ART | They don’t make ‘em like they used to
Opening Aug. 24
Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
for the Arts
54 St. Phillips St.
You never know what people hide in their basements. In the case of one man, it was a Technicolor fantasy world. Growing up in the golden age of cinema, Gordon Brinckle developed a passion for movie palaces and over the years worked as a projectionist in theatres with the dream of one day opening his own. Limited by his meager salary, he started building a smaller scale version of his dream theatre in his own basement. For 40 years, every spare moment was spent working and reworking his creation — the Shalimar. Kendall Messick grew up across the street from Brinckle and managed to catch a glimpse of the Shalimar when he was a boy. Inspired by a vague memory of "something magical," he returned to his hometown and The Projectionist was born. Opening this Friday, the exhibit's film will be presented on the actual screen and stage of the Shalimar prior to and following the reception, at 4 and 7 p.m. It looks at Brinckle's incredible artistry and explores ideas of obsession, aging, and nostalgia. Brinckle's design drawings for the theatre and photos from his career are also on display. Brinckle revealed to Messick that his greatest fear was not knowing the fate of his creation; now he's filled with excitement knowing that it's showing in an art gallery near you. —Erica Jackson OPENS FRIDAY
GALA | Watch out for that fur ball
A Furry Affair
Fri. Aug. 24
City Gallery at Waterfront Park
Tourists flock to the Holy City and residents are proud to call it home, but it’s kind of a crappy place to be a dog or cat — euthanasia rates in the tricounty area are twice the national average due to irresponsible pet ownership. But the John Ancrum Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is working to turn things around. On Saturday art- and animal-lovers will gather at the City Gallery for the third annual Furry Affair to raise money to support the adoption center for abused, neglected, and abandoned animals. Over 10,000 animals went through the shelter in 2006 and it’s not a cheap operation — it costs well over $1 million to fund the JASPCA’s three facilities last year alone. To help raise the much needed funds, artists and local celebrities have donated works to be auctioned at the event. An eclectic mix is up for bid from both established and up-and-coming artists like Sarah Mitchell, Steven McCabe, and Phillip Hyman, as well as local personalities like the hosts of Lowcountry Live, Chief Rusty Thomas of the City of Charleston Fire Department, RiverDogs owner Michael Veeck, and even Charlie the RiverDog. The crowd itself should also be an interesting mix, consisting of hat lady art patrons and starving artists. Tristan and Chef Ciaran Duffy are catering the event, so come hungry. Beer and wine will be on hand, included in the $75 ticket price. Funds from the event will go toward education and outreach programs for spaying and neutering (like the JASPCA’s recent dispersal of 100,000 spay/neuter coupons in water bills), as well as a new state-of-the-art building, which will help get more animals into happy homes. Because of the efforts of organizations like the John Ancrum SPCA, Charleston is getting to be a happier place for our furry friends. Now’s your chance to help make it even better. —Erica Jackson FRIDAY
PARTY | Celebrating 10 years
of City Paper shenanigans
10th Birthday Bash
Wed. Aug. 22
Free (21 and up)
1008 Ocean Blvd.
Isle of Palms
It’s officially been a decade … and the City Paper hasn’t yet decayed! To celebrate, we’ve organized a special birthday party to be held at the Windjammer on the IOP (where “it’s always a jam good time”) on Wed. Aug. 22. The party officially kicks off at 7 p.m. with a slew of live local talent and a bar full of great food, strong bevvies, and ice-cold beer. It’s a great opportunity to meet, toast, or stagger around your favorite writers, staffers, advertisers, and scenesters. We’re putting the spotlight on a handful of popular Charleston bands and musicians who’ve been prominently featured in the City Paper over the last 10 years. Live performers on the deck stage facing the beach include (in order of appearance) The Cutlines (an oldies act/garage band comprised of City Paper staffers), singer/guitarist Peter Alvanos (formerly of Charleston bands The Ferns and Honey Wagon, currently in Athens, Ga. band Fabulous Bird), Rik Cribb & The Problems, and singer/guitarist Cary Ann Hearst. The inside stage features performances from (in order of appearance) The Graham Whorley Band, The Stiff Joints, The Sound Affects (featuring members of Velveeeta), The Archetypes (featuring guitarist Kevin Wadley and singer Tommy Dew), Uncle Mingo, Jay Clifford and Jonathan Gray (both formerly of Jump, Little Children), Sol Driven Train, and Leslie. Sponsors include 98X, The Bridge @ 105.5, Future Brands Liquor, and McDaniels Automotive Group. —T. Ballard Lesemann WEDNESDAY
