Erin O'Hare



Stray Fossa closes its first Northeast tour with a show at
The Southern Café and Music Hall on Friday. Photo by Tristan Williams

Playing it out: Stray Fossa is a new band with a long history

Nick Evans sometimes wakes at “god-awful hours of the night” to find his brother, Will, in the living room, sitting quietly amid microphones, coiled cables, amps, guitars, and drums, his shoulders hunched toward his computer, the blue-white glow of the screen illuminating his face, laser-focused, with headphones covering his ears. Nick laughs as he describes […]

Uzo Njoku’s “Out of the Shadows,” featuring vivid, large-scale paintings that bring black women to the forefront, is on view at the New City Arts Welcome Gallery during the month of December. Photo by Amy Jackson

First Fridays: December 7

While working on her newest series of paintings, Uzo Njoku learned the importance of telling a story through portraiture. The story Njoku tells with “Out of the Shadows,” on view this month at the New City Arts Welcome Gallery, is one that has global reach and widespread effects, and is perhaps not told—or heard—nearly enough. […]

L.E. Zarling will perform her one-person improv show, Wisconsin Laugh Trip, at the IX Art Park on December 6. Publicity photo

Owning it: Comedy performer L.E. Zarling finds happiness in improv

It’s a Saturday morning in Richmond, and L.E. Zarling has ordered a chocolate croissant to go with her latte at Lamplighter Coffee. She looks at the pastry, covered in a heavy-handed sprinkle of powdered sugar. Then she looks at her black turtleneck sweater. “Fuck it,” she says before taking a bite. “I’m going to enjoy […]

John Borden Evans's show, "John Borden Evans: Blue Moon" is on view at Les Yeux du Monde art gallery through November 11. Photo by Martyn Kyle

First Fridays: November 2

In the early hours of February 1, John Borden Evans was out for his regular run through Walnut Creek Park when he paused to memorize the landscape before him. He noticed how the setting moon hung low and bright in the sky, how the moonlight radiated through striated clouds to bathe the mid-winter trees, grass, […]

Throughout October, the “Gallery of Curiosities” at The Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative is the setting for a variety of events, such as experimental music performances, a horror film screening, a Halloween party, trick or treating, and more. Photo by Martyn Kyle

Strange lot: The Bridge fills with curiosities in new exhibition

On a sultry First Fridays evening in early October, The Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative gallery glows gold beneath the dark, overcast sky. People flock to the warmly lit building to see the “Gallery of Curiosities.” Outside, near the door, there’s a small table draped with a white cloth and adorned with candles, where Leslie M. […]

Michael "Doc" Doyle's show, "Drawings from Jail," is on view at the New City Arts Welcome Gallery during the month of October. Photo by Martyn Kyle

First Fridays: October 5

Michael “Doc” Doyle believes that the hardest thing you experience in life is your best chance to find out who you are. For Doyle, a carpenter who studied metal sculpture in art school, that chance came in the form of jail time. After battling addiction and depression, Doyle attempted suicide in such a way that […]

Wild Common (L to R) Brennan Gilmore, Davina Jackson, Nate Leath, Atreyu Jackson, Dhara Goradia, Rob Hubbard, and Bryan Holmes, plays a 5:30pm set at Tomtoberfest on Saturday, September 29 at IX Art Park. Photo by Carla Kasun

Band together: Wild Common’s music knows no constraints

In the yard of Brennan Gilmore’s farmhouse outside of town, a jagged line of trees lie on their sides, torn from the ground by a recent tornado, chunks of red dirt still clinging to the roots. In the distance, mist settles in over the mountains, and the whole scene feels quintessentially Virginia, a feeling underscored […]

Juliana Daugherty's September 14 appearance at Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar has been postponed due to weather, but her album, Light, is good rainy day listening. Photo by Eze Amos

Weight lifted: Juliana Daugherty finds release with Light

Between sips of seltzer and small handfuls of Chex Mix, Juliana Daugherty lovingly runs her hand along her cat Monday’s back. “I’m still kind of shocked that I managed to get it out in the world,” she says, eyeing a thick cardboard box at the bottom of a bookshelf. It’s full of vinyl copies of […]

First Fridays: September 7

First Fridays: September 7

Tim O’Kane has made a career as a figurative painter, an artist capturing people napping on couches, teacups sitting on countertops, and bowls brimming with eggplants, all in a hyperrealistic style. But viewers of “One Intention in a Troubled World,” O’Kane’s September show at Chroma Projects will see a different facet of the artist’s work. […]

