Basement Medicine

Theater ensemble reinterprets “Antigone” to address modern issues

Theater ensemble reinterprets  “Antigone” to address modern issues

Nellie Tamboe

October 2, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

While the upcoming fall play is titled “Antigone,” it won’t be Sophocles’ original Greek tragedy. The ensemble, as well as the director, Assistant Professor of Performing Arts Isaac Eddy, have been working for weeks to rewrite the script.   The rewriting process began with the reading...

“Bastard Republic” takes you to the edge of the former Soviet Union

“Bastard Republic” takes you to the edge of the former Soviet Union

Lisa Kent

September 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

I normally stay away from books of war — I’ve a weak stomach for violent death. As a result, I’m more of a “big picture” student when it comes to history. But when Professor Tyrone Shaw came into the library one night and mentioned his book, “Bastard Republic,” I decided right then and...

Thurston explores living with color in “How To Be Black”

Thurston explores living with color in “How To Be Black”

Madison Doucette

September 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

In this New York Times bestseller “How to Be Black,” Baratunde Thurston of Jack & Jill Politics and The Onion employs quick satire and humor to explore the “ideas of blackness.”   Using anecdotes from the lives of what he calls The Black Panel, an assembly of seven comedians, writers,...

A new perspective on sexual deviance

A new perspective on sexual deviance

Cayla Fronhofer

September 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

When one of your roommates requests suggestions for movie night, most people probably wouldn’t expect a dramedy about fetishism to come up as an option. Then again, most people don’t have my roommates.   “The Little Death” is a 2014 Australian film directed by Josh Lawson, who also...

“Subnautica” explores the dangerous beauty of survival in the deep seas

“Subnautica” explores the dangerous beauty of survival in the deep seas

Richard Ahlgrim

September 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

At 120 meters below the surface, the frigid waters appear pitch black as you slowly follow the thin beam of illumination released by your dive light. Cave walls full of limestone deposits briefly reflect your light, allowing you to catch a glimpse of your surroundings. Your sight goes black again as...

“Sing” delivers a joyful musical for all ages

“Sing” delivers a joyful musical for all ages

Seana Rowell

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

In 2016’s “Sing,” everyone wants to be a star: the young kid singing in a city alleyway while keeping an eye out for cops; the stay-at-home-mom hopelessly trying to convince her houseful of kids and too-busy-too-notice husband that she’s just as good as the girl on the radio; the girlfriend playing...

In the Moog: odd pub, good grub

In the Moog: odd pub, good grub

Melenie Peters

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

After opening the door to Moogs Place, which shares a building with Fisher Auto Parts next to the Bijou theater in Morrisville, I entered a dimly lit, small dining room. Goldenrod yellow walls did nothing to brighten the place. The people seated at tables on the opposite wall looked up disapprovingly...

Skinny Pancake oozes flavor

Skinny Pancake oozes flavor

Nellie Tamboe

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

Snow fills the air on Montpelier’s bustling Main Street. Many people, their faces pink and pinched from the wind, hurry into various shops in a race to get out of the cold. Up ahead is an inviting brick building with a rustic sign painted on it reading The Skinny Pancake.   Instantly after...

“Cabaret” brings wonderful Weimar weirdness to Dibden

“Cabaret” brings wonderful Weimar weirdness to Dibden

Cayla Fronhofer

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

When the lights went dark and the audience quieted, a voice rang through the space, introducing the play and discouraging the use of cellphones during the performance. The anticipation felt oddly like the beginning of a ride at an amusement park, and I watched the stage with rapt attention.   “Cabaret”...

George Saunders’ tortured Lincoln

George Saunders’ tortured Lincoln

Josh Lemay

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

While “Lincoln in the Bardo” is George Saunders’ seventh foray into the world of fiction, it is his first, and thus far only, journey into the land of novel writing. The author of the brilliant collections “Tenth of December” and “Pastoralia” rose to national attention with a dark and cutting...

Viewers beware: You’re in for a trip with this looney movie

Viewers beware: You’re in for a trip with this looney movie

Avery Bliss

April 27, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

I’ve never tried LSD. But I have a sneaking suspicion that the effects of the drug would be remarkably similar to watching the movie “Looney Tunes: Back in Action,” because I don’t quite trust my eyes or mind anymore.   “Back in Action,” which came out in 2003, hasn’t aged quite...

Wooden acting and dumb beards in a sad “King Arthur” knock-off

Avery Bliss

April 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

I realize that, right now, Hollywood is currently in the phase where remaking movies is all the rage. Sometimes that works out and the audience gets a halfway decent movie, like the recent “Godzilla” movie. And then other times, the remake drifts into the territory of “lock it in the basement...

Original play offers unique look at mental illnesses

Cayla Fronhofer

April 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Stage

The theater is dark and quiet until white lights suddenly sweep across the stage, accompanied by the sound of a car’s engine. It quiets, white lights shift to red, and the sound of a blinker is heard. After a moment, the sounds fade and the play begins. “The Cover of a Book” is an original play...

New book addresses farcical coverage of 2016 election

New book addresses farcical coverage of 2016 election

Lisa Kent

April 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

Matt Taibbi is a Rolling Stone correspondent and an author. During 2015-2016, he reports on the presidential campaign and the ensuing election, and then combines his dispatches into “Insane Clown President.” Before he starts his dispatches, he writes of his prior book “The Great Derangement,”...

Disney remake brings beauty and anachronism to the big screen

Disney remake brings beauty and anachronism to the big screen

Emily Mullaney

April 14, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

“Beauty and the Beast” was extravagantly gorgeous, well written and performed well. Director Bill Condon (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn 1 and 2) struck a good balance between following the old story and adding new material. While most of the new material is nice, none of it is essential, and some...

