Louisville Ballet’s Shakespeare in Dance

Today I went to see Shakespeare in Dance at the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival. It was an amazing performance by the Louisville Ballet.

There are three parts to the show. First is Othello. It is a very powerful play and the movements showed who was in charge. I liked the part when Lago, played by Phillip Velinov, introduced everyone because it was very smooth like he knew something no one else did.

Next is the Romeo and Juliet balcony scene. I like how it is so happy and one could almost hear Juliet, played by Christy Corbitt Miller, say “Romeo, Oh Romeo. Where for art thou Romeo?” Romeo is played by Mark Krieger. It is also striking how easy it is to see that they are happy to see each other.

Finally, there is William’s Folly. I like this because it has many beautiful movements with everyone in exact lines and also because of the musicians. There is a cellist and a violinist, Scott Moore and Charlie Patton. They are also the composers and arrangers of the songs. They play amazing folkish music. A fun bit is that they use Shakespeare’s sonnets. One of the sonnets says to “hear the words with your eyes” which reminded me of the first two ballet scenes that didn’t have words. William Shakespeare was danced thoughtfully by Brandon Ragland, and spoken by Tony Milder and Megan Massie. They were very expressive and entertaining.

This was an amazing play. I hope you can come see it. It is the last play on the Kentucky Shakespeare Passport and it only shows Thursday through Sunday. If you have seen all of them and completed your Passport, you can get a prize.

 

Turtle

CenterStage’s West Side Story

Hello! It’s Turtle and Moose and we went to see West Side Story by CenterStage at the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival. It is an amazing play and it is based on Romeo and Juliet. It also happens to be a musical.

Here’s the plot of the beginning of the play. On the West Side of New York in the 1950’s there are two gangs – the Sharks and the Jets. They hate each other because the Jets feel like the Sharks are trying to take over their territory and the Sharks feel like they are picked on for who they are by the Jets. After the two gangs get in a street fight, Officer Krupke breaks it up and they all run off. It’s war between the two gangs! Tony, a Jet who is trying to get out of the gang, meets Maria, the sister of the leader of the Sharks, and they fall in love. The Jets challenge the Sharks to a fight under the highway and the Sharks agree. What will happen in the fight that must be stopped? How will Maria’s and Tony’s love play out? Find out in West side Story.

Our first favorite character is Maria, played by Kate Welsh, because she is so willing to let Tony, played by Andrew Newton, into her life even though he is a Jet. She is also an amazing singer and dancer. Our other favorite character is Riff, played by Mitch Donahue, because he is a creative character who leads the Jets. He never lets go of what he believes in for the Jets but he also listens to Tony to try to keep things under control.

Our first favorite scene is a back alley scene with the Officer Krupke song. It is cool to see what the gangs think about themselves and how Officer Krupke is mistreating them. Our other favorite scene is when they have the dance. The song is called Dance at the Gym. We like how they are all having a good time but as the dance goes on the gangs are still competing with each other. The scene is really well done and beautiful. It was also cool to see Anxious, played by Tyler Rosenblatt, try to break up the fights.

West Side Story plays through August 7th and then the summer season finishes August 10th-14th with Shakespeare in Dance by the Louisville Ballet. Remember that this is also a Louisville Cultural Pass event and the pass ends August 6th.

Turtle and Moose

Globe Players’ As You Like It

Hello! I went to see the Globe Players’ As You Like It at the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival. It was a really good play and I enjoyed it a lot.

The play opens with Duke Senior being banished by his brother Duke Fredrick. Senior escapes to the Forest of Arden, while his daughter Rosalind stays at the court with her cousin Celia. Orlando tries to leave his unfair brother Oliver by trying to get his share of the fortune. Orlando and Rosalind meet and fall in love. Duke Fredrick banishes Rosalind. Rosalind (disguised as a boy named Ganymede), Celia (disguised as Aliena – sister of Ganymede), and Touchstone the fool leave to find Rosalind’s father in the Forest of Arden.

When they get to Arden they discover that someone has been posting love poems on trees and it turns out to be Orlando. Orlando meets Ganymede and Ganymede makes him act like he is Rosalind to cure his love for her. But for the other characters there is also love. A shepherd named Silvius loves Phoebe who is, in turn, in love with Ganymede. Celia falls in love with Aliena (that’s coincidental) and even Touchstone falls in love with Audrey. Soon Ganymede tries to fix up everything. He asks Phoebe if she will marry Silvius. Phoebe agrees so on the wedding day Ganymede reveals that she is Rosalind. She marries Orlando, Touchstone marries Audrey, Oliver marries Celia and Phoebe marries Silvius and all live happily ever after.

