I love long weekends, but I don’t love when Monday pretends to be Tuesday so that we all like him/her better.
I’m on to you, pal.
This last weekend was a huge success at the Center. On Saturday we had Kathleen Madigan, who was a real treat, and she even offered tips to fix healthcare and airport security, by having all travelers get a CAT scan at the airport. (Trust me, she said it funnier than I did). Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get any video or photos from her performance, so if you couldn’t make it on Saturday, you really missed out.
Sunday we had the wonderful Peter Gros, who is one of the nicest people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. He let me back stage before his show to get a few pictures of his animals back stage. I didn’t stay too long, because they had a show coming up and I didn’t want to tire them out…and because there was a red bag bigger than me that had something moving in it and I’m pretty sure it was a huge snake. Nothing against them, I think they’re fascinating, I just don’t like being around them for too long.
Although I was brave and got a photo of a different snake.
This weekend we don’t have any performances, but we still have a lot going on. The whole weekend we have WordCamp making another appearance, and I get to go this year! Very exciting.
On Friday, we have the Gold Cup Talent Competition, and Sunday is Step Up 2 Dance Competition.
Then next week, the big mamajamma. Eat Your Art Out Chandler. Scope out your spots because not only will you be supporting the arts by eating out, you can win fabulous prizes!
If it’s Monday, then it means that we’re already looking forward to the weekend, and I’m no exception. But while the weekend means lounging around catching up on Downton Abby for some, it means shows for me!
On Friday, we have Sister Moses, the Story of Harriet Tubman performing at 8pm. It’s a Desert Dance Theatre production, and it’s been in the Valley for almost 20 years. If you haven’t caught a performance yet, never fear, you’ll have your shot at the end of the week, and then you won’t be the odd person out who hasn’t seen it!
On Saturday we have the Chandler Symphony Orchestra at 2 pm, and that is free, as always. That night at 8pm, we have Kathleen Madigan, who made herself known on NBC’s Last Comic Standing. You can catch a clip of her here, as well as buy tickets. Although I’d probably call our box office for this one, because last time I checked, tickets were selling like mad.
If you aren’t in the mood for history or comedy this weekend, we have Peter Gros, part of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom on Sunday afternoon at 3pm. Peter isn’t a stranger to the Valley, though. He visited us back in November on two separate occasions.
I think his owl is a movie star now.
I love showing rather than telling, and two of our shows this weekend can express themselves better than I could.
One of our patrons summed up Alpin Hong perfectly.
We’re happy that you’re happy.
And then, there was Ballroom with A Twist. I was expecting the dancers, but I didn’t know about the appearances of David Hernandez and Gina Glocksen, so I was surprised.
I took a bunch of video, but that would just take up space on the blog, so I’ve created a playlist here.
I wasn’t able to grab any video from Wyatt Earp, but I loved the show. Getting to hear about the early days of Arizona (especially as an Arizona native) made my day. If anyone has any pictures they’d like to share, throw them my way.
Phew, three shows, and that was just a weekend recap, so I’ll make this next one short. On Saturday night we’re hosting Lorrie Morgan and Pam Tillis as a part of their Grits and Glamour tour. I had not heard of Lorrie or Pam until last spring, and I’m ashamed of that. I like country as much as the next person, but there is just something about these two ladies that I can really connect to, and I enjoy listening to their music.
You can find out how to get tickets, as well as watch a video of them, here.
I’m dead serious when I say Wyatt Earp is coming here on Sunday.
Wyatt Earp the lawman who gained fame and notoriety from the Tombstone shootout at the O.K. Corral died, and unfortunately we couldn’t get his ghost to sign a contract to perform here.
So we got his descendent, also named Wyatt Earp, to stop by on Sunday and give our audiences a look at what life was like back in the days of Wyatt Earp v. 1.0.
Wyatt Earp v. 2.0 will perform a one man show about life on the frontier, and also give us a glimpse at the Wyatt Earp v. 1.o that he didn’t show for the world to see.
Growing up in Arizona, I can remember reenacting the shootout at the O.K. Corral for school plays, parades and just for fun,* so I can’t wait to see someone who actually gets paid to do something that cool.
Oh, and he’s asked me (shouted, more like) to say that he’s coming on Sunday at 3pm, and he’s bringing a something special.
*I was always cast as Doc Holliday. I still don’t know how I feel about that.
*And no, I will not be your Huckleberry. I had one guy ask me that and I had to give him the Ice-Queen-Death-Stare-Crazy-Eye until he left.
A few days ago, I posted this clip of Alec Mazo and Edyta Sliwinska performing together to give you a hint at the level of talent that we’re bringing to the Center on Saturday night. I have a few more clips of just Edyta and Alec dancing and the style they bring, but we’re also bringing in other dancers with different talents and specialties.
But just for fun, I thought I’d share some more of Alec and Edyta’s dancing, probably because deep down I wish I could dance like her, instead of flop around waving my arms like I know what I’m doing (I did this at my Aunt’s wedding. There is photographic proof.)
The list of things that we’re thankful for at the Center goes on and on, and if I wrote a blog post about everything that we and I were thankful for, it would be a great blog post, but I’m not sure anyone would stick around and read it. So, I’ll keep it short and simple.
We’re thankful that Ballet Etudes is bringing back The Nutcracker for two weekend performances. The Nutcracker has always seemed like a holiday tradition and I’m happy that the Center is doing it’s part to keep the tradition alive. You can still snag tickets, but keep in mind that they are going fast.
