Two concerts already scheduled for this weekend at Oklahoma City’s Blue Door listening room have been transformed into tornado benefit shows, just hours after deadly and devastating tornadoes ripped through Moore and south Oklahoma City this afternoon.
“I just could not continue my Blue Door anniversary in light of what happened. This is not when … we need to be celebrating. So we’re turning what was going to be a continuation of our Blue Door anniversary into this,” Blue Door proprietor Greg Johnson said by phone tonight.
“We just figure it’s the least we could do. While we’ve got shows going on, we might as well do what we can to help.”
In celebration of his venue’s 20th anniversary this month, Johnson has been hosting a series of shows featuring some of the musicians who have been playing the Blue Door since the beginning.
Singer-songwriter Kevin Welch, who graduated from Midwest City High School, was scheduled to play Friday night. Austin, Texas, singer-songwriter Michael Fracasso was to headline Saturday night, with Oklahoma City duo Miss Brown to You sharing the bill.
Now, the lineup for Friday’s benefit show includes Welch, Fracasso, Miss Brown to You and Grammy-nominated Bearden singer-songwriter John Fullbright. Tickets are $40.
Previously purchased tickets to Friday’s show will be honored, too, Johnson said.
Fracasso and Miss Brown to you are still on the lineup for Saturday’s show, and $20 ticket price will remain the same. But it now will be a tornado benefit concert.
Proceeds from both shows, with the exception of minor expenses like gas money for the musicians, will go to helping victims of today’s tornado. Johnson said he is researching the best local route to funnel the funds to tornado victims, particularly those directly affected by the destruction of Briarwood and Plaza Towers elementary schools in Moore.
“We’re going to be as supportive as we can be and let the power of music kind of wash over everybody and help steel everybody,” he said. “It’s something that I think the community needs to come together, and this is just a start.”
He said Fullbright, whose Sunday Summer Breeze concert in Norman was postponed to June 9 because of Sunday’s tornadoes, texted him soon after the latest round tornadoes roared through. The Grammy nominee said he wanted to do something to help. Johnson, who is also Fullbright’s manager, contacted the other artists, and they immediately agreed to turn their shows into benefit events.
“We’ve done so many benefits. And people have done benefits for me to get the wall built when the north wall was falling down,” Johnson said. “Hopefully, we’ll help and then I’m sure other people are gonna be helping. But it’ll be a long road back, like it always is.”
Johnson said he expects indoor seating for both benefit shows to sell out quickly. But he plans to open up the Blue Door patio and sell patio tickets at the door to accommodate as many music fans as possible.
“If it’s sold out, don’t worry. We’ll pack the patio,” he said. “It’s gonna be a way for all of us to get together and support those people.”
For tickets and information, go to www.bluedoorokc.com or www.ticketstorm.com.
deadCenter Film Festival to screen “Last of the Mohicans,” give Hunt Lowry the Oklahoma Film ICON Award
Oklahoma City native and acclaimed Hollywood producer Hunt Lowry will receive the 2013 Oklahoma Film ICON Award during the 2013 deadCenter Film Festival.
Lowry will receive the award prior to a free outdoor screening of “The Last of the Mohicans” at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, June 7 on the Great Lawn at Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W Reno.
The Oklahoma Film ICON Award is given annually to an outstanding Oklahoman whose success in the film industry brings honor to our state and helps increase the profile of the local film industry. This is the second year for the award, according to a news release. Last year’s recipients were Oscar-winning producer Gray Frederickson and actor James Marsden from Stillwater.
Lowry, a Casady grad, is best known for producing the Oscar-winning epic “The Last of the Mohicans” and the legal thriller “A Time to Kill,” starring Matthew McConaughey, Sandra Bullock and Samuel L. Jackson. He started his career on classic comedies like “Airplane!” and “Top Secret” before shifting gears to bring the intense family drama “Surviving” home to be filmed in Oklahoma City. He captured the teen market with his Gaylord Films “A Walk to Remember,” “What a Girl Wants,” “A Cinderella Story,” and the “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.” During the past decade, Lowry has produced successful comedies like the “Blue Collar Comedy Tour: The Movie,” and “Thou Shalt Laugh.” Independent film lovers hail the cult classic “Donnie Darko” as Lowry’s masterpiece.
