The Hippo


Jul 17, 2019








Magic Dick and Shun Ng. Courtesy photo.

Holiday events at the Cap

All shows are at Capitol Center for the Arts, 44 S. Main St., Concord,
Buzz Ball 2016
When: Thursday, Dec. 15, 7 p.m.
Tickets: $30 & $40
Performers: Greg & the Morning Buzz, Alex Preston, Magic Dick & Shun Ng, Adam Ezra, Jimmy Dunn, Tony V, Juston McKinney, PJ Thibodeau, Super Secret Project, Jordan Tirrell-Wysocki, Max Ater, Mike Girard, The Velvet Elves and  Charles Burthoud
Rocking Horse Christmas 
(Spotlight Cafe)
When: Friday, Dec. 16, and Saturday, Dec. 17, 7 p.m.
Tickets: $20
Performers: Dusty Gray, Brooks Young, Anna Madsen, Trade, Eli Autry, Hank Osborne & Chas Mitchell, Steve Blunt, Justin Cohn, Ryan Williamson, Ashley Howard-White, Jack Polidoro, Elie Rivollier and Stephanie Tonneson
Capital Jazz Orchestra Holiday Pops Concert
When: Sunday, Dec. 18, 4 p.m.
Tickets: $20-$45
Performers: Patty Barkas, Laura Daigle,  CJ Poole and NHPR’s Laura Knoy

A Capitol Christmas
Four days of rock, comedy and jazz in Concord

By Michael Witthaus

 A fun string of recent holiday events at Concord’s Capitol Center for the Arts included the Mavericks Americana-hued Christmas show, an epic night with Mannheim Steamroller and stage productions of Amahl and the Night Visitors and The Twelve Days of Christmas

The seasonal experience crests with a long weekend of shows featuring rock, comedy and jazz — call it the Four Days of Christmas. On Thursday, Dec. 15, the Buzz Ball marks its sixth annual show. The next day, Rocking Horse Christmas returns, for two nights, followed by Capital Jazz Orchestra’s Holiday Pops Concert on Sunday, Dec. 18.
Lynne Sabean, the venue’s marketing manager, called Thursday’s Buzz Ball “the ultimate holiday rock-n-roll variety show.” Hosted by  Greg & the Morning Buzz, it’s the event’s second year in Concord. The lineup includes several returning performers, like comic Juston McKinney and Fools singer Mike Girard, who did a great star turn in 2015. 
“We have some friends coming back,” show promoter and mastermind Jim Roach said recently. “There are some very cool pieces. ... I’m very proud of this one.” The show is a benefit for New Horizons for New Hampshire, a charity headed by TV and radio veteran Charlie Sherman. 
New on the bill this year is the duo of harmonica legend Magic Dick and guitarist Shun Ng. “They’ll play two songs,” Roach said, “a Christmas tune and another one that’s sure to be a big crowd pleaser.”  
Roach also touted first-timers Max Ater, a Maine singer-songwriter, and English import Charles Burthoud.
The latter may provide the biggest surprise, Roach hinted. 
“I always like to do something a little weird, and this is it,” he said.
Comic PJ Thibodeau, “Granite State of Mind” heroes Super Secret Project and fiddler Jordan Tirrell-Wysocki all perfom, with running commentary provided by the WGIR morning drive team, led by air personality Greg Kretschmar.
“We’re the kind of connective tissue through it all,” Kretschmar said recently via phone. 
Rocking Horse Christmas again showcases New Hampshire musicians who have worked in the past year with producer Brian Coombes at his Pittsfield studio. After three years of sellouts, a second show was added for the event, happening in the  pop-up Spotlight Cafe in the CCANH lobby. 
Coombes talked about the show while on location in Manchester, England, where Anna Madsen was filming a video and performing on a BBC program. 
“I’m excited for the audience to see Anna perform ‘O Come, O Come, Emmanuel’ again,” he said. “It really left the audience stunned last year.”
Scott Solsky will appear with his new band, Trade. 
“I’m looking forward to seeing what the local boys have been cooking up,” said Coombes, adding that the group will be recording with him in January. 
Solsky will be part of a “new look” house band that includes guitar wizard Myron Kibbee with fellow axe man Ian Sleeper, Adam Soucy on drums, Rick Black and Coombes both playing keyboards and bassist Chris Noyes.
Brooks Young will perform. His band is celebrating a new album made with Coombes and released earlier this month. Coombes proudly noted other Rocking Horse clients on the bill. 
“Justin Cohn, Ryan Williamson, and Ashley Howard-White remind us how fortunate we are to work with such talented artists,” he said. “I’m also looking forward to Steve Blunt and his guest vocalist Noelle Boc turning ‘Let it Snow’ into a flirty duet.”
For the Sunday afternoon pops concert, the Capitol Jazz Orchestra is led by Clayton “Skip” Poole, featured vocalists are Patty Barkas, Laura Daigle and CJ Poole; NHPR host Laura Knoy returns to narrate and read The Night Before Christmas
It’s a fitting musical cap to a lively December run at the downtown venue. “The big band sound resonates throughout our  historic Chubb Theatre,” Sabean said “It should please audiences of all ages.” 

®2019 Hippo Press. site by wedu