C-VILLE Writers



Returning for the sixth installment of his annual Christmas tour, Robert Earl Keen has always had a special place for the holidays in his Americana-infused heart. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Robert Earl Keen

Returning for the sixth installment of his annual Christmas tour, Robert Earl Keen has always had a special place for the holidays in his Americana-infused heart. Since 1984, Keen has crafted 19 albums, among them his holiday fan-favorite, Merry Christmas from the Family. He pours his energy, hilarious anecdotes and incredible music into a magical […]

Letters to the editor: Week of November 15-21

Letters to the editor: Week of November 15-21

Letters to the editor Childish board behavior to blame The article “Secret history: Is the Charlottesville historical society a thing of the past?” [October 25-31] by John Last should have been on the opinion(ated) page as it does not qualify as a news article. Starting off the article by referring to Steven Meeks as an […]

Mi Ossa co-owners Nora Brookfield and Shannon Worrell collaborate with local artisans 
on their vegetable-tanned leather clutch purse. Photo: Sanjay Suchak

Makers gonna make: The results of our 2017 Made in C-VILLE contest

Ask and you shall receive. That’s the takeaway from our call to makers for the first-ever Made in C-VILLE contest. We wanted goods conceived and manufactured in Charlottesville, and you brought lampshades, cupcakes, coasters, sandals, knives and knick-knacks with undeniable charm. And while our judges were required to narrow it down to nine top choices—a […]

After it closed in 2003, Western State was a magnet for ghost hunters and daring teens. Now it's going to be a deluxe inn.
Photo Daniel Stein

In brief: Mental health break, Groundhog Day and more

Seeking asylum He’ll tell you it’s not haunted, but owner and developer Robin Miller acknowledges the twisted history of the new Blackburn Inn, his historic boutique hotel set to open in Staunton this spring. Originally serving as the Western State Lunatic Asylum in the early 1800s, a hospital for the mentally ill—known for its electroshock […]

Chamomile & Whiskey pay tribute to the
band’s roots with the release of Sweet
Afton at the Southern on Wednesday. Photo by Aaron Farrington

ARTS Pick: Chamomile & Whiskey

Cementing a friendship that began in childhood, Koda Kerl and Marie Borgman formed the eclectic folk act Chamomile & Whiskey over a cup of hot tea with Evan Williams bourbon poured in. But the band’s name also speaks to a love of the traditional Irish tunes and bluegrass folk that gave the group traction shortly […]

The Tallis Scholars give voice to the Renaissance at Old Cabell Hall. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Tallis Scholars

Hailed as “rock stars of Renaissance vocal music” by the New York Times, The Tallis Scholars are a British ensemble dedicated to the sacred vocal music of the Renaissance. Founded by famed choral conductor and musicologist Peter Phillips in 1973, the group has gained international acclaim by bringing fresh interpretation to historic pieces. Through Phillips’ […]

Travis Elliott. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Travis Elliott

Local club fixture Travis Elliott has a new album entitled Get In Love, and he’s making a holiday celebration of its release with his friends, who are also a talented group of musicians including Tucker Rogers, Joe Lawlor, Johnny Stubblefield (Parachute), Seth Green (former Sons of Bill bassist) and Kristen Rae Bowden. The evening also […]

Combining puppetry and dance with dazzling visual effects, Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas takes the audience through a neon tale of family, friendship and hope. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: A Very Electric Christmas

Combining puppetry and dance with dazzling visual effects, Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas takes the audience through a neon tale of family, friendship and hope. The production’s creative team designed sculptures and costumes using electroluminescent wire arrangements to tell the story of a young bird named Max, who is on the annual journey south […]

The annual Blessing of the Hounds ceremony includes bagpipes, a soloist and, of course, horses and hounds. Cider, hot chocolate and donuts will be provided.

