Rape, Murder on the Rise in Dallas: Dallas police statistics show that there has been an increase in the total number of rapes in Dallas for the first six months of 2013 compared with 2012, with month to month increases in both rape and murder for the first half of the year. The Dallas City Council’s public safety committee will be briefed on the statistics today.
Will Texas Democrats Get Their Act Together for 2014 Election? Next year’s elections will see more open seats for statewide offices than any ballot since 1990, but so far it looks like the only candidates jockeying for a chance to run at the open seats are Republicans. That doesn’t look good for the party that hasn’t won a statewide race since 1994.
Vadym Kholodenko Wins Cliburn Piano Competition: After two-and-a-half weeks of grueling competition, the 26-year-old Ukrainian pianist Vadym Kholodenko took home gold in Fort Worth. What does it take to be named one of the best young pianists in the world? Have a listen (and keep an eye on Kholodenko’s face).
What was I thinking? The simple answer is, I wasn’t thinking. And for that, I sincerely apologize to everyone involved.
Last night, I was asked to emcee the Poo Live Crew concert at the Arboretum. Yes, that was the actual name of the band. No, they are not a 2 Live Crew tribute band. Sadly. Because if you know anything about 2 Live Crew’s live performances, which featured sexually uninhibited women performing acts of — well, it’s entertaining to imagine that sort of thing going down at the Arboretum. Maybe that’s what I was thinking about last night when I took the mic. Anyway, Poo Live Crew is a harmless ’90s cover band from Fort Worth that plays hits from the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. And the members all wear Evel Knievel costumes. Just go with it.
My job was to make a few announcements, officiate a ’90s costume contest, and then introduce the band. I was told by Wendy, the Arboretum’s helpful and patient PR rep, that I needed to begin by welcoming people to the Martin Rutchik Concert Lawn. Very important to hit that name. Martin Rutchik. Concert Lawn. And, as you know, yesterday we had some rain move through the area around noontime. Though the weather was gorgeous when things got underway at 7:25, the Martin Rutchik Concert Lawn itself was still wet. There were several hundred people in attendance. Those without chairs or tarps to put under their blankets figured to get a bit moist. So I took the mic off its stand and began the evening thusly:
I met Sai Selvarajan when we filmed a spot promoting our FrontRow site to run before DIFF screenings a couple of years ago. He sent me this. It is awesome and you should watch it, even though it doesn’t have Jay-Z’s “handle like Van Exel” line. Happy NBA Finals day, you guys.
Tomorrow The 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition kicks-off in Fort Worth. Basically, the event, which takes place every four years, is something like the classical music version of the NCAA basketball tournament There are 30 competitors from around the world who face off in rounds of recitals. And the winner doesn’t just get prestige and a $50,000 check; they will most likely get a full-fledged career as a concert pianist (winners get connected to top flight musician management companies right at the competition). In other words, winning is a life changing event, which means the stress, pressure, and Spellbound-style drama is amped up to eleven.
You can attend, or you can watch the online broadcast of the event here. And if you’re looking for someone to root for, we suggest Alex McDonald. The Plano-dwelling 30-year-old is the first DFW-area pianist to compete at the Van Cliburn in more than three decades. For more on McDonald, check out Carol Shih’s fantastic behind-the-scenes look at the last few months of McDonald’s life as he prepared for the high stakes competition.
“We Could Hear it Coming. It Was Like Thunder That Wouldn’t Stop:” The stories out of Granbury are horrifying and heartbreaking, awful reminders that we live in a strange, unforgiving world in which, on rare occasion, the sky can just come down and rip you right out of your closet:
The closet door flew open, and the tornado yanked her oldest son, Brandon, into the air.
Green’s body twisted and bent, and she began to pray.
“Please let this be over. I can’t take this anymore,” she remembers thinking. “I asked God, ‘Is this really the way I’m going to die?’”
The Legacy of Mary Suhm vs. the Legacy of Dallas’ Super Donors: Two features in the local daily frame two perspective on the shaping of the city. Sure, as Mayor Ron Kirk puts it in this profile of outgoing City Manager Mary Suhm, “Her fingerprints are all over the city.” But what is the legacy of any powerful member of city government versus the “thousand families,” the philanthropists whose Texas-sized generosity (sorry) make Dallas one of the nation’s most charitable cities:
The city’s wealthiest philanthropists are also sometimes called the new Medicis, and there’s something to the comparison: Not a single major cultural institution in Dallas would exist in its current form — or exist at all, in many cases — without their help. . . . The philanthropists’ generosity extends beyond cultural organizations.
