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Monday, April 30, 2018

The Shatman is Returning to Talk "Wrath of Khan" at Altria Theater

Posted By on Mon, Apr 30, 2018 at 12:40 PM

Set your phasers to fun: Actor Bill Shatner is coming. Back. To. RVA. Baby.

Best known for his searingly dramatic performances as Capt. James T. Kirk on "Star Trek," Shatner will be coming to Altria Theater on Thursday, July 26 to speak onstage after a screening of "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan."

Obligatory shout-out video here:

Shatner will hold what's sure to be an entertaining conversation after the screening, sharing humorous stories from his 50-year career, as well as answering questions from fans. Perhaps before going, you should be required to watch this classic SNL sketch featuring Shatner at a Trekkie convention.

A limited number of VIP tickets will be available which include premium seating and a photo opportunity with Shatner. Tickets start at $39 (plus applicable fees) and go on sale Friday, May 4 at 10a.m. at AltriaTheater.com, (800) 514-ETIX (3849), and the Altria Theater Box Office.

In the meantime, check out this quick 8-minute interview we did with Shatner last time he was in town, wherein he addresses his memories of his famous 1978 performance of Elton John's "Rocket Man" at the stoniest sci-fi award ceremony ever.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Roundup: Richmond Forum, International Violin Competition, Stone's Throw Down, GBV, plus Violent Femmes return with Echo and the Bunnymen

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2018 at 12:39 PM

There have been so many event announcements lately that it's hard to keep up with them. This is the time of year when summer starts to take shape, and even fall events start going on the books.

So here's a brief rundown of recent arts news:

1.The City of Richmond has been named the host city for the international Menuhin Competition 2020, the world's leading competition for young violinists, which is often billed as "the Olympics of the Violin."

According to a release, the competition will take place May 14 - 24, 2020 in venues throughout the city, including the Modlin Center for the Arts at UR, the W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts at VCU and the Carpenter Theatre at the Dominion Energy Center for the Performing Arts. To learn more, visit the website.

2.The Richmond Forum, which always seems to be sold out, announced its line-up for next season. The 33rd annual season which kicks off next November will include astronaut Captain Scott Kelly (Nov. 17), comedian Tina Fey (Jan. 19), CNN medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta (Feb. 23), political scientist, Ian Bremmer (March 23) and autism spokesperson, Dr. Temple Grandin (April 27).

Current subscribers have until May 19th to renew their subscriptions for next season. Any seats not purchased by current subscribers will go on sale to the public through a lottery. Anyone interested in learning more about becoming a season subscriber should visit www.richmondforum.org for details.

3. In concert news, the Violent Femmes will be returning on a co-headlining tour with Echo and the Bunnymen on Monday, July 23 at the National. And jamband heads should know that the Trey Anastasio Trio was just announced for a July 5 show in Charlottesville at the Sprint Pavilion.

4. Also, Stone Brewing announced its second annual Stone's Throwdown RVA for Sept. 8 at Brown's Island. It features headliners Drive-By Truckers, plus Antibalas, No BS Brass, Futurebirds, Spooky Cool and Kenneka Cook.

Tickets are $10 for advance and $15 at the door. VIP Tickets are available for $45 online only. All ages are welcome and kids under 12 get in free. All proceeds will be donated to local charities and you can buy tickets here.

5. Another recent announcement for concerts: indie rock journeymen Guided by Voices will be performing at the Broadberry on Monday, Aug. 13. $25-$30 and tickets go on sale this Friday, April 27.

6. And, of course, "Hamilton" is coming to Broadway in Richmond. But that's such a big deal, it gets its own blog post.

Monday, April 23, 2018

A Couple of Richmond Images from the Penultimate Episode of "Homeland" Season Seven

Posted By on Mon, Apr 23, 2018 at 6:50 PM

We're winding down season seven of "Homeland," with only one more episode to go -- and the spy series already is shifting its location to events in Moscow.

Last Sunday's Episode 11,"All In," didn't have much in the way of recognizable Richmond locations, but we've included a couple nice Church Hill shots below, and the lead still above from downtown.

At this point, it's safe to say that this has been a middling season in terms of plot. It feels as if there were some interesting ideas (social media use as espionage) merely skimmed or pushed along. The show became somewhat hijacked by the parenting subplot, which meant a level of sustained tension still fell short of the acclaimed first two seasons of the show, generally cited by fans as the best.

Lead actress Claire Danes recently announced that season eight will be her final year on the Emmy-winning drama. It was reported in Variety that the network has not made a decision beyond season eight. That leaves open the question of whether the series, one of Showtime's longest running, will spin-off in another direction.

"Homeland" will run the season seven finale on April 29. We have to say that, overall, Richmond has looked amazing on the show.

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"Hamilton" National Tour Coming to Broadway in Richmond

Posted By on Mon, Apr 23, 2018 at 11:40 AM

Talk about your hot tickets.

The national tour of "Hamilton" is coming to Richmond during the 2019-2020 Broadway in Richmond season.

From the press release:

The national tour of the Broadway musical HAMILTON will play in Richmond as part of the 2019-2020 season, it was announced today by producer Jeffrey Seller and Jam Theatricals.

