100 Dallas Creatives: No. 40 Festival Orchestrator Anna Sophia van Zweden

Categories: 100 Creatives

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In front of a piece by Jessica Warboys at an art fair in New York.
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.

Earlier this year, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra unveiled its secret weapon. While Jaap van Zweden builds a top level orchestra, his daughter has been at work behind the scenes helping him strategize how to bring in younger audiences. She's chaired the annual gala, planning a fun after party that stretches late into the night. And it was announced in April that she will serve as the Director of Festival Advancement for the Soluna Festival, which is set to launch in May 2015.

Her multi-disciplinary background, primarily in visual art and museum studies, has allowed her to approach the festival in an inclusive way, pairing international visual artists with the DSO, inviting dance companies to participate, and working the Dallas Museum of Art to program performance art. And that's just a tiny piece of what's to come. We're excited to see how it all comes together, but with Anna Sophia orchestrating its first year, we're expecting great things.

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The New Borderlands Game Will Get a Premiere at the Alamo Drafthouse

Categories: Gaming

Video games are so powerful these days that they are practically on par with movies in terms of story, graphics and production. That might sound like a step forward until you realize that means that Adam Sandler may one day get to make his own game.

There's actually been a movement away from stories in games as the big studios just deliver more and more virtual killing machines that people can play until their eyes melt. Telltale Studios, however, has tried to make story the reason you play their games and they teamed up with local Gearbox Studios to make a graphic adventure version of their popular Borderlands game to deliver a brand new story called Tales from the Borderlands.

It's so close to a movie that it's even getting a flashy, red carpet premiere this Monday at the Alamo Drafthouse in Richardson.

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Bob's Prop Shop in Dallas Gets Reality Show Treatment on the Reelz Channel

Categories: Film and TV

A car shop that only builds screen-accurate reproductions of famous cars like The A-Team van and Doc Brown's DeLorean from Back to the Future sounds like a much more interesting target for a reality show than a group of white trash, beauty pageant freaks without a moral compass.

Apparently executives at the Reelz Channel agree with us.

Robert Moseley, owner and operator of Bob's Prop Shop in Flower Mound, says Reelz will debut Screen Machines, a reality show based around his movie car business, Tuesday, Dec. 2nd. The series will also get its first public screening at a special premiere on the same day at the Alamo Drafthouse in Richardson.

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Brian Brooks Moving Company Explodes Onto the Dallas Scene This Weekend

Categories: Dance

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Erin Baiano

Brian Brooks. Maybe you've heard of him; maybe you haven't. Don't be surprised if you find your self in the latter category. Even the dance world is still getting acquainted with the choreographer coming to the Dallas City Performance Hall this week as part of TITAS' 2014-2015 dance season. Though Brooks has been creating work for more than a decade--and dances that have received both national and international attention--he hasn't become a name common amongst dancers and dance critics; at least not yet.


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With ArtPrize Set to Launch in 2016, Did Dallas Just Buy a Franchised Art Event?

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Facebook.com/ArtPrize
A detail of 'The Hair Craft Project' by Sonya Clark, winner of half of the split Juried Grand Prize.

Last week I found myself in a debate with an artist about the annual fundraiser Art Con. This artist has decidedly never participated in the construction of an art piece to be auctioned off in the name of charity because in his words, "the art is inconsistent." In my words, he takes it all a bit too seriously. I argued that it's more about the event than the quality of art (he nodded, "exactly") and that for many people it's a gateway to an appreciation of local art and artists. He said something to extent of, "If people are going to be introduced to art for the first time, I'd like it to be with a quality event."

I'm wondering if this artist will like today's news that the city of Dallas entered into a three-year agreement with ArtPrize - the citywide art festival that gives up to $500,000 to participating international artists - to debut in April 2016.


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Has Jennifer Lawrence Outgrown Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games?

Categories: Film and TV

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Photo: Murray Close
Jennifer Lawrence in Mockingjay
Can The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 keep up with the first two films? Why was the final book split into two movies? Does Katniss even want to be part of this revolution? On this week's Voice Film Club podcast, we discuss all things Hunger Games before moving onto a documentary about Sheffield, England's Pulp, and finishing with a recommendation for Happy Valley, a documentary on the fallout after the Penn State scandal. Be sure to follow our hosts on Twitter: Alan Scherstuhl (@studiesincrap), Stephanie Zacharek (@szacharek), and Amy Nicholson (@theamynicholson).

