This week kicks off the final six weeks of the calendar year where things move in a very rapid pace. It’s the start of what’s been stated as the big holiday season with many festive events, both as official and unofficial. There’s Thanksgiving (in the USA anyway) on November 23rd. In December, one will experience Christmas Day (December 25th), Hanukkah (December 12th-20th), Kwanzaa (December 26th-January 1st) as well as other holidays that tend to fall within the month of December.
For simplicity sake, this article will concentrate on Thanksgiving, the day that one is support to give thanks for the various elements that exist in one’s domain. This is the moment that is perhaps the biggest day that revolves around food–the day where folks gather around a table of some sort and have themselves the biggest feast day this side of the eating circles.
Just about every magazine that caters to housekeeping and/or homemaking in their November issues has articles on Thanksgiving, offering ideas one can add to and for their gathering. Travel see see big movements about as folks head off between one place to another for the long four day plus weekend. Families will reunite for the day that can range from peaceful to the stressful moments (sometimes leading into actual fights) that has been part of sitcom fodder as well as the occasional feature film plot points (Trains, Planes, and Automobiles, Home For The Holidays, The Ice House, etc.) that one can catch on a favorite streaming media service.
Of course, there are the thankfulness parts, the time where one can take out the moment to give thanks. Generally speaking, there are two sets of thankfulness to make note of. There is the traditional thanks, and there are the “thanx”. This humble writer will separate the two emotions, giving an honest opinion over the methods of thankfulness.
Fist, there is the genuine thanks. This is where one counts their blessings that they hold over the elements that are found within their personal domain. Many people have such elements that they are grateful to have and hold for what they are and how they are conceived. If ranges wildly, from having a home to live in, family and/or friends they cherish, a job or occupation they are content with, and the list goes onward. Taking time to give thanks at first may sound old fashioned and perhaps even corny. However, with many of the tragic events that has taking place within the last few weeks as created by mother nature as well as human nature, one does take out the time to note various elements that state “This could have happened to me!”. Social media expressed all types of commentary of these notions, meaning that in spite of what occurred as well as its origins, people hold a strong notion to rally around one another and offer such thanks, no matter how large or how small.
Then there is the “thanx” part, the methods that fall into a trivial state of being. As one can guess, Thanksgiving starts out the biggest shopping season of the year. Retailers have been ramping up inventory over goods that is most likely to be exchanged during these final six weeks of the calendar year. It stated out as the days called “Black Friday”, leading off to “Cyber Monday” eventually changing to an ever present occasion.
These shoppers give their thanks (or “thanx”) over the fact they they can now shop for the holidays (all of ‘em) through convenience, taking advantage of buying online. According to a recent report by the marketing firm Deloitte of those polled in their 32nd annual holiday survey as completed online based on a sample of 5,000 adults, 51% will do their holiday shopping online, the first time where buying via cyberspace will surpass shopping at a physical retail outlet. This means that people will not even bother in trekking out to a mall or big box outlet to fight crowds, deal with sales folks that can range from helpful to clueless, and face the hassle of getting what they want or need. All it will take is a click of the mouse and a handy-dandy credit card number! That aspect, along with the 90 million Amazon Prime members as estimated by the Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, shopping is a snap–or click!
Whatever the case, there is that thankfulness in the air, from knowing that one is safe and secure from harm and danger, to the satisfaction that one scored on getting Uncle Louie a copper plated chamber pot (monogramed) through an internet based store that includes shipping and handling in the price! However, one should give their personal thanks to whatever and wherever one may be. And this thankfulness isn’t just limited to the fourth Thursday in November. It should be a year round aspect, the same case for shopping for the season! After all, monogramed copper plated chamber pots can be obtained all year round. Then again, would Uncle Louie know, let alone care just when you got the thing? We didn’t think so, either!
NEWS AND REVIEWS
SHERLOCK HOMES AND THE CASE OF THE JERSEY LILY, Katie Forgette’s play that has the master detective taking upon a case between an actress of the stage, a series of scandalous letters, and an arch villain within an ordeal that can bring a fall within the British monarchy, opens as its third production of Theatre 40’s current theater season.