Throwing back to hairspray and classic rock in “Adventureland”

Throwing back to hairspray and classic rock in “Adventureland”

Avery Bliss

March 23, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

Hey, do you like the ’80s? Teenage angst? Kristen Stewart trying her damnedest to make a normal human expression? Well then, “Adventureland,” featuring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, is the movie for you. Even though this movie came out only a few years ago, it has that definite feel...

Wolverine’s last ride

Wolverine’s last ride

Cayla Fronhofer

March 23, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

Three years after his second solo film, Wolverine has returned to the big screen with his claws out and his taciturn demeanor fully intact. Following the enormous success of last year’s “Deadpool,” 20th Century Fox has released its second attempt at an R-rated X-Men film: “Logan,” the 10th...

Pierce the Veil offers listeners red and orange hues of a West Coast sunset

Jacob Greenia

March 23, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Music

Few artists have parlayed their collective frustration and vision into rich songwriting quite like Pierce the Veil has with its fourth full-length album, “Misadventures.” After six years of nonstop touring around the world, the San Diego-bred post-hardcore quartet had a breakthrough moment in...

A behind-the-scenes look at “Beauty Queen of Leenane”

Caroline Loftus

March 23, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Stage

In the dark, winding halls of the Dibden Center of Performing Arts, Emily Pike, special effects makeup specialist, frantically looks for the gelatin-based prosthetic molding compound she uses to make life-like burns and injuries. Finding the compound, Pike hurries back to where the crowd of four is. In...

Bad accents and other misses

Bad accents and other misses

Avery Bliss

March 9, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

Does anyone remember Val Kilmer at his prime, in movies like “Top Gun” or “Tombstone”? And then you watch him in his more recent works and he just looks tired and bloated? That’s what watching Nicolas Cage (“National Treasure”) in the American-Canadian-Chinese action film “Outcast”...

Steady as she goes

Steady as she goes

Emily Mullaney

March 9, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Music

I like to think of the Steady Betty concert from March 2 in Dibden as a two-layered cake. The icing was not smooth and well decorated, but both layers of cake were moist and satisfying, and the icing melted in the mouth. The bottom layer of the cake was a rich chocolate flavor and arguably the most important...

Batman in a Lego world

Batman in a Lego world

Cayla Fronhofer

March 9, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

On the surface, the idea of making a movie using Lego versions of other intellectual property is pretty ridiculous. As it turns out, the reality of such a movie is still ridiculous, but in more of an amusing and heartwarming way. As with the first Lego movie, “The Lego Batman Movie” proves that a...

Nazi bratwursts and other stupidity

Nazi bratwursts and other stupidity

Avery Bliss

February 16, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

I have seen the true face of the Devil, and it looks an awful lot like the poster for the movie “Yoga Hosers.” Coming from the mind of Kevin Smith, the director of “Clerks,” and “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back,” this movie stars Smith’s daughter as one of the leading roles. This movie...

Authentic food at Ocha Thai Smile

Authentic food at Ocha Thai Smile

Emily Mullany

February 16, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment

I wouldn’t have guessed that there’s a restaurant of extraordinary quality on this busy stretch of road near I89 in Waterbury. Ocha Thai Smile restaurant is nestled beside and beneath a smoke shop and a tattoo parlor respectively, and outward appearances don’t promise anything spectacular.   The...

Dark wit and shocking twists in “The Beauty Queen of Leenane”

Dark wit and shocking twists in “The Beauty Queen of Leenane”

Cayla Fronhofer

February 16, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Stage

Walking into the Dibden auditorium, it seems as if no one is there. All of the seats are empty and the heavy blue curtains are drawn across the stage. Tentatively, I step onto the stage and am ushered behind the curtain by the two people waiting on the platform. “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” was...

New book explores secrets of trees

New book explores secrets of trees

Lisa Kent

February 2, 2017


Filed under Art, Arts & Entertainment

When I browsed the new book section in Willey Library for a book to read and review, “The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate” by Peter Wohlleben caught my eye. The cover popped out at me, with its cream-colored paper, colonial red letters, and images of trees and their greenery....

A look back at Coheed and Cambria’s first album

A look back at Coheed and Cambria’s first album

Emily Mullaney

February 2, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Music

It begins with a rustling and a soft twang. The anticipation builds in those few seconds, just before the soft, eerie strings enter. Then the percussion clashes, and the piano player plucks out a melody which will become a motif as the album dives into its rock-metal hybrid epic. This is how “The Second...

“Maximum Ride” tramples childhoods

“Maximum Ride” tramples childhoods

Avery Bliss

February 2, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

In the world of book-to-movie adaptations, there are only two possible ways that these movies can be made. They can either be mostly true to the source material, with only a few alterations or missing things, or they can absolutely butcher the source material. Unfortunately, the film “Maximum Ride,”...

A new kind of Disney princess

A new kind of Disney princess

Cayla Fronhofer

February 2, 2017


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Movies

Disney princess movies have followed a fairly standard formula for nearly 80 years, usually based on a fairy tale and including a prince in some capacity. November’s “Moana” broke that pattern with style, delivering stunning visuals and a riveting plot.  Directed by Ron Clements and John...

2016’s top 6 albums: diverse new music from veteran artists

2016’s top 6 albums: diverse new music from veteran artists

Jacob Greenia

December 8, 2016


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Music

The year 2016 will be remembered more for its political discord than it will be for a diverse selection of new music. Through all of the static, the unnecessary noise of political punditry and the derision elicited from those in high office, newsrooms and living rooms, 2016 managed to produce a rich...

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