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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Brahms away

Symphony unleashes two juggernauts and a fawn

by Lawrence Cosentino
Saturday’s Lansing Symphony concert featured the most highly anticipated orchestra-and-soloist tandem of the 2011-Ž12 season, French pianist Philippe Bianconi’s energetic go at Johannes Brahms’s Second Piano Concerto. Would the collision of a top pianist and a mighty music make for a memorable night?
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Garden dreams

A bouquet of gardeners share their styles, hopes and delights

by Lawrence Cosentino
Last week, Dan Crow picked his way through the wind-blasted garden that surrounds his home in Perry. "It looks like a disaster," Crow said. "This is the ugliest time of year. Everything’s beat up. Yesterday there were two trees down — a Serbian spruce and a pine."
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Advice Goddess

Lard Of the dance & memory bank fraud

by Amy Alkon
Q: When I got married, I was a slim 6’2”, but I’ve gained a lot of weight. My wife gained about 20 pounds but recently lost that and more. I’ve been as high as 265, but I’m now at 238 and losing about a pound a week, which isn’t fast enough for my wife. When I contemplate going on a stricter diet, what comes to mind is feeling angry, tired, and hungry at my high-stress job. My wife said that I obviously love food more than her, and that if I won’t lose weight for her, maybe I’ll do it for our boys.
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

An officer and an author

Actor-soldier-memoirist Benjamin Busch looks back on being a Marine — and playing a Marine

by Bill Castanier
Busch — an artist, actor, soldier and now author — shows his poetic vision of life and death in this unusual memoir, which doesn’t follow the usual conventions. For example, the story isn’t linear, but is broken into the sub-categories of Arms, Water, Metal, Soil, Bone, Wood, Blood and Ash, things the author refers to as elemental. Typically, he alternates chapters on his war experience with those of growing up.
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

St. Patrick’s Day Events

by City Pulse
What’s better than a day dedicated to drinking? Not having to take a day off work to enjoy a day dedicated to drinking. This year, St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Saturday; the next time it happens—2018—we’ll probably be able to teleport to a bar on the moon for last call. Which will be great for all those future college seniors who are only just starting high school this year, but as for 2012 weŽll have to keep our feet on the ground and stick to local establishments. So this year, take solace in the knowledge that if you want to spend an entire day drinking (and spilling) green beer, you don’t have to lie to your boss this year to get away with it.
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Guitar star

Grammy winner Isbin picks up on 'Passion'

by Rich Tupica
That confidence is a testament to her steadfast skills with the nylon strings and her poised on-stage coolness. At the November 2009 show, Isbin performed just feet away from the First Family and did what she does at every show: sat, guitar in lap, masterfully nailing each note.
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Take a bow

Violinist makes his own 'transitional journey'

by Rich Tupica
He now plays, what he calls, "a transformational journey through digital violin." It’s a field that relies heavily on improvisation, digital-effects processors and looping pedals, creating an experimental blend of classical, even some rock tones. On Thursday, he brings his ingenuity to the Creole Gallery.
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Turn it down

by Rich Tupica
Who says St. Patrick’s Day has to be all about Irish music? This Saturday Mac’s Bar is all about rugged American-style rocking. Black Jake & the Carnies, an Ypsilanti-based band, headlines the night, delivering ferocious murder ballads and foreboding tales to the beat of an old-time string band. The septet’s blend of Americana, bluegrass and punk (dubbed “crabgrass”) sets a disorderly pace for original songs about evil creatures and banjo-pickinŽ demoniacs. The band features Black Jake (banjo, vocals), Joe Cooter (bass), Gu
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

Au revoir to 'Oklahoma' and so long 'Hello, Dolly!'

This season’s high school musicals include ‘Hairspray,’ ‘9 to 5,’ ‘Chicago’ — and ‘The Phantom of the Opera’

by James Sanford
To some, the term "high school musical' calls to mind visions of Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale. To others, it means wake-me-when-it’s-over productions of "H.M.S. Pinafore" or "Peter Pan."
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Wednesday, March 14,2012

The screening room

The humor is hard-hitting in Gleeson's 'Guard'

by James Sanford
"The Guard" teams dumpling-faced, plain-talking small-town police sergeant Gerry Boyle (Brendan Gleeson) with the considerably more polished and professional Wendell Everett (Don Cheadle), an FBI agent assigned to track down international narcotics traffickers who are bringing a boat full of cocaine to the Emerald Isle.
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