It’s ok to feel down

It’s ok to feel down. It’s ok to feel sad. It’s ok to feel discouraged. It’s ok to feel disappointed. It’s ok to feel slighted. It’s ok to feel upset. It’s ok to feel anxious. It’s ok to feel nervous. To feel these is human… Society compels us to always be happy – this is not reality. Through these feelings, we grow to understand others and these feelings’ opposites – joy, love & calmness. Marvel at the tapestry of feelings we experience.

~ DBR

KidLitCon 2015 | The Hyatt Place (Baltimore)

The KidLitCon 2015 is Here!

We come across so many gatherings, seminars, and conferences when it comes to book launches and promotions for adults, but the scope for children’s books is severely limited. People are gradually warming to the idea, but more needs to be done. KidLitCon strives to make a difference by hosting a meet comprising bloggers who talk about kids’ and young adult books with numerous librarians, authors, teachers, parents, booksellers, publishers, and readers joining in.

What is KidLitCon?

This event deals exclusively with books of a particular genre. The attendees, despite loving children’s’ books, are also heavily involved in promoting the right books for young minds. Common topics of discussion might include the dynamic between publishers and bloggers, pros and cons of penning critical reviews, and combating blogger burnout. It is a fantastic platform to network with like-minded indviduals who share their love for children’s literature.

What can you expect this year?

According to a notice sent to publishers, the focus this year will be on the criteria of a good children’s book, professional blogging tips, career development sessions, celebrating authors and illustrators who are attendees, and talk to judges involved in different award programs. Keeping in line with the theme of 2014, diversity will occupy a significant portion of the conference. Sheila Ruth and Paula Willey of Wands and Worlds and unadulterated.us respectively, are the co-organizers for 2015. Even though the main events are on Saturday, some sessions will be conducted on Friday too, and since the dates clash with Columbus Day weekend, a tour day is being planned on Sunday for those who can stay back. It is a great opportunity to visit this wonderful city and check out historic landmarks, including some that will pique your literary interest. The Cybil Awards are also turning a decade old, so there might be some sort of celebration for that as well.

The Hyatt Place Baltimore Inner Harbor has garnered a lot of praise as a top-class hotel with amazing facilities. The Kidlitcon 2015 is being held there because of amenities like built-in AV in meeting rooms, spacious guest rooms with ample scope for sharing, Wi-Fi, and so on. The prices are quite reasonable and if you are lucky, you might get a significant discount too!

So what are you waiting for? Reserve your spots today!

Cash Cash and Tritonal |The Showbox Sodo (Seattle, WA)

Music has the ability to accomplish unlimited objectives. For instance, music has the ability to put you in a good mood when you are down, help you relax after a long hectic day, provide entertainment, and a host of other good stuff. So when you get the chance to witness iconic names in the world of music sharing a single stage, it is one spectacle you should definitely not miss out on!

Meet the Titans

What could be better than some of the best DJs, belting out fantastic tunes and music? Fall is approaching soon, and October 9th will be a remarkable day at the Showbox Sodo in Seattle, when Cash Cash and Tritonal turn up to give one of the most versatile and dynamic performances you have ever seen. They are known as an Untouchable set of dance-music destroyers due to their talent of combining talent and skills from vastly different perspectives and mixing it to create something unique and beautiful. Cash Cash has been in the news thanks to its brotherly trio and infectious, energetic hooks, while Tritonal carved its own niche as a hype-drawing duo with an unquenchable thirst for dance music. Their show is bound to be an event that you won’t forget for a long time, especially due to an overly positive vibe that practically radiates off them!

Untouchable and More…

Cash and Tritonal’s collaboration, “Untouchable” has generated tremendous response and garnered praise from thousands of dedicated fans. If you haven’t listened to it yet, you don’t know what you are missing! Untouchable is the result of fusing the talent of these big league names that feature amazing male vocals and bright progressive house drop. Tritonal has hits like “Anchor” and “Now or Never” under its belt, while Cash Cash is known for “Surrender” and “Take Me Home.” This North American Tour by them is to celebrate the resounding success of Untouchable. It begins in New Orleans this September, and covers major spots in US & Canada, all of which haven’t been divulged. Party Favor, gladiator, and Yogi will also join them sometime during the two-month long tour.

