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A decade after Hurricane Katrina, new books, new insights, old memories

A man on his roof waves to a passing New Orleans Police Department SWAT rescue boat Monday,  Aug. 29, 2005, in New Orleans after flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina. (AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Melissa Phillip)

Every Katrina anniversary arrives with a fresh flood of books — and this 10th anniversary is no exception. Weary New Orleanians may choose not to read them, having moved on in their personal narratives; some may read them obsessively. This year’s Katrina bookshelf is full to the brim. Here are some of the best so far.… Continue reading →

New Orleans area book events for August

“THE STORY OF LAND AND SEA”: 6 p.m., Octavia Books, 513 Octavia St. Katy Simpson Smith has a discussion with Laura Lane McNeal on the release of the book in paperback. (504) 899-7323. “VOICES OF ANGELS — DISASTER LESSONS FROM KATRINA NURSES”: 6 p.m., Garden District Book Shop,… Continue reading →

Katrina anniversary literary events, Aug. 6-30, 2015

“VOICES OF ANGELS”: John Batty signs “Voices of Angels: Disaster Lessons from Katrina Nurses,” 6 pm. Garden District Book Shop, 2727 Prytania St, New Orleans. JEFFERSON PARIS LIBRARY LITERARY FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. East Bank Regional Library, 4747 West Napoleon Ave., Metairie. The library’s first literary… Continue reading →

Surface-bobbing ‘Infinitely Polar Bear’ may not deserve movie treatment

Photo by CLAIRE FOLGER -– From left, Mark Ruffalo as Cam Stuart, Imogene Wolodarsky as Amelia Stuart and Ashley Aufderheide as Faith Stuart in ‘Infinitely Polar Bear.’

Autobiographical drama “Infinitely Polar Bear” tells a family story with some sweetness and warmth. But when the film’s bookending, it’s-all-good voiceovers and sporadically nostalgic tone are held in the light, they look more like storytelling devices than expressions of deeper truths. Set in the late 1970s, “Infinitely Polar Bear” is based on writer-director Maya… Continue reading →

Review: ‘The Tribe’ is a bleak, daring drama from Ukraine

Photo courtesy of Drafthouse Films -- Anya (Yana Novikova), left, regards Sergey (Grigoriy Fesenko) with skepticism as they walk through the snow in 'The Tribe.'

Writer-director Miroslav Slaboshpitsky tells a simple story in Cannes Film Festival favorite “The Tribe.” A primal story, too, without spoken dialogue and music. “The Tribe” is both difficult watch and difficult to turn away from. Slaboshpitsky renders no mercy to his characters or his audience. Everyone who enters the insular world of “The Tribe” suffers.… Continue reading →

Flood of material a good problem to have on The Revivalists’ new CD

Photo By Travis Shinn -- The Revivalists will debut a new CD.

Local rock ’n’ roll band The Revivalists were ready when they went into the studio to record “Men Amongst Mountains,” their new album. They had so many songs that they needed a dry-erase board to keep lists of definites, strong maybes, long shots and so on. They started to cut down the list almost immediately.… Continue reading →

Here is where to slip into a restaurant for a break from crowds on annual art walk at Whitney White Linen Night

Advocate staff photo by Ian McNulty -A charcuterie plate at Butcher makes for a cool meal on a hot night in the Warehouse District.

Quite possibly the city’s most popular late-summer tradition, Whitney White Linen Night attracts thousands of art enthusiasts and fashionistas, decked out in stylish achromatic ensembles. And although the annual art walk offers outdoor food and drink options, nearby restaurants provide a break from the crowds and respite from the sizzling heat. Here is a guide on where… Continue reading →

Where to go, what to see at New Orleans' Whitney White Linen Night

Advocate photo by VERONICA DOMINACH -- Art lovers stroll down Julia St. during Whitney White Linen Night in the Warehouse Arts District of New Orleans, La. Saturday, on Aug. 2, 2014. During the hours of 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. the two dozen or so art galleries on or adjacent to Julia Street open their doors to art aficionados and casual strollers alike. The large block party includes food, music, and fun open to the public for free.

