in New York Festival Saturday July 6, 2013
For more information contact:
85 Worth Rd
Email address: email@example.com
Madison Barracks in Sackets Harbor will once again host the 3rd annual “Made in New York” festival. The one day festival event Saturday July 6 - 11:00 am to 9:00 pm is designed as a principal fund raising event for Meals on Wheels of Greater Watertown and The Watertown Urban Mission is being added to this year’s event as a co-recipient of the fund raising efforts. These are two dynamic organizations that play critical roles within the North County Community.
The event showcase’s over 100 NYS agricultural, farm and home based businesses. This year’s event will introduce several new activities, including a state wide invitational classic and vintage auto “Cruise In“ presented by the Watertown based Highway Legends Classic Auto Club. In addition the event will be highlighting several local restaurants with the introduction of the “Tasting of New York”. Chefs from several area restaurants will be conducting cooking demonstrations throughout the afternoon.
Music will once again play a key role in the festival and this year’s line includes bands from across Central and Northern New York with Bob Greco Band from Rochester , Ferguson, Taylor and Rogers, Fred and the Ed’s, from Watertown and the Todd Hobin Band, from NNY, CNY and Syracuse. Returning once again to the Madison Barracks stage national touring and recording artist Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown and headlining this year’s festival event 1970’s mega hit band FOGHAT.
New also this year, Clarence Henry Coach will be running a free shuttle bus service from the festival grounds to and from the Ramada Inn and the Holiday Inn Express each hour throughout the day long event.
Over the past two years the Made in New York festival has generated a total donation of $12,500.00 for Meals on Wheels of Greater Watertown, and the 2012 festival had over 5000 in attendance.
The Game Connoisseur
It’s time to make your own game.
It was a cold and rainy Sunday in mid-April. By most measures this was the perfect board-game day. The kids and I went through the typical options: Monopoly, Life, Battleship, and about a dozen others. Good sure, but we’d been there, done that. We needed something new. So we set out to make our own game using what we had around the house. This wasn’t our first homemade game. Last year we took a large piece of scrap cardboard and cut-outs from the recycle bin to make RainbowHeartLand, a Candyland meets Chutes and Ladders meets HeroClix mash-up with lots of hearts, lots of superheroes, and lots of pink. It’s been a big hit in the house, and often is their first choice to play. In fact we happen to have quite an extensive collection of HeroClix mini-figures, including Wonder Woman, Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, Lex Luthor, Doomsday, Sinestro, and a couple hundred more (if you are interested, you can find these at a pretty reasonable price in lots on eBay). So we figured we could reuse the figures in the new game, and that became the starting point.
To back up a bit, the week before I had purchased Super Munchkin (I highly recommend any of the various Munchkin games) and played it with some friends. We had a great time, and while the kids are getting a bit older, they weren’t quite ready for something this complicated, not to mention that the content is a bit PG-13ish. So I figured we could make something that captured some of the best qualities of Munchkin, add in the HeroClix figures, integrate RainbowHeartLand, and above all give us something to do on this rainy Sunday.
The closest thing I can equate game making to would be cooking. And while you might not fancy yourself a gourmet chef, everybody can “cook,” and everybody can make a game. For me, when it comes to games, like a good chef I first take care of the big picture, and then get great pleasure in the little touches and small details. For those of you just starting out, you may be a bit fearful of simply burning the toast (so-to-speak), so I suggest focusing on the big picture. The most important thing is to involve your children (or friends) in making the game. If they make it, they own it. For example, I knew that in the game we would need “boots of speed,” so I let them draw the boots on the cards. I knew we would need “treasure cards,” and again they made these cards. In fact they made each of the seventy-two cards (18 each in four categories ranging from easy to extremely hard). I made the base set of rules, knowing that after the first couple of playthroughs there would need to be some tweaks (there always are). The best advice I can give you for making rules is to keep it simple and elegant, and sometimes it is better for one person to come up with the base set of rules, and others to offer advice (too many cooks can spoil the soup). And focus on your strengths. If you have an artistic flair, maybe you could have an impromptu art lesson. Maybe the game is about drawing at its core (think Pictionary).In the end you really can’t go wrong. You’ll spend some quality time with the people you care about, make something together that you’ll come back to again and again. My kids love the game, and ask to play it regularly. From their point of view it doesn’t matter if its chocolate chip cookies, chicken and biscuits, or a good burger from the grill, if they have a hand in making it, it will taste all the better.
Dr. Anthony Betrus, The Game Connoisseur
Ventricklism Part 2
Ed Sullivan sure loved ventriloquists…well, he loved acrobats and animal acts too, but heck, Señor Wences was on the show 18 times over the years. Along with Sheri Lewis, he's another one I didn't appreciate back in the day…I kept waiting for him to tell some jokes, but he'd just babble on, saying things like "OK, Johnny, how are you feeling today, please?" Of course, today I think his act was marvelous, and wish I could find more clips. His specialty was more complicated than simply not moving his lips…it was real "voice-throwing."
As Edgar Bergen proved, the technique of "inner talking" isn't everything…it's the skill and strength of the characterization that makes it work. Charlie McCarthy even used to kid Edgar about moving his lips, and that was all part of the fun. It's the "selling" of the dummy's personality that makes it seem like the voice is coming from where we know it really isn't. I mean, if you see 2 people at a distance, and one is talking, you assume it's the one moving his lips. Now Bergen said he could fool dogs into thinking a voice was coming from the bushes, altho he admitted most dogs would eventually figure out it was him…and that's more than just not moving your lips. Remember the ventriloquist's wife who sued for divorce, claiming he snored on her side of the bed? This was the key to Wenceslao Moreno's act.
