Rayvon Owen: Baby You Rescue Me!

Rayvon Owen

In all the holiday hoopla we miss him at The Mint in Los Angeles earlier in December.  But there was no way we were going to miss the opportunity to spotlight American Idol and Buzzfeed featured artist, Rayvon Owen, who recently released  new EP Cycles.

 “Rescue“,  featured here, is from the EP and was co-written by Yellowcard frontman Ryan Key and Steve Aiello from 30 Seconds to Mars, and produced by Seth Jones.  Rayvon is gaining traction fast and he recently gave a special performance at the CMJ music festival in New York and was featured as one of Huffington Post’s artist to watch. 

Turn off the music above and watch the new video release for “Sweatshirt”!

Owen will also be featured on the upcoming season of AMERICAN IDOL!purchase

Available_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_0824Love this song as much as we do?  Buy it on iTunes now

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Check out Rayvon on all his sites:

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The Day After…

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Waiting For That Moment…

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Open Wide!

One of the most fun street art finds of the week, this sea monster comes totally alive, rendered in a uniquely perfect symmetry with its urban landscape.  We had to share it!  Check out @StreetArtBuzz on Twitter for more.

street art buzz graffiti

Fiber Art Creates a Pause at the Lambert Baggage Claim

Turning what was once considered just a craft into amazing visual pieces, Missouri fiber artists are pushing their creativity for mainstream audiences with a new exhibition, 3D Fiber Explorations, at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.
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Sandy Kolde: We’re In The Blues

Free and open to the public, the exhibition runs December 5, 2014 through April 4, 2015 in The Lambert Gallery in the bag claim level of Terminal 1.

3D Fiber Explorations is presented by Missouri Fiber Artists and sponsored by the Lambert Art and Culture Program and the Regional Arts Commission. The exhibit’s 23 works from local artists will prompt the visitor to pause for a moment and to see fiber work in a new light, beyond craft and into the realm of fine art. Materials for this exhibition include paper, wool, felt, linen thread, silk, cotton and other materials. The fiber art genre includes surface designers, felters, embroiderers, dyers, quilters, weavers, basket makers, paper makers and more.

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Janet Frazee: Wade

Through innovation and creativity, Missouri Fiber Artists also strives to place St. Louis into the realm of a lively and innovative city. Works in this exhibit are contributions to the multitude of fine art in St. Louis. Artists include   Shirley Boudreaux, Kacey Cowdery, Tracy Deniszczuk, Katherine Ehlmann, Candyce Grisham, Pamela J Gruer, Laurie Harper, Joanne Kluba, Sandy Kolde, Hae-jung Larsen, Tamryn McDermott, Shirley Nachtrieb, Pat Owoc, Joyce Pion, Rhonda Schrum, Phyllis Shipman, Susan Sontag, Leandra Spangler, Janet Frazee Wade, Barbara A Zappulla.

The Lambert Art and Culture Program sponsors a rotating exhibition schedule in The Lambert Gallery featuring local and regional arts organizations. Previous exhibitors include the Photography Hall of Fame & Museum, Missouri State Museum, Foundry Art Centre, Craft Alliance and the Griot Museum of Black History.

A seven-member Airport Art Advisory Committee led the selection effort for the latest series of exhibitions at the Lambert Gallery. Members are David Allen, Director of Metro Arts in Transit; Susan Marie Barrett, Director of the World Chess Hall of Fame; Laura Helling, Director of Development for Wings of Hope; Marilu Knode, Director of Laumeier Sculpture Park; Jill McGuire, Executive Director for the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission; Kiku Obata, Founding Principal of Kiku Obata & Co.; and Freida L. Wheaton, Salon 53 and Founder of Alliance of Black Art Galleries.

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Leandra Spangler Joyce Pion

 

About Missouri Fiber Artists

Missouri Fiber Artists (MoFA) invites all artists who work with any form of fiber to join its organization. Artists are surface designers, felters, embroiderers, dyers, quilters, weavers, basket makers, paper makers and more. Missouri Fiber Artists works with a huge variety of materials and broad range of styles with a mission to increase public awareness of fiber art.

BrightLights: It’s “How You Love Me”

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This has been on our “to do” list for weeks now and we’re finally getting to listen to multi-Grammy-nominated, electro-pop artist Heather Bright.

Better know as BrightLights, Heather announced the release of her acoustic version of the EDM hit “How You Love Me’ last month and on a first play, we LOVED it!  Simple and absolutely beautiful. It’s the best and most hopeful sentiment anyone could hope for at the week of Christmas.  We’ve added it to our Soundcloud playlist forever!

Originally recorded as a feature for 3LAU, Bright’s acoustic version strips down the heavy-hitting production that made the original a smash dance hit and it put’s her powerhouse vocals on full display for an emotionally driven, intimate sound.

Bright has lent her vocal talents to notable artists such as Zedd, Porter Robinson and Hardwell.  The new single marks Bright’s first solo release establishing her as an emerging standalone pop artist.

unnamedGet the Full”Bright”

Join her Facebook page: facebook.com/brightlights333
Follow BrightLights on Twitter: @brightlights333 

The Model Critic Reviews: Tom Stoppard’s The Real Thing

By Carlos Stafford, The Model Critic

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LOVE, ART, AND LANGUAGE

The Real Thing is a tough, comedic look on love and marriage, and the unforeseen pitfalls encountered by its characters.  The problems that arise are timeless, the circumstances unique, and the positions of the main characters, bold; there is no one in this play who is not totally convinced of his own well-defended perspective.

