Arts and Culture | WGLT

Arts and Culture

'WCBU & WGLT Present' Set To Debut In October

Sep 25, 2020

WCBU and WGLT Present is a limited, short-run series featuring cultural arts organizations throughout central Illinois that are unable to perform in front of a live audience because of COVID-19 restrictions on public gatherings.

Normal theater exterior
Ryan Denham / WGLT

After being closed for six months due to the pandemic, the Normal Theater will reopen for in-person film screenings starting Oct. 1.

seaside jumpers painting
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Artist Cathy Engberg celebrates life’s simple, everyday moments.  

Charlie Starr and Blackberry Smoke play the Corn Crib in Normal Saturday night
Blackberry Smoke

Musicians and concert promoters are working their way back into larger live music events. Blackberry Smoke headlines one of two shows this weekend at the Corn Crib in Normal.

The Creative Technologies Program / WGLT

The gaming industry is becoming so big that Illinois State University’s Creative Technologies major is leveling up when it comes to game design.

kids creating art
avilasal / Flickr via Creative Commons

Each autumn, Illinois State University offers kids in the community a chance to participate in a series of art classes, learning visual arts and drama. Naturally, those classes have a twist this year. 

The new album from V8 Vast Change is titled "Civil Disobedience"
Dominique Stevenson

Dominique Stevenson has been a very public figure in Bloomington-Normal this year. He founded the youth-based Next Gen Initiative. The social-justice group initiated several marches and education forums in the Twin Cities this summer.

a hand holding a fossil
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

North and west of Mason City, Iowa, there is a quarry belonging to the LeHigh Cement Company. It's huge. In a "what I did on my summer vacation" moment, ISU Geologist and Paleontologist James "Jed" Day said he found something very cool there.


Each year, Bloomington-Normal doctors put down their stethoscopes and pick up a violin, cello, guitar or other musical instrument for the annual Doctors in Concert fundraiser. 

happy contagion
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Don’t let the cute fool you. 

Alex Sing

A documentary film about an organic vegetable farmer in Woodford County is now available to a much wider audience.

Normal IL rapper and visual artist Grill Billyenz
Grill Billyenz

Rapper and visual artist Grill Billyenz of Normal says the darker industrial sound on his latest album "Metamorph" comes from the ghost-town feeling he gets working the third shift at his "day job."

Stone columns at an IWU gateway
WGLT file photo / Staff

The American Association of University Professors said Friday it questions the legitimacy of the process that led to the Illinois Wesleyan University Board of Trustees decision to cancel anthropology, French, Italian, and the religious studies programs.

The AAUP has asked for a response to faculty allegations made in a letter sent to IWU President Georgia Nugent and trustees chair Timothy Szerlong.

In recent years, the phrase, “That’s What She Said” has become a popular punchline. It also is the title of a series of live events that showcase everyday women. The series began in Champaign in 2013 and was supposed to come to Bloomington earlier this year until, well, everything shut down.

Now, it's going online Friday evening.

big fish performance
Community Players

The doors to their theater may be closed, but Community Players has declared the show must go on. 

Justin Vickers
Justin Vickers

It was just standing there, empty. No concerts, no audience, no applause. No nothing. And that’s a sad state for a concert hall. 

The Illinois Art Station’s plan to locate near Constitution Trail took a step forward, and the Normal Police officers’ union agreement was OK’d during Monday night’s Normal Town Council virtual meeting.

A statue of Columbus
Tim Shelley / WGLT/WCBU

Bloomington city staff will examine converting the Columbus Day holiday to one honoring indigenous people, with a majority of the city council indicating at least some support for researching the question during a Committee of the Whole session Monday night.

Illinois Art Station

Illinois Art Station is on the move and making plans for an expanded future in Bloomington-Normal. 

Group poses at Black lIberation event
Tiffani Jackson / WGLT

Standing in solidarity and using fine arts as the form of expression, a downtown Black Liberation Celebration brought people of all demographics together Saturday to support the African American community in a plea for justice among injustices taking place nationwide.

Normal Theater
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

For almost four months, the silver screen at the Normal Theater has remained dark. The seats  have been  empty. And that enticing scent of popcorn has been conspicuously absent. 

Stone columns at an IWU gateway
WGLT file photo / Staff

Illinois Wesleyan University faculty have voted overwhelmingly to ask the administration to hold off on faculty layoffs in programs cut by the board of trustees.

blue dog print
McLean County Arts Center

Works of art that once were part of private collections can now be enjoyed by the entire community at a new exhibition at the McLean County Arts Center in downtown Bloomington. 

A statue of Columbus
Tim Shelley / WGLT/WCBU

A lot of statues in America have become problematic. People want to tear them down because they represent a part of history to be disavowed, or embody once heroic themes that now seem shameful.

front proch
Roger-Bruce / Creative Commons

Live theater has returned to the Twin Cities in a new project that guarantees audiences needn’t venture any further out than their own front porch.  

The fierce debate over the future of the Uptown Normal mural has inspired a documentary about the controversy and the role public art plays in our lives. 

Ames Library at Illinois Wesleyan University
Staff / WGLT

Hundreds of Illinois Wesleyan University graduates are closely watching this week’s expected Board of Trustees decisions on the future direction of the institution. A variety of potential cuts and changes will be considered.

Outside of Irving Elementary School in Bloomington
WGLT file photo

A Bloomington grade school teacher has produced a children's book that she feels will better serve a more diverse student population.

transit photo
Courtesy of the artist and Regards, Chicago.

A group of students from Bloomington High School didn’t let anything stand in their way to curate the latest exhibition from University Galleries in Normal. 

Men holding a sign marching in the Labor Day Parade in Bloomington
Bloomington-Normal Trades and Labor Assembly / Facebook

The pandemic has caused the cancellation of another of the big annual Bloomington-Normal event.