Local Spotlight

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If you’re bored with listening to the same 20 hits on radio day after day, check out LB’s Thursday night Songwriters Acoustic Showcase.

Hosted by Kenny Skoreyko, Fred LaRose and Gord Matthews, the showcase is a platform for songwriters to air some of their hidden gems.

Still in its infancy, the newbie showcase powers into action with St. Albert’s self-proclaimed inventors of cowjazz — Back Porch Swing.

The four-piece acoustic band mixes a stew of western swing, jazz, folk and bluegrass. It’s what vocalist Penny Malmberg describes as “funny lyrics, hot pickin’ and sweet harmonies.”

Back Porch Swing is so loaded with down home familiarity, you almost want to pull out grandpa’s banjo and start tapping your toes.

The acoustic showcase starts with a house band warmup at 8:30 p.m. Featured performers follow at 9 p.m. No cover charge.

The University of Alberta and Peter North kick off Winter Roots and Blues Roundup on Thursday, Feb. 24.

The five-day roundup meshes concerts, film screenings, seminars and workshops at a number of venues including The Yardbird Suite, Metro Cinema, Expressionz Café, Century Casino and The Blue Chair Café.

Some of the more seasoned warriors highlighting this event are Rosalie Sorrels, Holger Peterson, David Gogo, Kat Danser, Bill Bourne and John Rutherford.

But it’s not just veterans. Folk/roots singer Joe Nolan, a long-time busker at the St. Albert Farmers’ Market, is opening for California act Grandpa Banana (Lowell Levinger) at The Blue Chair CafĂ©. Tickets are $20. Call 780-989-2861 or email reso@bluechair.ca.

For a complete list of artist information and schedules visit www.ualberta.ca/folkwaysalive.

Once again the Alberta Drama Festival Association is gearing up for the Edmonton Region One-Act Festival on Feb. 25 and 25 at Walterdale Theatre.

This year, eight plays are in contention with John Kirkpatrick (Julius Caesar, Noises Off, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels), a St. Albert Children’s Theatre alumnus offering public adjudication.

Former St. Albert resident Barbara North brings a new work Everything I Didn’t Need to Know I Learned in Grade 9, a coming of age comedy.

Bradley McInenly, manager at Ric’s Grill, is in two shows — Linda Wood Edwards’ The Society of the Oddly Disappeared, about a secret society, and Gerald Osborn’s Skin Deep, a look at a midlife crisis.

Phil Kreisel’s Hookers promises loads of action; Ethan Coen’s Waiting is a hot-ticket item and Sarah Van Tassel’s Gone is packed with mystery. And then there’s Chad Carlson’s Frank and Shelley: A Destructive Love Musical about a gal that decides to create the perfect mate.

Sessions are Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 1 and 7 p.m. Three session passes are $24 to $28. Single tickets are $10 to $12. Call 780-420-1757 or purchase online at: www.tixonthesquare.ca.

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St. Albert Gazette

The St. Albert Gazette has been the source for news and community information in St. Albert and area since 1961. Today the twice-weekly full-colour tabloid delivers award-winning journalism in print, online and on mobile.