Pick up any local publication about this time of year and you’ll quickly see that kvetching about White Linen Night is almost as much of a cherished New Orleans summer tradition as White Linen Night itself. After 20 years, we all know what we’re in for come the first Saturday in August around the Warehouse District:… Continue reading →

Company devoted to Tennessee Williams kicks off with lesser-known drama

Photo by James Kelley -- Kate Kuen is Myrtle in 'Kingdom of Earth.'

New Orleans celebrates its adopted literary son every year with the Tennessee Williams Festival. But Nick Shackleford and Augustin J. Correro, founders of the new Tennessee Williams Theatre Company, wanted to do more. Correro introduced Shackleford to the works of Williams five years ago in Richmond, Virginia, where Correro attended graduate school and Shackleford worked in… Continue reading →

Musical classic ‘Hello, Dolly!’ closes out Summer Lyric season

Photo by Michael Palumbo -- Elizabeth Argus as Dolly Gallagher Levi and Bob Edes, Jr. as Horace Vandergelder in Tulane Summer Lyric Theater's 'Hello, Dolly!'

Before saying goodbye for the season, Tulane Summer Lyric will say hello one last time with “Hello, Dolly!” on stage from July 30 to Aug. 2. Based on the Thornton Wilder play “The Matchmaker” and using music by Jerry Herman, “Hello, Dolly!” follows the self-proclaimed “professional meddler” Dolly Levi. Spending years as a widow and finding mates… Continue reading →

New Orleans events calendar, July 30-Aug. 6, 2015

Advocate photo by A.J. SISCO  -- Banu Gibson performs with her band at the City Park Botanical Garden in New Orleans during the Thursdays at Twilight music series July 10, 2014. Gibson is know n for her swinging jazz performances of songs from the 1920s, '30s and '40s.

GOSPEL MUSIC WORKSHOP ASSOCIATION CONVENTION: Also Friday, Hilton New Orleans Riverside, 2 Poydras St. International gathering featuring workshops, services and performances. WALK THE WETLANDS: 10 a.m. daily except Monday and Tuesday, Barataria Preserve of Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, 6588 Barataria Blvd., Marrero (near Crown Point). Explore Louisiana swamp and marsh on… Continue reading →

On stage in New Orleans, July 30-Aug. 6, 2015

Photo provided by Anthony Bean Community Theater --  James Compton V plays Michael Duplesis, a young man devastated by the death of Michael Jackson, in 'The Glove' this weekend at the Anthony Bean Community Theater, 1333 S. Carrollton Ave., New Orleans.

“HELLO, DOLLY!”: 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday; Dixon Hall Performing Art Center, Tulane University, 6823 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans. The delightful tale of matchmaker Dolly Levi and the charming folks of Yonkers and Manhattan come alive in one of Broadway’s most enduring musicals. $30 and up. (504) 865-5269. “PTERODACTYLS”: 7:30 p.m. Thursdays to Saturdays,… Continue reading →

Don’t miss events in New Orleans, July 30-Aug. 6, 2015

Associated Press file photo -- Vanessa Williams will headline an evening of talent for a good cause Sunday at the 'Heavenly Host of Stars' gala. The benefit concert and food festival will feature such local musical luminaries as Wanda Rouzan, Davell Crawford and the Chris Severin Band. Proceeds benefit the Sisters of the Holy Family. $75. 7 p.m., Hyatt Regency New Orleans, 601 Loyola Ave. (504) 241-3088.

With a voice and style to make her contemporaries green with envy, Idina Menzel has made a name for herself as an accomplished actress and powerful voice. Whether it be as Elphaba in “Wicked” or Maureen in “Rent” or as the voice of Elsa in “Frozen,” Menzel has captivated audiences — and… Continue reading →

‘Frozen’ star Idina Menzel coming to Saenger Thursday

Photo by ROBIN WONG -- Idina Menzel

Before “Frozen,” Idina Menzel was merely a Tony-winning Broadway star. After “Frozen,” the singer and actress found herself engulfed in the Disney animated musical’s global blizzard of popularity. “Frozen” is the highest-grossing animated movie in history. Menzel sings and speaks the role of Princess Elsa, the “Frozen” character who performs the film’s Oscar-winning… Continue reading →

Satchmo SummerFest to feature new exhibit, lots of Louis Armstrong-inspired music, 'beloved by new generations of musicians and fans'

Photo by CEDRIC ELLSWORTH -- Rebirth Brass Band performs at Satchmo SummerFest 2014.

