Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Aug. 15: 'That Certain Something' at the Arlene Francis Center

Posted By on Tue, Aug 13, 2013 at 8:40 PM

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One could say that Arlene Francis dabbled in show business, but that person would simply be an idiot. Francis has a résumé that would put many others’ to shame, at least those in the business. You see, Francis was one-of-a-kind and she stayed committed to her career, with her most memorable ones including her years on Broadway, where she starred in All That Glitters and appeared with Orson Welles in a production of Danton’s Death. In the 1940s, Francis looked toward radio as her next goal and played in as many as five radio serials a day.

It was a different medium, however, that soon put Francis’ name on the map. She became one of the highest-paid women in TV when she became a permanent panelist on CBS’ What’s My Line? from 1950 through 1967. She then continued as a panelist in a syndicated version until 1975, thus staying with the show for its entire 25-year run. In 1960, she starred in a daily interview show in New York called The Arlene Francis Show, which ran for 23 years. Her commitment to her career as well as her charming personality, wit and fashion made her a fan favorite and icon at the same time. After her final show’s run, Francis retired from show business and spent her last years living in San Francisco, where she died from cancer in 2001 at age 93.

With the Arlene Francis Center named in her honor by her son and center owner Peter Gabel, the late actress is now being remembered in a different way: through film. Arlene Francis: That Certain Something, a documentary by independent filmmaker Jackie Sanders, is a film on the life and legacy of Arlene Francis that will screen at the center this week. To begin the event is a dinner, followed by music from national touring jazz group Bordeaux Blues and a screening of the film. All proceeds support Jackie Sanders.

Come view the life and inspiration of the amazing Arlene Francis on Thursday, Aug. 15, at the Arlene Francis Center. 99 Sixth St., Santa Rosa. $10 suggested donation. 6pm. 707.528.3009.

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Aug. 16: Rita Moreno at the Napa Valley Opera House 10th Anniversary Concert

Posted By on Tue, Aug 13, 2013 at 8:31 PM

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It’s been a decade since the remodel of the Napa Valley Opera House, and that means it’s time to paaaarrrrttaaayyyy! Rita Moreno, Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony winner, was the first artist to perform upstairs at the Opera House after the renovation was completed in 2003, and is now back to join in this 10th anniversary benefit concert on Saturday, Aug. 17 ($50—$100. 7pm). The fun spills into Friday, too, as master conguero Poncho Sanchez fuses jazz, soul and a variety of Latin American and South American influences for a perfect blend of styles in the heart of wine country, in one of our favorite theaters. See Sanchez perform at the Napa Valley Opera House on Friday, Aug. 16 ($35—$40. 8pm). 1030 Main St., Napa. 707.226.7372.

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Aug. 16: Nova Albion at Hopmonk Tavern in Novato

Posted By on Tue, Aug 13, 2013 at 8:30 PM

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Step one: produce an EP with two naked people staring out over the San Francisco landscape. Step two: write a band bio that describes this cover picture, and throw in some strange ramblings/possible song lyrics to make it seem as if you’re in a cult and looking for followers. Step three: eh, let’s just see how that last part plays out. Such is the quirky vibe of San Francisco-based Nova Albion, and who knows whether or not one can judge this book by its cover. The indie band plays a record-release show this Friday and, since the group trucks in the same amount of mystery as a unicorn, there’s no telling what exactly the performance will have in store. Test the waters and “join them” on Friday, Aug. 16, at Hopmonk Tavern. 224 Vintage Way, Novato. $10. 9pm. 415.892.6200.

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Aug. 13: Lyle Lovett & His Large Band at Marin Center Showcase Theatre

Posted By on Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 9:23 PM

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With his signature tall, curly coif and ensemble band in tow, Texas-based Lyle Lovett & His Large Band make their debut in Marin County this week. Lovett, a triple-threat songwriter, musician and actor, has garnered fans nationwide with his fusing of American music elements—country, swing, jazz and folk. With four Grammys under his belt, this eclectic performer has never been one to shy away from the spotlight. I mean, who can forget his quickie marriage-divorce to Julia Roberts? Fans nevertheless remain enthralled with Lovett’s greatest calling, music, and now he brings his band of 14 players on Tuesday, Aug. 13, at Marin Center Showcase Theatre. 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. $50—$90. 8pm. 415.473.6800.

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Aug. 11: El Gusto at the Green Music Center

Posted By on Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 9:13 PM

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Once upon a time in 2003, director Safinez Bousbia discovered the story of a group of Jewish and Muslim artists separated by war more than 50 years ago. These musicians shared one quality, a passion for chaabi, a blend of Berber, Andalusian and Flamenco sounds. Bousbia and these artists came together to produce the 2011 documentary El Gusto, which chronicles the stories and musical production of the group, called The Buena Vista Social Club of Algiers. Flip ahead to this week, and the 20-piece orchestra comes to Sonoma County to provide a screening of the inspirational film and a lively performance for guests on Sunday, Aug. 11, at the Green Music Center. 1801 East Cotati Ave., Rohnert Park. $5. 4pm. 866.955.6040.

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Aug. 11: Zucchini Festival and Antique Show at Windsor Farmers Market

Posted By on Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 8:51 PM

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Chop it, steam it, bake it, fry it—there really isn’t much that can’t be done to zucchini. What better way to honor the multifaceted summer vegetable than to throw a party for it, and heck, why not throw in some antiques as well? The Zucchini Festival & Antique Show appears this weekend and, boy, is it packed with the zest of life. Zucchini lovers can view a veggie garnishing and carving demo with SRJC chef Lauren Helvajian, enter the Biggest Zucchini Contest and race zucchini cars. Antique lovers can view showcased treasures from pre-1975 and have their own antiques viewed by certified appraiser Phil Eagle. Live music, food and a Kidz Corral round it out on Sunday, Aug. 11, at Windsor Certified Farmers Market. 701 McClelland Drive, Windsor. Free. 9am. 707.838.5947.

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Aug. 9 - Aug. 11: Healdsburg Guitar Festival

Posted By on Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 8:46 PM

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Guitars: strum, pick and slap these things, and out comes beautiful acoustic melodies or head-banging anthems. With this much amazing variation, is it really any surprise that there’s a three-day celebration dedicated to this single instrument? The 2013 Healdsburg Guitar Festival knows what’s up, because every year it’s dedicated to shining the spotlight on the guitar. Filled with workshop upon workshop, demonstrations, a showcase of hundreds of custom instruments and acoustic guitar summits featuring musicians like Walter Strauss, Teja Gerken, Peter Lang and Kelly Joe Phelps, the festival is a must for those who enjoy playing, listening or anything in between. The fest runs Friday, Aug. 9, to Sunday, Aug. 11, at the Hyatt. 170 Railroad St., Santa Rosa. $15—$149. 9am. 800.477.4437.

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Aug. 8: Tim Cahill at Book Passage

Posted By on Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 8:36 PM

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Think your travel stories are incredible to hear because they were adventurous, heroic and life-altering? Well, that just might make author Tim Cahill laugh. The acclaimed travel writer has faced every travel situation one could dream up, as well as ones never imaginable. If the titles of his books, including A Wolverine Is Eating my Leg and Pass the Butterworms: Remote Journeys Oddly Rendered don’t provide enough explanation into his crazy travel adventures, skeptics (or fans) can listen to the author’s own accounts when he joins with National Geographic writer Don George in an evening of travel discussion and readings on Thursday, Aug. 8, at Book Passage. 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. $10. 8pm. 415.927.0960.

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