A Press Democrat Blog


Dan Taylor on the fine arts scene.

Gabriel Kahane performs March 29 in Sebastopol

Singer, songwriter and pianist Gabriel Kahane, who spent his teenage years in Santa Rosa and has gone on to gain national attention, will perform Sunday, March 29, in Sebastopol. He’ll perform his own material from his latest album, “The Ambassador,” released last year. The album was named “one of the year’s very best” by Rolling Stone and described as “remarkable” by the New York Times. The show, a benefit for the Main Stage West theater company in Sebastopol, starts at… Read More »

Main Stage West presents Santaland Diaries

If you’ve already gotten an overdose of sugary sentiment this holiday season, you’ll want to check out Santaland Diaries at Main Stage West in Sebastopol. The show is based on David Sedaris’ semi-autobiographical account of his job as a Christmas elf at Macy’s in New York. It first aired in 1992 on National Public Radio, and was later adapted as a solo play by Joe Mantello. Starring David Yen as grumpy Crumpet the Elf and directed by Argo Thompson, this… Read More »

Main Stage West presents ‘Exit the King’

King Berenger is dying and so is the universe. His palace, and the solar system are falling apart. In the 1962 play “Exit the King,” written by Eugene Ionesco, one of the leading playwrights of the Theater of the Absurd movement, literal reality becomes a matter of personal perception. In June, Main Stage West, at 104 N Main St. in Sebastopol, is launching its own production of the play, which had a Tony Award winning Broadway revival in 2009. For… Read More »

Sebastopol solo show salutes pioneer folksinger

“Precious Memories,” a stage work in progress written by community organizer and folksinger Si Kahn, will be performed by Sue Massek of the Reel World String Band at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 2, at Main Stage West, 104 North Main St., Sebastopol. Kahn’s one-woman play traces the life of Sarah Ogan Gunning, an unsung heroine of American folk music and labor movement songs. Almost unknown today, Gunnings songs about life in the coal mining region of Kentucky in the 1930s… Read More »

Mary Gannon Graham returns as ‘Shirley Valentine’ in Sebastopol

Mary Gannon Graham’s reprise of the one-woman show, “Shirley Valentine,” about a middle-aged English housewife searching for freedom, gets another turn onstage this month. Main Stage West, 104 N. Main St., Sebastopol, will run the show from Jan. 25 through Feb. 17. Admission: $10-$25. Information: 823-0177, mainstagewest.com. Graham previously starred in sold-out runs of the show during 2008 at the old Sonoma County Repertory Theater (now the home of Main Stage West) in Sebastopol, and in 2011 at the Cinnabar… Read More »

Amendola and Blades play at Main Stage West

Main Stage West in Sebastopol is known  mostly for its theatrical productions, but it puts on concerts, too. Drummer Scott Amendola and organist Wil Blades team up with guitarist Dave MacNab for a show Saturday, March 3, at the downtown theater. The Bay Area duo of Amendola and Blades and got started when Amendola wanted to perform Duke Ellington’s “Far East Suite.” Blades plays the Hammond B3 organ, used in the 1940s and ‘50s to recreate the sound of big… Read More »

‘Flying Solo’ series starts in Sebastopol

After a decade as a professional Bay Area standup comic, Dave Pokorny of Petaluma decided he wanted something more from his work, and his life. “I turned into a storyteller as a comic, because it turns out in standup comedy, they want a laugh every 10 to 15 seconds, and I had all these stories I wanted to tell,” Pokorny said. “Comedy clubs were not going be the venues for me, so I vowed to put together a one-man show.”… Read More »

Si Kahn appears at Sebastopol fund-raiser

Singer, songwriter activist and recording artist Si Kahn — newly named writer-in-residence by Sonoma County’s Heritage Music Theatre — will appear at a fund-raiser for the theater company this weekend. The event will run from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, April 22, at Main Stage West (formerly the site of the Sonoma County Repertory Theater),  104 N. Main St., Sebastopol. “This will not be a concert, but a chance for those who are there to talk with me in a… Read More »

Arlo Guthrie plays Napa, Sebastopol

Every Arlo Guthrie fan knows you can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant, ‘ceptin’ Alice. But you can get all the Arlo you want. Arlo — son of legendary American troubadour Woody Guthrie and longtime pal of Woody’s close friend and folk icon, Pete Seeger –  will perform twice nearby this week. Arlo will perform with his own son, Abe, and the Burns Sisters at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 14, at the Napa Valley Opera House, 1030 Main St.,… Read More »