The action opens with Charlotte (Cynthia Nixon) and Max (Josh Hamilton) in conflict; she, having just returned from a trip to Switzerland–or so she says.  Max has found Charlotte’s passport while she was gone, and questions her. Max catches her in a lie, a lie that she soon confesses has been going on for years with her phantom trips. “What went wrong? asks Max. “You’ve done everything wrong,” she says. “You aren’t anyone I know.” Charlotte, having just arrived, walks out, suitcase in hand.

But we find this is only a play within the play called “House of Cards.” Charlotte is actually married to the playwright, Henry (Ewan McGregor), and has a teenage daughter, while Max is married to another actor, Annie, (Maggie Gyllenhaal). They are all friends, and the play that was presented works as a kind of overture, like in opera, that foreshadows ensuing themes.

Charlotte is nasty, sarcastic and disillusioned in the play, and when she’s at home with Henry in real life, fails to drop character. Or is this her real character with life and art blurred? Henry is an intellectual playwright, witty and sure of himself, but Charlotte openly scorns him when Max and Annie come to visit. Henry has an fizzy answer for everything, but has a strong rational stance, like someone from a Noel Coward play. Charlotte is not impressed and sharply criticizes Henry for the deficit between his real life and his writing life–and the the difference, she says, is “thinking time;” he writes plays, and understands characters, but is not so good in the present moment.

The set is the home of Henry and Charlotte–clean, well-ordered, minimal, linear lines–most of the action takes place here. The order belies the chaos underneath their marriage, however. Henry  loves R&B, and hates foreign music, in foreign languages, with no dancing– people standing in line donating a kidney for a ticket to hear someone named Callas. He is a successful writer. We see Henry as a witty iconoclast, with strong beliefs on everything. His marriage is an accomodating quagmire, marginally civil but emotionally messy. He may have been reduced to using his marriage for his art, as an observer, removed. But he also philosophically respects the concept of marriage, the commitment, the total revealing of oneself to only one distinct person, while Charlotte looks at marriage as a bargain, to be renewed daily, nothing set in stone.

Then surprise! When Max and Annie come to visit, Annie and Henry lustily pounce on each other as their respective spouses are busy in the kitchen. Annie leads the assault guiltlessly and openly, and pleads with Henry to kiss her, and begs Henry to finally tell his wife that he is leaving her.  She’ll do the same with her husband. This reminded me of the funny scene in Noel Coward’s “Private Lives,” when Amanda and Eliot, bored with their new spouses, decide to leave them on their honeymoons, and to escape to Paris.

Gyllenhaal plays Annie as sexually free and liberated, totally adoring of Henry; she doesn’t care a damn about his wife or her husband’s feelings. She lives for honesty and denounces hypocrisy, and takes what she wants. Henry complies easily. Goodbye Charlotte, goodbye Max. Henry is now free with an adoring lover.

There is much about the nature of writing, ideas of love and commitment, romance. Henry has the tables turned on him, however, when Annie goes to Glasgow to be in a play.  She is also supporting Brodie (Alex Breaux), a young radical Scotish dissident who has committed an act of civil disobedience, and tries to get Henry to rewrite his book while he is in prison. Henry refuses, saying the lad can’t write, and his book is filled with tired political cliches from the left that have little merit. Annie defends Brodie’s vitality, while Henry thinks he’s a posturing lout without substance–which we later find is true when he is eventually released.

Returning from Glasgow a day late, where she has played in a run of “Tis a Pity She’s a Whore” Henry questions Annie in a similar fashion that Max questioned Charlotte in the opening play. She too confesses, yes, she has had a dalliance with a cast member, Billy, the night before, but tries to explain it meant nothing, that she loves him only.

McGregor is a wonderful presence on stage, good looking, intellegent, and filled with the right energy–(Moulin Rouge, Trainspotting, etc.)  But here, as a character, he remains even throughout, doesn’t transform or have any great moments of insight as to why he has problems in his life with women–his defense is a removed kind of wit to the end, without any deepening. He feels that whenever he gets close to a woman suddenly “a wheel comes off.” He says brilliant insightful things, is funny, but it would be much more interesting for his character to descend, and come up stronger and register new insight.

Gyllenhaal is a slinky, loose and free presence on stage. She exudes confidence, and plays Annie perfectly–self assured, brave, taking what she wants, convinced. She was most believable.  Nixon plays her role properly–shrill, bitter, and sarcastic; she stands straight and delivers her lines with serious intent showing her discontent with her marriage. Josh Hamilton, as Max, showed the most range of emotion with his unbraiding of Henry, while defending Annie’s position on Brodie, and too, with his anguish when Annie swings the velvet hammer and calmly says goodbye.

All this is familiar territory for an audience today, but what Stoppard says and how he says it, is still a thrilling experience.  He packs a lot of knowledge into brief stage time, and nothing ever lags. Catch the show while it lasts.

THE REAL THING

By Tom Stoppard
Directed by Sam Gold

Now Playing through January 4, 201

American Airlines Theatre
227 West 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Cynthia Nixon, Josh Hamilton

For showtimes and tickets visit: RoundaboutTheatre.org

Running Time: 2 hours and 10 minutes, including intermission

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