Tag Archives: OutrSpaces

It’s a Makers Weekend

November 15, 2018 by

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Pick of the WeekFriday, Nov. 16:  This Friday is full of good things, thanks to the OEAA Showcases happening at some of your favorite, local music joints in Benson. You can check out full lineups at Burke’s Pub, The B Side, and Barley Street Tavern, or bounce around to catch your favorites. For only $10, your wristband will get you in to see over 15 performances featuring bands, DJs, hip-hop artists, and comedians. Why would you spend your night anywhere else? Get the whole setlist here.

Thursday, Nov. 15:  It’s a magical night at Bayliss Park as they celebrate Winterfest. This free event marks the kickoff of a festive winter wonderland in the park. With Santa, hot cocoa, reindeer, and carolers, tonight will definitely get you in the mood for some holiday fun. Don’t miss the lighting ceremony and a showing of Frosty the Snowman. For the full rundown, click here.

Friday, Nov. 16 to Sunday, Nov. 18: Shopping for the perfect gift for your loved ones? Be sure to check out Junktoberfest at the Southroads Mall in Bellevue where you can choose from collectibles, crafts, handmade pieces, and more. There will also be food and entertainment available for when you need a break from all the mall walking. You have the whole weekend to check it out, but don’t wait until the last day if you want to get the good stuff. Head here for more information.

Saturday, Nov. 17: It’s part Santa’s workshop, part science fair at SAC Museum this Saturday. Their Makers Market celebrates invention, creativity, and resourcefulness, with everyone from engineers to hobbyists to craft brewers in attendance. This is an event for the whole family to experience new forms of arts and technologies. Be sure to check out the puppet shows, yoga workshops, and musical performances throughout the day. Did I mention the duct tape Transformers? (Yes, that’s all duct tape!) Get the full list of all the many ways they’ll have to entertain and educate here.

Sunday, Nov. 18: Spend your lazy, Sunday afternoon supporting local talent at OutrSpaces with poet A.J.K O’Donnell. An Afternoon with A.J.K. O’Donnell will help fund an extension of her book tour, so let’s make it work. Pre-sale tickets include a signed copy of her latest book, This Void Beckons. They will also include early entrance & seating, appetizers, an open bar, and several other perks. There will also be time for dialogue and questions for the author. To learn more, just tap here.

 

Causing a Kerfuffle

October 24, 2018 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Ashley Laverty got bit by the acting bug at the tender age of 6, when she performed in her first play. It is fitting that she has dedicated her career to theater for youth.

“I was drawn to [theater] from then on,” Laverty says. “As both a performer and director, I love the ensemble. It’s kind of a cliché, but you’re really a family with your fellow performers and have to trust them so much. As a theater teacher, I love watching my students blossom and I love creating a safe space for them to be who they are and to be weirdos. That’s why I keep doing it.”

When the Worcester, Massachusetts, native took on New York City after college—bent on a Broadway career—she instead kept getting hired to do children’s theater. Laverty decided to let the universe steer her in that direction and sought her MFA in theater for youth at Arizona State University. 

“That’s when I was really introduced to theater for the very young [a movement known by the acronym TVY], which is theater intentionally created for children under age 5,” Laverty says. “Theater for adults doesn’t have to be a certain way, but so often theater for young people has to be overtly educational, didactic, and still isn’t seen as a legitimate art form. But as a theater maker, I’m passionate about creating theater for theater’s sake. Something can be beautiful, exciting, dynamic, and it can also teach you something—because anything good will teach you something. I’m really passionate about legitimizing the field of theater for young audiences by creating beautiful work.

“A 3-year-old deserves to see something high-quality and beautiful, just like a 35-year-old does. You know, seeing a beautiful painting, for example, can make you think about things in ways that you never have before, it doesn’t need to knock you over the head with a lesson.”

Inspired by that passion, Laverty and schoolmates Jeff Sachs and Amanda Pintore founded Kerfuffle, a TVY company where Laverty is the founding artistic director.  

