Slightly Modified

Kimber Lanning and Leslie Barton restore the original vision of downtown's best art space/music venue

She and Lanning also plan to host musicians workshops and independent-film nights, where local filmmakers can present five- to 20-minute shorts. "By putting them all together on one night, they can share in each other's support," Lanning says.

"Personally, I think what makes a downtown space special is that a variety of people can go there," Barton adds. "And it's not just for an 18-year-old or a 25-year-old, where you have the 40-year-old thinking, 'I don't want to go down there, that's for the kids.'"

"I love having an outlet for the 16-year-olds who are just starting out to have a place to play, and Modified will always be their home," Lanning says. "But there are a lot of other people who need an outlet."

From left, Leslie Barton, Kimber Lanning and Erin Antrim.
From left, Leslie Barton, Kimber Lanning and Erin Antrim.
Slumber Party helps launch Modified Arts on Saturday, November 3.
Slumber Party helps launch Modified Arts on Saturday, November 3.

Lanning has always gone out of her way to put the artists' interests ahead of her own business interests. When she booked bands at Stinkweeds, she paid them 100 percent of the receipts, simply happy to bring them to town. And she won't hesitate to help another local venue snag a show that's simply too big for Modified. Along those lines, don't expect Modified Arts to allow for the kind of overcrowding that happened at last year's sold-out Le Tigre gig, when it was clear that Modified simply couldn't accommodate the band's fan base.

"You have to think of the bands first, and the kids second," Lanning says. "You can't just cram 150 kids in there; it's not fair to the band or the kids."

But even as Lanning's list of must-do items expands this month, there's one hat that she chooses not to wear: that of club owner.

"I've never called myself the owner, and I won't ever call Leslie the owner," Lanning says. "I always say, 'I run the place, I'm the coordinator.' When you have that many volunteers, I don't think there's any place for an owner."

Modified Arts presents the work of Jerry Jacobson and Chad Godt on Friday, November 2. Slumber Party is scheduled to perform on Saturday, November 3, with Anti-Organic, and Thee Apologies.

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