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November 2 – 15, 2013

Song and stage reect the season BY TERI CARNICELLI

Whether treating out-of-town visitors to an inspirational holiday concert or taking the family to a humorous holiday show, there are plenty of offerings beginning this month to tickle your mistle-toes. The SanTan Sun News has put together a list of holiday-themed entertainment options to make the selection process a smooth one.

Chandler & Gilbert The Chandler Center for the Arts (CCA), 250 N. Arizona Ave., hosts two not-to-be-missed annual holiday favorites. First up is “The Nutcracker,â€? presented by Ballet Etudes, Nov. 29 through Dec. 1 and Dec. 6 through 8. Let Clara’s magical journey surround you as she encounters mice, swirling snowakes, dancing confections and the Sugar Plum Fairy. Tickets are $23 and $28, children 2 and younger are $5. Note that the show moves to the Mesa Arts Center for Dec. 13 through 15; ticket prices are the same and available through the MAC box ofďŹ ce. Next up is the 26th annual holiday event, the “Spirit of Christmas,â€? an energetic variety show featuring a cast of more than 100 dancers, singers, a horse and carriage, special guest performers and a champion hoop dancer. Tickets are $24 and $28, with discounts available for children ages 12

and younger. Proceeds beneďŹ t the Paz de Cristo Child Crisis Center. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit or call the box ofďŹ ce at 480-782-2680. The Higley Center for the Performing Arts in Gilbert also hosts two outstanding holiday shows, beginning with a “Holiday Memoriesâ€? Concert performed by the Phoenix Children’s Chorus at 7 p.m. Sat., Dec. 7. Inspiring the season with songs from around the world, all 300 members of the chorus will perform this holiday concert, which includes an array of carols and songs celebrating the holiday season. A string ensemble will accompany the children on several pieces including the ďŹ nale, “German Lullaby.â€? Tickets are $10, $17.50 and $20 plus ticket fee. Prior to the concert, the Phoenix Children’s Chorus will host a silent auction in the theater lobby from 4 to 7 p.m. to raise funds in support of the group’s musical education programs, scholarships and touring program. Another youth group also will take the stage at the HCPA, as the Southwest Youth Ballet performs “The Nutcrackerâ€? Dec. 20 and 21. Now in its seventh year, the ballet featuring a large cast of youth dancers performs under the direction of Yen-Li Chen. Music of the Chandler Symphony Orchestra enhances the audience’s experience through the full, rich sound each musician brings. Shows

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KICKIN’ IT: The annual “Spirit of Christmas� holiday show features more than 100 dancers, who perform a Rockettes-style dance number during the show. Submitted Photo

are 7 p.m. Friday, and 2 and 6:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $10 to $30 plus fees. Higley Center for the Performing Arts is located at 4132 E. Pecos Rd. Tickets are available at or call 480279-7194. Not far away, another holiday classic reminds us about the importance of family, of sharing and of love, as the Hale Centre Theatre once again tells the tale of Tiny Tim and Ebenezer Scrooge in “A Christmas Carol.� The show runs from Dec. 5 through 24. The production is rich with traditional carols, period costumes, memorable characters and delightful performances that are guaranteed to enrich the holiday season. Be sure to see this unforgettable musical, which is celebrating its 11th sold-out year in Gilbert. Tickets are $16 to $26 plus fees. Weekend performances sell out early. Visit SEE HOLIDAY PAGE 66

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November 2 – 15, 2013


Sun Lakes Two musical events highlight this year’s holiday shows in the Sun Lakes area. On Sun., Dec. 8, the Chandler Symphony Orchestra performs its holiday concert beginning at 3 p.m. in the Sun Lakes United Methodist Church, 9248 E. Riggs Rd., Sun Lakes. The orchestra will be joined by the Perry High School Chorus as it performs favorite holiday carols and classic seasonal songs. For tickets, call 480-895-8766. Then on Thu., Dec. 12, the Sun Lakes Chorale showcases its Holiday Concert also at the Sun Lakes United Methodist Church, beginning at 7 p.m. Tickets are just $10 and are available from chorale members or online at: sunlakeschorale. com/slc-ticket-info.

