Grand weekend for music, theater, romance |

Grand weekend for music, theater, romance

Sally J. Taylor
Nevada Appeal Features Editor

Love is in the air this weekend as Carson City embraces several options for a romantic evening.

‘Grand Night for Singing’

Western Nevada Musical Theatre Company has assembled more than 30 singers and dancers, many who starred in past productions, to create the acclaimed Broadway revue “Grand Night for Singing.” The show will play three performances this weekend at the Carson City Community Center.

“Many of the people in this show have been in our shows for as many as 15 years,” said producer/director Stephanie Arrigotti, artistic director for the company and professor of music at Western Nevada College.

Gina Kaskie-Davis choreographed the production.

Although the show recreates many of Rogers & Hammerstein’s most beloved broadway songs, “the attitude is different,” Arrigotti said. “Many numbers have new twists. … There are comic twists to these standard Rogers & Hammerstein numbers.”

Broadway favorites include “The Carousel Waltz,” “If I Loved You,” “Some Enchanted Evening,” and “I’m Just a Girl Who Cain’t Say No.” Often the numbers are sung by the same performers who portrayed the characters in the original Western Nevada productions.

A sassier version of “Wash That Man” is performed by a trio with Lynne Heller, who played Nellie in “South Pacific” nine years ago, Sarah Pennebaker, who played the same part in September, and Maria Arrigotti, a veteran of more than 50 productions.

Other lead singers include Leoney Berg, Adam Machart and James McDuffie.

“Occasionally they have a jazzy take on the standards, occasionally they’re done straight,” Arrigotti said.

“Kansas City” is sung in tight harmony reminiscent of Manhattan Transfer, she said, while songs from “Cinderella” tend to be in the original style.

“Grand Night for Singing” also draws on songs from obscure productions.

“Many plays never made it but had this one really cute number in it that deserves to be heard,” Arrigotti said.

She said the talented performers, often competitors for lead parts, are enjoying working together.

“There are gorgeous harmonic arrangements, difficult arrangements,” Arrigotti said. “We have many many remarkably strong performers.”

‘Moonlight & Magnolias’

‘Moonlight & Magnolias’ tells the fictionalized tale of how the epic film “Gone With the Wind” was saved from its premature demise and takes a farcical look behind the scenes of the classic.

“It’s about an actual true incident, but is highly fictionalized,” explained Karen Chandler, director of the Proscenium Players production.

The play will be staged Fridays and Saturdays at the Brewery Arts Center from through Feb. 28.

The plot centers on legendary Hollywood producer David O. Selznick, played by Jim Godwin. He has just fired the director of “Gone with the Wind” and the script needs a rewrite. The writer he wants, Ben Hecht, played by Jason Macy, has never read the novel but is expected to write a revised screenplay by the end of the week. Selznick also pulls director Victor Fleming, played by Jody Paslov, from finishing “The Wizard of Oz” to be the new director of “Gone with the Wind.”

In “Moonlight & Magnolias,” Selznick locks the three of them in his office for five days with only bananas and peanuts to eat. By day three, fatigue, hunger and sarcasm prevail and tempers flair.

Selznick’s secretary, played by Kate Cook, comes in periodically to restock the trio’s bananas and peanuts, with hilarious interactions.

“(The play) has its thoughtful moments too,” Chandler added, as the writers discuss serious topics such as slavery and Hitler’s move through Europe.

Despite taking place in an office, the set created for the Proscenium Players production is elaborate, including leaded glass panes.

“It’s one of the most beautiful sets Carson has seen in quite awhile,” Chandler said.

“I can’t even remember when I’ve been this pleased with a show. It’s been so much fun. We laughed through the whole thing while getting serious work done.”

A complementary champaign reception will follow Friday’s opening night performance in the Brewery Arts Center’s Grand Ballroom. A Valentine’s Day dessert bar will open after Saturday’s performance.

An Intimate Valentine Evening with Tuck & Patti

Jazz vocal and guitar duo Tuck & Patti will bring their passionate music to the Brewery Arts Center for a romantic Valentine’s Day concert.

The couple ” Tuck Andress and Patti Cathcart ” have performed together since 1978 and been married nearly as long. The joy of their devotion to each other is converted to memorable music and shared with their audience.

Joy is “the basis of our music and everything we do,” Patti says on their Web site, “Call it divine love, love of your mate, love of your planet; whatever you call it, joy is what it’s all about for us.”

Their minimalist arrangements ” primarily just Tuck’s guitar virtuosity and Patti’s rich mezzo-soprano vocals ” are layered with technical and emotional depth.

The couple, who reside in the Bay area, has produced 14 albums on the Windham Hill label and their own label, T&P Records. Their most recent album “I Remember You,” was released in 2007.

Patti grew up in the Bay area immersed in a variety of music styles. She sang in church at age 6 or 7 and was directing the adult choir before she turned 16. In the ’60s and ’70s she was part of the San Francisco music scene.

Tuck grew up in Tulsa, Okla., surrounded by the music of his jazz pianist father and classical pianist older sister. He started playing piano then switched to guitar in high school to play in rock ‘n’ roll bands. At 16, a friend introduced him to jazz. College brought him West to Stanford.

Tuck and Patti met in 1978 in San Francisco when Patti auditioned with the band Tuck played in.

“Within a few seconds of hearing her sing, I knew that I had found my musical soulmate,” he says.

Patti’s experience was similar.

“I immediately knew two things, that the band wasn’t happening, but that I was going to steal the guy playing guitar in the corner.”

Nearly three decades later, their romance continues to inspire their music and their audiences.

‘Grand Night for Singing’

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday

Where: Carson City Community Center Bob Boldrick Theater

Tickets: $20 for general admission, $18 for students and seniors, and $16 for youth 17 and under; season tickets and preferred seating also available.

Call: 775-445-4249

Tuck & Patti

When: 7:30 p.m., Saturday

Where: Brewery Arts Center Performance Hall

Tickets: $25 reserved seating; $3 off students, seniors and Brewery members

Contact: 883-1976 or go to http://www.brewer

‘Moonlight & Madness’

Who: Proscenium Players

When: 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through Feb. 28

Where: Brewery Arts Center’s Donald W. Reynolds Theater

Tickets: $15 general; $12 seniors, students and Brewery and Proscenium members