Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: 'Classical Music' (151) Currently Viewing: 51 - 60 of 151

November 17, 2013 at 9:20am

5 Things To Do Today: Tacoma Symphony, Belgian ales and sausage, Seahawks in Cheney Stadium, One-Act Plays and more ...

Scott Speck will dress for success this afternoon.

SUNDAY, NOV. 17 2013 >>>

1. The Tacoma Symphony has decided to skip Craigslist and choose its next music director by throwing them to the dogs first chairs. The fourth and final candidate  - best-selling author, conductor, polylinguist, Rhodes scholar and public speaker Scott Speck - will lead the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra with Oksana Ezhokina on piano through Beethoven Piano Concerto no. 1, Philip Glass' "Funeral for Aknaten" and Tchaikovsky's Symphony no. 5 at 2:30 p.m. in the Pantages Theater. Talk about a group interview. ...

2. Beer and food have always co-mingled, especially in European cultures such as Belgium, Germany and England. At points, beer was food. According to lore, European monks brewed ales and bock beers to provide sustenance during their Lenten fasts. Beer and grilled sausage: the two are a natural fit. The Red Hot has added three sausage hot dogs to its menu: The Cowboy ($4.75), Berliner ($4.25) and The Dakota ($4.50). TRH bartender Mitchell gave nod to The Cowboy, a locally made beef/cheddar sausage link on a steamed poppyseed bun, topped with barbecue sauce, chopped onions, slice of bacon, nacho cheese sauce and jalapeños. Giddy up! The Cowboy pairs well with Belgian style ales, which are $1 off on Sundays.

3. As you might guess, converting a stadium from baseball to football is more than just pulling down some outfield walls and laying down new line markers. The outfield fence pads and fence posts are removed and stored ... somewhere. The pitching mound must be removed from what will be midfield on the sideline. Two bullpen mounds - one in each end zone - also are removed. Sod is laid down. Screw it. Let's just watch a football game on a baseball stadium's big screen. The Seattle Seahawks play the Viking at 1:25 p.m. Cheney Stadium will open its doors to fans 21 and older to watch the game on the 50 foot video board from the Sterling Bank Summit Club. Get in on the party at 253.752.7707.

4. What could be better than one thought-provoking piece of theater? Seven, of course. Saint Martin's University Theater Department presents An Evening of One-Act Plays, a taste of crazy-quilt comedy theater of actors taking to the stage to perform student-directed, one-act plays exploring topics as diverse as discordant marriages, life and death, and an initial meeting between Adam and Eve in a bar. Catch them at 2 p.m. in the Kreielsheimer Arts Building. Click here for the list of schedule plays.

5. Brian Lee & The Orbiters will fill The Spar in Old Town Tacoma with blues at 8 p.m.

LINK: Sunday, Nov. 17 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

October 20, 2013 at 9:18am

5 Things To Do Today: Vampire movies, Dia de los Muerto, lutefisk dinner, Haunted Theatre and more ...

Let's all cross our fingers for "Vampyres" tonight at the Acme Grub Cage.

SUNDAY, OCT. 20 2013 >>>

1. The Tacoma Cult Movie Club hosts another 7 p.m. screening at Tacoma's Acme Grub Cage. Appropriately, this month's theme is vampires. While Rev. Colin doesn't release the titles of the gems he'll screen, if we know Rev. Colin, he'll bust out the British Vampyres, the story of a lesbian pair that battles when one of them falls for a man they've kidnapped while hitchhiking. Next, we suspect he'll turn more European, with Daughters of Darkness finding another femme fatale duo (led by French New Wave dame Delphine Seyrig) that welcomes the wife of their latest kill into the fold. It's a crapshoot really, except the popcorn and zany prizes. You can always count on the popcorn and raffle.

2. In your desperation to design your Walter and Jesse Halloween costumes, you might overlook Dia de los Muertos. The Day of the Dead, Nov. 3, is seen by many as Mexico's most important holiday, a time to honor family members, friends and mentors who have passed on in a loving, respectful way. However, it is not too early to appease your indignant kin. Centro Latino leads community groups and Stadium High School students in the installation of several ornate ofrendas (altars) commemorating the deceased at the Tacoma Art Museum from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The altars will be laden with offerings of food and drink to honor loved ones. Local artist Fulgencio Lazo and his team of professionals and volunteers fill the Marie A. Helmer Lobby with a colorful tapete (large sand painting). 

3. The Weekly Volcano will join all those who worship Thor, Odin and other Norse gods from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. when the Sons of Norway's annual Lutefisk Dinner hits Normanna Hall. While loaded with vendors selling clogs, sweaters, Sigvat jewelry, Viking ships in bottles, ABBA records, pewter Norse gods and Kongetinn wine goblets, we attend the festival for the food.  We will dive in to some big slabs of yummy jellied pressed Lutefisk, meatballs and baked goods while reading from the Rigsbula: The Lay of Rig from the Poetic Edda. Afterward, we'll take a nap and dream of large sledgehammers and cute pointy helmets and enormous women shaped like huge pomegranates belting out Wagner.

