and east coasts, into magazines, as well as painting murals in as many places and countries as possible. n

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

What’s your artistic process? For an oil painting, I sometimes make a small watercolor and gouache sketch, and then grid it, or by photo reference, into nine blocks. I transfer the landscape to the canvas in this manner by loosely sketching it in, with pencil and then paint. I build up the layers until I’m relatively satisfied with the believability and detail. For gouache paintings, I sketch them out a bit more thoroughly with pencil, then layer the watercolor and gouache.

of my work up for sale, but I really don’t care either way anymore if it sells. The process of creating each painting is enough reward for me. I also need variety in my life, so I enjoy working creatively on film and photo shoots as a way of bringing in more income than painting currently does.


The Arts Issue | profile

Artist Henry Arthur Brown and one of his collages (pictured left).


A wriggly mind reconstructs the world

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

by Tamara Fox


hanks to dyslexia, Henry Arthur Brown always struggled in school. “I still have anxiety to this day when it comes to reading and writing,” Brown said. “I’m like a deer in the headlights.” Cur iously enough, the condi tion became a creative catalyst, according to Brown. If the words wouldn’t cooperate, Brown reasoned that he could make them meaningful in his own unique way. “When I looked at words, they would be like scribbles,” he said. “So I would get frustrated and cut it up.” Today, he creates colorful and intriguing collages often inspired by current events that reveal an imbalance of power, with themes of injustice and human folly. As a child, Brown would use any materials on-hand — newspapers, comics, even his sister’s paper dolls. “I’d take the head off and replace it with a skull or something,” he said, adding that his mother was always puzzled by his work.

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She had only a third-grade education, but was determined to make a better life for her five children after leaving the south. Working as a housekeeper for the well-off, his mother was able to raise the family in “nice neighborhoods,” Brown said. Living near the city, Brown formed connections early on with mentors that encouraged his artistic endeavors. He has fond memories of summer retreats with a family in Hudsonville through a program that matched urban children with families in the country. Forty years later, they’re still in contact. Later in high school, Brown’s art teacher recognized his potential, encouraging him to think differently about both his art and himself. “That’s how it started,” he said. “I was doing art all my life, but it was the art teacher at Ottawa Hills, Mr. Webberley, who would say, ‘Really put your mind to whatever you want to be.’ I couldn’t wait to get to that class, because it was the only thing I thrived in. He turned me onto art — real deep into it.

“He made me keep my sanity and I still have that today. Sometimes my mind gets a little wriggly … but then art just pulls it back.” Brown says his work star ted out somewhat primitive, working with others’ photographs and kids’ cartoons. Now he sources his materials from all over. What’s more, Brown was initially giving his art out for free. That all changed when he met Reb Roberts, proprietor of Sanctuary Folk Art (40 Division Ave., Grand Rapids). “I came in and talked to him and he said, ‘You need to stop giving these things away. You need to start selling them and taking yourself more seriously,’” Brown said. “You know, it had just been a hobby. I never really made any money until I met Reb, to be honest, and that’s when my confidence came back.” Brown has participated in local art fairs and exhibited at myriad local galleries and venues, including LINC UP and A.K. Rikk’s. His work can now be found at Sanctuary Folk Art Gallery. n

All the Worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Our Stage!

Michiganâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s only year-round, touring Shakespeare company, bringing classical theatre to venues throughout the state.

Coming Fall 2016 The Taming of the Shrew And Announcing Our 2017 Season Titus Andronicus Much Ado About Nothing Cymbeline Henry V King Lear

All productions by the Pigeon Creek Shakespeare Company play at multiple Michigan venues. For information about upcoming performances, please visit us at www.pcshakespeare.com

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | profile

Nicholas Szymanski

Magic, Sex, Death: Getting Personal With Subjects By Nicole Rico

Nicholas Szymanski, 27, paints understated works stirred by magic, sex and death. Despite that Aleister Crowley-sounding list of influences, his work could more aptly be described as quiet and minimalist. He currently resides in Grand Rapids and has a bachelor of fine art with a focus in painting from Kendall College of Art and Design. Szymanski talked with Revue about how he applies his experiences in his works.

How would you describe your paintings? I think my work could be described as simplified or understated, quiet, heavily processoriented, meditative, slow and void. Someone recently called it “severe.” I’m not sure if I would identify my work as thematic, but I always go back to the subjects of magic, sex, death and perception in my writing, which is closely related to my painting practice.

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

Is there any particular reason why you go to those themes? I have some theory that art and experience are inherently related to those things, whether literally or metaphorically. They afford us with distortion and creative potential in regards to expression or developing a sense of self. It’s about polarity, attitudes and thresholds. Life is composed of a spectrum of feeling and experiences, from dread to ecstasy. My work is portions of reality synthesized in order to communicate this spirit. How do you put these themes into practice? My process is very matter of fact and physical. It’s all application of materials, mixing color, investigation of composition and non-composition. I spend a lot of time adding thick or thin paint to substrates with different mediums and potentially building up a surface that is either thick or thin, depending on what the work needs. Sometimes I lightly sand the surfaces, other times more aggressively. What kind of materials have you used? Really, whatever the work calls for. I have used acrylics, oils, spray-paint, watercolor, bleach, tea and dirt. One time, I made some paintings that were composed of stretched waxed canvas with marble dust rubbed into the surface. In relation to application, I use all sorts of brushes, both artist grade and more house painting types, as well as different types of rollers and rags. What’s keeping you busy these days? I am working on seven oil paintings in my studio, primarily monochromatic, varying sizes, both addi-

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Follow Nicholas Szymanski:

nicholas-szymanski.com Instagram: nicholas.szymanski

tive and subtractive. I’m also making a series of works on paper at home. In addition to those projects, I am building some cradled panels for a series of ten paintings, (with) the working title Damaged Sleep. How do you express your individuality in your work? When I was younger, my work was more concerned with style and trying to have a similar experience as the modern artists that I admire. I had a disdain for limitations, but later understood the value of restraint and imperfections, or rather, how to view those things as a conduit for my ideas and work. Through that, I also began to make work that was more related to my own experiences, ideas and perceptions. I was concerned with getting somewhere. Now that idea rarely enters my mind. How do you know when a painting is finished? I don’t really believe in endings, so there’s no real destination for a painting. I get caught up in the act and paint until I achieve some sort of vitality and balance. Painting is a very felt process for me. Sometimes this is achieved very slowly over a long time, (and) other times very quickly, even immediately. If my work ever reads as illustrative in any way, I either start over or destroy it. I have no time for illustration. n


Reserve your seats now for performances coming to the

VAN SINGEL FINE ARTS CENTER Check us out at vsfac.com

THE HIT MEN Time Travel Tour Sunday, October 16, 7:00 pm

hitmenlive.com MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET

Starring legendary musicians who performed with Frankie Valli, Carole King, Jim Croce, Carly Simon, Cat Stevens & More! Feel like your 23 years old again and travel back in time with The Hit Men to relive the music, the magic and the memories! Saturday, December 17, 2:00 pm & 7:00 pm

Celebrate the Christmas season with Miracle on 34th Street, a fun, family musical based on a favorite holiday tale made famous by the 1947 movie of the same name. With a touching story and wonderful songs, such as “Just Imagine,” “Macy's Madrigals,” and “I Believe in Miracles,” you will truly believe in the miracles of the season. Get your family together and reserve your seats now for one of two performances!


Thursday, January 26, 7:30 pm

Those filling-station attendants with farmer tans and those waitresses with hot pots of java will make harmony when the Tony Award-nominated, country-and-pop-flavored musical Pump Boys and Dinettes routes its way into the Van Singel. It’s a fun evening of country styled songs that received unanimous raves on and off-Broadway. With heartbreak and hilarity, the group perform on guitars, piano, bass and, kitchen utensils. Underwritten by Dan Pfeiffer Automotive Group


Thursday, March 2, 7:30 pm

It’s an unforgettable concert when Freddy Cole (piano/vocals), Elias Bailey (Bass), Quentin Baxter (Drums), and Randy Napoleon (Guitar) continue the legacy of Nat “King” Cole and niece, Natalie, with special musical memories. Now in his 55th year of performing, this great singer/pianist and three-time Grammy nominee, has developed a huge following of his own. The instantly recognizable Cole voice and his veteran quartet, play the classics as well as new compositions and interpretations from a huge repertoire. freddycolemusic.com

ONE MAN STAR WARS TRILOGY starring Charles Ross

Thursday, March 16, 7:30 pm

From the producer of Potted Potter comes the only Star Wars parody permitted by Lucasfilm Ltd. when Charles Ross stuns you with his One-Man Star Wars Trilogy. Much of Ross’ childhood was spent in a galaxy far, far away, enthralled with Star Wars videos. The result is his hysterical One-Man Star Wars™ Trilogy, where he singlehandedly plays all the characters, sings the music, flies the ships, fights the battles and condenses the plots into one hilarious show! onemanstarwars.com

It’s A Hot Night of COOL JAZZ

Friday, April 28, 7:30 pm

Get ready, set and go once again for a hot night of Cool Jazz featuring the nationally recognized Byron Center Jazz Ensembles along with a featured international jazz musicians.

Mallory Skilling - Back Home Again

Thursday, May 18, 7:30 pm

The Van Singel Fine Arts Foundation presents homegrown singer/songwriter, Mallory Skilling in a benefit concert on Thursday, May 18 at 7:30 pm. Mallory attended Byron Center Public Schools as a young girl and is a graduate of Cornerstone University. She is currently living in Nashville where she is pursuing her musical career. Check out Mallory’s music at malloryskilling.com, then come experience the talent of this young woman.

To purchase tickets call 616.878.6800 or vsfac.com

84th St & Burlingame SW, Byron Center (1.5 miles west of US-131)

Box office is open Mon-Fri 12-5 pm

Less than 15 mintues south of Grand Rapids

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | Venues

Beginner’s guide to West Michigan museums by Troy Reimink

One of the many ironies and conceptual quirks of ArtPrize is that the “radically open” contest that has proved disruptive in the art world’s traditional hierarchy of galleries and museums also draws enormous crowds to… museums. Maybe art is ideally appreciated in a setting curated by people who have spent years of study and professional work in their field? But who’s to say. Either way, as Grand Rapids girds itself for the coming ArtPrize frenzy, we humbly suggest making first stops at some of the city’s fine cultural institutions, all prominent venues and (it turns out) all actually open the rest of the year too. Here’s a handy beginners’ field guide to museums, some art-centric and some not, all over the West.

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

101 Monroe Center NW; artmuseumgr.org

This jewel of downtown Grand Rapids next year will celebrate a decade in its current location adjacent to Rosa Parks Circle, where it opened as the first LEED-certified art museum in the United States. The GRAM beat ArtPrize to the “is this art?” debate when it installed its signature work, a 26-foot-tall two-tone parallelogram titled “Blue White” by late painter Ellsworth Kelly (short answer: definitely art). The GRAM excels at public engagement through programs such as its seasonal GRAM on the Green outdoor concert series and regular Saturday drop-in events. Its ArtPrize 8 exhibition, “Past/Present/ Future,” is open Sept. 1-Oct. 30.

