Let’s start off with what we picked as our Do or Die selection this week. Big Car Gallery's newly launched center, in Lafayette Square, is the location for Indy Film Fest’s second annual Bigger Picture Show. Local artists have taken your favorite classic and cult movie posters and re-imagined them. Expect to see such favorites as Alice in Wonderland, Almost Famous, The Goonies, Cool Hand Luke and Lost in Translation adorning the walls. Even better, you can purchase them at a relatively cheap price. Take home a framed poster at the event for $75 or order an unframed print there for $60. There will be a grand opening of Big Car Service Center later this month (May 28) so stay tuned…
On Friday and Saturday, the ISO is showcasing a big hit, Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, ye olde gold standard of what everyone else tries to accomplish, with its lush accompaniments and lovely violin solos. The ubiquitous Zach De Pue will lead the orchestra and play the solo violin part. As an addition to the night, he'll join with ISO principal viola Michael Isaac Strauss for Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante.
Who’s ready for some opera? On Friday and Sunday, Indianapolis Opera will present La Traviata. Maureen O’Flynn, who sang the role of Mimi in last season’s La Boheme, will star as Violetta, alongside Richard Paul Fink, who sang Alberich in the opera’s 2009 production of Das Rheingold, cast in the role of Germont. We had some confusion over the ticket price, so note that tix start at an affordable $30.
Opening Friday is a photography exhibit by Thomas Mueller, Private Thoughts in Public Spaces, which captures human drama in its simplest form. Even the most ordinary of subjects are turned into thought-provoking works of art. The opening reception will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. in conjunction with the Broad Ripple Spring Gallery Tour.
Another visual arts delight comes in the form of the immensely-talented Rob Day, whose work has been featured in Time, GQ, Rolling Stone and Esquire — and he's from right here in our hometown. Day's oil paintings will be featured in his new exhibit, New Landscapes, at the Eye on Art Gallery as part of the Carmel Arts and Design District Second Saturday Gallery Walk. Expect images that emphasize atmosphere and shadow, creating landscapes you feel you can walk into.
If it’s May, it’s you-know-what time, and we’re thinking you’ll want to attend Indy Star Opening Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This year’s opening day event starts at 9 a.m. with the Celebration of Automobiles, followed by driving practice at 12 p.m. The Celebration of Automobiles Dinner takes place at 6 p.m. Be sure to swing by the Pace Car Club Lab at 11 a.m. and catch Mayor Ballard’s interview.
Our main feature this week profiled Kevin Kling and Simone Perrin who will perform at the Indiana History Center on Saturday. After a successful run in the 2009 IndyFringe Festival, storyteller Kevin Kling and musician Simone Perrin return to perform as part of Storytelling Arts of Indiana’s season. Kling is an author, playwright and performer, best known for his commentaries on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. Perrin is an accordionist, theater artist and chanteuse who has appeared on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion. Expect an evening of song and story dedicated to all-things-midwest. Check out Katelyn Coyne’s story.
Finally, if you’re looking for something to do NEXT weekend, then the International Symposium on Chicago Theater is the place to be. Ever wonder what happened to John Green, former head of the Butler University Theatre Department? Well, I don’t wonder, because I know that Green was lured away from Butler in 2009, where he’d established one of the finest, most innovative theater programs in the Midwest, by Columbia College in Chicago, where he has taken his work up a notch. Or two. Or three. You can catch up with Green next weekend, May 18-21, at the symposium he’s helped put together. Speakers, workshops and panels cover a wide range of material, from the plays of Sara Ruhl (4:48 Psychosis) and Tracy Letts (Bug) and David Mamet to stage combat demos, discussions about race in theater and performances by internationally-renowned theater people. Really, it’s freakin’ boggling, go to www.colum.edu; you’ll see what I mean.