Friday, December 1, 2023

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The Culture Buzz

Greetings, Cultural Catalysts:


11:00 AM to 1:00 PM Central Time.
Broadcast regionally on KFMG 98.9 FM; Simultaneously streaming globally through

From Iowa’s cultural epicenter, MainFrame Studios Building at 900 Keosauqua Way in Des Moines, comes your Listener-supported Community Voice, the Award-Winning independent radio station KFMG-LP 98.9 FM, bringing you music, literature & cultural news. — John Busbee for The Culture Buzz

The Culture Buzz Podcast Library –
2014 Iowa Governor’s Award for Partnership & Collaboration in the Arts
2018 – voted Best Local Talk Radio Show 

Quote of the Week

“You express, when you sing, your soul in song. And when you get together with a group of other singers, it becomes more than the sum of the parts. All of those people are pouring out their hearts and souls in perfect harmony, which is kind of an emblem for what we need in this world, when so much of the world is at odds with itself . . . to express, in symbolic terms, what it’s like when human beings are in harmony.” – John Rutter (b. 1945), an English composer, conductor, editor, arranger, and record producer, mainly of choral music.

Curious about my primary source for reliable quotes, often with back stories included? Just visit Mardy Grothe’s exceptional, free source, Dr. Mardy’s Dictionary of Metaphorical Quotations –

Newsletter content:

  1. Guests on this week’s show
  2. Performance Arts (Greater Des Moines/Iowa)
  3. Visual Arts (Greater Des Moines/Iowa)
  4. Auditions and other Individual Enhancement Opportunities
  5. Planning ahead
  6. Author events (Greater Des Moines/Iowa)
  7. Best-sellers, life resource books, Greater Des Moines performing arts organizations, Central Iowa indie book stores, cultural exploration resources, health & welfare resources

Special Cultural Headline News:

  1. Bread & Puppet: Apocalypse Defiance Circus
    The Woodland Realm urban garden and Group Creative Services are thrilled to host world-renowned, Vermont-based Bread and Puppet Theater on their fall tour with their latest production, The Apocalypse Defiance Circus. Wed Oct 5, 2022 at 6 PM. After the show Bread and Puppet will serve its famous sourdough rye bread with aioli and do a talk-back. Admission is free, donations for the performers accepted. Suggested $10-$25. Guests are encouraged to bring their own seating (chairs, blankets). Des Moines Biergarten will be open before, during, and after the performance with drinks and snacks available for purchase (brats and pretzels). Rain location: Franklin Jr High event center.
  2. Mainframe Studios FIRST FRIDAY
    Host: Mainframe Studios and Community Support Advocates
    Time: 5:00 PM — 8:00 PM, No admission cost
    MOMENTUM ART EXHIBITION | 18th Annual Works of Growth & Recovery juried exhibition featuring Central Iowa artists living with disabilities or mental illness.
    Mainframe Studios is excited to partner with Community Support Advocates for a barrier-free First Friday as we take steps to improve accessibility. In addition to live and virtual viewing options, promotional materials are designed using Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines for printed materials. Artworks will be accompanied by recorded artwork descriptions. Add food and drink available from Tangerine Food Company, dozens of artist open studios, and the sublime aesthetics of one of America’s great cultural centers, and First Friday is a great way to begin a weekend.
  3. Iowa Stage Theatre Company
    2023 Season unveiling. Iowa Stage shifts its season to a calendar year one, and will reveal its 2023 season Oct 6, 5:00 – 7:00 PM at Decades, 1208 Grand Avenue, West Des Moines. This complimentary event is open to all. Please register at SURVEYMONKEY.COM/R/ISTCRSVP.
  4. The 14th annual Iowa City Book Festival features readings, discussions, exhibits and more from Sep 28-Oct 13. Highlights of the festival include appearances by Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Anthony Doerr, Paul Engle Prize winner Rebecca Solnit, National Book Award finalist Jerald Walker, University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop director Lan Samantha Chang and more. For additional information, follow us on Facebook at, or Twitter at

