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Monday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 17 Dec 2012 7:58 AM

Today in the roundup: The benefit of cultural districts, a local book gaining national attention and words with the star of the upcoming Forbidden Broadway.


THE ECONOMIC IMPACT: Texas is one of 12 states that formally designate cultural districts. That stamp of approval doesn’t come with any money behind it, but it does help the districts market themselves and seek outside financing. But beginning with the new legislative session next month, a push will be made to allow the districts to tap into state funding and position the Texas Commission on the Arts as a economic driver. “We’re being underutilized,” Gary Gibbs, the commission’s executive director, tells The Texas Tribune in a story that looks at the ramifications of these potential changes. “We have great potential to benefit the state, and with more resources we would be in a much better position to fulfill our mission and benefit all people of Texas.”

A NOTABLE BOOK: You might remember hearing Jerome’s interview way back in July with Plano music historian Ted Gioia. He had recently published his The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire, which tells the stories of 250 classics. Fast forward to now, and the book is still catching people’s attention. Los Angeles Times book critic David L. Ulin has named it one of the top 10 books of 2012. “This exquisite book brings both context and passion to the 250-plus songs that make up the jazz canon, blending research, criticism and a musician’s understanding to frame an informal history of the form,” he writes on

QUOTABLE: “You get to change your clothes a lot, each one of us has different costumes. Especially, for the women who have to change dresses, wigs, and shoes. Sometimes the better show is backstage.”

– James Donegan, star of Forbidden Broadway, which plays the AT&T Performing Arts Center Dec. 27-30. He covers a wide array of topics in an interview with Front Row.