Mesa & Tempe The Mesa Arts Center, One E. Main St., hosts a large selection of holiday shows this year, beginning with two comedic twists on the holiday season. Unless otherwise indicated, all show tickets are available by calling 480-6446500 or going online to mesaartscenter. com. “The Santaland Diaries” by David Sedaris is performed by Class 6 Theatre Nov. 7, 9, 13, 15 and 17. Out of work, a slacker decides to become a Macy’s elf during the holiday crunch. At first the job is simply humiliating, but then he becomes battle weary and bitter. In the end, yet another Santa’s ushered into the workshop, but this one’s different

from all the lecherous and drunken ones. This one actually seems to care about and love the children who come to see him, startling our hero into an uncharacteristic moment of goodwill just before his employment runs out. “The Twelve Dates of Christmas” is a one-woman show by Ginna Hoben, Nov. 6, 8, 10, 14 and 16. After seeing her fiancé kiss another woman at the televised Thanksgiving Day Parade, Mary’s life falls apart—just in time for the holidays. Over the next year, she stumbles back into the dating world, where “romance” ranges from weird and creepy to absurd and comical. It seems nothing can help Mary’s growing cynicism, until the charm and innocence of a 5-year-old boy unexpectedly brings a new outlook on life and love. Both shows contain adult language. Tickets are $20 general admission, $17 for members of the military. Families looking for more friendly fare will enjoy the children’s book favorite, “Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus,” performed by the East Valley Children’s Theatre Dec. 5 through 15. Two compelling stories come together in this heartwarming play inspired by the famous editorial by Francis P. Church. On Christmas Eve, 1897, in New York City, 8-year-old Virginia is left pondering whether or not Santa really exists after a series of unhappy events. Meanwhile, a young newspaper editor also struggles against tough holiday times as he is faced with losing his job if he can’t find his writer’s voice by morning. Even though they don’t know each other,

the spirit of Christmas is about to bring these people together. Show times are 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, with matinees at 4 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $15 for adults and $11 for children ages 17 and younger. Join Phoenix Opera for a fun-filled concert celebrating the holiday spirit with its “Celebration” concert, 7:30 p.m. Fri., Dec. 6, featuring favorite sing-along carols, inspirational classics and the best loved traditional music. Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for students, and children age 2 and younger are admitted free to sit on a parent’s lap but they do need a ticket; pick them up at will call the night of the performance. The East Valley Millennial Choirs & Orchestras (MCO) ushers in the holiday season with its highly acclaimed Christmas concert, “Let Earth Receive Her,” Dec. 5 and 7. Come experience the surround-sound musical phenomenon featuring Christmas music like you have never heard it before, performed by the MCO choirs and symphony orchestra. Concertgoers are asked not to bring infants or toddlers to these performances. Show times are 5 and 7:30 p.m. both days. There are no Friday performances. Tickets are $17 to $36. The Phoenix Symphony steps away from its regular home to perform Handel’s “Messiah” 7:30 p.m. Wed., Dec. 11 at the MAC. Handel’s massive oratorio makes a profound musical statement of the Christian faith, celebrating the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The acclaimed and popular “Halleluiah” chorus highlights this spiritual concert. Music Director Laureate Michael Christie returns to lead The Phoenix Symphony and Phoenix Symphony Chorus. Tickets are available through the Phoenix Symphony Box Office; call 602495-1999 or go to Symphony of the Southwest, together with the Cantilena Chorale and a large cast of singers, will present a concert version of “Amahl and the Night Visitors” 7:30 p.m. Sat., Dec. 14. Originally written for television, this masterpiece by Gian Carlo Mennoti tells the wonderfully imaginative story of a crippled boy who meets the three wise men on their way to see the Holy Child. Tickets are $19, general admission. Salt River Brass, The conjures up a winter wonderland in the desert with its most popular concert of the season, “Holiday Pops,” 3 p.m. Sun., Dec. 15. The concert of holiday classics includes Alfred Reed’s “Russian Christmas Music,” Franz Biebel’s “Ave Maria,” and Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Dance of the Tumblers.” Audience favorite Carole FitzPatrick returns with her phenomenal vocals as she leads the Carol Sing-Along with audience members and the Salt River Chorus of more than 1,000. The afternoon sparkles to a close with a jazzy Nutcracker Suite, a hilarious “We Three Chipmunks” and an Auld Lang Syne Cha Cha that will keep your feet tapping into the New Year. Tickets are $17 to $22 for adults, and $15 to $20 for seniors. A more traditional holiday program will be offered by the Sonoran Desert