You are certainly lucky this fall – book your tickets right away to avoid disappointment, as the show is going to be choc-a-block with eager fans. Getting the tickets in advance is all the more important if you plan on attending in a large group. For more details about dates and places covered, you can go to their Click Here to See Tour Dates

Or click here, to purchase tickets. 

Children of Eden | PERFORMING ARTS SAN ANTONIO (San Antonio, TX.)

Children of Eden Imparts Values to be Cherished Forever

The Children of Eden was initially penned in 1986 by Youth Sing Praise, which was a high school theatre camp that placed great emphasis on religion. Back then it was titled Family Tree, with its first performance at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville, Illinois. It was Stephen Schwartz who adapted the script and music of the original story and conceptualized the delightful musical fare we see today.

Brief History

Developed as a Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) workshop and directed by John Caird.  After severe budget cuts, it opened at the Prince Edward Theatre in London’s West End on January 8, 1991. Unfortunately, it lasted only a little over 4 months due to poor reviews, dampening all dreams of a switch to Broadway. Even the original London cast album being released on CD and LP, faced problems as the CDs were full of manufacturing glitches rendering the discs unplayable.

Revival of the Musical

Till date the only reminder of the original cast of the show exists in a playable copy of the disc that features Stephen Schwartz playing the piano. Very few people have the CD or a digital copy in possession, which includes Schwartz himself and Michael Kol. This rare recording was done before the Paper Mill Playhouse production, so all rewrites and revisions could be reviewed properly. During the 1990s, there were several production houses that tried to revive Children of Eden with revisions, editing, and introduction of songs and scenes. Papermill opened the play in Millburn, New Jersey, featuring Stephanie Mills, which is the licensed version for production in the United States. It is also referred to as the Paper Mill version.

Life lessons and more…

The story revolves around biblical stories of Genesis interweaved with personal interactions within a family. This is an amazing musical that has featured up to 60 members at a time! It starts with the creation of the universe, where Father gives life to his children Adam and Eve, and is faced with the pain of sacrifice when he has to let them go. The same lesson is integrated into the parenting of Cain, Abel, and Seth and Noah when it comes to his sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The musical teaches you various emotions, evaluates choices you make, risks that have to be undertaken, and consequences that can’t be avoided.

This musical is coming to San Antonio in October, so make sure your tickets are booked well in advance.

The Musical Illusionist TOMMY WIND | Theater & Event Center (Las Vegas, Nevada)

Experience Mystery, Enigma and Harmony

When the music and magic are blended together, the outcome is expected to be thrilling and compelling to say the least. The best part is that Tommy Wind’s performances are enjoyable and well-liked by all age groups. After all, who wouldn’t want to watch a young illusionist with amazing stage presence who combines magic with his musical talents?

 

The seed takes root

Tommy’s association with magic commenced when he was just 7 years old when his grandfather showed him his very first trick, the Vanishing Hanky. Right at that time, this then Staten Island resident fell in love with art and spent every free minute trying to absorb as much knowledge as he could about magic. His sources were diverse from to master magicians like Jeff McBride. When he turned 19, he became one of the youngest magicians to receive the prestigious title of Master Illusionist.

 

Name and fame

He went on to perform at a myriad of venues such as New York City, Atlantic City, and Las Vegas. He has charmed thousands worldwide and even entertained at the NFL. He has also appeared on Criss Angel’s “Mindfreak” and the hit NBC show, “I Do.”  His powerful, large-scale illusion, remarkable close up magic, marital arts, mentalism, and humorous interactive moments are what makes his show brilliant. His musical side is revealed when he plays several objects such as the electric guitar, harmonic, piano, and violin. The drum sequence is fast paced and a must-watch.

