Friday, January 23, 2009

Much to Do About (Middle)town

This image of a Russian Schoolhouse in the town of Serpuxov is a work by Wesleyan graduate (2001) Sasha Rudensky. The Russian-born photographer, who received her MFA from Yale in 2008, is now a Visiting Instructor in the Art & Art History Department at Wesleyan. Her first major solo exhibition opens this Saturday at the Ezra & Cecile Zilkha Gallery on campus and will be celebrated with an Open House tonight (Friday January 23) from 5 - 7 p.m. She'll deliver the Gallery Talk at (approximately) 5:30 and you'll get to view the images fromm 2 of her photographic series, "Remains" and "Demons." Regular Gallery hours are 12noon - 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday (12noon - 8 p.m. on Friday and the exhibition is up through February 15. To view more of her excellent work, go to

Also on campus tonight, "A Conversation with Tony Kushner" takes place at 8 p.m. in Memorial Chapel. The playwright will discuss his Abraham Lincoln project, his award-winning "Angels in America" and many other topics. For more information about this free event, call the University Box Office at 685-3355.

The Buttonwood Tree has a musical weekend on tap. Tonight, the performance space welcomes the duo of Sonny & Perley. Perley Rousseau is the vocalist and her husband Sunny Daye plays the keyboards. Their program mines the "Great American Songbook", the worldsof Jazz and Latin American music in a delightful and irresistible manner. Over the past 12 years, they've issued 4 CDs and toured venues throughout the Northeast and beyond. The music starts at 7:30 p.m. To get a taste of Sonny & Perley's sound, go to Then, head downtown to catch them live.

On Saturday, The Buttonwood welcomes the high-energy funk, jazz and r'n'b sounds of the Leah Randazzo Group. The septet, lead by the feisty 24-old year vocalist, features a really "tight" rhythm section and a "hot" 3-piece horn section. Randazzo possesses a strong and pliable voice, equally at home in quiet ballads and more raucous songs. The weather is expected to be quite cold on Saturday night; I expect the Leah Randazzo Group will warm you right up. To learn more about the young lady and her band, go to For more information about The Buttonwood, call 347-4957.

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