Archives for October 2012

Alias opens its season with feral fowls, fabulous fiddle music and a masterpiece or two

Compared with some of its recent recitals, Alias Chamber Ensemble’s concert Tuesday night at Turner Hall seemed like an oldies show. The newest work on the program, R. Murray Schafer’s Wild Bird, was composed in 1999. For a new-music powerhouse like Alias, a 13-year-old piece seems like an antiquity. And let’s not even talk about […]

German modernism glistens at the Frist

German Expressionism was like a nova. It appeared in a flash in 1905 after artists in Dresden and Munich began emulating their Post-Impressionist and Fauvist counterparts in France, and it burned brightly for about a decade. The movement dimmed considerably after World War I, but like cosmic background radiation, its influences are still detectable. Some […]

Three Notable Indie Films Hit Belcourt Screens This Friday

Belcourt Theatre brings three notable recent releases to Nashville this Friday. Here’s a quick look at the trio of indie films on offer beginning this weekend: THE PAPERBOY (R): A “Southern Gothic noir thriller with a terrific ensemble cast” (USA Today) from Lee Daniels, Oscar-nominated director of Precious. The film – based on the bestselling […]

Jazz review: Third Coast Vocals shine at the Jazz Cave

Four world-class vocalists nonchalantly took the Nashville Jazz Workshop stage on Friday night. A brunette woman picked up her microphone and greeted the audience with a casual “Welcome everyone,” and a slender man in a striped shirt started snapping.  The opening line of Frank Loesser’s tune “If I Were a Bell” was a simple request: […]

Clarke and company give Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven an authentic spin

Until somebody finally invents a time machine, we’ll probably never know exactly what performances sounded like in Mozart’s day. That said, the recital that violinist Karen Clarke and friends gave Sunday night at Turner Hall provided some intriguing clues. Judging from the brisk way that Clarke, cellist Christopher Stenstrom and fortepianist Lillian Buss Pearson performed […]

Theater review: ‘Anything Goes’ National Tour is the Tops

Musical comedy is one of America’s greatest gifts to the world of entertainment. And Anything Goes, which served as the template for so many musical comedies to follow, has docked in Nashville with a de-lightful national tour. A wait-and-see energy was in the air as opening night subscribers and other patrons assembled in Tennessee Performing […]

Third Coast Vocals brings vocal jazz back to the Nashville Jazz Workshop

Far from the dreaded show choirs and a cappella groups of school campuses, Third Coast Vocals will bring professional-caliber vocal jazz back to the Nashville Jazz Workshop Friday, Oct. 26 at 8 p.m. This will be the group’s first Snap on 2 & 4 performance in two years. In 2009, Nashville jazz scene staples Jeff […]

Blair Quartet opens its season with Haydn, Husa and Beethoven

Bells ring.  Birds sing. Notes soar. Those evocative images and more were part of the Blair String Quartet’s concert on Saturday night at Ingram Hall. The players – violinists Christian Teal and Cornelia Heard, violist John Kochanowski and cellist Felix Wang – presented three works, two classical-period quartets bracketing a contemporary piece. All were complex […]

Nashville’s ‘A Stoop on Orchard Street’ Now in Philadelphia Run

Ten years after its birth in Nashville, a hit Off-Broadway musical has returned to the stage for a lengthy engagement in Philadelphia and nearby cities that once again involves several members of the Nashville theater community. A Stoop On Orchard Street, with book, music and lyrics by Nashville resident Jay Kholos, takes a nostalgic look […]

Theater review: ‘Desperate Hours’ Benefits from STC Craftsmanship

If you like old-fashioned suspense Street Theatre Company’s The Desperate Hours might be the ticket for you. The Joseph Hayes story of a family held hostage shows its age at points, but compelling performances, original music scoring and technical elements make this production engaging. The play, which starred Paul Newman and Karl Malden when it […]

