Three Stages opens full, exciting season

By From page A18 | July 27, 2011

KRIS KRISTOFFERSON will perform at Three Stages.

The first full season of Three Stages at Folsom Lake College builds on the success of the regional performing arts center’s spring productions. The $50 million arts venue opened on Feb. 11, 2011, with “A Chorus Line” and continued with a wide variety of performances that attracted 40,000 patrons shelling out more than than $1 million in ticket sales.

Executive Director David Pier said no matter what the event was, nearly all were sold out. “We found that our patrons are adventurous,” he said. “They’re willing to try something new. In the short months we’ve been open, we have established trust with our audiences that whatever the show it will be high quality. We have an unbeatable combination of an intimate atmosphere and the latest in visual and acoustic technology that makes any event in any one of our three stages a great experience.”

Audiences will have a lot to choose from this season. Weekends are booked. “We have had good response to our weeknight events,” said Pier. “We have a good location. We are keeping our ticket prices affordable. Parking is free Friday nights and all day Saturday and Sundays. Our patrons can see a show on a weeknight and still be home in a reasonable time.”

This year’s season comes in three sections: Three Stages Presents schedules the national and international touring companies. Three Stages Partners is home to arts organizations from the region. Three Stages Productions showcases the visual and performing arts of Folsom Lake College.

Three Stages Presents

Around the world, from classical to street art, Three Stages has a show for everyone and every age. Here are some of them:

Comedy: Who better as the first comedy artist to come to Three Stages than Dana Carvey? He’ll crack you up with his impressions of Gov. Jerry Brown and his endearing Church Lady routines. Carvey plays Nov. 20. More comedy comes next spring when Jonathan Winters and Friends will perform March 9, 2012.

Big shows: Comedy goes big-time with Monty Python’s “Spamalot,” Nov. 17-19. The National Acrobats of  The People’s Republic of China will perform on Folsom on Sept. 23 in their first tour of North America. “STOMP” appeals to all ages with an eight-member ensemble that uses unconventional percussion devices — matchboxes, wooden poles, hubcaps — to create awe-inspiring rhythms, Oct. 7-9. “BLAST!” combines 35 brass, percussion and visual performers, each highly trained athletes and world-class musicians, March 17-18, 2012. “The Color Purple,” April 10-12, 2012, ran for two years on Broadway.

Dance: From Spain comes the sensational Compañia Flamenca Jose Porcel, Dec. 3. “Diavolo” is a breathtaking performance by a team of dancers, gymnasts, rock climbers, athletes and actors, Jan. 20, 2012. The Moscow Festival Ballet will perform “Swan Lake” on Feb. 10, 2012. Michael Flatley’s “Lord of the Dance” will be on stage Feb. 3-5, 2012. Perhaps the best tapper of our time, Savion Glover will perform “SoLo in TiME” March 22, 2012.

Jazz: The Ambrose Akinmusire Quintet presents “The Miles Davis Experience, 1949-1959,” Oct. 13. Pianist and bandleader Eddie Palmieri will celebrate his 75th birthday days before he appears at Three Stages with his jazz-infused Salsa Orchestra, Dec. 5.
Master vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson makes his Folsom debut with Sacramento’s own Joe Gilman at the piano as a member of the quintet, April 14, 2012. “India Jazz Suites” is a dynamic collaboration between two master dancers, North Indian and tap, and a trio of Indian classical musicians and the Marcus Shelby Jazz Trio, May 11, 2012.

Classical: Following his virtuosic performance and lively commentary on great composers in the spring, Jeffrey Siegel brings four “Keyboard Conversations” to Three Stages, Sept. 16; Jan. 14, 2012; Feb. 22, 2012; and May 19, 2012. Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, Feb. 2, 2012. Tschaikowski St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra, March 16, 20120.

