Erin O'Hare



Salvaticus plays a farewell-for-now show at Magnolia House on Saturday, May 5. Photo by Tristan Williams

Metal band Salvaticus finds beauty in the order of things

It’s the day after Earth Day, and Kevin Ardrey, Brian Weaver and Carter Felder —three of the four members of local black metal band Salvaticus—sit on a worn wooden bench under an open-air roofed shelter at Ivy Creek Natural Area. The dogwoods and redbuds have bloomed, clouds move through the blue sky and a breeze […]

Joyce Ivory, president of the Charlottesville chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women. Photo by Eze Amos

Q&A: Local leaders discuss serving the community

Before Joyce Ivory was president of the Charlottesville chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, she was a girl growing up in the Fifth and Dice (Fifeville) neighborhood. A Charlottesville High School track team member, cellist and a singer in the choir, Ivory looked up to a group of young women a few […]

The Attachments’ lead singer Sam Uriss says that most of his lyrics are “hugely influenced by advertising and mass media.” The trio plays Champion Brewing Company on Sunday. Photo by Tristan Williams

The Attachments play sane punk as art reaction

After band practice on a recent Monday evening, the three members of The Attachments lean back on couches in drummer Jack Richardson’s Belmont living room. As the day falls into dusk outside the window, they drink beers and bottled teas while a record spins punk music at a low volume in the background. “I came […]

“Visage,” on view at the New City Arts Welcome Gallery this month, features the work of portrait artists Frank Walker and his nephew Jae Jae Johnson. Photo by Eze Amos

First Fridays: April 6

“Nobody understands an artist like another artist,” says local portrait artist Frank Walker. And so Walker, who has drawn all his life—first imitating the figures in Sgt. Rock comic books and later working in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers graphics department, earning a BFA in painting and printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University and working […]

Organizers are confident that Thursday’s all-female Rugged Arts showcase is the first of its kind in Charlottesville, featuring a female host, a female DJ and five female artists, including Sierra “Juice” Stanton (pictured). “I only write about what I know, what I’ve been through, what I go through, what I’m preparing for,” says Juice. Photo by Eze Amos

Getting a lift: Nine Pillars’ female showcase is brimming with talent

Last April, A’nija Johnson walked into the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center auditorium ready to speak her truth at the Nine Pillars Hip Hop Cultural Fest’s freshman class competition. Wearing a floor-length skirt, a Tasmanian Devil “I need coffee” T-shirt and a pair of sunglasses, the local high schooler found herself in a room […]

The Ante Room, operated by Jeyon Falsini, will close its doors on March 31, due to the demolition of the Main Street Arena complex. Falsini hopes to relocate the popular live-music venue and continue his support of local musicians, particularly hip-hop and metal acts, such hard rock and metal band Congenial Crime, pictured here. Photo by Tristan Williams

Live music venue The Ante Room folds for now

A music venue is a strange place to be in the middle of the day. A club is designed for the nighttime, with its dark walls, ceilings and stages meant to be illuminated not by the sun but by bright lights, coming alive when bodies are in the room and music is in the air. […]

Catherine Monnes performs at The Bridge PAI’s Telemetry series on Saturday. Photo by Tom Daly

Catherine Monnes is bringing music to life

In the sunflower yellow kitchen at the back of her narrow house, Catherine Monnes drops a few thistle teabags into a pink tulip-shaped teapot full of boiling water. She slides the lid into place and carries the pot into her plant-filled sunroom. The evening light is disappearing behind the trees in her North Downtown yard […]

Bellair Farm’s Jamie Barrett says joining CSAs gives community members an opportunity to join farmers on their journey.

CSAs offer benefits for farms and consumers

To-may-toes. To-mah-toes. ’Maters. No matter what you call them, if you want to be slicing into the freshest ones around come summer, you’ll want to sign up to participate in community-shared agriculture. And now’s the time to do so. The community-shared agriculture (or CSA) model of farming, which developed in North America in the 1980s, […]

Tavola bar manager Steve Yang (above) and assistant bar manager Rebecca Edwards are both participating in upcoming national bartending competitions in Washington, D.C. Photo by Eze Amos

Tavola bartenders are rocking national competitions

Two of Tavola’s bartenders are shaking up national drinks-related competitions. Bar manager Steve Yang was named one of 12 regional finalists in the United States Bartenders’ Guild’s annual World Class bartending competition. “Qualifying is both humbling and terrifying,” Yang says of going shaker-to-shaker with some of the best bartenders in the country. An expert panel […]

Judy McLeod exhibits work from her career in three shows at three different galleries this month. She will give a progressive gallery talk beginning at 2pm on March 25 at McGuffey Art Center. Photo by Martyn Kyle

See what’s on display at First Fridays

During the month of March, local artist Judy McLeod exhibits work from her oeuvre at three different galleries, each individual show representing a different phase in her 40-plus years of art-making. “An artist works in series whereby an idea is pursued visually for months or years in terms of a medium,” says McLeod, and while […]

Vibe Riot (fronted by Jay “Jaewar” King, above) plays Vibe Fest at IX Art Park on Friday. Photo by Eze Amos

