Poor Virgil Thomson. The famous, award-winning composer -- he lived from 1896 to 1989 -- from midtown Kansas City hardly gets any respect in his home town and to add insult to injury, a new musical play about him in New York City just got a bad review in the New York Times.
It's not Virgil's fault that the show got panned -- it's the show! Virgil Thomson, who was as respected for his "incisive wit" and writing talents as
his musical compositions, is apparently not well-served by "Oh Virgil!
A Theatrical Portrait" by the creators of the show. The Times
reviewer, Neil Genzlinger, writes that although the play bills itself
as a "snapshot of one of the most remarkable, influential and
controversial artists," there's a problem in translation: "But that guy
never shows up. Instead some sour, self-absorbed old dude plants
himself on the stage: you're tempted to go up there and heave him into
the wings to make way for that erudite, multi-talented fellow you've
heard so much about."
(Image via Flickr: Painting by Alice Neel)
The Golden Ox got a little smoky yesterday, but the 60-year-old steakhouse didn't burn down.
Pitch food critic Charles Ferruzza reports over on Fat City that firefighters quickly extinguished the blaze and the Golden Ox suffered little damage and could be open as soon as Wednesday.
Here's a clip:
A fire in the grill tonight wafted up through the restaurant's ventilation system (a somewhat similar incident took place last February at the original Fiorella's Jack Stack BarbecueOh, and Ferruzza promises a review of the Golden Ox in this week's edition of The Pitch.
in Martin City).
By CHARLES FERRUZZA
Café Trio, officially turns four years old this month — if you don’t count the several months that Chris Youngers and Tai Nguyen spent operating their midtown restaurant as Pappagallo, the previous tenant at 3535 Broadway which Youngers and Nguyen bought out in 2003.
But instead of celebrating that birthday with a bang, the young bistro owners are in a frenzy of orchestrating their move to a bigger venue.
By CHARLES FERRUZZA
There’s been some significant movement in Kansas City’s restaurant scene this week.
After failing to keep her Overland Park restaurant 40 Sardines open as the sole chef-owner, Debbie Gold is bouncing back from her divorce from chef Michael Smith (who has remarried and now runs his own namesake restaurant at 1900 Main Street with his wife Nancy).
By CHARLES FERRUZZA
As an ex-waiter, I still have the occasional server’s nightmare: In my dream, I’m standing in the middle of a well-appointed dining room of a restaurant that I’ve never seen before. It’s a Saturday night, every table is full and I don’t see another waiter in the joint. A strange manager hands me a waiter’s pad and a pen, points off to a remote spot in the room and says, “You’re in Station Five.” Then he vanishes.
By CHARLES FERRUZZA
Wilkerson may have secured the patent for the 52-year-old frozen novelty, but he didn’t invent it. That honor goes to the founder of Merritt Foods, James S. Merritt and his most legendary employee, D.S. “Doc” Abernathy who went on to create the Dole Frozen Dessert bars and the Mutant Ninja Turtles ice cream treats. Merritt died in 1970 at age 54; his namesake company closed in 1991 when its then-owner, Dallas-based Morningstar Group, Inc. decided to get out of the icy-treat business. Iowa-based Wells Dairy bought the Bomb Pop patent after the century-old Merritt plant (originally built as a brewery) on Guinotte Avenue was shut down.
The original six-finned Bom Pop was introduced during the height of Cold War paranoia and atomic bomb testing in the United States. (Another summer innovation inspired by the A-bomb was the bikini, named for the Bikini Atoll nuclear weapons test site.) The three-color -- red, white and blue, of course – popsicle was created in a three-stage process in a trademarked shape. It’s grown longer and thinner over the years, and added color and flavor combinations.
Currently Wells Dairy (which sells over a million of the frozen treats annually) offers tenvariations on the theme, including Fudge Bomb Pop, a Jolly Rancher Bomb Pop, a Sour Power Bomb Pop and a sugar-free version – all of which are wildly popular with a generation of tykes who have no concept of what it means to live in terror of a nuclear war. For those who do -- there's a different kind of treat: The Bomb Pop cocktail.
It was a very good omen, I thought, when the Cordish Company announced it had snagged a local outpost of the popular Bice (pronounced bee-chay), a stylish Italian restaurant on New York City’s East Side, for the Power & Light District. The Bice Restaurant Group will open three concepts – a bistro, a café and a lounge -- in the two-story restaurant. Later, a friend asked me if Bice was the Italian word for “bitch.” That might be a little too cutting-edge for Kansas City, I’m afraid; I believe that in Rome, the slang word might be cogna (that’s what it is in Buffalo, anyway), which might be a good name for a restaurant, but that’s another story.
These days Paul Lovelace is a 30-year-old documentary filmmaker in New York City. He travels the country shilling his own motion picture projects – and on his own dime. Last night Lovelace returned to Kansas City (he’s a 1995 graduate of Shawnee Mission South High School) for a screening of the film The Holy Modal Rounders…Bound to Lose at Screenland; Lovelace co-directed the documentary about the famed psychedelic folk duo with Sam Wainwright Douglas and was also one of the film’s four producers.
One of the high points of last weekend’s Ethnic Enrichment Festival at Swope Park was a dazzling fashion show featuring the couture creations of young Vietnamese-American designer Nhut Trang. His name may be a lot more difficult to pronounce than, say, Mark Jacobs or Alexander McQueen, but the Ho Chi Minh City native, who immigrated to the United States in 1992, has the same passion for creating beautiful clothes.
On the glass counter near the entrance of the Bollywood Indian Bistro (20100 East Jackson, Independence) are a dish of hard candies and a box with cream-colored paper fliers announcing that the month of August is the “Grand Opening” of the restaurant. The restaurant actually opened well over a year ago and for all I know, the fliers are leftovers from last summer. Or are they new? The restaurant has recently re-opened after a three-month hiatus where the doors were locked and the lights were off.
No one working at the restaurant wanted to talk about the three-month period where the restaurant was closed. The manager of the place – which is still owned by chef Daljit Singh – got a funny look on his face when I asked. “There was a problem,” he said.
Dewey's Pizza (in Ohio and St. Louis), crust is doughy and light, toppings are amazing,…
Pappadeaux, Whataburger, Raising Cane's, Krystals
Portillos, Goodtimes burgers from Denver, Maggianos,
Chovy's Italian from Meadville, PA!
Is there going to be a parade?