SALT LAKE CITY, UT – SEPTEMBER 3: View of a Michigan Wolverines football helmet before their game against the Utah Utes at Rice-Eccles Stadium on September 3, 2015 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)Apparently wide receiver Devin Funchess is not the only recent Michigan football player who can throw down. After seeing Funchess’ impressive dunk on Instagram on Sunday, quarterback Devin Gardner decided to make one of his own.Gardner’s dunks are definitely impressive, especially for someone who focuses on another sport, but we’ll have to award this impromptu Wolverine dunk contest to Funchess. That vertical leaping ability is sure to impress NFL scouts in the coming weeks during the combine and other draft preparation events.
Facebook TORONTO, Jan. 16, 2018 – Bell Media congratulates its production partners, internal team members, talent, and all those involved in the creation of its television series and films nominated for the 2018 Canadian Screen Awards. Announced earlier today, Bell Media garnered 203 total nominations, comprising 134 television and digital nominations and 69 nominations for Bell Media-supported films. Bell Media is proud to continue to be the Premium Partner of the Canadian Screen Awards.“It’s a tremendous honour to be recognized by the Academy with 203 nominations,” said Randy Lennox, President, Bell Media. “These accolades are a testament to the boundless creativity and dedication of Bell Media’s partners and team members and the industry as a whole, and we are proud to play a part in the exceptional television series and films developed right here in Canada.”Bell Media received nominations in a wide variety of genres, including drama, comedy, and reality programming:CTV’s acclaimed Canadian drama series CARDINAL, from JCardinal Productions Inc., received the most nominations for Bell Media with 12, highlighted by a nomination for Best Limited Series or Program, as well as Best Lead Actor, Drama Program or Limited Series for Billy Campbell, and Best Lead Actress, Drama Program or Limited Series for Karine VanasseCraveTV Original Series LETTERKENNY, from New Metric Media, garnered nine, including Best Comedy Series and Best Lead Actor, Comedy for Jared KeesoThe final season of Space’s critically acclaimed, award-winning sci-fi drama ORPHAN BLACK from Temple Street Productions, received six nominations, including for four-time Canadian Screen Award winner Tatiana Maslany for Best Lead Actress, Drama SeriesCTV’s hit drama 19-2, from Sphère Média Plus and Echo Media, received six nominations, including Best Drama SeriesDiscovery’s original scripted series FRONTIER, from Take The Shot Productions and their partners at ASAP Entertainment, received five, including Best Costume Design and Best Photography, DramaCTV’s THE AMAZING RACE CANADA, from Insight Productions, received seven nods including Best Reality/Competition Program or Series; CTV’s original mystery series THE DISAPPEARANCE scored four nominations; and MASTERCHEF CANADA, from Proper Television, earned two nominations LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment On the strength of its unparalleled roster of championship events and diversity of programming, TSN, Canada’s Sports Leader, received 19 nominations for its live sports coverage and feature programming, more than all other sports broadcasters combined. TSN received five nominations for its exclusive live coverage of the 2016 GREY CUP, watched by 10 million Canadians.CTV News received 17 nominations, including three for CTV NATIONAL NEWS WITH LISA LAFLAMME for Best National Newscast; Best Reportage, National for “East African Hunger Crisis”; and Best News Anchor, National for LaFlamme. CTV News was also recognized with two nominations for Best News Special, for “Prince Harry: Journey to Invictus” and “Vimy Remembered.” W5, the longest-running newsmagazine/documentary program in North America, received eight nominations, including Best News or Information Series; Best News or Information Program for “48 Hours”; and Best Host or Interviewer in a News or Information Program or Series for Jon Woodward. CTV NEWS TORONTO AT SIX has been nominated for four awards, including Best Local Newscast; Best News Anchor, Local for Ken Shaw and Michelle Dubé; and two nominations in the Best Reportage, Local category for Austin Delaney and Tracy Tong.Television productions supported by premium pay TV network The Movie Network received seven nominations, led by acclaimed action series ROGUE, which received nominations for Best Lead Actress, Drama Series for Meaghan Rath and Best Guest Performance, Drama Series for Richard Schiff.Bell Media Studios received eight nominations, including nominations for Best Talk Program or Series for THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW and THE SOCIAL; Best Host in a Program or Series for Marilyn Denis; Best Host in a Live Program or Series for Ben Mulroney, Danielle Graham, and Lainey Lui for their work on ETALK AT THE OSCARS; and two nominations for HOWIE MANDEL: A BELL LET’S TALK SPECIAL.Additionally, Bell Media scored multiple nominations for Best Live Entertainment Special for its presentations of the 2017 IHEARTRADIO MUCH MUSIC VIDEO AWARDS and THE 2017 JUNO AWARDS, as well as Best Variety or Entertainment Special for WE DAY 2016.Films supported by Bell Media are nominated for 69 Canadian Screen Awards, with Kathleen Hepburn’s Never Steady, Never Still leading the way with eight, including Best Motion Picture as well as Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role for Shirley Henderson. Support for films comes from The Harold Greenberg Fund/Le Fonds Harold Greenberg, as well as pre-buys and acquisitions from premium pay TV networks The Movie Network and Super Écran.The Canadian Screen Awards take place during Canadian Screen Week, which celebrates the best of Canadian film, television, and digital media from March 5-11, 2018.The full list of Bell Media television and film nominations includes:Television and Digital Nominations (134)CTV (47)CTV/Bell Media Studios (9)ETALK (2)Bell Media StudiosETALK AT THE OSCARSBest Host in a Live Program or SeriesBen Mulroney, Danielle Graham, Lainey LuiETALK’S ULTIMATE OSCAR GUIDE 2017Best Photography, Lifestyle or Reality/CompetitionDylan McNivenHOWIE MANDEL: A BELL LET’S TALK SPECIAL (2)Bell Media StudiosBest Talk Program or SeriesJohn Kampilis, Steve Jarman, Ken KatigbakBest Direction, Lifestyle or InformationGillian ParkerTHE MARILYN DENIS SHOW (2)Bell Media StudiosBest Talk Program or SeriesMichelle Crespi, John SimpsonBest Host in a Program or SeriesMarilyn DenisTHE SOCIAL (2)THE SOCIAL (1)Bell Media StudiosBest Talk Program or SeriesMichelle Crespi, Laura ScarfoTHE SOCIAL: CHRISTMAS WITH JANN ARDEN (1)Bell Media StudiosBest Variety or Entertainment SpecialMichelle Crespi, Laura Scarfo, John Kampilis, Steve Jarman, Ken KatigbakWE DAY 2016 (1)Bell Media StudiosBest Variety or Entertainment SpecialJohn Kampilis, Steve Jarman, Ken Katigbak, Marc Kielburger, Craig Kielburger, Steve SloanCTV Original Programming (38)CARDINAL (12)JCardinal Productions Inc.Best Limited Series or ProgramJennifer Kawaja, Julia Sereny, Jocelyn Hamilton, Armand LeoBest Direction, Drama Program or Limited SeriesDaniel GrouBest Original Music, FictionTodor KobakovBest Photography, DramaSteve CosensBest Picture Editing, DramaTeresa De LucaBest Production Design or Art Direction, FictionRob Gray, Dennis Davenport, Ian GreigBest Sound, FictionDavid McCallum, Goro Koyama, Jane Tattersall, Martin Lee, Nelson Ferreira, Paul Germann, Sandra Fox, Stacy CouttsBest Writing, Drama Program or Limited SeriesAubrey NealonBest Achievement in CastingJon ComerfordBest Lead Actor, Drama Program or Limited SeriesBilly CampbellBest Supporting Actress, DramaAllie MacDonaldBest Actress, Drama Program or Limited SeriesKarine VanasseTHE AMAZING RACE CANADA (7)Insight Production Company Ltd.Best Reality/Competition Program or SeriesJohn Brunton, Barbara Bowlby, Mark Lysakowski, Mike Bickerton, Sarah James, Kyle Martin, Robyn Bigue, Ann Camilleri, Guy Clarkson, Steff Millman, Catherine PetersenBest Direction, Reality/CompetitionRob BrunnerBest Photography, Lifestyle or Reality/Competition“Can I See Your Kuna?” – Ryan ShawBest Picture Editing, Reality/Competition“Finale” – Al Manson, Jonathan Dowler, Clare Elson, John Niedzielski, Jay Prychidny, Jordan Wood, Michael TersigniBest Picture Editing, Reality Competition“Who Wants To Be The Python?” – Michael Tersigni, Jonathan Dowler, Cynthia Flengeris, Clare Elson, David Yenovikan, Wesley FinucanBest Writing, Lifestyle or Reality/Competition“Can I See Your Kuna?” – Mark Lysakowski, Rob Brunner, Matthew HansonBest Writing, Lifestyle or Reality/Competition“We Just Saw Johnny Mustard” – Mark Lysakowski, Jennifer Pratt, Rob Brunner19-2 (6)Sphère Média PlusBest Drama SeriesJocelyn Deschenes, Luc Chatelain, Bruce M. Smith, Virginia Rankin, Josée Vallée, Greg Phillips, Saralo MacGregor, Jackie MayBest Achievement in Make-UpErik Gosselin, Edwina VodaBest Photography, Drama“Labour Day” – Ronald PlanteBest Picture Editing, DramaAnnie IlkowBest Supporting Actor, DramaBenz AntoineBest Supporting Actor, DramaDan PetronijevicTHE 2017 JUNO AWARDS (4)Insight Production Company Ltd.Best Live Entertainment SpecialJohn Brunton, Barbara Bowlby, Randy Lennox, Allan Reid, Mark Cohon, Lindsay Cox, Pam De Montmorency, Tracy Galvin, Kristeen Von Hagen, Luciano Casimiri, Mark Vreeken, Howard Baggley, Simon Bowers, Doug McClement, Alex NadonBest Direction, Variety or Sketch ComedyDavid RussellBest Writing, Lifestyle or Reality/CompetitionKim Clarke Champniss, Jean PaulBest Host in a Live Program or SeriesBryan Adams, Russell PetersTHE DISAPPEARANCE (4)Productions Casablanca Inc.Best Limited Series or ProgramJoanne Forgues, Jean-Marc Casanova, Sophie ParizeauBest Direction, Drama Program or Limited SeriesPeter StebbingsBest Writing, Drama Program or Limited SeriesGeneviève Simard, Normand DaneauBest Lead Actress, Drama Program or Limited SeriesCamille SullivanMASTERCHEF CANADA (2)Proper Television Inc.Best Reality/Competition Program or SeriesGuy O’Sullivan, Lesia Capone, Cathie James, Marike EmeryBest Picture Editing, Reality/CompetitionDave McMahon, Miles DavrenCANADA IN A DAY (2)Screen Siren PicturesBest Direction, Documentary ProgramTrish DolmanBest Picture Editing, DocumentaryNick HectorSAVING HOPE (1)ICF Films Inc.Best Guest Performance, Drama Series“We Need to Talk About Charlie Harris” – Missy PeregrymTSN (19)2016 GREY CUP (5)Best Live Sports EventPaul Graham and Jon HynesBest Direction, Live Sports EventAndy BouyoukosBest Sports AnalystGlen SuitorBest Sports Play-by-Play AnnouncerChris CuthbertBest Sports Opening/TeaseCraig Chambers, Devon Burns, Troy Hacock2016 MLS CUP (3)Best Live Sports EventJim Panousis and Steve AbitranteBest Direction, Live Sports EventRichard WellsBest Sports Play-by-Play AnnouncerLuke Wileman2017 TIM HORTONS BRIER Final (3)Best Live Sports EventPaul Graham and Scott HigginsBest Direction, Live Sports EventAndy BouyoukosBest Sports Play-by-Play AnnouncerVic Rauter2017 IIHF WORLD JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP – Gold Medal Game (2)Best Sports AnalystBob McKenzieBest Sports AnalystRay Ferraro2017 TRADECENTRE (1)Best Sports HostJames DuthieRaptors Basketball on TSN (1)Best Sports AnalystJack ArmstrongJOURNEY TO THE GREY CUP (1)Best Sports Program or SeriesMatt Dorman, Kevin Fallis, Gino Zolezzi, and Gary HawkeLANCE STROLL: GROWING UP FAST (1)Best Sports Program or SeriesJosh Shiaman, Rick Westhead, Darren Oliver, Nigel Akam, Michael BananiTHE MISSION (1)Best Sports Feature SegmentJosh Shiaman, Brent Blanchard, Sid Bailey, and Gary HawkeSOUND OF THUNDER (1)Best Sports Feature SegmentMatt Dorman, Brent Blanchard, Devon Burns, and Kevin FallisCTV NEWS (17)CTV NATIONAL NEWS WITH LISA LAFLAMME (5)Best National NewscastLisa LaFlamme, David Hughes, Rosa Hwang, Allan Myers, Allan BlackBest News Anchor, NationalLisa LaFlammeBest Reportage, NationalMelanie Nagy, Jim HoffmanBest News Special“Prince Harry: Journey to Invictus” – Lisa LaFlamme, Rosa Hwang, Stéphane Brisson, Paul Flynn, Angelo AltomarBest News Special“Vimy Remembered” – Lisa LaFlamme, Rosa Hwang, Allan Myers, Scott Ferguson, Katie DammanW5 (8)Best News or Information SeriesAnton Koschany, Brett MitchellBest News or Information Program“W5: 48 Hours” – Jon Woodward, Brian Mellersh, Emma Jarratt, Paul Flynn, Anton Koschany, Brett MitchellBarbara Sears Award for Best Editorial Research“W5: Making a Terrorist” – Madeline McNair, Brennan Lefler, Victor MalarekBest News or Information Segment“W5: After Ebola” – George Reeves, Kayla Hounsell, André LapalmeBest News or Information Segment“W5: Creep Out” – Jerry Vienneau, Steve Bandera, Jon Woodward, Denis LangoisBest News or Information Segment“W5: The Forgotten” – Madeline McNair, Paul Flynn, Brennan Lefler, Kirk Neff, Kevin NewmanBest Photography, News or Information“W5: 48 Hours” – Jim HoffmanBest Host or Interviewer in a News or Information Program or SeriesJon WoodwardCTV NEWS TORONTO (4)Best Local Newscast“CTV News Toronto at Six” – Ken Shaw, Michelle Dubé, Sophia Skopelitis, Joanne MacDonald, Joel BoweyBest News Anchor, LocalKen Shaw, Michelle DubéBest Reportage, LocalAustin DelaneyBest Reportage, LocalTracy TongSpace (12)ORPHAN BLACK (6)Boat Rocker MediaBest Achievement in Make-Up“To Right the Wrongs of Many” – Stephen LynchBest Photography, Drama“To Right the Wrongs of Many” – Aaron MortonBest Picture Editing, Drama“To Right the Wrongs of Many” – Jay PrychidnyBest Visual Effects“To Right the Wrongs