Monday, December 31, 2012

On the SPOT: Il Volo

RECAPPING 2012

The three great voices of Il Volo filled the room with insight and laughter, as we discussed the fast rise to fame of the young Italian singers.  In 2012, they released a new album and some bonus Christmas tracks.  They also toured the U.S. and Canada as a headliner, and as a support act for Barbra Streisand's North American tour.  Il Volo are: Piero Barone, Ignazio Boschetto and Gianluca Ginoble

PAUL:  Did you have big dreams when you were little?

GIANLUCA: Yes!  To be singers!

PAUL:  What's it like to see your dreams realized?

IGNAZIO:  Now imagine...we met three years ago.  I was playing Playstation with my friends, mostly, you know, soccer, and now here I am in America, touring with Il Volo with a great career.  It's really the dream come true!  The dream coming true.

GIANLUCA: We still play Playstation, on the tour bus now.  We are always playing soccer!

PIERO:  Our dream is to see the people, to see the audience really excited to come to our concert. And when we finish the concert they start to say always "encore, encore!"  We have always a standing ovation at our concerts.  That makes us real excited.

PAUL:  You are known for singing classic Italian songs.  What kind of music do you enjoy?

IGNAZIO:  We listen to opera, but we love all kinds of music... Michael Buble...

PIERO:  Janice Joplin.

IGNAZIO:  Janice Joplin, ACDC, Aerosmith, but the opera is the perfection of music.
PIERO:  And we don't sing opera.  We sing classical music, crossover.  With the first album we did all covers, but now for our new album I can tell you there are new songs, duets, lots of surprises.

GIANLUCA: Now we are singing crossover.  We can tell you we love opera and we love pop.

IGNAZIO:  It's a mix of the three tenors and the Jonas Brothers.  It's a mix.  Il Volo is Il Volo.  If you listen to the album you can say it is Il Volo.

PAUL:  You three have very big voices when you perform.  How blessed are you to have these voices?

PIERO:  We have to say thanks to everyone, to our parents, our management, our producers,  but we say thanks to God because he gave us this gift.

PAUL:  What's joyful about being in Il Volo?

GIANLUCA:   Meeting these two guys.  I am so proud to work with them.

PAUL:  What would you like to see happen to Il Volo in 10 years?

GIANLUCA:  We hope to stay together.

IGNAZIO:  Yeah, we hope to stay together, but in the years we hope to bring our music, our emotion through the music to the people, but all kinds of people, young and older, and we hope to make the young generation love this kind of music.

PIERO:  When a young guy listens to this kind of music he's going to fall in love with this kind of music.  But you have to discover it.  When you discover it, you love it.

FOR MORE IL VOLO, FOLLOW THESE LINKS:

The CD We are Love is available now.

The CD Il Volo is available now.

Il Volo Takes Flight, and other music.

Official website:  http://www.ilvolomusic.com

Sunday, December 30, 2012

On the SPOT: Michael and Kevin Bacon - THE BACON BROTHERS

RECAPPING 2012

Emmy Award-winning music composer Michael Bacon and his sibling, accomplished actor Kevin Bacon enjoy their respective jobs, but they also join forces to perform as the Bacon Brothers.  Both brothers have talent as musicians and songwriters, and their band has a loyal following of fans in countries around the world.

PAUL:  Has music always been something that has bonded the two of you?

MICHAEL:  Yeah, pretty much as long as I can remember.  We both grew up in a household that valued creativity and artistic expression above everything else, including grades in school and the idea that you actually had to go out and make money as an adult.  We didn't really get that message until two years ago...no (laughs)!  So our household was about music and acting and art and dance, and so it's something we shared and it's as natural as breathing for us. 

PAUL:  So how did the two of you wind up performing as a duo?

KEVIN:  Michael was performing from my earliest memories... He was in a band with my sister when they were little kids, and then eventually in a duo called Good News in Philadelphia, and I used to go and see them when I was really young.  And then eventually Good News broke up, and the first time we really started performing together was when he first asked me to play percussion in his solo act.  So we had a bass player and I was playing percussion and we had a girl singing background vocals, or he had a girl singing background vocals.  It was Michael's songs and he was the front man.  And that sort of went away for a long time, many many years, and then we grew up and then about fifteen, sixteen years ago we got a call from a buddy of ours from Philadelphia, where we grew up, and he had heard a demo that we had done and the demo was basically to get some other people to cut some songs that we had written, and he said "how about a Bacon Brothers show?" So, you know, he kind of came up with the name and we figured, yeah, we'll just put a band together and did one show and that was it.  It just kind of took off after that.  

