“The Alter Eagles” and “Gershwin with a Twist” kick off concert series
Music and comedy light up the MainStage on Sundays and Mondays
Venice, FL Nov. 2, 2016 – During any month of the year, it’s hard to find a night when something isn’t on stage at Venice Theatre. From November through April, it’s nearly impossible. While many performing arts venues are “dark” on Sunday and Monday evenings, Venice Theatre is busy each week with its Concerts and Special Events Series.
Organized by Venice Theatre’s Producing Director, Allan Kollar, the Concerts and Special Events Series has been a growing part of the theatre’s programming since the late ’90s. Kollar started with just one concert (The Sounds of Harry James and the Andrews Sisters) as a benefit to raise money for new computers in the box office. Now almost two decades later, 15 different concert acts (listed below) are on the calendar from Nov.13, 2016 through April 24, 2017.
Tickets for all shows can be purchased at www.venicestage.com or by calling 941-488-1115. Venice Theatre’s box office is located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. and is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and an hour before all performances.
The Alter Eagles are first act on the roster. Back by popular demand, this Eagles tribute band kicks off the 2016-2017 Series on Sunday Nov. 13 at and Monday Nov. 14 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $29. The Alter Eagles cover all of the Eagles greatest songs, from their earliest classics like “Take It Easy,” “Desperado,” and “One of These Nights” to huge hits like “Heartache Tonight” and “Hotel California.”
Renowned pianist and vocalist Brian Gurl makes his Venice Theatre debut on Nov. 20 and 21 at 8 p.m.with his show Gershwin with a Twist! This exciting and innovative production honors the music of George and Ira Gershwin with poignancy and power – while stretching the limits of the listener’s imagination.
Gurl, with Venice Theatre favorites Michele Pruyn and Charles Logan, will perform a mosaic of Gershwin hits in the traditional styles of ragtime, jazz, beautiful ballads and catchy Broadway hits. Then they will playfully take Gershwin “back to the future” into the world of doo wop, reggae, R & B, rock ‘n roll and rap – with some unique arrangements. Highlighted by brilliant piano playing, lush vocals, superb musical artistry, engaging dialogue and a dynamic six-piece ensemble, this bold and entertaining production will make audiences smile with pure delight. From Michele’s elegant rendition of “Embraceable You,” to a soaring “Summertime” to Brian’s hilarious Gershwin-meets-Elvis routine highlighted by his show-stopping rendition of “The Rhapsody in Blue,” Gershwin With A Twist! promises to be an exhilarating and unforgettable journey. Every song is a new adventure.
The Concert and Special Events Series will continue through April with:
Late Nite Catechism
Friday Dec. 9 at 8 p.m. and Saturday Dec. 10 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $32
Part catechism class, part stand-up routine, Late Nite Catechism will take you back to the days of the Latin Mass, meatless Fridays, and remind you about that good old ruler across the knuckles! This interactive comedy is one of the longest running shows in Chicago and U.S. theater history. The New York Times calls it, “hilarious, well-written and inspired.”
The Sounds of Christmas starring the Ditchfield Family Singers
Thursday Dec. 22 and Friday Dec. 23 at 8 p.m.Tickets $27
Singing Christmas Carols is where it all began for the Ditchfield Family Singers and they consider it a true privilege to share this special time of year with you. Journey with them from Victorian England and the traditional carols through the Christmas classics made popular by contemporary performers.
Shades of Bublé: A Three-Man Tribute to Michael Bublé
Thursday Dec. 29 – Saturday Dec. 31 at 8 p.m.
Tickets $37 on Dec. 29 & 30; $51 on New Year’s Eve
With three voices singing incredible songs like “Moondance,” “Come Fly with Me,” “Home,” “Fever,” “Save the Last Dance for Me” and many more, this group brings the swinging standards and pop hits of Michael Bublé to the stage in an unforgettable high-energy concert event.
The Capitol Steps: “What to Expect When You’re Electing”
Sunday Jan.15 at 8 p.m. and Monday Jan. 16 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $51
Often seen and heard on PBS and NPR, the Capitol Steps began as a group of Senate staffers who set out to satirize the very people and places that employed them. Since then, this no-holds-barred political comedy act has become one of the country’s (and Venice Theatre’s) favorites. No elected official is safe when the Capitol Steps are in the house!
