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Five questions with: playwright Rob Merritt

In 2011, at the first ever Theatre Cedar Rapids Underground New Play Festival, the community was surprised by a new play from local playwright Rob Merritt, The Summerland Project. A fascinating and philosophical piece of rare science fiction theater, The Summerland Project explored the implications, both ethical and emotional, […]

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Book Review: ‘Walter Benjamin Reimagined’ by Frances Cannon

Artist, former Iowa Citian and sometime-Little Village contributor Frances Cannon has delivered a delightful, insightful nugget of wonder with Walter Benjamin Reimagined. This book is everything a fan of the German Jewish cultural critic and philosopher could ever hope for, and it offers an accessible window into his brilliance […]

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319 Fest will present 70 artists — including Davenport’s Soultru, fresh off a new release

In 2016, Cedar Rapids’ 319 Fest took a year off. Their goal was to refocus, redevelop. Organizers changed the location of the festival, and were determined to make it always free, organizer Jason Zbornik said in an email, “in hopes that it would allow more people access to new original music.” Now in its third year back […]

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Riverside’s ‘Men on Boats’ is sheer delight

In 1869, Major John Wesley Powell took a crew of nine other men on an expedition to traverse and map the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon. In just over three months, six of them emerged on the other side of the canyon, having completed the journey more or less in tact. […]

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Dan Hutchison’s Sump Pump Records is a hub for metal acts, DIY artists and vinyl nerds

Along with its wild abundance of musical talent, Iowa is also a treasure trove of top-notch record labels. As someone with a passion for lifting up local artists, I’ve been obsessed in recent years with discovering just what confluence of events has put all of these talented and discerning folk in positions to do just […]

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Artisan’s Sanctuary confirms Neil Young to close out Woodstock celebration (Updated)

The dream of the ’60s is alive in Marion. That’s where, on Aug. 18, nonprofit community arts collective the Artisan’s Sanctuary will present their own tribute to the 50th anniversary of the fair that redefined music, festivals and naked mud dancing. […]

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Honor and duty are deeply examined in Riverside’s amazingly accessible romp of a ‘Henry IV Part 1’

There were moments of sheer unplanned magic in the opening night performance of Henry IV Part 1. But there were also moments of genuine theater magic as well — scenes that stood out even in an overall strong production. There are a lot of good reasons to see Riverside’s ‘Henry IV Part 1.’ But the most amazing thing about it is the role it plays in our community. […]

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You should see her in a crown: Katy Hahn leads Riverside Theatre’s ‘Henry IV, Part I’

In Iowa, there is a small, but growing, community of artists who have no “day job.” It’s into this mad amalgam of a gig economy that theater artist Katy Hahn found herself thrust several years ago. “A question that people ask me a lot is, how do I do it? I say, don’t try to take the same path!”
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Album Review: Aseethe — Throes

Out May 17, Throes, the new album from Iowa City’s metal mavens Aseethe (their second since signing to Thrill Jockey), is overflowing with emotion. This album is exhausting. The opening title track is a nine-and-a-half-minute relentless epic. Aseethe pulls no punches, demanding full investment and offering no quarter. […]

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Hancher announces 2019-20 season featuring Diana Ross, Audra McDonald, ‘Rent’ and more

Hancher 2019-20 general public season tickets on sale Monday, July 1 Hancher announced today the lineup for its 2019-20 season, and it’s a thrilling one. The voices of some amazing women anchor the offerings, including singers, ensembles, poets, comedians and plays by and about women. The season also includes the inaugural events of Hancher’s new […]

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