With one hand, he was working Cecilia the Chicken…in the other he held a telephone, from which emanated a distorted, faraway voice. Then there was Wences' "hand" puppet Johnny, who sounded muffled because he'd been "put away" under a table…and Pablo, the head in a box, who sounded different depending on whether the box was open or closed. This gimmick was the result of a train wreck on the way to Chicago in 1936…and all that was left of Pablo was the head! Mind you, Wences was doing all these voices at once, back and forth, at breakneck speed. Who needed jokes?
And he didn't have a lisp. "Wenthes" is how it's pronounced in the Catalan dialect of Spanish, the "official" language of Spain. It's a "soft C," one followed by an E or an I. In English, the K sound softens to a S sound…like the words city, cent, face. Same thing happens in Mexican Spanish. In Italian, a soft C sounds like "ch"…and in Catalan, it's "th"…they call the city "Barthelona." If he really had a lisp, like Thindy Brady, he would have said "Wentheth," right?
A Gottle of Geer…Sullivan also had British vent Arthur Worsley on 12 times all told. He was considered the vent's vent, but his act was completely different…his dummy Charlie Brown did all the talking, loudly berating Worsley for one thing or another…and loud voices are much harder to do than soft voices. He'd rant and rave, working himself into a froth, then deliver his signature line: "By the way, son, how is it that when I shout, YOU spit in MY face?" It sounds like kind of a slim gimmick, but Worsley's routines were endlessness creative, and his technical skill was unmatched.
Another great British vent was Ray Alan…he added to the difficulty by having a dummy, an aristocrat named Lord Charles, who was perpetually drunk, so his speech was slurred and mangled. And Lord Charles fancied he himself a "ventricklist"…hence the title of this column… with his own cheap little dummy. But while Lord Charles could say "bottle of beer"…the B sound being extremely difficult to do…his dummy would say "gottle of geer," because Lord Charles wasn't a very good ventricklist. How Alan manipulated both his dummy and his dummy's dummy is anybody's guess.
Home, Home on the What?…At the other end of the spectrum, you had Max Terhune…a competent enough vent…he's the one who appeared on an episode of "I Love Lucy"…but for most of his career he played a side-kick in B westerns, riding his horse with his dummy Elmer Sneezeweed on his lap. To us kids, this made perfect sense…would you give Elmer his own horse? Another vent with a western bent that you might remember was Shirley Dinsdale, and her rather ugly figure Judy Splinters. She began her career in 1940 at age 14, and won an Emmy for Outstanding Television Personality in 1949, eventually leaving show business to become a cardiopulmonary therapist. But now, let's move on to…
The Dark Side…Some of us Baby Boomer kids were afraid of clowns. Not me so much, altho I'll admit to finding puppets a little creepy…I mean, it isn't really alive, is it? Ventriloquists actually understand this, which is why dummies look the way they do…to make them look too human would be unsettling to many people. Thus the plot device of the dummy-come-to-life, usually for sinister purposes. We have the 1929 silent film "The Great Gabbo"…who is actually the vent, his dummy is named Otto. This idea was used again as one segment of the 1945 horror anthology "Dead of Night."
In our day, one of the best was the 1964 film "Devil Doll." Demonic dummies were featured in 2 different episodes of "Alfred Hitchcock," and again in 2 episodes of "The Twilight Zone," not counting Telly Savalas and the Talky Tina doll. Ultimately you have the 1978 movie "Magic" with Anthony Hopkins and Fats…and a TV commercial that was supposedly pulled for frightening children. And in one 1960 episode of "Peter Gunn," the dummy really did kill the vent. Seems when the vent lost his voice, he hired a midget to be the dummy and do the talking for both of them…well, you can take it from there. But I'd like to close with another mystery…and that is…
The Mystery of Skinny Dugan…Now I had heard Charlie McCarthy occasionally mention a friend named Skinny Dugan. After all, Charlie didn't pal around with Mortimer Snerd, who was supposed to be an adult, a rube befuddled by the Big City…altho in a series of Dell comic books in the late 1940s, Mortimer was portrayed as a kid…and when they needed a third character, there was Skinny Dugan…with a massive shock of black hair, but otherwise looking pretty normal, not at all "skinny."
But there actually was a real Skinny Dugan. He was a dummy used by vent Fred Maher from 1940 until his death in 1952. His widow sold it to Detroit TV personality Ted "Sagebrush Shorty" Lloyd, on condition he not change the dummy's name. The dummy is owned today by Jeff Dunham. Apparently, Edgar Bergan wasn't concerned with the name being used…perhaps he was flattered, and at any rate, it wasn't a big part of his act.
Trouble is, there was yet another vent with a different Skinny Dugan. He was a Ted Mack discovery named Ray Austin, and this Skinny was a Frank Marshall dummy in the Jerry Mahoney/Danny O'Day mold. Apart from a clip from 1952 on YouTube, I can find very little on Ray Austin…but at least I can tell you this: "Skinny Dugan" is actually old-time dice-players' slang for a 7…so I guess in that sense it was considered a generic term of sorts. Will more Skinny Dugans crawl out of the woodwork, so to speak? Wouldn't be surprised. Till next time, don't take any wooden nickels…and rock on!
