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Issaquah, Washington
January 28, 2009     The Issaquah Press
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January 28, 2009

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4* B6 WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28, 2009 THE ISSAQUAH PRESS TO SUBMITAN ARTS CALENDAR II1EM: Call 392-6434, exL 237, or newscle~sspress.com. Submit A&E story ideas to isspress@isspress.com. JA NUARY 2N 'n"'- ~ of'~ Jr* Burning ~ Man Collecting Works Benefit," a showcase of art born of the harsh Black Rock Desert and its inspired inhabitants, is through Jan. 31 at Up Front [art] gallery, 48 Front St. N. Call 996-8553. Recent painUngs by Emanuel and Lonore Vardl are on display at Revolution Gallery through Feb. I from 5-9 p.m. at 317 N.W. Gilman Blvd., Suite 26. Call 392-4982. ArtEAST presents the class =The Lonely Ught of Edward Hopper" as part of its Lunch with the Masters art lecture series from 7-9 p.m. at Up Front [art] gallery, 48 Front St. Seating is limited to 10. Fee is $15. Call 679-2459. 0 The Butch Harrlssn Quartet, featuring vocalist Josephine Howell, performs from 7:45-10 p,m. at Bake's Place, 4135 Providence Point Drive S.E.Tickets are $54.50 for dinner and the show; $22 show only. Call 391-3335. Black Velvet 4 performs from 7:30-11:30 p.m. at Vino Bella, 99 Front St. N. Call 391-1424. t The seventh annual Northwest International Brass Band Festival is at 7 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Bellevue, 1717 Bellevue Way N.E., featuring brass bands from the Pacific Northwest, including local musi- cians in Brass Band Northwest. Suggested ticket donations are $15 for adults; $10 for students and seniors. Go to http://brass- bandnw.org/festiva/.htm. The ~ Pnttis Quartet performs from 7:45-10 i~ p,m. at Bake's Place, 4135 Providence Point Drive S.E. Tickets are $59.50 for dinner and i~ the show or $27 for just the show. Call 391-3335.-- 6 FEBRUARY Ventura Highway Revisited performs from 7:30-11:30 p.m. at Vino Bella, 99 Front St. N. Call 391-1424. BY JEFF RICHARDS Nancy Talley introduces the crowd to the first Open Mic Poetry Readings at Vino Bella Wine and Espresso Bar. Liv, poet's socie l:, BY JEFF ]~ICHARDS "A coward dies a thousand deaths." The night began with an empty chair and a microphone, but one by one, some of Is- saquah's writers, thinkers and observers came to the stage to bare their thoughts and feelings to the crowd in the form of po- etry. "It is an act of personal courage, and anyone who does- n't understand that needs to try it," Nancy Talley said. "Poetry is about a multitude of voices, and when you put together the mul- titude of voices, it's a great joy to hear." The would-be poets gathered Jan. 20 for the first Open Mic Poetry Readings at V'mo Bella Wine and Espresso Bar. Talley, who hosted the event, formu- lated the idea. The night brought together six writers, including Talley, who read their works to an unusually packed Tuesday night crowd. "I know you Joe. You're the type of person who always tries to get what you want." The poetry night is the third Tuesday of each month from now on. Talley said she thought of the idea while in the library, and she wondered aloud why such a thing did not exist in Issaquah. Upon looking into it, she was told professional poets had been brought to Issaquah before, and no one showed up. But that's not what she wanted She wanted a place where anyone, of any experi- ence level, could come and share their work in front of a positive, supportive crowd. Joan erobala, of the Issaquah Arts Commission, said she loved the idea and helped Talley set things in motion, erobala said her work with the commission had been for other arts, never poetry. "Art is not just statues. It's reading, it's writing, it's poetry," she said. "I think Issaquah should be proud of its writers." When looking for a location, she said V'mo Della was a logical choice for its good wine and cozy atmosphere. "Dear child of hope. As you , are born and rest on your child s breast, what message will you bring?" BY JEFF RICHARDS Reisha Holton reads one of her poems. 'Sorry if it's a bit dark; she cau- tioned the crowd beforehand. Holton read three of her poems. V"mo Bella is a long, thin building with the kind of brick walls that look to have been hastily slapped together during an era vacant of televisions, cell phones and micro brews The dark room is calmly lit by an assortment of small lamps, white Christmas lights and the headlights of passing cars. The art on display is a smattering of vivid colors in random arrange- ments, with names like "New Media." The stage is nothing but a half-foot-tall rise from the floor, accompanied by a microphone and a single stool, though no one used it. The atmosphere made it a welcome venue for those partici- pating, like Christopher Hill, who said the poetry reading was a cathartic experience for him. "It was pretty noncritical," he said. "People were open to hear- ing different types of poetry. There were not a lot of precon- ceived notions about what poetry is." Hill said he was encouraged to attend after taking an eight- week writing course with Reisha Holton, who also read at the po- etry reading. "It was all about positive feed- back," Hill