Entertainment Briefs - Sept. 25

CLC Cultural Thursday: Hepokoski experience in Chile Bob Hepokoski and his wife Giselle will present Central Lakes College's second Cultural Thursday event of the 2014-15 season at noon Oct. 2 at the Brainerd Campus in room E471. They will take t...

A musical event featuring nearly 600 voices of men ranging in age from early teens to age 85 - Real Men Sing - will perform at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 in the Staples Motley High School Gymnasium.
A musical event featuring nearly 600 voices of men ranging in age from early teens to age 85 - Real Men Sing - will perform at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 in the Staples Motley High School Gymnasium.

CLC Cultural Thursday: Hepokoski experience in Chile

Bob Hepokoski and his wife Giselle will present Central Lakes College's second Cultural Thursday event of the 2014-15 season at noon Oct. 2 at the Brainerd Campus in room E471.

They will take the audience to South America and share their experience of working with the Mapuche natives in present day Chile. The Hepokoskis lived in the country of Chile in South America for 15 years. They will speak on the theme of traditional cultures in transition. They spent most of the time doing mission work among the Mapuche people. During the time they lived with the Mapuches, they witnessed the people undergoing a period of intense cultural change.

"We watched the Mapuche people going through significant cultural change between 1993 to 2006," Bob Hepokoski said. "Electricity arrived to their communities, cellphones, TV, rural bus routes connecting them easily to the city and new employment opportunities. And the new generation obtained literacy in Spanish. Like all cultures, they faced changes, but because they lived so long in relative isolation, the changes seemed to arrive very quickly. From one generation to another, their long-standing way of life was dramatically altered.​"

This is a free event open to the public.


For more information on Cultural Thursday events contact Tracey Kloeckl-Jiménez at 855-8183 or .

Jacobite Harp concert planned

NEW YORK MILLS - A Jacobite Harp Scottish music concert is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 3 at the Cultural Center in New York Mills.

The Jacobite Harp concert will present a show featuring the world renowned artistry of Minnesota's own Ann and Charlie Heymann. Their harp music and ballads are balanced by humor and lively dance music. Tickets are available by calling 218-385-3339. Admission is $12 with advance reservation and $10 for center members. Receive an additional $2 discount on admission by bringing a non-perishable food item for donation to the Mills food shelf.

Ann Heymann plays a replica of an Irish harp that survived the turbulence during the Catholic Stuarts' fight to claim the English throne, nearly uniting Ireland, Scotland, England, Wales and France, some 300 years before the European Union. The harp was made in 1734, owned and played by an exceptional Protestant clergyman who risked all to support seditious Munster poets who continued to protest the decimation of their homeland. After his death, the harp found its way to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the sole surviving Gaelic harp outside of Ireland and Scotland.

Real Men Sing to perform Oct. 4 in Staples

STAPLES - A musical event featuring nearly 600 voices of men ranging in age from early teens to age 85 - Real Men Sing - will perform at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 in the Staples Motley High School gymnasium.

Students from 19 schools, the Staples Area Men's Chorus (SAMC) and Twin Cities-based internationally acclaimed guest choir the Great Northern Union Chorus (GNU) will perform.


Brian Stubbs, Brainerd High School choir director, will be the 2014 guest director for the Real Men Sing Jr. group.

Stubbs said, "Life is all about relationships, family and relationships. Singing strengthens bonds. The Real Men Sing festival allows schools to come together. For some, it is the first time they are going to be working on something together."

"The kids are emboldened to sing in front of others with this experience and some of them will form friendships at this year's festival."

Schools represented with performers participating with Real Men Sing Jr. include: Albany, Bertha-Hewitt, Browerville, Brainerd, Little Falls, Long Prairie, New York Mills, Osakis, Pequot Lakes, Pillager, Pine River-Backus, Sauk Centre, Sebeka, Staples Motley, West Central Area Schools and the Bemidji State University Men's Chorus.

"The Staples Area Men's Chorus (SAMC) are excited to host so many musicians and watch those who haven't been part of a similar group hear the music in their chest," said SAMC member Mike Gold.

GNU has its own following, and for area residents who are not familiar with the group, GNU has approximately 90 singers in the men's a cappella chorus. They have competed in the Barbershop Harmony Society International Competition 21 times with each performance finishing in the top 10, and in eight of those finishes they were a top 5 medalist.

GNU's excitement to be part of the Real Men Sing festival stems from a contact made nearly two years ago with Stubbs. Stubbs had been contacted by GNU about wanting to find a location to tour in northern Minnesota. Stubbs introduced GNU to SAMC director Steve Hoemberg and shared about the annual Real Men Sing festival.

"GNU was excited about coming to our Real Men Sing festival because they had just been to one in Wartburg, Iowa." Hoemberg said. "Ironically, it was our Real Men Sing festival that has started this whole thing, and we can track the musicians that began to bring this concept across the state and even into Iowa. It started here, and then it took off at St. Cloud State, and then Wartburg College. The GNU are even planning their own Real Men Sing in addition to being guests at our event on Oct. 4."


For the participants the festival begins at noon where they are welcomed before vocal solos are reviewed, followed by rehearsals, the talent show, a special GNU master class, more rehearsals, supper and any last minute concert preparations. This day-long workshop will be a learning experience for the singers, but is important for the younger students who are helping SAMC fulfill their mission of teaching and sharing the lifelong value of singing for men.

