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INSIDE COVER P. 21 Oklahoma Gazette jumps head-

long into the season with our Holiday Guide, featuring entertainment and activities to lift your spirits at the end of the year.

By Gazette staff

NEWS

STREAMING ONLINE NOW

PLAYITLOUDSHOW.COM

4 STATE urban/rural divide

6 ELECTION women made history this

8

year

THE HIGH CULTURE local law enforcement of medical marijuana

10 CHICKEN-FRIED NEWS

EAT & DRINK 13 REVIEW Jamil’s Steakhouse

14 HOLIDAY GUIDE nontraditional

recipes by local chefs

STAR SPANGLED BANTER COMEDY TOUR

18 HOLIDAY GUIDE GAZEDIBLES

restaurants open on Thanksgiving

NOV 17 | 7PM

ARTS & CULTURE

STARTING AT $25

21 HOLIDAY GUIDE Downtown in

CHAD PRATHER

December roundup

22 HOLIDAY GUIDE It’s a Wonderful

Life: A Radio Play at The Pollard Theatre

Great Russian Nutcracker at Hudiburg Chevrolet Center

NOV

24 HOLIDAY GUIDE Moscow Ballet’s

24

25 HOLIDAY GUIDE Norman

Philharmonic’s Handel’s Messiah at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church

7PM

27 HOLIDAY GUIDE A Christmas Carol

at Lyric at the Plaza

28 HOLIDAY GUIDE Junie B. Jones in

STARTING AT $25

Jingle Bells Batman Smells at Children’s Center for the Arts

33 FORTY UNDER 40 52 CALENDAR

MUSIC

dec 29 rodney carrington

55 EVENT Broncho at The Jones

Assembly

Theatre

56 EVENT Little Steven at Tower 57 LIVE MUSIC

FUN 57 ASTROLOGY

58 PUZZLES sudoku | crossword OKG CLASSIFIEDS 59

COMING SOON

dec 31 NEW YEARS EVE JAN 12 ROB LAKE JAN 18 LEANN RIMES

Cover by Tiffany McKnight Cover photo by Alexa Ace Wardrobe stylist: The Junk Fairy at Bad Granny Makeup: Lacey San Nicolas Model: Hannah Royce Special thanks to The HQ Studio and Nicole Galloway

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S TAT E

NEWS

Oklahoma divided

Results from Oklahoma’s Nov. 6 elections reflect a divide between urban and rural counties. By Nazarene Harris

Results from Oklahoma’s Nov. 6 elections caused emotions to stir across a state that ushered in new governor Kevin Stitt and turned representation in Oklahoma’s 5th congressional district over to a Democrat for the first time in 43 years. Political scientists said election outcomes are indicative of changes that reach far beyond individual mind shifts. “A common assumption is that if you’re a Democrat you’ll vote Democrat and if you’re a Republican you’ll vote Republican,” said University of Central Oklahoma political science department chair Louis Furmanski. “But until recently, that wasn’t really the case. While Oklahoma is a Republican state, we haven’t demonstrated this much attachment to our political parties for some time.” In 2014’s gubernatorial election, seven counties in Oklahoma saw 70 percent or more residents vote for Republican incumbent Mary Fallin and six counties vote in favor of Democrat gubernatorial candidate Joe Dorman, according to data from Oklahoma State Election Board. By contrast, in this year’s general election, 14 counties in Oklahoma saw 70 percent or more residents vote for Republican candidate Kevin Stitt and four counties vote in favor of Democrat Drew Edmondson. Counties in the panhandle including Cimarron, Beaver and Ellis saw more than 79 percent of voters cast ballots for Kevin Stitt. In casting their votes, Oklahomans created what political scientists call the doughnut hole effect, in which rural counties that sit on the outskirts of a state vote red and urban counties near the center of the state vote blue. Oklahoma was one of many states across the nation where the effect took place, leading some to wonder if a divide between party lines means a divide between county lines.

Different priorities

Since the 1930s, when rural dwellers began migrating to cities in large numbers with the hope of finding jobs 4

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outside an ag r icu ltural industry that was experiencing devastating losses due to droughts and the Dust Bowl, Furmanski said there has been a divide between rural communities, defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as those with populations less than 50,000, and their much more densely populated urban counterparts. “There’s has always been a difference in priorities because there has always been a difference in the circumstances surrounding how people in urban communities live compared to the circumstances surrounding how people in rural areas live,” Furmanski said. While a teacher pay raise might be a priority in an urban community like Oklahoma City, where rent and the cost of living is generally higher than figures seen in rural communities, it might not be a priority in rural communities, where an otherwise seemingly low salary can go far because the cost of living is not high. Oklahoma Education Association spokeswoman Carrie Coppernoll Jacobs said she believes a low cost of living could not be enough for rural teachers to disregard the need for school funding and increased teacher pay across the state or vote against Drew Edmondson, who stood for additional teacher pay raises and expanding pre-K to every school in the state. “A teacher in a rural district might not feel as much pressure as a teacher in an urban district about salary,” Jacobs said. “But a teacher in a rural district might feel other pressures relative to what’s going on in their community. When it comes to problems in education, no county in Oklahoma is exempt.” While differences in educational policies might not have swayed rural voters one way or another, Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association executive vice president Michael Kelsey said the differences between Stitt and Edmondson’s proposed agricultural policies were crucial in helping rural voters choose their candidate.

“Time and time again, I heard our members say that they couldn’t stand behind Edmondson because they didn’t feel like he valued them,” Kelsey said. The fact that Edmondson was in favor of eliminating the capital gains tax deduction and he represented what Kelsey describes as an “aggressive animal rights group” while he was an attorney deterred many rural voters from voting for him Nov. 6.

There’s has always been a difference in priorities because there has always been a difference in ... circumstances. Louis Furmanski According to Kelsey, the capital gains tax deduction is incredibly valuable for cattlemen and farming families across the state because they don’t invest in traditional employee retirement saving accounts like 401(k)s. “A retired farmer might need to sell his land so he can afford medical treatment, or a young farmer might sell his cattle to make room for new additions,” Kelsey said. “The money that we gain from selling our capital and not having to pay taxes on the sale usually goes to the purchase of new farming equipment like a new tractor or we reinvest it in our livestock.” Additional taxation, Kelsey said, would have devastating effects on family farmers. In October, Rural Oklahoma Farmers and Ranchers Council announced its endorsement of Edmondson, who promised to create a Family Farmers Bill of

Oklahoma’s election night results follow a national trend in which counties on the states’ outskirts vote red and counties toward the center of the state vote blue. | Image Oklahoma State Election Board / provided

Rights if elected governor. While Edmondson strived to assure Oklahoma’s farmers that the removal of the capital gains tax deduction would affect mostly wealthy companies situated in the state’s urban counties, Stitt ultimately got the rural vote.

Moving forward

In general, Furmanski said, Oklahoma’s voting trends reflected what was seen on the national level. Oklahoma was one of only two states where all counties voted for Donald Trump in 2016’s presidential election. Those who voted Republican two years ago held tight to their party affiliation on Election Day in Oklahoma this year. Likewise, Furmanski said, those who identified as Democrats in 2016 did so again this year but were more vocal about their beliefs and desire to usher the party’s “blue wave” into the Sooner State. While splashes of blue were seen, Oklahoma didn’t experience the wave Democrats hoped for beyond the election of Kendra Horn to represent Oklahoma’s 5th congressional district. “That could happen someday,” Furmanski said, “but my guess is that it won’t be for a very long time.” Voting trends are not stagnant, Furmanski said, and they are never as black and white as they seem.


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ELECTION

NEWS

Ladies’ night

Women made history across the country (including Oklahoma) on election night. By Nazarene Harris

Results from the Nov. 6 midterm elections were a cause for celebration for many as an unprecedented amount of women emerged triumphant nationally. History was made in several states, including Tennessee, where voters elected their first woman to the United States Senate; Texas, where voters chose Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia as the first Latina women to represent the state in U.S. Congress; and in Massachusetts, whose voters elected the state’s first black woman to Congress. On the national front, Debra Haaland, from New Mexico, became the first Native American woman elected to U.S. Congress, Ilahn Omar from Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib from Michigan became the first Muslim women elected to Congress, Sharice Davids from Kansas became the first openly lesbian and Native American woman elected to Congress and 29year- old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez from New York became the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. South Dakota elected Republican Kristi Noem as the state’s first female governor, and for the first time in Oklahoma’s history, the state’s citizens elected its first female Democrat to represent the state in U.S. Congress. Kendra Horn, 42, defeated incumbent Steve Russell by winning 50.7 percent of votes to represent U.S. House District 5 beginning in January. She attributes her win and the win of her sister candidates to voters’ desire for change. “We’ve seen the desire for change on a national level and in Oklahoma,” Horn said. “Women rose to the occasion, offered common-sense solutions and won based on those solutions.” 6

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Women in action

Carrie Blumert, who won the election for District 1’s Oklahoma County Commissioner, said women deciding to run was a primary reason so many were elected in Oklahoma on Tuesday. “It was really the perfect storm,” she said. “I think many of us had never even thought of running for office before. Once we felt the desire to run and established the confidence to do so, that was the first step towards success. The women’s marches helped many of us decide to run for office. In Oklahoma, the teacher walkout added fuel to the fire.” In January, Blumert will replace Willa Johnson, who is retiring as the only female elected official in Oklahoma County government. If the teacher walkout in April added fuel to the fire, Carrie Hicks, who was elected state senator for District 40, was burning up by election night. A fourth-grade Deer Creek public school science and math teacher, Hicks visited a state congressman months before the teacher walkout with the hope of representing classrooms across the state and their need for additional funding. “He basically told me I was lying. He told me to go back to my classroom and leave politics to the guys in office. It was demeaning, demoralizing and humiliating,” Hicks said. “But pretty soon, I’ll get the chance to work with him and do what he should have done then.” Once sworn into office, Hicks said she will fight to reduce classroom sizes, increase school funding and create incentives that will keep qualified teachers in Oklahoma. Strengthening education will also be a primary focus for Nicole Miller,

who won her campaign to represent District 82 in Oklahoma’s House of Representatives. Miller, one of the few women who ran as a Republican in this year’s elections, said she believes women also won because of their willingness to be vulnerable. “I think voters really respond to a political candidate who proves to be authentic,” she said. “I never thought I’d run for office, so doing so wasn’t a part of some kind of political agenda for me.”

We’ve seen the desire for change on a national level and in Oklahoma. Women rose to the occasion, offered commonsense solutions and won based on those solutions. Kendra Horn Miller decided to run for office when her family had the opportunity to decide where they wanted to live permanently after Miller’s husband, Doug, a United States Air Force lieutenant, retired. When the Texas native moved to Oklahoma seven years ago, her dream became to stay in the Sooner state so long as she saw changes at the capital. “We come in last in so many areas,” she said. “But this state has a lot of potential.” For the first time in her life, Miller said, instead of asking herself, “Why me?” she asked herself, “Why not me?” In 2005, when Miller was 35 years old and pregnant with her second child and her husband was deployed oversees, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s a story of heartache and strength she openly shares with her constituents. “You might not find a doctor’s diagnosis on the campaign websites of most

from left Kendra Horn, Carrie Blumert, Nikki Nice, and Nicole Miller | Photos Alexa Ace

male politicians,” Miller said. “But I don’t think there’s anything to be ashamed of. Politicians are not perfect, and the more we’re willing to share our struggles and our hardships with the people we represent, the more likely they will be to trust and relate to us.” Remaining relatable is a top priority for 38-year-old radio personality Nikki Nice, who won a seat on Oklahoma City Council. Nice will represent Ward 7 beginning Monday. She said a woman’s ability to be honest and strong is what is appealing to voters in today’s political climate. “There’s a lot of heartache right now,” Nice said. “I think people are looking for a political candidate who can show that they care about the people they represent and not just about remaining in office.”

Promises fulfilled

Whether its on their current agenda or not, Horn said the women elected on Nov. 6 will likely remain in office. Their victories, she said, will only cause more women to run for office in future elections. A 2012 study published in Harvard’s Business Review showed that in the United States, women are considered to be more effective leaders than their male counterparts. Female candidates will deliver on their promises, Horn said, and will inspire more women to run successful campaigns for office. “Studies have shown that women in office pass more legislation and are more likely to compromise and negotiate in their efforts to come to agreements that have positive outcomes,” she said.


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Green light

THC

Oklahoma City has recently modified its city ordinances to lower the punishments for marijuana and paraphernalia possession. By Matt Dinger

Getting busted with your bag or bong in Oklahoma City is now a lot less painful. You’ll still lose your stash, but you won’t be taking a trip to jail in handcuffs. On Oct. 26 — the same day medical marijuana became legal in the state — city police changed their enforcement tactics. Chapter 30 of the city’s municipal code now states that those in possession of marijuana will face up to a $400 fine and no jail time. The previous possible punishment was a fine up to $1,200 and up to six months in the Oklahoma County jail. Similarly, possession of drug paraphernalia is now a $50 fine, down from $200 and the possibility of 10 days behind bars. By police policy, on a third offense, officers will arrest the offender and he or she will have to face a judge who might decide to send them to drug treatment. Jail time will still be off the table, and the fine will remain the same. “Possession of marijuana is considered such a minor offense anymore,” said Oklahoma City police chief Bill Citty. “The views on it are changing. Whether or not you think it’s harmful or whether or not it has medical use is not really the issue for me to decide.” Since the municipal code had to be amended to include medical marijuana anyway, Citty thought it was an ideal time to modify other parts of the ordinance. “I’ve wanted to do it for several years now,” he said. “I have never been in

favor of totally legalizing marijuana, but I have thought for quite some time that the penalty is too extreme and too high compared to some of the other things that we penalize people for. I’ve wanted to make the changes for a while. A lot of stuff is just timing, especially if you’re changing culturally.” Citty compared the new cite-andrelease policy to other low-level offenses like trespassing and some forms of minor assaults. “We’ve just come to realize that putting somebody in jail is not necessarily a deterrent, so to try to be more fair and deal with things in a more justifiable way, we’ll be writing tickets and releasing,” Citty said. Dropping it from Class B offense — which would require a court hearing to resolve — will help cut city costs. Not having to make an arrest will not only keep more officers on the streets to deal with more serious crimes, but it will also save the city money by not having to pay the jail to keep the arrested individual. “The city reaps the benefits of somebody paying for their fine, but believe me, the city can’t run its business on that, nor can we enforce the law based on the fact that we want the revenue. That’s not why you police,” Citty said. “It may help, but it doesn’t pay the bills.” Oklahoma City police officers also do not have a quota system, nor are they rewarded for the number of arrests they make or citations they issue.


WE’RE SOCIAL. After the legalization of medical marijuana, Oklahoma City Police updated the city’s laws regarding possession. | Photo bigstock.com

Regardless of the more relaxed penalties, Citty stresses that marijuana possession is not decriminalized in OKC. “The use of drugs is and probably always should be a violation of the law as far as I’m concerned. To what extent do we do that? Because a fine, a penalty, should be a deterrent. It should either deter someone from doing it or should deter them from continuing to do it. What’s reasonable and what does that? Does putting them in jail do it? Well, no; we’ve already shown that doesn’t do it,” Citty said.

I’ve wanted to make the changes for a while. A lot of stuff is just timing, especially if you’re changing culturally. Bill Citty Since marijuana possession and paraphernalia possession are still crimes in Oklahoma, the items will be confiscated by officers and booked into the property room as evidence. Citty said forfeited items will eventually be destroyed. “We can’t let you keep it just like we can’t let a juvenile keep that beer or alcohol,” he said. “Besides, police officers have to be accountable for anything they take off of somebody.” And the city ordinance does not apply to distributing marijuana. If scales and other indicators of a drug deal, like large amounts of cash, are also found, the accused will likely be arrested and face a felony charge in state court, Citty said. Like underage drinkers, juveniles

found with marijuana will not be released in the field. Medical marijuana license-holders will be exempt. If you have one but do not have it on you, you will still be cited and the pot will still be taken. If you can prove you were able to legally possess it, Citty said, it will be up to a judge whether or not to return it. State laws regarding driving under the influence also remain unchanged. Police will still rely on sobriety tests and a totality of circumstances to determine if a motorist is driving high. There is not currently a blood or breath test available that can determine the amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the main psychoactive compound in cannabis — at the time of arrest. Citty said things like physical impairment, red and glassy eyes and the smell of burned marijuana give officers indication that drivers are impaired behind the wheel. “Anybody that thinks they can smoke marijuana and they can go out and drive and not get caught, well, they’re fooling themselves because that’s not the case,” Citty said. Citty said criminal justice reforms have led to the agency making fewer arrests overall and marijuana possession arrests have been trending downward as well. Multiple requests for the number of people arrested for marijuana possession in OKC in recent years were not answered by the police department. “It’s still a crime. You still need to be held accountable. ... We’re not going to let people off the hook; we’re just going to be more fair about it,” Citty said. “If you would have brought this before me or had me consider it five, six, seven years ago, I would have said no. But it has a lot to do with the changes in how society accepts something and how it’s looked at. ... We have to evolve also in law enforcement.”

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Police chief Bill Citty said citizens will still be held accountable though the penalties for possession have lessened. | Photo provided O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

9


chicken

friedNEWS Holiday rules

’Melo Jazz reprise

Oklahoma City Thunder received an early visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past last week when Carmelo Anthony arrived in town for the rival Houston Rockets game, and it gave them a glimpse of how their present might be, if not for a shrewd offseason move by general manager Sam Presti. Oklahoma City fans gave Anthony a rousing cheer when he was introduced prior to the game, which proves OKC fans are more forgiving than a lot of professional fans — or maybe they were just excited to see him in a different uniform. Anthony delivered his best game for the Thunder, except he was wearing red, not white and blue. He went 1-10 from the field, bricked non-corner 3-pointers and was a sieve defensively, which should give Thunder fans flashbacks to Anthony’s performance in the playoff series loss to the Utah Jazz. The Thunder cruised to a 98-80 victory over the Rockets without Russell Westbrook, who was nursing a sprained ankle. Dennis Schroeder — who the Thunder received from Atlanta for dumping Anthony’s contract — was again dynamic filling in for Westbrook, and he has been the perfect complement to Westbrook and George, operating as the primary point guard for bench units and playing alongside the two stars during crunch time. The Thunder are 7-1 since moving Jerami Grant into the starting lineup at power forward, Anthony’s old position. Grant represents the antithesis of Anthony’s game. The versatile athlete is perfect for the modern NBA because he can switch from defending frontcourt players and perimeter players during pickand-rolls. On consecutive possessions against the Rockets, Grant forced Anthony into a long mid-range miss and then stayed in front of point guard Chris Paul as Paul missed a 3-pointer. After a rough start to the season, the Thunder has found its footing as a versatile defensive team that is still awaiting the return of lockdown perimeter ace Andre Roberson and now has an exciting second unit led by offseason additions of Schroeder, center Nerlens Noel, shooter Alex Abrines and rookie Hamidou Diallo.

Halloween has come and gone in the Sooner State, and Oklahomans, like the rest of the nation’s citizens, are left to ask themselves, "What’s next?" The obvious answer to this headscratcher is that Thanksgiving comes next, of course. This is the time of year, however, when many Oklahomans, including those at Chicken-Fried News, get caught up in the weeds of holiday rules, which somehow find a way to perplex us time and time again every year. Anxiety-prone decorators face the knee-jerking reality that even in a state where the gods of ambiance have graced us with Hobby Lobby’s headquarters, there is never enough Thanksgiving décor available. A possible solution typically follows this problem: Why not decorate for both Christmas and Thanksgiving at the same time? Such a resolve would certainly allow for a more festive Thanksgiving celebration. Before the preparations begin, however, worry ensues and the typical decorator's thoughts are as follows. “Can I decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving? It’s cold outside right now, but it could be 80 degrees tomorrow. Is it appropriate to have Christmas lights up when there’s no guarantee that summer weather is

c o n n e c t

t o

Confidence a t C e n t r a l

UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL OKLAHOMA TM

10

TM

uco.edu

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gone? None of my neighbors have Christmas lights up. Will putting mine up right now offend them?” Worrisome thoughts as long as 20 miles worth of tinsel can lead to herds of distraught, once-cheerful souls, wandering around Oklahoma City’s North Pole City for hours until the completely irrational decision is made to forgo Christmas decorations altogether and opt instead to buy a $200 mechanical tiny

village display that deserves a place on the mantle year-round. Don’t. Go. There. Here are the decorating rules for winter’s upcoming holidays: After Oct. 31, all are free to decorate for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Eid-e-Shuja, Kwanzaa, Festivus and New Year’s Eve. Do not decorate for holidays that come after Feb. 1 until the beginning of February. Or else. Lastly, if you decide to decorate for Christmas before Oct. 31, CFN would like to, in the name of Christmas, all things holy and just the spirit of getting out our frustrations, damn you to an eternal residence in hell. Stay tuned for a friendly reminder of Black Friday rules — including full-combat shopping regulations — that will appear in a future publication. Happy holidays, and watch your twinkle-lightloving ass.

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11


Make it a Happy Holiday

t h i s ye a r, h o n o r a n e w

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Breakfast Sandwiches

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TRADITIONAL 7

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REVIEW

EAT & DRINK

Live tradition

As fun and relaxing as Jamil’s dinner service can be, it delivers a tasty lunch at more value. By Jacob Threadgill

Jamil’s Steakhouse 4910 N. Lincoln Blvd. | 405-525-8352 WHAT WORKS: The Lebanese starters are flavorful, and the steaks are the best kind of time machine. WHAT NEEDS WORK: The music selection. TIP: Stop in for lunch for a unique sandwich or burger.

A drive north on Lincoln Boulevard away from the capitol is one that features relics of the past and provides a portal into the 1960s, which is a very difficult thing to find in Oklahoma City. When the Lincoln Plaza complex was opened in 1970, the 24-acre project with a huge hotel, office center, parking complex and sleek midcentury architecture aimed to become a regional hub for corporate and political activity. As Oklahoma boomed in the ’70s, the hotel with its dinner theater and spacious ballroom became an attraction for tourists and lawmakers at the nearby capitol. After the collapse of Penn Square Bank sent the state into a massive financial panic, Lincoln Boulevard began to change. Hotels along the boulevard attracted sex workers and illicit drug users, and once-gleaming Lincoln Plaza began to fall on hard times and was foreclosed in 1993, according to The Oklahoman. The massive complex has gone through so many revitalization attempts — including an 18-month stint in the late ’90s in which the hotel featured a restaurant owned by former Oklahoma State University and Dallas Cowboys head coach Jimmy Johnson. A representative for the property’s current owner promised the city council that renovation efforts will begin by January 2019, saving the complex from being added to the city’s abandoned registry.

If you’re making the trip down Lincoln and want to get a glimpse of what it would’ve been like during the heyday, look for Jamil’s Steakhouse, 4910 N. Lincoln Blvd. Lucky for us, it’s still serving its Lebanese-inspired menu and has been for nearly six decades. The combination of urban renewal and the financial crash that started in the 1980s wiped out an entire generation of Oklahoma restaurants. When researching the recent Gazette cover story “What we ate in ’68,” I could only find a handful of full-service restaurants that remain in service today as they did 50 years ago. Jamil’s got its start in Tulsa in 1946 when Jamil “Jim” Elias decided to embrace his Lebanese heritage after starting a night club a few years prior. Each steak would be served with tabbouleh, hummus, pickled vegetables and cabbage rolls. Elias opened the Oklahoma City restaurant in 1964 in a former luxury home that was used as a nightclub. Elias passed on the operation to his nephew Greg Gawey in 1976, and he still owns the restaurant today. The walk up the long entryway into a waiting room filled with photos of vintage OU football teams feels like a trip into a time portal that is only enhanced when you walk into the main dining room that is dim and filled with photos of its many celebrity guests over the decades. Murals of famous Oklahomans line the walls between table settings, and my only wish is that more of them are identified. After six decades, Jamil’s is still delivering during its dinner service, which I enjoyed during a visit from the in-laws, and it pleased everyone’s stomachs. If you’ve never eaten at Jamil’s, the dinner service has side dishes and hors d’oeuvres built into the price of the entrees.

Jamil’s beef kebab | Photo Gazette / file

The server starts by taking drink orders and then bringing tabbouleh, hummus and pickled vegetables to the table with crackers. Opt to get a serving of pita bread to easier combine all of the ingredients for an excellent start to the meal. It’s my favorite hummus in the city, and the tabbouleh hits all the notes you want: acidity, salt and fat from olive oil with plenty of fresh herbs and cucumber. A dish with a stuffed cabbage roll and in-house smoked bologna arrives after entrée orders are placed. The bologna was much better than any store-bought version, and I realize that it’s a restaurant staple, but I couldn’t imagine ordering its entrée version, especially for $23. The cabbage roll had a good filling and flavorful tomato sauce topping. I think cabbage rolls are underrated. Whenever I buy fresh cabbage for coleslaw, I usually end up with half a head left over. I like to make cabbage rolls or braised cabbage and apple with pork to use up the rest of the cabbage. The cabbage holds up well to be stuffed. I’ve done similar preparation with collard greens, which have more flavor but don’t hold up as well after baking as cabbage. Jamil’s delivered a pair of well-made cocktails that pleased the table, including one with grapefruit-flavored vodka and lemon lime soda that tasted like an adult Fresca. The broiler-cooked steak ranging from beef kebab ($28.75) to filet with jumbo shrimp ($44) or market price for filet and lobster. I went with the center-cut huge 16-ounce rib-eye ($35.99), and it was delivered cooked medium-rare with a fluffy baked potato and was perfect with a slight char from the broiler and a tender interior. My favorite bites paired the steak with leftover tabbouleh.

