In brief: Arts events across the Modesto region

April 24, 2014 

Love will be in the air as the marriage equality production “Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays” comes to the Gallo Center for the Arts on May 2.

The touring production comes from the New Conservatory Theatre Center in San Francisco. It features an evening of short plays by a lineup of Pulitzer Prize, Tony, Emmy and Obie award-winning writers that portray the befores, durings and afters of saying “I do” in same-sex marriage. The NCTC presents the production on three dates throughout the Central Valley for its Pride on Tour shows in May.

The short plays in the show were written by Mo Gaffney, Jordan Harrison, Moisés Kaufman, Neil LaBute, Wendy MacLeod, Jose Rivera, Paul Rudnick and Doug Wright. The production was conceived by Brian Shnipper and directed by Sara Staley, program director of NCTC’s YouthAware Educational Theatre Program. An ensemble of six actors performs the pieces.

A discussion will be held after the show. Proceeds from the Modesto performance will be awarded to local LGBT programs.

The Gallo Center show will be at 8 p.m. in the Foster Family Theatre. Tickets are $20. Call (209) 338-2100 or visit www.galloarts.org.

New York Film Critics Series

Downtown Modesto’s State Theatre continues its partnership with the New York Film Critics Series to present screenings of prerelease movies along with simulcast Q&As with the stars and filmmakers.

Tuesday, the monthly program continues with a screening of the British thriller “Locke,” starring Tom Hardy. The actor, best known for his roles in “The Dark Knight Rises” and “Inception,” plays a construction worker who drives down to London. On the way, he has a series of real (and imagined) conversations.

After the screening, a captured-live Q&A appearance by Hardy and the film’s director, Steven Knight, will be shown.

The screening starts at 7:30 p.m. at the theater, 1307 J St. Tickets are $12. Call (209) 527-4697 or visit www.thestate.org.

Poets’ Corner winners

The winners of the 2014 Poets’ Corner Contest have been announced.

The Modesto Parks, Recreation and Neighborhoods Department-sponsored event received more than 100 entries for its adult and young adult divisions. The theme for the 33rd annual contest was the world of insects and spiders.

Adult winners were Ed Bearden, Roberta Bearden, Linda Benham, Cleo Griffith, Lynn M. Hansen, Nancy Haskett, Louise Kantro, Nancee Kinkaid Maya, Tom Myers, Clifford M. Parker, Tom Portwood. Linda Marie Prather, Steve Reyes, Doug C. Souza, Nicole Santana Souza and Gary Thomas.

Adult honorable mentions were Brett Ashmun, Virginia Dall, Clifford M. Parker and Linda Marie Prather.

Youth winners were Keila Aguayo, Brian Anglim, Grace Benham, Seth Berschneider, Vinay Channaveerappa, Emily Cline, Reece Costales, Arjun Dulai, Keoni Fatanum, James Forkner, Natalie Garcia, David Gorman, Sean Gutowski, Kassidy Houck, Isabel Dakota Jennings, Sarah Mah, Victoria Morales, Sophia Orlando, Lyla Patel, Cory Rogers, Shawn Spani, Kylee Sullivan and Liam Willerup.

Youth honorable mentions were Ashley Grace, F. Cabral, Katie Holmes, Arnav Krishnamoorthi, Haley Lehikainen, Danielle Rukezo and Julia Schauer .

The public is invited to hear the winning poets read their works at the Poets’ Corner Celebration Reading at 1 p.m. on May 18 at the McHenry Museum.

Los Banos Arts Council

The Los Banos Arts Council brings in Texas singer-songwriter Tom Russell on Saturday.

The performer has appeared on “The Late Show with David Letterman” five times, and his songs have been featured in movies and television including “Tremors,” “Songcatcher” and “Northern Exposure.” Also performing will be Thad Beckman.

The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Ted Falasco Arts Center, 1105 Fifth St. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 day of show. Call (209) 826-6132.

Swiss Echoes

The San Joaquin Valley Swiss Echoes present their annual spring concert Saturday at the Ripon Swiss Hall. The 35-member mixed chorus performs songs and yodels from Switzerland. The chorus has members from Delhi, Escalon, Galt, Oakdale, Lodi, Manteca, Modesto, Ripon, Stockton and Turlock.

Following the concert will be dancing to the Ed Inderbitzin Orchestra. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Swiss Hall at East Main Street and Manley Road. Tickets are $8 presale and $10 at the door. For more call (209) 524-0642.

“Yes! We’re Open”

A Modesto entrepreneur will be featured on the new KVIE Public Television series “Yes! We’re Open.” The program celebrates small-business owners in Northern California and will profile four people in its premiere, airing May 12 on KVIE. Modesto-based Cold House Vodka owner Lee Palleschi, who creates handcrafted vodkas and other liquors, will be among those profiled in the episode. Check your local listings for air times.

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