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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Narcissus and Terpsichore (partially obscured):
Nederlands Dans Theater review

Posted By on Wed, Mar 30, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Nederlands Dans TheaterMemorial HallThrough March 30 You can tell Memorial Hall Box Office tries to be forthright about the merchandise it sells. Across the face of my front row balcony ticket for the performance by the Nederlands Dans Theater, a big black box is printed. In it, the words “Possible Partial View” appear, in white. But since no similar warnings were printed on what were my original tickets for the show — fifth row from the front of the orchestra — this review necessarily begins with something of a consumer advisory. If your tickets for tonight’s performance are in the...

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Savoyard's problematic PRINCESS IDA raises more questions than it answers

Posted By on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 2:43 PM

Joe CohnFighting the man? Lee Galbreath as Princess Ida. (Click image to enlarge.)PRINCESS IDA1.5 stars (out of 5)Durham SavoyardsCarolina TheatreThrough Mar. 27 It’s long been the Durham Savoyard’s lovably eccentric (and by now, nearly 50-year-old) mission to present the complete comic operas of Mssrs. Gilbert and Sullivan in installments, once per year. Regrettably, their 2011 production, PRINCESS IDA, calls into question the wisdom of their quest. To start with, director Derrick Ivey’s game sci-fi reframing of this 1884 work hardly hides the fact that Sir Gilbert’s libretto is an open mockery of what was the nascent women’s rights movement of...

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

ADF Announces 2011 Season — and the departure of co-director Charles Reinhart

Posted By on Wed, Mar 23, 2011 at 2:58 PM

ADF Co-director Charles ReinhartThe American Dance Festival announced the lineup for their 2011 season this afternoon. While longtime dance goers will hardly be shocked at the number of usual suspects listed among its 14 mainstage presentations between June 9 and July 23, the news that, after 43 years, this summer will be co-director Charles Reinhart’s last with the festival should raise at least a few eyebrows across the dance world. So, for that matter, might the festival’s choice for the 2011 Samuel H. Scripps Award: choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. Despite an internationally celebrated career that has spanned 30 years...

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Monday, March 21, 2011

"Letter to N.Y.": Elizabeth Bishop and The New Yorker, The Complete Correspondence

Posted By on Mon, Mar 21, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Perhaps the best way to read Elizabeth Bishop and The New Yorker: The Complete Correspondence (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 496 pp.) is, surprisingly, straight through—but with support. Some books of literary letters are best browsed, like an antique store; but if you prop a copy of Bishop's Complete Poems, 1927-1979 on your lap and Elizabeth Bishop and The New Yorker on top of that—and have Bishop's Collected Prose near to hand, for additional reference—the great poet's exchanges with her editors at the magazine for which she was, for three decades, probably the most celebrated and most frequently published poet, take...

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Friday, March 18, 2011

The dangers of slighting a vivid imagination:
Robert Lepage's THE ANDERSEN PROJECT

Posted By on Fri, Mar 18, 2011 at 5:29 PM

Yves Jacques in THE ANDERSEN PROJECT. Click image to enlarge.THE ANDERSEN PROJECT 4 stars (out of 5)Ex MachinaCarolina Performing Arts SeriesMemorial Hall, UNC Chapel HillThrough March 18 Never slight a person with a vivid imagination. Perhaps that’s the largest takeaway from Robert Lepage’s frequently inspired, technically innovative—but still overlong—one-person performance, THE ANDERSEN PROJECT, which closes tonight at UNC Chapel Hill’s Memorial Hall. It’s tempting to call this intermissionless two-hour performance a theatrical roman a clef, except that one of the names apparently hasn’t been changed at all. For on the basis of earlier interviews with the Canadian quintuple threat—stage director,...

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Jason Whitman’s hapless animals at Rebus Works

Posted By on Thu, Mar 17, 2011 at 6:36 PM

Courtesy of Rebus WorksJason Whitman:DrawingsRebus Works Through March Remember that guy in high school who was always drawing? You always wanted to sit in the row next to him so you could peek over during class to see what he was scrawling there, hiding the paper with an arm so the teacher couldn’t see what he was up to. I have a feeling that Jason Whitman was one of those guys. Whitman’s 25 or so pencil drawings currently at Rebus Works in Raleigh still show something of that album-cover, adolescent hand, featuring painstakingly shaded animals under various degrees of ironic...