Theater review: ’12 Angry Men’ Another Studio Tenn Triumph

FRANKLIN, Tenn.– One of the toughest challenges for performing artists is to make us look at something we think we know well in a new way. Studio Tenn Theatre Company does just that with its gripping rendition of Twelve Angry Men. Artistic Director Matt Logan and his top-flight cast fill a courtroom in the Historic […]

Dance review: Nashville Ballet’s terrific ‘Beauty’ reawakens at TPAC this weekend

The Sleeping Beauty is the grandest of all storybook ballets. This amazing piece, first performed in 1890, conjures a fairy-tale world of silver and gold, of good versus evil, and of idealized romantic love. Surely, no other ballet requires as many tutu-clad ballerinas to engage in as much perfectly synchronized dancing. Few productions ever do […]

Jazz review: Chris West and friends bring jazz to the Family Wash

When the unassuming saxophonist Chris West picked up his horn for the first time on Wednesday night at the Family Wash, it was easy to tell who in the audience knew of him and who was about to learn.  Those familiar with West stopped talking, turned their chairs towards the stage and waited. And, after […]

Tulsa Opera’s Noah Spiegel New Nashville Opera COO

Nashville Opera announced today that Noah E. Spiegel has joined its 14-person staff as Chief Operating Officer. “Noah Spiegel is a highly-regarded member of the opera world community,” says General and Artistic Director John Hoomes. “His vast knowledge of the art form, coupled with his creativity, business acumen, and engaging personality will make Noah a […]

Nashville Symphony extends Guerrero’s contract through 2020

Congratulations are apparently in order once again for the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and its music director, Giancarlo Guerrero. The orchestra announced on Wednesday afternoon that it has extended Guerrero’s contract through the 2020 season. The contract will make Guerrero’s directorship the second longest in NSO history, after concert hall namesake Kenneth Schermerhorn, who served from […]

‘Doyle and Debbie Show’ Captures Two Jeff Awards in Chicago

CHICAGO – The Doyle and Debbie Show snagged two major prizes Monday at the 44th Annual Joseph Jefferson Equity Awards ceremony at Drury Lane Oakbrook. The Nashville-originated production won what is commonly called a “Jeff Award” for Production – Musical in midsize theaters and its creator Bruce Arntson copped the Actor in a Principal Role – […]

Jazz Plus: What’s hot? Ron Wynn’s been listening

Dave Douglas Quintet: “Be Still,” (Greenleaf) Trumpeter, bandleader and composer Dave Douglas has never been more lyrical or inspirational in his solos and playing than on his latest release “Be Still.” Part of that’s due to the nature of the material and occasion. He chose a recording menu that featured hymns, primarily to commemorate his mother’s passing […]

Nashville Ballet opens its 2012-13 season with ‘Sleeping Beauty’

“Are you familiar with much 19th-century ballet music?” asks Paul Vasterling. “A lot of it is just a pastiche of mediocre melodies set to a boring oom-pah-pah accompaniment.” Vasterling, Nashville Ballet’s artistic director, was leading up to a discussion of Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty, a vast ballet of symphonic sweep that doesn’t have a single boring, […]

McCoy Tyner’s musical changes seem timeless at the Schermerhorn

Pianist and bandleader McCoy Tyner’s been a superb player and influential member of the jazz world since his early days with the Benny Golson/Art Farmer Jazztet in the late ’50s. His relationship with saxophonist John Coltrane during the immortal quartet’s five years (1960-65) further shaped modern jazz’s course and direction. His style merged brilliant left-hand forays with inventive right-hand harmonizing, and […]

Salsa band makes music sound ‘Excelencia!’

“It’s not about what you have.  It’s not about how you dress.  It’s not about the language you speak. It’s about music.” So proclaimed La Excelencia at the beginning of their second Nashville performance.  The concert was held as part of Vanderbilt’s 2012-13 Great Performances season on Friday, Oct. 12 at  Ingram Hall.  La Excelencia, […]