As fun and relaxing as dinner was that evening, I wondered what Jamil’s was like for lunch. I noticed that it offered a completely different menu based around sandwiches as well as house-smoked brisket not found on the dinner menu. I returned for lunch the next day and ordered the Lt. Governor sandwich ($12.95): jalapeño bacon and pimento cheese topped chicken breast with pickles, tomato lettuce and onion. It was a hard choice because I also thought about getting the brisket sandwich or the ham and tabbouleh pita. The sandwich came with baked potato fries, rounds of potato cooked and then fried golden. It’s probably not my favorite french fry preparation, but it was memorable. The jalapeño bacon delivered some heat, but I found it to be missing in the pimento cheese, which worked well as almost a sauce on the sandwich. While a meal at Jamil’s might normally be saved for date night or business dinner, I’d recommend popping in for lunch, where it offers an interesting menu that also includes huge hamburgers that are discounted on Mondays. My only major complaint with the restaurant is it music selection. During both dinner and lunch service, it played some Pandora station that featured solo acoustic covers. Hearing Chris Cornell painfully sing “Nothing Compares 2 U” while trying to make conversation wasn’t the easiest thing to do. It’s great that OKC and Tulsa have a place like Jamil’s that carries on the tradition of Lebanese steakhouses that used to be more common in the city. It’s even better to see that it’s still serving quality food and service that has made it an institution.

left Jamil’s owner Greg Gawey stands next to one of the restaurant’s murals featuring famous Oklahomans. right Tabbouleh is included with every dinner entree at Jamil’s. | Photo Gazette / file O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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F E AT U R E

EAT & DRINK

Holiday kitchen

Oklahoma City chefs provide some of their favorite holiday tricks that elevate traditional recipes. By Jacob Threadgill

In preparation for this holiday season, Oklahoma Gazette asked chefs from some of the best restaurants in the city to provide recipes they like to make at home for the holidays. They provided a few techniques that will put a twist on holiday classics. Chef Melissa Aust is the executive chef at Stella Modern Italian, 1201 N. Walker Ave., where coming up with modern twists on classic dishes is a staple of Stella’s modern Italian menu. The technique of salt-encrusting creates a tight seal around meat, sealing in flavor and juices during the cooking process. The salt shell creates a cooking method that is simultaneously roasting and steaming for a memorable holiday centerpiece like prime rib. “People freak out and think that it’s going to be super salty, but it’s not. It’s just on the outside,” Aust said. “It keeps all of the moisture in the beef.”

The recipe requires a good meat thermometer placed into the center of the prime rib. Aust cautioned that even though the center temperature of 110 degrees Fahrenheit is below medium rare, the prime rib will continue to cook inside that salt shell as it rests for at least 30-40 minutes. You will need to buy a thermometer because you only want to let it cook to 110 degrees Fahrenheit in the center and let it rest; that way, the juices soak back in and and don’t overcook it. The end pieces will be more cooked, and the center is medium-rare. “You need a heavy tool like a mallet or back of a knife and find a crack that opened during the cooking process,” Aust said. “Crack all of the salt off and use a towel to wipe away any residual salt crust.” Aust also provides her tasty take on mashed potatoes, which can substitute olive oil if you can’t find duck fat.

NOV

22

Salt-encrusted prime rib

Prime rib as herb salt crust is added by Melissa Aust | Photo provided

Ingredients 1 prime rib, boneless 3 boxes of kosher salt 4 cups of water 2 cups of mixed herb, any combination (rosemary, thyme, oregano, parsley),

+

chopped small

+ tax

Method Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the salt, water and herbs in a large bowl and mix until the herbs are evenly incorporated. Add more water if needed; a fist full of salt should hold the shape of a ball when squeezed. During the process, continue mixing the salt, as the water will settle at the bottom of the bowl. On an oven-proof sheet pan or dish, layer salt approximately 1/2-inch thick as a base for the prime rib. Continue to pack the salt around the prime rib until it is completely covered and no meat is showing. Let it rest for 15 minutes and fill in any cracks that appear. Place an ovenproof thermometer into the center of the prime rib. Place the dish in the preheated oven and cook for approximately one hour or until the thermometer reaches 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the dish from the oven and let it rest for 20 minutes.

GRANDBOXOFFICE.COM

Crack the crust off the prime rib and, using a clean towel, brush off any salt that is on the meat. Place it on a cutting board for slicing. —Melissa Aust

14

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Nic’s Place START BOOKING YOUR RESERVATIONS NOW FOR THANKSGIVING DAY FOR 11AM, 1PM, 3PM, 5 PM AND 7PM SEATINGS!

Photo bigstock.com

Bone marrow French onion soup

become a paste and no longer resemble

Jason Campbell is the executive chef at Mary

this). Once they are dark, rich and sweet,

Eddy’s Kitchen x Lounge. For the holidays, he

add the thyme bundle, the three reserved

keeps this recipe on hand at all times. It re-

bones and the beef stock.

You want the onions to break down and onion (the steaming of the onions helps

quires having a conversation with your local

Cook over medium-low heat and lightly

butcher to procure cut beef bones, but

simmer for two more hours (the bones will

Campbell swears by this take on classic French

add a richness and help the beef stock),

onion soup that serves six to eight guests.

and the soup should be a dark brown.

“This is a labor of love recipe; I suggest

After two hours, add salt to taste and a

making it the day before, which is better for

liberal amount of pepper to the soup, turn

the soup,” Campbell said. “The day of, all

the heat to low to keep the soup warm and

you need to do is roast off the bone marrow

remove the thyme bundle and bones.

and toast the bread. This soup freezes well.”

To finish the dish, crank the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Take the remaining

Ingredients

marrow bones and season them with salt

15 Spanish onions, julienned

and pepper and roast them on a sheet pan

11 barrel-cut bones (reserve three to

with a lip in the oven for about 10 minutes

add to soup for cooking)

or until the center of the marrow is soft but

20 sprigs of thyme tied in a bundle

not rendered away. You can check with a

6 quarts of beef stock

cake tester or a paring knife. (Insert it into

6-8 slices of crusty bread

the marrow for 10 seconds. If the tester is

Olive oil

warm to the touch, you are good to go.) Be

Salt

careful, as there will be fat in the pan. Save

Pepper

the fat to either toast the bread for the soup or reserve it in your fridge to roast

Method

potatoes or even make a beef fat hollanda-

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

ise for a nice steak or prime rib.

The first step is to roast the three bones

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Next, brush olive oil or the reserved

in the oven — be sure to put them in a pan

beef fat, salt and pepper on the bread and

with a lip to collect the fat. Roast the bones

toast it in the oven until crisp but still a

for 45 minutes or until they’re nice and

bit soft, maybe five minutes. Place a warm

golden brown.

bowl on the side.

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Once the bones are roasted, add the rendered beef fat to a heavy-bottomed pot or

To serve

a Dutch oven over medium heat and cover,

In a warm bowl, place the roasted bone

saving the bones for later in the recipe.

marrow in the middle of each bowl, ladle

Add the sliced onions and some salt and start to sweat the onion; you’re not

and give it a few more cranks of pepper

looking for any color. Once the onions

and some fresh picked thyme. Have some

start to soften, place a lid on the pot and

small knives to scoop out the bone mar-

cook the onions for 45 minutes or until

row and place it on the bread to dip in the

they are really soft and tender, stirring

soup! Enjoy!

every 10-15 minutes. This step is very

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the soup into the bowls around the bone

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important to help the onions caramelize more evenly. After the onions are soft, remove the lid, and there will be some liquid from the onions, which is fine. Turn the heat to low and start to caramelize the onions (this will take 2-4 hours), stirring every few minutes to prevent sticking — it’s worth it! Put on some music and enjoy some adult beverages.

616 N. 5th St, Oklahoma City, OK 405.601.2857 | theunionokc.com M-W 11AM-10PM | Th-11AM-12AM or Later Fri-Sat 11AM-2AM | Sun 11AM-9PM O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

15


EAT & DRINK

Garlic confit potatoes by Melissa Aust | Photo provided

Garlic confit mashed potatoes

Method

Ingredients

Place the oil and the garlic cloves in a

4 cups of duck fat or extra virgin olive oil

small pot and cook over low heat for about an hour until they are soft and

2 cups whole cloves of garlic

golden in color. Remove the garlic from

6 pounds of potatoes, peeled and

the oil, mash it with a fork and set it aside.

cubed 3 cups heavy cream, warm

Melt the butter in the warm cream. Place the potatoes in water and boil

4 oz. butter (1 stick)

them until they’re soft in the center,

2 teaspoons of salt

strain them in a colander and return

Apple Tarte Tatin Recipe

1 teaspoon of pepper

them to the pot.

Chef Shelby Sieg is the mastermind behind

4 rosemary stems, leaves removed and finely chopped 1 large pot of salted water to boil potatoes

In small batches, add the cream and

The Pritchard’s small plate menu that

Photo bigstock.com

Ingredients 5 to 6 medium apples, such as Pink

butter to the potatoes and mash them

always delivers, even as it changes to add

until they turn creamy. Add the salt, pep-

seasonal ingredients. Over the holidays,

1 prepackaged puff pastry sheet

per, mashed garlic and rosemary. Mix

odds are you will run across at least one

3/4 cup granulated sugar

until the herbs are completely incorpo-

apple pie, but she recommends giving this

3 tablespoons of water

rated and adjust the salt if needed.

French technique a try for something simi-

4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, cut

— Melissa Aust

lar, but a little different.

Lady or other crisp variety

into small pieces

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I

Kaiser’s

Method Roll out the puff pastry to a 10- to 11-inch circle, about 1/8 inch thick; transfer it to a baking sheet and chill until firm, about 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and set it aside. Core the apples and cut them into quarters. Transfer them to a large bowl. Squeeze lemon over the apples and set them aside. Combine the sugar and water in a 9-inch cast-iron skillet. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat; immediately reduce the heat to medium and cook the mixture until it begins to thicken and turn amber. Remove it from the heat and stir in the butter. Place the apples in a skillet. Decoratively arrange the apples in the skillet. Continue layering slices until they are level with top of the skillet. Cut any remaining apples into thick slices to fill in gaps. If the fruit does not completely fill the pan, the tart will collapse when inverted. Place the skillet over low heat and cook until the syrup thickens and is reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Do not let the syrup burn. Remove the skillet from the heat and let it cool. Place the puff pastry over the apples and tuck in the edges. Place the skillet on the prepared baking sheet, place the baking sheet in the oven and bake until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove the skillet from the oven and place it on a wire rack and let it cool 15 to 20 minutes. Loosen the pastry from the skillet using a sharp knife. Place a rimmed platter over the skillet and quickly and carefully invert the dish onto the platter. Serve immediately. — Shelby Sieg

Thanksgiving turkey gumbo Beth Ann Lyon has developed the

Place four pasture-raised turkey breasts in a container with brine overnight. Ingredients

menu at many places across the city:

2 cups of yellow onion

The Mule, Anchor Down, The Press and

1 cup of chopped celery

Provision Kitchen. The alumnus of Kurt

4 cups of large diced sweet

Fleischfresser’s Coach House program

potato

and French-trained chef puts an onus

2 cups of frozen okra

on intuitive eating, which emphasizes

1/2 cup of dried thyme

plant-based and local ingredients.

1/4 cup of hot sauce

When she does cook with meat, she

1/4 gumbo file

advocates for humane and antibiotic-

8 cups veggie stock

Real Jewish Rye Kaiser’s Grateful Bean Café N Walker & 10th • 236-3503

Mon – Thurs 11a-6p • Fri – Sat 11a–8p General Manager - Alberto Fonseca personally prepares our NY Jewish sourdough rye using old-world methods; he also personally creates our corned beef, sauerkraut, spicy mustard, guacamole, salsas, yogurt, sour cream, buttermilk...and lots of other great fermented foods.

free proteins. You’ll be able to taste Lyon’s blend of

Method

plant-based and mindful meat options

Place all of the ingredients in a large

at her own restaurant, The Black Cat,

Dutch oven, cover it with foil and cook

which became the first micro-kitchen

it in an oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit

announced at The Collective, which will

for four hours. After cooking, uncover

open at 308 NW 10th St. in early 2019.

the dish and salt and pepper it to taste.

Lyon’s family is from Louisiana,

Pour it over wild rice or cornbread.

and she is a fan of a quick and easy,

Garnish it with pomegranate seeds and

rouxless gumbo that is prepared in one

more hot sauce. After you eat it, don’t

pot. She adds thickness to the dish by

fuss over Thanksgiving ever again. As a

cooking the okra for hours and adding

matter of fact, travel next year!

a large helping of filé powder.

— Beth Ann Lyon

Brine for turkey breast 1 cup of apple cider vinegar 1/2 cup of maple syrup 2 cups of water 3 tablespoons of sea salt

Photo bigstock.com

Prime Rib Pizza comes home for the holidays on November 19!

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17


GAZEDIBLES

EAT & DRINK

Turkey venture

There are a lot of reasons not to eat at home during Thanksgiving, and there is certainly no judgment from us if you don’t want to debate the merits of estate taxes just to get some green bean casserole. Luckily, these seven restaurants are open to serve on Turkey Day. Be sure to call ahead to get reservations.

McClintock Saloon & Chop House

The R&J Lounge and Supper Club

Nic’s Place Diner and Lounge

Stockyard City’s newest addition is flexing its muscles this Turkey Day with what it is describing as a fabulous feast. Enjoy a four-course meal underneath red velvet curtains or near its opulent wood bar 11 a.m.-7 p.m. The meal includes appetizer, salad, choice of four entrees and dessert and costs $45 per adult and $20 per child.

Instead of a smoked turkey breast, why not try a smoked fried chicken sandwich at R&J Lounge? It tastes great when paired with the restaurant’s excellent bar. R&J serves its normal menu starting at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving with classics like shrimp and grits, but it will include a turkey burger special with sweet potato fries.

Whether you’re looking for a lunch to get out of the house or dinner to finish your day, Nic’s Place has you covered. It features a Thanksgiving menu that includes ham, turkey, dressing, green beans, mashed potatoes and cranberries. Be sure to save room for a choice of four desserts.

2227 Exchange Ave. mcclintocksaloon.com | 405-232-0151

By Jacob Threadgill | Photos Gazette / file and provided

320 NW 10th St. rjsupperclub.com | 405-602-5066

1116 N. Robinson Ave. nicsokc.com | 405-601-9234

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The Pump Bar

Ingrid’s Kitchen

2425 N. Walker Ave. facebook.com/thepumpbar 405-702-8898

6501 N. May Ave. ingridsok.com | 405-842-4799

The plate pictured above is from last year’s Thanksgiving meal at The Pump. The 2018 version features a pork roast cooked in pumpkin or a turkey breast option. The two entrees will be served with potatoes, carrots, fried Brussels sprouts, butternut squash, beer macaroni and cheese and homemade potato bread.

Reservations are required to enjoy Ingrid’s Thanksgiving buffet that has five seatings between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. The buffet is centered on the offerings of herb-roasted turkey, brown sugar and citrus ham, beef roast and oven-fried chicken. There is a bevy of side dishes, and of course there is unlimited access to Ingrid’s decadent dessert list. It’s a steal of a deal at $22.95 for adults and $10.95 for kids age 6-12 and $6.95 for those age 5 and under.

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Mary Eddy’s Kitchen x Lounge

Vast

333 W. Sheridan Ave. vastokc.com | 405-702-7262

900 W. Main St. maryeddysokc.com | 405-982-6960

Executive chef Jason Campbell has put together an a la carte menu that features items like seared scallops, prime rib and roasted acorn squash, but there’s also his take on the traditional turkey dinner with mashed potatoes, green beans, stuffing and cranberry sauce ($29). It is open 11 a.m.-7 p.m., and the full menu is posted online.

Get a nice view from the 49th floor of Devon Energy Center Tower during Vast’s Thanksgiving dinner that runs 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. The three-course meal features a selection of seafood, steaks and turkey. The meal costs $49.50 for adults and $24.50 for children under 12 years old.

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C U LT U R E

ARTS & CULTURE

Joyful journeys

Downtown OKC is full of holiday events to help you celebrate the season right. By Brittany Pickering

| Photos Downtown Oklahoma City Partnership / provided

The holidays are upon us, and it’s never too early to get into the Christmas spirit. Many of Oklahoma City’s shops and organizations have events planned so you can pick up gifts for friends and loved ones, revel in the season and make memories to last you throughout the next year, and we’ve compiled a list of a few of our favorites. Visit downtownindecember.com for a complete list of events.

Film Row Lights Display Nov. 23-Jan. 1, 2019 Film Row Sheridan Avenue, from S. Classen Blvd. to S. Lee Avenue filmrowokc.com Come one, come all to witness Film Row bedazzled with sparkling lights, just like old Hollywood! The historic district was once home to major motion picture offices such as Paramount Pictures, Warner Bros. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) Studios that distributed feature films and tested out new technology in the heart of OKC. Today, design firms, architects, restaurants, bars, theaters and retail shops have reclaimed and revitalized the area. A walk or drive through the district’s holiday light display is sure to put you in the holiday spirit!

SandRidge Santa Run 9 a.m. Dec. 8 SandRidge Energy 123 Robert S. Kerr Ave. raceentry.com Free-$35 Find your elf ears and strap on your Santa suspenders! SandRidge Santa Run is back! This 5K and 1-mile fun run snakes around the streets of downtown OKC, and participants are encouraged to dress for the occasion. After the race, runners (and walkers) can join the costume contest. First place wins $150, second place gets $100 and third place receives $50. During the race, spectators can pull silly faces in a photo booth, color, make their own trail mix and get their faces painted like Rudolph and his reindeer friends. We already have our Buddy the Elf and Jovie costumes ready. We’ll race ya! 5-7 p.m. Nov. 23

Bricktown Tree Lighting Festival Third Base Plaza Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark 2 S. Mickey Mantle Drive Free Nothing gets revelers more into the Christmas spirit than an enormous tree decorated with festive baubles and covered with twinkling lights. And while Oklahoma City doesn’t have a Rockefeller Center or Trafalgar Square, our tree at Third Base Plaza just outside Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark knocks Charlie Brown’s sad little sapling out of the park. OKC mayor David Holt lights the tree at this celebration featuring food, live music, face-painting and Santa.

Holiday Pop-Up Shops

1991 and is so spectacular it takes all year to plan. This year, Broadway star Nikki Renée Daniels joins the Philharmonic’s chorale (The Mistletoes) and Santa to perform holiday hits and put you in the holiday spirit. Daniels has starred in musicals including Porgy and Bess, Les Misérables and Anything Goes, appeared on TV and movies and even released an album, Home. Last year, OKC Phil brought back its popular Letter to Santa segment, so do not forget to bring copies of your letters! (Obviously, you already sent the originals to the North Pole.)

Devon’s Saturdays with Santa

8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 1 and 8 Devon Energy Center 333 W. Sheridan Ave. facebook.com/saturdayswithsanta Devon Energy Center turns into a winter wonderland in December. Don’t believe us? Go see it for yourself. The Devon Tower lobby is filled with live music, craft-making stations and other activities — the parts that aren’t filled with giant holiday ornaments, candy canes and Christmas trees anyway. You might even see a real, live reindeer on your way to ride the train and visit Santa!

Canterbury Christmas

10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sundays Nov. 23-Dec. 23 NW 10th Street and Hudson Avenue okcpopups.com While spending quality time with friends and family is the reason for the season, nobody can deny that gifts are one of the best parts. More than 50 Oklahomaowned shops including DNA Galleries, Gathered Home, Oh Honey Paper Co., The Okay See, Salt & Water, Trade Men’s Wares, The Social Club and Woody Candy Company set up in geodesic domes on a rotating schedule up to Dec. 23. Don’t forget your tree! Holiday Pop-Up Shops even features a Christmas tree lot, a beer bus, and Katiebug’s Sips & Sweets.

OKC Philharmonic’s The Christmas Show 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29, 8 p.m. Nov. 30, 2 and 8 p.m. Dec. 1 Civic Center Music Hall 201 N. Walker Ave. okcphil.org | 405-842-5387 $19-$73 OKC Phil’s The Christmas Show started in

7 p.m. Dec. 2 Civic Center Music Hall 201 N. Walker Ave. canterburyokc.com | 405-232-7564 $15-$62 One of the most beautiful and fun parts of Christmas is the music. That’s how even small children know that Santa Claus is coming to town, guided by Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, with lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh. Canterbury Christmas definitely includes yuletide carols being sung by a choir — that’s basically the whole point. The show also features performances by Oklahoma City University Faculty Brass Quintet and Canterbury Youth Voices. Don’t leave your singing voice at home; Canterbury Christmas includes a sing-along! Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

Oklahoma City Museum of Art Holiday Events Third Thursday: Victorian Yuletide 5-9 p.m. Dec. 20 Oklahoma City Museum of Art 415 Couch Drive okcmoa.com | 405-236-3100

Free-$12 Studio Sunday: Radical Tile Designs 1-4 p.m. Dec. 30 Free-$12.50 Oklahoma City Museum of Art offers many activities throughout the holiday season — Victorian Radicals and Off the Wall exhibits, Sonic Free Family Day, etc. — but two particular events caught our discerning eyes. Dec. 20, the museum holds a special version of its Third Thursday event: Victorian Yuletide. The museum’s monthly event gets a Victorian holiday makeover, complete with Victorian Radicals art projects and holiday drinks 5-9 p.m. On Dec. 30, Studio Sunday gets the Victorian treatment with Radical Tile Designs. Participants of all ages will receive a 4- by 4-inch ceramic tile to decorate with stamps, markers and paint.

A Dog Day in December 5:30-8 p.m. Dec. 1 Midtown Mutts Dog Park 407 W. Park Place Free Don’t leave your four-legged friends out in the cold! They deserve to have a happy, happy Christmas too! At A Dog Day in December, they can take photos with Santa, enjoy puppuccinos, rifle through goodie bags filled with treats and toys and participate in a silent auction to raise money for Midtown Association. Auction items are provided by Midtown businesses. Goodie bags are $20 and include a ticket to the After Party at the Holiday Pop-Up Shops. Fido, grab your special holiday sweater; we’re going to meet Santa!

Devon Ice Rink Nov. 9-Jan. 27, 2019 Myriad Botanical Gardens 113 S. Robinson Ave. | 405-708-6499 $7-$13 We don’t get many opportunities to lace up our ice skates in the great outdoors in Oklahoma, but for nearly three months of the year, Devon Ice Rink makes your ice-loving dreams come true. The rink, located in Myriad Botanical Gardens’ seasonal plaza (next to Park House and Ice House), is open every day through Jan. 27, 2019. Public skate times and hours vary, so make sure you check the calendar at downtownindecember.com. It’s even open on Thanksgiving and Christmas! O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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ARTS & CULTURE

illuminate

the season

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Radio life

Pollard Theatre Company transforms a holiday classic into a radio drama for the stage. By Jeremy Martin

Guthrie’s Pollard Theatre Company has been staging A Territorial Christmas Carol for 30 years, but this year, artistic director W. Jerome Stevenson said the company just couldn’t do it. There was what Stevenson described as an “inherent sadness” in the idea of returning to the play after James Ong, a founding member of the company who defined the role of Ebenezer Scrooge in nearly two decades of performances, died in February. “It became clear that for our sake and for the audience’s sake, we needed to produce something that didn’t have quite the memory hold on us after the passing of James Ong,” Stevenson said. “We started looking at what we could do as an alternative. … It was kind of a big search to find what was going to fill that void temporarily.” Ultimately, Stevenson settled on replacing Pollard’s Carol, an adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic set on the Oklahoma frontier after the Land Run of 1889, with another high-concept take on a holiday staple. It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, runs Nov. 23-Dec. 23 at The Pollard Theatre, 120 W. Harrison Ave., in Guthrie. The play, written by Joe Landry, reimagines the 1946 Frank Capra film as a production for the radio. “There are actors around microphones that are portraying the various characters,” Stevenson said. “There is a Foley operator who is creating the sound effects that go along with that action. … Much as is the Pollard way, we love to break down the components of a piece and eliminate some of the noise, as I like to call it, to give you the essence 22

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of the story itself, and this, I thought, was a really good example of how that could be done with a theatrical style.” While Dickens’ work is heavily associated with 19th-century England, It’s a Wonderful Life, based on a short story Civil War historian Philip Van Doren Stern sent out as a Christmas card in 1943, tells an all-American story. In the film, deeply depressed George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) is contemplating suicide to end his financial and personal problems until Clarence (Henry Travers) shows him how much worse off his friends and family would be had he never existed. “The story is so much more resonant, in my opinion, to America because it is kind of America’s version of A Christmas Carol,” Stevenson said. “It is a uniquely American story, that kind of ambition of wanting to experience more and do more and feeling like maybe your life has been wasted. … There is such an idea that goes along with the American culture of giving more to your children than you had, and then the idea of ambition, particularly in relation to your job, your vocation, that level of success.” While Bailey feels like a failure because he never seems to make enough money and many of his childhood dreams have gone unfulfilled, his generosity and moral code have made other people’s lives better. He has given up all his dreams to help the people around him, and it turns out is that is an extraordinary thing. It’s such a tragic idea that he would think that is a failure. But, of course, as we learn


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throughout the course of the evening, it is not a failure. It is the ultimate riches, the ultimate treasure.”