Grand Rapids Public Museum 272 Pearl St. NW; grpm.org

Unmissable with its iconic carousel along the west bank of the Grand River, the Public Museum achieves the “something for everyone” ideal of any museum. In its more than 160 years as part of Grand Rapids’ cultural landscape, the museum has claimed various homes — including its longtime site on Jefferson Ave. SE, where several creepy-as-hell dioramas remain — but since 1994 has occupied its current spacious abode, loaded with exhibits exploring history, science and regional

80 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

culture. The Robot Zoo, which depicts wildlife as supersized interactive robots, is open through Sept. 18; the exhibition of three-dimensional ArtPrize entries opens Sept. 21.

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum 303 Pearl St. NW; fordlibrarymuseum.gov

its galleries with boundary-pushing contemporary art, show an impressive lineup of new-release indie and art films, and exhibit some of the most reliably thought-provoking ArtPrize entries. UICA’s 2016 ArtPrize exhibition, “FUTURE TALK,” presents digital and new media works from 17 artists; meanwhile, the “superusted” exhibition of new work by Midwestern artists will run through late October.

Grand Rapids Children’s Museum 11 Sheldon Ave. NE; grcm.org

It’s hard to imagine an institution with a more agreeable mission statement than the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum, which is that play is healthy, play is transformative, play is a right and play benefits families and people of all ages. It’s emphatically pro-play, something we can all get behind. GRCM offers a dizzying variety of ways to scratch that itch and there’s no better place in West Michigan to spend a rainy afternoon with your kids.

Kalamazoo, the KIA houses a rich permanent collection of American paintings and sculptures, ceramics, photography, African-American art, pre-Columbian gold and globespanning 3-D work. It curates a diverse roster of visiting exhibitions which now include Chul Hyun Ahn, Renee Stout, Fred Wessel and Barbara Takenaga. “Scaled Up: Sculpture By Marcia Wood” opens Oct. 1 and runs through the end of the year.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum 230 N. Rose St., Kalamazoo; kalamazoomuseum.org

This hands-on, kids-of-all-ages museum focuses heavily on science, history and technology and offers a variety of classes and workshops, a planetarium and a theater for films and live music. The museum celebrates the 50th anniversary of Kalamazoo Valley Community College with a free month-long commemorative exhibit all September.

Air Zoo

6151 Portage Road, Portage; airzoo.org

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

314 S. Park St., Kalamazoo; kiarts.org Closing in on a century of nurturing art appreciation and education in

If it’s man-made and it flies, you’ll learn about it at the Air Zoo, which displays rides, simulators and more than 50 historic aircraft, honoring the history of aviation. “POPnology,”

an exhibit exploring the relationship between technology and pop culture, runs through the beginning of October.

Holland Museum

31 W. 10th St., Holland; hollandmuseum.org There are still a few days left (until Sept. 4) to catch the downtown museum’s “Say Yes to Michigan” interactive exhibit, which pays tribute to classic Michigan road trips.

Muskegon Museum of Art 296 W. Webster Ave., Muskegon; muskegonartmuseum.org

Along with its widely respected permanent collection, Muskegon’s must-visit art museum now hosts an exhibition of works inspired by the colors of beer, so, yeah, count us in!

Gilmore Car Museum

6865 Hickory Road, Hickory Corners; gilmorecarmuseum.org Located just northeast of Kalamazoo, the Gilmore Car Museum, the largest of its kind, honors the American auto industry with a collection of about 400 vehicles that span more than a century of automotive history. n

Both a required stop for Grand Rapids visitors and an institution longtime locals know they ought to dutifully visit (but just haven’t gotten around to yet), the Ford Museum honors the life and legacy of our 38th POTUS, buried nearby. The recently remodeled facility includes exhibits highlighting Ford’s early years in Grand Rapids, his career in the Navy and Congress and a recreation of Ford’s Oval Office. Take a break from reading your friends’ campaign-related Facebook rants and visit sometime between now and Election Day.

Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts

2 West Fulton St.; uica.org Grand Rapids’ destination for cuttingedge interdisciplinary art has amplified its presence in (and direct engagement with) the community since moving into its spacious new location five years ago. Approaching its 40th anniversary, the UICA continues to fill

Studio Brew: The Colors of Beer at Muskegon Museum of Art Pictured: Erin Hoffman, In All Its Glory (reductive woodcut) and Richard Aardsma, Still Life with Beer Glass (digital) .

Theatre Kalamazoo is a nonprofit collaboration between the live theatre organizations in Kalamazoo, Michigan. We take great pride in promoting the diversity and richness of theatre in Kalamazoo and foster a spirit of cooperation and support among this strong and talented community.


Farmers Alley Theatre

Barn Theatre

Festival Playhouse

Center Stage Theatre

Miller Auditorium

The Civic Theatre

The New Vic Theatre

Black Arts & Cultural Centerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Face Off Theatre

Queer Theatre Kalamazoo

Fancy Pants Theater

of Western Michigan University

School for Advanced Theatre Training

of Kalamazoo College

University Theatre

Check out whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s happening on the many stages of Kalamazoo!

www.theatrekalamazoo.com REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


The Arts Issue | theatre


Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene




82 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Broadway Grand Rapids gets a bump from ‘Phantom’ tour, DeVos upgrades By Kayla Tucker

While recent improvements did little to directly change the attendee experience for shows at DeVos Performance Hall, they helped usher in a record-setting season for Broadway Grand Rapids. That’s because the $350,000 in behind-the-scenes renovations approved two years ago made it possible for Broadway Grand Rapids to lure in bigger shows. The first of those larger performances, “Phantom of the Opera,” played its sold-out, 16-show run over two weeks in May.

For Mike Lloyd, executive direc tor of Broadway Grand Rapids, the organization’s record performance is proof that the improvements were well worth the investment. “It was a spectacular run and it showed what the magnetic power of top-notch Broadway theater can be as an attraction to the community,” Lloyd told Revue. Ticket sales over the season rose 67 percent to 92,000, while season-ticket sales also increased 36 percent to 4,900. Those numbers were certainly boosted by the soldout Phantom run, during which Broadway Grand Rapids sold out the 2,300-seat DeVos Performance Hall for two straight weeks, with tickets ranging from $40 to $100 each. “(The show) broke every record in DeVos Hall for seats filled and attendance,” Lloyd said. According to Broadway Grand Rapids, the show also had a wide reach. The organization sold tickets to people in every county of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula and about half of the counties in the Upper Peninsula, Lloyd said. Ticket holders also came from out-of-state cities like Toledo, Chicago and Milwaukee, to name a few. Janet Korn, senior vice president of Experience Grand Rapids, said the big shows

Phantom of the Opera production

Broadway GR executive director Mike Lloyd Photo: Jeff Hage impact not just the city’s theater community, but also the entire community itself. “When people come from a farther distance, they’re more likely to stay overnight and they’re more likely to spend money in our community,” Korn said. “Their ability to help us attract tourism makes Grand Rapids a more vibrant place.” But the show would not have been possible without the improvements to three key areas of DeVos Performance Hall — changes Broadway Grand Rapids convinced the Kent County Convention and Arena Authority would have a much broader economic impact on the greater Grand Rapids area, Lloyd said. “(Phantom) completely changed the way shows were staged and it required a bigger stage than was built in DeVos,” Lloyd said,

noting that other Broadway shows, including “The Lion King,” have similar requirements. To accommodate the show’s larger set, DeVos Performance Hall needed to widen its stage, reinforce the ceiling and expand the entry point for sets to come through from backstage. “The difference is much more structural than cosmetic,” Lloyd said, meaning the changes can’t really be seen from the audience. Importantly, the new stage design has opened more doors of opportunity for Broadway Grand Rapids: The group already plans to bring in more major shows, including “Wicked” and “The Lion King.” “There isn’t a show that can’t perform on the stage here,” Lloyd said, adding that the goal is to get at least one Phantom-level show in Grand Rapids annually. “I took on this job because I believe that Broadway Grand Rapids can be an economic engine for the community. Phantom proved that point.” The upcoming season will open with “Cinderella” followed by “The Sound of Music,” “Motown: The Musical,” “Dirty Dancing,” “A Christmas Story: The Musical,” and “RENT.” n

The world is here.

Betroffenheit by Michael Slobodian



Sun 9/11

Sat 11/12-Sun 11/13

Falling Up and Getting Down Jason Moran & The Bandwagon with Skateboard Masters

Berlin Philharmonic

On Behalf of Nature Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble

Tue 11/15

Sat 1/21-Sun 1/22

Sun 9/18

HD Theater Broadcast

Shakespeare’s Richard III Thu 9/29-Sat 10/1

The TEAM’s RoosevElvis Fri 9/30 [NOTE NEW DATE]

Kamasi Washington & The Next Step

October Sat 10/8-Sun 10/9

Beethoven String Quartet Cycle Concerts 1 & 2

Takács Quartet Sun 10/9

HD Theater Broadcast

Terence Rattigan’s The Deep Blue Sea Thu 10/13-Sat 10/15

Layla and Majnun Mark Morris Dance Group The Silk Road Ensemble Sun 10/16

Denis Matsuev, piano Thu 10/20-Fri 10/21

Dorrance Dance

A Venetian Coronation 1595 Gabrieli Wed 11/16

Jake Shimabukuro Thu 11/17-Sun 11/20

portrait of myself as my Nora Chipaumire

December Sat 12/3-Sun 12/4

Handel’s Messiah Sun 12/4

HD Theater Broadcast

Shakespeare’s King Lear Sat 12/10

Fri 1/20

Beethoven String Quartet Cycle Concerts 3 & 4

Takács Quartet Sun 1/22

HD Theater Broadcast

The Audience Sun 1/29

Inon Barnatan, piano Anthony McGill, clarinet Alisa Weilerstein, cello

February Thu 2/2

Bruckner Orchester Linz Fri 2/3

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir



Sat 3/4

Sat 4/1

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis

Michael Fabiano, tenor Martin Katz, piano

Thu 3/9-Sat 3/11

A Far Cry with Roomful of Teeth

The Beauty Queen of Leenane Druid Sat 3/11

Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis Thu 3/16

Snarky Puppy Fri 3/17-Sat 3/18

Betroffenheit Kidd Pivot and Electric Company Theatre

The King’s Singers Christmas Songbook

Mitsuko Uchida, piano

Calidore String Quartet

Sat 3/25-Sun 3/26

Sat 1/7-Sun 1/8

Batsheva Dance Company Thu 1/12-Sat 1/14

Idiot-Syncrasy Igor and Moreno Thu 1/19

Prague Philharmonia

Sat 2/18

Beyond Sacred: Voices of Muslim Identity Ping Chong + Company Sun 2/19

Jelly and George Aaron Diehl and Cécile McLorin Salvant

Fri 4/21

King Sunny Adé Sat 4/22

Yo-Yo Ma, Edgar Meyer & Chris Thile Tue 4/25

Opera in Concert

Handel’s Ariodante Starring Joyce DiDonato

Fri 3/24

M-Prize Winner

Budapest Festival Orchestra

Sanam Marvi

Steve Reich @ 80 Music for 18 Musicians

Sun 2/5


Sat 4/15

Sat 3/18

Holiday Concert

Fri 2/10

Wed 4/12

Beethoven String Quartet Cycle Concerts 5 & 6

Takács Quartet Wed 3/29

DakhaBrakha Thu 3/30-Sat 4/1

The Encounter Complicite/ Simon McBurney

ums.org 734.764.2538

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |



Latino Art & Film Festival


presented by

Friday, September 16 | 7PM @ Park Theatre

Round up your friends, grab a brew and head into our Micro Cinema to enjoy our feature film Illusions: Los Arboles Mueren de Pie. Stick around after the film and enjoy the taco bar from On The Border and of course a few more brews!

