Some of my favorite artists are oftentimes overlooked as artists for some strange reason. In fact, I believe these trailblazers truly embody what “AltArts” is. They slave away for long hours in insufferable conditions, risking life and limb to blades of all varieties and flaming sauté pans filled with sauces that are center-of-the-Earth hot. These weary yet brave souls are often victims of reoccurring back pain and constant foot torture, and for what? — To see the spoils of their genius destroyed and devoured within moments of its inception. Of course, I speak of the chefs: the innovative and motivated individuals that keep this town fat and happy and two of these mavericks are about to prove how big of rock stars chefs really can be.
Chefs Cory Shupe (Executive Chef/Owner – Thyme Square) and Pete Magliocco (Sous Chef – Spring Lake Country Club) have teamed up to present “A Farm Fresh Feast,” a four course, locally sourced, gourmet meal to benefit one of my personal favorite Quincy non-profs, Quanada. This can’t miss event will take place on Saturday, June 4, at Thyme Square in Quincy. There will be two seatings for this remarkable meal, (6 p.m. and 8 p.m.) and it will feature some of the freshest and highest quality meats, cheeses, vegetables and herbs from local vendors (for those vegetarians out there, there will be options for you as well). Along for the ride will be celebrity servers: The Dark River Derby Coalition, sans skates in case you were worried. What’s so special about this event is not only does it illuminate the artistry
and talent of our local chefs and the quality of our local products, but it’s main focus is the continuing support this community gives to Quanada, an organization that this area could not do without-and could not thrive without our help.
The meal is $50 per person and reservations MUST be made in advance by calling Quanada at (217) 222-3069, and feel free to bring your own special spirits to enjoy with your meal. I truly hope to see you all there; it is going to be delicious on so many levels.
Facebook invite: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=177280982326009
Quanada Website: http://www.quanada.org/
Thyme Square Website: http://www.thymesquarecafe.net/
Dark River Derby Coalition Website: http://www.darkriverderby.com
All of the children in the class who know what a poetry slam is please raise your hand, anyone, anyone?
Bueller? Bueller? Why am I not suprised?
OK, to be fair, I suppose I am merely assuming that no one knows what a poetry slam is, because I’m an elitist hater, but I happen to know for a fact that the contestants, judges and spectators (intentional or accidental) who attended the Quincy Not-So-Fine Arts Society’s inaugural slam April 2, 2011, know what a poetry slam is.
Poetry slams saw their birth in the mid ’80s in Chicago, Ill. Though rules and regulations oftentimes vary, the major themes remain the same: poets of all races, religions, colors and creeds assembling and reading their original works for sport. It is not unlike any standard professional sporting event you may have seen, judges (refs) that scrutinize your every word and fans that are encouraged to cheer and jeer at their leisure. It truly is a wonderful way for any writer to gain confidence in themselves and their work, and if they already have confidence in themselves and their work — well, have you ever seen a guitar player play a ridiculously fast solo? Same thing, only with words.
As usual, the folks at Brix Wine & Cheese were wonderful hosts of our happy little event; Brix has been the home base for every poetry slam the NSFA has held, and it is the perfect venue for such an event in size, acoustics and ambiance. Our celebrity judges were: Phil Quevillon: NSFA Senoir Activities director, Megan Duesterhaus: Executive Director of Quanada, and Rob Dwiyre of the Quincy Society of fine Arts, and this humble scribe served as master of ceremonies for the event. (To read Clinton Begley’s blog on last year’s slam, click here.)
Though the turn out for competitors was small, all of the talent was HUGE. For those who do not know, Quincy has a very strong and talented community of poets, and I have always been honored to count myself among those ranks. Briana Robertson, Chaz Robertson, Clara Robertson and Lincoln Brown stepped up to the plate and knocked verse after verse straight out of the park. As a writer, it is unbelievably exciting to be in the presence of talented writers spitting truth through their words. The audience was feeling it too, even the accidental spectators were fascinated by the strange humans with their iambic pentameter and stanzas. It truly was a magical event, and we are proud to extend our congratulations to this slam’s winner: Briana Robertson.
The NSFA society throws several slams and poetry related events every year so, if you haven’t already, join the facebook group to keep up on all the fun.
It is with a heavy heart that I take up this task. Clinton Begley, the Local Q’s former “Alt Arts” blogger and all around great guy, is moving on to greener pastures to pursue academic greatness, and we are all left floundering in his mighty wake.
For those who do not know Clint, he was called by his friends “the hardest working man in showbiz” (it’s a falsehood that James Brown owns that title). Clint worked tirelessly to illuminate as many darkened corners of Quincy’s hidden arts scene so that the general public could recognize just how much talent our little burgh has to offer. I worry how much will fall through the cracks without his eagle eye, but I also owe it to him to try my hardest to pick up where he left off — we all do.
I am truly honored that he tapped me to take up this “Alt Arts” mantle in his stead; when great people trust you to fill their shoes it is humbling and highly motivating. So wherever you are and whoever you may be raise your glass to Clinton Begley: artist, musician, scholar, outdoors man, ace event planner, friend. I miss you already, dear.
My name is JJ Magliocco, and I am proud to be the Local Q’s new (but certainly not improved) “Alt Arts” Blogger.
What does “Alt Arts” mean? I’m not entirely sure. What does “Alt Arts” mean to me? That one is a bit easier: “Alt Arts” is the garage band writing their own desperate lullabies whether they are good or bad. Alt arts is the sleep deprived artist slamming coffee, chain smoking and sketching until their fingers bleed. “Alt Arts” is the poet, who doesn’t know it and is redefining what prose really is. “Alt Arts” is the pioneering chefs paving new avenues in the world of cuisine. The illustrators, the bloggers, the rappers, the filmmakers: they are all “Alt Arts,” and their voices deserve to be and will be heard. This is what “Alt Arts” means to me, and this is what I hope to accomplish as a member of this team.
I will not always be PC, and I will almost assuredly anger a good portion of my readers one way or another. This is the reality of my writing style; I will editorialize and share my opinions without apology because you, the reader, deserve truth as much as you deserve objective information. I tend to find little is objective in this world, and that is doubly true for the world of art. You will, of course, see black and white facts in the form of artist interviews or promotional information, but my penchant for pop culture reference and back-handed sarcasm will be hard to stifle.
So, dear reader, bear with me, and I promise to bring you new and interesting perspectives on this beautiful and often misunderstood world of Quincy “Alt Arts.”