of Many” – Geoff D.E. Scott, Sarah Wormsbecher, Eric Doiron, Nathaniel Larouche, Anthony DeChellis, Katarzyna Cieryt, Aaron Wright, Kaiser Thomas, Jason Snea, Lon MolnarBest Writing, Drama Series“To Right the Wrongs of Many” – Graeme Manson, Renee St. CyrBest Lead Actress, Drama SeriesTatiana MaslanyORPHAN BLACK: The Game (1)Best Cross-Platform Project – FictionDavid Fortier, Ivan Schneeberg, Kerry Appleyard, John Fawcett, Graeme Manson, Bryan Winters, James Woods, Bryce Hunter, Mel Maduro, Anthony Godinho, Mackenzie Eaton, Nicolas Ilareguy, Elliott FienbergWYNONNA EARP (1)SEVEN24 Films Inc.Best Writing, Drama Series“I Hope You Dance” – Emily AndrasWYNONNA EARP Digital (1)Best Cross-Platform Project – FictionDaniel Dales, Jarrett Sherman, Alex Lalonde, Emily Andras, Jordy Randall, Tom CoxKILLJOYS (1)Boat Rocker MediaBest Visual EffectsMichael Gibson, Danny McNair, Anthony Patterson, Lara Osland, Shoban Narayanan, John Coldrick, Tony Cybulski, Pranjal ChoudharyDARK MATTER (2)Prodigy PicturesBest Visual EffectsLawren Bancroft-Wilson, Kerrington Harper, Erica Henderson, Justin Reimer, Armand Vladau, Henrique Reginato, Karina Partington, Paul Furminger, Tristan Patrick, Will WallaceBest Achievement in Make-UpLynda McCormackDiscovery (10)FRONTIER (5)Take the Shot Productions / ASAP EntertainmentBest Achievement in Make-Up“Keetom Takooteeoo Maheekun” – Elizabeth Kuchurean, Norma RichardBest Costume Design“Mutiny” – Michael GroundBest Photography, Drama“Wanted” – Glen KeenanBest Production Design or Art Direction, Fiction“Mutiny” – Gord BarnesBest Sound, Fiction“Cannonball” – Marco Dolle, David Yonson, John Elliot, Clive Turner, Alastair Gray, Orest Sushko, Janice Ierulli, Dave Johnson, Mark ShnuriwskyBUILDING STAR TREK (2)Yap FilmsBest Direction, Documentary ProgramMick GroganBest Writing, DocumentaryMick GroganFORT MAC WILDFIRE: ROGUE EARTH (1)Pixcom ProductionsBest Direction, Documentary or Factual SeriesJoe WiechaHEAVY RESCUE: 401 (1)Great Pacific MediaBest Writing, Factual“Anything Can Happen” – Todd Serotiuk, Catharine ParkeMAYDAY (1)Cineflix (Mayday 16) Inc.Best Factual SeriesAlex Bystram, Kim Bondi, Martin PuppCraveTV (9)LETTERKENNY (9)New Metric Media Inc.Best Comedy SeriesMark Montefiore, Patrick O’Sullivan, Jared Keeso, Jacob TierneyBest Direction, Comedy“The Election” – Jacob TierneyBest Photography, Comedy“Relationships” – Jim WestenbrinkBest Picture Editing, Comedy“The Election” – Christopher MnnsBest Sound, Fiction“Relationships” – Rick Penn, Jamie Sulek, Devin Doucette, Kieran SherryBest Writing, Comedy“Relationships” – Jacob Tierney, Jared KeesoBest Achievement in CastingJenny Lewis, Sara KayBest Lead Actor, ComedyJared KeesoBest Supporting or Guest Actor, ComedyK. Trevor WilsonThe Movie Network (7)ROGUE (2)Greenroom EntertainmentBest Lead Actress, Drama SeriesMeaghan RathBest Guest Performance, Drama SeriesRichard SchiffRUSH: TIME STAND STILL (1)Fadoo ProductionsBest Biography or Arts Documentary Program or SeriesAllan Weinrib, Pegi Cecconi, Ray Danniels, John Virant, Corey RussellBRACE FOR IMPACT (1)IncendoBest Supporting Actor, DramaEnnis EsmerVERSAILLES (1)IncendoBest Supporting Actress, DramaSuzanne ClémentTHE DEVIL’S HORN (1)Larry Weinstein ProductionsBarbara Sears Award for Best Visual ResearchElspeth Domville, Elizabeth KlinckFANatic (1)IncendoBest Supporting Actress, DramaKaty BreierThe Comedy Network (5)THE BEAVERTON (5)Pier 21 Films Inc.Best Sketch Comedy Program or SeriesLaszlo Barna, Melissa Williamson, Jeff Detsky, Luke Gordon Field, Nicole Butler, Kurt SmeatonBest Direction, Variety or Sketch ComedyShelagh O’Brien, Craig David WallaceBest Writing, Variety or Sketch ComedyJeff Detsky, Luke Gordon Field, Alexander Saxton, Jacob Duarte Spiel, Kurt Smeaton, Pat Dussault, Nile Seguin, Wendy Litner, Winter Tekenos LevyBest Performance, Sketch Comedy (Individual or Ensemble)Emma Hunter, Miguel Rivas, Aisha Alfa, Dave Barclay, Marilla WexBest Cross-Platform Project – FictionJonas Diamond, Catherine Tait, Laszlo Barna, Melissa Williamson, Lisa Baylin, Lora Campbell, Luke Gordon FieldBravo (3)THE KENNEDYS: AFTER CAMELOT (3)Muse EntertainmentBest Limited Series or ProgramMichael Prupas, Keri Selig, Jon Cassar, Stan E. Hubbard, Stephen KronishBest Costume DesignDelphine WhiteBest Direction, Drama Program or Limited SeriesJon CassarE! (3)REIGN (3)Take 5 ProductionsBest Achievement in Make-Up“All It Cost Her” – Jenny Arbour, Linda PrestonBest Production Design or Art Direction, Fiction“A Bride. A Box. A Body.” – Aidan Leroux, Joel Richardson, Rob Hepburn, Phillip BarkerBest Costume Design“Pulling Strings” – Meredith Markworth-PollackMuch (1)2017 IHEARTRADIO MUCH MUSIC VIDEO AWARDS (1)Bell Media – Agincourt ProductionsBest Live Entertainment SpecialJohn Kampilis, Steve Jarman, Ken KatigbakAnimal Planet (1)WILD BEAR RESCUE (1)Omnifilm Entertainment Ltd.Best Writing, Factual“A Cub with a Kick” – Jenypher FisherNominated films supported by Bell Media’s The Movie Network, Super Écran, and The Harold Greenberg Fund include:Never Steady, Never Still (8)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundBest Motion PictureJames Brown, Tyler HaganPerformance by an Actress in a Leading RoleShirley HendersonOriginal ScreenplayKathleen HepburnAchievement in Art DirectionSophie Jarvis, Elizabeth CairnsAchievement in CinematographyNorm LiAchievement in EditingSimone SmithAchievement in Music – Original ScoreBen FoxAchievement in Overall SoundMatt Drake, Nate Evans, Christopher O’BrienHochelaga, Land of Souls | Hochelaga, Terre des Âmes (8)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergPre-buy by Super ÉcranAchievement in Art Direction / Production Design | Meilleure direction artistiqueFrançois SéguinAchievement in Cinematography | Meilleures imagesNicolas BolducAchievement in Costume Design | Meilleurs costumesMario DavignonAchievement in Make-Up | Meilleurs maquillagesKathryn CasaultAchievement in Music – Original Score | Meilleure musique originaleTerry Riley, Gyan RileyAchievement in Overall Sound | Meilleur son d’ensembleClaude La Haye, Bernard Gariépy StroblAchievement in Sound Editing | Meilleur montage sonoreClaude BeaugrandAchievement in Visual Effects | Meilleurs effets visuelsAlain Lachance, Yann Jouannic, Hugo Léveillé, Nadège Bozetti, Antonin Messier-Turcotte, Thibault Deloof, Francis BernardMaudie (7)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundPre-buy by The Movie NetworkBest Motion PictureBob Cooper, Mary Young Leckie, Mary Sexton, Susan MullenAchievement in Costume DesignTrysha BakkerAchievement in DirectionAisling WalshAchievement in EditingStephen O’ConnellOriginal ScreenplaySherry WhitePerformance by an Actor in a Supporting RoleEthan HawkePerformance by an Actress in a Leading RoleSally HawkinsThe Little Girl Who Was Too Fond of Matches | La petite fille qui aimait trop les allumettes (7)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergBest Motion Picture | Meilleur filmMarcel GirouxAchievement in Art Direction / Production Design | Meilleure direction artistiqueMarjorie RhéaumeAchievement in Cinematography | Meilleures imagesNicolas CanniccioniAchievement in Visual Effects | Meilleurs effets visuelsMarc Hall, Jonathan Cyr, Emmanuel Bazin, Clément Natiez, Emmanuelle GillAdapted Screenplay | Meilleure adaptationSimon LavoiePerformance by an Actor in a Leading Role | Interprétation masculine dans un premier rôleAntoine L’ÉcuyerPerformance by an Actress in a Leading Role | Interprétation féminine dans un premier rôleMarine JohnsonIt’s the Heart that Dies Last | C’est le Coeur qui meure en dernier (6)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergPre-buy by Super ÉcranBest Motion Picture | Meilleur filmRichard LalondeAchievement in Direction | Meilleure réalisationAlexis Durand BraultAchievement in Editing | Meilleur montageLouis-Philippe RathéAdapted Screenplay | Meilleure adaptationGabriel SabourinPerformance by an Actor in a Leading Role | Interprétation masculine dans un premier rôleGabriel SabourinPerformance by an Actress in a Leading Role | Interprétation féminine dans un premier rôleDenise FiliatraultThe Breadwinner (6)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundPre-buy by The Movie NetworkBest Motion PictureAndrew Rosen, Anthony Leo, Paul Young, Tomm Moore, Stéphan RoelantsAchievement in EditingDarragh ByrneAchievement in Music – Original ScoreMychael Danna, Jeff DannaAchievement in Music – Original SongQais Essar, Joshua Hill – “The Crown Sleeps”Achievement in Sound EditingNelson Ferreira, John Elliot, J.R. Fountain, Dashen Naidoo, Tyler WhithamAdapted ScreenplayAnita DoronCross My Heart | Les rois mongols (6)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergAcquired by Super ÉcranAchievement in Art Direction / Production Design | Meilleure direction artistiqueGuillaume CoutureAchievement in Costume Design | Meilleurs costumesBrigitte DesrochesAchievement in Music – Original Score | Meilleure musique originaleVivianne Audet, Robin-Joël Cool, Alexis MartinAchievement in Overall Sound | Meilleur son d’ensemblePierre Bertrand, Stéphane Bergeron, Shaun-Nicholas Gallagher, Maxime PotvinAdapted Screenplay | Meilleure adaptationNicole BélangerPerformance by an Actress in a Supporting Role | Interprétation féminine dans un rôle de soutienClare CoulterThe Ravenous | Les affamés (5)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergPre-buy by Super ÉcranBest Motion Picture | Meilleur filmStéphanie MorissetteAchievement in Direction | Meilleure réalisationRobin AubertAchievement in Make-Up | Meilleurs maquillagesÉrik Gosselin, Marie-France GuyAchievement in Music – Original Score | Meilleure musique originalePierre-Philippe CôtéPerformance by an Actress in a Supporting Role | Interprétation féminine dans un rôle de soutienBrigitte PoupartRumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World (3)Pre-buy by The Movie NetworkTed Rogers Best Feature Length DocumentaryCatherine Bainbridge, Christina Fon, Linda Ludwick, Lisa Roth, Stevie Salas, Tim Johnson, Diana Holtzberg, Jan Rofekamp, Ernest WebbBest Cinematography in a Feature Length DocumentaryAlfonso MaioranaBest Editing in a Feature Length DocumentaryBenjamin Duffield, Jeremiah HayesThe Man Who Invented Christmas (3)Pre-buy by The Movie NetworkAchievement in Make-UpSonia DolanAchievement in Visual EffectsGreg Behrens, Brendan Taylor, Jasmine Scott, Martin O’BrienAdapted ScreenplaySusan CoyneBon Cop, Bad Cop 2 (2)Supported by The Harold Greenberg Fund – French Language ProgramPre-buy by The Movie NetworkPre-buy by Super ÉcranAchievement in Make-Up | Meilleurs maquillagesMarlène RouleauAchievement in Sound Editing | Meilleur montage sonoreMarie-Claude GagnéIqaluit (1)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergPre-buy by Super ÉcranPerformance by an Actor in a Supporting Role | Interprétation masculine dans un rôle de soutienNatar UngalaqLe Cyclotron (1)Equity investment by Le Fonds Harold GreenbergAchievement in Visual Effects | Meilleurs effets visuelsMarc HallMeditation Park (1)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundPre-buy by The Movie NetworkPerformance by an Actor in a Leading RoleTzi MaPorcupine Lake (1)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundPerformance by an Actress in a Supporting RoleLucinda Armstrong HallIndian Horse (1)Equity and development financing by The Harold Greenberg FundPre-buy by The Movie NetworkPerformance by an Actor in a Supporting RoleSladen PeltierGoon: Last of the Enforcers (1)Pre-buy by The Movie Network and Super ÉcranAchievement in Sound EditingChristian Rivest, Antoine Morin, Thibaud Quinchon, Guy Pelletier, Guy FrancoeurAdventures in Public School (1)Pre-buy by The Movie NetworkOriginal ScreenplayJosh Epstein, Kyle RideoutLong Time Running (1)Pre-buy by The Movie NetworkAcquired by Super ÉcranBest Editing in a Feature Length DocumentaryRoland SchlimmeAbout Bell Media Original ProgrammingBell Media has commissioned some of Canada’s most-watched and most-acclaimed original programming, working with the best Canadian independent producers in the country. Hit series commissioned by CTV include the hit drama CARDINAL, the record-breaking THE AMAZING RACE CANADA and MASTERCHEF CANADA, new original series THE DISAPPEARANCE, THE INDIAN DETECTIVE, and THE DETAIL, and the upcoming international TV format THE LAUNCH. Among the original series on Bell Media specialty and streaming platforms are Space’s KILLJOYS and WYNONNA EARP; CraveTV hit comedy LETTERKENNY; Discovery’s first-ever drama FRONTIER; Comedy’s satirical news series THE BEAVERTON as well as the upcoming CORNER GAS ANIMATED; and multiple series and specials for food and lifestyle channel Gusto, including ONE WORLD KITCHEN. Discovery is also home to Bell Media’s hit factual franchise HIGHWAY THRU HELL, HEAVY RESCUE: 401, and CANADA’S WORST DRIVER, among others. Bell Media is one of the first media companies in North America to commit to producing all new original scripted series in 4K.About Bell MediaBell Media is Canada’s leading content creation company with premier assets in television, radio, out-of-home advertising, and digital media. Bell Media owns 30 local television stations led by CTV, Canada’s highest-rated television network; 30 specialty channels, including TSN and RDS, and four pay TV services, including The Movie Network and Super Écran. Bell Media is also Canada’s largest radio broadcaster, with 215 music channels including 105 licensed radio stations in 54 markets across the country, all part of the iHeartRadio brand and streaming service. Bell Media owns Astral, an out-of-home advertising network of more than 30,000 faces in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Québec, and Nova Scotia. Bell Media also operates more than 200 websites; delivers TV Everywhere with its CraveTV and GO video streaming services; operates multi-channel network Much Digital Studios; produces live theatrical shows via its partnership with Iconic Entertainment Studios; and owns Dome Productions Inc., a multi-platform production company. Bell Media is part of BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company. For more on Bell Media, please visit www.bellmedia.ca. Advertisement Advertisement Login/Register With: Advertisement Twitter