Acappedia to Perform for Watertown Musicales on May 20
Acappedia, a five person acappella vocal band, will be guest performer for Watertown Musicales at 7pm on May 20, in the community room of First Presbyterian Church on Washington Street, Watertown.
Acappedia formed to explore and share music from several genres, from classical to country, translated to the techniques of unaccompanied singing, always with a sense of fun. Members of the group bring backgrounds in musical theater, vocal performance and instruction, barbershop, and rock and roll. They are Corri Dartnell, Jodi Castello, Kari Robertson, Andrew Willis, and Tracy Robertson. For more information on Acappedia, check facebook, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Corri at 405-7148.
Since 1907, Watertown Musicales has encouraged local talent and given scholarships to youth to help them pursue music. Concerts are free and open to the public and include refreshments. To learn more about Watertown Musicales, contact Kevin Thackston at 777-6470.
Little Theatre of
The Elephant Song
by Nicolas Billon
Black River Valley
Club Cabaret Room, 131 Washington Street, Watertown, New York
Dinner Theater Shows
April 26, 27 & May 2, 2013 dinner at 7pm, show to follow
April 28, 2013 Sunday dinner at 1pm, show to follow
Reservations required for dinner theater: 315-782-6218
All meals served with rolls, vegetables, coffee/tea, and dessert.
Roast beef with gravy and smashed potatoes
Chicken Parmesan and linguini
Garlic Salmon and smashed potatoes
$30 per person includes dinner, tax, tip, and show.
No general admission at dinner theater shows
April 25 and May 3, 2013 at 7:30 pm
$12 per person for general admission
An eminent psychiatrist
has vanished from his office. The last person to see him is Michael, a troubled
patient obsessed with all things elephants. Dr Greenberg, the hospital director,
is determined to interrogate Michael, ignoring the head nurse's cryptic warnings.
Michael speaks of elephants and opera - with the occasional hint of murder
and foul play. Fraught with mind games and verbal tugs-of-war, The Elephant
Song is a cat-and-mouse game that will keep you guessing.
Directed by Sherman Ward
Starring: Jay Storey, Wayne Thompson, Susie Curtis, Suzy Quackenbush, Shane Coughlin, Colton Mangon, Emily Thompson
Show produced by permission of Gary Goddard Agency, Toronto Ontario, Canada
~ Caught in the Act!! By: Captain Dave with Photos By Wendy
On Saturday March 16th, Jeff Stein and Sweet Revenge were "Caught in the Act" while performing at Murry's Old Irish Inn in Waddington, NY.
For almost two decades Jeff Stein has provided
quality live entertainment throughout northern New York at venues of all ages,
shapes, and sizes. Jeff delivers a seasoned performance guaranteed to impress
even the most critical listener. Everyone needs a reason to break out of their
daily routine and I'm hoping I can be the catalyst for that. Perhaps once
a week or maybe once a month, take a few hours to relax and enjoy some great
music, a few cocktails, and the company of your friends and neighbors.
Sweet Revenge is a hard rock outfit from northern
New York. Blending a variety of classic with modern rock it is a refreshing
blend of good old rock and roll. It is truly northern New York's newest power
trios, consisting of some very talented seasoned musicians. Starting off with
the true backbone of the outfit, drummer Scott Barney brings a high level
of intensity to each performance. Along with his intense drumming style, his
vocals are enough to get anyone out on the floor moving. Coming from bands
such as Ranger and Exposure it's just the right time for his return to the
scene. Bassist Kevin Bosjolie fills in every possible gap that would normally
be filled by any rhythm guitarist. His smooth style adds all the elements
of any song being covered and then even more on top of that. He has been seen
in such bands as Full Throttle, Stone Cold, and Out of Time which was an Ozzy
Osbourne tribute band he was a part of. Rounding out the edges is guitarist
Matt 'Blackie' French. Coming from bands such as StereoType, Board of Silence
and The Original FRENCH he adds the grit that only rock music can deliver.
All together they form a high impact performance that is truly 100 % pure
NY, grade A rock and roll. If you hear Sweet Revenge is coming to your town
be sure to see it for yourself. Don't be the one only hearing about the show
the next day.
Lewis County Historical Society
South State Street
P.O. Box 446
Lowville, New York 13367
the final event of the
2013 Black River Concert Series
LISA VROMAN IN CONCERT
NY)—The beloved soprano returns to her Northern New York roots to perform
two concerts in the Blue Room of the Lewis County Historical Society on Saturday,
April 20 @ 7:30pm, with a repeat performance on Sunday, April 21 at 2:00pm.
Presale tickets are $18; tickets at the door are $20. Presale tickets are available
at Café Z in Lowville, Dr. Guitar, in Watertown, or by calling 376-8957.
All are encouraged to buy tickets early as seating is limited.
Ms. Vroman, an Adams, NY native, starred for several years on Broadway as Christine Daae in The Phantom of the Opera. As Christine, she garnered Theatre Critic’s awards for the role in a record breaking run in San Francisco, and did a return engagement at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. She is a frequent guest soloist with Theatre, Opera companies and Orchestras including San Francisco, Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta, National, Florida, Santa Barbara, Hong Kong, Cleveland, Nashville, Pacific, Utah, Dallas, the Boston Pops (Keith Lockhart), and Peter Nero and the Philly Pops. Miss Vroman made her debut at The Hollywood Bowl in Disney's 75th celebration, singing and dancing with legend Dick Van Dyke in a medley from Mary Poppins, (John Mauceri, conductor). She guest starred with SONY artist Greek tenor Mario Frangoulis in his NYC debut concert at City Center; and has performed many times the New York Festival of Song (NYFOS), including a tribute to Broadway director Harold Prince. Miss Vroman has sung in concert with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, composer Stephen Schwartz, Organist David Higgs, and the Empire Brass Quintet. Her solo CD Broadway Classic features Metropolitan Opera Mezzo-Soprano Stephanie Blythe and 47 of San Francisco's finest orchestral players. Lisa had the honor of singing at the Profiles in Courage Award dinner in Boston at the JFK Library, as a guest of the Kennedy family. She has also sung on separate occasions for Queen Elizabeth, former President Bill Clinton, and former Vice President Al Gore.