Old-fashioned adaptation

Recreating a familiar film classic with an all-star cast from Hollywood’s golden age is a challenge for a stage production. “How do we find those iconic characters and give the audience what they are used to hearing without mimicking those characters?” Stevenson asked. “Lionel Barrymore gives such an epic performance in that film, and of course Donna Reed and Jimmy Stewart have such epic performances. So we needed to make sure they weren’t doing an imitation because those actors were one of a kind. What we want is to create the same sense, the same pattern and rhythm and tone that they produce in the film because while normally we can say the audience doesn’t know what that line sounds like until we say it, the audience will know exactly what that line sounds like.” By adapting the story to a recreation of a live-in studio radio broadcast, the play conveys the meaning without requiring extensive sets while maintaining the spirit of the slower-paced time period of the film. “Because the story was written in the ’40s, there wasn’t mass media as there is now,” Stevenson said. “There wasn’t television, and there wasn’t all this visual stimulus to make a piece work. As technology has gotten greater, I think we forget that the nature of theater is storytelling, and from its roots, it’s oral storytelling. … It’s not going to be about moving pieces of scenery, it’s not going to be about smoke pots and magic tricks; it’s going to be about amazing individuals and what we know to be true but we forget because our lives are so inherently busy and bustling and we’re always trying to get more.” Adopting a radio-age mindset hasn’t been easy for Stevenson and the cast

It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, runs Nov. 23-Dec. 23 at The Pollard Theatre in Guthrie. | Photo W. Jerome Stevenson / provided

of actors who grew up in the TV and internet era. “We had to, and are still having to, remind ourselves that the style of performance is very different,” Stevenson said. “It’s not nearly as subtle as contemporary film is, or even in some cases as contemporary theater is. It’s changing your voice in big, broad ways to give the audience a sense of different characters because in truth, they would be listening to this over the airwaves; they wouldn’t be seeing all your gestures and all your facial expressions to help you sell an idea. So as much as we can, we’re trying to make sure that rings true for the audience.” Conveying the concept of a live radio broadcast to the child actors in the play is especially difficult and requires Stevenson to adapt his directing technique. “A lot of what you can do with kids is give them an action that helps them support the emotion,” Stevenson said. “So if they’re running and playing, they tend to laugh, but with a radio play, they’re not going to be running around or sliding down a hill, so you have to really help them find a sense memory. Children really have a natural tendency to want to play, and that’s what theater is. It’s a desire to play and producing it in a way the audience can understand it. We’re having a blast.” Tickets are $15-$30. Visit thepollard.org.

It’s a Wonderful Life: A Radio Play Nov. 23-Dec. 23 The Pollard Theatre 120 W. Harrison Ave., Guthrie thepollard.org | 405-282-2800

Kate Bunce, Musica (detail), ca. 1895–97. Oil on canvas, 40 3/16 x 30 3/16 x 1 3/4 in., Birmingham Museums Trust (1897P17). © Birmingham Museums Trust

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ARTS & CULTURE

On pointe

Moscow Ballet performs Great Russian Nutcracker at Rose State College Nov. 16. By Jo Light

The holiday season is often heralded with sugarplums, snowflakes and the familiar score of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s ballet, The Nutcracker. Oklahoma City residents will have the opportunity to enjoy this classic performance in early November, when Moscow Ballet arrives on its winter tour. Moscow Ballet has been performing its version of the ballet, Great Russian Nutcracker, in North America since 1993. Although the tale of princes and magic is well known, Moscow Ballet lends several distinctive spins to the story as it follows lead character Masha through her holiday adventure. Unique to Moscow Ballet’s company is a community outreach program called Dance with Us, which allows dancers age 7-17 to audition for the performance in their local city. Seven audition directors from the company travel to various cities to select these dancers. If chosen, the young hopefuls participate in roles like the children at Masha’s party, mice and snowflakes. One audition director is ballerina Maria Morari. Born in Moldova, she decided to pursue ballet seriously at age 10. She began her career at National Theatre for Ballet and Opera in the capital city of Chișinău and has toured with Moscow Ballet, Saint Petersburg Ballet and Imperial Russian Ballet. She has taught children since age 17. Her experience in Great Russian Nutcracker spans several years, and she prides herself on knowing all the choreography, even if she is not in every scene. This is because during one performance about three years ago, she said she was in the audience when a dancer was hurt onstage. “When I entered the backstage, our producer, she was like, ‘You have to change!’” Morari said, laughing at the memory. The injured dancer was meant to appear in Waltz of the Flowers minutes later, but Morari had to take her place. She didn’t know the choreography. “So I went in my dressing room, did my makeup, hair, wore her costume and learned backstage [when] the variations were going on,” she said. Now she brings this dedication and knowledge to the young students she helps select and teach for Great Russian Nutcracker. This year, she began her auditions in August, traveling for three months through 20 cities. Student dancers need at least one year of experience in ballet to be considered, but Morari also seeks young Moscow Ballet’s signature Dove of Peace dances in the Land of Peace and Harmony. | Photo Moscow Ballet / provided

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people with stage presence and a passion for the experience. In the ballet itself, Morari plays a parent and snow queen. She also serves as a guide to the young, and often overwhelmed, student dancers between sequences. “The most important is to be backstage with the children and help them to count,” she said. “To be like a point, like, ‘Come on, come here, come here, I’m here!’ because sometimes they are lost.” Morari said the whole experience stays with the young dancers for the rest of their lives and sometimes guides them on to careers in ballet or teaching dance. “Some of them, maybe they will not [become] ballerinas, but they’ll just have good memories about childhood, about being backstage with ballerinas,” Morari said. Morari said the Dance with Us program is important because Great Russian Nutcracker is a ballet for children and the performance should include children, who bring the appropriate sense of innocence and wonder to the stage. “Especially snowflakes,” she said. “I love snowflakes. They are running, and they have nice costumes, and they are so cute. They run so beautifully and do this amazing movement. I think nobody looks at us. Everybody looks at the cute children.” Auditions for the OKC performance took place at Julia’s Dance Academy, 1229 W. Lindsey St., in Norman, under the guidance of owner and instructor Yulia Zhmutski. The Russian-method studio opened in 2009 and has partnered with Moscow Ballet since 2014. “It’s a really good experience for younger kids to see where they can be eventually,” Zhmutski said of the outreach program. “It’s very inspirational for them.” Moscow Ballet audition director Anna Trofimova held the local auditions

this year, and 58 student dancers were selected for the OKC performance. These young performers have had two months of rehearsal with Zhmutski. Their dress rehearsal falls on the day of the performance. Zhmutski said this is a great example of the time crunch real ballet companies usually work under. “On top of physical and emotional and mental work,” Zhmutski said, “they also get a discipline, which is a big part of your life these days.”

Promoting peace

Another element exclusive to Moscow Ballet is a character called the Dove of Peace. Traditionally, act two of the ballet opens with Masha and the Nutcracker Prince arriving in the Land of Sweets. Moscow Ballet’s production instead sets the scene in the Land of Peace and Harmony. Two principal dancers perform an acro-ballet duet, each wearing one white feathered wing, so together their movements form the 20-foot wingspan

In Great Russian Nutcracker, Masha replaces Clara in the lead role. | Photo Moscow Ballet / provided

of the Dove of Peace. Dancer Stanislav Vlasov, who was the production’s first choreographer, helped create the role for a single ballerina in 1993. The dance later evolved into a two-person Dove of Peace, which premiered in 2012. A message of international harmony has been central to Moscow Ballet since the fall of the Iron Curtain in the 1980s, and the dancers continue their advocacy at a particularly rocky time in world history. “This is a peace tour, and we promote peace,” Morari said. “I think this is a good thing. We need it now.” The act continues with the ballet’s traditional musical variations, which feature the dances and cultural elements of several different countries. New 12-foot-tall animal puppets will represent various character strengths, such as a wise Arabian elephant and a daring Spanish bull. Morari said the company also creates dove origami figures with auditioning students around the countr y. Photographs of students with their doves have been gathered into a twovolume book that can be purchased through the Moscow Ballet. Visit nutcracker.com.

Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker 7 p.m. Friday Hudiburg Chevrolet Center Rose State College 6000 S. Trosper Place nutcracker.com | 405-297-2264 $28-$175


T H E AT E R

ARTS & CULTURE

Sacred selections

Norman Philharmonic performs selections from Handel’s Messiah Dec. 16 at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church. By Jeremy Martin

A Christmas tradition since 1750, George Handel’s Messiah initially caused some controversy for taking sacred subjects from the church into the concert hall. Though the composition most famous for its exultant “Hallelujah” chorus con-

tinues to be performed annually around the world, Richard Zielinski, artistic and music director of Norman Philharmonic and professor at University of Oklahoma, said Handel’s oratorio is still most commonly heard in a secular setting.

The philharmonic is scheduled to perform selections from Messiah at 8:30 and 10:55 a.m. Dec. 16 at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church, 419 S. University Blvd., where Zielinski, who will conduct, also serves as director of music ministries. The free concert, included as part of McFarlin’s Sunday church services, is not how Handel’s work is typically heard, Zielinski said, but he believes it’s compatible with the composer’s original intent. “You’re usually seeing a concert version of it, but this I think brings the message home directly and it’s very, very powerful,” Zielinski said.

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Norman Philharmonic is scheduled to perform selections from Handel’s Messiah Dec. 16 at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church. | Photo provided

“Obviously there’s a very special meaning to this piece and so forth, but also I think it wasn’t just done for the sake of doing it in a concert hall. It was done to help people, and I think reminding us what inspired it and what Handel wrote it for is special. It really brings out the message in the music.” Messiah premiered in Dublin in 1742 at a concert benefitting a charity hospicontinued on page 26

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ARTS & CULTURE

CARLISLE FLOYD’S POPULAR OPERA “Shot through with veins of American folk, yet Puccini-esque” —Gramophone U.K.

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T H E AT E R

tal and prisoners’ debt relief, and it first gained popularity in England with annual performances raising funds for London’s Foundling Hospital for orphans. Zielinski said Handel’s work, based on Charles Jennens’ scripture-based libretto, is meaningful because of its message and intent. “Handel had written many operas and oratorios before he wrote Messiah,” Zielinski said, “and I would say this is one of the greatest stories ever told when you’re telling the story of this person named Jesus Christ, so I think he loved this piece and had inspiration from the scripture.”

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Handel, who had previously written Italian operas until they began to fall out of fashion in England, might have also shrewdly selected subject matter he knew would sell. “He was also a very keen businessman,” Zielinski said. “This was also something he probably knew was going to be a topic for a work of art that would relate to people for many, many, many years. It’s one of the most popular oratorios.” Staging Messiah as an oratorio, an operatic work relying only on the written libretto and the music to convey the story without an elaborate stage production, allowed Handel to avoid some production costs and the potential controversy that might have arisen from casting a performer as Jesus, but it also required the composer to pack as much meaning as possible into the score. “There’s no scenery and there’s no acting,” Zielinski said. “So the story is told by the chorus and the orchestra and soloists. … If you think about it from the theatrical side of things, his music had to be very dramatic and very descriptive. He had to paint the picture because there was no scenery; there were no lights; there were no costumes. It’s just literally the voice, the music and the text.” The work, beginning with Old Testament prophecies of a coming messiah and stories from the nativity, benefits dramatically from Handel’s past experience composing operas. “Of course the music was inspired by the text,” Zielinski said, “but much of the music tells us the emotion of the text because of the way it was written, talking about the shepherds in the fields and angels singing glory to God and flying away, and the birth of Christ in the stable. He set the text beautifully. We call it ‘text painting.’ The music actually tells us about the text, and there’s this great relationship between the two. He was a successful opera director, so he knew the dramatics that music could bring and the emotion that music could bring to a topic, and he did this late in his life, so he was a very skilled composer, promoter and businessman at this point, so he’s given us a great gift in this piece.” Between musical selections, McFarlin

pastor Linda Harker will give her own reflections on the meaning of the text. Zielinski said presenting the work in this way gives it additional meaning. “They’ll sing about the birth of Christ or sing about his sojourn, his journey on earth and all these different scenes we’re painting,” Zielinski said, “and then we stop and hear somebody talk about it, and it reminds us to refer to the scripture and hear the message and relate to what we’re doing in today’s world. Of course the congregation appreciates that as well. … I’ve been told that a lot of people come to our services that day. A lot of people come to services every Sunday, but that day is really setting us up for this whole Advent Christmas season.”

Moving music

Even in the midst of conducting Messiah, Zielinski said he is still moved when he hears it. “I’ve done the full or portions of the Messiah for the past 40 years,” Zielinski said, “but when you have that combination of the human voices — first of all you have this genius, Handel, writing this music that was inspired by scripture, and then he writes it almost to perfection because he’s such a skilled composer — and when you add that to the message, it really heightens the message and the emotion of the moment. Of course, there’s times when I can’t get too emotional about it because I’m still cueing people, but there’s always a sense when all of it starts to work together you create something bigger than all the pieces that are there. Some would call it a spiritual moment, but I think in today’s world, it’s nice to see people working together and creating beauty.” Seeing this creative cooperation in action makes Zielinski optimistic about the world and its future. “It adds even more to it that you can see young people in the choir,” Zielinski said. “You can see senior citizens in the choir. You can see middle-aged people. You can see white people, black people, all different kinds of races in the choir. It says something when you just look at the choir at McFarlin and you see that it kind of represents us and they’re singing about this great message and saving the earth; it’s very powerful. … It brings hope, and it helps people believe that we can all get along. We can all live in this world and be different and believe in different things, but we can still get along and be kind to each other.” Admission is free. Visit normanphil.com.

Handel’s Messiah 8:30 and 10:55 a.m. Dec. 16 McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church 419 S. University Blvd., Norman normanphil.com Free


T H E AT E R

A Christmas Carol is scheduled to run Nov. 23-Dec. 4 at Lyric at the Plaza, 1727 NW 16th St. | Photo KO Rinearson / provided

Miser’s journey

Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma blesses everyone with A Christmas Carol. By Jeremy Martin

Some people — Ebenezer Scrooge, for example — would rather pay to build more prisons than to feed and shelter the hungry and homeless. “Are there no prisons?” asks Scrooge in response to a charity collector’s pleas on behalf of the needy in Charles Dickens’ 1843 holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. “They cost enough; and those who are badly off must go there.” “Many would rather die,” the charity worker protests. “If they would rather die,” Scrooge replies, “they had better do it and decrease the surplus population.” Dirk Lumbard, cast as Scrooge in the production of A Christmas Carol running Nov. 23-Dec. 24 at Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma’s Plaza Theatre, 1727 NW 16th St., said the famous crank whose name has become synonymous with stinginess views the poor and unfortunate as inconveniences to be removed from sight and society, at least when the play begins. “Scrooge just wants to send them away to the workhouses, where they worked them to death,” Lumbard, returning to the annual production for the third time, said. “The boys literally were on treadmills, working nonstop.” In order to offset the costs of their imprisonment, prisoners were often made to turn a stepped wheel in order to grind corn, a form of manual labor often assigned as a punishment in 19thcentury England. It’s the sort of coldhearted calculation to balance the ledger that Scrooge initially supports. “At the beginning, he only gives to prisons and workhouses,” Lumbard said, “and then, of course, the whole journey is to turn his mindset around, which it does so beautifully.”

The idea that an unfeeling and greedy miser can have a complete change of heart gives Dickens’ story a timeless appeal. “The piece is going to be being done; 2,000 years from now, it’s still going to be being done,” Lumbard said. “It’s such a beautifully written piece, and there’s so much at heart. The hope and love that is there and needed in the dead of winter. Everything works so beautifully, and everybody sits back and remembers to be thankful and grateful and blessed. … So much of A Christmas Carol is about helping the poor and needy.” While Scrooge’s journey can be a helpful reminder that we should be more generous in our own lives, someone that set in his ways will often take more than a play or novel to change their minds. The famous 180-degree turnaround at the end of Dickens’ story, for example, requires significant supernatural help. “It takes Scrooge three ghosts to shake him up,” Lumbard said. “Even when the Ghost of Christmas Future is showing him a dead body, he’s still in denial that it’s him. It’s kind of astounding how far he’s in denial until they finally show him the grave with his name on it and everything starts sinking in, but I don’t think it would work and it wouldn’t be as strong if you only had one ghost. It’s a tough journey.”

Catching spirit

One of Lumbard’s biggest challenges playing the character is to make sure he doesn’t make the trip look too easy. He can’t begin showing remorse even as he watches his childhood abandonment issues and the dissolution of his first love replayed in front of him.

“The kind of person I am, I’ve got to be careful not to turn around too quickly,” Lumbard said. “I can’t turn around when I see my childhood friends and I want to wish them a merry Christmas, and I see me as a boy with nobody to come pick me up, Christmas after Christmas after Christmas being alone. And even Belle, even that, I can’t turn around too quickly. I still come back going, ‘I won’t believe it. It’s humbug. I won’t believe it,’ until the third ghost.”

Christmas spirit

Lumbard, who currently lives in North Carolina and often works in New York, said he is looking forward to his own return journey to Oklahoma City, where he’s excited to work with a cast he calls “some of the finest actors I’ve ever worked with.” “It’s a special group of people doing a very special piece,” Lumbard said. “I can’t wait to get back to this family, with these people that I’ll be spending my third holiday season with, the cast and crew and everybody. I just get excited around every October that it’s coming up.” Though playing Scrooge in the production complicates his holiday schedule, Lumbard said you won’t hear a “humbug” out of him. “It takes my Christmas away a bit,” Lumbard said, “but then, but, you know, I have a fantastic pre-lit, prefabbed Christmas tree that I’m going to be putting up tomorrow, and I’ll still get a little bit of Christmas here before I leave, and then it will be up when I get back at midnight Christmas Eve, and then I’ll be able to continue Christmas again. … Dickensian at Christmastime, what more do you want? How much better does life get?” Despite his familiarity with

the story, Lumbard said he is still finding new inspiration in the script, such as a small moment illustrating the extent of Scrooge’s newfound generosity. “One of the wonderful things that I kind of didn’t realize the past two years is when he gets the prized turkey he sends at the end, he says, ‘I’ll send it to Bob Cratchit, and he shan’t know who sent it,’ which I think is just absolutely the most wonderful thing, that Scrooge has come so far that he doesn’t want to take credit for it even. … That is just a beautiful spirit, and hopefully that is in all of us. Christmas is the time to realize that, to celebrate that,” Lumbard said. Lyric’s production features a rotating cast of child actors, colorful sets, elaborate puppetwork and, new this year, local musician and actress Kizzie Ledbetter in the role of Mrs. Cratchit. Audience members will have a chance to exercise their own generosity after the play by donating to Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. Portraying Scrooge’s resolution that he will “honor Christmas in [his] heart, and try to keep it all the year” has a reallife impact on Lumbard over the holidays. “Somebody will be ahead of me in the checkout line, a woman with three kids and she’s got some groceries and everything, and I’ll step up and pay the bill at Christmastime,” Lumbard said. “It animates me. It gives me something, and they’re stunned. … I just say ‘Merry Christmas.’” Visit lyrictheatreokc.com.

A Christmas Carol Nov. 23-Dec. 24 Lyric at the Plaza 1727 NW 16th St. lyrictheatreokc.com | 405-524-9310 $25-$61

Myles Currin-Moore as Tiny Tim and Dirk Lumbard as Ebenezer Scrooge | Photo KO Rinearson / provided O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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T H E AT E R

ARTS & CULTURE

Jingle smells

Oklahoma Children’s Theatre presents a holiday play fun for both children and adults. By Joshua Blanco

Friday, Junie B. in Jingle Bells Batman Smells returns to Oklahoma Children’s Theatre just in time for the holiday season. Based on the children’s book of the same name, the show tells the story of Juniper Beatrice Jones, a first-grade schoolgirl enjoying the spirit of Christmas around her; that is, until she discovers she’s the Secret Santa for her arch nemesis Tattletale May. The script, originally adapted by Allison Gregory from the series written by Barbara Park, centers on the complex relationship between May and Junie B., two classmates struggling to find common ground. “They don’t get along, but neither of them want to be bad students who get in trouble,” said Dani Pike, who plays Junie B. “As Junie B. puts it, friendly just does not come natural to them.” Pike’s fellow performer, Katy Yates, plays the role of May, who she describes as “a bit of a teacher’s pet,” struggling to make friends but still “a very sweet girl.” As the show goes on, the two find themselves at odds with one another in a number of scenarios highlighting the strained relationship that exists between them, one of them being the moment that inspired the production’s namesake. During the Christmas play, Junie B. sings, “Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg. The Batmobile lost its wheel, and the Joker got away.” Upset by the changes, May cries out, c om m a nd i n g her t o s t op. Accommodating as ever, Junie B. decides to honor May’s wishes, this time using an alternate lyrical composition. “Jingle bells, Batman smells, P.S. so does May. I’d throw May right off a sleigh, and then I’d drive away,” she sings, much to May’s disapproval. What happens next is a treat for the audience. Will Junie B. get her the lump of coal she feels she deserves, or will they put their differences aside and learn to get along? However the plot unfolds, there’s sure to be a lesson parents and children alike can take home for the holidays. Pike explained the show’s message as a sort of theme dealing with personal redemption among peers. “Even if you mess up, it’s never too late to be the bigger person and to make somebody smile,” she said.

Training ground

“There’s always time to do the right thing,” Elin Bhaird said. “You know, there’s not a lot of love in this world right now, not a lot of giving to other people.” Bhaird serves as the theater’s artistic director, working alongside only three other staff members to deliver 28

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around 10 or 11 productions annually. Fortunately, the team gets a lot of help from the university and its students at its current residence. Met with success shortly after its founding, what was originally a Stage Center program soon became an independent nonprofit organization. Following the change, Lyn Adams, founder and executive director, ran a resident theater program located at Oklahoma City Community College. Over the course of the next three years, the troupe focused on outreach, incorporating a few programs oriented toward children and intended to supplement the regular performances. By 1989, its audience had more than doubled and it was subsequently invited to the fairgrounds as a City Arts Center resident. After expanding its programs and productions, Oklahoma City Children’s Theatre moved to Oklahoma City University (OCU) in 2005, opening the door for regular collaborations between them. The acting crew is comprised primarily of OCU students who also handle other aspects that go into producing a quality show, a mutually beneficial feature that comes with the location. “It’s a training ground for them when they’re out in the real world to know how to actually handle themselves in that situation,” Bhaird said, referencing the learning experience it provides those aspiring to enter the theater profession.

Fine tuning

Though Bhaird is an experienced artistic director, she still finds ways to improve the shows when they’re in need of a little fine-tuning. During each play, she and the team conduct what they’ve dubbed the Potty Poll as a way to gauge the success of the current showing. “If three or four kids or more than one child has to get up in the middle of the show during a certain section and go to the bathroom, then there’s something wrong with that section of the play,” Bhaird explained. Afterward, they can go back and refine it, working out any kinks that might have resulted in disinterest. Like Bhaird, the actors also have to tune their delivery when working with an audience comprised mostly of children. “It can be hard to remember how to play a kid but not in an insulting way,” Yates said. “Kids are really smart and we forget that, and it’s easy to fall into a trap of trying to play little.” “I think it’s important to remember that children don’t necessarily fight because they have hate or anger; they

think that their way of doing things is right or maybe better and they want to show the other person,” Pike said. “They don’t assume the worst in people, and they aren’t jaded; they’re kids. So I think maintaining that sense of light-heartedness can be difficult sometimes.” That’s not to say adults won’t enjoy the shows, especially when it comes to Junie B. “I think we all have Junie B. in our hearts,” Pike said, alluding to the play’s relatability. “It’s funny enough for the adults too,” Bhaird said. “I was actually still laughing after six years.” Aside from the show itself, Bhaird believes there are certain aspects of the venue that make each production an experience unmatched by other children’s theaters in the area. “It’s a real casual atmosphere here,” she said. “And there are a lot of people

from left Katy Yates plays Tattletale May and Dani Pike plays Junie B. in Junie B in Jingle Bells Batman Smells. | Photo Oklahoma Children’s Theatre / provided

around now that do theatrical productions for kids, but ours are, I think, a little more intimate than everybody else.” Visit oklahomachildrenstheatre.org.

Junie B. in Jingle Bells Batman Smells Friday-Dec. 16 Children’s Center for the Arts Oklahoma City University NW 25th Street and N. Blackwelder Avenue oklahomachildrenstheatre.org | 405-951-0011 Free-$11


SPONSORED PROGR AM

MA P O F

EVENTS Brought to you by

D O W N T O W N O K L A H O M A C I T Y PA R T N E R S H I P

and presented by

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Devon Ice Rink Devon’s Saturdays With Santa SandRidge Santa Run Bricktown Tree Lighting Festival presented by Sonic 5. A Dog Day in December 6. Free Holiday Water Taxi Rides 7. Lights on Broadway Annual Event 8. Streetcar Ribbon Cutting & Grand Opening Celebration 9. Holiday Pop-Up Shops at Midtown 10. Deluxe Winter Market 11. Holly Jolly Shops at The Brick 12. Automobile Alley Light Display 13. Bricktown Canal Lights 14. Bricktown Holiday Parklet 15. Film Row Light Display 16. Little Willie’s Triple Dog Dare 17. Myriad Gardens Holiday Events 18. OKCMOA Holiday Events 19. Lyric’s A Christmas Carol presented by Devon 20. Sheraton Hotel Holiday Events 21. Skirvin Holiday Events 22. OKC Ballet’s The Nutcracker presented by Devon 23. OKC Philharmonic’s The Christmas Show 24. Red Earth TreeFest 25. Canterbury Christmas at The Civic Center 26. American Banjo Museum’s Candy Cane Christmas 27. Pambe Ghana’s Global Market 28. First United Bank Downtown Grand Opening 29. Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop 30. OKC Arts Council’s Opening Night

N Walker Ave.

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D E VO N E N E R GY

Oklahoma City Boulevard

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SPONSORED PROGR AM

An annual collection of

H O L I DAY

EVENTS

Downtown in December, presented by Devon, is a collection of more than 30 holiday events that take place in and around downtown Oklahoma City each year.

