by Susan Braun

If you want to catch fine performances by two of Buffalo’s most accomplished actors, Anne Gayley and Roz Kramer, take yourselves to the Kavinoky Theatre to see them reprise the roles they played 20 years when Peter Schafer’s comedic play Lettice and Lovage was first produced. The show, which opened on Friday, April 30th, is directed by Kathleen Gaffney. Lettice Douffet (Anne Gayley) is a tour guide at an old British mansion that does not have an exciting historical past. To make up for this perceived lack, Lettice embellishes the facts with great enthusiasm until she is unceremoniously fired by Lotte Shoen, the Human Resources Manager at the British Preservation offices.

Conflicts between creativity and fact are quickly resolved as Lottie, suffering from guilt, comes to visit Lettice at her apartment. She brings information about a new job as well as a glowing letter of recommendation. Lettice invites her to “quaff” a potent English cordial which she concocts using an herb called lovage. And so begins a new friendship.

For information about tickets and show times, contact the Kavinoky Theater at either 716-881-7668 or

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by Denise Drews

This weekend I am looking forward to attending one the coolest nights out in Buffalo. It’s a Multi Art & Music Party being held from 9pm – 2am. I’m also very intrigued of the location for this event. It will take place at Rock Harbor Yard 57 Tonawanda Street in Buffalo, just a few minutes from Buffalo State College and Elmwood Village.

In the past 21 incarnations of Hallwalls’ Artists & Models Affair, a multitude of Buffalo sites have served as the locus for temporary artistic expressions and controlled insanity: the Broadway Market, abandoned factories, warehouses, auto showrooms, roller rinks, deserted downtown malls and department stores, the Tri-Main Center, and the Buffalo Convention Center. This year’s event—officially, the 22nd version of Artist &Models.

There will be 30 Artists’ Installations, including 404 Error, Alice Alexandrescu, Kyle Butler & Marc Tomk, AWK, Steven Ansell & Tammy McGovern, Katrina Boemig, Michael Bosworth, David Butler, Buffalo Hackerspace, Scott Bye, Collective Collective, Jax Deluca, Aasta Deth, John Fink, Chris Hausbeck, HERO Design, Jimyn the Singing Mine, Jill Johnston-Price, Evelyn Killaby, Alison S.M. Kobayashi-Emily Gove & Jennie Suddick, Al Larsen, Marty McGee & Mick Gross-, R.J. Melnyk & Ariane FulkLorna Mills, Vincenzo Mistretta, P.J. Moskal, N.J. Parisi, Shasti O’Leary Soudant, Timothy Scaffidi, Gary Sczerbaniewicz, R.M.Vaughn, Heather Warren-Crow, Christopher Young

Live Music from Family Funktion & SitarJamz, Divi Rome Royal African Sound, Orchestra Stimuli, MC Wizzalot & Tip Top Hip Hop Orchestra, DJ Bev Beverly and Strip Teasers (Burlesque)

Cost is only $15 in advance and for Hallwalls members, or $20 at door

Advance tickets are available at Hallwalls -Talking Leaves Books (both Elmwood & Main St.), Sweetness 7 Cafe (Lafayette & Grant), Rust Belt Books (Allen St.), Room (Hertel) and Clarence Coffee Center (Goodrich Road).

For more information go to or call 716-854-1694

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by Karen Huefner
Upon completing my final essay in graduate school, I pretty much vowed that my schooling days were over. That was until Wine School came into my life. Gone are the days of sitting in the back of class, doodling in my notebook waiting for 9th period to end. At Wine School, it’s chair closest to the teacher, arrive ten minutes early and ask as many questions as I can.

Bacchus restaurant located in downtown Buffalo on Chippewa Street offers Wine School every other Wednesday for those who want to have an intimate lesson on a grape’s most valued byproduct. Taught by a certified sommelier, each class touches on a specific type of wine from a specific region. The class I attended focused on Pinot Noir’s of California. Mmm…

There were 12 of us in the class and they sat us at a table right in the main dining room. With a set of wine glasses in front of each of us, we had a chance to sample 4 wines ranging in price and taste. Mike, the sommelier, gave a down-to-earth approach to the lesson and gave us a blow-by-blow as to what makes a Pinot Noir a Pinot Noir. It was fantastic!! The wine tasting also includes two food pairings. The leg of lamb and sea bass they served were incredible and the wine truly complemented the food beautifully. Mike answered everyone’s questions and provided personal suggestions and tips on wine buying. The class lasted about 2 hours and for a girl who used to only drink Riesling, I was rather impressed and left eager to sign up for the next one! Something different to do on a Wednesday night, especially if you time your trip to Buffalo right!

For more information, go to the Bacchus website. Salud!

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by Susan Braun

Shea’s Performing Arts Center has just announced its 2010-11 M & T Bank Broadway Series. A quick glance at the schedule indicates that the up-coming season has something for everyone. Here’s a quick rundown.