Melissa Collins portrays Lillie Langtry, an actress known as the “Jersey Lily”, that has graced the high stages of London and much of Europe. A few years before, she composed and mailed a series of private and rather intimate letters to the Prince of Wales, and those letters were recently stolen! A mysterious source notified Lillie that these letters, along with a photographic image, would be sent to the newspapers unless a ransom is paid to get those letter back into her hands! The content of what these letters expressed would not only cause havoc within the ruling royal family, but to Lillie’s personal repatriation. So Lillie turns for the support of Sherlock Homes (Martin Thompson) and his faithful assistant Dr. Watson (John Wallace Combs) to solve this case. Lillie has in tow playwright Oscar Wilde (Scott Facher) who is currently writing a new comedy about the importance of being forthright that wants Lillie to star in. It’s discovered that behind this blackmail sect is Homes’ arch enemy, Professor Moriarty (Dave Buzzotta) that desires to bring the detective down for his count as well as for the British empire. Homes and company meets another challenge to stop Moriarty in his tracks, and to see to it that Lillie’s name and repatriation is kept in a proper manner.
This is a play that comes from the realms of one of literature’s best known and well respected case solvers, and presents all of the action, thrills, and suspense one would expect into an original stage concept from the aspects of the mastermind detective as created by Arthur Conan Doyle. In this Theatre 40 program, Martin Thompson depicts a Sherlock Homes as one would desire: a character that stands up mighty with the texture of stone, yet holds enough wit and intelligence based on simple (or “elementary”) logic. Melissa Collins as Lillie Langtry is a thespian of the stage that is just as pure as a lilly, even though she is more legacy that virgin. John Wallance Combs as Dr. Watson is fully acquainted of what Homes can provide, yet stands out for his own self. Oscar Wilde, as portrayed by Scott Facher, provides much of the comedy relief depicting a playwright that would rather pen witty stage pieces that serious dramatic matter. And Dave Buzzotta as Professor Moriaty holds the sinister approach, ready, willing, and nearly able to foil Homes, only to keep another chance in almost succeeding at bay. Jules Aaron directs this program that will keep the audience’s attention throughout, always keeping on the know to how Homes will get his job done, using reason that anyone could figure out if one knew how!
The stage set as created by Theatre 40’s residual set designer Jeff G. Rack changes from one selected scene to the next that enhances the period of Victorian London where Homes and company is evoked at its superior state of excellence.
Also featured as supporting players are Alison Blanchard, Shawn Savage, and Anibal Silveyra.
For those that are fans of Sherlock Homes detective tales, or those that enjoy a great thriller for a play, SHERLOCK HOMES AND THE CASE OF THE JERSEY LILY will fit that bill! As one of the play’s running lines note, “You see, but you do not observe.” There is plenty to see, yet much more to observe. That is what theatre is really all about! (No s#it Sherlock!!)
SHERLOCK HOMES AND THE CASE OF THE JERSEY LILY, presented by Theatre 40 and performs at the Reuben Cordova Theatre, located within the campus of Beverly Hills High School, 241 South Moreno Drive (off little Santa Monica Blvd.) Beverly Hills, until December 17th. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 2:00 PM. Special Monday night performances take place on December 4th and 11th at 8:00 PM. No performances on November 23rd and 24th.
For ticket reservations or for more information, call (310) 364-0535, or via online at http://www.Theatre40.org
Over at Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group performance space located in North Hollywood is Susan Chambers’ UNCOVER THE MOON, a surrealistic tale of a young woman’s coming of age saga that carries her toward magical elements.
Mieko Beyer is Levana. As a girl, she lives within a community of sorts that has a sense of anxiety within its grip. Her being becomes earmarked with the burden of womanhood through a “Mad Woman”. She enters an invisible presence of the spirit of the moon as she shakes off her curse to discover her own place found within her domain.
