OCT presents electrifying ‘Five Guys Named Moe’
In celebration of its 20th anniversary season, Oregon Cabaret Theatre is restaging “Five Guys Named Moe,” the musical by Clarke Peters, as its 100th production. This is a toast to the music of Louis Jordan (1908-1975) whose heyday, as Jim Giancarlo reminds us in the stylish commemorative program, “was during the ’40s and early ’50s as swing and jazz evolved into what we now call rhythm and blues.”
The musical originally opened in London in 1992 and OCT presented it in 1997 to highly appreciative audiences. The new cast are all first-timers at OCT. At the start, a young man named NoMax (D. William Hughes) is lounging in a chair beside a radio. He is as blue as blue can be because there’s nothing sweet about his Loraine; she has dumped him and he’s knocking back the booze to the accompaniment of oldies on the radio. Then all at once, five singing and dancing guys burst on the scene (actually emerging from the identical Fada radio set design by Craig Hudson and Michael Halderman that lets us glimpse the band aloft through a mesh).
The band is comprised of John Taylor (also the music director) on keyboards; Bruce McKern, string bass and brother Kevin, drums; and Daryl Fjeldheim, woodwinds, who offers a saxophone riff late in the show, a nice nod to Louis Jordan, himself a sax player.
Self-praise is no recommendation, it is said. But when the Five Guys Named Moe hold forth about “Who’s the greatest band around, makes the cats jump up and down, who’s the talk of Rhythm Town? and High brow, low brow all agree they’re the best in harmony,” they’ve every justification. They’re truly an electrifying and infectious quintet, with unflagging energy and exuberance (no wonder they need a sweat rag; it pours out of them). It’s amazing, with all their leaps and gyrations, that they don’t collide; a tribute no doubt to choreographer Jim Giancarlo and co-choreographer and dance captain, Christopher George Patterson.
Among the eleven choice items in ACT I are “Beware, Brother, Beware,” sung by Big Moe (Ekello Harrid, Jr.), “I Like ’Em Fat Like That,” by Little Moe (Kwame Michael Remy), and “Messy Bessy” by Christopher George Patterson. The ensemble number, “Safe, Sane, and Single” is a delight with its “western” choreography. Then there’s “Push Ka Pi Shi Pie,” described as the new calypso be bop, in which the audience is inveigled to participate. And it was only too ready to leave its seats and conga across the stage, with Jim Giancarlo in their midst. We needed an intermission after that!
In ACT II there are 13 offerings including “Is You Is Or Is You Ain’t” in a final medley. The stand-outs are “Let The Good Times Roll” with Four-Eyed Moe (Dante Maurice Sterling) doing some nifty tap-dancing; “Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying” by Eat Moe (DaRon Lamar Williams); and “Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens,” a duo by Little Moe and No Moe. A personal favorite was “What’s the Use of Getting Sober?” with Big Moe and NoMax. Big Moe in the Funky Butt Club scene literally works the audience over in “Caldonia,” getting their arms to fly upward on the word “mop.” There is clever choreography in “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie,” featuring Four-Eyed Moe and the ensemble.
Costume designer Kerri Lea Robbins really lights up the stage with the vivid colorful zoot-suits the Moes wear; a contrast to the soberly attired NoMax.
— “Five Guys Named Moe” is a veritable feast of music that sets your toes a-tapping and your hands a-clapping. And there’s the feast for dinner patrons, gourmet meals by resident chef, Douglas Todd, along with delicious desserts.
The Motet, spearheaded by drummer Dave Watts, continues its tradition as an eclectic band when it plays at The Mobius, 281 Fourth St. on Saturday, July 16 at 9 p.m.
The Motet’s blend of Afro-Beat, Afro-Cuban, Latin, Funk and Jazz traditions defies categorization. Drawing on the wealth of musical inspiration in the band’s hometown of Boulder, Colo., The Motet features grooving improvisation that awakens and stirs the soul.
