Well known for showing the influences of Dinah Washington, Peggy Lee or Ella Fitzgerald, who knew Natalie Cole could wail like Janis Joplin? The highlight of her concert with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra on Sunday may have been Cole’s unexpected and powerful version of Joplin’s soaring “Cry Baby,” though the whole show was chockfull of moving moments.
Cole even sang with her late dad, Nat King Cole, thanks to their technology-created “duet” of “Unforgettable” in 1991 being projected onto the screen behind the orchestra. She paced her concert beautifully, opening with jazz and ballads before taking a short break, putting on a sparkling white top over her sparkling black evening gown, and cranking up the music with her tight eight-piece band and the ASO.
Her performance culminated with a rousing rendition of “This Will Be,” which had several fans in the balcony up and dancing. Cole came back out, received a key to the city from Barbara Graves, apologized for having referred to the local musicians as the “Little Rock” symphony, and performed an encore with “Inseparable” (dedicated to her fans, she said) and “Our Love.” She left “I’ve Got Love on My Mind” off the set list, but two standing ovations and happy faces indicated that no one in the nearly full Robinson Center minded.
— By Jim Harris
UALR Chancellor Andrew Rogerson told staff today that law professor John DiPippa would serve as interim dean of the Bowen School of Law while a search is made for a permanent dean. The appointment takes effect in July. The search should begin in the fall.
The senior high classes of 1969, ’75 and ’86 and all in between and around were entertained with a completely satisfying four-plus hours of “San Francisco Fest 2016” featuring Bay area natives Journey and The Doobie Brothers, with special guest Dave Mason.
Sheila Kennedy, a professor of architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and founder of Kennedy & Violich Architecture Ltd., will give the June Freeman lecture tonight at the Arkansas Arts Center, part of the Architecture + Design Network series at the Arkansas Arts Center.
The Walton College of Business is working to expand its executive education by opening an office in downtown Little Rock that would offer non-degree programs to the health, banking and finance and retail industries in Central Arkansas, the school confirmed today.
A former mental health agency director has won a default judgment worth $358,000 over a claim for unpaid retirement pay and Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson is apparently to blame for failure to respond to pleadings in the case.
The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra opened its season Saturday night with a return visit by the 28-year-old violin virtuoso Augustin Hadelich, who had appeared with the orchestra in the Beethoven concerto two years ago.