For those of you in the Buffalo Film and Arts community, the name DefTone Pictures Studios may be a familiar one. DefTone Pictures Studios is a local Buffalo based film production company that’s been producing independent film in the horror/comedy genre for the past 10 years.
The upcoming 2016 festivities, which marks the events 10th anniversary, is set to take place next week from Wednesday, April 13th through Sunday, April 17th at the historic Tonawanda castle. Described as a “festival by filmmakers, for filmmakers,” the BNFF has long been a great place for producers, directors, and screenwriters based on the East coast to network with industry professionals from around the world.
To get a glimpse of exactly what Buffalo fans have to look forward to, maybe for years to come, one only had to watch last week’s Saturday matinee at home against the Winnipeg Jets, won by Buffalo 3-2.
Beloved by American music fans for his one-of-a-kind vocals and inspired take on the folk, blues, and gospel genres, the music of legendary country western singer-songwriter Hank Williams has lost none of its power in over the half-century since the ill-fated musician recorded such classic ballads as “Lovesick Blues”, “Your Cheatin’ Heart”, and “I’m So Lonesome I could Cry”.
Every year, WNY Book Arts Center invites artists, foodies, and book-lovers to design and display books intended to be consumed. Each presentation is to be inspired by literary references, books, or the general form. They are exhibited, documented, and then consumed. Each piece is ranked by local celebrity judges and artist/chefs are awarded with prizes donated from local businesses.
New Phoenix Theatre on the Park
Glenn Cortese will be on two different podiums this weekend, when he leads his Western New York Chamber Orchestra in a pair of concerts featuring the music of J.S. Bach, Michael Haydn, and the local premiere of his own recent new work. The first performance on Friday, April 1 at 7:30pm will take place in Westminster Presbyterian Church, 724 Delaware Avenue in Buffalo. The Sunday April 3 event is at 4pm in King Concert Hall, on the SUNY Fredonia Campus.
The adverse weather on Dyngus Day went largely unnoticed by both those marching in the parade and those watching. One lucky crew (below) had a bird’s eye view from the window of their house.
Photos by Christina Cooke
Photos By Christina Cooke
This year marks the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. He is said to have died on the same date he was born: 23 April. Throughout 2016, all “seven ages of men” will gather to rejoice Shakespeare’s life and works. Peace of the City—the organization annually producing Shakespeare Comes to (716)—will kick off the celebration at their yearly benefit, on Thursday (3/31).
An extraordinary young talent whose experimental films frequently defy classification, filmmaker Jessica Oreck will be in town this week for the Buffalo premiere of her hypnotic and fascinating third feature The Vanquishing of the Witch Baba Yaga, presented by the Cultivate Cinema Circle at Squeaky Wheel this Friday at 7pm, featuring an introduction and post-screening Q & A with the director herself.
An urban symphony in six movements, Knight of Cups is a dizzying odyssey into the nature of perception, love, and the dual nature of the self. By turns euphoric and mournful, Terrence Malick’s seventh feature finds American cinema’s greatest philosopher-poet turning his gaze from the sun-kissed treetop canopies and wheat fields of the natural world to the towering structures of glass and steel which comprise contemporary Los Angeles.
Terrence McNally, four-time Tony Award-winning playwright, will visit Buffalo on April 1 and 2, 2016 as a guest of Buffalo United Artists (BUA), the Dramatists Guild Fund, the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Historic Site, and Just Buffalo Literary Center. During his stay, McNally, one the most highly regarded and widely celebrated playwrights in the world today will participate in two events to support theater in Western New York.
The annual evening of one-act plays features world premieres of recent finalists and one-act winners of the Maxim Mazumdar New Play Competition. Alleyway calls it, a “smorgasbord of tasty theatrical tidbits flavored with the spice of life!” The plays are suitable for adults and teens.