Courtesy of Needlepoint.comNeedlepoint Retreatby Jessie AmmonsSerious stitchers will convene in the mountains this month for Elizabeth Bradley Home’s annual needlepoint retreat October 2-4 at Asheville’s Grove Park Inn. Attendees will dive in to two full days of instruction on a seasonal needlepoint kit design. With breaks for wine and cheese, coffee and cookies, open stitching, and a Kirk & Bradley and Elizabeth Bradley Home trunk show – brands known for the botanical pillows seen at local shops like Furbish Studio – the getaway’s organizers sure know their audience.They ought to. Needlepoint.Com is well known to avid needlepointers as the parent company of both Elizabeth Bradley Home and Kirk & Bradley. Its website is also a top place to find needlepoint canvases, kits, and threads. Even dedicated stitchers, though, may not realize the operation is based in Raleigh on Hillsborough Street, and that its retail store has a far broader selection than its website.Courtesy of Needlepoint.comThe store often offers classes and welcomes beginners, but the annual fall retreat tends to attract serious hobbyists. While transportation and accommodations are not included, a discounted rate at the Grove Park is available. There’s also an optional upgrade to attend classes with Joan Lohr, an artist and popular needlepoint canvas designer. The whole shebang is a luxurious spin on a familiar pastime. The 2015 Needlepoint Retreat is $980, and the Grove Park Inn rate begins at $299 per night. For more information and to see what other local, beginner-friendly events are offered, visit needlepoint.com.
Firestarter (R)Friday, Feb. 13Featured speaker: Jennifer Bunch, photo double for Drew Barrymore Ricky Bobby’s No. 26 Wonder Bread race car from the 2006 movie Talladega Nights: TheBallad of Ricky Bobby. The 2006 Chevrolet, currently on view in the museum lobby, is on loan from International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega, Ala., and from Shell Oil.In August 2012, North Carolina Museum of History curator and film buff Katie Edwards had an idea. She knew that major movies and TV shows are often filmed in the Tar Heel State. “We’d all heard about Bull Durham, The Hunger Games, Dawson’s Creek, and others,” she says. But she knew there were many, many more, and suspected that the history of filmmaking here could make for an interesting exhibit.The film clips, stories, history, and memorabilia she and her team uncovered amazed them all. Covering 3,000 films over the last 100 years, their work took two and a half years to complete and resulted in Starring North Carolina!, which opened Nov. 15 and runs until Sept. 6.The show charts the state’s emergence as one of the nation’s top film and television production locations – from silent pictures shot in western North Carolina in the early 1900s, to the birth of Wilimington as a movie-making hub in the ’80s, and on to recent blockbusters like Iron Man 3 and the successful Sleepy Hollow series.There are three main reasons why moviemakers flock here, Edwards and her colleague Camille Hunt say. The first is geography. With mountains, beaches, and everything in between, there’s no terrain we don’t have. The second is talent. As in any other industry, good work attracts it, and North Carolina is now home to thousands of professional crew members who make these productions happen. One of the many places they ply their trade is Wilmington’s EUE/Screen Gems Studios, the largest film studio outside California. The third is economics. North Carolina remains a far less expensive place to make movies than the West coast or many other places.Movie lovers won’t be surprised to see Bull Durham featured in the show – Kevin Costner’s bomber jacket is on display. But you might not know that 1986 cult classic Blue Velvet was primarily shot in Wilmington. The museum has not only Isabella Rossellini’s blue velvet robe but also the “severed ear” that figured prominently in the film. Other highlights include Ricky Bobby’s No. 26 Wonder Bread race car from 2006’s Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby; a costume worn by Jennifer Lawrence in The Hunger Games; several items from Dawson’s Creek; and Daniel Day-Lewis’s fringed suede get-up from Last of the Mohicans.The exhibit will play host to the inaugural Longleaf Film Festival, which will feature narrative and documentary movies, on May 2, 2015. The museum will also run a monthly film series on the second Friday of each month in coordination with the exhibit. (See box below.)Starring North Carolina! Film SeriesIron Man 3 (PG-13)Friday, Dec. 12Featured speaker: Bryan Simmons, memorabilia collector. Dirty Dancing (PG-13)Friday, March 13Featured speaker: Dr. Marsha Gordon, associate professor, film studies, N.C. State Brainstorm (PG)Friday, Jan. 9, 2015Featured speaker: Ira David Wood III, actor, author, singer, director, playwright(see story, following page.) All films begin at 6 p.m. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased in the museum’s shop. For a complete list of films through Sept. 2015, go to NCMOH-starring.com.
David Wilmoth, 47, is a Lucas Enterprises-certified Darth Vader and a huge fan of the film series.photographs by Christer BergRaleighites have not been immune to the fervor surrounding the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the latest chapter in the galactic saga. With a temporary studio set up at the Marbles IMAX Theatre, intrepid photographer Christer Berg captured fans of all ages as they waited in line for the film’s premiere. He discovered the force is strong in the City of Oaks.Brothers Jacob Bosecker, 10, and Joshua Bosecker, 12, dressed as an Ewok and a Padawan, or young Jedi.Stan Mallard, 27, paid tribute to Yoda with his eared hat. He began watching Star Wars when he was three years old. “My dad raised me on Star Wars,” he says.Stephanie Smith, 29, transformed into a Christmas Princess Leia. She first saw Star Wars when she was 8 and now her boyfriend, Stan Mallard (above), has re-introduced the films to her.Deirdre Lewis, 21, who dressed as Princess Leia, has been a Star Wars fan “since four or five years old, watching it constantly on TV.” This was her first time seeing a Star Wars movie in a theater.Lloyd Wilmoth, 9, cloaked himself as Luke Skywalker, complete with light saber. Appropriately, his father, David Wilmoth, is Darth Vader (above).A fan for as long as he can remember, Gage Ward, 21, donned a Boba Fett hoodie.Imperial Staff Officer Katrina Andrews, 36, has been a big fan since she was a child.
Nick Pironioby Fanny SlaterOnce upon a basket of cornbread, I made a decision that would forever change the course of my life. I slouched into the cozy, familiar booth at Margaux’s Restaurant and asked my family: “What about some kind of tangerine chicken?”My mom looked up from her Caesar, puzzled. It was now three days before the finale of Rachael Ray’s Great American Cookbook Competition. I was one of two remaining contestants, and we had been sent home and given one week to choose our final recipe. For some bizarre reason, I couldn’t let go of tangerine chicken. I had never even made tangerine chicken before in my life. This was clearly the moment when I began grasping for anything. Anything at all. In this case: tangerine chicken.After winning Rachael Ray’s Great American Cookbook Competition, Slater appeared on the show. Here, she is shown with Jacques Pépin and Rachael Ray. Slater’s book will be available March 1.My boyfriend Tony slid the shiny basket of still-warm cornbread under my nose. I peeled apart a crumbly, golden square and swiped it through a ramekin of whipped butter. I looked up at my dad – whose expression was solemn (unusual for someone who wears cartoon rotisserie chicken socks). “Why don’t you end where you began?” he suggested.I thought back to the first recipe I’d submitted for the competition: “The Tin Foil Surprise.” It was my spin on our family’s favorite to-go English muffin breakfast sandwich. My updated version featured creamy taleggio cheese and floral, homemade orange lavender fig jam. I stuffed the fluffy cornbread into my mouth and grinned. “If the rest of my life is riding on an English muffin,” I declared, “I think everything is going to be okay.”Many of my richest memories have taken place over a basket of Margaux’s cornbread. I grew up with a dad who prepared top-notch homemade meals on a near-nightly basis, so naturally, my family’s restaurant expectations have always been high. But it’s never been pretentious, complicated cuisine we’re after – just good food made with soul. And butter, of course.Margaux’s opened its North Raleigh doors in 1992 and instantly became our second kitchen. It was where we boogied for my sister Sarah’s post-Bat Mitzvah brunch (and for mine four years later). It was where my parents celebrated birthdays and anniversaries. It was where we even broke our cardinal ritual of a homestyle Thanksgiving to unapologetically surrender to the sinful buffet one memorable year. And it was Margaux’s where we took “Macho Man” Randy Savage to dinner. No, seriously. But that’s another story.Apple; treeIn 1975, my mom founded the nationally-acclaimed bakery business Rachel’s Brownies. In the beginning stages of her eventual business partnership with my dad, she would tenaciously re-wrap the brownies he’d dutifully tried to wrap to meet her impeccable standards. For her, each chocolate morsel was a work of art. My dad, while not a whiz-bang brownie-wrapper like my mom, was a highly-experienced marketing guru and self-taught kitchen wizard. He kept a copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking on his nightstand. When I was four, he scooted a chair up to the stove and handed me a spatula. In first grade, he came into my class at Ravenscroft and taught us all how to braid and bake homemade challah. That’s pretty much all I remember from first grade. Needless to say, I grew up on good eats, and it was only a matter of time before I took the cooking into my own hands.As a Ravenscroft first-grader, Slater performs a cooking demonstration with her father.My last year at Peace College (now William Peace University), I was assigned a final writing project to fulfill my English major. Sitting in my advisor’s office, I talked in circles until I somehow convinced him to allow me to intern at my favorite Raleigh restaurant and write about it. Several weeks later, I found myself standing in that esteemed kitchen, looking out onto the dining room where I had spent many meals enjoying cornbread, peppered duck, and delicate profiteroles. In Margaux’s kitchen, I felt as though I had been granted entrance to a mystical universe where few elite members were allowed. I silently bowed my head at the crab cakes.A few years later, right around the time I turned 25 and moved to California, the restaurant movement in the Triangle began to erupt. When I came home to visit, I thought I’d be eager to dive into the trendy new hot spots. But it turned out it was familiar flavors I craved. Between my dad’s sublimely-seared scallops and Margaux’s expertly-wrapped shrimp summer rolls, I was happy. After all, I had a short window of time at home and only so many pairs of stretchy pants in my suitcase.I eventually returned to the East Coast (downtown Wilmington to be exact), where I got close enough to sample the exquisite fare of Raleigh’s most gifted chefs. This is how Ashley Christensen became my best imaginary friend. As Julie Powell, of Julie & Julia, once said, “I have this fantasy that she comes for dinner and I show her my new lemon zester. We become very close.”Slater prepares a root vegetable frittata in her Wilmington home kitchen. “I always have eggs and veggies and cheese on hand,” she says. Maybe it’s because Ashley’s food is full of imagination – but also reminds me of home – that I daydream of this citrus-inspired friendship. Because at the root of it all, I am still influenced by the flavors that have stuck with me all of this time. The anecdotes and recipes you’ll find in my cookbook,Orange, Lavender & Figs: Deliciously Different Recipes from a Passionate Eater, are modern tributes to the food moments that have shaped my life. Case in point: to honor Margaux’s succulent, butter-slathered cornbread – which has provided me with countless memories – I crafted these honey cornmeal pancakes with vanilla bean-fig butter. But first, back to the beginning… I decided to submit “The Tin Foil Surprise” as my final recipe for Rachael’s competition. I think you can guess how it all turned out. I knew that if I stayed true to myself, my love for nostalgia, and my whimsical spirit, I couldn’t lose. After all, coming from a family who relentlessly encouraged my silliness and my love of cooking, it’s no surprise I come up with eclectic, playful food. Can you blame me? Because, well, with a name like Fanny – it’s pretty hard to fit into the crowd.But I’m okay with that.