LIVING Picks: Week of November 22-28

FAMILY Holiday open house Sunday, November 26 Get into the holiday spirit by ogling the decorations as you stroll through the first floor of Monticello. Don’t forget to stop by the Shop at Monticello for tastings and treats. Free, 9am-4pm. Monticello, 931 Thomas Jefferson Pwky. monticello.org NONPROFIT Blessing of the Hounds Thursday, November 23 The […]

Monticello. Photo courtesy Carol M. Highsmith Archive Library of Congress

LIVING Picks: November 15-21

FAMILY Archaeology Lab sneak peek Saturday, November 18 Children and their parents can see Monticello’s Archaeology Lab close up, work with artifacts and learn how archaeologists piece together history. $12 adults, $9 children ages 7-11, 10am-noon. Monticello, 931 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy. monticello. org FOOD & DRINK Heal C’ville Beer Garden and Street Fair Saturday, November […]

The Can-do Attitude performs Friday at The Ante Room. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Can-Do Attitude

Is there anything left to be said about life, death, food, money and love? Local folk-punk band The Can-Do Attitude thinks there’s always something new and delightfully weird to discover, making its case with tracks like “Popcorn” (“One day we’ll hit an asteroid and all of the corn will be popped / One day we’ll […]

ARTS Pick: The Miho Hazama Big Band

To put the big into The Miho Hazama Big Band, Tokyo-born, New York-based jazz innovator Hazama assembled an 18-piece tribute to her idol Thelonious Monk in celebration of the 100th anniversary of his birth. The accomplished composer, arranger, conductor and pianist was selected as one of DownBeat magazine’s 25 for the Future in 2016, and […]

Billie Piper has earned critical raves, an Olivier award for Best Actress, and she’s performed two sold-out runs at London’s Young Vic in the lead role of Yerma, written by Spanish dramatist Federico García Lorca in 1934 and reimagined by director Simon Stone. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Yerma

Billie Piper has earned critical raves, an Olivier award for Best Actress, and she’s performed two sold-out runs at London’s Young Vic in the lead role of Yerma, written by Spanish dramatist Federico García Lorca in 1934 and reimagined by director Simon Stone. The power of the biological clock looms large in this modernized version, […]

ARTS Pick: Hiroya Tsukamoto

ARTS Pick: Hiroya Tsukamoto

In a small town in the heart of Japan, 13-year-old Hiroya Tsukamoto discovered the banjo and taught himself to play bluegrass tunes for his dad, who was a fan of traditional Appalachian music. He went on to master the guitar, and in 1999 Tsukamoto won a scholarship to the Berklee School of Music, which brought […]

Virginia Film Festival At-A-Glance

Virginia Film Festival At-A-Glance

Festival At-A-Glance sponsored by Wells Fargo Tickets At-A-Glance Where Can I Get Tickets During the Four Days of the Festival? UVA Arts Box Office at 109 Culbreth Road Nov 9: Noon–5:00 PM, 5:30–6:30 PM, 8:00–9:00 PM Nov 10: Noon–6:00 PM, 7:30–8:30 PM Nov 11: Noon–5:00 PM, 5:30–6:30 PM, 8:30–9:30 PM Nov 12: 10:45 AM–6:00 PM, […]

Spotlight on the Virginia Film Festival

Spotlight on the Virginia Film Festival

The Virginia Film Festival, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year from November 9-12, chose a topic at the forefront of many people’s minds—both locally and nationally—with its Race in America series. A collaboration with James Madison’s Montpelier, the series features notable filmmaker Spike Lee, who will screen his documentary 4 Little Girls. And from […]

The Ruination of Lovell Coleman. Courtesy Virginia Film Festival

VFF films with Virginia ties

VFF films with Virginia ties The Ruination of Lovell Coleman Director Ross McDermott met Lovell Coleman in Charlottesville 10 years ago when he saw the then octogenarian putting a new roof on his house by himself. Coleman, now on the cusp of 94, has been playing the fiddle since at least age 14, when he […]

Harold and Maude. Courtesy of the Virginia Film Festival

Doing shots with Harold and Maude’s producer

Harold and Maude producer Chuck Mulvehill and director Hal Ashby met during post-production work on The Landlord (1970), and eventually became partners in the company DF Films (Dumb Fuck). Mulvehill says when the story of Harold and Maude came his way, “My first reaction to the script was ‘It’s weird.’ Hal’s take was that there […]

