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Cityscape

‘Cityscape’ remembers Clark Terry

Feb 27, 2015
Clark Terry
Facebook | with permission

St. Louis jazz trumpeter Clark Terry made his first trumpet. His neighbors quickly got tired of listening to the racket, and raised money to buy the 10-year-old a real instrument.

Terry became a legend: He was a star soloist with the Count Basie Orchestra and Duke Ellington Orchestra; he led his own big band; and he was the first black man to play in “The Tonight Show” house band. Terry died Saturday; he was 94.

‘Country Boy’ Ricky Skaggs returns to St. Louis

Feb 20, 2015
Country and bluegrass artist Ricky Skaggs will perform in St. Louis on Feb. 28, 2015.
Skaggs Family Records

Ricky Skaggs started playing the mandolin in the hills of Kentucky at age 5. Fifty-five years later, he’s still in love with what he calls “old-time mountain music.”

“That real traditional thread running through the fabric of the music scene, I’ve always been drawn to that,” Skaggs told “Cityscape” guest host Jim Althoff. “I’ve always felt, too, that if that particular thread ever gets pulled out, I think the whole piece of cloth can just unravel. It’s a very important part of what we need desperately to hold on to and honor.”

George Caleb Bingham painted 'The Jolly Flatboatmen' in 1846. The oil-on-canvas painting is part of the St. Louis Art Museum's Bingham exhibit.
Courtesy of the St. Louis Art Museum

A new exhibit at the St. Louis Art Museum tackles the personal interests of a Missouri painter known for his depictions of 19th century elections and politics.

“They are the most spectacular paintings he did,” said Melissa Wolfe, the new curator of American art at the museum.

David Choi demonstrates the grill for Steve Potter and Ligaya Figueras on Feb. 3, 2015, at Seoul Q in St. Louis.
Katie Cook / St. Louis Public Radio

It all started in the kitchen of David Choi’s grandma. It was there that Choi fell in love with the flavors of Korean barbecue and the communal act of eating together, and got the idea for Seoul Taco. Choi's Korean-Mexican fusion food truck hit the streets in 2011 and one year later became a brick-and-mortar restaurant off the Delmar Loop.

Meet The Man Behind Lemony Snicket

Feb 13, 2015
Daniel Handler
Meredith Heuer

Go ahead; call David Handler’s work weird and bizarre. He’ll thank you.

Handler has written novels for adults as well as two series for children written under the pen name Lemony Snicket. His latest novel, “We Are Pirates,” is for adults, but it’s still quirky.

New Symphony CEO Discusses Her Role, Goals

Feb 13, 2015
Marie-Hélène Bernard of St. Louis Symphony
Courtesy of St. Louis Symphony

Marie-Hélène Bernard believes music connects things. People. History. Literature. Sports. And, for Bernard, law.

As a teenager, Bernard played the viola da gamba professionally. Then she became a lawyer, practicing corporate and tax law. But something was missing.

“I realized that music was really a calling, and I could bring skills that the music field needed, both from the business legal standpoint and music and management standpoint,” she told “Cityscape” host Jim Kirchherr on Friday.

Betsy Bowman, left, plays Honey; Michael Amoroso, seated, plays Nick; William Roth plays George and Kari Ely plays Martha in the St. Louis Actors' Studio's 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?'
St. Louis Actors' Studio

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the St. Louis Actors’ Studio presents the twisted reality of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

“I think it’s the greatest American play of the second half of the 20th century,” director John Contini told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. “I think it changed the face of theater when it came out.”

Sheldon Art Galleries Director Olivia Lahs-Gonzales takes a photo of Aurelia Hartenberger as she plays a bird ocarina from South America on 'Cityscape' on Feb. 6, 2015.
Katie Cook / St. Louis Public Radio

It started as a garage sale purchase, and grew. Last month, music professor Aurelia Hartenberger and her husband donated 2,500 instruments to the Sheldon Art Galleries.

Jenn Malzone of Middle Class Fashion records at St. Louis Public Radio studios
Willis Ryder Arnold/St. Louis Public Radio

More than 5,000 bands submitted video entries to NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert Contest, including a dozen from the St. Louis area.

Contestants filmed themselves indoors, outdoors, as groups or solo acts, and some even featured tiny desks of their own. Although submissions are closed, "Cityscape" gave listeners an exclusive taste of three local bands participating in the contest. The contest winner will be named Feb. 12.

