December 6, 2010

Spitzer @ the Burton

Last Thursday, the night after the D Show, the Creative Arts Scholarship Series (CASS) debuted at the Burton Theatre with a special screening of Client 9: The Rise & Fall of Eliot Spitzer. Academy Award-Winning Director Alex Gibney came out to show the crowd his latest work. Those of us who weren’t too hung-over from the night before were able to get in a few more drinks and watch a great film in a hip Detroit theater, while raising money for the College for Creative Study’s Advertising Scholarship Fund.

If you’ve never been to the Burton Theatre, then you’re missing out. Once an elementary school auditorium, this hidden gem features velour seats, suspended iron & glass lamps and a modest stage where you can imagine grade-school students putting on Holiday pageants. The Burton hosts everything from zombie flicks to international award winners to blaxploitation to oddball/home made/found/psychedelic/’Never Seen Anything Like This’ movies. Always interesting. The theater hosts barbeques in the summer with a generous outdoor screen, grilled Porktown sausages and classic favorites like The Burbs & Polyester.

It was certainly the first time an Academy Award-Winning director dropped by to show his/her own flick, and his work did not disappoint. His take on the Eliot Spitzer story was less of a ‘here’s what happened & why he’s a bad/good guy’, and more of a ‘here’s how this story is a fairly-common tragedy that we’ve all read before’.

The Q&A benefited from the intimate size of the crowd and their industry experience. Questions ranged from how Gibney pulled off so many impossible, close-up interviews to more technical matters of documentary style and crew size. It was a pleasure to have such a tuned-in group, it made me feel smarter.

The Creative Arts Scholarship Series is devoted to supporting the development of the next generation of creative thinkers in Detroit by raising money for CCS Scholarships. This marked the debut event. I will be working to help this series gain traction. We aim to bring world-class film-makers to Detroit to screen their films, and eventually to branch out into music and art-based events as well. We're gonna start with a mission statement. One step at a time!

If you feel like you missed out on the invite, it’s probably because you did. We blew that part. But fear not, next time we’ll do it a little better! I promise.

Here’s to keeping more creatives in Detroit...

If you weren't able to join us, but are curious to hear what Gibney has to say about the film, check out a video of another Q&A here:

We'll have to get ourselves one of those fancy video-camera things to start taping our own Q&A's next time...


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