Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Where We Live - Hartford

Where We Live @ Real Art Ways, LIVE
Wednesday, October 7

8 AM: reception with John Dankosky and the Where We Live production staff
9 AM: Live recording

If you listen to WNPR, chances are you've heard the program Where We Live, which discusses all kinds of local CT issues and happenings. On Wednesday, you can be a part of a live radio broadcast of WWL, hosted by the excellent John Dankosky. The topic is Hartford – where it's been and where it's going. Bring your stories, thoughts, questions and ideas to share on air.

Hopefully a lot of the discussion goes into the arts and music community of Hartford, why it's been stagnant for so long, and where we can go from here to revive it more. I've heard numerous discussions on reviving Hartford and talks of cleaning it up and changing the face of the downtown area, but I'm just not very optimistic about it. What I find strange is that a city that's so deeply seated in the art world, and has so many amazing art theaters and venues is such a cultural void. Why does it have to be that way? I live close to Hartford, and yet I hardly ever have a reason to go, the city itself basically shuts down at night. The local music scene in Hartford is hardly worth mentioning, there are only a handful of bands, and there are almost no venues that sponsor local independent music. All that seems to come out of Hartford are classic rock cover bands and nu-metal WCCC 106.9 garbage. Just about the only places worth visiting in the entire city are Real Art Ways and the Charter Oak Cultural Center - I think they're great, and Hartford needs more places like that.

I don't mean to rant so much, but something definitely has to change before I'll look at Hartford differently. Maybe I'm just being negative here, and maybe I'm missing out on a lot of things that are just sliding under my radar. Seriously, Hartford has the chance to actually be worthwhile: there's a train station downtown, and a lot of small little clubs and bars within walking distance of each other. There's a huge amount of infrastructure for the arts and music, with tons of theaters and venues all over the city. Where are the bands? Where are the crowds? Where is the support? How can we spark a change to the Hartford mentality? Does anyone even care anymore, or is everyone just looking elsewhere?

1 comment:

eric said...

I lived in Hartford for 5 years; went to music school there. There's a small jazz scene, mostly fueled by the Hartt school and the Artists' Collective, but I have to agree. As a sometimes indie rock musician, I would never consider living in Hartford. There's just nothing there. Potential, yeah; lots of cool buildings and spaces, and even a decent amount of young people who might love a good music/arts scene (there are a lot of colleges around). But there's just nothing happening.