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October 27, 2018 - 2:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GSO, Genesee Symphony Orchestra, music, entertainment, arts, news.

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Celloist Marza Merophi Wilks will be the featured soloist tomorrow in a concert by the Genesee Symphony Orchestra at Genesee Community College.

The concert starts at 4 p.m. and tickets are available at the door.

Wilks, born in Peru, started playing cello when she was 5 years old and is a master student at the Julliard School. She has previously been a guest soloist for the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes and The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra. 

Wilks will perform with the orchestra Samuel Barber's "Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra," a piece in three movements.

Also on the program, "Electric Dream for Acoustic Orchestra," a world premiere performance, which was written by S. Shade Zajac, the GSO's musical director and conductor. 

The orchestra will close with "Symphony No. 2 in B minor" by Alexander Borodin.

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October 26, 2018 - 12:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in genesee valley wind ensemble, music, arts, entertainment, news.

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The Genesee Wind Ensemble performs at the Oakfield-Alabama Auditorium at 4 p.m., Nov. 18. It is located at 7001 Lewiston Road, Oakfield.

Featured works include "Beguine for Band," "Blue Moon," highlights from "Camelot," "Entry for Gladiators," "Procession for Nobles," "Abracadabra," and Symphony No. 3 by Clifton Williams.

Visit geneseevalleywindensemble.org for more information.

Photos are from last night's rehearsal.

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October 20, 2018 - 11:06am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, entertainment, GO ART!, news, batavia.

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Artist Christopher McGee was at GO ART! on Thursday evening for the opening of his show, "The Rhythms of Nature."

Born in Jamestown, the Clarence-based artist said this is the first time he's had a show for this series of paintings.

He began the series in 2008 while observing landscapes while on road trips throughout Western New York. 

He said, "My experience playing drums in experimental and improvisational noise bands helped me to visually express some of the more mercurial, unpredictable elements in the universe: earthquakes, meteor showers, supernovas, and black holes."

The show runs through Dec. 8.

GO ART! has two other shows on display as well:

  • The Batavia Photography Club has photos on display by members through Dec. 8.
  • The Traveling Ghost by Ryan Gustman is on display until Nov. 3. Gustman was diagnosed with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder and ADHD early in his life. He specializes in photographing abandoned buildings.
October 20, 2018 - 10:41am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Players, news, arts, entertainment, batavia, Harvester 56 Theater.

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Batavia Players hosts its annual fundraising concert at 7:30 tonight at Harvester 56 Theater.

The cast perfoms a variety of show tunes in their production of "Stories, Songs & Just a Touch of Sin."

Tickets are $20 at the door.

Photos submitted by Pat Burk.

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Kaylee Dehlinger (Center) with Jocelyn Coburn and Kathryn Fitzpatrick singing "It Won't Be Long" from "Across The Universe."

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Jacqueline Morrison, Tiffany Keicher, Kristin Gelia, and Alix Young singing "I'm A Woman" from "Smokey Joe's Cafe."

October 19, 2018 - 8:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCC, Forum Players, arts, entertainment, news.

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The Genesee Community College Forum Players present "Bakkhai" in performances tonight and Sunday at the Stuart Steiner Theatre on the GCC Batavia campus.

The play is an adaptation by Anne Carson of “The Bacchae” by the Greek philosopher Euripedes, written more than 2,400 years ago. It's a story of based on the Greek myth of King Pentheus of Thebes and his mother, Agave, who are punished by Dionysus, the god of wine, madness, fertility, and religious ecstasy.

The play contains adult subject matter.

Tonight's performance is at 7:30 and Sunday's show is at 2 p.m.

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September 4, 2018 - 1:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in arts, GO ART!, batavia society of artists, news, Brian O'Neill.

Photo of Rochester artist Brian O'Neill, courtesy of Batavia Society of Artists.

Information provided by the Batavia Society of Artists:

The Batavia Society of Artists is excited to announce that the demonstrating artist at GO ART! on Tuesday, Sept. 11th, will be Brian O'Neill, a Rochester Art Club Signature Member and internationally known fine art painter.

The artist's contemporary, dynamic and expressive abstract paintings are really fantastic, says Nikki Tamfer, of the Batavia Society of Artists, and he is also known for his oil realism.

The demo will be held in the historic Seymour Place home of GO ART! in Downtown Batavia from 7 to 9 p.m. a week from today. It is located at 201 E. Main St.