Friday, September 16 | Dusk @ Midtown Center

Nothing is better than enjoying a film under the canopy of the stars! Bring your lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy The Perfect Game.

Sunday, September 18 | 2PM @ Holland Civic Theatre Since he was 5 yrs old, Jose's abuelita taught him to play chess like his grandfather who was a champion in Mexico. Join us for our Family Film, Endgame.

Friday, September 23 | 6PM @ Holland Area Arts Council

“It’s a wrap!” -- Come and enjoy Tulipanes’ closing celebration and awards ceremony! The night’s film, We Like it Like That, will put you in the mood to move and enjoy live music from the Orquesta RITMO Project as we gather on the closing weekend of Tulipanes Festival.

Afternoon of Shorts , Salsa Night, Mariachi Flor de Toloache, and more...

Find all the details at www.tulipanes.org! 84 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

indie film

by Josh Spanninga

Overcomer Film Series Celebrates Beating the Odds

The UICA Lets Its FarOut Flag Fly with Frank Zappa Documentary



rom Sept. 9–20, the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA) is celebrating the king of weirdness with the new documentary Eat That Question: Frank Zappa in His Own Words. Vastly underrepresented as a small footnote in rock ‘n’ roll history, Zappa was truly Eat That Question: one of a kind. A self-taught musiFrank Zappa in His cian and satirist, he would write Own Words intricate compositions, then give UICA 2 W. Fulton St., Grand them titles like “America Drinks Rapids and Goes Home” and “Don’t Sept. 9-20, times vary Eat the Yellow Snow.” He was an $4 for Members, $8 Nonavid supporter of free speech, and members (contrary to public perception) Rated R very rarely used drugs. But above uica.org, (616) 454-7000 all, he was a modern mad genius. Composed entirely of archival footage, Eat That Question follows this prolific musician and satirist as he explains his philosophy on music, religion, politics and life itself. The documentary swings between

interviews with Zappa and live performances, both solo and with the Mothers of Invention. Whether you’re a lifelong fan of Zappa’s music or just curious about this enigmatic character, Eat That Question is sure to please the wild-eyed rebel in all of us.

Saugatuck Short Film Competition Accepting Entries


f you’re from Michigan, it’s hard to not have an overwhelming sense of state pride. Just count the number of mitten bumper stickers and T-shirts you see in one day. But what better way to show that love than a short film? Now through Oct. 14, the Saugatuck Center for the Arts (SCA) is accepting submissions for the fourth annual Saugatuck Shorts Film Competition. The theme for the competition is “Pure Michigan,” meaning the short must be shot in the state or center around themes and subject matter unique to the state. If you’re able to put something together that’s five minutes or shorter, SCA encourages you to submit your film. Students 18 and under can submit for free, while applicants 19 and older pay a meager $20 submission fee.

Whether you’re a professional in the industry or an amateur filmmaker with a love for all things Michigan, the folks at SCA will gladly review your submission. They are then choosing the 10 best films to screen, which takes place Nov. 5. Filmmakers will be given a chance to introduce their films, and prizes will be given to the best films in 3 different categories: the Student Category ($500 prize), the Adult Category ($1,000 prize), and of course the Audience Favorite ($1,000 prize). In addition, each of the 10 films chosen will air on local station WKTV. For more information and submission guidelines visit sc4a.org.

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

hen it comes to film characters, you’d be hardpressed to find a main character more likeable than the underdog. It’s impossible not to root for the little guy, fighting against all odds to overcome adversity and rise victorious. When Meg Derrer, executive director of Hope Network, was working with her team to create a film event, they wanted it to coincide with Hope’s mission. It only made sense to make underdogs the focal point of the series. “We have people who overcome mental, social or physical barriers, so we thought it would be cool to have an Overcomer film series where we secured a few of these movies that have ‘overcomer’ as a theme,” Derrer said. “The main character, or somebody in the movie, would overcome great odds in order to accomplish something, much like the people we serve at Hope Network.” Thus began the Overcomer The Karate Kid Film Series at Wealthy Theatre. Wealthy Theatre In July, the Grand Rapids theatre 1130 Wealthy St. SE, screened the first movie, Toy Story, Grand Rapids to a crowd of about 150 people. Sept. 28, 6:30 p.m., Free The Sandlot became the choice for grcmc.org/theatre, (616) 459-4788 August, and Derrer plans to close out the series with The Karate Kid on Sept. 28. The movies were chosen by staff at Hope Network with the intent of making the series fun for all ages. “We also saw this series as an opportunity to say thank you to all the people who support Hope Network: The donors, the families of the people we serve, and the community,” Derrer said. “So we wanted this to be for the whole family.” For each film in the series, the Wealthy Theatre opens its doors 45 minutes early, giving families plenty of time to socialize, purchase concessions and partake in various activities. The lobby is also decked out with themed decorations to set the mood. “For each of the movies, we’re doing a selfie booth with props that will be reflective of the movie,” Derrer said. “Then people can post pictures of themselves on social media with the particular hashtag that goes with the series.” The Overcomer Film series is a free event, but Derrer encourages those interested to reserve a seat online in advance at grcmc.org/theatre.


Style Notes

by Missy Black

the road less traveled


f you’re looking at the same storefronts and racks and coming up empty, seek style inspiration elsewhere. Forget the familiar and head outside of your comfort zone for some destination shopping off the beaten path. Tenneile Petersen, owner of Lennon & Willow

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

Lennon & Willow at 204 W. Main St. in Lowell is a women’s clothing boutique with loads of signature pieces, including dresses, leggings, tops, jewelry and accessories. Fun gifts can be found as well and include reusable bags, candles and home décor. Fall selections feature denim, slouchy casual wear, boot accessories and seasonal colors in deep wines, greens and rust hues. Sporting a shiplap wall and chic farmhouse vibe, this stop is also big on exclusives. “I’m only getting six of one style, so: two smalls, two mediums and two larges,” said owner Tenneile Petersen. While there, check out some other Lowell highlights like the Tap House Bo boutique and the Flat River Grill.

April Petersen, owner of Pink & Frillos

86 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Pink & Frillos at 12810 Lincoln Lake Ave. in Gowen is a modern-vintage store filled with colorful home décor pieces. “I want my store to be a place where you not only shop, but come in and see how to decorate,” said owner April Petersen. It’s also a shopping destination, gathering space and creative studio. Petersen offers classes such as a succulent class and on Oct. 22 there will be a vintage flea market on the grounds. A big attraction is the Lou+Marie clothing line, which showcases statement dresses. Make the trek and you can lunch in downtown Greenville at the Winter Inn or Flo’s Restaurant.

6740 CASCADE ROAD 6 1 6 . 9 4 2 . 9 8 8 6 www.cascade-optical.com PHOTO: ROB CONENS FRAME: ANNE ET VALENTIN “ON THE WAVE” MODEL: KAREN WEAVER

by Eric Mitts


Kathleen Madigan

Comedy Vet Brings ‘Mermaid Tour’ to Kalamazoo State Theatre

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene


lives, which is not what I’m living. It’s like their athleen Madigan is ealife is what most people are doing, so it’s nice ger to celebrate her 51st to experience that for a while. I don’t know if birthday on stage in Kalamazoo. I would want that, but it’s nice to jump in it A veteran of standup, Madigan for a while.” already knows about the area’s great Madigan has also returned to the Midwest beer selection, asking fans to tweet for her last two comedy specials, taping her bar recommendations for her post-Mermaid 2013 Netflix special, Madigan Again, in Lady Tour performance birthday festivities. Detroit. For anyone who’s seen her act, that should “I’ve never had anything bad happen to come as no surprise. Madigan has gladly emme in Detroit, and I’ve been all over Detroit,” braced the road life with an average of 300 Madigan said, adding that she had to drag her shows per year for more than 15 years. After L.A.-based crew along with her for the taping. nearly every one of those, she loves to connect “I do this joke onstage, but I mean it, when with fans — and drinks — out on the town. I go out in Detroit, I may have a really great Born and raised in St. Louis, Madigan evening with a nice steak, or I might be murhas an extra special place in her heart for the dered. But you know what, there’s something Midwest. After all, Detroit was the first city about the sketchiness that I like. It adds a little outside of her hometown where she began excitement.” selling out shows. Whenever she returns to No stranger to real danger and excitethe area, there’s just a sense of familiarity she ment, Madigan has done two USO tours doesn’t get elsewhere. overseas, performing for troops in both Iraq Her own humble, Midwestern charm and Afghanistan. made Madigan a hit on the NBC reality “Those are really, really great to do,” series Last Comic Standing, where she broke Madigan said. “They’re the best out nationally as a finalist on crowds ever. They’re so excited the show’s second season back in and so appreciative, and you can 2004, returning as a judge three The Mermaid joke about anything. I don’t do it seasons later. Lady Tour anymore, but I did ten minutes To this day, Madigan is Kalamazoo State Theatre on Iraq and Afghanistan, and respected and admired as one 404 S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo I wrote those jokes there. And of the best comics of her genSept. 30, 7 p.m., $35 they’re more than happy to hear eration by fellow comedians, kazoostate.com, about that. You’re kind of saying ranging from her good friends (269) 345-6500 what they can’t say. They can apLewis Black and Ron White to preciate it, and they can laugh at late-night legends like David it, and it wasn’t political. It was Letterman and Jay Leno. just the absurdity of the whole situation.” When she’s not on the road, Madigan When asked what she learned about now splits her time between Los Angeles and herself by heading into a war zone, Madigan her family’s farm back in Missouri, where she quickly answered that she and Lewis Black spends part of summer fishing and relaxing found out they could never be soldiers. with her many nieces and nephews. “We couldn’t even fit the equipment “It’s great,” she said. “Your brain just needs properly,” she added. “Which is why we have to turn off sometimes. Other comedians are to keep entertaining these people. If they will like, ‘Aren’t you afraid you’re not writing jokes agree to do this, then we will agree to keep that whole time?’ And I’m like, ‘No, I’m not entertaining them, because after this they’d run afraid of that at all. I don’t even know where out of people and start calling us. And there’s my joke book is.’ no way. I’d run away.” “There’s always new material to be had,” Back home, she and Black are more she added. “I have six siblings who have jobs comfortable drinking and commiserating on and dogs and kids and houses, and normal

88 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Kathleen Madigan

the golf course. Together they’ve also hosted Periscope parties during this year’s presidential debates, expressing their frustration for the whole process with their fans. “I’m kind of a political junkie because my dad made us watch all of it,” Madigan said, describing this year’s election as being like a bad reality show. She’ll often live-tweet her reactions to political events, like the recent party conventions, and has gone so far as to suggest that writing in a chimp as a new candidate might be the best option. As for leading a new generation of women comedians, Madigan doesn’t look at herself as a glass-ceiling breaker — even after winning

both the American Comedy Award and Phyllis Diller Award for Best Female Comedian. “I just go with blinders on and I think a lot more people should do that, instead of worrying about what everyone else is doing,” she said. “Especially in comedy, because it’s like the game of golf. You’re just playing against yourself. There’s no actual competition. I don’t think about, ‘Oh, I’m a woman in a mostly male-dominated game.’ I just like to tell jokes, and it all worked out. If people just concentrated on the road that they’re on, and not look at other highways, their drive would be a lot smoother.” n






Do you LOVE the library so much that your fines have piled up?