Courtesy Jumping Rocksby Mimi MontgomeryA weekend trip to the mountains is one way to escape the swelter. The Swag bed-and-breakfast is a secluded, luxuriously rustic boutique getaway in Waynesville, cozied right up to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Four of North Carolina’s six highest mountain ranges – the Great Smokies, the Plott Balsams, the Richland Balsams, and the Black Mountains – are visible from the Swag. The inn has a network of trails for rambling and exploring, and offers guided hikes, too. There’s plenty to do indoors, as well – the lodge has a sauna, massage therapy room, racquetball court, and extensive library. It’s also an easy drive to Asheville or the Blue Ridge Parkway.The best part? The food. The Swag is all-inclusive, which is particularly great when you’re excited to dig in: The award-winning restaurant puts on a daily breakfast buffet and dinners with seasonally-inspired menus featuring fresh vegetables, fruits, and herbs from its gardens. The kitchen will pack a picnic lunch for you every day, and often hosts outdoor barbecues, too.Courtesy Jumping RocksThe Swag only has 14 guest rooms, so it pays to make reservations well ahead of time. You won’t want to miss out on these digs – the perfect blend of refined and rustic, many of the rooms have wood-burning fireplaces and private balconies overlooking the mountains, and some even have outdoor soaking tubs and showers.The Swag opened for its 35th season last month, and will stay open through November 26. Check it out this summer, and you may develop a sudden interest in foliage this fall.2300 Swag Road, Waynesville; theswag.comCourtesy Jumping Rocks
Art2Wear is the culmination of months of work. Designer Leeza Regensburger takes a walk down the runway with her models and her line, Moth.by Liza Robertsphotographs by Robert WillettWith the wave of a visionary wand one night in April, ambitious students at N.C. State’s College of Design transformed Talley Student Union into a glamorous showcase for their manifold design talent. The event, in its 15th year and known as Art2Wear, was the culmination of a year of intense work by a team of nine designers chosen by a jury. These students spent months creating, sewing, knitting, and refining capsule clothing collections that ranged from stylish contemporary eveningwear to cutting-edge sportswear and flights of creative fancy. The theme: “The virtue of obsession.” “You can feel the energy,” says designer Justin LeBlanc, the show’s faculty advisor and chief cheerleader, as he watched a dress rehearsal. “This year is probably the best I’ve seen so far.”Olivia Brown models a piece from designer Bailey Knight’s line, MycoLogic.Art2Wear faculty advisor Justin LeBlanc rallies the troops.Designer Kathleen Davis adjusts her creation on model Ryan Burt. The fashion on display was the event’s obvious highlight, but the show’s success also relied on a fleet of accomplished students who directed, produced, promoted, choreographed, photographed, fundraised, and modeled. They made films to spotlight the individual designers and to open the show. The highly produced event they created was a fitting forum for a range of fashion designs as unique as their creators. Designer Bailey Knight took her “obsession and romance for the earth and the magic it produces” and her love of Henry David Thoreau to craft an homage to mushrooms with a fanciful collection she called MycoLogic. Backstage, surrounded by friends modeling her creations, she pointed out the inspiration behind a ripply, mustard-hued coat: a Chicken of the Woods mushroom. A white cape with a blue pleated interior was an Indigo Milk.Designer Meaghan Shea takes a walk down the runway with her models and her line, Tetra, in a dress rehearsal.Model Emory Cooley is made up by Isabella Zazareei before modeling Angele Gray’s Vert collection. A few feet away and a world apart stood Leeza Regensburger, whose collection, Moth, included hip sportswear: plushy pastels, crop-tops, pom-pom-drawstring hoodies, fleece gym shorts. Meant to evoke “a moth to a flame,” Regensburger says she imagined the woman wearing her clothes as an insomniac running out in the middle of the night to grab something to eat from a corner store. Young, thrown together, unfussed, but stylish. In another realm was Angele Gray’s Vert, which took its cue from “Paris during the rise of Formalism and Modern Art.” This translated to a restrained palette – mostly black and white – and a focus on line, composition, and texture. The result was a series of body-skimming dresses and ensembles that would be at home in any elegant setting.More fitting for an urban walk to the gym were the creations of former soccer player Grace Hallman, who based her collection, Mia, on “the obsession of being an athlete.” She dressed her fit and confident models in laser-cut, close-to-the-body synthetics that put a futuristic spin on the athleisure trend.Designer Bailey Knight prepares a piece in her MycoLogic line.Sketches for Gena Lambrecht’s line, Gold.her inspiration. Her collection, Kingdom, which also included designs for men, included carefree silhouettes with a childlike aspect, including fabrics like pique and tulle, embroidery, and knitwear.Tanna Aljoe, center, is one of several models showing Grace Hallman’s line, Mia.For her part, Quinan Dalton took her own childhood home and “the obsessive sense of nostalgia many tend to feel when they think of their past” as her inspiration. Her collection, Kingdom, which also included designs for men, included carefree silhouettes with a childlike aspect, including fabrics like pique and tulle, embroidery, and knitwear. Gena Lambrecht’s collection, Gold, was all grown up. The glittery metal “has motivated some of history’s greatest conquests and caused the downfall of entire civilizations,” she says. Her ensembles, shown to the tune of Gold Digger by Kanye West and Jamie Foxx, comprised a series of strutting, gold-hued looks, including a showstopping waterfall-pleated tulle gown. Dionysian Contagion by Kathleen Davis was unique: a creative explosion of recycled plastics, gas masks, and light, meant to evoke the powerful effect live music can have. She described it as: “Movement. Silhouettes. Illumination. Color. Music. Your entire soul shifts. The infection spreads, until you awaken anew.”Wearable paper creations by first-year students at the Design School open the show.Angele Gray’s designs for her collection, Vert.Designer Bailey Knight’s line, MycoLogic, celebrates her obsession with the earth with an homage to mushrooms.Indeed, inspiration for these makers came from very different places. Susan Stephens, with her 1919 collection, honored her own great-grandmother, who was born in that year, and the tradition of crochet she passed down through the generations. Stephens’ large-scale, knitted pieces were architectural and striking, paired with tailored pieces made of printed fabric Stephens created herself. Meaghan Shea also printed her own fabrics, and used “a single print, color scheme, and endless iterations” to inform her refined and carefully tailored clothes. Each piece spoke to the others through geometry and shifts in color. Together, these nine designers and their fellow students who put on the show showed “what the College of Design has to offer,” says LeBlanc. Art2Wear, he says, is “more than a fashion show … it showcases the talents of our students and their ability to transform their vision and dreams into reality.”Sketches for Quinan Dalton’s line, Kingdom.Designer Susan Stephens’ 1919 line features large-scale hand knits and custom-printed fabrics.Patrons including Linda Dallas and Susan Woodson applaud.
Pilobolus photo by Ian DouglasAmerican Dance Festivalby Mimi MontgomeryMovement is alive in the Triangle this summer when the American Dance Festival hosts its 83rd season in Durham June 16 – July 30. Heralded by The New York Times as “one of the nation’s most important institutions,” the festival, founded in 1934, aims to foster creative growth in the modern dance world by bringing together dancers, choreographers, and students to learn and practice alongside one another. This season, the festival will present 61 performances in 13 Durham venues by 26 companies and choreographers from Israel, Russia, France, and the U.S. Throughout, professional training workshops will be held for dancers, choreographers, students, and teachers from around the world at Duke University.The gathering also aims to have a local impact: ADF Project Dance offers creative movement workshops to Triangle students and distributes over 500 free performance tickets to local nonprofits. The group also partners with Durham’s Central Park School for Children to introduce dance classes as an alternative to more traditional physical education classes.Company Wang Ramirez photo by Frank SzafinskiThroughout the summer, ADF will also partner with lululemon for free, public yoga classes; lead free tours throughout the ADF school; host a children’s Saturday matinee series featuring especially imaginative performances to captivate little ones; and hold free movie screenings focusing on the relationship between body movement and cinema. Plus, through the ADF Go program, young art lovers between the ages of 18-30 can purchase a $10 ticket to any performance (barring Savion Glover and Jack DeJohnette June 20-21).Go big, go small, but definitely go. There are plenty of performances happening throughout the two months and it’s easy to take your pick. For a full list of performances, events, locations, and ticket prices, visit americandancefestival.org
photos courtesy Relay Foods and John Robinsonby Mimi MontgomerySummer vacation may mean time off for the little ones; but for busy parents, that’s a little harder to come by. Between packing for summer camp, carting kids off to the pool, and arranging trips to the beach, it’s nice to have a hand with the shopping. Relay Foods is an online grocery delivery service that provides fresh, organic, nutritious food to customers in Virginia, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and the Triangle.Users sign up online for free and browse through an endless list of groceries covering everything from produce, coffee and tea, and frozen foods to meats and seafood, paper towels, and dish soap. Relay will deliver straight to your doorstep in sealed bins and coolers – $12 for a one-time delivery, $19-a-month for an unlimited home delivery subscription – or you can select a local pick-up location and swing by to get them yourself.Relay sources local goods for each area it services, partnering with nearby businesses and farmers to make sure that it’s benefitting both its customers and the local community. Some favorite Triangle brands you can now get dropped off on your front step include Chapel Hill Creamery, Maple View Farm, Eastern Carolina Organics, Larry’s Coffee, Whisked, and even White Whale Bold Mixers.If you have picky eaters, food allergies, or just need menu inspiration, Relay Foods can help you there, too. It has online sections devoted solely to gluten-free, paleo, vegan, and dairy-free snacks and products, so you don’t have to scrounge around to find tasty food that fits your lifestyle. You can also shop by recipe – the website offers a catalogue of recipes for inventive dishes, and you can have every ingredient sent to you – making them not unlike a local Blue Apron. You can even upload recipes you find on other websites and Relay Foods will help you source the ingredients.Is it dinner time yet?relayfoods.com
by Liza Robertsphotographs by Nick PironioWilliam Ivey Long, the prolific, multiple-Tony Award-winning costume designer, has drama – and Raleigh – in his blood, and in every single one of his earliest memories.“I grew up in the stage left dressing room,” Long says as he gestures around a tiny, WPA-built stone structure that still stands at Raleigh Little Theatre’s outdoor amphitheater. He’s not speaking metaphorically: The dressing room is where he lived until age 3 with his father, a technical director, and mother, an actress who wore many play-making hats. “People would change clothes in our house, and put on costumes … You would open the door, and you’d be on the stage.”Doors – and stages – have a way of opening up for Long. On Broadway and London’s West End, he has showcased his talent for almost 40 years. He has 15 Tony nominations and six Tony Awards, and has designed costumes for more than 70 Broadway productions. He has received the Art Institute of Chicago’s “Legend of Fashion” award and was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame. He has the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the City of Raleigh Medal of Arts Award, and the North Carolina Award in Fine Arts. Costumes for the likes of the Metropolitan Opera, Mick Jagger, the New York City Ballet, and Siegfried and Roy round out his resume.William Ivey Long fits Robin Givens for Roxie Hart; photo courtesy of Alessandra PetlinVanessa Redgrave wears a Long-designed costume as Queen Elizabeth I in The Lost Colony; photo courtesy of Aaron TrotmanBut despite his starry spot in the Broadway pantheon, manifested by his current role as head of the American Theatre Wing (the organization that runs the Tony Awards), Long remains resolutely North Carolinian, a natty Southern gentleman with gracious manners, good humor, and stories to tell. He’s as likely to digress about his large extended family (and their furniture) as he is to talk about his life of glamour. And he has remained loyal to the theaters here that launched him: This summer will be his 45th working on The Lost Colony play in Manteo.Growing up in the South has informed “every one of my sensibilities,” Long says. “How I was raised, telling stories, being in North Carolina, which is, I think, a very diverse culture … the abundance of educated, cultivated people … Revering the word, growing up in a family where the play is the thing …”Long’s words meander happily as he recalls his early influences: old Western movies; the Raleigh Rose Garden; the Long ancestors who were members of the first class at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1795; the actor Andy Griffith; Long’s great-grandmother’s sister; The Lost Colony costume designer Irene Smart Rains; the playwright Wendy Wasserstein; his parents.“I’ve always been interested in the making of theater, because of being right here.” He takes in the dressing room with a glance. “The business of our family was always play-making.”Destined, not designedConsidered by critics a nimble designer whose work marries storytelling and glamour – together with an unmistakably sexy jolt that “hovers between taste and travesty,” as famed New York magazine theater critic John Simon put it – Long is also considered technically ingenious, with a specialty in “transformations,” costumes that seamlessly turn a scullery maid into a princess, for instance, or a greasy car mechanic into a rock star.The Frogs, Dress Rehearsal, Lincoln Center Theater, June 19, 2004, Credit Photo ©Paul Kolnik, NYC 212.362.7778Costumes and sketches for The FrogsLong’s crimson feather ballgown that morphed into a living Christmas tree in La Cage aux Folles; @CarolRosegg“I love transformations,” he says. “I love transforming people.” At the same time, he says, his main goal is always to help tell the story. “I like to think that I’m an honest and true designer who supports the material.” Michael Feingold, theater critic for the Village Voice, agrees. Long deploys “a kind of secret, supplemental playwriting,” he wrote, “done not to compete with the script being performed, but to enhance it … William is one of the master dramatists of our day.”Long’s ethereal, transformational costumes for Cinderella, which won him the 2013 Tony; his over-the-top looks for Hairspray, which won in 2003; and his canny creations in last year’s On the Twentieth Century, which nabbed a nomination, showcase a portion of his talent.