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Claudia Schmidt performs in Ashland

Ashland St. Clair Productions will present songstress Claudia Schmidt in concert Saturday, March 24, 8 p.m., at the Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 87 Fourth St.

Schmidt performs mostly original songs in the folk, jazz and blues styles accompanied by her 12-string guitar and mountain dulcimer.

Tickets are $15 in advance, $17 at the door, $8 for teens 12-17 and free under 12 accompanied by a paying adult. Tickets are available at the Music Coop in the A Street Marketplace, on-line at or by calling 535-3562.

A musician who has always hated categories, Schmidt describes herself as a "creative noisemaker." Audiences have learned to expect anything at a Schmidt concert &

hymn, poem, bawdy verse, torch song, satire and the gamut of emotions. Schmidt can weave the elements of music and stage into a program so unified and full of life that the San Francisco Bay Guardian has described a Claudia Schmidt concert as "....a lot like falling in love. You never know what's going to happen next, chances are it's going to be wonderful, every moment is burned into your memory, and you know you'll never be the same again."

According to The Post-Bulletin (Rochester, MN), "Those who keep trying to characterize Claudia Schmidt's music should just give it up and file her under the general category 'Talent.' Big talent."

The Door County Advocate (Sturgeon Bay, WI) said "To say that Schmidt is simply a performer with a talent to entertain would be a miscarriage of understatement." Schmidt takes her audiences into her world as easily as the child who discovers the endless universes that exist in a cardboard box.

Schmidt has 14 recordings of mostly original songs, exploring folk, blues, and jazz idioms. Her latest CD is Spinning, released on Pragmavision Records. Recently, she collaborated with the New Reformation Jazz Band on two CDs: a Dixieland gospel recording and a tribute to Gershwin and Ellington in celebration of their hundredth birthdays. In 2000, Schmidt released Wings of Wonder on Redhouse Records featuring many new songs with instrumental support by Dean Magraw and Peter Ostroushko. Her most recent work in the Jazz field I Thought About You, is her second leading her own swinging sextet - Claudia Schmidt The JumpBoys. In the fall of 2003, Schmidt released an all spoken word CD featuring some of the many pieces she's made famous in her performances over the past thirty years. The CD, Roads includes 17 poems and essays from her rich performance repertoire.

Thirty-two years as a touring professional have found Schmidt traversing North America as well as Europe in venues ranging from intimate clubs to 4,000 seat theatres, and festival stages in front of 25,000 rapt listeners. She has performed on radio and TV, including regular stints on Public Radio International's A Prairie Home Companion, and starring in an hour-long documentary called I Sing Because I Can't Fly, produced by KTCA TV in St. Paul. She participated in the Les Blank movie Gap-Toothed Women, contributing a song as well as an interview. She wrote an award-winning score and performed in the Goodman Theatre's Chicago production of Brecht's "Good Person of Szechuan." Her latest stage performance was in Gales of November, the musical adaptation of the 1975 Edmund Fitzgerald tragedy produced by Minnesota Public Radio in Minneapolis.