Thursday, April 29, 2010

'Mary Poppins' extends stay in Charlotte

The Broadway touring production of "Mary Poppins" has been extended for an extra week "in response to the overwhelming demand for tickets," according to a Blumenthal Performing Arts Center press release.

The show was originally scheduled to run from Aug. 26-Sept. 13. Tickets for newly announced performances -- from Sept. 14-19 -- are on sale now. Individual tickets are available from $32.50 and up. Tickets can be purchased at the Blumenthal Box Office and online at To charge tickets by phone, call 704-372-1000.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

'Twilight' convention in Charlotte this week

Need a "Twilight" fix?

The Official Twilight Convention -- set for this Friday through Sunday at the Marriott Charlotte Executive Park Hotel -- promises attendees "an up-close and personal 'Twilight Saga' experience."

The weekend gathering will feature on-stage appearances by supporting actors and actresses from the "Twilight" movies, exclusive footage, panel discussions, "Twilight"-themed parties, musical performances, costume and trivia competitions, auctions, autographing, merchandising and photo opportunities. Twilight fan websites including and www.twilightnovelnovice will also host special presentations.

Actors and actresses appearing at the convention include: Peter Facinelli (Dr. Carlisle Cullen), appearing Friday; Charlie Bewley (Volturi tracker Demetri), Michael Welch (Mike Newton), and Justin Chon (Eric Yorkie), all appearing Saturday; Gil Birmingham (Billy Black), appearing Saturday and Sunday; and Tinsel Korey (Emily Young), appearing Sunday.

Convention hours are 1:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Parties, concerts and food functions will take place before and after the official show hours. Daily admission pricing is $10. For more information and registration, visit

Monday, April 26, 2010

Concert news: Kelly Clarkson, Shinedown, Drake

Several major acts have announced Charlotte shows in the past few days. Here are the highlights:

The 2010 Lilith Tour will visit Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre on Friday, Aug. 6. The lineup includes Sarah McLachlan, Kelly Clarkson, Jill Scott, Indigo Girls, Court Yard Hounds and six other artists (to be named later). Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday...

The Carnival of Madness Tour -- featuring Shinedown, Chevelle, Puddle of Mudd, Sevendust, and 10 Years -- will play Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre on Saturday, July 24. Tickets on sale at 10 a.m. Friday...

The alternative-rock band Everclear, best-known for its 2000 hit "Wonderful," will play the main stage at Food Lion Speed Street in uptown at 9:30 p.m. Friday, May 28. Musical performances for the three-day festival begin Thursday, May 27. Additional artists will be announced soon. Admission to Speed Street is free. For a complete schedule of events, click here...

Hip-hopper Drake is set to perform at The Fillmore on May 25. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday...

The Thirty Seconds to Mars concert -- originally slated for this past Sunday at the Uptown Amphitheatre but postponed due to an illness -- has been rescheduled for Nov. 7 at The Fillmore. Tickets will be honored at the venue on the new date...

Friday, April 23, 2010

2 country concerts set for Charlotte area

Toby Keith's "American Ride Tour" hits Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre on Sunday, July 11. Trace Adkins and James Otto will open. Tickets ($33.75 lawn, $73.75 reserved) go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, April 30, at, Ticketmaster, the Verizon box office, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Also: "American Idol" finalist Bucky Covington will perform on Thursday, May 6, in Salisbury to kick off the inaugural "Brick Street Live!" concert series. Tickets ($5 general, $25 VIP/reserved) can be purchased by calling 704-637-5363 or online at

Charlotte Knights to throw a birthday party

The Charlotte Knights will celebrate mascot Homer the Dragon’s birthday tonight.

All fans attending the team's game against the Norfolk Tides will receive a free piece of birthday cake. In addition, Homer Birthday Bobbleheads will be given to the first 1,000 kids (12 and younger). And Junior Knights Kids Club members will be able to partake in a pre-game party with Homer in the Home Run Café, located on the fourth floor of Knights Stadium.

Sixteen mascots from local pro sports teams and colleges will join in the celebration tonight: Sir Purr, Chubby, Rufus, Stormy, Lugnut, Ramses and many more will be on hand to help Homer ring in another year at Knights Stadium.

Homer has been representing the Knights -- the Triple-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox -- for more than 21 years, making him the oldest professional mascot in the area.

For ticket or event information, call 704-357-8071 or 803-548-8050 or click here.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Rent this 'Avatar,' don't buy it

With his 3-D blockbuster, “Avatar,” director James Cameron gave millions of moviegoers a glimpse into the future of filmmaking.

But the “Avatar” DVD, which arrived in stores today, seems awfully old-fashioned.
There is no 3-D version. There’s no director’s commentary. No making-of featurettes or documentaries, no deleted scenes or outtakes. Just the movie.

