Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Review: The 39 Steps

Posted By on Tue, Mar 14, 2017 at 4:07 PM


The 39 Steps
gives meaning to the term “wearing many hats,” since a cast of four assumes dozens of roles, including traveling corset salesmen, spies, police, alluring women and railroad conductors. Playwright Patrick Barlow’s revisionist adaptation of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 spy thriller was based on a novel by Scotsman John Buchan, penned during World War I, when German spies could have been hiding anywhere. Audiences won’t find deep, philosophical meaning in this Tony award-winning play, directed by Ricky Graham at Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts, just a rollicking good time, as falsely accused murderer Richard Hannay (Marc Fouchi) gets into misadventures while being pursued by detectives in the Scottish highlands.

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Review: King Leopold

Posted By on Thu, Mar 9, 2017 at 10:03 AM

Tom Foran stars as King Leopold.
  • Tom Foran stars as King Leopold.

Mark Twain was one of America’s greatest humorists, best known for writing The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, but also as a biting satirist. Twain’s writings brought attention to injustices and racism under the guise of entertainment.

For Blunt Object Theatre’s premiere of Twain’s 1905 essay, King Leopold’s Soliloquy: A Defense of His Congo Rule, Tom Foran, who bears considerable likeness to the Belgian king, delivers an hourlong rant, haranguing critics of his privately owned African colony. Posing as a Christian and humanitarian, Leopold was an colonialist who enriched himself on the backs of African natives, depleting the Congo Free State’s population by some 15 million through murder, starvation and disease.

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Friday, March 3, 2017

Loyola Feminist Festival returns March 7-18

Posted By on Fri, Mar 3, 2017 at 9:44 AM

The fest rides a wave of recent feminist activism, including the Women's March New Orleans (pictured). - KAT STROMQUIST
  • The fest rides a wave of recent feminist activism, including the Women's March New Orleans (pictured).

At Loyola University's Feminist Festival, 11 days of events — including panel discussions, workshops and a dance performance by Melange Dance company depicting the so-called waves of feminism — celebrate the oft-misunderstood women's advocacy movement.

"There's been such an effort by anti-feminists to marginalize [feminists] as man-haters or 'feminazis' and so forth, when really all feminists want is gender equality," Patricia Boyett, Loyola Women's Resource Center director, explains.

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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Books roundup: Six literary events in New Orleans in March

Posted By on Thu, Mar 2, 2017 at 2:55 PM

Alison Fraser performs in A Tennessee Williams Songbook: Only a Paper Moon at the 2013 Tennessee WIlilams Festival.
  • Alison Fraser performs in A Tennessee Williams Songbook: Only a Paper Moon at the 2013 Tennessee WIlilams Festival.

Spring is a busy time for book lovers in New Orleans: a flurry of fests, book sales and appearances by arts and letters types round out the calendar. Fortunately, no one in her right mind gives up reading for Lent.

Here's a few of our picks for literary activities this month.

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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Review: A Few Good Men

Posted By on Wed, Feb 8, 2017 at 2:59 PM

A.J. Allegra and Cecile Monteyne star in A Few Good Men. - JOHN BARROIS
  • A.J. Allegra and Cecile Monteyne star in A Few Good Men.

Is a soldier morally responsible for the consequences of following direct orders? What if the actions resulted in an accidental death? And what if it is uncertain whether an order actually was given? This is the sticky situation U.S. Navy lawyers confront in A Few Good Men, a courtroom drama presented by The NOLA Project and Delgado Community College at its Timothy K. Baker Theatre.

A Few Good Men was written by playwright and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin (TV’s The West Wing), and the 1992 film version starred Jack Nicholson, Tom Cruise and Demi Moore. Sorkin’s character-driven plot is based on a case defended by his sister in the Navy Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps involving soldiers based at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The complex plot examines the Marine Corps’ “unquestioning loyalty to unit, corps, God and country” and the legal implications resulting from a broken chain of command.