This week’s guests on The Culture Buzz –

  • 11:00 AM – The new Iowa History Journal is out, and Don Doxsie’s cover story is another brilliant immersion into Iowa’s fascinating and appealing past. “Trice-Slater: CyHawk Gridiron Legends” takes readers well beyond football into cultural and societal explorations. The rest of the issue includes fascinating stories about tent theatre, Waterloo’s Gem Donut Machine, Cheryl Mullenbach’s and Arvid Huisman’s columns, and more.
  • 11:14 AM – Abigail Cutter delivers a uniquely engaging historical novel in Long Shadows. From its opening pages, this story draws the reader into a captivating immersion. Abigail talks about the back story of how this story came to be. “A searing, brilliant, moving, and utterly original Civil War novel. A stirring meditation on guilt and redemption.”  Lee Smith, New York Times best-selling author
  • 11:29 AM – Andrea Hoffman Goes All In will immediately draw its readers into a wild ride of a story as Diane Cohen Schneider captures the wild times of 1980s Wall Street in a fanciful, factual insider romp that will keep the pages turning. Listen as Diane enthusiastically shares insights into the creation and motivation of this marvelous story. “This book is going to take you on a fabulous ‘80s adventure in the heart of the go-go Wall Street era…Schneider brings us the financial world we never knew, a world she knows well, her own world of money, love, ambition, excess, and success, reimagined. By turns hilarious, poignant, deep charming, and brutal – and always true – Andrea Hoffman will keep you guessing, and keep you up all night.” – Bill Roorbach, author of Lucky Turtle and Life Among the Giants
  • 11:44 AM – Kelsey Kleinow is the program coordinator for Community Services Advocates’ stellar program, Momentum, based in Mainframe Studios in Des Moines. This Fri Oct 7, CSA partners with Mainframe in presenting the opening of their exhibition of rare creativity, inspiration and achievement. “Momentum is a stellar creativity program, a safe space for not only its primary clients but for all people seeking to enhance their lives through artistic exploration.” – The Culture Buzz
  • 12:00 PM – In this revealing and lively conversation with Hari Kandabolu, his comic path is shared to where he is one of the most recognized new comics today. With award-winning specials and regular appearances on such NPR standards as “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me,” Hari makes a stop for one night in Des Moines at TeeHee’s Comedy Club Sun Oct 9. This is sure to be a “DON’T MISS” event. “…one of the most exciting political comics in stand-up today.” – New York Times
  • 12:16 PM – Wed Oct 5 marks a special one-night-only experience as creative leaders Rachel Buse and Ryan Francois share news about world-renowned, Vermont-based Bread and Puppet Theater’s stop in Des Moines while on their fall tour with their latest production, The Apocalypse Defiance Circus. Presented at Waterworks Park’s Lauridsen Amphitheater, audiences are encouraged to bring chairs, blankets and enjoy the experience. Rain location: Franklin Jr High auditorium 48th & Franklin. “With deep artistic roots, this legacy company continues to engage, encourage and otherwise inspire next-generations of artists to be creative and socially conscious. What a beautiful legacy indeed.” – The Culture Buzz
  • 12:27 PM – In a singularly unique journey, Rebecca Stirling shares her life in The Shell and the Octopus, a memoir of solitary specialness, yet one that resonates with readers, connecting in a variety of ways. Listen as Rebecca provides some tantalizing glimpses into her life with an openness that is honest and revealing. “The Shell and the Octopus is an insightful coming-of-age memoir about a strong and compassionate woman. Raised by her unstable father aboard a thirty-foot sailboat, Rebecca Stirling’s haphazard adventures allow her to make peace with herself in a dangerous and gorgeous world. She is an everywoman, and yet not like anyone else you’ve ever met.” —Leslie Johansen Nack, author of The Blue Butterfly
  • 12:44 PM – Attribution is a surprisingly seductive read, as Linda Moore brings the world of art into a special light through her expertise, research and talented pen. Through her creative deliver, this novel draws its readers quickly into its page-turning irresistibility, and carries them through to the final rewarding pages. “Moore knocked me out with this high concept, arthouse puzzle. I was on my heels the whole time, in the best way, gobbling up the next clue as the book pushes toward an evocative crescendo. A fascinating debut.”Josh Mohr, Author of Model Citizen: A Memoir

Performance Arts

  1. Ankeny Community Theatre. Borrowed Beats. Thru Oct 9.
  2. Iowa Stage Theatre Company. 2023 Season announcement party, as ISTC switches to a calendar year season format. Thu Oct 6, 5:00 PM. Decades Event Center, 1208 Grand Avenue, West Des Moines. Free.
  3. Des Moines Young Artists’ Theatre. Sister Act Jr. Oct 7-16.
  4. Des Moines Performing Arts. The Book of Mormon. Oct 7-9.
  6. Des Moines Community Playhouse – The Penguin Project. Annie Jr. Oct 14-16.
  7. Ballet Des MoinesSalem – World Premiere. Oct 20-29 in the Stoner Theater.
  8. Carousel Theatre of IndianolaSteel Magnolias. Oct 21-30.
  9. Pura Social ClubDisney Villain Cabaret. Oct 22.
  10. Des Moines Performing ArtsFiddler on the Roof. Oct 25-30.
  11. Des Moines Performing Arts/Temple Comedy SeriesThe Crown – LIVE!. Oct 25-30.
  12. Des Moines Community Playhouse – Kate Goldman Children’s Theatre. Harriet the Spy. Oct 28-Nov 13.
  13. Central Iowa Wind Ensemble. performs “Ghouls, Goblins, and Ghosts!” Sun Oct 30, 2022, at 4 p.m., Small Auditorium, Franklin Junior High – 48th & Franklin, Des Moines. Free, but patrons should register for tickets in advance.

