Gentrification hit Harlem first, and now a housing-boom play born there makes its Philly premiere

Theatre Horizon stages "Renaissance in the Belly of a Killer Whale" Feb. 22-24. We talk to co-creator Jaylene Clark Owens.

Coming to the Delaware waterfront in March: A new theater mini-festival with ‘hip-fizz'

In March,FringeArts launches its High Pressure Fire Service series, HPFS for short. Say it: hip-fizz.

Coming to the Delaware waterfront in March: A new theater mini-festival with ‘hip-fizz'

In March,FringeArts launches its High Pressure Fire Service series, HPFS for short. Say it: hip-fizz.

Two opera superstars with Philly ties will sing a dream-team recital here Friday

Star tenor Lawrence Brownlee world-premiered "Yardbird" at Opera Philadelphia. Star bass-baritone Eric Owens grew up in Mount Airy and is about to become co-director of opera at Curtis.

Two opera superstars with Philly ties will sing a dream-team recital here Friday

Star tenor Lawrence Brownlee world-premiered "Yardbird" at Opera Philadelphia. Star bass-baritone Eric Owens grew up in Mount Airy and is about to become co-director of opera at Curtis.

Pa. Ballet will dance controversial ‘La Bayadère’ in its 2019-2020 season, being announced today

“La Bayadère” is one of the most beautiful and beloved historical full-length ballets. But also one that has been called racially insensitive.

Pa. Ballet will dance controversial ‘La Bayadère’ in its 2019-2020 season, being announced today

“La Bayadère” is one of the most beautiful and beloved historical full-length ballets. But also one that has been called racially insensitive.
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Winsome Imani Winds gives world premiere of Four Sketches by Penn professor James Primosch

James Primosch wears lightly an American vernacular in his style for these sketches, one that recalls no other composer in particular, but an aesthetic of lyricism and gentle motion.

Newspaper ads placed by former slaves seeking missing relatives to be read on stage at Villanova

A cast of 75 will bring to life the voices of mothers searching for their children, husbands for their wives, daughters and sons for their parents, siblings for each other.

Review

‘Broads’ at 1812 Productions: Brassy, unapologetic cabaret of freethinking females

In this entertaining cabaret, three talented performers play the bawdiest belles of American entertainment from the 1930s to the 1960s, from Mae West to Rusty Warren. No naughtiness is spared, in a show whose women display a freedom that could not be timelier in 2019.

Esa-Pekka Salonen enthralls in rare appearance with the Philadelphia Orchestra

The vibrant Salonen, who takes over the San Francisco Symphony in the 2020-21 season, gave his Philadelphia audience a wild ride, through a familiar Strauss and two meaty Bartók scores.

Review

‘People Kissing’: The history of the kiss in photos, or vice versa

This little collection of images doesn't try to do too much, but it suggests a history of photography, and of kiss photos. It stresses the sweet side of kisses, the side the camera likes most. You wonder about the story between the kissers -- and the person holding the camera.

Review

‘Bowlaway’ by Elizabeth McCracken: The subject is love, because the subject is bowling

We've been waiting a while for a new one from this fiction master. Here is a wild, American tale about a woman who explodes on a Massachusetts town, starting a kind of bowling alley and working herself into people's histories and destinies. It keeps you guessing, and is a masterpiece of compassion.

Review

‘I Am God’ by Giacomo Sartori: A cranky, vulnerable deity not above a little slapstick

In this ingenious, entertaining novel, the Supreme Being is both omniscient and irritable, lovestruck and jealous and a Peeping Tom (although He says He isn't). This book strides through the cosmos with both irony and good humor.

Review

‘Fryderyk Chopin’ by Alan Walker: Best bio yet of ‘the poet of sweet sound’

This is now the best biography of the great Polish composer and pianist. Tubercular from youth onward, Chopin still managed to write some of the best music of his or any other age, dying at 39. If not a nice man, he was, as poet Heinrich Heine said, "the poet of sweet sound."

How the Academy of Music Anniversary Concert and Ball of the future can be bigger and better

This glitzy affair with Helen Mirren a couple weeks ago was lovely, as far as it went. But this grand building needs an even grander gesture to build community support. One thought: A short series of Philadelphia Orchestra afternoon concerts there.

Penn Libraries and venerable Philadelphia Athenaeum form bookish alliance

University researchers and Athenaeum members will be able to access each other's catalogs seamlessly in what could be a model for urban universities and neighboring independent libraries, archives, and museums.

Rising-star Philly playwright will premiere his latest at the Kennedy Center Friday

Philly playwright Josh Wilder watched girls playing double Dutch on his block in Point Breeze. His play about their grit and resilience opens in Washington, D.C., this weekend.

John Cale’s ‘nerd-brother’ Tony Conrad is charming, difficult, and totally worth your effort in a big ICA retrospective

From hippie math prodigy to avuncular professor, Conrad has shaped the music, art, and ideas of the avant-garde.

Review

‘Bridges of Madison County’ at Philadelphia Theatre Company: A bridge built of cliches

No opportunity for cliche is left untaken in this rom-musical based on the popular rom-novel. It plays to every predictable character turn, in the equivalent of a "chick musical." There's also a condescending tone in it toward the country people portrayed.

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