My favorite costume was Charles because he wore red and black shoulder pads with spikes. He also had a manager and an entourage. A really cool thing was all the singing and music. There were electric guitars, guitars, cello, and a banjo. There was also a really amazing dance scene at the end that was really well choreographed. My favorite character was Touchstone because he was funny and like everyone else was also in love. My favorite scene was the Charles wrestling scene because it was in fun to see Charles and Orlando.

Remember that Kentucky Shakespeare is on the Louisville Cultural Pass which is over this coming Saturday. There are two more shows in the park this summer – West Side Story and Shakespeare in Dance.

Moose

The Louisville WaterWorks Museum

I went somewhere and learned about water awarded the best in the country in 2008 and 2013 and it still tastes amazing today. It’s the Louisville WaterWorks Museum. It is all about the super cool history behind Louisville’s water.

First I did a scavenger hunt reading the text on the signs to learn the history behind Louisville Tap. There was also a great activity were there were 6 vials of water. I had to determine if a vial was purified tap water or if it was water straight from the Ohio River based on what was in it. Louisville started to pump water in 1854 and they first used steam to power the machines and then changed to electricity. Louisville was the first place in the world to combine a tunnel and a collector well system as well as riverbed filtration as source of drinking water. There are also a couple of fire hydrants on display that are large so they can pump more water. I think that because it is twice as big, dogs will like it twice as much.

Next there was a tour of the waterworks both new and old. I liked the old water tower – a super tall tower with a simple standpipe that was used to even out the pressure of the pumped water. There is a ladder that goes all the way up to the top and statues of Roman gods on the outside. All of the statues are made out of zinc except for one that is made out of concrete because when a tornado hit the tower in the 1970’s it smashed one of the statues. The biggest piece that remains is the right leg which is displayed in the museum.

After that I went to the newer pump houses that used to run on steam. They worked like a seesaw pulling in water and then pushing it out. The water went to the reservoir and then was distributed to Louisville. It took more than 20 people to run each steam engine. It is much different now. It uses electricity so it is a completely different machine with no people and much smaller. It is loud and there are lots of pipes in view. Next on the tour was a bridge to the intake building in the Ohio River. I learned about how the Louisville Waterworks dealt with floods and the consequences.

Finally is the water itself. Either from an outdoor water fountain or a cooler in the museum it is amazing. It is the best tasting anywhere in the nation.

This was an amazing place and I hope you can come see it. It is a stop on the Louisville Cultural Pass which ends August 6th.

 

Turtle

 

Louisville Nature Center

Hello! It’s Turtle and Moose and we’re back to show you an amazing naturetastic adventure. It’s fun and you can experience nature again and again. It’s the Louisville Nature Center!

First, there was a scavenger hunt. We had to find something in nature that starts with each letter of the alphabet. There were 2 main trails to go on. Make sure to take plenty of water on the hike. The trails had some of the items for the scavenger hunt and the Nature Center’s library had the rest. There was also a bird blind in which to go birdwatching. The birds were really pretty and there was a squirrel just hanging out among the birds. There was also a garden walk with lots of flowers and ponds.

This was a cool place to go. We hope you can come see it. Remember that this is part of the Cultural Pass, if you go to at least 8 places you can be entered in a drawing for cool prizes. The Cultural Pass ends on August 6th.

Turtle and Moose

The Muhammad Ali Center

Hello! It’s Turtle and Moose again and we’d like to share an amazing place on the Louisville Cultural Pass. It’s the Muhammad Ali Center. It was an awesome space and had lots of fun and cool info.

Muhammad Ali was born in Louisville, Kentucky January 17, 1942 and was named Cassius Clay when he was born. He lived in segregated times and didn’t like it. He wanted show other people that segregation is bad and at the age of 12 was determined to win the heavyweight boxing championship. Little did he know that he would win three! In his career he only lost five times and was a torchbearer in the 1996 Olympics. After he won the heavyweight title the first time, he converted to Islam and changed his name to Muhammad Ali. He devoted his life to peace and when he was drafted to fight in the Vietnam War, he refused to enlist and was stripped of his heavyweight title. He was convicted of draft evasion and wasn’t allowed to box anymore. He eventually had the conviction overturned by the Supreme Court and was allowed to fight again. After he retired, he spent his life going from country to country helping people. He developed serious Parkinson’s disease in 1981. He died June 3, 2016.

