Voted About.com’s Best Haunt in Memphis for two years running, Hauntedweb of Horrors ushers guests through two winding walk-throughs filled with gruesome scenery and ghoulish live denizens. The Tormented haunt plunks guests into Dr. Hacker's asylum, where they encounter frenzied inmates in macabre hospital locales. Eluding the doctor deposits patrons in the Dark Bayou—a quagmire beset by bloodthirsty locals and the vengeful ghosts of catfish dinners past. Feet can also tiptoe past psychedelic terrors in The Dark Matter haunt's labyrinthine tangle, navigating a surreal landscape of 3-D visuals that baffle the senses. Each frightful journey lasts approximately 15–20 minutes or 20–40 high-pitched screams. Although Hauntedweb does not recommend that children tour its spooky innards, its proceeds help Youth Villages to reach kids in need. While this Groupon is valid any day through October 31, customers attending the Hauntedweb of Horrors October 29 through October 31 should expect long lines and possible delays.
One of the oldest community theaters in the country, Theatre Memphis has been putting on high-quality productions for 90 years. The 2010–2011 season features six highly acclaimed plays and musicals fit for auditory and sensory feasting. Tony Award nominee for Best Book of a Musical, [title of show] (January 14–30), is a love letter to the musical theater that follows two struggling writers in a race to craft an entry to a musical theater festival. Amadeus (February 4–20) traces Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as he rises to become the number one ranked composer in the eyes of Austrian Emperor Josef. March 11–April 3, the stage and its reddest curtains dance to Cabaret, along with a charmingly carefree nightclub performer. Richard III, the third in William Shakespeare’s acclaimed three-part Richard series, appears April 8–24, preparing the stage for Picnic (April 29–May 15) and Crazy for You (June 3–26).
Instructor Lynn Givens knows from experience the kinds of dangers lurk in the world. After an experience with a stalker who threatened her and her son, she started training in armed self-defense, going on to earn a state instructor's certification in less than a year. Wanting to help prepare others for such threats, she joined the instructional team at Rangemaster, where today she and several other instructors lead more than 30 training courses.
Understanding that all clients have unique training needs is what drives the staff at Rangemaster. The team operates under the direction of owner and chief instructor Tom Givens, who previously spent 25 years in law enforcement and security. Applying training standards compliant with organizations such as the NRA, Tom's team-teaches classes from the Level I – Basic Personal Protection Course to advanced classes such as Low Light Skills and a three-day Dynamic Marksmanship course. When not leading classes, the instructors oversee a range that welcomes the general public and members, who enjoy perks such as class discounts and their own entrance music played at every visit.
The Memphis Symphony Orchestra has been breaking strings and the hearts of screaming fans since its inception in 1952. This year, the orchestra will once again resonate throughout the elegantly crafted Cannon Center, sending seasonal shivers down the tickled spines of all audience members. The Home for the Holidays performance includes vocal joys from soprano Ashley Brown, best known for her portrayal of Mary Poppins on Broadway, in addition to a medley of carol-worthy classics performed by the Memphis Symphony Chorus and the University of Memphis Concert Singers. The evening's combination of power and cheer will cause many to be moved to tears, which will likely form puddles in the theater, making exiting nearly impossible without an inflatable raft.
Theater should inspire wonderment. That's the view at Tennessee Shakespeare Company, an artistic organization dedicated to bringing new life to William Shakespeare's words. Each of its productions aims to burrow beneath the play's familiar surface, finding deeper explorations into psychology, government, and philosophy. This approach brings new life to the timeless works—TSC's Macbeth, for instance, highlighted the civilian cost of civil war, while an all-female Julius Caesar embodied "a bold new way to look at honor, womanhood, and power," according to The Commercial Appeal. That same sense of exploration is extended to contemporary pieces. Once a year, the company members hang up their iambic pentameters to produce the Southern Exposure festival featuring new works from the region.
The The Dive Shop's instructors, drawing from Scuba Schools International's programs, teach water-safety skills to fledgling divers and swimmers of all ages. Classes and activities range from the Scuba Rangers club—where kids aged 8–12 learn to snorkel and scuba dive from the safety of a pool—to open-water dives, swimming lessons, and more advanced stress-and-rescue dive sessions, during which instructors turn dog paddlers into almost-mermaids, minus the pet octopuses.