New Venture Theatre's 'Satchmo at the Waldorf' takes over Independence Park Theatre this weekend.

Arts around town: Satchmo in the spotlight at New Venture Theatre, Opening reception for ‘Painting Enlightenment’ at LSUMOA, and more

A look at art-related events going on in Baton Rouge:

This Saturday and Sunday, September 10-11, New Venture Theatre will present Satchmo at the Waldorf, a one-man, three-character play about world-famous trumpet player Louis Armstrong’s journey to success in the midst of the Jazz Age. As he sits in his dressing room after a legendary performance, Armstrong takes a trip down memory lane into the complex relationships with his manager, Joe Glasser, and rival Miles Davis. The shows will take place at Independence Park Theatre. To purchase tickets, visit

The universe is a strange thing, boasting uncharted territories and complexities that we can hardly wrap our brains around. Japanese scientist and artist Iwasaki Tsuneo tried to make sense of the complex interconnectedness of the universe through his artwork, which combines scientific phenomenon and Buddhist principles. His works are the focus of the new Painting Enlightenment exhibit that opens at the LSU Museum of Art this week.

The exhibit officially opens to the public tomorrow, Friday, September 9, but art lovers can get a sneak peek at a reception tonight, Thursday, September 8. This evening’s event begins with a public lecture by guest curator Paula Arai at 6 p.m., followed by a gallery tour and light refreshments from 7 to 8:30 p.m. The opening festivities are free for museum members, $10 for nonmembers and $5 for students and faculty with ID.

“The paintings will create a contemplative experience for viewers to reflect on their relationships with themselves, others, nature and the cosmos,” says Arai, an associate professor of philosophy and religious studies at LSU. Arai will lead another special exhibit-related event, a lunchtime lecture on “Buddhism 101,” on Wednesday, September 21, at noon. And Thay Thich Dao Quang of Tam Bao Temple will guide visitors in “Mindfulness Meditation” on Thursday, September 29, at 7 p.m.

The exhibit runs through November 27.

Nine contemporary sculpture artists from Louisiana and around the country will display their work in a new exhibition called “Contemporary Constructs” at Kelwood Contemporary Art. The show will be on display from September 9 until October 1. The opening reception, set for tomorrow, Friday, September 9, is free and open to the public from 6 until 9 p.m.

The Aspen Santa Fe Ballet will perform at Manship Theatre this Sunday, September 11, at 2 p.m. Now almost two decades old, this company features bold artistic talent, virtuoso dancers and top choreographers. To buy tickets, visit

Live After Five, a fan-favorite affair voted “Best Community Event” in the Greater Baton Rouge Area by inRegister’s sister publication 225 magazine in 2014, 2015 and 2016, makes its return to downtown’s Repentance Park this Friday, September 9. Stop by any Friday through October 28 to catch tons of musical acts, plus plenty of good food and dancing. This Friday welcomes Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. & The Zydeco Twisters for the festival’s opening performance. For a full lineup, visit