4. Head over to see Tacoma City Ballet performance of Haunted Theatre: Backstage Tour and Eerie Dances at 3 p.m. inside the Merlino Arts Center. Walk behind the scenes in an old ballet studio and see what kind of chills, thrills, and arabesques lurk as Tacoma City Ballet dancers perform spooky Halloween ballets complete with bats, marionettes, ghosts, monsters, mummified Egyptian cats, pumpkins, skeletons and witches.

5. Guitarist Jeffrey Hamilton Steele and pianist Monica Steele will perform pieces from Bach, Rodrigo and Barrios at 3 p.m. in the Antique Sandwich Company.

LINK: Sunday, Oct. 20 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

October 19, 2013 at 9:11am

5 Things To Do Today: Black Cat Fun Run, Haunted Theatre, Elliott Gould, Maltoberfest and more ...

Run with friends tonight at Point Defiance Park. Photo credit: Cookie Monster

SATURDAY, OCT. 19 2013 >>>

1. For some, running can be an excruciating experience. To many others, it's what they live for. But however you feel about running, there's no doubt the experience can be improved by the donning of a ghoulish costume or vampire teeth and a cape. Enter the Black Cat Fun Run, a family-friendly 2.5 or 5-mile jaunt through Point Defiance Park set to go down at dusk. Organized by Metro Parks Tacoma, the event caters to runners and walkers of all levels, and the registration fee gets you a running cap with lighted brim, glow necklace and live music, hat bales and snack at the finish line ... or water if you're, like, a really hardcore runner and stuff.

2. What would all this Halloween talk be without perhaps the most classic (and bloodiest) Halloween-y performance of them all? Head over to see Tacoma City Ballet performance of Haunted Theatre: Backstage Tour and Eerie Dances at 3 and 5 p.m. inside the Merlino Arts Center. Walk behind the scenes in an old ballet studio and see what kind of chills, thrills, and arabesques lurk as Tacoma City Ballet dancers perform spooky Halloween ballets complete with bats, marionettes, ghosts, monsters, mummified Egyptian cats, pumpkins, skeletons and witches. Afterward, go grab a "bite." The dance company will be sure to make a great impression (or is it a great mark?) on you.

3. Actor Elliott Gould will appear at a 7 p.m. screening of the 1970 Robert Altman film M.A.S.H., in which Gould played Trapper John McIntyre, as a fundraiser for the Olympia Film Society's digital cinema campaign at the Capitol Theater.

4. PugetBrass will perform traditional and contemporary literature in a unique and entertaining style popularized by British colliery bands of the early 20th century at 7:30 p.m. in Tacoma Community Coolege Building 2 Auditorium.

5. "For an event that pretty much takes the worst elements you could possibly combine together," says Craig Egan, "we've had surprisingly little amount of trouble." Egan is speaking about his annual take on Oktoberfest, called Maltoberfest at 7 p.m. inside Bob's Java Jive. It doesn't take much detective work to figure out that Maltoberfest celebrates that most dubious of concoctions: malt liquor. Now in its eighth year - and with the ridiculous subtitle of "Maltoberfest 8: Menace II Sobriety" - the event brings together all of Tacoma's rabble-rousers for a night of punk, hip-hop, German nonsense and many dozens of forties of Old English, Mickey's, and Steel Reserve. Read Rev. Adam McKinney's full feature on Maltoberfest 8: Menace II Sobriety in Music and Culture section.

LINK: Saturday, Oct. 19 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

October 8, 2013 at 7:17am

5 Things To Do Today: Toast to Frank Herbert, Tacoma Film Festival, haikus, Classical Tuesdays and more ...

Happy birthday Frank Herbert! Cheers!

TUESDAY, OCT. 8 2013 >>>

1. Tacoman Erik Hanberg loves parks and books. He's taken both passions to the next level. He's currently a commissioner with Metro Parks Tacoma. He's also penned The Saints Go Dying, The Marinara Murders and within days of releasing his first sci-fi novel,The Lead Cloak. Hanberg is campaigning to create a park out of the waterfront property next to Point Ruston, naming it after the Tacoma author Frank Herbert, author of the Dune series. Hanberg will join Post Defiance, King's Books's Broad Horizons Book Club and Chris Keil, co-owner of Hilltop Kitchen cocktail lounge and Dune fan, toasting Herberttoday  - what would have been Herbert's 93rd birthday - with Keil's exclusive cocktail menu inspired by Herbert's classic six-book science fiction series from 7-10 p.m. Let's hope HK skips the Toto soundtrack from David Lynch's 1984 film version.

2. Commencement Bay Haiku will meet at 6 p.m. in King's Books to read haiku or one page of haibun (prose with haiku), as well as discuss various aspects of haiku, haibun, or haiga (a painting, sketch or photo with haiku). It's not easy to convert the innards of your soul into scrawled words on paper and then wax rhapsodic as judging eyes stare at you. You may use this haiku about King's Books cats: Wanna go outside. Oh, no! Help! I got outside! Let me back inside!