PAUL:  How is expressing yourself as an actor different from expressing yourself as a musician?

KEVIN:  Well, I think they're very, very different because writing is kind of the key. In the band, almost all the time we are writing songs and performing songs that we wrote... either Michael wrote, or I wrote...or once in awhile that we wrote together.  So that means from beginning to end, it's your own piece of creative expression.  When I'm doing a film, I'm a tool for somebody else's words to get put across, so that's a different kind of process.  In some ways, acting is more of a collaboration in a strange kind of way.  Certainly, we collaborate as brothers and as a band, but in terms of the genesis of a creative expression it's all our own in music.  It's like you're standing there in your own clothes and singing a song about something specific that happened to you.

PAUL:  Do you feel more vulnerable as a musician and songwriter, or as an actor, because you reveal a lot of yourself as an actor?

KEVIN:  Yeah.  I mean My theory about acting is you use yourself and you lose yourself.  So a good performance to me is tapping into as much as you can of what your own personal and emotional experiences are, and then trying to lose yourself and feel like you are truly walking in someone else's shoes.  Because acting, to me, is not being Kevin on screen.  That's not acting.  But at the same time, it is a very vulnerable place to be.  It's vulnerable every day, whether you're on screen or not, because people, especially as you get more and more well known, are constantly judging you.  They're judging your look, and your hair, and your clothes, and your weight, your performances, and your choices and your career, all that kind of stuff.  So that's one kind of vulnerability and certainly again it's like apples and oranges.  On the flip side to stand up and say "Hey, my dog died so I picked up my guitar and wrote this song about her and now I'm going to sing it for you," I mean that's a pretty vulnerable place to be too.

PAUL:  And you've done that?

KEVIN:  Yes!

PAUL:  What is your greatest wish for the Bacon Brothers?

MICHAEL: I'd love to write a song that out-lived my brother and me and the band, that's still remembered long after we are forgotten.  My example would be "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"  It's one of the most poignant anti-war songs ever written, by Pete Seeger, but a lot of people don't even connect that song with Pete Seeger.  That song will still be there.  It has a sense of eternal life and I think it's a really great contribution to history.  I think that's what we're trying to do.  That's what every songwriter is trying to do.

PAUL:  You are both enormously successful in your respective careers.  Does having a hit single matter to you?

MICHAEL:  Well, you know it's almost like a metaphor for a disease you have.  You always want more than what you have.  You're always aspiring and for me it's a big  a motor.  It really pushes me.  I'm not going to speak for my brother but for me, no matter what, whatever place I've gotten to there are places beyond that I would like to get to and it takes a lot of work and a lot of focus, and a lot of support from one's family.  So I dream.  I keep dreaming.

FOR MORE BACON BROTHERS, FOLLOW THESE LINKS:

The album Philadelphia Road - The Best of the Bacon Brothers is available now.

Mountain Lake PBS interview and concert footage of the Bacon Brothers.

Video for Go My Way.

Bacon Brothers Adirondacks PSA.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

On the SPOT: Chris Isaak

RECAPPING 2012

Chris Isaak is a super nice guy, and had me laughing all through our interview.  His latest album is Beyond the Sun.  It pays tribute to musical legends who got their start at Sun Studio in Memphis.  The album also includes some of Isaak's own compositions.

PAUL:  Your album Beyond the Sun pays tribute to a lot of the musical greats.  Where were you when you first heard this kind of music?

CHRIS:  I'm lucky enough that my parents were smart and they had good taste.  My  dad listened to nothing but Johnny Cash, Elvis, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, you know, B B King... it was all these great records.  I didn't realize that they all came out of one little place in Memphis, Tennessee until much later in my life, but I loved that music growing up

PAUL:  What appeals to you about this kind of music?

CHRIS:  I think I liked it because I'm a guitar player, and growing up we didn't really have musical lessons so we taught ourselves to play guitar.  You could learn those songs. They were simple enough that you kind of felt like you could kind of pick them out...and you could start twanging along.

PAUL:  You wrote about Sam Phillips, the founder of Sun Studio on the liner notes of your album.
He discovered Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins.  Why is he so special to you?