“Just as impressive as any individual film is Lowry’s ability to move seamlessly across film genres and styles, creating visual stories that endure the test of time,” deadCenter Film Festival Executive Director Lance McDaniel said in the release. “He has also served as a beacon to Oklahomans moving to Los Angeles to pursue their dreams in motion pictures.”
Wes Studi, a renowned Native American actor from No Fire Hollow, Oklahoma, will present Lowry with the award at 9 p.m. Studi played the villain Magua in “The Last of the Mohicans.”
deadCenter will offer two free outdoor screenings, in addition to “The Last of the Mohicans,” on the Great Lawn at Myriad Botanical Gardens, including the feature-length rockumentary “The Rolling Stones: Charlie is My Darling,” at 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 5, and “Stevie Nicks: In Your Dreams” at 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 9.
deadCenter Film Festival is Oklahoma’s largest film festival for the past 13 years and one of the “Top 20 Coolest Film Festivals in the World” according to MovieMaker magazine. This year’s festival is June 5-9 and includes 115 comedies, dramas, hard-hitting documentaries and short films from Oklahoma and around the world. For more information, please visit www.deadcenterfilm.org.
The Paseo Arts Association has announced the music and performance lineup for the 2013 Paseo Arts Festival, set for May 25-27 in the historic Paseo Arts District.
Musicians and other performers featured at the festival will perform on one of two stages: the North Stage—near Picasso Café—or the South Stage—in the middle of Paseo Drive, near NW 28 Street. The North Stage, curated by Casey Friedman of Acoustic Oklahoma, features singer-songwriters and acoustic performers of all stripes, while the South Stage features high-energy, louder musicians and some of the event’s most popular returning acts, such as perennial Festival opening act Tarpley’s Tappers (Saturday, noon, South Stage) and Edgar Cruz (Monday, 4 p.m., South Stage)
Music committee chair Amy Young and Casey Friedman have worked since January to curate a strong, diverse group of performers, encompassing every genre from country, blues, and folk to rock, electronic music, and much more.
“This festival, even though it’s smaller than some, truly captures and celebrates the local Oklahoma music flavor.” Friedman said in a news release. “I think we’ve gathered some of the best, most talented, hardest-working musicians in the metro area. I’m really proud of the lineup we have.”
Among the acts she is most excited to see, Young lists Sunday headliners Pidgin Band (Sunday, 9:30 p.m., South Stage), who describe their sound as “experimental Afro-Funk,” and who Young said will “put on a high-energy show that will really get people moving.”
Beau Jennings (Sunday, 5 p.m., North Stage) is another musician that Young mentions. Previously headlining the Brooklyn-based band Cheyenne, Jennings has now made a home in Oklahoma, and has recently filmed a documentary on Will Rogers.
On the North Stage, Casey Friedman is looking forward to a performance by Bat-or Kalo. Kalo is best known in her native Israel, where she became well-known as a child star. She has been in and out of Oklahoma since 2005, and Friedman looks forward to her bringing an international aspect to the roster. Friedman also looks forward to performances by new rising local star Josh Qualls. (Saturday, 7 p.m., North Stage)
The musicians described above are only a few of the 57 acts booked for The Paseo Arts Festival, which will take place on Memorial Day weekend in the Paseo Arts District, Oklahoma City’s distinctive arts community. The Paseo Arts District is located between NW 30 and 27 Streets and Walker and Hudson Avenue.
For more information, go to www.thepaseo.com.
See the full live entertainment schedule after the break.
Wednesday Video Spotlight: Driving with Serge Ibaka – The Thunder take on Memphis in Game 5 tonight in Oklahoma City
It’s do-or-die Thunder up time tonight at The ‘Peake!
The Oklahoma City Thunder takes on Memphis Grizzlies in Game 5 of their Western Conference playoffs series. The Grizzlies lead the series 3-1, so our hometown boys in blue must win tonight or end their season.
To help you Thunder up, cruise with power forward Serge Ibaka to Chesapeake Energy Arena. We need Serge in the zone and playing at peak form tonight!
The game tips off at 8:30 tonight at The ‘Peake, 100 W Reno. It will air on TNT.
