Friday, August 24, 2012
Acro-cats show now playing at Stone Soup Theatre. What about a cat standing on its hind legs, holding up one paw next to a sign that says "Who's Number One?" Yep, these are the kind of insanely cute tricks performed by owner Samantha Martin's troupe of cats, ranging from adoptable kittens to old hands. Samantha is a cat-lover turned trainer, and if you're all up in arms about cats being forced to perform, you should know that she rescues and fosters cats, and finds "forever" homes for them. She uses the clicker/treat reward system of training, and the "tricks" are based on normal cat behaviors. The Stone Soup Theater is quite small, so it really does feel like you're watching the show in Samantha's living room. (In fact, she told the audience that all the props and gear in the show are actually her living room furnishings.) Anyway, it's pretty hard to get a cat to do anything it doesn't want to do, so I didn't feel bad at all for them--and I hate zoos and circuses that keep animals in captivity. These domestic cats seem happy. Back to the show: Along with the cats, there are a few rats, a couple of chickens, and a groundhog(?!) who rides in a wagon pulled by an RC car. There's also a cacophonous music segment, with cats playing guitar, keyboard, drums, chimes, cowbell, and a chicken playing tambourine and cymbals. The show's in Seattle until September 1, so go see it! A couple of insider tips: You can buy tickets at at the door no problem (at least last night), but I recommend getting there early so you can get a front-row, center seat AND so you can listen to the cat-themed music before the show ("Stray Cat Strut" by The Stray Cats, "Year of the Cat" by Al Stewart, and so on). Also, this is one place you won't be out of place wearing that cat sweatshirt your grandma gave you, or your Halloween cat ears (but if you forget them, you can buy some at the show!)
Thursday, August 23, 2012
ZooTunes concert: Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue. It was sold out, and the lawn at the Woodland Park Zoo was packed with picnic blankets and folding chairs. You can bring a kid, free, with each paid ticket, and it's an early show (doors open at 5; concert starts at 6), so it's very family-friendly, if not job-friendly. I love the sound of horns, so I was excited to listen to Trombone Shorty. Since they're from New Orleans, I was expecting more of a New Orleans jazz sound, but they had a much more modern vibe; there was even a Nirvana song in their set (in honor of Seattle, maybe?). Since I was sitting in the back with friends and kids, it was much more like being at a picnic than at a concert, but it was fun nonetheless! We brought food, but there are also concessions, and the carousel is running to entertain the kiddies. Parking is an issue, though, so be forewarned. We had a three-block walk back to the car, which might be an issue if you're carrying a toddler, chair, and picnic basket. ZooTunes has some great concerts--I would have loved to have seen Pink Martini, which played two shows earlier this summer. But there's still one show left this season: Rosanne Cash on August 29. As of today, there are still tickets!
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
Sunday, August 5, 2012
1965 movie starring Lesley Ann Warren and ultra-handsome Stuart Damon on TV when I was a kid and loved it. I think I only got to see it once or twice, but one of those times I tape-recorded it (yes, on cassette tape) so I got to listen to the music repeatedly. Why this movie wasn't in more frequent rotation is a mystery to me, because it's got great music and lyrics and wonderful comedic twists to make it more entertaining than sappy. Just check out this clip of the stepsisters on YouTube! (This movie was remade with Whitney Houston and Brandy in 1997, but I never saw that one.) I got to relive this childhood memory yesterday with my nearly 4-year-old friend and princess-lover Isla yesterday (and her mom!) at Snoqualmie Falls Forest Theater. Like the Kitsap Forest Theater, it's a tiny outdoor amphitheater--which stayed a perfectly comfortable temperature on a sweltering day yesterday. It has a nice intimate feel, and holds only about 275 people. This is great for kids since it's not as overwhelming as a large theater can be, and the actors can interact with the audience. When the prince and his pages were looking for the owner of the glass slipper, they tried it on some audience members before they found Cinderella's home!