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Showing posts with label performing arts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label performing arts. Show all posts

January 19, 2019

REVIEW: Rock Dinner Show at The Orlando Forum - NEW FOR 2019!


Every year seems to bring so many new amusements and original experiences to the Orlando area, and 2019 is shaping up to be no different. Aside from all the theme park updates, we continue to stress that you cannot allow yourself to overlook the expanding options beyond the big three parks. International Drive is continuing its progressive growth with new shops, entertainment, lodging, and dining options - and one that launched like a racehorse straight out of the gate is the Rock Dinner Show at The Orlando Forum. Receiving rave reviews all around, this is a venue that has absolutely earned every ounce of praise it's received.

The background on this one is really quite interesting. It's a surprising location and one that I know well from my days at the now-defunct CSI: The Experience. The Orlando Forum has taken up residence in a building across the street from the CSI building, in what used to be a Ponderosa Steakhouse. I know what you're thinking because I mentally went there, too - a revamped buffet "steakhouse" as a performance venue?? Maybe not such a logical fit at first consideration, but it really works. There wasn't a complete and total level-and-rebuild of the building, and it transformed quite quickly overall. It's opened up to be seamlessly functional in its new purpose, and intimate enough to give the theme of the location a much greater appeal. The vibe is classy - almost like the atmosphere of a wedding reception, and moreso than the traditional dinner show. I wouldn't show up here in my tourist garb after a full day at Magic Kingdom, in other words.

Another notable difference between Rock Dinner Show and area competitors... I often remark about the intrusion factor of a typical dinner show - the servers and guests constantly coming to and fro, consistently in your view, or interrupting the show to peddle up-sell photos, additional drinks, etc. It is probably a combination of the venue's layout, the flawless skills of the staff, and the coordination of the specific show model, but Rock Dinner Show does not present these standard dinner show nuisances - and I love it! The meal service and clean-up were practically ninja-level in nature and wrapped up before the show kicked into gear. There was none of the chintzy money grab photo pitching going on, either - and that was so refreshing. The only "extra" we were advised of was an alcohol add-on. Although you can select from a menu of wine, beer, and liquor selections (prices on par with I-Drive expectations), you can opt for a bracelet that offers unlimited beverages from a slightly narrowed list for less than $30. If you plan to have more than two drinks, this would be a worthwhile option, so keep it in mind!

I've always been of the opinion that you shouldn't go into a dinner show experience expecting the finest standard of food. Behind-the-scenes, as a former dinner show employee, I realize that it is mass-produced, to be blunt (hence the limited menu options), and you have to go into the event feeling that you are there for the show primarily. Of all the Orlando dinner shows (we've been to each venue), Rock Dinner Show absolutely has the BEST quality of food. There is absolutely nothing generic about the menu items, and in no way did we find the food to be lacking in freshness or flavor. Frankly, it tasted every bit as tantalizing as it sounded in its description! In fact, let's take a look at what's on the menu ...


FIRST COURSE: FORUM’S WEDGE SALAD
Crispy lettuce wedge topped with cucumbers, tomatoes, feta and house brined olives, served with blue cheese buttermilk dressing.

ENTREE SELECTION: SCALLOPINI OF CHICKEN
Parmesan crusted chicken breast with fire roasted tomato sauce and fresh mozzarella cheese, served with creamy Pecorino Romano risotto and Chef’s selection of market fresh vegetables.

ENTREE SELECTION: BRAISED SHORT RIB
Fork tender slow braised short rib of beef seasoned with sea salt and fragrant rosemary, accompanied with truffle mashed potatoes and roasted vegetables and a natural beef broth.

DESSERT: “SWEET EMOTIONS”
Double chocolate mousse filed cupcake topped with a creamy and rich chocolate frosting and chocolate pearls.

Vegan pasta options also available, as well as entree upgrades.

