Recent Blog Posts

Mellencamp: the musical

February 27, 2008
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The long-discussed John Mellencamp/Stephen King stage musical “Ghost Brothers of Darkland County” at last has an opening date. It’s scheduled to premiere in Atlanta at the Alliance Theatre in April…of 2009. (The Alliance, FYI, won the Tony Award for Oustanding Regional Theatre...
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Musical detente in N. Korea

February 26, 2008
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What to make of the New York Philharmonic’s decision to include a concert in North Korea on its latest musical road trip? Conductor Lorin Maazel explained:  "Music is a powerful language in which those of us who are humane and intelligent...
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You-review-it Monday (+ Oscars)

February 25, 2008
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Catch any of the three Ps this weekend (“Proof” at TOTS, “The Piano Lesson” at the IRT, or Pilobolus at Clowes Hall)? Get to the Indianapolis Art Center or the Symphony? Or just groggy from watching the Oscars? Whatever the case, let...
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“Assassins” shot down

February 22, 2008
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"All of us have a healthy respect for the freedom of artistic expression that college theater represents, and all of us agree that out of respect for the families of those victims of the tragedies at Northern Illinois University and...
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IBJ Night at the Movies IV

February 21, 2008
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A few reasons why I’m interested in “The Other Boleyn Girl”: 1. Natalie Portman, still looking for a post-“Star Wars” winner. 2. Scarlett Johansson, ready to step up from the promise of her early, less challenging roles. 3. Eric Bana, in a role...
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TV alert: Sondheim tonight

February 20, 2008
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Today I am PBS’ biggest fan. That’s because tonight, the long-running series “Great Performances” is premiering “Company,” a taped-from-the-stage production of the George Firth/Stephen Sondheim musical. In case you are unfamiliar, “Company” is a landmark musical from 1970 that bypassed traditional story...
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Sense or censorship?

February 19, 2008
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“It is important for those in the industry to show some thought about who they are marketing some of these programs to.... I'm concerned about sex, but I'm also concerned [about] some of the violent slasher-horror films that come out.......
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Theater 2008-2009?

February 18, 2008
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We’re getting closer to the point where Indianapolis-area theater companies and presenters announce their 2008-2009 seasons. Already, Footlite Musicals has staked out territory that includes “Crazy for You,” “Miss Saigon” and—the one I’m most looking forward to—the local community theater premiere...
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You-review-it Monday

February 18, 2008
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Lots going on this week, from a new play opening at the Alley Theatre to African Footprint at the Madame Walker. Me, I had my first Storytelling Arts experience at the Indiana Historical Society, visited the Indianapolis Art Center and caught...
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Striking developments

February 15, 2008
Comments(3)
So we all survived the Hollywood writers strike. Bully for us. As a writer — and as someone with an optioned script in limbo at a major studio — I’m...
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Your “In Bruges” reviews

February 13, 2008
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Thursday evening was lively at Keystone Art Cinema, where the latest IBJ Night at the Movies featured a screening of Martin McDonagh’s film "In Bruges." Some of you may know McDonagh as the playwright responsible for "The Lieutenant of Inishmore,"...
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The end of poetry?

February 13, 2008
Comments(8)
I have flexible hours here at IBJ due to the amount of evening and weekend A&E events I attend. One of the advantages of such a non-schedule is that at least twice a week I’m in the car at 9 a.m....
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An all-black “Cat” on Broadway

February 12, 2008
Comments(5)
Tonight, a new production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” begins performances on Broadway with a high-profile cast, including Terrence Howard, Phylicia Rashad and James Earl Jones. Obviously this isn’t the cast that Tennessee Williams had in mind when the...
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You-review-it Monday

February 11, 2008
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For me, this weekend meant the Phoenix Theatre’s production of “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” Mickey Rooney’s visit to the Warren Performing Arts Center, and screenings of a few of the films we’ll be reviewing prior to the Indianapolis International Film...
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Jazz riffs

February 8, 2008
Comments(11)
Yesterday, the announcement was made that Aretha Franklin would be headlining this year’s Indy Jazz Fest. More acts, of course, to follow. Three questions : 1. Who else would you like to see on the lineup this year? 2. More provocatively, who wouldn’t...
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Symphonic crisis in Columbus

February 7, 2008
Comments(7)
Our big-ish city neighbor to the east, Columbus, Ohio, is facing problems with its orchestra. Wrestling with $1.5 million deficit this season, management has proposed downsizing from 52 to 31 full-time players. A truncated season (cutting out 12 of the usual...
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Justifying PBS

February 6, 2008
Comments(17)
President Bush’s proposed budget features significant cuts to public broadcasting: 2009’s allocation goes from $400 million to $200 million. And 2010’s drops from $420 million to $200  million. More details here. Public broadcasting certainly had an easier time justifying...
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Eastern Star (and 'Superstar')

February 5, 2008
Comments(6)
The balcony was shaking. Literally. You could see the flag bouncing in the windless Artsgarden and I half-jokingly asked Alpha Blackburn, of Blackburn Architects, about the structural stability of the place. What was causing this seismic disturbance? The Eastern Star Church Gospel Choir,...
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You-review-it Monday

February 4, 2008
Comments(5)
This is normally the time when I ask you what you did last weekend, but I've got a pretty good idea what you were up to on Sunday. Still, there was Friday and Saturday to catch something on stage, in galleries...
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IBJ Night at the Movies III

February 1, 2008
Comment(1)
Maybe you’ve already been introduced to the intense, funny, bloody work of Martin McDonagh. He wrote the acclaimed play “The Pillowman,” which the Phoenix Theatre produced last year. And he wrote “The Lieutenant of Inishmore,” opening at the Phoenix this month. He...
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'Project Runway' goes artsy

February 1, 2008
Comments(9)
It had to happen eventually, I suppose. The “Project Runway” creators are shopping another reality/competition show to the networks—this one looking at the art world. "There will be creative challenges, unexpected challenges, things that will test these artists outside of their comfort...
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'Bang' bounced at TOTS

January 31, 2008
Comments(0)
A last-minute switch in the lineup at Theatre on the Square was mysteriously announced yesterday. In the just-around-the-corner late February slot, out went the relatively unknown survivalist comedy “Bang.” In comes the Pulitzer-Prize winning “Proof.” Why? According to the news...
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The Kindle, bootleg movies, etc.

January 31, 2008
Comment(1)
A few technology and the arts stories for you forward-thinking readers: According to yesterday’s Publishers Weekly, Amazon.com has experienced better-than-expected sales of the temporarily-out-of-stock Kindle, the $399 electronic book gizmo it launched last November.More

Sneak peek at "Great Ideas"

January 30, 2008
Comments(2)
Elsewhere at ibj.com, Jennifer Whitson reports on the Arts Council of Indianapolis’ selection of two projects as winners in this year’s “Great Ideas” contest. More

First impressions/free tickets

January 29, 2008
Comments(3)
What was the first production that woke you up to the potential pleasures of the stage? Were you tuned in as a kid? As a teen? Did interest in theater, dance, opera or live music wait until you were grown? Or...
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