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  • Planet Ant presents A Steady Rain

    The Planet Ant Theatre in Hamtramck will present a police drama called A Steady Rain May 2 through 24. Planet Ant veterans Ryan Carlson and York Griffith will star in the play, written by House of Cards and Mad Men co-writer Keith Huff. Tickets ($10-$20) are on sale now at PlanetAnt.com. According to the press release, “A Steady Rain by Keith Huff focuses on Joey and Denny, best friends since kindergarten and partners on the police force whose loyalty to each other is tested by domestic affairs, violence and the rough streets of Chicago. Joey helps Denny with his family and Denny helps Joey stay off the bottle. But when a routine disturbance call takes a turn for the worse their loyalty is put to the ultimate test.First produced at Chicago Dramatists, A Steady Rain appeared on Broadway featuring Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig. The Planet Ant production of A Steady Rain is directed by York Griffith featuring Ryan Carlson and Andy Huff. This marks the return of two of Planet Ant’s founding members. Carlson and Griffith. Griffith has served as the theatre’s Artistic Director where he directed the critically-acclaimed productions The Adding Machine and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? […]

    The post Planet Ant presents A Steady Rain appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • You can wear Detroit’s blight on your face

    There is no easy answer to the question regarding what should be done with Detroit’s abandoned homes. However, an Eastern Market company has a solution that could reflect Detroit’s possibly bright future. Homes Eyewear has set out to make the city a little more stylish, and do their part in cleaning it up by repurposing select woods from neglected homes for sunglasses. All of the wood that Homes uses is harvested from vacant houses with the assistance of Reclaim Detroit. A lot of work goes into prepping the wood to be cut and shaped into frames. Homes goes through each piece to remove nails, paint or anything else detrimental to their production (it’s a bit strange to think that your wooden sunglasses could have had family portraits nailed to them). In order to produce more durable eyewear, they salvage only hardwoods like maple or beech, which are difficult to come by as most of the blighted homes were built with softer woods like Douglas fir and pine. If you’re worried about looking goofy, or shudder at the thought of salvaged wood resting on your nose, you can rest easy. Homes currently offers frames in the popular wayfarer style and are developing their unique spin on the classic aviators. For as […]

    The post You can wear Detroit’s blight on your face appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor

    Detroit home-girl Lily Tomlin will perform at the Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor on Saturday, June 14. A press release reads, “Get together with Lily Tomlin for an unforgettable night of fun and sidesplitting laughter. “Tomlin is amazing” The NY Times and “as always a revelation.” The New Yorker This unique comic artist takes her audience on what the Washington Post calls a “wise and howlingly funny” trip with more than a dozen of her timeless characters—from Ernestine to Mrs. Beasley to Edith Ann.” “With astounding skill and energy, Tomlin zaps through the channels like a human remote control. Using a fantastic range of voices, gestures and movements, she conjures up the cast of characters with all the apparent ease of a magician pulling a whole menagerie of animals from a single hat.” NY Daily News “Her gentle touch is as comforting as it is edifying.” NY Time Out She has “made the one-person show the daring, irreverent art form it is today.” Newsweek Her long list of awards includes: a Grammy; two Tonys; six Emmys; an Oscar nomination; two Peabodys; and the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Find more info here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor

    The Detroit Metro Times, Detroit’s award-winning alternative weekly media company, is proud to announce the recent hire of Valerie Vande Panne as Editor-in-Chief. An award-winning independent journalist and Michigan native, Vande Panne’s work has appeared in Crain’s Detroit Business, The Daily Beast, and Salon, among other publications. Previously, Vande Panne attended Harvard University and was a regular contributor to The Boston Phoenix, and a news editor of High Times magazine. She has spent years covering drug policy among other subjects, including the environment, culture, lifestyle, extreme sports, and academia. “Valerie understands our business and what we expect to accomplish in Detroit. She has an excellent sense for stories that will move our readers, as well as experience with balancing print and digital content. I’m excited to have her at the paper and trust her leadership as we move forward,” said Detroit Metro Times publisher Chris Keating.