The sound is funk, it’s jazz, it’s world beat, and a little soul. The Motet prides itself on being freely creative, dishing up unexpected twists and turns during tunes, one-of-a-kind segues, and unknown directions each time. It’s the true beauty of experimentation, taking improvization to a whole new level.
The constant element throughout all of their performances is evolving music, matchless musicianship and the ability to make audiences feel good and dance... Whatever the occasion, wherever the gig, The Motet is winning the hearts, souls and dancing feet of fans all over the country.
Wednesday, July 19, 8 p.m.
$5 cover, $50 prize
Hosted by Ocho, sign-ups at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, July 13, 9 p.m. Home at Last -All Star Bay Area Jam Collective $7 all ages
Members Home At Last, The Ritual, and The Garrin Benfield Band playing the music of The Dead, Dylan, Allman Brothers, The Beatles and more, as well as original compositions. They will also explore original compositions, showing how influence translates to inspiration.
Home At Last (HAL) came together in late 2002. Home At Last has found a unique and powerful voice after three years of touring, recording, and soul-searching. 2006 is an important year of growth and change for this band, beginning with the release of their first full-length album, Wampus Room, back in January.
HAL member Benfield’s shows center on his quirky pop melodies but are stretched by Garrin into improvisational explorations into new territory each night. At once organic and eclectic, Garrin’s shows are an experience as much as they are a musical concert. Utilizing electronic effects and a loop station, audiences find themselves grooving to atmospheric rhythms and settling back into Benfield’s soothing vocal style.
Jordan Feinstein is an outstanding musician founder of the SF institution/band: The Ritual. Jordan cites Steve Winwood, Brent Mydland, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, and Billy Preston as his biggest influences. He is a key collaborator in several Bay Area bands, including Tea Leaf Green, ALO and New Monsoon.
For information see the Web sites www.halband.com; www.garrin.com and www.theritual.net
Friday, July 14, 8 p.m.
— Circus Tribal Bellydance Hafla
$7 all ages
An evening of bellydance featuring Circus Tribal dancers and students with special guest performers from local troupes Ayesha’s Oasis Dance Company, Aiwa She’ Raka and more. With henna design by Ashland Royal Henna Company and costumes for purchase, by local designer Circus Tribal.
Thursday, July 20
— Delta Nove
Afro Samba World Funk Experience
Delta Nove is performing live at the Mobius on Thursday, July 20. They’re a six-piece band from Long Beach, Calif., that has been committed to the evolution of music since its inception. Never satisfied to lock into one pre-conceived genre, Delta Nove constantly explores the synthesis of sound and texture, much to the delight of audiences. Born from a blend of Funk, Brazilian Samba, Jazz, Afro-Beat, Blues and Rock, Delta Nove has a distinct sound that is carving out its own niche in today’s music industry.They have shared the stage with Poncho Sanchez, Burning Spear, Olodum, Gato Barbieri, Roy Hargrove, and Ozomatli. Drawing from a deep pool of musical training and diverse instrumentation, the group fuses many styles into one funky powerhouse that rocks the crowd. For information see the Web site www.dnove.com.
The Mobius is at 281 Fourth St. Ashland. For information call 488-8894 or see the Web site www.TheMobius.
OSF stages enthralling ‘Cyrano de Bergerac’
The verse drama, “Cyrano de Bergerac,” by Edmond Rostand (1868-1918), premiered in Paris in 1897, and has proven to be a perennial favorite with audiences in France, England, and the United States. And it is being performed now by Oregon Shakespeare Festival in its Elizabethan Theatre. It’s an enthralling rendition that uses the translation and adaptation for the modern stage by British novelist, Anthony Burgess (“A Clockwork Orange” ).
The real Cyrano de Bergerac (1619-1655) was a French poet, soldier, and serious writer of philosophical romance. He was twice severely wounded, once in a fight with a Gascon guard and then during the siege of Arras in 1641. He has little in common with the hero romanticized in Rostand’s play — the adventurer, duelist, and self-sacrificing lover burdened with an enormous nose.