Fort Worth Figures Out Trinity Project: And speaking of big ticket city items, while Suhm’s legacy contains the unrealized Trinity River Project, Fort Worth seems to have figured out how to have simple fun down on the river with a much more modest, accessible investment. This, ahem. Not this.
The Dallas Opera has only had two music directors since its founding 56 years ago. Graeme Jenkins just took his final bow with the organization after almost 25 years at the conductor’s stand. Today, his successor was announced, and yes, it’s another European to lead a local classical music organization (which had some music watchers grumbling about the Old World’s sustained dominance of top positions in American ensembles). We spoke to the new maestro, Emmanuel Villaume, and you can read that piece over on FrontRow. And to break up your midday, here’s Villaume conducting Anna Netrebko and the National Orchestra of Belgium’s performance of “Je veux vivre” from Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet.
Plenty of more information here. Tickets go on sale at 1 p.m. I will be involved in some capacity.
I can’t recall hearing another song played on both K104 and The Edge, but “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis is in rotation on both stations. “It is really a song that appeals to everybody, no matter who they are,” said Ki Ki J, K104’s programming coordinator, “and it proves that good music is just that: good music.”
The Texas Tribune has the scoop this morning:
The video announcing Bush’s run for Texas Land Commissioner on Wednesday was set to a familiar tune: the back-track to Beyoncé’s hit 2009 single “Halo.” The campaign’s decision to use music from a prominent supporter of President Obama’s, someone who sang at his inauguration, attracted media attention from around the country.
As of Thursday morning, that video was no longer publicly available on YouTube; it’s now “private.” And on Bush’s campaign web site, the video was swapped out overnight with one featuring similar, but markedly different, music.
The Tribune quotes campaign spokesman Juan Roberto Hernandez as saying that the singer did not complain, and that the switch has made for “consistency” reasons. “Consistency” in this case meaning “Beyonce was probably going to say something at some point because she’s clearly not a fan of the Bush family.”
You may know the name of British artist Richard Patterson for a variety of reasons. Perhaps you were enthralled with his defense of the opening ceremonies of last summer’s London Games. Perhaps you’ve read his musings on FrontRow. Maybe you caught his exhibition at the Goss-Michael Foundation in 2009. More than likely, though, you know him because Patterson is an accomplished and renowned painter who has been residing in Dallas now for some time, a member of that pivotal generation of British artists that is known by the clumsy moniker “YBA.”
I said painter, but as you all know, Dallas does funny things to people who move here and stick around for a while. In Patterson’s case, he has been dabbling in video of late. The result is a series of video pieces Patterson is calling “Six Short Stories.” They are screening tonight at 8 p.m. at the Texas Theater for one night only. Admission is completely free.
Why can’t you miss this screening? Well, for one, because the work is hilarious, fascinating, moving, deeply intelligent, and beautiful. It is also likely the only chance you’ll ever get to see Patterson’s videos (in part because of all sorts of confusing copyright stuff that tends to give gallery dealers headaches).
So what to expect? Pushed to describe his work, Patterson calls the videos “dream-like vignettes” and feigns British self-deprecation:
[It is] A film with scant originality and little authenticity featuring fast cars, bare breasts, inflatable furniture, the music of Allegri and Michel Legrand, death, the Jaguar Mk2 and much, much more… Don’t bring your children.
Also, following the screening, I’ll be participating in an onstage conversation with Patterson, and after we gab, a DJ set by Wild in the Streets will take us all into the night. See you there.
Let’s go straight to the source, KellyClarkson.com:
So I just heard Clive Davis is releasing a memoir and spreading false information about me and my music. I refuse to be bullied and I just have to clear up his memory lapses and misinformation for myself and for my fans. It feels like a violation. Growing up is awesome because you learn you don’t have to cower to anyone – even Clive Davis.
