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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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Archive for September, 2010

First full season and a new home for Fabrefaction Theatre

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Fabrefaction Theatre Company, a summer community theater troupe since 2004, launches its first full season on Sept. 10  with “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” The show runs through Sept. 26 at Fabrefaction’s new Westside district home at 999 Brady Ave.

The season will include “Rent,” “The Music Man,” “The Seagull” and a to-be-announced premiere by an Atlanta playwright. 404-876-9468, www.fabrefaction.org.

Continue reading First full season and a new home for Fabrefaction Theatre »

Scorsese’s ‘Letter to Elia’ launches Kazan series Sept. 13

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Ahead of its screening at the New York Film Festival later this month, Martin Scorsese’s documentary “A Letter to Elia” will receive its Atlanta premiere at the Plaza Theatre on Sept. 13.

It launches a four-film series of works by the late director Eila Kazan in new 35mm prints, sponsored by Emory University’s Department of film Studies and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

“A Letter to Elia” and “Viva Zapata!” show Sept. 13; “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” Sept. 20; “Gentleman’s Agreement,” Sept. 27; “Wild River,” Oct. 4. Individual screenings, $10; series ticket, $32. www.plazaatlanta.com.

Co-directed by Scorsese and Kent Jones, “Letter” made its world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival and its North American premiere at the Telluride Film Festival.  It is an official selection of the New York Film Festival where it will screen alongside Kazan’s “America, America” on Sept. 27.

It will air nationally on PBS as part …

Continue reading Scorsese’s ‘Letter to Elia’ launches Kazan series Sept. 13 »

Emory presents free sampler of arts offerings on Friday

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Emory University’s arts offerings are extensive, especially in the fall, the third annual Creativity & Arts Soiree can only help metro Atlantans sort out the intriguing options.

The free event, 4-7:30 p.m. Friday[9/10] at the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts, will include performances from and information about Emory’s performing, visual and literary arts offerings.

At 6:45 p.m., art critic Jerry Cullum and gloATL choreographer Lauri[CQ] Stallings, will be honored with the first Creativity & Arts awards.

1700 N. Decatur Road, Atlanta. www.creativity.emory.edu.

Continue reading Emory presents free sampler of arts offerings on Friday »

Botanical garden fertilizes our love of chocolate with sprinkling of info

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

No, you haven’t entered Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Though there’s no ignoring the smell of that confection that fills your nostrils the moment you step foot in the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s Hardin Visitor Center.

That devilish, hidden aroma machine gets those olfactory senses tingling, and it’s hard not to make a beeline straight into the gift shop, throw down a few bills, and tear into a gourmet chocolate bar.

Focus! Remember that we came here not to eat up — though that will come later — but to drink in the new outdoor exhibit “Chocolate: Seed to Sweet.”

Open since Saturday, the traveling educational diversion features interactive, outdoor displays that spill the (cacao) beans about the history and use of chocolate around the world. The family-friendly show (read: kids can burn off a few kilowatts of energy) was organized by six leading botanical gardens around the country, including Atlanta’s, where it’s making its final stop.

The …

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Everything old is new again: Athens author’s ‘Canning for New Generation’

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Liana Krissoff grew up the daughter of parents who magically transformed bushel baskets of fruit and vegetables from their Virginia garden into shelves heaving with colorful canning jars and chest freezers filled to the brim.
She thought it wise to simply stay out of the way, and all that big kitchen production led her to think of canning as “something that took over your life.”
Yet years later, when Krissoff was living on her own in New York, she began to miss some of the flavors of her youth. Armed with some Pink Lady apples she’d picked at an orchard, she called and asked her mom how to make applesauce.
Krissoff’s initial canning success — nobody died, she noted wryly — led her to an extended search for an easy-to-follow, up-to-date canning book with tasty-sounding recipes. When she couldn’t find anything of the sort, the freelance tester, editor and writer (“Secrets of Slow Cooking” and “Hot Drinks for Cold Nights”) decided to whip up her …

Continue reading Everything old is new again: Athens author’s ‘Canning for New Generation’ »

Decatur Book Fest author goes back to the ’60s in children’s book

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Many novelists don’t ’fess up to the truth behind their fiction. Not Tucker author Deborah Wiles, who was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award for “Each Little Bird That Sings,” a children’s book about death, inspired by the loss of her parents. The Georgia Center for the Book included “Bird” on its list of “25 Books All Young Georgians Should Read,” released last week.
Wiles’ new children’s book, “Countdown” (Scholastic Press, $17.99), features an 11-year-old protagonist, Franny Chapman, much like Deborah Wiles at 11: living with her family in suburban Maryland outside Andrews Air Force Base, where her father held high rank, and experiencing typical ’tween social dramas and traumas. And like Wiles in 1962, Franny frets as the dark cloud of the Cuban missile crisis forms. The author and her character both composed sensible, peace-seeking letters to Nikita Khrushchev in their troubled minds as they drifted off to sleep every …

Continue reading Decatur Book Fest author goes back to the ’60s in children’s book »

Your guide to getting the most out of Decatur Book Festival

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

It’s perfectly acceptable to simply show up at this weekend’s AJC Decatur Book Festival on the town’s historic square and see which direction the crowd takes you.
Some 70,000 people are expected over three days, starting with the keynote address by Jonathan Franzen (“The Corrections,” “Freedom: A Novel”) at Agnes Scott College tonight. Whichever way you’re carried, you’re likely to bounce off something literary and interesting.
But … while you don’t have to have a game plan for visiting the fest, please do not ignore this footnote:

1. Some idea of who you want to see and what you want to do at the DBF sure would help.

Even a minor amount of forethought will be rewarded many fold. At last count, 355 authors will appear on 20 outdoor and indoor stages scattered all around the pedestrian-friendly downtown. The big names include Diana Gabaldon, author of the best-selling “Outlander” novels; Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post reporter David …

Continue reading Your guide to getting the most out of Decatur Book Festival »

‘Planet Shark’ extended at Georgia Aquarium into February

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

The Georgia Aquarium’s exhibit, “Planet Shark: Predator or Prey,” which has drawn more than 300,000 visitors since making its world premiere last October, is being extended until Feb. 20.

The exhibit includes huge shark models, a row of shark jaws and a “frozen-in-time” display featuring a 700-pound tuna and its predator, a 10-foot adult mako shark.

An exhibit ticket includes admission to the aquarium, where visitors can see more than 70 sharks in 14 species. Ages 16-64, $29.50; 65 and up, $25.25; 5-15, $23.50. www.georgiaaquarium.org.

Continue reading ‘Planet Shark’ extended at Georgia Aquarium into February »

Fascinating facts and a few mysteries amid the Lincoln artifacts

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

Senior military historian and curator Gordon L. Jones is standing in the middle of an Atlanta History Center gallery packed with powerhouse documents, literal pages from early American history, his eyes focusing on something almost invisible.
It’s a string, not much more than a thread really, tying the left temple to the frame of Abraham Lincoln’s wire-rimmed spectacles, one of the items in his pockets the night he was assassinated.
“It’s probably Lincoln’s repair. His glasses broke and he got a piece of string and fixed it,” Jones speculates. “Here’s a guy who’s literally installed in marble, memorialized, but he literally put his pants on one leg at a time like the rest of us, and this is a reminder of that.”
“With Malice Toward None: The Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Exhibition,” opening today, delivers both what Jones calls the “big-ticket stuff” (such as the Gettysburg Address) and more human-scale objects.
It’s a tad late for a 200th …

Continue reading Fascinating facts and a few mysteries amid the Lincoln artifacts »