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  • 48 to film — behind the scenes at the 48 Hour Film Project

    By Amanda Mooney There’s a lot that goes into producing a film, and unless you are a filmmaker you really have no idea. Writing, casting, finding a location, shooting, and editing; each step of the process can take days, months, and sometimes years to complete. Can you imagine doing it ALL in just 48 hours? The 48 Hour Film Project is an annual competition that takes place all over the world in various cities. According to Mike Madigan, head of the Detroit 48 Hour chapter, the city is one of the largest participating in terms of the number of teams. The competing teams go in blind as to what kind of film they will be producing, with no creative planning beyond getting a cast and crew together, Madigan explained. “They pick a genre out of a hat, and they get a line, a prop, and a character. And they have to incorporate that within a short film, that’s usually between 4 to 7 minutes long. And they have the timeframe of doing it all within 48 hours,” said Madigan, “So all the creative process of it all has to happen within that 48 hour–writing a script, putting it together, editing–to […]

    The post 48 to film — behind the scenes at the 48 Hour Film Project appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Passalacqua debut dark project ‘Church: Revival’ at new Hamtramck performance space

    Church: Revival is the new project by local rap duo Passalacqua (aka Bryan Lackner and Brent Smith), but it’s more than just a new Passalacqua release. The rappers teamed up with siblings Jax Anderson (frontwoman of rockers Flint Eastwood) and Seth Anderson, who together form the songwriting team called Syblyng (naturally). The result is a cycle of songs that promises to be darker than Passalacqua’s material so far. The project will make a live debut on Saturday, July 26 at a brand new venue space at the Detroit Bus Co.’s building Eight & Sand, and they will premiere the Right Bros.-directed video for the track “Baptism” as well. Other performances include Tunde Olaniran and Open Mike Eagle, and DJ sets by Nothing Elegant, Dante LaSalle, and Charles Trees. We met up the two duos at Eight & Sand to check out the new space and to talk about the project with all parties involved. Metro Times: How long have you been working together? Jax Anderson: Seth and I are constantly writing songs together. We want to push in the direction of becoming songwriters more frequently. This is our first project that we took on to co-write everything together. We’re basically just a songwriting entity. We won’t play live that […]

    The post Passalacqua debut dark project ‘Church: Revival’ at new Hamtramck performance space appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • PETA offers to pay overdue water bills for Detroiters willing to go vegan

    #150207742 / gettyimages.com As locals continue to flood Detroit streets to protest the city’s ongoing water debacle, one national organization is hoping to be part of the solution — that is, for a dietary price. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA as the organization is more commonly known, has offered to pay outstanding water bills for 10 Detroiters who are willing to go vegan for one month. “Vegan meals take far less of a toll on the Earth’s resources,” PETA representatives said in a recent press release. “It takes about 2,500 gallons of water to produce just a pound of meat but only about 155 gallons of water to produce a pound of wheat.” PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk adds, “Vegan meals are also a cost-effective way to help prevent health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart conditions, the last thing that someone who is struggling financially needs to deal with.” Folks interested in participating are asked to send a copy of their most recent overdue water bill and their written pledge to go vegan for one month to PETA Attn: Detroit Water at 501 Front St., Norfolk, VA 23510 before Aug. 1.

    The post PETA offers to pay overdue water bills for Detroiters willing to go vegan appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Dinner Club Does Brunch

    Sure, The Dinner Club, a regularly occurring pop-up that takes places at the Storefront Gallery  in Ferndale (and other locations, occasionally), usually happens around dinner time, but this Sunday, July 27, there will be a special edition: Brunch Chef Matthew Baldridge, who’s resume includes stints at such Detroit greats as Cliff Bell’s, The Rattlesnake Club, and Seldom Blues, has crafted a menu of French-inspired items that employ locally procured ingredients. Brunch includes four courses where guests will be treated to such delights as cocoa, cinnamon, chili-spiced creamy grits with pickled strawberries, cocoa puffs and strawberry-infused syrup, a smoked gouda potato gallette with Faygo Root Beer braised pork belly, quail egg and Faygo Root Beer syrup, banana marscapone-filled French toast with fresh raspberries, whipped cream and balsamic syrup, and champagne-soaked strawberries. It is also important to note that brunch is BYOChampagne. Baldridge, along with The Storefront Gallery’s Derek John and Lilacpop Studio owner and artist Janna Coumoundouros, curate the event that includes an art show, a great playlist, and visuals. Brunch services are at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. and last about two hours, only 20 seats are available at each service. The cost is $25 plus a service fee. The Storefront Gallery […]

