Books & Film

A Locals' Guide to New York City? Yes, Please!

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

You know how it is: big city = overwhelming choices! You want a friend, a local to show you around. Luckily for us, author Gigi Griffis has a WHOLE series of travel guides, where locals share their best tips (we've shared her Italy guide here). Her newest, released today, is a guide to New York City, one of the most intimidating cities to travel to, for there are TOO MANY CHOICES for what to see, do, explore!

Savannah Music Festival: Education in the Spotlight

by Kerry Dexter / Jan 18, 2016 /
Kerry Dexter's picture

The city of Savannah, Georgia, has been a place where cultures meet and mix and mingle ever since its early days centuries ago. Blues, bluegrass, country music, jazz, gospel, and Celtic music are local traditions in music that continue to flourish in Savannah. Over the years, it has also become a crossroads for classical musicians, those who work in opera, and musicians who bring their native traditions from many parts of the globe. The Savannah Music Festival celebrates and encourages all these aspects of music.

London in Three Guidebooks

by Kerry Dexter / Jan 15, 2016 /
Kerry Dexter's picture

London is one of the world's great cities -- and it is one with so much going on that however many times you might visit and however long your stay might be, having a particular focus will make it easier to choose experiences and to make plans.

London in Three Guidebooks

A Moose Goes a-Mummering: Newfoundland's Twelve Days of Christmas

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

If you're like me, you devour books from places you visit - and want to visit - and get books for your kids, too, to devour. For nothing teaches a place like learning about it from locals - whether you're there in person, or reading their stories

This summer, we road tripped to Newfoundland from Michigan (what a drive!), and loved just about every place on our route. But Newfoundland is special. Called The Rock, it's an island full of Jellybean-colored houses, whales and puffins, and the most adorable dogs in the world - look!

Scotland's Music: A Saint Andrew's Day Tapestry

by Kerry Dexter / Nov 16, 2015 /
Kerry Dexter's picture

As autumn turns to winter in Scotland -- a transition which certainly happens during November -- days become shorter, temperatures fall, it may begin to snow, and that snow, already in place or oncoming, may begin to stay around longer. There are changes in the quality of light as the sun hangs low in the sky, and at night stars shine brightly.

Shoot the Conductor: Too Close to Monteux, Szell, and Ormandy

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

One of the pure joys in life is music - listening, playing...and conducting? Yes! As you have seen, experienced (who doesn't conduct in the car?), and loved (at your local symphony orchestra), music gets into your blood, and you can't help but let it out.

Maestro Magic -- Eric Jacobsen in Glorious Debut with Orlando Philharmonic By Josh Garrick

Josh Garrick's picture

In the past 11 months, Orlando has twice announced to the world that the city the world will always know as the vacation land home of DisneyWorld is ready to stand up and say, “We are MORE than a place to stay while you visit a theme park.” The first miracle event happened last November when, led by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, philanthropist Jim Pugh, and Executive Director Kathy Ramsberger, we opened the magnificently world-class Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.  

Listening to the West

by Kerry Dexter / Oct 19, 2015 /
Kerry Dexter's picture

The Texas hill country, the high country of Alberta, the dusty backroads of rural California, the mountains of Colorado, the quiet landscapes of Montana, the forested slopes of Oregon ranges: each of these has had its part in shaping and changing and keeping alive the idea of the west in North America. So, too, the musicians who have been shaped and drawn to these places have had their part in creating, defining, and sharing ideas of these landscapes. Take a listen...

Untamed: Honesty, Power, and Reality in a Dystopian World

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

Every so often, a book comes along that beautifully, powerfully reminds you of humanity. One such book is the first in a series (YAY!), entitled Untamed. Written by Madeline Dyer, this YA novel takes a look at a world that is changed - and who the changemakers are. From the start of Untamed, you're pulled into the arc of the story, as if one of the family. Then (and make note of this, so you plan for it) you won't be able to put the book down. Meals? Who needs them! Sleep? Ditto!

Undefeated: The Story of Shepler’s Mackinac Island Ferry

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

There are a few things that Michiganders know, growing up. One is the beauty of a Michigan winter (good thing, because it is very snowy and cold!). Second is the incredible landscape we live in, from beaches to mountains, city to rural, and even a few islands thrown in. Another is our strong work ethic – arising from our northern European ancestors, and strengthened through winter and landscape. We honor this work ethic here, in a variety of ways.