If something about this seems familiar to you DVD geeks, you’re right – Cameron’s been down this road before. In 1998, his “Titanic” went to VHS and laserdisc first, then was released on DVD in 1999 with no special features other than the theatrical trailer. Everyone bought a copy. Six years later, a fully loaded special edition of “Titanic” hit stores … and everyone bought a copy again.

The wait for an “Avatar” special edition will be more like six months than six years – Fox plans to deliver a multi-disc edition with all kinds of bonus features in November – but still ... what we’ve got here is another case of film fans falling for the oldest trick in the DVD book: Why make people pay for something once when you can make them pay for the same thing twice?

Anyway, if you haven't already rushed out to pick up a copy, I've got two words for you: Rent it.

Last chance to get Bon Jovi tickets

Bon Jovi will perform at Time Warner Cable Arena tonight, and although the show was previously "sold out," the band has just released a limited number of additional seats.

The concert is set for 7:30 p.m., with Dashboard Confessional opening.

Tickets are available through, the Time Warner Cable Arena box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, or charge by phone by calling 800-745-3000.

Want to be in a Carowinds commercial?

Carowinds is searching for about 70 "clean-cut" men and women actors and models (ages 18 and older) for a commercial shoot for television taking place April 27 at the 112-acre combination amusement and water park on the N.C./S.C. border.

The ad will showcase Carowinds' new roller coaster, Intimidator.

IF SELECTED ... Filming is scheduled to take place from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. next Tuesday. Actors should arrive by 9 a.m. and will need to be comfortable repeatedly riding at speeds of about 80 mph (although actors will be changed out as needed). Dress for summer. If temperatures are cooler, wear removable hoodies over short-sleeve or sleeveless shirts. No logos on T-shirts. No visible tattoos or piercings. No-flip flops. Lunch will be provided.

The commercial will air in North and South Carolina, as well as Tennessee and Georgia.
Interested? Contact Jack Stevenson at Include your phone number, e-mail address and a current photo.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Knights team up with Tilted Kilt

Interesting press release of the day:

The Charlotte Knights are teaming up with The Tilted Kilt for some post-game fun. On selected dates throughout the 2010 season, the Knights will host a post-game party for their fans at The Tilted Kilt located at 13230 Carowinds Boulevard in Charlotte.

Following the game, fans can come to The Titled Kilt where Knights players will be signing autographs, giving away tickets and other Knights prizes. These are post-game events only, the first of which will be this Friday, April 23rd following the Knights 7:15 PM game against the Norfolk Tides.

This will offer Knights fans a great chance to meet Knights players and offer fans a fun place to go following the game. If there is no game due to weather the event will be rescheduled for a later date. Other post-game party dates have not been announces.

The Charlotte Knights are the Triple-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. For ticket or event information, please contact the Knights front office at (704) 357-8071 or (803) 548-8050 or visit our website at for more information.

Black Crowes to play outdoor show

The Black Crowes will play the Uptown Amphitheatre at the Music Factory in Charlotte on Saturday, Sept. 18. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, May 14, at, Ticketmaster, at the Fillmore/Uptown box office and the Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre box office, or charge by phone 800-745-3000.

Have you forgiven Tiger Woods?

Tiger Woods will play Charlotte's Quail Hollow Championship, which runs April 29 to May 2. It will be Woods' first tournament since he returned to golf at the Masters after a five-month hiatus during which multiple infidelities were revealed by over a dozen mistresses.

Do you think Tiger has paid for his sins? Will you have any problem cheering for him while he's here? Can you look at him the same way as you did before the sex scandal? Do you think he can return to being a positive role model and go back to pitching products for major companies? Please e-mail me at ASAP and share your thoughts ... I would love to hear from anyone, and am particularly interested in responses from women.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Carrie Underwood books Charlotte concert

Carrie Underwood -- winner of Season 4 of "American Idol" -- is coming to Charlotte's Time Warner Cable Arena on Saturday, Oct. 30. It's among 46 stops just added to her successful "Play On Tour," which continues through December.

Billy Currington and Sons of Sylvia will open the concert.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 24, through,, the arena box office, Ticketmaster outlets, or by calling 1-800-745-3000.

On Sunday night in Las Vegas, Underwood was named the Academy of Country Music Awards' Entertainer of the Year for the second straight year, becoming the only woman to receive the honor twice.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

'Mary Poppins' tickets on sale this week

Tickets for the Walt Disney Theatrical musical "Mary Poppins" will go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday. The touring production of the show -- which was nominated for seven Tony Awards in 2007, winning one -- runs at Charlotte's Belk Theater for 23 performances Aug. 25-Sept. 12.

Tickets will be available at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center box office (130 N. Tryon St.) and online at To charge by phone, call 704-372-1000.

Based on P.L. Travers' stories and the 1964 Walt Disney film of the same name, "Mary Poppins" the musical features music and lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman. The stage production was created, in collaboration with Cameron Mackintosh, by Julian Fellowes (book) and George Stiles and Anthony Drewe (composers).

