Blogging the Ballet Ball 2017 Part One // The Rehearsal

The journey to figuring out my passion has been tough to initiate at times but looking back, it is so clear.  Of all the activities I attend/cover, they usually fall under the music and arts areas of the lifestyle category so when I received the invitation to attend the 2017 Ballet Ball I was more than thrilled.  Look over my blog — its main music, some rants, some developments, some people, but all somewhat centered around the music.  So combine the iconic Fisk Jubilee Singer in a performance with the Nashville Ballet, plus performances by Emmy/Grammy/Dove award winning (and super charming) artist Shannon Sanders and rock blues duo Muddy Magnolias.  I knew this was something special.  I love to get dolled for an event with a cause.  I believe in the music and the arts — the Nashville Ballet and the National Museum of African American music. It was almost like the Universe was giving me confirmation that I’m on the right path.  (Later I learned I was recommended by the National Museum of African American Music from my work on my blog and brand YUP. Opportunity. Straight like that. More about that later.).


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Ballet Honors Nashville’s Historically Diverse Musical Heritage

The National Ballet is presenting it’s fundraising black-tie invite-only (kinda a big deal) event of the year Ballet Ball.   My understanding of the event is that the guests are presented a seated dinner before the gala performance.  At the same time as the invite only seated dinner, there is a separate hall for ticket purchasing guests to mingle and have cocktails and small bites – like a cocktail hour (for the younger crowd of “movers and shakers”).

Guess who was invited to cover the event?!  Me!  AND I get to attend a pre-rehearsal event two days before with an interview from a dancer and an artist.  Sweet!  So be sure to stay connected with me on social media (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter ) to get the first look behind the scenes.
So again, what I’m gathering is there’s a separate baller’s only seated dinner, while the young folks( AKA “movers and shakers”) mix and mingle, then we ALL gather in the hall to watch a performance of Dance, Song, and Instruments, and at some point can dance the night away. (The PR lady literally repeated use the phrase “dance the night away” to describe the evening.  now its stuck in my head)  Never attended an event like this, let alone a BALL.  No clue what to wear to a ball.  But THIS GIRL is going to have fun figuring all this out. I was built for this!  Can’t be too hard – find a dress, beat my face, introduce myself and brand because ITS WHO I AM and enjoy results!  Great networking opportunity and night of amazing music for sure.
Super thrilled to be invited it’s an honor to be in the same room with such reputable names and brands.  But that’s what I live to do!

I’ve included the majority of the press release below.

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Bilal at City Winery


Photos Courtesy of


Bilal is a soul singer who is obviously influenced by Prince with his falsetto and quirky style.  The City Winery space was lit with a low light candle glow that set the soulful mood.  I ordered my favorite white wine from City Winery the 615 chardonnay.   Right on time, the lights started to dim and the band began to play warm up tunes.
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Omni Nashville Staycation

This summer one warm July weekend,  Maxwell was in concert Friday and that Saturday Gary Clark Jr was in concert as well, both at the Ascend Amphitheater.
(Sidebar – listen to my favorite song by GCJ by clicking the link here. )
I was gracious enough to have a weekend staycation sponsored by Omni.  The Omni Hotel is nestled in the heart of downtown and a short three block walk over from the Ascend Amphitheater. The Omni’s grand decor and furnishings, as well as its attentive guest services, makes it one of the most sought after hotels in Nashville and the world.    Read about my staycation sponsored in part by Omni Hotels Nashville below.
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Pablo is Petty – Kanye West Performs The Saint Pablo Tour in Nashville

Kanye is a misunderstood creative genius and I love his vision.  Although his execution and communication may be a bit misguided, I truly believe his intent is in the right place.

On Saturday night at Bridgestone Arena, Kanye West, from the shadows of a dimly lit floating stage, gave us a great show of hits from “Late Registration”, “Yeezus”, and his latest album and tour “The Life of Pablo”.  The show started at 8pm and Pablo hit the stage around 9:20 to the tunes of Father Stretch My Hands.  The Life of Pablo which I will refer to as “TLOP” is one of my favorite albums by Kanye West.   In this post I’ll review the pettiest moments of Kanye West in Nashville.  

