Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Archive for February, 2011

Fall in Love with the Cambridge Lions Club

Hear Those Lions Roar!  The 38th Annual Music and Comedy Show will be held at the Scottish Rite Auditorium in Cambridge, OH on March 24, 25, and 26.  This is a fun filled show for the entire family to enjoy. Show time is 7:30 but you will probably need to get your tickets in advance as some evenings do get sold out.

The theme this year is “Fall in Love with the Cambridge Lions ” and the show is filled with love songs.  The background chorus is filled with local Lions Club members as well as others in the community who just enjoy singing and having fun. They are joined by a talented Lions Music & Comedy Show Band, who add a great sound to the evening.

Not only is this a night of fun and laughter, but there are some beautiful solos and quartets that take you back to reminisce about that love of long ago.  It is amazing  how much talent exists in the small town of Cambridge.  From vocal to instrumental, there is definitely music in the air.

The club’s slogan is “We Are Knights for Sight.” One of the great things about the evening is that all the proceeds go to the  Cambridge Lions Club projects dealing with improving vision internationally.  Their Sight First Program focuses on fighting blindness around the world.

Locally, they provide eye exams and eye glasses to low-income families and school children of Guernsey County.  This last year they purchased over 100 pair of eyeglasses.  At their events, they have a barrel  where you can drop off old, no longer used eyeglasses.  The glasses are then recycled and used in regions all over the world.

Since diabetes is a leading cause of blindness, they support the South Eastern Ohio Regional Medical Center’s Diabetic Support Group.  The Lions Club assists in providing educational material and medical supplies to the area with help from this group.

Get your tickets for a night of fun entertainment with lots of comedy routines as well as great musical variety.  Tickets are reasonable at $8 for Thursday evening, which is usually Senior Citizen Night, and $10 for Friday and Saturday evenings.  All shows begin at 7:30.

Rest assured that the price of admission will bring you lots of enjoyment and will help many with vision problems in our area and around the world. Come on out and Hear Those Lions Roar!

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Opole, Philharmonic of Poland

Always a delight to sit back and listen to the sounds of a fantastic orchestra.  Thanks to the Cambridge Concert Association’s reciprocity with the Zanesville Concert Association, this evening was possible for classical music enthusiasts.

Opole, Philharmonic of Poland filled the stage of Secrest Auditorium with ninety members.  All were talented musicians on their first transcontinental tour of the United States.  They arrived in three tour buses with a large semi to carry all their precious instruments.

This group traces their beginnings to 1947, shortly after WWII.  Opole is the permanent home for the Orchestra in Poland in this beautiful Performing Arts Center built in 1952. Opole was originally a Slavic settlement but passed to Poland in 1945.

They performed a Vienna Gala featuring light Viennese classics composed by Johann Strauss, Johann Strauss, Jr., and Fraz Lehar. There was an enjoyable mix of orchestral, vocal, and violin music that included waltzes, arias, and even polkas.  What a fantastic collection of outstanding musicians!

Soprano Izabela Matula is the star soloist and has so many prestigious awards that they would fill pages.  Her most recent first place award was at the International Vocal Competition at the Oper Schloss Laubach.  She was the sole performer chosen to represent Poland in the recent BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition.

Music Director and Conductor, Boguislaw Dawidow is internationally renowned for his musical knowledge and extraordinary stage presence.  He has conducted leading Orchestras all over the world.  Maestro Dawidow was resident conductor of the Polish Chamber Orchestra as well as Principal COnductor of teh Russian National Acadmic Symphony Orchestra.

In 2002, the American Biographical Institute in New York bestowed Maestro Dawison with the title “Man of the Year,” due to his musical accomplishments on both sides of the Atlantic and well-beyond.  He brought immense enthusiasm to the stage and even brought some laughter from the audience.

This was an enjoyable evening and the concert association should be commended for their excellent selection of music for the community to enjoy.

