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Wednesday, April 27,2011

South side stench

GM Grand River Assembly Plant investigates moldy paint smell

by Lawrence Cosentino
With the return of warm weather, Turner and other residents of Lansing’s near south side are going outside for some fresh air, only to be slammed with a sour smell variously described as “paint,” “chemical,” “heavy exhaust,” “ammonia or cat pee,” “moldy” and “a weird mix of organic and synthetic.
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Wednesday, April 20,2011

Nel's Ravel gels well

Lansing Symphony brings down the curtain on season with triumphant double dip

by Lawrence Cosentino
Get too full of yourself on the concert stage and Bugs Bunny will bang the bandshell with a giant hammer until you vibrate, or make you hold a note until your face turns plaid. The Three Stooges will flick grapes down your throat, fill your piano with cats, sprinkle ants on your bosom and saw your cello in half.
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Wednesday, April 13,2011

Mad about Maurice

Pianist Nel lends three hands to Ravel at LSO closer

by Lawrence Cosentino
Guest soloists at symphony concerts often yawn through the same bromides: “I’m really looking forward to playing Nabob’s Ninth Nurdle ' I’ve played it since I was a zygote.”
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Wednesday, April 13,2011

Going out with a bop, not a whimper

Jazz Spectacular brings Jimmy Heath and a slate of stars to Michigan State University

by Lawrence Cosentino
Who doesn’t like to eat frosting? If you haven’t savored the layer cake of jazz events stacked up by Michigan State University’s world-class jazz studies department throughout the year, this weekend’s Jazz Spectacular is a chance to catch up ' and then some.
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Wednesday, April 6,2011

The party's over

Sifting through the scraps of a celebration on Grand Avenue

by Lawrence Cosentino
At 8 a.m. on a recent Saturday, a tall man in an orange vest walked in front of the new headquarters of the Accident Fund Insurance Co. of America, picking up bits of trash.
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Wednesday, April 6,2011

'Inspiration' lacks foundation

Riverfront sculpture needs more money for a pedestal

by Lawrence Cosentino
There’s a ton of sculpture coming to downtown Lansing ' literally ' but nowhere to put it.
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Thursday, March 31,2011

First life of a landmark

How the Ottawa Street Power Station fired up and flamed out

by Lawrence Cosentino
State of the art equipment, hidden smokestacks and a stunning stylized-flame design made the Ottawa Power Station the city’s most cherished landmark. Slowly, it sank under the silt of time, neglect and architectural indignities, until its full-blown resurrection as the world headquarters of the Accident Fund Insurance Co of America.
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Phoenix Risen

How ‘the dominoes fell up’ to revive a great building and a determined city

by Lawrence Cosentino
In early autumn of 2006, two anonymous visitors asked for a tour of Lansing’s derelict Ottawa Power Station. It was an unusual request.The city usually had to coax people into venturing inside the once-splendid landmark on the Grand River, by then an intractable and embarrassing symbol of decay.
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Hitting the bricks — gently

Masons restore a colossal flame to its original glory

by Lawrence Cosentino
The most compelling reason to spend millions of dollars to gut, refit and save the Ottawa Power Station is its unique shell, tapered and colored like a giant flame burning from black at the bottom to red to orange to yellow on top.
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Transom zaps redux

Lightning strikes twice at the doors of the Ottawa Power Station

by Lawrence Cosentino
Lorenzo Ghiberti’s 15th-century bronze doors at the Baptistery of Florence have God, Noah, Adam and Eve going for them, but even the fabled “Gates of Paradise” don’t have transom zaps.
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