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Best of the Rest: July 24, 2015

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Sure, we want you to visit Sky Blue Window daily, but we realize stories about incredible events, entertainment and interesting organizations that are transforming Indiana pour out of publications all over this city. So in this space, we bring you the Best of the Rest, a collection of other notable pieces spotlighting arts and entertainment around town.

Check out the list below of hot topics from beyond our Sky Blue Window. When you're finished, stick around to browse some of our stories you might have missed this week. Enjoy!

Artist Jonathan McAfee made his name celebrating Indy's most famous author. Of course, like Vonnegut, he's leaving too. - COURTESY JONATHAN MCAFEE
  • Courtesy Jonathan McAfee
  • Artist Jonathan McAfee made his name celebrating Indy's most famous author. Of course, like Vonnegut, he's leaving too.

Saving Vonnegut from Smithereens

By Dan Wakefield via NUVO

NUVO accomplished a coup this week, when the alternative weekly published a piece from celebrated Hoosier author Dan Wakefield. Wakefield celebrates the life and work of publisher Seymour Lawrence who played an integral role in the careers of Kurt Vonnegut and Wakefield, among others. According to Wakefield, Lawrence specialized in taking on writers previously dismissed by other publishers. Vonnegut serves as a prime example. Lawrence published his breakthrough Slaughterhouse Five after three other publishers had turned it down. Read Wakefield's full story in NUVO for a unique look at this literary champion of the little guy.

Study: Property values along Cultural Trail up $1B

By John Touhy via Indy Star

Indy Star broke an exclusive story yesterday on the economic impact of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene and Marilyn Glick. Mayor Greg Ballard celebrated the news with a small announcement in front of Bluebeard restaurant along Virginia Avenue, on the trail itself

The numbers arrive in a study by Indiana University's Public Policy Institute. They were impressive: Property values within one block of the trail rose 148 percent between 2008 and 2014; the average expenditure by trail users is $53 and 95 percent of trail users reported feeling safe on the trail, in a survey as part of the study.

Visit Indy Star for a full breakdown of the study. For more details about the trail, take a look at these Sky Blue Window stories: Trailing Culture, Bromance on the Cultural Trail, and Tour de Art.

Tully: Indy Film Fest's 13-year-old moviemaker

By Matthew Tully via Indy Star

The 2015 Indy Film Fest wraps up tomorrow with a handful of screenings and a closing night party at an undisclosed location at Indianapolis Museum of Art. Last Friday, Indy Star columnist Matthew Tully penned a great story on the festival's youngest director, 13-year-old Jack Yanover. Yanover's documentary film That Bites! tells the story of children who suffer from food allergies. Many of the interview subjects in the film are from Indy. For more on the 2015 Indy Film Fest, check out Ben Shine's preview of the movies on music and Jami Stall's interview with director and native Hoosier Michael Goldburg.

Inspired by Day of the Dead figures playing musical instruments, artist and illustrator Vincent Desjardins designed the poster for the 2015 - Lotus World Music and Arts Festival.  - COURTESY OF VINCENT DESJARDINS
  • Courtesy of Vincent Desjardins
  • Inspired by Day of the Dead figures playing musical instruments, artist and illustrator Vincent Desjardins designed the poster for the 2015Lotus World Music and Arts Festival.

Indianapolis Children's Choir founder Henry Leck to retire in 2016

By Wei-Huan Chen via Indy Star

Indy Star arts reporter Wei-Huan Chen has the details on the impending retirement of Henry Leck, the founder and longtime artistic director of Indianapolis Children's Choir. Under his direction, ICC has enjoyed unparalleled success with a reputation as one of the world's premier children's choir. Head over to Indy Star to learn Leck's plans for his final season and life after retirement. For more from Leck, see our 2014 story Hymn & Herto learn his thoughts on why singers struggle with covering "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Painting the town in a whole new way

By Dan Grossman via NUVO

For the second week in a row, NUVO's cover story has an arts focus. Last week, Kyle Long's profile of acclaimed Hoosier musician Ron Matelic graced the cover. This week, Dan Grossman shines a spotlight on 74-year-old painter Jerome Neal. Neal will make his public debut at Arts Council of Indianapolis' Gallery 924 next month with an exhibition entitled Circle City 360. The paintings on display combine depictions of Indy's urban landscape with fictional and abstract embellishments. Neal's story serves as a reminder that you're never too old to make an impactful artistic statement. The exhibit opens Aug. 7th.

Lotus Festival lineup announced

Via Indiana Daily Student

Bloomington's Lotus World Music and Arts Festival will celebrate its 22nd year from Sept. 24-27. This week, the festival announced its lineup of performing artists, which features a diverse selection of more than 25 artists from Brazil to Korea. In addition to the foreign musicians showcasing traditional genres from all over the globe, a handful of U.S. artists made the cut. One prominent selection is tUnE-yArDs, the genre-bending vocal and polyrhythmic project of Merrill Garbus. Get some background on the event from Indiana Daily Student, check out the entire artist lineup on the Lotus website and below watch a video of tUnE-yArDs performing live on KEXP last year.

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