ArtWalk Alive! 2004 is a cultural smorgasbord.
If you're a fan of art, you'll almost be able to feel it flowing through your veins with all the painting, sculpting and collage work going on.
If you prefer dance, there will be rhythms so plentiful they'll probably put a bounce in your step.
If you call yourself a music lover, your senses are sure to go wild with tunes as diverse as country, Celtic, Eastern European, pop and jazz.
If spoken word is more your style, the event will feature some of that, too, and no topic or style will be off limits.
Mix all of that with food vendors and activities for the kids, and you've got a four-hour event that's sure to be bustling from beginning to end.
So, stop by, enjoy the entertainment and experience some Rochester culture. Here's a look at some of the performances you can expect to see:
Dances on the Avenue
Members of the Bush Mango Drum and Dance ensemble combine dance, music and storytelling to share their passion of African culture.
The group derives its name from one of the types of wood used to carve jembe drums, an instrument used in the West African country of Guinea, where many of the basic dance steps originated.
Add that with vibrant costumes and you have what Joel Lomnick, a member of the group, calls a show-stopping ensemble.
“It's something different that you don't really see around Rochester,” says the 23-year-old city resident.
Other featured dancers: Henrietta Senior Stompers & Henrietta Recreation Program Students, School of the Arts Senior Dance Ensemble, Pywakkit, The Motoniks and Sahara Shimmer Belly Dancers.
Artists at Work
Jeremy Sniatecki's interest in Rochester's history might be explanation enough for the piece he chose to create for ArtWalk.
Sniatecki, a graphic designer and illustrator, will create a sidewalk chalk drawing of Frederick Douglass. When asked about the short lifespan of the black-and-white 5-foot-square piece, he wasn't fazed.
“That's the beauty of it,” says the 31-old-year Rochester resident. “It makes it more special. It's there for the people who are there, and once it's gone, it's gone.”
Other featured artists: ARTPeace Inc., Martine Lepore, Julie L. Seegler, Patrick Doyle, Cheryl and Dow Olney and Nick Agnello.
Word on the Street
Words are important to Reenah L. Golden. Besides teaching creative writing and poetry, she's a spoken-word artist.
Golden, 31, performs what some call slam poetry, an edgy art form that she says helps people create new ways of expressing old issues.
“(My poetry) stems from the tradition of spoken word,” she says. “(It) stems from American life — issues that are hard to deal with like racism and poverty and urban youth.”
Although there won't be a band behind her or a choreographer plotting her every move, Golden says her show still will be captivating.
“Spoken word is very interactive,” says the Rochester resident. “It's very animated. … It's in your face.”
Other featured artists: Fran Carlisi-Paxson, Annette Ramos, Urknee & Bjurton Russell, Eric Thompson and The Golden Teen Slam Team.
Music on the Block
Although Lisa Dotolo lives hundreds of miles away, she's psyched to be making the trip to play for her hometown fans.
Dotolo recently moved to Nashville, Tenn., to pursue her dream of making it big as a musician. The Mercy High School graduate has completed her first CD, Someday Soon , which is available through her Web site:
“I've been coming back … playing at coffee shops,” says the musician, who's in her late 20s. “I want to stay in the loop with them. It's a way to maintain my little fan base. … I don't want to just drop off the face of the Earth.”
Dotolo says her music, which mixes folk, pop, country and Christian, can be compared to that of Emmylou Harris or Jewel.
Other featured musicians: NRG!, The Squeaky Chair Quartet, Hayseeds, Bonnie Abrams and Allen Hopkin and The Celtic Music Society.