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.

A Dad’s Garage Weekend

Over in Edgewood this past weekend, an eventful showcase occurred at the Dad’s Garage Theatre Company. Saturday night featured the third weekend of the world-premier production of Black Nerd by Dad’s Writer and Improviser Jon Carr.

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Black Nerd
The play as a whole was extremely entertaining and maintained a subtle seriousness concerning cultural issues within the black community. Throughout the course of the play, Marcus consistently breaks the fourth wall to comment on many of these issues while also voicing his own opinions on the prejudices of being a “black nerd”.  

Director Tiffany Porter explained, “My goal in directing this piece was to have people see a piece of their own life….It is a story about acceptance of self.”

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Ticket
Marcus was played by Dad’s Garage Rookie Avery Sharpe, and included an ensemble cast of Dad’s Improvisers and many talented Atlanta actors and actresses.

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Black Nerd Cast
The final showings will be August 2nd-4th , so you should definitely plan on attending if you haven’t already.*

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TheatreSports
That same evening also marked the 23rd Birthday of Dad’s Garage, and featured a “Birthday Edition” of TheatreSports.

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TheatreSports is Dad’s longest running improv show, and consists of two teams ready to compete in a variety of improv games. Suggestions for themes are asked from the audience which can then be used once or throughout each game.  

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Team 2
 I am honored to say that my “popcorn” suggestion was used in many of the games that evening which truly touched my Gnomey heart.

 

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The Thinking Process
To conclude my weekend at Dad’s, the Giant King and I attended the annual “Daddy Awards”.

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Dad’s Birthday Cake
The Daddy Awards focus on awarding specific Dad’s Garage writers, improvisers, and staff members. through submitted votes. Some of these awards included: Hannah Aslesen for Rookie of the Year, Andy Coen for Best Male Lead and Karen Cassady for Best Female Lead.

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Daddy Awards
 Black Nerd was also the winner for Best Original Script while Tiffany Porter won Best Director. 

All and all, Dad’s Garage and the Dad’s Family provided an amazing summer weekend for myself, and know more will come.

*Click Here To Purchase Tickets For Black Nerd
https://dadsgarage.secure.force.com/ticket/#details_a0S4100000D5NmtEAF

 

Funday Sunday feat. the 7th Annual Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival

When people think of Sundays, many anticipate the dread of the weekend concluding. No one enjoys going back to work or school; however for the Gnome Queen, I view Sunday as a unique mystery. Anything can happen and its usually less crowded throughout most of Atlanta.

My Sunday began with the FIFA World Cup Tournament Finals. I watched the game with some good friends and food, but unfortunately had to see France beat Croatia 4-2.
Viva la France.

Later on, I celebrated National Ice Cream Day with the Giant King at Sub Zero Ice Cream. Sub Zero is located across from Centennial Olympic Park and uses liquid nitrogen in its creation. Customers can mix and match countless flavors and milk-bases including Diary-Free, Fat-Free, or Custard. The flavors and bases can then be mixed with add-ins which is then frozen using the liquid nitrogen.

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Sub Zero Ice Cream
I got the Brownie Batter and Amaretto mixed with Andes Mints and Cookie Dough Bites while the Giant King got Peanut Butter and Chocolate mixed with Peanut Butter Cups.

He loves his peanut butter

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The 7th Annual Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival
Afterwards, we hit West-Midtown for the main event of the night: The 7th Annual Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival hosted at Actor’s Express. The Annual Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival occurred both Sunday and Monday evenings, and included 60 one-minute plays by some of Atlanta’s established and emerging playwrights and directors.

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Kevin Qian & Joshua Quinn
Each play also featured an assortment of many talented Atlanta-based actors and actresses, which included my loving Giant King.

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Post-Show Chatter
The plays were broken down into “clumps” of 10 and were organized based on theme. Many of these themes included current political trends, cultural references, and overall social issues. Each “clump” was unique and provided an interesting outlook on the modern world.

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Post-Show Chatter
My choice “clump” was definitely the first one as well as various plays from clump 5 and 9. Out of all of the plays, Hard Candy by Steve Yockey was hands-down my most favorite. It was humorous and involved a dangerous argument over Gobstoppers and Jawbreakers. (Cough Cough Gobstoppers rule.)

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Post-Show Chatter
The commitment and work of each playwright, director, and cast member made the night extremely entertaining, and I am excited to see the creativity at next year’s show.

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Actor’s Express Season 31 Play Guide
If you’re interested in seeing more shows at Actor’s Express, check-out their website https://www.actors-express.com/