Hear the Rodney Block Collective at South on Main tonight!

Kick off the December with some music as sure to keep you warm regardless of the outdoor temperatures!

South on Main is turning up the heat with the Rodney Block Collective.

Led by musical favorite Rodney Block, this musical group alternates between various forms of jazz mixed in with gospel, Be-Bop, hip-hop, funk, and soul.

Show begins tonight (December) at 10 pm with a $15 cover. Purchasing a ticket does not guarantee you a seat.

Call (501) 244-9660 to reserve a table.

That time The Jackson 5 rode in the Little Rock Christmas Parade

The 2019 Big Jingle Jubilee Holiday Parade takes place today in downtown Little Rock. It seems like a good time to remember one of the earlier incarnations.

On December 2, 1972, Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5 performed in concert at Barton Coliseum. But earlier in the day, they were the grand marshals for the second annual Little Rock Christmas Parade.

They were featured in a full page ad for M. M. Cohn advertising the parade (and of course encouraging persons to stop by the store while they were downtown).

The Jackson 5 sang and waved from the upper level of a London style double decker bus. About fifty kids followed behind the bus yelling their appreciation and singing along.

Writing for the Arkansas Gazette, Bill Lewis notes that the biggest cheers at the parade, however, went to Gary Weir as KATV’s Bozo (even louder than the one’s for Santa).

FROZEN SCIENCE at the Museum of Discovery today!

Don’t “Let It Go” when it comes to the opportunity for Frozen Science at the Museum of Discovery.

The fun (and learning – but don’t tell the kids they will actually learn things) is today (December 7) from 10am to 3pm.

Suit up for a wintry science adventure full of icy experiments, liquid nitrogen demos and chilly hands-on activities!

Tickets are included in regular museum admission or free for members. Purchase tickets at the door or online.

Studio Gang was announced as Arkansas Arts Center architect on Dec. 6, 2016

On December 6, 2016, the Arkansas Arts Center (AAC) announced the selection of Studio Gang as design architect for its upcoming building project.

The five firms selected as finalists were Allied Works (Portland, Ore./New York), Shigeru Ban (New York/Paris/Tokyo, Japan), Studio Gang (Chicago/New York), Thomas Phifer (New York) and Snohetta (Oslo, Norway/New York/San Francisco).

Studio Gang was deemed the best fit for the project due to the firm’s elegant and smart approach to architecture, their understanding of the issues posed by the AAC’s current facility, their vision for the center as a cultural beacon for Central Arkansas and their commitment to sustainability and strength as urban planners.

Founded by MacArthur Fellow Jeanne Gang, Studio Gang is an award-winning architecture and urbanism practice based out of Chicago and New York. A recipient of the 2013 National Design Award, Jeanne Gang was also named the 2016 Archiitect of the Year by the Architectural Review and the firm was awarded the 2016 Architizer A+ award for Firm of the Year.

Studio Gang is recognized internationally for a design process that foregrounds the relationships between individuals, communities and environments. The firm has extensive knowledge in museum, theatre and artist studio spaces, with projects ranging from the Writers Theatre in Glencoe, Ill. to the Aqua Tower in Chicago to the expansion of the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Since their selection, Studio Gang has brought on a variety of other members of the consultant team including:

In February 2018, Studio Gang released their first designs for the project.  On October 1, 2019, ground was broken and construction officially commenced.

Blues legend Bobby Rush in concert at the Ron Robinson Theater tonight, presented by CALS Arkansas Sounds

CALS Arkansas Sounds presents an intimate solo show with blues legend BOBBY RUSH!

Bobby Rush is a Grammy Award winner, a Blues Hall of Fame member, a 12-time Blues Music Award winner and B.B. King Entertainer of the Year.

