Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Around Town

Company of Fools actors perform a 1940s live radio show of a Christmas favorite, complete with commercials. Courtesy photo

"It's a Wonderful Life" on stage

Company of Fools presents the perfect show for this holiday season, "It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play," adapted by Joe Landry from the screenplay by Frank Capra, Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett and Jo Swerling.

Return to yesteryear when news, music, comedy, drama, and soap operas came into homes via radio. The setting is Christmas Eve 1946 at station WCOF, where several talented radio players bring to life the characters in "It's a Wonderful Life," plus commercials, sound effects, and music.

The Company of Fools' production features Rachel Abrams, Andrew Alburger, Jana Arnold, Greg Cappel, Kathryn Cherasaro, Scott Creighton, Keith Joe Dick and John Glenn under the direction of Denise Simone. Musical direction is by R.L. Rowsey, set design by Joe Lavigne and light design by Steven Koehler.

From today, Dec. 14, through Sunday, Dec. 18, the show will be held at the Sun Valley Opera House. The production will then continue its run Tuesday, December 20, through Friday, Dec. 30, at the Liberty Theatre in Hailey. 

For more information, contact or Company of Fools at 578-9122

Family fun with clay

Boulder Mountain Clayworks, a local nonprofit clay arts education organization, will hold its third annual Clay Carnival, Sunday, Dec. 18, from 4-7 p.m. This is a free holiday event and is for everyone, young and old. During the carnival, people can make clay holiday ornaments and watch wheel throwing demonstrations by Judy Nicholson and Cade Street. This is a great opportunity to see skilled youth and adult potters in action. In addition, people can shop for Christmas gifts created by the potters.

Enjoy delicious homemade soup, appetizers, hot chocolate bar, mulled and regular wine, and Christmas cookies. Raffle tickets will be sold for a drawing for ceramic pieces or a membership to Boulder Mountain Clayworks.

Boulder Mountain Clayworks is located in the bottom level of the 10th Street Industrial Center in Ketchum. Watch for balloons at the entrance of 10th Street. 

Call 726-4484 with questions or visit

Hellbound Glory to honk the tonk

The public relations on Hellbound Glory claim that the band is well on its way "to proving they are a force to be reckoned with in the country music [world]."

Their music is described as a fusion of superior song writing and hard-living characters with a hard-edged country honky-tonk sound.

See for yourself Saturday, Dec. 17, if the band's instrumental dexterity and vivacious down-home, good-ol'-boy attitude lives up to the press.

The show starts at 10 p.m. at Whiskey Jacques' in Ketchum. Tickets are $5.


'Generations' film about climate change

"Generations" discusses climate change through the perspectives of those for whom snowy winters have a deeper personal significance.

"Going beyond charts and numbers, 'Generations' humanizes the debate on climate change by exploring the delicateness of winter and the intrinsic value of snow to people across generations and cultures," the film's website states.

It's a call to action for anyone who cares about snow. It recently won Best Environmental Message from the Backcountry Film Festival and Best Environmental Film at Rossland Mountain Film Festival.

For those who can't catch the 17-minute film at Whiskey Jacques' in Ketchum tonight, Dec. 14, from 6:30-8:30 p.m., it is now available as a free HD download from iTunes and at, and

New exhibit opens at The Center

Courtney Gilbert, a curator at the Sun Valley Center for the Arts, has been keeping a file on artists working in the Artic and Antarctica for years now, waiting for the time when she had amassed enough for an exhibit.

All the squirreling away and research paid off and is up now as "Thin Ice: Journeys in Polar Regions."

"I think that a key reason artists are interested in these places is their almost magical quality," Gilbert said. "They're remote, they have challenging weather and terrain, the light there is unique. They're hard to get to. And both Poles have such an amazing history of expeditions. So we decided to do a project that focuses on the mystique of journeys and expeditions in Polar Regions."

On Thursday, Dec. 15, at 5:30 p.m., Gilbert will lead visitors and a free guided tour, which features photos by early explorers alongside work by contemporary artists who have visited the remote regions. At 6:15 p.m., The Center will present a free screening of the film "The Greely Expedition."

Between 1881 and 1884, Adolphus Greely and his crew of 25 were stranded in the far North, where they planned to collect scientific data about the Arctic—a vast area of the world's surface that at the time was described as a "sheer blank." First seen as part of the PBS series American Experience, the hour-long documentary tells a harrowing tale of shipwreck, starvation, mutiny and cannibalism.

Also part of the exhibit is "Due North: Images of Baffin Island and Inuit Art," which opens Friday, Dec. 16, 5:30-7:30 p.m. with a meet the artists reception at The Center's Hailey site.

An invitation from friends to visit the Arctic—and a chance encounter with Inuit art at a Montreal gallery—changed the respective lives of Wood River Valley residents Ann Puchner and Page Klune.

Puchner went on to live for a year on an island 200 miles south of the Arctic Circle. Klune became an avid collector of Inuit art who at one time ran her own gallery in Ketchum. The Hailey exhibit showcases the passions of these women. On display are black-and-white photographs taken by Puchner on Baffin Island between 1960 and 1961, plus a selection of Inuit sculptures and prints from Klune's exceptional collection.

The Hailey show continues through Friday, February 10. Gallery hours are 2--6 pm Wednesday through Friday, and admission is always free. For more information about the programs related to "Thin Ice," visit or call 726.9491 ex 10.

"The Maid" author speaks

Author Kimberly Cutter will be at the Community Library, Thursday, Dec. 15 at 6 p.m. to read from her novel, "The Maid" and talk about the fiction's heroine, who is based on the story of Joan of Arc.

Cutter said she chose the topic because, "I think Joan of Arc is the most astonishing woman who ever lived, and I did not feel like most people of my generation were aware of how incredible her life was. I wanted to bring her story to life for them."

The former West Coast editor at W Magazine has done diligent research on her subject.

"The book is meticulously researched. If you look at it, there's a long section at the end in which I specifically address the (very) few places where I took liberties with the story, and why," she said. "Historians have debated for 600 years about whether or not Joan of Arc actually fought in battle, and whether or not she was raped in prison towards the end of her life. All anyone can do is do the research and then use their best judgment to make a call. Historians are always going to disagree about these issues."

The Washington Post said "Cutter makes the story of Saint Joan worth retelling by breathing new life into these characters and dramatizing the complex politics of their era in a strikingly engaging way. She depicts Jehanne as she was, a simple farm girl who believed herself chosen to do God's work. We see the bloody battles, the relationships formed and destroyed. We are with her when her voices fade, dimmed by stone walls and men's agendas."

The event at the Ketchum library is free.

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