C-VILLE Writers



Former Fluco Chris Daughtry takes time out of his busy rock 'n' roll schedule to play a benefit show at Firefly on Thursday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: A Very Woolen Holiday

Grammy-nominated former “American Idol” contestant Chris Daughtry headlines A Very Woolen Holiday, a benefit event for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a nonprofit that funds research for less toxic treatment options. Presented for the first time by Woolen Writers’ Revival and hosted by local musicians Will Thomas Reed and Brian Craddock, the lineup also includes Keith […]

Anais Mitchell opens for Punch Brothers on Wednesday at The Paramount Theater. Publicity image

Anais Mitchell moves forward while looking behind

To say that Anais Mitchell shares commonalities with Orpheus, a character from ancient Greek mythology isn’t as far fetched as it sounds. Both possess the musical talents vital for swooning listeners and charming their way into remote realms. But while Orpheus’ journey to rescue his wife Eurydice ended in despair when he carelessly turned his […]

Photo: Michael Bailey

ARTS Pick: The Santaland Diaries

An unlikely holiday tradition took hold when David Sedaris told the sour, witty story of his experience as an unemployed writer who takes a job as an elf at Macy’s in The Santaland Diaries, which gained public recognition on NPR in 1992. Staged by the American Shakespeare Center, Sedaris’ sardonic tale offers an unvarnished glimpse […]

All your holiday fantasies come true during Deanna Danger’s KnucklesCracker, a burlesque twist on The Nutcracker. Photo: Robert Escue

ARTS Pick: KnucklesCracker

Ballet meets burlesque in KnucklesCracker, a reimagining of the classic Nutcracker story, set in the bygone era of speakeasies and vaudeville entertainment. This whirlwind of ragtime rambunctiousness features an array of performers and live music by The Judy Chops. Vintage or cocktail wear encouraged. 18-plus. Sunday 12/13. $12-60, 8pm. The Jefferson Theater, 110 E. Main St., […]

The Steep Canyon Rangers play it straight (sans Steve Martin) at the Jefferson on Friday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Steep Canyon Rangers

Wild and crazy guy Steve Martin’s affiliation with the Steep Canyon Rangers may have led to wider recognition for the group when he invited them to tour as his backing band in 2009, but the North Carolina-based bluegrass act already held a stellar reputation among fans on the pick ‘n‘ grin circuit. With the release […]

Enjoy holiday classics and a guest narration of The Night Before Christmas by former Poet Laureate, Rita Dove on December 5 and 6. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Family Holiday Concerts

Former U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner Rita Dove guest narrates The Night Before Christmas at the UVA University Singers and the Charlottesville Symphony Family Holiday Concerts. The joint performance will include seasonal favorites such as “Sleigh Ride” and “Winter Wonderland” and crowd-pleasers from The Polar Express and Frozen soundtracks. Saturday 12/5 & Sunday […]

If you like it hot, Milli Joe pour-over brews from varied coffee origins are the way to go. Photo: Ron Paris

Coffee awakening: A comparison of local cups

Pour-over coffee. It’s known for its tea-like flavors, light body and ceremonious process. Each cup takes about five minutes to brew. In the world of coffee, that’s a decidedly snail-like pace. And yet the pour-over method has become the mainstay of hipster, third-wave coffee joints. In many ways it’s transcended its coolness and become the […]

Take in Moscow Ballet's rendition of the holiday classic, The Great Russian Nutcracker on Sunday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Great Russian Nutcracker

Set the holiday mood with the Moscow Ballet’s take on the beloved story of The Great Russian Nutcracker. Experience the artistry of world-class Russian dancers, handcrafted sets and costumes, and Tchaikovsky’s time-honored musical score that shines in the orchestra’s upper register. Sunday 12/6. $30-177, 1pm and 5pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. […]

Guest choreographer, Katharine Birdsall, joins the UVA dance program students in a performance of movement and music. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: UVA Fall Dance Concert

In addition to showcasing the engaging, provocative work of dance program students and faculty at UVA’s Fall Dance Concert, the Department of Drama will host guest choreographer Katharine Birdsall (founder of Charlottesville’s Zen Monkey Project) in Moonlight, her tribute to Frederic Chopin’s Preludes. The performance of suites allows movement and music to share the spotlight equally. […]

Halloween season isn’t over until All Them Witches rocks the Southern on Tuesday. Photo: Robby Steabler

ARTS Pick: All Them Witches

While Nashville is known for its storied history of country music, that doesn’t stop All Them Witches from blowing up jazz-funk jams on the local stages. With an attitude that defies its geography, the band absorbs the vibe of places traveled and channels it into longplay epics like “El Centro” on the new album, made […]

Four County Player’s production of Honk! sends a message of love and acceptance in time for the holidays. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Honk!