On The Boards is presented by the Irish Classical Theatre Company
Part of the impetus behind Joyce Hill’s mostly artist’s books exhibit at Canisius College is her sense that we don’t read as much as we used to and ought to. Books, anyway. “Computers, cell phones, and television are now where we go to see what is happening in our world,” she says in wall introductory copy. “Books with paper pages are tossed aside in favor of these electronic devices,” she says. And describes going into a used book store and finding the tossed-aside books “sitting lonely on the shelves, long forgotten.”
Aeschylus wrote his play Agamemnon more than 2400 years ago, and the powerful tragedy still resonates strongly, both with modern audiences and contemporary creative writers, artists and composers. Inspired by Agamemnon, the Pulitzer prize-winning American composer Roger Reynolds has worked on what he calls his Red Act Project for almost twenty years. Commissioned by the Library of Congress, where the work received its premiere, Reynolds created Justice, his chamber opera based on Agamemnon in 1999-2001.
That was the last time that Canada was shutout from the NHL postseason.
Back then it was a 12 team league, Buffalo and Vancouver would be the expansion entrants the following year. The two Canadian teams, Toronto and Montreal, failed to qualify in what was then an eight team playoff field.
The disaster movie has been a genre that American cinema has commanded more or less exclusively since the 1970s. The popularity of star-studded disaster films such as The Poseidon Adventure and Airport, continued through to modern blockbusters such as Armageddon and The Day After Tomorrow.
A summary of films screening this week.
From its opening shot which captures middleweight boxer Jake LaMotta’s towering presence as he shadowboxes in the ring set to the Intermezzo from Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticano to its final moments of LaMotta, now a flabby failure, reciting Brando’s “I coulda been a contender” monologue from On the Waterfront before a dressing room mirror, Martin Scorsese’s Raging Bull achieves grandeur despite its grounded realism. The rise-and-fall sports biopic explores how a man copes with jealousy through violence, ensuring his self-destruction.
World Premiere of a play by Donna Hoke
by John Guare at the new American Repertory Theater space on Amherst Street
This weekend, Buffalo Philharmonic music director JoAnn Falletta will be on the podium in Kleinhans this Saturday at 8:30pm, and on Sunday at 2:30pm for a BPO program featuring the Austro-Germanic composers Mozart, Franz Schreker and Richard Strauss. Making his welcome BPO return engagement, pianist Eldar Nebolsin will be the featured soloist in Mozart’s sublime final concerto for piano, the Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat major, K.595.
Jim Steranko, superstar guest at the 2015 Buffalo Comicon, told the story of being offered a job by four different comic book companies in a single day. He took Marvel’s offer when Stan Lee gave him his choice of any Marvel character. “I told him I’ll take the guy with the eye patch,” he said.
It comes along every so often, that perfect buddy-action book that fits together like peanut butter and jelly. Deadpool & Cable is not that book. But it’s still a fun romp through the minds and motivations of Wade Wilson (Deadpool, the Merc with the Mouth) and Nathan Summers (Cable, the Merc with the … umm, Metal Parts).
The Friends of Vienna resumes its long-running chamber music concert series on Sunday, March 13 at 3:30pm in the Unity Church at 1243 Delaware in Buffalo. BPO principal clarinetist John Fullam along with his BPO colleague cellist Robert Hausmann, and UB pianist Nancy Townsend, who together make up the Amberg Ensemble, will get together for an afternoon of new, and rarely programmed works, highlighted by the premiere performance of a new work composed for the group by Persis Parshall Vehar, a multi-award winning composer long resident in Buffalo
That final day in the season to make player trades, which is always set for sometime late February or early March, quite often results in a media carnival atmosphere and hard core fans tuning in to watch the frenzy. Which teams will be looking to add that valuable piece for s deep playoff run? Who is looking to unload fat contracts? And which teams are in rebuild mode and finally coming to grips with that?