3. What are the current and future human impacts and implications of cell phones, social media, and the Internet? Documentary filmmaker, director, and Pacific Northwest native Dominic H. White asks this question and more in his new eye-opening documentary, DSKNECTD, which screens at 6:30 p.m. as part of the 2013 Tacoma Film Festival. The documentary delves into how mobile devices; virtual worlds, social media and the Internet are reshaping human interactions. Looking at the good, bad, and the ugly, White leaves the viewer in the end pondering their own personal connections to technology.

4. Conventional wisdom dictates that you'd rather spend Tuesday night watching TLC TV and sharing a big bowl of prune whip with your great aunt Martha than venturing out to hear harp music. But in this case, conventional wisdom would be wrong. Tacoma harpist Margaret Shelton explored traditional and contemporary harp music from Asia, Europe and South America while traveling on a grant in 2011. Through performing, interviewing harpists, digging through museum archives and even building a small harp, Shelton discovered the rich variety of this unique instrument around the globe. At 7 p.m., she's going to bring it all home in the Slovonian Hall as part of Classical Tuesdays in Old Town Tacoma.

5. Every Tuesday night at Stonegate Pizza on South Tacoma Way Leanne Trevalyan hosts an acoustic open mic at 8 p.m.

LINK: Tuesday, Oct. 8 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

May 11, 2013 at 9:27am

5 Things To Do Today: "Cosmosis," Spring Glass Sale, Foss Waterway Seaport reopening and more ...

Susan Botti's "Cosmosis" tells the story of a science experiment.

SATURDAY, MAY 11 2013 >>>

1. The common interpretation of composer Susan Botti's Cosmosis is it tells the story of a science experiment. The PLU University Wind Ensemble and University Singers set the science-theme poetry of May Swenson to music, answering the question: Can a spider spin a web in space? The multi-discipline, three-part performance depicts the struggles of a spider trying to construct a web without the assistance of gravity. However, if you analyze deeper, you'll discover Botti's baton actually symbolizes an alien construct, left behind by an ancient and advanced race. The baton can accelerate development of less-evolved lifeforms, as it did with the Rococo movement in France, and signal the arrival of advanced races, which happens, 263 years later, when Botti picks it up at 8 p.m. in Lagerquist Concert Hall. Oh, and Botti will be reborn as an alien. PLU science professors Brett Underwood and Justin Lytle will confirm this theory in a post-concert presentation.

2. Hilltop Artists is a nonprofit glass arts program created by the iconic Dale Chihuly designed to use "glass art to connect young people from diverse cultural and economic background to better futures." The program boasts more than 500 students a year, and each year its Spring Glass Sale acts as both a great opportunity to make its mission known, and offer chances at top-notch work to one and all. In fact, the Hilltop Artists Spring Glass Sale has become so popular that attendees are asked to start showing up at 9 a.m. to take a number, with entry starting at 10 a.m. in the order that people arrived. All proceeds go directly back to the program.

3. The Foss Waterway Seaport reopens at 11 a.m. after 18 months of closure for remodeling. The Seaport will kick off its summer season with fun family activities such as sack races, sea shanty performances and cannon fire every hour. When you're not covering your ears, check out the new awesome 55-foot high glass front wall and exhibits, which include artifacts and pictures that portray the story of the famous "Mosquito Fleet" that plied the waters of Commencement Bay. Special reduced admission pricing will be offered May 11 and 12 in honor of the opening weekend.

4. Michael Hoover, co-director at The BareFoot Collective, has created a dance piece to his love of punk music, and in particular Tacoma's Girl Trouble, the garage-punk band that has its sights on a 30th anniversary next year. As part of BareFoot's Ides of May performance May 11 at the Theatre of the Square, Hoover will describe the rockers through the motion of local dancers. In addition to Hoover's punk maneuvers, The Ides of May dance concert will include the music of Julia Massey & the Five Finger Discount and Nathaniel Dybevik, original work from Serendip Dance Brigade, the choreography of Carla Baragan of BQDanza, Serena River and dancers from PLU at 2 and 7:30 p.m. at Theatre on the Square.

5. Team "Future Bass" - DJ Broam, Bobby Galaxy, Mr. Melanin (happy birthday!), Del Brown and Najamoniq - will lay down squiggly squeaks, breaky beats, distorted hip-hop samples, wobbling bass lines, clean taps, eerie synthesized keys and some badass soul beginning at 9:30 p.m. - surrounded by projected video and live visuals - at 9:30 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge. Bonus: The night is dedicated to Monique LeTourneau who's moving to Colorado to do Teach For America.

LINK: Saturday, May 11 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

March 22, 2013 at 1:12pm

Weekend Hustle: Edgar Martinez at the Liquor Lodge, UPS Flea Market, hypnotist Ron Stubbs, Rich Ridenour and more ...

HUNGERFORD SCHROEDER DOLL: Keep your fingers crossed at the UPS Memorial Fieldhouse Saturday.