Bring a friend or family member to the library September 12 – 24, 2016 to get a Grand Rapids Public Library card and get up to $25 off your library fines. Don’t have any fines? Bring in a friend for a new card and we will put $25 in a fund to forgive children’s library card fines. Stop by any GRPL location for more details. TM


SEPTEMBER 7 - NOVEMBER 9, 8PM FOR MORE INFORMATION GO TO: celebrationcinema.com/foundersfilms TICKETS $2 21 AND UP





616.988.5400 WWW.GRPL.ORG REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

FOUNDERS film series


by Josh Spanninga


Hannibal Buress Returns to West Michigan on the Hannibal Montanabal Tour

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene


an n i bal B u re ss i s f u ll o f s u rprises — just look back to this past February. The comedian made a special unannounced guest appearance at Dave Chappelle’s show in DeVos Performance Hall, then upped the ante by headlining his own pop-up show the next day at the Pyramid Scheme. And to make matters more interesting, he did all of this in the midst of a snowstorm. “Pyramid Scheme was a dope venue and Grand Rapids came through that night,” Buress said. “It sold out, and it was horrible outside. It was crazy snow and messy conditions, but that don’t really stop Midwestern people, so it was a fun couple of nights we had.” Of course, that’s nothing out of the ordinary for the 33-year-old comedian, who has a habit of popping in out of the blue for last-minute shows. “Sometimes it just happens where we travel to a city or we’re close to a city and we say, ‘Let’s just do a show. Let’s do something. I don’t want to be bored,’” Buress said. “That’s the good thing about social media now — if you’re doing an event last minute you can promote.” Hannibal Buress Even when he’s not performKalamazoo State Theatre ing on stage, he still manages to 404 S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo Sept. 18, 6:30 pop up in unexpected places. He $25-$65, kazoostate.com, hosted the 2015 Webby Awards, (269) 345-6500 provided voices for characters in The Secret Life of Pets and Angry Birds and even makes an appearance in the upcoming Spider-man: Homecoming, along with a whole slew of other shows and movies. Buress wasn’t always in such big productions though. He recalled back to a time in college when he was first trying out his acting chops in friends’ student films (none of which ended up online). “You weren’t really going on the internet to watch videos back then,” Buress explained. “I’m grateful actually that I went to high school and college in a more relaxed internet era, because me and my friends definitely did some embarrassing stuff.” Years later, the internet would play a key role in Buress’ rise in popularity. In 2010, he appeared as Lincoln Rice on the web series Broad City, which would later go on to become a successful show on Comedy Central. Buress continues to play his role on the show and even manages to add in some of his own jokes from time to time. “It’s probably 80 percent scripted and 20 percent improvised,” Buress said. “I don’t know, I also might be making that up.” In 2015, he even struck out to create his own series on Comedy Central. The resulting show, Why? With Hannibal

90 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Hannibal Buress Buress, featured Buress’ oddball humor in a blend of sketch comedy, interviews and stand-up. In addition to appearing on live action shows, Buress has lent his voice to multiple animated projects, including guest spots on Bob’s Burgers and Adventure Time. Buress says the whole experience can seem a bit surreal, and cites the completion of the short-lived FX series Chozen as a prime example. “I got high and watched one of the first episodes and I was like, ‘This is too much. I can’t handle this,’” Buress said. “I was like, ‘Oh, shit. This is my voice, but that’s not me, that’s a cartoon!’ I couldn’t handle it. But I also can’t handle a lot of stuff when I’m high.” With all of his work in television and movies in recent years, it seems quite feasible that Buress could quit stand-up and take up acting full time. To him though, the thought of quitting stand-up is unfathomable. “I enjoy doing acting in other people’s projects,” Buress said. “But when I’m doing stand-up, that’s me unfiltered for

an hour and some change, and it’s my audience that’s for the most part familiar with me and my work, so that’s a fun thing.” When it comes to writing new material for his stand-up gigs, Buress takes inspiration from personal experiences and molds these stories and ruminations into a full, cohesive set. He also tries not to think about whether anyone will be offended by his jokes. “You can’t really worry like that, because if you worry like that, you can’t really create at your peak,” Buress said. His latest tour, dubbed The Hannibal Montanabal Experience, is bringing him to the Kalamazoo State Theatre on Sunday, Sept. 18. Audience members can expect some of Hannibal’s signature low-key, conversational comedy as well as some new additions to his set. “We’re incorporating a little more multimedia stuff and just talking about the world,” Buress said. “Whenever I do a new hour, it’s more about who I am and what I’m thinking about at that time.” n

MMM conference

September 16 & 17

SEP 24-25


Turner Street at East Grand River in “Old Town” Lansing

OCT 27

3 STAGES • GREAT PERFORMERS • KIDZBEAT AREA BEVERAGE TENT • FOOD & CRAFT VENDORS • RIVERBOAT Supported in part by National Endowment for the Arts, Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs, Ingham County, and Arts Council of Greater Lansing

OCT 28


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The Orbit Room | 2525 Lake Eastbrook S.E. Grand Rapids, MI 49546 • 616-942-1328 Tickets for all shows are available at the Orbit Room Box Office along with Shakedown Street in Grand Rapids. Box office is open day of show starting at 2:00 pm with no fees.

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule



/// Magic

Master of Illusions ‘The Magic of Bill Blagg Live’ to appear at Frauenthal Center | by Nicole Rico

B Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene

ill Blagg wasn’t always a busy illusionist, touring nine months out of the year. Like everyone, he had to start somewhere. In his case, he began dabbling with tricks as an elementary student and never stopped. Since then, he’s become known for mystical tricks like passing through industrial fan blades, miraculously teleporting across theaters and floating across the stage on a hoverboard. On Oct. 7, Blagg, 36, stops by Muskegon’s Frauenthal Center to present his traveling spectacle, The Magic of Bill Blagg Live. Here’s what he had to say to Revue. You’ve certainly come into your own, but do you still have any illusionist heroes? I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I was David Copperfield’s No. 1 fan growing up. Good thing they didn’t have stalker laws back then like they do now or I might be locked up. I’m totally kidding, but yes, David Copperfield is my magic hero. Growing up watching his TV shows gave me hope that I, too, could perform magic on a large scale. One of the biggest things I respect about him is how he always stayed true to the art side of magic. What you saw him perform on TV is exactly what you saw him do in his live show. He didn’t use camera tricks or fancy TV editing to pull off his magic. At what point did you first get introduced to the art of magic? I started magic at the age of 6 after I received a magic set from my grandparents for Christmas. The first trick I learned was how to make a quarter

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disappear. I’ll never forget when I showed it to my dad and he looked at me and said, ‘How did you do that?’ From that moment on, I was hooked. After you surpassed the magic set, how did you continue your craft? Since there isn’t a real Hogwarts to learn magic at, I’ve been self-taught my entire career. I read a lot of books on magic, spent endless hours practicing and learning the various techniques, and then it was a matter of applying them. While it started as a hobby, how did magic turn into a career for you? I started getting real serious about our show when I was in college. I designed a senior project for my business degree that involved fully producing and staging a public show. I was in charge of everything, from renting the venue to selling the tickets in addition to putting the entire show together. That experience was a pivotal moment in my career. It opened

Bill Blagg

my eyes to the amount of hard work that was necessary to make it all happen. Fast forward to today, and we have a show I could have only dreamed of as a kid. It’s been a long, hard road, but I’m fortunate to have an incredible team of people behind me that makes this all work. What are your signature illusions? I’m known for a few signature pieces of magic. One is my dancing handkerchief: It’s an actual handkerchief that comes to life on stage and dances. The thing has better moves than Justin Bieber. I actually won a national magic competition with the routine when I was 18. It’s still in our show today. The other notable illusion would be my hoverboard. I was sitting in my college dorm watching Back to the Future II and when I saw the hoverboard, I wanted to make it happen live. It took 10 years to figure out, but we did it. I can honestly say that I’m the first person to ever ride a hoverboard without any strings in front of a live audience.

What’s some advice you would give to someone looking to do what you do? The best advice I could give to a young, rookie magician would be the same advice David Copperfield gave me: Just keep doing shows, don’t stop. Perform anytime you get the chance and just keep going. There’s no secret formula to success in this business. It’s hard work and a little luck. I like to say the harder I work, the luckier I get. And boy do we work extremely hard. I guess that makes me really lucky. n

the magic of bill blagg live Frauenthal Center 425 W. Western Ave., Muskegon Oct. 7, 7:30 p.m. $18-$36 billblagg.com

Treasures of Lost and Found is the home of the mid-century and classic designer antiques in Michigan • RETRO-FURNITURE • ARCHITECTURAL • ARTWORK • CHAIRS




445 Century Ave. SW #2 Grand Rapids, MI 616.732.3401 | treasuresoflostandfound.com

The Rose Ensemble, Oct. 30

MichigaN Festival of sacred Music Oct. 29 through Nov. 2 5 days, 10 events at various Kalamazoo venues Tickets now on sale at www.mfsm.us

