Kentucky Shakespeare kicks off its 59th annual free Kentucky Shakespeare Festival in Central Park with a comedy, a history, and a tragedy. The season begins with their professional productions of As You Like It May 29th, then Henry IV, Part II June 13th, followed by King Lear on June 27th. July 9th-21st all three performances will be presented in repertory. The season will be dedicated to the late Bekki Jo Schneider, former Producer of Kentucky Shakespeare and founder Doug Ramey’s immediate successor. “Last year we lost our dear friend Bekki Jo. She was instrumental in helping make the company what it is today, not only during her tenure here as an actor and leader but for years after as a mentor to me and to so many others in our community. We dedicate this season to her as we celebrate her life and legacy,” said Matt Wallace, Producing Artistic Director.
“Though it’s winter now, we’ve been busy planning an exciting 59th season of Kentucky Shakespeare Festival! This season features a company of 20 performers and an array of 54 community pre-shows, with 7 productions and 58 performances over our 10-week summer season,” says Wallace. “Thanks to an Imagine 2020 Project Grant, made possible by Louisville Metro Government in partnership with the Fund for the Arts, we will also present the Kids’ Globe this summer! Before performances youth can visit our Kids’ Globe tent to participate in free interactive, hand-on arts activities all summer long. We’ll again have a variety of 28 food trucks from the Louisville Food Truck Association rotating nightly, along with our Brown-Forman Bar, Will’s Tavern and Will’s Gift Shop. If you haven’t been lately, you haven’t been!”
The season kicks off with As You Like It, Shakespeare’s beloved, gender-swapping romantic comedy set in the Forest of Arden, where lives can be transformed when you least expect it. Matt Wallace directs, setting the production in 19th century Kentucky. It will feature live music with the cast performing original songs composed by Louisville singer/songwriter Aaron Bibelhauser of the bluegrass band Relic. The production stars Hallie Dizdarevic as Rosalind with Jon Becraft as Orlando, Gregory Maupin as Touchstone, Abigail Bailey Maupin as Jacques, Crystian Wiltshire as Silvius, Jon Patrick O’Brien as Oliver, and making their Kentucky Shakespeare debut, recent Actors Theatre performers Amber Avant as Celia and Angelica Santiago as Phebe.
Henry IV, Part II explores the precarious friendship of Prince Hal and Falstaff. The play is the third installment in the “Game of Kings” series, which wraps up with Henry V in 2020, the Festival’s 60th season. The production is directed by Associate Artistic Director Amy Attaway and will again feature original music from Wax Fang’s Scott Carney. Tom Luce returns as the title king, J. Barrett Cooper returns as Falstaff and Zachary Burrell as Prince Hal, with cast members including Will DeVary as Prince John, Amber Avant as Lady Percy, Kyle Ware as Ensign Pistol, and Kentucky Shakespeare veteran Monte Priddy as Shallow. “This play is a little detour from the wartime saga, and it easily stands on its own. It’s irreverent, funny, and deeply human – I can’t wait to show our audiences this different side of everyone’s favorite fat knight,” said director Amy Attaway.
Rounding out the main stage productions is one of Shakespeare’s most powerful tragedies, King Lear, last performed by Kentucky Shakespeare 32 years ago. Wallace directs the production, set in ancient Britain, that follows a once-great ruler’s descent into madness. Kentucky Shakespeare veteran Jon Huffman takes on the title role, with cast members including Jennifer Pennington as Gloucester, Dathan Hooper as Kent, Braden McCampbell as Edmund, and Neill Robertson as Edgar.
The Louisville Improvisors return with Late Night Shakes on select Saturdays bringing late night improvised Shakespeare shows, June 1st, 15th, 29th and August 3rd.
Kentucky Shakespeare’s Globe Players Professional Training Program for high school students will present the comedy Twelfth Night, directed by Kentucky Shakespeare’s Director of Education Kyle Ware, running July 24th – 27th.
Cincinnati Shakespeare Company returns to the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival stage July 28th and 30th to present the touring production of Romeo and Juliet directed by Caitlin McWethy.
Rounding out the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival season, Louisville Ballet returns to present a premiere of Cleopatra: Queen of Kings. They have based the dance piece on Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, and what is known about the life of Cleopatra. Roger Creel and Scott Moore again create the piece, with the addition this year of Louisville Ballet dancer Erica De La O as lead choreographer. The production runs July 31st to August 4th.