Friday: Partly cloudy, hi 47, lo 32

Saturday: Mostly cloudy, hi 50, lo 33

Sunday: Sunny, hi 57, lo 37


You spend hours wandering around consignment stores, yard sales, and nothing. Break the cycle. Rethink your thought process. Antiques - The older they are the better. And, unlike the average retail giant's merchandise, you can sometimes get a deal. So come check out the annual University of Puget Sound Flea Market and peruse 60 vendor booths of previously owned and "family friendly" (oh, thank heavens) antiques and collectibles. It's the University of Puget Sound Women's League's 45th flea market to fund student scholarships. A silent auction runs throughout the day. Not so silent? You ... when you happen across an art nouveau nail buffer, seven-piece marble fruit set, American legion auto badge, Chinese rice basket, duck decoy with glass eye, Hungerford Schroeder doll, homemade phaser made out of a staple gun and 20 D batteries, Taylor Swift's single "I Have Never Ever Done Anything Wrong in a Relationship" and a SKU: 500-DB-Lighted, aka the Batphone! - Weekly Volcano

  • University of Puget Sound Flea Market, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., $3, North 11th and Union, Tacoma, Facebook


According to the Olympia Youth Chorus website, the organization's mission is to, "nurture the appreciation of choral art and the shared experience of creating fine choral music for young singers in South Puget Sound." The Youth Chorus does this, at least in part, with help from presentations like Saturday's A Choral Tapestry, which according to billing will feature "folk music, light-hearted fare by our littlest singers, to energetic gospel tunes, and beautiful lilting melodies by our older singers."  The Olympia Youth Chorus will be joined by Olympia's Sweet Adelines, a harmony that will only add to the awesomeness. - Weekly Volcano

  • Washington Center, 7 p.m., $5-$27, 512 Washington Street SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585


For most of us, the name Edger Martinez is nostalgia-inducing. The former major league baseball player spent his entire 18-year career with Seattle's Mariners and was most know for his double play that sent the team to the 1995 American League Championships. This Saturday, T-Brothers Liquor Lodge in Olympia will host a meet and greet with the retired superstar, who will be promoting and signing purchased bottles of his premium, organically grown Mezcal, Zac Mezcal. Lick, slam, suck and sign. — Nikki McCoy

  • T-brothers Liquor Lodge, 4-6 p.m., 417 Plum St., Olympia, 360.539.7978


You are getting sleepy, v-e-r-y sleepy. Now, go see the hypnotist show at The Royal Lounge this Saturday. Whether a skeptic or believer, the show will be sure to entertain with its comedy, rock and roll and outrageous hypnosis, like people sneezing and having orgasms (!) when Ron Stubbs, the man behind the magic utters the word "pepper." Hype on his webpage reads, "If you're looking for an old fashioned, out dated, boring show, well my friends, this isn't it. But if you are looking for a modern, fast paced, laugh a minute, mind bending, hell bent for leather excursion through the inner mind, then you have found the right place... So buckle up Sparky, it can be one wild ride!" - NM

  • The Royal Lounge, 8:30 p.m., $12/advance, 311 Capitol Way N., Olympia, 360.705.0760


Oh yeah, I almost forgot about The Loch's. You know the place - the old Hell's Kitchen in downtown Tacoma. Well, here's a good reminder that this venue is still cranking out shows. This Saturday, enjoy some quality, melt your face punk rock with a Jobe Himself demo release show with Poorsport, Omega Moo and DJ Reign. - NM

  • The Loch's, 9 pm. $5, 928 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.221.1587


Rich Ridenour, a 54-year-old Michigan native, has been playing the piano most of his life. He wasn't old enough to drive when he joined his first rock band. He met his future wife, Stacy, who is in the front office at the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, when both were students at the University of Michigan. She went into musical administration, he went on to a master's from Juilliard and a career as a pianist that has taken him from piano bars to the nation's finest concert halls, such as the Pantages Theater Sunday when he join the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra in concert. Expect the greatest hits of Elton John, Billy Joel, George Gershwin, Rachmaninoff, Beethoven and more with a pinch of Victor Borge humor, a grand Steinway and the full Tacoma Symphony Orchestra. - WV

  • Pantages Theater, 2:30 p.m., $24-$77, 901 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.591.5894


It's load-in and the start of tech week for a show my wife and I are in, The Somewhat True Tale of Robin Hood for Olympia Family Theater. I'm also hoping to beat this cold into submission.

This weekend is my birthday. Not sure what I'm gonna do, besides maybe check out Stoker at the Grand. I love that director's other movie, Oldboy. Other than that, I dunno, birthdays don't mean all that much to me anymore. #SadSack

I'm no party animal. I'll probably just hang around the house. Maybe watch a little TV.

NIKKI MCCOY Feature Writer
Friday: drinks, food and friends. Saturday: rinse well and repeat. Sunday: helping my mom move. She's now part of the tiny house movement. She even has a tiny china hutch and tiny dishwasher. I'll have to try hard to resist buying her every tiny knick-knack I see. ...

