Sunday, January 23, 2011
Review: Late Nights at the DMA with Telegraph Canyon, Brave Combo, and more
It was truly a family affair, and there was something for everyone.
DALLAS If you’ve never been to Late Nights at the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA), why not? The museum celebrated its 108th birthday on Friday, and there was definitely reason to be in the house.
The University of North Texas African Percussion Ensemble kicked off the evening’s festivities with an electrifying African Drum Parade. Complete with tribal dancers, the troupe wowed watchers as they processed down the main concourse. Like moths to a flame, observers flocked to the Atrium, where the procession continued their performance. Taking to the stage, the ensemble led the audience through the many sounds of Africa, while the dancers gyrated and jumped to the tribal beats. Of particular note, the lone male of the dance group commanded the attention of the audience with an amazing solo of high kicks and low splits.
Following the UNT performers was the nuclear polka sounds of Brave Combo. If you’re not familiar with the band, here’s the skinny: This Denton based group has been a staple at DMA birthday celebrations over the years and they are even Grammy Award winners. From the first bellow of the accordion, there was not one empty spot on the dance floor. Dancers, young and old, bustled around to traditional polka, salsa, and more. Complete with sing-a-longs and conga lines, things went from lively to downright rockin’ when the band played what they called the fourth most popular polka song, “Clarinet Polka,” Rowdy, loud, and rambunctious (don’t you love it?), no one could ever accuse polka fans of being boring.
The final musical group of the night was Telegraph Canyon. Their latest album, The Tide and The Current, has been loved by many, and if the audience was any indication, there is no doubt why. This rock band captivated the audience with a folksy catchiness in each song. As toddlers hopped around to the tunes, ladies whooped and guys hollered out their apparent appreciation and enjoyment.
Aside from the musical entertainment during the night, the DMA offered many activities throughout the museum. Art exhibits and coffee tasting were just the beginning to a fun, art-filled night.
During the earlier part of the evening, families with little ones were invited to the Center for Creative Commons (C3). In Arturo’s Nest, located inside of C3, colors and textures of all types stimulated the imagination and kiddos could touch, feel, and play until their little hearts were content. For those looking for the complete mind-body experience, C3’s Yoga for Kids was a great alternative. Children learned various yoga poses and the session even included an appearance by Arturo the parrot. Later in the evening, everyone gathered in the C3 Theater for bedtime stories.
Declared by many critics to be one of the best documentaries of the year, Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010) showed in the Horchow Auditorium. In the movie, wannabe filmmaker Thierry Guetta, a Frenchman living in Los Angeles, is in search of the elusive British street artist Banksy. Guetta’s prayers are finally answered when he is invited into Banksy’s world and allowed to chronicle the artist’s life. As the two continue to spend time together, Banksy comes to trust in Guetta but soon questions whether his new found friend is an idiot savant or just a plain old idiot. In a comical twist, it is Guetta who becomes the observed, as he transitions from failed filmmaker to an overnight success in the realm of street art, all of which Banksy captures in this candid film.
Late Nights at DMA occurs the third Friday of each month and is truly a family affair. From dads dancing with their daughters, to teens just hanging out, there is something for everyone to do.
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