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An older and mellower Tom Green: a conversation with the creator of Freddy Got Fingered

Posted By on Thu, Mar 17, 2011 at 6:20 PM

Courtesy of Marleah Leslie & AssociatesIn the late 1990s and early 2000s, Tom Green rose to superstardom through such gross-out humor as putting a sculpture of his parents having sex on their front lawn and the novelty hit “The Bum Bum Song.” There was also the debatable cult classic Freddy Got Fingered. (A highbrow appreciation is here.) But these days, the one-time MTV sensation who famously broadcast his testicular cancer surgery on the air has embraced a perspective he calls “conservative.” “I just talk about things that make me laugh, and that the mainstream doesn’t necessarily talk about,” says Green...

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First Friday diary

Posted By on Thu, Mar 17, 2011 at 5:38 PM

Photo by Lauren ShuteAt 311 Gallery, Friday night in RaleighAlthough I’ve spent three years in Raleigh, I’d yet to hit downtown for a First Friday. But this month, it was time. My editor asked for a report on the monthly art celebration, and I was more than happy to grab a notepad and some friends and spend a night on the town. My friends and I paired our most chic outfits with our highest heels for First Friday earlier this month, eager to fit in with the Raleigh art set. We sipped white wine and nodded along with the artists,...

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Want to see National Theatre's FRANKENSTEIN Thursday?
Fly to London. Or drive to Southern Pines.

Posted By on Wed, Mar 16, 2011 at 4:24 PM

FRANKENSTEINNational Theatre LiveSunrise TheaterSouthern PinesMarch 17, 3 p.m.Reservations: 910 692 8501 We've got another one of those insanelygreat—and totally last minute—performance opportunities for you. If you'd like to see a live performance of Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle's controversial production of FRANKENSTEIN, at London's National Theatre on Thursday, March 17, you have two options. Plan A: Fly to London and take your chances on a scalper's ducat or a last-minute cancellation. Price: ~$1,500—up. Plan B: Drive 90 minutes to Southern Pines, where you can see the performance, broadcast live via HD satellite feed, at the historic Sunrise Theater. Price: $20...

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Illness, privacy and reality TV: The Independent interview
with Now You See Me playwright Neal Bell

Posted By on Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 7:05 PM

Neal BellLate-stage lung cancer is certainly no joke. But Claire, the central character in Neil Bell’s new play, NOW YOU SEE ME, has an unexpected ally, of sorts. It’s her television—even though, a certain David Byrne lyric notwithstanding, they are not good friends.Bell’s dark comedy, whose world premiere opens Wednesday at Manbites Dog Theater, is a sharp-eyed critique from an industry insider of a medium that has proven, in its own way, to be every bit as metastatic in our culture as the carcinomas are in Claire’s body. Now You See Me asks to what lengths will a television network...

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(More) cute "a-gnome-ymous" art in D-town

Posted By on Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 3:34 PM

Cork gnomes are expected to venture out beginning March 20 Spring is in the air. Heaps of little creatures are prepping for debut, from bitty bunnies to budding bulbs and... lucky little cork gnomes, as the Indy staff has learned. The news came in an "a-gnome-ymous" letter of Lilliputian proportion, attached to this little guy (or gal?). Locals will start spotting these little cuties beginning March 20, according to the message. It seems they were inspired in part by last year's garden-gnome spottings across Durham, which were documented on a local blog, as well as here at the Indy website....

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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Good cast, long script—and a tight situation:
REP's Last Days of Judas Iscariot

Posted By on Sat, Mar 12, 2011 at 5:17 PM

D.L. AndersonLormarev Jones as St. Monica in THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT. Click image to enlarge.THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT3.5 stars (out of 5)Raleigh Ensemble PlayersThrough March 13 Our review of this production is also inescapably a first critical notice on a new venue—Raleigh Ensemble Players’ new theater space, which occupies the main floor of their modest four-story brick building at 213 Fayetteville Street in the heart of downtown Raleigh. That theater finally opened for its first show this week after a couple of earlier miscues, during a capital campaign conducted over two of the most economically unstable...

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Interviewing Kemet Jacobs of Black Poetry Theatre

Posted By on Sat, Mar 12, 2011 at 3:12 PM

D.L. AndersonKemet Jacobs. Click image to enlarge.Kemet Jacobs is a member of Durham's Black Poetry Theater, a group that has fused spoken word, music and movement since 2006 into multi-media performances dedicated to creating both celebratory and healing spaces and invoking community. We spoke before the group's appearance at Performance Art Night. Black Poetry Theater performs "Letters to My Child" Sunday, Mar. 13 at 3 and 6 p.m. at Common Ground Theater. I grew up in urban upstate New York. My mom was 13 when she had me. I was in an out of foster care. My siblings were tossed...