The 2015 Satchmo SummerFest, running Friday through Sunday at the Louisiana State Museum’s Old U.S. Mint, features Louis Armstrong-inspired music, a new exhibit on Armstrong’s life in New Orleans, scholarly seminars and more. More than 40 traditional jazz, contemporary jazz and brass band performances are on the festival’s schedule this year. The lineup… Continue reading →

Ella & Louie

Photo by DANIELA KLEIN -- The Ella and Louie Tribute Band are, from left,Leslie Martin, Wendell Brunious, Eileina Dennis, Gerald French, Mitch Player and Todd Duke.

In the 1940s and ’50s, jazz stars Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald combined their exceptional talents for duo recordings. Released by the Decca and Verve labels, the collaborations include the classic mid-’50s albums “Ella and Louis” and “Ella and Louis Again.” Inspired by the Armstrong-Fitzgerald recordings, Mitchell Player formed the Ella and Louie Tribute Band… Continue reading →

New Orleans music calendar, July 30-Aug. 6, 2015

ALEXANDRA SCOTT: 5 p.m., Little Gem Saloon, 445 S. Rampart St. (504) 267-4863. BANU GIBSON: 5 p.m., Pavilion of Two Sisters, 101 Victory Ave. (504) 483-9488. OGDEN AFTER HOURS PRESENTS SWEET CECILIA: 6 p.m., Ogden Museum of Southern Art, 925 Camp St. (504) 539-9650. THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA: 6:30 p.m., House of Blues, 225… Continue reading →

New movies in New Orleans, July 30, 2015

Photo by DAVID JAMES -- Tom Cruise, left, plays Ethan Hunt and Rebecca Ferguson plays Ilsa in 'Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation.'

“MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION”: Because his agency has been dissolved, Tom Cruise’s unaligned operative is out in the cold. He gathers his team and joins forces with disavowed British agent Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson). But Ilsa may be a member of The Syndicate, a group that wants to create a new… Continue reading →

New Orleans art gallery listings, July 30-Aug. 6, 2015

"Water Markers," polished acrylic slab with embeded digital images by Dawn DeDeaux is part of New Orleans Museum of Art's "Ten Years Gone" exhibit, featuring work by six contemporary artists who explore the passage of time, memory, loss and transformation a decade after Hurricane Katrina. Through Sept. 7. Templeman Galleries, 1 Collins Diboll Circle, City Park, New Orleans. (504) 658-4100.

ANGELA KING GALLERY: “Being.” Paintings by Aaron Reichert. Opening Aug. 8. 241 Royal St., New Orleans. (504) 524-8211. BARRISTER’S GALLERY: “Modern Swamp,” ceramics, photography and paintings curated by Susan Bowers. Opening Aug. 8 through Sept. 3. 2331 St. Claude Ave., New Orleans. (504) 525-2767. BARRISTER’S GALLERY: “My Re-sister, My self — Re-envisioning the American… Continue reading →

In Sedarises’ ‘Book of Liz,’ a nun takes her recipe on the road

Photo by John Barrios -- Kathryn Talbot, left, and Margeaux Fannning in 'The Book of Liz' at St. Claude Theater.

