Below is a list of things to do in Charlotte that we compose for each print issue of Queen City Nerve. Our city is kind of opening, kind of not, so not all of these are virtual events as we were highlighting at the beginning of the lockdown, but plenty are. COVID is still going strong, however, so party at your own risk. Wear a mask.
February 25| 7 p.m. | Camp North End
What: In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s great American novel about the hollowness of the roaring ’20s, the nonstop party at Jay Gatsby’s house is a “kaleidoscopic carnival” where people come and go, drunkenness abounds, and the books in the library have no pages. Director Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 adaptation of the book takes this description to heart with a dazzling, ADHD approach in which unreal CGI cities glitter, the camera constantly prowls and hip-hop entwines with ragtime piano. In other words, it’s more faithful in spirit to the novel than previous versions.
Cost: $30 per car
February 27 | 8 p.m. | Virtual
What: Sarah Council Dance Projects in partnership with Arts & Science Council’s Culture Blocks Program presents Dancing the Poem, five virtual movement and poetry workshops for kids, teens and adults starting in February. Working with dance educators Sarah Council and Erin Badger-Coffey, movers of all ages will make words come alive to create and perform original movement inspired by a work of poetry. Workshops also include collaborative poetry writing explorations drawn upon participants’ experiences.
February 27 | 6:30 p.m. | Virtual
What: Helmed by Oscar and Emmy-winning director Roger Ross Wiliams, HBO’s documentary The Apollo chronicles the unique history and contemporary legacy of the New York City landmark that launched the careers of anyone who was anybody in music, dance and comedy, including Billie Holiday, The Jackson Five, Jimi Hendrix, Dave Chappelle and Lauryn Hill. The documentary focuses on The Apollo’s inaugural staging of author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ nonfiction work Between the World and Me. Donations are encouraged with proceeds supporting the arts at West Charlotte High School.
February 28 | 7:30 p.m. | Virtual | Neighborhood Theatre
What: Last year, Time Sawyer and frontman Sam Tayloe hosted a variety livestream series, reaching over 100,000 viewers. Now Sam and Time Sawyer are back with a full band show at the Neighborhood Theatre to kick-off a second run of Sam on Sunday. As with last year, the show will feature musical guests, and alternate a solo set from Tayloe’s home on the second Sunday of each month with Time Sawyer shows at music venues on the fourth Sunday of each month. The show has raised funds for The Evening Muse, NAACP Charlotte-Mecklenburg and others.
March 1 | 8 p.m. | Virtual | Belmont Abbey Basilica
What: The Bechtler Ensemble brings string trios from 20th-century Finland, Hungary, and France as well as classical and early romantic composer Franz Schubert to their Arts at the Abbey series. The ensemble, featuring violinist Lenora Cox Leggatt, violist Vasily Gorkovsky, and cellist Tanja Bechtler also interprets compositions by Sibelius, Cras, and Dohnanyi. A limited live audience will be admitted and the concert will also be livestreamed.
March 3 | 7 p.m. | Virtual | Neighborhood Theatre
What: Late Bloomer is an unclassifiable rock trio. Are they hardcore, neo-grunge, alt-rock, or post-punk? The answer is yes. Their 2018 release Waiting garnered acclaim for its dissonant, syncopated, shape-shifting tunes, but even their cast-offs are gold. Last summer’s Tonight’s No Good For Me, comprised of two songs left over from an abortive album session, earned our thumbs-up as essential quarantine music. The tunes contain moody basslines, syncopated percussion shuffles, Hüsker Dü-infused guitar gallops, and anguished vocals threading through a thicket of chiming guitars.
March 5 | 8 p.m. | Virtual
What: Darkwave music maven DJ Sider spins remakes and re-imaginings of pop and rock standards by industrial, synthpop and goth bands. There are more of these remakes than you may think. Off the top of my head, there are Bauhaus’ thrashing rumbles through T-Rex’s “Telegram Sam” and David Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust,” The Cure’s moody take on Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady,” and The Sisters of Mercy’s doomy evisceration of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene.” A lot of people think Soft Cell’s ominous “Tainted Love” is an original and not a cover of Gloria Jones’ 1964 soul standard.
March 6 | 7:30 a.m. | Virtual
What: The standout in Charlotte Symphony Orchestra’s program of three sprightly pieces for strings is contemporary composer Jessica Meyer’s exhilarating “Slow Burn.” The piece, originally composed to accompany a burlesque dancer, is a combination of “all the groovy music I like to listen to,” Meyer writes on her webpage. A central theme to “Slow Burn” is the heartbreak of unrequited love. Mozart’s Divertimento in D and Wirén’s Serenade for Strings round out the program. An excerpt from Mozart’s piece appears in The Beatle’s animated film Yellow Submarine when the Blue Meanies annihilate a string quartet.
Ongoing | 6 p.m. | Virtual | Harvey B. Gaant Center
What: You’ve heard of coming-of-age stories, but how about a sumptuous coming-of-death fable? In You Will Die at 20, Sudan’s first Oscar submission, a sheikh prophesies that a newborn son will shuffle off this mortal coil after two decades on earth. Haunted by the prophecy, mother Sakina keeps constant watch on son Mazumil, who knows of his fate. When Mazumil finally frees himself from his understandably overprotective mother, he encounters friends, ideas and challenges that make him question his destiny.
Ongoing | 7 p.m. | Mint Museum
What: The Mint Museum Uptown presents W|ALLS: Defend, Divide, and the Divine. Ranging from the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem to the toppled Berlin Wall, the exhibit examines the historic use and artistic treatment of walls over the centuries. It features more than 130 photographs taken by 67 photographers across five continents. Local photographers spotlighted in the show include Will Jenkins, who photographed Dammit Wesley’s Strange Fruit mural in uptown Charlotte; Uncle Jut, who photographed Darion Fleming’s Pure’ll Gold mural; and Guggenheim Fellowship recipient Linda Foard Roberts.
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