Theatre Review|#GraceForPresident Wins My Vote for #FamilyFun ! @RLT1936 @NCmuseumofhistory 

Raleigh, The votes are in…Grace For President is a win-win! A must see for families who enjoy seeing theatre that is fun for everyone. This play is based on a children’s book, Grace For President (if you haven’t read it, head to your local library to check out this wonderful book) …

…by Kelly S. DiPucchio, with illustrations by LeUyen Pham. It’s now playing at the North Carolina Museum of History as part of the Raleigh Little Theatre Family Series. The book, music and lyrics for this production are by Joan Cushing and will run from October 13 thru October 22, 2017. 

This inspiring tale empowers little girls to believe they can achieve anything, to work hard to be the best person for the job and never rest on being the popular choice. The whole family can enjoy this musical experience and follow Grace’s ambitions as the story unfolds. If you saw my recent #SobeSavvyGiveaway post, I shared the plot of this play in detail as well gave away tickets to see this show. I had a chance to see the Saturday night show with my #HeighPartyof3 and we loved it! Take a look at some of the amazing talent from the local actors ranging from 13 to 21 years old that brought this story to life: 

  • Left to Right: Anthony/Mr. Waller (Matt Ellington), Robbie (Blake Rose), Mrs. Barrington (Emma Johnson), Grace (TaMya Bland), Thomas/Henry (Logan Harrison), Sam (Keith Petersen), Rose/Mrs. Phillips (Jessica Soffian), Carla (Stacey Mejia-Montano)

  • Grace Campbell (TaMya Bland)

  • Mrs. Barrington (Emma Johnson)

  • Thomas/Henry (Logan Harrison)

  • Anthony/Mr. Waller (Matt Ellington)

  • Rose/Mrs. Phillips (Jessica Soffian)

  • Carla (Stacey Mejia-Montano), Sam (Keith Petersen)

Photo Credit: Brandi Swarms 

Admission Prices: Adult ($15), Children ($11) Tickets are available for purchase online or from box office at 919.821.3111 *Seating is General Admission. The show is about an hour long with no intermission.*

SobeSavvy Tip: Go one hour before the show for a “Grace” inspired gallery hunt in the Museum, to create your own campaign button to take home and pose for a selfie as a future North Carolina Hall of Fame-er! Take a look at our #GraceforPresRLT selfies here⤵ 

 https://www.instagram.com/p/BaPh8wXBBtD/

Although based on a fictional book, this play was full of fun facts about our Presidents, American History and how Election Day works! I would recommend this educational musical for everyone, especially any aspiring young leader you may have in your family. Buy tickets TODAY and make plans to see Grace and her classmates discover what it takes to be the best candidate and find the fun and hilarity in the wonderful world of politics! 

This event is presented by the Raleigh Little Theatre http://raleighlittletheatre.org/                

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*Single tickets on sale for the 2017/18 Season of Groundbreakers.

North Carolina Museum of History
Daniels Auditorium
5 E. Edenton Street
Downtown Raleigh






#Raleigh, Win Tix To See @RLT1936 ‘s #GraceForPresident @NCmuseumofhistory #FamilyFun

Grace for Presidenta play based on the book by Kelly S. DiPucchio, with illustrations by LeUyen Pham, is coming to the North Carolina Museum of History as part of the Raleigh Little Theatre Family Series. The book, music and lyrics for this production are by Joan Cushing and will run from October 13 thru October 22, 2017. *One lucky SobeSavvy reader will have a chance to win a family 4 pack of tickets to see the play on Friday Oct. 20, 2017, 7:30pm Entry details will be at end of this post.*

If you are not familiar with this childrens book, it is an inspiring tale that empowers little girls! The whole family can enjoy this musical experience and follow Grace’s ambitions as the story unfolds. Here is the plot: 

One day in class, Grace Campbell discovered that there has never been a female president. “Where are the girls?” she asked, as her third-grade teacher rolls out a poster of all 44 U.S. presidents. Frustrated by the lack of female faces in the White House, Grace decides she wants to be president and inspires a school election. She seems the likely winner until the most popular boy runs against her. Through the throes of campaigning and pep rallies, service projects and posters, Grace and her classmates discover what it takes to be the best candidate and find the fun and hilarity in the wonderful world of politics!