“Kerfuffle’s model is that we work directly with very young people through drama, creative movement, and art to facilitate open-ended drama sessions. With those ideas we create characters and stories with those young people, then we go into rehearsals and create shows in which adults are performing for very young people,” Laverty says.

In 2016, after graduating from ASU, Laverty brought her considerable talents to Omaha when she was hired by The Rose Theater as a teaching artist and director of early childhood. Kerfuffle came along with Laverty, and she and her partners—now located in Chicago and Lawrence, Kansas, respectively—hope to evolve it into a Midwestern theater company.

Kerfuffle’s first show, The Caterpillar’s Footprint, was remounted in 2018 at Lincoln’s Lied Center and Omaha’s OutrSpaces. In addition to the preceding creative workshops, characteristics of Kerfuffle shows include a pre-show experience to ease kids into a production, sensory elements throughout, shorter run times, and a post-show party with snacks aiming to transition kids back out of the experience and foster community among families.

As a 2018 Union for Contemporary Arts Fellow, Laverty has created the latest Kerfuffle production, Nested, which will run Dec. 7-15. She hosted several drama workshops for kids last summer in The Union’s Abundance Garden to help derive the concepts for Nested.

“[When we come up with the concepts] they are acting along the way,” says Laverty. “We’re literally playing pretend in The Union’s garden, coming up with ideas for who lives in the garden and then going into my studio and building this giant nest. It’s 10-feet wide, 4-feet tall, and we’re decorating it with sticks, leaves, yarn, and other materials. The show will take place with the actors in the nest and the audience seated around them in The Union’s gallery.”

Approaching her two-year Omaha anniversary when she spoke with Omaha Magazine, Laverty was feeling adjusted and welcomed. Even with her jampacked schedule she makes a point to make time for herself—hangout time with her cat (Ron Weasley), travel, and improv at The Backline (where she performs with Zip-Zopera, Less Mis, and The Carol Brunettes).

“The Backline is really fun, and it is not kid-friendly. So that’s also kind of nice,” Laverty says. “That way it’s not like my whole life is theater for people under 5. Although I’m deeply passionate about TVY, it’s good to have a balance. At first I just did it for fun, but I feel like improv actually has made me a much better teacher.”

Speaking of improv, and its core philosophy of “yes, and…” Laverty praises Omaha for coming from a place of “yes.”

“What I love about Omaha compared to other places is that people are really willing to say yes here,” Laverty says. “That’s how the OutrSpaces partnership happened. I just reached out to them and said I thought this would be a really great partnership and they were like, ‘Yes.’ And The Union, everything I’ve gone to them with, even stuff they’ve never done, they’re all about making it happen. So, I feel like people say yes here a lot, and that’s really exciting.” 


Kerfuffle’s Nested runs Dec. 7-15 at The Union for Contemporary Art. Visit u-ca.org or kerfuffletvy.com for more information.

This article was printed in the November/December 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Check the Radar, Omaha

July 26, 2018 by

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Thursday, July 26 to Saturday, July 28: We’re a little late to this party, as it kicked off on Wednesday, the 25th. But Omaha Under the Radar has so many events happening you’ll still have plenty of time to experience the incredible talent performing at several different venues in Omaha. Some of our favorite picks are Event 7 at Bancroft Street Market and Event 9 at OutrSpaces. Don’t just take our word for it, though. Head here for the full list and to get tickets.

Thursday, July 26: Picking up trash may not be how you planned on spending this lovely Thursday evening, but imagine how satisfying it will feel to enjoy an evening by the lake while doing some good. The Bluemovement Road Trip cruises through the country cleaning up vital waterways. This joint collaboration of Keep Omaha Beautiful, Inc., United by Blue, and Neighborhood Offshore Boutique & Board Shop is bringing people together to help preserve our nation’s natural beauty. Get all the details here.

