Performing arts

Do you get nervous on stage? How do you deal with the butterflies? 

Photo by John Pemble

A new play about one the country’s most influential Presidents will take place in a space only used by politicians.  “Lincoln’s Last Interview” only engagement is on the floor of the Iowa House in the State Capitol.  It’s being used as a stand in for the US House of Representatives.  The play is set on April 14th, 1865 where President Lincoln and his wife Mary give an interview to a reporter before leaving to see a play at Ford’s Theater.  

Courtesy of Dorothy Marcic

When Professor Dorothy Marcic was asked to give a talk about how women have been portrayed in song lyrics over the course of the 21st century, she was shocked to find that nobody had really look into it, so she did.

“What I found was that the songs that resonated on Top 40 charts, have shadowed the women’s empowerment movement. Songs start out being very co-dependent, like in Little Peggy March’s ‘I Will Follow Him’ and end up being very empowering. Take ‘I Will Survive’ by Gloria  Gaynor," she explains.

kevinkling.com

Everyone is at some point a storyteller.  

Kevin Kling is known for telling stories that are weird and wonderful.  He makes audiences laugh until they cry and he makes them cry until they laugh again.  In this 'Talk of Iowa,' Kling talks about storytelling, his upcoming residency at Central College in Pella, and his latest book On Stage with Kevin Kling.  

David Plowden

For more than 50 years photographer David Plowden has been capturing images of American and the land he loves most is here in the Midwest. Host Charity Nebbe talks with Plowden about his latest book "Heartland: The Plains and the Prairie." 

Also, Dennis Chamberlin of Iowa State University's Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication discusses how the field of photojournalism is changing.  

Photo by John Pemble

This week the musical Wicked is celebrating ten years.  Former Iowan Tim Baudler returned to Des Moines to see this show at the Civic Center with close friends and family to thank them for helping him overcome struggles in his life. 

John Pemble / IPR

Host Charity Nebbe talks comedy all hour today on Talk of Iowa. Sketch, improvisation, standup...comedians in Iowa are working to foster more home-grown performances in the state. Joining the program are actors from Banana Punch, a sketch comedy group from Des Moines, performers in the latest Iowa improv showcase, "The Revolver Comedy Revue", and several stand-up comedians across the state. Join the conversation for some laughs, and to find out more about Iowa's up-and-coming comedy scene.

Wikimedia Commons

Join Jacqueline Halbloom for previews of some major arts events in our state. This month, director Laura Johnson leads off, telling us about the production in Iowa City this weekend of Mozart's second-to-last opera, La Clemenza di Tito. Next comes David Janssen of the Brucemore in Cedar Rapids on this summer's events; then Hugh Pettersen of the Gallagher-Bluedorn in Cedar Falls tells us about the upcoming Creme de la Creme 13. Finally, Michael Egle of the Des Moines Metro Opera updates us on its next season. Hear them at 5 PM Saturday on IPR Classical.

Iowa Public Radio's Cedar Falls facilities are the home of Studio-One-the-room (as opposed to Studio-One-the-programming-stream), an excellent venue for live music.  As I write this, Studio-One-the-room is undergoing renovation and not available for use, but on April 28, The Folk Tree brings you some music that was recorded live there.

In the 2:00 hour, it's our favorite metaphysical Minnesotan singer-songwriter, Peter Mayer.  Then in the 3:00 hour, Sam Knutson, Jordan Sellegren,  and John Waite play music from their Iowa Opera House project.

Iowa's Opera Houses

Feb 6, 2013
The Warren Cultural Center

Though opera houses once meant a town held status, many have since fallen into disrepair. Today efforts are underway to renovate and shed light on Iowa’s opera houses, including Sam Knutson's project, the Iowa Opera House Project, which brings Iowa performers into these antique spaces for locals to experience.

Later, Richard Poole and George Glenn, co-authors of The Opera Houses of Iowa, share the history of the state’s opera houses.

Ben Garland / Flickr

The play "Farmscape" gives us a glimpse into many different aspects of the changing rural environment. Talk of Iowa talks with Mary Swander who wrote "Farmscape" along with a class of MFA students from Iowa State University. And we’ll meet the man, Duncan Sheik, who wrote the music for the Broadway musical "Spring Awakening" and find out about the University of Iowa's production.

The Englert / Facebook

When the Englert Theater in Iowa City was built in 1912 it cost 60,000 dollars. The complete restoration of the theater, completed in 2004, cost 5 million dollars. Now at 100 many believe the Englert is priceless. Host Charity Nebbe talks with Englert Director Andre Perry to celebrate the centennial of the Englert Theatre. Then she explores the intersection where art and life collide with University of Iowa theater professor Eric Forsythe.

At the invitation of Iowa’s Poet Laureate Mary Swander, who is of Irish ancestry, the theatre troupe, Hob Nailed Boots of Renvyle, Ireland,  is visiting the state giving dramatic recitals from works about the Aran Islands, the Irish famine, and immigration. We reached the troupe’s Sean Coyne from his home in Renvyle.  Coyne says audiences are in for an emotional experience…

Hob Nailed Boots Theatre Tour of 3 Plays

Performed by Sean Coyne and Tegolin Knowland, written by Eamon Grennan

Oct. 15, 7:00 P.M.  Hearst Center for the Arts, Cedar Falls, IA     Emigration Road

Iowa's Opera Houses

Jul 16, 2012

Though opera houses once meant a town held status, many have since fallen into disrepair. Today efforts are underway to renovate and shed light on Iowa’s opera houses, including Sam Knutson's project, the Iowa Opera House Project, which brings Iowa performers into these antique spaces for locals to experience.

Later, Richard Poole and George Glenn, co-authors of The Opera Houses of Iowa, share the history of the state’s opera houses.