6:30pm Food Trucks Open
7:00pm Will’s Tavern, Will’s Gift Shop, and Kids’ Globe open
7:15pm Nightly Community Pre-Show Entertainment
8:00pm Main Stage Production
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) recently awarded a contract for rehabilitation of the Bernheim Bridge in Cherokee Park in Louisville. This bridge, also known as Bridge No. 8, crosses the Middle Fork of Beargrass Creek.
This project includes waterproofing and repairing the concrete arch, resetting the railings, masonry repairs on the spandrel walls and railings and new asphalt pavement on the crossing.
KYTC is coordinating the bridge repairs with Louisville Parks and Recreation and Olmsted Parks Conservancy.
Construction is scheduled to begin this week. The bridge crossing via Beargrass Road from Park Boundary Road and Alta Vista Road will be inaccessible through the duration of the project. The Bernheim Bridge will reopen to traffic in late summer.
Several popular nearby park features, including Big Rock pavilion, parking and playground area, will be easily accessible during the construction period. A detour map can be viewed below.
Louisville Paving Company was awarded the $1.1 million construction contract. Marr Construction will be the subcontractor for the masonry rehabilitation of the historic bridge. Marr has worked on several other bridge restoration projects in Cherokee Park.
The Bernheim Bridge dates to 1928 and was named for Bernhard and Rosa Bernheim, who were members of the notable Bernheim family that includes Isaac Wolfe Bernheim, who founded the Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest south of Louisville.
Another bridge in Cherokee Park on the Scenic Loop is scheduled for repairs later this year. These bridges are part of KYTC’s Bridging Kentucky program. Bridging Kentucky includes more than 1,000 state, county, and municipal structures that are rated in poor condition or have restricted weight limits. More than 70 of the bridges on the list are currently closed to traffic.
Each bridge will be addressed in the next six years, either replaced with a new structure designed to last at least 75 years or rehabilitated to extend its life by at least 30 years. Those with restricted weight limits will reopen to school buses, emergency vehicles, commercial trucks, as well as passenger vehicles.
The date and duration of this work may be adjusted if inclement weather or other unforeseen delays occur. Visit goky.ky.gov for the latest in traffic and travel information in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Traffic information for the District 5 counties is also available at facebook.com/KYTCDistrict5 and twitter.com/KYTCDistrict5.
January is proving to be a busy month at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Admission varies by event, but parking is $10 per vehicle per event.
The year kicks off of with the end the Kentucky Flea Market New Year’s Spectacular. The event starts on December 29th and includes free admission. As an added bonus, if you make a purchase at the Flea Market, parking will be half price.
Next up on the calendar is the National Wrestling Coaches Association Multi-Divisional Natioanl Duals. The two day event will feature the some of the best atheletes from Division II, III, NAIA, NJCAA and Women’s programs from across the country. Tickets start at $17 for students and $25 for adults, plus parking at the Exposition center.
January 5th will be the Yugioh! Regional Qualifier. Entry fee is $20 (spectators are free) and includes 5 packs of soul fusion. More information about tournament structure and format can be found online.
January 6th will be the Kentucky Bridal and Wedding Expo. Tickets are $10 at the door (or free if acquired online in advance).
January 10-12: Members of ATA can attend the Archery Trade Association show.
January 12 and 13: The Great Train Show is designed for anyone interested in model trains. The show will feature more than 40 exhibitors, model train displays, workshops, and a riding train for children. Children are free with an adult. Tickets are available online.
January 18-20: The Outdoor Life/Field and Stream Expo. This Expo was formerly named the Deer and Turkey Expo. Anyone interested in the outdoors, or hunting will find something here. The show will feature a trophy contest, seminars, archery and shooting ranges, and more. Tickets can be purchased in advanced online at a discounted price.
January 19-20: National Gun Day JAG Military Gun Show. More information to be announced as the event gets closer.
January 23-27: Louisville Boat, RV and Sport Show Children under 12 are free with adult. Tickets are available for purchase online.
January 25-27: USA BMX Bluegrass Nationals. Freedom Hall will become an indoor BMX racing track as athletes compete in the second of 13 events. The event is open to the public.
January 26-27: The Crown Cheer & Dance Championship. This event will be held in the Broadbent Arena and admission is $15 per person (children 5 and younger are free with adult).
January 30-February 1: Midwest Manufacturing Housing Federation Show This is not a public show and only people that are involved in the industry will be admitted.
Mayor Greg Fischer announced today that the Office of Sustainability has implemented its first Energy Project Assessment District (EPAD) project with partner Citizens Union Bank (CUB).
EPAD is a tool that encourages property owners install energy efficiency mprovements, renewable energy and water conservation measures at commercial and multi-family properties, by allowing them to acquire private funding that can be paid off through a voluntary assessment administered by the Jefferson County Sheriff in the same manner as a property tax bill. The program allows property owners to extend the term of the loan to 30 years and finance up to 100 percent of an energy project’s cost.