Ms Vroman promises a thoroughly entertaining show presenting Broadway Classics as well as American Songbook pieces. Joining her on stage will be two gifted pianists, Mr. Peter Woolschlager and Ms. Toni Zygadlo. Included in the show will be promising local high school vocalists who will have participated in a Master Class with Ms. Vroman and won a Broadway Idol Competition on Friday, April 19th @ Lowville Academy and Central School at 7:00pm. Tickets for the Broadway Idol Competition can be purchased at the door for $5.00.
series made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York State Council
of the Arts - Decentralization Program, administered in Jefferson, Lewis and
St. Lawrence Counties by the St. Lawrence County Arts Council.
Annual J.D.M. Musicfest
Saturday, April 6, 2013
12:00pm until 10:00pm
Hannawa Falls "Dog House" @ the Fireman’s Field
23 yr old Jesse McCarthy lost his life in a tragic accident on Sept. 17th, 2009.He was an avid sportsman and guitar player, loved blues music. The next spring his Aunts and friends created this Award Program in his memory, to help local students further their music interests. The Awards are given in August at The JDM Pride & Joy Ride.
This year , The Max Ryder Band will be hosting the Benefit, along with other bands playing through the day/evening.
There will be raffles, food, music , and plenty of friends and family to visit with ! We have had a great turnout for these events, and hope to repeat the success of our past events !
As there are only a very few actually involved in organizing this , we welcome any help with donations, food, helping the day of the event, or any other help we can get. There will be more details in the days to come.
PLEASE mark this day on your calender, and come out to help us give these music students something the schools cannot ! Will be a great start to the spring !! After a long winter, its a great way to get rid of the Winter Blues !!
Anyone wishing to bring food or help in anyway, contact : Crystal McCarthy 261-1021 or Michelle Pharoah at 212-5186.
Lake Effect Mud 'Eyes Open Wide' Album Release Party
Sunday April 28th @ The North Side Improvement League on Mills Street in Watertown. $5 cover at the door. Doors open at Noon. 8 bands. This will be the first time the new CD is available and new T-shirts and hoodies as well.
Lake Effect Mud
Rock94.1 & Tunes 92.5 are currently playing "Ear To The Ground". Album has 12 songs and was produced by Jeff DaBella and Lake Effect Mud in Binghamton, NY.
For up to date info go to our 'Like' Band Page at www.facebook.com/LakeEffectMudband
OLD CROW MEDICINE SHOW
TO PERFORM AT BREWERY OMMEGANG ON SUNDAY, MAY 26TH AT 7PM
The Americana string band comes to Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown, NY on Sunday, May 26th at 7pm.
Old Crow Medicine Show got their start busking on street corners throughout New York State and up through Canada, winning audiences along the way with their boundless energy and spirit. The band eventually relocated to Nashville for a residency at the Grand Ole Opry, where they entertained the crowd between shows. Since their humble beginnings, the band has toured the world, played renowned festivals like Bonnaroo, Coachella, The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival and embarked on the historic Railroad Revival Tour with Mumford and Sons and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.
"The twentysomethings in Old Crow Medicine Show marry old-time string music and punk swagger." - Rolling Stone
"It's so extraordinary to hear a band where there are three good singers; their harmonies remind me of the Dead or the Band."- Gillian Welch (MOJO)Time: Gate 5pm, Show 7pm
Date: Sunday, May 26th, 2013
Location: Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, NY
Ages: All ages
Tickets: $35 advance + $10 camping,
$40 day of show + $20 camping
(Additional Fees & Taxes Apply)
Tickets go on sale Friday, March 29th at 8am
Charge by phone: 888.512.SHOW
In person: Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown Chambers of Commerce,
Gree Toad Bookstore (Ithaca), Sound Garden Records (Syracuse),
State Theatre Box Office (Ithaca)
DPAO / TOYOTA / CAR-FRESHNER SUMMER CONCERT SERIES
The DPAO / TOYOTA / CAR-FRESHNER Summer Concert Series is pleased to announce that … Country Superstar Randy Travis … is the replacement show for George Jones.
The Randy Travis Concert will also feature a “tribute” to Country Superstar George Jones who passed away on April 26th.
The Randy Travis concert will be Saturday, August 3rd at 7 p.m. at the Watertown Fairgrounds Arena. For those holding Tickets to the George Jones show … these tickets will be honored for Randy Travis. There is no need to call DPAO … simply present your concert ticket the night of the show to gain entrance.
For those people holding George Jones tickets … that do not want to attend the Randy Travis show … please call DPAO at 782-0044 for instructions on how to receive your full refund. The Deadline to receive a refund for the George Jones concert is Friday, May 17th.
Tickets for the Randy Travis Concert will go On-Sale when all REFUNDS have been issued from the George Jones concert. Stay tuned to your Local Media for further information!
