Arts and Entertainment

Performers give Islanders something to cheer about

The Total Experience Gospel Choir will perform at Saturday, Sept. 25, at Vashon Island Community Church. - Courtesy Photo
The Total Experience Gospel Choir will perform at Saturday, Sept. 25, at Vashon Island Community Church.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo

Islanders who want to go out on the town this weekend won’t have trouble finding things to do. Not only does Vashon Allied Arts’ annual art auction take place on Friday and Saturday (see story page 1), but there are also other offerings on stages all over town. There is something for everyone — raucous comedy, quiet café performances and even a world-famous gospel choir.

Laugh it up at the Red Bike

A quartet of funnymen will bring laughs to the Red Bicycle Bisto at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24, when Island performer and humorist Steffon Moody hosts the latest installment of a twice-yearly comedy night at the venue.

The comedians are all Islanders, and Moody has promised that the group will “ply their craft as only locally famous amateur comedians can ply.”

The lineup includes Kevin Joyce, a multifaceted performer whose long resumé includes such glittering entries as founding the UMO Ensemble and directing and performing with Teatro Zinzanni.

PerLars Blomgren, who has taken the stage at other Moody-produced comedy nights, will perform, and Andy Royer — a comedian Moody called “an international traveler, local feather ruffler and gap-toothed yukster,” will also do standup. Rounding out the roster will be Jon Whalen and Jim Farrell.

Tickets are $5 — audience members should show up early to get a good seat. Parents are advised that the show will include ribald jokes and spicy language, with some of the material not appropriate for young children.

Danny O’Keefe is a special Great Rain guest

The Church of Great Rain will have its season premiere at 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 26, at the Open Space for Arts and Community. The local troupe, which finds equal parts inspiration in Prairie Home Companion and Monty Python, blends comedy sketches and music performances in once-monthly, Sunday night presentations.

This month’s installment will feature music by the Church House Band and new skits performed by the Holy Roller Radio Players. David Godsey, a leading member of the troupe, will bring back his trademark character, Reverend Hunter Davis, for a lively monologue, and as usual, refreshments will be available during the show.

But the star of this month’s show will be special guest Danny O’Keefe, a celebrated singer, songwriter and recording artist who lives on Vashon and yet infrequently performs here.

O’Keefe’s best known song, “Good Time Charlie’s Got the Blues,” was recorded by Elvis Presley, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Leon Russell, Charlie Rich, Jerry Lee Lewis, Charlie McCoy, Cab Calloway, Earl Klugh, Chet Atkins, Mel Torme and Dwight Yoakum.

A long list of other stars, including Jackson Browne, Judy Collins, Alison Kraus and John Denver, have recorded other O’Keefe songs.

In June, O’Keefe released two highly praised new songs as digital‐only singles, available through iTunes and other online resources for digital content. The songs, “Pray for Me” and “Father Bernie’s Boys,” are companion pieces, and both explore issues related to spirtuality and religion.

Tickets for the show are $8 for adults and $5 for kids. Organizers said the show is rated PG-13 due to some mildly racy comic material.

A night of women songwriters on Friday

Local songstresses Allison Shirk and Kelsey Alina will bring their soulful songs to Café Luna at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24.

Shirk has been making music for more than a decade, and organizers said her music has “heartache with a sense of humor.” She has fronted punk, alt-country and Americana bands, and is currently playing solo around the Puget Sound region.

Alina is an Island favorite — she has been singing since infancy, and started appearing as a soloist in church when she was 3 years old. A recent high school graduate, she has already recorded one album and is currently at work on her second. In July, she auditioned for American Idol and made it through several rounds before being eliminated.

Total Experience Gospel Choir will raise the roof

The Total Experience Gospel Choir, a renowned Seattle gospel choir led by Pat Wright, will perform at 7 p.m Saturday, Sept. 25, at Vashon Island Community Church. Since its founding in 1973, the choir has traveled to 38 states, five continents and 22 countries and along the way has garnered numerous awards and released seven recordings. This marks the 16th Vashon visit for the choir, and as usual, the concert is a benefit for Bailey-Boushay House, an AIDS hospice in Seattle. Proceeds will go to fund the arts department there. Admission is by donation. Doors will open at 6 p.m. for refreshments.

Somewhere Swan graces Café Luna

Somewhere Swan, an acoustic duo, will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, at Café Luna. The duo is comprised of Colby Stead and Amy Rubin, who both hail from Utah. Together they blend accordion, guitar and their voices to create thought-provoking and emotionally evocative songs.

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