Visual Arts – Exhibitions

  1. Momentum Art. Works of Growth & Recovery. Oct 7 as part of Mainframe Studio’s October First Friday.
  2. Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure. Local artist Pat Millin is being featured in a new show opening on Ingersoll Avenue. Her latest work will be on display at Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure thru Nov 18. Pat is known for her numerous series representing the deep emotional psychologies found in the events of everyday life. In her new series, “Finding Refuge,” she turns her creative energies to images of the refugee experience.
  3. Artisan Gallery 218. A Tale of Kitsune: Selections from the Shapeshifter Project. Mary Kline-Misol. Thru Dec 31. Artist’s reception Fri Oct 14, 5-9 PM.

Visual Arts — Galleries

  1. Des Moines Art Center2 Re-connect with old favorites on exhibit from their permanent collection. Explore the constantly changing exhibits, from staff-curated to international, always ready to stimulate the imagination and senses. Always open (except holidays), always free.
  2. Brunnier Art Museum. Ames. 2 This is the flagship for the University Museums, a treasure trove of visual arts immersion on the Iowa State University campus, which includes the Christian Petersen Art Museum, The Farm House Museum, the Anderson Sculpture Garden and the Art on Campus Collection.
  3. The Grinnell College Museum of Art. Grinnell. 2
  4. 2AU. West Des Moines. 1,2
  5. Artisan Gallery 218. West Des Moines. 1,2
  6. Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. Des Moines 2 I added this destination for its unique value as a “living gallery,” where the constantly changing floral exhibitions entice and delight.
  7. Hoyt Sherman Place Art Gallery. Des Moines.
  8. Kavanaugh Art Gallery. West Des Moines. 1,2
  9. Kunzler Studios. West Des Moines. 1,2
  10. Liz Lidgett Gallery + Design. Des Moines.
  11. Moberg Gallery. Des Moines. 2
  12. Olson-Larsen Galleries. West Des Moines.1,2
  13. Polk County Heritage Gallery. Des Moines. 2
  14. Ritual Café. Des Moines. 2
  15. Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure. Des Moines.

1Check these galleries open during semi-annual Historic Valley Junction Gallery Nights.
2Check website for current exhibitions.

Auditions, Volunteer, and other Individual Enhancement Opportunities

  1. Des Moines Playhouse/Kate Goldman Children’s TheatreGo, Dog Go! Nov 7.
  2. Des Moines PlayhouseKinky Boots auditions have been moved to 6:00 PM, Monday, Nov. 14, 2022. Original date was Jan. 9, 2023. Details will be posted at
  3. Ankeny Community Theatre
  4. Class Act Productions (CAP).
  5. Des Moines Community Playhouse.
  6. Des Moines Performing Arts
  7. Des Moines Young Artists Theatre.
  8. Iowa Shakespeare Experience
  9. Iowa Stage Theatre Company
  10. Pyramid Theatre Company
  11. Tallgrass Theatre Company.
  12. Urbandale Community Theatre

Planning ahead

The first-ever IOWA ROOTS ROUND will be hitting stages beginning Oct. 20 in Des Moines, IA and running shows across Iowa. Don’t miss your opportunity to see 3 Iowa acts on stage, swapping songs and stories in this unique event!! Tickets are on sale now!!