The story opens in the Theatre Bourgogne for a performance of “Cloris” (1640), with G. Valmont Thomas as actor Montfleury. Cyrano (Marco Barricelli) has ordered Montfleury not to perform for a month (his bad acting is the ostensible reason; the real reason the lecherous looks he has cast at Roxanne (Robin Goodrin Nordli), Cyrano’s cousin). Next up is the pastry shop of Ragueneau (Robert Vincent Frank). He is “the prince of pastry cooks” and a poet as well, though his benevolence is costing him dear.
Then there is the enchanting scene in Roxane’s garden where Baron Christian de Neuvillette (Rex Young) ineptly pitches his woo to Roxane and Cyrano comes to his rescue with passionate poetic outpourings. In a grim contrast, the scene changes to a barricade outside Arras, where Christian is fatally shot in battle and dies in Roxane’s arms. She takes a telltale letter from his bosom.
— — Cyrano — de Bergerac
— — — — When: There are — performances through Oct. 7 — — Where: On the — Elizabethan Stage, — Oregon Shakespeare — Festival, Ashland — — Tickets: $21.75-$72 — — Call: 482-4331
Lastly, 15 years later, we are in the large garden of the Convent of the Ladies of the Cross in Paris. It is autumn and the leaves fall; the perfect setting to end the play. Roxane realizes that “I never loved but one man in my life. Now I must lose him twice.”
The play is powerfully and affectingly directed by Laird Williamson. William Bloodgood admirably adapts the scenic design to accommodate the different locales, which Robert Peterson complements with his fine lighting. And Deborah M. Dryden’s costume design is outstanding, for men and women alike.
There are many ensemble opportunities for the cast to help bring the play to life. To name a few actors, there is the excellent presence of Derrick Lee Weeden as the Count de Guiche, Colonel of the Gascon Guards; David Kelly as Henri Le Bret, Captain of the Gascon Guards; Dee Maaske as the Duenna, Roxane’s companion; and Rene Millan as Ligniere, a poet friend of Cyrano.
But, of course, it is the strength of the triangle — Cyrano, Roxane, and Christian — that determines the success. Nordli is a beautiful Roxane, lovely to look at and lovely to listen to, though her scream at Christian’s death pierces the ear and heart. As for Christian, Young gives us an endearing but inarticulate lover, a young man of conscience yet troubled by the artifice of using Cyrano’s words as his own.
Marco Barricelli is a fine actor and his Cyrano is stunning. Such is the command of his body and resonant voice that at times one is hardly aware of his enormous nose. And if you want to know what panache is all about, he demonstrates it to the full. I wonder whether his portrayal of Christian in OSF’s 1989 production gave him a special insight into the heart and passion of Cyrano himself. Cyrano, at one point in the play, says, “I’ve decided to excel in everything.” Which is just what Barricelli does in this play.
If the ending is, as translator Anthony Burgess contends, “grossly sentimental,” it nevertheless brought the audience to its feet in acclamation, and this after three hours 30 minutes of theatre (with two intermissions).
Folk trio SeeSaw sings
SeeSaw, a folk trio of local musicians Nancy Spencer and Lisa Spencer and Portland-based Rick Meyers will present an album release concert on Tuesday, July 18 at 7:30 p.m. at the Ashland Congregational Church, 717 Siskiyou Blvd. Their album, titled “At Nancy’s House,” features both contemporary and traditional folk songs.
The three artists who join together to form SeeSaw bring a variety of talents to the group. Nancy Spencer, well-known for her virtuosity on the musical saw plays flute and pennywhistle as well as the saw. She began playing the saw in 1944, and in the 80s she made several appearances as a sawplayer on the Prairie Home Companion show on NPR.
