Arts and Culture

UPDATE: A "Homecoming" celebration of the life of Lawrence Leathers has been scheduled for Saturday, June 29th at the New Mount Calvary Baptist Church on West Miller Road in Lansing. There will be a public viewing at 9 a.m. and a service at 10 a.m., followed by burial at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens. A man and a woman are in custody, facing charges of manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.

A Lansing-born Grammy Award-winning jazz drummer was found murdered Sunday in New York City. Lawrence "Lo" Leathers was 37. A suspect is in custody. He was a prodigy, playing as a toddler and playing professionally at the age of 15, attending the Juilliard School and winning Grammys in recent years.

Leathers played on two of Cécile McLorin Salvant’s three Best Jazz Vocal Grammy-winning albums.

WKAR's Scott Pohl talks with Diego Rivera of the MSU College of Music about Leathers' life and career.


East Lansing Art Festival 2018
Katie Cook / WKAR-MSU

The East Lansing Art Festival returns to the streets of East Lansing this weekend. Julie Levy-Weston, the festival’s interim director, speaks with WKAR’s Scott Pohl about this year’s event.


Laura Apol photo
Scott Pohl / WKAR/MSU

For two years, Dennis Hinrichsen has served as Lansing’s first Poet Laureate. As his term ends, a new poet laureate has been named. Laura Apol is an associate professor of literacy and curriculum in the Michigan State University College of Education. 


Hamilton national touring company photo
Joan Marcus

When the Wharton announced that Hamilton was coming to East Lansing about a year and a half ago, the anticipation started to build. The biggest hit musical in a generation will be in town for three weeks, starting May 14th, and on Saturday, individual ticket sales begin. They’re sure to go fast, so WKAR’s Scott Pohl brought Bob Hoffman in from the Wharton Center to get the lowdown on how you can get tickets to see Hamilton.


Westrin and Mowry photo
Courtesy photo

A Lansing-area musical duo has been named the grand prize winner for folk music in the John Lennon International Songwriting Contest. Westrin and Mowry now move on, along with winners in 23 other catagories, in vying for the competition’s Song of the Year honors.


Joshua Davis Live at the Robin CD cover
courtesy image

Joshua Davis spent 20 years in the Lansing music scene with his band Steppin’ In It before moving on to Traverse City and a solo career. You may have seen him on WKAR-TV’s “Backstage Pass” program, or as a finalist on NBC’s “The Voice.” Davis speaks with WKAR's Scott Pohl about releasing a new live album at the Midwinter Singing Festival in East Lansing tonight.


Wayne Kramer photo
Jim Newberry

The leader of one of Detroit’s most influential rock bands has written an autobiography. Wayne Kramer led the MC5, a group that helped take hard rock music to the mainstream. Fifty years later, to promote his book “The Hard Stuff: Dope, Crime, The MC5 and My Life of Impossibilities,” he’s hitting the road with a band he’s calling MC50.


Motown
WKAR file photo / WKAR

The Motown Museum in Detroit is recognizing Aretha Franklin’s importance to her home town this weekend.


Brian Kirschensteiner photo
Scott Pohl / WKAR/MSU

If you’ve ever visited an art museum, you’re familiar with the small information signs posted next to the works on display. There, you’ll find the name of the artist, the title of the piece, and other information. At Michigan State University, the Broad Art Museum hopes to use new technology to provide a lot more than the basics.


Janice Blixt photo
Courtesy photo / Michigan Shakespeare Festival

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival is back for its annual six-week run. As always, the first three weeks are staged at Jackson College.


Maceo Parker photo
Laurent Graffion

Saxophone player Maceo Parker may have the greatest résumé in funk music history. On Friday night, Parker brings a show paying tribute to Ray Charles to MSU’s Wharton Center.


Mark Auslander photo
Scott Pohl / WKAR-MSU

There will not be a Great Lakes Folk Festival this summer in East Lansing. WKAR's Scott Pohl talks with  Museum Director Mark Auslander about the decision.


Wally Pleasant photo
Vincent Brady / Windwalker Underground Gallery

Wally Pleasant is a comedic singer-songwriter who’ll perform twice this weekend in Charlotte. Scott Pohl brought the long-time local favorite into WKAR’s Studio S for a little conversation and music.


Theresa Rosado and Diana Rivera photo
Scott Pohl / WKAR-MSU

The art world looks down on paintings on velvet. The images conjured by the phrase “velvet art” might be things like children with big eyes, or Elvis Presley. A Lansing art gallery is challenging the notion that this is low-brow art. Casa de Rosado is hosting an exhibition called “Black Velvet, a Rasquache Aesthetic” through February 3rd.


Warhol's Marilyn image
Courtesy Image

The most iconic name in modern art history might well be that of Andy Warhol. Even casual observers of the art world know about his works depicting soup cans or celebrities like Marilyn Monroe. Starting Saturday, the Broad Art Museum on the MSU campus will be the site of an exhibition of works by Warhol. “Andy Warhol: A Day in the Life” can be seen through May 6th.


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