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Wednesday, February 19,2014

REVIEW: “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” at Wharton

Disney fairytale paints by numbers for audience-pleasing spectacle

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Wednesday, Feb. 19 — Not much has changed to “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” — playing through Sunday at the Wharton Center — since it debuted 20 years ago and inspired the resurgence of film-to-stage adaptations. Despite some clever illusions and overpowering musical numbers, the paint-by-numbers production never feels truly magical, and with nothing new to offer, it feels as trapped in the past as the denizens of the story’s enchanted castle.
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Wednesday, February 19,2014

New In Town

Michigan Mart/Whipped/Artie´s Filling Station

by ALLAN I. ROSS
This week, Michigan Mart in Lansing’s East Side neighborhood moved into its new home with a vastly expanded 10,000-squarefoot floor plan and a slightly expanded name: Michigan Market. Since 1973 the building, 1908 E. Michigan intown Ave., was home to H.C.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

New rodeo in town

Organizers will promote river activities with Lansing summer fest

by ALLAN I. ROSS
The Grand River flows north and west from Hillsdale just south of Jackson, through Lansing and out to Grand Haven, where it dumps into Lake Michigan. It’s about 250 miles long, but it’s only the milelong stretch running through downtown Lansing we’re focusing on here.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

100 shows and counting

‘Leaving Iowa’ director celebrates milestone with Riverwalk comedy

by ALLAN I. ROSS
A typical community theater show usually takes about two months of work from first rehearsal through closing night. If you take that as your average, actor/ director Michael Schacherbauer has spent 200 months — just under 20 years of his life — pounding the boards or calling “action” for one show or another.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

Forming Team Tony

Fundraiser helps ailing local theater director

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Two weeks ago, Williamston Theatre’s co-founder and artistic director Tony Caselli, 45, was hospitalized. His family requested that full details not be revealed, but confirmed that he is “fighting a sudden and unexpected illness.”
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

New In Town

Travelers Club/ White Bros. Music/ Mayfair Bar

by ALLAN I. ROSS
The Travelers Club International Restaurant and Tuba Museum is looking to add some flavor to Old Town. The longtime business, which closed in November 2012 after 30 years on the corner of Okemos and Hamilton roads in Okemos, wants to make the move to the old Mustang Bar, 1215 Turner St., bringing its globe-hopping menu, and possibly a microbrewery, to the historic Lansing district.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

Angels and unbalanced washing machines

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner on his body of work, same-sex marriage and spending time with Abraham Lincoln

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Last year, President Barack Obama presented Tony Kushner with the National Medal of Arts, the highest individual honor given for achievement in the arts. The award crowned a lifetime of groundbreaking work, which has encompassed a variety of media, including essays, books, operas and screenplays.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

NEXT time

Old Town gets young in February with art, music, comedy exhibition

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Lansing’s Old Town district is a textbook example of transforming a formerly undesir able neighborhood into a thriving arts community, but that doesn’t mean it still couldn’t use some tweaking. And Henry Brimmer thinks he’s just the guy to do the tweaking.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

The social network

‘Short Term 12’ follows the unsung heroes of social work

by ALLAN I. ROSS
You have to be tough as nails, both physically and emotionally, to be a social worker. On any given day, you could have to wrestle a frenzied teen to the ground or mop up the blood from a suicide attempt. The indie drama “Short Term 12,” part of the East Lansing Film Series at Studio C!, believably depicts the highs and the lows of a group of college-age workers helping emotionally damaged teens.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

New In Town

ATHENA´S DINER/ OFILIA´S EL BURRITO

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Athenas Diner opened last week in the former home of Big Jon’s Country Burgers. Owner/operator Anton Prenaj renovated the former location for Jon’s Country Burgers, leaving the eatery’s signature tabletop telephones in place.
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