Ballet Northwest Celebrates 50 Years of Dance

Ballet Northwest is celebrating an impressive milestone — 50 years of bringing ballet and the art of dance to Olympia and the greater Thurston County region. In celebration, Ballet Northwest presents the 50th anniversary gala on Saturday, January 25, 2020, at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts. The program includes professional dancers from the American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Boston Ballet, and National Ballet of Cuba. During the gala, Ballet Northwest alums will share their experiences and memories of dancing with the company, and historical ballet videos will be shown. 

“Ballet Northwest’s 50th Anniversary Gala will honor the organization’s history and alumni, as well as build excitement for its future by raising funds for scholarships and new costumes,” says Ken Johnson, co-artistic director of Ballet Northwest.

“At the gala – and throughout 2020 – Ballet Northwest will celebrate its legacy,” says Paula R. Lowe, gala coordinator. “Ballet Northwest has impacted thousands of people in the past 50 years, from the dancers, cast, crew, parents, and volunteers, to the audiences. We are inviting former Ballet Northwest dancers to celebrate with us at the gala, connect with their dance community, and support up-and-coming dancers, so they, too, will learn and grow from dance.”

Former artistic director Bernard “Bud” Johansen and his wife, Mary Johansen, will be honorary guests at the gala, along with Sam and Margie Reed. Sam was the president of the Ballet Northwest board of directors in the 1970s when the board hired Bud Johansen. Margie Reed was the first professionally-trained ballet dancer who danced with Ballet Northwest, continuing to work with them for many years.

The gala will also feature professional dancers from American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Boston Ballet, and National Ballet of Cuba. The event will highlight memorabilia displays and video interview clips from throughout BNW’s 50 years, and raise funds for BNW’s costume and scholarship funds. The evening will culminate with desserts and dancing in the black box. A limited number of VIP tickets are available, which include a pre-show reception in the black box with dinner appetizers and drinks.

Since 1970, Ballet Northwest has served as a community-based group dedicated to promoting, teaching, and preserving the art of dance in Southwest Washington. BNW is the sole nonprofit ballet company in Thurston County and the oldest in Washington state, and its 50-year anniversary will certainly be one to celebrate. For more information on the gala, visit the Washington Center website.

MARTINA PRESTON

Nutcracker & The Tale of The Hard Nut

Snowflake dance Nutcracker

It’s that time again—time to celebrate the holiday season with a performance of the Tacoma City Ballet’s historical recreation of The Nutcracker & The Tale of The Hard Nut, presented for the first time in the beautiful newly renovated Pantages Theater.
The Tacoma City Ballet, under the leadership of Miss Erin Ceragioli, Executive and Artistic Director, is celebrating its 34th year of producing of one of the most famous ballets in the world, The Nutcracker & The Tale of the Hard Nut


The Nutcracker ballet is based on a story written by E.T.A. Hoffmann in 1816, the music was written by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, a Russian composer renowned for his ballet scores. This timeless holiday classic, first presented in 1892 in St. Petersburg, has entertained generations for well over a century.

The story of The Nutcracker, authentically told in its entirety with the addition of The Tale of The Hard Nut, features the historical scenery and costumes first seen by audiences in 1892. No other ballet company in the world performs the original production. Tacoma City Ballet’s magnificent production is filled with spectacular dancing, live orchestral music by the Tacoma City Ballet Orchestra, grand scenery and lavish costumes, sure to thrill your entire family this holiday season. 

PERFORMANCES
Friday, December 13, at 7:30pm

Saturday, December 14 at 2pm and 7:30pm

Sunday, December 15 at 2pm

BOX OFFICE
(253) 591-5894

901 Broadway, Tacoma WA 98402

www.tacomacityballet.com/performance-season 

“O Christmas Tea” Comes to Olympia

From the unbridled imagination of beloved British comedy duo James & Jamesy comes the rollicking holiday comedy O Christmas Tea. Already a tradition for thousands of theatre-goers each year, O Christmas Tea will be steeping its uproarious brand of immersive theatre in Olympia at the Washington Center for Performing Arts on November 29th

Reminiscent of classic British pantos, O Christmas Tea is rich with wordplay, comic physicality, and cleverly crafted interactive elements. Even so, it is truly the boundless imagination and endearing chemistry of James & Jamesy’s that bring to life the magic of this unique festive experience. David MacMurray Smith, Aaron Malkin (James), and Alastair Knowles (Jamesy) are creators, performers, and educators of physical comedy and physical theatre. Since 2012, James & Jamesy productions have been performed over 750 times across the UK, USA, and Canada, earning lifetime fans and rave reviews.

