Ammon Swenson, Alaska Public Media

Ammon Swenson is Alaska Public Media’s Audio Media Content Producer. He was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. He graduated from UAA in 2018 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and integrated media. He’s previously worked for KRUA radio, the Anchorage Press, and The Northern Light.

State of Art: Anchorage Festival of Music presents silent film epic ‘Scaramouche’ with live baroque ensemble

The 1923 film "Scaramouche" is a story of love and revenge during the French Revolution. Director Rex Ingram' 100-year-old masterpiece is filled with historic details, massive sets and action that holds up today. Anchorage Festival of Music will host a screening of the film and will be scoring the film live with period correct instruments.

State of Art: Wild Shore New Music returns for 10th season

This week on State of Art we're joined by the founders of Wild Shore New Music. They perform modern chamber music that explores place and environment while collaborating with a variety of other artists. The group will be performing in Anchorage on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. in the UAA Recital Hall.

State of Art: The Alaska Writers Guild annual conference connects writers and illustrators

On this episode of State of Art we're discussing the Alaska Writers Guild and their upcoming conference. The guild connects Alaska writers and provides educational opportunities for things like business and marketing. Their annual conference for writers and illustrators will be held on Friday and Saturday the last weekend of September at UAA's Rasmuson Hall. We're joined by Alaska Writers Guild board members Laura Carpenter and Brooke Hartman to find out more about the guild, what to expect from the conference and more.

State of Art: Black comedy classic ‘Arsenic and Old Lace’ returns to Anchorage Community Theater

This week on State of Art we're joined by "Arsenic and Old Lace" director MaryAlice Larmi to discuss the fast-paced farce. It centers on Mortimer Brewster and his maniacal family including spinster aunts who have a habit of murdering lonely old men, a brother on the run from the law and one who thinks he's Teddy Roosevelt. She tells us about what to expect, casting the right performers, and acting icon Boris Karloff's contribution to Anchorage Community Theater's 1957 production of the play.

State of Art: Meet two young filmmakers looking to take their next steps

This week on State of Art we're hearing from filmmakers Kendrick Whiteman and Logan Smith. They're both products of Alaska Teen Media Institute and are peer mentors with the youth media training organization. Whiteman was featured at the Anchorage International Film Festival in 2022 and leans toward a surreal atmosphere with his work while Smith likes to blend the weird with comedy. We discuss what got them into film, their previous work and what comes next.

State of Art: Medium Build and Quinn Christopherson to headline benefit concert in Anchorage for northern tribal school

This week on State of Art we're discussing an upcoming benefit concert to help the Qargi Academy Tribal School in Wainwright. We're joined by longtime musician and Marketing Manager for the Arctic Slope Community Foundation, James Dommek Jr., who is organizing the show. He tells us about what makes the Qargi Academy unique, including indigenous performers as the opening act and more.

Addressing Alaskans: Anchorage Economic Development Corporation’s 2023 three-year outlook

On this episode of Addressing Alaskans we hear how the Anchorage economy has been progressing and what issues lie ahead. This program features the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation’s three-year outlook luncheon. It covers topics including population, employment, and other local industries. Speakers include Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson, AEDC president and CEO Bill Popp, and keynote speaker Mick Cornett, a four-term Mayor of Oklahoma City.

State of Art: An original ‘Hamilton’ rap won this Anchorage student free tickets to the hit musical

This week on State of Art we meet an Anchorage winner of the "Hamilton" creative competition organized by the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts and BroadwayBoundAK. Students from across Alaska going into grades 7 through 12 were invited to make and submit an original creative piece that was inspired by the hit musical. Winners were chosen from across the state and get to see "Hamilton" for free in September. Sam Beesley is starting his freshman year at West High and was chosen for his song called "Don't Wait For It."

State of Art: Celebrate all things Irish at Galway Days

This week on State of Art we're hearing all about Galway Days Irish Festival. It takes place on Saturday, August 12 at Town Square Park. There will be vendors, food, music and more. Irish Club of Alaska President Dawn Berg joins us to tell us about the festival, the club and she even sings us a song.