CHRIS:  I understand how the real world works.  Elvis Presley deserves tons of credit, and he's going to be the one remembered because he's beautiful,  and you see him singing a song and you think, "Well, he did this all by himself,"  but Elvis really was part of a musical movement that was started by, I think, Sam Phillips.  Sam Phillips really was a visionary, a genius, and he took risks. I mean he took risks and he did stuff with music that changed the whole world. I know you think of it as just rock n' roll but I love Sam Philips because one of the things he said for example goes "I didn't want to just make a record by black artists and then try to change it so it would be palatable to white people.  He said I wanted them to make the record that they wanted to make.  For his time and where he's from, I mean, he was way ahead of everybody.  He said, "We're not going to worry about rules.  We're going to play this for fun, and we're going to have fun, and you're going to feel that on the record."  That's what rock n' roll is.  You can feel the fun.

PAUL:  He also paid you a very high compliment.

CHRIS:  He did.  There's a lot of great musicians and he worked with so many of them and I was reading an article in Oxford American it was a great music magazine, and I was reading this article.  I had no idea that he had mentioned me, and at the end of the article, they said, "Well Sam, who do you listen to today?"  I was the first one he mentioned.  He said "I listen to Chris Isaak," and he said a lot of nice things.  Man, it meant a lot to me.  When I saw that article and I read it I broke down in tears, because he's the reason I have a job, I mean, it was his records that really made me want to be a musician.  One time I saw him talking...this is an odd bit but it sticks in my mind about Sam Phillips... He was talking to a bunch of school kids, and Sam was a little older at the time, and he said to them something I thought it was a great quote.  He said "Any time yo spend making music is never wasted."  And you know like everybody else, I waste a lot of my life.  I waste time doing stuff that really didn't mean much, but when you're making music with your friends, that time is never wasted.

PAUL:  What is the best thing about performing music from these great musicians?

CHRIS:  I have a ball singing this stuff.  You get to sing that, and the whole band kicks in behind you.. the whole band and the singing in the background.  I go, "This is what I used to pretend to do when I was a kid in front of the mirror in my bedroom, you know?  I'd sing along with a record.  Now I have the band behind me.  So, this is a dream come true.

FOR MORE CHRIS ISAAK, FOLLOW THE LINKS:

Chris Isaak's album Beyond the Sun is available now.

Official website:  www.chrisisaak.com

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Il Volo Exclusive!

"Il Volo" may mean "the flight," but these Italian singers are well grounded.  During our interview, they stressed the importance of remaining "humble," even while facing enormous global success before they each reached the age of 20. 

Meeting these three talented singers was a pleasure.  I hope you will enjoy hearing them speak about how their different personalities and distinct voices helped create a group that is causing a sensation among people of Italian origin, as well as among a much wider public.

To appeal to a wide range of young people, their parents and even their grandparents, it helps that these teenage singers enjoy performing classic Italian songs, as well as other types of music.

My exclusive interview with Il Volo will run on Borderless North this Thursday at 8:30pm.

Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Before December 31st, you may also wish to support Mountain Lake PBS and receive a thank-you gift of some Il Volo Christmas music, or their brand new album, We are Love.  Go to mountainlake.org to find out how.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Author Does it All!



"A REAL LIVE AUTHOR" is what one of her young fans called Janice Dave Stanley when she made a classroom visit recently. Interviewing Janice (known to most as Jan Stanley) was a real pleasure.  She not only writes poetry and bases her books on her own photographs, but she also designs her books and publishes them herself!  Teachers and students all over the North Country have discovered the talents of this retired English instructor, and she's in demand in schools all over the region.   

Enjoy the "Spotlight" interview tonight on Borderless North at 8:30pm.  

Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Learn more about Jan Stanley, and see her interview on our "Author Visits" web page.
http://www.mountainlake.org/education/education-initiatives/author-visits/

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Bacon Brothers Interview!

