Staff Picks for 5-28

May 28, 2008 at 1:08 am

Thursday, May 29

Author Dan Mathews

Vocal animal activist Dan Mathews makes a stop in Louisville Thursday on his Midwest tour to promote his book “Committed.” Working with PETA since its inception in 1980, Mathews has been an animal rights activist for nearly 30 years and was behind the iconic “I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur” campaign. He claims his book, which was released to positive reviews last year, has two messages: Devote your life to a cause, and have fun doing it.

Mathews hopes that his stop in Kentucky will help shed light on local fast food giant KFC’s questionable practices. “Kentuckians in general are huge animal lovers,” Mathews said in a phone interview. He thinks the horse racing business and KFC both have unusually cruel practices, which give Kentucky a bad name when it comes to animal rights. When asked about the recent death of Eight Belles during the Kentucky Derby, Mathews took the opportunity to bash the horse racing industry, which he claims is on its deathbed. “It’s no surprise that they keep dropping like flies, and now that people are learning a little bit more about horse racing, they don’t find it such a romantic sport.” —Aaron Frank

Borders Hurstbourne

2520 S. Hurstbourne Gem Lane


Free; 7 p.m.

Thursday, May 29

Warren Oates photography exhibit

Louisville has been home to many actors, including Victor Mature and Sean Young. We do our best to claim Tom Cruise, but really, folks, he only lived here a couple of years. But we can boast about 1960s-70s anti-hero/character-actor-extraordinaire Warren Oates. He was born in Depoy, Ky., near Greenville, but went to high school and college in Louisville. The Warren Oates Merit Award in Theatre Arts is a scholarship offered at U of L.

Some of his best films are classics like “The Wild Bunch” and “The Heat of the Night.” Oates died in 1982 but is currently receiving a lot of attention with a new biography by Susan Compo and an exhibition in Muhlenberg County. On Thursday, Greenville’s Duncan Center Museum and Art Gallery is opening the Warren Oates Memorial Hall featuring a permanent display of photographs and memorabilia. —Jo Anne Triplett

Duncan Center Museum and Art Gallery

122 S. Cherry St., Greenville, Ky.

(270) 338-2605

May 29-June 15

Disney’s ‘High School Musical’

An evening with your family on the banks of the Ohio is not a bad way to kick off the summer. It’s even better when you can sit back and watch “High School Musical” — for free, no less — at RiverStage, the beautifully terraced amphitheater in historic Jeffersonville. The stage was once a boat that served as a floating restaurant in Cincinnati.

The show, based on the popular movie, follows schoolmates Troy, super-popular captain of the basketball team, and Gabriella, science genius transfer student, as they negotiate peer pressure and cliques to follow their dreams

This production stars kids with considerable stage experience, including Luke Porco, Noah James Ricketts, Jillian Gottlieb and Kristen Sherman. Bring a lawn chair or blanket, chow down on the omnipresent barbecue and nachos and watch tomorrow’s stars today. —Sherry Deatrick

RiverStage Amphitheatre

Banks of Ohio River, Jeffersonville

Free; 8:30 p.m.

Friday, May 30

Author Pico Iyer

Spalding University’s Festival of Contemporary Writing, already underway since last Saturday, willed be capped off Friday night by Pico Iyer, author of the new book, “The Open Road: The Global Journey of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama,” chronicling his decades-long dialogue with the Dalai Lama. Iyer will speak at 5:30 p.m. in the Crystal Ballroom of the Brown Hotel. All of Iyer’s work draws on his experiences traveling and living around the world. He addresses questions of how we can make good on the promises of a global family, what is our common ground and what divides us. A book signing follows the presentation.

At 7 p.m. that same night, also in the Crystal Ballroom, there will follow a celebration of recently published books by Spalding MFA alumni. Local favorite authors such as Joey Goebel, Erin Keane and Pam Steele will be reading from new works. In particular, this will be the launch party for whiz-kid Goebel’s new novel “Commonwealth,” to be released on July 4. —Mary Welp

Brown Hotel

335 W. Broadway

Free; 5:30 p.m.