said. "It wasn't really a critique." One of the poems he read was inspired by a prompt from Holton's class in which album covers were placed on the ground and music by Van Morri- son was played in the back- ~raOund. From there, the class d to just write about how it made them feel. Hill's work from that came to be a poem about feelings of enti- tlement and self-assuredness, called "National Debt." "She is one of many now who know no place is home. ~ Vino Della owner Claude Blu- menzweig said he was more than happy to host the poetry reading. The Front Street wine bar is a venue for other enter- tainment, such as Comedy Night and Jam Dawgs jam ses- sions. "You couldn't do something like this anywhere else," he said. "Like in a library? It's too noisy." The evening was the first of what those involved hope will become a monthly event. While she did not read, erobala said she enjoys listening to the work of others. "Poetry's like a camera," she said. "Pictures go off in your mind of how you feel." Until the next poetry reading on Feb. 17, Talley and erobala can only hope Issaquah's writ- ers continue to write and find the courage to add themselves to those brave souls who choose to share their hearts and minds with fellow resi- dents of the Issaquah commu- nity. "Short shimee. Ain't it cool. ~ The quoted poems are ex- cerpts from work read by Jay Kumar, Christopher Hill, Michael Johnson and Barbara Carole. 'The Importance of Being Earnest' a sumptuous delight BY KATHLEEN 1~. MERRILL IFYOU GO Sumptuous. Delightful. Ex- quisite. Decadent. That's the sets, the dresses, the cast and the lines. "The Importance of Being Earnest" is deeply shallow and shallowly deep. And that makes it a lot of tim. But this isn't a musical. There's no singing and there's no dancing. If you go, you re going to have to work for this one. But "Earnest" is totally worth it, so pay close attention. There are three acts, not two. So, when the first interval happens, it's a surprise that left many people wondering, how can it already be halfway through? Also, those two in- tervals are not very long, which is amazing, because that's when the crew changes the sets. A city house becomes a country garden becomes the inside of the country home in nothing flat. And all three of those places are gorgeous in their simplicity. But far more important than seeing is hearing at this play. "People have to really listen, which they aren't used to do- ing so much, said Artistic Di- rector Steve Tompkins during an interval. "People are not so much into language anymore and that's what it's really about." This show includes one of the most fun marriage propos- als,ever. People were howling with laughter. Pay attention to the clever takes on romance, flirting, relationships and mar- riage. Although some of the things are sad but true, that's exactly what also makes them really funny. With only seven cast mem- bers, you really get to know each character well during this more than two-hour feast. Lady Bracknell, played with great verve by Laura Kenny (and dig her dresses!), is hilari- ous in her sternness. Jason Collins is a delight as the fussy, trendy Algernon Moncrieff. (And how does he eat like that night after night and stay so slim, audience '111e importance of Being Earnest' Jan. 21-March 1 Francis J. Gaudette Theatre 303 Front St. N. $22 - $58 392-2202 or www.villa@theatre.org members wondered out loud.) Clayton Corzatte, who plays two roles, Merriman and Lane, is very funny with his dry, yet smirky manner. Angela DiMarco and Is- saquah native Jennifer Lee Taylor, who play Cecily Cardew and Gwendolen Fairfax, re- spectively, are simply delightful with their wit, joy and spark. And the second dress Taylor wears, marvelous. Paul Morgan Stetler provides great belly laughs with his manner and charm as John Worthing, otherwise known as Ernest. Jayne Muirhead, as Miss Prism, and Richard Ziman, as the Rev. Canon Chasuble, are like giddy children with each other and will make you smile every time they are onstage to- gether. Caroline Pinkers, 77, of Bellevue, who has had season tickets to Village Theatre for more than five years, loved the theater's take on "Earnest." And she knew whether the cas! was doing well. After all, she s seen the play "a number of times over the years." "The first time I saw it, I was in high school," she said, tak- ing a break from a book during one of the intervals. "And I've been going to see it off and on ever since" Aside from the witty one-lin- ers, and complicated yet sim- ple plot, this show features twists and turns you'll predict, and some you never would. Go see this show. Reach Editor Kathleen R. Merrill at 392-6434, ext. 227, or editor@iss- pressxom. Comment on this story at www. issaquahpress, com. BY JAY KOH/PROPERTY OF VILLAGE THEATRE In a scene featuflng most of the cast of 3he Importance of Being Earnest' are (from leE) Jason Collins (Algernon Moncrieff), Paul Morgan Stetler (John 'Jack' Worthing), Angela DiMarco (Cecily Cardew), Jennifer Lee Taylor (Gwendolen Faiffax) and Laura Kenny (Lady Bracknell). We'tt Pay Your Heating BILL! We will pay your heating bill for any month you choose following the installation of our ~l~l~nir~ Heats. 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