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


by Anastasia Hauschild

lit life At The B.O.B. Grand Rapids, MI 616.356.2000 www.thebob.com

All Things Tomaszewski Inside the mind of a Grand Rapids poet

JON RerEEP8-10






NEmMbRer 21

Schedule | Dining | Sights Sounds | Scene



September 22-24


Sept. 29 - Oct. 1

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o most people, poetry has an unfortunate reputation as the black sheep of literary genres. Often seen as dense and difficult to understand, many poets today go unnoticed. That being said, masters of the craft like Z.G. Tomaszewski make it hard to ignore the magic of poetry. Tomaszewski, a Grand Rapids native, was only 25 when he published his first collection of poetry, All Things Dusk. Writing primarily in a cabin in the middle of the woods of Vermont, the young poet’s goal was to escape his familiar distractions and find intense solitude. He spent months journaling day and night, exploring this newfound solitude and the natural environments of Vermont. Through all this writing, Tomaszewski began to discover a small semblance of unity in the imagery of writing, a dance of language particular to the natural ambiance of Vermont. “The things that don’t ever seem to change. But it’s not at a loss of what the human condition teaches us of taking cues and learning our place in the world from watching and seeing,” he said. All Things Dusk went on to win the Hong Kong University International Poetry Prize of 2014, a prize judged by renowned poet Li-Young Lee. This brought his work to a national level of praise and recognition. In 2015, he co-founded the Great Lakes Commonwealth of Letters in Grand Rapids in an attempt to create a place to nurture writers and create a strong literary community in the city. The GLCL hosts events from writer’s workshops to author readings and discussions. As a writer shaped in West Michigan, Tomaszewski is inspired by the landscape and the poets that have come before him, like Robert Fanning and Patricia Clark. When he’s not writing, Tomaszewski can be found fishing around Grand Rapids or browsing the aisles of Argos and Redux Used Books, a place that’s shaped him as a writer. Between stumbling upon new poets to literally having a book fall off the shelves at the perfect time, Tomaszewski has come to believe “a book has a homing device.” “It finds you at the right time and place,” he said. The memories of Grand Rapids seem to have a homing device for Tomaszewski as well. In the collection, there are references to the city all over, especially the Grand River and Lake Michigan. These are places he left behind, but are too important to forget. In the end, he’s a writer who creates on the road but comes home to reflect. Tomaszewski referenced “an instinct that said, ‘Wander back,’ calling me to where the greatest of revisions happens, at my desk in Grand Rapids.” He also finds the city to be his musical HQ. Tomaszewski is co-director of Lamp Light Music Festival and his most recent music project, titled Afghan Ponies, is a collaboration with musician Rachel Eve. The two experiment with two guitars, a vibraphone, singing and writing lyrics. For

the first time, Tomaszewski is writing lyrics and music at the same time, a process he’s been reluctant to use in the past. “Playing music, it’s the only time words don’t come to my mind,” he said. “Sometimes it’s a nuisance, the shaping of those thoughts. Whenever I approach music, I am not writing a poem. In music there is less filter. I am typically not trying to be conclusive in anything that I do.” Tomaszewski has an upcoming chapbook, Mineral Whisper, set for release on Dec. 19, 2016. In the meantime (and beyond), the poet would like to continue to shape the arts scene of Grand Rapids. As the city grows, so does the artistic community and its reputation. “Any artist must have a level of tolerance to be able to put themselves out there and get put down,” Tomaszewski said. “What Grand Rapids shows is we want it here. We are interested in collaboration and networking. Finally, there is beginning to be a level of owning one’s place.” n

Fallasburg Arts Festival Lowell, MI September 17 & 18

Presented by:


1 0 0 F i n e Arts and Crafts Booths Admission FREE Saturday and Sunday Open 10am-5pm Location Fallasburg Park, 1124 Fallasburg Park Rd, Lowell, MI 49331

Children’s Activities

Live Music

Craft Demos

We would love your support! LowellArts is moving to a new location on Main Street in downtown Lowell. Artists have stepped up to support the Campaign by donating a piece of art. All bidding will be conducted on-line.

Moving to Main Art Auction

Bidding open September 13 to October 1


Coming next month The Beer issue Revue’s annual guide for Michigan craft beer enthusiasts. Check out our comprehensive brewery guide, plus beer face-offs, new breweries, beer road trips, events, and more.

Call (616) 608-6170 or email sales@revuewm.com Space reservation is the 15th of the month before publication.

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining | Schedule

To AdvertisE:


Reader offer: Half off enrollment Must mention Revue at sign-up. Offer expires September 15, 2016.


W CKOGR.COM P 616.930.3779 A 820 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Open for Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner: 7 days a week

Schedule Dining Sights | Sounds | Scene

Note Worthy Dining.

great food

live music


Downtown Grand Rapids

10% OFF Inside Holiday Inn 310 Pearl St. NW (616) 235-1342 www.pearlstreetgrillgr.com

96 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

with this coupon

Excludes alcohol. Cannot be used on holidays. Expires 9/30/16. Revue Magazine.


Sunday Brunch 11am-4pm



T U E - W E D 1 1 AM- 1 0 PM T H U R - F R I 1 1 AM- 1 1 PM S A T 5 PM- 1 1 PM & S U N 1 1 AM- 4 PM

september shows 9/3 TBA 9/8 Lipbone Redding 9/10 Natchez Trace 9/15 Deep Greens & Blues 9/17 35th Annual Cottage Bar Chili Cookoff Noon-6pm Channing & Quinn, The Outer Vibe and Jesse Ray & The Carolina Catfish No Music During ArtPrize

136 East Fulton, Grand rapids | 616.235.7669 | onetrick.BIZ

Restaurant listings arranged by region

Grand Rapids Angel’s Thai Café 136 Monroe Center NW. 616-454-9801 THAI. This downtown restaurant makes your order fresh, fast, and hot. You can order your entree with your choice of meat and spice level, or create your own. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Thai Steak and Yum Talay. Big O Café 80 Ottawa NW. 616-451-1887 ITALIAN. The downtown (and downstairs) restaurant has a reliable menu featuring pizza, pasta, and sandwiches that are Italian and Cuban influenced. A great spot for lunch or a quick glass of wine and plate of pasta before a downtown event. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Dead Head Vegetarian Pizza, Cuban dinners on Friday nights. Bistro Bella Vita 44 Grandville Ave. SW. 616-222-4600 ITALIAN. One of Grand Rapids’ best dining experiences, featuring Mediterraneaninspired country cuisine, a swanky yet comfortable downtown atmopshere and personable service. BBV’s culinary team creates authentic, housemade recipes made with locally grown produce, fresh seafood and rotisserie roasted meats. Specialty gluten-free menu, and can prepare custom dishes for lactose intolerant, vegetarian, and vegan diets. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Mediterranean Country Cuisine and Martinis.

Bombay Cuisine 1420 Lake Dr. SE 616-456-7055 INDIAN. Offering savory and subtly spiced dishes from northern India, Bombay Cuisine is a hot spot for those who like to add a little flavor to their lives. With a lunch buffet served every weekday, this restaurant provides its eaters with an array of traditional Indian cuisine. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Naan, Butter Chicken. Brewery Vivant 925 Cherry St. SE. 616-719-1604 FRENCH/BELGIAN. Housed in a refurbished funeral chapel, this brewery won Best

Chapbook Café 2660 28th St. SE, Grand Rapids. 616-942-0595. CAFE. Take a break from browsing the shelves at Schuler Books with a homemade selection of soups, sandwiches and quiches. Soups are prepared in-house daily and served with fresh baked bread to accompany a small-but-elegant sandwich menu. Try a quiche or traditional Italian Panini grilled on fresh ciabatta bread, or for a quick bite, grab a bagel or scone from the dessert case. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days GO THERE FOR: Homemade soups and sandwiches CitySen Lounge 83 Monroe Center St. NW. 616-608-1720 AMERICAN. CitySen Lounge, located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, is a bar with a big-city feel, offering exciting options for lunch, dinner and breakfast on the weekends. The focus is on fresh ingredients and a full bar with local brews, wine and creative cocktails. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner (Breakfast on weekends). OPEN: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Daily happy hour The Corner Bar 31 N. Main St., Rockford 616-866-9866 AMERICAN. The downtown Rockford tavern serves a solid menu of burgers, burritos, salads and sandwiches, but it is best known for hot dogs — serving almost 1,000 per day. Its hot-dog-eating challenge has been conquered by more than a few, but it raises the question: Why would you want to consume Corner Bar dogs in a hurry rather than savor each bite? » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Hot dogs. The Cottage Bar 18 Lagrave Ave. SE. 616-454-9088 AMERICAN. The Cottage Bar is the oldest operating restaurant and bar in downtown Grand Rapids. Come in for the Cottage Burger, smothered with green olives, bacon, lettuce, tomato, hickory mayonnaise and Swiss and American cheeses. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Closed Sundays GO THERE FOR: The Cottage Burger. Divani 15 Ionia Ave. SW. 616-774-WINE. ECLECTIC. Divani offers a sophisticated environment, with chefs using Michigan-made ingredients in their creations, such as Dancing Goat Creamery, Otto’s Chicken, S&S Lamb, Ingraberg Farms, Mrs. Dog’s and Madcap. For the thirsty, the bar serves more than 300 types

of liquor, 300 wines and 50 beers to complement each handcrafted meal. » SERVING: Dinner after 4 p.m. OPEN ON: Everyday but Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Wine and Local Cuisine. Erb Thai 950 Wealthy St. SE #1A. (616) 356-2573. Additional locations at 4160 Lake Michigan Dr. NW, Suite B, and 820 Michigan St. NE. THAI. Food rooted in traditional Thai cuisine, but also made to accommodate health conscious and special diets. Not too strong, not too weak, like harmony and melody. Marketing representative Molly Rizor was a Thai virgin when she went and is now glad Erb Thai was her first experience. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Peanut Curry Noodles. Founders Brewing Company 235 Grandville SW. 616-776-1195 BREWPUB. A beer-lover’s paradise with a national reputation for flavorful, award-winning beers. Likewise, the brewpub’s menu consists mainly of flavorful handcrafted deli sandwiches that can stand up and complement the beers (or vice versa). » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Award-winning beer, handcrafted sandwiches. Ganders 4747 28th St. SE. 616-957-0100. AMERICAN. Ganders by Hilton Doubletree presents modern American menu options dedicated to locally grown ingredients representing the best farms, markets and food artisans of West Michigan. The restaurant also features a number of local craft beers on tap and by the bottle. The restaurant works directly with local breweries to create multi-course beer tasting menus featuring beer incorporated into every course. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh, locally grown ingredients and Michigan-made beer. Garage Bar & Grill 819 Ottawa Ave. NW. 616-454-0321 AMERICAN. This bar and grill serves up real food with fresh ingredients. Known for its all day happy hour with a $2 draft, $3 well drink and $4 glass of wine. Also look for the freshly-ground 7 oz. Garage Burger, served with hand-cut fries. The casual bar’s diverse menu ranges from soups and wedge salads to brisket sandwiches and hand-battered onion rings. A long list of icecold craft beers tops off the experience, with block parties on Wednesday throughout the summer. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Burgers, Chicken Tenders, Live Music. Gilly’s 20 Monroe NW. 616-356-2000 SEAFOOD. Gilly’s may not be the biggest name on the seafood block, but it takes second place

to no one in regards to quality, freshness and inspiration. A vast array of exotic fish is line-caught, flown in and prepared fresh daily. Every facet of Gilly’s speaks to impeccable attention to detail. » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: Closed on Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Fresh seafood at a great price. Graydon’s Crossing 1223 Plainfield NE. 616-726-8260 TAVERN. An authentic take on the English Pub, with a huge selection of beers on tap and a menu that includes classic English dishes like Fish & Chips, Shepherd’s Pie and Irish Stew, as well as Indian specialties like Tandoori Chicken and Tikka Masala. A great casual atmosphere for drinking and dining. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer and authentic pub food. G.R.P.D. (Grand Rapids Pizza and Delivery) 340 State St. SE. 616-454-9204 ITALIAN. The current location opened in 2004 as the first established pizzeria in Heritage Hill A common meeting spot for local folks, business professionals and college students, a place where one could gather for a quick meal or a reflective lunch. It offers both hand-tossed pizza and Chicago-style stuffed pizza, as well as pasta, sandwiches, salads, and wings. Online ordering, too. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza. Grand Rapids Brewing Company 1 Ionia Ave SW. 616-458-7000 BREWPUB. GRBC features a menu stocked with locally grown ingredients. With a diverse selection of beers on tap inspired by historical Grand Rapids figures and a hearty array of shareables (try the Kale Popcorn), burgers/sandwiches, and entrees, this place represents the best of the brewery’s 120-year legacy. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer, happy hour specials and locally sourced food. Grand Woods Lounge 77 Grandville Ave. SW. 616-451-4300 AMERICAN. The restaurant’s interior exudes a warm, casual ambiance reminiscent of the great eateries of the Pacific Northwest; the outdoor porch features two outdoor bars and a fireplace. Menu stocked with affordable appetizers great for sharing, plus salads, sandwiches, and entrées. Lots of domestics and microbrews, plus an array of martinis including the “Woodstini,” a tasty mix of Stoli Orange Vodka, mandarin oranges and raspberries. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Cocktails. Harmony Brewing Company 1551 Lake Dr. SE (616) 233-0063 BREWPUB. Harmony features 12 craft-brewed beers in addition to signature root beer for the kiddos. Named one of the top-five brewpub menus in West Michigan by yours truly, Harmony offers 10" rustic wood-fired pizzas and great soups and sandwiches. Check out their new location, Harmony Hall, at 401 Stocking Ave. NW. » SERVING:

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining Schedule

The B.O.B. 20 Monroe Ave. NW. (616) 356-2000 ECLECTIC. If you’re not sure what kind of dining you want, you can just head into The B.O.B., where you can choose from one of its several venues. Go into Gilly’s, where you can dine on seafood or B.O.B.’s Brewery, the restaurant’s in-house brewery. You can dress down for some pizza at Bobarino’s or dress it up for a steak at Judson’s Steakhouse. For after dinner, take in a show at Dr. Grins or enjoy live music at H.O.M.E. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer and numerous dining options.

Ambiance in Revue’s Best of the West with its stained glass windows and European beer hall setup. Along with farmhouse style beers, the LEED-certified BV is known for its FrenchBelgian cuisine, from duck nachos to roasted bone marrow. » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Burger (2nd place Best of the West).

REVUE’s dining listings are compiled by staff and minions. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list of restaurants in the region. For an expanded list, be on the lookout for new and improved dining changes on our website, revuewm.com. The listings are not intended to be reviews of West Michigan restaurants, although we will inject some opinions into the listings based on staff experiences and personal preferences. To submit or to correct information in a dining listing, e-mail editor@ revuewm.com.



Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza and brews.

Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Salads, soups and sandwiches.

The Holiday Bar 801 5th St. NW. (616) 456-9058 AMERICAN. Tucked smack dab in the “Heart of the Westside,” The Holiday Bar boasts a classic 40-foot Horseshoe bar, along with cheap eats and drinks, both served until 2 a.m., with specials happening daily. The Holiday Bar has a full menu that features pub fare like chicken strips, pierogis, battered homestyle mushrooms and more. It’s a great place to watch the game, listen to music or just hang out with friends. » SERVING Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Cheap eats and drinks.

Mixology 235 Louis St. NW. 616-242-1448 LOUNGE. Casual, upscale service and atmosphere allows guests to relax and enjoy the city views. This type of service allows guests to complete business tasks while still enjoying the accessibility to great food and libations. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Specialty cocktails.

HopCat 25 Ionia SW. 616-451-4677 TAVERN. Named “Best Brewpub in the USA” by RateBeer.com, HopCat’s spin on its food is thus: “It’s the food your Mom would feed you, if your Mom loved beer.” That’s specifically true for HopCat’s cheese ale soup, BBQ Pulled Pork, crack fries (not real crack), Killer Mac & Cheese and other dishes meant to pair well with beer. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Massive beer list, crack fries. Marie Catrib’s 1001 Lake Dr. 616-454-4020 ECLECTIC. The East Hills eatery makes everything from scratch with local ingredients, and there are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. Get there early for lunch, as there is almost always a wait. » SERVING:

O’Toole’s 448 Bridge St. 616-742-6095 PUB. This West Side pub offers delicious and outrageously topped burgers, as well as an extensive beer selection, and arguably, the best happy hour specials in town. If food is not your passion, this is a prime place to kick off your Sunday Funday with its $3 Absolut Bloody Mary bar. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Gourmet burgers, Bloody Mary bar. One Trick Pony 136 E. Fulton. 616-235-7669 AMERICAN. One Trick Pony unveiled a new menu last April with the tagline “Fresh, Local Fare with a Beat.” The restaurant is a part of FarmLink and supports local growers and remains focused on sustainability. Connected to the Cottage Bar, the menu spans pizza, salads, homemade soups, smoked prime rib and more. Pair the food with live music, which OTP features weekly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Eclectic pizzas.

Pearl Street Grill 310 Pearl St NW. 616-235-1342 AMERICAN. Dine in a relaxing environment where kids eat free (hotel guests only) and the chef uses local vendors and suppliers. Conveniently located in downtown Grand Rapids, Pearl Street Grill serves sesasonal comfort food and offers nightly happy hour specials. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Late night specials. The Pita House 1450 Wealthy SE, 3730 28th Street, 4533 Ivanrest SW (Grandville). 616-454-1171 MEDITERRANEAN. Gyros so big you can club someone with them, the smoothest hummus in town and other Mediterranean fare, including kibbe, kafta and falafel. Additional locations on 28th Street and Kalamazoo SE. Sandwiches are made to order with fresh vegetables and ingredients. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh pita wraps. Reserve Wine & Food 201 Monroe Ave. NW (616) 855-9463 ECLECTIC. With 102 wines available by the glass and more than 300 by the bottle, paired with an ever-changing food menu influenced by West Michigan grown foods, Reserve promises diners a unique experience. Cocktails and craft beers add depth to the primarily wine-centered menu. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: Closed on Sunday GO THERE FOR: Wine and food pairings, charcuterie, happy hour.

River City Saloon 1152 Leonard St. NW. 616-451-0044 AMERICAN. Combine your tastes of live music and filling food at River City Saloon. The restaurant and bar has Mexican options, burgers, salads and more. On the weekends, indulge in any of these menu items or a couple drinks while listening to some local music by bands like Hey Marco, OTC, Litt Up, Drop 35 and more. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Wednesday olive burger special Rockwell-Republic 45 S. Division Ave. 616-551-3563 ECLECTIC. Menu offerings range from sushi to burgers and everything in between. The craft cocktail menu runs the gamut from classics like the Manhattan to more modern concoctions and the beer and wine menus are nicely curated. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Specialty cocktails, broad menu, lively atmosphere. San Chez Bistro 38 West Fulton St. 616-774-8272 SPANISH/ECLECTIC. San Chez is both a café and a Tapas Bistro, now both housed in the same room. This is a social setting where people can remember the one rule of kindergarten: sharing. Featuring small, delicious dishes, San Chez can satiate your desire for variety. It’s also a hidden secret for breakfast in downtown Grand Rapids, offering a great start to any day. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Tapas, Breakfast, Sandwiches

Schedule Dining Sights | Sounds | Scene

Signature ”Gandered” Tots

A new restaurant for Southeast Grand Rapids. At Ganders, we’re passionate about Michigan.

Stay with us in the heart of Downtown. 616-957-1111

cityflatshotel.com / 616.608.1720

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83 Monroe Center St in Downtown GR

28th Street SE at Patterson Ave. doubletreegrandrapids.com/ganders

MICHIGAN GROWN MICHIGAN MADE MICHIGAN BREWED Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner

REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |



The Score 5301 Northland Dr. NE. 616-301-0600 SPORTS BAR. The Score is the perfect combination for beer and sports lovers. More than 70 TVs carry all major sports packages and there are 128 beers on tap. During the summer months, enjoy live entertainment seven days a week, outdoor dining (complete with real palm trees) and volleyball tournaments. The menu ranges from burgers to pizzas and wings tossed in one of The

Score’s 16 sauces. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner .OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Lots of beer options. Six.One.Six. 235 Louis St. NW. 616-242-1448 ECLECTIC. Market-inspired menus, sweeping views and progressive rhythms combine to create a memorable dining experience. The dishes tempt taste buds and is the perfect spot for foodies. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days GO THERE

FOR: Variety and being seen. Stella’s Lounge 53 Commerce Ave. 616-356-2700 TAVERN. The Chicago-style whiskey bar has more than 200 varieties of distilled spirits, old-school video games, and a menu filled with vegetarian and vegan bar food — and stuffed burgers. Did we mention you can sip cans of PBR and other classic beers out of a mason jar?

» SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Whiskey, vegetarian and vegan bar food. Terra GR 1429 Lake Dr. 616-301-0998 AMERICAN. Terra boasts fresh, healthy ingredients in every dish. The restaurant doesn’t feature one menu, either. It offers a Saturday and Sunday brunch menu, as well as menus for lunch, dinner, dessert, beverages, wine, happy hour and kids. The food is inspired by the seasons and ingredients come straight from one of Michigan’s many farms. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh foods with ingredients from regional growers.

Wheelhouse Kitchen & Cocktails 67 Ottawa Ave. SW, Grand Rapids. 616-226-3319 AMERICAN. Nestled into the ground floor of Grand Rapids’ new Arena Place tower, this casual/fine dining bistro is all about refined, locally-sourced versions of classic dishes in a modern, yet intimate, atmosphere. With an 85-seat porch, Wheelhouse wants to provide a true community experience. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner. OPEN ON: 7 days (Sat.–Sun. dinner only). GO THERE FOR: Tartines, outdoor dining. The Winchester 648 Wealthy St. SE. 616-451-4969 ECLECTIC. This upscale bar and restaurant feels like it was plucked from Chicago’s Bucktown or Logan Square neighborhoods. A comfortable spot to drink or dine, with an always evolving menu featuring shared plates, salads and inventive sandwiches and specials. When available, some produce items are harvested from their garden across the street. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: DIY Bloody Mary Bar Special, Yucca Fries. Wolfgang’s Restaurant 1530 Wealthy St. SE. 616-454-5776 BREAKFAST. The bustling Eastown breakfast spot is home to some of the heartiest breakfast dishes and funniest menu descriptions. Courteous staff never fails to offer a cup of coffee to go after we’ve finished breakfast. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Breakfast all day.

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Kalamazoo/Battle Creek

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Arcadia Brewing Co. 103 Michigan Ave., Battle Creek. 269-963-9520 BREWPUB. You’ll find some of the usual suspects on the Battle Creek brewpub’s menu, including wood-fired pizzas and some of the best barbecue in the region. But you’ll also find some delightful surprises — Osso Bucco in a brewpub?! — on the menu, courtesy of award-winning Chef Sean Kelly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Handcrafted ales and barbecue. Bell’s Eccentric Cafe 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave. 269-382-2332 BREWPUB. The Eccentric Café features eclectic fare sourced from sustainable local ingredients, inspired by and designed to complement Bell’s award-winning beers. On tap, you’ll find 30-40 different beers, many exclusive to the Café and brewed right next door

tour where it all started

Sun - Wed: 11AM - 12AM

Th - Sat: 11AM - 2AM

355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo, MI 49007 269.382.2332


REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

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Schedule a tour online


taste this

Grove’s sous vide duck breast that has an onion soubise, onion mostarda, radish, crispy potatoes, charred onion and onion ash.

