5 picks for live entertainment
The Zany Zone
Inspired by commedia dell 'arte — a rustic form of theater that emerged during the 15th and 16th centuries in Europe — James Donlon and Alina Cenal put a modern take on the timeless form of comedy at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Ashland Community Center, 59 Winburn Way. The duo portrays 16 masked characters and offers zany antics, physical comedy and commentary about the human experience. The show is presented in a mix of Spanish and English. Gothic Voices Medieval Choir will open the show, performing a set of music written before 1500. Admission is $15 to $20, $10 for students and seniors.
Trumpeter and composer Brandon Ridenour will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, at North Medford High School, 1900 N. Keene Way Drive. Ridenour, a Juilliard School graduate and a former member of the Canadian Brass, will be accompanied by trumpeters Dan Kocurek and Steve Kessler, along with North Medford High School's Wind Ensemble. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online at jcconcerts.org or at Piano Studios, 2580 Crater Lake Highway. Call 541-772-1384.
Improvisational comedy cuddles up next to the classic holiday film genre when the "Warrior Princesses of Improv" — Cil Stengel, Eve Smyth and Kyndra Laughery — perform at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Dec. 9-10, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11, at Bellview Grange, 1050 Tolman Creek Road, Ashland. Tickets are $15 in advance and can be purchased online at hamazons.com. Tickets will be $18 at the door.
The choir, directed by Mark Reppert, will present Joseph Haydn's "Maria Theresa Mass," along with other songs of the holiday season, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11, in the Music Recital Hall, 405 S. Mountain Ave., on the Southern Oregon University campus in Ashland. The mass will be accompanied by orchestra directed by Scott Cole. Soprano Lindsay Panero, alto Michel Cox-Thornhill, tenor Erik Connolly and basso Daniel Gibbs will be featured. Musicologist Ed Wight will present lectures one hour before the Saturday and Sunday concerts. Tickets are $20, $5 for students and Oregon Trail Card holders, and can be purchased at Music Coop or Paddington Station in Ashland, Grocery Outlet in Medford, online at siskiyousingers.org or by calling 541-482-5290.
Pianist, guitarist and recording artist John Nilsen will perform at five venues throughout December in the Rogue Valley. Nilsen, who graduated from Southern Oregon University in 1979 and spent nearly two decades in the Rogue Valley, lives in West Linn. He will perform at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 13, at Upper Rogue United Methodist Church, 18977 Highway 62, in Shady Cove. Admission is $10. Call 541-878-2793. Also at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 14, at Newman United Methodist Church, 132 N.E. B St., Grants Pass. Admission is $10. Call 541-479-5369. At 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, at Pascal Winery, 1122 Suncrest Road, Talent. Admission is $10. Call 541-535-7957. At 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, at RoxyAnn Winery, 3285 Hillcrest Road, Medford. Admission is free. Call 541-776-2315. And at 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, at Gold Hill United Methodist Church, 416 Fourth St., Gold Hill. Admission $10. Call 541-855-7224.