JOSH RIZEBERG Music Columnist
This weekend starts for me on Saturday. I'll be teaching my class at D.A.S.H. At night, Beanz & Rize has a show in Seattle. Sunday night I'll be having a little Sedar at My Mom's house for Passover.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
This weekend I will be taking my adorable son to Olympia to review The Somewhat True Tale of Robin Hood at Olympia Family Theater where we get to watch fellow theater critic Christian Carvajal show off his acting skills. Also hoping to take my son to see some of my students perform in Tacoma Youth Theatre's production of A Midsummer's Night Dream. Long live theater!

Three words: Richard Hell, Portland. The legendary punk will be signing his new tomb at Powells. Then off to Slabtown to catch btpnlsl.

On Saturday, I'm excited to be a judge at the Museum of Glass Slider Cook-Off. If you see me in a slider-induced haze on Sunday, chalk it up to that. If the weather is decent, I'll be heading to Chambers Bay at some point to walk it out with my dogs.

MOLLY GILMORE Feature Writer
Friday, I'm going to see Harlequin Productions' The Philadelphia Story. Saturday, I am going to the first meeting of a detox program — which involves giving up sugar, dairy, coffee and alcohol for three weeks. Sunday morning is dance, as usual!

I will be spending most of the weekend at my house sipping bottom shelf whiskey while watching March Madness. Sunday afternoon, I will finally leave my house, though. I have go out to Evergreen to flyer for Wednesday's Darktime Sunshine show at The Olympia Ballroom.

STEVE DUNKELBRGER Nightlife Correspondent
Going to the Slider Challenge and just hanging around T-town - like going to see Midsummer Night's Dream at Tacoma Youth Theatre.

ROCKFORD ROWLEY All-ages Music Columnist
I'll be sitting in front of my turntable, familiarizing myself with the partially-local BOAT's newly released album, Pretend to Be Brave. Similar to Pavement but occupying the more melodic, poppy side of things, music is always better coming from a multi-colored vinyl disc that looks like a Willy Wonka product when it rotates.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

March 15, 2013 at 10:41am

Weekend Hustle: Harmony Sweepstakes, Whiskers Wine & Dine, Before Cars, St. Patrick's Day, Northwest Sinfonietta and more ...

"THE GOLD RUSH": The Northwest Sinfonietta will perform the soundtrack to Charlie Chaplin's silent film.



Friday: Mostly cloudy with a shower or two, hi 56, lo 44

Saturday: Freakin' rain, hi 50, lo 38

Sunday: Some sun, some clouds, maybe a shower and a little bit colder, hi 48, lo 36


Olympia's Mosquito Hawk joins Tacoma band Mahnhammer - the band's first show with guitarist Mike Crum from Mico De Noche - Portland's Dark Country and Seattle's Gang Cult for a house show in Tacoma. "We have some new songs, and some re-vamped old tunes since our new addition," says Mahnhammer's vocalist Micah Hembree. "We are very happy to know that there are great people like Chuck that will open up his home to support the music scene." Sean Lanksbury (vox/guitar) chimes in. "I'm personally stoked because Friday's lineup spans the I-5 corridor and all kinds of heavy music. Varied night of killer music in a great atmosphere? Doesn't get much better." Agreed.


In support of Coalition Humane's efforts to fight pet overpopulation, the Whiskers Wine & Dine event will go down Saturday night at the Sharon McGavick Center. Not only with the benefit include an exquisite buffet style dinner and drinks, you should also expect an amazing silent auction and help support a cause that is passionate about our furry family. All proceeds benefit the Northwest Spay and Neuter Center. Tickets cost $60 and include dinner and a drink coupon. - Weekly Volcano

  • Sharon McGavick Center, 6-10 p.m., $60, 4500 Steilacoom Blvd., Lakewood, nwspayneuter.org


The Northwest Sinfonietta bills itself as, "an orchestra to be reckoned with," not to mention an orchestra of, "passion, vision, thrill, and creation." Anyone who has seen the Northwest Sinfonietta in action would have trouble arguing with these statements, as the musical body routinely wows audiences in Tacoma, Puyallup and Seattle. Saturday the Northwest Sinfonietta will perform the original score to Charlie Chaplin's flick, The Gold Rush, in which the Little Fellow is cast as "the Lone Prospector," one of the hopeful hordes of prospectors during the Alaskan gold rush of 1898. Chaplin drew his creative muse from grim history, specifically the tragic saga of the Donner Party, an ill-fated expedition of westward travelers who got caught in a bitter winter storm in the Sierras, resorting to cannibalism to survive. - WV

  • Temple Theater, 7:30 p.m. March 16, $19-$49, 47 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma, 800.838.3006
  • Liberty Theater, 2 p.m. March 17, $19-$49, 116 W. Main Ave., Puyallup, 800.383.3006