Lisa Spencer, guitarist and lead vocalist in SeeSaw is known for her rich, gorgeous voice and moving interpretations of well-loved songs. In addition to SeeSaw, she is a vocalist and bass player with Blue Lightning, the local all-women rock and roll band. Lisa, who is Nancy’s daughter, was embarrassed in her youth to have a mother who played the saw, but in her maturity she enjoys their musical adventures.
Rick Meyers is a multi-instrumentalist who plays guitar, mandolin, banjo, autoharp and musical saw in addition to singing. Rick and Nancy met at the Silver Falls Musical Gathering several years ago and began playing saw duets. SeeSaw grew from there.
Admission price at the door is $12 for adults; $5 for children 12 and under. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. For further information and reservations contact Nancy Spencer at 488-1561.
Funktronica at Vinyl Club
J. Wail Kru’ from Phoenix, Ariz., will play at The Vinyl Club, 130 Will Dodge Way, at 8 p.m. Thursday, July 13.
Headlining the “Funktronica Freshness Tour 2006” the Kru’ performs sets of organic electronica, mixing live instruments and electronica devices.
The Kru’ plays instruments ranging from a guitar thats makes thousands of synthesized sounds, a keyboard, a groovebox, and a bumpin’ bass. They will be playing songs of various electronica styles including drum n’ bass, house, breaks, and techno, and their own unique spacefunk style. Check out J. Wail Kru’ at www.myspace.com/jwail to check upcoming dates, listen to songs, and for more information.
Lifelong storyteller at the library
No one should have been surprised when an eight year old named Jeff Defty became a children’s storyteller; after all, his favorite pastime was making-up dragon tales. Thus, thirty years later, no one is surprised that that same storyteller is invited, again and again, to regale children and their parents at many Northwest libraries, schools, festivals, camps, and in concert settings. With his family-friendly and humorous tales, audiences always await his return.
For this year’s performance, Jeff will roar into the Ashland Library with funny animal folk tales - tales like the Eskimo story of Why Cranes Have Blue Eyes and the African fable of The Crocodile That Crashed the Party! His other stories will introduce his audience to wild and wonderful animals from many other cultures of the world
Not surprisingly, Defty makes his living working in child-related fields. Besides his storytelling work, Defty is the Eugene Public Library’s children’s librarian; the author of the teaching guide, Creative Fingerplays and Action Rhymes and the video, Choosing and Using Picture Books; and the composer of music to accompany future recordings of children’s book author Willl Hillenbrand’s work.
To keep his life in balance, Defty also pursues “grown-up” activities. He co-founded the acoustic jazz ensemble, Confluence, and performs as their cellist and recorder player. He has also performed with the Eugene Symphony and the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra; and he is the composer and musician in two recordings, Vanish into Blue (regularly featured on the NPR program “Music from the Hearts of Space”) and the Descent of Inanna.
Jeff Defty’s storytelling performance is free and is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, July 18. Snacks are served first at 3:15; then, the storytelling begins at 3:45 and lasts about 45 minutes. Especially designed for elementary-aged children and the adults who accompany them, story lovers of all ages will enjoy this performance. This is the seventh event in this year’s Third Tuesday at the Library and is sponsored by the Jackson County Library Foundation, Jackson County Library Services, the Friends of the Ashland Library, Albertsons, Shop ‘n Kart, and Dolores Marx.
Around The Valley
Local singers present ‘Songs of Shakespeare’
Enjoy some of the world’s most beautiful poetry and music as the Southern Oregon Repertory Singers, under the direction of Dr. Paul French, present their fourth-annual “Songs of Shakespeare,” Monday, July 17, at 8:30 pm, on the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Elizabethan Stage. There will be a pre-concert lecture at 7:30 pm by Ed Wight in Bill Patton gardens.
“Ethereal vocalizing” and “a feast for the soul” said Richard Moeschl of the Mail Tribune.
