Director’s Chair Aug. 14 |

Director’s Chair Aug. 14

Kris SabelVail CO, Colorado

We have just crossed into the second half of summer events at the Vilar Performing Arts Center and there is a wide array of programs to entertain and intrigue you in the next week alone. Here is an overview of whats coming up …Tonight and tomorrow, the Vail Performing Arts Academy, now in its 12th season, presents Willy Wonka Jr. Based on the book by Roald Dahl, this musical production features a cast of local youth who have been in rehearsals and classes for the last six weeks. The exuberance of these kids is contagious, and it is always a treat see their progress from year to year. On Sunday evening, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame musicians Stu Cook and Doug Cosmo Clifford will help us re-live some of the best music of the 60s and 70s with Creedence Clearwater Revisited. The original band, Credence Clearwater Revival, had a streak of eight consecutive gold singles, beginning with 1969s Proud Mary, and concluding with 1971s Have You Ever Seen the Rain? Stu and Cosmo re-formed the band in 1995 to play private parties, but interest in the music was so positive they started to tour and now play more than 100 dates a year. The reaction to Creedence Clearwater Revisiteds concerts has been astounding, and driven in part by a generation of kids who, as Cosmo says, werent even born when the music came out. Music critic John Lappen of Hollywood Reporter wrote their set was an amazing list of hit after hit that was done serious justice by the players involved … the cheering crowd {let out} whoops of joy at hearing live some of the best American rock ever written and recorded.On Thursday we jump forward a decade to one of the most successful pop groups to come out of Australia, Little River Band. What you may not remember about this group is the astounding number of hit songs they recorded. From 1978 until 1981, Little River Band achieved six consecutive U.S. Top 10 singles with Reminiscing, Lady, Lonesome Loser, Cool Change, The Night Owls and Take It Easy on Me. During their career theyve sold more than 25 million records and scored 13 American Top 40 hits. This is one of those shows where the audience sings along to every hit, remembering where they were when they first heard these great sounds.Little River Band sold out the Vilar in 2002 and we expect it to do so again so dont wait to buy your tickets.On Wednesday the Vail Symposium presents the first of four intriguing films, all presented as part of the Beaver Creek Film Series. Persepolis has received 13 awards and 21 nominations, including an Oscar nomination for best animated feature and a jury award at the Cannes Film Festival. The series continues through Sept.10. Each evening, following the screening, the audience will have an opportunity to discuss the film with renowned critic Walter Chaw, followed by a food tasting from the films country of origin. We welcome this beloved series back to the Vilar Center, and hope you will come take in these important films with us. Finally, we are pleased to announce that guitarist, singer and songwriter Martin Sexton has just been added to schedule and will appear on Nov. 1 in a very special solo acoustic concert. Hes been called the finest new male singer/songwriter of recent memory by Billboard Magazine. The Boston Globe raved Martin Sexton is ripe with … raw, expansive talent. His voice comes in a hundred impossible shades. His songs are sweet and spirited and soulful. His repertoire is like a cross-country tour of the American musical vernacular. Sextons music blends many genres of American music, including soul, gospel, country, rock, blues and R&B, and this is a great addition to our concert offerings. Tickets are on sale now for this special early winter show. For more information on any of these programs, please check them out on our Web site at hope to see you at the theater!

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