But what about the show? If I'm too be entirely honest, it was a challenge to go into this with no advance potential comparisons in mind. I really had little idea what to expect, but I knew that there was a celebrity impersonator theme to the show. A couple experiences I've had with this type of performance stand out a bit. One of those is a place called Memories Theater in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and the other is Mango's - also on I-Drive. Those are both entirely different in scope, and Rock Dinner Show added yet another new layer to my celebrity impersonator experiences. Rock Dinner Show differs from Mango's in many ways. I wouldn't really say one is better or worse than the other - but it depends on what type of experience you seek. As I said before, Rock Dinner Show is more intimate. Rock Dinner Show also does not stray from its focus, whereas Mango's presents a performance event with only bits of impersonator inclusions. It follows the dinner show "model" more than Mango's does, but you still can just visit The Orlando Forum for drinks at their indoor-outdoor bar/patio. Unlike Mango's you won't get the full, direct stage view from that perspective, but it has a more inclusive and inviting feel than other dinner shows... sort of like an in-between venue that takes all the best aspects of everything similar!

Memories in Tennessee did not include a dinner element. It was performance only, set in a theater. One thing that Memories had that I did somewhat expect at Rock Dinner Show was diversity of performers. Unfortunately, this is the one area I was somewhat disappointed in at Rock Dinner Show. When I originally heard of it, it sounded like it would be a journey through the evolution of rock. It was not. It is worth mentioning that performers rotate, so the lineup varies, but thus far the website roster for Rock Dinner Show doesn't show the diversity or span I'd personally appreciate. While the performers were much better than I expected, and every bit fit to their roles, I didn't really find the "rock" in the lineup, or much of an expanse in the timeline represented. My disappointment was in the expectation more than the event, however - and I am hopeful that the show's cast will begin to show more of an array of artists. Certainly, Orlando has a great pool of creative workers to choose from! During out visit, we caught: Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Adele, and Prince. Again... all very skilled in their portrayals, but this was a pop show, with each performer offering up three of their most recognizable chart-toppers from a pretty narrow time frame.

But don't just take our word for it - check out Rock Dinner Show at The Orlando Forum for yourself! We've included a brief mashup with segments from the performances (see top of page). As you probably know by now, we do not attend these events with high-profile intrusive equipment, opting to visit and review these experiences as any other guest. While the video is not pro-level, it is a fair representation of the show. Rock Dinner Show takes place seven nights per week, with doors opening at 6:30 PM. Adult admission is $64.95, children 3-12 are $39.95. For more information, or to reserve your spot, visit http://orlando-forum.com/. Don't forget to stick around after the show for selfies and meet-and-greets with the cast!

January 14, 2019

ANNOUNCING #HAM4HAM LOTTERY IN ORLANDO 40 TICKETS FOR EVERY PERFORMANCE $10 EACH


PERFORMANCES JANUARY 22 – FEBRUARY 10, 2019
AT DR. PHILLIPS CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS

ORLANDO, Fla. (January 14, 2019) — Producer Jeffrey Seller and the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts announce a digital lottery forHAMILTON tickets will begin in conjunction with the show’s first performance (January 22) in Orlando at the Dr. Phillips Center.  Forty (40)tickets will be sold for every performance for $10 each.  The digital lottery will open at 11:00 AM ET on Sunday, January 20 for tickets to the Tuesday, January 22 performance.  Subsequent digital lotteries will begin two days prior to each performance.  

HOW TO ENTER THE DIGITAL LOTTERY

December 21, 2018

Cirque du Soleil is bringing its iconic Big Top experience to Orlando for the first time!

