As West Michigan's only professional opera company, Opera Grand Rapids thrills audiences with the gripping tale of Verdi's Il Trovatore. The four-act opera chronicles a gypsy hag's lifelong revenge plot, fraught with kidnapping, a witch burning, and unregulated derivatives trading. Nationally acclaimed cast members, including seasoned tenor Arnold Rawls, belt out monumental arias and the spellbinding "Anvil Chorus" in elaborate period costumes. Operagoers delve into the dramatic story up close in the orchestra section of the 2,404-seat DeVos Performance Hall, refurbished in 2002 to further enhance the auditorium's sight lines and glowing amber wood panels.
Under the guidance of cofounders and brothers Mikhail and Arkadiy Sarkisov, the skilled coaches at Grand Rapids Fencing Academy enlighten budding swordsmiths on the essential techniques of modern fencing. During informative classes for all experience levels, students learn the foot moves, blade work, and confetti-cutting skills of èpèe-, foil-, and saber-style fencing. Each session is designed to improve mind-body coordination and flexibility while providing aerobic exercise. A wall of full-length mirrors allows pupils to view and modify their techniques inside the sprawling hardwood studio.
Mikhail and Arkadiy Sarkisov sharpened their fencing skills on the former Soviet Union's national fencing team before earning medals in their home country's national championship. In 2004, the United States Olympic Committee named Mikhail the Developmental Coach of the Year in fencing. Both brothers hold master's degrees in fencing and have placed highly in numerous tournaments across multiple globes.
As he revealed in an article on MLive, Garry Von Myhr thinks about cell-phone repair so much that he talks about it in his sleep. Von Myhr opened Genius Phone Repair with partners Jordan Notenbaum and Steve Barnes. The startup has blossomed out of parent company Note Tech Industries—a cell-phone repair business that Notenbaum was running out of his basement—into a successful organization with four convenient storefronts.
The entrepreneurs' speedy and affordable services were praised in a feature on WZZM 13 News. They specialize in repairing iPhone, BlackBerry, and Android mobile devices, and they stand behind their work with a 90-day warranty. The crew also purchases broken or functional devices for cash, and can recommend phone accessories such as protective cases or pasta-making attachments.
Laughter is the best medicine, though it tends to be the worst legal defense. Salute the healing art of comedy with today's Groupon: for $8, you get two tickets to see River City Improv (an $18 value) at the Ladies Literary Club downtown. This Groupon is valid for two admissions ($9 each) to one of six performances: Sept. 18, Oct. 2, Oct. 16, Nov. 6, Nov. 20, or Dec. 4. Both tickets must be used at the same show. Shows start at 7:33 p.m., with doors opening an hour before.
Shining its spotlights on everything from live concerts to cage fights, the Orbit Room morphs to handle intimate concerts and packed dance parties alike. A two-tiered design lends ample room for more than 1,600 swaying fans or 800 three-legged racers, with an open ground floor and loge resting below a seated balcony. Five bars adorn the two floors, quenching fans' thirst before they hop into the mosh pit or stretch their legs in the balcony.