America’s Diamond Live starring Jay White
Sunday Jan. 22 at 8 p.m. and Monday Jan. 23 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $42
Endorsed by Neil Diamond himself, Jay White recreates the look, sound, and mannerisms of “The World’s Classiest Rock Star.” Enjoy hits like “America,” “Cherry,” “Forever in Blue Jeans,” and be sure to sing along to “Sweet Caroline.”
Back Home Again, A Tribute to John Denver featuring Tom Becker
Sunday Jan. 29 at 8 p.m. and Monday Jan. 30 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $42
Tom Becker (former member of the New Christy Minstrels) recreates the style and sound of one of America’s immortal musical storytellers with songs like “Take Me Home, Country Roads;” “Thank God I’m a Country Boy;” “Rocky Mountain High;” and “Annie’s Song.”
The Sounds of Harry James and the Andrews Sisters
Monday Jan. 6 at 3 and 8 p.m. Tickets $42
No Venice Theatre season is complete without them! Venice Theatre’s own Kim Kollar is joined by Cathy Baudrit, Michelle Pruyn and trumpet virtuoso Charly Raymond in a loving tribute to the performers that provided the soundtrack for America’s “Greatest Generation.”
Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone
Sunday Feb. 26 at 8 p.m. and Monday Feb. 27 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $61
Peter Blair Denis Bernard Noone is a multi-talented entertainer who has been delighting audiences nearly all his life. At the age of 15, Peter achieved international fame as “Herman,” lead singer of the legendary ’60s pop band Herman’s Hermits. His classic hits include: “I’m Into Something Good,” “Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter,” “I’m Henry VIII, I Am,” “Silhouettes,” “Can’t You Hear My Heartbeat,” “Just A Little Bit Better,” and “Dandy.” Ultimately, Herman’s Hermits sold over 60 million recordings including 14 gold singles.
Sunday March 5 at 8 p.m. and Monday March 6 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $42
Best known for the rock ‘n’ roll classic “Little Darlin’,” The Diamonds offer tight harmonies and instrumentals, humor, and lively choreography. Their blast-from-the-past celebration features fabulous Diamond hits like “The Stroll,” “Why Do Fools Fall In Love,” and “Silhouettes.”
Let’s Hang On, A Tribute to Frankie Valli
Sunday March 12 at 8 p.m. and Monday March 13 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $42
Let’s Hang On! is a group of ten seasoned entertainers who are preserving the music and style of the iconic group Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Respectfully paying tribute to all the classic “Seasons” details, Let’s Hang On! also pays tribute to the Broadway show, The Jersey Boys. Capturing The Four Seasons’ trademark vocal virtuosity, tight harmonies, and crisp choreography, this full-blown stage show includes “Sherry,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Walk Like a Man,” “December ’63,” and many more mega hits of the ’60s.
The Kingston Trio
Sunday March 19 – Tuesday March 21 at 8 p.m. Tickets $54
Year after year of sold-out performances at VT prove that these Grammy winning legends of folk music just get better with time! The Kingston Trio always provides a wonderful trip through a musical genre that is adored by millions. You’ll be sure to enjoy their beautiful harmonies, simple-yet-meaningful songs, and top-notch musicianship.
Sunday April 23 at 8 p.m. and Monday April 24 at 3 & 8 p.m. Tickets $32
Monday, Monday pays tribute to one of the most harmony-rich pop groups of the ’60s: The Mamas and the Papas. Hear legendary songs made famous by The Mamas and the Papas as well as sure-fire hits from other legends of the Woodstock era.
Again, tickets for all shows can be purchased at www.venicestage.com or by calling 941-488-1115. Venice Theatre’s box office is located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. and is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and an hour before all performances.
About Venice Theatre
Venice Theatre is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to making a dramatic impact on all stages of life. The second-largest of 10,000 community theatres in the United States, it is located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. in Venice, FL. Its MainStage offers seating for 432 patrons and features musicals, plays, concerts and special events. Its Yvonne Pinkerton Theatre seats 90 patrons and is home to the theatre’s “Generations,” Stage II and Cabaret Series. In addition to providing entertainment to the community, Venice Theatre offers a wide range of education and outreach programs for children and adults.