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City Lights

Mason Bates

Symphonist Mason Bates is a master in merging musical genres with a fluidity that seems effortless.

The 37-year-old Chicago Symphony Orchestra composer-in-residence is known for dropping ambient electronica beats into an orchestral symphony.

His compositions such as “Alternative Energy” ─ a four movement symphony which recreates industrialist Henry Ford's junkyard, a modern particle collider, a futuristic nuclear wasteland and a pristine rainforest ─ have earned him national recognition as a trailblazer in the classical music world.

WonderRoot moves to former Tech High in Atlanta
Ryan Nabulsi / / for WABE

Earlier this year, the nonprofit WonderRoot signaled a major shift in scope when it announced a move to a building 14 times its current size.

The arts group has a unique mission. Dedicated to inspiring social change, WonderRoot’s projects range from youth art programs, to dance showcases, to a variety of social activism projects. So as the group readies for the renovation of its building-to-be, WABE’s Kate Sweeney headed over for a preview tour, to find out what exactly the expansion means — both for WonderRoot and for Atlanta’s arts community as a whole.

Trains parked in the roundhouse at the Railroad Model Club
Ryan Nabulsi / / for WABE

The Railroad Model Club of Atlanta has been around for more than seven decades, operating its vintage train set-up from the same second-floor room on Edgewood Avenue for nearly that entire time.

So, why doesn’t anyone know about it? Kate Sweeney went to find out.

The Railroad Model Club of Atlanta welcomes visitors the first Saturday morning of every month. Find out more here.