During the action-packed production, a Christmas wish for tea is fulfilled in titanic proportions. The world floods with tea, leaving the duo to find innovative and hilarious solutions to keep them afloat as they try to make their way back home.

“The Christmas season is a magical time of year that brings people of all ages together; a time when we are encouraged to dream big, embrace imagination, and celebrate a childlike excitement for merriment,” explains Alastair Knowles (Jamesy), the eccentric half of the award-winning duo.Redefining immersive theatre, these masters of physical comedy—with over 20 comedy awards to their name—take their audience on a jolly aquatic escapade in this joyous celebration of friendship at Christmas. For more information on this holiday treat for the whole family, visit www.washingtoncenter.org to learn more or purchase tickets.

Monet, Renoir and Degas

Seen as artistic radicals in their time, the French Impressionists found their way into premier public and private Northwest art collections impacting American artists for decades. Now on display through January 5, 2020, Tacoma Art Museum premiers a collection of classics to take in. The exhibit, Monet, Renoir, Degas, and Their Circle: French Impressionism and the Northwest, examines how the work of French Impressionists and their immediate precursors made their way into Northwest public and private collections.

“The purpose of this exhibition is deeply connected to the same passion that drove the French Impressionists, to transform the way we see,” said David F. Setford, TAM’s Executive Director and curator of this exhibition. “It does this in two ways. First, it puts rarely seen works from TAM’s European art collection into context and allows for an expanded visitor learning opportunity. In addition, it is also the first time that these Impressionist works from museums and private collections in the Northwest have been seen together. It will provide a lasting resource about French Impressionism and its historical impact for curators and collectors in our region and beyond.”

Monet, Renoir, Degas, and Their Circle: French Impressionism and the Northwest was organized and curated by Tacoma Art Museum, and includes approximately fifty works of art. The exhibition is accompanied by a small publication including essays by Setford and TAM curator Margaret Bullock, as well as an online listing of French Impressionist works currently in Northwest public collections.

The exhibition provides visitors the unique opportunity to enjoy signature works by Gustave Caillebotte, Mary Cassatt, Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Alfred Sisley among others. Filling out the story, paintings from some of the most important precursors of Impressionism such as Eugène Boudin, Jean- Baptiste-Camille Corot, Gustave Courbet, and Johan Barthold Jongkind are included.

“To round off the exhibition, there will be a section of artworks which demonstrate the influence of French Impressionism on Northwestern and American painters—in other words, how East Coast and Northwest artists adapted and interpreted the brushwork and use of light and color in their own work,” notes Margaret Bullock, co-curator of the exhibition.

“We are extremely grateful for the immense generosity of our regional sister museums in collaborating to create this exhibition,” notes Setford. “The treasures of French Impressionism that will be brought together for this exhibition demonstrate the depth and strength of the collections located in the Pacific Northwest.”

HILARY RYAN

For Additional Information

Tacoma Art Museum

tacomaartmuseum.org

Lumaze: Lost in Lights Comes to Seattle

Lumaze: Lost in Lights— the all-indoor Christmas festival and market— is making its debut this holiday season at Pier 91 on Seattle’s new Waterfront. From November 28, 2019, to January 5, 2020, this sparkling new event will allow people to laugh, stroll and play under the twinkle of a million lights.

Attendees can escape the winter elements and enjoy nearly 100,000 sq. feet of beautiful light displays set inside Smith Cove Cruise Terminal. The festive environment is fully enclosed, perfect for families, friends or dates, and also offers a Christmas market, interactive light maze, food, beverage and live entertainment. There’s truly something for everyone at this holiday festival. 

“It’s the ideal place to plan annual holiday get-togethers and parties or celebrate birthdays or anniversaries,” said Kristi Savoy, the Lumaze Seattle Event Supervisor. “We love to provide our guests with an environment where they can create memorable moments and new traditions.” And there is no shortage of memorable opportunities to be had. Guests can expect illuminated structures perfect for photos, interactive activities and playgrounds especially for kids, and plenty of options for adults to kick-back at bars and enjoy seasonal beverages and live music. Local culinary options will be highlighted, as well as a festive holiday market to take care of any shopping lists. 

Lumaze also gives back to the communities they operate in by creating fundraising opportunities during the event. “We use local vendors for the marketplace and food and beverage options, and engage local charities, organizations and entertainers to ensure the event is uniquely Seattle.” said Savoy.  Local vendors and entertainers, charities, or sponsors and ambassadors interested in the event are encouraged to apply online. 

This glittering event will provide the fun and festivities, without the stress. Included on the website are suggested arrival times, to minimize entry waits, and there will be ticket control for each day the market is open to ensure that it is never too crowded. A parking shuttle will also be provided to and from designated event lots. 