The best way to guarantee tickets to HAMILTON is to purchase a season subscription for the 2018-2019 Broadway In Richmond season. Subscribers who renew their subscription for the 2018-2019 season will be able to guarantee their seats for the premiere Richmond engagement of HAMILTON before tickets become available to the general public ...

Subscriptions for six--show packages are on sale now and start at $270. Subscription packages and group tickets are available for purchase by calling the Subscriber and Group Sales Hotline at (804) 592-3401 and by visiting www.BroadwayInRichmond.com. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. eastern time. Tickets for individual shows will go on sale as each performance date approaches. More information about the 2018-2019 season is available at www.BroadwayInRichmond.com. Information regarding HAMILTON engagement dates and how to purchase groups and single tickets will be announced at a later time.

With book, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, direction by Thomas Kail, choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler and musical direction and orchestrations by Alex Lacamoire, HAMILTON is based on Ron Chernow’s biography of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton.

HAMILTON is the story of America's Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, an immigrant from the West Indies who became George Washington's right-hand man during the Revolutionary War and was the new nation’s first Treasury Secretary. Featuring a score that blends hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap, R&B, and Broadway, HAMILTON is the story of America then, as told by America now.

HAMILTON’s creative team previously collaborated on the 2008 Tony Award ® Winning Best Musical IN THE HEIGHTS. HAMILTON features scenic design by David Korins, costume design by Paul Tazewell, lighting design by Howell Binkley, sound design by Nevin Steinberg, hair and wig design by Charles G. LaPointe, and casting by Telsey + Company, Bethany Knox, CSA.

The musical is produced by Jeffrey Seller, Sander Jacobs, Jill Furman and The Public Theater.

The HAMILTON Original Broadway Cast Recording is available everywhere nationwide. The HAMILTON recording received a 2016 Grammy for Best Musical Theatre Album.

For information on HAMILTON, visit www.HamiltonMusical.com, www.Facebook.com/HamiltonMusical, www.Instagram.com/HamiltonMusical and www.Twitter.com/HamiltonMusical

Friday, April 20, 2018

Pick: "Blues for Mister Charlie" at University of Richmond, April 20-April 22

Joint production from VCU and UR of James Baldwin play is receiving raves.

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2018 at 2:40 PM

We're hearing great things about the James Baldwin play, "Blues for Mister Charlie," being staged this weekend at the University of Richmond's Alice Jepson theatre.

One of our contributing editors says its "amazing" and "intense" and by all means, people should get out to see it this weekend.

"Blues for Mister Charlie" is Baldwin's 1964 story loosely based on the murder of Emmett Till before the Civil Rights movement began. "In his award-winning play, Baldwin turns a murder and its aftermath into an inquest in which even the most well-intentioned whites are implicated –– and in which even a killer receives his share of compassion," reads a description on the Modlin Center website.

The play is a collaboration between Virginia Commonwealth University Theatre and the University of Richmond Department of Theatre and Dance, in association with the African American Repertory Theatre and the Conciliation Project. It is being co-directed in Richmond by Tawnya Pettiford-Wates, an associate professor of theater at VCU, and Chuck Mike, an associate professor of theater at the University of Richmond.

According to the Modlin Center website, "the production is a narrative to engage in a broader community dialogue around issues of racial justice, economic freedom, family, and faith. Surrounding the production of Blues for Mr. Charlie will be Community Forums and Public Dialogues around the play’s content."

To learn more about the production, read this story in Urban Views.

The play is being staged at the Alice Jepson Theatre at the Modlin Center on Friday, April 20 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 21 at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee on Sunday, April 22 at 2 p.m. Tickets range from $5 to $10, for more info, go here.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Goldrush Reuniting to Benefit Those Injured Outside Cary St. Cafe

Show will be held this Friday, April 20 at Cary St. Cafe

Posted By on Tue, Apr 17, 2018 at 2:45 PM

Four years ago, musician Prabir Mehta was severely injured in a brutal attack that required hospitalization and extensive physical therapy.

At the time, he was provided with financial support from the artistic community, particularly Cary St. Cafe owner Robyn Chandler, who rallied around the singer and guitarist. Now Mehta is doing the same for Chandler and her two employees injured in the Cary St. Café food truck fire.

Goldrush, which also features Matt and Treesa Gold from the Richmond Symphony and Virginia Orchestra, will be performing a rare show on Friday, April 20 at Cary St. Cafe.

"When Robyn put on the fundraiser for me during my recovery period I went over there to thank her once I was able to walk again," Mehta says via email. "She said 'We’ve got to look out for each other, that’s what we can do.' I remember just feeling incredibly grateful and happy to know that people like her exist in our community. She’s an amazing asset for our city and we’d love to help her out since she’s done so much for us musicians already."

Goldrush and its individual members have played Cary St. Cafe for many years, Mehta notes.

"For quite a long time now this venue has been the hub for Richmond’s working musicians," Mehta adds. "Beyond that, Robyn has also been a friend to these musicians ... Proceeds from the show will go directly to them to use as they need for the many items that will need to be addressed to get everyone and everything up and running again.