Pixar senior scientist Tony DeRose, who leads a master class on animation techniques on Thursday, says everything changed in 1986, when John Lasseter used computer graphics to make the bouncing lamp and ball movie, Luxo Jr. Photo: Courtesy Virginia Film Festival

Do the math: Putting emotion into digital motion at Pixar

Tony DeRose, senior scientist at Pixar Animation Studios, wants students to know that the math and science they must learn in school really is helpful. It’s applicable in their activities, games and movies, and DeRose is holding a master class during the Virginia Film Festival to drive home this point. Joining him will be Earl […]

Nikuyah Walker admits she doesn’t follow the rules very well.

Staff photo

In brief: ‘Hit piece,’ the unshrouder and more

But her emails Independent City Council candidate Nikuyah Walker was the target of a November 4 story in the Daily Progress that she and her supporters called a “hit piece”—three days before the election—in which an anonymous source in City Hall questions her ability to “work collaboratively with city officials.” The story described her emails […]

The UVA Army ROTC cadets, the Buford Middle School band and Retired Colonel James O’Kelley will participate in a ceremony to salute our veterans at James Monroe's Highland.

LIVING Picks: Week of November 8-14

NONPROFIT Veterans Day ceremony Friday, November 10 The UVA Army ROTC cadets, the Buford Middle School band and Retired Colonel James O’Kelley will participate in a ceremony to salute our veterans, followed by a living timeline of veterans. Active duty military and veterans get in free; $8-$14 admission includes historic house tour, 1pm. James Monroe’s […]

The documentary Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World explores the impact of American Indian style on rock ’n’ roll music. Courtesy image

ARTS Pick: Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World

You know that rock band. The one you can recognize immediately because of its iconic style and utter uniqueness? Well, you may be surprised to hear that if you trace that sound back through the years, you’ll likely find Native American influences at its roots. Catherine Bainbridge and Alfonso Maiorana bring this often-overlooked topic to […]

Nashville’s local band on the rise, Boy Named Banjo, plays the Jefferson on Friday. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Boy Named Banjo

Describing themselves as “Tennessee’s Americana apostles,” the phenomena that is Boy Named Banjo breaks out on an Eastern U.S. tour. Since 2011, the five members of the Americana and roots act have been developing their sound, weaving numerous instruments, including guitar, harmonica, mandolin, drums, upright bass and (of course) banjo, with sweet, five-part harmonies. Friday, […]

ARTS Pick: Herron’s Entertainment Comedy Night

If laughter is the best medicine, then consider Herron’s Entertainment Comedy Night a health class from out of town. Composed of emerging comedians from New York City, these missionaries of hilarity dish out gut-busting tropes that are certain to heal frowny face outbreaks. Bent Theatre partners in the mad merriment by adding local stand-up to […]

Kevin Minor as Floyd “Schoolboy” Barton in UVA Drama’s Seven Guitars. Photo by Michael Bailey

ARTS Pick: Seven Guitars

Theresa M. Davis directs Seven Guitars, the 1940s installment of August Wilson’s Century Cycle, which is centered around blues guitarist Floyd “Schoolboy” Barton, who leaves jail looking for his next hit record and the hope of repairing his relationship with his former girlfriend, Vera. The realism in Wilson’s lyrical script intimately relates the strife and […]

Milli Coffee Roasters owner Nick Leichtentritt says he likes the idea of offering a seasonal menu, which includes the ubiquitous pumpkin spice latte, to reflect our changing palate. Staff photo

Pumpkin spice everything must mean it’s fall

By Sam Padgett Fourteen years ago, the pumpkin spice latte crashed into our lives when Starbucks introduced it into its seasonal lineup. And this beverage has gone from a niche fall drink to being ubiquitous enough to warrant its own acronym: PSL. Pumpkin spice fever has become something of an epidemic, and its sheer popularity […]