Featured Plays and Sonnets will include “As You Like It”, “Much Ado About Nothing”, “The Merry Wives of Windsor”, “The Tempest”, “Twelfth Night”, “Two Gentlemen of Verona”, and Sonnets 18, 19, and 128 will be read by long-time leading OSF actor Robin Goodrin-Nordli and friends, Jim Finnegan Barry Kraft
Musical Highlights will include newly commissioned world premieres by the Repertory Singers’ composer-in-residence, Craig Kingsbury, and award-winning composer Bryan Johanson, as well as an Oregon premiere of “Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind” by Kelly Crandell.
The audience will hear a blues setting of “Hey Nonny Nonny by Carl Nygard Jr., as well as works by James Bassi, Morten Lauridson and others will be part of the evening.
Harpist Laurie Hunter, will return to accompany the singers.
In the event of rain, the concert will move to the Angus Bowmer Theatre with seating on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Admission to “Songs of Shakespeare” is $15. Tickets will be available at the door as well as the following outlets: Paddington Station and Music Coop, Ashland; Grocery Outlet, Medford, by phone 552-0900 and at www.repsingers.org.
Auditions set for “Fahrenheit 451”
Camelot will hold open auditions for “Fahrenheit 451” on Sunday, July 23, 10:00 am at the theatre. Director Charles Cherry is looking for women, men and children of all ages. No appointment is necessary but please be prompt! Please bring a resume and picture (that looks like you). Prepared monologues are helpful, but not required. (All parts open except Capt. Beatty and Clarisse.)
Perusal copies of the script are available through the Camelot Box Office during box office hours only! The Camelot Theatre Company Box Office is open Mondays through Saturdays from — to 5 p.m. If you have questions, please call the box office at 535-5250 ext. 3. Camelot Theatre Company is located at the corner of Talent Ave and Main St. in Talent.
Continuing its commitment to present theatre that is both timely and thoughtful, Camelot’s fall production will be Ray Bradbury’s own adaptation of his classic novel, “Fahrenheit 451.” (Fahrenheit 451 is the temperature at which paper ignites and books burn.) With an eye for the future as well as the past, Bradbury’s powerful drama is about the inner struggle of Guy Montag, a fireman. Set in a future where fireman start fires and no one is encouraged to think for themselves, Montag has worked as a civil servant for ten years burning books. But lately he has become increasingly unsure about what he is doing and about his vegetable-like existence. It is not until he meets 16-year-old Clarisse, who is filled with strange ideas, that he is led into a dangerous and highly combustible situation. Now he must choose between continuing his nonexistent existence and risking everything for the right to think. “Farenheit 451” runs from October 4 through Nov 5. For more information, visit Camelot’s website: www.CamelotTheatre.org.
The Mote at
The Motet plays the Mobius on Sunday, July 16 at 9 p.m. for a 21-and older show.
The Motet’s newest release, “Instrumental Dissent” reflects much of the band’s new electronically textured explorations while still driving home hard hitting, percussive dance grooves.
The band will be joined by musician and comedian Reggie Watts (Soulive, Maktub) for select dates on this tour and is expected to bring a new edge to the band’s sound and soul. The collaboration promises to infuse the Motet’s ever-evolving sound with the kind of soul that only a singer like Watts can bring into the mix.
Formed in 1998 by drummer Dave Watts, the Motet’s music fuses Afrobeat, Afro-Cuban, funk, Latin and jazz. Primarily instrumental since the departure of vocalist Jans Ingber in 2004, the addition of Reggie Watts and his powerful baritone will allow the band to revisit familiar musical territory.
Reggie Watts is a consummate performer with a voice that has drawn comparisons to artists as diverse as Al Green and Chris Cornell. As the lead singer of Seattle’s psychedelic soul group Maktub, he has shared the stage with bands like Coldplay, Dave Matthews, and Ben Harper. As a solo artist, Watts has lent his vocal skills to acts like Soulive, MeShell NdegeOcello, Roy Hargrove, Bill Frisell, and Bernie Worrell.