The city’s first EPAD project was made possible through a loan from CUB and allowed property owner Tony Holland to construct a 15-unit apartment at 110 Weisser Avenue with high-efficiency heating and cooling controls, an exterior insulation system and cool roofing materials.
“I applaud the Office of Sustainability, CUB and Tony Holland for forming a partnership to make our city more sustainable. This project is a showcase of how property owners and developers can make a great financial choice that will have great environmental benefits for our community,” Mayor Fischer said. “Our city needs more lending institutions and property owners to partner with us on projects like this one.”
“We are thrilled to close on the first project of our EPAD program. EPAD will help promote energy efficiency and will ultimately contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving the quality of life in Louisville,” said Louisville Metro Office of Sustainability Director Maria Koetter. “We applaud Tony Holland and CUB for paving the way.”
“At CUB we care a great deal about conservation efforts that benefit the communities we serve”, said David Bowling, CUB’s CEO. “We are proud to be able to partner with the City and property owners like Tony Holland on the EPAD Program. They were great to work with and hopefully this will be just the beginning of many similar projects in the future.”
The EPAD program offers unique benefits to the property owner, including low interest, and fixed rates that are affixed to the property title and not the property owner. That separation means the property owner is not tying up other credit lines for essential operating expenses.
Energy efficient improvements and renewable energy projects—like solar panels, green roofs and LED lighting—aid in Louisville Metro’s efforts alleviate urban heat and decrease the amount of pollutants impacting local air quality.
EPAD financing is available to office, retail, industrial, non-profits and multi-family residential units consisting of five or more dwelling units. Commercial properties include for-profit businesses and non-governmental, non-residential, tax-exempt properties such as privately operated community centers and hospitals.
An eligible energy-efficient, water-efficient or renewable energy improvement project must have a minimum cost of $20,000, a useful life of at least five years and be permanently affixed to the property title. Additionally, the property owner must demonstrate that the project reduces energy or water usage or generate renewable power for the property and that the improvements will remain with property upon sale or transfer of title.
The Kentucky General Assembly enacted legislation in 2015 authorizing local governments to establish EPADs and an ordinance approved by Metro Council in 2016 designated the entirety of Louisville Metro as an EPAD.
Kentucky Venues’ guests who are blind or visually impaired will soon have access to an innovative technology that will improve their ability to navigate around large spaces and events.
Kentucky Venues, which operates the Kentucky International Convention Center (KICC) and the Kentucky Exposition Center (KEC) recently partnered with the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) on their Nearby Explorer mobile app.
The app, developed by APH, gives people who are blind or visually impaired audio cues about the world around them and communicates information with beacons that will be installed at strategic points throughout both KICC and KEC.
The app offers an unmatched level of independence when moving through unfamiliar buildings, especially large ones like KICC or KEC. It provides the equivalent of electronic signage, so the user knows what rooms, stairs, etc. are in the vicinity.
“As a user of the app who is blind, I appreciate knowing the general layout of the venue,” said Larry Skutchan, Director of Technology Product Research at APH.
“This way, I can walk in the correct direction, find rooms, find stairs, etc. Even if walking with another person, it is super helpful to get information about what is around.”
Installation of the beacons is anticipated to be complete at both properties by January 31, 2019.
“Accessibility and innovation have always been important to our organization,” said David S. Beck, President and CEO of Kentucky Venues.
“We are proud to partner with APH and want to assist all guests so they feel comfortable as they navigate through our facilities.”
The Nearby Explorer app is available for both Apple and Android phones.
The Muhammad Ali Center is proud to announce its upcoming Daughters of Greatness speaker, Doris Kearns Goodwin. Goodwin, a world-renowned presidential historian, public speaker and Pulitzer Prize-winning, New York Times #1 Best-Selling author, will speak at the Center on Friday, December 7th. The event will begin with a hot breakfast at 8:30 a.m. and the program will follow from 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Throughout the year, the Daughters of Greatness breakfast series invites prominent women engaged in social philanthropy, activism, and pursuits of justice to share their stories with the Louisville community. The Daughters of Greatness series provides a place for dialogue and discussion on current issues of justice, community engagement, and social movements within the Louisville area and beyond.
Ms. Goodwin will also appear at the Kentucky Author Forum on Thursday, December 6th at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts at 6pm and will be interviewed by Scott Berg, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of five bestselling biographies.
