Theater

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Serious Stuff with Comedian W. Kamau Bell

Posted By on Sun, Apr 9, 2017 at 6:50 PM

W. Kamau Bell - PHOTO BY JOHN NOWAK/CNN
  • Photo by John Nowak/CNN
  • W. Kamau Bell

W. Kamau Bell has a big laugh. It’s full and deep over the phone, inviting you to laugh with him — maybe at a joke he just made, maybe at him, maybe at an awkward moment, like hanging out at a white nationalist convention as an African American man. The laugh is part of what keeps even those he disagrees with engaged, taking out the sting of his observations without losing their sharpness. In fact, with his keen insights into race and culture, Bell might be just the friend America needs, listening intently and calling us on our shit. With a smile.

Bell is tackling heavy stuff in the show he brings to the Van Duzer Theatre on Monday night, The Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour. An hour. Why not? That he’s planning to do it via PowerPoint is another thing but we’ll get to that.

This trip to Humboldt comes at a pretty busy time in Bell’s career. His critically acclaimed CNN docu-series United Shades of America, in which he crisscrosses the country talking to people from all walks of life about everything from neighborhood gentrification to the Klan, begins its second season at the end of this month. He’s got a book, The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell: Tales of a 6' 4", African American, Heterosexual, Cisgender, Left-Leaning, Asthmatic, Black and Proud Blerd, Mama's Boy, Dad, and Stand-Up Comedian, coming out in May and he’s got two podcasts going (Politically Re-Active, with co-host Hari Kondabolu, and Denzel Washington is The Greatest Actor of All Time Period, with co-host Kevin Avery).


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Thursday, April 6, 2017

Jane Doe and the Rabbit Hole of Sex Trafficking

Posted By on Thu, Apr 6, 2017 at 3:08 PM

JANE DOE IN WONDERLAND
  • Jane Doe in Wonderland
I’ve been a supporter of the Jane Doe in Wonderland project since playwrights Grace Booth, Erin Johnston, and Kate Tobie, in collaboration with Humboldt sex trafficking survivor Elle Snow, first presented it as a reading at Dell’Arte just about a year ago. Since then, it’s matured into a powerful piece of theatre that journeys deep into the alternate universe that is sex trafficking in America today.

Alice in Wonderland was Elle Snow’s favorite story as a child — she would stare at trees for hours, waiting for the White Rabbit to pop out and take her on a fantasy adventure. When she was 19, she finally met her White Rabbit; at first, the adventure was flattering and fun, but as soon as he took her on their first “romantic weekend away,” her journey down the rabbit hole began. Within weeks, her body was being sold out of a brothel in the Bay Area and it took a very long time for her to climb back out into the real world to tell her story.

Drawing parallels with the looking-glass world of Alice, Jane Doe in Wonderland chronicles the psychological and physical manipulation these girls are subjected to as they gradually lose all sense of self and become invisible, seen only as faceless whores by a judgmental outside world. It’s all too easy to see how vulnerable teens (60 percent of the teens trafficked out of Humboldt come from the foster system, and likely most come from abusive or otherwise dysfunctional families) can be seduced into believing there is a better world for them with this handsome young man. After all, in Humboldt, a fancy car, lots of cash and no regular job just means he’s a grower — nothing to worry about there. And that’s what the traffickers play on.

Each performance is followed by a talkback session with Elle and the cast and crew: Andrew Bayer, Grace Booth, GianCarlo Campagna, Erin Henry, Lynnie Horrigan, Ivan, Erin Johnston, Linn Haldrup Lorenzen, Tone Haldrup Lorenzen, Jared Mongeau, Drew Pannebecker, Brittny Renhuhn, Leif Schrecengost, Elle Snow and Kate Tobie. It can be a real eye-opener. At one performance I attended, a man in the audience declared that the traffickers are “failed men, who must be shamed by other men before they will stop.” That’s one of the reasons it’s so important that Snow, through her Game Over anti-trafficking organization, has been training both male and female law enforcement personnel throughout the county — sex trafficking is not, and never has been, a “women’s issue.” It’s a human issue and the second largest criminal industry in the world.

Jane Doe in Wonderland is being presented at several area high schools and youth groups, with the full support of the Sheriff’s Office. Public performances are also scheduled at Humboldt State University’s Gist 02 at 7 p.m. on April 8, and at 6:30 p.m. on April 12 at Eureka High School. More info and reservations at www.janedoeinwonderland.com.


