Arts

Arts and Humanities
2:06 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Jason Alexander, Matthew Morrison Headline Upcoming Louisville Orchestra Pops Shows

Jason Alexander

Most people know Jason Alexander best as Jerry Seinfeld’s sidekick George Costanza on the award-winning NBC sitcom "Seinfeld." But Alexander got his start on stage, and even won a Tony Award for his role in "Jerome Robbins’ Broadway."

After "Seinfeld," he went back to musicals and Broadway tunes. He opens the Boston Pops’ upcoming summer season with the program of song, dance and (of course) comedy that he’ll bring to the Kentucky Center's Whitney Hall on September 27. That concert will open the Louisville Orchestra's 2014-15 Pops season, a slate of six shows that feature several heavy-hitting alumni of the Great White Way. 

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Arts and Humanities
4:45 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Louisville's Alley Theater Programs Off-Beat Shows in Short Bursts

The new Alley Theater on Museum Row.
Credit Alley Theater

Louisville’s The Alley Theater delayed its 2014 season to begin renovations and construction inside its new storefront theater space on Main Street’s Museum Row, which are currently underway. The Alley will open its new season in March, but don't ask them what's playing Labor Day weekend. Starting this year, aside from holiday shows, the company will announce its programming in three-month chunks.

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Arts and Humanities
7:15 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Nulu's Dreamland Experiments Beyond Film

Credit dreamlandislouisville.org

The Dreamland Film Center in Nulu is getting a mission make-over. The Louisville Film Society renovated the former Wayside Christian Church chapel behind Decca on East Market Street in 2012 as a micro-cinema, but recently decided to relocate to a larger space in the Portland neighborhood to accommodate new projects and an expanded mission.  

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Arts and Humanities
3:14 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

REVIEW | Actors Theatre's 'Our Town' Reinvigorates a Classic

Bruce McKenzie as Stage Manager, with the cast of "Our Town" at Actors Theatre of Louisville.
Credit Bill Brymer

It’s not easy producing a classic play. You carry the weight of the aggregate of all previous productions with you into the theatre, where you then ask the audience to set aside their individual ideas about how this play should look, sound and feel on stage based on what they’ve seen before and accept your vision with an open mind and heart. If the production is faithful to tradition, you’re rewarded by those seeking comfort in the familiar, but the other side of the coin can be brutal – dismissed by those prizing innovation over all. And the opposite is also true – a daring production can break all of the rules and garner critical acclaim while alienating a large swath of ticket buyers.

All of this is to say that Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” was not necessarily a “safety” pick for Actors Theatre of Louisville’s 50th anniversary season. There is as much danger in producing such a well-known and frequently produced (especially on school and community stages) play as there is in putting up an untested world premiere in the Humana Festival.

But director (and artistic director) Les Waters, who came to “Our Town” with an Englishman’s fresh eyes, has pulled it off. His “Our Town” is a sensitive, beautiful and unsentimental production that honors Wilder’s groundbreaking script while offering innovative gestures that are wholly his own.

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Arts and Humanities
1:20 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

REVIEW | Louisville Ballet Dancers Flex Choreography Muscles

Natalia Ashikhmina in Rob Morrow's “Paranoia Prima” in the Louisville Ballet's 2014 Choreographers' Showcase.
Credit David Toczko / Louisville Ballet

  The 2014 Louisville Ballet Choreographers' Showcase is this week at the ballet's headquarters on Main Street. This year's Showcase brought together a smorgasbord of seventeen short pieces choreographed by company members and trainees, with almost half of the complete company represented as choreographers. Some pieces were choreographed by familiar names, while others contributed an original piece to the Showcase for the first time. 

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Arts and Humanities
5:01 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Abbey Road on the River Producers Stage Live Re-Enactment of Ed Sullivan's Fab Four Show

The Beatles wave to fans after arriving at Kennedy Airport on February 7, 1964.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

On February 9, 1964, Ed Sullivan introduced the Beatles to his American audience, bringing the nascent British Invasion to almost half of America's televisions in one evening. 

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Arts and Humanities
12:53 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Service Plans for Former Kentucky Opera Director Thomson Smillie

Thomson Smillie
Credit Submitted photo

A funeral Mass for Thomson Smillie, director of Kentucky Opera from 1982-1997, is planned for Thursday at 1:30 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Assumption, 433 S. Fifth Street. A Memorial Concert will follow at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the W.L. Lyons Brown Theatre, 315 W. Broadway. A reception will follow the concert in the adjacent Fifth/Third Conference Center.

Smillie died Saturday at his home. He was 71.

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Arts and Humanities
11:17 am
Tue January 21, 2014

Actors Theatre Extends 'Pirates' Run

The cast of "The Pirates of Penzance," Actors Theatre of Louisville, 2014
Credit Bill Brymer / Actors Theatre of Louisville

Due to heavy demand for tickets, Actors Theatre of Louisville is extending the run of "The Pirates of Penzance" in the Bingham Theatre. The company has added an extra performance, February 5 at 7:30 p.m., to increase capacity for the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta.

"We've been thrilled by the tremendous response we have seen from audiences. Louisville is really loving this party in the middle of winter," says spokeswoman Kirsty Gaukel. "People have been returning to see the show for a second time, so they can try out the promenade seats."

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Arts and Humanities
1:00 pm
Mon January 20, 2014

Actors Theatre's Les Waters Sees American Classic With Fresh Eyes

Credit Actors Theatre of Louisville

Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” is a certified American classic. Taught and performed in high schools across the country, the play, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1938, at times suffers from the regrettable side-effects of that familiarity, reduced to a sentimental period piece appealing to those nostalgic for small-town simple life at the turn of the 20th century.

Wilder, oddly enough, is often misunderstood by those who should know him best. 

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Arts and Humanities
6:46 pm
Sun January 19, 2014

Former Kentucky Opera Leader Thomson Smillie Dies

Thomson Smillie
Credit Submitted photo

Thomson Smillie, who led the Kentucky Opera to become one of the nation’s leading regional opera companies, died at 10:30 Saturday night at his home. He was 71.

A native Scotsman, Smillie came to Louisville in 1981, where he spent a year working with the Kentucky Opera’s founder, Moritz Bomhard, before taking the reigns as Mr. Bomhard’s successor in 1980.

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