The event is free for Batavia Society of Artists' members; $5 for non-members. 

"It's All Abstraction" will consist of an artist talk and PowerPoint presentation. O'Neill will illustrate through a visual presentation how all form can be broken down into simple, dark and light abstract shapes for more believable realism work. And he will offer insights into the inspirations for his abstract painting and relate them to environmental realities. 

O'Neill has a working and teaching studio in the Hungerford Building in Rochester, which is at 1115 E. Main St. His work has been showcased in galleries across the United States, Canada, England and Japan. He's a graduate of the Ani Art Academy apprenticeship program, where he trained with renowned realism painter Anthony Waichulis.

His formal training gave him the freedom to create in worlds both recognizable and imagined. 

In his bio statement, O'Neill, born in 1969, says: “My responsibility as an artist is one that asks me to create not because I want to, but because I have to. My goal with each painting is to infuse my passion for beauty in a language that can be read and felt by all people that view my work. I challenge myself to always remain open to learning and making work at the highest level possible.”

Find more examples of O'Neill’s work as well as student creations here.

Below, "Homestead," oil on canvas by Brian O'Neill.

Below, "Pause," oil, whitegold, gold, silverleaf by Brian O'Neill.

Below, "Turquoise Twilight," acrylic with silver, goldleaf by Brian O'Neill.

Below, "The Chase," oil on canvas by Brian O'Neill.

Bottom, "Winter Glow," oil on canvas by Brian O'Neill.

August 15, 2018 - 12:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia society of artists, batavia, news, arts.

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Kevin Feary with his painting "Distance From Transit Rd.," was the winner Tuesday night at the opening of the Summer Art Show for the Batavia Society of Artists.

The show runs on the second floor of GO ART! through Oct. 5.

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Kate Engle's "Badge #2," a pencil and felt pen drawing, took third place in the show. The drawing is of her great-grandfather, who was a Batavia police officer and wore Badge #2.

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JL Wenrich, who could not attend the opening, placed second with "Back Yard Chickens," a pen and pencil drawing.

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A pen and ink drawing by Rick Ellingham of the Swartz Hotel (the Stumblin' Inn) in Elba.

August 14, 2018 - 3:50pm

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Monday night at Genesee Community College, the Genesee Symphony Orchestra rehearsed for Sunday's third annual Summer Serenade.
 
The garden party event is a combined fund-raising event for the United Way's Backpack Program and the Genesee Symphony Orchestra.
 
It will be Aug. 19th from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at the Mercy Grove Event Center, 7758 E. Main Road (Route 5) in Le Roy.
 
During the three-hour Garden Party, guests can enjoy hors-d'oeuvres, grazing stations, beer, wine, and a cash bar, all catered by the Le Roy Country Club. 
 
The Genesee Symphony Orchestra will play a concert from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. under a large white tent, which is set up off the back patio of Mercy Grove. The stately mansion was built by Donald Woodward in 1927 and sets amid beautifully landscaped grounds with expansive views.
 
Le Roy Historian Lynne Belluscio will conduct mansion tours during the Garden Party.
 
Bright-colored, garden-party attire recommended.
 
The orchestra will feature "Summer Songs" with their concertmaster, GSO Conductor S. Shade Zajac. Kiran Rajamani is the featured violin soloist. Some other musical surprises will also be played.
 
Theresa DeMars, an account manager with Lawley Insurance, chairs the event for United Way.
 
Tickets to support this combined fundraiser are $75 per person; $40 of that ticket cost may be claimed as a donation to these two nonprofit organizations.  
 
Tickets may be purchased at the door or as follows:
  1. Le Roy Country Club
  2. Roxy's Music Store
  3. United Way or GSO Board Members
  4. Online at: www.uwrochester.org/summer serenade
  5. www.geneseesymphony.com

(Photos by Howard Owens.)

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August 10, 2018 - 1:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Concert Band, batavia, music, arts, entertainment, news.

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Press release:

As part of the last concert, Dave Lumberg, owner of Tim Hortons, of Batavia, received the annual Pam Frisby Friend of the Band Award.  Pam was a longtime board member and president for the Batavia Concert Band, and the Band honors her memory every year with a Friend of the Band Award. 

Tim Hortons was recognized for their generous donation each season of baked goods for the concession stand, of which the proceeds are used to fund a scholarship program for college students who play in the Batavia Concert Band. 