All information about the following events, including schedules, pricing, and other details can be found online at DOWNTOWNINDECEMBER.COM

@DOWNTOWNOKC @DOWNTOWNOKC @DOWNTOWNOKC @DEVONICERINK @DEVONICERINKOKC @DEVONICERINK @SATURDAYSWITHSANTA #DOWNTOWNINDECEMBER

DEVON ICE RINK AT MYRIAD GARDENS

The Devon Ice Rink returns for its 8th season in the Myriad Botanical Gardens November 9 through January 27. Join us for another great winter of outdoor ice skating at Downtown in December’s premier attraction. Open seven days a week, the Devon Ice Rink hosts daily public skating, private parties, and special events all winter long. The Devon Ice Rink is located in the Myriad Botanical Gardens at 100 S. Robinson Ave. (at the corner of Robinson and Sheridan.) Please call 405-708-6499 to book a private party or for general questions. Visit DowntownInDecember.com to see the full schedule and daily hours of operation.

RATES:

› $13 per person for all ages, includes skates › $8 for guests who bring their own skates › $9 for 10 or more guests, includes skates Reservations are encouraged for groups

DEVON’S SATURDAYS WITH SANTA

Bring the kiddos downtown to the Devon Energy Center December 1 and 8 to visit Santa, make crafts, and participate in holiday-themed activities. DECEMBER 1 - 8AM TO 5PM DECEMBER 8 - 8AM TO 5PM 6

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Devon Energy Center is located at 333 W. Sheridan Ave. in downtown Oklahoma City. For more information, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

SANDRIDGE SANTA RUN

On Saturday, December 8, guests will be prancing in the streets of downtown Oklahoma City in the 2018 SandRidge Santa Run. As part of Downtown in December, the SandRidge Santa Run includes a 5K race, a one-mile Fun Run, and a warm-up with Rumble the Bison. All runs begin and end at SandRidge Energy (123 Robert S. Kerr Ave.) where there will be free snacks, a photo booth, face painting, and other kids activities. Medals will be awarded to the top three male and female finishers in each 5K age group, and all runners are invited to dress up in their most festive holiday attire for cash prizes in a costume contest afterward! Register now at DowntownInDecember.com.

BRICKTOWN TREE LIGHTING FESTIVAL PRESENTED BY SONIC

On Friday, November 23 from 5pm to 7pm, the annual Bricktown Tree Lighting Festival presented by SONIC, America’s Drive-In will take place on the 3rd Base Plaza at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Guests will enjoy a live band, hot cocoa and coffee from Junction Coffee, food and fun as Mayor Holt lights the Christmas Tree and kicks off the holiday season. Santa will make an appearance at the festival to take free photos with the kids, which are printed on-site. The event also features food trucks, face painters, and musical performances. The Bricktown Tree Lighting Festival presented by SONIC is free and open to the public. For more information, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

FREE HOLIDAY WATER TAXI RIDES

All aboard for an adventure cruise on a Bricktown Water Taxi! Come enjoy a funfilled float down the beautifully-adorned Bricktown Canal free of charge, courtesy of the Downtown Business Improvement District. The narrated and holiday-themed Free Holiday Water Taxi Rides will begin at the main dock on canal level, below the entrance to Mickey Mantle’s Steakhouse. The tours will run on a continuous loop

through Bricktown, Thursdays through Sundays, November 23 through December 30 from 6pm to 9pm. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, call 405234-TAXI or visit DowntownInDecember.com.

AUTOMOBILE ALLEY LIGHT DISPLAY

See the historic buildings of Automobile Alley in a whole new light at Automobile Alley’s light display on Broadway Ave. beginning November 17 through January 1. More than 180,000 colorful LED lights will drape the buildings along eight blocks of North Broadway making for a magical holiday wonderland. (NW 4th to 10th St. on Broadway Ave. in downtown Oklahoma City.)

BRICKTOWN CANAL LIGHTS

The Bricktown Canal light display will brighten your Bricktown experience from November 23 through January 1. As you stroll the canal, enjoy the dining and shopping along downtown OKC’s premier entertainment district under the gorgeous holiday lights. The light display is free to the public. Also, check out the Free Holiday Water Taxi Rides on certain nights of the week throughout the season.

LITTLE WILLIE’S TRIPLE DOG DARE

The 7th annual Little Willie’s Triple Dog Dare will be held Saturday, December 1 at Leadership Square (211 N. Robinson Ave.) This stair climbing athletic event is open to people of all ages, and keeping in line with the “Little Willie’s” spirit, there’s even a Firefighters Division – racing in full gear of course! Awards will be given to top three overall male and female finshers, as well as age group divisions. All proceeds go to The Homeless Alliance. For more information, visit littlewilliestripledogdare.com.

A DOG DAY IN DECEMBER AT MIDTOWN MUTTS DOG PARK

Bring the pups and enjoy a pet-friendly holiday party fundraiser on Saturday, December 1 from 5pm to 8pm at Midtown Mutts Dog Park (407 W. Park Pl.), benefitting the Midtown Association. Dogs can take photos with Santa (printed

on-site), enter into a drawing for a chance to win a gift card to a Midtown business, and enjoy “puppuccinos” from The Children’s Hospital Volunteers’ Paws for Purpose program. This event is sponsored by the Midtown Association, COOP Ale Works, Oklahoma Gazette, Tinker Federal Credit Union, and The Children’s Hospital Volunteers’. For more information, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

LIGHTS ON BROADWAY ANNUAL EVENT

Cruise down historic Automobile Alley for the district’s holiday open house and the first day of this year’s stunning light display with the third annual Lights On Broadway event on Saturday, November 17 from 4pm to 8pm on Broadway Ave. between NW 4th & 10th Streets. Retail shops and restaurants will be featuring buzz-worthy holiday window displays in addition to children’s activities, special promotions, and giveaways. There will be complimentary carriage rides, visits with Santa, live artists and musicians, a free photo booth, an outdoor screening of classic holiday cartoons, hot cocoa, and more! Join us in discovering the Alley “in the new old-fashioned way”! For more details, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

FILM ROW LIGHT DISPLAY

Beginning Friday, November 23, enjoy Film Row’s holiday light display. Film Row once housed the offices of major Hollywood film studios like Paramount Pictures, Warner Bros, MGM, and more. The buildings are lit up during the holiday season to showcase rich history and vibrance. The lights will be on display until January 1.


BRICKTOWN TREE LIGHTING FESTIVAL

SPONSORED PROGR AM

STREETCAR GRAND OPENING

PRESENTED BY SONIC

DEVON ICE RINK

AUTOMOBILE ALLEY LIGHT DISPLAY

SANDRIDGE SANTA RUN

LYRIC’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL

DELUXE WINTER MARKET

On Saturday, November 24, 11am to 5pm, the Deluxe Winter Market will take place in Leadership Square (211 N. Robinson Ave.) Back for its 11th year in 2018, the market will offer an opportunity for guests to do their holiday shopping at more than 60 vendor booths featuring all local and handmade goods. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, visit DeluxeOK.net.

HOLIDAY POP-UP SHOPS AT MIDTOWN

The Holiday Pop-Up Shops are returning to Midtown in 2018! Visit 35 Oklahoma-owned shops and an urban Christmas tree lot for five weeks this holiday season between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Shops rotate weekly through a set of geodesic domes at NW 10th and Hudson, next to Bleu Garten. The holiday shopping village is open each weekend, starting Black Friday, Thursday through Sunday. Entry is free, shopping is encouraged. For more information, including the list of shops, visit OKCPopUps.com. NOVEMBER 23-25 NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 2 DECEMBER 6-9 DECEMBER 13-16 DECEMBER 20-23 THURSDAYS-SATURDAYS 10AM TO 9PM SUNDAYS - 10AM TO 6PM

In its 8th year running, the spectacular Oklahoma holiday tradition returns with Lyric’s production of Charles Dickens’ classic, A Christmas Carol, sponsored by Devon Energy. Go on a magical journey with Ebenezer Scrooge and the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future! Tickets start at $25, and the show takes place at Lyric’s Plaza Theater (1725 NW 16th St.) To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.LyricTheatreOKC.com or call 405-524-9312.

OKC PHILHARMONIC’S THE CHRISTMAS SHOW

The OKC Phil’s annual holiday extravaganza returns starring Broadway’s Elizabeth Stanley, the Philharmonic Pops Chorale, the Mistletoes, and of course, Santa – all singing and dancing to your favorite holiday songs. This show delivers laughter, joy, and maybe even a few sentimental tears, all packaged in delightful costumes and fantastic sets and lights. Kick-off your holiday season with this festive musical experience for the whole family, as only The Christmas Show can provide. For more information, visit OKCPhilharmonic.org or call 405-842-5387. SHOW DATES & TIMES: NOVEMBER 29 - 7:30PM NOVEMBER 30 - 8PM DECEMBER 1 - 2PM & 8PM

OKLAHOMA CITY BALLET’S THE NUTCRACKER PRESENTED BY DEVON

Tchaikovsky’s familiar score and Artistic Director Robert Mills’ delightful staging of The Nutcracker will fill your heart with the spirit of the season as Clara and the Nutcracker Prince return to enchant both the young and the young at heart. The Oklahoma City

Philharmonic and students from the Oklahoma City Ballet Yvonne Chouteau School join with the professional company dancers to present an experience your whole family will remember for years to come. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit OKCBallet.com or call OKC Ballet at 405-848-8637. SHOW DATES & TIMES: DECEMBER 14 - 7PM DECEMBER 15 - 2PM & 7PM DECEMBER 16 - 2PM DECEMBER 21 - 2PM DECEMBER 22 - 2PM & 7PM DECEMBER 23 - 2PM

CANTERBURY CHRISTMAS AT THE CIVIC CENTER

Canterbury Voices will hold their 80-member adult chorus holiday performance on Sunday, December 2 for Canterbury Christmas at the Civic Center Music Hall at 7pm. Also featured will be the traditional holiday carol sing-a-long with the children of the Canterbury Youth Voices. To purchase tickets, call 405-232-7464 or visit CanterburyOKC.com.

SHERATON HOTEL HOLIDAY EVENTS

The Sheraton Hotel will be offering several holiday events this season. Enjoy dinners and events located in the heart of downtown. For more information, visit SheratonOKC.com.

BRICKTOWN HOLIDAY PARKLET

Enjoy the Bricktown Holiday Parklet this winter season. The parklet will be decorated with lights and holiday garland for pedestrians to enjoy during holiday shopping and strolling throughout Bricktown. A parklet is a temporary, pop-up park. The Bricktown Holiday Parklet was purchased by The Bricktown Association and Downtown Oklahoma City Partnership in 2016 as a

placemaking project to create additional seating in downtown Oklahoma City’s entertainment district.

MYRIAD GARDENS HOLIDAY EVENTS

LEARN TO CURL AT THE DEVON ICE RINK Join the Oklahoma Curling Club as they teach the basic rules and etiquette of curling. Dress warm, wear rubber-soled shoes, and prepare for the most fun you can have with a broom this side of Quidditch! All other equipment will be provided by the Oklahoma Curling Club. November 17 - 9AM-10:30AM December 1 - 9AM-10:30AM December 15 - 9AM-10:30AM January 5 - 9AM-10:30AM January 19 - 9AM-10:30AM *Members $20, Nonmembers $25 DECEMBER DROP-INS DECEMBER 19-DECEMBER 21, 10AM-12PM Kids will discover the beauty and fun nature has to offer even during the winter. Join us each day for holiday ornament or gift making and interactive education. Every day has a different theme. POLAR EXPRESS PJ PARTY & PANCAKE PARTY DECEMBER 9, 9:30AM-11:30AM Do you BELIEVE? Join the Myriad Gardens for a morning of holiday festivities in the Park House Event Center. Guests will be able to ice skate at the Devon Ice Rink, drink hot cocoa, and create Polar Express crafts! Our special guest, Santa, will also make an appearance. Wear your PJs to get in the spirit! SENSORY SANTA DECEMBER 2, 9AM-11AM An event tailored for families with children with special needs, join us inside the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory for a morning with Santa. This event provides a more controlled and welcoming environment for a Santa photo experience. ILLUMINATIONS: NIGHT LIGHTS IN THE CRYSTAL BRIDGE NOVEMBER 23-JANUARY 2 Tuesday-Thursday 6-9pm, Friday-Saturday 6-10pm, Sunday 6-9pm O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | O C TO B E R 2 6 , 2 0 1 6

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SPONSORED PROGR AM

FREE HOLIDAY WATER TAXI RIDES

DEVON’S SATURDAYS WITH SANTA

Enjoy a new take on holiday lighting inside the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory beginning November 23 through January 2. Professional designers using the latest lighting technology are taking the holiday display to the next level, beyond strings of lights. The Myriad Gardens will be offering additional paid classes to enjoy this holiday season, such as: SNOW GLOBE WORLDS WORKSHOP WINTER WEATHER WONDERLAND LITTLE SAPLINGS READING WEDNESDAYS GINGERBREAD HOUSE WORKSHOP HOLIDAY WREATH WORKSHOPS

For more information and to sign up for classes, visit MyriadGardens.org or call 405-445-7080.

RED EARTH TREEFEST

Red Earth Art Center will host a Holiday Open House event in December at the Red Earth Art Center (6 Santa Fe Plaza, next to The Skirvin.) The third annual Red Earth TreeFest runs from November 19 through January 4, featuring twenty Christmas trees adorned with ornaments created to showcase the Native cultures that make Oklahoma unique. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, visit RedEarth.org or call 405-427-5228. HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE: DECEMBER 1 - 10AM-3PM

SKIRVIN HOLIDAY EVENTS

As Downtown Oklahoma City comes to life this holiday season, the Skirvin Hilton once again will host several festive events, including

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Holiday High Tea and Breakfast with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Plus, enjoy fabulous Skirvin holiday breakfasts, brunches, and dinners on Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day. For reservations or more information, contact the Holiday Desk at The Skirvin at 405-702-8444.

OKC MUSEUM OF ART HOLIDAY EVENTS

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art will feature several holiday events this winter. Art installations, drop-in art making, SONIC Free Family Day on December 2, a New Year’s Eve event, and more. The new exhibition ‘Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts and Crafts Movement’ is open now and features work by William Morris and his associates. For more information, visit OKCMOA.com.

OKC ARTS COUNCIL’S OPENING NIGHT

Ring in the New Year in style! Since 1987, Opening Night has been the place for families and friends to enjoy the performing arts and “open” the New Year in the spirit of community. Downtown Oklahoma City is the setting for a variety of bands, fireworks, and an unforgettable children’s craft and performance area. The day begins with a festive 5k and all the excitement concludes with a fireworks extravaganza at midnight. Wristbands are $8 in advance and $10 the night of the event. For more information, visit ArtsCouncilOKC.com.

CANDY CANE CHRISTMAS AT THE AMERICAN BANJO MUSEUM

The American Banjo Museum welcomes our friend from the North Pole, Santa Claus. Santa will be stopping by and bringing his banjo! Executive Director Johnny Baier will take to the stage to perform holiday favorites and invite everyone to sing along! There will be wonderful music, candy canes, and lots of fun. Admission is FREE when you bring a new unwrapped toy to support the Red Andrews Christmas Dinner. Join the American Banjo Museum for Candy Cane Christmas on Sunday, December 9 at 2pm. For more information, visit AmericanBanjoMuseum.com.

HOLLY JOLLY SHOPS AT THE BRICK

FIRST UNITED BANK GRAND OPENING

Visit Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop and enjoy crafts, activities, and a free photo with Santa! Visit the Bass Pass Ticket Depot at the Bricktown Bass Pro Shop to sign up for a time slot to see Santa. For more information, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

Join First United Bank’s official grand opening celebration in Automobile Alley on Thursday, December 6 from 4:30PM-7PM. Guests can enjoy rooftop views, hors d’oeuvres, drinks and fabulous door prizes. Fore more information, visit DowntownInDecember.com.

OKC STREETCAR RIBBON CUTTING & GRAND OPENING CELEBRATION

You’re invited to the OKC Streetcar Ribbon Cutting on Friday, December 14 at 10AM. The event will take place at Leadership Square and will kick off the inaugural ride of the OKC Streetcar. Learn more about OKC Streetcar and the grand opening weekend festivities at OKCStreetcar.com.

Holly Jolly Shops at the Brick is a two-day event featuring amazing retailers, food, and fun on the concourse of the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Come enjoy holiday shopping in a festive atmosphere! This open-air market is free and open to the public. For more information, visit Revolve-Productions.com. DECEMBER 8 - 12PM-7PM DECEMBER 9 - 12PM-5:30PM

SANTA’S WONDERLAND AT BASS PRO SHOP

PAMBE GHANA GLOBAL MARKET

PAMBE Ghana Global Market is open for the 11th year this holiday season. The Global Market is a fair trade shop featuring handmade items from artisans around the world. Proceeds benefit PAMBE Ghana’s education initiatives in northern Ghana. Visit the market at The Sieber, located at 1309 N. Hudson Ave. For more information, visit PambeGhana.org.


CL ASS OF 2018

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FO R T Y U N D E R 40

F

rom the achievements that line their resumes to the attitudes that guide them through life, the young professional population is a barometer of a cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s present and future. Forty Under 40 honors a generous cross section of that population. While their roles range from doctors and lawyers to artists and musicians, the honorees are united by an infectious enthusiasm for their professional and creative pursuits. They also share a desire to give something back to the Oklahoma City community, often juggling multiple volunteer commitments at any given time on their busy calendars. Now is the time to say thanks to those 20- and 30-somethings who are helping ensure the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s place on the economic and cultural map. Here are their stories.

presented by

beer & wine provided by

food provided by

LEADERS ARE AT THEIR BEST WHEN THEY ARE EMPOWERING OTHERS We are proud of our Forty Under 40! Our partners and staff would like to recognize and congratulate our very own Kristine Wise and all the nominees of the Forty Under 40 award. Your innovation, professionalism, dedication and commitment are a great asset to our community.

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contributing sponsor


ALY CUNNINGHAM ............................................... 38 ALYX PICARD DAVIS ............................................ 45 BRET T GRIMES ...............................................................41 BRIAN FIRESTONE ..................................................39 BRIAN WEST ..................................................................... 48 CASEY LOGUE ...............................................................44 CINDY CORNELSON ........................................... 38 DESIREE YEARBY ..................................................... 50 ELIZABETH FORSY THE ....................................41 ERIC GRUNEWALD ..................................................41 ERIC SCHMID ................................................................. 46 HILDA DE LEON XAVIER ............................... 38 JABEE WILLIAMS ..................................................... 49 JACE KIRK ............................................................................ 43 JAMES NGHEIM ..........................................................44 JEFF MILES ......................................................................... 45 JENNIFER BELL ............................................................36 K ATRINA AVERS .......................................................... 37 KELLEY GANN ................................................................41 KRISTIN RICHARDS ............................................ 46 KRISTINE WISE ............................................................. 50 LEAH ROPER .................................................................... 47 MADELEINE GREGORY ...................................40 MARGARET CREIGHTON ..............................39 MAT THEW PEACOCK .......................................... 45 MICHELLE BUI ................................................................ 37 MIKE BECKHAM .......................................................... 37 PAOL A CHRISTINA LOPEZ ......................... 45 RACHAEL CRAWFORD ..................................... 38 RACHEL HOLT ............................................................... 43 SELENA SKORMAN ................................................. 47 SHANNON FLECK ....................................................40 SIL APBERDI BERDIYEV .................................. 37 STACI SANGER .............................................................. 46 STEPHEN HOLMAN ............................................... 42 STEPHEN T YLER ......................................................... 49 TAYLOR KETCHUM .................................................. 42 TRENT L . RAT TERREE ......................................... 46 VICTOR ACOSTA .........................................................36 ZAC SMITH ........................................................................ 48

AHH, WE KNEW YOU WAY BACK WHEN...

CONGRATULATIONS STACI SANGER ON YOUR FORTY UNDER 40 HONOR!

O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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VICTOR ACOSTA

FO R T Y U N D E R 40

AGE

JENNIFER BELL

31

Congrats TAY L O R K E T C H U M FORTY UNDER 40

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CO-OWNER THE PAPER BOX CRAFTS AND DESIGNS The business and creative people whose work puts Oklahoma City on the map do not necessarily originate here. Many of the metro’s proudest residents were born in other cities, states or even countries. Case in point: Victor Acosta, originally from San Luis Potosí, Mexico, now co-owner of The Paper Box Crafts and Designs. Acosta has lived in Oklahoma City since he was 17 years old. With the help of scholarships, he attended University of Central Oklahoma and earned a degree in graphic design. However, it was not necessarily an easy path. “English is my second language, and I struggled to learn the language and it has been and continues to be a significant barrier for me, but it does not stop me to reach my goals,” he said. Acosta worked as a designer and photographer for El Nacional, the largest Hispanic newspaper in Oklahoma City, for two years. But this is only one of the ways in which Acosta’s heritage has informed his career and his involvement in the greater community. Over the last couple of years, he has worked with Dream Action Oklahoma, which lobbies for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, both as a graphic designer and as an advocate, with visits to Washington, D.C., in 2017 and 2018. Following graduation from a leadership class hosted by World Experiences Foundation earlier this year, Acosta is in the process of launching his own foundation to help students who have recently arrived in the United States. “I consider myself an example of a successful, hardworking young professional in a foreign country, and I feel that should make any person proud of being Hispanic,” he said. “My mom and dad are my influence to keep going and always remember where I come from.”

DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC INFORMATION CITIZEN POTAWATOMI NATION

Oklahoma’s indigenous community remains a culturally vital fixture in the state. Tribal governments are surviving and thriving in 2018 thanks in no small part to the efforts of Oklahomans like Jennifer Bell. Bell serves as director of public information at Citizen Potawatomi Nation (CPN). Before she came onboard in 2012, the tribe’s department of public information consisted of only one employee who was tasked with publishing a monthly tribal paper. “The publication of the paper was inconsistent and rarely published monthly,” she said. “At that time, the tribe did little public relations, social media or government relations.” On Bell’s watch, the department expanded to eight employees. “Together, we have consistently published a monthly newspaper since 2013,” she said. “We have AGE also established brand standards and guidelines for the tribe and its enterprises.” 33 Bell and her team see it as their responsibility to document information for current and future generations — both of tribal members and the public at large. She also recently helped facilitate a cultural leadership program, Noek Nmeshomesek, which is based on the Potawatomi “seven grandfathers” teachings. “We began the program five years ago, and our objectives are to help educate the CPN workforce about tribal sovereignty and Potawatomi culture and to build a networking system for the participants,” she said. “As CPN has grown, it has become increasingly difficult to coordinate across departments and enterprises. This program and the alumni network created because of it aims to create channels of communications for employees.” Bell’s professional goal is to continue to make people more aware of the tribe and its impact across the local and state community.


SIL APBERDI BERDIYEV

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Dove Science Academy prepares kindergarten through 12thgrade students for college with special emphasis on economically disadvantaged communities. Boasting a college acceptance rate of nearly 100 percent, the 12 public charter schools focus on math, science and computer technology. As the man who oversees Dove’s academic and counseling programs — and with eight years at the academy under his belt — Silapberdi Berdiyev certainly ranks high among those who deserve credit. He serves as president of Dove Alumni Association, whose members mentor around 40 children between the ages of 6 and 14. Under his leadership, the association also began the Grow Your Own Teachers program, which provides financial assistance to former students seeking to pursue a career in education. Meanwhile, his focus on minority students has derived strength from a successful partnership with Latino Community Development Agency. Another great example of Berdiyev’s work at the academy is EXCELerate Dove, a program that gives high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to earn an associate degree concurrently with their diplomas at no cost to them. Partnering with OSU-OKC and Boeing, the program is designed to remove financial barriers and ease the burden faced by parents. Berdiyev advises those who wish to succeed in his line of work to persevere in pursuit of their goals. “Active patience — working hard while leaving the end product to its right time — is a right strategy at our profession,” he said.

Mike Beckham is chief executive officer of Simple Modern, a company that sells insulated drinkware at Target and Amazon. After graduating from University of Oklahoma with his business degree in 2003, Beckham spent several years in a leadership role with the nonprofit Christian ministry Cru. The next turning point came in 2009 when he helped found an online auction business, QuiBids, along with several other enterprises in the burgeoning world of e-commerce — businesses that have since made hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. Beckham considers entrepreneurship to be the ultimate creative endeavor. “It is the process of creating something out of nothing,” he said. “It requires a multitude of skills, human capital, social capital, financial capital and self-confidence.” This helps explain why Beckham has come full circle by returning to University of Oklahoma’s Price College of Business — this time as its entrepreneur-in-residence, mentoring students who are interested in pursuing a similar path. “The best and brightest business minds in Oklahoma need to have experienced entrepreneurs who are teaching, coaching and encouraging them toward creating new and amazing businesses,” he said. Beckham actively volunteers with Wildwood Community Church, plus several other ministry-based nonprofits. Simple Modern donates at least 10 percent of its annual profits to local and international causes like education and disaster relief. His belief in the future of his home state reflects an innate optimism. “I grew up in Oklahoma City, and I have had a front-row seat to the incredible transformation of our city,” he said.

