Marcie Sillman

Arts and Culture Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 1985

Marcie Sillman arrived at KUOW in 1985 to produce the station's daily public affairs program, Seattle After Noon. One year later, she became the local voice of All Things Considered, NPR's flagship afternoon news magazine. After five years holding down the drive-time microphone, a new opportunity arose. Along with Dave Beck and Steve Scher, Marcie helped create Weekday, a daily, two-hour forum for newsmakers, artists and thinkers.

The new century brought new challenges. Marcie and Dave Beck created The Beat, Seattle's only broadcast program to focus specifically on arts and culture. In 2002, after more than 15 years as a daily host, Marcie decided to become a full-time cultural reporter. During her career, more than 100 of her stories have been heard on NPR's newsmagazines, as well as on The Voice of America. In 2005, she became KUOW's first special projects reporter. In this role, she produced in-depth audio portraits and documentary series about life and culture in the Puget Sound Region.

In September, 2013, Marcie was part of the team that created The Record, a daily news magazine focused on the issues and culture of the Puget Sound region. After two years as Senior Host of the program, Marcie returned to full-time cultural reporting.

Ways to Connect

The University of Washington men's rowing team prepares to launch their shells during an early morning practice.
KUOW Photo/Matt Mills McKnight

The old wooden rowing shell that hangs in the University of Washington crew team’s dining hall doesn’t look all that remarkable. You see boats like it in many nautical-themed restaurants.

But this particular wooden boat -- the Husky Clipper -- is special.

It carried nine UW athletes to an Olympic gold medal at the 1936 games in Berlin.

Bill Tytus took over Pocock Racing Shells in 1985 from Stan Pocock, the son of founder George Pocock.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

It takes about six minutes for the University of Washington’s top men’s rowing team to power the latest model Pocock racing shell on their home course through the Montlake Cut. 

But it took the factory in Everett, Washington, 260 work hours to get the boat to that point.

Why I row

3 hours ago
Reporter and rower Marcie Sillman.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

At 5 a.m. on a late winter morning in Seattle, dawn is a distant hope.

But if you peer through the dark, you'll see small white lights pulsing their way along the shores of Lake Union. They mark the bows and sterns of dozens of rowing shells, launched early to take advantage of the smooth morning water.

The University of Washington Men's Rowing team prepares for an early morning practice.
KUOW Photo/Matt Mills McKnight

The early morning water is usually calm in Seattle. That makes it the preferred time for rowers.

It’s beautiful as the sun rises over the water as the University of Washington’s rowing team heads out for practice.

But the peace doesn’t last.

“You go from a groggy mess to everybody screaming and yelling and getting hyped for their day,” says rower Sam Helms.

WATCH: KUOW went out with the team during a morning practice, capturing the experience inside the boat for these elite athletes.

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "Daydreams of Angels," by Heather O'Neill.

Courtesy of Niki Sherey Keenan

Niki Sherey Keenan’s moments of inspiration arrive when most of us are still in bed.

“There might be a sunrise that only lasts five seconds,” she explains. “It would stick with me all day.”

Sherey Keenan recreates these special moments in her dream-like paintings.

Tod Marshall is Washington state's new poet laureate.
Courtesy of Amy Sinisterra Photography

Tod Marshall grew up in the Midwest, but Eastern Washington’s high desert is the place that inspires his poetry.

Marshall, the newly appointed Washington state poet laureate, teaches at Gonzaga University in Spokane. He’s an avid outdoorsman, and he spends much of his free time exploring the nearby vast open spaces.

Linda Hartzell, left, with SCT staff, working on an adaptation of 'High School Musical'
Courtesy of Chris Bennion

Linda Hartzell’s office at the Seattle Children’s Theater is packed with memorabilia. Photos of colleagues, friends and family clamor for space on the credenza behind her desk.

Hartzell’s happy to give details about these mementos, but she pauses when asked about a framed child’s drawing. 

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "The Last Painting of Sara de Vos," a novel by Dominic Smith.  

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about Nick Harkaway's novel, "The Gone-Away World."

Sarah Rudinoff at the piano at On The Boards.
KUOW Photo/Marcie Sillman

Powerhouse.

That’s the best way to describe Seattle performer Sarah Rudinoff.

Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann gestures as he is carried off the field at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., Nov. 18, 1985. Theismann injured his right leg during second quarter action.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about her pick of the week, "The Throwback Special" by Chris Bachelder.

A classic Craftsman in Seattle's Mount Baker neighborhood. Most of the neighborhood was developed in the early 20th century when architecture was in its heyday.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Look around almost any Seattle neighborhood and you’ll see them: Modest one-story homes, with large, covered porches and eaves that shield wooden siding from the rain.

They’re Craftsman-style bungalows, and you’ll find hundreds of them here, from Wallingford and Ravenna to Mount Baker and over the bridge in West Seattle.

Paul Kalanithi's 'When Breath Becomes Air'
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about her pick of the week, "When Breath Becomes Air," by Paul Kalanithi.

Velocity Dance Center Artistic Director Tonya Lockyer at V2
KUOW Photo/Marcie Sillman

Capitol Hill has more artists and arts groups per capita than any almost any other Seattle neighborhood. Now some of those artists have a new place to work, at least temporarily.

Last month city officials announced that the vacant Value Village store in the Pike-Pine corridor would re-open as V2 Arts Space under the management of Velocity Dance Center. 

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