Thursday, July 26: Think you know music? Relax after all that cleaning and test your knowledge later this evening at Mercury Lounge with Rock ’N’ Roll Jeopardy. You and up to three teammates will play a traditional three rounds. Win it all, and you will get a $100 bar tab. Best of all, that otherwise inane knowledge can help you support a good cause and keep that do-good vibe going. This week’s round of Jeopardy, $1 of every purchase will go to Omaha Girls Rock. Find out more here.

Saturday, July 28: Head to Lewis & Clark Landing this Saturday for the first Nebraska Asian Festival. Presented by Awesome Egg Rolls, this production includes activities and demonstrations from several different Asian cultures, including a Tibetan monk blessing in the morning, martial arts demonstrations, and a performance by the Pacific Island Dancers. Then there’s the food, with everything from sushi to curry and of course, egg rolls, with a beer garden featuring Asian beers. Tickets are only $5 and this is an all-day festival, so there’s really no excuse if you miss it. Learn more here.

Saturday, July 28: Can’t wait for that crunchy leaves, pumpkin-centric, spooky Halloween time of the year? Satisfy that yearning by signing up for the Haunted Hummel Hike this weekend. Known for generating creepy tales, Hummel Park is somewhat legendary around Omaha as a place for freaky happenings and encounters. Get your tickets here and determine for yourself whether the park is cursed or not.
(Keep an eye out for our upcoming story on Hummel Park in Omaha Magazine’s Sept./Oct. issue.)

Saturday, July 28 to July 29: Start with pancakes, end with a run to burn them off. Benson Days is happening this Saturday, with the the Indie 5k/10k run taking place Sunday morning. The pancake feed starts at 8 a.m., with a parade to follow. There’s also a street festival and the beer garden is open for business until 11 p.m. Also, if you miss the pancakes, there will be plenty of food trucks on hand to keep you fueled. Most importantly, though, the music starts at noon and lasts all day, with performances from local favorites Matt Cox, All Young Girls Are Machine Guns, and Miwi La Lupa. Don’t drink too many brews though, or you may have a hard time staying hydrated during the run. Get the full rundown here.

Mother’s Day Magical Mayhem

May 10, 2018 by

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Pick of the Week—Sunday, May 13: We would be remiss if we didn’t make Mother’s Day our Pick of the Week. But with so much going on, there’s no way we could pick just one event. Below are several unique options for you and mom to enjoy.

  1. Tatsuya Nakatani: Clinic and Performance at OutrSpaces is from 1-4 p.m. Nakatani is a Japanese avant-garde sound artist and master percussionist. For this event, he will share insight into his life on the road, improvisation, sound, and vibration. Drum up more info here.
  2. Meet & Greet at Long Dog Fat Cat Big Dogs Huge Paws volunteers will be at Long Dog Fat Cat to introduce you to their sweet rescue and foster dogs from 1-3 p.m. Put your paw here for more information.
  3. Mother’s Day Brunch at Liquid Sunshine Taproom/Alamo Drafthouse starts with brunch at 11 a.m. with Terms of Endearment showing at 2 P.M. Press play here.
  4. Women in Omaha: A Biographical Sketch of Persistence Through History at the Durham Museum is an excellent way to celebrate all things woman for Mother’s Day. Of course, don’t forget to check out their other exhibits, including Romantically Speaking: The Development of American Literature in the 19th Century. The museum is open from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. Learn more here.
  5. The Mother’s Day Race is something special for those moms who just aren’t into brunch and shopping. Brought to you by the MRO Off-Road Club, this one’s in Lincoln. But if your mom is into racing, chances are she won’t mind the drive. Best of all? Moms race free! Speed on over here to find out more.
    We hope we’ve given you some ideas and you find something fun to do. As always, don’t forget to make reservations!

Thursday, May 10 to Saturday, May 12: The Florentine Players’ 54th annual melodrama this year is Love Potion No. 9 or All is Love in Fair and War. This show takes place during the World’s Fair in North Omaha in 1898 and focuses on a family of “inventors” and their love troubles. Come out and find out whether all’s fair in love and war (or some variation of that). Learn more about the play, the players, and the Florence Community Theatre here.

