Opening Night at Nick’s Flamingo Grill

As you all know by now, the Queen of the Gnomes is a massive patron of the theatre. From One-Act Plays to Musicals and Improv, I will see it all no matter the type.

On Thursday of this past week, the Giant King and I attended the World-Premier of Nick’s Flamingo Grill over at the Alliance Theatre.

Written by the multi-talented and legendary Phillip DePoy, Nick’s Flamingo Grill is described as a “play with live-music” performed by an amazing cast of actors. Bouncing between post-WWII Paris to 1950s Atlanta, Nick’s Flamingo Grill tells the story of two ex-WWII GIs with a dream of opening their own “club du jazz” here in America. Along with a Cuban songbird and a “pretty” French Resistance fighter, the four decide to create a “Camelot” of lively music and good food.

The play focuses on various themes from racial segregation to fraternal brotherhood. A unique aspect of Nick’s Flamingo Grill is that it’s actually based on a real place.

“The club was real…my father was in the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and would sit-in with his friends and sometimes play there,” explained DePoy.

Located near the old Armor Meat Packing Plant [now Castleberry Hill]; the club was “technically” illegal due to Segregation Laws at the time. While DePoy may not have been able to verify the existence of this mystical, mixed-race club, that didn’t stop him from writing one of the most humorous and heartfelt plays performed on the Hertz Stage.

Featuring ten original jazz songs by both DePoy and New Orleans’s jazz pianist: Tyrone Jackson, Nick’s Flamingo Grill had the audience snappin’ and tappin’ throughout the evening.

The Gnome Queen highly recommends seeing this fantastic *performance not only for the music, but for the message as well.

*The play is about an hour and a half with no intermission and does include some loud “explosions” for those with sensory-sensitivities.

ATL by Night Artist Spolight: ATHRS

This article is by our new writer, Luminous. Enjoy!

Punk Rock electronic artist, ATHRS, born Mike Torres, performed for his second time at Imagine Music Festival (IMF), this year in Hampton, Georgia. The Orlando, FL, native often performs in the Southeast and said Atlanta’s premier electronic music festival is one of his favorites. “I love performing in Atlanta, this is my second year at Imagine. Glen and Maddie (of IRIS Presents) throw one of the best festivals out here and it’s always so amazing to be a part of it,” he said.

Rock and EDM have been in an increasingly intertwined relationship ever since Skrillex burst onto the DJ circuit after leaving his post-hardcore band “From First to Last.” Steve Aoki was a singer and guitarist in the scream band “This Machine Kills,” EDM powerhouse, Zedd, was once a member of death core band Dioramic, and bass legend, Bassnectar, also was once in a metal band. Some acts leave the “rock sound” almost entirely, trading guitars for synthesizers and hard bass, at times only referencing their roots in mashups or remixes.

ATHRS has managed to evolve into EDM while keeping his pop punk influences intact. This has allowed him to create original music that melds the two genres in a genuine way. ATHRS played for an intimate show for a crowd at the Six Feathers stage, splitting the set between his laptop and DJ Controller, and grabbing his guitar to leave behind the booth and rock out on stage and right in front of his audience.

Growing up on pop and punk music, ATHRS says he is influenced by bands like All Time Low, Green Day, and blink-182. He also has a penchant for DJs like Kayzo and Borgore, and says Adventure Club, who played IMF this year, is one of his biggest influences: “I was super hyped to see them! They killed it; it was an ABSOLUTELY epic show!” The pioneers of vocal dubstep put on an epic show full of lights, lasers, and their signature sound, famous for attracting many fest-goers into the electronic scene in the first place.

 

ATHRS thinks the diversity of sound within EDM music has attracted more and more people to American EDM music and events. He uses his platform to produce a unique combo he calls “pop-punk electronic” with vocals characteristic of punk rock, interwoven with synths, energetic beats and high energy drops. His songs vary from highly rock influenced to more house influences like his single, “Shed My Skin.” During his performance of “Under My Skin,” a cut from his upcoming EP, ATHRS croons about not letting the world get to him before a crescendo of heavy, melodic guitar riffs, with a dance beat picking up to join the melange of sound

“People are hungry for real talent, drive and ambition, and that’s what I hope to bring them. They also get to see [my] vulnerability. I think it really comes through in the music,” he said. ATHRS’ fans, at Imagine or people who want to hear his unique brand of punk EDM, can catch him next at Uncle Lou’s entertainment hall in Orlando, FL, on October 14th.

ATHRS’ latest EP “Pop Punk is Dead” will be releasing soon and a music video for his single, “Rollercoaster” was recently released on Youtube. Fans can find more of ATHRS’ music on Soundcloud, and Spotify.