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.

“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!

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.)

 

 

 

 

We’re finally off to Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre

Photo courtesy Beef & Boards Media

It has been since October 2019 since our last visit to Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre in Indianapolis. COVID-19 closed it for a long time, and some rocky start ups were also hurt by that danged pandemic. We were due to go last week but alas, Covid exposure within the cast forced a postponement of the opening of Kinky Boots . We are going tonight!

This production is a Tony Award winning musical, featuring the music of Cyndi Lauper and on stage at B&B for the first time.

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.

“Kinky Boots” coming to Indy Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre

The 2022 season at Indy’s beloved dinner theater has a Tony Award winning musical opening next week. Their press release proudly states: Kinky Boots, the Tony Award-winner for Best Musical, struts onto the Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre stage for the first time in 2022, featuring music by Cyndi Lauper and a heartwarming tale that’s based on a true story. Opening Feb. 10, this high-heeled hit will bring plenty of sparkle to Beef & Boards’ 49th Season!

This vibrant musical not only won the Best Musical Tony, but also Best Original Score for the talented music and lyrics by Cyndi Lauper, along with four additional Tony Awards, and the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album.

Kinky Boots is on stage for 47 performances through March 27 in the intimate space of Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre. Tickets include the dinner buffet and select beverages. For tickets, visit beefandboards.com or call the box office at 317.872.9664.

We are so looking forward to seeing this marvelous show. The pandemic stifled so many months of B&B’s productions. It will seem like finally getting to go to visit a dear friend when we see Kinky Boots next week.

Another large vintage 1970 art work

De Wain Valentine was born in Colorado in 1936. He is known for his translucent glass, fiberglass and polyester resin minimalist creations. Of the same time as Robert Indiana of the LOVE sculpture, Valentine has a fine piece in the same gallery room at Newfields (IMA) in Indianapolis.

Vintage 1970 Double Concave Circle (Deep Violet-Red)

Above is the ID plaque at the museum with information about Valentines art

This is an impressive 8 foot tall circle of polyester resin. What we found fascinating was the fact that this striking red circle is a mere 20 feet or so from the Robert Indiana LOVE sculpture. Both were made in 1970. De Wain Valentine lives in California, and developed a unique resin for large scale pieces.

Indy’s Circle of Lights celebration

Monument Circle, the “center” of downtown Indianapolis, Indiana, is a large traffic circle with the Soldiers & Sailors Monument standing in the center. Each year the monument is turned into an impressive display of Christmas lights. It has been dubbed by some as being the “World’s Largest Christmas Tree”.

Photo courtesy Indiana War Memorial Foundation

Each November the Indiana Brotherhood of Electrical Workers IBEW 481 decorate the Soldiers & Sailors Monument with 52 garland strands with 4,784 LED lights, strung from the top of the Monument to its base. The Monument will continue to be surrounded by 26 larger-than-life toy soldiers and sailors and 26 peppermint sticks.

Last year the pandemic forced the lighting of the monument and fireworks to be on TV only.  This year folks viewed the celebration in person. The celebration started with a talent show on the circle. The lighting of the nearly 5000 colorful LED bulbs signals the beginning of the Christmas Season in the Hoosier State.