Schedule with Chad ElliottRyne Doughty Music and Royce Johns:

Schedule with Chad Elliott, Ryne Doughty and Kathryn Severing Fox:

Between the covers — author events worth noting:


  1. Beaverdale Books – Oct 7, 6:30 PM. Anne E. Terpstra, Beyond Any Experience
  2. Beaverdale Books – Oct 10, 6:30-7:00 PM. Darcy Maulsby. The Lincoln Highway.
  3. Beaverdale Books – Oct 11, 6:30 PM. Beth Howard. World Piece: A Pie Baker’s Global Quest for Peace, Love, and Understanding
  4. Beaverdale Books – Oct 16, 2:00-3:00 PM. Adib Khorram. Kiss & Tell.
  5. Beaverdale Books – Oct 19, 7:00-8:00 PM. Lan Samantha Chang. The Family Chao.
  6. Beaverdale Books – Oct 23, 1:00-2:00 PM. Christer Sturmark. To Light the Flame of Reason.
  7. Artisan Gallery 218 – Oct 24, 6:30-8:00 PM. Kay Fenton Smith & Carol McGarvey. Baking Blue Ribbons: Stories and Recipes from the Iowa State Fair Food Competitions
  8. Beaverdale Books – Oct 28, 6:30 PM. Anne Winkler-Morey. Allegiance to Winds & Waters: Bicycling the Political Divides of the United States
  9. Beaverdale Books – Nov 3, 6:30 PM. Phil Adamo. The Medievalist
  10. Beaverdale Books – Nov 9, 6:30 PM. Madison Traviss. Indi Meets Washington
  11. Artisan Gallery 218 – Nov 14, 7:30 PM. Rob Sand. The Winning Ticket

Recurring bookstore events –

  1. Beaverdale Books – Hunter’s Classics Book Club (2nd Tue, 7:00 PM); Beaverdale Book Browsers Club (2nd Thu, 6:30 PM); Urbandale UCC Book Club (3rd Thu); Books and Bonbons (3rd Thu, 7:00 PM); Environmental Bok Club (3rd Sat); Mystery Book Club (4th Tue, 7:00 PM)
  2. Storyhouse Bookpub – Storytimes (Saturdays 11:00 AM)
  3. Dogeared Books – Dog-Eared official book club (one Thu/month, 10-11 AM); Between the Covers (one Sat/month, 7-8 PM); Women from Other Words book club (one Mon/month 5-6 PM); Translation book club (one Fri/month, 7-8 PM); Books & Beverages – the book club experience without the commitment (one Thu/month, 6-7 PM)

Beaverdale Books provides their Top Ten sellers list, updated each month. Updated hours: Mon-Fri 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM; Sat 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM; Sun 12:00 Noon to 4:00 PM. 515-279-5400.

Top Ten sellers in our store last month — see what everyone’s reading!

  1. Bet the Farm: The Dollars and Sense of Growing Food in America, Beth Hoffman*
  2. Finding Turtle Farm, Angela Tedesco*
  3. Hello Iowa, Mary Gordon* and Candace Camling**
  4. Baking Blue Ribbons: Stories and Recipes from the Iowa State Fair Competitions, Kay Fenton Smith* and Carol McGarvey*
  5. The Land Remains: A Midwestern Perspective on Our Past and Future, Neil D. Hamilton*
  6. Heart Songs, Dennis Maulsby*
  7. Where the Crawdads Sing, Delia Owens
  8. The Last White Man, Mohsin Hamid
  9. Horse, by Geraldine Brooks,
  10. She Said, He Said: Money, Scott Galenbeck*

* Iowa author
Highlighted author names’ indicate interviews are in The Culture Buzz Podcast Library.
Please visit: 

Life Resource books worth your consideration:

  1. From Horror to Hope: Recognizing and Preventing the Health Impacts of War by Barry S. Levy MD. This meticulously researched book adds Dr. Levy’s career of understanding and study on these issues, creating the most comprehensive understanding on this topic, while giving hope for a future with less or no war.
  2. (P)luck: Lessons We Learned for Improving Healthcare and the World. Blair Sadler and twin brother, Alfred, the dynamic medical doctor-lawyer team, infuse their invaluable resource with vital information that is applicable even beyond the world of just healthcare.
  3. Becoming the Instrument: Lessons on Self Mastery from Music to Life is the masterful follow-up to Kenny Werner’s seminal Effortless Mastery: Liberating the Master Musician Within. The wisdom packed between the covers of this gem will enlighten each and every time you delve into it.
  4. The Exceptional Professional: What You Need to Know to Grow Your Career is an info-packed gem from Callista Gould. 

Check out The Culture Buzz’s insightful interviews for these and other authors’ interviews at

Performing Arts Organizations:
Please check in advance regarding any scheduled performances, exhibitions, museum visits, etc.

Greater Des Moines Independent Book Store Happenings:
The Culture Buzz shares many authors and their books with its audiences. We encourage you to visit your local independent book store regularly. The folks at these destination locations know books, and welcome the chance to help anyone connect with titles and subjects they seek. Check these sites, as their calendars are always filled with enticing activities and news.

