Arts & Culture
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EIGHT, ARIZONA PBS NERDS OUT FOR SUPERHEROES WITH LIVE SCREENING OF NEW GROUNDBREAKING PBS DOCUMENTARY SUPERHEROES: A NEVER-ENDING BATTLE – PHOENIX, OCT. 15
Eight, Arizona PBS welcomes viewers and comic lovers to the “BAM! POW! Bash,” featuring debut of three-part PBS documentary and “super” live entertainment
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No it’s Eight, Arizona PBS in partnership with the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department hosting a night of MARVEL-ous entertainment! Eight invites comic-lovers, documentary fans, and costumed Super Friends of all sorts to party and celebrate “nerd-dom” in the run-up to the 2013 PBS Nerd Walk, with the community event “Eight’s BAM! POW! Bash” Oct. 15 from 6:30 to 10 p.m. in The City of Phoenix – Civic Space Park downtown (424 N. Central Ave., Phoenix 85004), featuring the premiere of the three-part, three-hour PBS documentary Superheroes: A Never-Ending Battle, airing nationally Oct. 15 and on Eight, Arizona PBS at 7 p.m.
The event will blast-off with themed entertainment including: “Epic Super Hero Improv” by Torch Theatre featuring Guido Martin; an “Iron Cosplay” competition led by ASU State Press; a superhero costume contest presented by Yelp; special appearances by the Justice League of Arizona and the Arizona Avengers; prizes and registration for the 2013 PBS Nerd Walk. The Bookmans’ “Save the City” Photo Wall will also be on location.
“I’m really geeking out over this film, as a fan of both comics and historical documentaries – and I know I’m not alone,” says Bob Beard, promotions and events coordinator for Eight, Arizona PBS. “After all, Eight is the local home to Super-Grover! And the most popular t-shirt design currently trending for our upcoming PBS Nerd Walk features our Nerd logo imposed on Superman’s shield. Superheroes have cross-generational appeal. Everyone has a favorite character or an opinion about the best superpower to be imbued with – so we wanted to create a celebration of Superheroes that fans of all ages can come out and enjoy.”
Narrated and hosted by Liev Schreiber (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Showtime’s Ray Donovan), Superheroes: A Never-Ending Battle is the first documentary to examine the dawn of the comic book genre and its powerful legacy, as well as the evolution of the characters who leapt from the pages over the last 75 years, and their ongoing worldwide cultural impact. It chronicles how these “disposable diversions” were subject to intense government scrutiny for their influence on American children and how they were created, in large part, by the children of immigrants whose fierce loyalty to a new homeland laid the foundation for a multibillion-dollar industry that is now an influential part of our national identity.
Among the notable on-camera talents in the film are Stan Lee, Adam West, Lynda Carter, Pulitzer Prize winners Michael Chabon and Jules Feiffer, and interviews with the late greats Joe Simon (co-creator of Captain America) and Jerry Robinson (who helped create the Joker) – as well as Arizona locals, Atomic Comics founder Mike Malve, and Spawn creator Todd McFarlane. The three-part film takes viewers on an epic journey of America’s comic-book phenomenon from their early popularity during the Great Depression to modern fandom.
All images courtesy of Eight, Arizona PBS
Catch the final performances of the original Broadway musical version of Seussical this weekend as Valley Youth Theatre (VYT) concludes its two-week run at the Herberger Theater Center. Written by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, and co-conceived by Monty Python alum Eric Idle, this family-friendly production enters the world of Dr. Seuss as young performers offer a fantastic, magical extravaganza.
In Seussical, the Cat in the Hat tells the story of an elephant named Horton who protects the infinitesimal Whos from danger while guarding an abandoned egg. A paean to friendship, loyalty, and community support, the children’s classic includes vivid costumes, full-scale staging, and enthusiastic acting by talented youngsters, some of whom may go on to performing careers.
All images courtesy Valley Youth Theatre.
If you go:
- Valley Youth Theatre
- Remaining showtimes (all at the Herberger Theater Center):
Friday, September 27 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, September 28 at 2PM & 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, September 29 at 2 p.m.
Under the sky, ballet has a completely different feel from the formality and tension of an indoor performance. Anything can happen — wind, stars, insects, and audience all add layers of natural art to even the most carefully planned production.
Each September, Ballet Arizona continues a 15-year tradition of free outdoor community performances at parks across the Valley, this year making stops in Casa Grande, Sun City West, Goodyear, Fountain Hills, Phoenix, and Tempe. On a portable elevated stage complete with lighting and music, costumed dancers share choreography by the iconic George Balanchine, up-and-coming young artist Alejandro Cerrudo, and Ballet Arizona’s own artistic director, Ib Andersen.
On Saturday, September 28, Ballet Under the Stars comes to Steele Indian School Park at 7 p.m., and downtowners can experience a bit of the glorious uncertainty of a live outdoor performance. While the professionals warm up, it’s not uncommon to see a handful of tiny would-be dancers leaping and spinning on grass and sidewalks between lawn chairs and blankets. They’re perfectly prepared to see scenes from Andersen’s luscious Cinderella, set to music by Sergei Prokofiev and featuring fairies, cavaliers, Cinderella, and her prince.
From the classical Cinderella, en pointe in tutus, the program shifts to a contemporary work: Cerrudo’s Second to Last, commissioned by Ballet Arizona for a world premiere this past March. The Spanish-born dancer, who works with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, cites major influence from choreographers Jiří Kylián, Ohad Naharin, and Mats Ek as well as Freddie Mercury.