Tickets are available for purchase online or from box office at 919.821.3111 *Seating is General Admission

SobeSavvy Tip: Go one hour before the show for a “Grace” inspired gallery hunt in the Museum, to create your own campaign button to take home and pose for a selfies as a future North Carolina Hall of Fame-er!

#SobeSavvyGiveaway Details: In partnership with Raleigh Little Theatre, I am giving away 4 tickets for 1 winner to enjoy this family friendly show on Friday, October 20, 2017 at 7:30pm . To enter, click >>>HERE. Winner will be chosen randomly on October 13. 

Good Luck!   (..and be sure to stay tuned of my review of this show. I can’t wait to see this play with #outandaboutAva)

North Carolina Museum of History

Daniels Auditorium 

5 East Edenton Street

Raleigh, NC 

*UpdateContest has ended. Congrats to Rada Mills! Thank you all for entering !*

Opening Night Review|HATS OFF to ‘CROWNS’👒 ! Now playing @RLT1936 thru 9/10 in #Raleigh ~Get Tix NOW!

In 1998, North Carolina photographer Michael Cunningham began taking
pictures of women in their hats. His friend, journalist Craig Marberry, thought they should put together a book of the photos and the stories behind them. Marberry was curious why so many African-American women wear flamboyant
hats to church. Their curiosity led to the publication of the now iconic book (which I received as a Christmas gift in 2003 from my in-laws) entitled “Crowns”. They have the picture of 50 African American Women wearing their hats, or Crowns to church. They has a profile of each women to go with the back story behind their hats.

This book ‘CROWNS’ was made into an off broadway play and has had many adaptations nationwide on stage throughout the years that have followed.

Fast forward to 2017, the Raleigh Little Theatre had their premier opening of the musical “Crowns”, now playing from Aug 25 to Sept. 10 . It’s story is about culture, history, tradition, women and their “hattitudes” ! You’ll laugh, you’ll reflect and you may even sing-along to the gospel music performed in the show. Musical Director, Carolyn Colquitt said “This story is telling why women wore the hats and what they represented.” 

More than a few women {including myself} wore their “Crowns” for the Opening Night at Raleigh Little Theatre

The play, directed by Terra Hodge, created six composite characters. Their stories are
told over the course of a Sunday. The audience sees these various women get ready for church, attend a morning service, a wedding, a funeral and a baptism. 

Photos by Brenna Lila Jane Berry-Stewart                    

  • (Top Left) India Williams as Mabel
  • (Center Left) Chanda Branch as Velma
  • (Bottom Left) Lynnette Barber as Mother Shaw
  • (Right) Lynnette Barber as Mother Shaw, Chelsey Moore (kneeling) as Yolanda, LaToya Smith as Jeanette

Five older women are joined by the grandaughter of one of them — a younger woman, 17 year old Yolanda from Brooklyn. The young woman (played brilliantly by Chelsey Moore) is a pivotal character and is changed by this experience of finding out about these women, through their hats. The audience is reminded that we’re still kings and queens with “crowns” that as James Baldwin said …”were already bought and paid for. All we have to do is wear them.” 

Leslie Heigh, Founder of SobeSavvy.com , wears her hat/crown to see “CROWNS”

One of my favorite parts of the show was the music, which had the sold out audience clapping and sometimes stomping their
feet. It was truly a shared experience no matter your age, race, gender or religion. I think everyone felt the uplifting spirit of the play and got the message from the monologues, as well as the lyrics of the songs. BRAVO to all the actors on stage, who were locals who auditioned right here for the chance to show their talent for the entire Triangle to witness!  

Crowns Contest Winners (left to right) Evenlyn Castleberry and Brenda Sanders pose by the winning entries

SobeSavvy Tip:  Arrive early to see the exhibition on display of the CROWNS contest winners. Six women were chosen to be photographed wearing their ‘Crowns’ based on their shared stories of what wearing a hat means to them.

CROWNS Contest Winners Photo Exhibition | Photo Credit: Raleigh Little Theatre, Arts Now

Tickets are available >>>> here. Some shows are already sold out, so don’t wait! On Aug 27 a panel discussion, sponsored by North Carolina State’s African American Cultural Center, will be held after the show to discuss the history behind the hats worn by black women. The talk will be led by Moses T. Alexander.

