Sumner Coy

Courtesy Northwest Arkansas Community College

The theme of this year's Spring Arts and Culture Festival at Northwest Arkansas Community College (NWACC) is "Home."  

"It's not just where you lay your head, but also the private space that you have as well as the notion of losing that space, of body as home, of alienation," says Matt Evans, a political science professor at NWACC and organizer of the festival. "Home is broadly construed in this theme."

Composer Christopher Cerrone tackles virtuosity in "High Windows," which the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas performs alongside with Beethoven and Bach at this weekend's concert.

The spark began when he was particularly struck by the trill of the G minor caprice as performed by Thomas Zehetmair. 

Courtesy The Unexpected

More than a century ago visual art and symphonic music collided when Modest Mussorgsky wrote "Pictures at an Exhibition," in tribute to pictures created by artist Vicktor Hartmann.

Feelings of vulnerability led Grammy-nominated baritone Jubilant Sykes—who performs this week in Northwest Arkansas—to pursue singing.

"I was painfully shy as a kid—deeply insecure," he admits. "Singing was a way for me to express what I could not put into words.

"As I got older and I was learning songs," he explains, "that was the only way I could really say: 'yeah that's how I feel' and express it without being mocked."

Courtesy Lalaland

For nearly a decade, Lalaland has served up all-ages experimental music and art in a sleepy area of South Fayetteville. This weekend will be its "last hurrah," with 18 bands performing a two-day blowout farewell experience.

"My joke is that I'm in the unique position of bulldozing myself," admits founder Sam King, a painter and musician who works as an assistant professor of art for the University of Arkansas.

His employer is the reason the venue must close. The University of Arkansas bought Lalaland's lot to expand School of Art facilities.

An attempt to translate Rainer Maria Rilke's poem "The Panther" at age 14 really resonated with Cody-Rose Clevidence. That impulse to dissect and deconstruct is on full display in Clevidence's new collection Flung Throne (stylized Flung Throne).

In Arc, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo oscillates between Baroque master George Frideric Handel and modern opera giant Philip Glass. His debut release on the Decca label is nominated for a 2019 Grammy in the category of Best Classical Solo Voice.

"I say that Handel defined me and Glass changed me, and I wanted to see if somehow might they work together," says Costanzo. "In a way, I began to see Handel as this proto-minimalist, doing what Philip Glass was doing, but just in a different way."

Christian Steiner

Pianist Andrew Tyson brings to life the poetic impulses of Chopin with the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas (SoNA) this weekend on a piano he helped pick out in the showroom of the Steinway Factory.

"It was like being the kid in the candy store," describes Tyson of the buying trip with Maestro Paul Haas and Walton Arts Center CEO Peter Lane to pick the right piano.

Breaker Fixer Productions

In Breaker/Fixer Production’s latest play a long-dead Confederate widow confronts her sins in a curious underworld, forcing the audience to reconsider notions and attitudes about violence of the old South that still resonate today.

Although the ragtime craze was all the rage in dance halls at the turn of the 20th century, a century later few performers tackle this crucial part of American music. The Peacherine Ragtime Society Orchestra is an exception and they're performing in Northwest Arkansas this week.

Andrew Greene and the Peacherine Ragtime Society Orchestra delve into ragtime as it was heard in the 1910s, fully orchestrated, thanks to an insatiable curiousity and the dedicated pursuit of period materials.

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