Culture

The Big Something
5:45 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

An Interview With Art Spiegelman and Phillip Johnston

Legendary underground comix author and artist Art Spiegelman will present “Wordless,” a slide lecture accompanied by live music on Wednesday, January 22 as part of Cornerstone Arts Week at Colorado College. The Big Something’s Noel Black spoke with Spiegelman and musician Phillip Johnston about the event.

Tickets for the Event are sold out, but hopeful attendees may want to wait outside the Richard F. Celeste Theater in the Cornerstone Arts Building to see if seats become available.

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The Big Something
6:09 pm
Mon January 20, 2014

An Interview with Children of Men Screenwriter Tim Sexton

Tim Sexton is an Oscar nominated screenwriter, best known for his work with director Alfonso Cuaron on the dystopian sci-fi drama, Children of Men, released in 2006. Sexton's screenplays--which also include the Martin Luther King Jr. biopic "Boycott" and a forthcoming film about labor activist Cesar Chavez--often explore the complicated, human side of heroism. The Big Something's Noel Black spoke with Sexton about his work.

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Culture
5:19 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

The Middle Distance 1.17.14: With the Phone Unplugged

Half a month into the new year and I have lost all sense of time passing. Moving deeply southward across the continent in the dead of winter will do that. It is disorienting to see a rose in bloom in January, but here on the Gulf coast of Texas on the trellis of my mother’s front porch, the yellow climbing rose is loaded with buds.

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Culture
6:03 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

The Middle Distance 1.10.14: Still Time

PPLD Digital Photo Archive, Image Number 195-4258.jpg

My son-in-law arrives tired and hungry for his annual holiday visit. Winter storm Hercules, followed closely by a record-setting Arctic vortex of extreme cold, has left thousands stranded in New York City but he managed to get out and fly to Houston following a harrowing day in an airport filled with desperate traveling strangers. 

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Colorado College
4:41 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

How social networks drive creativity: Katherine Giuffre

How do communities spark creativity? Social network researcher and Colorado College professor Katherine Giuffre shares what she learned studying what was, at the time, arguably the most creative culture in the world -- on an island in the South Pacific.

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The Middle Distance
4:24 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

The Middle Distance 1.3.14: Stories of a Pioneer American Family

Apple Tree and Irises by Myron Wood, May 1980. Copyright PPLD. Image 002-9202.

When I arrive in Galveston on the next-to-last day of 2013, my mother has made a soup from the bones of the Christmas turkey. Just a few rags of meat on the bones, but the broth is rich and brown and fragrant. She has tossed in the last scraps of vegetables from her refrigerator and a handful of wild rice.

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Culture
11:17 pm
Thu December 19, 2013

The Middle Distance 12.20.13: Hate Christmas Songs?

Credit Pikes Peak Library District, Digital Photo Archive. Image 004-10649.jpg

 

    

The short order cook and I had been singing for a while before I noticed the grimace on the cashier’s face. We were harmonizing on “Silver Bells,” the classic Bing Crosby version, and cared little how we sounded as I was the only customer in the diner.  

“What’ll we do when it’s not Christmas any more?” the short order cook said as I pulled out my wallet to pay the bill.

“I don’t know,” I said, “but it looks like Mr. Grinch here can’t wait for it to be over.”  

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The Middle Distance
5:43 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

The Middle Distance 12.13.13: Small Talk About Christmas

The snow has finally stopped falling after four days of constant icy drizzle, but sidewalks are still packed with a three-inch sheet of frozen, thawed and refrozen precipitation. Pedestrians tread carefully, especially along sidewalks that have gone un-shoveled or in shady corridors where the sun rarely reaches the ground. It’s Christmas time in the city.

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The Big Something
5:01 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Laugh Lines: An Interview with Poet Tony Hoagland

Poet Tony Hoagland, author of “Unincorporated Persons in the Late Honda Dynasty," will read tonight at 7 p.m. in the Gates Common Room in Palmer Hall on the Colorado College campus as part of the  Visiting Writers Series. The Big Something’s Noel Black sat down with Hoagland to talk about the disconnect between poetry, entertainment and comedy.

Click HERE for complete event information.

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The Big Something
4:05 pm
Tue December 10, 2013

Disruptive Media: An Interview with Noel Maxam About the Future of Content

Tonight at 6 p.m. in the Richard F. Celeste Theatre at the Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center here on the Colorado College campus, former Days of Our Lives executive co-producer and director Noel Maxam will discuss disruptive innovation in media from Network Television to Netflix. The Big Something’s Noel Black spoke with Maxam about soap operas ant the future of local media.

