Tuesday, July 29, 2014

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Carla McDonald with NowPlayingAustin.com has the inside scoop on what's hot each week in the Visual and Performing Arts. Every Wednesday, she showcases several art, music and theatrical events going on throughout Central Texas in On the Town.

07/25/2014 10:29 AM Posted By: Jess Mitchell
TWC News: 'Tommy' Takes Stage in South Austin
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Rock music paired with explosive visuals make "The Who's Tommy" an electric musical.

"This production of Tommy is vastly different than any production of Tommy that has happened in the past," Michael Valentine with the production said.

It’s a well-known show with a twist. This showing of Tommy uses the Alice and Wonderland plotline to tell the story of a visually and hearing-impaired pinball player.

"All of it translates to today, all of the issues that Tommy deals with growing up, I mean it’s all still happening today all you need to do is turn on the news, and there are stories of abuse and neglect," Valentine said.

Stories play out on the stage that based on the Who's 1969 album with the same title. It was first a film in the ‘70s then the show hit Broadway in 1993.

"I had originally listened to everything to get lyrics into my head, I had just kind of drilled them in a British accent, then when I came here and found out I wasn't doing a British accent that changed everything,” Valentine said.

Creating this experience was not only a challenge for the actors, but also the director.

"When I was looking at it as a director like how does this storyline become acceptable to sit through, the child suffers some sexual abuse, some physical abuse, some taunting and bullying,” director Dave Steakley said.

Though a difficult and unique story, it's one that many can relate to.

"The journey of Tommy is really for him to find himself,” Steakley said. “That turning point that comes at every person's life at which there's a reckoning with who you truly are and who you want to be and how you're going to spend your time and your life so that it's meaningful."

It’s a meaning that takes this musical beyond the performance, sending the audience home with more than a catchy tune stuck in their head.

"They come away kind of surprised that they've been affected by a rock musical like that. You really get why this was a story to be told,” Valentine said.

“The Who's Tommy” plays at the ZACH Theatre through August. Later this fall, the non-profit theatre will bring the “King and I” to the stage.

Click here to learn how you can see the show.


07/23/2014 07:20 AM Posted By: TWC News Staff
TWC News: Arts and Entertainment for July 23
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Hyde Park Collective — Closing Reception
Link and Pin, July 26

Black and White Party
Russian House, July 25

Tango Through the Revolution
Brave New Books, July 24 - Aug. 2


07/23/2014 07:14 AM Posted By: Todd Boatwright
TWC News: Arts and Entertainment for July 23
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Summer Sol Fest
McNutt Courtyard and Sculpture Garden, July 24

San Antonio Film Festival
Various locations, July 28 - Aug. 3

Big River
Cameo Theatre, July 12 - Aug. 10

HOT!
Bihl Haus Arts, July 25 - Sept. 12


07/16/2014 07:55 AM Posted By: Carla McDonald
TWC News: Arts and Entertainment for July 16
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Chanteuse in Concert
Various locations, July 20

New Media Arts Summer Camp: Radio VSA!
AGE Building, July 21

Beth Consetta Rubel
New East Arts Gallery, now - Aug. 1


07/16/2014 07:08 AM Posted By: Todd Boatwright
TWC News: Arts and Entertainment for July 16
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ArtSmart - Greek Art
Central Library, July 17

Second Annual Salsa in the Plaza
Market Square, July 19 - 20

Transforming Communities Through Writing
Gemini Ink, July 20


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