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The BUZZ This Season pre-interview: Michael J. Solender

October 11, 2012

What is on the minds of the panelists who will participate in The BUZZ This Season on Oct. 24?

The BUZZ This Season is an event, presented by Blumenthal Performing Arts, that will provide insights from five local critics and journalists about the cultural scene in Charlotte. You’re invited to attend and participate in the discussion. The BUZZ This Season is 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 24, in McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square.

And it turns out, with critics and journalists, all you have to do is ask what they think. Through Oct. 21, get the skinny from each panelist. Today, Michael J. Solender is in the spotlight. Michael is a freelance journalist who writes about arts and culture.

What do you think about this season’s crop of shows?

I am particularly pleased by the diverse lineup. The dance focus including Martha Graham and Shen Yun 2013 are incredible opportunities to experience the very best. I like the fact that the (Duke Energy) Broadway Lights lineup has blockbusters such as LES MISERABLES as well as really technically innovative shows like WAR HORSE.

Which show are you most looking forward to? Which one are you keeping an eye on… because of subject matter, cast, musicians, etc.?

  • Martha Graham Dance because UNC Charlotte Dance faculty professor Kim Jones is recreating/reanimating a lost Graham masterwork, Imperial Gesture, from 1935. She has been working for months painstakingly researching and recreating the choreography for this lost and unperformed (since 1935) work using written descriptions/reviews of it from the 1930s, old photographs, etc. The music was totally lost, so she has had to commission new music from a composer.
  • Mandy Patinkin is a genius and HUGE supporter and proponent of Yiddish Theater – I’m looking forward to seeing him perform.

What’s your biggest hope for the city’s cultural scene in ’12-’13?
The entire community benefits with a broad and diverse chorus of voices and perspectives – Charlotte for too long has been a great place for talent to be “from” on their way somewhere else – I’d love to see the emergence of Charlotte as a destination for talent to come to. As we develop more equity theater and the economy allows for more per capita arts spending perhaps we’ll see the emergence of more locally developed performance art.

Coming Up

Sunday, Oct. 14: Courtney Devores
Wednesday, Oct. 17: Lawrence Toppman

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