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Hampshire Life

Artist and writer Russell Powell works on a painting at his home in Hatfield.

Art Maker: Russell Powell | painter

Friday, January 23, 2015

Russell Powell, 60, of Hatfield draws on his experience as an athlete — throwing a softball, for example, or shooting a basketball — when creating his oil paintings. “My most transcendent moments on the playing field occurred when my will was realized unconsciously through my body,” he says. “In one fluid motion ... I would receive a relay throw from …

Rich Szlosek’s Slice of Life — The Conch Republic: A role model for western Mass?

Friday, January 23, 2015

Here’s an example of how my mind works: Last September, while reading about the Scottish secessionist movement from the United Kingdom, I started thinking about Key West, Florida, one of my favorite travel destinations. Besides those great sunsets and a laid-back atmosphere, this little dot of an island with its edgy feeling has traditionally been a haven for folks who wish to keep …

Kathleen Mellen’s Best Bets: ‘Cuba: Anthropology of a Country’ at the Augusta Savage Gallery at UMass; three stand-up comedians at the Academy of Music

Friday, January 23, 2015

INSIDE CUBA I’m fascinated by Cuba and am excited to think that a trip there might be in my future. As the U.S. and Cuba try to figure how to proceed, an exhibit, “Cuba: Anthropology of a Country,” projected digital photographs by Yeraldine Ordoñez, opens Tuesday and will be on view through Feb. 17 at UMass’ Augusta Savage Gallery in Amherst. It’s a …

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Laurie Loisel’s Best Bets: Mandolin Orchestra of South Hadley concert; ‘Descent’ by Tim Johnston

Thursday, January 15, 2015

YOU KNEW THEM WHEN Local residents have a chance to see the first performance of the Mandolin Orchestra of South Hadley this weekend. Founder and director Adam Sweet (also a soloist) will lead the orchestra playing chamber works from selected composers and Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3. There …

Steve Pfarrer’s Best Bets: Two good books on modern Russia; South Hadley Mandolin Orchestra concert

Thursday, January 15, 2015

FROM RUSSIA WITH RESIGNATION Interested in a portrait of modern Russia? I can recommend two recent books. “The Putin Mystique” by Russian-American journalist Anna Arutunyan, published by Northampton’s Interlink Publishing Group, looks at President Putin’s relationship to past Russia autocrats. Gregory Feifer, a former NPR Moscow correspondent whose …

Book Bag: ‘Make a Wish But Not For Money’ by Suzanne Strempek Shea; ‘The Dyeing Room’ by Robert T. McMaster

Thursday, January 15, 2015

MAKE A WISH BUT NOT FOR MONEY By Suzanne Strempek Shea PFP Publishing www.suzannestrempekshea.com For her first novel in several years, Valley writer Suzanne Strempek Shea has been inspired in part by the former “Dead Mall” of Hadley, …

Valley Readings

Thursday, January 15, 2015

The following author appearances, readings and book events are planned for the coming week in the Valley: JONES LIBRARY: Don Ogden reads from his book “Bad Atmosphere — A Collection of Poetry & Prose on the Climate Crisis” Tuesday, 7 p.m., at the library, 43 Amity St., Amherst. …

Ken Maiuri’s Tuned In: Junior Brown plays the Iron Horse and other musical happenings this week in the Valley

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Here comes guitar star Junior Brown, a striking figure making his way over the horizon from his home in Austin, Texas. There’s the larger-than-life cowboy hat, the low baritone voice, the one-of-a-kind signature instrument — a two-headed “guit-steel” …

Movie listings

Thursday, January 15, 2015

The following movies are playing locally. Contact theaters for times. AMHERST CINEMA 28 Amity St., Amherst 253-2547 amherstcinema.org Birdman (R) Citizenfour (R) Force Majeure (R) The Imitation Game (PG-13) Inherent Vice (R) CINEMARK 267 Russell St., Hadley 800-326-3264, ext. 1118 cinemark.com American Sniper (R) American Sniper XD (R) …

Movie Capsules

Thursday, July 31, 2014

AMERICAN SNIPER: Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle (Bradley Cooper) saves countless lives on the battlefield, which turns him into a legend. But when he returns home to his wife (Sienna Miller) and kids after four tours of duty, …

Your Time: Bay Road Tennis Club at Hampshire College, Amherst

Thursday, January 15, 2015

For an hour-and-a-half each Friday morning, no matter the weather, you can find a jovial group of spry tennis players enjoying the senior “hit-around” on the courts of the Bay Road Tennis Club at Hampshire College. According to …

Carol Lollis’ Photo Gallery: Unanswered mysteries in the halls of power

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Last week, I was at the Statehouse in Boston to photograph Stan Rosenberg, D-Amherst, as he was voted in as Senate president. I have walked by the Statehouse, with its big gold dome, many times, but this was …

Headliners: Cellist Stephen Katz; “Above the Fold: New Expressions in Origami”

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Transcendent cello While maintaining reverence for the classical tradition of his instrument, Haydenville-based cellist/composer Stephen Katz has also been on the cutting edge of liberating it. In addition to using live looping electronics to generate dynamic orchestral textures …