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Category: Arts

BREE GANGI LANDS LEADING ROLE AT KEY WEST THEATER

Bree Gangi has one of the coolest jobs in town, rubbing shoulders with the rock stars, comedians, country music legends and Key West music icons who perform at Key West Theater and the Coffee Butler Amphitheater at Truman Waterfront. As the newly promoted executive director of Key West Theater, her job involves terms most people only hear on TV and in the movies — the green room, the “talent,” booking agents, tour buses, sound checks, entourages, and the demands included in a star’s rider (the document that specifies the items a performer expects in their dressing room). But Gangi speaks the...

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KEY LARGO MUSIC LEGEND’S DAUGHTER RELEASES FIRST COVER SONG

The daughter of Keys music legend “Grateful Ted” recently released her first cover song and collaboration with Grammy award winner “Bluegrass Boy” Peter Rowan.  “Seminole Wind” is an original piece by country singer John Anderson that speaks to the struggle and displacement of the Seminole Tribe in Florida caused by war, destruction of natural resources, and the draining of the Everglades for financial gain.  “I learned this song by hearing my father, Ted Hyde, AKA ‘Grateful Ted,’ play it,” Kelly Hyde said. “My father was based in the Florida Keys and played music there for over 30 years, and...

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CALLING ALL ARTISTS! $5K GRANT FOR WINNER

The City of Marathon has issued a call to artists to submit renderings for the wall on the new Fitness Court being installed at Marathon Community Park.  We’ve received additional information that the National Fitness Campaign is offering a $5,000 grant to the artist whose art is chosen for display. In addition to this grant, the artist will have a bio wall on the side of the structure. This opportunity is open to any artist in the Keys that is interested in submitting a rendering for voting.  After judging, the top three designs will be presented to City Council at October’s Council...

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ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR TRANSFORMS HER LIFE & FINDS SUCCESS IN THE KEYS

Susi Trottnow says that she divides her life into two parts. And the dividing moment happened 10 years ago, when she and her husband, Rich Trottnow, took a stroll in Islamorada’s Morada Way Arts & Cultural District shortly after moving to the Keys from Lake Tahoe. They passed an open warehouse called Morada Way Clay and went inside. They met the owner, and she asked Susi, “Have you ever played with clay?” “I responded, ‘No, I’ve never done any kind of art,’ Susi told Keys Weekly. “And that’s what started the entire venture. I knew saying ‘yes’ to working in clay was the right answer. Fate...

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ADMISSIONS SCANDAL: BACK TO SCHOOL BOOKS WITH A TWIST

Admission By Julie Buxbaum Chloe Berringer is a senior at the most prestigious (and expensive) private high school in Los Angeles. The SAT pressure is in full force and her beautiful, celebrity mother and handsome, successful father are cast as the helicopter parents from hell. Chloe’s grades are mediocre at best and her mom hires “the” college consultant to get the job done. Chloe is more focused on her longtime crush and spending weekends with her best friend but figures that whatever makes her parents happy and gets them off her back is fine by her. The morning the FBI comes banging on...

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MARINE LIFE PAINTER IS MOVING FROM THE KEYS BUT SHE REMAINS COMMITTED TO HER ART

In front of Islamorada’s BJ Royster Ocean Gallery last week, a sign flapped in the breeze that said, “Clearance — Everything Must Go.” But within the gallery, instead of a quiet emptied-out shop that the sign indicated, business was brisk. Artist BJ Royster stood chatting away with two clients who had driven down from the mainland to pick up a “custom Royster” — a large colorfully painted ocean reef scene. And, she told Keys Weekly, she was in the middle of working on five commissions. Make no mistake: marine life artist BJ Royster may be shutting down her gallery and moving from the Keys....

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ZOMBIES & SCONES: KEYS WRITER HAS A NEVER-ENDING SOURCE OF IDEAS FOR HER BOOKS

Roberta Isleib, a.k.a. mystery writer Lucy Burdette, once participated in Key West’s annual Zombie Bike Ride. The event is known to draw thousands of participants and spectators. She went all out with her husband by hiring a makeup artist to create their zombie faces. On the bicycle ride, while surrounded by a gang of similar-looking zombies, she had an epiphany: “If one of these zombies were to suddenly keel over, it would be hard to tell who the perpetrator is.” Thus, the idea was born for how to open book number seven in her Key West Food Critic Mystery Series, “Killer Takeout.” According...

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ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: KEYS SELF-TAUGHT ARTIST MAKES A LIVING TURNING COPPER INTO SEA-CREATURE SCULPTURES

It’s funny, the turns a life can make because of a simple gift. Keys resident August Powers had been making a living for years in food service for the Seacamp on Big Pine Key and as a sailing instructor, among other things. But he always liked working with his hands. So in 1990 for a birthday gift, his mother gave him a welding art course at the Florida Keys Community College.  “And she said, ‘I want a fountain,’” Powers told Keys Weekly.  In the course, he used oxy-acetylene welding on copper with silver braze. He made his mother a fountain, and loved doing it. “And it just took...

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ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: JANICE NAGLE MAKES HER HOME & HER ART IN ISLAMORADA

Janice Nagle found herself, like many folks, picking up the pieces of her life in the post-Irma days. Yet among the scattered ruins, she came upon a small treasure: her grandmother’s art box, filled with tubes of half-dried paint and old art brushes. It prompted her to give painting a whirl. With her camera phone she snapped photos and began painting her subjects from there. From that day on, she just never looked back.  Although her grandmother shared cooking lessons, knitting, arts and crafts and more with her when she was young, Nagle doesn’t have any formal training in art. “I have...

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MARATHON LIBRARY HOSTS ‘DUNGEONS & DRAGONS’ FOR ALL AGES

By Anthony Guntert In the modern, glass-walled activity room of the new Marathon library exists an ancient adventure like no other, a trip through mystical lands and far-off realms using the powers of imagination and storytelling. We’re talking, of course, about Dungeons & Dragons, the most popular and engaging role-playing game ever created. Loved by millions around the world, D&D serves as a platform for adventurers of all ages and backgrounds to explore a world outside their often stressful daily lives through a character of their own design.  “What I love about D&D,” said...

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