     Michael and Kevin Bacon are great guys to meet, and I enjoyed hearing their stories about performing music in the band The Bacon Brothers.  I'm happy to share these stories with you in two separate TV pieces that premiere tonight.  
     The first airs on Mountain Lake Journal.  It contains a lot of little-known information about Emmy-award winning composer Michael and accomplished film actor Kevin.  People living in the Adirondack region and all our PBS viewers should find it particularly interesting, as it shows the links the two of them have to both the Adirondack Park and PBS television.  The ties are strong!  Mountain Lake Journal times are:  Thursday at 8pm, Friday at 5:30 am and 12pm, Saturday at 7pm, and Sunday at 5:30am and 10am.
     Then it's onto the main feature story, a ten-minute piece on the program Borderless North about the origins of the Bacon Brothers band, their commitment to music, and how they balance work with the band with their busy schedules.  Kevin is currently starring in a TV series, and Michael composes the orchestral score for feature films and documentaries.  Borderless North times are:  Thursday at 8:30pm, Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am and 10:30am.  
     For Bacon Brothers videos, their Adirondack-themed public service announcements, and even a radio interview with Michael, head to our special Bacon Brothers page:  http://borderlessnorth.org/the-bacon-brothers

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Kevin Bacon doesn't love doing interviews


Can't wait for you to see the results of my interview with the Bacon Brothers!  That's the name of the musical duo comprised on Kevin Bacon and his composer brother Michael.  Michael has composed the score to feature films, and many PBS documentaries and specials.  There's a preview video link at the bottom of this entry.  Be sure to check back here next week for many more Bacon Brothers videos.

Don't miss the Bacon Brothers on Borderless North, beginning on Thursday, October 18 at 8:30pm on Borderless North, on Mountain Lake PBS.
     Additional times: 
     Friday at 6am and 12:30pm
     Saturday at 7:30pm
     Sunday at 6am and 10:30am


Preview video link:

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Celebrating Good Books!







































It was great to meet several of the authors participating in the 2012 Burlington Book Festival over the weekend.  Readings, signings, workshops, book sales and demonstrations happened in different venues located in downtown Burlington. The Queen City's 8th annual celebration of the written word featured literary luminaries from around the world-and just around the corner. Activities provided a great way for beginning writers to learn about self-publishing, and creating a web site to promote their works.  Events also allowed readers to meet established authors.  Participating authors this year included Pulitzer Prize-Winning poet Tracy Smith, and author Michael Hastings, whose book, The Operators, is being turned into a film by Brad Pitt's company, Plan B.  I had the pleasure of meeting Rick Kisonak, our Borderless North film critic and the founder of the festival.  Vermont Poet Laureate Sydney Lea inspired the audience at the opening ceremony.  For more information about the yearly book festival, head to: http://burlingtonbookfestival.com

Thursday, September 13, 2012

New Show: BORDERLESS NORTH

I'm anchoring the premiere of a new show tonight:  Borderless North. It's a magazine show without borders, meaning the possibilities are limitless. We'll still be covering a wide range of topics in northern New York, western Vermont, and Quebec. We'll also illuminate a wider world with stories of national and international significance, brought close to home, so they're made relevant to our viewers.  Borderless North is our first show with a completely integrated online component. In fact, the online presence is in some ways more important than the TV show.  The online borderlessnorth.org will allow our viewers to contribute their own stories, photos and videos.  Be sure to watch the premiere of Borderless North tonight at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Native American Artistry
































"Spotlight," in cooperation with the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York, presents a new series on Native American Artistry.  I have interviewed master quilter Carla Hemlock, and her husband, accomplished cradleboard-maker  Babe Hemlock.  Many more pieces will follow. Look for the stories on on our new Borderless North Web page: http://borderlessnorth.org/topics/native_american_artistry

Monday, July 9, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Adirondack Coast ARTWays


It was fun to serve as a judge on the committee that chose a work of art that will represent Clinton and Essex counties for the next three months. It will be replicated on posters (for sale), magnets and other souvenir items. After the three months, another work will receive the honor. This brand new project results from a partnership between the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts and the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, a division of the North Country Chamber of Commerce.  Watch "Spotlight" on Mountain Lake Journal Extra this week to find out whose piece will be the first winner in this contest, meant to unite the community through art.  Pictured with me are Janine Scherline, Executive Director of the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts, who gets the credit for this great idea, and Michele Powers, V.P. of Marketing for the North Country Chamber of Commerce, who saw this as a great marketing tool for the community. For more information:   http://plattsburgharts.org/  

"Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra this Thursday, July 12 at 8:30pm.  Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Breaking Boundaries and "Frankenstein"

An art exhibit in Lake Placid could change the way you look at city scenes and the natural world. At least that's the hope of the creators of the "Breaking Boundaries" exhibit at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts. It features the work of two very different artists, but the pieces work well to create an effective sense of unity and flow in the exhibit space. You'll see ceramic works by Rainbow Lake, New York resident Peter Shrope, and the city and nature prints of Connecticut artist Zemma Mastin White. The exhibit lasts until July 29. I am also very excited to see the high definition presentation of Frankenstein. Last summer when I was in England, I kept hearing about this fantastic production of Frankenstein on the London stage, but it was sold out so I couldn't see it. Now we get two chances to see this critically acclaimed version of Mary Shelley's gothic tale, directed by Oscar-winner Danny Boyle.