    The post Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’

    She welcomes you when you enter Detroit, from every direction, with the one word that might just be Detroit’s biggest philosophical question: Injured? Joumana Kayrouz is deeper than the inflated image watching over Detroit, peddling justice to the poor and broken of the city. This Wednesday, Drew Philp takes us behind the billboard and into the heart of the Kayrouz quest. (And all of Brian Rozman’s photos of Kayrouz have not been retouched.) Check out MT‘s cover story, on newsstands Wednesday!

    The post Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt

    There was a fire in an upstairs apartment at PJ’s Lager House on Monday evening. No people were hurt, although three cats belonging to the tenants died after CPR. The fire broke out around 10:30 p.m. during a show featuring Zombie Jesus & the Chocolate Sunshine Band, Curtin, and Jeffrey Jablonsky. “We just smelled smoke and someone yelled everyone has to get out,” 33-year-old Nick Leu told MLive. On the Lager House Facebook page in the early hours of the morning, a post said, “We at PJ’s lager House would like to thank everyone for their care and concern. Also, a very big THANK YOU to all who stepped up to do what they could this evening. The fire was contained to the upstairs but due to water damage in the bar, we will be closed until it can be assessed. Everyone is safe and we will keep you updated.” A later update read, “Update from the big boss. Since there was no damage to the stage side of the bar, the show will go on tomorrow! You may have to enter through the back door and there may not be a large selection of booze but we are going […]

    The post Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Summer Guide 2011

Life's a beach

Summer highs to look forward to

Photo: , License: N/A

Ty Stone helps open the fest July 1.

Photo: , License: N/A

Macy Gray helps close the festival June 26.


Summer Guide 2011
  • In (the) heat The psychology, anthropology and politics of the summer fling | 6/15/2011
  • Juggalos in the mist A retreat to the wilderness turns weird in a heartbeat | 6/15/2011
  • Killer prose By day, he's a Detroit business writer. On his time off, Tom Henderson is a chronicler of the sensational, the lurid | 6/15/2011
  • Feed your head Detroiter lit-lovers share their summer reads | 6/15/2011
  • Life's a beach Summer highs to look forward to | 6/15/2011


July 14-17: Concert of Colors

Don Was' first All-Star Revue seemed like a great idea that had just barely scratched the surface in terms of possible stars. Now back for its fourth installment, it's hard to imagine the Concert of Colors without it. This year Was brings in Martha Reeves, Brothers Groove, Ivan Kral, Black Irish, Jim McCarty and Wendell Harrison, among others, and presents such pairings as Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Cobras, and Melvin Davis and the United Sounds. Also on tap this year, headliner Bettye LaVette and such world music exemplars as Latin jazz master Orlando "Maraca" Valle, East Indian jazz-soul songstress Susheela Raman and Colombian folk-jazz fusion artist Pablo Mayor's Folklore Urbano Orchestra. Others to perform include Amp Fiddler, Immigrant Suns, Audra Kubat, Hamtramck World Music Ensemble, Will Sessions, Odu Afrobeat Orchestra, belly dancers, taiko drummers and on and on. Performances will be at Orchestra Hall, as for a number of years, but also now at the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History and Scarab Club. And it's all free! Man alive! See concertofcolors.com.


July 15-17: Jackson Hot Air Jubilee

No, the Hot Air Jubilee isn't a gathering of politicians. It is, however, an event that will bring more than 50 hot air balloons to the skies above Jackson. Especially beautiful are the balloon "night glows" that will take place Friday and Saturday evenings. In addition to the lofty bags of hot air (we promise, this isn't about politicians) there will be shows featuring arts and crafts, classic cars and wild animals. As if that's not enough fun, there'll also be antique military displays, aerial demos, live entertainment, plenty of food and much more at this free event. Ella Sharp Park, Jackson; 517-782-1515; hotairjubilee.com.


