Director/Adaptor                                                                     Desiree SanchezLighting Designer                                                                   Peter MeineckCostume Designer

Smart bets: Wuthering Heights and The Tempest

New York-based Aquila Theatre Company’s annual “two plays in two days” tradition sees the same cast performing two different productions on back-to-back nights in Asheville. The first show follows the plight of English lovers thwarted by fate in a new production of Emily Brontë’s mid-1800s classic Wuthering Heights, while the second calls on William Shakespeare […]

Cindy Billingsly 24Aug11 Studio TTU Photo/JL

Smart bets: Dynamic Narratives exhibit

“Clay is the only medium that uses every element: fire, water, air and earth,” according to Tennessee artist Cindy Billingsley. “It is meant to be touched by the heart, the eyes and the hands.” Billingsley, a pioneering force behind Women Ceramics Sculptors art collective, curated 12 members’ artwork for inclusion in a collaborative Dynamic Narratives […]

Carolina Cinemas

Smart bets: Super Sunday

Big screens are better than big crowds. At least that’s the rationale behind Carolina Cinemas’ Super Sunday Super Bowl watch party. Limited-release beers like Devil’s Britches and the 20th Anniversary Weizenbock from Highland Brewing Co.’s tap takeover will ease the strain of tense field goal moments, while games, trivia and prizes (including pint glasses and […]

BET Steppin Stones

Smart bets: The Steppin Stones

“We can’t wait to share our new music with you!” reads the Facebook page for Hilton Head Island-based rock trio The Steppin Stones. Front woman Hannah Wicklund, bassist Andrew Ottimo and drummer Ryan Tye trekked north mid-winter to record their third full-length album at Echo Mountain Studios. Although they can’t celebrate the record’s impending completion […]

BET AL Coffee

Smart bets: AL Coffee & Da Grind

Asheville’s AL Coffee & Da Grind, a self-described high-energy, up-tempo blues quartet, will travel to Memphis, Tenn., in late January, joining more than 200 musical groups in competition at the International Blues Challenge. The soul- and dance-inspired band has scheduled a series of hometown fundraising gigs to cover the musicians’ trip to this “blues heaven” […]

BET Taylor Martin (byScottWoody)

Smart bets: Taylor Martin

“There are gonna be a lot of smiles onstage and for good reason,” says Asheville guitarist Taylor Martin of his upcoming show at Isis Restaurant & Music Hall. Local music luminaries Lyndsay Pruitt (fiddle), Drew Matulich (mandolin) and Rick Cooper (upright bass) comprise Martin’s band, and drummer Josh Mulligan will also join the musical combo […]

BET FreewayRevival

Smart bets: Freeway Revival

Recently topping the ReverbNation Americana charts for Asheville, Americana/country-blues collective The Freeway Revival writes songs about the Appalachian mountains but spends a lot of time touring outside Western North Carolina. Upcoming dates take the group to the Carolina coast, upstate New York and into the Midwest; last spring the band traveled to L.A. to record […]

Kingdom by Brian Mashburn

Smart bets: Brian Mashburn art exhibit

Portentous and meticulously crafted urban landscapes typify painter Brian Mashburn‘s body of work, which often juxtaposes a calm observer — perhaps iconic of nature or purity — among background rubble. The artist, who has lived and worked in Asheville for more than a decade and garnered increasing national and international attention over the past two […]

BET Carolina Wray

Smart bets: Carolina Wray

When it comes to genres, brothers Dillon and Jantzen Wray refuse to pick just one … or two. Their band Carolina Wray’s 2014 single “America,” for example, combines uncharacteristically slow banjo strums with vocal and electric guitar tracks made of undiluted pop rock. The former Old North State band members take decisive strides into the […]

Christmas in Scotland

Smart bets: Jamie Laval’s Christmas in Scotland

Internationally renowned Celtic violinist Jamie Laval’s Christmas in Scotland performance calls on a patchwork of art forms to revive traditional Celtic celebrations of the winter solstice and Christmas. Local guitarist and banjoist David Brown and multi-instrumentalist Rosalind Buda are among Laval’s supporting lineup of Celtic-influenced artists, in addition to a Welsh harpist and a Scottish […]