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Looking Ahead: Lots of Entertainment in Store this Week!

October 20, 2014
An Evening with Andy McKee comes to McGlohon Theater tomorrow night!

Andy McKee comes to McGlohon Theater tomorrow night!

From music to comedy and more, we are convinced there is something in this week’s lineup for everyone!

Kicking it all off tomorrow night is one of the world’s finest acoustic guitar soloists. An Evening With Andy McKee comes to McGlohon Theater Tuesday, and ticket prices start at only $22.50! CLICK HERE to nab tickets before it’s too late.

Then, opening Tuesday and playing for one week in Booth Playhouse at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, it’s Steve Solomon! Solomon is the author and star of the three-time award-winning, critically acclaimed show: “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish and I’m in Therapy.” We now bring you “CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT … the therapy continues,” Solomon’s newest project.

Almost a million people throughout the United States and overseas have laughed till they cried at Solomon’s hit shows: “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish & I’m in Therapy,” “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish & I’m STILL in Therapy” and his hilarious holiday show, “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish & I’m HOME for the Holidays.”

His latest show coming to Charlotte a laugh-filled fest of everybody you know, have known and some you’d want to forget but can’t! Each of the 20 or so characters are brought to life by Solomon using the voices and dialects that they possess in real life. Close your eyes and you’d swear there were two or three people chatting on stage; all these people are created by the comedian and master dialectician himself.

Playing Oct 21-26 in Booth Playhouse!

Steve Solomon plays Oct. 21-26 in Booth Playhouse!

Prepare to laugh, prepare to cry and prepare to spend a wonderful side-splitting evening with Solomon and his wacky family and friends. You’ll leave remembering why you left home in the first place: Dinner for 35 … one toilet and no plunger! CLICK HERE for tickets!

Friday night, get a taste of everything! Some call it jazz. Some call it classical. Some call it bluegrass. The music of The Kruger Brothers is all of that and more.  Experience what happens when these innovative and soulful world-class virtuosos put on a one-of-a-kind performance that audiences find breathtaking and unforgettable. CLICK HERE for tickets to see this amazing show in McGlohon Theater.

Sunday, celebrate 40 years with Los Lobos! If they have learned one thing in nearly four decades together, it’s that playing by the rules is not for them. They tried it for a while, said no thanks, and they’ve been better for it ever since.

Their 1987 remake of Ritchie Valens’ classic “La Bamba” for the soundtrack by the same name, earned the band a No. 1 smash on the Billboard charts, and the following year’s “La Pistola y El Corazón,” which found the band revisiting its Mexican folk roots, was also highly regarded. This all-acoustic performance of traditional Tejano and Mariachi folk songs featured on that Grammy-winning 1989 release of “La Pistola y El Corazon” will also feature a set of hits as well. This tour celebrates the band’s 40th anniversary. CLICK HERE for tickets. Prices begin at only $34.50!

Friday Giveaway! Win Tickets to See ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ on Tour!

October 17, 2014

The show that has swept the nation and, in some ways, re-energized the entire world of dance is set to captivate audiences in a new way — live on tour! Celebrating its momentous 11th season,   “So You Think You Can Dance,” sends its top 10 finalists across North America, performing in more than 70 cities — including right here in Charlotte — as part of the “So You Think You Can Dance” Season 11 Tour.

You could be the lucky winner of a pair of tickets to see this amazing, 11-time Primetime Emmy Award-winning show in Belk Theater on Monday, Nov. 10!

The season 11 tour lineup includes the following top 10 finalists: Bridget Whitman, Casey Askew, Emilio Dosal, Jacque LeWarne, Jessica Richens, Ricky Ubeda, Rudy Abreu, Tanisha Belnap, Valerie Rockey and Zack Everhart.

Check out this behind-the-scenes video created during a photo shoot with the top 10 dancers.

Fall’s hottest ticket will feature this season’s most popular routines, as well as original pieces created specifically for the nationwide tour. 19 Entertainment and dick clark productions will present audiences around the country with the opportunity to experience the action brought into their living rooms each week on the beloved summer series, with a variety of sizzling, one-of-a-kind dance routines they have come to expect from their favorite dancers.

“So You Think You Can Dance” recently received seven 2014 Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including Outstanding Reality-Competition Program and Outstanding Host In A Reality or Reality-Competition Program (Cat Deeley), in addition to Outstanding Choreography nominations. SYTYCD’s outstanding costume team of Marina Toybina and Grainne O’Sullivan also won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Costumes for a Variety Program.

You can purchase tickets for the “So You Think You Can Dance” Season 11 Tour by clicking HERE.


