You-review-it Monday

March 15, 2009
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Friday night at the opera. Saturday triple-header at the Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville. Sunday night catching up on back episodes of "How I Met Your Mother." (Okay, so I'm about three years behind, but the sitcom is terrific.) 

How about you? Did you do any of the above? Or catch Encore Vocal Arts? Spend time with $3 Bill comedy? Hang out with "The Ladies Man" at the IRT?

How did you spend your weekend?
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  • Pirates of Penzance by Indianapolis Opera (Friday) was delightful. The Ladies' Man at IRT (Sunday) was a fast-paced howler of farce. Carmina Burana by Encore Vocal arts (Saturday), though was unforgettable. Chris Ludwa is a gifted conductor with a talent for inspired programming. Here, he married a fine chamber choir with four percussionists, tympani and duo pianists for a vigorous reading of Karl Orff's popular masterwork.

    What transformed this Carmina Burana was the added element of gymnasts using the floor, a trapeze/ring apparatus and two pairs of streamers suspended from somewhere hidden in the stage rigging. Their aerial dancing added visually, physically to the sung story. For me--and, evidently, for the large, enthusiastic audience in Shortridge's Caleb Mills Auditorium--it all added up to more than the sum of the parts.

    Next up for Encore Vocal Arts: May 2 and 3, a program of the singers' favorites--likely to be ours, as well.
    dh
    (Formerly a choir dad--now just a fan)
  • I heard Megan McKinney interviewing someone from the Encore Vocal Arts show about the music and the aerial gymnasts on her radio show on the Fine Arts Society channel (88.7 FM/HD) this past weekend. I was sorry I couldn't go to the show. I'm glad it was good. Thanks, Dan, for writing about it!

    I listened to 88.7 a lot last week on my way to and from theatres. A week ago Sunday when we were at the IRT, my friend Adrienne introduced me to someone named Meridith. Adrienne had been in a show with his wife. He is an announcer for 88.7.

    So far, I haven't heard Meredith, but I have enjoyed every FAS show I've tuned into. Such a wide variety of music! My new favorite song is one I heard on Friday night, I think it was. It is a folksy song whose chorus includes, Do you color outside of the lines? I scribbled down the artist's name at a stoplight: Bucky Hawker.

    This weekend I saw and judged two Encore Association community theatre shows. I also saw West Side Story at the Indianapolis Civic Theatre. I will write about it on my own blog soon, so I'll just say here that it was a very satisfying production - somehow both fresh and reliable, if that makes sense. The first weekend was almost sold out, so I encourage people to make reservations right away if they are thinking of going.

    I also laughed and cried while reading a wonderful novel called FLIP, by Wendylyn Van Draanen (Knopf 2001.) It was written for middle schoolers, but if you have ever been 13 years old yourself, I bet you would enjoy it. It is told from two points of view: a boy and a girl who live across from each other.

    I also stressed about my lack of time to do yard work, but that is a topic for a different blog.

    Hope Baugh
    Indy Theatre Habit
  • Hope:
    The classical announcer you refer to Meredith Granger, who is quite knowledgeable and professional (also a fun and witty guy, for those who have the pleasure of knowing him.)

    Glad you enjoy the Fine Arts Society. Not enough people support them (or WICR or WFYI, for that matter.) Those who enjoy the programming need to understand that the Fine Arts Society (www.fasindy.org) is a separate organization, distinct from WICR but in partnership with them and supplying programming that many of us enjoy every day.

    (That's a heartfelt plug, Meredith. You're welcome)
    dh
  • Few things make me laugh. W. C. Fields, David Sedaris and The Marx Brothers are three who do. I've now discovered that a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, in the right hands, will also cause me to laugh out loud. My wife, daughter and I took in Pirates of Penzance at Clowes on Sunday. I was expecting to be entertained, as few Clowes productions miss the mark, but I wasn't prepared for laugh out loud entertainment. It was one of those magic afternoons when it all came together the way it was supposed to; even the weather cooperated. It was a good day and I'm grateful for the Indianapolis Opera and the production they bring our way.
  • The 22nd Art and Antiques Show at the State Fairgrounds was a feast for the senses. Oil painters Doug David and an up-and-coming artist named Forrest Formsma each composed a demonstration painting. Forrest painted a scene the Broad Ripple Canal area and it sold immediately thereafter. Also, loved the vintage Chanel bags and could have spent the entire weekend pouring over antique maps. What a story they tell! Despite this economic Pearl Harbor we're in, it appears investors are looking at other opportunities. I was happy for the exhibitors to see the show so well-attended.

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  1. Aaron is my fav!

  2. Let's see... $25M construction cost, they get $7.5M back from federal taxpayers, they're exempt from business property tax and use tax so that's about $2.5M PER YEAR they don't have to pay, permitting fees are cut in half for such projects, IPL will give them $4K under an incentive program, and under IPL's VFIT they'll be selling the power to IPL at 20 cents / kwh, nearly triple what a gas plant gets, about $6M / year for the 150-acre combined farms, and all of which is passed on to IPL customers. No jobs will be created either other than an handful of installers for a few weeks. Now here's the fun part...the panels (from CHINA) only cost about $5M on Alibaba, so where's the rest of the $25M going? Are they marking up the price to drive up the federal rebate? Indy Airport Solar Partners II LLC is owned by local firms Johnson-Melloh Solutions and Telemon Corp. They'll gross $6M / year in triple-rate power revenue, get another $12M next year from taxpayers for this new farm, on top of the $12M they got from taxpayers this year for the first farm, and have only laid out about $10-12M in materials plus installation labor for both farms combined, and $500K / year in annual land lease for both farms (est.). Over 15 years, that's over $70M net profit on a $12M investment, all from our wallets. What a boondoggle. It's time to wise up and give Thorium Energy your serious consideration. See http://energyfromthorium.com to learn more.

  3. Markus, I don't think a $2 Billion dollar surplus qualifies as saying we are out of money. Privatization does work. The government should only do what private industry can't or won't. What is proven is that any time the government tries to do something it costs more, comes in late and usually is lower quality.

  4. Some of the licenses that were added during Daniels' administration, such as requiring waiter/waitresses to be licensed to serve alcohol, are simply a way to generate revenue. At $35/server every 3 years, the state is generating millions of dollars on the backs of people who really need/want to work.

  5. I always giggle when I read comments from people complaining that a market is "too saturated" with one thing or another. What does that even mean? If someone is able to open and sustain a new business, whether you think there is room enough for them or not, more power to them. Personally, I love visiting as many of the new local breweries as possible. You do realize that most of these establishments include a dining component and therefore are pretty similar to restaurants, right? When was the last time I heard someone say "You know, I think we have too many locally owned restaurants"? Um, never...

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