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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

10 offbeat and anti-Valentine's Day events in New Orleans

Posted By on Tue, Feb 7, 2017 at 9:07 AM


Even the happily coupled can find much to dread about Valentine's Day. Between overcrowded restaurants, hurt feelings and the crushing weight of a society which values heteronormative romantic love as the be-all and end-all of human relationships, you may be tempted to chuck the fancy dinner out and hit the bars, with or without your sweetheart.

Need a destination? A short list of unconventional and anti-Valentine's Day events — including drag parties, cover band shows and more — is after the jump.

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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Review: Toruk — The First Flight

Posted By on Thu, Feb 2, 2017 at 5:45 PM

  • Photo by Errisson Lawrence Costumes: Kym Barrett © 2015 Cirque du Soleil

Toruk — The First Flight features all the high-flying feats one would expect of a Cirque du Soleil show: Troupe members climb almost to the set’s rafters and spin on ropes and ribbons. Five acrobats in skin-tight blue outfits do a synchronized routine of handstands and contortions on a giant spinning see-saw apparatus designed to look like a dinosaur’s skeletal spine. But some of the most entertaining scenes involve more frenzied action by the entire company as Toruk’s story of global cataclysm fills the arena floor at Smoothie King Center. That drama is part of the point of the modern circus company’s collaboration with James Cameron, creator of the $2.9 billion-grossing 2009 film Avatar.

Toruk is a prequel to Avatar, taking place thousands of years earlier, and before humans arrive on the distant moon Pandora. There the blue skinned Na’vi people live in various tribal groups. Following a vision of apocalypse, two young Na’vi hunters, Ralu and Entu, set out to save the threatened Tree of Souls, upon which they all depend for life. Their quest takes them around the moon, where they must enlist the aid of other Na’vi clans.

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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Review: Jelly's Last Jam

Posted By on Wed, Feb 1, 2017 at 11:48 AM


Ted Louis Levy collaborated with the extraordinary Gregory Hines to choreograph the original Broadway production of Jelly’s Last Jam. Twenty-five years later, the master tapdancer assumes the lead in director Jackie Alexander’s production at Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre. The early jazz pianist and composer Jelly Roll Morton was a Creole born in the Faubourg Marigny before the turn of the 20th century and later claimed to have invented jazz.

The musical is at once an entertaining romp, biography of a musical genius and exploration of black history at a tumultuous time.

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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Scientists and fishermen share Deepwater Horizon stories at Feb. 6 event

Posted By on Tue, Jan 31, 2017 at 1:08 PM

An aerial view of Grand Terre Shows leaked oil flowing up against a sand berm.
  • An aerial view of Grand Terre Shows leaked oil flowing up against a sand berm.

At a live storytelling event held Monday, Feb. 6, oceanographers, restoration ecologists and fishermen take the stage to share personal accounts of their experiences during the Deepwater Horizon disaster, when over 130 million gallons of oil leaked into the Gulf of Mexico in the largest spill in U.S. history. The show is sponsored by the Story Collider podcast, which organizes and records storytelling events related to science.

As President Donald Trump's public comments on energy continue to reflect a pro-drilling stance, events like this can highlight some of drilling's risks for coastal communities, including ongoing struggles for Gulf animals, fish and plants and an estimated $94.7 million cost to area commercial fishermen.

The free event takes place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Club XLIV and Encore at Champions Square. Registration is recommended.

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Sunday, January 29, 2017

Louis C.K., 'alternative facts,' a market for Marigny and other stories you may have missed this week

Posted By on Sun, Jan 29, 2017 at 9:00 AM


• FEST, FEST, FEST: The 2017 Jazz Fest lineup was announced. You people on Twitter had a few thoughts. And Aaron Neville is part of the just-announced French Quarter Fest lineup.

• COMING TO TOWN: Louis C.K. is coming to town this week for a couple of just-announced shows. The Pixies are coming later.

• LGBT NEWS: The LGBT Community Center is getting a new home. And a new eldercare group is launching a health care provider network for LGBT seniors.

• KRISPY KRUNCHY KING CAKE: Where you can eat king cake topped with crickets.

Lots more under the jump ...

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