Photo: Matt Beard © 2017 Cirque du Soleil

The
 astounding production LUZIA opens on March 7, 2019
under the white-and-gold Big Top at The Florida Mall

TICKETS NOW ON SALE

Orlando, FL (November 26, 2018) – Cirque du Soleil is coming to Orlando this winter with its delightfully-imaginative and visually-stunning Big Top production LUZIA, a waking dream of Mexico. From March 7 – 31, 2019, local audiences are invited for the first time ever under the Cirque du Soleil Big Top at The Florida Mall to escape to an imaginary Mexico  sumptuous world suspended between dreams and reality

In a series of grand visual surprises and breathtaking acrobatic performances, LUZIA takes audiences on a surrealistic journey through a vibrant world filled with wonders, playfulness and striking artistrySmoothly passing from an old movie set to the ocean to a smoky dance hall or an arid desertLUZIA cleverly brings to the stage multiple places, faces and sounds of Mexico taken from both tradition and modernity. Rich in awe-inspiring moments, LUZIA enchants by incorporating rain into acrobatic and artistic scenes – a first for a Cirque du Soleil touring production. 

December 11, 2018

ADAM SANDLER IS MAKING CFE ARENA “100% FRESHER” ON FEBRUARY 10


TICKETS GO ON SALE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14 AT 10 AM EST

ORLANDO, FL – Comedic icon, Adam Sandler, is coming to CFE Arena with his “100% Fresher” Tour on Sunday, February 10, 2019 at 7:00 PM. Sandler will bring the fun with comedy and songs from his successful Netflix special 100% Fresh with lots of additional material and a special surprise guest.
Tickets go on sale Friday, December 14 at 10:00 AM. Tickets will be available through Ticketmaster.com, Ticketmaster outlets, by calling 800-745-3000 or at the CFE Arena Box Office. Sign up for the CFE Arena Cyber Club to receive all the information you need about this event and others at www.CFEArena.com.
Sandler is an American actor, comedian, screenwriter, and film producer, best known for his roles in the films Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, The Waterboy, The Wedding Singer and many more.

About CFE Arena
The Spectra managed CFE Arena is home to the UCF Men’s and Women’s basketball programs, as well as concerts, family shows and other attractions for the Central Florida area. Visit www.CFEArena.com for more information on upcoming events.

About Spectra
Spectra is an industry leader in hosting and entertainment, partnering with clients to create memorable experiences for millions of visitors every year. Spectra’s unmatched blend of integrated services delivers incremental value for clients through several primary areas of expertise: Venue Management, Food Services & Hospitality, and Partnerships. Learn more at SpectraExperiences.com.

December 7, 2018

Phantasmagoria Orlando is proud to present its events for the 2018 Holiday Season! One of the greatest and most enduring Ghost Stories ever told! “A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas” NOW TOURING 5 COUNTIES!

Phantasmagoria Orlando is proud to present its events for the 2018 Holiday Season!

One of the greatest and most enduring Ghost Stories ever told!

“A Christmas Carol, 
A Ghost Story of Christmas”
              NOW TOURING 5 COUNTIES!

All Photos: Chris Bridges

Celebrate the 2018 Holiday Season as Victorian Troupe Phantasmagoria returns to the stage with its own unique adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic holiday tale “A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas”. 

This critically acclaimed Victorian Performance Troupe will bring its signature tapestry of movement, dance, puppetry, projections, music and storytelling to the stage as one of the most famous Ghost Stories of all times comes alive! A true tale of the Past, Present and Future – with the glory of redemption!  

Dickens’ wonderful tableau will come to life with Phantasmagoria’s own unique aesthetic and performance style in a brand new adaptation of the classic work. Last year’s performances sold fast so get your tickets now! NOTE: A show good for ALL ages!

November 18, 2018

IN ITS FOURTH YEAR, DR. PHILLIPS CENTER POSTS DOUBLE-DIGIT GROWTH IN OPERATING REVENUE


— Arts Center Also Grew Attendance, Performances and Community Support, and Received Venue Excellence and Service Awards — 

— International Venue Excellence Award Spotlighted Center’s  Operational Acumen — 

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 26, 2018) — From July 2017 to June 2018, the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts experienced a 10 percent, year-over-year increase in operating revenue earned from the shows and events it presents. The strong results cap four years of growth in operating revenue, now up 48 percent since the arts center opened in November 2014. 