Chad Channing, former Nirvana drummer, brings his pop rock band Before Cars to Rocket Records for an afternoon, live performance. Before Cars are promoting its latest album, How We Run, dropped Feb. 26 on the band's record label, Pocket Star Records. Best thing about this album is the acoustic, singer/songwriter feel. Best thing about Rocket Records shows is they start early, you can browse music, there is a cool gumball machine, and owner Steve Gaydich and his dog, Bruno, are never without smiles, making it feel like your living room. Combine the two, and you're golden. - NM

  • Rocket Records, 3 p.m., no cover, 3843 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.756.5186


Ooh! Another free show! This time at Ben Moore's in Olympia - a few-and-far-between music venue that's known more for its Best $3.75 Fish and Chips than hosting a show. But, Saturday, you can enjoy a live set from Sour Owl in celebration of St. Patrick's Day. Rock, pop, jazz, fusion, whatever you want to call Sour Owl's sound, just know that it's sweet. - NM

  • Ben Moore's, 9 p.m., no cover, 112 Fourth Ave. W., Olympia, 360.357.7527


The Harmony Sweepstakes may sound like a new dating service, but it's actually an annual event in Olympia featuring some of the region's best a cappella talent. No kidding. A night of music and awards, Saturday's festivities will include hosts and guest artists Six Appeal, the 2012 first-place champions, along with event emcee Smilin' Jay of Olympia's KGY AM/FM radio. Event hype available on the Washington Center's website promises, "an evening of impeccable harmonies and scintillation arrangements." Hard to go wrong there. - WV

  • Washington Center, 7:30 p.m., $13-$26, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585


Celebrate St. Patty's in true Irish fashion at O'Malley's in Tacoma Sunday night. Bag pipers and performance dancers kick off the night, followed by live music from Shivering Denizens, The Fun Police and The Approach - plus tons of free schwag, food specials and of course, green beers. This will be a Patty Party not to miss. For more St. Patrick's Day parties, check out the Weekly Volcano's St. Patrick's Day Command Center. - NM

  • O'Malley's Irish Pub, 2403 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.627.9403


We're seeing Philadelphia Story at Harlequin and Oliver! at Capital Playhouse. Just as happily, we're also taking a bunch of foodie friends to Marrow.

Well, it's St. Patrick's Day weekend, so I'll likely be avoiding the bars. Much like New Year's Eve, St. Patrick's Day is amateur hour when it comes to drinking. Best just to steer clear.

I'm in play-going mode this weekend. I'll be seeing The Philadelphia Story at Harlequin, Oliver! at Capital Playhouse and The Joy Luck Club at Tacoma Little Theatre.

NIKKI MCCOY Feature Writer
Plans include Friday happy hour goodness with all my downtown regulars. After they have their fun, it's my turn as another bartender and I plan to hit up the Dwell Hole in Tacoma for a kick ass house show. I hope I make it in time to see Mahnhammer and Dark Country (PDX). Hot damn! Saturday and Sunday, it's back to parent-land, which has its perks - like warm morning snuggles and blueberry pancakes.

JOSH RIZEBERG Music Columnist
I'm recording a verse at Kept See's spot for the League of Extraordinary Emcees album. Saturday, I'm teaching my spoken-word/poetry class at D.A.S.H. from 1-2 p.m. Last, but definite not least, I'll be chilling with my family!

Friday evening I'll be sipping on copious amounts of joe at Bluebeard Coffee while listening to local authors read their works from Wrist Mag, to be followed by an open poetry slam. That said, the weekend will mostly be consumed with work feeding the pre-partying and hungover masses. And pow wow with team peace out to talk non-profit awesomeness somewhere in the mix.

I'll be throwing a baby shower for one of my best friends. Let the "oohing" and "ahhing" over tiny clothes commence! Oh, and I should probably do those taxes I didn't get to last weekend. ...

I will be a hermit this weekend while watching the PAC 12 basketball tournament as well as other college basketball games. If I'm feeling up to it, on Saturday night I may go check out AKA's record release party at McCoy's. Other then that, I will be pretty lame.

STEVE DUNKELBRGER Nightlife Correspondent
I'll be hitting A MidSummer Night's Dream at Tacoma Youth theatre at this weekend. I hear the girl playing Lysander is highly talented as well as genetically awesome.

ROCKFORD ROWLEY All-ages Music Columnist
This weekend I am going out in search of a hard copy of the newly released Strike Gently by The Virgins. Stricken with illness and exorbitant amounts of schoolwork this week, there's nothing like a new album to lift the spirits.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

March 4, 2013 at 3:26pm

Gunsan style

"SECRET SUNSHINE": "No, I'm not going to build a giant coffee pot and serve cheap beer inside it just because our sister city has one."


For a month now, Tacoma's sister cities has been feeding the Mouse. And by feeding the Mouse we mean feeding the Blue Mouse Theatre with delicious foreign films and cultural programs. Each Thursday through April 4, the Sister Cities Film Festival highlight's one of Tacoma's sister cities with a program and film that matches the culture of a city that Tacoma calls a sister. Take this Thursday, Gunsan, South Korea has been Tacoma's sister since 1978 and had a curiously parallel course of development to Tacoma - Gunsan is a port city that boomed in the 1890s due to a rail link, and there is even an American Air Force Base in the vicinity. We're still checking to see if Gunsan has a weekly chalk competition in a park or if Guy Fieri has his Camaro towed down its streets.

