C-VILLE Writers



Spamalot rocks and mocks King Arthur's court at PVCC through November 24. Image: Neill Mitchell

ARTS Pick: Spamalot

Got wit? What happens when Camelot’s King Arthur and his knights get goofy, ridiculous, and even a bit nutty? You get Spamalot, the musical-comedy that swept the Tonys in 2005. The play is an adaptation of the comedy classic Monty Python and the Holy Grail, in which King Arthur recruits a band of disorganized misfit […]

Phillip Glass' Akhnaten premieres in The MET Live in HD at the Paramount on Saturday. Image: Richard Hubert Smith

ARTS Pick: Akhnaten

Ancient outlier: Phillip Glass’ mystical, trance-like opera Akhnaten transcends time to explore the life and psyche of the 13th-century B.C. pharaoh of ancient Egypt. The Met Live in HD’s premiere illuminates the fundamental ways that Akhnaten tried to change the way his people thought about their gods and spirituality by using creative lighting, soaring orchestral […]

Tigers Be Still is up at Live Arts through December 12.

ARTS Pick: Tigers Be Still

Rescue zoo: Sherry Wickman is on the way to achieving her professional dreams when she moves back home and faces a fruitless job search and the family dynamics that set her on the path to becoming a therapist. Relatives retreat into their anxiety and, as they struggle, a tiger escapes from the zoo, prowling freely […]

Jay Phillips leads the United Nations of Comedy on Saturday. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: United Nations of Comedy

Laughing all the way: As a shy kid growing up in Washington, D.C., United Nations of Comedy headliner Jay Phillips would watch “Saturday Night Live” and “An Evening at the Improv,” and play his mom’s comedy records on repeat, learning from the greats before he put his own routine on stage. He drew laughs at […]

Aaryan Balu, Ingrid Kenyon (center), and Tori Kotsen play Dungeons & Dragons in the UVA Drama production of She Kills Monsters. Photo by Martyn Kyle

ARTS Pick: She Kills Monsters

Fantasy rolls: Written by Qui Nquyen, the play She Kills Monsters tells the story of Agnes, a teen who embarks on a fantastic journey after her younger sister, Tilly, dies unexpectedly. Agnes finds Tilly’s Dungeons & Dragons notebook and dives into her sister’s world of fairies, ogres, and dwarves, and begins to understand that she […]

Pop superstar Ariana Grande plays John Paul Jones Arena Friday, November 15. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Ariana Grande

We are next: Superstar Ariana Grande has been on an intense performing schedule for the last eight months, showcasing her recent albums Sweetener and Thank U, Next. Known for her commitment to fans, Grande’s giving them what they love—a setlist with tight choreography that highlights her introspective sentimentality and dance-pop smash hits. Her songs are […]

Laraj "LT" Thomas performs on stage at the Sprint Pavillion as an opener for Jacquees in September, 2019.

Work and passion: The search for hip-hop success

Music reflects the spirit of a community. With each new generation, artists must find ways to keep the music they create playing around town. In the Charlottesville area, a small but dedicated group of people keeps the hip-hop scene thriving. Musicians like Channing “Mr. Gray” Gray and Malcolm “Waasi” Wills work with a variety of […]

Kishi Bashi returns to The Jefferson on Saturday, November 9. Image: Max Ritter

ARTS Pick: Kishi Bashi

Playing into it: Athens, Georgia-based multi-instrumentalist Kaoru Ishibashi, who uses the stage name Kishi Bashi, makes a unique brand of indie pop. In some songs, his mastery of violin and guitar come across as bright and joyful, and in others he turns mournful. He’s toured with Regina Spektor, Sondre Lerche, and of Montreal, and has […]

Wilco swings through town on its "Ode to Joy" tour this Friday, November 8, at the Sprint Pavilion. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Wilco

Been there: Regardless of which collaborative era in Jeff Tweedy’s career got you on board—Jay Farrar, Jay Bennett, Billy Bragg, Nels Cline—you’ve likely heard the frontman of the revered alt-country, punk-leaning, folk-forward, American rock band Wilco at his best—because Tweedy does not disappoint. Twenty-five years after the band’s formation, Wilco’s poetic authenticity continues to thrive […]

