Friday, October 5, 2012

ATTN: Huntsville Residents - A Crazy(wood) Proposition

I had the chance to sit down for lunch with John Smither and Liz Ganz several days ago. Most of you know Smither - or at least know of him because you know of Smither Company Real Estate. Liz Ganz moved here this past summer as a dance artist in residence and dance teacher. John and Liz showed me a great deal of hospitality by cooking and serving lunch, and I would like to formally thank them for that. I would also like to formally apologize for not eating much; I was having a hell of a time getting my fork to stab through the salad. I guess I now know that I should have gone with the chopsticks!

Throughout lunch, we discussed a lot of things, but most importantly, we discussed the mutual desire to get people involved in things in our community. Huntsville has always been home to artists, writers, builders, eccentrics of all kinds, people that are curious or seeking culture, and people that are just plain weird. However, there has also always been a lack of a way for all of these different people and groups to connect. When I say connect, I don't mean via Facebook. The internet has been a huge help to us in so many ways, but it also assists in creating a barrier that makes it ridiculously easy for us to become homebodies. In some ways, "social networking" actually makes us socially stagnant. Where are we supposed to go to make real, human connections? Huntsville has its share of bars, and at some of them, a good time can be had, but aside from those bars, where do you go to meet people and engage in meaningful conversation or activities?

This is a problem that we at Hey, Huntsville! and they at Crazywood would like to join together to help solve. You may be familiar with Crazywood; it is located right next to the real estate office on Sam Houston Avenue. When I asked for a meeting with John and Liz, one of the topics I wanted to discuss was Crazywood and what in the world was going on with it at this time. In the past, I had visited Crazywood Gallery for a few art exhibits and sales, a slam poetry competition, and even a noise show. I hadn't heard about anything happening there in a long while.

It turns out, Crazywood still has exhibits in the gallery (currently: the works of Bill Haveron), but they have turned their focus on dance. The name does a good job at describing the essence: Crazywood Art and Movement Center. Several dance classes will be offered starting this month - a weekly Nia class, a class called beingLoved, etc. The center also plays host to dance retreats.

One of the most interesting events happening in the Crazywood world goes down on October 11. This will be the first in the new weekly event: Dance Night.

I am glad to have had the chance to have a conversation with people who are passionate about something. While John and Liz may be more passionate about dance and I may be more passionate about art, we all have one passion in common: making real connections with people through real experiences with them. As I told them, I couldn't tell you the last time I had a conversation with a friend via phone. Texting and Facebook have eliminated the need for verbal communication. Why would I feel the need to call you when I just read a detailed description of what you cooked or had at a restaurant (with bonus photo attached!)? Why would I travel to your house for a visit when I can sit here by myself on my laptop and Skype you or get in on your Google hangout? We know more than ever about each other (congrats on that bacon wrapped in bacon recipe you perfected and the jalapeno dip that went right through you, btw), yet we don't know each other at all any more. When's the last time you gave a friend a hug or a real shoulder to cry on? "OMG SORRY" via text or IM doesn't cut it, guys. I've been saying this for a while, but maybe I haven't been saying it loud enough: Let's go out and do something!

There are a lot of events that go on around town that no one seems to care about, but I am going to be an optimist and say that no one knows about them. Sometimes they're not advertised well, and sometimes they're not advertised at all. That's where we want to come in. Please go to our Facebook page (I know, I know!), like it, and keep up with our posts. Alternatively, bookmark our calendar of events and check it every once in a while. We recently teamed up with ITZ Magazine as well, so you can grab one of those (for free) and tear the calendar out. Sometimes we hear about events after our deadline to ITZ, so the best thing to do is check out the calendar online.

If you skimmed this article, here's a summary: Huntsville has all kinds of awesome people inhabiting it. Let's all get together and do things! Let's create art together, view other people's art, dance together, watch films and theatre performances together, attend live music performances together, encourage each other in everything we do, and most of all, become more connected with each other. I don't just want to tell you about events with boring status updates every day. I want to attend these events with you, get to know you, and build a better community with you.

I'll make the first move: I'll be at Dance Night on October 11, even though I am not someone who dances. I dare you to join me. Say hello. Tell me what you're passionate about. Make a connection with me and with other people in our awesome little town. See you there!

Dance Night @ Crazywood (Thursdays)

This isn't your everyday dance event, which is why we are excited to tell you about it. At 8p on Thursday nights, Crazywood will open its doors to the community for a very different dance experience, where the focus is not on showing off, but on self expression, connection, and, of course, fun! Guests are invited to come in and get comfortable (breaking the "no shoes" rule is highly encouraged), meet new people, make new connections, and dance a crazy variety of styles: blues, ballroom, salsa, swing, tango, disco, freestyle, hip hop, and more. You get the gist: the dancers at Crazywood are inspired by all kinds of dance, and everyone is welcome.

This event is for dancers of all experience levels - even people whose experience only includes dancing alone in the privacy of their homes. If you want to dance solo at this even, you can dance solo. If you want to bring a friend, you can bring a friend. If you want to dance with someone new, just grab a partner at the event and dance. Shy? Sit on one of the comfy couches on the edges of the dance floor and scope things out for a bit.

The cost for this event is $5 for one person or $8 for a couple of people. Seeya there!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Center City Brass Quintet (Weds., Oct. 3)

SHSU's School of Music will host guest artists Center City Brass Quintet on Weds., Oct. 3 at 7:30p in the Performing Arts Center - Payne Concert Hall.

Center City Brass Quintet consists of five American brass players. They are known for their performances of classical pieces, but they also play original arrangements of popular pieces by Gershwin, Ellington, Bernstein, etc.

Tickets to the event are $5 for students, $12 for seniors, and $15 for the general public.

To purchase tickets, you can call the GPAC Box Office at 936.294.2339.


Broadway & BBQ (Oct. 8-9)

Who: Huntsville High School Choir
What: Broadway & BBQ
When: Oct. 8 & 9 at 6p & 8p each night
Where: HHS
Why: For fun! - And to help fund the purchase of new uniforms.

Join HHS Choir for an evening of bbq and Broadway hits. To reserve tickets or for more information, you can call the choir room at the high school at 936.435.6100 ext 1211.

Tickets to the event are $10.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Foreign Film Festival (SHSU; Tuesdays)

Hey, film lovers! It's time for the Fall 2012 Foreign Film Festival at SHSU! Each Tuesday, a different movie will be shown - at two times during the day: 3:45 and 7p. The films will be shown in the Evans Building, Room 105.

Educating Rita - the first film to be shown

For a complete list of the films being shown, click here!

Admission is free for SHSU students, faculty, staff, and their guests.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Oleanna (Sept. 26-29)

Oleanna is a two-person play written by David Mamet that tackles the tough subject of sexual exploitation accusations by a female student against a male professor. 

The performance will take place in the Showcase Theatre on the SHSU campus from Sept. 26 through Sept. 29. Show time is 8p each night. On Saturday, there will also be a matinee performance at 2p. 

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased by calling 936.294.1329. 

The Boys Next Door (Hville Community Theatre)

The Boys Next Door is a play about four mentally disabled men who live under the supervision of a young social worker. You'll laugh, you'll get all sentimental, and you'll leave the performance with a reminder that no matter our condition or lack thereof, we're not so different from one another.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and children, and $8 for senior citizens and military personnel.

Sept. 21, 22, 28, 29 @ 7:30p
Sept. 23, 30 @ 2p

The performances will be held at Old Town Theatre (1023 12th St.).

For more information or to reserve a ticket, you can contact these fine folks:

Huntsville Community Theatre

To reserve tickets online: Click here!