Theatre/Music

Crown Hill's ARC Dance returns to the Seattle Center for its third season of Summer Dance at the Center, a mixed-rep program, July 15 to July 17.

ARC Dance, which is based out of the Crown Hill Center, presents five world premiers by choreographers Penny Hutchinson (Mark Morris Dance Group), Marie Chong (Artistic Director), Betsy Cooper (ARC Resident Choreographer), Jason Ohlberg (Hubbard Street Dance Chicago) and Kiyon Gaines (PNB) in a July 15-17 program at the Bagley Wright/Leo K. Theatre.

The annual summer performances are a wonderful opportunity for locals and tourists alike to see that Seattle has a vital dance community operating all year long, Artistic Director Marie Chong said in a press release.

A King County 4Culture grant helps ARC give back to the community during difficult economic conditions by partially covering the cost of half-priced tickets offered to students and seniors.

05/17/2010
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Courtesy of ARC Dance

Taproot Theatre Education Director Sara Willy isn't just in charge of overseeing the Greenwood theater company's new Drama With Your Mama class, she's also a member.

Willy took her 2-year-old son to the first Drama With Your Mama class, an acting workshop for children ages 1 to 3, May 10, and even with a "drama person" for a mom, Willy didn't know how her son would react. Would he like it? Would he respond? Would he be shy and clingy?

"He went crazy," Willy said. "He loved it so much."

Taproot Theatre, located at 204 N. 85th St., offered classes for adults and children 4 and older, but nothing for what Willy calls "the little ones."

She said there are gymnastics classes, music classes and more for 1-year-olds to 3-year-olds, so why not a theater class?

She and Drama With Your Mama teacher Jessica Brady put together a curriculum that will get young children use their imagination and act without knowing that is what they are doing.

Willy said the little ones get a lot out of the class. Future actors are learning skills that will serve them in that pursuit, while other children learn how to use their voices, bodies and space while being aware of others, she said.

05/17/2010
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Michael Harthorne

Teacher Jessica Brady applauds the three slithering snakes in front of her during Drama With Your Mama, Taproot Theatre's acting class for children ages 1 to 3.

May 20, 21, 22 & 27, 28, 29 7:30 PM

The musical comedy play Once Upon a Mattress is in rehearsals now at West Seattle High School and will debut May 20th. It is a popular choice for High School drama programs. West Seattle High School Drama Club advisor and director Andrew Finley points out, this is because it involves singing, dancing, choreography, costumes and set construction so it's extremely inclusive. "Students are involved in every layer of the production," he said.

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Finley, who has been teaching English and been active in theater "since I was six" does a great deal with a limited budget. Other schools with larger budgets may have it easier but he said, "When you have a large budget it's like filet mignon, it's easier to get something good. For us it's more like chuck steak. We marinate it, we work it, we massage it until we create something really really good." The school drama club gets no grants and has no outside support. The plays presented there are dependent solely on the money from ticket sales.

05/13/2010
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West Seattle High School Drama Club

Once Upon A Mattress can be seen on two successive weekends beginning May 20 at 7:30 PM.

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Ballard High School jazz students had the chance to learn from a pair of internationally acclaimed musicians, as well as some most likely soon-to-be internationally acclaimed musicians, when the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz brought its peer-to-peer jazz education program to the school April 29.

Saxophonist Antonio Hart, vocalist Lisa Henry and Thelonious Monk, Jr. brought six of the best jazz musicians from the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts to five Seattle high schools this week to work side by side with students.

Ballard High School jazz band teacher Michael James said his students were definitely excited for the visit. They didn't know all the details about the institute, but Thelonious Monk is a big name in jazz history, he said.

J.B. Dyas, vice president of education and curriculum development at the institute, said the idea is for six Los Angeles High School musicians to teach next to their Ballard counterparts the same way Thelonious Monk learned by sitting next to Dizzy Gillespie.

"Kids learn so much more from each other than they ever do from us," Dyas said.

04/29/2010
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Michael Harthorne

Professional saxophonist Antonio Hart instructs Ballard High School jazz musicians as part of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz's April 29 visit to the school.

Westwood resident Nolan Palmer calls himself a character actor. Well, he may be a bit of a character on stage, but he can also carry the lead when asked. Palmer, who resembles Jack Lemmon but thinks his raised eyebrows give him a Jack Nicholson look, said, “I am not a method actor” with his quiet but commanding voice, adding, “I don’t need to feel it. I just need to do it.”

And he’s been doing it for 42 years. Palmer was born in Pocatello, Idaho, and grew up in Salt Lake City, where he started performing.

“I wanted to move to the West Coast and drove to San Diego,” said Palmer. “I kept driving north until I found a place I wanted to stop, and Seattle was it. There is a lot of theater here and I love the climate. ‘The gray, that’s OK.’”

Palmer has performed at the Village Theatre, the Book-It Repertory Theatre at the Seattle Center in a production of “Giant,” the now-closed Empty Space Theatre, and for 29 years at the Taproot Theatre Company in downtown Greenwood.