Miranda Lambert brings her smart, sassy country songs to John Paul Jones Arena on Thursday. Photo: Ellen Von Unwerth

ARTS Pick: Miranda Lambert

Nashville smash: Superstar Miranda Lambert has a powerful voice, and a striking capacity for emotional depth. She sings female rage songs like “Gunpowder and Lead” and “Mama’s Broken Heart,” aimed at abusive partners and cheaters, and she can tone it down in sentimental crooning ballads, such as “The House That Built Me.” The country queen […]

Former White House photographer Lawrence Jackson, who took this photo of Michelle and Barack Obama, reads from his book, "Yes We Did," at New Dominion Bookshop this week. Photo by Lawrence Jackson

ARTS Pick: Lawrence Jackson

Magnetic moments: “Eight years in the White House went by so fast,” says Barack Obama in the forward to Yes We Did, the new book by former official White House photographer Lawrence Jackson. (We feel you, Mr. President.) Jackson will tell stories about his work behind the scenes, snapping photos of Obama’s meetings with world […]

Gina Sobel's Gold Sounds (pictured) shares a bill with Spin Cycle this Sunday at UVA's Brooks Hall. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Spin Cycle and Gina Sobel’s Gold Sounds

Jazz combo: A night of jazz brings New York City’s freewheeling quartet Spin Cycle—playing everything from Coltrane and improv to New Orleans funk and raw punk—together with local flutist Gina Sobel’s Gold Sounds in a co-headlining concert presented by the Charlottesville Jazz Society and WTJU. Sobel is also an accomplished singer, saxophonist, and guitarist who […]

Victory Hall Opera offers a fresh spin on Haydn's 1784 opera, Armida, at Belmont Arts Collaborative through November 5. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Armida

Tale spin: Miriam Gordon-Stewart and Victory Hall Opera take on Hadyn’s 1784 opera Armida with a fresh perspective. The original is a love story of a crusader and enchantress, and Armida’s mission is to seduce, while the soldier’s is to resist. Gordon-Stewart’s version tells the story of an opera troupe “through the lens of a […]

Blues Traveler, who contributed a couple tracks to the '90s rock radio canon, plays The Jefferson Theater Tuesday, November 5. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Blues Traveler

Fired up: New Jersey band Blues Traveler is on the road in celebration of the 25th anniversary of its Grammy-winning album, Four. The blues-rock group broke into the mainstream with the record in 1994, playing on “Saturday Night Live,” and opening shows for The Rolling Stones. Now, the record’s hit tracks “Runaround” and “Hook” play […]

The Flamin' Groovies have been shaking some action since the 1960s. They play The Southern Cafe & Music Hall on Halloween with locals New Boss and The Gladstones. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Flamin’ Groovies

Shake it away: Under the radar since their formation at the height of the acid scene in the ’60s, San Francisco’s The Flamin’ Groovies are still delivering the edgy rock ‘n’ roll that circumvented the psychedelia of the day to find a lasting cult following. The band is touring on its 50-plus year catalog, ranging […]

Charlottesville Ballet dancers Cassidy Burk (left) and Jonah Sunnen perform a selection from The Nutcracker at Champion Brewing Company on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019. Photo: Zack Wajsgras

Picture this: Champions of dance

The unlikely pairing of beer and ballet—under an outdoor tent, no less—drew a standing-room-only crowd last Saturday at Champion Brewing Company, beside the railroad tracks downtown. Attendees, including plenty of kids, were treated to a pas de deux from The Nutcracker by member of the Charlottesville Ballet. The event, which kicked off the ballet’s 2019-20 […]

Baloo is the name of this classic panel truck, which is also a kegerator—now serving at Old Trail Golf Club in Crozet. Photo: Aaron Watson

Out and about: Living, food & drink events

Get your goat Next Tuesday Caromont Farm, the craft goat-cheese haven, invites you to stop by, take a tour, and enjoy a nosh with your fall weather. While you’re sure to see some of the crazy-eyed critters who make the cheese possible, the real attraction is the chance to meet owner and culinary sage Gail […]