Although the real Broadway is over a thousand miles
away, that doesn’t prevent their musicals to share their joy with New Orleans. Join New Orleans for the East Jefferson General Hospital Broadway in New Orleans at the Saenger Theatre 2015-2016. Nearly 10 Broadway plays will be visiting this year, with a handful of them winners of Tony Awards. This year’s shows will range from family-friendly (Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid), to not-so-family-friendly Book of Mormon. Show tunes fan or not, there will be something in the line up for everyone. But, I’m still holding my breath for Les Miserables.
THE LITTLE MERMAID
September 15 – 20, 2015
October 27 – November 1, 2015
December 1 – 6, 2015
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
December 29, 2015 – January 3, 2016
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL
January 19 – 24, 2016
February 16 – 21, 2016
THE BOOK OF MORMON
March 8 – 13, 2016
April 5 – 10, 2016
May 25 – June 19, 2016
2014 theme, “Krewe du Vieux Comes Early” (travelingringo.com)
Krewe du Vieux 2015 Parade is approaching! Krewe du Vieux is my favorite of the Carnival season and has a new parade route that crosses the Canal Street. The parade will begin in the Fauborg Marigny and stroll through the French Quarter, then crossing over Canal Street. The parade is Saturday, January 31st, 2015 and starts at 6:30pm. This satirical parade is held in the French Quarter/Marigny area, with pre-parade day festivities being strongly encouraged.
Krewe Du Vieux aims for expression, may it be goofy or vulgar, or both. Expect lots of tongue-in-cheek themes, and plenty of catches and stickers to go around. There is constant dancing because of the parade’s live music; another unique and glorious quality that the Krewe du Vieux parade holds. The top brass and jazz bands create an embracing aura that only New Orleans can offer. Floats are pulled by humans or horses, no vehicles included. In 2006, Krewe Du Vieux was the first Mardi Gras parade held following Hurricane Katrina, with the clever little theme of:”C’est Levee”.
Besides the amusing lewdness of Krewe Du Vieux, perhaps it’s the casual, local, no expectations feel of the parade that draws myself, and many others, in. There is no need for concern over extensive crowds (although there will be one). Just the atmosphere of being in the quarter dancing to the music under the lights of carried torches can provide enough comfort for the most concerned parade-goer.
The new 2015 parade route.
Broadway and cinema hit Mamma Mia! will be coming to New Orleans this week. Beginning January 13th, 2015, the musical will be at New Orleans Saenger Theater until January 18th, 2015. Mamma Mia! is a musical to the tunes of ABBA, and is nothing short of fun and light. Taking place during a wedding weekend on the Greek islands, Mamma Mia! turns into a comedic dilemma with the unexpected arrival of the (single) mother of the brides past boyfriends. The musical takes you down several story lines to find out who the father is of the bride-to-be. I saw this on Broadway years ago and the audience was dancing in their seats to every song.
Visit the recently restored Saenger Theater this week for an evening of song and dance. Tickets are on sale now.
‘Tis the season for Christmas spirit, drinks, and a light crawl from pub to pub in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Running of the Santa’s will be held Saturday, December 13th, 2014. One of New Orlean’s favorite holiday events, the run/festival will begin at 3pm at Barcadia, located at 601 Tchoupitoulas Street, New Orleans, LA 70130. Start putting together your most comfortable and cozy, and if feeling inspired, most sassy, Santa-wear; the festivities are right around the corner.
2014 Running of the Santas Promo Video from MATTY MICK on Vimeo.
First of all: WHO DAT! I hope the Saints ride this win all the way to the end. I can’t wait to watch them whoop some Carolina tokhes! Finally, a Monday to enjoy. Moving on…
Halloween might be at the top of my list for favorite time of year- and it rises exponentially when it’s celebrated here in New Orleans. As per tradition, the VOODOO MUSIC + ARTS EXPERIENCE 2014 will be held at City Park October 31st- November 2nd, 2014. Wear your most creative costumes while enjoying the musical chaos surrounding you. Doors open at 10:30am and the event ends at 11pm on Friday & Saturday, and ends at 9pm on Sunday. That’s nearly 12 hours of festival fun for three days, located near the NOMA-region of the park. For those of you settling in, there will be lockers, charging stations, and free water. Check out the bottom part of this article to see what’s happening post-festivities.