Disney and Cameron Mackintosh kick off the season October 14-31, 2010 with a new touring production of the Tony®-award winning musical, Mary Poppins. You can learn more about the play at

A new stage production of Dreamgirls will arrive December 14-19, 2010. This play tells the story of Effie White, Deena Jones and Lorrell Robinson, who form an R & B trio in the 1960’s known as The Dreamettes. Starting as back-up singers, the three soon find themselves front and center as musical superstars. The show alludes to the lives and careers of The Supremes and the rise of Motown Records and features hits such as “One Night Only” and “Listen.” Visit

Look out for Shrek the Musical to be onstage February 22-27, 2011! An ogre, a princess with a mind of her own, a donkey who talks non-stop, a nasty short-tempered guy and a cookie are just a few of the “characters” you’ll come across in this Tony® and Academy® award winning musical. (

Young Frankenstein is next onstage March 22-27, 2011. This new production is based on the Mel Brooks film of the same name and is a hilarious interpretation of the story of Dr. Frankenstein’s attempts to create a monster. The music and lyrics were written by Mel Brooks who co-wrote the play. (

Back by popular demand, Wicked will be in town April 27—May 22, 2011. The New York Times recently named Wicked “the defining musical of the decade”. We all know the story of Dorothy and her red shoes, but did you know that long before Dorothy arrived on the scene, a girl with emerald green skin and another who is beautiful and popular met in the Land of Oz and became the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda, the Good Witch? Come see Wicked and find out how it all happened! (

It’s been more than 50 years since West Side Story opened on Broadway and yet, it is still timely today. The musical is set in 1950’s New York, against a backdrop of rivalries between 2 street gangs of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. The members of the Sharks, led by Bernardo, are all first generation Americans from Puerto Rico while the Jets, led by Riff, are all from working-class families who consider themselves the “real” Americans. The story revolves around Tony, a member of the Jets, and Maria, the sister of the leader of the Sharks who meet and fall in love. Musical theater changed dramatically after West Side Story originally opened because it used a romantic story filled with memorable music and dancing to comment on social justice issues. Don’t miss West Side Story on stage June 7-12, 2011. (

Season tickets for the 2010-2011 M & T Broadway Series are on sale now. For more information and to order tickets, visit , stop by the Shea’s Ticket Office at 650 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14203 or call 716-847-0850.

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by Melissa Barrie

Looking for a convenient place to stay downtown? Check out the newly renovated Comfort Suites at 601 Main Street. It’s located along the free fare zone of the Metro Rail, and they also provide free shuttle service to the Buffalo Niagara Airport. All of the rooms in the hotel are suites, with a bedroom and a separate living area. Recently updated features include:

  • New décor in all rooms, hallways, and in the lobby
  • New appliances in all rooms including microwaves, refrigerators, and two flat screen TV
  • New fitness room with state of the art equipment
  • Newly renovated dining area – they also provide a free continental breakfast
  • New computer room off of the lobby, and free wireless high-speed internet access

If you’re going to be in Buffalo’s entertainment district this New Year’s Eve, there are still 20 rooms available. Several rooms provide an excellent view of the Buffalo ball drop at the Electric Tower.

Have a safe and happy New Year!

by Carolyn Batt

Whether it’s ice skating and First Night for the family, the Ice Ball for the 21+, the ball drop at midnight, or the entertainment district for the partiers, downtown Buffalo has plenty of activities to ring in the New Year!

Start your day on New Year’s Eve with free outdoor skating at Buffalo Place’s Rotary Rink, located at Main and Chippewa Streets. The rink is offering extended holiday hours, and is open December 31st 11am-1am and January 1st 11am-9pm.

Head over to First Night Buffalo, which attracts more than 5000 people every year on New Year’s Eve at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. Featuring a wide variety of visual and performing arts, music and dance, sports activities and children’s entertainment, First Night is a drug and alcohol free event that serves as a healthy holiday alternative to New Year’s Eve celebrations.

If you’re looking for an upscale full-night event, check out the Ice Ball, taking place at the historic Statler Towers. This 21+ event features an optional dinner, live music, dancing, an open bar, confetti white-out and champagne toast at midnight. Other highlights include seeing the 1st marriage proposal of 2010, a photobooth, magician and ice sculptures.

For those that prefer a more traditional New Year’s celebration, this year marks the 22nd annual ball drop from the Electric Tower in Roosevelt Square. Attracting more than 40,000 people a year, this is the biggest party of the year in Downtown Buffalo. With a close proximity to Buffalo’s Chippewa Entertainment District, downtown Buffalo’s after-party will bustle until last call at 4 a.m. (and many bars will also extend their hours to remain open well past 4 a.m. for this night).

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by Karen Huefner

I’m always looking for new ways to experience Christmas year after year. Between the shopping, decorating and cookie-baking I feel like there’s little time for anything else! Don’t get me wrong, it’s imperative I watch ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ and the Holiday Pops concert with the BPO is a must but I always crave something different. This year I found it. I took a ride north of Buffalo to Youngstown, NY, home to Old Fort Niagara. For two weekends in December the Fort comes to life for their annual Colonial Christmas by Candlelight event.

Having been to the Fort numerous times when I was younger, I was familiar with the grounds. However with the chance to experience the Fort in the evening, that was a whole new ballgame. I arrived at the park around 8pm, sun already set, snow on the ground and a crisp breezing blowing in off Lake Ontario. Ladies, leave your heels at home for this…boots are a must.

I stayed at the Fort about an hour and a half watching (and partially covering my ears for) the firing of the Christmas guns, mixing and mingling with the soldiers, sampling some holiday cooking and clapping along to the music. It’s about as close as one can get to experiencing an 18th century Christmas.

This is the last weekend for Christmas by Candlelight. Make this a new holiday tradition with your family. Oh, and bring your flashlight!

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