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Sunday, February 26, 2017

Cry it Out with Sara Bareilles at the Oscars

Posted By on Sun, Feb 26, 2017 at 2:45 PM


Still hurting from all the stars we lost in 2016? Humboldt County lady Sara Bareilles is here to soothe your pain. Well, not here, but in Los Angeles, where the singer, composer and current Broadway star (she's taking a 10-week turn onstage in Waitress, the pie-centric musical she scored) will perform during the In Memoriam segment of the Academy Awards tonight. According to her Twitter feed, she's already getting cozy with the golden boy (see above). No word yet on what song she'll perform but if sitting in my parked car listening to "When She Was Mine" and crying into a wad of Fresh Freeze napkins is any indication, expect tears.


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Thursday, February 23, 2017

Going to the Ball

Posted By on Thu, Feb 23, 2017 at 3:09 PM

Emcee Mantrikka Ho asks the crowd, "Can I get a gay-men?" - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • Emcee Mantrikka Ho asks the crowd, "Can I get a gay-men?"

On Friday, Feb. 17, the Kate Buchanan Room got fierce when contestants and performers worked the runway at the Aqueerius Ball. Emcee Mantrikka Ho got the ball rolling with a history lesson about New York City ball culture and its signature form of expression, voguing. The evening, organized by the Humboldt State University Queer Student Union, sought to celebrate gay and trans people of color in particular as vital leaders in the early days of the LGBTQ rights movement and the community today.


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Monday, February 13, 2017

The Real 'Dude' Doesn't Roll

Posted By on Mon, Feb 13, 2017 at 4:00 PM

Karen Smith bowls her second shot in the round as the title character from The Big Lebowski, 'The Dude,' on Friday, Feb. 10. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Karen Smith bowls her second shot in the round as the title character from The Big Lebowski, 'The Dude,' on Friday, Feb. 10.

Karen Smith held up a dark green bowling ball. She lined up her last second shot to get a spare. She walked to the line and released the ball, it barreled down the lane leaning left and nailing the last pin to get the spare.

“I saw this event come up and I said ‘dude’ I gotta go,” Smith said, holding a white Russian cocktail in her right hand, the signature drink of "the Dude."

Smith attended the LeBOWLski event with her daughter, Laurel Osborn, dressed up as the Dude and Walter from the movie The Big Lebowski

While Osborn and her mother were having a good time bowling. The real Dude, Jeff Dowd, was sitting at the bar surrounded by a handful of people. He was wearing a brightly colored patched jacket and sat very relaxed. 

“I have never been here before,” Jeff ‘The Dude’ Dowd said. “I have only driven through but I never stopped.” 

Jeff Dowd, the man who inspired Jeff Bridges' character in The Big Lebowski, was promoting a musical about the marijuana industry, Mary Jane: A Musical Potumentary. Dowd did not bowl at all during the event that lasted from 7:30 to midnight.

Jeff 'The Dude' Dowd, the man who inspired the famous character from The Big Lebowski, promotes the musical Mary Jane. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Jeff 'The Dude' Dowd, the man who inspired the famous character from The Big Lebowski, promotes the musical Mary Jane.

“I am not that good at bowling,” Dowd said. “And ‘The Dude’ never bowls in the movie.” 

Karen Smith and her daughter holding up their score card from the the LeBOWLski event at the E&O bowling alley. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Karen Smith and her daughter holding up their score card from the the LeBOWLski event at the E&O bowling alley.

About three lanes to the left of Dowd, Karen Smith and her daughter bowled. Smith wore a tan cardigan and her daughter wore a dark green military jacket. Smith’s favorite character from The Big Lebowski is Jesus, the Dude's purple track-suited opponent. “I found the pants but I couldn’t get the rest of it,” Smith said. 

Osborn's favorite character was Maude Lebowski, the artsy daughter of the wealthy Lebowski, but she had a hard time trying to find a costume so she dressed as Walter, the Dude's Vietnam veteran friend. That would have to abide.

The night came to a close with the announcement of the costume competition winner. Amber Cook, who dressed as Maude Lebowski, wore a thick fur coat as she held a piece of paper that read, “The Dude bestows upon you the title of best costume.” 

Jeff "The Dude" Dowd, the man who inspired the famous character from The Big Lebowski, promotes the new musical Mary Jane. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Jeff "The Dude" Dowd, the man who inspired the famous character from The Big Lebowski, promotes the new musical Mary Jane.
Kitt Roberts, a student at College of the Redwoods, bowling at the LeBOWLski bowling night. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Kitt Roberts, a student at College of the Redwoods, bowling at the LeBOWLski bowling night.
Attendees brought a cake that read, "STFU Donny," a line from the movie The Big Lebowski. - SAM ARMANINO
  • SAM ARMANINO
  • Attendees brought a cake that read, "STFU Donny," a line from the movie The Big Lebowski.

via GIPHY


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Monday, December 5, 2016

Arcata Welcomes Santa

Posted By on Mon, Dec 5, 2016 at 5:30 PM

Julian Gillespie meets the Man in Red. - MARK LARSON
  • Mark Larson
  • Julian Gillespie meets the Man in Red.

