Arts Briefs: Nutcracker prep for kids, Saarinen at KMAC and Slant Culture Festival returns

Kids in the Nutcracker. Photo by David Toczko

Kids in the Nutcracker. Photo by David Toczko

Brown-Forman Nutcracker announces children’s events

Even after five years, it still strikes me as strange that ours is the “Brown-Forman Nutcracker.” But really, Brown-Forman paid for it (new choreography and style to the tune of a million dollars), so they have every right to name it. And “Brown-Forman Nutcracker” is heaps better than the “Jack Daniels Nutcracker” or the “Southern Comfort Nutcracker.”

Anyway, it’s a month away from Nutcracker season, but you can start “warming up” your little one for his or her first ballet by attending Nutcracker Family Story Time with the Louisville Ballet. (Technically, all ages are welcome, but I imagine your little lad or lass would be the target audience.)

Come listen to this classic holiday story read by a dancer from the Louisville Ballet and enjoy some Nutcracker-inspired activities. All story times begin at 6:30 p.m.

  • November 18 at the St. Matthews Library, 3940 Grandview Avenue
  • November 19 at the Main Library, 301 York Street
  • November 21 at the Southwest Branch, 10375 Dixie Highway
  • December 12 at Iroquois Branch, 601 W. Woodlawn Ave

Also for the little fans, the Ballet will host two pre-show “Sugar Plum Parties” featuring the children’s casts of the Nutcracker. $15 per person includes sandwiches platters, chips, sweets table with choice of milk or juice, photos with cast members, special art projects, and a sing-along. (Tickets to the Nutcracker are additional. These parties will be on  Sun., Dec 8 and Sat., Dec. 14  at 11:30 a.m. in the East Room of The Kentucky Center.

“The Brown-Forman Nutcracker” runs December 7 – 22 in the Whitney Hall at The Kentucky Center. A gift from the Brown-Forman Corporation to the Louisville Orchestra will allow them to provide live music for all performances. Ticket prices start at $30 and are available in-person at The Kentucky Center box office, by phone at (502) 584-7777,  or online at For more information on the Louisville Ballet and The Brown-Forman Nutcracker visit

Eero Saarinen: A Reputation For Innovation at the KMAC

Even people who don’t know architects and designers know the work of Eero Saarinen, the Finnish-born American architect whose iconic design work helped create a new American aesthetic. The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft will be hosting an exhibit of Saarinen’s works Nov. 23 – Jan. 19, 2014

Saarinen designed iconic structures like the Saint Louis Gateway Arch, the TWA Terminal at New York’s JFK Airport, the Dulles Airport in Washington DC, and the commissioned modern home and the Miller House in Columbus, In.

He was also at the fore of the modern furniture movement. He first gained recognition when he partnered with Charles Eames for the “Organic Design in Home Furnishings” competition in 1940, for which they received first prize. Saarinen also designed the iconic “Tulip Chair,” which was considered a “space-age” design, a reputation that was solidified when the Tulip Chair was used in the 1960’s television show “Star Trek” as the chairs on the spaceship’s bridge.

The museum will host a public opening on Nov. 23. The exhibit is curated by Mina Marefat, PhD, AIA.

Slant-notagline2-270x300Slant Culture Theatre Festival returns for its second year

The Slant Culture Theatre Festival, featuring “surprising, challenging, and uncommon works” by Louisville area theater companies and performers, returns for its second year this month. The Festival runs Nov. 14 – 25 at Walden Theatre.

Here’s the full list of companies and performers involved this year (click each name for full production information):

Producing Companies

Slant Guests and Special to the Festival

The Festival Launch Party is Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m. There will be a bar and the Grind food truck will be on site. Entertainment will be provided by Billy Goat Strut Revue, Justin Paul Lewis, and Sandpaper Dolls.

Ticket are available for individual shows, or audiences can select from Day Passes (for any one Saturday or Sunday), a Budget Pass, a Single-Weekend Pass and Full-Festival Pass. Individual tickets are $12 and Full Festival Passes are $65. View the entire Slant Calendar here and buy Tickets.