May 22, 2017
By Kathy Blackwell | February 17, 2017 | People
The latest from Austin Way's Editor-in-Chief, Kathy Blackwell.
I caught up with singer Mela Sarajane Dailey after she performed at a private fundraiser for next year’s Bernstein 100 Austin.
In times of uncertainty and doubt, the arts can be everything from a salve and needed escape to a call to arms or a bridge across divisions. In this city of musicians, writers, artists, and other creatives, the arts are not only essential, they’re thriving like never before. Just look at The Contemporary Austin’s recently renovated Jones Center, which now features Jim Hodges’ “With Liberty and Justice for All (A Work in Progress)” installation wrapped around the building so that it shines its message of hope down on Congress Avenue.
With Camila Alves and Rebecca Feferman at a special Alamo Drafthouse preview of Gold, the latest movie by Mr. Alves, Matthew McConaughey.
In February, The Blanton Museum reopens its second-floor galleries, which now have much more space to showcase its permanent collection (page 86). We are proud to sponsor the exquisite Blanton Gala to celebrate the relaunch as well as honor arts patrons Jeanne and Michael L. Klein. Another exciting event we are thrilled to support is next year’s Bernstein 100 Austin, a celebration envisioned by Austin Symphony maestro Peter Bay to mark the centennial year of music legend Leonard Bernstein—it will center around two fully staged performances of the composer’s epic MASS. You’ll be reading a lot more about this landmark, collaborative event leading up to the concerts in June 2018.
Saying something brilliant, I’m sure, at the Austin Way Holiday Party at the South Congress Hotel honoring our InstaAustin cover stars, including Lindsay Vandygriff and Charles Reagan Hackleman.
Of course, music and film are Austin’s creative cornerstones. Our cover features the Austin band Spoon, the indie-rock icons who will have a three-night residency during SXSW to coincide with the release of their new album, Hot Thoughts. Also in this issue, I talked to Austin writer/ director Jeff Nichols about his profound film Loving and being honored at the Texas Film Awards. Another of Austin’s illustrious directors, Terrence Malick, will premiere his movie Song to Song on SXSW’s opening night. I spoke with two of the movie’s producers, Austinites Sarah Green (also a producer on Loving) and Nicolas Gonda, about the star-studded movie, which was filmed in part at SXSW, ACL Fest, and Fun Fun Fun Fest over several years, sparking much speculation among locals who were there (including myself!).
SXSW will bring together artists from around the world, turning Austin into a global cultural hotbed. The current political climate will certainly underscore much of the fest (FBI Director James Comey is a speaker, after all), so get ready for a charged couple of weeks. In the meantime, enjoy this first Austin Way of 2017, including some of the changes we made throughout the book (because we’re creative types too).
PHOTOGRAPHY BY BEN PORTER (DAILEY); DAVID BRENDAN HALL (VANDYGRIFF); RICK KERN (ALVES)
May 22, 2017