Cambridge Concert Association Presents Michael Sonata

One of the best entertainment values for your dollar can be found in Cambridge, Ohio through the Cambridge Concert Association.  For Senior Citizens, it is a real bargain at $25 per year.  This includes four concerts at our home theater, Scottish Rite Auditorium, plus four reciprocating concerts at each of three other locations: Zanesville, Lancaster, and Alliance.  What a deal!

These concerts are varied and appeal to many types of music lovers varying from classical music to vocal and dance.  Usually at least once a year, an old favorite will appear such as recent appearances by the Osmonds and Tony Orlando.

One recent concert was given by Michael Sonata, who does a very life-like presentation of Frank Sinatra, “Ol’ Blue Eyes.”  He played to a full house and the crowd loved him.  Michael is from Canton, OH and graduated from University of Notre Dame as well as earning his masters degree from Kent State University.

Auditioning for a role in a local murder-mystery, The Contraltos,  Michael developed his entertaining  re-creation of Sinatra’s music and unique style of singing. He does such a meticulous job of matching his voice as well as his movements to those of Sinatra that several people said they couldn’t tell the difference, especially if they closed their eyes.

Over the years, he has expanded by including different Sinatra moods: young innocence of The Columbia years, swinging revival of The Capitol years, and confidence of the Chairman during the Reprise years.   He now uses over 90 songs that Sinatra has recorded and constantly adds new ones to his repertoire.

Backed up by a great 12 piece band, there was lots of variety along with some excellent instrumental solos by different sections of the band. Included were such hits as: “Stranger in the Night,” “My Way,” and “Night and Day.”

Cambridge was indeed fortunate to have the “Ol’ Blue Eyes” experience through the presence of Michael Sonata, one of the most sought after Frank Sinatra tribute artists in the country.

Join the Cambridge Concert Association at any of their programs as they are always enjoyable and filled with a variety of musical styles that are sure to satisfy music lovers in the area.  Concerts are sponsored in part by the Ohio Arts Council and Pennsylvania Arts on Tour.

Sitka’s Russian Heritage

As you travel through the streets of Sitka, you will notice the Russian influence as it traveled to the shores of North America many years ago.  This was the Russian capital of Alaska in 1808 and the Cathedral of St Michaels, a Russian Orthodox church, was built there in 1848. It was rebuilt after a fire in 1966  but many of the religious relics were saved and can be seen, including gold crowns, chalices, books, and vestments.

Sitka was the site of the ceremony where the Russian flag was lowered and the US flag was raised after US purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867. That purchase was called Seward’s Folly and was criticized at the time. At the price of two cents an acre, this acquisition turned out to be extremely rich in many natural resources including gas and oil.  The flag changing  ceremony is still held each year in Sitka on October 18, Alaska Day.

The Alaska Raptor Center is home for many injured bald eagles.  It is an education center that promotes understanding of the bald eagle as well as protecting the injured ones until they are ready for release back to the wild. Today they also had a large owl sitting in their office.  Good Morning America had filmed a segment here  regarding the injured raptors shortly before our visit.

Totem carvers were at work carefully putting finishing touches on their creations at Sitka National Historical Park, Alaska’s oldest national park.  Native Tlingit Haida Indian Tribes’ carvings began in the 1800s mainly as interior houseposts. Imagine these natives  carving beautiful pieces of history on a cold winter’s day.  Many of the poles here are replicas of totems that were first exhibited in the 1904 St Louis World’s Fair.  Some of the originals have been saved from deterioration and are exhibited in  Totem Hall at the park cener.

Russian Folk Dances performed by the New Archangel Dancers were another highlight of the visit.  Their mission is to promote the Russian heritage through sharing ethnic song and dance in traditional costume.  They have performed since the eighteenth century and are an all female dance troop performing both male and female roles.  In the early days, Sitka men didn’t find it appropriate to engage in dancing. Not a manly activity!  The audience thoroughly enjoy their performance.

After strolling through the streets of Sitka, it is time to head back to the ship.  Smaller local boats called tenders take passengers back to the cruise ship, which isn’t able to get close to shore at this point.   Along with souvenirs, many happy memories are carried aboard.

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