Kentucky Theater’s Summer Classic Film Series Lineup Launched

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The Kentucky Theater at 214 East Main Street in downtown Lexington, Ky., Friday, August 28, 2020. The Kentucky Theater is still wrapping up its Summer Classic movie series with ‘The Big Lebowski.’

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After a two-year hiatus, the Kentucky Theater seems to be trying to make up for lost time with a Summer Classics 2022 series featuring some of the biggest blockbusters of all time.

Titles include ‘Star Wars’ (1977 – the one some of you might call ‘A New Hope’), the original 1961 version of ‘West Side Story’, ‘The Godfather’ (1972) and the one of the Bondiest James Bond films, “Goldfinger” (1964), which was filmed and partly filmed in Kentucky. As always, there’s a Hitchcock film, “The Man Who Knew Too Much” (1956); a black favorite, “The Big Sleep” (1946) with Bogie and Bacall; and it all ends with “The Big Lebowski” (1998). A nod also to the recent disappearance of one of cinema’s greatest icons with “A Patch of Blue” (1965) starring Sidney Poitier.

The series runs from Wednesday, May 25 through September 7. Tickets will go on sale soon for the series, which includes a matinee and an evening. Here are the dates and movies, so you can start marking your calendar.

Kentucky Theater Summer Classic Film Series Schedule

  • May 25: “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” (1969)
  • June 1: “Roman Holiday” (1953)
  • June 8: “Star Wars” (1977)
  • June 15: “A Spot of Blue” (1965)
  • June 22: “Goldfinger” (1964)
  • June 29: “2001: A Space Odyssey” (1968)
  • June 6: “The Big Sleep” (1946)
  • July 13: “An American Werewolf in London” (1981)
  • July 20: “Sleeping Beauty” (1959)
  • July 27: “Bonnie and Clyde” (1967)
  • August 3: “Stand By Me” (1986)
  • August 10: “The Man Who Knew Too Much” (1956)
  • August 17: “West Side Story” (1961)
  • August 24: “Shakespeare in love” (1998)
  • August 31: “The Godfather” (1972)
  • September 7: “The Big Lebowski” (1998)

To visit kentuckytheatre.org for more information on Summer Classics and everything happening at the reopened Kentucky Theater.

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Longtime director Fred Mills stands outside the Kentucky Theater, 214 East Main St., in Lexington, Ky., Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016. Mills will return to the popcorn machine for the film series Summer Classic. Charles Bertram 2016 Staff File Photo

Verge, BCTC Theater

As the decline in COVID infections continues, more theaters are returning to the stage, including in separate troupes:

About is a theater company that performs almost exclusively outside of traditional theater venues, staging performances in locations such as a historic home, shop, and funeral home. Next month, the theater returns with its first production since 2019, Anton Chekhov’s “Uncle Vanya” at Hopemont, also known as Hunt-Morgan House, at 201 N. Mill St. In 2009, On the Verge took presented “The Little Foxes” at the same location. The show, at 7 p.m. June 8-12 and June 15-19, features a cast of well-known Lexington actors led by Shayne Brakefield, who just wrapped production on “The Normal Heart” by ActOut Theater Group. Due to the nature of the venue, audiences are very limited. Tickets are $50 and are available at ontheverge.org.

Bluegrass Community and Technical College Theater has a track record of inventive and engaging performances garnering more attention than one would expect for a community college theater group. During the pandemic, the company has created a number of virtual theater experiences for audiences eager to perform despite the need for social distancing. But on May 12 and 13, the BCTC Theater returns to the stage with “William Shakespeare”A lot of noise for nothingstarring program director Tim Davis and Dunbar High School Theater principal Alicia Henning as rivals Benedick and Beatrice. This production was delayed from October, due to the outbreak of the Covid pandemic at that time. The production is outdoors at the BCTC Winchester Campus Amphitheater, 2020 Rolling Hills Lane. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show is at 7 p.m. every night. Get tickets at the Pam Miller Downtown Arts Center box office by calling 859-425-2550 or visiting lexingtonky.gov/about-downtown-arts-center.

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Catherine Bush, a former Danville resident, was recently honored in Abingdon, Va., where the artist-in-residence at the Barter Theater is now.

Ky playwright Catherine Bush honored

Originally from Kentucky Catherine BushThe ode to Appalachian life, “Kentucky Spring,” won the annual Festival of Appalachian Plays and Playwrights in Barter Theater in Abingdon, Va., and plays at the theater until May 22. Bush is now the artist-in-residence at the Barter, the oldest professional theater in the United States. Prior to connecting with the Virginia Theater, Bush wrote plays presented by numerous local theater companies, including the West T. Hill Community Theater in Danville and the Pioneer Playhouse. To the latter, she wrote,A jar of fireflieson the occasion of the 50and anniversary of the filming of “Raintree County” in Danville, a Civil War epic starring Elizabeth Taylor. To visit bartertheatre.com or call 276-628-3991 for tickets and more information on “Kentucky Spring,” with music and lyrics by Dax Dupuy.

Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra Update

The Lexington Philharmonic has announced changes to its May concert and its search for a new musical director. The conductor for his May 21 concert at the Singletary Center for the Arts, 405 Rose St., was to be Keitaro Harada, the final nominee for music director and conductor. But Harada withdrew from the search. That, and a previously announced withdrawal, means there will be four finalists for the orchestra’s artistic director: Thomas Heuser, Akiko Fujimoto, Kelly Corcoran and Julia Tai. Corcoran also served as Acting Artistic Advisor to the Philharmonie during the COVID pandemic, which halted the search for a conductor. The orchestra is expected to announce its new musical director this summer.

Harada will not conduct the final concert of the season. Intervening for him will be Melissa Brunet, a French conductor currently living in Iowa City, Iowa, where she is Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of Iowa-School of Music. Brunet will conduct the previously announced program for the concert on May 21 at 7:30 p.m.: “Smothered by Sky” by Loren Loiacono, “Symphony No. 5” by Sergei Prokofiev and “Piano Concerto No. 3” by Ludwig van Beethoven with soloist . Xiayin Wang. To visit lexphil.org or call 859-233-4226 for tickets.

Rich Copley is a former arts writer and editor of the Herald-Leader who continues to enjoy the arts and culture of Lexington.

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Andrea G. Henderson