04/24/2010
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Courtesy of Taproot Theatre Company

Explorer West Middle School puts on a performance of My Fair Lady by Lerner and Loewe at a new location: Fauntleroy Church, 9140 California Ave SW, at 7:00 pm Friday April 23rd and Saturday April 24th, 2010.

This is the first year Explorer West is traveling outside of the campus to put on a production. The show will last approximately two hours and is family friendly with one intermission. Featuring ninety students in the cast and crew every student in the school is part of the show.

My Fair Lady is a musical about a poor young flour girl in the early 20th century in England struggling to make money. She comes across a phonetics professor who exclaims that he could make someone think she is royalty. He than makes a bet with his friend that he could make people think she actually is royalty.

04/23/2010
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Photo credit: 
Steve Shay

My Fair Lady is performed at Fauntleroy Church, an Explorer West Production. Pictured are Nate Dullea and Alex Batista, and Annie Basamania as the first Eliza Dolittle.

Ballard Avenue's Bop Street Records is relocating to a new Market Street location that can hold maybe the 250,000 records housed in the upper level of the store. That does nothing for the 200,000 records in the basement owner Dave Voorhees is currently searching through to find a Dusty Springfield album.

The problem of what to do with 200,000 records – some valuable, some not– is vexing Voorhees, and he's open to suggestions.

"If I had five to 10 people who wanted to start a record store and not compete with me, I would be find," Voorhees said before offering an invitation to the neighborhood. "Dave needs serious suggestions. Come commiserate with Dave."

As daunting as moving nearly half a million albums is, Vorhees said he is excited for the relocation to the former Tableau space at 2220 N.W. Market St.

"The place I got is a 100-times better location," he said. "The foot traffic is going to be 10 times what it is now."

Greg Shaw, owner of Second Ascent a few doors down from Bop Street, bought the building at 5219 Ballard Ave. N.W. to turn it into Second Ascent's bike shop. Voorhees' lease ends June 30.

04/23/2010
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Photo credit: 
Michael Harthorne

Bop Street Records owner Dave Voorhees, exhausted at the prospect of boxing up and moving nearly half a million records when his Ballard Avenue store relocates to Market Street.

Westwood resident Nolan Palmer calls himself a character actor. Well, he may be a bit of a character on stage, but he can also carry the lead when asked. Palmer, who resembles Jack Lemmon but thinks his raised eyebrows give him a Jack Nicholson look, said, “I am not a method actor” with his quiet but commanding voice, adding, “I don’t need to feel it. I just need to do it.”

And he’s been doing it for 42 years. Palmer was born in Pocatello, Idaho, and grew up in Salt Lake City, where he started performing.

“I wanted to move to the West Coast and drove to San Diego,” said Palmer. “I kept driving north until I found a place I wanted to stop, and Seattle was it. There is a lot of theater here and I love the climate. ‘The gray, that’s OK.’”

Palmer has performed at the Village Theatre, the Book-It Repertory Theatre at the Seattle Center in a production of “Giant,” the now-closed Empty Space Theatre, and for 29 years at the Taproot Theatre Company in downtown Greenwood.

04/23/2010
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Photo credit: 
Photo by Erik Stuhaug, 2009, Courtesy Taproot Theatre Company

West Seattle resident Nolan Palmer stars in Taproot Theatre's lates production, "Charley's Aunt May 12 - June 12. He is pictured here as Morrie from "Tuesday's With Morrie" in that theater's 2009 production.

The Ballard High School orchestra traveled to New York City over spring break and brought home several awards from the Heritage Festival.

The orchestra received average scores of 96 from the three judges, received a "gold" rating for scoring in the 90s and won second place in their division. They also won an Adjudicator's Award for having average scores of 92 or higher.

Colleen Maluda won a Maestro Award for her outstanding solo in John Rutter's "Suite for Strings."

The orchestra also won the "Spirit of New York City Award" for being the one group in the festival (out of 25) that best represented their school and community.

04/21/2010
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Photo credit: 
Courtesy of Kathy Adolphsen

The Ballard High School orchestra performs at the Heritage Festival in New York.

The 2010 Ballard Jazz Festival starts April 21 and features 18 artists over five days at venues ranging from the Sunset Tavern to the Nordic Heritage Museum.

Started in 2003 to highlight the thriving neighborhood of old town Ballard and Seattle's world-class jazz musicians, the Ballard Jazz Festival has grown into an internationally recognized festival.

The 2010 edition has five events: Wednesday's Brotherhood of the Drum, Thursday's Guitar Summit, Friday's Ballard Jazz Walk, Saturday's Mainstage Concert and Sunday's Swedish Pancake Jazz Brunch.

The 2010 Ballard Jazz Festival features Claudio Roditi, Jobvino Santos Neto, Hadley Caliman, John Moulder and more.

For much more information on the 2010 Ballard Jazz Festival, including tickets and schedules, visit www.ballardjazzfestival.com.

04/20/2010
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Photo credit: 
Andrew Doughman

Hadley Caliman, seen here playing the Ballard Jazz Walk in November, will be back for the 2010 Ballard Jazz Festival, which starts April 21.

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