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Arts Chorale as it performs its “Home for the Holidays” Concert, 7:30 p.m. Sat., Dec. 7, at First United Methodist Church, 15 E. First Ave, Mesa. Come experience this annual celebration as the chorale performs the highly acclaimed “Gloria” by John Rutter with chorus, organ, brass and percussion. The concert concludes with the chorale’s holiday tradition, singing carols together, sharing the joys of the season. Tickets are $18 for adults and $15 for seniors, students and groups of 10 or more. Call 480-305-4538 for more information, or visit Celebrate the 25th anniversary of Childsplay’s holiday classic, “The Velveteen Rabbit,” Nov. 17 through Dec. 22 at the Tempe Center for the Arts (TCA), 700 W. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe. For years, Childsplay brought holiday magic to the Valley with its production of Margery Williams’ classic picture book. Now the tradition makes a triumphant return, and it’s better than ever. For any child who has ever loved a favorite toy, “The Velveteen Rabbit” will give you a reason to believe in magic. Show times are 1 and 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $12 to $25. Appropriate for ages 3 and older. Tickets are available at or by calling the TCA box office at 480-3502822.

Out of Area The Ahwatukee Foothills “Nutcracker Ballet” will be performed Dec. 20 and 21 at Desert Vista High

School, 16440 S. 32nd St., Phoenix. It is a magical event where dolls come to life, snow falls in the theater, a Christmas tree grows through the ceiling, and angels dance on clouds. Performances take place 7 p.m. Friday, and 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday. There will be a special appearance by Santa Claus following the 2 p.m. performance. Audience members will meet cast members, Santa Claus and be able to take photographs in The Land of Sweets on Clara’s Throne. This production is suitable for all ages. Limited seats are available. Call 480-706-6040 for tickets, or purchase them at Dance Studio 111, located at 4910 E. Chandler Blvd., Suite 111, Phoenix. For more information, email

November 2 – 15, 2013


High school troupe joins improv group

CAST OF CHARACTERS: Cast members from improvMANIA will perform its unique brand of sketch comedy, along with some help from Hamilton High School students, Nov. 2 at the Chandler Center for the Arts. Submitted Photo

BEST BUDDIES: Debra K. Stevens stars in Childplay’s holiday classic, “The Velveteen Rabbit,” on stage at the Tempe Center for the Arts. Submitted Photo

Hamilton High School’s improv comedy troupe, Urban Lemmings, will join with local group improvMANIA for a night of comedy, 7 and 9 p.m. Sat., Nov. 2, at the Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave., Chandler. improvMANIA’s show is fast-paced, family friendly comedy in the style of the hit TV show “Whose Line is it Anyway?” Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors. For tickets, call the CAA Box Office at 480-782-2680.

New talent

improv comedy troupe is looking for new improv comedy talent to perform with the professional improv troupe: improvMANIA auditions will be held at Gangplank Chandler, 260 S. Arizona Ave., Chandler, 10 a.m. to noon Sat., Nov. 16. The troupe is looking for local talent with improv experience. This is not a high-stress audition. Several of the current cast members have been selected through the audition process. No headshot or appointment necessary. Just show up, bring a friend, dress comfortably and prepare to have fun and meet friends.

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November 2 – 15, 2013

Jane Austen fans to gather at Chandler Hamilton Library on Dec. 7 BY ALISON STANTON

Fans of Jane Austen may want to mark their calendars for Sat., Dec. 7. Starting at 10 a.m. that day, the Chandler Hamilton Library is hosting “Jane’s World: A Birthday Celebrationâ€? that will celebrate the life and work of the famous English novelist. Jo-el Miller, a library assistant who works at the Hamilton branch of the Chandler Public Library, says the threehour event will feature a teacup and saucer exchange, a fan ďŹ ction contest, live period music, a discussion of the book, “Emma,â€? and tea and cake to celebrate Austen’s birthday on Dec. 16. “For the teacup exchange, anyone who wants to participate should bring a teacup and saucer in a gift bag,â€? Miller says. Participant will then select gift bags that contain a new teacup and saucer that they can take home and enjoy. “Our fan ďŹ ction contest is open to anything participants wish to create that is tied to Jane Austen. If it is a piece of writing we ask that it be no longer than one page or one minute if read aloud.â€? The upcoming event is the third and ďŹ nal Austen-themed program that has been hosted by the Chandler Hamilton Library. Miller says the library started the event after it had such a great response to a recent “Downton Abbeyâ€? program. Miller’s co-worker, Rosanna Johnson, made the suggestion. Miller says Phyllis Saunders, Hamilton’s