It’s a Scandinavian invasion Friday night, when metal bands Nightwish and Sonic Syndicate take the stage at Headliners. Nightwish is an especially rare treat for Louisville’s metal-loving audience. The band blends Iron Maiden and Slayer-influenced metal with an orchestral backing and melodic vocals from singer Anette Olzon. Olzon joined Nightwish in 2007, after former singer Tarja Turunun departed. Olzon was prominently featured on the band’s most recent release Dark Passion Play, which was heralded as a classic by Kerrang! magazine.

If you like your metal a bit less melodic, and a little bit more brash, then Sonic Syndicate will probably be more your thing. This Swedish death-metal sextet released their second album, Only Inhuman, last year on revered metal label Nuclear Blast. After beating out 1,500 other bands in a competition for a recording contract, Sonic Syndicate was one of three winners and signed with Nuclear Blast, which will release the band’s follow up later this year. —Aaron Frank

Headliners Music Hall

1386 Lexington Road


$20 (adv.), $25 (door); 7 p.m.

May 30-31

Voices of Kentuckiana

This ain’t the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. This weekend the Voices of Kentuckiana community chorus is holding a preview concert of their upcoming performance in the GALA Festival program in Miami this summer, which is held every four years. Voices of Kentuckiana was founded in 1994 to provide an opportunity for gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender and heterosexual friends to sing and perform together in a way that is meaningful for them and their audiences. Their mission is to be an inclusive organization that celebrates diversity and impacts the community in a positive way. At the GALA (Gay and Lesbian Association) Festival, they will join more than 130 other similar choruses from across the country. Voices is one of the most popular groups at this festival, and they can be heard right here at home. —Jane Mattingly

Clifton Center

2117 Payne St.

$20; 8 p.m.

May 30-June 30

A Show of Hands’

You got to hand it to Gallery Janjobe. Friday is the F.A.T. Friday Trolley Hop as well as the opening of “A Show of Hands.” Art based on the hands, palm readings, hand reflexology treatments and henna drawings will be featured in the gallery from 6-9 p.m. Artist demonstrations are on Saturday. There are also accompanying programs weekly throughout June. There’s a bread-making demonstration from 12-1:30 p.m. on June 7. If bread kneading is not your thing, then stick around for a massage from 2-4 p.m. Sign language, music and rhythm is on June 14. June 21 shows a “little sleight of hand.” The next F.A.T. Friday Trolley Hop on June 27 features tai chi and yoga. —Jo Anne Triplett

Gallery Janjobe

1860 Mellwood Ave.



Ingrid Michaelson

LEO: So the last time you were here, there was a snowstorm. Are you bringing any winter weather with you this time around?

Ingrid Michaelson: No (laughs). That was wonderful a show! I like the snow.

LEO: You’ve been held up as a beacon of light for a lot of independent artists because of how you got noticed. Do you still feel that sense of independence with your success?

IM: Yeah, I mean, I’m still not signed, so, I’m just doing what I’ve always been doing: adding more people to the mix. I still retain all rights to my music and make all the executive decisions. That’s what it’s about.

LEO: What do you in your downtime?

IM: I really haven’t had much of that. When I’m home briefly, I like to see my friends, try to make sure I keep in contact with the people I need to keep contact with, but I really haven’t had any time …

LEO: How did the tour with opener Greg Laswell come about?

IM: Greg is a good friend of mine. He opened for me on a few dates, and I love his music. I asked him and he said yes.

LEO: Will you be playing anything new?

IM: Yes, I play 25 percent new material, 75 percent old material.

LEO: What is that like for you, debuting a song live?

IM: It’s more of a fear thing. It’s scary to perform a song you wrote two days before. What a great opportunity to have and see how it’s received. I’m always playing songs that I’ve just written. —Mat Herron

Headliners Music Hall

1386 Lexington Road


$15; 8 p.m.