Middle Class Fashion  

file photo

In honor of "Cityscape" host Steve Potter's 10-year anniversary with the show, production assistant Aaron Doerr put together some of Potter's more memorable (but air-able) bloopers.

Wash U, History Museum Seeking Ferguson Artifacts

Jan 30, 2015
Missouri History Museum employees dig through ash and scrap metal for artifacts on Jan. 29, 2015, at the burned-out Fashions R Boutique in Ferguson.
Emanuele Berry / St. Louis Public Radio

The Missouri History Museum and Washington University are making sure artifacts from Ferguson are preserved.

Sebastian “Tech Supreme” Lee is a cofounder of Delmar Records and a music producer.
Amy Harris/Courtesy of Delmar Records

Delmar Records is working to bring the national spotlight to a group of St. Louis musicians.

Cofounder and music producer Sebastian “Tech Supreme” Lee said the label’s roster features St. Louis musicians with strong careers who are looking expand their audience.  

St. Louis Theater Circle Announces 2015 Nominees

Jan 30, 2015
Provided by the Actors Studio

The St. Louis Theater Circle, a group of local theater critics, released its 2015 award nominees on Friday. 

“It was, I think, a terrific year,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch theater critic Judith Newmark told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. “It was a year in which we lost one theater — that’s always going to happen. There also are some new people on the horizon. And it was a year in which, I think Shakespeare Festival St. Louis, which is a free event that draws huge crowds, really came into its own with a double production of ‘Henry IV’ and ‘Henry V.’”

Photographer Documents Life In Bhutan

Jan 23, 2015
A photo from Regina DeLuise's Bhutan exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Religious Art in St. Louis.
Regina DeLuise

Photographer Regina DeLuise took a chance and ended up in Bhutan.

“Oftentimes in my life and in my career, I’ll just kind of throw my hat far over the fence somewhere and then go collect it and see what happens,” DeLuise told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter. “It was a very amazing trip. (A) very special place.”

Courtesy of Angel Romero

Even if you haven’t heard classical guitarist Angel Romero play, you’ve heard his influence.

“My guitar goes back so long,” he told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter. “They interviewed George Harrison of The Beatles. They asked him ‘How did you start playing the guitar?’ He said ‘From picking at Angel Romero’s records.’ Jimi Hendrix and all that, they told me that every single night he would put on my recordings before going to bed. My music has crossed over to them as much as theirs has crossed over to me.”

Dance Company Takes Over The Pageant

Jan 23, 2015
Courtesy of The Big Muddy Dance Company

Ballet may be one of the last things you’d expect to see at a rock venue, but it will happen next weekend.

The Big Muddy Dance Company will perform at The Pageant on Jan. 30 — a first for both.

Sauce executive editor Ligaya Figueras sits with the magazine's 2009 "ones to watch": Cory Shupe, far left, T.J. Vytlacil, Cory King and Adam Alnether.
Jonathan Gayman / Sauce Magazine

Six years ago, Sauce Magazine put together its first “ones to watch” list. At the time, though, Adam Altnether and T.J. Vytlacil were just trying to get started.

“The year before that was kind of this meteoric rise in Niche that everything just kept coming to me,” Altnether told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. In 2009, Altnether was the chef de cuisine at Niche. Today, he’s a partner at Craft Restaurant Group and Niche’s executive chef.

Renowned Dancers Leave New York To Join COCA

Jan 16, 2015
Kirven, right, and Antonio Douthit-Boyd
Andrew Eccles

Antonio Douthit-Boyd “stumbled upon dance” in St. Louis. Kirven Douthit-Boyd was “forced into it, really” in Boston. The pair, now principal dancers with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York, is moving to St. Louis to become the Center of Creative Arts’ artistic directors of dance.

Michael Lindner
Courtesy of Michael Lindner

For more than 70 years, the National Society of Arts and Letters has sponsored local and national competitions for young artists. This year, the national competition will be in St. Louis.

“(The) organization fosters young people in the arts, bringing them together in their field and providing opportunities for them to compete,” said Peggy Liggett, chairwoman of the competition committee of the St. Louis chapter. “We have some prizes that are very significant.”

St. Louis Low Brass Collective

Low brass is underappreciated. The St. Louis Low Brass Collective wants to change.

“Our goal is to improve the music performance level by offering opportunities for people to play, giving concerts (and) workshops,” B.J. Fullenkamp, a trombonist with Missouri Baptist University and St. Louis Cathedral Brass, told “CityScape” host Steve Potter.