    The post Dinner Club Does Brunch appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Jurassic 5 holds onto what’s golden

      By Ashley Zlatopolsky It’s been a little over twenty years since iconic ‘90s alternative hip-hop group Jurassic 5 first formed in Los Angeles’ Good Life club. Widely regarded as a pivotal influence in the decade’s underground hip-hop movement by critics and fans alike, the six-piece crew consisting of two DJs (Cut Chemist and DJ Nu-Mark) and four MCs (Akil, Zaakir, Marc 7 and Chali 2na) were well on their way to becoming one of hip-hop’s greatest and most powerful acts of all time, ranking alongside names such as Public Enemy and N.W.A. with socially-conscious lyrics and smooth beats paired with smart sampling. But in 2004, Cut Chemist left the group to pursue a solo career, and in 2007 Jurassic 5 completely called it quits after nearly 15 years of music. And that was it for the crew until 2013. After almost seven years apart (nine for Cut Chemist), Jurassic 5 reunited and re-emerged stronger than ever before with a new flair, seasoned attitude, and more vibrant energy at Coachella Music Festival, the group’s first show with the original six members since Cut Chemist split. During their performance, Jurassic 5 gave fans a memorable concert revisiting all the classic feel-good tracks […]

    The post Jurassic 5 holds onto what’s golden appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit Riverwalk west extension opens from Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks

    Dogs of Detroit have new territory to trot: Yesterday, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy held a soft opening for a 20-acre westward extension of the Riverwalk. Part of a planned two-mile track of the West Riverwalk, the new span runs from the Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks Boulevard, says Mark Pasco, director of communications for the conservancy. “It’s going to be great,” Pasco says. “It’s a wide open green space. It’s going to be great for activities.” The endgame for the Riverwalk, Pasco notes, is to extend the walkway from the Ambassador Bridge to Gabriel Richard Park, just past the MacArthur Bridge — about a 5.5. mile route. The new westward expansion is wider than most of the walkway, about 30 feet, says Pasco — a decision made by the conservancy to accommodate fisherman that previously frequented the area. “We knew … once it opened up they’d want to fish there again, so we made the Riverwalk itself wider,” Pasco says. The conservancy will hold a grand opening in late September, which will include “food and music and activities,” Pasco says, though no official date has been set.

    The post Detroit Riverwalk west extension opens from Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Best of Detroit 2011

Public Square - Readers' Choice

Our local riches, from media to politics to business and more, as judged by our readers

Photo: Photo: Marvin Shaouni, License: N/A

Photo: Marvin Shaouni


The bingo experience transcended: Bingo in the company of lovely drag queens draped in vibrant coloraturas at Five15 — a cafe and "media shop" located in Royal Oak — the first and last Friday of every month as well as every Saturday. It's essentially a comedy show, with a drag queen reading out the bingo balls. And prizes: usually a mug, T-shirt and a little gift from the drag queen's box. Depending on the night, games are at 8 p.m. or at 7:30 and 10 p.m. — check the website for info (and to see a video clip of what you're in for).

 

Best Place to Tailgate

Eastern Market
detroiteasternmarket.com

Easily accessible from I-75, I-375 and Gratiot and Mack, and about a 10-minute walk from Ford Field, it's got space to throw a football. If it's too cold, rainy, windy or snowy to be outside, Vivio's and Roma Café offer shelter, grub, drinks and shuttles to the game. For prices and a map of parking locations, see the website. For the best time before and after the game, see you at the market.

