The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

This year, which marks the 14th Annual Ford Honors Program, celebrates the partnership between the University Musical Society, the University of Michigan and the Royal Shakespeare Company. The company’s three Ann Arbor residencies (2001, 2003, and 2006) have included nine of Shakespeare’s plays as well as the US premiere of a stage adaptation of Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children. This Ford Honors Program is unique in that it honors a theater company and Michael Boyd, its artistic director alongside a U-M faculty member, Professor Ralph Williams who is retiring. This year's event will be an exciting multi-media extravaganza. Saturday, January 24th 6pm. Rackham Auditorium

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

Our favorite local orchestra begins its 9th season with a concert this Sunday.
The Life Sciences Orchestra was founded in the spirit of the U-M to encourage collaboration between academic disciplines in the sciences. The orchestra is made up of members of U-M’s medical, health and life science community and was founded by students and staff. This week's concert will feature 4 pieces: Promenade Overture by John Corigliano, Variations on a Theme by Haydn by Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 12 in E Major by Joseph Haydn and lastly, Symphony No. 12 in D Minor by Dmitri Shostakovich.
Hill Auditorium on Sunday, Jan. 11, 4pm. Free and open to the public.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

We have been trying very hard lately to be local. You know, we go to the Farmers' Market, we shop at bricks and mortar instead of online and we try to support our small town merchants. So, speaking of home-town, who's better to support than our local favs, The Chenille Sisters at The Ark on New Year's Eve? They are described as "a little bit Andrews Sisters, a little bit Supremes, and a little bit Roches, with honeyed harmonies from bygone days and a big dose of modern attitude and humor." This NYE they are teaming up with the Royal Garden Trio for a nice pairing of harmony and jazz. Wednesday, December 31 at 10pm.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

Are we all done shopping? Did we finish our gift lists on Black Friday or Cyber Monday? We hope not because Book Wednesday is coming right up. Ok, we made that up but Professor Thomas C. Foster will be at the library on the 10th to discuss his most recent book, "How to Read Novels Like a Professor." He promises to help us read with purpose and maybe even shop for the perfect title. Wednesday December 10, 2008: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room. Copies of his book will be for sale.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

Here's a nice, soothing option for pre-holiday madness: An Evening of Brahms. This Friday evening the Kerrytown Concert House Classical Series is featuring an all-Brahms program comprised of: Sonata #2 in A Major for Violin and Piano; Trio in a minor, Op. 114 for Clarinet, Cello and Piano; Selected Songs. Performed by a mostly local group: 8pm, November 21. 734-769-2999

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

We are so lucky in Ann Arbor to have many opportunities to see theatrical productions. The U's shows are fabulous and we also have The Purple Rose and Performance Network. Do not forget the school productions as they can also be excellent. This week the Huron Players are putting on Return to the Forbidden Planet by Bob Carlton. No surprise that this Off-Broadway musical is adapted from the 1950s sci-fi, B movie and cult favorite, Forbidden Planet. The crew of Scientific Survey Flight Nine takes a faster-than-light trip to an alien planet where a mad scientist unleashes monsters from the Id and destroys the world. Groovy. November 13, 14, 15 at 7:30pm and November 16 at 2:00pm. $12 General, $10 Students/Seniors.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

The Play Ground hasn't heard of this group-the "Us Five" Quintet-but in the publicity they sound cool. In addition, Blue Note recording artist Jason Moran plays in the first half of the evening featuring a performance that has "challenged the status quo each time out." Joe Lovano presents a lush saxophone sound that combines with his combo and Moran to provide great musical conversations. Perfect. They will be performing just post election and we will be glad to get out, relax and hear great conversations of the musical kind for a change. Friday, November 7, 8pm, Michigan Theater

The Play Ground

The Play Ground

Roll over Beethoven and tell Tchaikovsky the news...On November 15, the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra is presenting a wonderful program by four of the biggest rock stars of their day: Handel, Debussy, Tchaikovsky and Schubert. In addition, the Orchestra is featuring Primor Sluchin, a world-class harpist and one of the only women to play in the Berlin Philharmonic. Saturday, Nov. 15, 8pm, Michigan Theater.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

Did you know that Mardi Gras originated in Mobile, Alabama? Alabama Mardi Gras occurs next year in late January, early February but tomorrow you can catch a not very pretty history of the festival that was still racially segregated in 2007. Filmmaker Margaret Brown traces the pageantry as well as the historical violence. The film is presented as a Sundance Institute Art House Project Film Tour. Director Brown will answer questions after the film. THE ORDER OF MYTHS at the Michigan Theater, Thursday, October 16 at 7pm.

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