“His costumes look more than designed – they seem destined,” says critic Simon.Destined, not designed might be an apt description of Long’s career as well. He never set out to design costumes, he says; never gave them much thought at all. His interests were more varied. He took himself to William & Mary for college, for instance, because he loved the campus architecture and wanted to study art history. Then he took himself to Yale School of Drama because he wanted to be a set designer. He moved himself to the Chelsea Hotel in New York because he wanted to work for the couturier Charles James, who lived there. (It took Long six months to get James’s attention; in the meantime, neighbors like Andy Warhol “superstar” Viva and a punk-rocker called “Neon Leon” kept things interesting.) Long only became a Broadway costume designer, he says, after a friend from Yale was hired as the set designer for The Inspector General in 1978 and recommended Long to do the costumes. One production led to another, and “it slipped up on me,” he says. “It wasn’t conscious. It was so omnipresent that it became a self-fulfilling prophecy.” Long had become a costume designer.That was 38 years ago. “I am much more focused now and fierce – fearsome – in my approach than I was then,” he says. “I was young and naïve.” His first Tony, for Nine, focused his mind and gave him bigger dreams. “It didn’t just overnight change my life, but it did inside.”Of a pieceWherever his profession takes him, Long is never far from home. It’s not only on his itinerary year-round, it’s also readily in his thoughts, forming his frame of reference. Home and theater were and are of a piece.Long works on the set of Grease: Live; David Korins“The front hall of our big house in Rock Hill was always a scene dock,” he recalls. (His father, William Ivey Long Sr., was founder of the theater department, stage director, and professor at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C.) “And the big dining room table, which I finally restored, my grandfather’s dining room table from Baltimore, it was always the cutting table during shows. I think twice in my life, my father did The Heiress. Well, the entire house was emptied on to that stage. It’s set in 1840, so all of the portraits, all of the furniture … routinely, pieces of furniture would go missing and be on stage.”Long as a young man, preparing a prop; courtesy William Ivey LongTrim in the navy Brooks Brothers suit and polished loafers that serve as his uniform, curly hair askew, it’s not hard to picture Long as a younger man; his bearing and energy alone take decades off of his almost-69 years. “If you don’t look in a mirror,” he says, “you don’t know how old you are. I stand in front of mirrors all the day long for the fitting process, and I do not look.”He always wears a rep tie, he says, and almost always one with a blue stripe. For someone in his line of work, this conservative lack of ostentation is striking. It suits him to be as polite in his clothes as he is in his manner, even as it adds an extra wink to his conspiratorial smiles.The stage left dressing room at Raleigh Little Theatre where Long lived with his parents, Mary Wood Long and William Ivey LongVanity Fair zeroed in on this ineffably put-together quality last year when it put him on its international best-dressed list. Alongside the likes of Prince Harry in a top hat and Eddie Redmayne in Gucci plaid, Long appeared in his Brooks Brothers suit and shoes, accessorized only with a grin and glinting eyeglasses. But he’s nonplussed by all of that; doesn’t bring it up unless asked, and then changes the subject.Long with his parents, Mary Wood Long and William Ivey Long; courtesy William Ivey LongAsk him what does excite him most these days, and he might tip over his chair with glee. “I’m charting new courses,” he says, with several projects in the works, including costumes for the new weekly television variety show by Lorne Michaels, Maya & Marty. It’s not Long’s first foray into live TV, for which his background in theater is well-suited. He also designed costumes for Grease: Live, as well as the TV version of The Rocky Horror Picture Show for the Fox network.“All three things are different. Now I can say I design for stage, screen, and television.”New things excite him most, he says, and always have. “When I was in the 8th grade,” he recalls, “in Mrs. White’s biology class, she asked: ‘Why does a bug go from one side of the leaf to the other? It’s in search of the heat.’ And I knew then and there in the 8th grade that that was my path in life. I was going to be in search of the heat. That’s how I choose my course. That’s how I choose my friends. That’s how I do everything. I’m a bug on a leaf in search of the heat.”Early yearsJust like that 8th grade revelation, much of what fires Long’s imagination got to him early. Summers spent in Manteo, working with his family to help put on The Lost Colony, where his father was technical director, were an important early experience, not only for the time he had on stage beginning at 8 in the role of a child colonist, or for his time soaking up the work of the costume shop (the Elizabethan ruff he made for his dog out of a scrap of pillowcase when he was 4 is hard to forget), but for the late-night movies he’d watch once the family got home from the evening Lost Colony performance at around 11 p.m.William Ivey Long with his hero, former N.C. Governor Jim Hunt“The black-and-white late movies on the Norfolk station were Hollywood musicals, Hollywood Greta Garbo films. That began my fascination with glamour … and influenced my sense of shape, and style, and proportion.”Long and Raleigh mayor Nancy McFarlane take a selfie in front of the plaque commemorating his childhood years at Raleigh Little TheatreDuring the winter, he’d watch Picture for a Sunday Afternoon: “Our family did not watch football.” He credits his great-uncle in Waynesville for taking him to the movies on Saturdays, where they saw Gene Autry and Tom Mix Westerns. “It was high style in the Old West. And it’s a next step to Gary Cooper in Morocco. The most glamorous, handsome, stylish American in the history of America. Gary Cooper and Marlene Dietrich in Morocco: If you want to mess up a child, have them watch that late at night.”And give him a homeplace out of a fairy tale. Long leans almost entirely off of his chair as he describes his first three years living in the dressing room where he sits. The one-room building is almost impossible to imagine as a home – but in Long’s memory, it’s fully that. “There were two mahogany Chippendale chairs and a tilt-top table,” he says, “even in this little manger.” Red draperies: “brocade, or velvet. I remember red. I don’t remember bathing, or going to the bathroom, or cooking, or eating … but I remember playing on that stage.”He also remembers playing in the Raleigh Rose Garden (“I thought everyone had one”); remembers “sitting on a bench in the dark” and watching a “strange man pulling my mother’s hair.” Turns out she was onstage just outside their tiny home, acting in Death of a Salesman.At the dedication, guests enjoy a cool refuge inside the diminutive cottage.On that same stage on a sultry evening in mid-May, dozens of notable Raleighites gathered to honor Long. Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane introduced him as “one of our prominent native sons” and unveiled a plaque on the house to commemorate his childhood years in the place.“My oh my, not everybody gets to see their tombstone!” Long exclaimed. Governor Jim Hunt (“my hero,” Long calls him) and his wife Carolyn came to pay tribute, as did former News & Observer publisher Frank Daniels Jr. and his wife Julia, along with dozens of other art patrons and theater lovers. Long greeted them all with kisses and hugs, taking in their congratulations with humble humor.“The lesson to take home for your children and grandchildren,” he told the crowd, “is be careful where you grow up!”
DFS’s ten-week job acquisition class, Going Places Network, is designed to help clients like Flanagan tackle these obstacles. During its skills assessment class, Flanagan learned her personal and professional strengths. “I am adaptable,” she says now. “I am an eager learner. And I like to be a resource of information for other people.” The program taught her how to capitalize on these strengths during job interviews and when crafting cover letters. She says she has also found hope in the friendships she’s made through the program. “We carpool and lean on each other. It is encouraging to see the women in our group find employment.” Beth Briggs, executive director for Dress for Success Triangle, believes that the Going Places Network is one of Dress for Success Triangle’s most effective client services. “About 75 percent of women who go through GPN get jobs within three months,” she says. “That is a high percentage. It is a confidence-builder and a skill-builder. It teaches the women what it takes to get a job in this world and what is expected by corporations.”Transformative experience When Flanagan first met with an image coach for her suit fitting, she was taken aback by the amount of care and attention she received. Although she has bought and worn business suits in the past, she says the Dress for Success Triangle boutique experience is like nothing she’d known before. After more than a year looking for a job to support her two sons, she says she felt power when she saw herself in the mirror with a pair of high heels and a tailored suit. “It is transformative. It is a completely different experience for those of us who are not used to that kind of care. The image coach is more than a personal shopper. She listens to what I like and what I want. It is very empowering.” Briggs nods. She sees the same thing time and time again with the women who come through her organization’s doors. “This is all part of our mission to support unemployed and underemployed women and to help them find economic security. A lot of what we do is about building a woman’s confidence, dignity, and respect. It is easy to feel powerless when you’ve been out of the job market for some time. It is just so hard. We want to help a woman feel good about herself.” Once a woman finds a job, Dress for Success Triangle continues to support her, providing employment retention training and continued professional development. She also becomes part of the organization’s Professional Women’s Group, a network with mentors and leaders who help women navigate the workplace. They support each other as they tackle new routines and company culture and work-life balance. Briggs says Dress for Success Triangle is also committed to equipping its women to become strong leaders in their workplaces and communities. This results in a strong network between employers and Dress for Success Triangle.“We have a lot of corporate donors,” Briggs says, “and in addition to supporting us financially, we ask them to hire the women who come from Dress for Success. They flag our women. It lifts them out of the enormous crowd of applicants.” And while corporations, foundations, inventory sales, and private donors offer the financial means to support the organization’s $1 million annual budget, it relies on a team of more than 365 dedicated volunteers to run effectively. They donate and sort clothes, provide style and career coaching, job training, networking, and employment retention support. Many of these volunteers are women, some of whom have gone through the programs themselves. Flanagan admits that the road to landing a job has felt long, overwhelming, and frustrating. But she credits Dress for Success Triangle (and a healthy dose of pure grit) with keeping her plowing ahead – now with strong interviewing skills, an impressive resume, and a sharp professional suit. Most importantly, she carries with her a renewed sense of empowerment. trianglenc.dressforsuccess.org Dress for Success Triangle deliversby Settle Monroe | photography by Lissa GotwalsStepping through the double doors of Dress for Success Triangle feels like entering a high-end boutique, not a nonprofit. Dresses and suits, many adorned with new tags and labels like Coach and Ralph Lauren, hang on racks. Italian leather shoes line the walls; modern jewelry fills a glass case. Women strut in and out of dressing rooms to oohs and ahhs of personal styling consultants. Their confidence is clear as they see themselves in the mirror for the first time in a sharp suit or a well-fitting dress. And while the clients at Dress for Success may choose from a variety of beautiful clothes, they are all here looking for the same thing: employment and economic security. Yeshimabet Flanagan is one of the 10,000 clients who has benefited from the powerful work of Dress for Success Triangle. The organization not only dresses women to enter—or re-enter—the workplace, it trains them for it, too. Flanagan turned to the organization about a year ago for help. Like many of the women who walk through its doors, she came eager to re-enter the workplace after years of staying home to raise her children, and was referred to the agency by one of more than 150 nonprofits that refer women who are ready to find employment. When Flanagan moved to New York City from Jamaica in 1998 at 16, leaving seven siblings and nearly all of her family behind, she was quickly able to secure a job as a file clerk at an insurance company. Highly-motivated and personable, she worked her way up to earning a comfortable salary, even by New York City standards. In 2008, Flanagan moved to Raleigh and left the workforce in order to be at home with her sons. For a year now, she has been looking for a job. But despite her years climbing the corporate ladder to become an insurance broker, the large gap on her resume and her lack of a college degree have made it difficult to secure meaningful employment. Dress for Success Triangle has been the engine of perseverance for Flanagan in the face of numerous rejections and unreturned phone calls. “Transitioning back to the workplace is really hard,” Flanagan says. “Hearing ‘no’ again and again can be frustrating and disempowering. I’ve always been able to secure jobs by word-of-mouth. I have never had to pound the pavement. But Dress for Success is helping me navigate this new, current world of job searching.” And a new world it is. Unlike her first foray into the workplace, resumes are now submitted online. Computer programs search for specific key words in the resumes and reject those without them. Automated systems respond to job inquiries and cover letters. The result: The modern job search can be discouraging, impersonal, and isolating.
