Q&A: Singer-Songwriter Eliza Hardy Jones

Photo by Ryan Collerd

Photo by Ryan Collerd

Eliza Hardy Jones is starting the year off right. In addition to releasing her first solo record, the longtime Philly music fixture is hitting the road for a monthlong tour where she’ll be pulling double duty: playing keyboards for sultry singer-songwriter Grace Potter and fronting her own band as the opening act. Jones, of course, is best known for making music with the Buried Beds for more than a decade. The Beds started out as an Appalachian duo, just Jones and Brandon Beaver, and ended up sculpting some remarkably ambitious power pop as a full band. Read more »

Best Things to Do in Philly in January

January 6

Sarah Gliko stars in Tom Stoppard's "The Hard Problem," opening January 6th at the Wilma Theater. | Photo by Jauhien Sasnou

Sarah Gliko stars in Tom Stoppard’s “The Hard Problem,” opening January 6th at the Wilma Theater. | Photo by Jauhien Sasnou

The Hard Problem at the Wilma Theater

For years, Philadelphia actress Sarah Gliko longed to perform at the renowned Wilma Theater under the directorship of its co-founder, the peerless Blanka Zizka. “But I was off of Blanka’s radar,” says the 36-year-old Point Breeze resident. “And then she saw me in Lantern’s production of The Liar, and things changed.” That was in 2013. Since then, Gliko has been cast in the Wilma’s critically acclaimed Don Juan Comes Home from Iraq in 2014 and last year as Ophelia in the theater’s intriguing adaptation of Hamlet. Then, for her third Wilma play in as many years, she landed the lead in Tom Stoppard’s first work in a decade, The Hard Problem, which opens January 6th. “This role is a real challenge,” she admits. “There’s so much material, and it’s loaded with some very heavy and heady ideas. I have to find the passion and movement underneath these big ideas and elevate the human story that is pulsing below. It’s not going to be easy.” Through February 6th. 

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7 Concerts to See in Philly This Week

concerts-philly-questlove

The New Year brings a refreshing lineup of artists to the city. Make a resolution to turn it up this year by visiting some local music venues. This week, the TLA will reverberate with the sonic beats of The Infected Mushroom, The Roots drummer Questlove returns to The Fillmore and the Boot and Saddle will host esteemed pianist Eliza Hardy Jones. See those genre-spanning picks and more in our roundup below, or just click through to the day that interests you most.

MONDAY | TUESDAY | WEDNESDAY | THURSDAY | FRIDAY | SATURDAY | SUNDAY

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Review: Kristin Chenoweth Sings With the Philadelphia Orchestra

Chenoweth

Toward the end of Kristin Chenoweth‘s set on Saturday evening with The Philadelphia Orchestra, she turned to the audience and said, “There’s only about 20 minutes left, and then you can go and pee. Oh, and if there are any straight men in the audience, my name is Kristin Chenoweth.”

That’s the typical kind of camp one would expect from the Broadway star who has both a Tony and an Emmy to her name. Let’s be clear: Ms. Chenoweth and The Philadelphia Orchestra are odd bedfellows at best, but how can you not adore the pint-sized soprano sipping soda from a giant cup between her big musical numbers? And how could you not love her commentary on Wawa (“You can buy a candle there. You can buy a Slurpee there. Heck, you can buy an entire five-course dinner there!”)? It worked as an evening of endearing entertainment. Read more »

18 Awesome Philly Concert Photos in 2015

Ticket concert photographer Chris Sikich began shooting live shows for us in early November, after he spent several years documenting concert stages around Philadelphia for City Paper. Here, he digs through his catalogue to pull out over a dozen of his best shots of the year — from The Weeknd at Made in America to Sleater-Kinney‘s turn at Union Transfer and Billy Idol at Tower Theater. Check them out in the slideshow below.



Follow Chris Sikich @countfeed and see more of his photos on his website here

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Photos: The Spring Standards at Arden Gild Hall

This weekend, The Spring Standards rocked a sold-out Arden Gild Hall for the venue’s eighth annual Boxing Day show. The band, whose primary members, Heather Robb, James Cleare and James Smith, are from Wilmington, put on an expectedly stellar show of pop rock. With undertones of Fleetwood Mac, The Beatles and their own unique aesthetic of keyboard, guitar and percussion, they enchanted the festive venue. Highlights included their brilliant “Sharks” and an acoustic segment that featured the beautiful singalong “So Simple So True,” among many other outstanding moments.



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15 Outstanding Philly Arts Moments in 2015

Ticket arts writers weigh in on what they think are the most important local arts moments of 2015. 

best-philly-arts-moments-lisette-opressa

Lisette Oropesa’s in Opera Philly’s “Traviata”

Brava, Diva!

It’s been a banner year generally for Opera Philadelphia, but Lisette Oropesa’s Violetta in Traviata (her first performance of the role) was special. The beautiful young soprano met every vocal demand — fiendishly difficult as they may have been – and acted it superbly. Opera lovers around the world pay attention to debuting Violettas – the great ones are so rare. Here in Philly, we found one. —David Fox

Philadelphia Film Society Saves the Prince

The gorgeous Prince Theater seemed to be in quite a bit of limbo: The resident production company had vacated a number of years ago, and their presentations were random at best. With PFS purchasing the building, the theater has becoming a bustling hub not only for movies (it’s now the only mainstream movie theater in Center City) but performing arts, and their Razz Room is hosting some of the hottest NYC cabaret acts around. —Bryan Buttler

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Watch: Local Youth Sing With Kenny Rogers at Valley Forge Casino

Photo by HughE Dillon

Photo by HughE Dillon

Country legend Kenny Rogers performed his “Once Again Its Christmas” tour Friday night at Valley Forge Casino. This is the 34th year that Rogers has taken his Christmas concert on the road, and this show sold out, with 1,700 fans in the house.

He sang hits like “Lucille,” “The Gambler” and “Lady” along with tunes from his new holiday album, Once Again It’s Christmas, which is his sixth solo holiday LP since 1998’s Christmas From the Heart. In 1984, he released a pretty fantastic duets album with Dolly Parton called Once Upon a Christmas.

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18 New and Juicy Music Memoirs You Need to Read

No, Rihanna and Kendrick Lamar haven’t written their memoirs yet, but just wait a few years. Seems like every musician is sitting down these days at his or her computer to type out their stories. (Though in 2013, it was reported that Adele rejected a seven-figure book deal with Harper Collins because she thought she was too young at age 24. Yup.) But even iconoclastic Grace Jones, who famously declared she’d never write up her life story, published hers in September. The title? I’ll Never Write My Memoirs. Ha!

We’ve compiled a list of 18 juicy rock-and-roll memoirs published this year. Get your friends and family members what they really want: a book full of drama, bad choices, tattoos, alcohol, sex, celebrities, crazy fans, artistic genius, redemption and hard-earned wisdom.



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Photos: The Arcs at Philadelphia Fillmore



Some videos from the show. More here.

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