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LOU'S VIEWS: IBJ A&E road trip heading for Canada

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Lou Harry

Two years ago, the first IBJ A&E Road Trip took central Indiana arts lovers to see Chicago Shakespeare Theatre’s production of “Sunday in the Park with George”—a production that later went on to win Joseph Jefferson Awards (the local Tony Award equivalent) for best musical, best director and best production/video design.

Before the performance, we took a backstage tour of the acclaimed theater and visited the Institute of Contemporary Art to see George Seurat’s “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,” the painting that inspired the musical.

The enthusiastic response from those who joined me on that trek inspired more trips, including visits to Cincinnati to see the national tour of “War Horse” and back to Chicago for the Goodman Theatre’s “The Jungle Book” and the pre-Broadway production of “Big Fish.”

Now we’re getting even more ambitious, partnering with Ambassadair on a trip to the Stratford Shakespeare Festival (with side trips to Niagara Falls and the Shaw Festival) July 30 to Aug. 3.
 

ae-main-festivaltheatre-1col.jpg Since 1952, the Stratford Festival, housed at four venues including the Festival Theatre, above, has offered world-class theater from Shakespeare and more. (Photo/Stratford Shakespeare Festival/Erin Samuell)

The Stratford trip features performances of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” the Gershwin musical “Crazy for You,” and a tragedy/comedy choice of “King Lear” or Noel Coward’s “Hay Fever.” And there’s an optional “Arms and the Man” at the nearby Shaw Festival. Bonuses include backstage tours, actor encounters, a boat tour of Niagara Falls, a visit to the Edsel and Eleanor Ford Home outside of Detroit, and more.

I’ll be hosting the trip and looking forward to offering background info, comparing notes, sharing theater stories, and otherwise doing everything I can to make this into a one-of-a-kind A&E adventure.

For information, pricing and more, visit www.ambassadair.com and click the link for U.S. & Canada trips. To get early email notification of future trips, drop me a note at lharry@ibj.com with IBJ A&E TRIPS in the subject line.•

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This column appears weekly. Send information on upcoming arts and entertainment events to lharry@ibj.com.

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  1. A Tilted Kilt at a water park themed hotel? Who planned that one? I guess the Dad's need something to do while the kids are on the water slides.

  2. Don't come down on the fair for offering drinks. This is a craft and certainly one that belongs in agriculture due to ingredients. And for those worrying about how much you can drink. I'm sure it's more to do with liability than anything else. They don't want people suing for being over served. If you want a buzz, do a little pre-drinking before you go.

  3. I don't drink but go into this "controlled area" so my friend can drink. They have their 3 drink limit and then I give my friend my 3 drink limit. How is the fair going to control this very likely situation????

  4. I feel the conditions of the alcohol sales are a bit heavy handed, but you need to realize this is the first year in quite some time that beer & wine will be sold at the fair. They're starting off slowly to get a gauge on how it will perform this year - I would assume if everything goes fine that they relax some of the limits in the next year or couple of years. That said, I think requiring the consumption of alcohol to only occur in the beer tent is a bit much. That is going to be an awkward situation for those with minors - "Honey, I'm getting a beer... Ok, sure go ahead... Alright see you in just a min- half an hour."

  5. This might be an effort on the part of the State Fair Board to manage the risk until they get a better feel for it. However, the blanket notion that alcohol should not be served at "family oriented" events is perhaps an oversimplification. and not too realistic. For 15 years, I was a volunteer at the Indianapolis Air Show, which was as family oriented an event as it gets. We sold beer donated by Monarch Beverage Company and served by licensed and trained employees of United Package Liquors who were unpaid volunteers. And where did that money go? To central Indiana children's charities, including Riley Hospital for Children! It's all about managing the risk.

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