Arts & Culture

The forecast for rain this weekend has led to the cancelation of the Stucky Music Festival set for Saturday near the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green.

Thirteen bands had been scheduled to play throughout the day Saturday. Organizers say tickets purchased online have already been refunded, while those who purchased them in person will need to return them for a refund.

The event will not be re-scheduled.

The Kentucky Derby will be run this Saturday in Louisville. The thoroughbred horse race, now 140 years old, is one of the country’s legendary sporting events, but it also played a major role in spawning a new kind writing style, created by another Louisville product, the late Hunter S. Thompson.

As Rick Howlett of Here & Now contributing station WFPL in Louisville reports, there’s a new appreciation for the founder of Gonzo journalism in his native city and state.

Southern Kentucky Book Fest

An organizer of an upcoming book festival in Bowling Green says it’s becoming more of a challenge to get authors at larger publishers to appear at events for free.

Kristie Lowry is literary outreach coordinator with WKU Libraries, and an organizer with the Southern Kentucky Book Festival. She says book companies have cut their budgets related to book tours and marketing campaigns.

“So getting the authors to come to an event like ours for free, which would have been a little easier back in the day, is harder to do now,” Lowry told WKU Public Radio. “And Penguin and Random House have their own speaker bureaus now, so they market their authors, but you have to pay a fee in order to have them come into town.”

Lowry says another growing trend in the literary world is the rising number of self-published authors. She says many self-published writers in the southern Kentucky region, like Allison Jewell and Jennie Brown, have loyal followings and are well-received when they appear on panels at local book festivals.

Anthony Clark Evans

The rise to prominence in the opera world continues for an Owensboro native.

Last week, Anthony Clark Evans was named a winner of the Sarah Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Music foundation. Evans is one of only five young opera singers nationwide to win the $5,000 award this year. The audition for the grant was by invitation only.

“What it really means to me, is that I’m able to maybe make a few extra trips here and there and audition for more people because I’ll have a little bit of extra cash just sitting in the bank,” said Evans.  “I’ll be able to maybe take a flight out to New York again to sing for somebody that’s important out there.”

The  28-year-old baritone now resides in Elizabethtown but is currently studying at the Ryan Center of Lyric Opera in Chicago. He says he comes from a long line of singers.

“It really comes from my father. He was a trained singer and his father was a trained singer. I think it goes back four or five generations,” said Evans.

He studied voice at Murray State, but left school twice to save up more money to continue his education. The second time away, he got married and the couple settled in Elizabethtown where he took a job at a car dealership. 

Emil Moffatt

The Library of Congress has unveiled the list of this year’s 25 additions to the National Recording Registry.

Among the recordings – the Everly Brothers 1960 hit “Cathy’s Clown”, which was recorded at the RCA “Studio B” in Nashville.

Earlier this year, Muhlenberg County held a celebration of life for Phil Everly, who died January 3rd.  Everly and his brother Don held a series of charity concerts in their family’s hometown in Western Kentucky in the 1980s and 1990s.    

Time

A recent assignment for WKU alumnus Jonathan Woods took him to the very top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.  Woods is a Senior Editor for Photo and Interactive for Time Magazine.  He graduated from Western Kentucky’s award-winning photojournalism department in 2007.

Woods says his interest in photographing the new One World Trade Center building began when he was working for NBC News’ website during the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks in 2011. Then, he ventured on an eight-month process of negotiating with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to allow access to the 405-foot spire on top of the 1,776 foot tall building known as the Freedom Tower.  

He and a staff member from the GigaPan company climbed the ladder to take a series of photos that eventually make up a sweeping panoramic look at the Manhattan skyline.

“We were putting a camera in a place that we couldn’t go scout.  It was on top of a 405-foot tall spire, which had a 405-foot tall ladder that we were not allowed to climb until the day we went up there,” said Woods.  “So we had to work off of blueprints to create something to put a camera in a place that didn’t exist.”

Neverland Publishing

A novel called "The Killing Jar", by author Gloria Nixon-John, is based on a true story from rural eastern Kentucky in which an incredibly gifted, but mentally disturbed 15-year-old named T0dd Ice is convicted of murdering his neighbor’s 7-year-old daughter and assaulting the neighbor in 1978.

The main character – named Ted Lynch in the book – spends several years as the nation’s youngest person on death row until his murder conviction was thrown out on appeal. During a re-trial he is convicted of manslaughter and winds up serving 15 years in prison before being released to a mental institution and then a halfway house.

Before his initial trial, Todd (Ted) was diagnosed as paranoid schizophrenic.  He would die in 2010 at age 47 after a dramatic weight gain, partially blamed on the medications he was prescribed.

The book is a novel,  but the author says she started the project as a non-fiction presentation of events. She says 95 percent of book is based on factual documentation.

She will speak at Barnes and Noble in Bowling Green tonight at 7 p.m. as part of the Kentucky Live! Series, presented by WKU Libraries.

From its earliest days as America's homegrown whiskey elixir, Kentucky bourbon has been traveling on boats.

In fact, boats were a key reason why Kentucky became the king of bourbon. In the late 1700s, trade depended on waterways, and distillers in the state had a big advantage: the Ohio River. They'd load their barrels onto flatboats on the Ohio, which flowed into the Mississippi, taking their golden liquor as far down as New Orleans.

SKyPac

When Jan Allan Zarr takes the reins of the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center later this month, it will be a homecoming. 

Zarr has been hired as the new executive director of SKyPAC, a facility he helped open.  He’s been away for a year, but he told WKU Public Radio it won’t take long to get up to speed.

"The staff knows me, I know the staff," he said.  "That takes off a lot of pressure and time.  Normally, you come into a situation and you spend the next six months of the staff getting to know you, you getting to  know the staff and how everybody works."

Zarr currently directs the Topeka Performing Arts Center in Kansas.  His first day on the job in Bowling Green is March 24. 

SKyPAC, now in its third season, has seen a drop off in attendance, but Zarr says that’s normal. 

“You’re going to see that," replied Zarr.  "We started above the bar there and outpaced ourselves starting out.  What you’re seeing now is Skypac coming in where it should be.”

Emil Moffatt

A new executive director has been hired for the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center.  Jan Allan Zarr comes from the Topeka Performing Arts Center where he served as director. 

Zarr is actually returning to Skypac, having helped open the Bowling Green facility from 2011-2012.

Zarr replaces Tom Tomlinson, who resigned last month.

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