The Sustainers: Builders and Preservers of Civil Rights Sites brings together the people behind the transformation of historic sites into permanent places for interpreting and understanding the civil rights movement. The two-day conference starts today at the Hilton Columbia [note: location updated]; the news section has more.
Bite me: The Columbia City Ballet reprises Dracula: Ballet with a Bite today; the arts section has more on page 30.
Get a head start on your Halloweekend today, and get a laugh out of it: The RiffTrax crew — that’d be Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett, the mad geniuses behind Mystery Science Theater 3000 — riff on George Romero’s masterpiece of flesh-eating mayhem Night of the Living Dead tonight; Regal Columbiana Grande 14 and Regal Sandhill Stadium 16 present a simulcast of the wisecracking, which starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12.50; visit fathomevents.com for more information.
Comics. Hip-hop. Culture. Columbia. Cola-Con returns this weekend, bigger and badder than ever; the arts section has more.
What is it about Muscle Shoals that has made it such a mecca for musicians? That this small Alabama town on the banks of the Tennessee River has been able to produce and sustain two world-class recording studios — FAME Studios and Muscle Shoals Sound Studios, which churned out hits for musicians of every stripe — is surely due to some kind of mystic mojo. Muscle Shoals explores the magic and music of the Hit Recording Capital of the World; the film opens today at the Nickelodeon Theatre, screening at 3, 8 and 10:30 p.m. Visit nickelodeon.org for tickets and more information.
It’s a celebration! The South Carolina State Museum celebrates its 25th birthday today; its car insurance premium just went way, way down. The museum celebrates with an all-day, Egyptian-themed birthday party, during which it will name one of its most iconic objects, the 43-foot-long, three-ton life-sized replica megalodon shark that hangs from the ceiling on the second floor of the museum. (We like the sound of the name Declan, don’t you?) The party starts early — the museum opens at 9 a.m. — and it’s free with admission. Call 898-4921 or visit scmuseum.org for more information.
It’s a cellobration! Since getting together in 1981, the duo of cellist Robert Jesselson and pianist Charles Fugo has been delighting audiences with its impeccable ensemble playing and its rich works for cello and piano. In December, Jesselson and Fugo released Carolina Cellobration: New Music for Cello, which includes works commissioned for the duo by six composers; the duo performs the disc in its entirety at the Columbia Museum of Art at 2 p.m., as part of the Baker & Baker Art of Music series. Admission is free. Call 799-2810 or visit
columbiamuseum.org for more information.
It’s a (late-night) celebration! The New Brookland Tavern tonight hosts Sid and Nancy’s Hollaween Explosion; disk jockeys Huxtabillionarie, Christian and Alejandro sling dance hits, and there’s a costume contest, too. (Sample categories: Prettiest; Campiest; Most Brutal; Best Resurrected/Zombie Celebrity. Eight Days suggests dressing as Zombie Nikki Haley.) Better still: Proceeds benefit the South Carolina HIV/AIDS Council. The soiree starts at 9 p.m.; admission is just $3. Call 791-4413 or visit newbrooklandtavern.com for more info.
It’s yet another celebration! This one’s for equality! South Carolina hasn’t legalized gay marriage just yet, but if New Jersey can do it, why can’t we? South Carolina Equality hosts its inaugural gala tonight at Embassy Suites; the Alice in Wonderland-themed gala raise awareness and funds for South Carolina’s only statewide organization working to change laws and policies that impact the civil and human rights of LGBT people in the Palmetto State. Singer Frenchie Davis, known for her appearances on televised singing competitions American Idol and The Voice, is the evening’s featured entertainer. The gala starts at 6 p.m.; tickets are $75. Visit scequality.org for more information.
Tale as old as time: Broadway in Columbia brings the Broadway musical adaptation of Disney’s beloved Beauty and the Beast to the Koger Center at 7 p.m. Be Broadway in Columbia’s guest: Tickets are $46 to $66. For tickets and more information, visit broadwayincolumbia.com.
The Light the Way concert series kicks off tonight at 300 Senate; proceeds from each concert will go to a local non-profit that serves the homeless population, and the beneficiary of the opening concert is the Women’s Shelter. The 7:30 p.m. concert’s theme: Broadway to Bluegrass. Tickets are $25; visit lightthewaysc.com for more.
Chanticleer has been called “the world’s reigning male chorus” by The New Yorker. Good enough for Eight Days: The ensemble performs at 8 p.m. at the Newberry Opera House; tickets are $49. Call 276-6264 or visit newberryoperahouse.com for more.
Radio is the sound salvation: Local college radio station WUSC-FM hosts its semi-annual fundraising drive this week; it started back on Thursday. (What does WUSC raise money for? Well, licensing fees, for one, and things like new equipment. Plus, if — when — you donate, you get cool WUSC swag.) Like every fundraising week, WUSC throws satellite events, some of which are totally awesome. One of the totally awesome events: A screening of A Band Called Death, a documentary about seminal black punk band Death, tonight at the Nickelodeon Theatre, followed by a question-and-answer session with filmmaker Jeff Howlett. The Nickelodeon Theatre screens the documentary at 9 p.m.; admission is $10, a portion of which goes to WUSC. For more information on WUSC’s fundraising activities, visit wusc.sc.edu.
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