MICHELLE BUI

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MIKE BECKHAM

INDUSTRIAL/ORGANIZATIONAL PSYCHOLOGIST AND MANAGER JOB TITLE AND ANNUAL SALARY FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

KATRINA AVERS

The aerospace industry depends upon the work of numerous talented people to keep it soaring. One such individual is Dr. Katrina Avers, who works as industrial/organizational psychologist manager for Federal Aviation Administration’s Flight Deck Human Factors Research Laboratory. Her timely, responsive research enhances the safety and technological capacity of the national aerospace system, garnering international recognition in the process. “I believe my team has transformed [the lab] from a diamond in the rough into a finely cut diamond that is polished and gleams from every angle,” she said. With an educational background that includes a Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology from University of Oklahoma, Avers was poised for scientific success at a young age. She became an expert in optimizing human performance to make aviation safer and smarter, as evidenced by her authorship of more than 40 articles and book chapters (which have been cited in thousands of research contexts) and her presence on the editorial boards of numerous scientific journals. Meanwhile, Avers serves on the board of Heart to Heart and is also developing a nonprofit focused on connecting families with volunteer opportunities. And she does it all while raising four children and running a cow-calf operation with her most important partner of all, her husband. She puts a lot of stock in the ancient proverb, “Where there is a will, there is a way,” reflecting a work ethic that she traces back to her childhood days on the family farm. “I remember vividly working alongside my parents on projects, whether it be building a barbed wire fence, medicating a cow, fixing a broken water well in freezing temperatures,” she said. “Regardless of the weather conditions, availability of tools or supplies, giving up was never an option.”

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MANAGER ELEMENTAL COFFEE ROASTERS Coffee shops have evolved into a key component of urban life for creative and professional people, and most have a favorite spot. For many Oklahoma City residents, that spot is Elemental Coffee Roasters. Michelle Bui, manager of Elemental, has worked to make the shop an integral part of the community. “When hiring for the cafe, I make sure the staff knows that we are a family and a team as opposed to just being employees with each other,” she said. “Creating that positive and more familyfeeling environment allows for better productivity and much better work ethic in general. Thanks to those changes, we have seen a growth in reviews, sales numbers and consistency with regulars and them bringing friends and family in.” But Bui’s contributions to the city involve much more than coffee. As an active member of Young Nonprofit Professionals Network, American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma, [Inclusion in Art] and Confidence Con, among others, Bui devotes herself to uplifting the communities around her, often through public speaking engagements. “I see myself as a civil servant to help any and all who are willing to listen,” she said. Bui also owns a public relations company. The most important piece of advice that she has is to immerse oneself in one’s community. “Don’t just network and hand out business cards,” she said. “Truly become friends with these people. Learn about them, their hobbies, their friends and family. Building true relationships helps you in every way you could imagine.”

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FO R T Y U N D E R 40

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OKLAHOMA CITY-COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT The growth of Oklahoma City’s Hispanic community is undergirded by contributions of people whose heritage deeply informs their work, including their volunteer efforts. As a bilingual client access specialist for Oklahoma CityCounty Health Department, Hilda De Leon Xavier’s background comes into play as part of her day job. However, it is even more evident in the various civic and creative activities with which she is involved. Born in Guatemala, Xavier came to Oklahoma as a child. Her then-undocumented status closed a lot of educational and professional doors. “I did not let my situation prevent me from working for nonprofit organizations and participating in cultural activities,” she said. “Two years ago, I finally gained my permanent residency and was able to visit my home country.” Xavier volunteers with several organizations that benefit immigrants and the Hispanic community, including Mita’s Foundation, Bethel Foundation, The Dragonfly Home, Dillon International, Latinos Without Borders and Aspiring Americans. She has also worked in active collaboration with Passion Asociación, helping raise thousands of dollars to benefit volcano victims. Xavier belongs to the local Candela Latin Dancers group and leads a children’s dance group called Eterna Primavera. These are among the more recent expressions of Xavier’s Hispanic roots, which have been on proud display in Oklahoma since the late 1990s, when she worked as a waitress at a Mexican restaurant and a bilingual assistant at Harding Middle School. Plans for the foreseeable future include starting her own nonprofit to promote multiculturalism.

HILDA DE LEON XAVIER

HAPPY PLATE CONCEPTS (SUNNYSIDE DINER)

BILINGUAL CLIENT ACCESS SPECIALIST

ALY CUNNINGHAM

CO-OWNER

GROUP AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT COORDINATOR LYRIC THEATRE OF OKLAHOMA

Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma occupies an important place in the city’s performing arts scene. And as group and community engagement coordinator for the theater, Rachael Crawford does a great deal to keep it that way. Since joining the theater in July 2017, Crawford has managed to increase group sales revenue by 178 percent and group attendance by 202 percent. In doing so, she has ensured that more people experience the type of theater Lyric has to offer. “I’m really interested in investing my time and resources into advocating for the arts as a tool for growth and improved quality of life here in Oklahoma City,” she said. “I’ve always understood the value of the arts, but when I see how Lyric Theatre has helped transform the Plaza District ... it really inspires me to educate others about the socioeconomic impact of the arts.” Crawford’s civic memberships include 16th Street Plaza District Board of Directors, Big AGE Brothers Big Sisters of Oklahoma and Young 32 Nonprofit Professionals Network of Oklahoma City, among others. Another feather in Crawford’s cap, The Girl Crush Show, underscores her commitment to inclusion. She founded the monthly event at Partners, 2805 NW 36th St., as a showcase for talent within the local LGBT community that draws crowds as large as 300 people per show. “I want people to know that if you’re different, it’s okay,” she said. “Don’t let your gender, race, religion, age, orientation or socio-economic status hinder your success. Instead, embrace it as your story.”

SMASH BANGLES The path to professional success is not always paved with graduation dates and degrees. Just ask Aly Cunningham, co-owner of Sunnyside Diner. “I studied a range of subjects like human anatomy and dissection, every psychology class that existed, marketing and public relations, and after attempting to capture a passion and my academic attention, I realized that I needed to just start working,” she said. Beginning as a hostess at Applebee’s Grill + Bar in Enid in her teens, Cunningham worked her way up the pyramid of food service to the kitchen at Irma’s Burger Shack, full-time bartending at Iguana Mexican Grill and the original S&B’s Burger Joint location, where she joined as a manager. As any local aficionado of creatively concocted burgers knows, S&B’s was an entity that could not be confined to one just spot in the metro. Having mastered the art of washing dishes and cooking, Cunningham found herself in the position of facilitating the effective operation of a business, including the opening of new locations. She credits her rise to “a drive and determination to be at the top.” But there were still new heights to ascend, which led to her business partnership with Shannon Roper and the opening of three Sunnyside Diner locations, with a fourth planned for early 2019. “I have worked with Shannon for eight years now and have developed our company, Happy Plate Concepts, to create a culture of community, fun and exceptional quality and service,” she said. The community commitment includes Sunnyside’s partnership with Other Options, Inc., a nonprofit committed to feeding those affected by HIV and AIDS. Other outreach efforts come in the form of regular bag drops of food, water and supplies for the homeless population courtesy of the Sunnyside street team.

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RACHAEL CRAWFORD

CINDY CORNELSEN

Cindy Cornelsen owns Smash Bangles, which deals in “jewelry, gifts and whimsy on the Paseo.” The jewelry in question is handmade, reflecting Cornelsen’s lifelong affinity for artistic expression in its myriad forms, from her earliest ability to hold a crayon to her current balancing act of multiple creative endeavors. “Whether it be silversmith work, writing, drawing, painting, performing or running the back-of-house, art elevates everything because it connects us and teaches us how we are more alike than different,” she said. “So often, I find myself wishing more people I connect with could have experienced art in such a way.” AGE Cornelsen’s talents have taken her to some interesting 37 places — particularly Chicago, where she trained at The Second City school of improvisational comedy and became heavily involved in writing and performing standup comedy. Her voice can now be heard in everything from local music (as lead singer of Deep Deuce Duo and Choctaw 3) to advertising (for Lawton Kia, for which she also writes copy). Even those who have never heard Cornelsen might have been personally enriched by her altruistic heart. She helped organize Homeless Alliance Supply Drive in the Paseo, running through Nov. 30. “Working with them all, my eyes were opened to the vast horizon of opportunity before us all,” she said. Cornelsen’s community memberships include Paseo Arts Association, Paseo Merchants Association, Oklahoma City Business Network and Oklahoma Mineral and Gem Society.

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Positive Tomorrows is Oklahoma’s only elementary school that specifically serves homeless children. As development director, Margaret Creighton is responsible for all aspects of the organization’s fundraising department. Since assuming her role five years ago, Creighton has helped increase Positive Tomorrows’ fundraising budget by more than twofold. She also facilitated the campaign to raise funds for an expanded facility that tripled the school’s student capacity. While the new building requires a larger operating budget, Creighton said the children and their families make it all worthwhile. “My daily motivation comes from the positive impact I see in our families’ lives,” she said. “I watch children grow and flourish academically and socially while their families receive the support they need to build a supportive and self-sufficient family environment. Students will grow three, sometimes more grade levels per year because of the specific service we are able to provide.” Creighton’s career in fundraising began in 2003 in New York City, where she worked for Ballet Tech Foundation, setting the stage for her later career as an Oklahoma City-based fundraiser. Between leaving New York City and starting at Positive Tomorrows, Creighton added Oklahoma Arts Institute, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum and Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center to her resume. “I learned early in my education that I loved learning and the arts, but I had even more of a passion for the background — providing resources for experts to make true change in the world,” she said. Creighton’s professional advice is to find a cause that you consider important and pursue it fearlessly. “Be transparent, always,” she said. “Build genuine and honest relationships.”

DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR POSITIVE TOMORROWS

OCULAR ONCOLOGIST AND PATHOLOGIST DEAN MCGEE EYE INSTITUTE AND UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA

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BRIAN FIRESTONE

Brian Firestone, MD, is now in his fifth year of practicing ocular oncology and pathology — in other words, caring for people with cancer and other tumors affecting their eyes. He works at Dean McGee Eye Institute and University of Oklahoma. As a clinical educator, Firestone has earned top rankings in resident evaluations and didactic lectures. Consistent words of praise from residents attest to his undeniable personal and professional investment in bettering the lives of others. “I have found the old expression, ‘It is better to give than to receive,’ to be entirely true in the practice of medicine, ophthalmology and ocular oncology,” he said. “Any sacrifice that I have made on behalf of patients has been repaid to me many times over through their gratitude and friendship.” Firestone’s credentials include a bachelor of arts in family psychology from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, where he graduated with honors, and a doctorate in medicine from University of Oklahoma College of Medicine in Oklahoma City. His professional background includes numerous other honors and activities, including a stint as chief resident at Baylor University’s Scott & White Eye Institute in Dallas, Texas, along with a wide range of lectures, presentations and publications spanning the last several years. As a Christian and volunteer, Firestone has been involved with medical mission trips to locations such as Huaraz, Peru; Ixtapa, Mexico; and Siteki, Swaziland, between 2005 and 2015. Firestone’s memberships include American Academy of Ophthalmology, Oklahoma Academy of Ophthalmology and American Medical Association.

CONGRATULATIONS

RACHEL HOLT We are so proud of you and grateful for all you do for us and for the community! We love you, David, George & Maggie

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FO R T Y U N D E R 40

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OKLAHOMA CONFERENCE OF CHURCHES

Where local news gets their news 40

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Having spent more than six years with Thirst Wine Merchants, Madeleine Gregory’s responsibilities have varied quite a bit, but her current role might be best described as marketing coordinator. Gregory helps with web content, social media management, event coordinating and even some tech support, ensuring that the independently owned, Oklahoma-based distributor of fine wines puts its best face forward. This includes two trade events conducted every year over the course of two days as more than 30 representatives from wineries AGE throughout the world converge on Oklahoma 31 City and Tulsa. This monumentally busy spot on Gregory’s calendar also includes a charity event in Oklahoma City benefitting members of the hospitality industry with severe medical needs. And none of it would be possible without her commitment. “Each year has proven to be grander than the last, with our team organizing one of the best wine trade events in the country,” she said. Gregory also puts her social media and marketing skills to use as part of the allvolunteer Woody Guthrie Coalition board of directors, which organizes the annual Woody Guthrie Folk Festival in Okemah. As with her day job, the festival appears to be growing in stature. “The most recent festival, held July 2018, was heralded as one of the best by community members and Woody Guthrie enthusiasts alike,” she said. “With over 100 musical acts and about 3,000 festival attendees from all over the nation, this year’s festival achievements are incredibly special to me.”

MADELEINE GREGORY

www.okctalk.com

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SHANNON FLECK

Rev. Shannon Fleck has served Oklahoma Conference of Churches (OCC) since 2017. With a membership of some 600,000 people, the group works to get local churches engaged in communities around them. As OCC executive director since June 2018, Fleck leads 17 Christian denominations in ministry work surrounding matters of social justice, spiritual care and interfaith understanding. The events she oversees tend to reflect current events and politically relevant concerns like Interfaith Alliance’s Muslim Day at the Capitol. Other recent examples of Fleck’s work include her involvement with Dialogue Institute Oklahoma Advisory Board, Resilience Project with Potts Family Foundation and Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice. Last year, Fleck received the Human Rights Award from Church Women United. This year, she was nominated for Women Empowered. Her list of awards and acknowledgements attests to her success, and while her path of socially conscious, church-based work might differ from the rest of the professional world in many ways, her advice applies to almost anyone. “I think the key to succeeding in the nonprofit world as well as the world of ministry is to have genuine passion about what you’re doing,” she said. “When the passion is there, it tends to be contagious, causing others to join you in the work. The passion and joy you have will also carry you through the challenges you will inevitably face because the work has truly been about your love for it, rather than the reward of it.”

MARKETING COORDINATOR THIRST WINE MERCHANTS


PARTNER ROBOT HOUSE CREATIVE

Brett Grimes is a partner at Robot House Creative, the brand development firm whose work has helped refine and elevate the marketing messages of several muchloved local businesses. Grimes describes his job as “hybrid creative director, designer, producer and copywriter.” It can be a demanding role, especially considering the size of the agency — or, more accurately, lack thereof, with Robot House being a three-man small business. “When I started my career as an entry-level designer at a mid-size advertising agency, I never envisioned myself working for a small firm, much less actually having ownership in one,” he said. Robot House’s clients have so far included AGE Sunnyside Diner, with its memorable winking 36 sun logo setting the tone for the establishment’s unusually engaging, knowingly retro-inspired visual aesthetic. Other projects have included Barnes Consulting Group, Bitter Sisters Brewing Company, the IPS Research team and the now sadly defunct Hillbilly’s restaurant. As their client roster grows, so does their subtle imprint on the look of Oklahoma City in the early 21st century. “At Robot House, we like to think of ourselves as stewards of the visual landscape of Oklahoma City,” Grimes said. He also conceives of his firm’s greater creative contribution to the community in terms of “giving back to younger designers” by way of Robot House’s internship program. Grimes credits his wife and daughter as guiding forces in his life. “My wife Rory is fearless when it comes to trying out new art forms, and she’s a constant inspiration and creative companion,” he said, “which leads me to my daughter Violet, who’s a blossoming artist in her own right and reminds me every day that the true joy of creating is in the process.”

PRESIDENT FREESTYLE CREATIVE

Eric Grunewald helped create Community Beard Championship Foundation, and as chief operations officer, he also serves as its second-in-command. The nonprofit began a little less than a year ago as a beard contest organized to increase awareness of the local homeless youth population. Grunewald has launched a total of nine Oklahoma City-based businesses. Manscape & Massage Clinic, for example, offered various hair-removal services, massages, facials, manicures and pedicures. Grunewald might be a serial entrepreneur, but the academic path that brought him there was anything but traditional. Dropping out of University of Oklahoma’s business program to pursue his own ideas, Grunewald later took steps to fill in the gaps in his education. He completed an online course in social media marketing through Harvard University Extension School. Earlier this year, he was accepted into Wharton School of Business’ Executive Development Program. His use of online certificate programs and single-class offerings from prestigious academic institutions is tied to his belief that education is lifelong. Grunewald is a member of Homeless Alliance and National Coalition for Homeless Youth (NCHY) — further evidence of his passion for the cause that led to Community Beard Championship Foundation, which remains one of his proudest achievements and shows no sign of stopping.

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CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER COMMUNITY BEARD CHAMPIONSHIP FOUNDATION

ERIC GRUNEWALD

BRET T GRIMES

The practice of medicine and the art of the fiddle generally seem like separate spheres, but Elizabeth Forsythe somehow manages to keep a foot in both worlds. A fourth-year medical student at University of Oklahoma, Forsythe is pursuing residency in obstetrics and gynecology. Her passion for the subject of women’s health might be best exemplified by her endeavors as an educator in South America. “The spring before I started medical school, I spent four months teaching women’s health classes in rural Peru using a curriculum I developed myself,” she said. “We workshopped issues like healthy pregnancy, normal cycles of life and domestic violence.” Forsythe also coordinated a study on autoimmune mechanisms of disease, including postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and polycystic ovarian syndrome. She has submitted academic papers and delivered presentations on the same subject. It is, however, accomplishments like these that make her parallel musical career sound almost like the work of a different person altogether. As the fiddle player and AGE sometime vocalist for an all-female country band, Tequila 28 Songbirds, Forsythe has brought sweet sounds to Norman Music Festival, Noble’s Rose Rock Music Festival and Guthrie’s Red Brick Nights series. Forsythe finds inspiration in Oklahoma’s rich tradition of world-renowned musicians. But she also looks to the state’s increasing reputation for medical care and research, as exemplified by OU’s Stephenson Cancer Center’s status as a National Cancer Institutedesignated cancer center.

Kelley Gann is president of Freestyle Creative, a full-service marketing agency based in Moore. Her professional background combining creative direction, digital marketing, copywriting and film production has helped her company grow more than tenfold and its revenue increase by 12 times since she assumed her current role. Freestyle’s diverse client base ranges from Oklahoma State University Medical Center and Chickasaw Nation Department of Health and Population Research to Galleria Furniture and Home Creations — a testament not only to Gann’s strategic vision, but also her ability to implement it. Like any great advertising executive, Gann began as a copywriter and crawled her way up the ranks of another agency — Ackerman McQueen. But how did someone who is not yet 30 achieve so much in the business and creative world in so little time? Gann dispenses her professional advice with all the succinct clarity of a true adwoman. “Work hard, be kind, never stop learning and say yes to opportunities that help you evolve,” she said. AGE Now, she has her sights set on a 28 strategic growth plan for her agency, which she hopes to position as one of the top places to work in Oklahoma. And having recently been recognized as one of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber’s Metro 50 FastestGrowing Companies, it seems that Freestyle Creative is already well along the way. In the meantime, Gann serves as president of Oklahoma City Advertising Club. “Our mission is to protect, promote and preserve the wellbeing of advertising in our state,” she said. “Our membership encourages professional development, networking opportunities and a forum for idea exchange.”

KELLEY GANN

ELIZABETH FORSY THE

MEDICAL STUDENT, UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA FIDDLER, TEQUILA SONGBIRDS

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NORMAN CITY COUNCIL WARD 7 REPRESENTATIVE GENERAL MANAGER, FRIENDLY MARKET Norman roots run deep for Stephen Holman, from his childhood in the less economically advantaged part of town to his present status as a fixture of the local civic and business community. “I am a fourth-generation Norman native and I was raised almost entirely by a single dad,” he said. “I grew up on the east side of Norman and attended what is considered the poorest elementary school in town that also happens to be the most culturally diverse.” Now in his third term as Ward 7 representative on Norman City Council, Holman credits his early exposure to cultural diversity for making him both a well-rounded person and an effective, impactful councilman. As for his civic work over the last five years, Holman cites the Norman Forward Quality of Life initiative, which opened a new library this past summer, as a particularly proud achievement. A new, state-of-the-art downtown library is set to open in 2019. However, Holman’s recent life has been heavily affected by the other side of his career, which led to a different kind of engagement with local authority. In 2015, he became general manager of Friendly Market. Not long after, Norman police and the Cleveland County District Attorney’s office cracked down on the wellness store and its employees for the sale of glass pipes, which were deemed to be drug paraphernalia. A legal battle ensued, encompassing three jury trials and – ultimately – a decision in the store’s favor by the state’s highest court. Holman was also found not guilty of all charges. Friendly Market reopened in October 2017. “The store has become extremely successful since going through that entire ordeal,” he said. Holman will run for a fourth term on the council this February.

C O N G R AT U L AT I O N S

Executive Director The Oklahoma Conference of Churches congratulates Rev. Shannon Fleck for this much-deserved recognition and offers thanks for her faithful presence and bold leadership. Since 1972, OCC has worked tirelessly to connect, motivate, and empower faith communities throughout Oklahoma by promoting ecumenism and interfaith dialog and holding educational conferences, seminars, and training events. With Shannon’s wisdom and counsel, we look forward to many more decades of holy service in Oklahoma through partnership and community engagement.

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JONES PR Sometimes the best way to establish oneself in a company is to identify an area that is not receiving sufficient attention and make a push to take the lead. This is precisely what Taylor Ketchum did at Jones PR when she was 21. More than seven years later, Ketchum is director of consumer and digital marketing for the public relations agency, overseeing a team and managing accounts like Verizon Wireless, Harkins Theatres and Armstrong Auditorium. Ketchum and her fellow PR experts have garnered several prestigious awards, including a gold Cannes Lion at the 2018 Cannes International Festival of Creativity for their National Down Syndrome Society video, and personal recognition as top social media influencer at Facebook HQ in 2017. “I do not do what I do for awards, she said, “but it is always amazing to be able to come back to my team and show them what hard work can lead to.” Her work with National Down Syndrome Society carries some personal significance for Ketchum, as her brother-in-law suffers from the disorder. What began as basic social media work eventually led to involvement in legislative issues. “In 2015, I helped with aggressive grassroots efforts to get our legislators to pass ABLE [Achieving a Better Life Experience] Act, which allows those with disabilities to start a savings account,” she said. But this is just one way in which the importance of family manifests itself in Ketchum’s life. As the mother of two daughters under age 2, Ketchum strives to set a strong example. “I want to show my girls that women can be powerful, make big impacts, demand attention in a room of men and have full lives,” she said.

TAYLOR KETCHUM

The Rev. Shannon Fleck

DIRECTOR OF CONSUMER AND DIGITAL MARKETING

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CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER AND SENIOR GENERAL COUNSEL OKLAHOMA OFFICE OF JUVENILE AFFAIRS

JACE KIRK

Some achievements are concrete, specific, easy to identify; others are less tangible and gradually take shape as positive energy and momentum accumulate, leaving indelible imprints on people and places. This describes the work of Jace Kirk, former assistant director of FaithWorks of the Inner City and current dean of students at Santa Fe South High School. FaithWorks is a nonprofit ministry dedicated to alleviating the plight of inner-city youth in the Shidler-Wheeler area, with Shidler-Wheeler Community Thrift Store existing as a kind of stepping-stone into the workforce for local teenagers — a place for them to develop skills and build resumes before moving on. “Our location has provided a gathering place for our regular customers who just need someone to talk to at times,” Kirk said. “Our teens are learning that we are about more than making a dollar. We are about taking care of our people.” On a practical level, Kirk’s job involves management of after-school, economic development and housing AGE programs. But practical reality has a way of intersecting with the spiritual and mental 36 outlook of people and their communities. Kirk recognizes the importance of fostering the human spirit in those around him and enabling the kind of inner growth that manifests itself as outward improvement — to the community of Shidler-Wheeler, to the 1,000 students of Santa Fe South High School and, ultimately, to Oklahoma City as a whole. “The shift is often hard to explain to donors and volunteers,” he said, “but it has been the vital change needed in our neighborhood to see lasting change.”

DEAN OF STUDENTS SANTA FE SOUTH HIGH SCHOOL

RACHEL HOLT

Though born in Philadelphia, attorney Rachel Holt proudly calls Oklahoma City her home. After earning her Juris Doctor from University of Oklahoma College of Law in 2007, along with special recognition for her participation in the school’s Interdisciplinary Training Program on Child Abuse and Neglect, Holt began working as an assistant district attorney in the juvenile division of the Oklahoma County District Attorney’s Office. Over the past decade, she has balanced the demands of family and work while continuing to establish herself as an expert in the challenging world of juvenile justice. “It is my professional goal every day to help give the young people of Oklahoma every opportunity to lead a productive, happy life and not let their worst moment define them or their future,” she said. Since late last year, Holt has served as both chief operating officer and senior general counsel of the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA), which provides services for youthful offenders. In her AGE current capacity, she assists the executive 39 director with agency operations and legal advice and addresses judicial conferences and teaches continuing legal education courses on the topic of juvenile justice. Holt belongs to Junior League of Oklahoma City and serves on the board of Downtown Exchange Club of Oklahoma City. Her community service and civic endeavors include work with Quail Creek Elementary PTA and the Camp Fired Up Gala planning committee. She is also First Lady of Oklahoma City. “I love Oklahoma City and want to continue to work to make it a better place, especially for young people,” she said.

You’re the toast of the town. We’re raising our glass to the next generation of tried-andtrue professionals serving clients and organizations throughout Oklahoma City. Congratulations to BKD Partner Brian West and all of this year’s Forty Under 40 honorees.

Everyone needs a trusted advisor. Who’s yours?

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❏ Wake up dancing to The Spy on KOSU Radio ❏ Brighten that smile at Dental 32 ❏ Chow down on Hillbilly Hash at Sunnyside Diner ❏ Drop off your delicates at American Cleaners ❏ Warm up with Curry Beef Stew at Kwan’s Kitchen ❏ Dig up some quarters to mold a wax gorilla at the Oklahoma City Zoo ❏ Start dinner with a bowl of Famous Fried Mushrooms at Hideaway Pizza ❏ Catch an obscure anime at Tower Theatre ❏ Head to The Pump Bar and order a COOP Ale Works Saturday Siren to toast our favorite Robot Under 40, Brett Grimes! Strategic creative development for these (and many more) cool Oklahoma brands

RobotHouseCreative.com

CASEY LOGUE

FO R T Y U N D E R 40 PRESIDENT CAPITAL CITY SAFETY

Casey Logue’s dedication to improving safety standards in the field of construction stretches back more than a decade. Beginning his career with Timberlake Construction as an assistant project manager in 2007, Logue saw the opportunity to develop a more robust safety program, becoming director of safety by 2009, a brand-new position at the time. At age 26, Logue said he received approval from company management “to start a new safety department basically from scratch.” But his efforts did not stop there. Another significant promotion — to vice president of safety and risk management — came in 2016, by which point Logue was in a position to see his efforts pay off. AGE “After seven years in the making, 36 Timberlake Construction became the first contractor in Oklahoma to reach OSHA VPP Mobile Workforce star status,” he said. In January, Logue launched a safety consulting service, Capital City Safety, of which he is the president. In less than a year, the venture has already taken on multiple clients and gained recognition from Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America and National Safety Council, among others. “The construction industry is historically slow to adapt, but Capital City Safety changes that narrative,” he said. “We’re building the future of safety in Oklahoma.” Meanwhile, Logue serves as chairman of the AGC of Oklahoma Education Foundation, a private trust whose support for construction safety includes annual scholarships awarded to students in construction-related degree programs at Oklahoma State University. Logue’s story is a good example of what can happen when you “do what you love and love what you do.” “Safety is more than a job,” he said. “It’s a passion.”

