Author: Kevin Lee

Is Mobile ready for a big con?

The day was typical for what’s become one of the central Gulf Coast’s most successful gatherings built around creative pursuits. In short, Pensacon was kicking. For one Mobilian on hand, it was an eye opener. My wife and I shared some seats and conversation with Uncle Henry for the better part of an hour talking about the spectacle, the fans moving around us at artists’ tables and wandering the vendors’ floor beneath us. Uncle Henry couldn’t stop with the praise and amazement. When you impress an irascible curmudgeon, it’s notable. “What impressed me the most was when I found...

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MOJO melds crime, jazz

Conjure a classic detective, with fedora and trench coat, and a red neon sign blinking through the slats of a worn venetian blind. Now, what music does your imagination supply? If it’s a lonely trumpet or swaggering saxophone, you’re in good company. So, how did we come to associate crime thrillers and film noir with jazz? The story’s not simple, since those legendary Humphrey Bogart flicks didn’t feature jazz music at all. It took something other than just the hard-boiled detective to wed music with story themes to make something now as American as baseball. The Mystic Order of...

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MMoA shows cut to Dixie’s heart

Perhaps no other region in the United States mythologizes its past with the reverence found in the South. Central to the veneration are natives’ “sense of place,” which permeates their art and worldview. That same feeling runs through the trio of new exhibits at the Mobile Museum of Art, installed specifically to commemorate Alabama 200, the state’s bicentennial celebration. Each carries its own piece of a larger sentiment but remains unique and accessible all the same. At Southern identity’s core is a relationship to its natural world. Rene Culler’s glass installation spawned by the Mobile-Tensaw Delta cuts right to...

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Updated Shakespeare comedy at JJP

The Joe Jefferson Players have put a more modern twist on one of Shakespeare’s best comedies in their new rendition of “Much Ado About Nothing.” The zany tale — set in contemporary Mobile against the backdrop of Mardi Gras — matches the madcap oeuvre of the season. Through scuttlebutt, Benedick and Beatrice are tricked into confessing mutual love, while Hero and Claudio are manipulated into a breakup at the altar. To patch up things, further machinations build along with the hilarity. The play runs March 17 through April 2 at the playhouse located at 11 S. Carlen St. in...

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Puccini Project reawakens at Mobile Opera

It’s almost the halfway point for Mobile Opera’s decade-long undertaking. Ordeal? Nah, more like protracted homage. When the 100th anniversary of Giacomo Puccini’s death arrives in seven years, the organization’s Puccini Project will have gone through the composer’s major body of work. It’s coming in close to the original schedule. “He wrote 12 operas and it was our intention to do the four short operas as two per evening so we would finish it in 10 years, but it looks like because of the change of venues and doing ‘Gianni Schicchi ‘and ‘Suor Angelica’ as stand-alones we’ll probably be...

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