“I have influences from choreographers that I don’t even like,” Cerrudo declares. “I think everybody does — I think everything that you see, touch, smell, read, see, will influence you for good or for bad. Sometimes you see something and you’re like, ‘Oh, I really need to go the opposite of that in my work, because I see how that makes me feel, or I just don’t like the aesthetics’…and then the opposite way, as we grow up…you create your idea of beauty.”
He continues, “Europe is ahead of us right now in dance, in the sense that they produce more and they’re more progressive. But…I feel like I have a little place here where I can help and promote that growth and…evolution of dance in the States very humbly.”
Second to Last was a lovely revelation at its spring performances, a sensual exploration of every possibility of movement between two dancers. “People should come and see it,” says Cerrudo earnestly, “because it’s not meant to be explained with words…[it’s] meant to be experienced.”
During Ballet Under the Stars, students from Clarendon Elementary School take the stage as Class Act, an after-school program guided by Ballet Arizona dancers in which the students choreograph and premiere a new work.
The evening ends with Balanchine’s The Four Temperaments, with music for strings and piano commissioned from Paul Hindemith by the choreographer in 1940. Three themes danced by three successive couples broaden into variations named after the four humors of the human body specified in medieval cosmology, beginning with melancholic (analytical), continuing with sanguinic (sociable) and phlegmatic (calm), and ending with choleric (ambitious).
If you can’t make it to Ballet Under the Stars, consider visiting Ballet Arizona’s huge new dance center during its grand opening on October 12 from 10:30 a.m to 2 p.m. — it includes free performances, classes, and tours with a drawing for season tickets.
- Ballet Under the Stars
- Ballet Arizona’s Cinderella – Oct. 30 through Nov. 3 with The Phoenix Symphony at Symphony Hall
- Choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo
- George Balanchine’s ballet The Four Temperaments
- The Balanchine Trust
- The Balanchine Foundation
- Ballet Arizona’s past program Director’s Choice
- Ballet Arizona’s past program All Balanchine
- Ballet Arizona’s grand opening on Oct. 12
2836 E. Washington St., Phoenix, 85034
But then there is the “visioning” meeting, where the talking, planning and exchange of ideas converge to create a long view for what could take shape in the future.
These discussions represent an exciting hands-on opportunity to help shape our downtown, and as the Hance Park Conservancy can attest, few areas are in more need of a real vision than Margaret T. Hance Park (sometime referred to as Deck Park).
Input and feedback are being gathered from all community stakeholders on the redesign of our 32-acre urban park. The goal is to define a framework and set of ideas that reposition Hance Park as a vibrant destination that adds even more value to our city.
The City of Phoenix and Hance Park Master Plan Design Team is inviting members of the public to join the conversation by participating in the Community Visioning Workshop. Everyone with ideas for the future of Hance Park is encouraged to attend.
See representatives of downtown organizations in action in photos below, and join tonight’s discussion on how to make Hance Park great.
If you go
What: Community Visioning Workshop
When: Wednesday, September 25, 6 to 8 p.m.
Where: Cutler Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center, 122 E. Culver St., Phoenix, AZ 85004
”En-Hance” based on image courtesy of City of Phoenix
DPJ’s Wire series delivers news and information straight from the source without translation.
Downtown Phoenix and Tempe Celebrate PARK(ing) Day 2013 THIS Friday, September 20th During Morning Rush Hour
Parking spaces around the globe to be temporarily reclaimed for people!
In cities around the globe, this Friday, September 20th, artists, activists and citizens will temporarily transform metered parking spaces into public parks and other social spaces, as part of an annual event called “PARK(ing) Day” during morning rush hour at two locations in downtown Phoenix and one location in downtown Tempe.
Originally invented in 2005 by Rebar, a San Francisco-based art and design studio, PARK(ing) Day challenges people to rethink the way streets are used and reinforces the need for broad-based changes to urban infrastructure.
This will be the 5th annual Park(ing) Day event in downtown Phoenix. The event is organized by Stacey Champion, community activist and Founder of the local sustainability group, Rogue Green. The first Phoenix Park(ing) Day was launched by community activist Yuri Artibise who now resides in Vancouver BC.
“This is not a day to protest, but a day to rethink how we use our public space to feel a sense of connection and community engagement within a large city. If Phoenix is to thrive, walkability and connectivity need to be important factors moving forward. Small, green, public spaces feed the soul.” says Champion.
ASU students from both the downtown Phoenix and Tempe campuses will also be taking part in the event with students Connor Descheemaker and Mitchell Bobman leading the ASU locations.
The event will take place from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. THIS Friday, September 20th.
There will be three organized morning locations:
- Main PARK(ing) Day Location - Washington St. between 1st Ave. & 2nd Ave. on south side of street – Day of Contact: Stacey – 602-788-0033
- ASU Downtown Campus - Along First Street between Taylor and Fillmore, in front of Taylor Place - Day of Contact: Connor – 480-326-6551
- ASU Tempe students – At metered parking spaces at 5th & Mill in downtown Tempe – Organized by ASU Students for the New Urbanism – Day of Contact: Mitchell – 480-254-5454
Confirmed 2013 PARKS include: Dixieland PARK with the Dixie Devils, Chalkboard PARK by Rogue Green, Percussion PARK with members of the Rhythm is Life Steel Band, Coffee with a Cop PARK, Dog PARK, Bike PARK by Phoenix Spokes People, ArchiPARK, Lounge PARK, Eco-fessional by Arizona Interfaith Power & Light, Game PARK and many more… Plus we’ll probably have a special visit by Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton!
PARK(ing) Day is an “open-source” user-generated invention created by independent groups around the globe who adapt the project to champion creative, social or political causes that are relevant to their local urban conditions. More information is available on the PARK(ing) Day website, at http://parkingday.org.