 

Best Beach

Metro Beach Metro Park
31300 Metropolitan Parkway, Harrison Township; 586-463-4332; metroparks.com

It's actually a peninsula, 750 acres jutting into Lake St. Clair. It's got a pool with waterslides, a white-sand beach, shaded bike paths, a par-three golf course, miniature golf, picnic areas, boat docks, volleyball, a nature center, a wooded trail and a pond where turtles sun on wooden rafts. It's got 1,600 feet of boardwalk. And the cross-section of metro Detroiters it attracts makes it equally interesting as a place to observe the parade of humanity. Gaze south to see the RenCen through the haze.

 

Best Place for a Picnic

Belle Isle
fobi.org

In case you were wondering about renting one of the 20 picnic shelters for a large group event, the number to call is the Belle Isle Special Events Office at 313-628-2081. But there are plenty of spots for spreading a blanket and uncorking your jug throughout the 1.5-square-mile island. This Saturday (April 30) you can even help make the island attractive by pitching in with the Friends of Belle Isle's annual cleanup. Meet at the casino at 9 a.m., bring boots and gloves and be prepared to work until noon when there'll be refreshments. Call 313-331-7760 or e-mail fobi@sbcglobal.net

 

Best Eastern Market Vendor or Shop

R. Hirt Jr.
2468 Market St., Detroit; 313-567-1173

Dating back to 1887, the store actually predates by four years Eastern Market's move from Cadillac Square to its present location. Pay attention to the space, with its wide aisles and high ceilings, and with a little imagination, you can get a feel of that earlier era here. Of course, folks come here first and foremost for the 300 or so varieties of cheese and a knowledgeable a staff to go with it. (Watch for the weekly specials.) There are pantry items galore: oils, coffees, teas, spices, pastas, chocolates, etc., etc. And the third floor has wicker items and a hard-to-describe assortment of things from oddball gewgaw toys to soaps and lotions to $300 wind chimes.

 

Best Farmers' Market in Wayne County

Eastern Market

At 43 acres, it is reputedly the nations's largest public market, and we've yet to take an out-of-towner who hasn't been impressed on a fair-weather Saturday when the place bustles with life, from the breakfast line snaking out of Russell Street Deli to the engaging buskers, from just-off-the-vine vegetables to specialty vendors like mushroom man extraordinaire Don Schneider. In recent years, there've been physical improvements and an influx of new vendors bringing all-natural and organic options, and more specialty items. But has it lost its character? If anything, it's been enhanced.

 

Best Farmers' Market in Oakland County

Royal Oak Farmers Market
316 E. 11 Mile Rd., Royal Oak; 248-246-3276

Located in the Civic Center of Royal Oak (near the library and the 44th District Court), the Royal Oak Farmers Market is itself a civic operation, put on by the City of Royal Oak itself. The selection here is outstanding, and the event makes for a great way to spend a Saturday (especially a sunny one). Among the variety of products that are sold are breads, pies, flowers, fruits, veggies and soaps.

 

Best Farmers' Market in Macomb County

Clinton Township Farmers Market
37685 S. Gratiot Ave., Clinton Twp.; 586-469-2525

Quality imbues every product here, from the veggies to the meats. It has everything one desires in a farmer's market, namely the sight of fresh produce stacked ceiling-high: scattered towers of melons, apples, oranges, tomatoes, green beans, etc.

 

Best Farmers' Market in Washtenaw County

Ann Arbor Farmers Market
315 Detroit, St., Ann Arbor; 734-794-6255

Located in the Kerrytown District of Ann Arbor, the A2 Farmers Market is, of course, full of fresh and voluptuous fruits and veggies, but is also full of delicious sweet treats, such as sweet potato pecan pies. The market is producers-only (to those interested in becoming vendors), and serves at the moment as a base for more than 100 producers.

 

Best Local TV News

WJBK-TV2
myfoxdetroit.com

Local television is notoriously competitive, never more so than in our "Best of Detroit" contest. But Fox 2 narrowly "edged" the others this year. Was it, we wonder, the addition of former Detroit News writer Charlie LeDuff, who brought his quirky, renegade investigative style to the Problem Solver team? Is it Fox 2 Morning, the only fully local morning show available after 7 a.m.? Or could it be the fast-paced evening newscasts that include such segments as "The Edge" and "Let it Rip," all-too-rare volleys of lively discussion and spirited debate on local TV news?

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