New and classic movies screen at French Film Festival

The festival returns April 21-27 at Prytania
With the lifelong and at times rocky friendship of painter Paul Cezanne and writer Emile Zola at its core, Cezanne et Moi invokes the richness of French culture and the tumult of mid- and late-19th-century France, making it a marquee inclusion for the New Orleans Film Society's 20th French Film Festival, produced in partnership with the Consulate General of France in New Orleans and Prytania Theatre.   The festival screens recent award-winning French films, classics and short films April 21-27 at Prytania Theatre.

Kid Koala turns a graphic novel into a multimedia live show

Nufonia Must Fall runs at the CAC April 14-15
After visiting Preservation Hall during his first tour stop in New Orleans — his father told him he must visit — Canadian turntablist Kid Koala, aka Eric San, spent six months working on his version of "Basin Street Blues," the first track on his second album, Some of My Best Friends Are DJs. He describes the track as a sort of "stop-motion animation" version of the classic jazz tune, in which he meticulously layered single instrument notes sampled from classical music records.

Hell in a hand puppet: Hand to God at The Theatre at St. Claude

Storyville Collective stages a play about a boy and his demonic puppet
Life is awkward enough for Jason.   He's a shy kid trying to figure out how to approach Jessica, a girl in the Christian puppet ministry run by Jason's widowed mother in their church in a small town in east Texas.

Where to eat and drink after French Quarter Fest

New bars and restaurants in and around the Quarter
There's no problem finding food and drink at French Quarter Festival, and there are new places to try not far from festival stages. Here are a few.

Here are the nominees for 2017's Big Easy music awards

The annual awards honor the top performances of 2016
The Gambit-affiliated Foundation for Entertainment, Development and Education (FEDE) announced special awards and nominees in musical categories of the Big Easy Awards. Winners will be announced at the Big Easy Awards gala April 24.

Water world: New Water Music sends an orchestra to sea

Composer Yotam Haber and New Orleans Airlift join the LPO on Lake Pontchartrain
"Do you mind if I hit this?" Yotam Haber picks up a scythe-shaped strip of rusted metal, approaches a buoy and taps its side, which burps out a dull thud.

Here are the nominees for 2017's Big Easy theater awards

The annual awards honor the top performances of 2016
The Gambit-affiliated Foundation for Entertainment, Development and Education (FEDE) announced nominees for top performances in 2016. Winners and special award recipients will be announced at the Big Easy Awards April 24 at The Orpheum Theater.

John Waters gets filthy

The filmmaker brings This Filthy World to The Joy Theater March 18
Respectability has its price.   "People don't get mad at me anymore," says John Waters, director of cult classic films and an author.

The last days of Lower Mid-City

Stephen Hilger's Back of Town captures the disappearance of a neighborhood
Stephen Hilger sees New Orleans through the lens of a document-ary photographer.   "There's a lot of beautiful, rich visual sights and traditions," the photographer says of the city.

Krewe du Vieux revels in Carnival satire for the Trump era

The parade returns Feb. 11
There's nothing funnier than the absurd nightmare of the present. Even President Donald Trump's Press Secretary Sean Spicer unironically retweeted The Onion, describing Spicer's "role in the Trump administration will be to provide the American public with robust and clearly articulated misinformation."

An Avatar-inspired Cirque du Soleil show comes to New Orleans

Toruk — The First Flight runs at the Smoothie King Center Feb. 1-5
In James Cameron's Avatar, 22nd-century humans invade the lush ecosphere of the distant moon Pandora, seeking to extract a rare mineral necessary to sustain life back on Earth. The mission threatens to destroy the lives and home of the indigenous, blue-skinned Na'vi people, and a battle ensues, leaving emissaries from each side caught between the two species.

The Bluegrass Pickin’ Party celebrates 10th anniversary

Musicians perform every Monday at Hi-Ho Lounge
Like many a good time passed in New Orleans, the weekly Monday night Bluegrass Pickin' Party at the  Hi-Ho Lounge tends to start early and end late.   As one recent all-acoustic jam started, roughly a dozen musicians with guitars, fiddles, mandolins, banjos and an upright bass took seats in a circle of chairs arranged on the club's dance floor.

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