The Cleveland Stater is published online and in print by students enrolled in the School of Communication at Cleveland State University.
The Innerlink: A CLASS Publication
Ingenuity Fest to offer artsy, innovative entertainment for all
BY JONATHAN D. HERZBERGER
To the left, a group of artists frantically attacks a sizeable canvas together. To the right, dancers in colorful makeup glide in unison to a group of drummers behind them. A man on bright silver stilts strolls past, and just ahead, a pair of lively robots dance with a group of equally lively children.
Either you ate something spicy before going to bed and are paying for it in your dreams, or you’re at the Ingenuity Festival.
Beginning in 2004 as “Ingenuity, the Cleveland Festival of Art + Technology,” co-founders Thomas Mulready of CoolCleveland.com and James Levin, playwright, director and founder of the Cleveland Public Theatre, envisioned a fusion of art and technology, a sprawling event with a scope rarely attempted in Cleveland.
Levin and Mulready sought to highlight something they called “the hidden Cleveland,” which Mulready defines as “addressing a pressing need of this region: that despite the rich history and presence of wonderful resources in culture and technology, these treasures did not receive commensurate attention and respect.”
The first festival took place at various locations throughout downtown Cleveland in summer 2005.
In 2007, the festival partnered with Cleveland State University, Playhouse Square and WVIZ/Ideastream, hosting the entire event in Playhouse Square between East 22nd Street and the Halle building.
This year’s festival kicks off with a preview party on Thursday night at the Sterling Building, 1255 Euclid Ave.
Tickets are $45, which include all-weekend passes not only to Ingenuity Fest, but its sister event, Screaming Tiki Comic-Con, which boasts appearances by actor/stuntman Ray Park, best known for his work as Darth Maul in the Star Wars series. Also appearing are Edward James Olmos, from the television series Battlestar Galactica, and numerous artists and writers from Marvel, DC, as well as other luminaries in the comics industry.
Ingenuity Fest is bringing its own share of star power. Self-proclaimed Videoartist KASUMI, coming fresh from an appearance at Carnegie Hall, will be blending film with a live performance by experimental noise band KEN REI.
The performance art group Beatrix*JAR will be performing at 8 p.m. on Friday and conducting a “Circuit-bending workshop” in the Family Village at 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, in which they work with the audience to make music from electronic toys such as Speak-N-Spells.
Attendees are encouraged to bring battery-powered electronics and toys.
Scientist Geoff Landis will be hosting NASA’s contribution, including lectures on the future of space travel, the science of Superman and an installation dubbed the Magical Mirage Machine, which Landis describes as “a floor-projected 3D/virtual-reality display.”
Landis and other scientists from the Glenn Research Center will be hoisting virtual models of moons, stars, rockets and other celestial bodies throughout the weekend.
CSU staff, students, and alumni are involved throughout the festival, from the ambient rock band If These Trees Could Talk to several members on the events’ board of directors, to a large portion of the volunteer staff. Admission is $15 for the full weekend, or $10 per day. Children ages 12 and under attend for free.
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