Raleigh Little Theatre was the perfect intimate atmosphere to experience such a soulful stage presentation

RALEIGH LITTLE THEATRE             301 Pogue St

Raleigh, NC 27607 

Tickets 919.821.3111

Raleighlittletheatre.org

Go see this amazing musical “CROWNS ” by Regina Taylor~ Adapted from the book by Michael Cunningham and Craig Marberry~Directed by Terra Hodge 

Opening Night “CROWNS” at Raleigh Little Theatre ~As Seen on the Scene, by SobeSavvy.com

Be sure to follow Raleigh Little Theatre on social media to stay informed of the 2017/2018 season: 

Twitter: @RLT1936

Facebook: Raleigh Little Theatre

Instagram: raleigh_little_theatre

Top 5 Reasons to see The Wolf in #Raleigh ! Thru 4/2 @TheatreRaleigh #FamilyFun

Looking for some family fun or somewhere different than the playground to go with your little one? Then head to the Kennedy Theatre at Duke Center For Performing Arts to see  “The Wolf” presented by Theatre Raleigh. 

This kid friendly production, directed and choregraphed by Lauren Kennedy Brady, combines elements from well known stories as Little Red Riding Hood, The Boy Who Cried Wolf, The Three Little Pigs and Peter and the Wolf. Follow those characters and see what they have in store for The Wolf.
SobeSavvy.com shared a review of the play in 2016, so we were excited to be invited again to experience this fantastic play with #outandaboutAva, now 5 yrs old. To see her reaction to this play a year later, now that she is a year older was wonderful!

Savvy Tip: Make sure to stop by the fun “Capture the Wolf” photo booth and hang around after the show to meet the cast!

Top 5 Reasons you should see The Wolf 

  1. Whether you are age 3 or 93, this play is for everyone. Both young and adults audiences will find the production to be entertaining and delightful!
  2. We loved how the characters perform in close physical proximity to the audience. The show is so engaging and approachable, we felt like we were part of the play!  
  3. Kennedy Theatre is uniquely intimate, which is one of the main reasons The Wolf is perfectly suited for this venue.Kids can even sit on floor pillows stage side to help capture The Wolf!
  4. For 1 hour (no intermission), you can feast your eyes on dance, theatre and imagination all in one room. 
  5. You don’t want to miss your chance to finally see The Wolf get outsmarted! Take that, take that..we’re not afraid of the Big Bad Wolf!

The Wolf is an original show written by Joe Calarco and Andre Catrini and is part of The 2017 Family Series sponsored in part by Duke Health and plays until April 2,2017. For showtimes and ticket information, check here.

#Durham says “Yeah,Yeah” ! to #KinkyBoots Opening Night Recap @DPAC @KinkyBootsBway

“Ladies, and gents and those who have yet to make up their mind” came out to DPAC last night for the opening night of the 2013 Tony award winning musical, Kinky Boots ! As part of the Encore Broadway at DPAC series, this must see smash-hit musical makes its return to Durham September 13-18.

The musical, inspired by true events, tells the story of Charlie Price (played by Adam Kaplan), who has big shoes to fill when he inherits a shoe factory from his Dad. Charlie meets a beyond fabulous drag queen named Lola (played by a North Carolina native, J.Harrison Ghee). Together, they both develop a plan to produce a line of high-heeled boots. But not just any boots….sexy, stiletto-heeled, kinky boots! I was motivated to step out in some boots and see this popular production, directed and choreographed by Tony Award-winner Jerry Mitchell. Here we are in our kinky boots inspired outfits along with (center) Justin Natvig, aka Vivian Vaughn, who currently holds the title of Miss Gay North Carolina America.

DPAC was prepared to make this a night to remember in the Triangle by having local Drag Queen sensations greet guests with Kinky Boots playbills. We even got to take a selfie with local drag queen sensation, Mary K. Mart !

This Cyndi Lauper (the Grammy® and Tony® winning pop icon) scored musical was energetic, playful and fun yet came with a serious message: to accept someone for who they are !  It made me think of the discriminatory NC HB2 law and the Black Lives Matter movement and how relevant this musical is on so many levels. If Charlie and the gender bending Lola can form an unlikely bond over Kinky boots, so can the world! The final number “Raise You Up/Just Be” was my favorite as it summarized the whole theme of finding humanity in everyone. This joyous musical celebration is about the friendships we discover, and the belief that you can change the world when you change your mind.
So if you asked me if this is a musical to see, my reply would be “Yeah, Yeah”! It’s spectacular score will have you singing for more. The choreographed dance moves will have you feeling the groove. Get ready to have fun with the factory workers of Price & Sons. Look up the word fabulous and Lola’s pic will be there for her style, sass, talent and flair! Along with her girls, Lola and her performances were perfection and is the heart of the show ! Make sure you get a ticket to see Broadway’s huge-hearted, high-heeled hit; Kinky Boots before it goes!