“It’s remarkable for a start-up to achieve such strong financial results,” said Jim Pugh, chair of the Dr. Phillips Center, and chair and CEO of Epoch Residential. 

November 11, 2018

RING IN THE HOLIDAY SEASON WITH ORLANDO PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA HOLIDAY POPS IN CENTRAL PARK

 
(November 9, 2018) – The City of Winter Park and the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra invite you to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season at their annual Holiday Pops concert Sunday, December 2, at 4 p.m., in charming Central Park. A Holiday Festival is a free public concert and is made possible by the Charlotte Julia Hollander Trust. Bring a blanket and pack a picnic for a concert program that has become a family tradition in central Florida.

Enjoy beautiful Central Park as Conductor Albert George Schram leads the Philharmonic in a beautiful program featuring familiar favorites as well as surprise selections. Highlights will include instrumentals such as “Carol of the Bells,” “Sleigh Ride,” as well as vocal selections featuring Natalie Cordone and Shawn Kilgore including “White Christmas,” and a joyful Christmas sing-a-long.

November 9, 2018

Hamilton Tickets Sale Date Announced

PUBLIC ON SALE FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 16



PERFORMANCES JANUARY 22 – FEBRUARY 10, 2019
AT DR. PHILLIPS CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS


ORLANDO, Fla. (November 9, 2018) — Producer Jeffrey Seller and Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts announce today that single tickets for HAMILTON will go on sale to
the public on Friday, November 16 at 9 a.m. (ET).  Guests are encouraged to purchase online at drphillipscenter.org. Tickets also may be purchased in person at the Dr. Phillips CenterTickets will be available for performances January 22 – February 10, 2019.       

There is a maximum purchase limit of four (4) tickets per person for the engagement. When tickets go on sale, prices will range from $76.50 to $199.50 with a select number of $429.50 premium seats available for all performances. Online ticket purchases are subject to handling fees. There will be a lottery for forty (40) $10 seats for all performances. Details will be announced closer to the engagement.

November 6, 2018

IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS, GLEE’S JANE LYNCH AND THE PIANO GUYS HEADLINE THE HOLIDAYS AT DR. PHILLIPS CENTER


— Nightly hot chocolate and peppermint-infused specialty cocktails
also make the holidays warm and bright —


ORLANDO, Fla. (November 5, 2018) — For the first time since opening, Dr. Phillips Center has curated four weeks of holiday fare, including a smashing Broadway musical, a holiday-themed country concert and a variety show starring comedian Jane Lynch. The line-up also includes several performances of Orlando Ballet’s The Nutcracker – including two afternoon family shows – and the Orlando Philharmonic’s Home For the Holidays.

“This holiday won’t be complete without a visit to the Dr. Phillips Center,” said Foster Cronin, the arts center’s vice president of programming. “Whether you enjoy the classics or prefer a little more modern take on your holiday entertainment, we have something for you this year.”  

November 3, 2018

ORLANDO PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA INVITES CENTRAL FLORIDA ‘HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS’



Opera Orlando Youth Chorus and The Holiday Singers return for Central Florida’s favorite holiday concert.

(Thursday, November 1, Orlando, FL) – The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra brings the holiday spirit to Central Florida with two performances of Home for the Holidays on Saturday, November 24 at 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. at Bob Carr Theater. 

The Philharmonic’s annual tradition features Guest Conductor Albert George Schram, Opera Orlando Youth Chorus, and The Holiday Singers performing familiar favorites, and new holiday tunes that are sure to delight! 

The performances will also feature a new surprise guest this year – Santa Claus, himself, will be in the lobby before each performance ready to greet the entire family! The Philharmonic is partnering with Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida to host a holiday food drive, and persons attending the concerts are encouraged to bring shelf-stable food items to contribute. 

