Jul. 25, 2012
A Mattapan native is taking a star turn on TV’s most well-known fashion-themed reality show. Sonjia Williams, 27, has already built a strong following in Boston and New York with her clothing designs. Now, she’s hoping that international exposure on the Project Runway program will take her to a whole new level.
The show – now in its tenth season on Lifetime— airs on Thursdays at 9 p.m. Expert judges critique the work of the contestants, who are assigned to make new creations for each episode. Designers are voted off each week until there is a final winner. Her first challenge during the first episode – which aired July 19 – took place in the middle of Times Square.
Williams grew up in Mattapan, Dorchester and Roxbury and has not forgotten her roots since moving to New York. Read more
Jul. 4, 2012
As part of its second annual Dorchester Descendants festivities last weekend, the Dorchester Historical Society (DHS) threw open its doors for a double-barreled, century-spanning art display at the William Clapp House, the DHS headquarters at 195 Boston Street.
The three-day “Dorchester Artists: Past & Present” featured works by painters, photographers, sculptors, ceramicists and cartoonists who lived at some point in their lives in the neighborhood. Works by artists largely from the nineteenth century were selected by DHS President Earl Taylor and hung in the “second best parlor” while an unjuried show of contemporary pieces was coordinated by Andrea Kunst, Chair of the Board of the Dorchester Arts Collaborative (DAC), in the “best parlor.” Read more
Next Thursday’s Snazzy Jazzy Arty Party promises to be Dot Art’s biggest fundraising event yet, according to organizers. It will certainly be the one with the most Cape Cod flair ever.
In past years the swanky soiree was held in private homes in places like Melville Park. This year supporters will be reveling at Dot’s First Parish Church on Thursday, June 21, from 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. Read more
May. 3, 2012
The political drama 'Murph' wrapped up its run at the Boston Playwrights' Theatre last week, with its director hinting that the play could eventually make a return to the stage.
The play, written by Dorchester's Catherine O'Neill, packs the constant drama of the Massachusetts State House into 90 minutes of fast-paced dialogue and unraveled secrets, with winks and nods for the Beacon Hill insiders in the audience. Read more
Okay, so they’re transplants who’ve yet to experience their first Dot Day. They’re still new enough to the neighborhood that they marvel at the speed and efficiency of the Red Line from Ashmont into town.
Yeah, that new.
But, this week, we’re claiming Walter Sickert, band co-founder Edrie, and their assorted Army of Broken Toys band-mates as unequivocally ours. After you see their current production — a steamy, immersive, sci-fi theater ride called 28 Seeds that is now being staged at the Boston Center for the Arts through May 12— you’ll want to claim them, too. Read more
Mar. 22, 2012
Boston’s neighborhoods have launched their share of music superstars into orbit in past decades. Donna Summer, the original disco diva, hailed from Dot. Gang Starr’s legendary MC Guru (aka the late Keith Elam) honed his rap chops in Four Corners. And, of course, New Edition and New Kids on the Block served as the twin pillars of boy band stardom in the 1980s and 90s.
The landscape that spawned those artists has changed dramatically. Local artists are now able to utilize tools such as social media, pirate radio stations, and the Internet to market their music and create hype for themselves, rather than having to depend on a record company or promoter to do it.
This autonomy has made it easier not only for musicians to share their music and build a fan base, but to capitalize on opportunities also. Through a Twitter competition among Red Bull Soundstage artists, Shea Rose — an up-and-coming singer who has lived in Dorchester, Braintree, and now Mattapan — was able to rally her fans to help her win an all-expenses paid trip to Austin, Texas, to this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) Festival. She performed at the Red Bull Soundstage at the Universal Music Group Showcase. Read more
Mar. 8, 2012
Coming back to Dorchester means a lot to Liz Carney and even more for the Dorchester Community Center for the Visual Arts, or DotArt, as its more commonly called. After a year-long search for the right match, the non-profit center has found the perfect fit in Carney as the new executive director.
Much of the youth-oriented programming has been scaled back since founding director Leslie MacWeeney stepped down. The organization was largely volunteer-driven with fewer classes being offered. But Carney is determined to get the center back on its feet with new classes in the spring, future partnerships and summer fundraising. Read more
Heard the one about the rapper-turned-actor from the mean streets of Dorchester?
No, not Mark Wahlberg. Although you’re not far off.
We’re talking about Dot native Jay Giannone— who was one of Wahlberg’s true life entourage mates during his wilder days in the early 90s. Giannone — who scored small parts in “The Departed” and “Gone Baby Gone” — will hit the big screen next month in a new action-thriller flick called “Safe.” Read more
Dorchester’s impressive collection of public art recently got even more impressive. A bright yellow assemblage of reclaimed steel and aluminum, 30 feet long and 10 feet tall, was erected late last year on Columbia Point.
Thus UMass Boston added its second major sculpture by internationally acclaimed artist Mark di Suvero to Arts on the Point, the university’s public arts initiative. One of the largest and most important collections of modern sculpture at any American university, Arts on the Point also boasts pieces by such modern art luminaries as Dennis Oppenheim, Roy Lichtenstein, William Tucker, Luis Jiménez, and Willem de Kooning. Read more
Jan. 12, 2012
Rolling around next Monday is the only national holiday to honor a former Dorchester resident. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. lived here while he pursued his doctoral studies at BU, and in 1952 even served as Interim Pastor at Dot’s Metropolitan Baptist Church.
Dorchester and the rest of Boston will host a variety of arts commemorations of the slain activist and Nobel Peace Prize honoree in addition to the usual prayer breakfasts and service opportunities. Read more