One of the coolest things of the Muhammad Ali Center is the ride up the escalator because it is the 2nd tallest in Kentucky. It also had many words for welcome in lots of different languages. There was an introduction movie about Muhammad Ali and his life which was very moving and inspiring. The next area talked about how he also helped a lot in the Civil Rights movement because he wasn’t afraid to speak out in public. He was one of the main contributors to the movement and drew many pieces depicting the terrible things that happened to African-Americans.

Another room had lots of screens where you could watch fights from Muhammad Ali’s career like Ali against George Foreman or Sonny Liston. Another cool thing was the fighting center. There were 4 items in that area. They had a speed bag that you punch in tune with beats, a punching bag that bounces to you when you punch it, a shadow area where you copy the moves of The Greatest, and a boxing ring where you learn boxing moves.

This was a really fun place to be in and explore and we hope you can come see it. Remember that this is on the Cultural Pass. If you go to 8 places on the pass you get to be entered for many different prizes.

 

Moose and Turtle

The Big Show – Kentucky Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet

Hi! It’s Turtle and Moose again to talk about the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival’s Romeo and Juliet. This is one of the most well-known plays of Shakespeare and is very tragic. “Two households, both alike in dignity, in fair Verona, where we lay our scene. From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.” Once of the most well-known openings in theatre and with it we learn that Romeo and Juliet will be a story of how two star-crossed lovers from rival families try to find a way to be together.

It starts with the Capulets and the Montagues fighting in the streets of Verona. This is one our favorite scenes because the action was very intense and even with the rain slowing the speed of the fight (for safety’s sake), it was still a thrill to watch. The Prince is angered and says that if there are any more fights between the families then they will be executed. Peter, played by Tony Milder, is a messenger for the Capulets and does not know how to read but he wants to know who he is supposed to invite to a grand party. He asks Romeo who happens to be on the street. Romeo, played by Crystian Wiltshire, is one of our favorite characters because he did everything in his power to see Juliet, played by Megan Massie, and was very intense both in love and in anger. Romeo is reading the list and finds the name Rosaline, with whom Romeo is desperately in love.

Romeo and his friends are not allowed at the party but they show up anyway in masks. Mercutio, played by Bryon Collie and one of Romeo’s friends, is another of our favorite characters because he is funny and sarcastic but is also very serious about his friends. Tybalt, played by Neill Robertson, Juliet’s cousin and a loyal Capulet, shows up and finds out Romeo’s true identity and is hot to avenge this injustice. He is stopped when he tells his uncle and his uncle tells him to leave Romeo alone. Romeo then meets Juliet while dancing and leaves with a heavy heart knowing that he could never be married with her. After the dance Juliet is looking out her window calling Romeo’s name and wishing he was not a Montague. Romeo, who climbed over the walls of the Capulet’s home, miraculously hears her. They talk and they decide to wed, in secret, the very next day.

After the wedding, Tybalt sees Romeo and tries to goad him into a fight but Romeo walks away and Mercutio ends up fighting Tybalt. Tybalt slays Mercutio and then Romeo slays Tybalt in revenge. Romeo is banished. Juliet takes a potion that makes it look like she is dead so she won’t have to marry Paris. Friar Lawrence will then reunite Romeo and Juliet. But the plan fails and Romeo thinks she is dead. Romeo rushes to her tomb with a poison and commits suicide in despair. When Juliet wakes up and finds out that Romeo actually is dead she commits suicide too. This is one of our favorite scenes because of the fight between Romeo and Paris, tragic because of the misunderstandings, and the ultimate tragedy that follows. The two families realize that their hate for each other has caused all of the deaths and make peace and live sadly ever after.

In the first half of the play, the costumes were of the traditional period style but in the second half, the dress because modern with jeans and suits and police in modern uniforms. We believe this is because modern rivalries have just as tragic outcomes as did the families of Verona, and perhaps we can learn from Shakespeare before it is too late.

This was an amazing play and we hope everyone goes to see it. Romeo and Juliet plays through next Tuesday, the 12th, and then all 3 Shakespeare shows will be in rotating rep. Don’t miss any of these shows!

Turtle and Moose