The Sheldon Concert Hall

William Morris, Brett Williams and Meghan Grubb
Nancy Fowler

Three local artists received $1,500 each on Tuesday night to help fund projects that include home movies and ideas about the spaces where we live.

In an event at The Sheldon Art Galleries, the local Critical Mass for the Visual Arts organization named the recipients of its 2015 Creative Stimulus Awards. The money helps pay for the cost of ongoing work as well as funding new projects.

The 2015 winners are:

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.”

courtesy photo

When a friend asked St. Louis vocalist Denise Thimes to come to Detroit to sing for her father’s 75th birthday party, she didn’t tell her until she got there that one of the guests was Aretha Franklin. “I was shaking in my boots, to say the least,” Thimes told Cityscape host Steve Potter, but she pulled herself together and sang for the diva and the others in the audience. “She wanted to hear “The Way We Were” and I really tried to sing it to the best of my ability.  And she was very pleased with that.”

Photos provided by the Sheldon Art Galleries

The St. Louis area is crawling with photographic opportunities. Local professional Ryan Archer took advantage of one of them to win Best in Show in the Sheldon’s “The City at 250” photo contest.

Archer’s “City Museum Climbers,” entered in the “Events and People” category, garnered him $1,000 and a place in “The City at 250” exhibit, opening June 6. The competition was a collaborative effort of The Sheldon and the St. Louis Beacon, now St. Louis Public Radio. The Beacon merged in December with St. Louis Public Radio and is no longer a separate entity.

In a way, indie/pop duo Bella & Lily has been together a long time. That is if you can measure lifetimes spanning in the teen years as long. Bella (19) and Lily (15) are sisters, after all.

But the musical entity Bella & Lily was born less than two years ago, when the Ibur sisters made their debut on the St. Louis music scene. After winning a battle of the bands to earn a spot on the Loufest stage, Bella and Lily decided to focus on their musical career.

Table and Chairs
Duet Gallery

A table can connect families, foster discussion or encourage a game of cards. This weekend, a table in Grand Center also provides a canvas for artistic and cultural expression.

“Table” opened Thursday night at the new Duet art space, 3526 Washington Ave., with an evening of drinks and folk music. Friday night at 7, the custom wood design by Martin Goebel becomes the stage for a new media performance.

Scott Rackers

The Sheldon Art Galleries in Grand Center is asking for photographs documenting St. Louis, as the city celebrates 250 years.

The Arch, Busch Stadium and the World's Fair Pavilion in Forest Park are among the usual suspects when it comes to picturing St. Louis. But the same-old, same-old won’t cut it in a photography contest focused on the city at 250.

Bobby McFerrin is a multi-faceted vocalist.  A 10-time Grammy winner, he has blurred the lines between pop music and fine art and has inspired a generation of a cappella singers.  He is best known for his hit, Don’t Worry, Be Happy, which explores the limits of the human voice.  But while he is certainly pleased with the song’s success, he does not want to be defined by it.

Ricky Skaggs got an early start in music.  At the age of 5, we woke up one morning to find that his parents had left a pint sized mandolin in his bed.  A year later, he played a show with Bill Monroe, the father of bluegrass  and appearances with Earl Scruggs and the Stanley Brothers followed. Before the age of 10, Scruggs was fortunate enough to have performed with three of his heroes.  “When you learn music from  masters like that at such an early age, that I did, those people stay with you,” Skaggs told St. Louis Public Radio’s Jim Althoff.

The Sheldon

The Sheldon bills itself as the perfect place for music and art and the Sheldon Concert Hall has been called “The Carnegie Hall of the Midwest.”  This year marks the 100th anniversary of The Sheldon which was named after Walter Sheldon, who founded the St. Louis branch of the Ethical Society.  The building was designed by Louis C. Spiering, the architect of the 1904 World’s Fair.

(photo by: Dan Dreyfus)

Host Steve Potter talks with St. Louis Symphony Music Director David Robertson about the orchestra's recently completed European Tour and its 2012-2013 season. Then, St. Louis Public Radio’s Mike Schrand speaks with singer-songwriter Nick Lowe. Lowe is currently on a solo acoustic tour and performs at The Sheldon Concert Hall on Wednesday, September 26th.  Later in the show, Steve Potter talks with Rod Milam, creator and producer of the University City Musician Documentary Project.