For extra Thunder pride, check out my excellent colleague Jennifer Palmer’s feature on the making of the complimentary T-shirts the Thunder home crowds have become so famous for during the playoffs by clicking here.
“Judy ‘n’ Jody” reunion concert set for Thursday night at the Oklahoma History Center
The public is invited to the free event, which will feature live music, light refreshments and an announcement about the proposed OKPOP museum.
Many of the musicians who played on Oklahoma’s beloved “Jude ‘n’ Jody” show will perform at a reunion Thursday night, and the public is invited.
Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Oklahoma History Center, 800 Nazih Zuhdi Drive. The festivities will include free food and live music.
Guests will be invited to tour the “Oklahoma @ the Movies” exhibit, see historic footage of the television show, and partake in light refreshments. A cash bar will be available.
The program will begin at 7:15 p.m. Thursday. Admission is free, but seating is limited.
Grammy winner Jody Miller, who appeared on the “Jude ‘n’ Jody” show and had numerous top 10 hits, including “Queen of the House,” will take part in the concert.
Also featured will be Jude Northcutt, who is best remembered by Oklahoma natives as “Jude” of the Jude ‘n’ Jody furniture store band and country music duo.
Northcutt and Harold Dean “Jody” Taylor were regularly featured on Oklahoma City TV for 40 years, appearing on all three network affiliated stations. They began appearing on a show on an Ada TV station in 1954, then moved to Oklahoma City television in 1956. They continued to appear on local TV programs through 1980.-
Jody Taylor died in 2009 at the age of 74.
While not the original “Jody” of the show, Miller, who hails from Blanchard, is known for a number of hits from the 1960s and ‘70s, most notably “Queen of the House,” her 1965 answer to Erick-bred Roger Miller’s smash “King of the Road.”
In addition to the headliners, several musicians who have worked with Northcutt over the years will be reunited at the concert.
A special announcement regarding the proposed Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture, or OKPOP, will be made during the program.
Eligible guests will be able to join AARP and then take advantage of a special discounted rate to join the Oklahoma Historical Society.
For reservations or information, contact Nicole Harvey at the Oklahoma History Center at 522-5202 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A version of this story appears in Wednesday’s Life section of The Oklahoman.
Photo Slam to showcase 12 Oklahoma photographers
Part art exhibit, part poetry slam, with a hint of “The Gong Show,” the juried event offers photographers a high-energy opportunity to show their work at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art.
That’s what the Oklahoma City Museum of Art and Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition are going for with their Photo Slam, a speedy showcase of 12 Oklahoma artists planned for Thursday night at the museum.
“It’s like a poetry slam, a story slam, the idea of a slam, where it’s like a real high-energy, fast-paced discussion,” said Chandra Boyd, the museum’s senior associate curator of education.
“The idea is that each photographer has five minutes to present their work, and they can do that in any format. … If they go over the five minutes, they get gonged. It’s fun to see the photographers’ personalities come out. They really get into this opportunity to tell about their work.”
The Photo Slam doesn’t follow the typical art lecture format, said OVAC Associate Director Kelsey Karper.
Along with dynamic and competitive poetry slams, she said Photo Slam is inspired by PechaKucha, a presentation style developed in Tokyo in 2003. A kind of show-and-tell version of an open mike, PechaKucha — which translates roughly to “chit-chat” in Japanese — is aimed at architects and other creative types, who showcase their work and ideas in 20 images, each shown for just 20 seconds.
“It’s a way to give a presentation that’s more interesting, fast-moving and entertaining, so that’s the format that you get. But there’s a very strict time limit,” Karper said.
“We were taking these ideas from different types of really engaging presentation styles, and we kind of melded them together to come up with the Photo Slam.”
She’s not kidding about the strict time limit: Photographers who go over the time limit really will hear someone really bang a gong.
“We do encourage the artists to use their five minutes creatively. In the past, we’ve had people incorporate music. We had one photographer who went through the theater and hid things under everyone’s seats,” Karper said. “We’ve actually even had the presenting photographer taking pictures of the audience during their presentation … so I’m excited to see what this year’s group will do.”
The museum and OVAC served up their first Photo Slam in 2008, and Thursday’s event will mark the third installment. The slams typically are offered in conjunction with a photography exhibition at the museum. “Herb Ritts: Beauty & Celebrity,” an exhibit of 80 black-and-white images by the legendary portrait photographer, opened last week at the museum and shows there through July 28.
