Tuesday, July 31, 2012

DNC 2012 Notebook: With one month to go, some but not all questions answered

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Democratic convention developments are coming hot and heavy — very hot if you count a midday outdoor news conference announcing the details of the Sept. 1 media party that will see an estimated 15,000 journalists eating, drinking and watching as local and national acts perform. Time Warner Cable is the event’s main sponsor, with a host of other local businesses involved (full list here). Mert’s Heart and Soul owner James Bazzelle assured me there will be banana pudding on the menu.

San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, 37, will be the Latino keynote speaker at the Democratic National Convention.
  • Wikipedia
  • San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, 37, will be the Latino keynote speaker at the Democratic National Convention.

That might be enough to lure Bill Clinton, though he’s been watching his diet lately. The big announcement is that the former president will formally place President Obama’s name into nomination on Sept. 5, a sign, as I pointed out in the Washington Post, that both men want to win. Their relationship has been testy at times, but they’ve made peace since the 2008 primary fight between Obama and Hillary Clinton, who as Secretary of State will be staying away from the partisan Democratic Party’s party. A full-throated endorsement by the popular Bill Clinton in his home region will be more than enough to draw a crowd.

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LOL: Comedy in the Q.C.

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 9:50 AM

Listed below is a roundup of CL's top picks for comedy shows in Charlotte this week. Hopefully, they keep you entertained and, more importantly, laughing out loud.

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I've always been more fond of comedians who make fun of themselves than those who pick at their audience for kicks. I mean, c'mon, do you really want to pay for public humiliation? Luckily, Maria Bamford takes the spotlight off of the crowd and places it on her own mental problems. Jokes aside, Bamford does suffer from Bipolar Disorder. In her act, she typically jokes about her issues with depression and a dysfunctional family. Way to turn the negative into a positive (and a paycheck)! Maybe laughter really is the best medicine. $20. July 31, 8 p.m. The Comedy Zone Charlotte, 900 N.C. Music Factory Blvd., Suite B3. 980-321-4702. www.cltcomedyzone.com.

Crown Station Pub’s Taboo Tuesday Open Mic gives local comedians (funny or ... not) a chance to test their latest material on a live audience. There are no language or content restrictions, so that you’ll get to watch acts in a pure, raw form. Each comedian has five minutes of stand-up time. $2. July 31, 9:30 p.m. Crown Station Pub, 1425 Elizabeth St.

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He’s taken heat for slamming President Obama, even though he voted for the guy. Yes, former Saturday Night Live funnyman Jon Lovitz is a pissed-off Democrat who doesn’t think taxes should be raised on his hard-earned moolah. He says the U.S. teaches, “You can do anything you wan,” then in return gives achievers a big, fat “Fuck you!” Calm down, Lovitz. You still have showbiz to keep the bank account flowing. He stops in Charlotte for three days at The Comedy Zone. $25-$30. Aug. 2, 8 p.m.; Aug. 3, 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m.; Aug. 4, 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The Comedy Zone Charlotte at NC Music Factory, 900 N.C. Music Factory Blvd., Suite B3. 980-321-4702. www.cltcomedyzone.com.

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Today's Top 5: Tuesday

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Here are the five best events going down in Charlotte and the surrounding area today, July 31, 2012 as selected by the folks at Creative Loafing.

* Die Roten Punkte at Duke Energy Theatre

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* Artist reception for the Allegory exhibit at UNC Charlotte

* Maria Bamford at The Comedy Zone Charlotte

* Lindsey Buckingham at Neighborhood Theatre

* Filter at The Fillmore

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Monday, July 30, 2012

Jerry Sandusky is good for one thing

Posted By on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 3:21 PM

Reading about the Penn State scandal, in which former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was accused of molesting children over many years, usually makes you feel as good as 50 lashings to the back. It's sad, serious stuff.

But I finally read some good news today.

