Local Music Venue Provokes Discussion With New Speaker Series

Detroit’s Trumbullplex Theater has developed a well-earned reputation for offering exciting experimental, underground and local music acts, but the organizers of the space have bigger ambitions.

This October they launched a new speaker series called “What’s your Angle?” They hope the event will attract new visitors and generate discussion around interesting ideas and ongoing local projects.

Theater collective member Ian Ingram spearheaded the new event.

“There’s a ton of places in this town where you can go on any given night and see live music,” he said. “I don’t think T-plex has been exclusively focused on music, but it has been the one main focus for the theater. That’s not enough anymore!”

The series will take place the third Friday of each month. Every session will feature two speakers, a musical act and a photo exhibit, A different speaking topic will be explored each time, although the music and photo exhibit may not necessarily be linked to the night’s theme.

October’s lineup included presentations by the homeless cat rescue advocate Katherine Maurer and the Michigan Humane Society, as well as a performance by alt-country singer Dalice Malice and photography by Cale Kehoe. OmniCorpDetroit, a local makerspace, is scheduled to appear in November, as is the experimental improv band Terra Zoa.

In the early 2000s, Ingram was involved with a similar speaker series organized by members of the Green Party at a Ferndale space called the Green House. That event ran twice-a-week for several years and featured speakers from all over the spectrum — anti-police brutality advocates, libertarians, and even low-power FM community radio organizers. He hopes to bring some  of the speakers who appeared at the previous series to the new Trumbullplex event.

“They probably had 80-90 speakers a year. Some of them were just phenomenal, said Ingram. “Really this is based on what they did.”

The Trumbullplex, an anarchist housing collective and performance space, was founded in 1993. In addition to the speaker series, the venue also hosts a monthly DIY skillshare called “Small Craft” on the second Saturday of the month, operates a zine library and is planning a regular community potluck.

For more information visit www.trumbullplex.org.