AN ODYSSEY FULFILLED
Where can you find ouzo, moussaka, roast lamb and dancing all in one place? If a trip to Greece is not in your immediate future, the Greek Festival, May 26-28, may be your best bet. A Memorial Day weekend tradition, this year’s festival will once again sell Greek food – including a luscious baklava – pour Greek wine and liquor, and showcase Greek crafts and culture. Dance to Greek music and let the kids loose in the children’s area – all set in the Hellenic Cultural Center on Bayou St. John. For runners, the festival kicks off on Friday night with a 5K/1K run/walk. Hellenic Cultural Center, 1200 Robert E. Lee Blvd.,www.greekfestnola.com.
Need a bit of drama in your humdrum life? Performingarts festival DramaRama13 takes place May 19-20. Now in its 13th year, this event features comedy, drama, dance and burlesque by local and international artists. Performances are held at the Contemporary Arts Center, 900 Camp St., and the Louisiana Children’s Museum, 420 Julia St. Tickets are $10 for CAC members/students and $12 for general admission.
May is heating up with music!
• On May 12-13, the House of Blues will be the site of a documentary premiere and benefit concert. The documentary, “New Orleans Music in Exile,” screens on May 12, featuring local musicians’ reflections on how Hurricane
Katrina affected their lives. The concert is May 13. Proceeds benefit the programs of the Tipitina’s Foundation. House of Blues, 225 Decatur St., www.tipitinasfoundation.org.
• The New Orleans Friends of Music presents a concert with musicians from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, May 17, in Dixon Hall at Tulane University.
• The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra performs “Jazz Fest LPO Pops” May 5; “Schelomo” (includes works by Mendelssohn, Bloch and Dankner) May 11-13; and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony
• May 18-19. Locations vary. Information, 523-6530, www.lpomusic.com.
Oenophiles and gourmets – as well as those people with less picky palates – descend on the city May 24-28 for the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience held at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel and other locations. Culinary seminars, demonstrations, vintner dinners (which sell out quickly) and wine tastings fill the days and nights. Special guests include Food Network chef/host Dave Lieberman, and “Sopranos” cookbook coauthor Michele Scicolone. Information, 529-WINE, www.nowfe.com.
STATE OF MIND
The Ogden Museum of Southern Art has three special exhibits on display through July 29: “Art and Life in Louisiana: Elemore Morgan Sr. and Elemore Morgan Jr.”; “Come Hell and High Water: Portraits of Hurricane Katrina Survivors,” photographs by Thomas Neff; and “Drastic Changes: Trees of New Orleans I and II,” by Wolk Kahn. Ogden Museum of Southern Art, 925 Camp St., 539-9600, www.ogdenmuseum.org.
During May, Gallier House and Hermann-Grima House will bring history to life with a special deal for Louisiana residents to boot. On Wednesdays, the Gallier House will present “Living History Days”: Volunteers in period costumes have a dustup, so to speak, as they demonstrate housekeeping techniques from the 19th century. On Thursdays, Hermann-Grima House’s popular cooking program returns as volunteers exhibit food preparation and cooking methods in an 1830s kitchen. Admission is free both days for Louisiana residents. Gallier House, 1132 Royal St.; Hermann-Grima House, 829 St. Louis St., 525-5661, www.hgghh.org.
As the Louisiana Carnival’s biggest parade, which starts in New Orleans' Mid-City neighborhood and heads through the Central Business District toward the Superdome, the magic happens on the floats, in the streets and beyond.