Carlos Knight, art director at This Land Press, selected the dozen Photo Slam participants from a pool of applicants. Oklahoma City photographer Rex Barrett will be the master of ceremonies for the juried showcase.
The 12 chosen photographers — Lucia Martinez, Wendy Mutz, Kurt Nagy, Zach Nash, Ben Pendleton, all of Oklahoma City; Natalie Slater and Chad Clark, both of Tulsa; Sarah Engel Barnett, Norman; Summer Lu, Weatherford; Thomas Tucker, Edmond; Crystal Walters, Pryor; and Reginna Zhidov Chickasha — come from around the state and have varying degrees of photography experience.” from students to pros.
“It’s any level, it’s anyone who’s aspiring or accomplished. So “I think that’s the really fun part. You’ve got like professional photographers up against people who are hobbyists,” Boyd said.
“This is really their chance to get into the museum and fill the auditorium with people who are also photo enthusiasts. … We’ve had really good attendance in the past. I think by partnering with Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition, they are good to help us really connect to the art community in a way that we normally don’t get to do.”
In addition, the 12 participants work in varying styles, techniques and subject matters. Traditional photographs, iPhone shots and photo manipulations are expected to be included.
“It is limited to photography, but within photography, there’s all these variations in different styles and ways of working and photographic methods,” Karper said. “That’s part of what makes it really interesting.”
The gong doesn’t hurt, either.
When: 7 p.m. Thursday.
Where: Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive.
Admission: Free. Admission to the rest of the museum is $5 after 5 p.m. Thursdays.
Information: www.ovac-ok.org or www.okcmoa.com.
What to do in Oklahoma on May 15, 2013: See Trent Lawson’s velvet paintings at a.k.a. gallery in the Paseo
Today’s featured event:
See the exhibit “Velvet Memes: New Work by Trent Lawson” at a.k.a. gallery, 3001 Paseo in the Paseo Arts District.
The gallery is noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday.
The Oklahoma City specializes in kitschy and witty velvet paintings that mingle pop culture and art history. They are definitely worth seeing while the exhibit is on view through May 27.
For more information, go to http://akagallery.net or www.trentlawson.net.
For more events, go to www.wimgo.com.
What to do in Oklahoma on May 13, 2013: Hear Wayne McEvilly play “Mozart for Mother’s Day” at OKC’s Downtown Library
Today’s featured event:
Happy Mother’s Day! Hear Oklahoma City pianist Wayne McEvilly play “Mozart for Mother’s Day” at 2 p.m. today at the Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library, 300 Park Ave.
The concert is free, open to the public and will take place in the lovely atrium.
For more information, go to www.metrolibrary.org.
For more events, go to www.wimgo.com.
What to do in Oklahoma on May 11, 2013: See the 28th Annual Armed Forces Day and Shriners Parade in Del City
Today’s featured event:
DEL CITY — Watch the 28th Annual Armed Forces Day and Shriners Parade at 10 a.m. Saturday in downtown. Information: www.cityofdelcity.com.
For more events, go to www.wimgo.com.
Herb Ritts may not be a household name, but much of the art he created has become ingrained in popular culture.
“Chances are you’ve seen his work and you just don’t know it,” said Sandy Cotton, development director for the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, where the special exhibition “Herb Ritts: Beauty and Celebrity” opened this week.
The 80 black-and-white photos in the exhibit depict notable personalities from the worlds of film, fashion, music, art, sports and politics.
“Beauty and Celebrity” includes Ritts’ portraits of Madonna, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, Axl Rose, Christopher Reeve, Matthew McConaughey, Dale Chihuly, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Nelson Mandela, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, among others.
“Herb Ritts became woven immediately into American culture in the 1980s and ‘90s because of so many magazine covers and magazine editorials, fashion advertisements, commercials and also music videos. So he not only created fine art photography, but also had a very successful commercial side to his photography, one that was easily disseminated throughout culture,” said Jennifer Klos, associate curator at the museum.
“(He was) extremely influential. Herb Ritts created and propelled his own style.”
In this NewsOK video, Angi Bruss talks to Klos about the exhibit. To read more about the new show, click here.