Line up for a musical adventure about self-discovery and love, when Four County Players presents the family-friendly Honk!. Based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling, the play is the sing-song story of Ugly, who doesn’t quite fit in with his brothers and sisters. It’s a tale chock-full of unique characters and catchy tunes that […]

Hold your breath as the Golden Dragon Acrobats defy gravity and perform beautifully executed dance numbers at the Paramount on Friday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Golden Dragon Acrobats

Award-winning Chinese acrobatics meet traditional dance, theater and a blend of ancient and contemporary music onstage with the Golden Dragon Acrobats. The company, led by impresario Danny Chang and his wife and choreographer, Angela Chang, is composed of nearly 30 trained athletes, actors and artists who have performed in more than 65 countries worldwide. Friday […]

Devon Sproule is back with a new perspective, and keen insights, on a new record, The Gold String, to be released in early 2016. Photo: Anthony Gerace

Instead of different: Singer-songwriter Devon Sproule comes home

The last time C-VILLE Weekly talked with Devon Sproule, she was jetting off to Germany with her husband, Paul Curreri, to pursue a musical life abroad. The couple recently returned to Charlottesville, and Sproule is feeling more adventurous than ever. “Everything that led away from Virginia felt necessary, and so did the coming home,” she […]

Overindulged at the table? Bust some moves at DJ Sir RJ’s Thanksgiving Afterparty at The Ante Room on Thursday night. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: DJ Sir RJ’s Thanksgiving Afterparty

When the last slice of pie is in crumbles, and the final quarter winds down on the game, skip the La-Z-Boy kickback and get movin’ with DJ Sir RJ’s Thanksgiving Afterparty. Hip-hop grooves hosted by Blacko & Sunshine are the gravy on a night of boogie from the ’ville with a second helping of music […]

Volunteer firefighter and emergency medical technician Laura Hedger hopes more people realize they can train to become a volunteer firefighter. Photo: Amy Jackson

Volunteer core: ‘Tis the season to give back

The holiday season is a time when giving and sharing is on everyone’s mind. And that is especially true of volunteers who give their time and share their skills with numerous organizations in the community year-round. So many organizations rely on volunteers for not only day-to-day upkeep tasks such as touching up paint or mending […]

Sizzling in a combo of songwriting and fearlessness, Canadian Sarah Burton puts piano rock back in the mix at the Tin Whistle on Saturday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Sarah Burton

After exploring forms ranging from acoustic folk to electric bluesy rock, Toronto-based singer-songwriter Sarah Burton revisited her original muse, the piano, on her latest indie-pop album. Burton’s fourth release, Make Your Own Bed, features clever wordplay and powerful, balanced instrumentals while reflecting her inimitable style—equal parts soulful and sassy. Saturday 11/21. Free, 9pm. Tin Whistle Irish […]

Touring on the new album Nashville Obsolete, Dave Rawlings Machine plays the Jefferson on Friday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Dave Rawlings Machine

Rousing Americana-folk duo Dave Rawlings Machine fuses elements of traditional bluegrass with modern R&B, jazz and rock ‘n’ roll flavor. Rawlings and his longtime musical partner, Gillian Welch (who performed on and helped to produce the Grammy Award-winning soundtrack of O Brother, Where Art Thou?), compel audiences with simple arrangements combined with innovative and hypnotic […]

Carolyn Demanelis takes the audience through life’s ups and downs in Our Town. Photo: Michael Bailey

ARTS Pick: Our Town

With a sly twist on casting, director Robert Chapel makes the most of Our Town’s minimalist appeal by putting UVA drama grad student Carolyn Demanelis in the lead role of stage manager (played notably by Paul Newman on Broadway). Thornton Wilder’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play pulls back the curtain on the citizens of a close-knit, idyllic […]

Alejandro Rose-Garcia performs under the moniker Shakey Graves at the Jefferson on Wednesday.
Image: Josh Verduzco

Guiding the conflict: Shakey Graves chooses his battles

For many musicians, entering the music industry is like going to war. It’s a do or die field that’s filled with unpredictable circumstances and survival rates. Creativity requires constant combat and prosperity that comes through popularity, with legions of fans dictating the victories. It’s not far-fetched to say that Austin, Texas-based Shakey Graves is triumphing […]

Stevie Wonder will perform his heralded classic album, Songs in the Key of Life, in its entirety on Tuesday at John Paul Jones. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Stevie Wonder

Few musicians have been as profound in touching the lives of multiple generations and cultures in the way that Stevie Wonder has. Signed to Motown at age 11, Wonder has been prolific in penning masterful tunes by way of the piano for more than 50 years, and holds multiple credits for harmonica playing on his […]

Jackie Monahan appears with the fifth annual United Nations of Comedy Tour, one of the area’s most anticipated showcase of comedians. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: United Nations of Comedy Tour

Back by popular demand, the United Nations of Comedy Tour once again boasts a rising star lineup of talented comedians. Aaron Berg, Jordan Rock (Chris’ brother), Jackie Monahan, Funnyman Skiba and Brendan Eyre dole out sidesplitters from the stage at what’s become an annual local highlight. Saturday 11/14. $34.50-45, 8pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main […]

Jessica Petrus joins Three Notch’d Road for a classical tribute to both sides of the Atlantic. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Bach Comes to America: Virginia’s Baroque Heritage

The namesake of a colonial route that once spanned much of Central Virginia, Three Notch’d Road: The Charlottesville Baroque Ensemble was founded in 2011 by local period instrumentalists. The group performs Bach Comes to America: Virginia’s Baroque Heritage featuring guest artists Jessica Petrus (soprano) and Peter Walker (bagpiper and bassist) as part of the Music […]

The Free Bridge Quintet will add music to the dark surrealism of F.W. Murnau’s iconic adaptation of Faust at Old Cabell Hall on Saturday. Photo: Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Free Bridge Quintet

When trumpet genius John D’earth isn’t playing his weekly gig at Miller’s (Thursdays) or monthly set at Fellini’s (first Saturdays), he’s performing with The Free Bridge Quintet, UVA’s official faculty jazz outfit. This week he’s doing it all—and in conjunction with the Virginia Film Festival, Free Bridge will play D’earth’s original score to accompany the […]