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Archive for October, 2009

First impressions of ‘Cavalia,’ in Atlanta through Nov. 15

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Horse trainer Sylvia Zerbini, who appears in "Cavalia," unloaded a horse into its stable in Atlantic Station last week. AJC/Elissa Eubanks

I shouldn’t have been surprised last night when I walked into the White Big Top at Atlantic Station and thought, “It smells a little like a barn.” Of course it’s a little farm fresh — there are 60-some horses on tour with “Cavalia.” For all the controls we see on them, they’re still animals.

The Cirque du Soleil-like horse show opened last night for a run that lasts through Nov. 15. Normand Latourelle, “Cavalia” creator and artistic director, told me that his top priority is to please the eyes, and he succeeds at that. There’s not much of a story, but cool stage tricks, cool horse tricks and cool human tricks combine for something more unique than a concert, equestrian event or circus.

It looked like a packed house last night, but it was a see-and-be-seen opening for “Cavalia,” the night when political candidates, Real Housewives of …

Continue reading First impressions of ‘Cavalia,’ in Atlanta through Nov. 15 »

To do list: October 28

Books: Author Wil Haygood discusses “The Life and Times of Sugar Ray Robinson,” 7:15 p.m., Decatur Library, Decatur. FREE.

Lecture: Cornel West discusses “Progressions of Race Relations in America” for Emory’s State of Race, 7:15 p.m., Glenn Memorial Church, Atlanta.

For kids: The Young Actors Ensemble presents “Halloween Histories: Stories from the Graveyard,” 11 a.m., Ensemble Theater, Sandy Springs.

Music: Hanson performs with Hellogoodbye. 6:30 p.m., The Tabernacle, Atlanta.

Stage: The 101 Dalmatians Musical” opens, 8 p.m., Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, Atlanta. Dog trainer interview.

Stage:A Life in the Theatre” opens, 8 p.m., Alliance Theatre, Atlanta.

Sports: Atlanta Hawks vs. Indiana Pacers, 7 p.m., Philips Arena, Atlanta.

Got an event, venue, restaurant or performance in and around Atlanta? Add it to the AccessAtlanta.com calendar.

For instant updates, follow @insideaccess on Twitter.

Continue reading To do list: October 28 »

Should the Georgia Music Hall of Fame move to Atlanta?

Today was the deadline for the Georgia Music Hall of Fame to have raised $225,000 or close its doors.

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Inside the Music Hall of Fame in 1996, when it opened. AJC file photo

The Macon museum will stay open for now — the deadline to raise money and plan for the future was extended to Dec. 2, when the state board that oversees the hall was rescheduled to meet.

Executive director Lisa Love said in an AJC interview that she’s “very positive,” but didn’t say how much money has been raised.

There’s a lot of  of energy going into keeping the museum open, from benefit concerts to dog treat sales, and to keeping the hall in Macon. An Allman Brothers museum set to open in December could increase visits, and a proposed hotel-motel tax in Bibb County would go toward the hall and other Macon attractions.

But none of this has stopped talk of moving the museum to Atlanta.

Should the Georgia Music Hall of Fame move to Atlanta?

  • No! Leave it in Macon.
  • Yes! It’ll be better off in …

Continue reading Should the Georgia Music Hall of Fame move to Atlanta? »

What’s in store for the Martin Luther King Jr. Historic Site?

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U.S. Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar, left, bumped fists outside a house just down the street from the Martin Luther King Jr. Birth Home. Federal stimulus money will go toward stabilizing the house. AJC/Jamie Gumbrecht

AJCer Rosalind Bentley talked with Judy Forte, superintendent of Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, for a Q&A that ran Sunday.

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Judy Forte

Every time I’m there, it’s packed with field trip students, out-of-town visitors and adult locals inevitably returning after years without seeing the exhibits, rose garden or birth home tour.

In this interview, they talked about the park service gradually taking over more property around the King birth home, and stimulus money that will go toward stabilizing the home pictured above — all of which could improve the visitor experience.

There’s also some talk about how the historic site, King Center and the new Center for Civil and Human Rights might fit together.

Q: Under your administration, have you explored …

Continue reading What’s in store for the Martin Luther King Jr. Historic Site? »

PostSecret creator Frank Warren visits Georgia State today

(Click on the post headline if you can’t see the video above.)

As small-time online ideas go, PostSecret has built momentum and grown into a surprisingly large one. For years now, people have sent anonymous postcards decorated with their secrets to a mailbox in Maryland. One man shuffles through them, posts some of them on Sundays, and this month, published the fifth book of secrets, “PostSecret: Confessions on Life, Death, and God.”

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New PostSecret book

PostSecret creator Frank Warren, the guy with the mailbox in Maryland, will speak at Georgia State University today. In a PostSecret presentation I saw at University of Kentucky a couple years ago, Warren explained that he never intended or expected PostSecret to generate the following it has. He showed off dozens of secrets that never made it to the Web site, revealed some trends — apparently everybody pees in the shower and thinks it’s a secret? — and some nice stories about sharing what was once hidden.

Here’s a story about …

Continue reading PostSecret creator Frank Warren visits Georgia State today »

To do list: October 27

Art: PostSecret.com creator Frank Warren discusses the community art project, 3-5 p.m., Georgia State University Student Center Ballroom, Atlanta. FREE. More info.

