Here’s the question for Missy Pfohl Smith: What prompted the creation of the ARTs + Change Conference?

Worldwide, it’s the rising tide of polarization, and social media’s role in it, she says. Closer to home, it was the death of Daniel Prude — a man in the midst of a mental health crisis — at the hands of the Rochester Police Department “that sparked all the protests and brought up the problems that have been happening here for a long time, but really became acute in that moment last summer,” says Pfohl Smith, who organized the conference.

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The Rochester Summer Soul Music Festival at Frontier Field is back on this year, with 1990s R&B icons Boyz II Men serving as the headlining act.

The festival is set to take place Friday, Aug. 27, and Saturday, Aug. 28, and will feature a free community block party on Saturday leading up to Boyz II Men's performance.

Library of Congress

The Greenwood District, a thriving business community in Tulsa, Oklahoma, built by Black Americans, was known as Black Wall Street.

But the success story became a horror story when mobs of white residents attacked the district and killed many of its workers and inhabitants. The terror, which spanned two days in 1921, was captured years later by Rochester playwright Debra Washington.


The unnamed co-star of “Drunk Bus,” now showing at The Little Theatre, is Rochester.

The film’s co-directors, John Carlucci and Brandon LaGanke, and producer Eric Hollenbeck are back in town this weekend, a reunion with the city that served as a stand-in for Kent, Ohio, the setting for their film with an indie vibe. 

“Drunk Bus” smells like something that could develop a cult following: The story of a bus driver who ferries hard-partying college students to and from the town’s bars and other alcohol-driven appointments.


Artist Annalisa Barron wants to keep you in the dark.

Her current art series is called “Place Projectors.'' Its first element is a projector, fashioned out of very Victorian era-looking elements. If you found one in your grandparents’ attic, you might think they had been working on a time machine.


The prison in Central America was run down, the conditions horrible. Yet art was there. 

“Guys with tattoos on their faces, their eyelids, under their lips,” says Mandalit del Barco. “Places that hurt. They would try to put art on themselves, their whole bodies.” 

Some of these men had roamed the streets of Los Angeles, in gangs, until they’d been deported. And now, imprisoned. Perhaps that guy had been one of them, the one with the tattoo on his forehead.

Rebecca Rafferty/CITY News

Responding to mounting complaints from small arts organizations that they have been shut out of public funding for the arts, Monroe County Executive Adam Bello on Monday unveiled a $2 million grant program for the groups.

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This was a name almost -- almost -- as big as previous visitors to the Bug Jar, such as The White Stripes, The Black Keys, Vampire Weekend, Modest Mouse, Arcade Fire and Lizzo. 

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, backed by the iconic chintzy décor of the tiny Rochester music club, was describing in a March 31 press conference some of the federal government’s programs that are designed to save our music culture from the coronavirus pandemic.


A Southern rock bonanza featuring Blackberry Smoke and two locally grown shows are the first to be added to the summer season at Constellation Brands-Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center.

With coronavirus pandemic concerns dictating the arc of the summer season, the venue’s mainstage will also play host to a COVID-19 vaccination clinic.

CMAC is also requiring proof of vaccination to attend these shows.


As freelance artists in a time of pandemic drought, David Cowles and Josh Gosfield sensed it was time to put matters in their own hands.

“Let’s not wait for art directors to give us jobs,” Cowles says, “let’s do something that we really love.”

Heroes. We love heroes. We need heroes to get us through tough times. Cowles and Gosfield have given us 63 heroes, as defined by 63 artists, for this moment in a new art-driven magazine, Public Eye.