Parkland Press

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Allentown Symphony lands ‘Moon’ concert at State Theatre

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

It’s not the distance from the Earth to the Moon (on average, 238,855 miles), but the distance from Miller Symphony Hall, Allentown, to the State Theatre Center for the Arts, Easton (approximately 16.5 miles via American Parkway and U.S. Route 22 East) requires a fair amount of logistics for the Allentown Symphony Orchestra, 7 p.m. May 4 “To The Moon And Back!” concert.

The concert asks the cosmic question: Where were you on July 20, 1969, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin took mankind’s first steps on the lunar surface?

Students go ‘Side by Side’ in Allentown Band concert

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

When the phrase “Side by Side” is mentioned, one first might think of “Side by Side by Sondheim,” the 1977 Broadway revue of songs by Broadway composer Stephen Sondheim. The title references the song, “Side by Side by Side,” from the Sondheim musical, “Company.”

The Lehigh Valley has its own “Side by Side” Allentown Band concert, 7:30 p.m. May 5, Miller Symphony Hall, Allentown.

Allentown Band sound rings out in Carnegie Hall concert

Friday, April 26, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

NEW YORK -- “And to think these two schools from Puerto Rico were devastated and they got to Carnegie Hall,” said Deb Heiney, business manager, Allentown Band, after the band’s stellar performance on the Ronald O. Perelman Stage, Isaac Stern Auditorium, Carnegie Hall, New York City, for the concluding night of the 2019 New York International Music Festival.

The festival, presented by World Projects Corp., brought six high school music groups and two college ensembles, which were adjudicated to qualify for participation, to the five-day festival, April 13-17, in New York.

‘Soft start to spring season’: LV house sales down again

Friday, April 26, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Business Showcase

House sales declined for the third straight month, putting sales in negative territory for the first quarter of 2019 compared to house sales for the same three months one year ago.

Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors (GLVR) officials report that March data “showed a soft start to the spring selling season.”

Closed sales for houses in the Lehigh Valley decreased 7.2 percent in in March, with 589 houses sold, down from 635 houses sold in March 2018, according to the Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors (GLVR) monthly report released April 15.

Movie Review: ‘Pet Sematary’

Friday, April 26, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

Novelist Stephen King is a master of invoking the superstition metaphor of whistling past the cemetery, whereby when one is afraid, one tries to calm one’s fears by whistling.

It seldom helps.

It also won’t help with “Pet Sematary,” the remake of the 1989 film (a sequel, Pet Sematary Two” was released in 1992) based on King’s 1983 horror novel of the same title.

Review: ‘Shazam!’

Friday, April 19, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

Those of us of a certain age may recall “Shazam!” as a catchphrase of Gomer Pyle (Jim Nabors) on the hit TV shows, “The Andy Griffth Show” (1960-1968) and “Gomer Pyle U.S.M.C.” (1964-1969).

Comic-book collectors and fans will know that “Shazam!” as a word that, when exclaimed by Billy Batson (Asher Angel in the movie), transforms him into an adult superhero Shazam (Zachary Levi in the movie).

The Press 14th annual Student Poetry Project

Friday, April 19, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

To commemorate “National Poetry Month” in April, the Lehigh Valley Press presents the 14th annual Student Poetry Project.

Please see Page B1 and B3 and the Focus pages on the Press websites for poems selected in the Elementary School, Middle School and High School categories.

Students whose poems are published on Page B1 read their poems and were interviewed on the April 15 broadcast of “Lehigh Valley Arts Salon” on WDIY, 88.1, wdiy.org, Lehigh Valley Public Radio and NPR affiliate.

Movie Reviiew: ‘Us’

Friday, April 12, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

“We have met the enemy and he is us.”

“Pogo” comicstrip,

Walt Kelly, 1953

“Us” is not an altogether bad film.

It’s quite good in direction, performances, cinematography and soundtrack.

That said, “Us” is a disappointing sophomore effort from writer-director Jordan Peele, following his critically-acclaimed hit and big-screen directorial debut, “Get Out” (2017).

Whereas “Get Out” explored socio-ecnomic themes layered upon the leitmotif of a horror film. “Us” lacks overarching intellectual plumbing.

Press newspapers receive 18 Professional Keystone Awards

Friday, April 12, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

Lehigh Valley Press newspapers received 18 awards in the 2019 Professional Keystone Press Awards for work published in 2018.

The Bethlehem Press and its contributors received 12 Keystone Awards.

Four of the Bethlehem Press Keystone Awards was for work published in the Focus section.

East Penn Press received two Keystone Awards.

Northwestern Press received two Keystone Awards.

Whitehall-Coplay received one Keystone Award.

Catasauqua Press received one Keystone Award.

Movie Review: ‘Dumbo’

Friday, April 12, 2019 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

The live-action “Dumbo” movie is an entertaining comedy-drama that the entire family should enjoy.

Movies rated PG or G movies are typically in the minority of theatrical feature movie releases, and “Dumbo” is one of them.

Based on a report by Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which administers movie ratings, more than 50 percent of movies released since the rating system went into effect 50 years ago received an R rating, that is, 17,202 films. That compares to 5,578 films rated PG, 4,913 films rated PG-13 (implemented in 1984), and 1,574 films rated G.