You might not expect Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to have anything in common with Angela Davis, a counterculture activist and radical in the1960s, but a unique program at the University of Virginia finds qualities that many black leaders share.
The arts have a unique ability to embrace complexity; to hold a variety of ideas at once. They can foster exploration not always possible through other routes. That’s the idea behind the Islamic Worlds Festival at Virginia Tech’s Center for the Arts, which opens next month.
"There’s such a cultural clinging to tradition that is both admirable and sometimes problematic, but that’s in every culture; if you hold too strongly to tradition."
We recently had regional musicians Larry Hall and Marvin Harlow on the show. Larry Hall has played with The Stanley Brothers, Clinton King, Reno & Smiley, and Bill Monroe and now performs with his own band, Larry Hall and the Virginia Mountaineers. Marvin Harlow is also an established musician - they performed a few songs for us and talked some bluegrass with host Kinney Rorrer.
The American Shakespeare Center in Staunton is known for being traditional, but you might be surprised by what constitutes tradition when it comes to the bard.
In Shakespeare’s time, the lights did not go down as the curtain came up. That’s why the Blackfriar Theater’s racy motto is, “We Do It with the Lights On.” And during the current five-show series, performers are taking just 48-hours to find costumes and rehearse. Theater spokeswoman, Cathy Bagwell Marsh, says for the Bard, it was all about business.
“Because the more you did, the more money you made.”