COMEDY | Rounding up the usual suspects, one last time
Thurs. Aug. 23
280 Meeting St.
Fifteen years ago Michael Graham was banned from S.C. public radio for making fun of “boneheads in the state legislature” (his words) on the air. As a result, the conservative pundit started writing a column, “The Usual Suspects,” which now runs in newspapers across the Southeast, including Charleston City Paper. Now living in Boston, he works as a radio talk show host and writes a twice-weekly column for the Boston Herald, and he’s written several successful books. Take that, S.C. public radio. But alas, all good things must come to an end, including Graham’s long-lived “Usual Suspects” column —he’s decided to go out while he’s on top. Coinciding with City Paper’s 10-year anniversary, one of our longest-running contributors says goodbye with an exclusive stage performance at Theatre 99. Graham will surely draw from his six years as a professional stand-up comic in the comedy boom of the late 80s and early 90s, when he toured with the likes of Jerry Seinfeld and Jeff Foxworthy. But don’t expect a typical stand-up performance. Graham promises a more storytelling feel to the evening, as he shares the tales he’s been unable to tell in print, because of their adult content or longer format. He’ll talk about the time he was jumped by illegal immigrants for wearing an INS (“I Need Border Security”) T-shirt at one of their rallies, and the time he was shaken down by the Secret Service for on-air comments he made about Hillary Clinton and a tire iron. He also promises to tell “The Ultimate Road Trip Story” — something about a redneck bar in Nebraska that involves animal husbandry. Expect a few surprises too, as he’ll be making a few phone calls to people “who ought to know better.” —Erica Jackson THURSDAY
FESTIVAL | Down on the farm
Southern National BBQ Championship and Bluegrass Festival
Aug. 24 & 25
Fri. 4-8 p.m., Sat. 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
Boone Hall Plantation
As one of America’s oldest working and most photographed plantations, Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens is synonymous with the South, making it the perfect setting for this third annual event. Featuring barbecue, bluegrass, and a few rabid football fans gearing up for the fall, the Southern National BBQ Championship and Bluegrass Fest is about as Southern as you can get. About 30 amateur and professional barbecue chefs from all over the Southeast (with a few Yankees tucked in) will compete for more than $13,000 in cash and prizes. With names like Passionate Pig, Big Daddy’s Butt Rub, Midnight Smokers, and Pork Shank Redemption, you know they’ll be bringing their game faces. Competitors will be divided into three divisions: pro, amateur, and tailgaters. The latter category will be judged on their barbecue and their tailgate setup, which should showcase school colors, paraphernalia, and general enthusiasm for their team. Barbecue and beverage (including beer) vendors from all over the Lowcountry will be on hand to satisfy those cravings. And don’t forget the bluegrass. Local bands Yee-Haw Junction, Homeboy Reunion, and the Southland Boys will help keep the atmosphere as down-home as possible. —Erica Jackson FRIDAY & SATURDAY
THEATRE | A Shakespeare classic with an Asian flair
Aug. 23-26, Aug. 30-
8 p.m., 3 p.m. (Aug. 26 & Sept. 2)
Emmett Robinson Theatre
54 St. Philip St.
$15, $10/CofC faculty, staff, students, and seniors
College of Charleston’s theatre department tackles perhaps the best-known of the the Bard’s history plays, Richard III. Though historically Richard III is known as an effective ruler, thanks to Shakespeare he’s known as one of theatrical literature’s greatest villains. Great actors like Ian McKellen and Al Pacino have been drawn to the role because of its complexity — he’s reprehensible, but at the same time he’s charming, seductive, and funny. The play looks at the king’s rise to power and his subsequent downward spiral. According to director Evan Parry, this production explores this idea of power, and how people who attempt to achieve it corruptly are simply an outgrowth of a war-faring society. With this focus on war and its cyclicality, CofC’s production also stands out in its overall look, which is influenced by Japanese and Chinese cultures. Highlighted because of their similar history as war-faring societies, Asian influences are seen in details like the lighting’s saturated colors, the costumes (which tend to blur the silhouette, thus blending gender differences), and weapons. Jamie Smithson, a CofC grad who’s been acting professionally in New York for the past several years, stars as Richard. You might recognize him as the lead in Urinetown or as Barry in The Boys Next Door, both recently at the Village Playhouse. —Erica Jackson THURSDAY