In theTopStomach of the Beholder local chefs make a case for the art of cuisine

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by Troy Reimink


n Kitchen Confidential, the bestselling chronicle of the food industry’s colorful underbelly, Anthony Bourdain warns of the mayhem and mediocrity that can occur “when the chef starts thinking of himself as an artist rather than a craftsman.” This is not, needless to say, a universally shared opinion, but it did get us thinking. ArtPrize will soon arrive to engulf the city in its annual conversation (slash philosophical freakout) about what is and isn’t art, and the world of food inserts itself readily into this debate. Can food be art? Is a chef an artist, a craftsperson or both? Is the kitchen producing a beautiful meal simply an assembly line, or something closer to Andy Warhol’s Factory?

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In search of clarity, Revue asked some of the area’s top chefs to explain what in the restaurant world, if anything, qualifies as artistic. (The field, after all, is called the culinary arts, not crafts or sciences.) Participating in this conversation were: n Jeremy Paquin, head chef of Grove n Zach Pisciotta, co-executive chef of Reserve

Wine & Food n Lucas VerHulst, co-executive chef of Reserve

Wine & Food n Katy Waltz, pastry chef for Brewery Vivant

Here’s what they had to say.

Can food be art? Why or why not? VerHulst: More so the plating of food, for me, is an art form. I tend to define quality cooking as a craft over an art. Putting out repeat quality dishes exactly the same every time — same sear, salt content, viscosity, temperature — these are skills that must be honed over time. However, composing a dish can absolutely be an art form, balancing different flavors, textures, colors and temperatures into one single harmonious composition is one of my favorite parts about cooking, and allows for the greatest creative expression I have in my life. I’ve never been a painter, I can’t draw very well, and I take the worst pictures, but I love to conceptualize composed dishes. Waltz: There is no simple definition of what art is. Art is whatever you perceive it to be. Yes, I believe a few dishes I put out to be art, but not all. I do not consider my everyday birthday cakes to be art

— craft, yes — but a 3-D sea turtle on a white chocolate coral sculpture, I would call that art.

if you’re missing one piece, it is all going to fall apart.

Paquin: A plate is just like an artist’s canvas or palette. It is all about putting components together that accent each other and as a whole complete the ‘picture.’ (It’s) an art in the technicality of what goes well together and how you use all of the ingredients to make a finished product.

Pisciotta: A chef is in fact an artist, but he is also a mad scientist and a skilled craftsman. She/he is all three simultaneously, and that’s what sets them apart from the rest.

Is a chef an artist, scientist, craftsperson or some mixture thereof? Waltz: Cooking is a combination of art, science and craft. As a pastry chef, science plays a major part of my every day. Sour doughs and yeast products are a great example of science in the kitchen. You are dealing with live organisms that you need to feed and keep happy or they will die on you. Science is needed to manipulate food to do what you want it to. Craft is the knowledge and experience needed to use that science to your advantage. Art is the finesse you add to elevate food into an experience for a target audience. Paquin: I think most chefs would consider themselves artists in some degree. Obviously you have to have some sort of artful touch in presentation, but most chefs would consider themselves, as I do, more blue-collar and craftsmen. We can be equated to housebuilders: you have to have the foundation and

How might thinking about food as art change the experience of eating it? Pisciotta: It calls upon you to really pay attention to what is put in front of you, and in a way it kind of demands a conversation. It wants you to think, to ask questions, and complete yourself without even realizing until it’s too late. It can almost be like a first date in a way. You’re getting to know each other a bit, you open up, and by the end of it all you think to yourself, ‘Could this be the one?’ Either way, it’s affecting you beyond the stomach. It’s affecting your heart and your mind.

Which of your dishes would you recommend for someone who wants to experience food as art? Waltz: Brewery Vivant’s chocolate board, featuring white chocolate poppy seed pot de creme, dark chocolate cake and milk chocolate cheesecake truffles. Paquin: Grove’s sous vide duck breast with onion soubise, onion mostarda, radish, crispy potatoes, charred onion and onion ash. Pisciotta: Reserve’s cavatelli with squash, zucchini, eggplant, cherry tomato and fennel.

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VerHulst: Crudo plate with black bass, tomatillo, fennel, cashew, lemon verbena, steelhead roe, beet emulsion. n

Brewery Vivant: Chocolate Tart, Noyaux Ice Cream, Michigan Cherries, Broken Amaretti REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |


by Joe Boomgaard, Revue Beer Czar


Creston Brewery

offers range of accessible flavors with community vibe


new brewery is breathing life into a lo n g -vacant f o rm e r f u rn itu re showroom on Plainfield Avenue in Grand Rapids’ burgeoning Creston neighborhood. Launched last month by two couples — Vince Lambert and Cailin Kelly, and Scott Schultz and Molly Bouwsma-Schultz — Creston Brewery aims to bring an inclusive environment to the local craft beer scene with something for people of all backgrounds and tastes, including non-beer lovers. The latter point is evident at first glance of the beer menu, which describes the drinks by ingredients, flavor, color and taste, not traditional styles like IPA, stout or porter. In addition, the beers mostly lean toward the sessionable varieties, with responsible alcohol content for people who still need to drive home. Revue sat down with Lambert to hear more about the concept and the vision behind Grand Rapids’ newest brewery.

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Photos: Joe Boomgaard

How did you decide to open a brewery? We started two years ago from idea to now opening the doors. Scott has been a brewer for 10 years. He started at the Hideout and brewed in Chile and then at Founders for four years. He got to the point where he wanted to open his own brewery. Our wives were good friends. Cailin knew I wanted to open a business. I have a finance and business background. They connected us and said, ‘Hey, one of you has the brewing skills, one of you has a finance and business background.’ Cailin and Molly are community organizers. So it seemed like the perfect recipe for us to create a place where we all wanted to hang out — something that’s not your conventional brewery.

ment that’s creative and artistic. Not to knock other breweries, but we’re not in your typical warehouse style (facility). We wanted to showcase the beauty of the neighborhood and the history of the building.

drink beer, and we like to drink beer all day, really. … I think our beer is so approachable and so well done that it’s not offending anyone. People can expect to enjoy low-alcohol beer in a way that a lot of craft breweries aren’t offering.

The beer seems rather unconventional, too. How do you describe Creston’s beers? Scott’s philosophy is that he doesn’t brew to styles. So he doesn’t start out saying, ‘Today, I’m going to brew a pale ale.’ He works backwards and says, ‘All right, I want this beer to have a tropical aroma, a medium body with some grapefruit notes, and I want it to finish dry.’ … Sometimes, it starts to blur styles together.

Did you find something in the current scene lacking? We wanted to create an inclusive, welcoming, neighborhood place that really represented the city. We came up with this unique idea: Let’s create a real loving culture, a loving environ-

I noticed they’re mostly on the lower end of the alcohol range. Was that intentional? We only have one beer over 6 percent alcohol. We set out to have our average stay around 4.5 or 5 percent. We like to

Since you started planning the brewery two years ago, the scene has grown quite a bit in West Michigan. How do you think your timing will work out? We feel the timing is perfect. We set out to be a neighborhood brewery. … I think a lot of breweries are opening up with the business model of trying to get on Meijer shelves from the beginning, trying to can and bottle. We just said, ‘Let’s start with a 20-barrel brewing system that’s big, so that we can have a really big taproom, and let’s focus on the neighborhood.’ Our focus is pretty small. We think we can do very well and do very well for our entire team here if we can make delicious beer, good food and keep seats full. It’s a big neighborhood.

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Continued on page 106 ➤



CRANKER’S RESTAURANT & BREWERY 454 68th St SW, Grand Rapids 616-827-1919

CRANKER’S BREWERY 213 S State St, Big Rapids 231-796-1919

CRANKER’S RESTAURANT & BREWERY 1207 E Pickard Rd, Mount Pleasant 989-779-1919

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Creston Brewery, continued from page 104 You’re making a fairly big bet right out of the gate with a 20-barrel system. That’s bigger than Cedar Springs Brewing and about the size of Brewery Vivant. Why take that risk? With our concept of anchoring ourselves in the community, we’re hoping we can go through a lot of beer here. Especially when you can go through it fresh and we’re using all these aromatic hops, if you can get people drinking it off the tap, it’s just such a better beer than when it’s sitting with a distributor for a few months before it hits the shelves. Turning away from beer for a second, talk a little bit your Latin American-inspired menu. We have a full food menu. Intentionally, when we started this, we wanted to have this be a real nice lunch place, and we don’t want it to be real expensive. All of our menu items are $6, $7 or $8 — there’s nothing on the menu more than $9, actually. It’s all made from scratch. Given that Molly and Scott are both wellknown from the local band Vox Vidorra, how did music play into the Creston concept? People can expect to hear great music. All of our music is curated. We all collect vinyl, and

we’re really into Motown and soul music and old-school R&B. You’re not going to hear Top 40 on the radio. At the start, you mentioned creating a sense of inclusion and community. Do you think craft beer has a bad reputation in that regard? Yeah. We’re trying to do our best. The 25- to 35-year-old white male is definitely the demographic who drinks the most or is in the most breweries. The thing is, I think more and more people are drinking craft beer, and we’re trying to use music as a big uniter. We’re trying to use lower-alcohol beers as a big uniter — and our staff. I’m in a mixed-race family, and Scott is too. So we’re trying to just be authentic to ourselves and bring people around that we like to be around. n

creston brewery 1504 Plainfield Ave. NE, Grand Rapids

Open: Seven days, 11 a.m.-midnight Menu: Latin American street food, $6-$9 crestonbrewery.com

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Tasting Notes: Creston Brewery edition

Fox Deluxe (6.67% ABV) Creamy textures with some hints of grain and light hop flavors that really pull through on the finish.

Blueberry Sweet Street (5.0 % ABV) Wheat beer with subtle flavors from the Michigan blueberries. Eye-pleasing color.

The Great Log Jam of 1883 (5.78% ABV) A distinct coffee bitterness with chocolate malty notes and flavors of roasted grain. A smooth, light-ish stout.

Peach Clickety Clack (3.6% ABV) Subtle hint of peaches that manages to be fruity, but balanced. Certainly an entry point for non-beer drinkers.

Grale (4.9% ABV) An ode to tropical hops. Plenty of fruity hops with mango notes and a touch of bitterness. Dangerously drinkable IPA.

Sweet Street (5.0 % ABV) A citrusy wheat beer with fruity hop notes. The flavor starts somewhat unexpectedly, but has a pleasant finish.

Koala Bear (4.2% ABV) A coffee blonde style ale with a creamy finish that manages to be smoother than many of the established players. Oddly refreshing for a coffee-heavy beer.

Clickety Clack (3.7% ABV) The use of German-style yeast comes through in this beer, with its slightly tart/sour notes. A great beer for a hot summer day.

