The National Tour of The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess, winner of the 2012 Tony Award for best musical revival, opened at San Francisco’s Golden Gate Theatre last month to critical acclaim. It’s headed to the Queen City next summer, but excitement is already building, especially after seeing how audiences are reacting to the show in other cities!
Rob Hurwitt of the San Francisco Chronicle exclaimed, “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess is a triumph. Moran and Stampley vividly embody the central star-crossed lovers and proclaim their passion in an electrifying, ‘Bess, You Is My Woman Now.’ The silken voice of Sumayya Ali enfolds us in the glories of ‘Summertime.’ Diane Paulus’ bold revival has your heart beating in time with the world of Catfish Row.”
Karen D’Souza of Bay Area News Group hailed it as so: “A SUMPTUOUS MUSICAL TREAT! From lowdown blues to sultry lullabies, this is a score to be savored. Bask in the enduring beauty of songs such as ‘Summertime’ and ‘I Got Plenty of Nothing.’ Nathaniel Stampley etches Porgy with majesty and grace. Alicia Hall Moran sings like an angel, especially in ‘I Loves You’ and ‘Porgy and Kingsley Leggs,’ as Sporting Life delivers a juicy ‘It Ain’t Necessarily So.’ This ‘Porgy’ emerges as a moving tribute to the genius of the original.”
Check out the video below to hear how Porgy and Bess is resonating with audiences everywhere!
The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess is set in Charleston’s fabled Catfish Row, where the beautiful Bess struggles to break free from her scandalous past, and the only one who can rescue her is the courageous Porgy. Threatened by her formidable former lover, Crown, and the seductive enticements of the colorful troublemaker, Sporting Life, Porgy and Bess’ relationship evolves into a deep romance that triumphs as one of theater’s most exhilarating love stories. The show plays Belk Theater July 15-20. CLICK HERE for details.
Clairy Browne & the Bangin’ Rackettes will appear in McGlohon Theater tonight for the first time! Before they take the stage, they stopped by NBC Charlotte to give “Charlotte Today” a taste of their Australian retro soul. Click HERE to see them perform “Love Letter” on NBC Charlotte’s “Charlotte Today.”
Charlotte’s own Grown Up Avenger Stuff and Alex Kastanas will join Clairy Browne on stage tonight! Great seats are still available! Buy tickets now.
It’s yet another week full of amazing shows! From the Knight Theater down to McGlohon at Spirit Square, there’s something happening nearly every night this week. While rock icon Chris Cornell has sold out, there are other great shows you can still nab tickets for, but don’t wait any longer!
Godspell opens in Knight Theater Tuesday, Dec. 3. It’s here for six days only. The timeless tale of friendship, loyalty and love has touched the hearts of countless theatergoers all over the world, and now you can join in the celebration as a spectacular ensemble of bright young stars stirs your soul, raises your spirit and lifts you right out of your seat. Watch the video below to see the cast of the 2011 Broadway revival of Godspell perform a medley of “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord,” “Day By Day” and “Light of the World” live on David Letterman.
Looking for the perfect concoction of soul, surf and rhythm and blues? Clairy Browne & the Bangin’ Rackettes have just that and will bring it to the McGlohon Theater stage on Wednesday! The group makes its Charlotte debut for one night only. CLICK HERE for all the details and to buy your tickets now! The show also features two local openers: Grown Up Avenger Stuff and Alex Kastanas!
When I Grow Up … is also playing this week. This one-act showcase features wonderfully talented Charlotte area teens performing material from contemporary musical theater. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to see Broadway’s future stars! When I Grow Up … is directed by the award winning, professional directing team of Linda Booth and Lori Anne Sword and arranged by musical director Bill Congdon who was most recently musical director for the national and international tours of Billy Elliot. Team Broadway’s young performers represent 14 schools across the Charlotte region. CLICK HERE for all the details. Come support this homegrown talent!
on sale Monday, Dec. 2, at 10 a.m.! Don’t miss your chance to nab great seats first!
