Archive for July, 2014

Five Weekend Month – Silver Pockets Full

August2014

A five weekend month includes five Fridays, five Saturdays, and five Sundays.

Any 31-day month that starts on Friday will have 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays.

August 2014 is a five weekend month.

Upcoming five weekend months:

May 2015
July 2016
December 2017
March 2019
May 2020

King Arthur visits City Lights Theater in SPAMALOT

 

King Arthur (Ken Boswell, in crown) has a jolly old time with the folk of Camelot

King Arthur (Ken Boswell, in crown) has a jolly old time with the folk of Camelot

City Lights Theater Company has gone ambitious this summer as it presents the comedy extravaganza Monty Python’s Spamalot!  This is one of my favorite shows because it’s just so irreverent and complete fun.  There is nothing serious in this show, there are no deep hidden meanings, and there is so much going on at any and all times that glitches are guaranteed to happen every single night… and it is always fun and hilarious to see how these professional performers manage to overcome the unexpected.  When you are in need of a show that is strictly fun entertainment in its purest form, Spamalot is the one to see.

The show recreates many scenes from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, with a lot of Broadway mixed in.  You will see killer rabbits, and cows tossed from the ramparts, the Black Knight receives a flesh wound or four, and included in the show is the one thing the film is missing: a plethora of dancing girls.  The story is of King Arthur’s search for a team of worthy knights who will help him on his quest to find the Holy Grail.  On the way they must all avoid the plague, find a nice shrubbery for the Knights Who Say Ni, and rescue a Damsel in Distress Prince Herbert.  Watching the film first is not necessary, so if you have been deprived of the Monty Python movie experience, rest assured you will still have a rollicking great time (and then go rent the film for gosh sakes, why haven’t you seen it yet??).

Almost all the actors play multiple parts, requiring many costume changes, and there is constant choreography and singing.  There is a lot of acting and singing talent required to put this show on, and stage and set work behind the scenes that is unimaginably difficult.  City Lights does a tremendous job with their smaller theater and budget, so that you don’t miss a thing and an amazing time is had by all.  Kudos to director Jeffrey Bracco for pulling off this amazing feat so well, and to Jennifer Gorgulho for managing to choreograph an incredible number of constantly moving people.

Spamalot is running through August 31, but shows have already started to sell out, so get your tickets now before you miss it.  And before you get to the theater, stop off at Psycho Donuts for their special Spam Wellington Donut, a savory creation filled with layers of Spam and mushroom duxelle.  This surprisingly delicious treat was served at the Opening Night Gala along with mead from Alderin’s Meadery and catered food from Cafe Stritch A big thanks to all these companies for supporting City Lights Theater Company and local theater!

 

Monty Python’s Spamalot
Through August 31
City Lights Theater Company
529 South Second Street, San Jose

Main Stage Ticket Pricing:
Adult: $30
Student: $17
Educator: $17
Senior: $25

THE GREAT PRETENDER a Must-See at TheatreWorks

 

Great Pretender4_KevinBerne

Children’s TV host Mr. Felt (Steve Brady) performs with his puppets Carol the Pony and Francis

TheatreWorks is presenting another amazing show as the opener of their 45th season.  This is the world premiere of The Great Pretender, by David West Read, and I have no doubt this original show will be playing many theaters in the future.

Mr. Felt is the host of a televised puppet show for children.  He works with a puppet child named Francis, a puppet pony named Carol and a couple other friends.  In the opening we get to see them put on their puppet show of craft making, which goes on just long enough to make me wonder if the entire play was going to be a child’s puppet show… but soon enough the theme music fades out and we head a few months into the future.  Mr. Felt’s wife, the puppeteer for Francis, has passed away, and someone new is needed to replace her.  We soon meet Carol, the puppeteer for Carol the Pony (and the most terrible human on the planet), another puppeteer Tom, and newbie Jodi, who grew up with the show and wants more than anything to be a part of it.