106 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Photos: Joe Boomgaard

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Chubby Squirrel is a seasonal spiced amber ale with real Madagascar vanilla beans, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon and lemon peel. The melody of spice aromas balances out notes of toffee, brown sugar and vanilla, followed by a dry finish. rightbrainbrewery.com

20 Monroe Ave NW Grand Rapids 616.356.2000 thebobsbrewery.com REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |



at the original brewery. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Beer Bravo! 5402 Portage Rd., Kalamazoo 269-344-7700 ITALIAN. Muchlauded restaurant has earned its stripes over 23 years as one of the region’s best dining experiences, including a 3-star rating in the 2010 Forbes Travel Guide. The Tuscan-inspired cuisine is spectacular, the atmosphere comfortable and intimate, and the service first-rate. Also brews its own beer in small batches for pairings with menu offerings. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. (Closed Sat. lunch) GO THERE FOR: A great dining experience. Central City Taphouse 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall. (269) 492-0100 TAPHOUSE. If Central City doesn’t have the kind of beer you want on tap, you’ll probably find it with the 75+ bottles. OH, you say you’re not a beer drinker? Well, Central City offers 20 wine ‘taps’ and a full bar. If you’re not the drinking type, that’s cool too. There are a number of food options to pick from, including a raw menu, a pizza menu and the all-day menu, which features burgers, soups and entrees. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Diverse beverage selection.

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Fieldstone Grille 3970 W. Centre St., Portage. 269-321-8480 AMERICAN. Lodge-retreat atmosphere overlooking the Moors Golf Club

108 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

natural wetlands. The “field-to-plate” menu features burgers, pizzas, steaks and some eclectic items like quail. Try the FSG chips, a combination of potato, beet and sweet potato chips. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Blue Burger, Almond Crusted Walleye, FSG Chips.

Old Burdicks Bar & Grill 100 W. Michigan Ave. (269) 226-3192 AMERICAN. Old Burdick’s Bar & Grill features tasty sandwiches, burgers, salads and entrees, as well as a great selection of cocktails, wines and beers. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner. OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Old Burdick Burger.

Food Dance 401 E. Michigan Ave. 269-382-1888 AMERICAN. Food Dance is committed to building a thriving and sustainable local food system, supporting artisans who practice craft food processes. It’s about the connection with people and places the food comes from. Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, private dining space, catering and delivery, while an on-site market offers humanely raised meats, artisan cheeses, fresh bread and pastries. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh Local Foods.

Old Dog Tavern 402 East Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo. 269-381-5677 AMERICAN. The food at Old Dog Tavern is just about as eclectic as the entertainment offered. The menu has so much on it that it might even bring some harmony between picky and adventurous eaters. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The eclectic menu options.

Martell’s 3501 Greenleaf Blvd., Kalamazoo. 269-375-2105 AMERICAN. Tucked away in a quiet neighborhood that overlooks Willow Lake, Martell’s offers casual ambiance and an expansive menu with steaks, prime rib and other comfort food entrées like Italian style meatloaf and pork shank. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days (Sundays-dinner only) GO THERE FOR: Quiet casual ambiance.

Olde Peninsula 200 E. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo 269-343-2739 BREWPUB. Downtown brewpub serves up the expected (e.g., steaks, ribs), the authentic (e.g., London Broil) and some pleasant surprises (e.g., extensive vegetarian offerings, Italian food). Offers a range of beers brewed on the premises and served on tap, plus a full bar. Check out the seasonal porters on tap right now, including the Vanilla Porter (5.5% ABV) and Stout Chocula (5.25% ABV). » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: BeerB-Que Ribs, London Broil.

Union Cabaret & Grille 125 S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo. 269-384-6756 AMERICAN. A partnership with Western Michigan University, Union features eclectic food and cocktails, plus live jazz music performed by WMU faculty and students. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Closed Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Portabella Fries, Bloody Maries with infused vodkas.

Lakeshore 8th Street Grille 20 W. 8th St., Holland. 616-392-5888 AMERICAN. This eclectic grille offers a mix of draft and bottled craft beers and a variety of pub classics and new, American beer-inspired dishes. Happy hour includes half-off appetizers and $1 off drafts. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: 28 taps of craft beer.

Bil-Mar Restaurant 1223 S. Harbor St., Holland. 616-842-5920 AMERICAN. A destination restaurant for more than 60 years. Dazzling sunsets and an all-American menu featuring fresh seafood and hand-cut steaks. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Lake perch, lobster strudel, prime rib.

Now Offering Brunch Saturday & Sunday, 8 am Brunch & Bloody Mary Bar Daily lunch and dinner chalkboard specials Check out our full menu at olddogtavern.com

(269) 381-5677 | 402 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo MI 49007

Coming soon in September 2016! West Michigan’s new premiere steak house and billiard center

APA League Nights & Open Table Youth leagues Saturday afternoons Cue sales and billiard supplies Happy Hour M–F, 2–5 p.m. Weekly Tournaments (See our website for details)

Late night menu - Open 7 days a week, 11 a.m.–2 a.m.

91 Douglas Ave., Holland facebook.com/billiardsarefun - 616-394-7500

Upcoming Music Sept 2, 9pm

Skinny Hodge Sept 3, 9pm

The Mainstays Sept 10, 9pm

Big Love band Sept 16, 9pm

Seventh Son Blues Band



820 MICHIGAN ST NE GRAND RAPIDS, MI 49503 616-454-0444


Sept 23, 9pm


Marci Linn Band

We l co m e B a c k St u d e nt s !

Asamu Johnson

10% OFF ANY ENTREE with a valid s t u d e nt i d

downtown kalamazoo

Limited 1 per customer. Ca n n o t co m b i n e with other offers, discou nt s, o r p ro m o t i o n s.




Sept 30, 9pm

(269) 384-6756 125 S. Kalamazoo Mall


REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |

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950 WEALTHY ST SE SUITE 1A GRAND RAPIDS, MI 49506 616-356-2573



Thank You to All Who Voted for Us!

5570 Wilson Ave. SW, Suite M Grandville, MI 49418

Experience your first class for $5

peacelabyoga.com | 616.745.0310

CityVu Bistro 61 E 7th Street, Holland. 616-796-2114 AMERICAN. A distinctive rooftop dining experience in downtown Holland with fresh gourmet flatbreads and an array of seasonal entrees. The contemporary-yet-casual atmosphere, full bar and unique menus make it the ideal spot for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: flatbreads

Everyday People Cafe 11 Center St., Douglas. 269-857-4240 AMERICAN. REVUE Publisher Brian Edwards calls Everyday People Café his favorite restaurant along the lakeshore. The atmosphere is casual and upbeat, the staff knows its stuff about wine and food, and the seasonal menu is filled with meticulously prepared, eclectic comfort food like Butternut Squash Risotto, Braised Lamb Shank and Ahi Tuna. A great wine list and tremendous desserts. » SERVING: Brunch (Weekends) Lunch Dinner OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Gorgonzola Pork Chop, Greek Salad with Grandma Gigi’s Dressing (Edwards).

You don’t have to be Jewish to Love Jewish Theatre

At GRCC Spectrum Theater - Thurs. & Sat. a 8 p.m. Sun. at 3 p.m. ductions with atrical pro ality the re universal in appeal. ting qu ta presen h themes tha Jewis

Tickets: 616-234-3946 or jtgr.org

Review Ad JTGR.indd 1

Fricano’s Pizza Tavern 1400 Fulton Ave., Grand Haven. 616-842-8640 ITALIAN. Claims to be the first pizzeria in Michigan, but customers care less about its longevity than the amazingly crispy thin crust and simple ingredients atop its much-lauded pies. Four other locations around West MI, including Comstock

8/15/16 5:24 PM

send us your events Did you know?

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You can get a free listing on our online event calendar.

On your way to the lakeshore, be sure to visit our Grand Haven Tasting Room! OPEN DAILY! 327 N. Beacon Blvd. Grand Haven, MI | 616.844.1709 lemoncreekwinery.com

110 | REVUEWM.COM | September 2016

Just visit our calendar, click “submit event” and enter the details.

revuewm.com/ calendar

Park, Muskegon, Holland and Kalamazoo. » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza. Hops at 84 East 84 East 8th St., Holland. 616-396-8484 TAVERN. A beautiful taproom sporting reclaimed wood and copper. With 60 beer taps, two English beer machines, eight wine taps and an extensive spirits menu, Hops has a special beverage for everyone. The menu includes brick-oven pizza, burgers and sandwiches, chicken wings and a rotating special of the day. There are also gluten-free options, including their famous pizza. Several large-screen TVs adorn the restaurant if you’re in the mood to watch the big game. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Craft beer and brick-oven pizza. Kirby House 2 Washington, Grand Haven. 616-846-3299 AMERICAN. The Grill Room doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what it is — a chop house and grill. Atmosphere is warm with Tuscan tones, atmospheric lighting, classically cool music and leather booths. The menu focuses on steaks and chops and makes no apologies. The steaks are prime USDA choice, the seafood selection immaculate, and the wine and beverage list is top shelf. Relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Nightlife. New Holland Brewing Company 66 E. 8th St., Holland. 616-355-6422 BREWPUB. One of West MI’s premier microbreweries serves up better than average pub grub, including savory sandwiches chock full of Michigan ingredients, plus a seasonal entree menu. Also try their artisan spirits. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Mad Hatter IPA, Dragon’s Milk. Phil’s Bar & Grille 215 Butler St., Saugatuck. 269-857-1555 AMERICAN. This cozy (some would say “small”) bar and grille in downtown Saugatuck is one of those unassuming spots you might easily overlook, though locals in Saugatuck will tell you about their love affair with Phil’s. Eclectic menu is all over the place, but in a good way, and the staff is super-friendly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Portabella Mushroom Fries. Salt of the Earth 114 East Main St., Fennville. 269-561-7258 AMERICAN. Salt of the Earth is a farm-to-table-inspired restaurant, bar, and bakery located in the heart of SW Michigan farm country in Fennville. Focuses on fresh, seasonal, and local ingredients whenever possible. Also serves up live music on weekends. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: House made rustic cuisine. Saugatuck Brewing Company 2948 Blue Star Highway. 269-857-7222 BREWPUB. Enjoy a traditional Irish-style pub that features quality beer, wine, food and service. Try one of 12 unique brews that are served in the pub and bottled and distributed throughout the Midwest. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer in a family friendly pub environment.

To submit or to correct information in a dining listing, e-mail editor@revuewm.com.

S A– I Y A D Y R E V –E

! Y T R A P o pat i


y a d n u F y a Sund

ty r a P t u o w o l ve B E y a D r o b a L live music


es patio gam ink food & dr specials

dj spinning






end of Summer



9pm-close DJ MATT B $15 Woody buckets!



Grandwoodslounge.Com REVUEWM.COM | September 2016 |



DECEMBER 27-30, 2016

FEBRUARY 21-26, 2017

MARCH 14-16, 2017

MAY 2-7, 2017

JUNE 6-11, 2017

Profile for Revue Magazine

Revue Magazine, September 2016, The Arts Issue  

REVUE is West Michigan's most comprehensive free monthly entertainment guide covering music, arts, beer, dining and more. Visit us at revuew...

Revue Magazine, September 2016, The Arts Issue  

REVUE is West Michigan's most comprehensive free monthly entertainment guide covering music, arts, beer, dining and more. Visit us at revuew...