Goldrush performs on Friday, April 20 at Cary St. Cafe with Kenneka Cook opening. Goldrush will be doing all of our favorite originals and our favorite Beatles tunes to close out the night. $10 at the door and there will be opportunities inside to donate to the Cary St Cafe team’s recovery efforts as well.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Your Weekly "Homeland" Screenshot Dump of Richmond Locations, Episode Ten

Posted By on Mon, Apr 16, 2018 at 7:20 PM

Well, there's only two episodes left for season seven of Showtime's "Homeland," filmed right here in RVA.

Here's hoping there is some knock-down, drag-out action and Carrie gets to whack somebody with a baton again.

Last Sunday's episode number ten, "Clarity," was a wee bit slow. Where the heck did all the Russians go? Why does the CIA keep employing someone who is having psychotic breaks? And what the heck is Beau Bridges doing in here?

But hey, it had some nice RVA vibes, yet again.

Without further adieu, here are our memorable screenshots. Most of these are fairly obvious, except for the church funeral scene. Who can name that spot? You win nothing but self-satisfaction.

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"Murals of Richmond" Book Coming from Mickael Broth and Chop Suey

Posted By on Mon, Apr 16, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Richmond has earned a rep as one of the best destinations on the East Coast for public murals. Now it's getting some hardcover proof.

Muralist Mickael Broth says he is releasing a coffee table book,"Murals of Richmond," through Chop Suey Books Books publishing next fall. The 220-page book will feature mostly photos as well as short interviews with some of the artists involved. Veteran muralist Ed Trask is writing the foreword.

"Last fall, someone posted online asking if there was a book of murals and it was one of those moments like, well - wait a minute, there should be!" Broth says. "I got a ton of content from my first Facebook post. Marc Schmidt [from RVA Magazine] submitted a lot."

"We want to capture how the city has changed," Broth explains. "Also these are not works of bronze, they aren't going to be around forever. Many of the works that will be in the book are already painted over. We really want to capture the connection between the international art scene and local scene."

Asked about the legal permission for the images, Chop Suey Books owner Ward Tefft says that they certainly will be consulting with a copyright lawyer before anything official happens.

"The book really is a history of sorts," Tefft notes. "And it's perfect for us, because we're working with a friend as well as documenting the art scene."

Local artists have gotten "tons of opportunities out of [making murals]," Broth adds. "Myself included. I've somehow made a career out of this [laughs]."

The open call for photo submissions won't last much longer. But Broth still needs more, as he recently posted on Facebook (see below for address). Oh, and this should be obvious, but don't send him the janky, poorly lit ones.

"Thanks to everyone who has been sending images and content for the Murals of Richmond book I’m working on with Chop Suey. We are getting close to the layout phase and wanted to put out one final call for contributions. If you’ve got high quality images (sharp focus, good lighting, etc.) of finished works or artists working, feel free to drop a line at muralsofrichmond@gmail.com. We’d particularly love any images of the RVA Street Art Festival at the old bus depot. Also, old mural/sign work (pre-2010) and legal graffiti walls (office equipment rental wall, old stuffys wall, etc). Please and thanks!!"

Keep an eye out for a possible Kickstarter to handle pre-sales for the book.

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Monday, April 9, 2018

A Few Richmond Moments from Homeland Episode #9

Posted By on Mon, Apr 9, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Last night's "Homeland" episode nine was titled "Useful Idiot," and it was one of the more intense shows of the season, building nicely to a harrowing climax inside a hospital.

We won't give anything away for those fans who haven't watched it yet, but we can say that a lot of this episode took place indoors or on the highway, so Richmond locations were a little tougher to spot.

We snagged a few stills anyway, including two more from Fox Elementary in the Fan where Claire Danes' character Carrie is becoming "that mom" who the school administrators hate to see burst through the doors. I mean, she is saving the world and everything. Cut her a break, people.

How about the hospital below though? That stumped a few people -- who knows which emergency entrance this is below?

A little peek of Gallery5 in Jackson Ward as a Russian agent ditches some incriminating evidence.
  • A little peek of Gallery5 in Jackson Ward as a Russian agent ditches some incriminating evidence.

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Inside Fox Elementary
  • Inside Fox Elementary

Carrie gets a text and has a d'op moment in the hallway at Fox.
  • Carrie gets a text and has a d'op moment in the hallway at Fox.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Check out VMFA and Fox Elementary on Last Night's "Homeland"

Posted By on Mon, Apr 2, 2018 at 3:20 PM

Last night's "Homeland" episode number eight, with the catchy title of "Lies, Amplifier, F*king Twitter," is in the books.

With Carrie and crew trying to pry info out of Dante, who they suspect of being a double agent, many of this episode's scenes were shot indoors, so Richmond wasn't quite as prominently featured.

But there were a few winners.

Check out these stills where a male Russian agent blackmails an attorney in the elevator at the VMFA (kind of screams Trump reference, no?).

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And then there was this opening scene of Carrie dropping off her kid inside the Fan's William Fox Elementary School.

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Last one: Who can name the familiar area where this exterior-night street scene with Carrie takes place?

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