CONGRATS to all the #fortyunder4018 honorees!

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The proverbial man of many hats, James Nghiem is an adjunct professor at Rose State College, a plot manager at Lettering Express and a contributing writer for NonDoc. But Nghiem’s creative impulses find expression in many ways. He is also an aspiring standup comedian, drummer and art curator. “I jump between all three of these disciplines every day and every week,” he said. “There’s not a day that passes where I don’t actively contribute to this city’s diverse art community.” His comedy career began with a local label called Robot Saves City, which has released 13 albums since 2010. “I’ve always used Robot Saves City to highlight emerging talent within Oklahoma City or around me,” he said. “Our alumni include Leah Kayajanian, Kevin Costello and Pat Regan, artists who’ve made their way onto Comedy Central, Sundance Film Festival and Adult Swim.” On a more personal note, Nghiem was named funniest person in Oklahoma by The Looney Bin in 2013. His musical career, in conjunction with his brother in The Nghiems, includes a 2012 music video, “Dum Dum Dah Dah,” with more than 86,000 views on YouTube and a new album this year. In the local art world, Nghiem has helped organize several successful shows, with proceeds going toward Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. He looks forward to new, as-yet unrealized endeavors spanning multiple media. “A lot of what I do is on a project-to-project basis,” he said. “I think if you love the process and you come into something with the right motive and effort, you can accomplish a lot.”

JAMES NGHIEM

ARTIST

AGE

34


MAT THEW PEACOCK

Much like 16th Street Plaza District, booming Uptown 23rd District centered along NW 23rd Street represents a flagship area of economic and cultural growth within the urban core of the city. Among the visibly revitalized buildings that have opened (or reopened) their doors recently, the Oklahoma City Community Church building serves as a key example. The present design of the building was a collaborative effort between church staff and Matthew Peacock, principal architect of WPM Design Group and a member of American Institute of Architects (AIA). “This project gave me the opportunity to restore life to a discarded building and help activate a long-dead commercial corridor,” AGE he said. “These types of projects are my 37 passion because of the impact that they have on the surrounding community.” Peacock’s passion for the community can also be seen in his work with several service organizations, including a few for which he serves on the board of the directors: Rotary Club of Norman, Citizens Advisory Board and Friends of the Norman Library. “Most truly successful people identified passions and causes in the community and put their efforts into making those their realities,” he said. “They created the life that they wanted to see, and their stories back that up. In short, be an advocate for what you believe in, and go get your hands dirty.” His aesthetic sensibilities are on further display at Relic Revival, 320 Elm Ave., in Yukon, which specializes in midcentury modern furniture and design artifacts. Peacock is the co-owner.

PRINCIPAL ARCHITECT WPM DESIGN GROUP

As vice president and director of banking center operations at Republic Bank & Trust, Jeff Miles oversees customer experience, equipment, training and staffing of Republic’s banking centers. But he also oversees something more profound: the development of employees’ talents. “Each new banker or young professional I can help develop only strengthens the outlook of our community,” he said. “I have had the privilege of working with many up-and-coming professionals over the last 15 years. While some of them have stayed at Republic, others have moved on to other organizations, continuing to make our communities better places to live, work and play.” Not surprisingly, Miles’ civic involvement is fairly extensive, with memberships including Rotary Club of Moore, Moore Education Services Committee, Pioneer Library System Foundation Board of Directors, Moore Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and Moore Public Schools Foundation. Rotary Club of Moore is probably Miles’ biggest source of pride. He was president of the organization in 2013, when a tornado tore through the community and left heartbreaking destruction in its wake. “The greatest acts of humanity I have ever witnessed came out of this disaster,” he said. “Rotarians from around the world provided funding, supplies and volunteer manpower to help in the relief efforts.” Miles helped organize these contributions, making sure volunteers’ efforts were directed into the appropriate channels. “While our community was temporarily broken, we have been able to come back stronger than ever before,” he said. “I’m honored to have been a part of that journey.”

ALYX PICARD DAVIS

PAOL A CHRISTINA LOPEZ

DIRECTOR OF STUDENT DEVELOPMENT AND COMMUNITY UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA COLLEGE OF ARTS AND SCIENCES

VICE PRESIDENT AND DIREC TOR OF BANKING CENTER OPERATIONS, REPUBLIC BANK & TRUST

JEFF MILES

Paola Cristina Lopez has dedicated her professional life to the pursuit of equity and inclusion in education. Beginning her career with University of Oklahoma (OU) as an admissions counselor in the early 2010s, Lopez set her sights on the recruitment of racial AGE minorities, including undocumented students, making extensive revisions to the university’s 30 admissions policy in the process. A few years later, Lopez moved to OU College of Arts and Sciences, where she presently serves as both an adjunct instructor and director of student development and community. Lopez spearheaded a massive effort to improve college readiness for the state’s growing Spanish-speaking demographic. This was a coordinated effort between various central Oklahoma institutions of learning, churches and community centers. “Leading this program showed me that the information gap is real and community members were starved for resources and education regarding college readiness,” she said. Lopez is also involved with a variety of civic groups, ranging from OU Latinx Coalition and National Conference on Race and Ethnicity to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Oklahoma. Lopez has always encouraged her students to think of their lives in terms of a greater purpose, to ask questions like “Why?” and “Why not?” in search of solutions.

AGE

35

FESTIVAL COORDINATOR AND HEAD OF OPERATIONS DEADCENTER FILM FESTIVAL

When Alyx Picard Davis volunteered at deadCenter Film Festival in 2006, it was still a relatively young enterprise. A dozen years later, it has become one of the city’s defining cultural events, and Davis’ relationship with it has grown in proportion. “Walking into that first special event, I was young, eager and terrified,” she said. “Walking out of it, I was hooked.” Returning to the festival in 2007, Davis took on the responsibility of archiving its database. With each year that followed, she devoted more and more of her time to the event, until at last, she was hired as a part-time programming coordinator in 2012. The next year brought full-time deadCenter employment as festival coordinator and head of operations, putting her in the position of day-today management, which she holds now. More recently, Davis’ presence in the local cinematic community has followed a logical progression into creative involvement with the AGE films themselves. 32 “While I don’t feel necessarily driven to pursue it as a career, I have a passion for assisting other filmmakers in bringing their vision to life,” she said. “By studying screenwriting in college and gaining extensive experience in operations, I’ve acquired a unique perspective on the filmmaking process and love serving as a bridge between creation and execution.” This year marked the completion of Davis’ first film as a director, Escape, conceived and executed in the span of 48 hours. She continues to consult on ideas, scripts, budgets and other practical realities behind the magical process of moviemaking, and she can’t wait to announce her next project. O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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Among the events that have defined the past year in Oklahoma, the April 2018 teachers’ walkout occupies a spot at the top. But the national headline-grabbing teacher action would not have been possible without the work of some dedicated people behind the scenes — people like Oklahoma Education Association’s Trent L. Ratterree. As legislative and organizing specialist at OEA, Ratterree was among those who helped organize the action in the first place. “It was inspiring to work with a group of Oklahomans who stood up for their profession and their students against a state that has continually cut education funding,” he said. In retrospect, Ratterree also sees the walkout as having positive community-wide effects. “It showed us how willing and capable the nonprofit community is at building partnerships to support students and families as the teachers were advocating at the Capitol,” he said. “In elections, voters are more strongly considering the effects elections have on core services, such as education and health care.” Ratterree, a former tight end in University of Oklahoma Sooners football program, is a master of public administration student at University of Central Oklahoma (UCO), where he also serves as president of Pi Alpha Alpha, a national honor society for the MPA program. In this capacity, he was particularly active in displaying public opposition to President Donald Trump’s proposed immigration policies. “Because of this, we came up with an event called Share the Love,” he said. “The event gave UCO students the opportunity to write, email or share on social media their love for people who have immigrated to the U.S., people of color and the LGBT community.”

STACI SANGER

DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND PLACEMAKING DOWNTOWN OKLAHOMA CITY PARTNERSHIP

No look at the landscape of Oklahoma City — geographical, professional or otherwise — is complete without downtown. Staci Sanger serves as director of marketing and placemaking at Downtown Oklahoma City Partnership, a nonprofit community development and management organization. Sanger oversees the partnership’s events, branding, sponsorships and fundraising, advertising, communications, social media and marketing initiatives. Downtown Oklahoma City technically encompasses eight separate districts. These naturally include many underutilized spaces that are ripe for the addition of, in Sanger’s words, AGE “beauty and whimsy.” 30 “In the past four years at Downtown OKC, I have helped fundraise for, facilitate, implement and install over 15 pieces of public art, with 10 more in the planning phase or currently under construction,” she said. “In addition to public art, I have helped conceptualize and install the first public bocce courts in downtown, the first semi-permanent parklet and an urban beach.” A few of these pieces include the Midtown Bocce Ball Courts (at Ninth Street and Hudson Avenue), “Nurture” by Beatriz Mayorca (in Hightower Park), “Abstract Passages” by Kris Kanaly (Main Street Underpass from Bricktown to the Central Business District) and #MakeItRainPoems by Short Order Poems (stencils that only appear when it rains downtown). Sanger’s advice for those hoping to succeed in her field(s) of expertise — marketing, nonprofit work and district management — is to cultivate and foster relationships. “It doesn’t have to be forced or feel inauthentic; just be kind,” she said. 46

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The legal field attracts some of the best and brightest minds in the young professional landscape. Kristin Richards, a trial attorney for the prestigious Hammons, Gowens, Hurst and Associates firm, is a great example. Working in the field of employment law, she assists clients who have been subject to discrimination, harassment or other wrongs by their employers — wrongs that are as much moral as legal. In her role as associate attorney, Richards assists and advocates for individuals who have been treated unfairly in the workplace due to circumstances beyond their control — characteristics like race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, age or disability. “Practicing employment law allows me to provide a voice to victims who feel helpless in their workplace environment,” she said. “My goal is to make sure every client I represent understands that I am advocating for their best interests and I am in their corner fighting for them 100 percent of the time.” Richards’ time is not entirely consumed by the practice of law. She is also active in a variety of causes and organizations, including (but by no means limited to) Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women (IEEW), a nonprofit that helps women grow their businesses, pursue greater entrepreneurial ventures and become active in the advocacy of policy. She is also involved in Junior League of Oklahoma City, Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, City Rescue Mission and Children’s Hospital Foundation. Richards serves on the Dean’s Council on Diversity, Equality and Inclusion for Oklahoma City University School of Law, the institution from which she earned her Juris Doctor.

TRIAL ATTORNEY HAMMONS, GOWENS, HURST AND ASSOCIATES Eric Schmid’s job is to, as he puts it, “design interesting buildings for interesting people.” As senior architect in Oklahoma City for Londonbased Allford Hall Monaghan Morris (AHMM), Schmid has been doing exactly that for the better part of a decade. “Oklahoma City is a place of burgeoning energy,” he said, “and I have been fortunate to work with ambitious clients that are passionate about developing purposeful buildings in Oklahoma City. Each project is a unique solution to a unique challenge and presents an opportunity to add joy to Oklahoma City.” A few of these purposeful projects include Oklahoma City Ballet’s Susan E. Brackett Dance Center, 6800 N. Classen Blvd., and Bob Moore Auto Group headquarters, 700 NW Fifth St. In fact, much of Schmid’s work could be considered “repurposing,” as neglected commercial structures are increasingly infused with new life, restoring their economic viability and bolstering the unstoppable growth of areas like Deep Deuce. “The Bob Moore Auto Group Building reimagined a woefully underused downtown AGE collision center into an engaging office building 31 that anchors development in the neighborhood,” he said. However, Schmid emphasizes that he is only one part of a talented group of architects, all of whom deserve credit for the success of each project. He and his fellow AHMM team members have helped ensure a steady flow of recognition and awards from groups like American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Urban Land Institute (ULI). As a volunteer, Schmid lends his time to events organized by AIA and Oklahoma City Foundation for Architecture, like the latter’s Buildings + Brews event. He also runs a boutique architectural photography studio.

ERIC SCHMID

AGE

LEGISLATIVE AND ORGANIZING SPECIALIST OKLAHOMA EDUCATION ASSOCIATION

SENIOR ARCHITECT ALLFORD HALL MONAGHAN MORRIS

AGE

29

KRISTIN RICHARDS

TRENT L . RAT TERREE

FO R T Y U N D E R 40


SELENA SKORMAN

Leah Roper works as an employment attorney at Laird Hammons Laird, but her resume ranges far beyond her legal career, with a special emphasis on a diverse variety of worthy causes. “In my career, I work hard to ensure that employees are treated lawfully by their employers across Oklahoma,” she said. “While this work is satisfying, I wanted to give more back to the community.” To that end, Roper has been a member of 16th Street Plaza District Association since 2014, Oklahoma Women’s Coalition since 2015 and Community Literacy Centers since 2016. Roper has risen to the level of vice president in all three organizations. Not content with mere participation in the causes for which she has a passion, Roper strives for the roles in which it is possible for her to bring about the most change. For example, the many people who attended and enjoyed this year’s Plaza District Festival have Roper to thank, at least in part. As co-chair of the festival along with Kristen Torkelson, Roper recruited committee members and coordinated all aspects of festival planning — a natural extension of the part she played in organizing the monthly Live! on the Plaza events between 2014 and 2017. Roper is also heavily involved with Arts Council Oklahoma City, Girl Scouts Western Oklahoma and deadCenter Film Festival. With such an eclectic collection of community involvements, where might Roper be expected to go from here? “There are a lot of options I’m exploring for the future, but I’m very interested in getting into public service on either the state or local level,” she said.

AGE

28

LEAH ROPER

EMPLOYMENT ATTORNEY LAIRD HAMMONS LAIRD

AGE

31

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR PLAZA DISTRICT ASSOCIATION As anyone who has lived in Oklahoma City for more than a couple of years knows, 16th Street Plaza District has undergone a massive turnaround, demonstrating the effect that the right combination of entrepreneurial vision and aesthetic sensitivity can have on formerly rundown neighborhoods. But if the Plaza is a rising star among city districts, its current success would not be possible without Selena Skorman. Skorman serves as executive director of Plaza District Association and Plaza Business Alliance. This year’s 16th Street Plaza District Festival was the culmination of extensive behind-the-scenes efforts on her part. Not surprisingly, she considers its success to be a significant business achievement and a proud moment. “You work and plan and work and plan, and then when it comes to the big day and you see a line of artist tents, hear music from the stages and see all the people come out and enjoy themselves, it’s a dream come true,” she said. Skorman is quick to credit the help of volunteers and donors in shaping the success of the Plaza, citing Mister Rogers’ quote, “Look for the helpers.” Remember them, she urges. “You’ll find that you have more people helping you than the other way around,” she said. Still in her first year as executive director, Skorman hopes to continue to learn and grow with the district. She might have some secret plans up her sleeve to make the festival bigger and better in future iterations. “For now, I’m focusing on learning how I can best serve the Plaza District and its visitors, business owners, property owners and stakeholders,” she said. Skorman has also worked with Arts Council Oklahoma City and its downtown Festival of the Arts. O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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FO R T Y U N D E R 40 ZAC SMITH

Congratulations

RESERVOIR ENGINEERING MANAGER, CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, VANESSA HOUSE BEER CO.

The oil and gas industry has long been the fuel that drives the state and local economy. Craft beer, on the other hand, is a relatively recent addition to the Oklahoma City business mix. Thanks to his years at Chesapeake Energy and his ownership of Vanessa House Beer Co., it’s safe to say that Zac Smith knows both. As reservoir engineering manager, Smith leads a team of seven workers — six engineers and one technician — in the development of the Haynesville and Bossier shales. His formal career began after his 2008 graduation from University of Oklahoma with a B.S. in petroleum engineering. It was also shortly after college that Smith, along with his brother and three of their friends, became interested in the world of craft beer. However, it was not a case of “love at first taste.” “Initially, we hated it,” he said. “It had way too much flavor for our novice palates, which had been honed on Keystone in our AGE earlier days. But thanks to the great beers 33 COOP was putting out at the time, we kept at it for a week or two and our taste buds were adjusted and a whole new world of beer was open to us.” The next step was brewing their own beer, followed by the creation of a production facility complete with a customer-friendly taproom at 118 NW Eighth St. in Automobile Alley, the goal being to help “make Oklahoma a beer tourism destination.” Through Vanessa House, Smith regularly cooks dinners for OK Kids Korral, which provides housing to families with children with cancer who are in the city for treatment.

As a partner at BKD CPAs & Advisors, Brian West brings well over a decade of accounting experience to bear for his firm. West has been providing audit and consulting services to clients in multiple industries for more than 13 years. This includes working with clients on U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings and compliance issues. He is also an instructor for BKD’s firmwide training programs for young professionals. In June 2014, West received the employeenominated BKD Pride Award, honoring his commitment to the firm’s foundational values. It remains his proudest business achievement. But West’s community service endeavors are easily as impressive as his accounting career. In fact, they are practically a career unto themselves. West has recently served as board president of Mental Health Association Oklahoma, where he not only led board meetings but also assisted with fundraising and promotion of mental health awareness throughout the state. His tenure marked a geographical transition for the previously Tulsa-based nonprofit. “Being a new nonprofit in Oklahoma City, we had to ensure that we did not upset other nonprofits in the area who had been established for years,” he said. “I have learned during this experience that a leader’s priority is bringing everyone together to focus on the end goal. Everyone’s goal in Oklahoma City is to help those with mental illness, and we’re off to a great start through a focus on collaboratively identifying potential solutions.” West’s accomplishments in this capacity include overseeing the opening of Oklahoma City’s first housing complex for individuals with mental illness and housing more than 100 people who were previously homeless. West also volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Oklahoma. 48

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BRIAN WEST

PARTNER BKD CPAS & ADVISORS

AGE

38


MANAGING PARTNER TOWER THEATRE

AGE

JABEE WILLIAMS

35

AGE

36

STEPHEN T YLER

The refurbished Tower Theatre is one of the great success stories of Oklahoma City in the early 21st century — the transformation of an iconic but sadly neglected 1930s movie house into a midsize concert venue that favorably compares with any theater of its kind in any city. The process that made this possible was certainly collaborative, relying on dedicated individuals and supportive organizations, but it is just as certain that Stephen Tyler, managing partner and “technomancer” at the theater, played a major role. “Many creative approaches had to be taken to ensure respect was shown to the performance on stage while also maintaining the historical integrity of the building,” he said. Tyler’s words speak to the twin impulses of creativity and technology that have shaped his life since childhood. “By the time I reached junior high, I had already been dabbling with building customized computers,” he said, “but it was there that I began my interest in music through joining band and playing clarinet.” This skillset led to a position as technical coordinator at ACM@UCO between 2009 and 2017. “During my tenure, I designed, built and maintained the recording and performance facilities as well as the rest of the technology found in a typical higher education institution, while throwing a little creativity in here and there,” he said. Now, aside from his Tower Theatre involvement, Tyler works as technical coordinator for deadCenter Film Festival and owns Mostly Harmless Media. It’s an impressive resume by any standard, but Tyler is quick to give credit to his carefully assembled support structure for “raising the tide” with which ships like Tower were raised in turn.

Like so many of his inspirations, from Tupac to El-P, it would be overly simplistic to label Jabee Williams as merely a hip-hop musician. As an artistic and entrepreneurial presence, his influence looms increasingly large over his city of residence. For one thing, Williams is breaking into acting, with a handful of recent movie and TV credits to his name, including this year’s Gosnell: The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer and The Last Defense series. However, he remains somewhat modest about this aspect of his career. “I don’t like to consider myself an actor,” he said. “People live and die for that.” Another area of professional involvement for Williams is music education, most recently at ACM@UCO, where he teaches hip-hop studies. As a community leader, Williams helped organize the 60th anniversary of the Katz Drug Store sit-in and participates in numerous events to benefit the homeless — a subject that is especially near to him, as he experienced a period of homelessness during his middle school years. He was also appointed to Oklahoma Arts Commission last year, giving him the opportunity to assist in approving various art projects for the city. Williams is a Tower Theatre partner, but his business aspirations do not stop there. His plans for 2019 include the opening of two restaurants on the northeast side where he grew up, joining what appears to be a coming wave of economic growth. “The cool thing about it is that we have the opportunity to have black businesses on the east side and employ black people on the east side, so I’m excited about that,” he said.

RAPPER/ACTOR/EDUCATOR/ACTIVIST/ENTREPRENEUR O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8

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FO R T Y U N D E R 40

Nominations are open for the

Class of 2019

SENIOR MANAGER

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EIDE BAILLY

DESIREE YEARBY

Do you know someone in Central Oklahoma under 40 who has achieved exceptional results and status in the business, creative, nonprofit and/or governmental sectors of our community?

PUBLIC RELATIONS SPECIALIST/FOUNDER GOTSTEEZE.NET

Though she works in e-commerce for an Edmond-based consumer electronics distributor by day, Desiree Yearby has another identity. She is “the queen of Oklahoma hip-hop.” The title was bestowed on her after years of public relations work for the local community. A proud product of Oklahoma City’s east side, Yearby entered the local cultural scene at the tender age of 16, joining the Puzzle People creative collective. She has gone on to produce fashion shows, host musical events, manage social media accounts and serve as a consultant to numerous influential creatives. Yearby, who often goes by “Dezz” or “DezzGotSteeze,” runs a blog, Got Steeze? The site has become a significant hip-hop platform, putting her in a better position to collaborate with other businesses and media outlets to ensure recognition for talent that might otherwise fly under the radar. AGE “Creating GotSteeze.net has been able to open 28 doors for me, women around me and the artists I write about,” she said. As a freelance PR specialist and event coordinator, Yearby has worked with a long list of artists and businesses, including Tower Theatre, Jabee Williams, Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, Oklahoma Arts Council, 16th Street Plaza District, Debate Night OKC, Steph Simon, Jaiye Farrell, 51st Street Speakeasy and more. Yearby also serves on the board of The Lifelines Initiative, a nonprofit that focuses on art programs in underfunded public schools with emphasis on music career counseling. “Our youth need more positive and relevant role models that can help to guide them towards a productive and well-adjusted lifestyle,” said local hip-hop artist and Lifelines executive director Jim Conway. “Desiree is helping to make that vision a reality.” It seems that Yearby always has a new project underway, the latest being a music marketing seminar that she’s teaching at ACM@UCO.

KRISTINE WISE

As tax season draws near, it’s a good time to honor the work of truly dedicated professionals like Kristine Wise. As senior manager at Eide Bailly, Wise is putting her associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting and her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) certification to their best use possible. “Earning the CPA designation has unlocked many doors in my career, helped me flourish in my role at Eide Bailly and grow as a person in general,” she said. “I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t studied for many hours and given it my all to pass the CPA exam, even after failing one part of the exam multiple times.” This is an inspiring point in Wise’s story because it is exactly where others might have given up. The portion of the exam in question required a passing score of 75. Wise failed first with a 71, then another 71 and then a 74. At this point, she took stock of her situation and, with the encouragement AGE of her parents, resolved to keep trying — only to fail again with a 68. 31 But she persisted and ultimately succeeded, an experience that she said helped increase her confidence in herself. “When you hear keynote speakers discuss failures and how to learn from them, I think you have to have your own failures to understand what it takes to actually learn from experiences,” she said. Wise’s work ethic can also be seen in her dedication to serving the nonprofit Christmas Connection, Inc., as its treasurer. Doing business under the name Sharing Tree, the store allows families in need to do their Christmas shopping at no cost.


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Invite Gazette readers to your house of worship for holiday services in the Holiday Services Directory.

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CALENDAR These are events recommended by Oklahoma Gazette editorial staff members. For full calendar listings, go to okgazette.com.

BOOKS Mid-Oklahoma Writers a meetup for local writers featuring guest speakers and literary discussions, 7-9 p.m. every other Wednesday. Eastside Church of Christ, 916 S. Douglas Blvd., 405-7320393. WED Suzy Amis Cameron book signing the author and environmental advocate will autograph copies of her book OMD: The Simple, Plant-Based Program to Save Your Health, Save Your Waistline, and Save the Planet, 1-3p.m. Nov. 17. Commonplace Books, 1325 N. Walker Ave., 405-534-4540, commonplacebooksokc.com. SAT

FILM American Hardcore (2006, USA, Paul Rachman) a documentary chronicling the development and rise of hardcore punk in United States, 8-11 p.m. Nov. 15. Resonator, 325 E. Main St., Norman, resonator. space. THU Burning (2018, South Korea, Chang-dong Lee) an aspiring writer’s crush on a former classmate becomes something else after she goes missing in this film based on a Haruki Murakami short story, 5:30 p.m. Nov. 16. Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, 405-236-3100, okcmoa.com. FRI Dark City (1998, USA, Alex Proyas) a man with amnesia discovers horrible existential truths attempting to solve his own personal mystery in this cerebral sci-fi film, 7-8:30 p.m. Nov. 19. Tower Theatre, 425 NW 23rd St., 405-708-6937, towertheatreokc.com. MON

Current Joys is the enigmatic solo project of 25-year-old Nevada-born singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Rattigan.

