This week’s Mid-Week Intermission features our Director of Ticketing Services, Chris Boone. He’s our resident dog-whisperer, underground arts lover, and really loves making playlists (especially when vinyl records are involved).
I’m Chris Boone. Currently, I’m most recognizable as the voice behind the Long Center’s voicemail and phone prompts, but when I’m not busy dodging voice fame & stardom, I’m also part of our great Ticketing & Box Office team working to get you the best seats in the house to ensure you have an amazing experience with us. Between us birds, I’ll let you in on a little secret – my favorite seats are int he front mezzanine.
HERE’S HOW I’M SPENDING MY FREE TIME THIS WEEK:
MONTOPOLIS LIVE FROM THEIR LIVING ROOM
Tuesdays at 8pm / @montopolismusic
I was introduced to Montopolis at the Long Center in November of 2018 and I have been a fan ever since. Montopolis also happens to be THE LAST SHOW I saw before we all entered the weird version of Groundhog Day we’re all in. I caught them at Alamo Drafthouse Ritz with “The Return of Draw Egan” – it surely didn’t disappoint and I’m surely not disappointed for it to have been my sign-off event before quarantine. Justin Sherburn was previously a member of Okkerville River (keep an out for him on Long Story Short later), and although he contributed to several stellar albums, the album True Love Cast Out All Evil with Roky Erickson is my personal fave.
Bandcamp always, special on 5/1, KMFA appearance 5/14
Graham recently uploaded A TON of albums to his Bandcamp page AND, on Friday May 1st, Bandcamp is waiving their portion of sales for 24 hours SOOO it’s the perfect time to support any artist, much less an icon. Bandcamp previously waived their share to support artists during this crisis and $4.3 MILLION DOLLARS in sales occurred and 100% went directly the artists.
There is plenty of ground to cover here from The Golden Arm Trio to Graham’s score for Ballet Austin’s Belle Redux. Dig in.
You can also catch Graham as part of KMFA’s Sound Ideas on Thursday, May 4th at 1pm/CST via Facebook Live where he’ll discuss how to make music at home on the cheap and some recording techniques.
SXSW FILMS SERIES ON AMAZON PRIME VIDEO
Now through May 6th
Here’s our collective chance to support filmmakers, SXSW, and expand our cinematic horizons. Every SXSW the Long Center is home to a portion of their film series, so this opportunity to still get to enjoy these films, shorts, and episodic series this year is surely welcomed. We’ve all binged our way through Neflix anyway. Level up.
ARTIST TALKS TO THE BLANTON / BLANTON FROM HOME
Wherever you like / blantonmuseum.org
Part of the Blanton’s Museum From Home offerings, Artists Talk to the Blanton is a diverse interview series that dives into a wide range of artists working in different mediums, but you can also find some coloring pages and a virtual tour. There’s also a curated conversation series taking place every Tuesday with live Q&A sessions with Blanton staff via Zoom. Each session has a recommended cocktail/mocktail recipe included. #MuseumFromHome
I LOVE T. Rex. Seriously. There isn’t a week that Futuristic Dragon doesn’t wind up on my turntable. Although these episodes have been available in snippets, now all 6 episodes are available in their entirety. It’s a piece of perfect glam kitsch escapism. Watch Marc lip synch some T. Rex hits and some awkward dancing, but also see The Jam, Generation X, Hawkwind, The Boomtown Rats, and David Bowie grace the stage. This is for fans of the ’70s, glam, punk, lip synching, serving lewks, and awkward dancing.
PARKS AND RECREATION REUNION SPECIAL (!)
Thursday, April 30th / NBC
Make your best JJ’s Diner waffle knock-off, load up the whipped cream, and pass the salgar – this is going to be EXACTLY what we all need right now. In true Leslie Knope fashion, the special is also raising funds for Feeding America’s COVID-19 Response Fund which helps food banks across the country. I’m REALLY hoping Andy assembles Mouse Rat via Zoom or hosts a Johnny Karate special-within-the-special. We’ll see.
I hope you enjoy some of these as much as I do. We can’t wait to see all of you on the other side of this. Stay safe, and be kind to each other.
POSTED ON APRIL 21, 2020 BY LONG
This week’s Mid-Week Intermission features our President & CEO, Cory Baker. Hear about her love for this city, its community, and what she’s tuning in to this week.