Mr. Felt (Steve Brady) watches skeptically while Jodi (Sarah Moser) tells Tom (Michael Storm) and Carol (Suzanne Grodner) about the pants she made herself

Mr. Felt (Steve Brady) watches skeptically while Jodi (Sarah Moser) tells Tom (Michael Storm) and Carol (Suzanne Grodner) about the pants she made herself

My friend and I were excited to see this show because PUPPETS, and also the line “Contains Mature Language”, and how can you miss with that combo?? But PEOPLE.  This show made me almost cry.  Well, perhaps I did actually cry a little, or maybe there was just a lot of pollen in the theater.  I certainly wasn’t the only one in the theater with sniffles.  The Great Pretender isn’t just a puppet show, it is about Life, and Death, and Friendships, and realizing who your Family is when you have no one.  It also made me laugh hysterically.  It touched me on so many levels, in a way that many other shows have not.  But what did I expect? This is TheatreWorks, and they have consistently presented the best of the best for the last year I have attended.

The production is not actually for children as there are mature language and situations, and also, the character of Carol should not be anywhere near children, haha.  But teens would be fine, and other than that, everyone should go see this amazing show immediately.  I don’t think we have seen the last of David West Read, and The Great Pretender is absolutely headed for the big time.

The Great Pretender
Through August 3, 2014
TheatreWorks
At Lucie Stern Theatre, Palo Alto

 

Six A’s & Two Giants in All-Star Game

The 85th MLB All-Star Game from Target Field in Minneapolis is Tuesday, July 15 on FOX TV and ESPN Radio at 4:30 p.m.

Oakland Athletics:

  • Josh Donaldson 3B
  • Sean Doolittle LHP
  • Scott Kazmir LHP
  • Derek Norris C
  • Brandon Moss 1B
  • Yoenis Céspedes OF


San Francisco Giants:

  • Madison Bumgarner LHP
  • Hunter Pence OF

Josh Donaldson and Yoenis Céspedes will participate in the 2014 Home Run Derby.
A’s third-base coach Mike Gallego will pitch to Céspedes.

Céspedes is the 2013 Home Run Derby champion.

The 2014 Home Run Derby is Monday, July 14 on ESPN TV and ESPN Radio at 5:00 p.m.

Startup Weekend: Bay Area Makers at the Tech

Startup Weekend

Ohh, maker and startup fans and anyone with a great idea should show up this weekend at the Tech Museum of Innovation! On July 11-13 they’re hosting an awesome event called “Startup Weekend: Bay Area Makers at the Tech” This will be a creative event where individuals who want to get started founding and launching a successful venture will have an opportunity to make it a reality.

Friday evening participants will present their pitches for a hardware startup. On Saturday they’ll form teams and alliances to make their dream come true and the Tech and it’s partners will be providing equipment like 3-D printers and laser cutters to make it happen.

Silicon valley tech leaders will judge the entries and give the teams feedback and conclude with a grand showcase of the week’s work on Sunday evening.

Startup Weekend: Bay Area Makers, supported by Google for Entrepreneurs, is dedicated to helping individuals build their networks, learn new skills, and launch a startup while creating a product, prototype, and presentation. Startup Weekend has events in more than 100 countries and 580 cities worldwide.

 

WHAT: Startup Weekend: Bay Area Makers. An intense event where teams create an innovative product over the weekend and launch a real startup.

WHEN: Startup Showcase: Sunday, July 13, 2014 at 5 p.m.

Full event: July 11, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. to July 13, 2014 at 8:30 p.m.

WHERE: The Tech, 201 S. Market St. San Jose, CA

Did Somebody Say #Bacon Festival AND Fireworks?

Bacon Festival

What’s not to love about a bacon festival with fireworks too? July 4th and 5th is the second annual Movable Feast Bacon Festival on the Plaza de Cesar Chavez. They’ve expanded to two full days of food, entertainment, music and SJStreet Mart vendors with everything from henna tattoos and organic indigo to jewelry, clothing and more.

The food
Throughout the day there will be a load of food trucks including the famous Bacon Bacon and Baconbot trucks. Even if bacon isn’t your favorite thing there are plenty of other options from Grilled Cheese bandits, Madd Mex Cantina, Tastee Bytes, Chromatic Coffee, Treatbot and Fairycakes. Here’s the list of food vendors.

Entertainment
Kick up your heels to Yeshua and the Hi-Tones, Anya and the Getdown, The People and The Honey Wilders and watch the Pro Wrestling Revolution at several times both days. Silly Ricky the stilt juggler will be there as well as Brian the Bubble guy to entertain the kids. This is definitely a family friendly event.

Fireworks will start at 9:30 on July 4th courtesy of the San Jose Rotary Club

Here’s the full schedule and be sure to get tickets in advance at a discounted price. (Kids tickets are free online)

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