CURRENT JOYS WITH

Filmography: Somebody Up There Likes Me (2012, USA, Bob Byington) three friends watch 35 years of life pass them by in this comedy, 8-10 p.m. Nov. 16. 21c Museum Hotel, 900 W. Main St., 405982-6900, 21cmuseumhotels.com. FRI Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016, Taika Waititi, New Zealand) a manhunt ensues when two people become stranded in the wilderness, 2 p.m. Nov. 18. Oklahoma City University Meinders School of Business, 2700 N. McKinley Ave., 4052085593. SUN The Last Waltz (1978, USA, Martin Scorsese) The Band plays its final concert, joined by Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Bob Dylan and many more in this classic music documentary; nonperishable food will be collected for the Regional Food Bank at this screening,

UP NEXT AT THE LAB:

(405) 974-4711 | acm-uco.com

Metro Music Series Sponsors

Vegan Holiday Desserts If you’re tired of explaining to Grandma why turkey gravy isn’t vegan and answering “Well what do you eat anyway?” at every family dinner, you can learn to make a variety of holiday deserts at this cooking demonstration by Health Konscious founder Nicole Asali. The chef will share some of her favorite recipes for cooks of all experience levels so you can ensure the holiday potluck will have at least one thing you can eat that isn’t parsley. Get cooking 1-3 p.m. Saturday at Natural Grocers, 7013 N. May Ave. Admission is free. Call 405-840-0300 or visit naturalgrocers.com. SATURDAY Photo Bigstock.com

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AQHA World Championships the American Quarter Horse Association’s pinnacle event with class competitions including halter, English and Western disciplines, Nov. 17. Oklahoma State Fair Arena, 333 Gordon Cooper Blvd., 405-948-6700, okstatefair.com. THU-SAT The Black Out Brunch author Cordney “MAC Woods” McClain will sign copies of his poetry book Blacker than Shakespeare’s Ink: The Diary of a Nostalgic Kid at this event, which also features performances by Poetic City poets; all-black attire required, 1-4 p.m. Nov. 18. Ice Event Center & Grill, 1148 NE 36th St., 405-208-4240, iceeventcentergrill. eat24hour.com. SUN Creative Oklahoma’s Ambassador Spotlight enjoy cocktails, dinner and an informative presentation by author and environmental advocate Suzy Amis Cameron, 6-11 p.m. Nov. 16. Urban Farmhouse Designs, 400 S. Western Ave, 405-812-8374, urbanfarmhouse.com. FRI Curing Your Stupid Addiction To Being Right brand identity agents Amy and Jennifer Hood present a discussion on learning from mistakes and maintaining flexibility as a creative, 6-9 p.m. Nov. 16. The Paramount Room, 701 W. Sheridan Ave., 405-887-3327, theparamountroom.com. FRI The Diversity Panel learn about the process of diversifying your business at this discussion including human resource directors and other professionals, 6-8 p.m. Nov. 15. Saxum, 621 N. Robinson Ave., Suite 600, 405-605-2003, saxum.com. THU Drag Bingo compete to win prizes at this evening benefitting Other Options, Inc. and Great Plains Rodeo Association and hosted by Luxx Bentley, 7 p.m. Nov. 18. The Boom, 2218 NW 39th St., 405-6017200, theboomokc.com. SUN Holiday Lights Spectacular see more than 100 animated lights displays and a 118-foot Christmas tree on a 1.5-mile drive soundtracked by classic holiday songs, Nov. 16-Dec. 25. Joe B. Barnes Regional Park, 8700 E. Reno Ave., Midwest City, 405-7391293, midwestcityok.org. FRI-TUE Inspiring Conversations with Jeff Krisman join the podcast host in a live conversation with Tom Spanier, an artist and partner of Around Town Art LLC, and Topher Owen, the creative director of the The Space Improv group and BRD Jazz Trio, 6-7:30 p.m. Nov. 15. [Artspace] at Untitled, 1 NE Third St., 405-815-6665, 1ne3.org. THU

Paseo Arts Awards Dinner local artistic luminaries including Kris Kanaly, Joel Levine and Robbie Kienle will be honored at this annual dinner and fundraiser for Paseo Arts Association, 6-9 p.m. Nov. 15. Skirvin Hilton Hotel, 1 Park Ave., 405-272-3040, skirvinhilton.com. THU

Public welcome. All Performance Lab tickets available at eventbrite.com

Nov. 30: Colourmusic with Applied Music Program and Net Dec. 7: Combsy & Henna Roso (Horton Records Showcase) March 3: Noname with Original Flow & The Fervent Route April 27: The Tallest Man on Earth

HAPPENINGS

OKC Town Hall Lecture attend an informational presentation about environmental sustainability by Greenpeace co-founder Patrick Moore, 10:30 a.m. Nov. 15. Church of the Servant, 14343 N. MacArthur Blvd., 703-481-0000. THU

7p.m. p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018 · $10 329 E Sheridan Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73104

The Proud Rebel (1958, USA, Michael Curtiz) a man seeks medical aid for his son in the dangerous days following the Civil War, 1-2:30 p.m. Nov. 14. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, 1700 NE 63rd St., 405-478-2250, nationalcowboymuseum.org. WED

Jackpot Bingo enter for the chance to win a cumulative cash prize and enjoy food and drink specials, 8-10 p.m. Mondays through Nov. 25. Fassler Hall, 421 NW 10th St., 405-609-3300, fasslerhall. com. MON

LOVE SEATS + LUNAR LAUGH

ACM@UCO PERFORMANCE LAB

7:30 p.m. Nov. 19. Rodeo Cinema, 2221 Exchange Ave, 405-235-3456. MON

Permaculture: Gardening for Sustainability learn about the sustainability program at SixTwelve, 6 p.m. Nov. 14. Will Rogers Garden Center, 3400 NW 36th St., 405-943-0827, okc.gov. WED Take a Bite Out of Hunger Jewish Federation of Greater Oklahoma City invites members of the Jewish community to help pack and sort food; children who are too young to help and adults who are unable to do heavy lifting will have alternative duties to perform, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Nov. 18. Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, 3355 S. Purdue St., 405-972-1111, regionalfoodbank.org. SUN Transgender Day of Remembrance a rally and candlelight vigil memorializing victims of hate crimes in the transgender community, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Nov. 20. Freedom Oklahoma, 4001 N. Classen Blvd., 405-446-8836, freedomoklahoma.org. TUE World Championship Boxing see Oklahoma City’s Alex Saucedo fight Dallas’ Maurice Hooker for the World Super Lightweight Title, 5:30 p.m. Nov. 16. Chesapeake Energy Arena, 100 W. Reno Ave., 405-602-8700, chesapeakearena.com. FRI

FOOD Boare’s Heade Feaste enjoy a holiday-season feast fit for a medieval king at this dinner featuring live entertainment, 7-10 p.m. Nov. 17. The Castle of Muskogee, 3400 West Fern Mountain Road, Muskogee, 918-687-3625, okcastle.com. SAT

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Ron Campbell Pop-Up Art Show In his 50-year career, animator Ron Campbell worked on beloved cartoons such as Rugrats, Scooby-Doo, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the Beatles’ film Yellow Submarine. Meet the man himself, who will be showcasing and selling some of his original artwork. Campbell is scheduled to appear 4-8 p.m. Friday, noon-6 p.m. Saturday and noon-4 p.m. Sunday at Framed in the Village, 10631 N. May Ave. Admission is free. Call 405-748-7400 or visit framedinthevillage.com. Y

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Myriad Kitchen: Soups and Salsas representatives from Trader Joe’s offer menu suggestions, recipes, cooking tips and other advice to help consumers make better food choices, 7-8:30 p.m. Nov. 15. Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W. Reno Ave., 405-445-7080, myriadgardens.com. THU

4240, iceeventcentergrill.eat24hour.com. FRI

Sunday Brunch with Plato Provisions enjoy vegan dishes from the popular food truck and craft beer from the local brewery, 11 a.m. Nov. 18. Anthem Brewing Company, 908 SW Fourth St., 405-6040446, anthembrewing.com. SUN

Musica Transalpina: The Italian Influence on Elizabethan Music the University of Oklahoma’s Collegium Musicum will perform music popular in the time of Shakespeare, including music for royal weddings and Italian and English madrigals, 3 p.m. Nov. 18. Catlett Music Center, 500 W. Boyd St., Norman, 405-325-0538, musicaltheatre.ou.edu. SUN

YOUTH Early Explorers toddlers and preschoolers can participate in fun scientific activities they can repeat later at home, 10-11 a.m. Thursdays, Science Museum Oklahoma, 2020 Remington Place, 405-602-6664, sciencemuseumok.org. THU Jennifer Hustis book signing the local author will autograph copies of her book The Wild Horse Who Loved the Girl about a preteen girl who adopts a homeless horse, 11 a.m.-noon Nov. 17. Best of Books, 1313 E. Danforth Road, Edmond, 405-3409202, bestofbooksok.com. SAT Litttle Saplings this educational workshop teaches toddlers about gardening with songs, games, and hands-on activities, 10 a.m.-noon every other Tuesday. Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W. Reno Ave., 405-445-7080, myriadgardens.com. TUE School’s Out Day Camps children age 4-11 can learn about connecting and caring for wildlife at these camps; snacks provided but campers must bring their own lunches, 8:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m. Nov. 1921. The Oklahoma City Zoo, 2000 Remington Place, 405-424-3344, okczoo.com. MON-WED Storytime Science the museum invites children age 6 and younger to hear a story and participate in a related scientific activity, 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays, Science Museum Oklahoma, 2020 Remington Place, 405-602-6664, sciencemuseumok.org. TUE

PERFORMING ARTS Battle of the Hardest Artist performers compete in the art of their choice to win cash prizes with the winner chosen by the audience, 9-11:30 p.m. third Monday of every month. Hubbly Bubbly Hookah & Café, 2900 N. Classen Blvd., Suite K, 405609-2930. MON Color of Art local bands perform while local artists are invited to create live art, 10 p.m.-midnight Nov. 16. Saints, 1715 NW 16th St., 405-602-6308, saintspubokc.com. FRI Comedy Fight League: Thanks-Killing local comics trade insults at this professional-wrestlingthemed roast battle, 8-9 p.m. Nov. 17. New World Comics, 6219 N. Meridian Ave., 405-721-7634, newworldcomics.net. SAT Comedy Night with Jer-Dog the Chicagobased road comic stops in Oklahoma City, 8-9:30 p.m. Nov. 15. Off the Wall Club, 3007 SE 44th St., 405-672-2994, facebook.com/offthewallclub. THU Frankenstein a broadcast of a live production of the stage adaptation of Mary Shelley’s classic Gothic horror novel presented by the National Theatre, Nov. 18. OCCC Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater, 7777 S. May Ave., 405-682-7579, tickets.occc.edu. SUN Funny AF Fridays hosted by Dope Astronauts, this weekly comedy showcase features a nationally touring headliner and local standups, 9 p.m. Fridays. Ice Event Center & Grill, 1148 NE 36th St., 405-208-

The Moth Mainstage the popular podcast presents a curated storytelling show with five performers, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 15. Cain’s Ballroom, 423 N. Main St., Tulsa, 918-584-2306, cainsballroom.com. THU

OCU Percussion Ensemble in Concert the ensemble presents its fall concert directed by Dr. David Steffens and Prof. Patrick Womack, 7:30-9 p.m. Nov. 20. Bass School of Music, OCU, 2501 N. Blackwelder Ave., 405-208-5227, okcu.edu. TUE OKC Art Battle a dozen visual artists create competitively with live music from Fresh Juice Party, 8 p.m.-2 a.m. Nov. 16. The Root, 3012 N. Walker Ave., 405-655-5889, therootokc.com. FRI Oklahoma Heritage Concert a musical exploration of the state’s cultural past highlighting Native American history, the Dust Bowl and famous Sooners through history, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Nov. 16. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, 1700 NE 63rd St., 405-478-2250, nationalcowboymuseum.org. FRI Pick-A-Tune with Lucas Ross people who have never played the banjo are invited to learn a song; instruments provided, 2-3 p.m. Nov. 17. American Banjo Museum, 9 E. Sheridan Ave., 405-604-2793, americanbanjomuseum.com. SAT Susannah the Wanda Bass School of Music presents the Carlisle Floyd opera set in rural Tennessee and featuring Appalachian folk music and dance, Nov. 16-18. Oklahoma City University Campus, Kirkpatrick Auditorium, 2501 N. Blackwelder Ave., 405-208-5000, okcu.edu. FRI-SUN

ENJOY WORLD-CLASS DANCE, MUSIC, AND THEATER!

Home for the Holidays Dance Extravaganza - Dec. 6-9 "Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley" Play - Dec. 6-9 Christmas Vespers Concert - Dec. 7-8

Those Who Lie Beyond an immersive performance art experience that requires visitors to move through the space interacting with actors and making choices to determine the outcome, through Nov. 17. Factory Obscura, 1522 S. Robinson Ave., factoryobscura.com FRI-SAT Traditional Music of the Open Prairie multiinstrumentalist Wayne Cantwell performs folk songs on banjo, fiddle and mountain dulcimer, 1-2 p.m. Nov. 17. American Banjo Museum, 9 E. Sheridan Ave., 405604-2793, americanbanjomuseum.com. SAT UCO Opera: Speed Dating Tonight an original opera by Michael Ching about modern dating and featuring an ensemble cast, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Nov. 14-17. UCO Jazz Lab, 100 E. Fifth St., Edmond, 405359-7989, ucojazzlab.com. WED-SAT Vienna Boys Choir the Austrian choir performs a selection of works celebrating Vienna, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20. Armstrong Auditorium, 14400 S. Bryant Ave., Edmond, 405-285-1010, armstrongauditorium. org. TUE

ACTIVE Learn to Curl learn the basics of the sport from the Oklahoma Curling Club; wear warm clothes and rubber-soled shoes, 9-10:30 a.m. Nov. 17. Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W. Reno Ave., 405-445-7080, myriadgardens.com. SAT

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continued from page 53 Learn-to-Swim Program Giving residents of all ages and financial situations the opportunity to learn to swim with proper technique and basic water safety at their own pace offered by the King Marlin Swim Club, ongoing, Through Dec. 31. Lighthouse Fitness (Front), 3333 W. Hefner Road, 405-845-5672, marlinswimamerica.com. SAT-MON

Monday Night Group Ride meet up for a weekly 25-30 minute bicycle ride at about 18 miles per hour through east Oklahoma City, 6 p.m. Mondays. The Bike Lab OKC, 2200 W. Hefner Rd., 405-603-7655. MON Wheeler Criterium a weekly nighttime cycling event with criterium races, food trucks and family activities, 5-8 p.m. Tuesdays. Wheeler Park, 1120 S. Western Ave., 405-297-2211, okc.gov. TUE

VISUAL ARTS American Indian Artists: 20th Century Masters an exhibition of Native art from the Kiowa Six, Harrison Begay, Tonita Peña and more, through May 12, 2019. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, 1700 NE 63rd St., 405-478-2250, nationalcowboymuseum.org. SAT-THU ArtNow an annual exhibition of works by Oklahoma-based contemporary artists including paintings, photos, ceramics and crafts such as tattoo designs and handmade knives, Nov. 16-Jan. 18, 2019. Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, 3000 General Pershing Blvd., 405-951-0000, oklahomacontemporary.org. FRI Beautiful Minds: Dyslexia and the Creative Advantage an exhibition of artworks created by people with dyslexia including students from Oklahoma City’s Trinity School, through July 14, 2019. Science Museum Oklahoma, 2020 Remington Place, 405-602-6664, sciencemuseumok.org. FRI-THU Cowboys in Khaki: Westerners in the Great War learn about the ways Westerners contributed to the US effort in World War I at this exhibit featuring military, rodeo and other historical memorabilia from the time period, Nov. 17-May 12, 2019. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, 1700 NE 63rd

St., 405-478-2250, nationalcowboymuseum.org.

SAT-THU

Daren Kendall: Threshold With Me view seven sculptural thresholds based on the seven terraces of Dante’s purgatory, through Dec. 30. Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, 555 Elm Ave., Norman, 405-3253272, ou.edu/fjjma. FRI-SUN Fall 2018 Group Exhibition an exhibition of works from local artists including Kjelshus Collins, John Davidson, Shanina Graves and more, through Nov. 30. The Art Hall, 519 NW 23rd St., 405-2315700, art.theriseokc.com. FRI Fresh stART an exhibition of artworks by artists currently experiencing homelessness, through Nov. 25. The Paseo Plunge, 3010 Paseo Plunge, 405-3156224, paseoplunge.org. TUE-SUN John Brand view works by painter/photographer John Brand, through Dec. 31. 50 Penn Place Gallery, 1900 Northwest Expressway, 405-848-5567, 50pennplacegallery.com. SUN-MON National Geographic Photo Ark a collection of images captured by National Geographic photographer Joel Sartore to preserve current species for future generations, through Dec. 16. The Oklahoma City Zoo, 2000 Remington Place, 405-424-3344, okczoo.com. WED-SUN Pop Stars! Popular Culture and Contemporary Art an exploration of contemporary pop art inspired by Andy Warhol, Nick Cave, R. Luke DuBois and others, through Feb. 28, 2019. 21c Museum Hotel, 900 W. Main St., 405-982-6900, 21cmuseumhotels.com. SUN-THU Red Dot a silent art auction and fundraiser for the Individual Artists of Oklahoma, 7-10 p.m. Nov. 17. IAO Gallery, 706 W. Sheridan Ave., 405-232-6060, iaogallery.org. SAT Sandra Patterson and Paul White an exhibition of oils on canvas and porcelain and watercolor and acrylic paintings, through Nov. 30. Porcelain Art Museum, 2700 N. Portland Ave., 405-521-1234, wocp.org. MON-FRI Seeds of Being curated by students enrolled in the university’s Native American Art & Museum Studies Seminar, this exhibition examines the impact of art in indigenous communities, through Dec. 30. Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, 555 Elm Ave., Norman, 405-325-3272, ou.edu/fjjma. TUE-SUN Still Looking: The Photography Collection of Carol Beesley Hennagin an exhibition of selections from Hennagin’s extensive collection, including works by Edward Weston, Frederick Sommer and more, through Dec. 30. Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, 555 Elm Ave., Norman, 405-325-3272, ou.edu/ fjjma. TUE-SUN Ticket to Ride: Artists, Designers, And Western Railways Exhibition view some of the paintings, studies, posters, and graphics that resulted from collaborations between artists and commercial designers with Western rail companies between the late 1880s and early 1930s, through Dec. 30. Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, 555 Elm Ave., Norman, 405-325-3272, ou.edu/fjjma. FRI-

SUN

FREE ADMISSION

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC “Little Steven” Van Zandt chats one-on-one with Scott Booker, Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma CEO, during this exclusive event!

2p.m. Monday, Nov. 26, 2018

“LITTLE STEVEN” VAN ZANDT SONGWRITING ROOM

25 S. Oklahoma Ave., 1st Floor, Oklahoma City, OK 73104 (405) 974-4700 | acm-uco.com 54

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Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts & Crafts Movement an exhibit exploring the revolutionary artworks of Victorian Engliand featuring many works not previously seen outside the UK, through Jan. 6, 2019. Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, 405-236-3100, okcmoa.com. SAT-SUN

National Theatre Live: Frankenstein People who have trouble distinguishing between Dr. Frankenstein and the monster he creates will not be helped at all by this rebroadcast of a stage adaptation of Mary Shelley’s classic proto-sci-fihorror novel presented by London’s National Theatre, directed by Danny Boyle and featuring Dr. Strange’s Benedict Cumberbatch and Elementary’s Johnny Lee Miller alternating roles between the mad scientist and his unholy creation. If that sounds confusing, try to remember that neither of them is at that moment playing Sherlock Holmes. It’s (a)live 6-9 p.m. Sunday at Visual and Performing Arts Center at Oklahoma City Community College, 7777 S. May Ave. Tickets are $15. Visit occc.edu.

Whiteout at Campbell Art Park an outdoor artwork made by hundreds of transparent white spheres embedded with white LED lights and animated in large-scale patterns, through March 31, 2019. Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, 3000 General Pershing Blvd., 405-951-000, oklahomacontemporary.org. WED-THU

Submissions must be received by Oklahoma Gazette no later than noon on Wednesday seven days before the desired publication date. Late submissions will not be included in the listings. Submissions run as space allows, although we strive to make the listings as inclusive as possible. Fax your listings to 528-4600 or e-mail them to listings@okgazette.com. Sorry, but phone submissions cannot be accepted.

SUNDAY Photo provided

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EVENT

MUSIC

Being Broncho

The ever-evolving Tulsa band is on its best Bad Behavior on its new album. By Jeremy Martin

Keeping an accurate count of untoward actions, ugly manners and poor form in any given 24-hour news cycle or endlessly scrolling social media timeline seems impossible, but Broncho’s Ryan Lindsey has been taking notes. “Everybody’s behavior is on full display,” Lindsay, the band’s vocalist and lyricist, said. “And you watch that stuff, you pay attention to it, and then you write a record, and then you call your record Bad Behavior. I guess maybe this is my therapy, talking about it and figuring it out, where it all came from.” The Tulsa-based band’s fourth album might have been written in response to the current state of the world, but Lindsey said it’s not meant as a condemnation. “I don’t think we’re passing judgment,” Lindsey said. “We’re more just reporting on ourselves and other people, whatever it is that we’ve made … but I’m not fighting to make a point. It’s not editorial. It’s maybe a little more factsbased. We’re a facts-based band from Oklahoma, digging deep for the truth.” The truth is keeping count of the instances of bad behavior in Bad Behavior would be more difficult than tallying the social gaffes on social media because the album’s lyrics are mostly impressionistic images and innuendos, puzzle pieces that not even their author has fully fitted together until after the fact. “I think the way that I write music, it doesn’t have to be about anything,” Lindsey said, “but I think I start figuring out that it is about something.” Lindsey, who recently relistened to his band’s discography to prepare for the current tour, said he sees Bad Behavior as a logical continuation of 2016’s critically acclaimed Double Vanity, which Spin called “perfection refracted.” “The last record had a lot more reverb on it, but there’s a connection there for me, character-wise,” Lindsey said. “I feel Broncho frontman Ryan Lindsay | Photo Alexa Ace

like the same character is in there somewhere. Whatever Broncho is, that character, he’s there on both records. For that matter, I can listen to all four records and hear that person, see that person. I can picture him. It’s just like looking through different yearbooks, different ages of whoever this person is. It kind of depends on where I am mentally or even physically. I think the character evolves in seasons one through four. Stream all the episodes.” Slower-tempo, reverb-soaked Double Vanity — the follow-up to commercial breakthrough Just Enough Hip to Be Woman and the first to feature bassist Penny Pitchlynn alongside drummer Nathan Price and guitarist Ben King — marked a stylistic shift for the band formerly known for fast-paced, hooklaced songs such as “Class Historian” and “It’s On.” To Lindsey, however, the albums all sound remarkably consistent. “Maybe it’s because a lot of people tell me how different we are record to record so that I expect it to shock me when I listen to everything,” Lindsey said, “and then shockingly, everything sounds more similar. … It’s all the same thing really.” Bad Behavior is the second album recorded by Broncho’s current lineup, and Lindsey said relationships within the band have only improved with age. “We all came together pretty easily in the end, but we’ve gotten better at all the things you need to get better at to keep things going,” Lindsey said. “It’s always a continuing process to figure out how to communicate better.” Opening for long-lived iconic acts including Billy Idol, Mission of Burma, Queens of the Stone Age and Guided by Voices has taught Lindsey several valuable lessons about how to front a rock band. “Josh [Homme] from Queens of the Stone Age, he’s so easy and light,” Lindsey said, “and the way he handles his stuff, he does it in a way that’s good for a band like us to watch, and Bob [Pollard] from Guided by Voices, he has his own way of doing things. He cruises through the whole thing.” While playing support for high-profile musicians is an educational experience, Lindsey said, most interactions can be if you approach them the right way. “I’ve learned a lot from all of them, and you learn from the people opening up for you, too,” Lindsey said. “You can learn from everybody. Keeping an open mind and being open to learning more is the easiest way to stay happy in our world. … Those things can, I think, lower your blood pressure. I don’t know for sure, but it seems like it lowers mine. … It almost keeps me from making all my

things so sacred to myself.” Touring in Europe has also been a learning opportunity, but Lindsey said he quickly discovered he should be on his best behavior when he’s representing his home state.

I think the character evolves in seasons one through four. Stream all the episodes. Ryan Lindsey “Meeting anybody there, or even going around the U.S. and talking to different people, it gives me a different perspective on us at home,” Lindsey said, “because a lot of times maybe I’m the first person from where I’m from that somebody’s met, and so they’re like, ‘Oh, you’re from Oklahoma. It surprises me that you’re here.’ And then they find out why I’m there and it makes sense to them and they have a different perspective on where I’m from. … I think it’s important for almost anybody to travel because they become an ambassador from their place that they come from. … It helps, diplomatically, keeping in contact and keeping a dialogue going. So you know everything’s OK, and that lowers blood pressure, I’m pretty sure.” Lowered blood pressure aside, Bad Behavior marks a return to uptempo indie power pop with catchy single “Get in My Car,” kinky come-on/troll “Family Values” and funky Chordettes riff “Sandman,” but the richer sonic textures explored on Double Vanity return to reward the repeated listens

Broncho plays Nov. 21 at The Jones Assembly, 901 W. Sheridan Ave. | Photo Pooneh Ghana / provided

the catchy hooks require. Produced by Chad Copelin, the album was initially recorded at Broncho’s studio/performance space in a former Jacuzzi warehouse but was finished at Copelin’s Blackwatch Studios in Norman. To date, a portion of every Broncho album has been recorded at Blackwatch. “It’s just like going home,” Lindsey said. “‘Should we eat out or go home?’ ‘Well, let’s go home. Home sounds real cozy. Let’s go there.’” Visit broncho.tv.