National Theatre Live presents Frankenstein in high definition:


Monday, July 9 at 7pm
Original Cast:
Benedict Cumberbatch as The Creature and Jonny Lee Miller as Victor Frankenstein

 


Monday, July 23 at 7pm
Reversed Cast:
Jonny Lee Miller as The Creature and Benedict Cumberbatch as Victor Frankenstein


For more information about Breaking Boundaries and Frankenstein, head to the Lake Placid Center for the Arts web site: http://www.lakeplacidarts.org/

"Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra thisThursday, July 5 at 8:30pm.  Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Video Games Live!

Tommy Tallarico shows his enthusiasm for a new form of live entertainment, an interactive symphonic concert celebrating the sophisticated scores to video games.  The co-creator of the event talked to me about how this is one orchestral concert that kids will want to go to, and their parents and even grandparents should enjoy the experience as well.  Why did I enjoy conducting this interview?  It's one more example of a significant shift in both the world of entertainment, where video games are providing very tough competition for people's entertainment dollars, and in many cases are winning over movies and music, and in the world of live performances.  The show not only features a live orchestra and choir, but video games appearing on screens, lasers, and audience participation involving game play.  Imagine playing a video game while you're at the symphony!  Live entertainment has been becoming increasingly visual... now it's immersive!  Tommy talks about the PBS special:  Video Games Live!  It airs on Mountain Lake PBS Sunday night at 10:30.  He also is getting ready for the live show at the Bell Centre in Montreal on October 26.  Ticket info is here.

"Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra this Thursday night at 8:30pm.  Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Chris Isaak Exclusive!


Funny, funny guy!  Rock and Pop Star Chris Isaak appears on Skype for the first time ever for our interview. The “Wicked Game” singer and I discussed his musical heroes Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash.  He pays tribute to them on his album “Beyond the Sun.”  Be sure to listen for his exclusive rendition of “Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing,” a song made famous by its inclusion in Stanley Kubrick’s movie Eyes Wide Shut. He personalized it to me in a hilarious way.


I always enjoy speaking with someone whose work I admire.  I am a big fan of Chris Isaak's, and can't wait to see him live in concert in Montreal this October.


You may get your concert tickets here at the Mountain Lake PBS BOX OFFICE.     Learn how to meet Chris in person, plus exclusive interviews here at the Mountain Lake PBS Chris Isaak "Spotlight Extra"page.

Enjoy the concert special “Chris Isaak Live! Beyond the Sun” on Mountain Lake PBS. Friday at 11pm / Saturday at 8pm / Sunday at 6pm.  


Our interview appears on the "Spotlight" segment of Mountain Lake Journal Extra this week.  It premieres Thursday, June 7 at 8:30pm. Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.


Chris Isaak photo courtesy of PBS Pressroom.

Monday, May 28, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Digital Art!




The first International Digital Arts Biennial in Montreal is helping bring North America into a whole new era of art:  the digital age.

Just like painting, sculpture, photography, film and video, digital art is now allowing artists to express their views using the technology of their own time.

It was fascinating to interview artists Matthew Biederman and Peter Flemming for the story, as well as Digital Arts Researcher Lynn Hughes.

The piece I'm producing features works by Philom√®ne Longpr√©,  Matthew Biederman, Peter Flemming, Zimoun, Florian Grond, and other artists.

The nationally award-winning "Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra.  

The "digital art" piece premieres Thursday, May 31 at 8:30pm.  Repeat airings include Friday at 6am & 12:30pm, Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 6am & 10:30am.

Photo courtesy of Matthew Biederman, from his piece Event Horizon.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Jean-Jacques Duval

















I had the pleasure of interviewing Keeseville, New York artist Jean-Jacques Duval at the site of his exhibit in Montreal.  Stained glass installations by artist Jean-Jacques Duval decorate churches and other buildings in countries such as the U.S, Japan and Germany.  


