Insight News

Wednesday
Jul 30th

Ramsey Lewis

Ramsey LewisFamed jazz pianists Ramsey Lewis and his trio takes a bow before a packed audience at the Dakota Jazz Club, after performing one of his well-known Grammy Award winning pieces.  Lewis presented four sold out concerts at the Dakota last Monday and Tuesday evening.    – Photograph by Oliver White -
 

Eclipsed is not to be missed

Eclipsed is not to be missedOur metro area ranks among the best nationally in opportunities to see live theater. Much of that theater is quite good. But, now and then, a play is staged which simply cannot be missed. For the year 2010, that play is Eclipsed, to be staged from September 17 to October 10, at the Playwrights’ Center on Minneapolis’ Franklin Avenue by Frank Theatre; the production is directed by Wendy Knox, and features a spectacular local cast.

Written by Danai Gurira, a young Zimbabwean-American of great heart and intellect, Eclipsed is the story of five Liberian women trapped in that country’s prolonged civil wars. Four of them are the unwilling “wives” of a guerrilla “commanding officer,” who use threads of solidarity and competition to weave themselves into a fragile community. The fifth is a “peace woman,” an educated, urban dweller who, like the others, has lost all her material possessions and, like the others, is unsure of her future. Their dreams, visions, and even identities have been “eclipsed” by the violence which surrounds them, but not erased. We sit on the edge of our seats, waiting to see what will emerge, what these young women can make emerge, as they explore their relationships with each other and the situation around them changes shape.
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Inspirational Blended-Family Documentary Debuts on PBS

Inspirational Blended-Family Documentary Debuts on PBSOff and Running - PBS-TV Review by

When Tovah Klein emigrated from Israel to the United States, she met and fell in love with Midwesterner Travis Cloud. The smitten lesbians subsequently settled in a trendy section of Brooklyn together where they would raise their three adopted children as Jews, sending them to Hebrew school.

What might strike some as strange about this arrangement is that none of the kids had a Jewish background. Rafi, of mixed-ethnicity, was born drug-addicted and with an STD, while his slightly younger sister Avery’s parents were African-Americans from Texas, and little Zay-Zay was a cuddly, Korean orphan.
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Ava Has Arrived!

Ava Has Arrived!Ava Duvernay - The “My Mic Sounds Nice” Interview

Ava DuVernay has worked in the world of film as a marketer and publicist for more than 14 years, forming DVA Media + Marketing in 1999. Her award-winning firm has provided strategy and execution for more than 80 film and television campaigns for acclaimed directors such as Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, Michael Mann, Robert Rodriguez, Bill Condon, Raoul Peck, Gurinder Chadha and Reggie & Gina Bythewood.

Yet, in 2008, Ava stepped behind the camera to make her feature film directorial debut with the critically-acclaimed hip-hop documentary, “This is The Life.” DuVernay, a graduate of UCLA and a member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, is based in L.A. Here, she talks about her skyrocketing second career.
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William Pierce: creating art that transforms

William Pierce: creating art that transformsPlaywright, director and producer William Pierce buried the stagnant habit of wondering through his desires by creating an addiction to exacting immortality through art and motivation.

Having spent years fighting his own ghosts, Pierce has redefined himself and entered the world of theater. He is now the newest voice to be reckoned with on the entertainment platform, and his company Second Chance Productions is definitely one to keep an eye on.

“My company, Second Chance Productions, tries to present an art form to people that will inspire them, educate them and encourage them to transform into the people that they desire to be, regardless of their past or the things they are dealing with today whether it is financial, mental or physical. Everyone deserves a second chance at life, and we want to allow them the opportunity to realize that and encourage them to take advantage of it,” said Pierce.
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Corinne Puts Her Record On and Lets Her Hair Down

Corinne Puts Her Record On and Lets Her Hair Down Corinne Bailey Rae - The “Live from the Artists Den” Interview

Corinne Jacqueline Bailey was born in Leeds, England on February 26, 1979, the eldest of three girls to bless the union of her British mother and Caribbean father from St. Kitts. As a child, she studied classical violin at school, and only sang in the church choir, until she formed an all-female rock band at the age of 15.

Corrine went on to major in English at the University of Leeds, and after graduating in 2000, took a job as a hat check girl at a local jazz club. It was there, while sitting in with various bands that she developed the sultry, soulful vocal style which would become her trademark. It was also at the pub that she met saxophonist Jason Rae, the love whose last name she would take when they married the very next year.
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Cautionary Tale Uncovers Another Reason to Avoid Mexico

Cautionary Tale Uncovers Another Reason to Avoid Mexico  Daniel & Ana

I don’t know anybody who’s considering Mexico as a vacation destination anymore, given the kidnappings of the rich for ransom, the mass murders in resort areas like Acapulco, the ever-escalating body count in the drug wars and the recent employment of bombings as a terrorist tactic. If, in spite of all of the above, you’re still thinking of venturing South of the Border, you might want to check out Daniel & Ana, a cautionary tale blowing the covers off another problem plaguing the troubled region.
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