July 16: Scene Reunion Party

It was Detroit's answer to Soul Train, with Nat Morris as Don Cornelius and a crew of Detroiters putting on the dance moves and grooves. As a local show, it hardly had Soul Train's cachet to pull in celebs to chat and lip synch, but it wasn't without its star visitors. "We learned such dances like the shake, the prep, the jit, (various versions of) the Smurf. ... Lawwwwd, the Jheri curl juice lubricated the screen," reminisces former Detroiter Frederick Smith on his blog. What's billed as the first official reunion party is being held at Bert's Warehouse, 2739 Russell St., Detroit; 313-567-2030; thescenedetroit.com.


July 17: Michigan Jazz Festival

Particularly poignant this year will be Ed Nuccilli's Plural Circle, performing without its founder conducting; the composer-arranger passed away earlier this year. The all-jazz, all-local festival is a daylong celebration of the local jazz scene with six stages running more or less throughout the day. Among the attractions: The Sean Dobbins Trio, George Benson Quartet, the Johnny Trudell Big Band, Dennis Tini Trio, Paul Keller's Michigan Jazz Suite and a series of solo piano performances, encompassing ragtime (Taslimah Bey), boogie-woogie (Bob Seeley) and players steeped in bop and beyond from Ellen Rowe to Charles Boles. At Schoolcraft Community College, 18600 Haggerty Rd., Livonia; michiganjazzfestival.homestead.com.


July 23: Midsummer Meltdown

Gathering over a dozen DJs from around the country (and world, for that matter), the Majestic and Magic Stick will be home to one helluva show this July. Burst Detroit is providing additional sound and lighting to the venues for a night of sweaty, in-your-face electronic music. Promised is a stellar light show, a pre-party barbecue, a slew of sexy go-go dancers and more than 60 subwoofers in addition to house speakers — that's right, more than 60 massive 18-inch monsters ready to melt your face and damage your ears. Featuring DJ Rozz and Chris Trip (Chicago and Milwaukee), Zoo Logic (Detroit), Dirty Talk (Minnesota and Colombia), Nice Lab (Detroit) and more. Earplugs advised. From 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. at the Majestic Theater and Magic Stick, 4140 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-833-9700; $20 before 10 p.m., $25 after; 18+.


July 28: Death Cab for Cutie

What began as a side-project for a group of wide-eyed college students has turned into one of indie rock's most successful stories. Since its debut in '98, Death Cab for Cutie has achieved relative mainstream success without losing its indie cred, gained new fans without alienating the longtime diehards, and grown and matured without losing the core of what made the band so popular in the first place — dreamy textures, catchy hooks and the heart-bursting sincerity of frontman Ben Gibbard. The group's recently released seventh disc, Codes and Keys, features a foray into keyboard-based electronics and a change from melancholia into a gently uplifting outlook. Death Cab performs in support of the release at 7:30 p.m. at the Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-6611; $30-$45.


July 29-31: Yale Bologna Fest

A friend of ours who lives in these parts jokes that, when you graduate from high school in Yale, chances are you'll either go into the service or apply at the bologna factory. The point being that, in Yale, bologna is the biggest thing in town. And their Bologna Fest is no baloney. Every year since 1989, the sleepy outstate downtown turns into a massive festival that can include everything from fireworks to outhouse races. The quirky bash draws thousands, and its highlight is the selection of the fest's Bologna King and Bologna Queen, who are then crowned and get to ride a parade float dedicated to "Bologna Royalty," courtesy of the Yale Chamber of Commerce. Expect family-friendly high jinks and, of course, food, including bologna. And where does the bologna come from? From C. Roy, Inc., a truly local operation that buys its stock from local farms. Main Street, downtown Yale; yalechamber.com.

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