Randy Travis is an American Country Music Singer and Actor. Since 1985, he has recorded 20 studio albums and charted more than 50 singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Charts, and 16 of these were NUMBER ONE HITS!
Considered a pivotal figure in the history of country music, Travis broke through in the mid-1980’s with the release of his album Storms of Life, which sold more than three million copies. The album established him as a major force in the Neotraditional country movement. Travis followed up his successful debut with a string of platinum and multi-platinum albums.
Randy Travis has sold over 25 million records, and has earned 22 number one hits, 6 number one albums, 6 Grammy Awards, 6 CMA Awards, 9 ACM Awards, 10 AMA Awards, 7 Dove Awards and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Rush! Sign up NOW to be a SEASON TICKET HOLDER for
ALL FOUR CONCERTS! Call DPAO at 782-0044 and reserve your tickets BEFORE they go on sale to the public!!! This will provide you with good seats for the 2013 Summer Concert Series!
Both Reserved and General Admission Tickets will be available or sale at DPAO.ORG or by calling DPAO at (315) 782-0044. General Admission Tickets will also be available at most Kinney Drugs Store locations and Price Chopper Supermarkets.
The DPAO / TOYOTA / CAR-FRESHNER 2013 Summer Concert Series is made possible in part thanks to the generosity of our Main and Major Sponsors. Main Sponsors include: Disabled Persons Action Organization (DPAO), Toyota and Car-Freshner Corporation. Major Sponsors are: M&T Bank, Judy and Steven McAllaster-Gunn, Town of Watertown, Labatt Blue Light, Kinney Drugs Foundation, Watertown Savings Bank and Jreck Subs.
Proceeds from the DPAO / TOYOTA / CAR-FRESHNER 2013 Summer Concert Series will benefit the programs and services that DPAO provides to over 500 developmentally disabled children, adults and their families in Jefferson and Lewis Counties.
For further information
on the DPAO / TOYOTA / CAR-FRESHNER
2013 Summer Concert Series please visit our web site at
DPAO.ORG or call DPAO at (315) 782-0044 or (800) 533-2859.
A announces auditions for “Christine” & “Raoul”
Performances presents Angel of Music: A Salute to Andrew Lloyd Webber starring
Broadway veterans Glory Crampton & Franc D’Ambrosio in Ogdensburg
Free Academy’s George Hall Auditorium on May 18th at 7:45 pm. Tickets,
$15-$37, for this spectacular evening may be purchased by calling 315.393.2625
or visiting www.ILoveTheatre.org.
Two local singers, a female and a male, will have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to audition for the roles of “Christine” and “Raoul” to be sung during the performance in the beloved duet, “All I Ask of You” from The Phantom of the Opera. The singers will be selected through an audition with Franc D’Ambrosio, a world-class teacher who studied with the late legendary Luciano Pavarotti. Auditions are open to all high school and college students in St. Lawrence County, ages 15-22, and will be held 4-6:30 pm on May 17th in George Hall Auditorium at Ogdensburg Free Academy. Registration is required and may be completed by calling Ogdensburg Command Performances, 315.393.2625, Tuesday through Friday between 9 am and 4 pm. The public is invited to attend.
After announcing six finalists (three female, three male), Mr. D’Ambrosio will offer vocal and acting instructions to each on stage in a Master Class. After hearing/working with the finalists one “Christine” and one “Raoul” will be chosen to join him on stage the following night at Angel of Music: A Salute to Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Franc D’Ambrosio is best known as the "Phantom" in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award winning musical, The Phantom of the Opera and was awarded the impressive distinction as the “World’s Longest Running Phantom” which he played for six years. His resume also includes the role of Al Pacino’s opera singing son, Anthony Corleone, in Francis Ford Coppola’s seven-time Academy Award nominated film "Godfather III." He sang the Academy Award winning theme song, “Speak Softly Love” (Brucia la Terra) both in the film and on the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. While touring Mr. D’Ambrosio makes himself available for local outreach programs across the US and Europe.
Russell Opera House 2013 Season
The Russell Opera House announces their 2013 season. The committee is proud
to present the following list of concert dates so far. A few more to be added.
The RUSSELL OPERA HOUSE is located in the Russell Town Hall, Russell, NY.
April 13 - the Acoustic Brothers - 7 PM
April 26 - St. Lawrence University Orchestra at 7:30 PM
May 18 - Grass Transit - 7 PM
June 8 - Mary Casale & Andy Van Duyne - 7 PM
June 29 - Alan Betrus - 7 PM
August 9 & 10 - Grasse River Players - Time TBA
August 24 - Matune Creek - 7 PM
September 14 - Voss & the Flying Coconuts - 7 PM
October 26 & 27 - See More Players - Time TBA
At all performances there will be a ‘50-50’ raffle with refreshments served at the intermission. If you would like email notices of performance at the Russell Opera House, send a request to email@example.com As is the tradition, your donation is your admission to the Russell Opera House. The Russell Opera House in in Russell, NY and is supported by the Town of Russell and your “Patronage”. As is the tradition, your donation is your admission to the Russell Opera House.
Contact Tess Eells at 315-347-2358 for information.
‘Adopt a Theater Seat’
For $50 or more, you could adopt one seat, on which an engraved brass plaque will be mounted. You may place a name in honor, or in memory of a loved one. Forty characters per plaque will express your sentiment. Contact Tess Eells at at 315-347-2358 or send a letter of request to Tess Eells, P,O, Box 628, 4 Pestle Street, Russell, NY, 13684
TIPAF at the Clayton Opera House
Media contact: Joe Gleason,
TIPAF Executive Director
315-686-1037 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Vereen, Kingston Trio and special events headline TIPAF’s summer season.