 

Why watch his performance?

Tommy’s shows are a perfect example of how rock ‘n’ roll can be infused with magic – no wonder the Las Vegas Strip is always packed whenever he puts on a show, not to mention the fact he is one of the youngest illusionists to have a show on the Strip. Jet airplane and Lamborghini appearances have been lauded worldwide, with Time Out Magazine calling him “mind boggling”, while Awe Magazine quotes, “he takes the audience to another place.” Daring escapes, spectacular comedy, a floating guitar, a harp player vanishing in the blink of eye, dancers appearing and disappearing – the performances are a treat indeed.

With so many illusionists and magicians around, Tommy could have disappeared into the crowd, but his uniqueness has helped him to create a permanent niche in the world of magic. The versatile performer and accomplished musician, has won numerous awards and accolades, and will continue to do so, if he keeps delivering intriguing shows like these. So what are you waiting for? Get your tickets now!

Get Tickets to See
The Musical Illusionist TOMMY WIND

The Fantastiks | Snapple Theater (New York)

A “Fantasticks” Spectacle Indeed

When a show moves into the 20,000 performance range, there is no doubt regarding its popularity and acceptance. It truly becomes a legend, like The Fantasticks, which is the world’s longest running musical and even if you are not much of a theatre person, missing a live performance of this caliber is a crime!

 

The simplistic backdrops
The USP of the show is its “old wine in a new bottle” format of boy meets girl with a fresh style of storytelling. The Narrator and other cast speak to the audience directly throughout the duration of the play. The small, simple stage with a bench, a chair, a trunk and a sheet displaying logo of the show, makes up the entire setting. Pierce Cravens is amazing as the Mute and wall that fills up all visual voids. The music is great, especially the customary “Try to Remember” and “Soon It’s Gonna Rain” by Harvey Schmidt. The two-member orchestra with Robert Felstein at the piano and Maria Banks at the harp do a great job as well.

 

Captivating performances
The present cast comprises 8 members with MacIntyre Dixon, turning in a brilliant performance as The Old Actor with his charm and persona that combines traits of being world weary and flamboyant at the same time. The Man Who Dies, whose forte lies in faking deaths using create methods has excellent timing, which is augmented by his spontaneous personality – Michael Nostrand more than does justice to his role.

Talent galore
The crafty co-conspirators, the two fathers – Don Sharkey and Kevin R. Free, have powerful chemistry, which can be experienced first-hand on the stage. Their duets deserve a special mention as they are infused with modern musical comedy finesse and vaudevillian style. Michael Sharon as the Narrator bewitches with his dimple grin and cunning mannerisms. As for the protagonists, The Boy and The Girl played by Max Crumm and Samantha Bruce respectively set the stage on fire with their romance and witty comedy. Bruce’s sincerity shines through, as does her wonderful voice, while Crum has an off-handed, low-key delivery and a nice singing voice. Overall, you root for these characters, even though you are already aware of how their story concludes.

The musical does have its off moments when its mysticism becomes slightly self-aware, but this can be attributed to the show being conceptualized in the early 60s, when everything was drastically different. Nevertheless, you should definitely watch this iconic show at the Snapple Theatre in New York.

Chris Brown | One Hell of a Nite Tour

A Helluva Tour for Sure!

Music doesn’t follow rules or equations – it creates its own path and niche. It allows you to break open the shackles that restrict your freedom and take you to a happy place – as an artist, you shouldn’t be afraid to step out of the comfort zone, a statement, which Chris Brown greatly believed in. He is a triple threat – artist, dance, and actor, which comes as no surprise since he started dabbling in singing and dancing from a very young age.

Rise to stardom
Brown was born in Tappahannock, Virginia and due to his fascination with music; he was closely involved with the church choir and participated in numerous locally held talent shows. His debut album, in association with Jive Records gained the number two position on the US Billboard 200 and received a double platinum certification with record breaking sales. He followed it up with Exclusive that achieved similar sales figures.