Bobby Rush was actually born as Emmett Ellis, Jr. outside Homer, La. His daddy was a preacher and knew enough about a harmonica to pass along a few riffs to his progeny, who twanged a diddley bow before picking up a guitar around age 11. The senior Ellis relocated his family to Pine Bluff, Arkansas in 1948. When young Bobby went professional as a blues musician, he changed his moniker to not disrespect his devout dad. And Bobby Rush was born.

Bobby started playing with Delta blues guitarists Boyd Gilmore and Elmore James in Arkansas during the early ’50s before migrating to Chicago. There he assembled a band with an equally young Freddie King on guitar and Arkansan Luther Allison came into the combo later. Rush gigged around the West Side and in the southern suburbs of the Windy City, but it took until 1964 for him to debut on record with the tough downbeat blues “Someday” for the Jerry-O label.

And now, jumping forward to 2019, after decades of tearing up the chitlin’ circuit on a nightly basis with his sweaty, no-holds-barred funk-fests, Bobby has thoroughly broken through to the mainstream. He won a long-overdue 2017 Grammy for his spectacular album Porcupine Meat and consistently tours the globe as a headliner. What’s more, Bobby’s brand-new album Sitting on Top of the Blues on his own Deep Rush imprint promises to further spread the news that this revered legend, well past his 85+ years of age even if his stratospheric energy level belies the calendar, is bigger, badder and bolder than ever.

Don’t miss this chance to see BOBBY RUSH perform a special SOLO SHOW on Friday, December 6 at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater in downtown Little Rock! That’s right, you’ll see and hear Bobby Rush singing, playing guitar and harmonica, and telling stories-all by himself!

Tickets are $30 for general admission seating. The doors open at 7:00 pm and the concert starts at 8:00 pm.

Welcome to the Fourth Floor with John Willis tonight at South on Main

John Willis presents Welcome to the 4th Floor: 40th Birthday Show!Welcome to the 4th Floor: 40th Birthday Show!

December 7 is the birthday of singer-songwriter-troubadour-raconteur John Willis. In celebration of another trip around the sun, he is giving the gift of music to audiences on Friday, December 6.

The concert will be at South on Main.

As a performer and as a songwriter, John Willis is known for an eclectic sense of style, drawing elements of classical, jazz, r&b and soul into the sphere of his piano-pop oriented sets.

Expect an exemplary set of music at this show, on the evening before his 40th birthday, in which he will attempt to incorporate all of the elements that have inspired and influenced him as a musician in these first 40 years.

Help him make it to the “4th Floor” of the forties with a night of oldies, 90s, indie, folk, soul, Broadway, standards, and more.

Show kicks off at 8pm. $15. Call (501) 244-9660 for reservations.

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE – A Live Radio Play opens tonight as Arkansas Rep’s final show of 2019

George Bailey, Clarence, and Mr. Potter all make an appearance as the Arkansas Repertory Theatre presents It’s a Wonderful Life – A Live Radio Play.

After two days of previews, the production opens tonight (December 6) and runs through December 29.

Back by popular demand, this holiday classic returns to The Rep’s stage to close the 2019 season. (It was last on the Rep’s stage in 2008.)

Ring in the holidays with an entertaining spin on a familiar holiday favorite. Set in a 1940s radio station on Christmas Eve, enjoy a live radio version of Frank Capra’s classic 1946 film as the actors on stage transform into dozens of characters from Bedford Falls. Faced with the threat of scandal and financial ruin, George Bailey experiences a crisis of faith and wishes he had never been born. Divine intervention arrives in the form of Clarence (Angel Second Class), who is on a mission to restore George’s will to live… and earn his own wings in the process. Every life impacts countless others, whether we know it or not.

The production is directed by Giovanna Sardelli (whose most recent Arkansas Rep production was The School for Lies). The design team includes Jo Winiarski (set), Sarah Nietfeld (costumes), Jamie Roderick (lighting), and Jane Shaw (sound). The cast includes the return of Larry Daggett and Patrick Halley along with Alan Dronek, Larissa Klinger and Mary Murphy making their Arkansas Rep debuts.