Three productions offer classic Americana as well as Christmas cheer and jeers
The Music Man. In the ads for its family-friendly holiday show, the Redhouse Arts Center proclaims, “This is not your grandfather’s Music Man.” The words do not mean, we are happy to report, that Marian the Librarian has become an I.T. specialist or that Harold Hill is now huckstering tablets. What has happened is that the world of pre-World War I River City, Iowa, 40 years back when the show opened 56 years ago, is now too old for nostalgia. Instead, it’s a fantasyland, like Camelot. In such an environment music can be reshaped to express the talents of the performers and the location of the Redhouse, midway between Armory Square and the near West Side.
CNY Playhouse gets ‘Duranged’
The name of Christopher Durang is widely admired by anybody who’s been going to live theater regularly in the last generation. He can be counted on for irreverent, loopy humor. A host of younger playwrights who sound like him are happily called “Durangesque” or “Duranged.” Few people, however, will have heard of Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge, now at Central New York Playhouse’s Shoppingtown venue. In his program notes director Greg J. Hipius candidly admits that a copy first fell into his hands as a bonus in the package containing a better-known Durang play. He does not say he wanted to bring it to local stages because it had a fabulous production history or that he had seen a side-splitting mounting of it. In fact, it is rarely performed.
Heater and Blumer first composed All I Want nine years ago for the Baldwinsville Theater Guild.
Garrett Heater and his Covey Theatre Company occupy the catbird seat in Syracuse community theater. Not only are they the team to beat at nominations time for the Syracuse New Times’ Syracuse Area Live Theater awards, but Heater and Covey, with partners Susan Blumer and Michael Penny, can be expected to fill the seats at the BeVard Room of the Mulroy Civic Center with just about anything they wish to do. Heater also produces his own original material, like the historical speculation, Lizzie Borden Took an Axe (November 2010), universally received as far better than a personal indulgence. His current production is co-written with partner and choreographer Susan Blumer, All I Want for Christmas Is . . . Most of the roles in it are taken by children, ranging down to age 5.
Music reviews for ‘Honey Spoon’ and ‘Tim Herron Corporation’
Honey Spoon (independent). This band, which features Leila Dean (violin and vocals), Kevin Dean (percussion), Dave Wynn (percussion) and Billy Golicki (vocals and guitar), rides on feel-good themes of their sweet-tooth songs of simple stories. “Whoa” hits with a firm and familiar pop-rock beat you can clap and stomp to before delving into a story of “a girl/ who met a boy/ and a boy/ who met a girl/ they got together/ and it was cool/ and they both felt the same/ about each other.” Although the lyrics fall a little flat, the harmonies hit the sweet spot.
Austin Jimmy Murphy returns to the debt-challenged festival in the hopes of saving it.
The past few years have been tumultuous for the New York State Blues Festival. After experiencing tremendous success with the 2011 edition at the Inner Harbor, the 2012 fest ended in debt and disappointment. The financial obstacles were so grave that the planned 2013 edition was scrubbed.
Local musicians link to a yuletide clothing drive
It’s the season for giving, with charity runs, food drives and fundraisers taking place. Among those is the third annual “Beat the Cold for the Kids” clothing drive, through Wednesday, Dec. 18. Clothes for the cold-weather months, such as hats, gloves and scarves, are gathered and donated to the Salvation Army, which distributes to families in need. The drive has gathered more than 4,000 items in the past two years, with hopes to collect 3,500 this season.
Terrible things happen.
What would you do if before you took your next step, you'd be forced to make the ultimate decision of right vs. wrong, good vs. evil, should vs. shouldn't.
Saturday December 7th at the Palace Theater
The southern California suburbs birthed hardcore –– a caustic sound made of surging guitar, breakneck drum beats, and copious amounts of inextinguishable adolescent animus. Descendents, a four-piece from Manhattan Beach, CA, were a wholly unique fixture within this scene.
Check out movies opening in Syracuse!
Get ready for a modern tale of hard and frightening times to begin to fill the sleepier Hollywood list between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Scott Cooper directs and co-wrote (with Brad Inglesby) this tale of family and the drastic things people will do when blood is involved. The trailers reveal a dark tale full of angst and violence.
Who’s suing the Beastie Boys?
POINTS OF REFERENCE is a music news blog for people with actual lives and/or short attention spans: a weekly selection of topical, pop music talking points fit for bars and break rooms.