Pictured is Dave Lumberg, a Tim Hortons Batavia franchise owner, Anne Arent, BCB Board member, and Jason Smith, BCB general manager.

Tim Hortons received a certificate for display in their restaurant, and their name will be engraved on a special plaque displayed at every concert. Tim Hortons also donated the prize award back to the Batavia Concert Band.

The Band also thanks GO ART!, WBTA, the City of Batavia, and Genesee Community College for their support of our entire season, as well as the following concert sponsors: The Zehler Family, Rotary Club of Batavia, HE Turner & Company Funeral Home, Batavia Lions Club, Bailey Electric, GCASA, The Insurance Center, UMMC, friends of Neil Hartwick, the Pacino family, Michael Kubinec D.D.S., and Brighton Securities.  

Thank you to all our audience members who faithfully attended each week, and plans are already underway for the 2019 season!

August 4, 2018 - 1:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Blackjack Billy, the ridge, Frost Ridge, music, arts, entertainment, news.

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Nashville-based Blackjack Billy made its third appearance in five years at The Ridge in Le Roy, waiting out the rain with their fans and then rewarding them with another rockin' show.

The band's new single is "Straight Line Sober" (video embedded below).

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August 3, 2018 - 12:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, thebatavian, wbta, news, arts, entertainment.

Tomorrow starting at 6 p.m. the place to be is GO ART!, 201 E. Main St., Batavia, where the night's guest bartenders will be Howard Owens of The Batavian and Chris Kalin of WBTA.

Billed as a competition, our goal is to raise as much money as possible for local arts, so come, be merry, enjoy a few drinks, leave tips on the bar.

July 27, 2018 - 11:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in stumblin' inn, elba, news, music, arts, entertainment, notify.

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Jim Goff never knew. For decades the Stumblin' Inn in Elba was a haven for local musicians. He knew he was having fun. He didn't know what it meant to the musicians he nurtured and the community that followed them.

Now he knows.

A fire destroyed the storied watering hole the second Sunday of the July, despite a valiant effort by the Elba Volunteer Fire Department and their mutual aid companies to save the 143-year-old building. Jim and his brother Steve, or Stork to everybody who knew him, were asleep upstairs when the alarm went out. They were alerted in time to make a safe escape.

They found themselves on the sidewalks of their small village surrounded by friends and neighbors sharing their tears.

"I never knew until this happened how much it meant to the community," Goff said shortly after arriving Thursday at an open mic night in a park across the street, next to the Elba Fire Hall.

More than 150 local musicians and music fans had gathered for what is likely the last open mic night for the Stumblin' Inn, a Thursday night tradition for years.

"Musicians have always been my people," Goff said. "That’s who I relate to, that’s who I feel comfortable around. We started an open mic in the 1980s and did it off and on. Musicians just liked to hang out there. It felt like home to everyone. We had a lot of bands who called that place home."

Standing next to Goff was local musician Doug Barnard. He said Barnard and his band Southbound were responsible for helping Goff recognize the value of local bands to his bar business.

"They said 'Give us a chance,' " Goff said. " 'We guarantee we'll pack this place.' They told me that about three times so I gave them a chance. They packed the place for five years. I realized maybe this local band thing is a pretty cool thing to embrace."

It all worked, Goff said, because he and his brother kept their priorities straight.

"It’s all about having fun," Goff said. "If you’re having fun, you’re going to make money. Money and fun, it all goes together."

As for the future, that's still a blank slate.

"All the experts say you don’t make big decisions right away," Goff said. "You let things sink in. There’s certainly some pressure to rebuild. Age is definitely a factor. We honestly don’t know. I would say we’re leaning toward probably not, but who knows? I’m not going to say no because I don’t know. I honestly don’t know."

Top photo: Goff as he arrived at Thursday's open mic night, hugging local musician Dylan Desmit, who helped organize the fundraiser for the Goffs with co-host Paul Draper.

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July 20, 2018 - 6:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fair, music, arts, entertainment, news, DriVen.

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DriVen -- a power trio comprised of Dylan Desmit on guitar, Mike "Thunder" Warran on base, and Alex Desmit on drums -- beat out Invictra to win the 2018 Genesee County Fair Battle of the Bands.

I first saw Dylan Desmit play a few years ago and he was a good, young guitarist. He's become a great guitarist.

As the winner, DriVen is tonight's entertainment at the fair. They are scheduled to play from 7 to 11 p.m.