November 2, 2018

REVIEW: Jersey Boys at Dr. Phillips Center


In 1960, a little-known band called The Four Lovers evolved into The Four Seasons - rocketing four men from New Jersey into a stardom so solid that it would cross generations. During a time that produced more than a few endearing quartets, there was something remarkable that distinguished this foursome from the Beach Boys and Beatles of the day - and, for many years, the majority of their fans didn't even realize that it was more than their musical skills that broke the mold... it was their story.

Jersey Boys officially premiered in 2005 at August Wilson Theatre in New York, and on October 30, the Tony and Grammy Award-winning "Best Musical" kicked-off the 2018/2019 Orlando Broadway Series at Dr. Phillips Center.

October 27, 2018

IN ITS FOURTH YEAR, DR. PHILLIPS CENTER POSTS DOUBLE-DIGIT GROWTH IN OPERATING REVENUE

— Arts Center Also Grew Attendance, Performances and Community Support, and Received Venue Excellence and Service Awards —

— International Venue Excellence Award Spotlighted Center’s Operational Acumen —

 

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 26, 2018) — From July 2017 to June 2018, the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts experienced a 10 percent, year-over-year increase in operating revenue earned from the shows and events it presents. The strong results cap four years of growth in operating revenue, now up 48 percent since the arts center opened in November 2014. 

“It’s remarkable for a start-up to achieve such strong financial results,” said Jim Pugh, chair of the Dr. Phillips Center, and chair and CEO of Epoch Residential.

October 22, 2018

SOUNDS OF THE SEASON CONCERT SERIES RETURNS TO CHRISTMAS AT GAYLORD PALMS


Grammy® Award winner Sandi Patty will open this year’s series of holiday concerts

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – (October 22, 2018)  Christmas at Gaylord Palms again will welcome award-winning voice talent to spread holiday cheer with the return of its Sounds of the Season Concert Series presented by Celebration Golf Club. A variety of musical styles including Grammy® Award winner Sandi Patty and internationally-known a cappella group Voctave infuse the best of Christmas music into the fun spread throughout the resort. All performances will be onstage in the grand St. Augustine Atrium and will include a special concert patron-exclusive visit to the resort’s popular ICE! attraction after the performance. The six Sounds of the Season concerts will be held on select nights in the month of the December.

October 20, 2018

ORLANDO PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA PERFORMS HOLST’S MONUMENTAL THE PLANETS


Internationally acclaimed virtuoso on the kamancheh (spiked fiddle), Kayhan Kalhor returns

(Thursday, October 18, Orlando, FL) – A creative force in today’s music scene, Kayhan Kalhor returns to Orlando with a work he recorded with The Silk Road Ensemble and Music Director Eric Jacobsen leads the massive forces of the Orlando Philharmonic in Holst’s epic astrological masterpiece, The Planets on Saturday, November 3 at 8 p.m. at Bob Carr Theater.

“It was almost exactly 50 years ago that we first landed on the moon, and we have a program with the Philharmonic that’s celebrating the solar system, the universe, and the cosmos - it’s a program centered around Holst’s The Planets,” said Jacobsen. “One of my favorite things about this program is that our partner, the UCF Women’s Chorus, is joining us for one of the most gorgeous moments in Neptune.”
The concert also includes founding member of the Aizuri Quartet, Karen Ouzounian, cello; one of the leading tabla virtuosos in the world today, Sandeep Das, tabla; and the University of Central Florida Women’s Chorus.