Clayton - TIPAF at the Clayton Opera House is rolling out yet another spring and summer season of quality performances, with music, comedy, theater - even magic - to satisfy a variety of tastes. TIPAF performances begin at 7:30 p.m., unless otherwise noted.
Spring performances begin with The Amazing Kreskin on Friday, Apr. 19; Sunday, Apr. 21, brings Tennessee’s Runaway Home to the opera house stage performing Americana music.
TIPAF Teen Karaoke Nights take place every other Wednesday at 7 p.m. beginning Apr. 10 and running through May 22. Karaoke nights are a free event and open to all teens in the region.
In May, the
audience will assist the actors in creating a new musical comedy in the freewheeling,
improvisational “Broadway’s Next H!t Musical” Saturday,
May 18. On Friday, May 31, troubadour Livingston Taylor, best known for his
hit song “I Will Be in Love With You,” will come to Clayton.
In 2013, the Northern New York Community Foundation’s Sidney T. Cox Memorial Concert will become a classical and pops series beginning with the Northern Lights Orchestra from Potsdam. The orchestra makes its Clayton Opera House debut Thursday, June 13. The other major live performance in the series takes place Wednesday, Aug. 14, with pianist Christopher O’Riley, host of the NCPR program “From the Top.” Mr. O’Riley will share the stage with the most recent winner of the Cape Vincent International Chopin Piano Competition. Also part of the series are four Specticast pre-recorded HD digital theatre events presented on the opera house’s big screen every Sunday in July: July 7, Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia; July 14, Philadelphia Orchestra, Rites of Spring; July 21, Philadelphia Orchestra, Beethoven’s “Pastoral;” July 28, Philadelphia Orchestra, Mahler and Strauss. The Specticast programs begin at 4 p.m.
“Saturday Night Live” alumnus and “Deuce Bigalow” star Rob Schneider entertains with his special brand of comedy Thursday, June 20.
Presidential history as theater will make Independence Day come alive with “Teddy Roosevelt.” Actor Joe Wiegand is entertaining audiences nationwide with his portrayal of President Theodore Roosevelt, and the show will come to Clayton Wednesday, July 3. A benefit for TIPAF, the “Teddy Roosevelt” performance begins at 7 p.m.
Nostalgia reigns Thursday, July 11 with folk icons, The Kingston Trio.
A bona fide Broadway star arrives in Clayton Saturday, July 20, when TIPAF presents “Steppin’ Out Live with Ben Vereen.” This performance by an American musical theater giant begins at 8 p.m.
On Saturday, July 27, 4 p.m., Watertown native Dr. Toby Cosgrove, president and CEO of The Cleveland Clinic, will discuss “A Health Care System for the 21st Century: What Walmart, Zumba and the Performing Arts Have in Common.” This special event features the world-renowned cardiac surgeon, who is a Vietnam veteran and Purple Heart recipient and who has more than 20 patents to his credit. Dr. Cosgrove returns to the region to give a benefit lecture for the opera house; he will describe the system of health care developed at the clinic, a system that all sides of the economic and political spectrum have described as a model for the future. There will also be an optional reception to meet Dr. Cosgrove in conjunction with the lecture at $100 per person.
Mike Super makes family-friendly magic in Clayton for a second time Thursday,
The month of August at the Clayton Opera House ends with classic rock ‘n’ roll. Jefferson Starship will perform their hits, “Jane,” “Somebody to Love,” “Miracles,” “White Rabbit,” “Count on Me,” and many more Thursday, Aug. 22. Finally, on Wednesday, Aug. 28, “Satisfaction - Rolling Stones,” one of the most respected Stones tribute bands, will help the audience celebrate the band’s 50th anniversary.
Working with a new ticketing system, TIPAF now offers reserved seating for all seats; ticket prices for the three seating sections vary for each performance. Premium seating is available in the first four main floor center rows and the first two balcony center rows; ticket prices for premium seating range from $40 to $65. Main floor center and balcony center seating prices range from $30 to $55. Side seating on the main floor and in the balcony is available in the $25 to $50 range. All seats for Runaway Home are $20; for “Teddy Roosevelt,” $25; for Dr. Toby Cosgrove, $25; and for the classical Specticast programs, $15.
Performances other than those sponsored by TIPAF will take place this summer and into the fall. The Clayton Community Band, resident ensemble of the Clayton Opera House, will perform five concerts, each on a Tuesday at 7 p.m., on May 7, July 2, Aug. 20, Oct. 8 and Dec. 3. Tickets are $5 for all seats, and all seats are reserved.
Save the River will present its 10th annual Rock for the River Saturday, July 6. Details about the evening’s performers will be released by Save the River later this spring.
Clayton Country Jam, now in its third year, will take place Thursday-Saturday, Aug. 29-31.
Member Patrons, those who support TIPAF annually with donations beyond purchasing tickets, receive early access in March to the organization’s summer season shows; tickets go on sale to the public Tuesday, May 14. Patrons also enjoy a variety of other benefits.
For information, to become a member Patron or to be placed on TIPAF’s mailing and email list, call the Clayton Opera House box office at 315-686-2200 or visit the TIPAF website at claytonoperahouse.org.
Ya Big Dummy!!
The art of ventriloquism is alive and well, from the phenomenal success of Jeff Dunham…right down to the local level, like the North Country's own talented Peggy Miller. I got to thinking about some of the famous vents and dummies back in the day, starting with….