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24 Awesome Things to Do This Weekend, November 20 - 23

Categories: Dallas Stories

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Dead White Zombies

When I announced in the Dallas Observer staff meeting on Monday morning that the Dead White Zombies had a show opening this week, my boss paused, looked around the room, and asked, "Are we in it right now?" This is exactly the question Dallas' weirdest theater mind, Thomas Riccio, wants people to ask. The shows are all about breaking down theater conventions and defying expectations. No two shows are ever alike, and in the ones I've seen, I'm often asking myself, "Is this theater?" The immersive, sometimes enlightening, sometimes confusing, and always a little bit creepy shows take place in abandoned warehouses or homes throughout West Dallas and they're the perfect kind of weird. You don't get to settle into your seat and sip your glass of $9 wine. You have to walk through the space and you might interact with the actors. You won't be comfortable, but that's the point. kaRaoKe MoTeL is the final play in a three part series, for which the Zombies constructed a seedy motel, and filled the rooms with the unexpected. If Flesh World was death, and (w)hole was the afterlife, kaRaoKe MoTeL is rebirth. Grab your tickets while you can. The show opens at 8:01 p.m. Thursday with multiple shows in a night and runs through December 13. More info at deadwhitezombies.com.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 41 Emerging Veteran Actor Van Quattro

Categories: 100 Creatives

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Karen Almond
Van Quattro in Second Thought Theatre's A Behanding in Spokane
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.

"I tend to play wacked-out characters, but there's no reason I couldn't play doctors and lawyers." Actor Van Quattro, a favorite among DFW theater directors and critics, is frustrated. He's been auditioning for a lot of TV and film work lately and getting beat for roles by younger actors "playing older."

"Lately every role I go up for, I lose to some actor who was in [the HBO series] True Detective," says Quattro. "They're 10 or 20 years younger than me and we're up for the same part."

Quattro, 60, already has a resume any professional actor would envy. Before moving from Los Angeles (where he was born and raised) to Fort Worth 14 years ago, he had appeared in big TV series including Millennium, Chicago Hope, Picket Fences and General Hospital, and had good roles as mean cops and psycho killers in films such as Fight Club and End of Days.

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DGDG's New Dance Work, NICE, Has Spice

Categories: Theater

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DGDG
Dancers in DGDG's new piece NICE: Sarah Dye, Joshua Nichols, Tamara McCarty, Jana Duplechin.
The new Elevator Series in the sixth-floor performance space at the Wyly Theatre allows plenty of space for the dancers to run in NICE, the fascinating new piece by Dallas choreographer Danielle Georgiou and her company, DGDG.

"It's nice to be nice," croons singer-pianist Paul Slavens, who composed the score for a show that takes all the old tropes about how ladies should behave -- back to 1920s etiquette maven Emily Post, whose insipid rules for debutantes are read and recited by the dancers -- and smashes them to bits. Know that YouTube video about the woman getting catcalled on New York streets for 10 hours? NICE is its succinct, artistic response.

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Folklore Gets a Sexy Feminist Twist in Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls

Categories: Theater

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Undermain Theatre
Stephanie Cleghorn Jasso, Mei Mei Pollitt, Katherine Bourne and Alexandra Lawrence fight the "vicked vitch" in Undermain's Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls.
Tasty baked goods, glowing ovens, scary beasts, flying witches and dark forests. This is the stuff of classic children's fairy tales. Throw in 6-inch stiletto heels, push-up bras and glossy lips, and it's also the stuff of The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls, a toothsome play by Meg Miroshnik about three Russian tarts and a smart American cookie. The dark comedy, which premiered earlier this year at Yale Rep, is getting its regional debut at Undermain Theatre.

The Red Riding Hood of this adventure is Yankee student Annie (Katherine Bourne, speaking with Kardashian flatness, as befits her generation of young women). She leaves a worried mom (Joanna Schellenberg, who plays other roles, too, and all delightfully) at home in So-Cal to spend a few months in Russia, which her family left as Jewish émigrés when Annie was a child (the story is based on the playwright's own experiences). Annie's going back to study Russian language "for business" and see what capitalism has wrought upon post-Soviet culture. "Sleep with one eye open," her mother warns her. "Vicked vitches is crazy bitches."

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