The concert featuring all of the performers begins with Real Men Sing Jr., directed by Stubbs; followed by songs by the SAMC, directed by Hoemberg; featured soloists; and the GNU performance, directed by Pete Benson. The grand finale will be a mass chorus with every performer on stage. The concert then will be at 7 p.m.

The GNU will host a meet and greet the audience at a special AfterGlow performance. The AfterGlow will be held immediately following the concert open to concert-goers at the Staples Community Center, with cash bar and appetizers catered by Ted and Gen's of Aldrich. Tickets for this event are available online at , from a SAMC member or at Nelson Insurance Agency, 325 2nd Avenue NE, Staples; or by calling 218-895-5045. Tickets are $10 per person and includes admission to the concert as well as the AfterGlow concert following.

This project is made possible by a grant provided by the Five Wings Arts Council with funds from the McKnight Foundation supplemented with Legacy funds and with support from the Staples Lions Club, Staples Motley Area Community Foundation, National Joint Powers Alliance, 3M and Popplers Music.

Woodland cabin wins People's Choice

AITKIN - Artist Doug Fradette's 3D portrayal of a woodland cabin brought the most votes to win the People's Choice Award at the Community Canvas exhibit at the Jaques Art Center in Aitkin. The 8- by 8-foot canvas brought a lot of attention from young and old alike. Those who participated in the exhibit and want their canvas back, should do so by Tuesday.

The art center is hosting a clay class from 1-3 p.m. Tuesday and/or Saturday for $5 per session, plus clay and firing costs. Kaleidoscope will be held Oct. 4 with a "Let's Draw Friendly, Funny Monsters" class with Angie Barnhart.

Classes planned at St. Francis Music Center


LITTLE FALLS - Dance lessons for ages 3 and up will be offered at St. Francis Music Center in Little Falls starting on Monday. Returning for her third year as dance instructor is Trista LaFontaine Rakow. Rakow has danced with the Minnesota Dance Ensemble and has taken dance lessons much of her life, starting at age 10 with Kay Marie and Carol's School of Dance. Some of her classes included tap, jazz, ballet/pointe and lyrical. In her teens, she danced on the Sartell Dance Team and participated in plays at the Paramount Theatre taking on various dancing roles. While attending St. Cloud State University she continued to take additional dance classes and found a love for hip hop.

In 2009, she enlisted in the Minnesota Army National Guard as an officer candidate, where she received some of the nation's best leadership training. In 2010, she graduated from St. Cloud State University with a bachelor of science degree in marketing.

Dance classes will meet Monday night. The curriculum is developmentally appropriate for each age group so the students have fun while developing grace and coordination.

The music center also is offering percussion lessons for all levels of students, from beginners to advanced, and all styles of drums. John Tetrault is available to teach percussion including the trap set on Monday night.

Tetrault has studied percussion with Bruce Pederson, Gene Koshinski at the University of Minnesota-Duluth and Terry Vermillion at St. Cloud State University. He currently drums with The Sweet Papa Dave Band, a blues band out of St. Cloud. John has taught percussion privately on and off for about seven years. Tetrault also has years of experience playing with several area bands.

For more information on the classes contact the center at 320-632-0637 or online at . Financial aid is available.

Redneck Rescue to perform Friday

LITTLE FALLS - Little Falls band Redneck Rescue will perform at 8 p.m. Friday for the first performance of the Great River Arts LIVE! fall performing arts series on the Great River Arts stage in Little Falls. Doors open at 7 p.m.


Tickets are $10 and are available at Great River Arts or online at .

A common passion and interest in music inspired the formation of the group who began playing together in the basement of founding members Keith and Karen Olson. They expanded to playing local shows at nursing homes and schools. Redneck Rescue gets together for jam sessions every week with a wide array of guest musicians, sometimes having as many as 20 people playing with them.

The core members of Redneck Rescue include: Keith Olson on guitar, Karen Olson on bass, Dan Wolfe on guitar, Gary Stacken on guitar, Kelsi Stacken on fiddle, Ed Strickland on guitar, Mississippi Herbie D'Aigle on the fiddle and banjo and Brad Johnson on the dobro.

Piano and song night planned

NISSWA - Mary Beth Carlson, acclaimed recording pianist and entertainer, will perform at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Gull Lake Conference Center at Grand View Lodge in Nisswa. The concert will feature specially chosen songs from the 24 piano orchestral CDs she has produced and recorded, several of which have been distributed internationally.

Music spanning several decades, inspirational favorites and original songs inspired by life changing events will be performed.

Carlson has performed for a wide variety of audiences, and her arrangements have been heard throughout the country on many radio stations, including KTIG 102.7 FM in Pequot Lakes.

Joining Carlson will be renowned vocalist Mark David Williams. Williams has recorded four vocal CDs and has had leading roles in several musical productions. The duo have been performing together for numerous events over the past 14 years and have combined their musical talents on two CDs, "Reflections" and "Emmanuel ... The Miracle of Christmas," both featuring a blend of impassioned piano orchestral selections and vocal performances.


For more information about the concert contact the Grand View Lodge at 963-8712.

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