Anyway, in honor of Gunsan, the film Secret Sunshine will screen at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 7 at the Mouse.

"The movie Secret Sunshine was chosen by the committee members," says Sister Cities coordinator Debbie Bingham. "They compiled a list of movies that their members had reviewed and which ones they were able to get access to show in the U.S. and Secret Sunshine won."

Directed by Lee Chang-dong, the 2007 film garnered some strong attention around its release date. Lead actress Jeon Do-yeon scored best actress at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival for her role as troubled Shin-Ae, who is recovering from the death of her husband only to have another major tragedy jump into her path.

Get to the Blue Mouse at 6 p.m. and enjoy the full cultural program, which includes live classical Korean music and introductions by officials from the Korean Consul General's office and City of Tacoma's mayor's office.


March 1, 2013 at 8:57am

Weekend Hustle: Dance Oly Dance, Sustainability Expo, Dance party, "Arabian Nights," Dance Festival and more ...

DANCE OLY DANCE: Free televised dance party! Dance on live TV! Yippee! Photo courtesy of Facebook



Friday: Mostly cloudy with a couple of showers, hi 57, lo 44

Saturday: Periods of annoying rain, hi 55, lo 38

Sunday: Some rain here and there, hi 48, lo 35


It's been awhile since we've shined some light on Dance Oly Dance, where the dance revolution is televised. Well, at least on local television with local dancers and local DJs. The March 1 episode features an online vote for a favorite DJ, so dancers get to choose the poison. Will it be DJ SPF666? Will it be DJ Riot? Tune into Facebook for voting and results, and if you are not down there shaking your boo-tay, tune into TCTV to watch Dance Oly Dance live. — Nikki McCoy

  • TCTV, 8-9 p.m., 440 Yauger Way, Olympia


You know what rotating equipment engineers can do? They can: evaluate new equipment and enable employees training on proper repair and operational techniques; function as technical resource to maintenance groups to direct and recommend problems solutions; prepare equipment RFQ packages and technical bid evaluations and make vendor suggestions; review vendor design documents and coordinate with vendors during equipment design and fabrication process; publish two chapbooks; specify and review drawings and data for large pumps and rotating equipment for offshore applications and conduct routine and complex engineering, design, analysis and technical tasks. Well, at least that's what poet John Milkereit has done. Ask him about his chapbooks and RFQ packages tonight when he leads the Distinguished Writer Series event and open mic.


AKA and the Heart Hurt Goods is driven. The band is talented. And it plans to blow up The Royal Friday night in Oly. The group is always lively - with AKA laying his rhyme and reason to an authentic blend of talented musicians and lovely lady vocals. And I'm not ashamed to hype these guys by dropping names. They've opened for Sublime LBC and Macklemore. 'Nuff said. - NM

  • The Royal Lounge, w/Elbow Coulee, 9 p.m., $3/adv, $5/door, 311 Capitol Way N.,  Olympia, 360. 705.0760


The New Frontier Lounge will play host to one of THE premiere dance parties of the year Saturday. Tacoma's own Death By Stars has rounded up an all-star cast of its amazing friends to provide the 253 with a night of something new, something different, something ... weird! Bands includeEver So Android, Werebearcat! and DJ Melodica. "We wanted to bring in bands that don't get a chance to play in Tacoma enough," says DBS member Patrick Galactic.  It's also Galactic and Juan El Revelator's birthday.  "I've never thrown myself a bash before," Galactic continues, "so we're gonna do this RIGHT!  It's going to be a celebration of the friends, family and city we love. If you like to shake it, this is your night. If you don't like to shake it but like to watch sexy girls shake it ... this is your night!" - NM

  • The New Frontier Lounge, 8 p.m., $5, 301 E. 25th St., Tacoma, 253.572.4020


Fun fact: Before there were expos, people had no idea how to disseminate information about sustainability. It was a bleak time. Luckily, events like Saturday's South Sound Sustainability Expo at the Tacoma Convention and Trade Center have solved this problem, bringing "green" to the masses. According to hype, the South Sound Sustainability Expo is "intended to provide residents and business owners in the greater Tacoma metropolitan area a place to discover services, products, companies, and agencies in our region that address sustainability needs in our community." As part of that goal, instruction and information on everything from urban chicken cooping to waste minimization and recycling will be discussed. 


The Tacoma Youth Symphony Association brings its 2012-2013 season to the Rialto Theater Sunday for a performance by the much-loved Tacoma Youth Symphony Orchestra. Titled Arabian Nights, and thematically including Mahler's "Adagietto" from Symphony No. 5, Weber's Second Concerto for Clarinet and Romsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade, Sunday's afternoon concert should deliver in all facets of awesomeness. Coolest of all: 100 free main-floor tickets for students of high school age or younger will be available at the door on the day of the performance.