Lumaze: Lost in Lights will bring all of the magic and wonder of an outdoor Christmas festival, hosted inside the warm and spacious venue at the Seattle Waterfront Pier 91.

Visit the Lumaze Lights website at www.lumazelights.com/seattle-christmas/ for more details and information on ticket pricing.

MARTINA PRESTON

Tango Del Cielo Comes to Federal Way

The Federal Way Performing Arts and Event Center is excited to present an exotic fusion of harp, strings, percussion, and dance this November! Experience this captivating music in an entirely new way with Tango Del Cielo, a unique theatrical music and dance program. This event has been met with standing ovations nationwide.

    Tango Del Cielo, literally translated “Tango of Heaven,” features a fusion of various Latin styles in both music and dance, such as Argentine Tango, Flamenco, Spanish Classical, and Latin Jazz. The concerts are especially entertaining through their tribute to the era of silent films, with incorporations of multi-media film art, staging, lighting, and effects. Tango Del Cielo programs are always exciting to watch and fun for the whole family.

    Anna Maria Mendieta, the founder, artistic director, and harpist for the program, has an extensive history performing throughout the world. She is recognized nationally for her musical advancements in the realm of the Argentine Tango on the harp, and has brought many more exceptional musicians and dancers to be a part of the Tango Del Cielo, a few being Matthew Szemela of the multi-Grammy nominated Quartet San Fransisco, and acclaimed dancers Fanny Ara and Marcelo Molina.

    Beyond being masterfully delivered and performed, the program’s music in itself is a treat to listen to. Jorge Calandrelli, a Grammy Award winner and Academy Award nominee, arranged and composed the music for Tango Del Cielo, along with Pablo Ziegler and Daniel Binelli, also Grammy Award winners. Several other notable artists and Grammy nominees also contributed to the program’s extensive score, including Jovino Santos Neto as well as violinist and composer Jeremy Cohen, also of Quartet San Fransisco. 

    The Tango Del Cielo performance at the Federal Way Performing Arts and Event Center is an event you will not want to miss. From the flamenco dancers to the jazz tunes to the Argentine Tango, everyone will find something to love at this event. For more details, visit https://fwpaec.org

MARTINA PRESTON

Tacoma City Ballet’s Dracula

Tacoma City Ballet’s Dracula ~ The Romantic Ballet tells the legendary romantic tale of Vlad the Impaler, notably recognized as the infamous Transylvanian Count Dracula. An original Tacoma City ballet production, Dracula ~ The Romantic Ballet is filled with brilliant dancing, a lush haunting musical score with live orchestral music conducted by Maestro Bernard Kwiram, opulent scenery, and extravagant costumes. Appearing for its second consecutive season by popular demand, Dracula ~ The Romantic Ballet is destined to become a Halloween tradition.

Vlad the Impaler is a brutal yet tragic character who has suffered the loss of his beloved wife, Elisabeta. His rage over the Church denying her entrance into Heaven because of her suicide caused him to renounce his faith in Almighty God and embrace the immortal curse of the Vampire.  Mixing historical fact with mythical lore, four-hundred years pass and Vlad goes to London to seek out Mina Harker who he believes is the reincarnation of Elisabeta. His intention is to bite Mina turning her into a Vampire so they can be together for all eternity, as he and Elisabeta were meant to be. Dracula captures Mina and returns to Transylvania. However, his love for Mina prevents him from completing his plan, and instead of inflicting the “immortal bite” on her, he allows her to thrust his sword into his heart finally sending his spirit to eternal rest.

Presented in the beautiful Pantages Theater, which lends an ornate gothic feel to the production, Dracula ~ The Romantic Ballet is suitable for audiences of all ages, and the perfect addition to your celebration of Halloween. Audiences are encouraged to come in costume.

Saturday, November 9, 2019 at 2:00 P.M. & 7:30 P.M.

Sunday, November 10, 2019 at 2:00 P.M. 

For more information visit: 

tacomaartslive.org

An Evening with Taj Mahal Quartet

One of the most prominent and influential musicians of blues and roots music brings heart and soul to the stage. Taj Mahal Quartet will perform at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts in Olympia on Wednesday, Nov. 20, at 7:30 p.m.

A self-taught singer and songwriter, Taj Mahal plays the guitar, banjo and harmonica, among other instruments. His decades of recording and touring have nearly singlehandedly reshaped the definition and scope of the blues. He has accomplished this with the infusion of exotic sounds from around the world. His global fusion approach weaves in reggae, Caribbean, Cajun, R&B, West African folk, jazz, calypso, traditional country blues and Hawaiian slack key.