R&B and pop singer Nay Nichelle opens for Vibe Riot at this week’s Fridays After Five at the Sprint Pavilion. Photo by Yolonda Jones

Vocal exercises: Singer Nay Nichelle promotes positivity

Nay Nichelle likes to write outside. There’s something inspirational about natural sunlight, she says, especially at sunrise and sunset, when the light changes quickly and just so. It’s hard to put the reason for the inspiration into words, she says, but those moments often lead to lyrics for the R&B and pop singer’s next song. […]

Sam Gray’s premiere solo show, “Gaean Reveries,” is on view in the Sarah B. Smith Gallery at McGuffey Art Center through August 19. Photo by Martyn Kyle

First Fridays: August 3

“The root of my inspiration—pun intended—is firmly planted in the natural world,” says local artist Sam Gray. “When I’m feeling crazy, the best medicine is to go into the woods and be with the mosses, trees, herbs, fungi and critters,” she says. “I find a lot of magic in that connection.” That connection between the […]

The Rainey Day Quartet sets up for an evening of groovy summer jazz at The Garage on Friday. Photo by Martyn Kyle.

The Rainey Day Quartet gets downtown grooving

If you’ve been on the Downtown Mall this summer, you’ve likely seen four young musicians set up in front of Kilwin’s, beside a white board that reads “Help Us Pay For College” propped in a guitar case with a shallow sea of coins and crumpled bills pooling at its base. The Rainey Day Quartet formed […]

With Black Mac, Ti Ames directs one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays in a new light. Photo by Tristan Williams.

Black Mac puts a contemporary look on Macbeth

Ti Ames loves William Shakespeare. Or rather, Ames loves the plays of William Shakespeare. It’s a love that started when Ames played a fairy in The Tempest at Live Arts at age 9, and it grew when, at 16, Ames became the first black actor to win the English-Speaking Union National Shakespeare Competition in 2012. […]

“Bleached” (above), is a reaction to Clemons’ experience when visiting a birthing center in Uganda, inspiring a deeper exploration of identity for the artist. The emerging artist will participate in SSG’s “Teeny Tiny Trifecta” show in September, and was recently awarded an Incubator Studio residency at McGuffey Art Center for 2018-2019. Courtesy of the artist

Sahara Clemons steps out in SSG’s Backroom

Like most teenagers, Sahara Clemons is figuring out who she is. She describes herself as “quirky” and “introverted,” a bit shy and quiet. She wears bright lipstick and expresses herself via clothing. She likes to read, travel and look at art. And she’s a Charlottesville High School rising senior who only recently started thinking of […]

Lorenzo Dickerson’s Maupintown Film Festival opens at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center on Friday. Photo by Eze Amos

Maupintown Film Festival shines through the eyes of others

When Lorenzo Dickerson was in fifth grade at Murray Elementary school, he had to write a book report. He went down to the school library and came across Extraordinary Black Americans, a book full of dozens of profiles on inventors, politicians, activists, artists, writers and more. It was a sizable read for the fifth-grader, who […]

Rich Tarbell photographed more than 100 local musicians, including Lance Brenner of absurdist rock band The Falsies (pictured here), in their creative spaces for an upcoming book on Charlottesville music. Preview some of the book’s images this month at Studio IX. Courtesy artist

First Fridays: July 6

About a decade ago, Rich Tarbell sold a guitar to pay for his first camera. Frustrated with his own music, Tarbell decided instead to document local music on film. And while live concert photography is fun, it all starts to look the same after a while, says Tarbell, who likes the behind-the-scenes stuff that most […]

Trevor Scheunemann, at a recent rehearsal for The Marriage of Figaro, says although he’s performed the role of Count Almaviva several times, it was guidance from director David Paul that helped him understand the vulnerability of the character. Photo by Amy Jackson

Charlottesville Opera tells modern stories

Most of the time, when we talk about characters in books, in movies and plays, we talk about their arc—who the character is when the action begins and when it ends, and the curve followed in between. But opera singer Trevor Scheunemann knows it’s not always that simple. It’s especially not that simple for Count […]

Ashley Addington says if you’re thinking of going vegan, just do it. “Next time you run out of creamer, peruse the non-dairy section of the grocery store,” she says. “There are many options that don’t involve animal exploitation or cholesterol.” Photo: Amy Jackson

Vegan anew: Local blogger dishes on all things vegan

“I could never live without cheese!” That was one of Ashley Addington’s mottoes. She’d been vegetarian since she was a tween, after seeing videos of animals being “processed” in what was supposed to be a humane facility. “It really upset me…to watch a life violently end for someone’s five-minute meal didn’t make sense to me,” she […]