"Mary Poppins" has played more than 1,400 performances since opening in 2006, and has grossed over $392 million worldwide.

Friday, April 16, 2010

John Mayer coming; Tom Petty rescheduled

JOHN MAYER returns to Charlotte's Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre on Friday, July 16. Train will open the show. Tickets go on sale Friday, April 23 at 10 a.m. at, the venue box office, Ticketmaster or charge by phone 800-745-3000.

Meanwhile, TOM PETTY & THE HEARTBREAKERS' concert at Verizon has been rescheduled to Sunday, Sept. 19. Tickets purchased for the May concerts will be honored on the new dates. Refunds are available starting Tuesday, April 20.

Calling all Charlotte photographers

Interesting press release of the day. Sounds like a pretty cool project:

The Light Factory Paparazzi announces the City Block Project, a community photography project that features the Center City EpiCentre complex. The objective of the City Block Project is to become an annual occurrence, one that will eventually document different areas of Charlotte. More information is available at The project is open to all who desire to participate, both professional and amateur; the goal is to foster imaginative expression in the Queen City.

The project kicks off with a 24-hour shooting period, beginning at noon on Friday, April 23, ending at noon on Saturday, April 24. Entrants may submit their work online via through Monday, May 3. The judging period extends from Monday, May 3 through Monday, May 9 at which point the winners will be exhibited at the Red Sky Gallery in the EpiCentre through Monday, May 17. All entries submitted will be exhibited on a large digital screen during the opening reception that week at the EpiCentre.

Beginning Saturday, May 22, the winning photographs will be displayed in The Light Factory as part of The Light Factory Annual Members Show until July 2010. Learn more about the Members Show, the Paparazzi, and upcoming Paparazzi events at

The City Block Project is an egalitarian event: everyone can submit and vote on other submissions. The entry fee is $15 for the first submission and $5 for each additional image. Members of the Paparazzi can submit their images for $5 per image. To help any photographer submit the best image they can, The Light Factory will hold a 30-minute mini-class at the EpiCentre at noon Friday, April 23. Stay tuned to

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Want a taste of Scotland?

It’s a celebration of Scottish heritage, first and foremost. But whether or not you’re Scottish, this weekend’s Rural Hill Scottish Festival & Loch Norman Highland Games make for plenty of good, clean, fun people-watching.

Among the more interesting people to watch if you’re heading up to the 17th annual event, which takes place on 100 acres of historic land in Huntersville, just south of Lake Norman:

Any of the professional or amateur athletes participating in the heavy athletics competitions. “The one that people remember most is the caber, which is like tossing a telephone pole,” says Ed McLean, executive director of the Catawba Valley Scottish Society. “They have to flip it end over end, then it is judged by how close it comes to landing at 12 o’clock. That’s a lot of weight to control. … These guys generally weigh in the 320, 330, 350 range – they’re big boys.” Most of the heavy athletics will take place on Saturday.

The members of the Massed Pipe Band, a show-stopping display of about 420 pipers and drummers playing in unison. Noon on Saturday and Sunday. Over the course of the weekend, spectators can see 22 piping and drumming bands; more than 100 individual pipers and drummers will be judged in a competition that takes place Saturday.

People in traditional dress. “You’ll see lots of kilts, and lots of ladies in tartan. There’ll be a lot of pretty tartan dresses,” McLean says. “The men who do the heavy athletics, they’re all kilted.”

The festival also will offer plenty of chances to eat and drink like a Scot.

In addition to cups of Scottish ale for those 21 and older, there’ll be delicacies including Scottish eggs (shelled hard-boiled eggs wrapped in a sausage mixture); Scottish shortbread; and haggis, which contains sheep’s heart, liver and lungs and simmered in its stomach.

Is your mouth watering yet? Then I’ll see you there.

The event opens today and runs various hours through Sunday. Rural Hill is at 4431 Neck Road in Huntersville. For details, an event schedule, and ticket prices ($3-$20), visit or call 704-875-3113.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Share the stage with Bon Jovi

Bon Jovi is in the midst of "The Circle" Tour, and the band is looking for Charlotte fans to share in the limelight during its April 22 concert.

Fans can upload a video of themselves singing “Livin’ On A Prayer,” and several performances will be selected to appear on Time Warner Cable Arena’s giant video screens while the band plays its 1986 hit.

In addition to seeing themselves on the big screen, the winners will receive a prize package featuring a VIP messenger bag with limited edition tour souvenirs and other commemorative items. To learn more, click here.

To be eligible for the prize, videos must be uploaded by Saturday, April 17.

It's Bobcats Fan Appreciation Night

When the Charlotte Bobcats close out the regular season tonight against the Chicago Bulls, the first 10,000 fans through the gates will receive a free "FAN" T-shirt courtesy of Sprite.

Tickets are still available for the final game, including $6 seats in the upper level, $23 seats in the lower level, and $82 club seats. Click here to purchase, or for more information.