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‘The Identical’ Kicks Off 10-Day 2014 Nashville Film Festival Today

The world premiere of a film shot here in 2012 opens the 45th Annual Nashville Film Festival (NaFF) today. The expanded festival runs through April 26. The Identical, an appealing family drama about musically-gifted separated twins with a cast that features Ashley Judd, Ray Liotta, Seth Green, Joe Pantoliano and newcomer Blake Rayne in the leading […]

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Free Naxos Download: Félicien David’s Lalla Roukh/Opera Lafayette

The latest free download from Naxos, “The World’s Leading Classical Music Group,” is a track from the world premiere recording of Félicien David’s 1862 opera Lalla Roukh by Washington, D.C.-based Opera Lafayette. The company is led by Founder, Conductor and Artistic Director Ryan Brown. Here are cover images and access to more info followed by the track download […]

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Opera Review: A Timeless ‘Otello’ for All from Nashville Opera

In the worlds of theater and opera William Shakespeare and Giuseppe Verdi are, among their other accolades, the masters of tragedy. The opera Otello is a work by Verdi and librettist Arrigo Boito that distills the Bard’s story of passion, love, jealousy and hate into four gripping acts. Nashville Opera General and Artistic Director John […]

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Music Review: Violinist Christian Teal goes out on a high note with final recital at Blair

Violinist Christian Teal gave his final recital as a Blair School of Music professor on Sunday afternoon at Ingram Hall. For Nashville’s classical community, the event marked the end of an era. Teal has taught violin at Blair for 42 of the music school’s 50 years. As Dean Mark Wait commented during a post-concert reception, […]

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Music Review: Ethel brings its amplified sound to Oz Nashville

Ethel stands apart from much of contemporary music.  As an amplified string quartet that plays contemporary chamber music, they perform with a unique palette. This weekend, they are presenting two programs of adventurous, energetic string music at Oz Nashville. Friday night’s performance of Ethel’s Documerica was superbly performed. Ethel often performs sans vibrato and in […]

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‘Fiddler’ and ‘Wizard of Oz’ Bookend Studio Tenn’s Next Season

Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match! Studio Tenn Theatre Company released its 2014-15 season selections today after recently announcing its move from Franklin Theatre to The Factory at Franklin and next season begins with one of the most beloved musicals ever. Fiddler on the Roof runs Sept. 4-14. It is followed by that Southern-fried favorite Steel […]

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Book Review: Two new books spotlight basketball’s rise

This year’s NCAA men’s basketball Tournament was the most watched in 21 years, while the last two NBA Finals have been among the highest rated in the league’s history. But veteran basketball fans can recall a time when college basketball received minimal regional coverage, and the NBA’s championship series wasn’t even shown in prime time. Two exhaustive new […]

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Music Review: Huebl and Wait present Bolcom, Schubert and Franck

Violinist Carolyn Huebl received her doctorate from the University of Michigan, so it was probably just a matter of time before we heard her perform the music of that university’s famed professor emeritus William Bolcom. Huebl, an associate professor of violin at the Blair School of Music, was at Turner Hall on Saturday to perform […]

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Aisle Seat – “Live Theater”: As Opposed to What, Dead Theater?

The Broadway League release arrived with the headline: Empire State Theatre Production Tax Credit Approved New York is Now the Fourth State to Offer Tax Benefits for Investing in Live Theatre The good news has already been reported elsewhere, and I’m not writing about it now because I have any reason for objecting to a government initiative that increases theater-related business […]

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TV Review: ‘The Dave Clark Five – Glad All Over’ on PBS

Contemporary pop culture has created a sort of false binary between the Rolling Stones and The Beatles. While fans duke it out over whose catalog is better, a lot of other British Invasion bands don’t get anywhere near the recognition they deserve – bands like The Animals or Herman’s Hermits. All of them played an important […]

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Lauren Gunderson wins Steinberg/ATCA Award for ‘I and You’

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA) has selected Lauren Gunderson’s I and You as the recipient of the Harold and Mimi Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award, recognizing playwrights for scripts that premiered professionally outside New York City during 2013, it was announced today. Gunderson’s delicate but droll play about teenagers exploring […]

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‘Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me’ and ‘The Lunchbox’ Come to Nashville

Two exclusive-run films open in Nashville Friday, one at Belcourt Theatre and the other at Regal Hollywood Stadium 27 & RPX. The first is a candid look at a Broadway legend while the second is about two people seeking to free themselves from lonely lives. Both are gems that shouldn’t be missed while they’re here. Elaine […]

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Adrienne Outlaw: Breaking Bread at BNA

As the summer months come into view, many of us have travel on our minds. Whenever I go out of town I always check to see what interesting exhibits might be showing in and around my destination. However, the Metro Nashville Airport Authority’s Arts at the Airport program offers sights worth seeing that don’t even […]

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Jealousy & Desire: Nashville Opera Presents Verdi’s ‘Otello’

Nashville Opera concludes its 2013-14 season next week with three performances of Giuseppe Verdi’s operatic take on Shakespeare’s famous play about a great leader destroyed by his own uncontrollable jealousy and desire. Otello was composed near the end of his dynamic career and is the prime example of a masterful composer writing at the peak of his musical […]

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Theater Review: The Heightened Realism of Fine Acting in ‘Next Fall’

Geoffrey Nauffts’ Next Fall is that rare play that delves into a hot-button issue without quickly resorting to stereotypes. Yes, you’ll recognize the characters, but that’s because the playwright’s wit is delivered by Actors Bridge Ensemble performers that make every moment believable. There’s Luke, a young aspiring actor and fundamentalist Christian; Adam, a hypochondriac and […]

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Music Review: Gateway Chamber Orchestra plays the Grand Lodge of Tennessee

Just as we all suspected, Nashville Masons have been hiding a big secret in their Grand Lodge of Tennessee: It’s their glorious Freemasons Auditorium, a 1,455-seat acoustical marvel that is one of Music City’s true clandestine treasures. Gateway Chamber Orchestra, another one of the region’s hidden gems, was inside the Mason’s ornate auditorium on Monday […]

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Theater Review: A Pointed and Poignant ‘Mad King Lear’

In the attic of a West End Avenue church the scope of human tragedy plays out. Nashville Stagecraft, a budding company led by young theater artists, has renovated Shakespeare’s tragic King Lear, sprucing the old play up a bit with crisp structure that includes a concise storyline with clearer dialogue and a shorter character list […]

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Music Review: Pianist Zubin Kanga plays the music of Michael Alec Rose and George Crumb

Composers have spent much of history writing piano music for just one-half of the instrument. Zubin Kanga, a gifted London-based pianist, specializes in music that takes advantage of the whole piano. On Saturday afternoon, Kanga was at the Blair School of Music’s Choral Rehearsal Hall, performing a concert that explored the piano from the inside […]

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Theater Review: From the Flies to the Pit ‘Wicked’ Tour Gives Its All

Wicked is one of the most popular (sing it) musicals of all time. Running since 2003, and previously here on tour in 2009 and 2011, the show’s also won three Tonys and six Drama Desk Awards. With music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz (Godspell, Pippin) and a book by Winnie Holzman (My So-Called Life), this […]

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Music Review: Guerrero and the Nashville Symphony score with the music of Sibelius and Elgar

The Nashville Symphony Orchestra is widely admired for its interpretations of contemporary American music. Yet the orchestra is arguably at its level best when playing late-Romantic music from the turn of the 20th century. Two such works were on the NSO’s program on Thursday night at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Music director Giancarlo Guerrero led […]

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