Watts has comedic talent as well and w2ill open each show at 9pm with a special set of comedy, which has been described as “amazing and unlike anything you have ever seen.”
The Wiyos at
The Wiyos play at Mojo Rising at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 15. The Wiyos play a singular style of old-timey American music that they call “vaudevillian ragtime-jugband-blues and hillbilly swing.”
An acoustic trio comprised of three vocals, washboard, harmonica, kazoo, resonator guitar, and upright bass,The Wiyos transport listeners back to a time before TV and mass-media were the main sources of entertainment; to the days when acoustic, handmade music could be heard on live radio and at community dances, medicine shows and house parties.
Incorporating elements of physical comedy and theatricality, The Wiyos create a visually stimulating show in the spirit of Fats Waller, The Skillet Lickers, Spike Jones and the Hoosier Hotshots.
Based in New York City, The Wiyos have spent the last four years touring relentlessly, and as a result have become one of the most recognized and acclaimed old-timey acoustic bands on the east coast.
They have been featured at many venerable festivals and listening rooms including The Newport Folk Festival (2004-05), The Piccolo Spoleto Festival, The Annual Amercan Music Festival, The Lincoln Center Out-Of-Doors Festival (2006) and The Carnegie Hall Neighborhood Concert Series (2003-06). They have also toured throughout Canada, The UK, The Netherlands and France.
The Wiyos will be touring in support of their second record, “Hat Trick”, which was inspired by the old-time stringbands, blues singers, jugbands and hot jazz ensembles of the 1920s 30s, as well as the actual process and method of recording that was prevalent in the early period of documented American music.
The songs on “Hat Trick” were recorded live with no overdubs to analogue two-track in just two days (with one extra day of mastering). All dynamics were created by adjusting individual positions in relation to the two microphones; no digital editing or mixing occured during post-production.
Calypso at the Phoenix Market
On Saturday, July 15th, Folk Calypso musician Steven Kaucher will be playing live music at the Phoenix Green Market starting at noon. Phoenix Green Market runs from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. at 310 N. Main in downtown Phoenix, at The Clay Cup and Phoenix Clay and Steelworks.
Patio seating, fresh coffee and cups full of happiness are all available. For more information please call Julie at 541-512-1726.
A Union Man: The Life and Work of Julius Margolin”
Thursday, July 20 @ 7 p.m.
A benefit for Southern Oregon Jobs with Justice
osted by UNETE in the basement of Medford’s
— First United Methodist Church, 607 West Main Street.
Julius Margolin, at 89, is a living legend in the New York City labor
— movement. He’s been active since the 1930’s in the CIO, the National
— Maritime Union and Local 52 of the International Alliance of Theatrical
— and Stage Employees which he has represented in the NYC Central Labor
— Council for 32 years. A tireless fighter for for justice, equality, and
— against war, Julius embarked on a new career in 1999 making music and
— DCs with George Mann while still hitting picket lines and organizing
— workers in New York and around the United States.
“A Union Man” is a documentary film produced by George Mann. It tells
the story of Julius Margolin’s life through his own eyes as well as
those he’s met along the way. Featuring guest appearances by Utah
Phillips, Fath Petric and former NMU Vice President Joe Stack, as well
as concert performances. Its an affectionate portrait of a
rank-and-file activist still fighting for justice as he approaches age
Suggested Donation $5. - ALL Welcome!
Reception and discussion after the film plus Julius and George will
perform a selection of labor and folk classics.
On the web: http:www.georgeandjulius.com.
Local Contact: Wes Brain 541-482-6988 or Brenda Gould 541-301-3337
OSF’s ‘The Two Gentlemen of Verona’ is a treat
In OSF’s “The Two Gentlemen of Verona,” the third offering on the Elizabethan Stage this summer, director Bill Rauch takes one of Shakespeare’s most straightforward love-triangle plays and turns it into a delightfully stylish tale of love, loyalty and metamorphosis.
