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Wednesday, March 30,2011

From power to people

How designers made Planet Machine habitable by humans

by Lawrence Cosentino
Enter the Accident Fund Insurance Co. of America’s new headquarters in downtown Lansing and you walk into a naked tug of war between a 20th-century power plant and a modern office building.
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Hardhats and high hopes

Economic echoes of an urban renewal thunderclap

by Lawrence Cosentino
Tell someone Lansing’s historic Ottawa Power Station is 172.2 feet tall and you might get a “hm.”Take a friend downtown to see the big orange flame jet into the blue or tremble in the river and you’ll get an “ohhh.”
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Opera with punch

MSU Opera Theatre takes on Ricky Ian Gordon’s fierce ‘Grapes of Wrath’

by Lawrence Cosentino
Sing a song of hope, love and family. Is it the great American song yet? Try a song of unemployment and foreclosures, union busting and immigrant bashing, alcohol and suicide. Need more? Sing of vigilantes with torches, reformers branded as communists, and bankers golfing while depositors lose their shirts.
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Wednesday, March 30,2011

Farewell and zwee-bop

MSU Jazz Vocal Ensemble assembles for the last time

by Lawrence Cosentino
As part of a university-wide 20 percent slash of programs across many departments, the School of Music’s 7-year-old vocal jazz program has been dropped. The program’s founder, MSU vocal jazz luminary Sunny Wilkinson, will not be re-hired next year after 17 years with the school.
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Thursday, March 24,2011

Violins and Valkyries

Lansing’s Melissa White tops varied LSO program

by Lawrence Cosentino
For Melissa White, headlining Saturday’s Lansing Symphony concert doesn’t mean hotel food and hangers you can’t pull off the rack. Born and raised in Lansing, the peripatetic violinist can look forward to home-cooked meals with her mom and dad and a sleepover with her sister.
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Wednesday, March 16,2011

Absolute Music ventures into the night Friday

by Lawrence Cosentino
But the most attractive part of Absolute Music is the chance to get close and personal with an A-Team of Michigan State University and Lansing Symphony musicians, including pianists Deborah Moriarty and Derek Polischuk, Richard Sherman on flute, and Yuri Gandelsman on viola.
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Wednesday, March 9,2011

Out of the maw of Minnesota

Globetrotting St. John’s Chorus makes a stop in Lansing during national spring tour

by Lawrence Cosentino
When the 46-voice St. John’s University Men’s Chorus rattles the apses and naves of Lansing’s First Presbyterian Church Saturday, local music lovers will have a chance to witness one of America’s regional wonders without hitting the interstate..
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Wednesday, February 23,2011

The green and the black

Coal-fired MSU moves toward energy transition

by Lawrence Cosentino
Holding hand-made valentines with slogans like “clean energy = true love,” a series of student speakers pushed MSU’s “Be Spartan Green” slogan up against the reality of its T.B. Simon Power Plant, the largest on-campus coal-burning power plant in the nation and one of the largest 500 coal plants in the nation.
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Wednesday, February 23,2011

Brohn’s ’Alhambra’ premieres Saturday

Double concerto was inspired by Washington Irving

by Lawrence Cosentino
Master orchestrator and arranger (and Michigan State University alum) William Brohn has crafted many award-winning sonic canvases, from Broadway’s "Miss Saigon," "Wicked" and "Ragtime" (for which he won a Tony for best orchestrations) to intense new takes on Prokofiev’s "Ivan the Terrible" and "Alexander Nevsky.
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Wednesday, February 16,2011

'It's time to follow through on the dreams I've had'

Fresh from her triumph at the Grammys, Dee Dee Bridgewater brings Lady Day to Lansing

by Lawrence Cosentino
Suddenly, it seemed absurd to do anything normal, but she had to. Her Friday gig at East Lansing’s Wharton Center, and the usual promotional interviews were scheduled before the Grammy dropped..
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