Vibe Riot wants to know what’s on your mind

Jay “Jaewar” King listened to a lot of reggae while growing up in Virginia Beach. His Jamaican-born father always had the stereo on, with good vibes floating through the speakers and into the home. But it was hip-hop that took hold of him. Captivated by the imagery of the lyrics and by artists like LL […]

Robert Harllee of Market Street Wineshops has watched an increase in Virginia wine sales at his various locations. Photo by Martyn Kyle

Changes ahead for Market Street Wineshop

After 31 years of selling wine, fresh bread, cheese and more at Market Street Wineshop from the basement level of 311 E. Market St., Robert Harllee has decided to retire. But fear not; Charlottesville is not about to lose another jewel from its quirky downtown crown: Two of Harllee’s longtime employees, Siân Richards and Thadd […]

Like most of his classmates, Jack Keaveny carries his neon green and black UnderArmor backpack around all day—nobody really uses the few lockers left at Charlottesville High School. Staff photo

What’s in my backpack

Take a look inside a backpack and you’ll get a glimpse inside its owner’s life: perhaps notebooks and pens show evidence of his favorite color, or what he likes to do in his free time. There are folders full of assignments that indicate her potential career path, a book she reads for fun and keys […]

Monticello High School student Joshua St. Hill was motivated by the stories of black men who have died as a result of police violence to write (and perform in) his drama, A King’s Story. “The power of storytelling is legacy. Even if the story that you’re telling is tragic, even if the story that you’re telling is [that] of somebody who isn’t with us, you can always keep them alive in that,” says St. Hill. Photo by Amy Jackson

Teen playwright Joshua St. Hill discusses A King’s Story

In April 2017, Monticello High School student Joshua St. Hill began writing a play. He had been bitten by the theater bug during the school’s production of In the Heights, and his drama teacher, Madeline Michel, asked if he’d like to write something for the stage. He did. Black men who have died as a […]

Ike Anderson, now 31, choreographed his first dance at the MRC when he was in eighth grade, around the same age as some of the dancers he now teaches. “Dance was a huge confidence builder for me...it gave me a sense of purpose, and along with the confidence I gained from it, came evolution,” says Anderson. Photo by Eze Amos

Dance crews know all the right moves

In the warm glow of a few strings of lights strung above the dance floor of the Music Resource Center auditorium, Ike Anderson leads a group of dancers through a hip-hop routine, demonstrating each toe touch and head bob as he calls: “One and two and three and four, five and six and seven and […]

Escafé’s Water Street location has been a popular nightlife spot for everyone from the LGBTQ community to bachelorette parties. Photo by Melody Robbins

Escafé has served as a gathering spot for many different groups

On the evening of Friday, February 5, artist Bob Anderson stands in the middle of Escafé, identifying the many people in the Escafé Opera murals that his wife, Dominique, painted for the restaurant in 1997 and added to in 2015. There’s the Andersons’ daughter, Adriana, a former server at the restaurant, and the Andersons’ two […]

Free Idea plays Magnolia House on February 15. The group also records all of its practices and performances and posts many of them to the band’s SoundCloud page. Photo by Tom Daly

Free Idea trades the rules for psychedelic nirvana

A blank canvas. That’s what Marie Landragin sees in her mind’s eye when she’s about to play guitar with Free Idea. Just before the first note rings out, she sees a frame, some material, potential for the space to become anything. When the music starts, she says, it begins painting forms, “and there’s color, and very […]

Linda Zuby gathers an all-female cast to sing an eclectic set of show tunes for A View From Some Broads, as part of Four County Players’ Songs in the Cellar cabaret series. Photo by Linda Hogan

A View From Some Broads breaks with casting tradition

In “Bosom Buddies,” the famous duet from the Broadway musical Mame, eccentric bohemian and title character Mame Dennis gives her friend, actress —and famed lush—Vera Charles a bit of advice: “I feel it’s my duty to tell you it’s time to adjust your age / You try to be Peg O’ My Heart, when you’re […]

Sigrid Eilertson’s “Star Creatures: An Exploration of Astrological Signs in Mixed Media Collages” is at Studio IX this month. Photo by Martyn Kyle

First Fridays: February 2

Sigrid Eilertson likes to paint surrealistic images of creatures that straddle the line between the realistic and the fantastic, like larger-than-life goddesses and wild animals. She always works in a series, and she tends to work large—many of her paintings are 6 feet or taller. But for her most recent series, “Star Creatures: An Exploration […]

Waasi performs at New Year New Vibes Hip-hop Showcase Part 2: Grind Harder at the Ante Room on Thursday. Photo by Amy Jackson

Rapper Waasi breaks out with Betterdaze

Sitting in the living room of his mom’s house, Malcolm “Waasi” Wills, wearing a retro Looney Tunes T-shirt under a letterman sweater, leans over and lights a stick of incense. As a wisp of smoke curls into the air, Waasi waves it around, blending it into the afternoon light. “I almost cried when I got […]

The Kudzu Project has draped knitted vines over four local Confederate monuments including the Robert E. Lee High School sign in Staunton. Courtesy photo

Locals craft their own brand of activism

Editor’s note: The participants in the Kudzu Project act anonymously, and to protect their identities we refer to them by last names only throughout the article. Seven hours and 10 minutes into the new year, a Subaru station wagon pulls out of a Charlottesville driveway and sets out for Lovingston, exhaust billowing from the muffler […]