November 4, 2012 11:31 AM
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Carol Ann Strahl:
This book is an inside look at the music scene in the 1960's and early 1970's.
The average listener had no idea that the musicians who recorded the most popular songs of the time were, in many cases, not members of the bands listed on the labels but a group of talented studio musicians (aka "Session Players") known in the industry as "the Wrecking Crew."
Great stories featuring such luminaries as Sonny Bono, Roger McGuinn from
October 28, 2012 4:29 PM
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Angela Pierpaoli:
"Sometimes you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together again unless and until all living humans read the book." - The Fault in Our Stars
Clinically depressed and terminally ill, sixteen-year-old Hazel is almost equally obsessed with "America's Next Top Model" and An Imperial Affliction, a book about a young girl with cancer that ends
October 21, 2012 3:22 PM
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Dawn Stanton:
I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak is an enjoyable read with a hint of a "treasure hunt" feeling. To recap any part of the plot would be a spoiler to enjoying the journey of the main character, Ed. Ed's literal journey becomes something more personal, as the cards are dealt and the story unfolds.
Zusak's writing style is simple (yet intelligent) and clean - he is able to portray the essence of a scene or a character with just the few right adjectives.
October 17, 2012 12:01 AM
By Jay Smith
If you have ever visited the city of Detroit but haven't been back there in the last few years, you may be in for a pleasant surprise. The city has endured enormously difficult times, especially recently, but if there is one bright spot in Detroit, it would be the city's heart, downtown. Much has changed since I first visited Detroit in 2002. Businesses, retailers and restaurants have opened downtown, which is amazing considering it was written-off for dead. Quicken Loans, General Motors, Compuware and others large
October 12, 2012 8:35 AM
By Elexa Kopty:
Move over Buffalo bigwigs, there's a new musical coming to town.
In one week, American Repertory Theatre of WNY in collaboration with Theatre Jugend and Steven Sitzman will unveil the world premiere of "The Dead English".
Based on Bram Stoker's Dracula, the original musical adaptation is written, composed and directed by three young men from Buffalo. I sat in on a rehearsal and got a sneak peak of the project, and now I'm counting down the days until I can see the show
October 2, 2012 11:00 AM
By S. Alexander Smith:
The Brazen Faced Varlets live up to their name in this daring take on wicked women. Following last season's Artie nominated "Ladykillers," an exploration of women who kill, the Varlets took on a theme, wrote and mounted the play in two months. Director Lara Haberberger notes she wanted to do more risky work and "Way Wicked Women" meets this goal in every aspect. The staging of the Varlet's show in the back of Rust Belt Books pushes the limits of the small space and gives an intimacy with the audience that is inescapable and
September 30, 2012 7:20 AM
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Meg Cheman:
At turns tragic and gentle, epic and humble, The Orchardist gets under your skin and stays with you long after you've turned the last page. In the late 19th century, William Talmadge grows and lovingly tends his orchards of apples and apricots. Talmadge has settled into a single life, with his long-time friends, horse catcher Clee of the Nez Perce and herbalist/midwife Caroline Middey. His solitary life is disrupted when two ragged, wild, and pregnant girls steal his apples at
August 31, 2012 12:23 PM
The lines between love, music, and art have always been blurred. Whenever two musicians are dating, friends and family continually ask, "...so do you two perform together?"
An answer came quickly to Buffalo performing artists Christopher Wietig and Leah Schneider. Within months of meeting each other, the two were creating and launching New Buffalo Productions, a theatre production company and arts education advocacy organization. There was no question that they wanted to produce professional musical theatre in Buffalo. Their first project,
August 17, 2012 12:10 AM
By Amanda McLaughlin:
Fifty: the very word is one of the most charged in our humble language, and today, in our somewhat saccharine and saturated society, often calls up images of fine scotch and silver fox--the George Clooney kind, I mean--or dreary office birthday parties and ill-fitting pants. And yet fifty--so provocative in its trochaic simplicity, so powerful in its associations--can take on a remarkably different, generative, and golden--to borrow from that impervious metal--attitude: one of commemoration, profound celebration, and
July 25, 2012 12:08 AM
THE BASICS: This gutsy little one-act opera by Leonard Bernstein is this year's Lunchtime Theatre offering at the Shaw. It plays in repertory at the Court House Theatre through October 7th. The show runs about 45 minutes; there is no intermission.
THUMBNAIL SKETCH: It's 1952, and Americans have fled to the suburbs to live the Great American Dream. Dinah and Sam are a typical suburban couple. He is climbing up the corporate ladder while she stays home, dresses prettily and tends the nest. They seem to have everything, including a fine young son, but
July 24, 2012 12:00 AM
Frankie Scinta and his family act originally broke out in Buffalo, rose to fame internationally, and these days continue to headline in Las Vegas. But Frankie has been coming back every year for the Buffalo Italian Heritage Festival. Frankie told me that he thinks he may have raised the most funds ever for the festival this year, and wanted to make this the best festival ever. Scinta, the musical director of the festival, thinks that this year we had a better main stage (now called the Frankie Scinta stage at its new location Hertel and Tennyson), a better band lineup, two jumbotrons and better
July 22, 2012 12:00 AM
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Jack Edson:
Some people look for a "light summer read" for the months of July and August, but others of us look for a thick, serious novel that will intensely occupy us for a couple of weeks and will take us on an emotional roller coaster ride which, even though it is about "other people," will come much too close to our own lives for comfort. I thoroughly loved Jonathan Franzen's previous novel, The Corrections and when I bought a copy of Freedom at a library used book sale