Valentine (Juan Rivera LeBron) has been sent off from Verona to Milan to the duke’s court to get a bit of polish and maybe come by a few ducats in the process. His best friend Proteus (Gregory Linington) stays in Verona because he is hopelessly in love with Julia (Miriam A Laube). However, at the urging of his mother Antonia (Greta Oglesby) and her best friend Panthina (Linda Alper) — not to mention Valentine’s glowing accounts of the high life — Proteus soon follows.
Shakespeare’s play hops among three different “worlds”: provincial Verona, sophisticated Milan and some vaguely-located forest on the outskirts of Milan. Rauch and his scenic designer Christopher Acebo, costume designer Joyce Kim Lee and composer Paul James Prendergast took these cues and created three magical spaces.
Rauch portrays Verona as a strict Amish community, provincial by choice. He then sweeps us into a Milan of bright green astroturf, competitive games of croquet, gleaming tennis whites, dry martinis and powerful men with retinues. Valentine arrives here and wastes no time in blending right in, including an innuendo-filled game of tennis doubles with the duke’s beautiful, blonde daughter, Silvia (Sarah Rutan). Valentine is smitten.
Valentine’s “chaperon,” Speed (Eileen DeSandre) has no trouble adapting to Milan, either.
DeSandre, as we know from previous seasons, is a comedic genius. Director Rauch plays to her sense of the ridiculous. One of the unforgettable set pieces of this production is the diminutive DeSandre, dressed in Amish black, with stylish sunglasses, up-to-the-minute oversize black athletic shoes, slurping a Bloody Mary as she reclines in an Adirondack chair with her feet stretched directly out in front of her because they don’t reach the floor.
— — The Two — Gentlemen of Verona
— — — — When: There are — performances through Oct. 8 — — Where: On the — Elizabethan Stage, — Oregon Shakespeare — Festival, Ashland — — Tickets: $21.75-$72 — — Call: 482-4331
DeSandre at that moment is the epitome of the chaperon off the strait and narrow and down that wide and grassy.
The newly arrived Proteus has even less trouble adapting to Milan. When he catches sight of Silvia, whatever loyalty to his friend Valentine and love for Julia, evaporates. For Proteus, the means justify the end. He starts by betraying Valentine’s plans to elope with Silvia to her father (William Langan). Valentine is banished, thus allowing Proteus to betray her other suitor, the ridiculous Thurio (Brad Whitmore) and start courting her himself.
Meanwhile, the pining Julia disguises herself as a boy, shows up in Milan and discovers Proteus’ perfidy. She then allies herself with Silvia.
All of this is wryly observed and commented upon by Proteus’ servant Launce (David Kelly). Launce is the Greek chorus of this bit of fluff, tied to the themes of the play by his love for and loyalty to his dog, Crab. Kelly is the great improviser, making up dialogue as the evening demands while staying true to the underlying text.
This season, OSF and Bill Rauch have taken a huge leap of faith. They cast Terwilliger, an irresistible Jack Russell terrier, as Crab. With Terwilliger, every admonition of W.C. Fields about acting with children and animals comes true. When this dog is on stage, all eyes are on him.
David Kelly and Terwilliger are a seamless comedic team. Both shamelessly play off one another and play to the audience. (Now, I have to offer a disclaimer here. I am a personal friend of Terwilliger — known to us intimates as “Willie.” It was I who urged his owners Arne and Laurel Cherkoss to audition him for the part.)
Director Rauch then takes Shakespeare’s “outlaws of the forest” and turned them punk, gothic and misunderstood. Dressed in leather, coiffed in colorful spikes and Mohawks, they take a shine to Valentine. And, the banished (“He is vanish-ed” according to Launce) and ever adaptable Valentine understands their angst and blends right in.
