Michael Cavacini

An award-winning arts and culture blog.

Archive for the tag “Philadelphia”

Review: Aladdin The Musical

Disney’s Aladdin, the musical, is currently at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia. Performances run until July 1, and I highly recommend that you go. I went to a performance last night and the nearly sold-out crowd ate it up from beginning to end. Having watched a clip of this show from the Tony Awards a few years back, I knew that the Genie was going to be the star of the show and he was. Michael James Scott, who plays the role of the Genie and was the understudy for the Genie during the original Broadway run, is fantastic. Just watch him sing and dance to “Friend Like Me” and you’ll be blown away by his stamina and unending charisma. He’s the heart and soul of the show and made it a blast to watch.

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James Patterson & Bill Clinton Discuss New Novel In Philly

Photo by David Burnett

As you may have heard, President Bill Clinton has teamed up with the world’s best-selling author, James Patterson, on a new novel: The President Is Missing. From what I’ve been told, this is the first time a former U.S. President has co-written a novel with a best-selling author. Both Clinton and Patterson are currently on a book tour to promote this new venture and last week they made a stop in Philadelphia.

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Meeting Daryl Hall

Last Saturday, after HoagieNation, my wife and I had the opportunity to meet the legendary Daryl Hall. We were the only people that met him after the show, aside from his family, so I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity, and he was a pleasure to speak with. I shook Daryl’s hand, introduced him to Stephanie, reminded him of the cover story on Hall & Oates by me that was just published the other week in The Aquarian Weekly, and asked him to autograph it for me. Daryl said, “That was a really good piece you wrote” and gladly signed the cover for me.

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Review: William Shatner Live On Stage

William Shatner, even at 87-years-old, seems to have boundless amounts of energy. He’s always working on something new and exciting. Right now he’s on a tour where he’s visiting cities and, following a screening of the classic film Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Shatner is participating in a live-on-stage Q&A with audiences. My father and I attended the Philadelphia screening at The Academy of Music, and it was an excellent event.

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Night Ranger Rocks Philly

Night Ranger is one of my favorite rock bands, ever since I first saw them on KISS Kruise III. I also firmly believe that they are one of the most underappreciated bands, as they have written, released, and performed countless songs that feature killer riffs, harmonies, and hooks that rival nearly anything their peers have put out. This is why I always make it a point to buy the band’s newest albums and see them live when they’re in my area, which they were last Friday night. Read more…

John Oates Brings Arkansas To Philly

John Oates, one half of the most successful music duo of all time, Hall & Oates, just released a new solo album entitled Arkansas. According to Oates, “It’s like Dixieland, dipped in bluegrass, and salted with Delta blues.” Just a couple days after the Philadelphia Eagles won their first Super Bowl, this mustachioed master of music brought his new tunes to the City of Brotherly Love, delivering an impassioned performance that resulted in the majority of the crowd buying copies of Arkansas.

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Emotional Homecoming For Zelda Symphony Producer


Last week’s performance of The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses in Philadelphia was an emotional one for the show’s producer Jason Michael Paul. It was the first time he’s been back at the venue where he started his career since December 2001, when he was working with Luciano Pavarotti on a performance celebrating the opening of this now iconic arts and culture center. Sixteen years later Jason returned to produce The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses, a show that celebrates more than 30 years of timeless music from one of the most enduring video game franchises of all time: The Legend of Zelda.

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Married In Philly, Honeymoon In Hawaii

2017 has been a full year for me. From five cover stories in The Aquarian Weekly, to finally interviewing Barry Manilow after three years of trying to do so, to me co-founding a group that meets up on a monthly basis to play Nintendo consoles and games. Between all of these things and my full-time job, it’s been a year filled with great accomplishments and experiences. But the one that tops them all took place on September 9, 2017. That’s the day I got married.

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Hillary Clinton Explains What Happened

Photo by Craig Melendes.

Hillary Clinton has a new book out, What Happened, and she’s on the road promoting it through sit-down speaking engagements across the country, where she details what went wrong for her campaign during last year’s landmark election, what she’s been doing since and her plans for the future.

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Dionne Warwick Receives Marian Anderson Award

Jerry Blavat and Dionne Warwick.

On November 14 Dionne Warwick received the Marian Anderson Award, which celebrates critically-acclaimed artists who have used their talents for personal artistic expression and whose body of work has contributed to our society in a singular manner. As you can see from the photo I took above, Dionne and the attendees were all smiles – even before the gala began. It was a memorable night honoring an iconic woman whose music and philanthropic work have made a lasting impact on society and popular culture that will be felt for generations to come.

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