the program’s success, bringing along beautiful clothing for the fashion show, a whist expert and dance caller for our evening of diversions and a charming book discussion leader for each of the events,â€? Miller says. Miller, who loves reading Austen’s books and watching movies based on her works, says she has learned a lot listening to and being around the 40 or 50 “Janeitesâ€? who attended the ďŹ rst two events. “I’ve enjoyed seeing people connect with others in their community, who they may never have met if it hadn’t been for their shared love of Jane Austen and the library’s initiative in creating the program,â€? she says.

DRESSED TO THE NINES: Diane Gorham, regional coordinator of the Greater Phoenix Chapter of the Jane Austen Society of North America, attended a recent Jane Austenthemed event at the Chandler Hamilton Library dressed in clothing from the author’s era. Submitted photo

branch coordinator, then reached out to the Greater Phoenix Chapter of the Jane Austen Society of North America to see if it would be interested in partnering with the library, in an effort to create a fun and informative series of programs. “They have been an integral part of

“We have received positive feedback and had requests for similar events focusing on other authors, which we are busy planning now.� Admission to “Jane’s World: A Birthday Celebration� is free, but registration is required. To register, call the library at 480-782-2800 or sign up at Chandler Hamilton Library is located at 3700 S. Arizona Ave. Miller says fans of Austen may also enjoy visiting the library’s Jane’s World Pinterest page at janes-world/. Alison Stanton is a freelance writer who lives in the East Valley. She can be reached at

Exhibit reveals art in ďŹ ber Art doesn’t have to be created in traditional mediums, like paint, ceramic or marble. Some art can be in the form of a warm, cozy quilt. More than 50 hand-quilted, printed, hand-embellished and picturesque art quilts will be on exhibition in ARTrageous: Art Quilts Year XVIII, which runs through Jan. 18 at the Chandler Center for the Arts Gallery, 250 N. Arizona Ave., in downtown Chandler. All artwork is accompanied by a story and artist biography. The artwork

was selected based on the 2013 juror’s theme, “ARTrageous,� encouraging textile artists to step outside of the box in some context, reflecting a twist on the traditional, an interesting technique that was unique to their work, or simply something that was extremely bold. There is no charge to view the exhibit. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and noon to 5 p.m. Saturday. For more information, visit

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Seventies tunes rock the stage

November 2 – 15, 2013

Concert, raffle on Nov. 10 The Chandler Symphony Orchestra continues its series of free concerts with “A Real Symphonic Experience” 3 p.m. Sun, Nov. 10 at the Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave., Chandler. For the first time, CSO is giving away something more than just great music. Stop at the information table in the CCA lobby before the concert and during intermission to fill out a

DON’T CRY: Seventies rock group Blood, Sweat & Tears brings its high-powered show to the Chandler Center for the Arts on Nov. 9. Submitted photo

SanTan Sun-area music fans can experience a fun flashback—or two—this month as two nostalgic music groups take the Chandler Center for the Arts (CCA) stage. Get your groove back with some help from “Jive Talkin’: The Australian Bee Gees Show,” a tribute to the Bee Gees, 7:30 p.m. Sat., Nov. 9. Tickets are $36 to $48. The Bee Gees sold more than 200 million records worldwide and had more than 40 hit singles. “Jive Talkin’” presents the story of the Bee Gees on stage, accompanied by a live string section. In keeping with the flashback-music theme, Michael A. Pollack presents Blood, Sweat & Tears, 7:30 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16.

