When Victory Theatre opened in 1921 as part of the Main Street Hotel Sonntag complex, the denizens of Evansville were fed a daily diet of high-class vaudeville: a silent movie, comedy skit, organ music, and then a 10-piece orchestra. In 1928, that dependable formula changed when ?talking? pictures arrived, and the venue remained a Loews movie theater until 1971. Having survived a late ?70s stint as a teen-oriented nightclub and a site for Partridge Family reunions, the Victory emerged triumphant after an extensive 1999 renovation. Now with room for 1,900 audience members, the entertainment mecca hosts top-tier musical and comedic touring acts and plays home to the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra.
For 40 years, Spectrum Sound has livened weddings, proms, and company parties with a wealth of music, photo-booth, and AV services. Technical experts set up projectors and huge flat screens for slideshows and presentations, or specialized lighting for dance floors and stages. DJs crank out catchy tunes and hits across a variety of genres.
Comedy Caravan corrals chuckles into a singular locale with a lineup of professional comedians performing in the Historic State Theater. This summer, the show will regale theater-goers and inconspicuous phantoms of the opera with such line-punchers as Rich Ragains, a hard-working standup and regular on The Bob and Tom Show. WLEX-TV feature reporter Lee Cruse, who has performed alongside such notable funny-bone ticklers as Jon Stewart and Bill Engvall, will also take the stage in a flurry of guffaws. Ohio native Kelly Collette, a comedienne as lauded as her name is alliterative, will emcee this year's event.
It didn't take long for the first professional hockey team in Evansville to make their mark; in just their second year in the All American Hockey League, in 2010, the fledgling IceMen won the Davidson Cup in seven games. Though that first clan of IceMen has since gone extinct, the team soon resurrected as part of the ECHL, where they serve as the minor-league affiliate of both the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Saint Louis Blues. During games, fans fill the 9,400-seat Ford Center arena as the polar-bear mascot, Blizzard, entertains crowds and teaches children of the dangers of costume warming.
Of all the positive things that have led Joke Factory Comedy Club to succeed, two may be the most potent: the regular lineups of local and nationally touring standup talent and the sheer moxie of veteran comic and Florida talkshow host Artie Fletcher. The latter of those two helped nurture the venue's capacity to host the former, prompting popular southern comic Eddie Caylor to dub the Joke Factory "the little club that could and did." Today, after having firmly established itself on the comedy scene, the venue serves up big laughs every Friday and Saturday, alongside its signature adult beverage, "The Joke."
Held in Rivermont Park in downtown Owensboro, the Legendary Live Music Fest will showcase a symphonic assemblage of seven country stars in an all-day, outdoor extravaganza. Appease insurgent eardrums with a live set from household names such as Montgomery Gentry, LoCash Cowboys, and Jason Michael Carroll, or scope out lesser-known talents including Owensboro's own Jaclyn Graves. The open air of Owensboro will also be bathed in the dulcet croonings of Rodney Atkins, Kellie Pickler, and Brett Eldredge, ensuring that the show features the seven-act minimum anatomically proven to literally melt faces.