Books: Slate editor and author David Plotz discusses “Good Book: The Bizarre, Hilarious, Disturbing, Marvelous, and Inspiring Things I Learned When I Read Every Single Word of the Bible,” 7 p.m., Michael C. Carlos Museum at Emory University, Atlanta. FREE.

Books: Author Lynne Joiner discusses “Mao’s China, McCarthy’s America and the Persecution of John S. Service,” 7 p.m., Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum, Atlanta. FREE.

Books: Author Rita Mae Brown discusses “Animal Magnetism: My Life with Creatures Great and Small,” 7 p.m., Margaret Mitchell House, Atlanta.

For families: Atlanta Braves Museum trick or treat tours, through Oct. 31, Turner Field, Atlanta.

Music: Paramore performs, 7:30 p.m., The Tabernacle, Atlanta.

Music: Itzhak Perlman performs, 8 p.m., Fox Theatre, Atlanta.

Stage:Cavalia” opens, 8 …

Continue reading To do list: October 27 »

To do list: October 26

Books: Author Robert C. Hicks discusses “A Separate Country,” 7:15 p.m., Decatur Library, Decatur. FREE.

Books: Businessman and author Ray C. Anderson discusses “Confessions of a Radical Industrialist,” 6:30 p.m., SCAD’s Ivy Hall, Atlanta. FREE.

For families: Uncle Shuck’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch continues, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Uncle Shuck’s, Dawsonville.

History:Origin” exhibit continues, 7 a.m.-11 p.m., Schatten Gallery at Emory University, Atlanta. FREE.

Music: Kiss performs with Buckcherry, 7:30 p.m., Philips Arena, Atlanta.

Got an event, venue, restaurant or performance in and around Atlanta? Add it to the AccessAtlanta.com calendar.

For instant updates, follow @insideaccess on Twitter.

Continue reading To do list: October 26 »

Haunt review: Six Flags Over Georgia Fright Fest, Austell

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One of the first views inside Six Flags around Halloween: a fountain, dyed red. AJC photos by Jamie Gumbrecht

Six Flags Over Georgia’s Fright Fest isn’t really about the scary stuff. It’s about getting in as many roller coaster rides as possible before the park closes for winter, about enjoying Monster Mansion for more than the air conditioning. Still, the park gets spirit points for dressing up and shifting the experience away from summer and into the Halloween season.

There are spooky shows for families and adults, staff members in costume, new attractions and activities for kids.

Little ones probably will enjoy the “Thrills by Day” theme on the weekends in the Bugs Bunny World children’s area. People shorter than 54 inches can wear costumes and participate in a costume contest. There are scary story times, pumpkin painting and trick-or-treating, too.

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Scariest thing at the park: Mr. Six. Eeeeeek!

After 4 p.m., the park shifts to spookier entertainment with more adult live …

Continue reading Haunt review: Six Flags Over Georgia Fright Fest, Austell »

Book your Oakland Cemetery Halloween Tour tickets early

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Gene Ramsay plays Edwin Marsh during the Oakland Cemetery tours. AJC/Jamie Gumbrecht

Rain is ultimate foe of fun outdoor activities –  unless it’s a graveyard tour.

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Crowds arrived for Oakland Cemetery tours, rain or not.

I arrived at Oakland Cemetery last night while the sky had that swirly gray look that Hollywood uses to add forboding to horror movies. Despite the forecast, there was an umbrella-ready crowd in line for the sold-out Halloween tours. Any other place without a roof, I would’ve predicted thin attendance. Not here.

We heard a basic cemetery history from our guide, Andrea Janssen: Oakland was founded in 1850 on six acres that had been a family farm. The orignal entrance was off what is now Memorial, near Six Feet Under.

For those that want to plan ahead:  Oakland Cemetery still has about 14 funerals there per year, but you’ve got to get on the list for a plot. And if you’re considering a marker, Janssen recommends granite. After more than 100 years, guides can …

Continue reading Book your Oakland Cemetery Halloween Tour tickets early »

INTERVIEW: Joel Slaven, ‘101 Dalmatians’ dog trainer

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"The 101 Dalmations Musical" comes to Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre on Oct. 28.

“The 101 Dalmatians Musical” opens in Atlanta next week, and while I’m sure Rachel York will be fabulous as Cruella De Vil, and all the kids and cast members will be wonderful, I’m very much hung up on one fact: DOGGIES! Real doggies! On stage!

Nine of the 15 dogs in “The 101 Dalmatians Musical” came from rescue facilities or humane societies. None were purchased — six are retired show dogs or on loan from their owners — and those nine were strays that nobody claimed, or dogs surrendered by their owners.

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Rachel York plays Cruella De Vil.

Trainer Joel Slaven said they migh seek adoptive homes for some of the dogs if they seem tired or unhappy with show business. But the reasons they were cast migh be the exact reasons they wound up in shelters: they’re incredibly energetic. They bounce around, they bark, they chew. They’re not bad dogs, but it gets bad when they’re bored.

For now, they spend …

Continue reading INTERVIEW: Joel Slaven, ‘101 Dalmatians’ dog trainer »