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Theater review: The Dumb Waiter

Posted By on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 9:31 AM

As the current Starving Artist Theatre production of The Dumb Waiter amusingly demonstrates, you really don’t have to choose among the three possible meanings of playwright Harold Pinter’s title. While two hitmen, Gus and Ben, wait in a shabby cellar for their boss to give them details on how they’ll knock off their next victim, an unseen person sends down food orders from above via a dumb waiter, recessed in the wall. Sure enough, Gus, the underling, empties his rucksack of the assorted snackfood inside and sends it upstairs in lieu of the actual order.

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It’s all covered: the old-timey upstairs-downstairs machine, stupid waiter Gus, and absurdist descendants of Samuel Beckett’s protagonists in Waiting for Godot. Directed by Matt Cosper, whose native dramatic language is absurdism, the Starving Artist production is perfectly pitched and perfectly paced, sprinkled with hilarity as the plot thickens.

Nathan Rouse and James Dracy beautifully capture the partners’ droll dysfunctionality, with liberal applications of Pinter’s trademark silences. Rouse as Ben has a quiet competency about him as we first observe him, engrossed in the daily newspaper. Dracy as Gus proves to be far more garrulous after he wakes (he has no other pastimes to occupy himself while he waits). I thought we might have problems in the thickets of Gus’s cockney accent, but Dracy’s piratical service in Children’s Theatre of Charlotte’s Treasure Island pays off handsomely here. Dracy makes Gus’s vulgarity loud and robust, with just enough obtuseness so that he seems unaware of how repetitious and annoying he is.

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Today's Top 5: Monday

Posted By on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Here are the five best events going down in Charlotte and the surrounding area today, July 30, 2012 as selected by the folks at Creative Loafing.

* Cult Movie Monday, screening The Goonies at Actor's Theatre of Charlotte

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* Vans Warped Tour at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

* Bar Wars Mondays at Phil's Tavern

* Open Mic at The Evening Muse

* Buildings, Mon Frere, and Oddczar at Snug Harbor

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Time to VOTE for Best of Charlotte 2012

Posted By on Fri, Jul 27, 2012 at 12:05 PM

It's coming ... slowly, but surely. Creative Loafing's annual Best of Charlotte issue is creeping up on us. *Cue ominous music in the background*

To make sure this 25th go-round is as impressive as the previous 24, we're once again asking you, our dear readers, to take the time to make your voices known on what you believe to be the most — and, in some instances, least — memorable people, places and things in Charlotte.

Sure, you've got other things to worry about: Michael Jackson's mom just lost custody of the kids to Tito's son; Kristin Stewart cheated on vampire-sexy Robert Pattinson; the end of the world is coming in only a few months.

It's a scary task, we know. But you don't want Waffle House to win the category for Best Breakfast, do you?

Head over to our online ballot and cast your votes. Time is ticking!

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Today's Top 5: Friday

Posted By on Fri, Jul 27, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Here are the five best events going down in Charlotte and the surrounding area today, July 27, 2012 as selected by the folks at Creative Loafing.

* Closing reception for the Squared exhibit at McColl Center for Visual Art

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* Recess Fest

* Rumors at Davidson College's Duke Family Performance Hall

* Food Truck Rally at Rural Hill

* Poetry Reading & Open Mic at Vin Master Wine Shop

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Opening Friday

Posted By on Thu, Jul 26, 2012 at 11:16 AM

Where Do We Go Now?

Step Up Revolution - Cleopatra Coleman, Stephen "tWitch" Boss

The Watch - Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn

Where Do We Go Now? - Leyla Hakim, Nadine Labaki

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Today's Top 5: Thursday

Posted By on Thu, Jul 26, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Here are the five best events going down in Charlotte and the surrounding area today, July 26, 2012 as selected by the folks at Creative Loafing.

* Chris Franjola The Comedy Zone Charlotte

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* Josh Ritter & The Royal City Band at Knight Theater

* Train at Time Warner Cable Uptown Amphitheatre

* Project Art Aid's Queen City Soup at 7th Street Public Market

* WFAE's Public Conversations Series: Politics in the Street at Mint Museum Uptown

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