…and the dominos fall
It all went downhill in 2009 when Brown was subjected to harsh media glares due to the felony assault of his girlfriend at the time, well-known singer Rihanna. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 5 years of probation as well as 6 months of community service. Needless to say, it was a very rough patch in Brown’s life but his fans gave him strength to pull through, so he could put all transgressions in the past and move on.

Lazarus can rise yet again
His dedicated fans welcomed their hero with open arms when he began to release music online, including the mix tapes with his # 1 singles “Deuces” and “No BS.” Encouraged with the brilliant response, he titled his new album as F.A.M.E, an acronym for Fans Are My Everything. He repeatedly thanked his fans for their love and support, and how they are an important part of his rebound and albeit slow, but steady progress up the ladder of success yet again. The hot favorite of F.A.M.E. was “Beautiful People”.

Concert tour details
The summer amphitheatre tour, also known as “One Hell of a Nite Tour” produced by Live Nation and Haymon Events, will take Brown from Kansas City, which is the first stop, on 12th August, through Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Miami and San Diego, with the final performance in Concord on 19th September. It also features performances by Kid Ink, Omarion, Fetty Wap and Teyana Taylor. The tour is interestingly timed during a major event in Brown’s life – his attempts to reconcile with Karrueche Tran, with whom he has a daughter named Royalty. He is doing his best to smooth over stuff with Tran and be a part of his kid’s life at the same time.

Get your tickets booked for Chris Brown’s “One Hell of a Nite Tour” right away to avoid last-minute disappointments.

GET YOUR TICKETS TODAY

Miguel Live in Concert | Wildhearts Tour 2015

Experience the Power of Wildheart

The wait is finally over for Miguel fans! After the success of Kaleidoscope Dream in 2012, he had announced a follow-up, which is due about 3 years later, on 30th June, just days away. The new album is called Wildheart, and needless to say, has generated enormous hype and fans are literally counting the hours with bated breath.

Earlier portfolio
Right before Wildheart, Miguel scored several one-off singles and collaborations, which features duets with Jessie Ware and Janelle Monáe, Adult Swim song “Can’t Sleep Together”, and of course, his musical inputs to the soundtracks of the Girls and Hunger Games. The reason why there is an increasing buzz around Wildheart’s release is that he hasn’t been too forthcoming with details about the album. Although, he has admitted to working in the studio with Pharrell and producer DJ Premier, who is well-known for his association with D’Angelo, Jay Z, and Nas.

His summer tour
To popularize his album, he shared “Coffee (F*cking)” that went viral instantly. It was basically a revamped form of the “Coffee Track” that originated about a year back, and was among the his surprise three-song EP in December as well. It features guest bars from Wale and highlights a double shot of sexual desire – a fantastic marketing idea that truly hit home! He is all set to hit the road for an official summer tour, where he exclusively promotes Wildheart. It starts in late July and spans across Houston, Atlanta, New York City, Toronto, Chicago, and many more. The final performance will be in Los Angeles at the onset of September. Pre-orders for the album have shot up like crazy on iTunes, and it looks like the Adorn star has yet another winner on his hands.

Bring out the wildness
Wildheart is supposed to be a love letter dedicated to his hometown of Los Angeles with strong influences of hip-hop tunes and rock music to portray how California soul sounds in 2015. Apparently, the music from the album is being streamed in certain regions already, before its release via NPR Music’s First Listen. The whole idea is to let fans enjoy the music and feel it, which is why the Grammy winner is staging a special First Listen Live performance at (Le) Poisson Rouge in New York City on June 30, before he heads out for his summer tour. Other First Listen Live performers include Arcade Fire, ScHoolboy Q, Iggy and The Stooges and Alabama Shakes.

Special guest Dorothy, who performs in an LA-based band of the same name with guitarist Mark Jackson, bassist Gregg Cash and drummer Zac Morris, is joining Miguel on the tour. They mostly play traditional rock with a blues vibe, so it will be interesting to see what the powerful combination of Miguel and Dorothy will create.