Tickets are $38 to $54. It’s been more than four decades since drummer/producer Bobby Colomby and friends assembled the first group to successfully blend rock and jazz into a genre-crossing sound and style. So successfully, in fact, that the band’s second album, “Blood, Sweat & Tears,” topped the Billboard charts, beat out The Beatles’ “Abbey Road” for Grammy Album of the Year, and produced three major hit singles: “You Made Me So Very Happy,” “And When I Die” and “Spinning Wheel.” The Chandler Center for the Arts is located at 250 N. Arizona Ave., Chandler. Call the box office at 480-782-2680 or visit


free raffle ticket. Bring an address label to save time filling it out. A couple of winners will be drawn just after intermission and given some very cool prizes. While you’re there, speak with the organizers about donating, volunteering or just tell them how much you love CSO. For more information about the group, go to or call 480-899-3447.

Enjoy two decades of early jazz Whether you like it Kansas Citystyle or Chicago-style, you’ll find something to tap your toes to at the Arizona Classic Jazz Festival, Nov. 7 through 10 at the Crowne Plaza San Marcos Golf Resort, 1 San Marcos Pl., Chandler. Enjoy live music spanning from the early 20th century to the 1940s during the festival, presented by the Arizona Classic Jazz Society (ACJS). The festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, and conclude on Sunday. There are several jam sessions where anybody who plays an instrument can take part. Umbrellas will be available for everybody wishing to march in the “Second Line Parade,” starting at 5 p.m.

Friday. An after party will take place in A.J.’s Restaurant from 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday. An all-event badge is $95; Friday only is $45, Saturday only is $50, and Sunday only is $35. Admission after 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday is $25. For those aged 17 and younger, admission is only $5 on Friday and Saturday, and free on Sunday. There is no charge to enjoy music on the patio, which is supported by a grant from the City of Chandler Event Sponsorship Funding Program. For more information on the schedule and the performers or to purchase tickets, visit or call 1-888-233-9527.

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hanks to the Arizona Charitable Tax Credit Lay, A.R.S. 43-1088, donate to Chandler Gilbert Arc and receive a tax credit. [This Working Poor Tax Credit is in addition to the education tax credits…you can take advantage of both tax credits in the same year.] Chandler Gilbert Arc has been serving people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in the East Valley since 1975, providing community living, vocational, day treatment and training opportunities daily. Contributions earn dollar-for-dollar tax credit on your Arizona Income Tax return. Taxpayers filing as single or unmarried head of household have a maximum credit amount of $200; married taxpayers filing jointly have a $400 maximum credit. New for 2013: There is no longer a requirement to itemize deductions! Please make your check payable to:

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November 2 – 15, 2013

ON STAGE “Mrs. Klein,” through Nov. 10, TAS. Psychoanalyst Melanie Klein is shattered by the news that her son has died in a climbing accident. Her daughter, also a psychoanalyst, thinks he committed suicide to defy their overbearing mother. When the battle between these two women spills over into their professional lives, the childhood events that lie at the heart of the conflict are exposed. “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels,” through Nov. 30, HCT. Based on the popular 1988 film starring Michael Caine and Steve Martin, the play centers on two con men living on the French Riviera. “Driving Miss Daisy,” through Jan. 12, 2014, DST. This Pulitzer Prize-winning play premiered off-Broadway in 1987. Set in Atlanta, the poignant and sometimes gritty story spans a quarter of a century and centers on two characters, Jewish widow Miss Daisy and her African-American chaufferturned-friend, Hoke. Pacific Mambo Orchestra Featuring Tito Puente Jr., 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 2, SCPA. Celebrating the Golden Age of Latin Big Bands, this powerful 19-piece ensemble performs a dance-inducing mix of salsa, mambo and cha-cha-cha with singer and percussionist Tito Puente Jr. Arrive early for a pre-show happy hour. National Geographic: Spirit of the Wild, 7:30 p.m. Wed., Nov. 6, MAC.