Friday, May 11: It’s finally river season again! Kick it off with Celebrate at The River’s opening ceremony at Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park in Council Bluffs. Head on over right at 5 p.m. and grab a beer at the beer garden while waiting to hear from the mayor. Shortly after, the ribbon cutting of the UN art pieces will take place. There will also be food and a free concert from The Clean and Easy Band, playing some Southern, blues, and good ol’ rock ’n’ roll. Get the full month’s schedule here.

Saturday, May 12: Want to spend the day out in the countryside but don’t feel like, you know, actually doing anything? Then get to the Sip Nebraska Wine & Craft Beer Festival at Mahoney State Park, where all you have to do is drink some local booze, eat some local food, and enjoy the scenery. There’s also plenty of live music to listen to, and maybe even get up and dance to should the mood strike. Get the full winedown, I mean rundown, here.

Saturday, May 12: Grab your wand, your sorting hat, and of course, your favorite snitch (the Quidditch kind, not the other) and take the whole (muggle) family to Harry Potter Family Night at the Omaha Children’s Museum. Meet some owls, make some potions, and eat some (free!) ice cream samples from Cold Stone Creamery. Be ready for tryouts with Creighton’s own Quidditch team and see what you look like in the Vogue enchanted mirror. Conjure up more information here.

 

From Springfield to Syria, We Have It Covered

March 8, 2018 by

Pick of the Week—Sunday, March 11: Did you think you missed out on all the film festival fun? Don’t worry, you’re not too late. Sunday offers your last chance to catch a taste of the 13th Annual Omaha Film Festival at their Writer’s Theatre. These staged readings start at noon and last until 3 p.m., covering a range of works featured throughout the run. Who knows? You might even see someone you know up there making their acting debut. So get thee to Marcus Village Pointe Cinema this weekend. To get a complete list of what (and who) you’ll see, click here. Check out their Sizzle Reel here.

Thursday, March 8: Syria seems always to be in the news lately. But what do we really know about the Syrian people? If you’re curious and would like to learn more, head to UNO’s community engagement center to hear Wendy Pearlman, Understanding Syria Through Refugee Stories, a lecture and discussion regarding the lives and personal experiences of Syrian refugees. Pearlman is an associate professor of political science at Northwestern University and author of several books. Get more details about this event here.

Friday, March 9: OutrSpaces has a new home. And no, it’s not on the moon. Instead it’s in Omaha’s latest revitalized area, Little Bohemia. Their Launch Party on 13th Street will feature CJ Mills and Chalis Bristol. This facility brings together members of the local creative community, providing resources and a venue for those who need it, whether the moon is up or not. The doors open at 6:30 p.m. with performances starting at 7:30 p.m. Get there early to learn about the space and the artists. A suggested donation of $10 will go to supper the artists, with further donations going to support OutrSpaces in their second year of bringing people together. Find out more here.

(Photo by Ariel Fred)

Friday, March 9: With rumors of the possible closing of The Apollon Art Space, don’t miss any opportunity to see some of their creative verve at work. Nasty Women Omaha Presents: What the F!?K is Next? is one such unique show. This pop-up group exhibition focuses on demonstrating solidarity within the arts community. No matter what your sexual orientation, race, religion, or background, you are welcome here. (Children are welcome, but keep in mind some content will be graphic.) The art show starts at 7 p.m. with performances starting at 8 p.m. Best of all, 100 percent of the proceeds go to Youth Emergency Services (YES). Learn more about what to expect here.

Saturday, March 10: We’ll give you any excuse to get out of the house and get some exercise, but this weekend’s St. Patty’s Run for the Gold 5k/10k from Freedom Running Company will get you out even further. And it will be worth it, as this race begins and ends at Soaring Wings Winery, where you can enjoy a free beer or glass of wine once you finish. Plus, all finishers will receive a medal and a long sleeve shirt to help you keep warm once you cool down. To get more info and to register for the run, go here.