Alberta Culture Days alive in Morinville this weekend

By Morinville News Staff

Morinville – Arts and culture take centre stage in town, figuratively and literally, this weekend. The Morinville Community Cultural Centre will host five separate events, each providing a connection to arts and culture and each catering to a different taste.

The weekend kicks off with a performance by the Edmonton-based Jessie Peters Trio, the first performance in the centre’s 2012-2013 concert series. Peters’ show will be followed by a Saturday morning improv workshop for youth and a Saturday afternoon performance of the Princess and the Pea by the Kaybridge Puppets. The centre opens its doors Saturday night to patrons of the arts with the Annual Celebrating Life & Culture fundraiser for the Sturgeon Community Hospital Foundation, a gala that combines philanthropy with fine art and fine wine. Sunday afternoon brings the weekend to a close with the Fret 17 Productions Community Stage, a two-hour event that puts some of Morinville’s top entertainers on the cultural centre’s stage with full light and sound. The formal performance will be followed by a come-one-come-all community jam, a mix of electrified musical genres with acoustic performers.

Cultural Services Manager Laurie Stalker said she is excited about the weekend-long line up. “All the activities we’ve just sort of packaged together, activities that were happening anyway over the Alberta Cultural Days weekend,” Stalker said, adding the annual event is celebrated throughout the province. “Communities gather their artists and audiences and celebrate the culture that is happening in their communities.

Locally, those days will feature an eclectic mix of acts and arts.

All that jazz

The Jessie Peters Trio performance is set for 7:30 pm. Sept. 28. Doors open at 6:30. The Edmonton-based jazz trio includes Morinville bass player Travis Switzer.

“They do a combination of jazz, pop, funk and soul,” Stalker said of the trio. “He’s a really experienced artist on stage, although he’s quite young. He’s personable and really connects with the audience.”

Stalker said the show offers a real variety of music, although billed as jazz. Tickets, available at the cultural centre box office, are $25 for adults and $20 for students and seniors.

Improvising

Saturday morning will be an opportunity for youth to learn the skills of improvisation from a talented professional. Rapid Fire Theatre, a professional improv group from Edmonton, will be sending one of their improv instructors to do a workshop for youth between the ages of 13 to 17. The event takes place from 9 a.m. until noon.

“This is the start of something we hope is going to become very popular here in Morinville,” Stalker said. “I think it will be really fun and we hope that it ignites some interest in that genre.”

Puppets just for kids

Kaybridge Puppets offers a family show Saturday afternoon on the cultural centre stage with their performance of the Princess and the Pea. The performance takes place at 2 p.m.

Stalker said the puppet show will include musical accompaniment using the centre’s grand piano. The performance will be followed by a workshop where children learn to make their own puppet.

Tickets are $10 and available at the cultural centre’s box office.

Fine art for a fine cause

The annual Celebrating Life and Culture fundraiser for the Sturgeon Community Hospital Foundation will take place Saturday evening from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

The evening’s combination of philanthropy and fine art will include display and sale of local artists’ work, wine tasting and hors d’oeuvres as well as musical interludes by local musicians throughout the night.

Advance tickets are $30 per person and available at Vintage Petals Tea House, The Body Shop and Hunters Print and Copy. Tickets will be available at the door at a cost of $35 per ticket.

Elvis (and friends) are in the building

Sunday afternoon’s Open Stage show is being produced by Fret 17 Productions in partnership with the Community Cultural Centre. Stalker said she is looking forward to providing the venue for locals to perform on.

“I’m really excited about it because it’s a chance for people who live here to come and experience what it’s like to be on stage, whether they already know they love being on stage or they are not sure whether they do,” Stalker said. “There will be a nice variety of different things, and we are hoping people will call … and say I want to try that out. As I said in my little blurb, ‘They provide the performance; we’ll raise the curtain. It’s their stage.”

Confirmed acts for the open stage include Elvis tribute artist Rick Johnsen, singer / song writer Justin Hogg, Edgore, Dance Connection, and musician Paul Smith.

The free two hour show will be followed by a community jam. Musicians interested in taking part can contact Paul Smith at 780-862-0340.

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