We’re also thankful for our kids programs. We started with just a few week-long camps, but those have grown. Instead of one Glee Intensive camp for spring break, we’re offering two. So if you can’t make one, please don’t count us out, or think of this as a way to have even more fun on a spring break.
Plus, the Glee Camps have been such a success, that we’re now offering a longer workshop for all the young actors that way to get some extra experience. It runs once a week from January until April, and the students will get the training they need to improve their skills.
We’re also thankful for Zoppé Parties. I might just make up an excuse so I can have a party with a (non-creepy) circus.
This last one is a personal one, but I’m thankful for you. At first, I felt like a weirdo because I was blogging but I wasn’t sure if anyone was listening, but then you showed that you were. I started getting comments in real life about things that I was blogging about, and I had a few people quietly nudge me when they felt that I wasn’t blogging enough.
You rock. Thanks for listening to me and making me feel like I’m not a weirdo. I owe you a hug and/or high-five the next time we run into each other.
I was expecting Classic Albums to perform Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and bring the house down, but they far exceeded my expectations. Seriously, when they first started up I had to squint from my perch to make sure that we didn’t actually hire Fleetwood Mac or that they snuck on stage. The group sounded just like Fleetwood Mac, down to the note. I was blown away.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at some video that I got from this weekend.
(….testing. Testing. Please WordPress don’t fail me now)
This weekend we don’t have any performances, but the weekend after, in my favorite long weekend of the year, we’re kicking off The Nutcracker by Ballet Etudes. They were the same people that put on the ballet in the spring, and it’s Nutcracker! It’s a tradition, and you can’t mess with traditions. They’ll be here for two weekends, so if you’re out of town next weekend, you can watch them in the beginning of December.
That best describes our weekend and Friday night show at the Center. If you missed it, you didn’t just miss an amazing show, but you missed out on a whole experience. Lucky for you, I understand that emergencies come up, and there are maybe one or two good excuses for missing the show. So, here’s a taste.
First, we had three amazing gentlemen (who didn’t mind me stalking them) playing the bagpipes to welcome people to the Center.
Then you walked in and saw these lovely young ladies from AZ Colleen. Break it down, now.
And finally, you got to watch the show! Here’s a clip of Gaelic Storm playing “What’s the Rumpus?” Let me just say that most performers can get the audience going along with them for a song, maybe two. Gaelic Storm had everyone participating the entire show. Well done, guys.
Amazing time. We need them back next year.
This weekend we’re continuing the Irish trend, but taking it in a different direction. On Sunday you can catch Orla Fallon performing here, and it’s going to be a great time. She’s a little more traditional than Gaelic Storm, and her songs can really pull on your heart-strings one minute, and then make you laugh and clap along the next. She’s a great performer and you really can’t miss it.
Our 2011/2012 season got the amazing start it deserved over the weekend with The Official Blues Brothers Revue. While I didn’t get to spend all the time with them that I wanted, they were kind enough to help us promote Eat Your Art Out and let me know that the Jake and Elwood on their knuckles were in fact, not real. Kind of a bummer but they get an A+ for the attention to detail.
The whole show was just great. Elwood even did a rendition of Cab Calloway/Curtis Blues’ “Minnie the Moocher” that would have made him proud, scat singing an all.
But why keep telling this when I can show it? That’s what you can here for, right?
How do you start off a Blues Brothers show? By doing a cartwheel, of course.
You heard the boys, give them some lovin’!
And just because I’m a sucker for a tall dude in a black with a harmonica.
We’re keeping the energy high this week with a show by our annual favorites, Gaelic Storm. They have been to the Center so many times over the years and I have yet to see them live.
Bad, bad Caitie! I’m so ashamed right now. I’ve heard them before with friends at their houses or driving some place, and I loved their sound from the moment that I heard them. With a song like “The Night I Punched Russell Crowe“, how can you not love them?
They roll into town on Friday, and because I love everyone to pieces, I might be able to pull something together for a lucky person that comes to the show. (Fingers crossed!)
Q: How many miles will it take me to get to Chicago if I have a full tank of gas and half a pack of cigarettes, but only if I go when it’s dark and I’m wearing sunglasses.
A: 106 miles.
I would have also accepted “Caitie it’s only Monday and you’re going to start quoting Blues Brothers already?” Yes. Yes I am.
I can remember watching Blues Brothers when I was a little kid, and I may not have gotten the whole story (I had the attention span of a hamster) but one thing that I can remember clearly was the music. It was my first introduction to Cab Calloway, John Lee Hooker, Sam and Dave, and by extension Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters and Jimi Hendrix’s (his blues songs, at least). I could go on all day.
But I won’t, because where’s the fun in that? The fun doesn’t start until Saturday, when we’re bringing the closest thing to the real Jake and Elwood to the Center to strut their stuff and show us Zonies how Chicago does the blues.
The Official Blues Brothers Revue is the only Blues Brothers act that is sanctioned by the Belushi estate and Dan Ackroyd, which means that it really is the only Blues Brothers that is worth watching. Wayne Catania and Kieron Lafferty (better known as Jake and Elwood) looks, sound and act just like the Jake and Elwood in the SNL skits and movie, right down to their names tattooed on their knuckles. Remind me to ask them if it’s permanent or not.
I can’t think of a better way to kick off the season than with a show that will make you stand up and dance, whether you’re someone who saw Muddy Waters, Janis Joplin and Ray Charles live, or you first listened to Ma Rainey, Louis Armstrong and the Little Smokey Brothers on your iPod. Also, get your tickets today for the show and you’ll have the heads up on a contest to meet Jake and Elwood.