Artists at VOODOO MUSIC + ARTS EXPERIENCE 2014 include:
Foo Fighters, Outkast, Skrillex, Arctic Monkeys, Zedd, Pretty Lights, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Slayer, Awolnation, Rise Against, Flux Pavilion, Fedde Le Grand, Gogol Bordello, Death From Above 1979, City And Colour, Claude Vonstroke, Manchester Orchestra, Galantis, Booka Shade, DJ Set, Pete Tong, Twenty One Pilots, Thomas Gold, Action Bronson, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Melvins, Bleachers, Griz, Congorock, Fishbone, Makj, Fuel, Herobust, Le Youth, Big Freedia, Givers, Rebirth Brass Band, Red Baraat, Barcelona, Thomas Newson, The Wild Feathers, Wild Cub, Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors, Royal Teeth, Bonerama, Soul Rebels, Barely Alive, Trent Cantrelle, Manic Focus, World/Inferno Friendship Society, The London Souls, Peelander-Z, Lindsay Lowend, Astr, Flow Tribe, The Tontons, Honey Island Swamp Band, Sturgill Simpson, Benjamin Booker, Desert Noises, Dirty Bourbon River Show, Bo Ningen, Tysson, Quintron and Miss Pussycat, Yung Nation, Speak, Hello Negro, Carmine P. Filthy and a Boy Named Ruth, Church with Unicorn Fukr & Innerlign, Veridia, Naughty Professor, Crass Mammoth, Luxley, St. Cecilia’s Asylum Chorus and the Marchfourth Marching Band.
But the party doesn’t end there, check out the Voodoo “After Dark” Schedule:
10/30 – Moon Taxi @ House of Blues *
10/30 – DESTRUCTO + Big Sams Funky Nation @ Mardi Gras World
10/31 – Galactic + Earphunk @ Tipitinas
10/31 – Fishbone + MarchFourth Marching Band @ The Joy Theatre
10/31 – Flow Tribe @ Gasa Gasa
11/1 – The Revivalists + Naughty Professor @ Tipitinas
11/2 – The London Souls + Joe Krown @ Maple Leaf
This Weekend in New Orleans: 2014 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival
On the heels of the Louisiana Seafood Festival, this weekend’s festival is the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival. Presented by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation (the ones who bring you Jazz Fest), the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival will be held at Lafayette Square, October 17-19, 2014. This free event (the best kind) is from 5:30 to 8:30 this Friday; and Saturday & Sunday 11am-8:30pm. Join the fun in the heart of the French Quarter and support local vendors. Local New Orleans artist, John Bukaty, will be there, live, painting the music experience. Side note- he’s a friendly guy who I met when he had his studio/gallery on Nashville. This past summer, he opened a gallery on Carondelet St. If you visit his site (the link above), you can learn more; his “About Me” section is intriguing.
A good plan would be to visit Lafayette Square for a savory brunch followed by watching the Saints play the Lions (at 12pm). Then head back to the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival for dinner and game celebrations…or return to the festival to eat your feelings. Click here to view a list of vendors and their menus. This includes some of the best barbecue in town with food from The Joint and the Smokery (yes, I am bias toward Carolina barbecue, both Eastern Carolina or Western Carolina style). Or visit here to find the music lineup, featuring musicians such as Bobby Rush, Valerie June, and Ana Popovic. Ana Popovic (below) will be performing Friday night at 7pm.
WHO DAT TIME!
Football begins tonight! As good as pinstripes look, I have been itching for months for this day to come. I completed two fantasy drafts to ensure that I am fully engaged each Sunday, Monday, and Thursday. Check out the list I posted in March about Top 5 Sports Bars [to Watch March Madness] for detailed reviews of some of the bars on this list. I am not dwelling on the ambiance of each New Orleans Sports Bar because…who really cares? Read here for where to go tonight and Sunday, and for the rest of the football season. The boys of fall are back!
Favorite New Orleans Sports Bars
- Finnegan’s Easy: 717 St Peter St New Orleans, LA 70116
- Rusty Nail: 1100 Constance St New Orleans, LA 70130
- The Bulldog: Uptown: 3236 Magazine St New Orleans, LA 70115
and MidCity: 5135 Canal Blvd New Orleans, LA 70124
- Walk-Ons: 1009 Poydras St New Orleans, LA 70112
- J & J’s Sports Lounge: 800 France St New Orleans, LA 70117
- Bruno’s: 7538 Maple St New Orleans, LA 70118
- Lucy’s [Retired Surfer’s Bar]: 701 Tchoupitoulas St New Orleans, LA 70130
- Finn McCool’s: 3701 Banks St New Orleans, LA 70119
- Cooter Browns: 509 S Carrollton Ave New Orleans, LA 70118
- Tracey’s: 2604 Magazine St New Orleans, LA 70130
- Mellow Mushroom: 8227 Oak St New Orleans, LA 70118
- Happys: 1009 Poydras St New Orleans, LA 70112
- NEW ONE for the list: Ale on Oak St.