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Culture
6:32 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

The Middle Distance 12.05.13: The Country Store

Waymires Store Interior by Stewarts Commercial Photographers, October 1947. Copyright PPLD. Image Number: 013-1013.
Credit

There’s a Facebook questionnaire circulating, asking participants to check off how many of 100 chosen worldwide destinations they’ve visited. I haven’t taken the quiz and if I did my score would be modest, even though I’ve visited some pretty exotic locales. But I find the older I get it’s not faraway places I long to see; I’m more drawn to places from the past, even if I have to recreate them strictly from stories passed down by family.

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The Middle Distance
10:04 am
Wed November 27, 2013

The Middle Distance 11.29.13: Season of Contradictions

"Tejon Street at Night" by James and Helen McCaffery, ca. 1950s. Courtesy of Special Collections, Pikes Peak Library District. Image Number: 266-10084.

(This column originally ran on December 3, 2010. Kathryn Eastburn will return next week.)

‘Tis the season of contradiction. Bare black tree limbs, frozen earth, and neighborhood houses lighted up like Vegas. Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and a constant string of economic forecasts based on how much we might or might not spend on stuff we don’t need in this holiday season.

Meanwhile, 28 million jobless Americans lose their federally funded unemployment benefits, barely raising a peep.

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The Middle Distance
5:24 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

The Middle Distance 11.22.13: Switching It Up

This year, for the second time in my life I won’t be having Thanksgiving dinner at home. Many years I considered going out and letting some wonderful chef at a restaurant feed my crew, but that just never seemed right. What if they served oyster stuffing? What if there were no mashed potatoes? What if there was no pecan pie? Thanksgiving, after all, might be about the Pilgrims and a bountiful harvest and giving thanks for being alive and all that good stuff, but isn’t it really about doing it the way you’ve always done it? About being a kitchen Nazi?

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The Big Something
4:56 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

The International Experimental Cinema Exposition Returns to Colorado Springs

The 13th International Experimental Cinema Exposition comes to the Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center beginning tonight and running through the weekend. I spoke spoke with Festival Director and Colorado Springs native Chris May about the history of this prestigious event.

Click HERE for complete details.

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The Big Something
5:15 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

The Middle Distance 11.15.13: In The Bedroom

The earliest bedroom is corner-mounted in a brand new post-World War II house built of native Kentucky limestone. Your mother has arranged a maze of chests of drawers and beds for her three little girls — so close in age they seem part of one big whole — to offer them equal amounts of relative privacy. The effect is of a nest, a tiny space barely big enough to turn around in, where you hide the things you don’t want to share. In winter, it is cozy and dark. In summer, a large and very loud electric fan fills the window frame, blowing hot air out by day and sucking cooler air in by night.

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The Big Something
12:00 am
Thu November 14, 2013

Sweetgrass Productions on Naked Skiing, the Cool Bus, and Valhalla

(from left) Nick Waggoner, Zac Ramras and Ben Sturgulewski
Credit Leeds Mallinckrodt-Reese

  Making their way through the Southwest in the reconstituted yellow “cool bus", the guys behind Sweetgrass Productions are premiering their newest ski movie and narrative hybrid film "Valhalla" 

Ski movies are developing in to a more refined genre, and Sweetgrass is on the edge of that new movement, guiding the world of ski movies towards unprecedented aesthetic attention. 

With an impressive range of sponsors and audiences all over the world, Valhalla premiered at CC in September, marking the beginning of ski season excitement while conjuring images of 70's free love. 

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The Middle Distance
5:50 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

The Middle Distance 11.8.13: Among the Ghouls and Goblins

Last week, amidst the long parade of trick-or-treaters and Halloween festivities, I consciously tried to invoke my beloved departed. Some friends and I even staged a Dumb Feast, the Celtic ritual of Samhain in which guests partake of a silent meal with an empty place set at the head of the table for the spirits of the dead. That night I was able for the first time to close my eyes and summon a vision of those I love who have died — my son, my nephew, my sister, my former spouse — and picture them well beyond suffering, released.

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Culture
4:52 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Talking Quality and Community with Pikes Peak United Way

Pikes Peak United Way recently released its 2013 Quality of Life Indicators Report.  At more than 140 pages in length, it offers a thorough and statistically rich analysis of the quality of life in Greater Colorado Springs community. KRCC's Jake Brownell spoke with Carrie Cramm, vice president of Community Impact at Pikes Peak United Way, to discuss some of the findings of this report. 

