Archives for August 2013

Welcome to the Multiverse: ‘Larries’ Starts 29th TN Rep Season

Tennessee Repertory Theatre begins its 29th season of live professional theater with the world premiere of Nate Eppler’s dark comedy Larries.  Larries runs Sept. 7 – 21 at TPAC’s Johnson Theater (with preview performances Sept. 5 – 6). In this world premiere created in Tennessee Rep’s Ingram New Works Project, Wanda sends her husband Larry an ultimatum […]

Film review: ‘One Direction: This is Us’ a Straight Shot of Joy

There’s nothing better than sharing a positive experience with your son or daughter. And having fun while learning more about a part of his/her connection to the world is pretty nice, too. Such was my happy experience watching a recent advance screening of One Direction: This is Us with my 14-year-old daughter Katie (along with […]

NSO President Alan Valentine: Setting the stage for the future

Nashville Symphony CEO Alan Valentine finally broke his silence on Wednesday, granting interviews with the media for the first time in six months. The occasion was the end of the orchestra’s year-long ordeal that began with a crisis over the Schermerhorn Symphony Center and ended Tuesday with the conclusion of contract negotiations with the musicians. […]

Franz Joseph Haydn: Having the ‘Last Word’ at Blair

The Blair School of Music is opening its 2013-14 performance season in high style this weekend, presenting the original orchestral version of Haydn’s masterpiece Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross. Commissioned around 1786 for a Good Friday performance at Cádiz Cathedral in Spain, this miraculous nine-movement work contains some of the most wrenching […]

Nashville Symphony musicians agree to 15-percent pay cut

Nashville Symphony musicians have a new contract. Their fans, meanwhile, will get to enjoy a complete and gratifyingly uncut symphony season. Musicians voted on Tuesday afternoon to ratify a one-year contract that will require them to give up 15 percent of their pay, reducing their minimum base salary from $60,000 a year to around $51,000. […]

“The Butler” in print offers the real story

Everyone, regardless of whether they are a supporter or detractor of Lee Daniels’ film “The Butler” should read acclaimed Washington Post writer Wil Haygood’s short, yet comprehensive and valuable companion book. “The Butler, A Witness to History” (Atria/Simon & Schuster) expands the remarkable 2009 feature story Haygood did on Eugene Allen, the man who served as […]

Gateway Chamber Orchestra expands its new season to include regular performances in Nashville

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – The Clarksville-based Gateway Chamber Orchestra is about to become a touring ensemble. Starting in September, the orchestra will present most of its concerts in both Clarksville and Nashville. Performances in Nashville will take place at various venues. “We always experience a buildup of excitement for our Clarksville concerts, so we decided to […]

Nashville Symphony launches Kickstarter campaign to raise money for new Joan Tower recording

For the first time in its history, the Nashville Symphony has turned to crowdfunding to raise money for a recording. The Kickstarter campaign was launched last week to raise money for a new recording of American composer Joan Tower’s music on the Naxos label. The orchestra plans to record three works – Stroke, Chamber Dance […]

‘The Hank Legacy’ Original Revue Starts Studio Tenn Season

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – Studio Tenn Theatre Company starts their 2013-2014 season Thursday with an original production. Their musical revue The Hank Legacy: The Songs of Hank Williams runs through Sept. 15 at the Franklin Theatre. For Managing Director Jake Speck and Artistic Director Matt Logan the chance to produce an original tribute to the late great Hank Williams could […]

Albee Masterpiece ‘…Virginia Woolf’ Begins Friday at BRT

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – The Boiler Room Theatre opens its production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? on Friday. The show runs through Sept. 15 at BRT’s home in the historic Factory at Franklin (230 Franklin Rd., Bldg. Six). Edward Albee’s masterful dark comedy shocked audiences with its brutally honest characters and powerful dialogue in its […]

Theater review: Nashville Shakes Conjures a Delightful ‘Dream’

Happily where Nashville Shakespeare Festival’s present-day rendition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is concerned it is not past the wit of man to say what dream it was. The dream was, and is, delightful. Director Denice Hicks and her merry band of colleagues have mixed the Bard’s Athens with today’s Athens of the South to create […]

Nashville Symphony, musicians reach tentative contract agreement

After months of negotiations, the Nashville Symphony and Nashville Musicians Association have reached a tentative agreement on a new musicians’ contract. Union negotiators provided musicians with an outline of the new collective bargaining agreement during a meeting Friday morning. Details of the agreement are being withheld pending ratification by the musicians. “The new agreement is […]

Animation in Nashville: Bigfott Studios at Belcourt This Saturday

For many decades American animation studios were Hollywood workshops where such artistic luminaries as Disney’s Nine Old Men and the no-less-legendary figures at Warner Bros. Cartoons created magic. Modern technology has changed the industry in more than just its methods: whether it’s computer-based, free-hand, 2D, 3D or a mixture of styles, lively and engaging animation […]

Tracy Silverman: Bringing ‘Good Dharma’ to the Basement

Nashville electric violin phenom Tracy Silverman was rummaging through some old sheet music the other week when he came across a remarkable manuscript. “It was the handwritten notes for The Dharma at Big Sur that John Adams sent me back in 2003,” says Silverman. “As soon as I saw it I thought it would be […]

Brent Hyams is TPAC and Historic War Memorial Auditorium COO

The Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) this week announced the promotion of Brent Hyams to Chief Operating Officer. A 10-year veteran of the performing arts center, Hyams oversees all operations in production, ticketing, patron services, marketing, and facility maintenance for the organization’s four performance venues, including Andrew Jackson Hall (capacity 2,472), James K. Polk Theater […]

Film review: Gentle ‘Museum Hours’ a Crucible for Connections

Jem Cohen’s gently flowing Museum Hours is set in Vienna, but its leisurely and subtle storyline could be placed anywhere – the feature is ultimately about the need we have to connect with others, particularly in a time of crisis or transition, and how the art that reflects, inspires and engages us can provide a […]

Film review: Action-filled Trip to ‘Elysium’ Just Enough to Satisfy

The word “Elysium” calls to mind rolling hills dotted with lush forests, verdant pastures and marble plazas where artists, musicians and classical athletes gather to extoll the glories of human nature. By contrast, the movie of that name has Matt Damon. I bet that got your attention, but it’s actually a tad unfair, because this […]

Actress Miki Yamashita on Diversity and Invisibility

“I remember almost always being the only Asian American in my classes, growing up in grade school and middle school,” says Massachusetts native Miki Yamashita. “For the most part, though, I didn’t feel that separate from everybody else. I feel like the environment was pretty inclusive.” She said it wasn’t until she went out into the […]

A Here and Now ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ From Nashville Shakes

The Nashville Shakespeare Festival will honor as well as “hold up the mirror” to its hometown with its 2013 production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream Aug. 15 through Sept. 15 at the Centennial Park bandshell. Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. each evening with pre-show entertainment starting at 6:30 p.m. Food and drink can be purchased at […]

Jazz Plus: New blues releases spotlight veterans, reissues

Lurrie Bell: “Blues In My Soul” (Delmark) Guitarist/bandleader Lurrie Bell was touted very early in his career as a leader among the next generation of Chicago blues greats. Now he’s an established star, and his newest release celebrates the idiom’s cornerstone styles without being restricted by them. Bell’s rich, rousing voice is appropriately somber on “24 […]