Honky Tonk Angels is at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre

Take three different women from three different backgrounds, each with, however, a love of music and a desire to better themselves, and you have the makings of a rousing romp through the annals of classic Country Music. Three veterans of Beef and Boards’  shows bring incredible singing talent to the stage in the form of the new singing group The Honky Tonk Angels.

Darlene (Shelbi Berry), left, plays guitar and sings “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels” with Sue Ellen (Kaylee Verble), center, and Angela (Bridgette Ludlow)

Angela Bodine, played by Bridgette Ludlow, hails from Texas. Darlene Purvis, played by Shelbi Berry, leaves the poverty of Mississippi for her dreams of stardom. And finally we meet Sue Ellen Smith Barney Fife, played by Kaylee Verble. She’s a former secretary who has a jerk of a boss. When these gals get together hold onto your Stetson ’cause here comes a toe tapping good time!

On stage before the show. The band will be behind the horseshoe partition, which also serves as stage center actor’s entrance/exit

Get ready, as Honky Tonk Angels includes more than 30 classic country tunes from such artists as Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, and Tanya Tucker.. Among these favorites are  “I Will Always Love You,” “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” “Stand By Your Man,” “These Boots Are Made for Walking,” “Delta Dawn,” “Your Good Girl’s Gonna Go Bad,” and “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels.” If you like classic country, you will love the Honky Tonk Angels. We certainly enjoyed the show!

Angela (Bridgette Ludlow) sings “Harper Valley PTA”

To purchase tickets online go to the Beef and Boards website. Tickets are also available by calling the Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre Box Office at 317.872.9664 anytime between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays. Honky Tonk Angels will play through Aug. 14th.

Oliver P. Morton, Indiana’s “War Governor”

Unveiled in 1907, this statue of Morton stands in front of the Statehouse. It was sponsored by Union veterans

Vintage portrait of Morton, courtesy in.gov

Oliver P. Morton was Governor of Indiana during the Civil War. He was chief executive of the state from 1861 to 1867. He took office a mere 90 days before the war began with the Confederate attack on  Fort Sumpter. As soon as he heard of the attack, he rushed the following dispatch to President Lincoln: “On behalf of the state of Indiana, I tender you for the defense of the nation and uphold the authority of the government, 10,000 men.”

Indiana was the first of the western states to send soldiers to join the Union Army. Initially the legislature provided funds for the Indiana troops. Later on when controversy arose, Morton also helped to raise funds to insure that Indiana troops had the best and newest uniforms and weapons.  Morton was known by Indiana Civil War veterans as “the soldier’s friend”. A 12 foot statue of Morton in front of the Indiana Statehouse was placed in 1907.

Blues at the Indianapolis Jazz Kitchen

Sher and I had a most enjoyable time last night at a small music and dining venue in Indianapolis. The Jazz Kitchen is noted for providing an intimate and cozy space for drinks, dining and being up close to the evening’s entertainers. We shared the evening with Sher’s best friend from High School and her husband. Fun conversation sharing travel experiences and activities were had by all during dinner.

The live music was played by a duo of Blues performers supported by drums and bass guitar. The artists were Gordan Bonham and Paul Holdman. Bonham is well known in the Blues community, and Holdman brings an eclectic flair to his guitar work.

The first video gives you a flavor of the quality and energy of these artists and Bonham’s vocals. The second video highlights the marvelous guitar work of Holdman. Enjoy!

We had a marvelous time at the Jazz Kitchen! You can’t beat  this kind of evening: good food, marvelous entertainment and of course a close and warm time shared with old friends. Doesn’t ever get much better than that…

“Hello, Dolly!” is a must see at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre

Sometimes a live theater musical production just clicks. Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre’s production of “Hello, Dolly!” is an example of such a production. While driving home we discussed what we considered our favorite numbers. The realization soon came that we had no favorites: all were delightfully talent filled and delivered perfectly.

Dolly Levi (Suzanne Stark), center, decides she is going to put some “life back into” her life “before the parade passes by” . Photo courtesy B&B media

Dolly Levi (Suzanne Stark), right, tells Horace Vandergelder (Ty Stover) all about the woman she wants him to meet, all while planning to keep him for herself . Photo courtesy B&B media

Highlights of the show are impossible to list as the whole show was one big highlight! The clever stage sets on the turntable worked beautifully. The eye catching costumes brought a wow factor to each and every scene. The B&B’s orchestra arrangements indeed are superb and are an important and vital part of the success of the musical. The animated and dynamic choreography has you tapping your feet and wishing you could dance as well!

Suzanne Stark reprises her role as Dolly Levi for this production. She brings a decades long love of musical theater to her performance. “Hello, Dolly!” is one of, if not the favorite musical of this talented thespian. Her talent on stage is frankly amazing in it’s range covering character development and singing and dancing skills. It is easy to see why Suzanne has become one of Beef & Boards’ patrons favorite performers.

From left: Cornelius Hackl (David Schmittou), Irene Molloy (Grace Morgan), Barnaby Tucker (David Buergler), and Minnie Fay (Shelbi Berry) exert their “Elegance” Photo courtesy B&B Media

All cast members contribute to the success of this 10 time Tony Award winning musical. This true classic love story is filled with song, dance and hilarious comedy.  Each of the scenes brings a quality of talent that ensures that you will sit there watching with a smile on your face. Whether it is during one of the songs, humor in the execution of lines or fast footwork during dances you will be entertained. Guaranteed.

Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre’s production of Hello, Dolly! is now on stage through May 12.  Tickets include the Beef & Boards dinner buffet and select beverages. For tickets, visit Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre or call the box office at 317.872.9664.

“Hello, Dolly!” comes to Beef & Boards

Opening tonight at Indy’s beloved Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre is the classic musical Hello, Dolly. Suzanne Stark stars again as the iconic Dolly Levi in this matchmaking musical classic.  Sher and I are thrilled and excited that we have the opportunity to catch the show this weekend!

Dolly Levi (Suzanne Stark), center, celebrates her triumphant return to society at Harmonia Gardens Restaurant in Hello, Dolly!

The B&B facility

Strait from the B&B press release: “Based on the play “The Matchmaker” by Thornton Wilder, Hello, Dolly! is the story of the vibrant, romantic, and meddling Dolly Levi, who is filled with both personality and an agenda. A turn-of-the-century matchmaker,
Dolly is tasked with arranging a match for the wealthy Horace Vandergelder, although she’d prefer to keep him for herself. Horace may have his sights set on a pretty young widow, but Dolly is determined to get her man.”

This wonderful musical will be onstage through May 15th. Check the Beef & Boards website for details about tickets, showtimes, and the buffet menu for this performance. Don’t miss your chance to see Tony Award winning Hello, Dolly!

Indiana Grand Racing and Casino is now Horseshoe Indianapolis

Casino loyalty program

Back in March of 2009 “Indiana Live” casino opened near Shelbyville, Indiana, about 30 miles southeast of Indianapolis. The pari-mutuel race track had opened in April of 2003. Over the years the facility had a few different owners, a couple of names and many improvements. Recently the latest name change came into play: Horseshoe Indianapolis is the new name for this Caesars Entertainment Inc. casino.

New name posted

The racetrack is going through some massive changes, renovations and additions. There is a new 50 room dorm for the backstretch workers. There is also a 105 stall winterized barn that will open soon. The casino itself is going through some massive additions, including new carpet and lighting throughout, 25,000 new square feet of gaming floor with 225 new slots and 10 new table games. In addition there is now a new World Series of Poker game room in use.

Hopefully the casino will soon reopen its eating facilities. They had a great buffet, a casual restaurant and a high end steakhouse, none of these have reopened. The only food available now is at what they call a “Sidewalk Cafe”, serving a limited menu. Racing does start again in April.

 

Kinky Boots at Beef & Boards

We finally got to spend a wonderful evening together at Beef & Boards. That danged virus had kept us away for different reasons since our last time attending a show in October, 2019. Once again the buffet was great and the show was very very entertaining. It was great to be back enjoying live musical theater, and we highly recommend this show!

Lola (Jonathan Studdard), center, performs “Raise You Up” with her Angels at the fashion show.

Kinky Boots, the five time Tony Award winner for the Best Musical is playing now at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre. This is the first time that the musical has played at Indy’s beloved dinner theater. Based on a true story and featuring Cyndi Lauper music, the production has also deservedly been awarded the Best Original Score and the Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album.

Lola (Jonathan Studdard) and Charlie (Jacob Butler) celebrate the launch of their line of transvestite footwear with the factory employees

The story chronicles the strange and chance meeting of a struggling shoe factory owner Charley and a marvelously outspoken and animated drag queen Lola. What follows is a blend of music, mayhem, heartwarming story twists and turns and some  social commentary on  human sexual identities. One of the classic lines uttered several times was “Ladies .. gentlemen… and those who have yet to make up their minds!”.

Lola (Jonathan Studdard), center, performs at the Blue Angel Club with her Angels

Of note are the performances of, frankly, the entire cast. You will see a lot of talent on stage during Kinky Boots. Jonathan Studdard’s portrayal of Lola/Simon is remarkable in character and intensity. Jacob Butler’s shoe maker Charlie is a solid portrayal of a conservative man trying to get a grip on his relationship with a drag queen. Sparks do fly  between Lola, Charlie and Don (Peter Scharbrough) one of the factory workers. Lola’s Angels are four very talented men in drag as backup singers and dancers.

Lola (Jonathan Studdard), right, sings “I’m Not My Father’s Son” to Charlie (Jacob Butler)

Lola (Jonathan Studdard) sings “Hold Me in Your Heart” at the Clacton Nursing Home

As you would suspect, the music from Cyndi Lauper is a wonderful choice of this production. The singing and dancing is superb. Hats off to the B&B orchestra, costume design and choreography. Kinky Boots is on stage through March 27 at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre. Tickets include the Beef & Boards dinner buffet and select beverages. For tickets, visit Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre or call the box office at 317.872.9664. (Please note that this show is rated PG-13 for some adult content.)

 

 

 

 

This has survived over 5000 years

This Egyptian vessel has survived for over 5000 years. It is amazing that you can still observe it close up in the Newfields  museum in Indianapolis.

This pot is about 14 inches tall

This artifact is identified in a museum information label as a Nagada II Vessel, titled Flamingos. It is dated 3400-3200 B.C. The pictures of the flamingos and the geometric lines are typical of other pots of the same vintage.