I love Austin. I know that sounds cliché but ever since I visited my sister here as a teenager, I’ve been trying to move here. And now, as part of this incredibly talented team, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and work with extraordinary, passionate artists, leaders, and community members and had a front-row seat to watch Austin evolve while sustaining the cultural values that shape us. Because Austin, much like the Long Center, has had a few growing pains amidst a rapidly changing environment, and my love has grown as we’ve weathered those challenges by staying true to the soul that makes this city so special.
Today, amid the worst global crisis of our lifetimes, I find strength in remembering why I came here and why my love for my home continues to grow. Knowing the character of Austin as a community that values artists and musicians and takes pride in taking care of each other is what gives me unyielding faith that we will come out of this both stronger and more unified than we’ve ever been. “Crisis doesn’t create character, it reveals it.” This quote came up in my interview with the brilliant Austin musician Gina Chavez, as we recognized that Austin doesn’t need to change to get through this crisis, we just need to remain true to who we’ve always been.
We feel the support of our community around us as we look to #CreateInPlace to keep us connecting with our artists and with each other. And as ATX goes virtual, I’ve added my picks-for-the-week to the growing list of creative surprises happening at this very moment. Long Live Love.
April 24 – 26 / @fuseboxfestival & YouTube TV
Fusebox Festival has been a highlight of my year even before I moved to Austin. Ron Berry and his team do a fabulous job curating an eclectic, thought-provoking and entertaining lineup and this year they are going virtual. Check out my #LongStoryShort interview with Ron, premiering tonight at 8pm on our Facebook page, and enjoy this internationally-beloved Festival from the comfort of your home.
It’s no secret that Austin is the Live Music Capital of the World but I think there is also a strong case that we have the greatest female artists in the country. Exhibits one, two, and three: Suzanna Choffel, Gina Chavez, and Jackie Venson, all of whom have been streaming live on a consistent basis throughout the crisis. I highly recommend checking them out virtually for inspiration now and rushing out to see them live as soon as we’re able.
April 22 at 7pm / Weekly
Night Shift was a weekly event created by our good friends Nakia Reynoso and Patrick Buchta, co-founders of Austin Texas Musicians, a group that used to connect & network at Beerland. The event has now moved to a weekly, online, live talk show discussing what’s happening with music in ATX. This week (4/22) features special guests Natashe Harper-Madison (District 2 Council Member), Mitch Ballard (Creative Director, BMI Texas), Velissa Chapa (Legal Counsel for Texas Workforce Commission), and musical guest Zach Person. Keep an eye out for Nakia on #LongStoryShort soon.
Weekly activity schedule / @TheThinkery
My boys are 3 and 5 so I’m always looking for fun ways to entertain (and hopefully educate) them. We love The Thinkery, but since we can’t go in person, we’ve had fun following their “Thinkery at Home” projects.
DJ D-NICE’S CLUB QUARANTINE
Daily / Instagram Live @dnice
Does anyone else remember DJ D-NICE? Boogie Down Productions? “They Call Me D-Nice?” …ring any bells? He has become an unlikely hero experiencing a resurgence with old-school fans like me (and now ones) with his surprise-hit “Club Quarantine” on Instagram. Besides being just fund to dance with a few thousand strangers, there is a slew of incredible surprise guest-revelers that pop up including Oprah, Bernie Sanders, and Rihanna to name a few.
There is much too much going on in this city (in the best way) to list everything here, but our team is dedicated to bringing as much as we can to as many as we can during this time. The pandemic has changed the way we gather, but this is only an intermission and the Long Center’s mission remains unchanged. So as we look forward to gathering again, please consider making a tax-deductible gift to continue your support for our nonprofit and our talented team that makes sure the show goes on.
Thank you, Austin, for making us part of your lives!
POSTED ON APRIL 16, 2020 BY LONG
Students, teachers, musicians, and theatre professionals woke up across the Greater Austin area this morning less exhausted than this time last year, but still just as excited. Yesterday, April 15, was the evening of the would-be live ceremony of the 2020 Greater Austin High School Musical Theatre Awards — an annual, 9-month long program that has become the mainstay of arts education in Austin and across the Central Texas area for so many.
And now, the Long Center and our Education team are thrilled to share that the artistic team behind 6 stellar GAHSMTA live ceremonies is hard at work on yet another very special production…
We are all absolutely thrilled to be able to announce that we will be taking the 7th Annual GAHSMTA Ceremony straight to your screens at home, MAY 31, 2020!