It's also Demolition Derby night and there will also be barrel racing at 8 p.m.

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July 12, 2018 - 9:07am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, batavia society of artists, news, batavia, Kiwanis Park.

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Deb Meier, a retired Batavia art teacher, provided a demonstration in watercolor plein air painting for members of the Batavia Society of Artists at Kiwanis Park on Monday.

Painting en plein air, or outdoor painting, which often requires the painter to work quickly in direct response to the scene before the painter, was a technique favored by the French impressionists of the 19th century and has continued to remain popular with artists.

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July 4, 2018 - 1:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Ramble, batavia, news, music, entertainment, arts.

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Photo: Paul Draper and Stephen Kowalcyk, co-directors of the 2018 Batavia Ramble Music and Arts Festival.

Press release:

The 2018 Batavia Ramble Music & Arts Festival will be held on Saturday, July 7th, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. This year we will have two main stages that will feature live performances from 34 local bands & artists.

The "Eli Fish" stage will be located in Jackson Square and the "Center Street" stage will be located in the parking lot across from Center Street Smoke House.

Along with musical performances, we will also have local artists, craft vendors and food trucks lined up all along Center Street.

As always, The Batavia Ramble is free to the public so bring a chair and a few friends and come and check out the biggest show in Batavia! For additional information, please email Paul Draper III at [email protected]

The 2018 music lineup:

 Eli Fish Stage:

  • Ghost Riders
  • Me & Red
  • Koko & The Moon Crickets
  • Justin Williams Band
  • Shotgun Pauly
  • Trolls 2.0
  • Genesee Ted
  • Driven
  • Zero
  • Old Hippies
  • Sierra
  • Noahs Reign
  • Bluesway Band
  • Warren Skye & Friends
  • Eagle Creek
  • Justin Crossett Band
  • Audibull

Center Street Stage:

  • J. Hopkins
  • Grizzwoode
  • PD3
  • Dave Holnbeck
  • Steve Kruppner
  • Kruppner Brothers
  • Jenny & Michelle
  • Beethovan's Dream Group Again
  • The Live Bait Band
  • The Pedestrians
  • Lonesome Road
  • Rock Soulgers
  • Gretchen & The Girls
  • Blues Daddios
  • Mercury Express
  • Conspiracy Theory
  • We are Groot
June 27, 2018 - 4:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Geezer Radio, WGCC, music, arts, entertainment.

Richard Beatty, the host of "Geezer Radio" on WGCC, 90.7 FM, invited me to come on his show tonight at 8 p.m. to share some songs from my rockabilly music collection.

We'll play some new stuff, such as Imelda May and the Bellfuries; the first stuff, such as Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins; as well as dig into the Sun Records archives a bit, and a few obscure rockabilly pioneers such as Jack Earls, Johnny Carroll, and Joe Clay.

June 27, 2018 - 9:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Concert Band, batavia, news, arts, entertainment.

The Batavia Concert Band will perform indoors this evening, show time, 7 p.m., due to rain, at Genesee Community College. The performance will be in the Stuart Steiner Theater.

June 15, 2018 - 9:32am
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, pembroke hs, news, arts, entertainment.

This short film was produced by a group of Pembroke High School for a class project. It's a sequal to a short film produced by students in 2009 called "The Birdman Phenomenon."

June 14, 2018 - 12:28pm

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Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew opened its 2018 Battle of the Bands competition with a check presentation of $3,000 to the Golisano Children's Hospital in Rochester. The Coniber family, Jason, Missy, and Hailey, of Le Roy, accepted the check on behalf of the hospital. 

This year, the crew at the Smokin' Eagle hopes to raise $5,000 during the Battle of the Bands competition, which ends in October. In addition to the 50-50 raffle that runs throughout the competition, the Smokin' Eagle will also be selling $15 chicken BBQ tickets for the finale.

The first band up last night was The Fallen, based in Rush, but with members from the region, including Le Roy.

There will be bands competing every Wednesday until the champion is crowned.

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This year's judges, Carl Giammarva, Sarah Tonzi, Jackie Whiting, Jeff Kanaley, and Chris Biviano.

June 8, 2018 - 5:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, schools, education, music, arts, entertainment, news.

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Alexander Central School hosted its second annual Jazz Invitational on Thursday night, which featured performances of Alexander's brass band, the Alexander Jazz Cadets (photos), and the Alexander Jazz Experience, along with a performance by the Warsaw Jazz Ensemble.

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