The Master…When our parents were growing up, Edgar Bergen was one of the biggest stars in show business. His radio show lasted 20 years, ending in 1956…people tend to forget that TV shows didn't completely "replace" radio shows until the early 1960s. I can still remember my mother listening to "One Man's Family" and "Young Doctor Malone." Altho Bergen wasn't able to make the transition, he appeared now and then on the tube until the mid 1970s, officially retiring in 1978, and dying several weeks later. But we all knew who Charlie McCathy was…and did you ever wonder why he wore that top hat, tails, and monocle? No, it wasn't because he was wealthy! It was simply a joke that caught on.
From 1931 to 1936, the pair made a series of short subjects for Warner Brothers-Vitaphone. In them, Charlie was dressed as a typical young boy of the period…first wearing a tam o' shanter, then a little cap resembling a ball-cap. When Bergen played a swanky nightclub in 1936, a year before his first big break on radio, he thought it would be funny to dress Charlie up to resemble the club's elegant clientele…and of course it became his trade-mark. Charlie McCarthy was constructed in 1922, and for a few years Bergen also used a rather homely female dummy named Laura, but soon decided to concentrate on Charlie, named after a paperboy he knew, which is why all those dummies were Irish…even Johnny Carson early on had one named Eddie Delaney!
Amiable country hick Mortimer Snerd, called Elmer at first, came along in 1938, followed by man-chasing spinster Effie Klinker in 1944. But Bergen had others. There was an old man named Lars Lundquist, used only on special occasions, since he spoke only in Swedish. Then there was Ophelia, simply Edgar's hand, like Señor Wences' Johnny…she appeared with him in the 1947 Disney movie "Fun & Fancy Free," and in later years took over Effie's routines. And seldom seen, but quite impressive, was Podine Puffington, the charming but dim-witted Southern belle.
She appeared on Bergen's TV debut, a live hour on Thanksgiving Day, 1950…and she was the size of a full-grown woman…Bergen did his act while dancing her around the stage. This was quite a big deal at the time, her "coming out" being previewed in a full spread in LIFE magazine, the June 8, 1950 issue…complete with numerous pictures showing her being, um, assembled. Some people might find it kind of creepy…but it's nothing compared to a 1959 episode of "The Jack Benny Program" where Jack vists Bergen's apartment and finds that Charlie is a real child…same voice, but somebody small dressed in a costume, actually walking around. Crossing the line much? Still, for Baby Boomers, the ventriloquist scene of the 1950s and early 60s was owned by…
The Big Three…which would be Paul Winchell, Jimmy Nelson, and Shari Lewis. Winchell's heyday with Jerry Mahoney and Knucklehead Smiff was the 1950s…"It's Winchell-Mahoney time, lots of fun, doo-dee-doo!" By the 1960s, Winchell was producing children's shows and became a tireless voice actor in cartoons…well into the 1990s on "Garfield and Friends," and as Tigger in "Winnie the Pooh" cartoons. And he tinkered on the side, patenting the first artificial heart. Now that's tinkering!
Perhaps you remember the episode of "The Dick Van Dyke Show" where the staff considers working for ventriloquist "Claude Wilbur," and his irascible puppet Jelly Bean, portrayed by Winchell and his Snitchy the Snail figure. Without puppets, he appeared on "The Beverly Hillbillies" as Homer Winch, Cousin Pearl's potential beau back in Bug Tussle. And there was the episode of "The Lucy Show" where Winchell agrees to play a benefit, then forgets to bring his dummy, in this case Jerry's seldom seen female counterpart, Tessie Mahoney. They dress Lucy up to look like Tessie, she sits on his lap, and well, the whole thing is sort of weird, but that's show biz.
Other Winchell side-kicks included a hand-puppet, the bespectacled intellectual Irving the Mouse…and the Humpty-Dumpty-like Oswald, actually Winchell's head upside down with eyes on his chin…a rather disturbing effect until you knew how it was done, or so it seemed to me at the time. Paul Winchell died in 2005 at age 82.
A Little Noodle…But still going strong at age 84 is Jimmy Nelson, who first rose to fame in 1954 on Milton Berle's "Texaco Show." Did you ever wonder why Danny O'Day looked so much like Jerry Mahoney? It's because they were both built by the legendary figure-maker Frank Marshall…as was, for that matter, Charlie McCarthy. The easiest way to tell Jerry and Danny apart is that Danny has a cleft in his chin, like Cary Grant…and Charlie's upper lip is wider than both of theirs. Nelson's second banana was also a Marshall creation with glasses, ascot, and beret, Humphrey Higsbye.
I always liked Danny better than Jerry…I thought he had funnier wisecracks. But it was Nelson's dog Farfel who really shot to stardom, thanks to those commercials: N-E-S-T-L-E-S…Nestlé's makes the very best…Chaaaawklit…CLUNK! But did you know that Nelson also had a grotesque cat dummy, as big as Farfel, named Ftatateeta…the name of Cleopatra's nurse in a 1898 George Bernard Shaw play…there's a good one for Final Jeopardy! And by the way, "farfel" is a kind of Jewish pasta…and has nothing to do with "falafel." You knew that already? Oh, never mind…on we go to...