The French-born artist who’s lived in the U.S. most of his life has earned an international reputation for his abstract art glass windows, but he’s equally skilled in painting. That’s the main focus of the “Harmonic Spectrum” exhibit in Montreal.  It lasts until May 13 at Beaux-Arts des Ameriques, 3944 rue St-Denis, Montreal, Quebec.  


This "Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra Thursday night at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS. It repeats on Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, and Sunday at 10:30am.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Rebecca Kelly Ballet

Most ballet dancers tread lightly on the stage, but Rebecca Kelly's dancers advocate treading lightly on the earth! In time for Earth Day, the Spotlight shines on the Manhattan-based choreographer, who uses dance to raise awareness about environmental issues. Kelly's message to her audience: Reduce your carbon footprint on the earth if you want to help reduce climate change.

This "Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra Thursday night at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS. It repeats on Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, and Sunday at 10:30am.

Photo by Todd Bissonette.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Spelling Bee

Congratulations to Nicholas Manfred of Moriah Central School. He outlasted more than 60 competitors to win the 2012 CVES Regional Spelling Bee which was held at Seton Catholic School in Plattsburgh. Nicolas won in the 11th round, correctly spelling “quinine” to seal the victory. Co-sponsor, the Press Republican along with the North Country Parents for the National Spelling Bee will pay the travel and hotel expenses for Nicolas (and a chaperone) to visit Washington, DC this summer, where he will compete in the National Bee.

The Grand Champion, 1st Runner Up, and Grade Level Winners are:

Grade 4 Champion: Gareth Mansfield - Plattsburgh City Schools

Grade 5 Champion: Jeremy Cui - Plattsburgh City Schools

1st Runner Up & Grade 6 Champion: Kenna Fasking - Saranac Central School

Grand Champion & Grade 7 Champion: Nicolas Manfred - Moriah Central School

Grade 8 Champion: Jillian Dean - Willsboro Central School


I had the pleasure as serving as one of the spelling bee judges this year.




Tuesday, February 28, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Museum of Fine Arts DESIGN Wing

This week on Mountain Lake Journal Extra:

The "Spotlight" shines on the newly renovated Design and Decorative Arts Pavilion at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, rooms aimed at attracting your attention, by design. With chairs climbing the architecture and other unconventional ways of displaying objects, museum curators created a space the public couldn't wait to enter, even before the renovations were completed.

To learn more about upcoming events at the Museum of Fine Arts, click here.

This "Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra Thursday night at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS. It repeats on Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, and Sunday at 10:30am.

Museum photo by Marc Cramer.


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

"Relay for Life" preview on Mountain Lake Journal Extra


Plattsburgh residents gear up for the annual Relay for Life of Plattsburgh. On the show this week, I speak with organizers about the upcoming kick-off and the event itself. The interview with cancer survivor Candace Jock touched everyone in the studio as it was happening. Community Executive Joan Sterling of the American Cancer Society is also inspiring when she talks about her personal reasons for participating in the relay every summer.

The all night event in June celebrates survivors of the disease, and raises money to help find a cure.

The kick-off is Thursday, February 16 from 6pm to 8pm at Gilligan’s Getaway in Plattsburgh.

The actual Relay for Life is June 15-16 from 7pm to 7am at the Clinton County Fairgrounds.


To learn more, the RelayforLife website is here.

This roundtable interview airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra Thursday night at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS. It repeats on Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, and Sunday at 10:30am.


Thursday, January 26, 2012

SPOTLIGHT: Opera Singer Tanner Knight

Tenor Tanner Knight of Kessville, New York discusses his career in opera. The singer has performed in many shows across the country, but he says dwindling audiences due to the tough economy are forcing many opera companies to make cutbacks or even close. In spite of the tough times, we managed to talk about his love of music. He also sang for us, accompanied on the piano by Dr. Karen Becker. She is an associate professor at SUNY Plattsburgh.




This "Spotlight" airs on Mountain Lake Journal Extra Thursday night at 8:30 on Mountain Lake PBS. It repeats on Friday at 6am and 12:30pm, and Sunday at 10:30am.





"Spotlight" is brought to you, in part, by the Glenn and Carol Pearsall Adirondack Foundation, dedicated to improving the quality of life for year-round residents of the Adirondack Park.