Rodgers and Hammerstein this definitely is not. Unlike Maria in “The Sound of Music,” when Sister Elizabeth Donderstock ventures into the outside world in “The Book of Liz,” she finds it not so much to her liking. What she does find in the David and Amy Sedaris-penned comedy is a world populated by quirky… Continue reading →

‘Ant-Man’ inches past ‘Pixels’ to take first place spot

This photo provided by Disney shows Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man in a scene from Marvel's "Ant-Man." (Zade Rosenthal/Disney/Marvel via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Ant-Man” crept past new opener “Pixels” to claim the top spot at the box office this weekend by an ant-sized margin. The Disney and Marvel superhero pic brought in $24.8 million over the weekend, bringing its domestic total to $106.1 million according to Rentrak estimates Sunday. “Pixels,” meanwhile, just barely missed first place… Continue reading →

New Orleans area book events

“LOW & SLOW 2 — THE ART OF BARBECUE, SMOKE-ROASTING AND BASIC CURING”: 2 p.m., Octavia Books, 513 Octavia St. Gary Wiviott and Colleen Rush sign and offer tastings from the second in their culinary series. (504) 899-7323. “NAVEL OF THE MOON”: 6 p.m.,… Continue reading →

Easy to be engrossed in astronaut’s quest

'Watch the Lady' by Elizabeth Fremantle

“The Martian” by Andy Weir. Crown, 2014. $25. I started seeing “The Martian” pop up on a lot of “best of” lists a few months ago, and when I found out it was being made into a movie starring Matt Damon, I knew I had to pick up a… Continue reading →

Review: ‘Pixels’ falls apart before it begins

Photo provided by Sony Pictures -- Josh Gad as Ludlow is chased by Pac-Man in Columbia Pictures' 'Pixels,' opening in theaters Friday.

The most believable element in “Pixels” is that alien video-game creatures could attack our planet. The core concept is clever — space aliens misunderstand a recording of old video games as a declaration of war, and send digital monsters based on those games to Earth as their army. But its execution in the hands of director-producer… Continue reading →

Review: ‘Towns’ is modest, middle-of-the-road teen drama

This photo provided by Twentieth Century Fox shows, Cara Delevingne, right, as Margo, and Nat Wolff as Quentin, in a scene from the film, "Paper Towns." (Michael Tackett/Twentieth Century Fox via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Based on an earlier teen fave novel by “The Fault in Our Stars” author John Green, “Paper Towns” is a mild coming-of-ager about dawning awareness and life lessons learned among a small group of Florida high school seniors. Part mystery story, part road movie and part pre-prom graduation romp, the film is most interesting… Continue reading →

Aububon Zoo opens frog exhibit, new Discovery Walk

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Meigs Pullen, 8, gets a close-up look at African clawed frogs at the Audubon Zoo.

Visitors to Audubon Zoo this summer will be happy to learn they now have another option for keeping cool — and it’s located just inside the gate. Only three months after the recent 44,000-square-foot expansion of the Cool Zoo water park, the zoo has opened a new exhibit: Frogs! Beyond Green. The 2,200-square-foot exhibit… Continue reading →

New Orleans art gallery listings, July 23-29, 2015

ANGELA KING GALLERY: Eddy Stevens “The Contemporary Past,” an ode to Belgian surrealism. Through July. 241 Royal St., New Orleans. (504) 524-8211. ARIODANTE CONTEMPORARY CRAFT GALLERY: Suzanne and Angelique Juneau jewelry, Ben Hamburger painting, Cheryl Grace painting, Cheri Ben-Iesau painting, Chuck Wright painting and Brad Abrams glasswork. Through Tuesday. 535 Julia St., New Orleans. (504) 524-3233. Arthur… Continue reading →

On stage in New Orleans, July 23-29, 2015

Photo by John Barrois. Matt Reed, center, takes on the role of Captain Hook in the Rivertown Theater for the Performing Arts production of Peter Pan. Hook and the Neverland pirates will be chasing Peter, the kids and the crocodile at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 325 Minor St., Kenner. $37; $35 seniors; $32 students and active military. (504) 461-9475.

“PETER PAN”: 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts, 325 Minor St., Kenner. The Broadway classic about the boy who never grew up flies onto the stage in this musical production. $37; $35 seniors; $32 students and active military. (504) 461-9475. “LITTLE MERMAID JR.”: 7:30 p.m., Thursday… Continue reading →