DESIGNERS RE-CREATE HOTEL CRESCENT COURT
There are a handful of historic hotels in Uptown Dallas, but only one just completed a $30-million re-imagination, which took nearly a year to complete. Hotel Crescent Court, located within the flourishing 11-acre Crescent Complex just steps from the Dallas Arts District and surrounded by stylish shopping, dining and entertainment, unveiled the expansive renovation.
Dallas-based interior and architectural design firm waldrop + nichols studio was tasked with leading the charge. It formulated an interior design concept that honors the historic property’s past and blends European luxury and elegance with impeccable Texas hospitality. “Embarking on a design renovation for a hotel with renowned presence and pedigree requires a commitment to honor the heritage yet still create an aesthetic for the next generation,” says Andrea Waldrop, the firm’s vice president. “Every design environment created provides an original platform that stirs a guest to engage and embrace the essence of the interior.”
The designers drew cues from works of haute couture and avant-garde ideals in the full redesign and restoration of the 186 luxury guest rooms and 40 suites, an addition of nine suites from the original. New bathrooms and vanity areas were part of the room renovation, and the designers selected a color palette of limestone, blush, taupe and mink, which speak to the classic French exterior. In addition to the rooms, the designers updated the floor corridors, elevators and lobby, while creating a new, swanky champagne and cocktail lounge, Beau Nash, located on the lobby level. Beau Nash radiates timeless elegance, with a beautiful marble bar top imported from Spain, tasteful brass light fixtures and rich materials. A sophisticated palette of slate, ink and silver textiles adds depth and mood to the space.
A second interior design firm, Michelle Meredith + Associates, spearheaded the renovation of the 22,000-square-foot luxury spa and fitness center. The new facilities exude modern luxury, bringing a fresh, organic atmosphere to the hotel. To create the oasis of serenity a color palette of subtle lavenders, blues, grays and warm creams accented with brass and glossy whites were used. All artwork and materials were hand-selected to showcase simplistic natural forms and patterns, from spiral root figures, representing health and growth, to forms of water and lush vegetation that connect to the most basic elements.
The transformation of Hotel Crescent Court pays homage to the 5-star hotel’s French Renaissance facade while upholding the vision of Caroline Rose Hunt and the original architect and Pritzker Prize-winner, Philip Johnson. 214-871-3200 crescentcourt.com
VOCAL MASTER BECOMES MENTOR
After a multifaceted music career that spans more than 38 years, some people might consider slowing down or even retiring. Not WT Greer. He is just warming up and embarking on a new venture to share his musical knowledge with anyone with a smartphone, mobile device or computer and 20 to 30 minutes of time. Especially the parent who wants to give the young, budding music artist something other than the standard online experience.
Having toured the world as an artist himself, Greer has also acted as a vocal producer and a vocal coach for other artists, including vocal producing in studio for Kirstin Maldonado of The Pentatonix on her new solo release, Zach Herron of Why Don’t We, and singing backup for Meghan Trainor’s latest CD, to name a few.
For the last six years, Greer operated as the director of the Master Program—total artist development for ages 14 to 18 for the Septien Entertainment Group. Several of Greer’s students have gone on to be accepted into acclaimed university music programs across the country and have been featured on major talent search programs as far back as and including, Star Search, American Idol, The Voice, America’s Got Talent and The Four.
Through TheVoiceMentor.com, Greer provides a monthly subscription service for artist development, covering topics such as songwriting, stage presence and social media marketing. Also covered are the many aspects of vocal training, both advanced and beginning vocal techniques.
“There are many different ways to sing and even more opinions on how to do so,” says Greer. “But, the most important things to consider are how uniquely your voice operates and how to preserve and protect it for long-term use. I can and want to help you get there.”
On this note, Greer’s classes are not just for singers and vocal entertainers. His lessons in breath economy and enunciations span techniques that will help those who wish to improve upon their public speaking skills for personal and professional arenas.
Greer’s online program entails a single 20-minute session released weekly. Each session is a combination of building technique and digging deeper into the core of vocal artistry. With the purchase of a monthly subscription, you will have access to certain curriculum available 24/7. There are different membership levels, which offer a variety of benefits for wherever you are in your journey, assistance in finding great producers and even industry contacts for those who are truly ready.
“After so many years in this industry on television, singing for 10 people or 90,000, after the many hours both singing and producing in the studio, and vocal coaching outside of it, I have learned incredible things from the incredible artists around me. But, there are far too many talented people out there who can’t afford private lessons, so here is a way to share some of what I have learned with others at a price anyone could afford,” says Greer. thevoicementor.com
NEW YEAR BRINGS NEW NEWS FOR DALLAS FILM SOCIETY
The annual cycle of celebrating moving pictures kicks off at the beginning of the year—award season launches with the Golden Globes and carries on until the Oscars—but for those at the Dallas Film Society (DFS), celebrating film takes place all year long.
DFS honors films, filmmaking, digital media and their impact on society, recognizing storytellers for their achievements and also providing education programs and community engagement. The nonprofit organization promotes DFW and produces one of the largest film festivals in the Southwest, The Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF).
This year DIFF runs from May 3 – 10, and for the first time, takes place in one central location, Uptown’s West Village, which will promote greater connectivity between attendees, filmmakers, local restaurants and the community. Films will be screened at the West Village Magnolia Theatre, with additional events and experiential activations taking place at the nearby Canopy Dallas Uptown by Hilton and throughout West Village. Sony will host a 4K theater to screen short films and other 4K content, and demo new cameras and emerging technologies. Four Corners Brewery, a major sponsor, is the official beer of DIFF and DFS. Additional sponsors include: Mercury One, Central Market, Lucky Post, Reel FX, Panavision, Dallas Film Commission, EP, Studio Movie Grill, Commerce House, Prekindle, Simple Media and many others.
Johnathan Brownlee, the recently appointed president and CEO of DFS, was instrumental in moving DIFF to West Village as well as setting up a deal where the winning narrative feature film will receive a limited national theatrical release through its partner, Studio Movie Grill. Brownlee and artistic director James Faust are also curating a collection of the festival films to be screened in two Best of Fest mini festivals: Best of Fest Texas and The National Best of Fest, hosted by Studio Movie Grill theaters nationwide.
In addition to enhancing this year’s festival, Brownlee and Maggy Croxville have created the Veterans Institute for Film & Media (VIFM). Croxville, a former Marine, is the managing director, overseeing VIFM’s first offering, Film Basic Training. The program is 12 weeks long and fully sponsored, and provides honorably discharged U.S. veterans unparalleled access to an innovative curriculum taught by working film industry professionals. The institute provides education and resources and prepares them for entry careers in the film and digital media production industries. The program includes four weeks each of classroom instruction, paid internship time and placement with local DFW companies.
Another new program is One Story at a Time, for economically disadvantaged DISD students, giving them an opportunity to “tell and show” their own stories with easily accessible tools, such as smartphones. They curate their films into a community festival and online platform.
To support DFS education programs and year-round events become a member, starting at $50 a year. There is also a new free option. DIFF Passes range from $80 ($10/day) to enter all regular film screenings to the All Access Star Pass for $500, which is inclusive for all events, screening and parties.