Sarah Delia

When you think about the stereotypical drinks ordered by women in pop culture…certain cocktails come to mind. Fruity daiquiris, maybe a piña colada and of course the pink drink that was popular on the HBO series Sex and the City the Cosmopolitan.

Whiskey isn’t usually included on that list. But a group of women in Charlotte is out to prove it’s not a man’s world when it comes to the liquor.  

Bernard and Shirley Kinsey are more than just art collectors. They own one of the largest and most diverse private collections of African American artifacts and artwork in the world. Their wide-ranging collection examines 400 years of the African-American experience from nineteenth-century slave documents and an early copy of the Emancipation Proclamation to letters written by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and works by artists Romare Bearden and Henry O. Tanner. Now, in honor of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Kinseys have brought their passion for art and history to Charlotte where their collection will be on exhibition at the Harvey B. Gantt Center. We'll talk with Bernard and Shirley Kinsey and their son Khalil about their collection, their philanthropic vision and what they hope new generations will learn from four centuries of African American art, history and culture, when Charlotte Talks.

It's summer movie time, which means big stars, big thrills and big box office blockbusters - at least the studios hope so. This time every year, we invite local film critics Matt Brunson and Sean O'Connell to talk about the summer's biggest movies - which ones to catch and which ones to avoid. Whether you're looking for superheroes in Iron Man 3 and Man of Steel, fast cars in Fast & Furious or some throwback SciFi in Star Trek, we'll cover them all. And you can't talk blockbusters without talking about those larger-than-life action sequences - so we've invited the visual effects supervisor for Iron Man 3 to explain how these effects work and the history of special effects in film, when Charlotte Talks.

Blood suckers, slime makers and vomit munchers. Discovery Place has a summertime exhibit sure to grab your kids . . . and probably make you gag. We go inside "Grossology" on the next Charlotte Talks. But first, we sit down with some people on a mission to make sure the city's museums and cultural institutions – like Discovery Place – have stable financial future. Government grants and workplace giving have declined so dramatically in recent years that Charlotte's arts leaders are sounding the alarm. They've formed a task force to come up with solutions. We talk to the co-chairs of that task force, when Charlotte Talks.

Part One: Queen City Theatre Co.'s Me and Jezebel. We've all had a houseguest who overstayed their welcome. Most do so for a matter of minutes or hours. Hollywood superstar overstayed her welcome by 32 days! Author Elizabeth Fuller met Bette Davis in 1985 and offered to let Ms. Davis stay in her home while there was a hotel strike raging in New York City. Over a month later, Davis finally left but her legacy continued as Ms. Fuller wrote a popular book about the experience. That book is now a play and Queen City Theatre is presenting it. We'll learn more when Charlotte Talks.

From time to time on this show, we discuss performances of plays, musicals, symphonies or operas composed or created by talented artists who are no longer with us, or who aren't available to join us on the show. On this edition of the show, however, we're joined by a living legend, an American composer and librettist who has been creating famous operas since the 1950's! Carlisle Floyd will join us, along with 4-time Grammy Award-winning American tenor Anthony Dean Griffey. They're in town to do residencies at Wingate University, and while they're here, they'll join us to talk about their craft and their worldwide prominence in opera and music performance, when Charlotte Talks.

Part One: Charlotte Symphony's Classical Idol. The concept behind American Idol is not new. We have always been fascinated by that special talent who comes along and inspires us with their vision and craft. But most American Idol winners are everyday folks with a gift. Classical musicians are highly trained, dedicated and persistent artists who often go unnoticed in the communities they serve with their music. Not in Charlotte. Last year Classical Idol was hatched. It's a friendly competition to raise funds for the Symphony but it's also a way to raise awareness of these incredibly talented musicians in our midst. With offerings from Celtic fiddle to an elementary school choir, Classical Idol has music for everyone. 

Wendy Herkey

The nominees have been announced, the red carpet is being unrolled and it's almost time for that annual movie love-fest known as the Academy Awards. We've tracked our intrepid film critics down, dragged them out of dark cinemas and into the studio to discuss their Oscar predictions. We'll talk about who's in, who's out and what they expect to see when Oscar makes his appearance. Join us for an award winning edition on Charlotte Talks.

During the first half of our show we welcome back Bob Crawford and David Childers. Bob is the bass player for the Avett Brothers but he and David have formed their own band called OverMountain Men. We'll take a listen to what they are up to and then we make way for The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity. It's the latest show at Carolina Actors Studio Theatre and it examines the wild world of Pro Wrestling. It's music and body slams when Charlotte Talks.

Part One: Lindi Ortega. Lindi Ortega has been described as Canada's answer to Dolly Parton and "the love child of Johnny Cash and Nancy Sinatra." The country singer-songwriter out of Toronto puts a unique spin on the genre - blending in folk and rock and sometimes a little humor. Lindi has a voice that draws you in and catchy songs you might find yourself humming. Fun facts, she appeared on ABC's Nashville and has toured with Kevin Costner (yes, THAT Kevin Costner.) While she's in Charlotte for a performance at The Evening Muse, we'll talk with her about her music, her influences and her story and she'll also perform live, when Charlotte Talks.


Lindi Ortega - Singer-songwriter, her latest album is Cigarettes & Truckstops

  • Lindi Ortega is performing (tonight) Tuesday, Feb. 5th at The Evening Muse at 9pm. Details.

Part Two: SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody. Unless you've been living under a rock, you've at least heard of the erotic literary series "Fifty Shades of Grey," which has become the guilty pleasure of millions of women around the world. The risqué book's popularity has been made into parody, first on Saturday Night Live, and more recently with its own MUSICAL parody. SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody comes to Charlotte this week and promises to be a howling, rowdy comedic night out for (mostly) women from 21 to 91. We'll talk with cast members and the writer about just how this musical came to be, and the surprising enthusiasm they've seen from audiences around the country.

Danielle Trzcinski
- 'Tasha Woode' in SPANK!
Gabe Bowling - 'Hugh Hanson' in SPANK!
Jim Millan - Writer and Director of SPANK!

  • SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody is Feb. 6-9th at McGlohon Theater. Details.