Chatter: the buzz on PK Unplugged, Iris DeMent, Fiddler on the Roof and Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree


Night of acoustics at Paul Kane High

PK Unplugged is back Thursday, Dec. 14 with a strong roster of student entertainers performing in an informal café style atmosphere. A popular fundraiser that supports Paul Kane High’s service clubs, it draws 21 acts from the student body.

The Straws, a band composed of seven teachers, plan to rock out with Keith Ainslie-O’Connor and Carly Loewen as lead vocalists.

Grade 10 student Hailey Benedict, who plays Cosette in the school’s upcoming production of Les Miz, is singing her original composition She Thinks and a mashup of the Beatles and Nina Simone.

Harpist Keely Toope adds a dash of elegance with The Little Mother and Habanero Gris while Celina Roaquin and Trey Maruyana perform An Awkward Duet on ukulele and piano.

“We’ve actually got five groups on ukulele. It seems to be the ‘it’ instrument this year,” said Angie Lockhart, organizer.

The diverse program varies from Hallelujah and Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You to hit songs from Metallica and Nirvana.

“There’s a nice variety crossing genres. It’s always nice to see how the students present it.”

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $5. Concession sells cheesecake, coffee and hot chocolate.

New show on Arden roster

Gospel nominee Iris DeMent is a late addition to the Arden Theatre roster and will appear on Friday, Feb. 16, 2018.

The American singer-songwriter is renowned for her folk-country-gospel hybrid. She has released six albums and recorded or sung duets with the likes of John Prine, Steve Earle and Emmylou Harris.

Tickets are $40. Call 780-459-1542 or at

Fiddler at Festival Place

Christmas is a time for family and great music. This year Sherwood Park’s Festival Players are mounting Fiddler on the Roof from Dec. 15 to 30 at Festival Place.

For over 50 years, the Tony Award winning musical has touched audiences with its humour, warmth, honesty and incredible songs.

Fiddler is Festival Player’s 15th anniversary Christmas show and it features a cast of 30, a pit orchestra of 15, a new set, costumes and an evening of great theatre.

Tickets are available at

Singing Christmas Tree returns

A whimsical 35-foot Christmas tree holding 150 singers, beautiful ballerinas, acrobats, dancing Santas, stunning costumes and glimmering lights are all part of the Edmonton Singing Christmas running Dec. 14 to 17 at Jubilee Auditorium.

Viva Dance Co. pliés back into the limelight along with 10 soloists including Terrell Edwards, Michelle Rushfeldt, Asim Chin and Annais Castellanos.

Tickets range from $24 to $85. Visit


About Author

Anna Borowiecki

Anna Borowiecki joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2000. She reports on local people and events in the arts, entertainment and food industry. She also writes general news and features.