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Arts & Life
The Scene was our Illinois arts & culture podcast through 2017. Rachel Otwell curated the podcast which provided full-length stories and follow-ups, links to other reports, and conversations with you.This podcast contained a range of stories from the world of arts & culture, from visual art to Springfield's DIY music scene, to profiles of interesting local characters. The podcast was about what makes artists tick, and the diverse culture that exists within our community.

The Scene Gets Thankful

photo: Brian Mackey, clip art: RO

Scott and  Rachel are nearing a year of bringing you The Scene on air and in podcast form. Every week we stop to take a look around the scene so we can tell you about some of the fun and fascinating things coming up. 

We've spoken with guest-hosts like Jeff Williams of Springfield's foremost punk band, NIL8, Gus Gordon who heads the Hoogland, Brandon Carnes of Black SheepSouth Town Studio and a million other DIY projects, Yona Stamatis who plays in and regularly interviews leaders of the Illinois Symphony Orchestra ... We even brought you The Scene live(ish) from Dumb Records!

So we decided this week to take a moment and reflect even more than usual on what makes the Springfield area arts and culture scene a vibrant one. One that makes living here in the seat of Illinois politics and amongst the corn-fields tolerable. (Lol, jk. Kinda...)

We were joined by listeners of The Scene - and adventurers of the scene - who also have things to be thankful for ... Here are some excerpts (hear them ALL by listening to The Scene in the audio player above):

  • Clare Frachey says:  "The Springfield underground music scene is one of the primary factors that keeps me loving this town! With venues such as the Black Sheep Cafe and Radon Lounge hosting bands from all over this country as well as the world, there's always an interesting show to go to without the need for anything other than music and good company ... Creativity is a human disposition and I think the avenues in this town help pull people together to channel it, usually in an intimate and charming way."
  • Joe Coffey says: "(My wife) Alison and I are so thankful that Spfld and the surrounding area has Tom Irwin not only entertaining people each and every week, but for his advocacy for local music and musicians for 25 years if not longer."                                                                                                                                  
  • Adam Clay says: "I’m grateful for the literary community in central Illinois and its support of diverse writers and voices, both on campus at UIS and in the local Springfield area as well."
  • Monique Garcia says: "I am thankful for how incredibly supportive the music scene is in Springfield. It's so easy to try to tear others down on your way to the top, but here it is a truly collaborative and collective effort to keep our thriving culture alive. Whether it's fans trekking out in the snow for an album release party, venues throwing fundraising benefits for an artist down on their luck, or an entire festival dedicated to supporting artists and musicians -- we take care of each other.

In conclusion, The Scene is thankful for YOU, dear listener. Whether you're an artist, musician, chef, rapper MC, mom who helps her toddler doodle with crayons, or seriously sporadic art-appreciator - it takes us all to build up a community that recognizes art matters, and that the more diverse the culture we inhabit is, the better. Please take a listen this week. (Maybe even on your way to visit family and gobble, gobble. )

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