Bad Behavior, Broncho’s fourth album, was released in October. | Image provided

Broncho 7 p.m. Nov. 21 The Jones Assembly 901 W. Sheridan Ave. thejonesassembly.com | 405-212-2378 $15-$20

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Class act

Steven Van Zandt harnesses his Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul tour to bring music education into schools. By George Lang

Steven Van Zandt always has his eyes on the culture around him. When he sees something falling apart, whether it’s on a global or local level, he finds a way to address it. Two decades after he took on the apartheid government of South Africa with the Artists United Against Apartheid single “Sun City,” the E Street Band guitarist recognized a slow-motion disaster happening in America’s public schools: the dissolution of music programs. As a product of Middletown Township, New Jersey’s public schools in the ’50s and ’60s, Van Zandt received a more thorough music education than most children receive today, the kind of instruction that allowed him to take his obsession with The Beatles and other British Invasion bands and formalize it into a real pursuit of music. Sensing a growing crisis in the late 2000s, he reached out to government leaders like U.S. Senators Teddy Kennedy, D-Massachusetts, and Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, to make a case for increasing funding. Un for t u n at ely, Van Zandt’s pleas fell on deaf ears.

“I thought about it, and I went back to the teachers and said, ‘Look, we’re not going to put instruments in kids’ hands for awhile,’” Van Zandt said in a recent Oklahoma Gazette interview. “‘We’ll have to find another way to do that. But let’s do something else; let’s build a music history curriculum.’” In the effort to create what would become Teachrock.org, a massive online curriculum available for free to all schools, Van Zandt visited classrooms and found that music subjects were often still taught using the same methods he experienced back in Middletown Township. “I said, ‘You know, we need to adjust to this modern world. These kids are smarter and faster. You can’t tell them to learn this now and someday you’ll use it,’” he said. Van Zandt and a team of educators spent the next 10 years developing Teachrock.org. While his initial goal was to create 100 lessons, the curriculum has swelled to over 140 lessons. Some sections address broad subjects like the birth and rise of rock ’n’ roll or music’s role in the civil rights movement, but they can also be extremely specific. One lesson focuses on Lana Del Rey’s song “Young and Beautiful” and whether it successfully humanizes the character of Daisy Buchanan in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. “Keeping music alive in people’s lives is important, but the main thing is that it engages the kids

immediately,” Van Zandt said. “We’re going to them and saying, ‘What kind of music do you listen to? Do you like Ariana Grande? Well, she grew up listening to Aretha Franklin. Never heard of Aretha Franklin? Well, let’s tell you about Aretha Franklin and let’s tell you about Detroit and the civil rights movement.’” When Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul

perform at 7 p.m. Nov. 26 at Tower Theatre, 425 NW 23rd St., the performance will coincide with Van Zandt’s Teachrock.org campaign. He will set aside a large number of tickets so teachers can attend for free. In addition, Van Zandt will meet with local school officials to discuss incorporating Teachrock. org’s curriculum, and at 2 p.m. that day, he will conduct a master class with Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma executive director Scott Booker at the school, 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. Admission to the master class is free. “We combined the foundation’s work with the tour,” Van Zandt said. “It’s our way of showing gratitude to the most underappreciated, underfunded and underpaid members of our working class.”

Old friends

Van Zandt was performing with his teenage band The Shadows in 1967 at a concert in Middletown Township when Bruce Springsteen walked into the club. A friendship soon turned into a collaboration, with Van Zandt joining Springsteen’s band Steel Mill and then Bruce Springsteen Band. In the early ’70s, Van Zandt split off from Springsteen to cofound the legendary rock and soul outfit Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, which combined a guitar-rock aesthetic with soul horns. In short order, Van Zandt began splitting his time between Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes and touring with the E Street Band, and then he became a permanent member when his arranging skills were brought to bear on Springsteen’s “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out” from 1975’s Born to Run. His love of big bands with horn sections never abated, and when Springsteen took a break from the E Street Band to record Nebraska, his stark and mostly acoustic album built on a four-track recorder, Van Zandt took the opportunity to launch Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul, which originally featured former Plasmatics guitarist Jean Beauvoir, Rascals drummer Dino Danelli and Southside Johnny’s horn section. The resulting album, 1982’s Men Without Women, gave Van Zandt a new and separate identity from Springsteen and received rave reviews. The current version of the Disciples of Soul features 15 members, including three backup singers, and is touring in support of 2018’s Soulfire Live! The album features live versions of all tracks from 2017’s Soulfire, and the extended box set includes guest appearances from Springsteen and former J. Geils Band singer Peter Wolf. “We created it organically; we didn’t think too much about it,” he said. “We had the rock guitar because I’m a rock guitar player, and we had the horns. I just felt like this is my thing.” After co-producing and recording the

E Street Band guitarist Steven Van Zandt created a music history curriculum for use in public schools. | Photo Jo Lopez / provided 56

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Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul’s latest album, 2018’s Soulfire Live! | Photo provided

1984 Springsteen breakthrough album Born in the U.S.A., Van Zandt left the group and focused on his own projects like Artists United Against Apartheid, a project that featured contributions from Bono, Peter Gabriel, George Clinton, Lou Reed, Darlene Love, hip-hop originator DJ Kool Herc, Bob Dylan and others. His solo career took priority until the late 1990s, when he permanently rejoined the E Street Band and took an unexpected turn toward acting, playing mobster Silvio Dante on HBO’s The Sopranos. More recently, he starred in the Netflix series Lilyhammer as an American mobster hiding out in Norway. Springsteen is expected to complete his Springsteen on Broadway residency next month, after which Van Zandt said he will likely take some time to rest after the 14-month stand at New York City’s Walter Kerr Theatre. Then the wheels will start turning again and the old friends will reunite, first in the studio and then on the stage. “We’re still the same best friends we always were, and onstage, it’s still all the same,” Van Zandt said. “Making the records has slightly changed, but we might go back to the old way one of these days. “I know he’s got a lot on the shelf that he wants to deal with. He wants to just relax for a minute and check out where he’s at. He’s incredibly prolific, and he probably has a lot of stuff that he wants to get out, so I’m sure there will be some kind of content in 2019, but as far as the E Street Band goes, that could be 2020.” Teachers interested in attending Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul concert at Tower Theatre are encouraged to email christine@teachrock.org to register. Visit towertheatreokc.com and acm.uco.edu.

Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul 7 p.m. Nov. 26 Tower Theatre 425 NW 23rd St. towertheatreokc.com | 405-708-6937 $35-$285

Steven Van Zandt master class 2 p.m. Nov. 26 Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. acm.uco.edu | 405-974-4700 Free


LIVE MUSIC L Jones/Amanda Howle, Java39. SINGER-SONG-

These are events recommended by Oklahoma Gazette editorial staff members. For full calendar listings, go to okgazette.com.

WRITER

Johnny Manchild/Rousey/Tribesmen, VZD’s Restaurant & Bar. ROCK/POP MyChildren MyBride, 89th Street-OKC. METAL On a Whim, Bossa Nova Caipirinha Lounge. JAZZ

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 14

Shane Smith & The Saints, Tower Theatre. COUNTRY

Greensky Bluegrass/The Lil Smokies, The Jones Assembly. BLUEGRASS

SATURDAY, NOV. 17

Katie & the Elements, The R & J Lounge and Supper Club. JAZZ Mac DeMarco, ACM @ UCO Performance Lab. ROCK Monte Montgomery, The Blue Door. ROCK Of Montreal/Reptaliens, Tower Theatre. ROCK

THURSDAY, NOV. 15 David Broyles & Jared Lekites, The Root. ROCK Heart of Hip Hop, Hubbly Bubbly Hookah & Café. HIP-HOP

Hot House Band, Othello’s Italian Restaurant. JAZZ Koolie High & the Tap Band, Ice Event Center & Grill. JAZZ Tzimani/Plastic Smile, Blue Note Lounge. ROCK Unearth/Fit for an Autopsy, Diamond Ballroom. METAL/HARDCORE

FRIDAY, NOV. 16 Darku J, Ponyboy. ELECTRONIC Jeremy Fullbright Band, Chisholm’s Saloon. COUNTRY

J Smoking Popes/Amuse, Blue Note Lounge. ROCK

Adam Hood, The Blue Door. COUNTRY

Killer Queen In an excoriating review of Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, The New York Times’ A.O. Scott writes that the film never comes close to “capturing the glorious and unlikely artifice of Queen itself, a band whose scrambling of sexual and musical codes remains a remarkable phenomenon in the history of popular culture.” So why not skip the hagiography and go straight for the hits with this London-based tribute act lead by mercurial Patrick Myers, who has been playing the role for 25 years? Hail to the Queen 8 p.m. Thursday at Tower Theatre, 425 NW 23rd St. Tickets are $37-$48. Call 405-708-6937 or visit towertheatreokc.com. THURSDAY Photo provided

Dameon Allensworth, VZD’s Restaurant & Bar. COUNTRY

Flock of Pigs/Steph Simon/Ada & The Omen, The Deli. HIP-HOP Generation Axe, Brady Theater. ROCK HipHop Junkies, The Root. HIP-HOP Howard Brady, Full Circle Bookstore. SINGERSONGWRITER

NoHezzo/Da Gh0ul, Fresh Sound Lounge. HIP-HOP Owen Pickard/Kaylea Harris/Carly James, Rodeo Opry. COUNTRY Sewerside Bombers/Anarchy for Assholes, Blue Note Lounge. PUNK

SUNDAY, NOV. 18 Current Joys/Love Seats/Lunar Laugh, ACM @ UCO Performance Lab. FOLK/POP Koo Koo Kangaroo, 89th Street-OKC. POP The Matchsellers, Norman Santa Fe Depot. BLUE-

GRASS/FOLK

Sleepspent/Carvist/Cliffdiver, The Root. ROCK

MONDAY, NOV. 19 Jason Hunt, Sean Cumming’s Irish Restaurant. FOLK Elizabeth Wise/Wess McMichael/The Ravens, Othello’s Italian Restaurant. BLUES Philip H. Anselmo & the Illegals, 89th Street-OKC. METAL

TUESDAY, NOV. 20 Country Clique, Friends Restaurant & Club. COUNTRY

Kyle Reid, Scratch Kitchen & Cocktails. SINGER/

SONGWRITER

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 21 Cannibal Corpse, Diamond Ballroom. METAL DJ Rhyano, Fassler Hall. ELECTRONIC Liquid Stranger, Farmers Public Market. ELECTRONIC Martha Odom, The R & J Lounge and Supper Club. JAZZ

With Confidence/Broadside, 89th Street-OKC. ROCK

Live music submissions must be received by Oklahoma Gazette no later than noon on Wednesday seven days before the desired publication date. Late submissions will not be included in the listings. Submissions run as space allows, although we strive to make the listings as inclusive as possible. Fax your listings to 528-4600 or e-mail to listings@okgazette.com. Sorry, but phone submissions cannot be accepted.

FREE WILL ASTROLOGY Homework: What do you want to be when you grow up? Testify at FreeWillAstrology.com.

Interior designer Dorothy Draper said she wished there were a single word that meant “exciting, frightfully important, irreplaceable, deeply satisfying, basic, and thrilling, all at once.” I wonder if such a word exists in the Chamicuro language spoken by a few Peruvians or the Sarsi tongue spoken by the Tsuu T’ina tribe in Alberta, Canada. In any case, I’m pleased to report that for the next few weeks, many of you Aries people will embody and express that rich blend of qualities. I have coined a new word to capture it: tremblissimo.

CANCER (June 21-July 22) Cancerian baseball pitcher Satchel Paige had a colorful career characterized by creative showmanship. On some occasions, he commanded his infielders to sit down and loll on the grass behind him, whereupon he struck out three batters in a row—ensuring no balls were hit to the spots vacated by his teammates. Paige’s success came in part because of his wide variety of tricky pitches, described by author Buck O’Neil as “the bat-dodger, the two-hump blooper, the four-day creeper, the dipsy-do, the Little Tom, the Long Tom, the bee ball, the wobbly ball, the hurry-up ball and the nothin’ ball.” I bring this to your attention, Cancerian, because now is an excellent time for you to amp up your charisma and use all your tricky pitches.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20)

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)

ARIES (March 21-April 19)

According to my astrological intuition, you’re entering a phase when you will derive special benefit from these five observations by poet and filmmaker Jean Cocteau. 1. “There are truths that you can only say after having won the right to say them.” 2. “True realism consists in revealing the surprising things that habit keeps covered and prevents us from seeing.” 3. “What the public criticizes in you, cultivate. It is you.” 4. “You should always talk well about yourself! The word spreads around, and in the end, no one remembers where it started.” 5. “We shelter an angel within us. We must be the guardians of that angel.”

GEMINI (May 21-June 20)

Adolescence used to be defined as a phase that lasted from ages 13 to 19. But scientists writing in the journal The Lancet say that in modern culture, the current span is from ages 10 to 24. Puberty comes earlier now, in part because of shifts in eating habits and exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals. At the same time, people hold onto their youth longer because they wait a while before diving into events associated with the initiation into adulthood, like getting married, finishing education, and having children. Even if you’re well past 24, Gemini, I suggest you revisit and reignite your juvenile stage in the coming weeks. You need to reconnect with your wild innocence. You’ll benefit from immersing yourself in memories of coming of age. Be 17 or 18 again, but this time armed with all you have learned since.

“Everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head,” writes fantasy author Patrick Rothfuss. “Always. All the time. We build ourselves out of that story.” So what’s your story, Leo? The imminent future will be an excellent time to get clear about the dramatic narrative you weave. Be especially alert for demoralizing elements in your tale that may not in fact be true, and that therefore you should purge. I think you’ll be able to draw on extra willpower and creative flair if you make an effort to reframe the story you tell yourself so that it’s more accurate and uplifting.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

In describing a man she fell in love with, author Elizabeth Gilbert wrote that he was both “catnip and kryptonite to me.” If you’ve spent time around cats, you understand that catnip can be irresistible to them. As for kryptonite: it’s the one substance that weakens the fictional superhero Superman. Is there anything in your life that resembles Gilbert’s paramour? A place or situation or activity or person that’s both catnip and kryptonite? I suspect you now have more ability than usual to neutralize its obsessive and debilitating effects on you. That could empower you to make a good decision about the relationship you’ll have with it in the future.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)

“I had to learn very early not to limit myself due to others’ limited imaginations,” testifies Libran astronaut Mae

Jemison. She adds, “I have learned these days never to limit anyone else due to my own limited imagination.” Are those projects on your radar, Libra? I hope so. You now have extra power to resist being shrunk or hobbled by others’ images of you. You also have extra power to help your friends and loved ones grow and thrive as you expand your images of them.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)

The U.S. is the world’s top exporter of food. In second place is the Netherlands, which has 0.4 percent as much land as the U.S. How do Dutch farmers accomplish this miraculous feat? In part because of their massive greenhouses, which occupy vast areas of non-urbanized space. Another key factor is their unprecedented productivity, which dovetails with a commitment to maximum sustainability. For instance, they produce 20 tons of potatoes per acre, compared with the global average of nine. And they do it using less water and pesticides. In my long-term outlook for you Scorpios, I see you as having a metaphorical similarity to Dutch farmers. During the next 12 months, you have the potential to make huge impacts with your focused and efficient efforts.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

“The world is like a dropped pie most of the time,” writes author Elizabeth Gilbert. “Don’t kill yourself trying to put it back together. Just grab a fork and eat some of it off the floor. Then carry on.” From what I can tell about the state of your life, Sagittarius, the metaphorical pie has indeed fallen onto the metaphorical floor. But it hasn’t been there so long that it has spoiled. And the floor is fairly clean, so the pie won’t make you sick if you eat it. My advice is to sit down on the floor and eat as much as you want. Then carry on.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)

Novelist Anita Desai writes, “Isn’t it strange how life won’t flow, like a river, but moves in jumps, as if it were held back by locks that are opened now and then to let it jump forward in a kind of flood?” I bring this to your attention, Capricorn, because I suspect that the locks she refers to will soon open for you. Events may not exactly flow like a flood, but I’m guessing they will at least surge and billow

and gush. That could turn out to be nerve-racking and strenuous, or else fun and interesting. Which way it goes will depend on your receptivity to transformation.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)

“Miracles come to those who risk defeat in seeking them,” writes author Mark Helprin. “They come to those who have exhausted themselves completely in a struggle to accomplish the impossible.” Those descriptions could fit you well in the coming weeks, but with one caveat. You’ll have no need to take on the melodramatic, almost desperate mood Helprin seems to imply is essential. Just the opposite, in fact. Yes, risk defeat and be willing to exhaust yourself in the struggle to accomplish the impossible; but do so in a spirit of exuberance, motivated by the urge to play.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)

“Never invoke the gods unless you really want them to appear,” warned author G. K. Chesterton. “It annoys them very much.” My teachers have offered me related advice. Don’t ask the gods to intervene, they say, until you have done all you can through your own efforts. Furthermore, don’t ask the gods for help unless you are prepared to accept their help if it’s different from what you thought it should be. I bring these considerations to your attention, Pisces, because you currently meet all these requirements. So I say go right ahead and seek the gods’ input and assistance.

Go to RealAstrology.com to check out Rob Brezsny’s expanded weekly audio horoscopes /daily text message horoscopes. The audio horoscopes are also available by phone at 1-877-873-4888 or 1-900-950-7700.

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PUZZLES 1

NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE CROSSWORD PUZZLE ESCAPE ROOM By Eric Berlin | Puzzles Edited by Will Shortz | 1111

This crossword represents an escape room, with four articles you’ll need hidden inside. After you complete the grid, follow the directions at 41-, 70and 99-Across to find what to do next. Working correctly will lead you to a four-word phrase with a total of 12 letters.

ACROSS

87 Kind of battery 1 Shakespearean father of three 91 Final desperate effort 94 Tickle the ____ 5 “I agree!” 97 Prefix on some first-aid 9 Enjoys the sun products 14 Pants material 98 “____ had it!” 19 Approximately 99 After following the instructions 20 Sycophant at 70-Across, how to escape 21 Earth tone this puzzle 22 Movie with a shootout at high 102 Not as much noon, maybe 105 Ratings pioneer 23 ____ Major 106 Edmonton athletes 24 Band bookings 107 “Fine with me” 25 Outside the city 109 German name component, 26 Any member of Abba often 27 Automotive debut of 1957 110 Uncool one 29 Some univ. hirees 111 Unconventional 31 Turkish inn 114 James of the West 33 Horror writer Peter 116 “Just foolin’” 35 Stole, in slang 118 Algerian port 37 Cold treat 121 Get together 41 What’s needed in order to 122 “Give it ____!” escape this crossword 123 Verdi soprano 44 Sandwich loaf 124 Grp. founded by 12 countries 45 Pitcher Hershiser 125 Luau, basically 46 Declares to be true 47 Indie rocker with the 2009 N0. 126 Brothers’ name in R.&B. 127 Symbol of fire prevention 3 album Middle Cyclone 128 Vehicle that requires no fuel 50 Not doing well 52 A snap DOWN 53 ____ jure (law phrase) 1 Name one can “skip to” 55 Tobacconist ____ Sherman 2 Goof 56 Virtuous ones 3 Confidently said 58 NYC subway org. 4 Pre-GPS staple 59 Words of denial 5 Subject with variables 63 Round fig. 6 Daily ____ (British paper) 66 A little, musically 7 Part of some physicals: Abbr. 67 Charcuterie stock 8 Attribute of many political ads 69 Lycées, e.g. 9 Soup with a red color 70 What to do with the items 10 Prefix with pressure referenced in 41-Across 11 React with fear or delight 74 Natural-light display 12 Ralph and Alice, on old TV 75 Move smoothly to the next 13 Actress Ward thing 14 Trig function 76 Great ____ 15 Native Iowan 77 Billy ____ Williams 16 Citizen of: Suffix 78 Like Russia prior to 1917 17 Actor Beatty 80 One of a couple 18 It’s mined, all mined! 81 Neon and others 28 Common middle name for girls 83 Apollo, to Zeus 30 Constantly fidgeting, say 84 Offshore 32 Game with 42 territory cards 86 Possesses, to the Bard

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PUBLISHER Peter J. Brzycki OPERATIONS & MARKETING MANAGER Kelsey Lowe

ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE Karen Holmes CIRCULATION MANAGER Chad Bleakley ADVERTISING advertising@okgazette.com 405-528-6000

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33 Slovenly type 34 Prefix with byte 35 “Famous ____” (slogan on Idaho license plates) 36 Pause 38 Went on and on 39 Yiddish cries 40 Second of April? 42 Wretched smell 43 “Hey! That hurts!” 48 Kind of Hollywood romance 49 Literary scholars debate what’s in it 51 Getting to the point? 54 Solution to a maze 57 Specks 58 They might drop down 60 Almost forever 61 Nothing more than 62 Latin 101 word 63 Petty disagreement

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Please address all unsolicited news items (non-returnable) to the editor.

ACCOUNTING/HR MANAGER Marian Harrison

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Oklahoma Gazette is circulated at its designated distribution points free of charge to readers for their individual use and by mail to subscribers. The cash value of this copy is $1. Persons taking copies of the Oklahoma Gazette from its distribution points for any reason other than their or others’ individual use for reading purposes are subject to prosecution.

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95 Soft and smooth 96 Happy wintertime news for schoolkids 100 Semi fuel 101 Golfer Michelle 103 Kinds 104 “Awesome!” 108 California city north of Ventura 110 Mythical queen of Carthage 111 Your and my 112 It has a big deck 113 Aunt: Sp. 115 Toledo-to-Columbus dir. 117 A Kardashian 119 Dined 120 Silent approval

ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Saundra Rinearson Godwin Christy Duane Philip Rodriguez Chris White EDITOR-IN-CHIEF George Lang glang@okgazette.com ASSISTANT EDITOR Brittany Pickering STAFF REPORTERS Jacob Threadgill Jeremy Martin Nazarene Harris CALENDAR COORDINATOR Jeremy Martin PHOTOGRAPHER/VIDEOGRAPHER Alexa Ace CONTRIBUTORS Joshua Blanco, Matt Dinger Jo Light CREATIVE DIRECTOR Kimberly Lynch GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Ingvard Ashby Tiffany McKnight

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SUDOKU VERY HARD | N°3071 Fill in the grid so that every row, column and 3-by-3 box contains the numbers 1 through 9. www.printmysudoku.com

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N OV E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 8 | O KG A Z E T T E . C O M

NEW YORK TIMES CROSSWORD PUZZLE ANSWERS Puzzle No. 1111, which appeared in the November 7 issue.

B A W L S

O R I O N

B E R R A

S W E E P

D I T K O

E N R A P T

S T A T E D

C O P I N G

R A D I O C A R

I M I N L O V E

C O R N E L I A

H U T S G A P

F O R A P E D O N E R E C O R N K I S B O N E P O U T E N T L T O H A S B O W E H O L M M I N D E A R D E N T E E M A R D S R S F O Y A L F P R E T S E N A T A T E A T E S C E R S O

P L E S H E R E D E R S S O S M B R I A B E F O G E A R N S L V E S T I E M E S P A D B A R M A S K C O R S E O R B E T U L E D R E D B T Y M O E V A T S B I G A A Y E N N N E W A Y

M O T O R S P E R M I T G R O S S E S

I C O N S D O M A I N G O A T A P T

D R I F F E A N I A E T A G S D S E T H E A D F A N T A O R S E Y R T E R S E S A I L T Z V A H G T A P E R E N T S E C K O S E S A P E N S C A B C L O S E H O U S E E P P E R R E E T S

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TEST DRIVE THE ALL NEW 2018 LINCOLN

N AV I G AT O R LEASE THE 2018 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL SELECT

LEASE THE 2018 LINCOLN MKZ SELECT

FROM $629/MONTH | 36 MONTHS* | $0 DOWN

FROM $499/MONTH | 36 MONTHS* | $0 DOWN

$3,009 DUE AT SIGNING

$2,392 DUE AT SIGNING

616 WEST MEMORIAL ROAD EDMOND, OK 73013 | 405.475.9000 JOECOOPERLINCOLN.COM LEASE THE 2018 LINCOLN NAVIGATOR RESERVE

LEASE THE 2018 LINCOLN MK X RESERVE

LEASE THE 2019 LINCOLN MKC SELECT

FROM $999/MONTH | 36 MONTHS* $5000 DOWN | $9,845 DUE AT SIGNING

FROM $549/MONTH | 36 MONTHS* | $0 DOWN

FROM $479/MONTH | 36 MONTHS* | $0 DOWN

$2,754 DUE AT SIGNING

$2,276 DUE AT SIGNING

2018 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL SELECT, VIN 1LJ5617936, MSRP $52,245

2018 LINCOLN MKX RESERVE, VIN 2LJBL42102, MSRP $48,470

2018 LINCOLN MKZ SELECT, VIN 3LJR625913, MSRP $40,715

2019 LINCOLN MKC SELECT, VIN 5LKUL08811, MSRP $38,280

2018 LINCOLN NAVIGATOR RESERVE, VIN 5LJEL19266, MSRP $85,910

*$0 SECURITY DEPOSIT, SUBJECT TO CREDIT APPROVAL, SEE DEALERSHIP FOR DETAILS, OFFERS SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE. DOWN PAYMENT, TT&L AND FIRST PAYMENT DUE AT SIGNING. PRICES GOOD THROUGH NOVEMBER 2018

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