Email and tell us why you love “So You Think You Can Dance!” Use the subject line: SYTYCD Giveaway! A winner will be selected at noon Tuesday, Oct. 21, and notified via email.


Help Support Broadway Junior

October 15, 2014
2014 Broadway Junior Celebration in Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts.

Students have fun at the 2014 Broadway Junior Celebration in Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts.

Have you heard of The Broadway Junior Celebration at Blumenthal Performing Arts? It offers an enthusiastic, educational environment for students and teachers to interact with hundreds of others who share their passion for musical theater, and you can help make it happen!

Broadway Junior is created and directed by iTheatrics, a New York City-based premiere creative consultant in educational musical theater, in association with the leading theatrical licenser Music Theatre International (MTI) and Blumenthal Performing Arts Education Department.

During the celebration, the school groups perform a selection from their school musicals before iTheatrics professionals who provide feedback to help the students improve their communication with the audience, engagement in the performance, understanding of the material and connection to the lyrics and movement.

Students participate in interactive workshops at Knight Theater.

Students participate in interactive workshops at Knight Theater.

The students also participate in interactive workshops while their teachers participate in professional development workshops with iTheatrics educators. Most importantly, the Broadway Junior Celebration brings together people from all aspects of theater – ranging from North Carolina students and teachers to professionals who work on Broadway – under one roof to celebrate outstanding student musical theater productions. The program is completely free to participants.

This past April, 45 schools participated and performed for their peers over three days with nearly 1,800 students and teachers gathered at the Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts.

The 2015 Broadway Junior Celebration is March 31-April 2. We shipped 42 musical kits to under-resourced schools at a cost of nearly $21,000 last month. The schools have use of the materials and the rights to produce their musical for the entire school year.

Help us raise $21,000 to cover the cost of these kits for schools that cannot afford them. Make your gift today and Team Creatif USA will match it dollar for dollar! CLICK HERE for more information.

Winner, Finalists Named in Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition

October 14, 2014
Sean Mason, Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition, Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival

Sean Mason performs during the first Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition, part of the Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival. Photo by Phillip Hoffman.

Sean Mason, an 11th grader at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology, is the winner of the first Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition. The contest was held Oct. 4 on Find Your Jazz Day, part of the Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival.

“The level of talent in this competition was amazing,” said Ralph Beck, Blumenthal Performing Arts director of education. “The judges were blown away. We can’t wait to see what happens next year.”

Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival kicked off with Find Your Jazz Day, a free event that included classes, exhibits, panel discussions, the student competition, a New Orleans-style second line jazz parade and a concert. The festival concluded Oct. 7 with a concert by Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra With Wynton Marsalis at Belk Theater at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center.

Sean Mason, Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition

Sean Mason performs during the first Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artists Competition, part of the Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival. Photo by Phillip Hoffman.

Charlotte legend Loonis McGlohon was a world-renowned master musician, composer and visionary. Along with his dedication and gift of live performance, he was a true friend to all who encountered him in the Queen City. In recognition of his many decades as a composer, writer and jazz ambassador, Blumenthal Performing Arts and Jazz Arts Initiative established the Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artist Award as a tribute to this special individual. The results of the contest follow.

First Place
Sean Mason, piano
11th grade at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology

  • Competition songs: “C Jam Blues” by Duke Ellington and “Autumn Leaves” by Joseph Kosma.
  • The prizes: An opportunity to perform as a guest soloist at the April 2015 Jazz Room: Jazz Appreciation Special Edition Concert Event; $750 cash; and a $100 gift card from Music and Arts Center.

Second Place
Veronica Leahy, saxophone
8th grade at Charlotte Latin

  • Competition songs: “Swing Easy” by various and “Confirmation” by Charlie Parker.
  • The prizes: $500 cash and a $75 gift card from Music and Arts Center.

Third Place
Stephen Brock, violin
11th grade at Comenius School of Creative Leadership

  • Competition songs: “Sandu” by Clifford Brown and “Summertime” by George Gershwin.
  • The prizes: $250 cash and a $50 gift card from Music and Arts Center.


Get to Know: Steve Solomon, Creator and Star of CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT

October 9, 2014

Comedian Steve Solomon, CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT...the therapy continuesSteve Solomon returns to Charlotte on Oct. 21 with his latest project, “CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT … the therapy continues.”

Solomon is the creator and star of the three-time award-winning, critically acclaimed show: “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish and I’m in Therapy” and the follow-up hits “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish & I’m STILL in Therapy” and “My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish & I’m HOME for the Holidays.”

The laugh-packed, one-man comedy show will run through Oct. 26 at Booth Playhouse at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. Tickets begin at $20. Click here to get yours today (check out the special offer below!).

“CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT is the best of the best mixed with brand new material,” says Solomon. “Audiences always requested their favorite parts, so we put them together for this new show.”

Solomon bases his show on his real-life family and neighbors that he met in the melting pot of Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn. He believes his comedy appeals to all ages because whether you’re 19 or 59, you likely know someone who should be wearing a hearing aid but isn’t. More than a million people have seen his shows.

CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT is set in the attic of his parents’ home in Sheepshead Bay. He’s moving them to a group home. It’s a bittersweet experience that many audience members have had. But Solomon promises that you’ll be laughing so hard that you’ll forget the heart pangs.

Solomon, a former physics teacher and school superintendent, brings to life 20 or more characters with different voices and dialects. He also ad-libs about 10 percent of the show. “People remark that they love seeing me laugh at my jokes,” he says. “Most of the time, I’m laughing because it’s the first time I’m hearing the jokes, too.”

The actor-writer avoids writing politics into the material and embraces that his shows are politically incorrect. The one piece of advice he has for anyone coming to the show? “Go to the bathroom before you take your seat,” he says. Be prepared for your sides and face to hurt from laughing.

SPECIAL OFFER FOR BLOG READERS: Click here tos save $10 on tickets* to “CANNOLI, LATKES & GUILT … the therapy continues,” Oct. 21-26 at Booth Playhouse.
*Save $10 on Price Zone 10. Offer available on all performances (exclude Saturday evening) for a limited time!


First National Tour of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella Soon to Launch

October 8, 2014
Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella comes to Belk Theater Nov.4-9.

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella comes to Belk Theater Nov.4-9.

We all know and love the story of Cinderella, but what if we told you a fresh, new version is headed to our stage? It’s the perfect way to kick off a new Broadway season! The 2014-2015 PNC Broadway Lights season begins Nov. 4 with Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella in Belk Theater at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center.

The first national tour launches in Providence, Rhode Island, in just two days! CLICK HERE to watch a video of the cast in rehearsals!

Did you know the man behind the unbelievably beautiful costumes in Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, six-time Tony Award winner William Ivey Long, grew up in Rock Hill, S.C.? Check out the photo below from of Long with Paige Faure in a dress fitting as they prepare for the tour. goes behind the scenes with William Ivey Long and Paige Faure. Photo by Jennifer Broski. goes behind the scenes with William Ivey Long and Paige Faure. Photo by Jennifer Broski.

This show has delighted audiences on Broadway with its surprisingly contemporary take on the classic tale, and we can’t wait for you to see it here in Charlotte when it is here for one week only!

The lush production features an incredible orchestra, jaw-dropping transformations and all the moments you love — the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball and more — plus some surprising new twists! Be transported back to your childhood as you rediscover some of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most beloved songs, including “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible” and “Ten Minutes Ago” in this hilarious and romantic Broadway experience for anyone who’s ever had a dream.

Tickets are going fast, so hurry and CLICK HERE to snag yours!

Cinderella the Musical, William Ivey Long, Paige Faure, Rodgers + Hammerstein Cinderella

Photo collage from Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella’s Facebook page:

Tuesday Tune: ‘Jack of the Wood’ by The Kruger Brothers featuring Steve Martin

October 7, 2014
The Kruger Brothers

The Kruger Brothers will perform in McGlohon Theater on Friday, Oct. 24.

Brothers Jens and Uwe Kruger were born and raised in Europe but have made their mark on American folk and bluegrass music in a major way. Now residing just over an hour north of Charlotte in North Wilkesboro, the brothers compose and perform as The Kruger Brothers. The bluegrass music that was birthed from the hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains is what attracted them to the area.

The Kruger Brothers have become an integral part of MerleFest, a music festival held in Wilkeboro that celebrates “traditional plus” music and has earned its right as one of the biggest music festivals in America. Joined by Joel Landsberg on bass, Jens Kruger plays banjo and Uwe Kruger plays lead guitar and also serves as lead vocalist. The Kruger Brothers are critically acclaimed for their compositions as well as their playing.

Jens Kruger has earned numerous awards for his mastery of the banjo including the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass Music in 2013. To celebrate his award, The Kruger Brothers performed with the legendary comedian and banjo picker on “Late Night With David Letterman.” Watch a clip of their performance of “Jack of the Wood” below.

Don’t miss The Kruger Brothers live in McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square on Friday, Oct. 24! Bluegrass fans can expect to hear a mix or The Kruger Brothers’ originals and traditional bluegrass licks like “Orange Blossom Special” and “Dueling Banjos.” Get tickets now.


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