This one-act production written and directed by Susan Chambers, is performed in a non-linear pattern that resembles an experimental theatre piece. There are no backdrops to speak of (the show is literally performed within a “black box” space) as the production itself has no set timeline nor physical space where the events in this play take place. This stage piece consists of a bevy of performers that emote through costuming and with some facial masks donned. (Lucine Chukhadarian and Denise Devin provides the said costume design.) The supporting cast appearing includes (as listed in their alphabetical order), Laura Lee Botsacos, Garrett Botts, Scathach Ashley Cotter, Philip Sokoloff, and Shalonda Shaw Reese. This ensemble troupe emotes their dialogue that becomes part of Levena’s inter-domain as she uncovers her place within her universe.
This is a production that is very creative, yet needs an acquired taste to become appreciated for what it is. Granted, it may not necessarily be for everyone that isn’t acquainted to new alternative theatre. But for those that value and admire this form of stage expressionism, then this presentation works to one’s personal advantage. It’s well worth its viewing as presented.
UNCOVER THE MOON will make its final performance on Saturday November 25th at the ZJU Theatre Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, one-quarter block north of the intersection of Lankershim Blvd., Vineland Avenue, and Camarillo Street. Showtime is 8:30 PM. For ticket reservations, call (818) 202-4120, or via online at http://ZombieJoes.tix.com
The next performances as presented by the Zombie Joe Underground Theatre Group will be Blood Alley Christmas, described as a “festively-abrasive holiday-horror yuletide spectacular”, and Astroglyde 2017, calling itself a “stellar holiday evening of truth, terror & titillation”. Blood Alley Christmas runs on Friday and Saturday nights, December 1st through the 16th at 11:00 PM, and Astroglyde 2017 performs on Sunday evenings December 3rd, 10th, and 17th at 7:00 PM.
Visit http://www.ZombieJoes.com or http://www.UrbanDeath.com for further information.
The Angel City Chorale will present A NEW Home for the Holidays, a festive concert event that spotlights the season with some classic harmonious tuneful chorale arrangements, as well as some new musical works including a world premier.
Among the musical numbers that are timeless for the season including new creative renditions of recognized carols as Bring A Torch, O Holy Night, among many others, as well as time honored arrangements as classical composers as Joseph Haydn to contemporary favorites from Norwegian songwriter Ola Gjello and Grammy Award-winning melodist Eric Whitacre, a new work will be presented: “Hanukkah Lullaby”, an original piece composed by ACC Founder and Artistic Director Sue Fink and ACC choir member and songwriter Denny Wynbrandt. Fink will once again lead the chorale as she has done since its founding. 2018 will commemorate this group’s Silver Anniversary of providing a musical blend of classical, jazz, folk, gospel, urban, rhythm & blues, and all points in between, to audiences around the nation and across the globe.
And with ACC tradition, there will be sing-a-long sessions presented where the theater audience can “join” the 160+ singers accommodated with a full piece orchestra to use their vocal talents as part of the festivities. It’s the ideal concert for all ages to gather to observe and glorify a timeless season of joy, piece, and the celebration of the human spirit.
As far as this year’s concert theme, A NEW Home for the Holidays. This year’s event, ACC’s 24th Annual holiday concert, will take place at a new location, the Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 3300 Wilshire Blvd. (between South Vermont Avenue and Normandie Avenue), in the Koreatown district of Los Angeles, a place that is larger in capacity and offers more parking space!
A NEW Home for the Holidays will take place for two days only, Saturday, December 2nd, and Sunday, December 3rd at 7:00 PM both evenings.
For more information on this event including ticketing details, call (310) 943-9231, or via online at https://angelcitychorale.org/concerts-events/a-new-home.
Visit ACC through their social media outlets via Facebook http://www.facebook.com/AngelCityChorale, YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/AngelCityChorale, Twitter https://twitter.com/AngelCityChoral and SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/angelcitychorale
On behalf of the staff and management of Accessibly Live Off-Line, we wish each and everyone one of our readers and subscribers a very Happy Thanksgiving.
We’ll see you for our next edition coming the next week!
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