Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Why Hickory is cooler than Charlotte

We can debate the overall merits of the two cities, but our neighbor to the northwest beats us in at least one regard: It has Emerging Pictures' new season. In fact, Columbia, Greensboro and Greenville, S.C., all  offer this amazing program. Winston-Salem has it in TWO locations. But we don't.

You'll find the whole story at But here are the basics: Theaters that contract this service offer a literal season of opera and ballet performances on their screens. Ticket-buyers will see Nederlands Dans Theater this Sunday at 2 p.m. and Tuesday at 7 p.m. Then come the Bolshoi Ballet, the Royal Ballet, a "Marriage of Figaro" by the Royal Opera House and many more.

The series includes films of live performances, documentaries about the arts and events that were staged specifically to be filmed. Tickets cost $20 per event, roughly what Regal charges to show the Metropolitan Opera at Stonecrest in Charlotte.

So why isn't this series available to us? Emerging signed a contract with Carmike Cinemas, and that chain hasn't operated here for at least 20 years. Emerging's list of locations shows a few independent cinemas, but independent theaters in our market have never aggressively pursued unusual programming.

Regal Cinemas has its own gig with the Met and other suppliers, though those are far more sporadic and don't constitute a season. And AMC has never been known for alternative programming, either. So there's nothing to do but bite the bullet, gas up the car and take a Sunday drive....


Karl Musgrave said...

What is your damage, Larry? Cant you just cover the performing arts in Charlotte? Theres more than enough to keep you busy. I think youre just bitter because the Observer demoted you after they began to farm out their movie reviews to a syndicated critic. Youre a loser

Augustus Gump said...

The Charlotte Observer is distributed throughout the Hickory area, so there's plenty of reason for Larry to take an interest in what's going on there, despite the contrary opinion so unpleasantly expressed by Mr. Musgrave.