First, he says I burst into “hysterical sobbing” in his office when he demanded Since You Been Gone be on my album. Not true at all. His stories and songs are mixed up. I did want more guitars added to the original demo and Clive did not. Max, Luke and I still fought for the bigger sound and we prevailed and I couldn’t be more proud of the life of that song. I resent him dampening that song in any way.
But, yes, I did cry in his office once. I cried after I played him a song I had written about my life called “Because Of You.” I cried because he hated it and told me verbatim that I was a “sh*tty writer who should be grateful for the gifts that he bestows upon me.” He continued on about how the song didn’t rhyme and how I should just shut up and sing. This was devastating coming from a man who I, as a young girl, considered a musical hero and was so honored to work with.
But I continued to fight for the song and the label relented. And it became a worldwide hit. He didn’t include that in the book.
Team Kelly, all day. Listening to Since U Been Gone on loop for the remainder of the day, in solidarity.
Perry Goes to California to Poach Businesses: Rick Perry is on tour of California, where he hopes to swoop-in and woo businesses to Texas. It’s a trip that puts the epic state showdown in context:
In that corner, Athens. In this one, Sparta. Each serves as the other’s foil, the Ali to its Frazier, the Moriarty to its Holmes, the red to its blue. Each sees itself as the economic, cultural and political engine of the future.
Services to be Held Today for Chris Kyle at Cowboys Stadium: After today’s memorial at Cowboys Stadium, there will be a 200-mile funeral procession Tuesday as the former Navy Seal’s remains travel from Midlothian to Austin.
Kelly Clarkson Meets Miguel: Burleson’s Kelly Clarkson took home a Grammy last night for best pop vocal album, but during her acceptance speech, the singer was a little distracted by an earlier performance by the singer Miguel:
“Miguel, I don’t know who the hell you are, but we need to sing together. I mean, good God. That was the sexiest dancing I’ve ever seen.”
Here’s what she was talking about.
In the video above, you’ll recognize some of the faces (Hi Dirk!), maybe a voice (that’s Sean Bass?), and put faces to some of the bylines you see in the local music press. But what you won’t get is any info about who’s playing the next KXT Summer Cut concert. That’s the joke, of course. It’s cute. D’s music guru Christopher Mosley has the best line in the whole thing.
Southern Methodist University’s Meadows School of the Arts announced the two winners of its annual Meadows Prize today. Nadia Sirota is a musician and a founder member of theÂ American Contemporary Music Ensemble, and her 2009 debut album was aÂ New York TimesÂ album of the year; Tania Bruguera is a Cuban-born artist whose work was featured in Documenta 11.
So why is this award a big deal? Well, recipients of the Meadows Prize receive a $25,000 grant and participate in artistic residencies at the Meadows School. But what makes the prize both unique andÂ efficacious is the extent to which past winners have led projects while at SMU that have had a wider impact on the Dallas community. For example, the art group Creative TimeÂ completed a (somewhat controversial) report of the state of Dallas’ art scene. Playwright Will Power’s time at SMU has now evolved into an extended residency with the Dallas Theater Center. What can we expect form this year’s winners? Hint: Think West Dallas. Jump for my thoughts and the full release:
We’re a couple of weeks into 2013, and I hope you’ve been able to keep on top of your resolutions. Especially if they include the daunting tasks of working out and eating healthier. It’s always interesting how busy the gym gets in the beginning of January, but I’m curious to see how this coming week is going to fare. I’m predicting far more available parking spaces.
If you’re in the mood to laugh, head over to The Texas Theatre tonight, where local booking group Parade of Flesh has brought together Tim Heidecker (The Comedy) and Neil Hamburger (an eccentric character played by Gregg Turkington) for a night of comedic genius. Also along for the ride is DJ Douggpound, who is not only a fitting third addition to the night, but has also somehow revived Devo’s incessant “Whip It” one-hit wonder into a more modernized version, entitled “Pound It.” I’ve never been a fan of Devo, but Douggpound’s take on their style strangely verges on the edge of cool.
Switching gears to a more serious occasion, this year will mark the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas. To honor his lasting legacy, broadcast journalist Charlie Rose is sitting down with Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Rory Kennedy (two of Bobby Kennedy’s 11 children) at the Winspear tonight for a discussion of their family legacy in our country’s political history.