October 1, 1960…the Saturday morning that Shari Lewis replaced Howdy Doody on NBC. I distinctly remember not being very much impressed with the new decade up to that point. In fact, I hated her show at the time…but I love watching old clips of her today. She had a wonderful wit, appealing to both kids and adults, and an excellent rapid-fire technique, doing complex routines with Lamb Chop on the one hand (ha ha) and either Charlie Horse, Hush Puppy, or Wing Ding on the other. In the trade, hand-puppets and sock-puppets like those are called "soft figures," as opposed to the traditional dummies, or "hard figures." And believe it or not, Shari Lewis started out with hard figures.
After winning first place on "Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts," she was hired to host a cartoon show on New York City's WPIX in 1953. She used full-size dummies, the space cadet Randy Rocket…another Frank Marshall creation…and a rather crudely constructed gal in pigtails, Taffy Twinkle. Lamb Chop first appeared in 1955 on "Captain Kangaroo" and went over so big that Shari's switch to soft figures was on. She died in 1998, but her puppets live on thanks to her daughter Mallory Lewis. I highly recommend you search out Lamb Chop's song from 1965, "Some Things For Xmas." Hard to find, I don't see it at present on YouTube, but well worth the effort as it's a hoot!
Next month, Part 2...featuring the head in the box, cowboy vents, British vents, killer dummies, and the mystery of Skinny Dugan. Till then, without moving your lips, rock on!
Dr. Anthony Betrus
Walking Dead: The Game - Staying Power that Rivals the Undead
So how long do zombies live anyway? Do they last for days, weeks, months, or even years? The living dead are the embodiment of persistence, infinitely patient and relentless in their ambling. And there is something particularly weighty about them, with their presence reminding us of our own eventual fate. They tend to leave a lasting imprint, long after they are gone. In much the same way, the five part episodic Walking Dead game, available on nearly every platform conceivable, carries this same weightiness and leaves a lasting impression.
The Walking Dead is a technically easy to play game, almost brain dead in its simplicity (sorry!). The focus is not on twitchy player actions, and is in this way it is the polar opposite of games like Temple Run or Fruit Ninja. Instead the game brilliantly builds tension and drama to critical decisions points that drive the characters and plot forward. The decisions are difficult, and make you question your own ethics and morality. In the end these decisions really do matter, and while each player will share a common story, the choices you make carry with them a lasting impact on the characters and plot.
Like the television show and comic, it is the investment in emotionally deep and complex characters that keep us coming back for more. The player can’t help but become attached to the Lee, Clementine, Ken, and the rest of the cast, which in turn makes those decision points all the more critical. The first episode is free, so for Walking Dead fans this is a no excuses must play. The events in the story parallel those in the show, and as with the comic and show, Telltale games has managed to capture and exploit the tension and drama of a post-zombie-apocalypse world with realistic precision. The writing and voice acting is absolutely top notch, and the graphics are purposely simplified to give it a living comic feel. And unlike typical game releases that last at best a few months before hitting the discount bin, The Walking Dead, originally released between April and November 2012, will be played for years to come. Ports to new platforms are almost a certainty, and like the zombies themselves, this game will live on, and on, and on.
Food & Beverage Showcase & Toots & The Maytals Concert
this May 30th in Ithaca
Ithaca, NY – The Ithaca Festival is proud to announce the inaugural, “Heart of the Finger Lakes: Tasting & Tapas Showcase” welcoming local food and beverage producers to present tastes of signature dishes and products Thursday evening May 30th on the streets of downtown Ithaca. The same evening, reggae legends Toots & the Maytals return to The State Theatre on their 50th anniversary tour… a co-presentation of Dan Smalls Presents and the festival.
The “Heart of the Finger Lakes: Tasting & Tapas Showcase” welcomes food producers to create a signature appetizer or tapas sized dish crafted from locally grown products. Wineries, breweries, cider makers and other beverage producers are asked to bring samples of a selection of their products. Other food producers like bakers, chocolatiers and dairies are welcomed to apply as well. Additionally, farm advocacy groups, and other organizations promoting local food are invited to table at the event.
Local food producers, artists and musicians, community residents, and out of town guests will join together in celebration of the region’s unique features highlighting much of what makes Tompkins County exceptional. Musical performances will take place as a community art project is launched. To apply as a food or beverage producer, advocacy group, or learn more visit www.ithacafestival.org. Contact Emma Hewitt, Program Director, email@example.com for additional information.
The night will cap off with a concert by reggae greats Toots & The Maytals, presented in collaboration with Dan Smalls Presents and the State Theatre. Local favorites the Blind Spots, who recently sold out the Haunt in advance, will open. The concert brings together three of Ithaca’s most reliable sources for live entertainment, united to highlight the city’s most beautiful venue while bringing beloved artists to our community.
It has been 50 years since the Maytal’s debut album “Never Grow Old” was released. Since then, the group, lead by charismatic frontman Toots Hibbert, has produced countless hits including “Pressure Drop,” “Reggae Got Soul, “ “Sweet and Dandy,” “Monkey Man” and “Time Tough.” Credited with singlehandedly naming an entire musical genre with 1968 hit “Do the Reggay”, Toots & the Maytals stands as one of Jamaica’s most influential groups. Their legendary ska and rocksteady style features soulful three-part harmonies, continuing to garner them fans across the globe.
Tickets will cost $26.50 and 29.50 with a very limited amount of gold circle seating available for $36.50 and will go on sale Friday, March 15th. They will be available without service charge at the Stage Theatre Box office, located at 105 West State Street. Tickets will also be available online at Stateofithaca.com, or by calling 800.919.6272. For detailed information please visit dansmallspresents.com. Doors will open at 7pm, with the show starting at 8pm.