Arts As a photojournalist working in some of the world’s most remote environments, Paul Nicklen faces incredible hardships and danger in pursuit of powerful, close-up images of iconic wildlife. He will discuss his experiences and show some of his award-winning photos. Origins of Traditional Japanese Art, 7 p.m. Thu., Nov. 7, SMoCA. Dr. Claudia Brown, former curator of Asian Art at the Phoenix Art Museum and current ASU art history faculty member, provides historical context for the contemporary work found in the exhibit, “Narrow Road to the Interior: Contemporary Japanese Artists.” Free with RSVP. “How Great Thou Art: The Gospel Music of Elvis Presley,” 7:30 p.m. Tue., Nov. 7 & 11, TPT. Starring Robert Shaw and a 12-piece band with a gospel quartet performing such hits as “Peace In The Valley,” “Amazing Grace” and of course the title track, “How Great Thou Art.” Diavolo: Architecture in Motion, Nov. 7-8, SCPA. The Los Angeles-based Diavolo is an internationally renowned modern acrobatic dance company that takes movement, athletics and daring to the extreme. The troupe’s gravity-defying performances explore the human experience using oversized, surrealistic sets and everyday structures. Comedian Jeff Ross, Nov. 8-10, IMPROV. Jeff Ross is an actor, writer, director, producer and comedian

HE’S THE MAN: Four-time AriZoni Award-winner Matt Newhard stars as Professor Harold Hill in Scottsdale Musical Theater Company’s production of “The Music Man,” on stage Nov. 14-17 in the Dorrance Auditorium at Phoenix Country Day School. Submitted photo


originally from Newark, NJ. He is the creator and star of “The Burn With Jeff Ross” on Comedy Central as well as a producer and star of that network’s wildly popular celebrity roast franchise. “Oklahoma!” Nov. 8-17, MAC. Presented by Mesa Encore Theatre. Set in a Western Indian Territory just after the turn of the century, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colorful background against which Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, play out their love story. Irish Chamber Orchestra, 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 9, SCPA. Two of the world’s most celebrated flutists, Lady Jeanne and Sir James Galway, perform with the esteemed orchestra, known for its energy, unique sound and outstanding musicianship. The Galways will perform for approximately 30 minutes with the Irish Chamber Ensemble during the first half of the concert. “The Music Man,” Nov. 14-17, PCDS. With classic tunes that include “Ya Got Trouble,” “Goodnight My Someone,” “Till There Was You,” and the show-stopping “SeventySix Trombones,” the performance is greatly enhanced with a live 20-plus piece orchestra. Presented by the Scottsdale Musical Theater Company. Broadway’s Next Hit Musical, 8 p.m. Fri., Nov. 15, SCPA. Masters of improvisation gather made-up, hit

November 2 – 15, 2013


ON STAGE VENUE INDEX DST – Desert Stages Theatre 4720 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale Tickets: 480-483-1664, HCT – Hale Centre Theatre 50 W. Page Ave., Gilbert Info: 480-497-1181, haletheatrearizona. com IMPROV – Tempe Improv 930 E. University Dr., Tempe Info: 480-921-9877,

song suggestions from the audience and create a spontaneous evening of music, humor and laughter. The audience votes for their favorite song and watches as the cast turns it into a full-blown improvised musical— complete with memorable characters, witty dialogue and plot twists galore. Discovering Ikebana: Japanese Flower Arranging, 1:30 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16, SMoCA. Patricia Kuffler, Assistant Professor of Ikebana, Ikenobo School, shares the history of the art form and demonstrates the creation of several floral arrangements. A special flower arrangement will be raffled at the end of the program. Free with RSVP.

MAC – Mesa Arts Center 1 E. Main St., Mesa Tickets:, 480-6446500 PCDS – Phoenix Country Day School 3901 E. Stanford Dr., Paradise Valley Tickets:, 602-909-4215 SCPA – Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts 7380 E. 2nd St., Scottsdale

Box office: 480-499-8587, SMoCA – Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art LG – Lounge 7373 E. 2nd St., Scottsdale Info: 480-874-4666, TPT – The Palms Theatre 5247 E. Brown Rd., Mesa Info: 480-924-6260,

San Tan Chorale opens season in Chandler The San Tan Chorale begins its eighth season with a performance at 3 p.m. Sun., Nov. 3, at Epiphany Lutheran Church, 880 W. Ray Rd., Chandler. Under the direction of Artistic Director and co-founder Matthew Frable, the chorale will present a cornucopia of music during its concert, “Resounding Rhythms: Exhilarating Expressions of Song and Dance.” The nonaudition community choir will sing more than a dozen selections ranging from the toe-tapping “At the

