performance art

Theatre Nova /

Raucus, fun, and steeped in tradition, a panto is a theater tradition that has entertained generations of Brits during the holidays. Ryan Mackenzie-Lewis, co-author of Theatre Nova’s production of "A Almost British Christmas" talks about the over-the-top characters and the slapstick comedy of this family-friendly holiday entertainment with "creative:impact" host Deb Polich of Creative Washtenaw. 

The Encore Musical Theatre Company /

Straight from Broadway, after roles in "Mamma Mia," "Bonnie and Clyde," "9 to 5," and "Les Misérables," Michigan native Dan Cooney wanted to put on his own show(s). He decided Dexter was the right place, and he opened The Encore Theatre. Hear his story when he joins Deb Polich of Creative Washtenaw and WEMU’s David Fair on this edition of "creative:impact."

Deb Polich / Creative Washtenaw

What we’d once hoped was going to be a short little dance number, COVID-19 has turned into a dance marathon. Deb Polich of Creative Washtenaw and WEMU’s David Fair talk about the state of arts + creative industry, now 18 months into this pandemic, on this edition of "creative:impact."

Meg Rohrer /

Founded on the principles--both simple and often overlooked--that concerts should be radically welcoming, accessible, and inclusive, a "Third Place Music Fest" is taking place August 25th-28th at several different locations around Ann Arbor.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with one of the festival's directors, Wesley Hornpetrie, about their mission is to bring together artists and businesses from the region to celebrate the power of the "third place." 

Encore Theatre
The Encore Theatre /

This week, "Art and Soul" is about the local performance arts scene. Lisa Barry talks with a local freelance journalist who specializes in art and culture, Jenn McKee.

Jenn details upcoming, in-person theatre performances planned for the coming months after being mostly online during the pandemic.

Wild Swan Theater
Wild Swan Theater /

Wild Swan Theater’s co-founders and artistic directors Hillary Cohen and Sandy Ryder created a family theater program their way. For more than 40 years, families gathered to enjoy their inclusive, accessible, and delightful theater productions. Now they are dropping the final curtain and spend time reflecting with Creative Washtenaw's Deb Polich and WEMU's David Fair on this week’s edition of "creative:impact." 

Wild Swan Theater

The Wild Swan Theater in Ann Arbor has announced it will be closing its studio at the end of June.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Whether it was performing on the virtual stage or via Zoom, Ypsilanti area theatre groups have had to be even more creative than usual during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with Kristin Danko from Ypsilanti's Neighborhood Theatre Group about how they responded to the global health crisis and still kept the shows going.

University of Michigan Press /

It is a borrowed philosophy but one that guided Ken Fischer's career and leadership vision.  For 30 years, Ken served as President of the University Musical Society.  "Everybody In, Nobody Out" is his new book.  That management ideology extended to the manner in which he guided expansion of UMS programming.  In the end, we find that performance arts not only entertain but help bridge divides in cultural, racial, economic, and educational divides.  WEMU's David Fair caught up with Ken to discuss the issues and today's release of his book.