World and Roots: The most thrilling band to come out of Africa in many moons, Staff Benda Balili will make its U.S. debut at Three Stages before going on tour. The band started as a group of paraplegic street musicians in the DR Congo, Sept. 14 “Playing for Change” began as a project for world peace. Now a travelling ensemble of stop-you-in-the-street musicians, they deliver blues, gospel, reggae and Afropop, March 11.

A potpourri of music: Country music Hall of Famer Kris Kristofferson will give an intimate solo performance on Oct. 7-9. An all-star cast will celebrate “An Irish Christmas” with lovely music, traditional dance and storytelling, Dec. 2. Neil Berg’s “100 Years of Broadway” brings to life the stars and songs from famous Broadway musicals, Dec. 4.  Experience blues at its finest with Mark Hummel’s “Blues Harmonica Blowout: A Tribute to Little Walter Jacobs,” Jan. 21, 2012. International Guitar Night features four incredible guitarists/composers playing their newest compositions and sharing musical ideas–Brian Gore, Marco Pereira, Adrian Legg, Lulo Reinhardt (son of Django Reinhardt), Jan. 27, 2012. The six-piece Irish-American David Munnelly Band, with vocals and dancing, is inspired by jazz and ragtime, March 10, 2012.

Something special (kids too): The dazzling show “Luma” uses dark as a canvas and light as the brush, blending physical movement with high technology illuminated objects, Jan. 29, 2012. “J-Walt’s Spontaneous Fantasia: The Ominicentric Universe” is a virtual reality show created on the fly with a drawing tablet, sound system and joystick, March 2-4, 2012. A star-studded lineup of world-class magicians take the stage for “It’s Magic,” April 13, 2012.

Three Stages Partners

Regional performing arts organizations have longed for a venue that showcases the talent they bring. Now a long list of them have found a home at Three Stages, some for one performance and others for a series.

They are: Folsom Lake Community Concert Association (five concerts), Sacramento Guitar Society (six concerts in Stage Three, the Scott-Skillman Recital Hall), Sacramento World Music and Dance Festival, Slavic Chorale, California Theatre Center, BYU’s Ballroom Dance Company, Folsom Symphony (five concerts), Sacramento Philharmonic Orchestra (three concerts), Chamber Music Society of Sacramento, El Dorado Musical Theatre (four productions), Carrera Productions “Legendary Rhythm and  Blues Revue,” Diana Murray-Tudsbury “Simply Chopin,” Sacramento Korean Choral Society, Pamela Hayes Classical Ballet “The Nutcracker,” Placer Pops Chorale (three concerts). Compañia Mazatlán Bellas Artes, and The 23rd annual Folsom Jazz Festival, featuring “Downbeat” magazine’s No. 1 ranked high school jazz band, Folsom High School, in a traditional youth festival, Sacramento Ballet, Northern California Dance Conservatory, Classical Masters Music Festival and El Dorado Dance Academy.

Check the website or call for details.

Three Stages Productions

Folsom Lake College performing and visual arts students have opportunities to work at Three Stages, to meet the performers and take master classes. Their music, drama and dance students will present performances this season.

From the Music Department,“FLC Afro-Cuban Funk Band: Jazz After Dark,” plays Sept. 9, 18, 24. Falcon’s Eye Theatre’s production of Bertolt Brecht’s“The Good Person of Szechwan” is Oct. 28-30 and Nov. 4-6. The MOSAIC Dance Company’s “Evening of Dance” features an array of dance styles, Dec. 1 and May 3.

The Bank of America Gallery of art exhibitions, next to Stage One, is open one hour before performances and Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is free.

Ticket info

Online ticket sales start at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, July 30. Box office telephone sales begin on Monday, Aug. 1, at 10 a.m.

Visit threestages.net  or call the box office at (916) 608-6888. The box office is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Check out the special pricing: With an expanded schedule, ticket buyers will save 15 percent when ordering tickets for five or more events.

Fans of different types of entertainment can save 15 percent by ordering a “ThreePack.” ThreePacks are offered for seven categories: Jazz, Dance, Keyboard Conversation, World & Roots, Celtic, Russian and Family.

Roberta Long


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