by Tina Haver Currinphotographs by Keith IsaacsThe zigzag of Capital Boulevard as it wends its way into downtown is often crowded, sometimes bumpy, and never particularly pleasant. But if you exit to the right just as Capital becomes Dawson Street, you enter a different world. There, behind brick walls and large wooden gates, is a retreat of swaying palm trees, crystal blue reflecting waters, and tufts of sweet jasmine curling their way up toward a terra cotta-tiled roof. It’s completely removed from the hustle and bustle of Raleigh’s main artery, and everyone is invited. But this oasis didn’t appear by magic. It’s the result of the vision, patience, and significant investment of one Raleigh man.“The whole design concept is that you are in somebody’s house,” says Samad Hachby, the owner of the pools and palms. He operates his Moroccan-influenced restaurant, Babylon, in the ground floor of the historic mill that anchors the space. “If you go to a house in Morocco, you have an interior courtyard for maximum light. You have water, you have food, you have booze, and it’s beautiful. But this place was a dump with no parking lot.”The courtyard has all the elements of a house in Morocco according to owner Samad Hachby – water, food, and drink – and anchors the historic Melrose Knitting Mill.Hachby, 44, left Casablanca for a stint aboard a cruise ship before relocating to North Carolina to attend N.C. State in 1998. He first noticed the 116-year-old brick Melrose Knitting Mill in 2004, before he opened Mosaic, a wine lounge perched on the corner of Jones Street and Glenwood Avenue. The knitting mill’s landlord, Abdul G. Zalal – or, as his friends call him, A.G. – was holding the building for a prospective tenant who wanted to turn it into a gym.“I kept walking by, and nothing was happening,” Hachby says. “So, one day (in 2009), I walked in and I said, ‘A.G., I am going to do this project.’ He said ‘OK,’ and we shook hands.”The mill had sat empty for years, and Hachby spent the next two and a half years making it restaurant-ready. That involved significant interior renovations, including replacing ancient wiring and plumbing. Hachby also made several trips to Casablanca to find the fittings he needed to create the place he envisioned.“I wanted a classic palatial ceiling that you’d find in Europe, southern Spain, or Morocco,” Hachby says, craning his neck to admire the handiwork. His dark hair and the faint beard are the same color as the espresso he sips to ward off an afternoon slump.“I went to Casablanca to find artisans who do work in Malaysia and Dubai. Forty men worked for two months on the tiles. They sent each piece separately – without instructions, of course.”Owner Samad Hachby.Signature dishes reflect Babylon’s unique atmosphere.By the summer of 2011 he was ready to open Babylon’s doors. It has since become a popular and cozy cavern for dining on braised lamb tagine or crispy margherita pizza. For four years, Hachby himself was at the helm of the kitchen. His goal was to create a menu to reflect the restaurant’s unique atmosphere, with Moroccan classics like hearty harira soup made from lentils and chickpeas, couscous topped with meats and vegetables, and tasting plates overflowing with hummus, eggplant, and marinated olives. Last year, Chef Jean Paul Fontaine stepped in as executive chef. He developed the menu for Babylon’s new outdoor kitchen and a satellite kitchen in a recently renovated upstairs event space.With plush, high-backed seating, a well-appointed bar and roughly hewn exposed beams, Babylon’s main room provides a rustic retreat. An adjacent room often used for parties features high ceilings with classic Moorish tiles and chandeliers that sparkle in the midday sunlight, while in a tucked-away library room, beams from the original factory hold cookbooks and magazines. Four hundred square feet of beige travertine marble cover the floors, blending with the brick walls.Hachby and his team had to lay each piece on the floor, like a jigsaw puzzle, and then mount the tiles on the ceiling one at a time from the center, radiating out. Hachby points to sections of brick where his crew – or previous crews before him – began construction, only to realize that continuing would compromise the structure or historical integrity of the mill. The building’s walls tell a story of half-starts in holes and patches.The interior of Babylon is exotic and dramatic.One floor above the tiled ceiling, the restoration of a massive events space, which hosted the Raleigh Food and Wine Festival in May, is finally complete. Hachby installed a second kitchen with direct access to the space, so his staff doesn’t have to clamber up and down the stairs from Babylon with piles of dirty dishes. Gorgeous rounded windows bathe exposed brick and wood in warm, natural light. Adjacent to the events space, a new tenant in Furbish Studio brings even more style to the historic mill.Textile roots Though the Melrose is now one of Raleigh’s loveliest treasures, it has been a long time in the making. The groundbreaking for the textile mill occurred in June of 1900, and the building was completed by October. The mill officially began manufacturing men’s wool and cotton underwear on January 28, 1901. Three years later, 85 employees – many of whom lived in small wooden homes around the property – were turning out 1,800 pieces of underwear a day.That same year, the Pullen Park Pool – the city’s first – brought an increased interest in swimming to the community, so bathing suits were added to the Melrose repertoire. The City of Raleigh ordered five dozen suits from the factory, which patrons could rent for five cents per visit.But the operations of the Melrose were short-lived. The knitting mill shut its doors in 1930, one year after the stock market crash that halted nearly all construction and commerce in downtown Raleigh. By the 1960s, two roofing companies were based at the property. In 1969, Abdul Zalal, a young recent immigrant from Afghanistan, came looking for a job.“I arrived and I asked, where is the office?” Zalal says today, gesturing to where one of Babylon’s massive wooden gates now hangs. With white hair and a white mustache, he exudes the same kind of rugged stateliness as the historic building he would later purchase. “It was a roofing company with 35 employees, but I went to the wrong one,” he recalls. “They still hired me, and I worked for $3 an hour.”A decade later, on June 8, 1979, he bought the crumbling Melrose Knitting Mill for $60,000. It was a good investment – the building is now worth about $1.7 million.Zalal’s first move was unsurprising: He installed a new roof to save the historic mill from further deterioration, then boarded up the windows. For years, it stood mostly vacant save for a collection of auto parts – you can still see the faint paint outline of the “Motorparts Warehouse” sign on the front of the building – and the parking lot was a pocked landscape.But in 2010, with the help and vision of Hachby, revitalization of the Melrose began in earnest. Zalal removed the old buildings that obscured the front of the mill, andinstalled 200 truckloads of dirt to level and pour the parking surface. With tenants Babylon and the housewares store Furbish, plus the second-story events space now complete, the Melrose Knitting Mill now buzzes with shoppers, diners, drinkers, and brides. “For 68 years, this building was vacant except for A.G.’s workshop and a stash for roofing cranes,” Hachby says, tracing his fingers along one of the mill’s solid wooden beams. “Now, there’s so much going on. It’s not vanilla. The building tells its story.”For Hachby, imbuing the historic mill with new vitality is a source of pride, and he keeps a collection of photographs from the State Archives close at hand. There are black and white snapshots of downtown Raleigh from the 1960s, the cobble of steel roofers’ buildings obscuring the beautiful brick facade, and even a photo from the early 1900s where the street is covered in mule-drawn carriages, the Melrose towering beyond a paving company that’s little more than a wooden construct with several smoking chimneys.With the renovations complete, Hachby is now turning his attention to travel and writing a cookbook centered on Moroccan wines. Even so, he’s committed to constantly improving his restaurant and the historic space.“You have to do things beautiful. It costs a lot of money, and a lot of people don’t want to invest in their businesses,” Hachby says. “But this is what drives the name Babylon. You had this crazy, macabre looking place, with this beautiful building rising up. Like Babel. It’s Babylon.”309 N. Dawson St.; babylonraleigh.comShekshoukaSamad’s favorite recipe: Shekshouka, a classic egg dish with spicy tomatoes and peppers. This is a one-skillet recipe of eggs baked in a tomato-red pepper sauce and onions spiced with cumin, paprika, and cayenne. Make the sauce first – it comes together fairly quickly on top of the stove – then gently crack each of the eggs into the pan, nestling them into the sauce. The pan is moved into the oven to finish.3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced1 large red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced1 teaspoon ground cumin1 teaspoon sweet paprika⅛ teaspoon cayenne, or to taste2 pints San Marzano tomatoes withjuices, coarsely chopped¾ teaspoon salt (to taste)¼ teaspoon black pepper (to taste)6 large organic eggsChopped cilantro, for servingHarissa for servingHeat oven to 375 degrees.Heat oil in a large skillet or tagine over medium-low heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook gently until very soft, about 20 minutes. Add garlic and cook until tender, 1 to 2 minutes; stir in cumin, paprika, and cayenne, and cook 1 minute. Pour in tomatoes and season with the salt and the pepper; simmer until tomatoes have reduced.Gently crack eggs into skillet over tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer skillet or the tagine to oven and bake until eggs are just set, 7 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with harissa.Serves 4. Total time: 1 hour.Lamb shank tagine6 small frenched lamb shanks (5 to 6 pounds total)3 cups chopped yellow onions (2 largeonions)3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger1 ½ teaspoons chili powder1 ½ teaspoons ground turmeric1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin½ teaspoon ground cardamom1 (4-inch) cinnamon stick1 large can diced San Marzano tomatoes2 cups unsalted chicken stockA pinch of saffronPreheat the oven to 300 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a very large (12-to-13-inch) pot or tagine.Preseason the lamb shanks, then add to the pot and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes on each side. Add the onions and cook over medium-low heat until translucent and almost caramelized. Add the garlic, ginger, chili powder, turmeric, cumin, cardamom, and cinnamon so that the spices release their oils and merge with the onions. Add the tomatoes and their liquid. They will deglaze any stock you have in the pot. Put back the lamb shanks in the pot and cover with the stock. Cook for 90 minutes. Remove from the heat and let rest.Serve over couscous, risotto, or seasonal roasted potatoes.Serves 6.
Shelby Vanhoy of Pretty in the Pines. Photo courtesy of Shelby VanhoyThe Triangle’s fashion bloggersby Mimi MontgomeryIn The Age of the Smartphone, where social media and viral hits reign supreme, blogging has evolved from a solo, diary-like activity into a lucrative field that allows tech-savvy entrepreneurs to create their own online communities-slash-marketplaces, right from their own homes. Here in the Triangle, style bloggers in particular have a growing toehold. A primarily female-dominated pool, these locals are showcasing their own takes on the fashion, beauty, decor, health, and lifestyle worlds, and contributing to the innovative spirit of the Triangle. This is “a place that just naturally fosters creativity,” says Molly Stillman, Still Being Molly blogger and founder of the Triangle Fashion, Beauty, Food, and Lifestyle Bloggers group (TriFABB), a community of 160 bloggers begun in 2012. The many startups, small businesses, and entrepreneurs’ groups that pepper RTP and downtown Raleigh and Durham make for fertile ground, she says. The Triangle is also a place where female blogging entrepreneurs forge friendships and encourage each other. “It’s a really supportive community where a lot of people want to collaborate together, because when you win, I win,” says Meghan Grant of Holly Springs, the blogger behind I’m Fixin’ To and co-founder of the Raleigh Blog Society. “It’s good for both of us.”Meghan Grant of I’m Fixin’ To (both photos above) tries to keep her posts real and fun. “I don’t take myself seriously.” Em Grey Photography With reaches near and far, these women are redefining what it means to be an entrepreneur in the 21st century. Their work may come with a steep learning curve and many late nights, but bringing a dose of style to the Triangle is what they love – and increasingly, it’s a real business, too.Not just a hobby Many of these local bloggers started their sites as sideline hobbies or creative outlets. Working in corporate jobs, they wanted an open space to share their stylish ideas and their writing. “When I was growing up, I used to change outfits like, three times a day, and I always used to have to put on a party dress,” says Angela Keeley-White of Raleigh, who works full-time for a financial planning and investment company and started her style blog Head to Toe Chic in 2011. So she decided to turn that passion into a side gig, writing posts filled with outfit inspirations, style tips, and eye-catching photography. When Raleighite Shelby Vanhoy was rejected from dental school, she took a hard look at her passions and felt the need for more creativity in her life. “I was thinking, ‘Is this really what I want to do?’” she says. “I’ve always had an interest in photography, travel, style…” So in 2014, she bought a camera and starting her blog Pretty in the Pines, which led to her current job managing marketing for Bailey’s Fine Jewelry.Amy Loochtan of Coffee Beans and Bobby Pins says blogging is a “legit career.” Photo courtesy of Amy Loochton Keeley-White and Vanhoy are not alone. What started as an outside hobby for many of these women has quickly become a second career. When they leave full- and part-time jobs at the end of the day, they head home to another one, where they create editorial calendars, schedule and write posts, organize photo shoots, edit photo batches, monitor site traffic, respond to readers, and negotiate brand campaigns and sponsored posts. Angela Keeley-White of Head to Toe Chic; Em Grey Photography “It comes across as so glamorous,” says Chapel Hill’s Lauren Steele of LC Steele. She’s talking about the stylish photography spreads and Instagram posts bloggers are known for. But for the Mississippi native who balances her blog with her job at a legal consulting business, it’s hard work, too. “You don’t see 90 percent of the time it took,” she says. “It is way more time-consuming than people give it credit for.” It’s her job, she says, to make it look easy.Angela Keeley-White’s Head to Toe Chic was mentioned in InStyle magazine. Vanhoy agrees: “It’s like a 12-hour day, every day.” But it pays off: The popularity of these blogs is a testament to the consumer demand for the women’s content. “So far, it’s really been worth it,” she says. “The people you meet, the community you grow, the opportunities you get – it correlates with how hard you’re working.” Brave new world For a successful style blogger, business opportunities can be vast. With the advent of content monetization platforms such as LIKEtoKNOW.it, bloggers can share their outfit details via Instagram, where followers who have “liked” their post will receive an email complete with links to purchase each pictured item. For each piece purchased from a LIKEtoKNOW.it email, the blogger receives a commission. Global companies have picked up on the wide reach of these digital influencers, as well. “As brands begin to trust the influence of bloggers and see the results, social media is becoming much more monetizable for the influencers,” says Jamie Meares, blogger behind the popular i suwannee and founder of Furbish Studio. “It’s created this Wild West effect on blogging – now you can actually make a business out of sharing the things that you love.” Triangle style bloggers are doing just that, negotiating paid contracts with brands to create sponsored product posts. These women have worked with national corporations such as Coca-Cola, J. Jill, Shopbop, Whole Foods, Anthropologie, Henri Bendel, Toyota, Target, Anne Taylor, and Rent the Runway, to name a few, as well as local companies like Cameron Village and The Fearrington House Inn. Using their social clout as an advertising platform makes sense: Each of these women have followers by the many-thousands. “People now understand the value of bringing eyeballs to the page,” says Steele. “I’ve watched social media become so much more integrated in everything. If you have 200,000 followers, you can look at a company