Rauch has even figured out a way to riff over the implausible last scene of this bit of Shakespearean nonsense. Proteus, in the forest, is caught in the act of attempting to rape of Silvia, who has followed Valentine. When Valentine catches him at it, Proteus repents and throws himself on his friend’s mercy. Valentine forgives him and offers him Silvia (who remains silent for the rest of the play).
Julia then reveals herself and Proteus decides that maybe he’s made a mistake and Julia is the better catch. Rauch glides over this bit of unpleasant business by focusing our attention on those gothic punks and some wry bits of shtick.
Go for the sight gags. It works all the time.
— “The Two Gentlemen of Verona” is an absolute delight — a perfect summer evening’s entertainment.
Chant along with Shanti Shanti
People are invited to join the Rogue Valley Metaphysical Library and Bridgit’s Solutions as they present “Shanti Shanti” a Sanskrit Chanting Rock Group for a concert entitled: “Shanti Shanti: Language of the Gods” on Saturday, July15 at 7 p.m. at the Havurah Temple at 185 N. Mountain Avenue. $10 General public and $5 students. Tickets are available at the door at 6 p.m. night of event.
The group will also give a presentation on Sanskrit: “How To Change Your Life With This Impractical Knowledge” Tuesday, July 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the RVML Event Center, 258 A St. Admission is free, but a $5-$20 donation is suggested.
The evening’s presentation will include Sanskrit chanting by Shanti Shanti, group chanting with audience participation, and a discussion of the incredible effects that Sanskrit has on and individual’s consciousness and nervous system. Sanskrit is not only enjoyable and therapeutic to chant, but it is also a root language with wonderful spiritual qualities. The discussion will include the language’s linguistic, scientific, and metaphysical properties. The evening will conclude with a talk from the Forman family mother and author, Linda Forman. She will share the story of Shanti Shanti and the Forman family’s inspiring and sometimes humorous life journey. Please join us for this evening of Sanskrit performance, group chanting and lively discussion.
Shanti Shanti is currently finishing up production of their fifth album, their book and some other fun things.
For more information go to: www.rvml.org or www.shantishanti.com, or call (541) 552-9119 between 2 and 6 p.m.
‘I Will Presents’ Ashland Summer Music Fest
There will be A “Gathering of the Tribe” at Jackson Wellsprings, 2253 N. Hwy. 99, Just north of Ashland on July 14-16.
The festival will include sacred acoustic music, world beat, reggae, spoken word and rainbow family musicians in the Casbah Tea House.
The travelling phenonmenon Casbah Tea House will join Lunagroove with Jamtronic - Electrofunk music, Scott Huckabay, Saint Germain and Sacred Sound System, Cybervixen - Electronic Deva, Pure Love - Bhajans and Heartsongs.
The event marks the introduction the New Temple Room, and features DJ Jah Firm and Medicine Man and special guests.
People are invited to come dance to Ethno-Electronica in the beautiful New Temple Room at the Wellsprings. Organizers offer a time of rest, relaxation and fun at this gathering between the Oregon Country Fair and Good Medicine Healing Gathering.
The event is a benefit for Wellsprings Tree Of Life Garden, Earthdance and the Mobius.
Admission is free, but a $5-10 donation is suggested. Gates open at 5 p.m. Music Friday-Saturday: 6 p.m. - — a.m. Music on Sunday: 6 p.m. - 10 p.m. Camping and RV and bus parking are available. Vendors and Musicians call 541-846-7525
Events at Jefferson State Pub
Clear, crisp musicianship takes hold of the Jefferson State Pub in the week ahead, headlined by singer/songwriter Drew Rouse who will perform Monday at 9 p.m.
Rouse considers himself a “fiercely independent” musician has toured extensively across North America and Europe. He has released a total of six independent albums, many that deal with environmental and social issues.
Local bluegrass players re-gather at the pub Tuesday night for the first time since it re-opened in June, for a night of informal music.
Call 482-7718 for a lineup of events.
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