Under clear skies, the Wonder and Light event on Friday, Dec. 2 attracted a crowd of adults and children to the Arcata Plaza with entertainment, social-awareness messages and a chance to decorate the Christmas tree and meet Santa and Mrs. Claus.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Meow, Baby

Posted By and on Tue, Oct 13, 2015 at 11:15 AM

Sugar Cane Jane cats around the Arcata Theatre Lounge. - ALEXANDER WOODARD
  • Alexander Woodard
  • Sugar Cane Jane cats around the Arcata Theatre Lounge.
Rowr. On Saturday, Oct. 10, the Arcata Theatre Lounge turned into a bit of a cat house as the Alley Cat Cabaret & Purrlesque slinked onstage to raise money for the Companion Animal Foundation. Photographer Alexander Woodard was on hand (paw?) to capture the feline frivolity. The evening featured more kittenish kitsch from locals Blue Angel Burlesque, Beat Vixens Burlesque, Bada Bling! Burlesque and Va Va Voom Burlesque Vixens, and Bay Area headliners Sugar Cane Jane, Ophelia Coeur de Noir and Laika Fox. Sassafrass and Laura Lopez-Ayllon brought the hip-shaking belly dance, while Lizzy Moonbeam, Luna Eclipse and Mr. Humboldt himself provided a little mood music. Take a peek at all the pussyfooting around in the slideshow below. And remember: Spay and neuter your pets.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Eureka Symphony Announces 2015-2016 Season

Posted By on Wed, Jun 24, 2015 at 11:24 AM

Carol Jacobson, Music Director & Conductor of the Eureka Symphony. - SUBMITTED
  • submitted
  • Carol Jacobson, Music Director & Conductor of the Eureka Symphony.

The Eureka Symphony recently announced its 2015-2016 season, “Experience the Greats” — a theme offering renowned composers and guest artists. There are five performances scheduled including a season opener, the popular holiday concert and a season finale. Nestled in the mix is a performance "dedicated to the contributions made to film by great composers, with such well-known classical composers as Rossini, Debussy, Strauss, Handel and contemporary composers John Williams and Hans Zimmer," and a concert showcasing the works of 20th-century composers, featuring a harpist/tango dancer.

Season Tickets for the 2015-2016 Season are available now. There are a number of discounted ticket packages available, which can be purchased online at eurekasymphony.org or by calling the ticket line at 845-3655. Single tickets go on sale on August 17.


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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Center Yourselves ... the 2015-2016 Center Arts Lineup is Here

Posted By on Wed, Jun 17, 2015 at 10:22 AM

click image He ain't heavy. Ok, wait, maybe both of them are ... - SUBMITTED
  • submitted
  • He ain't heavy. Ok, wait, maybe both of them are ...
All right, kids. The wait is over.

Center Arts just announced its 2015-2016 lineup and the offerings are good and plenty. From the Waifs to Weird Al to the Chieftains to Cooder (Ry), the good folks at Humboldt State University have done it again. There are Martinis of the Pink persuasion and Kids on Milk Cartons to whet your musical whistles. And if you haven't recovered from jazz legend Cassandra Wilson's last minute cancellation last season, pull yourself together because she's back. 

Some of this season's highlights include: Eddie Izzard, StarTalk Live! with Bill Nye the Science Guy, Melissa Etheridge, The Blue Man Group and John Prine. Take a second to let that soak in. Feels good, right? Feels "Everybody Wants to Feel Like You" good, doesn't it? Yeah. It's like that. 

To view the full lineup, check out their snazzy website at www2.humboldt.edu/centerarts/events, or check your mailboxes for the glossy goodness of the catalog. Prices vary per event and students get a sweet discount. For more info call CenterArts at 707-826-3928.

Nicely done, Center Arts. Nicely done.



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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Blue Lake's Rise Continues

Arts, Music and Community Boosted through Dell'Arte Grants

Posted By on Sun, Jan 26, 2014 at 9:26 AM

946263_207302142758448_42039375_n.jpg

Fantastic news from Blue Lake – Dell'Arte gave out 10 Blue Lake Rising grants last night following the inaugural Mad River Alliance Steelhead Days event. Blue Lake resident and musician Claire Reynolds shared an overview of the awards, including one bestowed on her band, Patronus.

"The projects ranged from the Old Crows' plan to put in a bench on the levee trail to an elementary student planning a percussion workshop for kids. Patronus got a grant to make a music video that represents the town, its people and places. All of the projects must be completed by July 2014, so things will be happening quickly."

More on Blue Lake Rising.

Patronus' Laurel Goldsmith, right.

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