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Friday, March 11, 2011

What's hazardous waste? Main Street trailer released on YouTube

Posted By on Fri, Mar 11, 2011 at 6:32 PM

No one is more disappointed than we are that Main Street, the Colin Firth-starring film that was produced in Durham two years ago, seems to be stuck in straight-to-DVD purgatory. The late Horton Foote, the author of the screenplay, is an American theatrical treasure who lasted longer—if burned less brightly—than his greater contemporaries Tennessee Williams, William Inge and Arthur Miller. Foote passed away in 2009, shortly before production began on Main Street. Marc Maximov recapped the troubled production two weeks ago in advance of Firth's widely expected Oscar win for The King's Speech. To put it mildly, the trailer doesn't...

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Performance Art Night Profiles: Tony Hughes, Dana Marks and Rus Hames

Posted By on Fri, Mar 11, 2011 at 1:45 PM

Read our print preview here It’s a cold and rainy Sunday afternoon in Durham. As a group of artists filter into Duke University’s modest Branson Theater facility at the edge of its East Campus, I’m talking with Tony Hughes, artistic director of Very Normal Productions and founder of PERFORMANCE ART NIGHT, about the series he’s curated over the past three years, and its “10th anniversary”—the 10th collection of works—that will be presented over two nights this weekend at Common Ground Theater. (For a lineup of performances and info on an affiliated Saturday class in slapstick and clowning, go to the...

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Sunday, March 6, 2011

In this political climate, Arts Advocates are needed. Here's how you become one...

Posted By on Sun, Mar 6, 2011 at 8:41 PM

Arts Advocacy WorkshopsArts North Carolina RaleighUnited Arts of Raleigh/Wake County110 South Blount StreetTuesday, March 8, 12 noon DurhamDurham Arts Council120 Morris StreetMonday, March 14, 11:30 a.m. Chapel HillPlaymakers Repertory CompanyPaul Green Theater, UNC-Chapel HillMonday, March 28, 2 p.m. The moment has occurred repeatedly since the early part of the 2000s, when Arts N.C. executive director Karen Wells and her colleagues began conducting what she calls “Advocacy 101”—hour-long workshops that teach total novices how to coordinate and raise their voices with their elected representatives as citizens who support the arts. At some point it starts to dawn on her students: It...

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Wanna see a show tonight? Last minute announcement: Mike Wiley's PARCHMAN HOUR, at Duke, at 7:30

Posted By on Thu, Mar 3, 2011 at 2:03 PM

It's hard to say what exactly spurs the whimsies of one of this region's foremost monologists and playwrights. But this little item came over facebook forty-five minutes ago: "If anyone in the Triangle area would like to see The Parchman Hour before we head to Mississippi, come over to East Duke 209 tonight [on Duke's East Campus] and watch at 7:30." Our 4-star review of this joint Duke and UNC production from December 2010 commends Wiley's probing work into the fates of the Freedom Riders, in a music/theatrical work which asks the question, "Did a prison-based variety show actually save...

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A haunting Stroke/Book traces images of dysfunction and betrayal back to their source

Posted By on Thu, Mar 3, 2011 at 10:47 AM

photo by Jeremy M. LangeAaron Dunlap and Evgenia Madorsky, in STROKE. Click on image to enlarge.STROKE/BOOK4 stars (out of 5) Little Green Pig Theatrical ConcernGolden BeltThrough Mar. 5 What makes certain images iconic? It’s one of the questions choreographer Doug Varone was working on in his low-lit, pensive—and at times, eerie—work BOATS LEAVING, which premiered here at the 2006 American Dance Festival. Through a wide-ranging series of tableaus based, according to the dancemaker, on a year’s worth of news photographs from the New York Times, we gradually began to notice: certain gestures, certain interactions came up again. And again—even if...

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Met's Nixon in China, to be rebroadcast tonight, is a spectacular success

Posted By on Wed, Mar 2, 2011 at 12:01 PM

Ken Howard/ Metropolitan OperaJames Maddalena (left) and Janis Kelly (second from right) as Richard and Pat Nixon with dancer Haruno Yamazaki and Kanji SegawaNIXON IN CHINAMetropolitan OperaRebroadcast @Regal Brier Creek, Regal North Hills6:30 p.m., March 2; tickets here The Metropolitan Opera’s HD re-broadcast of the most recent in its series of simulcasts is coming up tonight, and anyone interested in either contemporary music or global power politics may want to clear the evening’s calendar for the presentation of this wonderful new production of one of the 20th century’s great operas. Nixon in China, with its thrilling score by John Adams...

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You stopped the arts coverage to cover the election..... You were probably better off just covering the arts, rather than …

by Matt Price on Will to Live Cautiously Returning? Here's a Few Things to Do This Week. (Arts)

Thanks for being there. You will be missed.

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