Change is constant. But sometimes change is a bit bigger and more prevalent than at other times.
This occurred to me while sitting down to lunch a few weeks ago with Nan Plummer, the new President and CEO of LexArts. We were talking about theater in the area and two of the prominent names were new ones: The Lexington Theatre Company and AthensWest Theatre and some troupes that are regrouping or are no longer with us.
Lexington's arts and cultural scene has seen and will see even more change during the coming season. The 21c Museum Hotel will open on Main Street, bringing the city a new and prominent visual arts center. The music outpost on Manchester Street has changed hands and will reopen next month — which is almost here — and who knows what that will bring to the music scene Horse Capital of the World.
And we have made some changes too in this annual preview of the coming year in arts and entertainment.
No. 1, we're bringing it to you earlier. In recent years, we have found that when published in early September, some events were already in our rear-view mirrors. So hopefully bringing this to you now, we give you a full picture of what is to come and give you some time to act — you know, block off time on your calendar for things you want to see, get tickets, etc.
No. 2, we are trying to focus on Central Kentucky, the Bluegrass. Yes, one of the great things about living here is that we have the big cities of Louisville and Cincinnati within an easy drive, and the calendars within this section contain listings for major groups and events in those cities. But we have also streamlined the listings to focus on our own area and its wide variety of outstanding arts and entertainment presenters.
No. 3, we have added a section to reflect the rich and growing literary community in the Bluegrass, giving you a preview of events such as readings and discussions at venues such as the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning and area book sellers.
And finally, we are bringing some perspective as you will find longtime Herald-Leader arts writers Walter Tunis, Candace Chaney and myself providing some insight on upcoming events that are particularly intriguing.
I guess in a time of change, we have been somewhat constant, and for longtime Lexington culture vultures, there will certainly be plenty of familiar names and faces here, too.