You-review-it Monday

October 31, 2010
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For me, the weekend included theatrical visits with the Phoenix Theatre for "My Name is Asher Lev" and Carmel Repertory Theatre for the local premiere of Jason Robert Brown's "13." And, cinematically, there was "Bride of Frankenstein" at the Indianapolis Museum of Art (with a terrific crowd).

How about you? Did you see Actors from the London Stage's production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at the Indiana History Center? Q Artistry's "Cabaret Poe"? William Bolcom's Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra concert?

What A&E experiences did you have this weekend?

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  • I Rallied to Restore Sanity!
    On Saturday I joined many fellow "moderates" at the Rally to Restore Sanity in Washington, DC. The weather was perfect. The program was often funny, occasionally poignant, and surprisingly thought-provoking - especially Jon Stewart's closing commentary. The crowd was amazing: friendly, respectful, and much larger and diverse than I expected. The rally signs were a hoot. And any event that includes Cat Stevens, Ozzy Osborne and Tony Bennett on the same stage in front of an enthusiastic and appreciative multi-generational audience classifies as both entertainment and art in my book.
  • authors and other artists
    The weekend begins on Thursday, right? Last Thursday I got to attend the Carmel Clay Public Library Foundation Guild's Sixth Annual Guilded Leaf Book & Author Luncheon at the Ritz Charles.

    It was an elegant event with a wonderful mix of authors speaking after the meal. The six featured authors included Roy Blount, Jr., Sena Jeta Naslund, Jason F. Wright, David Wiesner, Joyce Maynard, and Brian Haig.

    Also recognized were the first and second place winners of the high school writing contest: McKenna Glorioso and Kira Wegner-Clemens. Their winning stories were published in a special booklet that everyone received at the tables.

    I felt lucky to be at the Guilded Leaf Luncheon and I felt lucky, later in the weekend, to be at the Phoenix Theatre to see "My Name is Asher Lev." The three actors in it are outstanding, and the story of a Hasidic Jew who becomes a revered and reviled painter in the larger world had me fighting back sobs. I am looking forward to writing more about it on my own blog soon.

    Hope Baugh
    Indy Theatre Habit
  • Songwriter heaven
    Was at Wheeler Center for the Arts (Fountain Square) Saturday for the 1st show in the Indy Acoustic Cafe Series (14 years running). Much celebrated Nashville songwriter Beth Neilsen Chapman (look it up if you don't believe me, she has been covered by many famous singers, Bonnie Raitt, Faith Hill, Trisha Yearwood, many others) was the headliner, and the show was about as good as it gets...intimate room, great sound, great songs, great stories about those songs. BNC has survived losing a husband (in his early 40's) to terminal illness, her own breast cancer and brain tumor, and as you can imagine, she has woven her hard won perspective on life, and her many bumps in the road into her lyrics. A wonderful performer and songwriter. Rebecca Correia, one of the new breed of Nashville songwriters opened, and she also has beautiful though not yet well known songs, and an amazing voice. This was as good a concert experience as you can have...an appreciative attentive audience...a great night.
    The next show in the series is November 13. The featured performer is David Wilcox, who is the best acoustic performer songwriter storyteller out there, and annually makes an appearance in the long running series, which is the best kept secret in Indianapolis. If you want to see great acoustic music, this is the real deal (and I don't get paid for saying that). IndyAcousticCafeSeries.com for ticket information...every show is $20 at the door, or less if you buy preshow from the website or at the ticket outlets...best entertainment value I have found...the best Acoustic performers in the world, in a venue where you can see and hear...Wilcox normally sells out, if you want to go, get tickets now. Shows later in the season (2011) are Darden Smith, and Brooks Williams, plus more to be added.
    • Thanks, Jim!
      I love David Wilcox! Thanks for the heads up, Jim - and the great review of the BNC concert, which I'm sorry I missed. Another terrific and much-covered Nashville singer-songwriter is Gretchen Peters. Are you familiar with her? I'm a big fan.

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