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September 27, 2016

Sept 27, 2016: Your Arts and Culture Adventure Picks


This post is a part of a series of posts curating adventurous arts and culture experiences in Southeast Michigan. Sign up for email updates (choose “Arts & Culture Adventures” list).

adam desjardinsHello Internet! Thank you for opening up this tab and checking out what I have to say about arts and cultural happenings for these next few weeks. I’m so very grateful for this opportunity to be one of the two UMS Blogging Fellows as Michigan has so much to offer in the arts and culture sector, but the regional coverage is sometimes lacking! I’m going to introduce myself real quick, and then we’ll get to the thick of things.

Hey again! My name is Adam, my grandma calls me “Adaś,” and these days I dwell in Detroit. I’m a recent graduate of University of Michigan, having spent my time there studying Sociology, Performing Arts Management, French, and dipping my toes in many topics in between. My passion is the arts education and accessibility aka how people engage, participate, learn and create in and with the arts. I’m currently taking accordion lessons, just got back from a year of working in France + some world travel, and took some film photos along the way. Most importantly, I hope you enjoy my suggestions and really do hope to see you at some of these events!

Mosaic Youth Theatre at the Michigan Theatre

mosaic-youth-theatreAs a previous attendee of the Neutral Zone in Ann Arbor, I whole-heartedly believe in youth-centered arts programs as a means for learning, engagement, and good old fun. Mosaic Youth Theatre in Detroit is a glimmering gem of all that and more. With 20+ years of exceptional arts education programming, they are not to be messed with, having toured nationally and internationally and as a dear friend just told me, they are “the real deal”. They’ll be at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor on October 2 bringing their song for $12 a ticket. Show up and show some support for regional youth arts programs! More.

Complex Movements’ Beware of the Dandelions at Talking Dolls

complex-movementsA smorgasbord of community organizing + electronic music + story telling + architecture + hip-hop + projectors, this event has got it all. Artist collective Complex Movements’ is returning home to Detroit after a few stints in Dallas and Seattle with their immersive work Beware of the Dandelions, inspired by the work of the late Grace Lee Boggs, a Detroit based activist. The event, rather, experience immerses participants in a polyhedron dome structure involving live performance, visuals, and themes of science fiction, and activism. Honestly, I’m not sure what to expect, but I do know that it is going to be phenomenal. The experience and residency at Talking Dolls includes 20 performances (Tickets: $10), 4 free installation viewings, and 20 community events from October 6-31. More.

Swoon: The Light After at Library Street Collective

swoonatdiaphotobyeljefe313Street art! What is it anyways?! That was rhetorical! Well, if you’re looking to learn more about it or know something already, make your way to Library Street Collective in downtown Detroit for an exhibition by Swoon, an NYC-based wheat-pasting extraordinaire and community organizer. While in Detroit, she will also be working with residents in the Jefferson-Chalmers neighborhood on a mural + beautification project and hanging a 400-pound installation at the DIA. The exhibition at Library Street Collective opens with a reception on October 8 and runs until November 26, so you have plenty of time to catch it and the slew of other Swoon-related events. More.

KING at El Club

Music in Motown, and more generally, American music, has been and continues to be deeply rooted in independent black artistry and excellence. KING, by way of Los Angeles, is bringing just that to Detroit on October 12. They are a smooth, cosmic trio, independently run, produced and bringing the groove. Their soulful tunes have rightfully gained the attention and support of many from Stevie Wonder to Erykah Badu to the late Prince, who once brought them on tour. This past spring, I had tickets to their show in Paris but ended up missing it, which resulted in some really terrible feelings. Avoid that situation and do not miss out on KING at El Club, a new venue in Southwest Detroit. More.

Gaelynn Lea at Marble Bar

Along with everyone else on the planet, one of my favorite pastimes is to get sucked into the endless archive of music on Youtube. Often this includes watching NPR’s Tiny Desk concerts and falling upon greats like Minnesota native Gaelynn Lea, who recently won the 2nd ever Tiny Desk Contest. Below you’ll find the video of her accepting her prize of a performance at the Tiny Desk at NPR. While you cry quietly in front of your computer at the sheer beauty of her music, just know that the Seraphine Collective, a Detroit based community of creative feminists, is bringing her to Marble Bar on October 16. Tickets are $10 in advance and include Lea + a handful of wonderful regional artists from fellow singer-songwriters to a Greek folk band. More.

Thanks for giving this a read! Which events do you have on your calendar? Have any suggestions? Feel free to shoot me an email at, or comment below. I’d love to hear from you! 

Photos courtesy of artists and performance spaces.

Adam DesJardinis is a UMS Blogging Fellow. Learn more about the blogging fellows program.