Hop” and the thigh-slapping “Barn Dance!” to the Quaker hymn, “How Can I Keep from Singing?” and “If Music Be the Food of Love.” Arrangements by Linda Spevacek, John Rutter, Kirby Shaw and others are on the program. The chorale will be joined by dancers from Kriti Dance, who will add to the festivities. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children and students, and are available at the door. For more information, call 480-297-7552 or visit




November 2 – 15, 2013

Improv show, classes at the HCPA

Small art can have a big impact

The Outliars Improvised Comedy Club is coming to the Higley Center for The Performing Arts (HCPA), 4132 E. Pecos Rd., Gilbert, with a series of shows and classes. Coach, director and performer Dave Thurston, a graduate of Second City Chicago, will teach improv classes 8 p.m. every Tuesday starting Nov. 5. The first class is free. Thurston is founder of the Outliars, as well as producer of the Arizona Improv Festival and The Arizona Sketch Comedy Festival. The Outliars Improvised Comedy Club puts on an average of 300 shows a year at four Valley locations including Chandler, Tempe and Scottsdale. For more information, visit To reserve a space for the Nov. 5 improv class, call 480-784-7258.

The Gilbert Visual Art League (GVAL) presents a unique Benefit Show and Sale 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16 in the courtyard at Postino Wine Café, 302 N. Gilbert Rd., Gilbert. The members of GVAL have been asked to contribute original paintings on 5-inch by 7-inch panels. Each piece will be available for only $25—first-come, first-pick. Purchases will help keep the visual arts alive and growing, and buyers will possess a piece of original art from the area’s finest artists. The Gilbert Visual Art League offers a venue for local artists to show their work and strives to increase artistic awareness and appreciation in the community and surrounding area. Many of the GVAL members live in Gilbert, Chandler and the surrounding areas.

Five local bands perform at benefit concert “Frozen River” by artist Jean Turner-Smith was created on a 5-inch by 7-inch panel and will be available for purchase Nov. 16 at the GVAL Benefit Show and Sale. Submitted photo

GVAL is a non-profit organization and part of the Human Relations, Culture and Arts board of the town of Gilbert. The group meets on the first Thursday of each month in the C.W. and Modene Neely room at the Gilbert Historical Museum, 10 S. Gilbert Rd., Gilbert. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. with a presentation by a guest artist at 7 p.m. For more information or to sign up for their newsletter, visit

Copperstar Studios opens in Chandler Copperstar Repertory Co. recently celebrated the grand opening of its new Copperstar Studios at 3002 N. Arizona Ave., Suites 3 and 4 in Chandler, on the northwest corner of Elliot and Arizona

roads in Pollack Plaza. A variety of classes for ages 3 and older are offered at the new studio, including Acting, Ballet, Fitness Fun, Hip Hop, Improv, Tap, Vocal Technique,

Yoga and Zumba. Online registration is available. To learn more about Copperstar Studios’ schedule, discounts, policies, rates and more, visit

The Tempe chapter of Amnesty International has teamed up with Arizona State University’s student group to host a benefit concert for social justice, 2 to 7 p.m. Sat., Nov. 9, at the Kiwanis Park “Sister Cities” Garden Amphitheater, Baseline Road and Mill Avenue, Tempe. The third annual “Localpalooza for Human Rights!” is free to the public and features five local bands: Walt Richardson, Haymarket Squares, Medicine Tent, the Robby Roberson Quartet, and the Thunderbirds. There also will be food vendors, a beer garden, amnesty souvenirs, and information and opportunities for the community to participate in human rights work. Promoters aim to raise awareness of Amnesty International’s work and encourage community involvement. For more information, go to events/366346013494902/.