Last night, we saw an outpouring of support for this event from the community, and we can’t wait to bring all the #facesofgahsmta together again for a virtual extravaganza of dance, laughter, music, and togetherness. Stick close to our @gahsmta & @longcenter social media channels for school nomination shoutouts, senior spotlights (wish them luck!), teasing show highlights, behind-the-scenes takes, messages of support from all around, and more details about how to watch, promote, and help the production.
Here’s some of the joy & support we saw from the community yesterday, featuring this year’s GAHSMTA shirt —
POSTED ON APRIL 13, 2020 BY LONG
This week, #CreateInPlace features our Director of Education and Outreach, Ginger Morris, who has been an integral part of the Austin theatre community since her college days. Hear a bit more from Ginger, the Long Center Education program, and what she’s tuning in to this week.
Hey, all! I’m Ginger Morris, and along with my staff and a host of amazing artists from near and far, we create and foster theatre programs for Austin area students such as the Greater Austin High School Musical Theatre Awards, Summer Stock Austin, College Audition Program, and the Select Ensemble performance company.
I am personally thrilled that we have been able to maintain an artistic community online over the past few weeks and have learned some new skills in the process.
5 THINGS I’M CHECKING OUT IN AUSTIN RIGHT NOW (ONLY I CHOSE 8).
2020 VIRTUAL GREATER AUSTIN HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL THEATRE AWARDS
Premiering May 31st!
Tonight, April 15th, would’ve been the 7th annual GAHSMTA awards, and we are heartbroken that we can’t gather in-person to celebrate this year’s ceremony on the literal stage. But I’m so happy to announce that we’ll be taking the Awards to the VIRTUAL STAGE on May 31st! Stay tuned for more and catch highlights @gahsmta & @longcenter along the way.
TUESDAYS WITH MILES
Tuesdays at 7pm CST / live from the house of singer/songwriter Miles Zuniga
I met Miles in 2006 while working on an original musical with his band called The Small Stars. We did a few workshops and had a lot of fun. The Small Stars no longer exist, but you can still enjoy some of the songs from the never fully-executed musical. Miles is an original member of the band Fastball and plays locally with the Resentments at the Saxon Pub on Sunday evenings. For now though, he streams from home at 7pm on Tuesdays.
PARAMOUNT THEATRE’S STORY WRANGLERS
Mondays at 11:30am / @ParamountEducation
This is an incredible program that the Paramount is taking online. And perfect for the kiddos in your life who could benefit from online story writing opportunities.
ANCHORED IN LOVE – YOGA WITH ADRIENE MISHLER
Friday, April 17 at 11am CST / pay what you want / @practiceyogaaustin
Adriene was a high school theatre student and I had the privilege of being one of her teachers. She has since found her true passion was to get the tools of yoga into schools and homes with her YouTube channel, Yoga with Adriene. She is hosting a session for Practice Yoga Austin on Friday morning – join me!
BALLET AUSTIN’S VIRTUAL DANCE & FITNESS CLASSES
Happening all the time!
Ballet Austin will keep you moving this week with free online sessions for all ages. You can take classes at any time that works for you from your laptop on demand (pay-per-class) or free from their instructors streaming live from Instagram or Facebook. Check for their daily schedule, and make their BE WELL Network a daily open tab in your browser.
BEAT ROOT REVIVAL
April 25 at 5pm CST / Live Stream
I absolutely love these two performers, and I try to catch their Austin shows as often as possible. They are musically gifted and so much fun to watch, and were supposed to play at the cancelled Kerville Folk Festival in June. Here’s to many more live performances in the future–I’m excited to take a break and enjoy them from my home next week!
THE BEST DANCE SESSIONS WITH SARA BURKE
However often your schedule allows!
Anyone looking to keep stretching those dance muscles and needing some private sessions, Sara Burke is fantastic. Not only does she continually choreograph and train students in the Long Center’s Education programs, but she is also offering tailor-made online sessions to fit your pocket book.
And, because I went rogue, here’s your added PICK-ME-UP MOMENT…
If you need a stress-reducing, feel-good moment, take a 3-minute break and join the artistic team behind Summer Stock Austin’s annual original musical in their NEW digital, “Socially Distant Dance Party.” There are many SSA alum featured in this video, too!
Ultimately, my theatre-loving heart is hopeful for the day when we can gather again to enjoy live arts. Until then, let’s keep virtually celebrating each other and our amazing community.