Archives for January 2013

‘Barefoot Children’ Explores Illness, Teams with Gilda’s Club

The struggles – and hopes – of children with serious illness are in the spotlight as The Theater Bug opens The Barefoot Children in the City of Ward this Thursday. And Gilda’s Club is part of the proceedings too. From the company’s press release: “Welcome to the city of Ward! The city gates are always […]

Jazz review: Jim Ferguson excels on jazz’s other side

Many fans see jazz mainly as forceful, experimental or edgy music, with performers obsessed with being on the cutting edge and looking more to the future than the past or present. While some of that is undeniably true, there’s a less familiar and publicized side that great musicians often display. Saturday night at the Nashville […]

Classical review: For Mozart’s birthday, cake and concertos

An overflow crowd swarmed into Edgehill United Methodist Church on Saturday night, and that could only mean one thing: It was time once again for the church’s ever-popular annual Mozart Birthday Festival concert. Nashville multi-instrumentalist Roger Wiesmeyer founded this festival a dozen years ago to indulge his dual passions – a love for the music […]

Jazz review: Jazz greats bring Monterey to Nashville

Since its inception in 1958, the Monterey Jazz Festival has been known for presenting the cream of world class talent. Friday night at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center, a specially assembled All-Star band gave the capacity crowd a taste of what’s made the Monterey Festival so beloved, with a powerhouse show that featured two sets of consistently excellent music that extended nearly two […]

Theater review: NCT Succeeds in Portraying the Art of Overcoming

Nashville Children’s Theatre continues to live up to its billing. Hailed by Time magazine in 2004 as one of the top five young audience theaters in the country, it delivers yet another success with Don’t Tell Me I Can’t Fly. The show, written by playwright Y York and directed by Scot Copeland, is based on […]

Coen Brothers Classic Inspires Studio Tenn’s ‘Big River’ Revival

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – The Coen Brothers meet Mark Twain in Studio Tenn’s version of Roger Miller’s Tony Award-winning musical Big River. The show docks at Franklin Theatre from Feb. 21 to March 3. This production provides Twain’s “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” set to music and lyrics by the legendary Miller – including such notable songs […]

Review: ‘Shakespeare Uncovered’ Encourages Us to Explore

In the six-part television series Shakespeare Uncovered, Richard Eyre, the former head of the UK’s National Theatre, puts his finger on the pulse of the world’s greatest playwright: “…If you say, ‘What is Shakespearian?’ Everything that is Shakespearian is ambiguous.” Yes, but that didn’t stop series producer Richard Denton from bringing actors, directors, academics and […]

Opera review: Goodness Triumphs Through Enjoyable ‘Cinderella’

Hopefully the ghost of Gioachino Rossini is happy with the way Nashville Opera lovingly handles his Cinderella (La Cenerentola). Wednesday’s exuberant dress rehearsal points the way toward a very enjoyable run among the living today, Sunday and Tuesday in Tennessee Performing Arts Center’s Polk Theater. Director John Hoomes has settled on an approach that respects […]

Advice to the Next Chair of the National Endowment for the Arts

It could be Michael Kaiser, President of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. It could be Ben Cameron, Program Director, Arts, at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. It could be Mary Schmidt Campbell, the Dean of the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and the former Vice Chair of the President’s Committee […]

Pianist Roger Wiesmeyer goes solo at Mozart birthday bash

Nashville native Roger Wiesmeyer was just 4 years old when his mother first tried to get him piano lessons. Ellenita Zimmerman, one of Music City’s esteemed pedagogues, deemed the pint-sized pianist to be too young for formal instruction. So she turned him down. Wiesmeyer, however, would not be denied. “I played [Zimmermann] my rendition of […]

Jazz Plus: The golden age of the soundtrack returns

The soundtrack was once as treasured a part of the cinematic experience as the film itself. When such masters as Ennio Morricone, Elmer Bernstein or John Williams devised a musical framework, it enhanced, often elevated the action taking place on the screen. Curtis Mayfield and Isaac Hayes showed contemporary R&B and funk could be weaved […]

All that California jazz at the Schermerhorn

Nashville jazz fans don’t have to purchase a plane ticket to California to see six world-class jazz musicians onstage together. Featuring an all-star band, the Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour concert will take place Friday, Jan. 25, at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Grammy- and Tony-winning vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater, Grammy-winning bassist Christian McBride (who is […]

Theater review: Refreshing ‘Catch Me If You Can’ Has ‘60s Glamour

If you are looking for a hilarious, fast-paced, and music-filled trip back to the glamour and excitement that was 1960s entertainment, then a visit to the Tennessee Performing Arts Center’s Andrew Jackson Hall to see the Broadway musical Catch Me If You Can will give you all that and so much more. This refreshing “variety-show” […]

‘Catch Me’ Launches Opening Act TPAC Young Professionals Group

Opening Act, Tennessee Performing Arts Center’s new young professional’s group, held its first pre-show event Tuesday at Nashville City Club before the opening performance of Catch Me If You Can in TPAC’s Jackson Hall. Opening Act’s mission is” to bring young like-minded arts lovers together to enjoy shows and events,” according to organizers. The group […]

Classical review: The music is coming up Roses at Blair

With a little effort, even a mediocre Scrabble player could probably find the name “Moses” embedded in the word “composers” – (co)M(p)ose(r)s.  But leave it to Michael Alec Rose to see its existential significance. Rose, a long-time professor of composition at the Blair School of Music, was at Turner Recital Hall on Tuesday night, presiding […]

Nashville Artists Come Together For ‘Mozart in Music City’

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart remains one of the world’s most celebrated – and enigmatic – figures more than two centuries after his death, perpetually famous for his brilliant classical compositions as well as for his turbulent and tragic life. This spring, his story and musical legacy are presented to Nashville audiences in a collaboration called Mozart in Music City: […]

Jenny Littleton Headlines as Sally Bowles in TN Rep’s ‘Cabaret’

It’s “Willkommen” to the Kit Kat Club as Tennessee Repertory Theatre presents the multiple Tony Award-winning musical Cabaret. The show, with book and lyrics by Joe Masteroff and Fred Ebb and music by John Kander, runs Feb. 16 – March 16 at Tennessee Performing Arts Center’s Johnson Theater (with preview performances Feb. 14 – 15). […]

Classical review: Isn’t it romantic? Peled plays Brahms and Chopin at Blair

Cellists have a tough time filling concert halls even under the best of circumstances. The audience for classical cello recitals, after all, is relatively small. But the challenges facing cellist Amit Peled, who performed Sunday afternoon at the Blair School of Music’s Turner Recital Hall, seemed especially cruel. It was bad enough that the weather […]

Classical review: NSO pays tribute to Martin Luther King

Just by being what it is, any Martin Luther King Day event has an inspirational quality. But Sunday night’s 20th annual Nashville Symphony Orchestra “Let Freedom Sing” celebration at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center’s Laura Turner Hall was far more than a poignant gathering and feel-good event. It also offered powerful testimonies and compelling stories from those […]

Jazz review: Nashville Jazz Workshop moves on Jimmy Van Heusen

Church was over by 3 o’clock on Sunday afternoon, but a congregation of devout followers gathered at Lipscomb University’s Collins Auditorium.  They were the followers of composer Jimmy Van Heusen and the Nashville Jazz Workshop, to be precise, attending the first Jazz on the Move concert of 2013. Perfectly in line with the Jazz Workshop’s […]