Baby boom won’t stop ‘Blonde’ As Gilbert’s award-winning Studio 3 Performing Arts rehearses for “Legally Blonde—the Musical,” there are bigger questions than whether Elle will pass the LSAT, get into Harvard Law School and get Warner back. The cast wants to know ... will it be a boy or a girl, and will she make it to opening night? They’re wondering about Emma England, the show’s artistic director. England, who is eight months pregnant, is busy in her roles as choreographer and music director while also directing set and costume design along with director

Marcus Smith. The fan-favorite musical, based on the hit movie starring Reese Witherspoon, is demanding, with bouncy songs like “Bend and Snap,” “What You Want, “and “Whipped Into Shape,” but the pace won’t stop England. “This baby won’t slow me down one bit!” England says. “Right now, we’re just hoping the baby is on time so I don’t miss final tech and opening night.” “Legally Blonde” has some mature subject matter but Studio 3 is making sure everyone will be able to be in the

SNAP TO IT: A very pregnant Emma England—right, in pink and white polka dot top—leads cast members from “Legally Blonde – The Musical” in the show-stopping “Bend and Snap.” Submitted photo


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pink with Elle and everyone’s favorite dog, Bruiser. Some of the song lyrics will be slightly adjusted to ensure the show is appropriate for all ages. The show runs Nov. 20 through 24 at the Mesa Arts Center, One E. Main St. in Mesa. Show times are 6:30 p.m., with matinee shows at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday

November 2 – 15, 2013


and Sunday. Tickets are $13 to $15 and are on sale through the MAC box office, 480-644-6500 or, and at Studio 3, 511 W. Guadalupe Rd., Gilbert. For more information, call the studio at 480-545-1492.

Two top musical acts come to Gilbert The Higley Center for the Performing Arts (HCPA) continues to bring in some well-known musical acts with a special stop on “The Lov’N It Tour,” featuring Juice Newton and Exile, 7 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16. Tickets are $36 to $44 plus fees. In 1963, the year before The Beatles scored their first American hit, a group of kids calling themselves The Exiles climbed onto an outdoor stage in the small midstate town of Richmond, KY, and proceeded to make musical history—not just with their songs but with their longevity as well. Forty-six years later, that same band, Exile, is still rockin’ with a mix of original and seminal members. Nowadays, J. P. Pennington, Les Taylor, Sonny LeMaire, Marlon Hargis and Steve Goetzman can look back on a career arc that embraces 11 No. 1 country and pop hits, two gold albums and fans by the hundreds of thousands. Grammy, CMA and Billboard awardwinning artist Juice Newton has multiple platinum and gold albums, 10 million

JUICE NEWTON. Submitted photo

records sold and 15 Top 10 hits under her belt. Some of her best-known songs include early 1980s hits, “Angel of the Morning,” “Queen of Hearts,” “Break It to Me Gently” and “Love’s Been a Little Bit Hard on Me.” Call the box office at 480-279-7194 or visit for tickets or more information.


November 2 – 15, 2013


THINGS OF BEAUTY: Art by AZ Open Studio artists. Submitted photo

Tempe studio hosts A doll’s journey is a tale of loss, hope, love holiday sale SanTan Sun-area art lovers and holiday shoppers can discover new ceramic and metal sculpture, functional art and a range of inspiring gifts at AZ Open Studio’s free annual Holiday Show + Sale Nov. 15 through 17 at 2141 E. Cedar St., Suite 2 in Tempe. A special wine and cheese reception will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. Fri., Nov. 15. The event continues from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sun., Nov. 17. AZ Open Studio artists Sandy Blain, Esmeralda DeLaney, Sandra Luehrsen and Joan Waters, a Chandler resident, will present their unique handmade works for sale. Light refreshments will be available. To learn more, visit

Childsplay’s stage adaptation of “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane,” on stage through Nov. 10, teaches us that, “if you have no intention of loving or being loved, then the whole journey is pointless.” With his handmade silk suits, wide array of hats and tiny gold pocket watch, Edward was the most exceptional toy in Abilene’s room. He was adored and he was happy. But then one day, he was lost. Written by Kate DiCamillo, author of

“The Tale of Despereaux,” Edward’s story is a tale of finding friendship, finding yourself and eventually finding your way back home. Performances take place at the Tempe Center for the Arts, 700 W. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe. Show times are 1 and 4 p.m. Saturdays, and 1 p.m. Sundays. Regular show tickets start at $12 and are on sale now at childsplayaz. org or at the Tempe Center for the Arts Box Office, 480-350-2822, ext. 0. Recommended for ages 7 and older.

TRAVELING MAN: Actor Kyle Sorrell, at right, stars in Childsplay’s stage adaptation of “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane,” on stage through Nov. 10 at the Tempe Center for the Arts. Sorrell does the voice of Edward Tulane. Submitted photo

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