and say, ‘Hey, I can basically fill a football stadium for you. How much is that worth?’”Lauren Steele of LC Steele balances her blog with her job at a legal consulting business. Photo by Anna Goodson Apparently a lot. “It’s a legit career,” says Durham-based Amy Loochtan of Coffee Beans and Bobby Pins. “People are flabbergasted by that … Some people think blogging is just taking some pictures of your outfit, putting them online; but it is so much more than that.” Of course, with the meteoric rise of outlets like Instagram and Snapchat, content is moving more toward the social media side, and anyone with an iPhone can try to become a blogger. That can put pressure on longtime bloggers to keep content fresh and readership levels up. After all, that’s where the money is – brands want to work with sites that consistently post original material and reach the widest demographic possible. “Now you have to be out there on all social media channels and keep up with the latest trends,” says Keeley-White. There’s also a fine line between the virtual and actual worlds, especially when personal style is the focus of a business. After a while, life can seem like just a series of potential Instagram posts. “That’s one of the biggest things that bloggers struggle with – missing out on life because of social media,” says Loochtan. “It’s a hard balance to know when to unplug.” Along with separating the personal from private, local style bloggers say they work hard to strike the right chord between stylish escapism and relatability. Because most have longtime readers who feel a virtual kinship to them, they want to maintain those relationships with the relatable voice of an old girlfriend. So in addition to the glamour, local bloggers are also careful to include affordable fashion and DIY projects that appeal to the everyday woman. “I try to be real with my readers,” says Grant. “The style posts are really pretty and they do really well, (but) if you’re behind the scenes with me on a shoot, I don’t take myself seriously … For me, it is really fun.” Bringing it home While these women may work with global companies and have followers across the world, they’re committed to using their brands to promote North Carolina, too. Keeping it local is just part of their spin on things: Many stage photo shoots at local spots like the Boylan Bridge, American Tobacco Campus, and the Leslie-Alford-Mims house; they showcase pieces from local boutiques and clothing lines; they partner with nearby restaurants and businesses; and they provide travel guides to N.C. destinations.Shelby Vanhoy of Pretty in the Pines says the 12-hour days are worth it. “The people you meet, the community you grow, the opportunities you get – it correlates with how hard you’re working.” Photo courtesy of Shelby Vanhoy Vanhoy recently partnered with the Outer Banks for a sponsored, weeklong trip along the coast, documenting her vacation on social media and her blog, and Grant started a blog travel series on eastern North Carolina, focusing on places to eat, shop, and visit while passing through. “People get stuck in the bubble of the Triangle,” she says. “It’s sad to see towns that were thriving when I was little become ghost towns.” It’s her way of using her online presence to benefit the local places she loves. Like her peers, Grant has come to realize that a significant online presence can be a powerful tool, both in terms of business opportunities and simply creating a brand that people love. “Life can be complicated and it can be so cluttered,” says Steele. “I just like to keep things as simple, classic, and elegant as I possibly can.” It’s a lot of work to make things look so good, but it’s worth it, says Loochtan. “You make time for what you love.”FALL PICKS“Big sweaters and ponchos layered over a thin turtleneck, booties, and changing up accessories and shoes for fall colors.” –Shelby Vanhoy, Pretty in the Pines“(It’s) cowboy boots, riding boots, lots of dresses and skirts. I would not be caught dead in a T-shirt and jeans at a football game. That is where you step out and you show up.” –Meghan Grant, I’m Fixin’ To “(I’m) all about layering with blazers and military jackets. And of course, ankle boots. And fun scarves … a bunch of light layers.” –Angela Keeley-White, Head to Toe Chic“Leather jackets, over-the knee-boots, and blanket scarves … (they’re) an affordable and chic way to make a statement with an outfit, plus they are really warm.”-Lauren Steele, LC Steele“A good bootie, black blazer, (and a) really great pair of jeans. If you feel good in it, you’re going to look good.” –Amy Loochtan, Coffee Beans and Bobby Pins
“Now that October cranks up, it’s a lot of travel and writing in the hunting season, for sure.”–Eddie Nickens, outdoors journalist and authorby Mimi Montgomeryphotograph by Travis LongEddie Nickens is an outdoorsman, award-winning author, journalist, on-camera host, and native North Carolinian. Now a Raleighite, he hails from High Point and graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with degrees in journalism and English. After some time as “a street urchin on Franklin Street,” Nickens took a job as senior editor at Spectator magazine; soon after, he transitioned to freelance work and has been, “as my father-in-law would say, ‘gainfully unemployed ever since.’” Nickens started out writing for the likes of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Smithsonian, Men’s Journal, National Geographic Adventure, Audubon, and National Wildlife. When Field & Stream magazine asked Nickens to write long-form outdoor journalism pieces, he knew he’d found his niche: Bigger assignments had him travelling across the globe, and the adventures have “been quite steady and quite crazy ever since,” he says. Nickens is now Field & Stream editor-at-large and a contributing editor at Audubon. He has a monthly Our State column, frequently contributes to Garden & Gun, has written two books, and hosted and co-produced the television programs Heroes of Conservation and Total Outdoorsman Challenge. The outdoors beat has taken him to places like Alaska and Canada for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing adventures; in Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica, he’s covered bird conservation, sustainability, and eco-tourism. “I’m not sitting at a business office or a convention center somewhere,” Nickens says. “Most of these assignments are pretty off the beaten track, if even on the track at all.” This fall, he’s got plenty of pheasant, dove, and duck hunting trips planned, but also looks forward to sticking close to home. He cites Halifax County and Morehead City as favorite local spots, and loves bringing along his black lab, Minnie Pearl, as a hunting companion. His family makes the cut, too: His wife, son, and daughter all love the outdoors. “One of the wonderful things about my job is that it’s evolved into an avenue to spend time with my children,” he says. “That’s been a real blessing.”Catch Eddie Nickens as the featured author at Walter’s latest Book Club event, Tales of the Wild, on Oct. 13; $55 for one ticket, $100 for two; waltermagazine.com
Jason Cooper and Jason McGuigan of Horizon Productions.by Henry Garganphotographs by Tim LytvinenkoEveryone in the Triangle’s burgeoning virtual reality industry seems to have a story that drives home the same point: No amount of artfully worded description can adequately convey what it’s like to enter virtual reality for the first time, they say, but once the headset’s on, there’s no going back. The region is full of these recent converts, many of whom have parlayed their revelations into start-up companies that produce virtual reality experiences – and yes, they are called “experiences” – within a thriving local industry. Virtual reality’s arrival in the region has been decades in the making, a long arc in a uniquely challenging industry. It’s a business that requires a complex, interdisciplinary process involving the coordinated talents of computer programmers, graphic designers, audio engineers, videographers, writers, and directors. Then there’s the challenge of marketing a product few people fully understand, if they know it exists at all.Horizon tests projects in the works using a HTC Vive headset that transforms a room into 3-D space. Thanks to the Triangle’s three major research universities and large population of technology professionals, the region is one of few in the country with the volume and variety of talent readily available to make virtual reality work. The UNC-Chapel Hill computer science department developed some of the technology’s cornerstones, like head-tracking and latency experiments, in the 1990s. Many of the scientists who did the groundbreaking work were still in the area when VR began making inroads into the consumer market a few years ago, and local VR professionals today say the legacy of that pioneering work partially explains why so many industry players are setting up shop in the Triangle. Cary-based Epic Games, the maker of real-time rendering software crucial to the production of virtual reality experiences, also gets a good deal of credit for its beginnings. To gain a sense of where the industry is headed, it helps to talk with someone who knows better than most where it has come from. Before Mike Capps was president of Epic, he was an undergraduate in UNC’s computer science department. This was in the 1990s, when his professors were just beginning to fulfill the dreams sci-fi buffs had about what virtual reality could and should eventually become. So where did that first push go wrong? And what’s different now? “There was a giant consumer expectation bubble that came from the movies and TV that told you what VR was going to be like,” Capps says. “And the reality was nothing close to it. That led to a crash in the business.” The first consumer products were decent, Capps says, but there was no Matrix-like sense of total sensory replacement, which is what consumers were primed for. And until relatively recently, Capps says he was afraid something similar would happen with the bubble that’s been building over the past few years – that the promise of virtual reality would, perhaps inevitably, always outstrip what was available to the average hobbyist. “I was like, please don’t overpromise,” Capps says. But when he saw Facebook purchase vitual reality start-up Oculus in 2014, “I told the guys at Oculus: Please don’t screw this up.” He allowed himself to believe that they wouldn’t. Google’s recent release of its own mobile virtual reality technology with its Pixel phone and Daydream VR platform is just one of several steps forward in the consumer sector that appears to be proving Capps right. Capps says the virtual reality industry’s success here in particular is owed, at least in part, to something he’s uniquely positioned to have witnessed. “About five years ago, we lost some big gaming companies that had some unfortunate failures,” Capps says. “Even some successful companies lost some staff, so there’s a lot of talent here that knows how to create these compelling experiences. You have all these developers that never saw their home in making things like free-to-play mobile games, and VR is perfect for them.” Capps, for his part, is tight-lipped about what he’s up to these days, but he still lives in the area and keeps a careful eye on things. His role is often that of a mentor, bridging the gap between the old guard and the new so the leading edge of this most recent wave doesn’t have to reinvent what his professors labored over so many years ago – ensuring this is the time everyone gets it right. The biggest remaining social obstacle to the success of the technology, Capps believes, is its demand that users isolate themselves. It is both fitting and ironic that he would worry about this, knowing that he and others like him have made virtual reality successful here by remaining anything but isolated, by sharing and teaching one another in ways that suggest the Triangle remains a place where any vision for the world can be made reality. Indeed, all of these local players have managed to prioritize the success of their medium above competition between themselves, weaving together a collaborative, interdisciplinary business ecosystem in the process.There are simply too many moving parts and too few experts for any one company to handle every project alone, local industry experts say. And the technology is also advancing too quickly for companies to eschew collaboration and risk missing out on a game-changing new piece of equipment, or fail to adapt to evolving standards.“If the medium doesn’t succeed, it doesn’t matter who gets a job,” says Jason McGuigan, creative director with Raleigh-based Horizon Productions. “We need the entirety of this to become a thing before we can realize our fullest potential. If we can all help each other out, the industry succeeds.”RTPVR If the area’s surplus of tech geeks and media professionals was the industry’s kindling and tinder, it was the spark of RTP Virtual Reality that set the whole thing ablaze. RTPVR began in 2014 as a meet-up among hobbyists and was accelerated by the 2015 arrival of Alex Grau, a virtual reality whiz who had worked on 360-degree video technology for a company called Total Cinema 360 in Manhattan. For a while, RTPVR was little more than a group of enthusiasts who met up every so often to geek out about the latest technology. But Grau’s experience and knowledge about the business side of things helped inspire a wide variety of companies and hobbyists to dive into the market. Eventually, a core group of VR professionals and their start-ups – about 11 of them, so far – emerged. Once that happened, RTPVR realized that its role as a clearinghouse for Triangle virtual reality start-ups was a business opportunity in itself. Beginning in January of this year, RTPVR transitioned from its role as a networking collective to an incorporated business.RTPVR’s Alex Grau and Nate Hoffmeier. “Right now, we’re describing ourselves as a consulting group,” says Nate Hoffmeier, who works with Grau at RTPVR. “We’re functioning as an incubator, but also trying to give start-ups access to these businesses coming to us for help.” Say, for instance, a university wants to develop a VR tour of its campus. RTPVR leverages its connections and knowledge of the Triangle start-ups in the industry to help the university find the company that best suits its needs and budget. Start-ups with complementary areas of expertise will often team up on larger projects. In addition to sharing technology and best practices among VR companies, the kind of networking RTPVR facilitates is doubly valuable for marketing to potential clients. Because one of the industry’s chief challenges is explaining what the technology can do and how it works, Hoffmeier says, word-of-mouth is critical. So are decidedly old-fashioned, in-person sales techniques. “People can’t advertise this stuff through a traditional 2-D screen,” Hoffmeier says. “We need people saying, ‘No, you need to try this. This isn’t a fad; this isn’t a gimmick.’”Horizon Unlike many of its peers, Horizon Productions is about three decades removed from “start-up” status. It has long been an industry leader among old-fashioned video production companies in the Triangle. But the company took a turn to the future about a year-and-a-half ago – “quite some time” in the VR world, according to creative director Jason McGuigan – when a few employees began playing around with a gadget called the Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset born on Kickstarter but later bought by Facebook. Oculus is widely known as a pioneering force behind market-ready virtual reality. Because Horizon already employed people with the graphic design, audio, and videography expertise required to produce solid VR experiences, the company realized it only needed a few key additional hires to become a viable player in the industry. And unlike most start-ups trying to get a foot in the door, Horizon had the capital and client base to support that ambition. “Looking at the core technology, we recognized that a lot of its aspects we already do, we have in house,” McGuigan says. “Once you discover the power of the medium, it’s very difficult to say, ‘This isn’t going to be a big deal.’” Since then, Horizon has begun offering 360-degree video products to its clients alongside more traditional services. As Horizon’s multimedia director Jason Cooper notes, they’re often educators as much as salespeople in those cases.Jason Cooper and Jason McGuigan of Horizon Productions pose with their Google VR/GoPro Odyssey camera, one of the only 360-degree VR cameras of its kind on the East Coast. “We’ve made it a focus to be evangelists and do demos and take VR to our clients and the community,” Cooper says. “We‘ve actually introduced VR to maybe more people than anybody else, than someone like Epic (Games), in the Triangle.” Horizon’s success in the field led to its becoming one of a handful of VR-involved firms chosen to participate in Google’s VR Jump program, which is both a product and a service. Companies like Horizon get to use a GoPro-designed 