For many in town, the name Ron McCurdy might be linked with fond memories of trumpets and tubas blasting over the triumphs of Danny Manning and Larry Brown while McCurdy served as director of the Kansas Basketball Band in the late 80s. It’s possible that KU music majors may have recorded jazz pieces within a Murphy Hall studio named after McCurdy, where he once served as the first director of Jazz Studies. For everyone else stateside and far flung around the globe, McCurdy, a KU Distinguished Alumni, is best known for creating the Langston Hughes Project, which he has performed internationally and which he will be bringing back to KU during a performance on April 7 in Swarthout Recital Hall.
Worried your kid's brain will turn to mush this spring break? School may be out, but fun — and learning — is in, at least at the Lawrence Arts Center, Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department, and the Lawrence Public Library. Here, we've rounded up a few of the camps, workshops and activities being offered locally this week.
Arnie Johnson has been and will always be “a country boy.” Johnson was raised in a family of musicians, first in Salina, and then in Lawrence, where he’s lived since 1952.
If you hear the name Lawrence Fight Club, you’re probably picturing a dingy and damp basement in some old building on Mass Street with fluorescent lights flickering from the ceiling. Down below a circle of spectators surrounds two shirtless dudes who are pulverizing each other.
If you’ve kept up with Chad Lawhorn’s Town Talk and you’re anything like me, you’re probably wondering exactly what the cluck is going on with all of these fried chicken joints popping up around town. To further investigate the allure, as every journalist should, I enlisted the help of sports editor Tom Keegan and the fried chicken oracle of Lawrence himself, Chad Lawhorn, to eat at all of them.
If the names Sam and Dan Billen ring a bell, it might be that you heard their music while popping around the Lawrence music scene at The Bottleneck or Jackpot Saloon in the early- to mid-2000s. But you’ve likely heard their music and not known it — and it may even have caused you to grab your wallet.
Give us your wildly unpopular, nonpolitical opinions.
A current exhibit at the Lawrence Arts Center, featuring works by Mike Yoder and Richard Gwin, two photographers with well over a half-century’s worth of combined years at the Lawrence Journal-World, aims to bring forth the hidden process. By presenting prints of contact sheets while on assignment, and photos selected after being pushed through the various channels of editing, “the work” is made visible.
Ian Stepp remembers visiting his aunt’s house as a kid, where he’d play classic games like Duck Hunt and iterations of the Mario Brothers saga on the family’s trusty old Nintendo Entertainment System. Now pushing 30, Stepp is still a fan of the now-classic video games that in recent years have spawned a thriving culture and industry capitalizing on the nostalgia of grownups who coveted Nintendo game systems as kids in the 1980s and 90s.
For me, without question, most of the images from the playing field that stand out at the end of each year usually aren't the electrifying dunks or the diving touchdowns. Many of them don't even have a ball anywhere in the photo. I think I speak for most photojournalists when I say that the storytelling moments, whether humorous, melancholy, deflating or uplifting are the ones that most of us are looking for.
Lawrencians will find no shortage of entertainment this New Year's Eve, from afternoon screenings of "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" to The Crumpletons' annual early New Year's show at The Jazzhaus to late-night karaoke and champagne toasts at the Yacht Club.
On Aug. 21, 1863, the rumbling of equine feet accompanied the dawn in Lawrence, Kansas. Before a swarming mass of pro-Confederate bushwhackers rode William Clarke Quantrill, once a resident of Lawrence himself. The guerrilla chieftain let his Missourians loose — hundreds of them — on the unsuspecting abolitionist stronghold.
In Ireland, where acclaimed harpist Cormac De Barra grew up, Christmas is a time for families and loved ones to come together. “No matter where you are, you drop everything and make it home for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day,” De Barra, an internationally touring musician based primarily in Dublin, says of the holiday tradition he and fellow Irishmen hold dearest.
In 90 seconds, most people could probably fry an egg on a preheated pan, fill up an empty tank of gas on a compact car or peel and cut up an apple with fingers fully intact. Most people, however, could not produce a large-scale painting of anything remotely recognizable before an audience while wearing high heels.
For Amy Nystrom, the set of Theatre Lawrence’s production of Peter Pan — from the wallpapered nursery to the multilevel pirate ship — is its own kind of Neverland.
Art has been Stacey Lamb’s refuge since childhood, but she thought two years ago her days as an artist were over.
It would be pretty difficult to forget meeting a anyone with a name like Gizmo Joe, or Mothman or Pat the Hat from Slab City, California. A pinky-ringed cabbie from Jersey named Al? Fahgettaboudit! For Lawrence artist John Sebelius, the memories of these four and 61 others certainly haven’t faded, as he has recorded them in great, colorful detail for his upcoming show, Cupcakes, which opens at Phoenix Gallery for Final Fridays on Nov. 26.
It’s ironic, Nick Schmiedeler says, that the old Packard junkyard on 1106 Rhode Island Street didn’t produce enough junk for the metal sculpture he just completed at the site.
In a pinch-me moment of Caribe’s decades-long presence in the Midwest music circuit, the reggae-Latin ensemble played at a party for industry big shots such as the Oakridge Boys and Roy Orbison. It was glamorous, to be sure, founding member Gary Frager recalls now. But for Frager, who went by the stage name Willie Skate in his tenure as the band’s trumpet-trombone-sax player, rubbing elbows with famous musicians wasn’t the point.
Think of it as “The Big Chill” for a new generation. That’s how Peter Zazzali, the director of KU Theatre’s upcoming production of “Pooter McGraw is Not Dead Party,” describes the coming-of-age tale set to open Friday at 7:3o p.m. at KU’s Crafton-Preyer Theatre, 1530 Naismith Drive.