Find tickets online at DPACnc.com, Ticketmaster.com or at The Ticket Center at DPAC, in person or by phone at 919.680.2787.

Here is photo recap of last night’s amazing opening night of Kinky Boots at DPAC ! 

The Light in the Piazza Shines Bright @NCartmuseum #NCMA presented by @TheatreRaleigh thru 7/14

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing performing arts amongst art as Theatre Raleigh partnered with NCMA to present “The Light in the Piazza”. 

Based on Chapel Hill resident Elizabeth Spencer’s novella, the Tony Award–winning musical centers on a chance meeting between Clara, a childlike young woman who travels from Winston-Salem to the “land of naked marble boys” aka Italy with her mother, and Fabrizio, a handsome Florentine. The Light in the Piazza takes place in Italy in the summer of 1953. Margaret Johnson (Judy McLane), the wife of an American businessman, is touring the Tuscan countryside with her daughter, Clara (Hilary Maiberger). While sightseeing, Clara, a beautiful, surprisingly childish young woman, loses her hat in a sudden gust. As if guided by an unseen hand, the hat lands at the feet of Fabrizio Naccarelli (Conor Ryan), a handsome Florentine, who returns it to Clara. This brief episode, charged with coincidence and fate, sparks an immediate and intense romance between Clara and Fabrizio. Margaret, extremely protective of her daughter, attempts to keep Clara and Fabrizio apart. As The Light in the Piazza unfolds, a secret is revealed: in addition to the cultural differences between the young lovers, Clara is not quite all that she appears. Unable to suppress the truth about her daughter, Margaret is forced to reconsider not only Clara’s future, but her own hopes as well.

Bravissimo! to Eric Woodall, Director and the cast/crew for doing an amazing job of transporting the audience to Italy by way of stories, statues and stellar performances! Theatre Raleigh is known for its intimate and invigorating presentations, so partnering with NCMA to bring this musical love story to life and staging it amid the beautiful Italian and ancient Roman sculpture in the Museum’s Classical Court was brilliant! 

If you are in RALEIGH, NC, this show is a must see!  July 6-10 (all performances sold out *as of 7/6/16 , a few seats have been released and on the day of each performance, just 10 standing room tickets will be made available on Theatre Raleigh’s website for just $20) and July 11-14 (the 14th is sold out).  Tickets are $32.50 adults and $30.50 senior/student/military. NCMA members $27.50- $30 adults and $28 senior/student/military and are available at http://www.theatreraleigh.com. Group rates available by calling the box office – 919-832-9997. Be sure to check out Theatre Raleigh 2016 Hot Summer Night Series to see what other performances are happening this summer before it sells out! 

Here are a few pictures captured prior to the performance/during intermission ..enjoy! 

One Night Only, #AlvinAiley #Dance in cinemas 10/22 @FathomEvents #LCMOVIES

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This Thursday only, Ailey hits the big screen nationwide! Screenings of a full Ailey performance will be held at hundreds of cinemas across the U.S. on October 22 at 7pm local time.  Enter your zip code now to find the theater closest to you and purchase tickets: http://bit.ly/1OTkLqL

Ailey’s film is one of four in a new series entitled “Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance,” presented by Fathom Events and Lincoln Center.

Captured before a live audience during Ailey’s recent Lincoln Center season, the performance includes four audience favorites – Wayne McGregor’s Chroma, Ronald K. Brown’s Grace, Robert Battle’s Takademe, and Mr. Ailey’s masterpiece, Revelations – as well as a look behind the scenes and exclusive interviews with the artists.

As a lover of all things Ailey, I am very excited to enjoy this performance in a unique , intimate setting. It’s like having a front row seat and a backstage pass all in one! Fathom Events is known for bringing one time speacisl events in Theaters near you at an affordable price . Be sure to stay connected so that you don’t miss out!

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Yannick Lebrun. Photo by Andrew Eccles

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Sarah Daley and Vernard J. Gilmore in Wayne McGregor’s ‘Chroma.’ Photo by Paul Kolnik