The St. Louis Classical Guitar Society wants to help the Ferguson healing process, one guitar at a time.

Through grants, the Ferguson Guitar Initiative is donating guitars and lessons to fifth- and sixth-grade students in the Normandy and Ferguson-Florissant school districts starting next week.

Repertory Theatre Sets The Table For ‘Dinner’

Jan 9, 2015
Anderson Matthews, as Matt Drayton, and Richard Prioleau, as John Prentice Jr., perform in The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis' 'Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.'
Jerry Naunheim Jr. / The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis

There are a lot of similarities between “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” the movie and “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” the play.

“The iconic moments are all there,” said Seth Gordon, associate artistic director of The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis.

It’s still an interracial love story. It’s still set in the 1960s. The play, adapted for the stage in 2012 by playwright Todd Kreidler, includes many of the movie’s memorable moments and monologues. But there also are some differences.

St. Louis Public Radio arts and culture reporter Willis Ryder Arnold had not spent time in St. Louis before starting his job in August, but already the region has made an impression.

“It’s an interesting place. It’s got a lot going on, and a lot it needs to work out, I think,” Arnold told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. “There’s a lot of creativity here, and a lot of creative people. People are just very connected to each other here.”

Arnold moved to St. Louis from New York.

Quirky 'Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll' Opens Tonight

Jan 2, 2015
Courtesy of The Midnight Company

Among the tales of quiet desperation, there’s “Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll” written more than 20 years ago by Eric Bogosian.

“He speaks to my generation,” actor Joe Hanrahan told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. “He grew up at the same time. He speaks, especially in this show, to the rock and roll life. To the pleasures it offers and the pitfalls. To him, it represents America: Both the things that we think of ourselves and the things that we do.”

Storyteller Bobby Norfolk's 'Take the A Train' opens Jan. 10, 2015.
Courtesy of Bobby Norfolk

It’s said that the arts can heal. Storyteller Bobby Norfolk is working on finding out if it’s true with Ferguson.

Norfolk is collaborating with producer Beverly Brennan on a yearlong series highlighting the talents of black and white performing artists starting with “Take the ‘A’ Train,” a tour of the Harlem Renaissance.

Sauce Magazine executive editor Ligaya Figueras called the cheeseburger at Death in the Afternoon in St. Louis one of her most memorable meals of 2014.
Carmen Troesser / Sauce Magazine

Looking back on 2014, Sauce Magazine's editor and restaurant critics shared their favorite new restaurants, meals and drinks.

Best New Restaurants

Restaurant critic Michael Renner picked Peacemaker Lobster and Crab. Chef-owner Kevin Nashan imports fresh seafood daily. "He's brining in Maryland crabs. He's bringing in Maine lobster," Renner told "Cityscape" host Steve Potter.

Restaurant critic Matt Berkley chose Planter's House.

Two looks of Raja
Provided by the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts

As our city rocked from the upheavals of 2014, a series of quieter changes was taking place in the St. Louis art world.

Several arts organizations debuted, others expanded and a few folded. Some relocated and others featured uncharacteristic fare to appeal to wider audiences. Here’s a look at eight of this year’s evolutions in the local arts scene.

Chuck Berry
Bill Greenblatt | UPI | file photo

After creating a list of 100 essential songs about St. Louis, Riverfront Times senior music writers Christian Schaeffer and Roy Kasten are working their way through the top 12 holiday songs by St. Louisians.

Bach Society’s Candlelight Tradition Continues

Dec 19, 2014
Kris Bueltmann

The Bach Society of Saint Louis continues its Christmas concert tradition on Tuesday, complete with a candlelight procession.

“Every time I maybe mention the Bach Society and their Christmas candlelight concert that they are performing, anybody I speak with will go, ‘Oh! Oh!’ and they kind of stop in their tracks because they do remember that procession,” soprano Jane Jennings said. “It’s riveting. It’s breathtaking.”

The candlelight procession will be after intermission.

St. Louis Teen Part of ‘A Christmas Story’

Dec 19, 2014
See 'A Christmas Story — The Musical' through Jan. 4, 2015, at the Fabulous Fox Theatre in St. Louis.
Fabulous Fox Theatre

Maria Knasel got her start at The Muny. Now the 13-year-old singer, dancer and actress is part of the Broadway tour of “A Christmas Story — The Musical.”

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