At the 13th Annual Americana Honors and Awards, the two-time Grammy-winning singer, songwriter, film composer, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist was feted with the Lifetime Achievement Award for Performance.

“What inspires me most about my career,” says Mahal, “is that I’ve been able to make a living playing the music that I always loved and wanted to play since the early ’50s. I am extremely lucky to have fans who have listened to the music I choose to play and have stayed with me for 50 years. It’s very exciting, to say the least.”

As in ancient culture, he adds, the people are as much a part of the performance as the music. “Live communication through music—oh yeah, it’s right up there with oxygen!”

JESSICA CALDWELL

For Additional Information

The Washington Center for the Performing Arts

360.753.8586

washingtoncenter.org

Bart at TAM fun meets history

Tacoma Art Museum presents BART at Tacoma Art Museum:Animating America’s Favorite Family, an unauthorized and in-depth look at the process and teamwork needed to create America’s longest-running prime time animated television show now through-October 27, 2019. Set in the fictional town of Springfield. The Simpsons explored the life of a working-class family through parodies of American culture and society, television and the human condition.

The exhibition features over 100 hand generated animation cells, scripts, and drawings related to the first 13 seasons of the Simpsons. “Visitors will be able to learn about the process of animation and explore elements of the history and process,” says Bill Heeter the collection owner.   

Now in its 30th season, the loving, yet dysfunctional family has met with both praise and criticism. The Simpsons has won 31 Primetime Emmy awards, and a Peabody Award. It has also collided with and responded to cultural events and social change over its decade long television run.  by Leah Grout

Tuesday–Sunday  10 am–5 pm
Free Thursdays  5–8 pm
Closed Mondays

tacomaartmuseum.org

The Bite Cooks!

(Sy Bean / Seattle Refined)

Take a look inside a professional chef’s kitchen at The Bite Cooks! from Friday through Sunday, July 19th-21st, 2019, at Seattle Center, in Seattle Washington.

The Bite Cooks! will feature high-energy mystery ingredient cook-offs and culinary demonstrations by some of the Seattle area’s best and entertaining chefs. The Bite Cooks! lineup changes each day, with chefs eager to share their delicious handpicked recipes, and showcase their quick-thinking in the mystery ingredient cook-offs.

The Bite Cooks! features ‘more mystery cook-off’s this year. The competing chefs will be given 30 minutes to create a masterpiece from three mystery ingredients, a basic pantry, and a large selection of produce, kindly donated by Charlie’s Produce.

Three lucky audience members will be selected to critique each chef on their dish and performance. The criteria: creative use of ingredients, presentation, tastiness and overall entertainment. The winning chef will be announced live, and will receive a $100 donation in their name towards the charity of their choice. 2018 winners donated to charities including FareStart, Food Lifeline, and Mary’s Place.

Notable chefs participating on The Bite Cooks! stage include return crowd favorites, Wayne Johnson (FareStart), Saffron Hodgson “The Aussie’ (bushcooking.com), Brittany Bardeleben (Dahlia Bakery), and Warnessa Victorian (Lizzie Lou’s), and new to The Bite Cooks!, Aaron Willis (The Generous Chef), Emme Collins (Alcove Dining Room), Young Cho (Phorale) and, for the first time in The Bite Cooks! history, junior chef-in-the-making, 9-year old, Hana Kuma (Junior Sous) will perform a cooking demonstration with instructor Sara Adams.

The Bite Cooks! is also thrilled to welcome Thai Select featured chefs, who will bring the flavors and aromas of Thai cuisine into their cooking demonstration dish, and, also infuse them into mystery ingredient cook-off challenges. Thai Select chefs featured include Jutamas Kanjanamai (Bai Tong), Aratana Nualkhar and Jindanat Nualkhair (Araya’s Place), plus Kasem Saengsawang (Farmhouse Kitchen Thai Cuisine).

Chef Thierry Rautureau aka ‘The Chef in The Hat’ will return for his 12th year as emcee of The Bite Cooks!, and will bring his unique level of excitement, and extensive culinary experience to the stage.

The Bite of Seattle® is a free-to-attend community festival, and in an effort for attendees to experience the best of the Bite of Seattle®, we are excited to offer discounted food and drink packages including the Experience Bite Package which includes Craft Beer & Cider Tasting + The Alley, and, the Craft Beer & Cider Tasting Only Package.

Bite of Seattle®

Friday-Sunday, July 19-21, 2019

Seattle Center, 305 Harrison Street, Seattle, WA 98109

For more info: https://biteofseattle.com