- NEW ONE for the list: Redd’s on Maple St. Free food too!
Mellow Mushroom on Oak St.
Idea Village presents Entrepalooza. This 2015 Season Kickoff Event is open to the entrepreneurial community and is a pep-rally of sorts. Entrepalooza will take place this Sunday, August 24, 2014 at one of the most popular New Orleans’ locations: NOLA Brewery. The event is from noon to 4pm and will offer free beer. But free beer isn’t the only reason to stop by! Entrepalooza will be a chance to meet and talk to local entreprenaurial businesses.
Visit NOLA Brewery on Sunday to meet, chat, and hopefully be inspired by local endeavors and the men and women who undertake them. Such ventures include Audiosocket, Better Day Health, Bioceptive, ChapterSpot, Cordina, Federated Sample, Kickboard, mSchool, NOLA Brewing, StaffInsight, TurboSquid, Tutti Dynamics, zlien, and more…Come out to support and enjoy cold beer and live music with new friends.
NOLA Brewery Address:
3001 Tchoupitoulas St.
New Orleans, LA 70115
Another favorite summer event is around the corner: New Orleans Red Dress Run 2014.
The gist: Originating and sponsored by Hash House Harriers (a running club), The Red Dress Run raises money for local charities . For an interesting history about the Red Dress Run, read here. It’s a good time for a good reason, and it’s Saturday, August 9th, 2014.
The deal: Not everyone participates in the physical run, but everyone who comes out supports the cause in spirit and attendance. Those in dress should support the local charities and register for the whole event which takes place at Armstrong Park. There are already 4763 registered participants. Many show their support by visiting the streets of the quarter in the early hours, in a red dress, of course.
Events will be held all weekend, including a lingerie run on Friday night and a hungover run on Sunday- Won’t be there.
Seth and I at 2013 Red Dress Run
9 am On site registrations opens
9:30 Gates open, beer is served
11:15 Browncoat Brass leads us to the streets
11:30 20th Red Dress Run takes off
Noon Time to eat – food is served
1 pm Flow Tribe performs
3pm 5 Finger Discount performs
Tank and the Bangas album cover. Visit them on FB https://www.facebook.com/TankAndTheBangas
I experienced a spellbinding performance last Saturday night at Gasa Gasa. Big Freedia was everything I hoped for and more. The venue was packed, bouncing, and rowdy while Big Freedia was working it on stage. I had just watched a brief documentary of her on YouTube, and she did not upset. Big Freedia wowed the audience and truly is The Queen Diva of New Orleans.
Heading to the venue with the sole purpose of to dance around with Big Freedia and her fans, I was in awe when I arrived for the band preceding her: Tank and the Bangas. The music was a fusion of everything I loved- soul, funk, brass, poetry, and theatrics. As much as I wanted to dance to their groove, I couldn’t take my eyes off the stage- I thought I was going to miss something, and in my mind, that just could not happen. Tarriona, the leading lady and poet of Tank and the Bangas, was mesmerizing; her back-up singers were killing it too, so it was a double whammy. She may be small, but Tarriona has mighty pipes. And quite the style- think steampunk meets Tim Burton, but feminine, flattering, and sassy. Between her dynamite look and dramatic and stunning facial expressions, Tarriona was bigger than life. TATB drew the reaction where you look around to make eye contact with people to find out if they are seeing what you’re seeing. Without words, I asked my friend, “Are you seeing what I’m seeing? Are we both watching the same magic?”. We did. Then we acted like looney-tunes and waited outside for TATB after the show.
The following day, I sent my sisters a link to a Tank and the Bangas YouTube performance, and I bought the album off iTunes. Tank and the Bangas can serenade me while I journey to Paris in a few days (so I won’t be writing here for a bit). The best news of that evening: Tank and the Bangas will be playing Wednesday’s at one of my favorite watering holes/venues: The Maple Leaf. You must go check them out; you won’t be disappointed.