Goodwin is known for her highly regarded studies of American presidents. Her career as a presidential historian and author was inspired when as a 24-year-old graduate student at Harvard she was selected to join the White House Fellows, one of America’s most prestigious programs for leadership and public service.
A meeting with Lyndon B. Johnson in 1967 resulted in Goodwin’s first book, Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream, which will be re-released in spring 2019. Her second book, The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys, was a best-seller. Following the release of No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II, Goodwin published a memoir detailing her youth in Brooklyn. She returned to presidential literature thereafter, releasing Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln in 2005. In 2013, she wrote the critically acclaimed and The New York Times bestselling The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism (November 2013).
In her seventh book, Leadership in Turbulent Times (published on September 18, 2018 by Simon & Schuster), is the culmination of her five-decade career of studying the American presidents. Goodwin draws upon four of the presidents she has studied most closely—Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Lyndon B. Johnson (in civil rights)—to show how they first recognized leadership qualities within themselves, and were recognized by others as leaders.
Well known for her appearances and commentary on television, Goodwin is seen frequently on all the major television and cable networks and shows including Meet the Press and The Late Show with Colbert Report. Most recently she played herself as a teacher to Lisa Simpson on The Simpsons and a historian on American Horror Story.
Goodwin graduated magna cum laude from Colby College. She earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Government from Harvard University, where she taught Government, including a course on the American Presidency.
Among her many honors and awards, Goodwin was awarded the Charles Frankel Prize, given by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Sarah Josepha Hale Medal, the New England Book Award, as well as the Carl Sandburg Literary Award.
Goodwin lives in Concord, Massachusetts. She was the first woman to enter the Boston Red Sox locker room, and is a devoted fan of the World Series-winning team.
Seating is limited. Tickets are $20 for Ali Center members, $25 for non-members, $15 for students. Tables of 8 and 10 are also available.
For more information or to purchase tickets for the Kentucky Author Forum, please visit https://kentuckyauthorforum.com/event/doris-kearns-goodwin/
By Charlotte Stephens
Before he became a bestselling author, David Sedaris survived by working odd jobs. He picked apples in Oregon. He reinforced the edges of window screens with a stapler (to keep squirrels from invading attics) in Chicago. He cleaned apartments in new York City. And, broke and jobless after first moving to the Big Apple, he got a gig playing an elf at Macy’s “SantaLand,” which would inspire his beloved and hilariously biting personal essay, “Santaland Diaries.”
Sedaris is now a literary celebrity. he’s one of the few writers who can fill Carnegie Hall with his adoring fans and who’s been considered funny enough to appear regularly on The Late Show with David Letterman. During his days as Crumpet the Elf, however, he never thought he’d see his dream of being a published author come true. “I’m wearing a green velvet costume; it doesn’t get any worse than this,” Sedaris-as-Crumpet quips darkly. But his career would profit immensely from this time spent faking holiday cheer and herding frazzled families for their photo with Santa. It was “Santaland Diaries” that introduced Sedaris’s signature deadpan humor to a national audience, catapulting him to fame in the early 1990s.
Since 1977, Sedaris had kept a diary, often carrying a notebook with him to record experiences both bizarre and mundane. (He’s known for his ability to highlight the weirdness of everyday life, zeroing in on personal quirks or strange encounters that are often highly relateable, but that we might never think to document in such comic detail.) As with many of his other early writings, the pithy observations in “Santaland Diaries” originally came from these journal entries. According to Sedaris, “‘Santaland’ was just stuff in my diary. All I did was take things from my diary and arrange them.”
One night, he was reading exceprts from his diary onstage at a small New York club. He later recounted in an NPR interview:
“[Radio host] Ira Glass was in the audience. He introduced himself…Later, he called, asking if I had anything Christmassy for a show that he was doing at the time called…So I recorded the Santa story for that, and he put it on [the daily NPR program] Morning Edition.”
Sedaris could never have predicted the rush of popularity that followed. “My life just changed completely,” he has said, “like someone waved a magic wand.”
The rest is history. Thanks to the wild success of “Santaland Diaries,” Sedaris, in his words, “went from having 50 listeners to 50 million listeners.” Soon after, he landed the book contract that led to his first published collection of essays and short fiction, the critically acclaimed Barrel Fever (in which “Santaland Diaries” also appears). Today, there are more than 10 million copies of Sedaris’s books in print, and his work has been translated into 25 languages. Meanwhile, his recording of “Santaland Diaries” has aired on Morning Edition during the Christmas season every year since 2004, and is one of the show’s most requested features. Not too shabby for a man who’d often joked that he was only qualified for “jobs that needed no skills.”
Tickets are available online here.