October 30, 2011 in Features

Spotlight: ‘Norman’ a hit with critics

By The Spokesman-Review
 

The positive reviews continue to pile up for the Spokane-filmed coming-of-age movie “Norman,” which extends its run this week at the River Park Square AMC.

The film-review compilation site Rotten Tomatoes gives it a “fresh” rating. Out of 14 reviews, nine were positive, giving it a score of 64 percent. Among “top critics” it got positive reviews from seven out of eight, for a score of 88 percent.

Among the critics giving it positive reviews: Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times, Andy Webster of the New York Times and Betsy Sharkey of the Los Angeles Times.

So right now, it’s among the best reviewed Spokane-filmed movies ever.

Box office numbers were not yet available, but it opened on just a few screens in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Seattle and Spokane, so it was undoubtedly far down the list.

A Kodis commemoration

A 108-foot-long “parade” of textile art by Spokane artist Louise Kodis – consisting of 31 fiber sculptures – will be unveiled on Tuesday, 4 p.m., at the Spokane Convention Center.

It’s made of fabric, bamboo rods, branches and curved acrylic rods. Kodis describes it in a press release as 31 pieces “that billow and curve and float, singing about our luscious natural landscape.” It represents the array of colors along the Spokane River.

“Inland Northwest in Full Color” was commissioned by the Spokane Public Facilities District Board to create an artistic welcome to the Spokane Convention Center’s Exhibit Hall. It is wall-mounted and is, at its highest point, 25 feet above the floor.

Check it out for yourself at the commemoration event.

Redman and Watrous

Two big names in jazz will make appearances in Spokane this week:

Bill Watrous, trombonist extraordinaire, will bring his quartet to the Ichiban Sushi Lounge, 202 W. Third Ave., on Thursday, 7 p.m. Tickets at the door will be $10, or $5 for students.

• Joshua Redman , one of the top jazz sax men in the world, will appear Saturday, 8 p.m. at Whitworth University’s Cowles Auditorium. He’ll be playing with the Whitworth Jazz Ensemble.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students and seniors, through TicketsWest outlets (800-325-SEAT or www.ticketswest.com)

Wilco in February

Wilco fans have probably already heard the news: The alternative rockers have been booked into the INB Performing Arts Center on Feb. 6, 8 p.m.

They were last at the INB just a little over three years ago. They’re touring in support of their latest album, “The Whole Love.”

White Denim will open. Tickets range from $33 to $41, through TicketsWest.

MAC poetry

The Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture and the art collective Terrain are collaborating for a poetry and spoken-word event, “Spokane Words,” Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m.

Poets Robert Wrigley and Ciara Shuttleworth (both from the University of Idaho and both published in the New Yorker) will read from their works.

Mark Anderson and Kurt Olson, from the local spoken-word scene, will also perform.

It’s free, although a $5 donation is suggested. There will be snacks, a no-host bar and live music.

The event will take place in one of the museum’s galleries, surrounded by an art exhibit.

Visiting Artist Lecture Series

Native American artist Bently Spang will be the first speaker in this season’s Visiting Artist Lecture Series, at three locations Wednesday and Thursday.

Spang, from the Northern Cheyenne Tribe, works in multimedia sculpture, performance, photography and video. He has most recently been getting attention with his “Tekcno Powwow,” a cultural mashup combining elements of a traditional powwow with contemporary music, dance and performance art.

He’ll give free talks at these times and locations:

• Wednesday, 11:30 a.m., Spokane Falls Community College, 3410 Ft. George Wright Drive, Building 24, Room 110.

• Wednesday, 7 p.m., Magic Lantern Theatre, 25 W. Main Ave. (presented by the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture).

• Thursday, noon, at Eastern Washington University’s Art Department Auditorium on the Cheney campus.

A new leader of the ‘Friends’

The Friends of KSPS – the fundraising arm of KSPS-7, the local PBS affiliate – has a new executive director, Gary A. Stokes.

Stokes was most recently vice president of development at Alabama Public Television. He replaces Patty Starkey, who retired after a 35-year career with the Friends of KSPS.

‘Hit & Run V’

Play-Makers Spokane is doing its annual staged reading of short plays, “Hit & Run V,” with a lineup of 12 original comedies.

Sixteen actors will read works by 11 playwrights, many of them local.

It all takes place Saturday, 2 p.m. at the Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland Ave. It’s free.

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