Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

WXXI's Arts & Life

Aug 23, 2018

Arts & Life is one of our news focuses at WXXI. From harnessing the musical knowledge from reporters like Jeff Spevak, Brenda Tremblay, Julia Figueras, and Mona Seghatoleslami, to our television products that focus on various lifestyles and the arts, WXXI is the place to turn for arts & life news.

Our coverage includes:

Music & Arts coverage by Jeff Spevak

Nazareth College

After more than a year of construction, Nazareth College is getting ready to take the wraps of its new Jane and Laurence Glazer Music Performance Center.

The $15.5 million facility is located adjacent to the Nazareth College Arts Center, and it includes a 550-seat venue designed specifically for the acoustics of large instrumental ensembles.

Rita Mannelli is the Executive Director for the Arts Center.  She says having the new building is important because nearly 20 percent of the Nazareth College student body are in the Department of Music.

Jason Lee

Abandoned motels, lonely gas stations, rusting cars, weary houses shedding paint. Jason Lee’s photographs captures a rural Texas landscape that is disintegrating before our eyes.

Yes, he says: Isn’t that what’s happening to our country today?

Lee discusses these images in his new book, A Plain View, followed by a book signing, at 6 p.m. Thursday at the George Eastman Museum. These are photos that he took throughout 2017 all across Texas, where he now lives. A catalog of lonesome, desolate spaces – people are almost non-existent – that he says is inspired by films such as Paris, Texas.

Travis Rix / SaveArtSpace

A Brooklyn-based nonprofit is using billboards to display art rather than ads around the country, and they’ve added a piece in Rochester.

Travis Rix is the co-founder and executive director of SaveArtSpace, and says the idea sprung from seeing billboards go up over murals around his neighborhood in New York City.

"These billboards and other advertisement spaces are in the public space, so we believe everyone should have a voice as to what goes on these public platforms."

SaveArtSpace is a donation-based organization, and Rix says they use that money to lease the billboards for artwork nationwide.

He says any artist, at any age or skill level, can submit art with a small application fee to be a part of the project.

Long Acre Farms

Long Acre Farms in Macedon will be celebrating a couple of anniversaries this year.

Peace amidst war in opera at Glimmerglass

Aug 18, 2018

Cooperstown, New York means one thing to baseball fans  - the Hall of Fame, And another thing to opera fans – The Glimmerglass Festival, held every summer.

One of the operas on stage this year is Silent Night – based on a true story of a legendary cease-fire during World War I.

Dan Shinneman / Creative Commons License

(AP) — A three-day Phish music festival was scuttled by dirty water from torrential rains on Thursday, with health officials denying a permit just as the rock band was about to go onstage for its traditional sound check jam.

"We are still in shock," the band said in a statement on its website . "Our families are here, our gear is set, our tents are up. We keep waiting for someone to come over and tell us that there is a solution, and that the festival can go on. Unfortunately, it is not possible."

Veronica Volk / WXXI News

At Fifth Frame Brewing on St. Paul Street in downtown Rochester, Carolyn Stiles starts talking to me about her favorite beer.

"I really enjoy a good pilsner, like, a well brewed pilsner," she tells me.

Stiles is part of an ever-growing group of craft beer enthusiasts across the country.

Rochester alone has over a dozen breweries experimenting with different malts, hops, and yeasts to make hundreds of local beers. With this rapid growth, Stiles saw an opportunity to start a beer education and appreciation group – just for women.


The death of singer Aretha Franklin has touched a lot of people including a Rochester musician who actually played with her.  Herb Smith plays trumpet both with the RPO and with his own jazz trio. He is also an adjunct professor at RIT and is conductor of the RIT Jazz Ensembles.

Spectrum News

We’re learning more about the show that was being filmed recently at Eastman Business Park.

Netflix says the film shoot that involved race cars at various hours of the day and night was for a show called Hyperdrive, billed as a “high stakes tournament series where daring drivers from across the globe compete for the glory on one of the largest automotive obstacle courses ever constructed.”

Netflix says it will be a 10 episode production that will launch in 2019.