16-camera rig to capture stereoscopic 3-D video, the production of which has been, until now, an incredibly labor- and computing-intensive process. VR Jump, however, allows participants to send Google their raw footage, where it’s processed within a day or two and sent back perfectly stitched together and compiled into 3-D, 360-degree video. “Our focus right off the bat was on the non-gaming applications of this technology, but we’ve actually moved into that realm as well,” Cooper says. “We’re one of the few players in the area that has done projects for major corporate clients.” Among those clients are local LED producers Cree and hardware retailer Home Depot. Horizon has also recently produced 360-degree video packages for the UNC football team – Cooper’s a UNC grad – as well as the Carolina RailHawks. Duke’s VR therapy Cynthia Jones’ Virtual Reality Therapy for Phobias clinic isn’t the only place on Duke’s campus using virtual reality; the technology you’ll find there, compared to what media and gaming production companies are working with, isn’t necessarily cutting edge. But that’s not what’s important, says Jones, a counselor with the Duke Faculty Practice whose clinical work using virtual reality to treat phobias has expanded the technology’s reach into places even the most interdisciplinary development teams might never have considered. Virtual reality’s application as a phobia treatment makes a lot of sense once you learn a little about how phobia treatment has traditionally been approached. People like Jones often use what’s known as “immersion therapy” to help patients understand and control their psychosomatic responses to their phobic triggers – flying in an airplane, for instance.Cynthia Jones uses VR to help treat phobias at Duke. Here she demonstrates a simulation for public speaking. But traditionally, immersion therapy hasn’t actually been all that immersive. Patients with a fear of flying might have been asked to imagine themselves in an airplane. They would then evaluate their responses to that imagined input and practice controlling them. Even that can be surprisingly successful, Jones says, but the power of suggestion that comes with a 360-degree video experience – combined with physical cues like a rumbling seat – adds a new dimension to the treatment. “VR allows me to take that in-between step of what you imagine in your mind and kind of having a virtual world to play with before you go into the real world,” Jones says. Duke’s clinic started using the technology in the early 2000s as a result of the hospital’s partnership with Emory University, where it was pioneered. The modules Duke has adopted, each crafted to address a specific condition, are developed by a company called Virtually Better. Virtual reality’s clinical uses have also expanded to addiction treatment, post-traumatic stress, and motor skill rehabilitation in patients who have suffered traumatic brain injury. Jones says VR helps some patients overcome the stigma associated with certain phobias by making the process of overcoming them feel more like a discrete task. The modules she uses recommend between eight and 20 45-minute practice sessions, but Jones says most patients only need a handful. “They can think, ‘I’m going to go in and practice with this set of equipment instead of going in and feeling like a crazy person,’” she says. “People will use VR, particularly men, because they want to come in, get the job done, and get out of there.”LEVR Studios As creative director of online education at N.C. State University, Mike Cuales has worked for the past 14 years to find and develop tools that transcend the limitations of remote learning. Once he discovered virtual reality, he knew it represented a total shift away from – and a vast improvement upon – everything that had come before it, including classroom learning itself. “From an educational standpoint, the ability to immerse somebody in an environment and put them in the scene holds immense promise for almost anything I’ve been working in for the last decade,” Cuales says. In 2015, Cuales began LEVR Studios. For now, it’s a low-budget, boutique operation that Cuales and his business partner Arthur Earnest find time for when they’re not at their day jobs. Cuales 3-D-prints his 360-degree camera rigs himself and uses his background in education to his advantage.Mike Cuales sets up gear provided by Lenovo for a 360-degree immersive experience at N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences’ BugFest. “With a small company, I can do the projects for a school, for example, or a nonprofit,” Cuales says. “Someone who can’t foot the bill for a Hollywood production.” That suits him just fine. Cuales says he’s not in virtual reality to become an industry tycoon. As an educator and researcher, his passion lies more in finding out what happens when artists and documentarians get their hands on the technology he’s grown to love. Cuales also understands better than many in his field the challenges virtual reality will face if it hopes to become more than a futuristic novelty. His job requires him to think about what will capture students’ attention, and unlike the bulk of technological innovation that’s come along in the last decade or so, virtual reality’s immersive premise demands that attention in an undivided form. That kind of focus is wonderful for learning, Cuales says, but it’s no mean feat to get students and consumers to commit to it.LEVR Studios’ Mike Cuales believes in the immersive power of VR for remote education. “It’s a big ask for our audience to sit down, put on this headset, and make sure you have enough space around you to move around and really check out to some degree,” Cuales says. “We’re not doing a tremendous job of preparing users for that.” As exciting as it is to don the headset for the first time, it’s also hard to completely let go and forget how goofy it must look to the outside world to be flailing about and remarking on things no one else can see. Cuales says he’s noticed that sense of vulnerability in demonstrations he’s been a part of, and he worries that could be an even more pernicious barrier. The solution to these problems, he thinks, is two-fold: Start people out with short experiences, and be conscious of the environment you create when introducing people to the technology. “That’s why I’m so passionate about its application in education,” Cuales says. “It’s a captive audience. If I say you need to take the next five minutes to step into this manufactured environment, that’s exciting because they’ve already made the commitment to be here.” Lucid Dream The founders of this Durham-based start-up are eager to discuss virtual reality’s big-picture future, but for now, they’re content to meet the market where it is. “What we’re not doing is games; I’ll start with that,” says Joshua Setzer, one of Lucid Dream’s co-founders. “Games are going to be a huge market in VR, and there’s going to be a lot of interesting possibilities, but we’re interested in VR mainly as a sales and marketing tool.” But even within that focused mandate, Lucid Dream has chosen to grapple with virtual reality at the conceptual level, partly because of the shared responsibility industry members feel to advance the technology, but also because a fundamental understanding of what makes virtual reality work promises to make their products more effective. “We’re hacking the conscious mind,” Setzer says. “We’re trying to hit the minimum threshold so that the human brain says ‘yes, this is reality.’” Mike McArdle, another Lucid Dream co-founder, is a former Apple Store employee who used to specialize in helping neophytes navigate Apple products. He has also dabbled in bringing the technology into the classroom through a separate initiative called the Virtual Reality Learning Experience. McArdle says virtual reality holds the promise of unprecedented accessibility in a way that takes away the abstraction of user interfaces, making tech-based tasks easier for even true tech novices by mimicking their real-life equivalents. “If you think about it, we’ve gotten used to abstractions with mouse and keyboard,” McArdle says. “(Virtual reality) is this crazy flat circle where we’re using the most insane, cutting-edge technology to make interaction with technology a lot more human, a lot more intuitive. VR could, ironically, bring a whole generation of people back into computing.”Lucid Dream co-founders Joshua Setzer and Mike McArdle say virtual reality has the ability to be the “greatest empathy machine that man has ever known.”McArdle’s skills are complemented by Setzer’s. The Duke graduate used to work in architectural rendering designing yachts, and he has a strong familiarity with 3-D modeling and the types of clients in the market for Lucid Dream’s work. So far, those include real estate developers, car and boat manufacturers, and product designers, all of which can benefit from the ability to give potential customers a tour of products that are either not present or don’t yet exist. In addition to possessing a near-complete virtual reality skill-set in a three-man team – RTPVR’s Alex Grau completes the trio – Lucid Dream’s co-founders are willing to discuss the cultural and philosophical implications of the medium, both the value and danger that awaits a society that places a premium on augmenting and replacing sensory input with something other than one’s immediate physical surroundings. “We have different mental constructs because of how we interact with different technologies due to the spread between the wealth of the world and the poorest of the poor,” McArdle warns. “This could accelerate that. It might be the great equalizer if enough of this technology gets around, but it might be the great divide where some people are able to start living in a virtual world.” Setzer chimes in with a more optimistic perspective. “It also has the potential to be the greatest empathy machine that man has ever known,” he says. “There are all these really interesting immersive journalism pieces that take an audience into another person’s world and life in pretty haunting ways. There are so many opportunities to build understanding.” The two agree that virtual reality, like the internet, is simply another media tool that expands access to both the real world and to refuges from it. What becomes of this tool will depend on how those who pioneer virtual reality define its place. “It’s business, but it’s much more than just business,” Setzer says. “It’s society-changing technology. There are a lot of important conversations to be had.”
Killer Tacosby Katherine Poolephotograph courtesy Xoco RaleighDo you prefer your carne with a side of carnage? Check out Xoco Raleigh, where every day is Dia de los Muertos. Aztec for “little sister,” Xoco is the kooky kid sibling of North Raleigh’s favorite haunt Dos Taquitos. “Haunt” isn’t a bad word for Xoco, either – it seems that when the Mexican eatery opened in the Old Creamery building on Glenwood South, it had a few disgruntled former tenants to contend with. Maybe the restaurant folks shouldn’t have been surprised: After all, the building has a grim history, including damaging fires and multiple deaths, including a murder by a serial killer. Perhaps that explains why dishes fly off shelves, lights flicker on and off, and spectral voices whisper in the dark. But the Xoco staff is armed with good mojo, and happily embraces its status as otherworldly outpost. They have even gone so far as to invite a local ghost-busting firm known as ASAP (As Southern as Possible) Paranormal in to verify mysterious disturbances. Ain’t afraid of no ghosts? Then, steel your nerves with a margarita or two and order extra queso, because you never know who might be joining you for dinner.
Travis Long, News & ObserverTimes to be together throughout the Triangleby Katherine PooleWe’ve made our list and checked it twice. Here are a few ways to make merry across the Triangle during the month of December, if the fates allow. Faithful friendsTo experience a really Raleigh Christmas, plan ahead for these City of Oaks traditions.Dec. 6State Capitol tree lighting ceremony5 – 7:30 p.m.; free; N.C. State Capitol, 1 E. Edenton St.; nchistoricsites.org/capitolDec. 6 – 10Theatre in the Park presents A Christmas CarolWed. – Sat. 7 p.m., Sat. – Sun. 2 p.m.; $32 – $92; 2 E. South St.; theatreinthepark.com/whatson/a-christmas-carol-2017Dec. 7 – 17Holiday Express at Pullen Park4 – 9 p.m.; $11.29; 520 Ashe Ave.; raleighnc.gov/home/content/parkspec/articles/holidayexpress.htmlDec. 15 – 24Carolina Ballet presents The NutcrackerSee website for dates and times; $37 – $111; 2 E. South St.; carolinaballet.comLight heartChildren of all ages will delight in these shining stars. Catch a new spin on a holiday classic complete with Red Rider BB guns, Charlie Brown Christmas trees, reindeer games, and big bad wolves. Then, jam on some gingerbread house building at Marbles Kids Museum. Troubles will be guaranteed out of sight.Dec. 1 – 4The Cary Players present A Christmas StoryFri. Sat. and Mon. 7:30 p.m., Sat. and Sun. 3 p.m.; $18 – $20; 101 Dry Ave., Cary; caryplayers.org/shows/a-christmas-story-december-2017Dec. 1 – 10Theatre in the Park presents A Charlie Brown Christmas See website for dates and times; $12 general admission, $10 season member; 107 Pullen Road; theatreinthepark.com Dec. 5Carolina Puppet Theater presents Rudolph11 a.m.; $5; 300 W. Ballentine St., Holly Springs; etix.com keyword: Carolina Puppet TheaterDec. 8 – 10A Fairy Tale Christmas Carol and The Great Big Holiday Bake OffFri. 7:30 p.m., Sat. 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Sun. 3 p.m.; $10 general admission, $6 students 16 and under; Halle Cultural Arts Center, 237 N. Salem St., Apex; etix.com keyword: Great Big Holiday BakeoffDec. 9Gingerbread Jamboree10 a.m. – 12 noon and 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.; $12 members, $15 non-members, $20 per household; Marbles Kids Museum, 201 E. Hargett St.; marbleskidsmuseum.org/gingerbreadjamboreeHappy golden days of yoreYou can make a date to experience Christmas as in the olden days. Take the wayback machine to the 19th century Dec. 9 for a taffy pulling party at Leigh Farm Park in Durham, then travel over to Bennett Place State Historic Site to learn about Christmas during the Civil War. Or make a stop in the 20th century for an evening of holiday music in the style of Glenn Miller’s big-band swing.Dec. 9A Kid’s Life: Taffy Pulling at Leigh Farm Park10 a.m. – 12 noon; free, but a small donation is suggested; 370 Leigh Farm Road; durhamnc.gov/753/Parks-RecreationChristmas in the Piedmont during the Civil War10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; free; Bennett Place State Historic Site, 4409 Bennett Memorial Road, Durham; bennettplacehistoricsite.comDec. 15 – 18In a Holiday MoodFri. 7 p.m., Sat. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m.; $20 adults, $18 students; $10 children under 12; N.C. Museum of History, 5 E. Edenton St.; ncmuseumofhistory.org/events/holiday-mood
Juli LeonardLara O’Brien Muñoz is a principal dancer with Carolina Ballet, where she has been for 17 years, and owner of the ballet schools Tutu School Raleigh and Tutu School Cary. She is also a wife and the mother of 1-year-old son, Theo. “I love the intersection of softness and strength, delicacy and power, playfulness and determination,” Muñoz says. She’s eager to explore the intersection at WINi, pointing to inspiration from a friend and fellow dancer who said, “regarding the world of ballet, that the layers of tulle and sparkle that make up a tutu sit on top of a whole lot of muscle, substance, and strength. My journey as a ballerina has certainly allowed me a playground to explore my femininity and ‘girly-ness,’ however my success in such a career has been through sheer discipline, dedication, and determination. Holding these qualities together is something I’m really proud of in my life. It’s now something I’m exploring as it extends to balancing business ownership and motherhood, too. … My personal mission through Tutu School is to allow young children, many of whom are girls, the opportunity and freedom to explore their own imaginations and self-expression, find confidence in their bodies, and a voice through movement and music.”Tickets
courtesy NCMAN.C. Museum of Art is putting women front and center. The museum’s recently launched Matrons of the Arts initiative celebrates influential female artists worldwide. Permanent exhibits, travelling exhibitions, and special events will honor and present the success of women in art, including abstract expressionist Georgia O’Keeffe and contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama. The goal, organizers say, is to challenge the sometimes negative connotations of the term matron, and to instead elevate it to a term of strength and success. This local campaign was inspired by the National Museum of Women in the Art’s name 5 female artists challenge, which seeks to keep notable women artists on the forefront of public conscience. As the movement takes shape, you can follow along at ncartmuseum.org/matrons-of-the-arts. –Catherine Currin