The Happiest Song Plays Last
A play by Quiara Alegria Hudes
presented by Raices at the Manny Fried Playhouse
The initial trailers for Disney animations cute and clever Zootopia, which as of this writing has toppled Frozen to have the studio’s highest grossing opening weekend ever, displayed no lack of subtlety to make sure children in the audience understood the film’s premise: Animals exist just like humans in the world of Zootopia; they walk, talk, wear cloths, and have everyday interactions with species they might otherwise eat in the real world.
On Friday (3/11), Rust Belt Books (415 Grant Street) will host Lauren Shufran to present a thought-provoking and apt reading, at 8pm. There will be a conversation to follow on: the animal-human, poetics of the body, translation, queering homophobia, and historicizing islamophobia.
I usually make it a rule to stay as far away from comic-based novels as possible; they’re one of the few types of books I never touch. To me, they’ve never given comic books justice, as they tend to butcher the characters.
Two fan-favorite D.C. characters, Harley Quinn and Power Girl, team up in what has to be the most underrated adventures ever written. I mean, how can you go without reading about what really happened “in the panel gutter between panels three and four of page twenty of Harley Quinn #12?”
Some words and ideas that come to mind in confronting Jack Drummer’s industrial sheet rubber artworks at the Burchfield Penney: minimalist, abstract, taciturn, tactile, Zen meditational, Rothko apparitional.
March 20th brings the closing of the Albright-Knox exhibit Monet and the Impressionist Revolution, 1860–1910. The exhibition, which has been delighting audiences, highlights the transformative work of the renowned French painter Claude Monet
We’ve all seen the headline stories about our fabulous renaissance: “Buffalo Fights Back” the New York Times; “Buffalo’s Comeback” Urban Land Magazine; “Millennials Love Buffalo” Syracuse.com; “Buffalo Tech Reboots the City” USA Today.
It’s a thin line between villainy and heroism, andDeadshot: Bulletproof walks that razor’s edge with a blend of sharp art, an edgy plot and dark wit. When is a villain actually a hero?
Chances are, you’ve experienced Robert Kirkman’s work (The Walking Dead, Ultimate X-Men, Marvel Zombies). But when Kirkman wasn’t making one of the most badass zombie apocalypses so far, he was writing about a quirky superhero teenager.
As unlikely as it might seem, I must confess that I found a show called Never Wear A Tube Top While Riding A Mechanical Bull (And 16 Other Things I Learned While I Was Drinking Last Thursday) to be very engaging. The show stars “Dixie Longate,” the drag persona of gifted comedian, Kris Andersson, as an Alabama housewife, who shares her down home wisdom in a 90 minute show set in a honky-tonk saloon as we wait out a storm.
The fabulous Diane Lane (pictured above) recently announced that she will fund a grant for arts educators to honor director/composer/writer Elizabeth Swados who died on January 5th. Buffalo born Swados wrote the music for Lane’s acting debut in a production of Medea at New York’s La MaMa back in 1972 when she was six years old.
This weekend, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra music director JoAnn Falletta will again be on the podium, to conduct an almost all-Czech program of music, with one significant exception, on Friday March 4 at 10:30am and Saturday March 8 at 8pm. But, since the only non-Czech piece happens to be Sir Edward Elgar’s darkly elegiac Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85, featuring the critically acclaimed young German/French cellist Nicolas Altstaedt, who will be making his BPO debut, it’s not very likely that the even the most ardent fan of Czech music is likely to complain.
This week's local theater productions.
It’s a world of white at Indigo Arts Gallery. Snow and ice in dessert mold and the like forms—like an arctic beach sandcastle community—in photos by Kathryn Vajda, and pristine white porcelain dysfunctional but exquisite pots and other vessels by Bryan Hopkins.
Tuesday 9:47am: Hi baby, you have to listen to me carefully—I’m on a plane that’s been hijacked. I’m on the plane; I’m calling from the plane. I want to tell you I love you and tell my children that I love them very much, and I’m so sorry babe. I don’t know what to say—there are three guys and they’ve hijacked the plane.