October 16, 2018

FIDDLER ON THE ROOF — Playing Dr. Phillips Center March 5 – 10, 2019


— Tickets go on sale Friday, October 19, 2018 

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 15, 2018) - Tickets will go on sale Friday, October 19, 2018 at 10 a.m. for the Orlando premiere engagement of the Tony® and Pulitzer Prize-winning hit musical Fiddler on the Roof. Part of the FAIRWINDS Broadway in Orlando series, Fiddler on the Roof will play the Walt Disney Theater from March 5 through March 10, 2019Tickets may be purchased online at drphillipscenter.org, by calling 844.513.2014 or by visiting the Dr. Phillips Center Box Office at 445 S. Magnolia Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, or 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday. Online and phone ticket purchases are subject to handling fees. Groups of 10 or more contact groups@drphillipscenter.org. or 407.455.5550. Prices, shows, artists, dates and times are subject to change at any time without notice.

October 5, 2018

ORLANDO PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA OPENS POPS SERIES WITH GRAMMY-AWARD WINNING RHIANNON GIDDENS

Giddens also known for her starring role as Hallie Jordan on CMT’s drama Nashville

(Wednesday, October 3, Orlando, FL) – The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra kicks off its 2018-2019 Pops Series with two performances of American Blues featuring the co-founder of the Grammy award-winning string band Carolina Chocolate Drops, Rhiannon Giddens on Saturday, October 13 at 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. at Bob Carr Theater.

The concert, the first of five in the Pops Series, includes Conductor Eric Jacobsen and Giddens on vocals and banjo, celebrates classics from American composers including Gershwin’s An American in Paris, Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story and others, as well as selections from her solo albums.

The elegant bearing, prodigious voice, and fierce spirit is abundantly evident on Giddens’ critically acclaimed solo debut, the Grammy-nominated album Tomorrow Is My Turn, which masterfully blends American musical genres like gospel, jazz, blues, and country, showcasing her extraordinary emotional range and dazzling vocal prowess. In 2017, she was awarded a Macarthur Genius Award and received the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Singer of the Year, and won the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Bluegrass and Banjo in 2016. In February of 2017, Giddens’ follow-up album Freedom Highway was released.

September 29, 2018

Phantasmagoria Orlando/DiDonna Productions is proud to present the ninth ALL ORIGINAL installment in their Critically Acclaimed “Whimsically Macabre” Halloween Celebrations PHANTASMAGORIA IX “HOMECOMING”

P h a n t a s m a g o r i a     O r l a n d o 
www.PhantasmagoriaOrlando.com         www.facebook.com/PhantasmagoriaOrlando  
Follow us: Twitter @phantasorlando         Instagram: PhantasmagoriaOrlando 

PHANTASMAGORIA AS FEATURED NATIONALLY ON PBS 

Called One of the most unique theater troupes in the country.”  by Good Day Atlanta, and direct from its successful sold out performances in multiple cities and states Phantasmagoria is proud to present their next main stage installment of this long running critically acclaimed series PHANTASMAGORIA IX “Homecoming” to celebrate the 2018 Halloween Season and its ninth year of ongoing production! 

With the ongoing critically acclaimed success of the past eight year’s installments - as well as special events and appearances throughout the year the brand new  PHANTASMAGORIA IX thunders on to the stage in five Florida counties with all new stories of terror!  Live performersPhantastical dance, explosive stage combat, large scale puppetry, aerial performance and haunting storytelling combine to create a tapestry of macabre and whimsical horror!   

Join Phantasmagoria’s evocative troupe of storytellers, dancers, and chorus as they embark on their newest and perhaps darkest journeys yet through literary tales of terrorand horrific folk stories, legends, and myths. Enter with us into dark and sometimes whimsical tales from the likes of Edgar Allan Poe, Thomas HoodMexican FolkloreVictorian Poetry and Song, an ancient centuries old  Irish Vampire and much, MUCH more  – all to set the tone for a truly Phantasmagorical Halloween season!     
  
Special VIP Experience!  Available in select cities The VIP show experience will include  Specialty actappearances by members of the Phantasmagoria  troupe woven together to top the evening off in the best and darkest of ways (also includes drink, Phantasmagoria souvenir and more - VIP available in Orlando, Eustis, Sanford and Deland only)