Born in Benin, West Africa, Angelique Kidjo is a Grammy award-winning music recording artist deemed “Africa’s premier diva” by Time magazine. Kidjo’s internationally acclaimed repertoire includes collaborations with various recording artists, such as Carlos Santana, Peter Gabriel, Alicia Keys, Josh Groban, Branford Marsalis, Joss Stone and many more. Known for her dynamic and uplifting music, she has translated her distinctive work in the arts to that of philanthropy. By promoting education for girls in Africa through her foundation, Batonga, and as a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador, Kidjo travels the world to inspire and empower. She comes to McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square Feb. 8. Ticket prices begin at $24.50. CLICK HERE for all the details.
On April 10, TAO: Phoenix Rising brings a unique show experience to the Knight Theater stage. Athletic bodies and contemporary costumes meet explosive taiko drumming and innovative choreography in a show that has critics waxing lyrical about TAO’s extraordinary precision, energy and stamina. With hundreds of soldout shows and more than a million spectators, TAO has proven that modern entertainment based on the traditional art of Japanese drumming has massive international appeal.
The stars of TAO live and train at a compound in the mountains of Japan, reaching the highest level of virtuosity only after years of intensive study. The performers each bring nontraditional flair to the group by drawing on their diverse backgrounds: one as a hard rock musician, another as a gymnast, and another as a composer. They offer a young and vibrantly modern take on a traditional art form. Ticket prices begin at $24.50. CLICK HERE to buy starting Monday at 10 a.m.
Watch the clip below to check them out!
The Ten Tenors come to Knight Theater March 31, and ticket prices start at only $29.50. This talented group respectfully tips their hats to their classical roots and share with audiences unique renditions of the genre’s best love pieces, but they also push the boundaries of what it means to be a tenor and to sit in the classical genre in today’s world. Taking cues from some of music’s most courageous contemporary artists, including Freddy Mercury and Meatloaf, The Ten Tenors, see rock opera as not only a way of keeping their show fresh and reaching new audiences, but appealing to the array of musical preferences a 10-piece musical act shares.
Amid incredible international success, this Australian troupe has become known as one of the hardest working touring acts. Performing an average of 250 shows per year across seven continents, they have sold more than 3.5 million concert tickets, have four gold and two platinum CDs, two gold DVDs and a platinum DVD, and they continually strive to challenge themselves and their audiences. CLICK HERE for more information.
Celtic Nights is also headed our way soon! The group comes to McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square March 22. Just as a plant craves light, Celtic people are drawn to music and song. Scattered around the world like seeds on the wind, they are propelled by the powerful rhythms and motifs of a mysterious and exuberant ancient culture. Music is the soul, the very lifeblood of their tradition. It binds them together, even as it sets them apart. This driving passion for music and dance is the keystone of Celtic identity. Their response to melody, lyric and the criss-crossing rhythms of Irish dance is reflexive, intuitive and filled with joy. The Irish embrace their musical culture like no other nation, and their pride in artistry is its own reward. Above all else, it is this natural affinity with music and song that has given Celtic people a truly global voice. A Celtic Voice. Every thundering dance tune and plaintive melody is a separate thread in the broad and colorful tapestry of Celtic music.
In this glittering production, six of Ireland’s most accomplished dancers mirror six of its finest voices to present a spell-binding and exhilarating picture of a proud people, their passion, and their hopes and dreams. It tells the story of the lives and loves of the Celtic exiles who dared to dream big and were doggedly determined to carve out a home in the New World. Their stories live large in the power and majesty of their music and hypnotic fury of dancing Irish feet. CLICK HERE for all the details.
Chris Isaak has made his mark on rock ‘n’ roll with hits such as “Wicked Game” and “Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing.” Isaak claims Roy Orbison as a major influence, and that influence is evident in his music. He made his solo debut in 1985 and has since recorded 11 studio albums. His career doesn’t stop there. Isaak has appeared in numerous films and TV shows, including The Silence of the Lambs, “Friends,” and 2008′s The Informers.
In addition to his hit singles, Isaak will perform holiday favorites in Knight Theater on Monday, Dec. 16, in a show billed Chris Isaak’s Holiday Show. One of the songs sure to make the set list is Isaak’s mellow rendition of my personal favorite holiday song, “The Christmas Song.” Hear Isaak lend his smooth rock voice to the timeless track below.
Don’t miss Isaak in Knight Theater Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m. Get tickets now.
