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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 2011-12 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 7,2012

Eyesore of the week

by Lawrence Cosentino
Property: 500 S. Fairview Ave., Lansing Owners: Bobbie and Claudia Pelfery Assessed: $38,100 Owner says: Unable to be reached for comment Some houses flake away quietly at the edges, tucked among better cared for neighbors, without drawing a second glance.
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Wednesday, March 7,2012

A gay rights first

East Lansing led the nation in local legislation that protected gay employees against discrimination. Forty years later, the city celebrates.

by Lawrence Cosentino
Two score years ago, after hearing from an angry resident who didn’t want to pay the city $11 for mowing his vacant lot and before taking up the matter of an abandoned easement, the East Lansing City Council made national human rights history.
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Wednesday, March 7,2012

'Love is very mysterious'

Guest pianist Philippe Bianconi plunges into a sea of Brahms with Lansing Symphony Orchestra

by Lawrence Cosentino
For a globe-trotting pianist with some top-shelf awards on his mantel, Philippe Bianconi seems to have a pronounced Buddhist streak. He loves nothing more than to dissolve into something greater than himself.
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Wednesday, February 29,2012

City Pulse Leap Year gift guide

by Lawrence Cosentino
It’s un-American. From the Declaration of Independence to the birth of Christ, everything that’s sacred in our land gets a temporary aisle at K-Mart. Who is cashing in on the rarest holiday of all? Where are our Leap Year Peeps?
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Wednesday, February 29,2012

The quiet fixer

How Feb. 29 keeps the year humming

by Lawrence Cosentino
Every four years, the calendar starts to shudder and creep out of place, like a dryer with a bad belt. Wait too long to fix it and the damn thing will creep across the floor.
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Wednesday, February 29,2012

Is Feb. 29 really Leap Year day?

by Lawrence Cosentino
The cocktail-party showoff term for Leap Year is “bissextile year,” which is easy to remember when you recall that Julius Caesar was bisexual (“every woman’s husband and every man’s wife,” quipped Caesar’s biographer Suetonius).
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Wednesday, February 29,2012

A musical mixed bag

Lansing Symphony falters and stumbles before standing and delivering during an uneven evening

by Lawrence Cosentino
Suddenly, the brass went off like a car alarm, leaving only visual evidence that the violins were still at work, playing intricate patterns. (Most music lovers could fill in the famous fiddlework mentally, having heard the music many times, but still.)
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Wednesday, February 22,2012

Battle over the bond

East Lansing school plan divides a passionate community

by Lawrence Cosentino
Supporters of the plan say the district needs to act on a grand scale now, before plunging property values erode its capacity to apply for bonds in order to replace or upgrade 40- and 50-year-old elementary school buildings.
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