March 7, 2017
Violet Weston, portrayed by Kim Grimaldi, shares some "truth telling" -- to varied reactions around the family dinner table.

Theater Review by Michael Morain
If you can't say anything nice, well, pull up a chair and make yourself at home. You'll fit right in with the family in " August: Osage County," onstage through March 19 at the Des Moines Social Club.
But don't expect to get a word in edgewise. When the Westons get together, you'd be wise to just keep quiet while they pick each other apart like their chicken dinner, served with heaps of jealousy, resentment, guilt and -- since this is family, after all -- a small crusty dish of leftover love.
Directed by Matthew McIver, this darkly funny three-course drama is easily the heftiest homegrown show we'll see all season. It's three hours long, with two intermissions, and draws from the combined resources of both StageWest and Repertory Theatre of Iowa, two deeply gifted companies that announced on Friday (finally) that they plan to merge into a single group called the Iowa Stage Theatre Company, with their first seven-show season starting in September. (They'll unveil the lineup March 18 at the Social Club.) Click here to finish reading the review. 

A passion for honoring the natural environment inspired this countryside home remodel. Using repurposed and recycled materials, we created a rural sanctuary for our clients and their many 4-footed rescue friends! ... 

Sunday's best recipe: Start with fun fajita combinations, add sangria, and toss in some live Latin music at Malo.

By Wini Moranville
I've been "up" on Malo for quite some time now; their taco-truck-style tacos and the ever-bustling atmosphere do it for me every time. Until now, I have thought my favorite time to go there is a Wednesday night, when margaritas go for half-price. But now, I've just learned of Sizzling Sundays -- a reason you'll likely find me there on a Sunday evening.
On upcoming Sundays, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., the restaurant will host live Latin jazz. Diners can enjoy half-price carafes of sangria, along with creative fajita combinations. The latter cost $15.99, and choices include aji lemon garlic butter shrimp, chimichurri flank steak, and chipotle- and agave-glazed chicken, as well as al pastor mushroom caps.
Here's the schedule of performers:
  • March 12: Equinox -- Latin jazz and jazz standards. 
  • March 19: Choro Moinga -- Brazilian choro. 
  • March 26: Ed East -- Caribbean music.
By the way, be sure to take a look at the masterful cocktail options. I've long admired Malo's creative bar program, which focuses on the cocktail's midcentury heyday (from the 1930s to the 1960s), in both the United States and Latin America. I wrote about this studied sense of place and time in this article  in the new issue of dsm.
Wini Moranville covers food and dining for dsm . Follow her at All Things Food - DSM Wini Moranville  
The artistic vision of Lee Emma Running included gold gilding on the interior of this deer skull.

One of the things we enjoy most at dsm is meeting artists and bringing you their stories and photos of their work. A great example from our new March/April issue is this story about Lee Emma Running, whose fascinating work includes the skeletons of wildlife killed by traffic. It's eerie, provocative and arresting. If you haven't seen this issue, why not? Oh, never mind. Here's what you're missing.
With a variety of hosts, celebrities and performers, the annual Variety telethon strives to keep its phone lines busy.

After its 43rd annual telethon last weekend, Variety -- the Children's Charity reported its annual fundraising campaign had reached almost $4.2 million. The organization supports underprivileged, at-risk and special needs children throughout Iowa. Over the years, the telethons have raised roughly $110 million. Variety programs include Bikes for Kids, Variety Vans and Variety Star Playgrounds. The charity also provides grants to more than 90 nonprofit children's organizations annually for building expansions, renovations and equipment needs. Contributions can still be made online or by calling 844-414-5437. 
A prototype in the development of Manibus, a robotic device designed to translate the artistry of ballet into painted images. 

Over the next month, a robot named Manibus is going to paint graphic images of its interpretation of dance at Ballet Des Moines. It's a collaboration of art and technology, developed by the ballet company's latest artist-in-residence.

Des Moines artist Amenda Tate Corso is best known for her work in metals, but she is also trained in mechanical engineering. Her Manibus Project will be an interesting collaboration for the ballet, says Laurel Knox, executive director of Ballet Des Moines, adding, "We continue to be amazed at the caliber of artists interested in this residency."   


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