If you need another reminder why you should come, just watch and listen to him perform “Wicked Game” in the video below. If you’ll remember the sultry official music video for “Wicked Game,” it was No. 1 on Fuse’s “40 Sexiest Music Videos,” was No. 4 on VH1′s “50 Sexiest Music Video Moments” and ranked No. 73 on Rolling Stone’s “The 100 Top Music Videos.”
What better way to kick off the holiday season than with the premiere Irish holiday celebration tour? On Saturday, Nov. 30, you have that chance as The Irish Tenors bring a stellar show to the Belk Theater stage. CLICK HERE for all the details!
The Irish Tenors’ powerful vocal lineup of Finbar Wright, Anthony Kearns and Ronan Tynan are unquestionably the leading brand of this genre, and they are regarded as the godfathers of the Irish repertoire. They are all classically trained singers, each having performed in leading concert hall across the world, and together they produce a sound and concert experience that touches hearts and stirs emotions. They have happy songs of celebration and humor mixed with touching melodies and songs that warm the heart. The magic they’ve captured on previous releases has sold millions of album and catapulted them to the upper reaches of Billboard’s music charts. The Irish Tenors have appeared on several incredibly successful and highly rated PBS specials, including “Ellis Island” and “Live From Belfast,” as well as on “The Today Show,” “Good Morning America,” “Regis and Kelly,” “Martha Stewart” and “A&E Breakfast With the Arts,” and they are one of the bestselling acts to appear on QVC.
In the clip below you can hear some of the songs from the “Home for Christmas” album released by The Irish Tenors in 1999.
Don’t miss this wonderful show that is sure to move you — coming to Belk Theater Saturday, Nov. 30. Ticket prices begin at $19.50. CLICK HERE to buy now!
It’s hard to believe we are already nearing the month of December! While holiday shopping might be at the top of your list of things to do, don’t forget about all of the amazing shows Blumenthal Performing Arts has to offer all month! A pair of tickets could be the perfect gift, or the theater could be just the place to take your out-of-town guests during their stay. From concerts to Broadway, we have you covered.
Rock icon Chris Cornell kicks it all off on Dec. 2 in Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts. An innovator who resists genre labels, he was nonetheless the chief architect of the ’90s grunge movement. Ranked as “one of the best voices in music history,” he has successfully maintained his own unique identity over more than two decades as a multiple Grammy Award-winning musician, Golden Globe nominee and universally acclaimed singer, songwriter and lyricist. Ticket prices start at $39.50. CLICK HERE to buy now.
If you’re in need of a Broadway fix, we have two shows this December: Godspell and The Book of Mormon. Godspell plays Knight Theater Dec. 3-8. CLICK HERE to buy tickets to this beloved musical. The Book of Mormon opens in Belk Theater Dec. 26. There are still seats available for some of the later performances, which run through Jan. 5. CLICK HERE to buy before time runs out!
Want to support some of Charlotte’s brightest young stars? When I Grow Up … plays Booth Playhouse Dec 4 and 5. Tickets are only $10-$30! Blumenthal Performing Arts’ Team Broadway presents a musical journey of self-discovery, exploring the path from adolescence to young adulthood. This one-act showcase features wonderfully talented Charlotte area teens performing material from contemporary musical theater. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to see Broadway’s future stars!
Interested in a rousing and rambunctious concoction of soul, surf and rhythm and blues, sure to blow your socks off? That’s what Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes have in store for Dec. 4 in McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square. Tickets prices start at $14.50. CLICK HERE to read more about the group and buy yours tickets now!
If you’re looking for something to get you in the holiday spirit, look no further! Chris Isaak brings his holiday show to Knight Theater on Dec. 16. CLICK HERE for details. Then on Dec 20 and 21, see The Colors of Christmas featuring four superstar performers in one amazing holiday show! Peabo Bryson (“A Whole New World”), CeCe Winans (“Everlasting Love”), Ruben Studdard (“American Idol” winner) and Melissa Manchester (“Midnight Blue” and “Lovers After All”) share the Knight Theater spotlight for two unforgettable nights! Performing their classic, chart-topping hits, as well as holiday favorites, these incredible talents bring the most magical show of the season center stage.
See what we’re talking about? December is a big month for theater! Visit BlumenthalArts.org for everything you need to know to make your plans.