Thursday, June 05, 2008

Jazz Hand ...and Outdoor Music

As a SpoJo (Spoleto civilian Journalist), I've had an opportunity to post my impressions on some of this year's presentations.

What an honor. What a challenge. JAZZ HAND - Tales of a One Armed Woman is such a situation.

During the opening skit where a dancer's hand flies off during a fast audition routine, the audience at the American Theater felt a bit uneasy. It appeared to be part of the act...but..

Mary Theresa Archbold and her husband, fellow performer, Pat Shay, looked down at the false (left) hand on the stage floor.

When the lights dimmed, signaling the end of the skit, we nervously applauded.

After that shaky (for the audience) opening, the show was great, touching, and VERY funny. We all, well, gave her a hand.Some genius decided to expand the seating for the Carolina Chocolate Drops by moving two of their four performances to the outdoor Cistern area. Man, that was inspired!

(The line looks long but, as soon as the gates opened, everyone quickly entered and we picked a seat down front.)I had seen the talented trio a few years ago when they opened for Taj Mahal at the Charleston Music Hall but they really blossomed onstage beneath the stately moss-draped oaks.

Catch them if you can.

(Check out ALL the Festival coverage at

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