You can find the report in it's entirety HERE

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The Middle Distance
4:47 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

The Middle Distance 11.1.13: Life-Giver

Eldonna Edwards, better known as Ellie, is a lively platinum blonde with streaks of pink dyed into her hair. Ellie radiates that other-worldly southern California vibe of feel-good health, laid-back lifestyle and liberal politics. She is a massage therapist with a functioning claw-foot bathtub in her back yard. Married and divorced several times, her kids all grown up, she has reached a point in life where she’s happy just living with herself.

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The Big Something
4:37 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

Lost And Found: Artifacts From The Flood

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The Big Something
3:17 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

Catamount Institute Sustainability Conference

The Catamount Institute's Annual Colorado Sustainability Conference begins this Thursday and will cover topics ranging from fires and floods to urban farming. I spoke with Catamount board member Alicia Archibald and Marketing and Communications Director Chris Aaby about the conference.

Click HERE for complete conference details and more about Catamount Institute. 

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The Big Something
4:59 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Rocky Mountain Women's Film Fest Turns 26

The 26th Annual Rocky Mountain Women’s Film Festival begins Friday, November 1st and runs through the weekend. The Big Something’s Noel Black sat down with Executive Director Linda Broker and Board Chair Lisa Tessarowicz to talk about some changes in the festival and this year’s films.

Click HERE for tickets and complete details.

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The Middle Distance
2:34 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

The Middle Distance 10.25.13: What Can't Be Faked

Sharpen your pencils, charge up your computers and clear off your desk: November is National Novel Writing Month. Otherwise known to eager scribes across America as NaNoWriMo, a clever web-based arts nonprofit enterprise operating on the belief that within everyone lies at least one great story waiting to be written. And in typical American fashion, why not bang it out in a month? The web site (nanowrimo.org) offers word count gauges, opportunities to compare notes with other writers racing toward the finish line, and plenty of inspiration like this observation by author Neil Gaiman:

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The Big Something
11:47 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Farewell to the Bowed Piano Ensemble? An Interview with Stephen Scott

Colorado College Professor Stephen Scott’s Bowed Piano Ensemble is on its way to Jazz and Lincoln Center on October 26 in New York to play one of its final concerts before Scott retires. The Ensemble will play a preview of this concert this Tuesday night in Packard Hall on the CC Campus. I sat down with Scott to look back on his career as he prepares to retire from teaching.

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The Middle Distance
5:13 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

The Middle Distance 10.18.13: Recipe for a Cold Day

It has to be a cold day. Preferably the first really cold day of the season, when the wind has swept down from the north and left the yellow leaves dangling, threatening to fall all at once; when the still-green summer grass stands stiff and frosted. A gray mid-October day when staying at home is in order.

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The Big Something
4:34 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

Vinylogue: Patrick McConnell's Stand-up Memoir Set to Music

Comedian and Storyteller Patrick McConnell will present his one man show “Vinylogue” beginning tonight and running through the weekend at the new Millibo Art Theatre at Ivywild. I spoke with McConnell about his autobiographical monologue set to music.

Click HERE for complete details about the show.

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Culture
2:48 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Idris Goodwin debuts "The Girl From Crete Falls": An Interview

Playwright, Poet and Colorado College Professor Idris Goodwin’s new play, “The Girl From Crete Falls, ” will premier tomorrow night and run through the weekend at the Edith Kinney Gaylord Arts Center. I spoke with Goodwin about his new work.

Tickets are $5 and you can get complete information HERE.

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The Big Something
10:59 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Ira Glass Tonight! Listen to Interview

Tickets are still available for This American Life creator and host Ira Glass's live performance at the Pikes Peak Center on Saturday, October 12.

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The Middle Distance
10:02 am
Fri October 11, 2013

The Middle Distance 10.11.13: Grandma?

"Married Fifty Years" by Stan Payne, August 20, 1959. Courtesy of PPLD. Image Number: 004-10554.

A few years back my friends started becoming grandparents. It was fun to watch from a distance, but it was not something I longed to be. It felt as though my youngest kids had just flown the nest and honestly, the last thing I could imagine enjoying was the care and feeding of a newborn or chasing a toddler around. I was ready for some middle-aged autonomy.

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The Big Something
4:41 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Palmer Land Trust Recognizes Conservation Champions: An Interview with Scott Campbell and Walt Hecox

Tomorrow night, October 9, 2010, the Palmer Land Trust will celebrate the 2013 Southern Colorado Conservation Awards.I spoke with Executive Director Scott Campbell Stuart P. Dodge Award Winner Walt Hecox about the importance of land trusts and Hecox’s efforts with The State of the Rockies Project.

If you'd like to make a reservation to attend the 2013 Southern Colorado Conservation Awards, call (719) 632-3236 x.2.

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