Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Seattle Men's Chorus Live and In Color!

Alexandria J. Henderson and Robin Henderson guest-starred with Seattle Men's Chorus

Motown and More
Seattle Men’s Chorus
March 2022
Seattle Men’s and Women’s Chorus(es) are back in person and sounding as great as ever! (I exhort you, if you’ve never gone to any of their performances and you’re part of the LGBTQ+ “family,” you owe it to yourself to get introduced to them and why they exist! They need your support!)
Like all arts organizations, the last two years have been an incredible challenge of reorganizing and rethinking how to fulfill missions and entertain people and keep going even with fewer donations and no ticket sales. This performance, if you saw it, was an exuberant re-establishing of in-person glorious song with a few laughs, a bit of choreography, and the inimitable duo of Robin Henderson and her daughter Alexandria J. Henderson as the guest stars.
It was a tight and sprightly two hours of carefully curated songs from the “Motown Era” primarily in the 1960s and ‘70s. Alexandria Henderson, as a DJ for WSMC radio, helped introduce many of the selections with a bit of history thrown in. The songs were all well-known, at least for the older crowd, and emotional heart-tuggers.
They ranged from The Marvelettes and Martha and the Vandellas, through Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gay, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder and more. The evening ended on a powerhouse rendition by Robin and Alexandria of Think by Aretha Franklin, where each singer let it all sing out and the crowd danced on their feet with happiness.
The men, lead by director Paul Caldwell, seemed excited and happy to be back in front of a live audience and the audience seemed as appreciative as could be.
As life creeps back to a “normal,” the Seattle Choruses are going to back to live gala fundraisers. Their next one, sure to be a special evening of gathering with friends and associates of the Choruses in person, will be at Fremont Studios on Saturday, April 30. If you’d like to have a great deal of fun – the theme of the evening is In the Center Ring – a circus theme, and maybe find some awesome treasure in the silent or live auctions, tickets on sale here!
This will not be a sit-down dinner. It’s a cocktail party with a buffet and signature cocktails – The Highflyer and The Contortionist – along with a hosted bar.
The next concert will be Voices Rising by the Women’s Chorus, featuring Sister Rosetta Tharpe, who created some of the music that changed the world. It will be at Town Hall Seattle on May 14th and you can choose either 2pm or 7pm concerts.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Reading Is Fundamental in The Book Club Play

Maya Burton, Lauren Paris, Arlando Smith in The Book Club Play (courtesy Village Theatre)
The Book Club Play
Village Theatre
Issaquah: Through April 3, 2022
Everett: April 8 – May 1, 2022
Book clubs probably comes in all shapes, sizes, and tastes. But the stereotype is that snooty people get together to read heavy classics of hundreds of pages. Karen Zacarias, a nationally known and produced playwright, chooses to skewer just such an elitist book club to explore the idea of classic versus popular culture.
The Book Club Play, now at Village Theatre, pinpricks a lot of very current cultural tropes and pitfalls, as many of her plays do. She likes to play with racial and class stereotyping with an eye to bring it up in a way that allows us to laugh a little while we explore our internal responses. Here, she brings us Ana’s book club (Marquicia Dominguez) and shows us what happens when it’s suddenly forced to change.

Saturday, March 05, 2022

Enchanting New "Red Riding Hood" Is a Hit With the Kids!

Claudine Mboligikpelani Nako and Conner Nedersen in Red Riding Hood (Angela Sterling)

Red Riding Hood
World Premiere
Seattle Children’s Theatre
Through March 6, 2022
Playwright Allison Gregory and director Steven Dietz make a great team. Long-time marital partners, they also have a lot of experience in the realm of children’s theater. And here is the world premiere of Gregory’s new play, Red Riding Hood, they have teamed to produce a winning production.
They’ve mind-melded with two of Seattle’s best performers, Claudine Mboligikpelani Nako and Conner Neddersen for a two-person, enchanting, silly re-enactment of the famous fairytale. Neddersen plays a theater-geek named Wolfgang who sees an empty theater and decides he’s going to treat the audience to a one-person show about this tale. Suddenly, he’s interrupted by a deliveryperson who is intrigued by his idea and wants to join the fun.

Look what March is blowing onto Seattle stages!

The Cake, As If Theatre, 3/3-3/20

Here in this list, you will find what, in March 2019, was considered a “normal” month of show openings! Are we back to “normal”? While no one can quite say, there is a blessed lot of theater to see in person in March 2022! (ALSO!!! Covid-19 protocols are changing in March of 2022 in Washington State. Masking and providing proof of vaccination requirements are being dropped by the state during March. But, masking is still mandated in some situations like in healthcare facilities and public transit as well as at the discretion of business and organization owners. Theater companies, venues and producers can still require/request you wear a mask/provide vaccination proof. If in doubt, we suggest checking with individual theaters/producers about their requirements and/or bring your mask/proof of vaccination just in case it’s required!)
The Book Club Play, Village Theatre, 3/2/22-5/1/22
Issaquah 3/2/22-4/3/22 | Everett 4/8/22-5/1/22
The Book Club Play follows a group of people whose book club is the subject of a famous documentary filmmaker. The members of the club differ in perspective, race, sexual orientation, and viewpoint on the world so completely, that their colliding assumptions also create a ripe environment for the comedy. With novels that audience members of all ages will recognize, this is a comedy that everyone can love, and a booklover will adore.
A Thousand Ways (Part Three), On the Boards, 3/3-12/22
Obie Award-winning 600 Highwaymen present A Thousand Ways (Part Three): An Assembly, a timely and intimate return to togetherness. 16 strangers construct a unique and intimate theatrical event, using a stack of instructive notecards. The audience will collectively recount a story of audacity in the face of uncertainty. This elucidating experience invites participants to consider one another—individually and collectively—and the significance of coming together after so much time apart. A Thousand Ways (Part Three): An Assembly is the final experience of the triptych of encounters between strangers, following Part One: A Phone Call and Part Two: An Encounter. Each installment brings people together in the creation of a moving live experience. The work explores the line between strangeness and kinship, distance and proximity, and how the most intimate assembly can become profoundly radical.