  • Rialto Theater, 3 p.m., $6-$17, 310 S. Ninth, Tacoma, 253.591.5890


Jazz hands, everyone! Sunday brings the fourth annual Olympia Dance Festival to the Washington Center for the Performing Arts. Combing the dance talents of several regional dance troupes - listed on the press release as Ballet Northwest, Centralia Ballet Academy, Comerford School of Irish Dance, Debbi's Dance, Johansen Olympia Dance Center, Mas Uda Middle Eastern Dancers, Random Acts of Dance Collective, Slieveloughane Irish Dancers, Southwest Washington Dance Ensemble and Studio West Dance Academy - this yearly event typically inspires smiles and rounds of applause. Southwest Washington is full of dance talent, and the Olympia Dance Festival routinely puts that fact on full display.

  • Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 2 p.m., $10, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585


Our schedule is unusually vacant this weekend, so the better half and I plan to give our condo a thorough pre-spring cleaning. Also, I'd very much like to catch Shakespeare Abridged at TLT, given its enthusiastic thumbs-up from Joann Varnell.

This weekend, I'll be hitting up Patrick Galactic's birthday show at the New Frontier. Death By Stars, Ever-So-Android, Elbow Coulee and Werebearcat! I'd be a fool not to go.

We're going to Seattle Saturday to see Photograph 51 at the Seattle Repertory Theatre. Not exactly a title that makes people run out and buy tickets, but I hear it's a great play.

NIKKI MCCOY Feature Writer
How about a bubble bath while the servants, I mean children, clean the cat box and fold the laundry? How about a full body massage with lavender and jojoba oil while my husband serenades me on the guitar? How about a luxury shopping trip with girlfriends and martinis while a team of top-rate gardeners prepare my yard for spring? Oh, sorry, what was that? My weekend plans? Nursing a cold and scrubbing toilets while the tyrants, I mean children, fight over Legos and complain about dinner.

JOSH RIZEBERG Music Columnist
I'm not doing too much this weekend. Friday, I'll be at Jazzbones for Clemm Rishad's album-release party. Saturday, I'll be teaching my spoken word/poetry class at D.A.S.H Center for the Arts. Sunday, I'll try to get my slow-moving ass to the Graffiti Garages for the Sunday Cyphers.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
Saturday, I'll hit up the Super Mall with one of my best friends (with my toddler in tow) to spend a gift certificate from Christmas. Sunday, I'll start the day with a birthday breakfast in bed and say hello to 38. I have no other plans than to relax, maybe take a nap (you know, like old people do) and enjoy a birthday dinner prepared by my rad husband. (Do people even say "rad" anymore?)

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Nightlife Correspondent
Well, I will be working on my next book about the history of Lakewood and going to the training session to learn about researching life in Washington during the Civil War years for an upcoming exhibit at WSHM, beating the ukulele strings like they owe me money for a birthday gig I got roped into playing and then maybe hit Louie G's for the Ben Union show or the Blanco Bronco show at the New Frontier. Decisions, decisions. Oh yeah, and walk the dog.

NIC LEONARD Music Writer
Saturday night I will be attending the Portland Trailblazers vs. Minnesota Timberwolves game down at the Rose Garden followed by a night if partying in Portland. Look for me on TV!  I'll be decked out in vintage Sonics gear sitting two rows behind one of the hoops.

ROCKFORD ROWLEY All-Ages Music Columnist
This weekend, I'm headed up to The Experience Music Project to see The Sound Off! finals. I'll be pulling for Tacoma's own electro-pop glimmer-twins THE FAME RIOT. A winning outcome will guarantee them a spot on the Bumbershoot bill.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

February 6, 2013 at 7:41am

Betrayal, passion on display in Tacoma Opera's "La tragedie de Carmen"


For its 2012-13 season, Tacoma Opera is all about girl power. Its next installment of feminine mystique is La tragedie de Carmen staged Feb. 8 and 10 inside Rialto Theater.

Peter Brook’s La tragedie de Carmen is a stripped-down version of the famous Georges Bizet opera Carmen. The story focuses on passionate gypsy girl Carmen, who seduces a very naïve soldier named Don Jose. Jose leaves his steady and faithful girlfriend, but then Carmen in turn ditches poor Jose for someone else. Pimpin' really truly ain't easy. As the show's title suggests, much tragedy ensues.

The original Carmen is filled with grandiose show and general pompousness for which opera is so well-known. La tragedie de Carmen does away with most of this and tells the story without the pomp, aiming to strike directly at your heart instead.  

"In my opinion, La tragedie de Carmen should really be subtitled, Carmen, Up Close and Personal, because it's one of the most intense and intimate operas you'll ever see," says Noel Koran, Tacoma Opera general director. "And the four singers portraying Carmen, Don Jose, Micaela and Escamillo are four of the most personable, talented and magnetic performers that have ever graced the Tacoma Opera stage."

RIALTO THEATER, 8 P.M. FRIDAY, FEB. 8, 2 P.M. SUNDAY, FEB. 10, $25-$66, 310 S. NINTH ST., TACOA, 253.591.5894

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