State of Art: Old Crow Medicine Show lead singer says playing Alaska has been a life-long dream

Ketch Secor first visited Alaska when he was 14 and it made a lasting impression on him. He traveled the Alaska Railroad, bought chewing tobacco in Sitka and kissed a girl in Fairbanks. The singer and fiddle player for the long-running, high-energy folk band Old Crow Medicine Show joins us this week ahead of the group's Salmonfest appearance. He tells us about their upcoming album "Jubilee" that celebrates a quarter century as a band, the finer points of playing street corners and more.

State of Art: Writer Corky Parker comes to Anchorage to share her award-winning memoir

Parker was an original staff member of KSKA nearly 45 years ago, but she's added many chapters to her life since then. Her memoir “La Finca: Love, Loss, and Laundry on a Tiny Puerto Rican Island” tells her story of running a rustic eco-lodge and what she learned along the way. The book is filled with sketches, images and other artwork that won her a 2023 University Press Award for Book & Cover Design along with her 2023  Pacific Northwest Writers Association Nancy Pearl Award for Memoir. She will be in Alaska in August for readings and other events.

State of Art: Salmonfest 2023 is packed to the gills with talent

This week on State of Art we're hearing from Salmonfest director David Stearns. The festival runs from August 4 through 6 at the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds in Ninilchik. Headliners include Old Crow Medicine Show, Sierra Farell, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong and Leftover Salmon. Stearns tells us about what to expect from the festival, this year's groovy artwork, zero waste efforts and more.
Camera crew films elderly woman

State of Art: Voices of ‘Antiques Roadshow’ in Anchorage

The popular television show came to film in Alaska for the first time last week. Since only a small fraction of the 2,500 attendees will make it on the show, here are some of the people who were there that day.
Two people stand next to a large trophy

Thousands attend first-ever Alaska filming of ‘Antiques Roadshow’

The Anchorage episodes filmed Tuesday will air next year on PBS.
A woman in a red sweater looks at a painting

State of Art: Want a free Sydney Laurence print? Head to the Anchorage library.

Zachariah Joshua Loussac left his collection of paintings by the famous landscape artist to the city. Now, the library is giving the prints away for free.

State of Art: Anchorage Chamber Music Festival returns for 11th season

We hear from the festival's co-founders and artistic directors Christine Harada Li and Nathaniel Pierce. They tell us about what makes chamber music unique, what to expect from this year's festival and more.
a woman kneels at the entrance of a trail

State of Art: Fairy houses turn a normal Anchorage walking trail into something magical

A short walk up the narrow, winding path through the lush forest reveals miniature structures made from natural materials.

State of Art: Blackwater Railroad Co. celebrates 10 years as a band with an Alaska tour

The Seward-based folk band has seen its share of lineup changes over the years, but they've maintained their mission of good vibes and good times. The band is playing dates across the state and will be performing in Anchorage at Williwaw on Saturday, July 1. We're joined by lead singer and guitarist Tyson Davis, keyboardist Kyle Comeau, and bassist Ben Sayers as they reflect on the last decade and what comes next.

State of Art: These free concerts are happening all summer in downtown Anchorage

This week on State of Art we break down the events Anchorage Downtown Partnership is hosting every Wednesday through Sunday. We also take a trip downtown to check out ADP's Music in the Park and Live After Five.

State of Art: Celebrate summer with the Sundown Solstice festival

This week on State of Art we're talking about the Sundown Solstice festival. The three-day concert features a mix of well-known, up-and-coming and local artists whose music ranges from hip-hop, electronic and rock. The festival starts Friday, June 16 and runs through Sunday at Cuddy Park. We're joined by Hellen Fleming, co-owner of Showdown Productions, the organizers of the festival. She tells us about the artists, what it takes to put on an event this big and being caught up in city drama.