  1. Beaverdale Books, Des Moines.
  2. Pageturners Bookstore, Indianola.
  3. Dog-eared Books, Ames.
  4. Artisan Gallery 218, 218-5th Street, Historic Valley Junction, West Des Moines (select author events),
  5. Read a Book Nook, Marshalltown.
  6. Book Vault, Oskaloosa.
  7. Pella Books, Pella.
  8. Prairie Lights Books & Cafe, Iowa City.
  9. Storyhouse Bookpub, Des Moines Historic East Village.

Cultural Exploration Resources:
The Culture Buzz will begin including carefully vetted but comprehensive listings where you can do some advance online exploration before scheduling destinations in the region. These are two great websites to know about:

  1. The Culture Buzz – John Busbee and associates encourage cultural adventures with a comprehensive overview of what The Culture Buzz delivers. An archive library of favorite interviews is on the website, and all recent interviews can be found at
  2. Gentle Guide to Theater – Timothy Rose renews his insights and information about the Central Iowa theatre scene with his new website. This site is anchored by the most navigable, informative calendar of upcoming things theatrical in this region.
  3. Center Stage – This Cityview monthly column covers feature stories about Central Iowa’s theatre scene. Distributed throughout the region and available online. Current column:
  4. Cityview – Central Iowa’s monthly printed and continually updated online resource to all things happening in your community, from arts & culture, to music, to civic and political discourse, to fascinating columnists and stories. Cityview is the reliable source for keeping you informed and engaged in the Greater Des Moines community and beyond.
  5. Art Week Des Moines – this annual, community/neighborhood celebration of the arts happens in several Greater Des Moines communities during the week leading up to the Des Moines Arts Festival. Planning, engagement and more happen throughout the year, and a diversity of input is welcomed and embraced by this initiative.
  6. dsm Magazine – Central Iowa’s gateway to arts, culture and more in a stunning, visual format. dsm’s CultureCast podcast features interviews with cultural leaders, artists and musicians.
  7. ia Magazine – Built upon the success of its Central Iowa counterpart, this annual gem brings enticing cultural news from across the state.
  8. Contact Buzz – This new column covers crossroads between creativity and culture, and is offered in the new Des Moines edition of Little Village magazine.
  9. Little Village magazine. This Des Moines edition of the iconic Iowa City monthly brings a progressive voice to Central Iowa readers.
  10. 900Views Podcast. An exploration of arts and community with Host Pat Boddy. Based out of Mainframe Studios in downtown Des Moines, 900Views provides a platform for glimpsing the creative work and lives of the Midwest’s cultural producers and influencers.
  11. Greater Des Moines Community Jazz Center is this region’s source for a decades-established advocacy group for jazz, and established jazz professionals guiding and nurturing next generations of jazz musicians and fans.
  12. Central Iowa Blues Society is the area’s connecting point for performance, presentations and education in the world of blues.
  13. Bryan Farland, for many years, single handedly puts together the most comprehensive list of live and streaming music in Iowa. Bryan reaches out two ways, and

Resources to help, support and guide during any challenges you or someone you care about may be experiencing:

  • COVID Iowa Recovery: 800-775-9276
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or
  • United Way 211: Dial 211, text ZIP code to 898211 or visit
  • CICIL: #CICILServes COVID-19 Hotline: (866) 44-CICIL
  • Trans Lifeline: (877) 565-8860
  • LGBT National Youth Talkline: (800) 246-7743
  • LGBT National Talkline: (888) 843-4564
  • Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center:
  • Broadlawns 24/7 Crisis Team: (515) 282-5752
  • Your Life Iowa Help Line: (855) 581-8111
  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
  • Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741 to be connected to crisis counseling
  • Online Mental Health Crisis Chat:
  • MercyOne Des Moines Behavioral Health Clinic: 515-643-9030.
  • Prelude Behavioral Services (substance treatment): 515-262-0349
  • Instead of 911 – Des Moines area
    Domestic Violence: 515.286.3600
       Polk County Crisis & Advocacy
    Poison Control: 800.222.1222
    Mental Health Crisis: 515.282.5752
       Broadlawns Crisis Team
    LGBTQ+ Abuse: 866.488.7386
    Sexual Assault: 515.243.7386
       Children & Families of Iowa
    Veteran Crisis: 800.273.8255 press1
       Veterans & Their Families Health Crisis Line
    Child Abuse/Neglect: 800.422.4453
       National US Child Abuse Hotline
    Animal Abuse/Neglect: 515.284.6905
       Des Moines Animal Control
    *open 24/7
    As always, I appreciate news and information from you out there in the cultural trenches and am ready and willing to pursue a story or interview to share with my audiences. ♦

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