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Soul Cinema Sunday – Wattstax

How does one cultivate a sense of community and fellowship in a day in age when families barely sit down together for dinner?  Where are the culturally based, value-adding events and programs that seem to become lost among the shuffle of likes, trending topics, hashtags, and Instagram models.  Where boredom produces potential foolishness (I say “potential ” foolishness because sociologically, I understand the underlying motives for activities perceived as the uncultured) how do we as a people reinstate the community nature from which many of us are reared?

Enter 2nd Sunday Soul Cinema.  Each 2nd Sunday Thaxton Waters is bringing an extension of the Art History Class and Lifestyle Lounge to the lawn right outside of the lounge.  The event will provide guests with an opportunity to congregate within the north Nashville community and celebrate Black Music History Month.  This Sunday the featured movie will be Wattstax which was filmed in the 1970s, and true to the Art History Class Lifestyle Lounge’s nature is by all means a vintage movie in look and feel.  The purpose of the event centered around the musical documentary Wattstax is the filming of a benefit concert to commemorate the 1965 Watts Riots.   In the movie Wattstax, there is black power,  black passion, and  black unity. The imagery is bold and the message is clearly articulated through chants of “I am somebody.” I’m excited this movie is being shown.

Before OJ Simpson, before Rodney King, before black lives mattered,  there were the Watts riots of 1965.  The movie Wattstax is a musical documentary of a benefit concert commemorating the Watts riots of 1965.  Racial tensions are a part of American History. Wattstax attempts to document a benefit concert held in benefit of, and as a response to, racial inequality and typical prejudice messaging.  What I enjoyed most is the action and congregating of the benefit concert (versus a hashtag) and the many artists from across that camen from across the country to support the event including Isaac Hayes, Jesse Jackson, and the Staple Singers, with hum orous commentary from Richard Pryor.  What’s even more special is that there is Tennessee homage paid in the movie as Stax records was established in Memphis Tennessee.

Just like contemporary Beyonce’s Lemonade, Wattstax is filled with imagery that is black, unadulterated, and true.  Along with the other musical documentaries  and movies  I’ve watched – Fade to Black, The Show – the images set the tone and the music tells the story of never forgetting to be black even when among dominant society.

Wattstax is important to the black culture.   It gives us a glimpse of our legends – who have died and joined our ancestors – in action and in their element for us to observe, honor and to learn.  The time frame of the movie depicts a time when black was proud and not concerned with offending anyone.  The background shows a black community united, proud, and non violent in a time where black crowds can cause anxiety and suspicion.  The message is consistent – I may be black, on welfare, or not have any skills, but I deserve respect and I deserve to be treated like a human.

I hope to see everyone Sunday at 7pm  for food, music, history, and culture at the Art History Class and Lifestyle Lounge for 2nd Sunday Soul Cinema featuring Wattstax.


Karla is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University which a degree in Sociology, and is currently pursuing a MBA at Bethel University. She is a Nashville Native and Lifestyle Blogger; a Free Spirit, and a Music Lover. To subscribe to her monthly newsletter click here.  She can be reached via email:

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Soulville Listening Party at Art History Music Lounge



The goal of this blog is to connect the Nashville community with its up and coming pillars of the community; they are the faces of #NewNashville. would be remiss without having the site blessed by Nashville Native – and I’m proclaiming him – Performing Arts Ambassador Rashad “Tha Poet.”  I say performing arts because he’s multi talented in the arts of acting, spoken word, and rap.  He’s being spitting poetry and flow on the mic since my high school years (think late 90s) and his latest project “Soulville”launched May 11.   I attended the listening party for Soulville at the Art History Lounge on Jefferson Street and am bringing the experience to

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Isley Brothers at Schermerhorn Symphony

Tonight, the Isley Brothers performed at the Schermerhorn Symphony Hall.  I really love this venue.  If you have never been to the Nashville Symphony, you must check out an event at the Schermerhorn. It is a beautiful location, inside and out.  It really makes you want to dress up, get a date, get out the house, and take some nice pictures.  I was raised on old school music, and I wanted to see the Isley Brothers because there was no telling when the next time they would be  in town.

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