Tag Archives: The Empty Space Theatre

Hotel California Pays Tribute to The Eagles

12 May
Family Fun When You Bring Your Refreshments

Family Fun Begins When You Bring Your Chairs and Refreshments

Hotel California Plays Tribute to The Eagles

Hotel California Pays Tribute to The Eagles

Hotel California’s Tribute to the Eagles is Family Entertainment

With the temperatures in the high 80s at 8 p.m., Bakersfield families enjoyed cooling-off with an outdoor concert at the Bright House Networks Amphitheater. Located at 11200 Stockdale Hwy., the amphitheater is unique. It is a gathering place for families to enjoy outdoor picnics while listening to a concert, sitting on the grass or bringing their own chairs. Adults are allowed to bring wine or beer, provided they check in with authorities and get the proper wristband permit. The amphitheater is located within walking distance of fine restaurants like P.F. Chang’s, California Pizza Kitchen, and Café Med. For more information on events call (661) 852-7777 or go to: www.bakersfieldamphitheatre.us.

Hotel California plays "Life in the Fast Lane"

Hotel California plays “Life in the Fast Lane”

The only problem with the concert is that several people thought The Eagles were really going to be playing and not a band named Hotel California. “I’ve never heard of a band named Hotel California,” Hermano Gonzales said as he left the park.  “I thought the Eagles were going to be playing,” Gonzales said. He indicated that the name of the band was not as clear as it could’ve been, although it was advertised as, “Hotel California gives tribute to the Eagles.” Most people stayed and enjoyed their evening regardless of the band’s name. “This is not the Eagles–only a salute,” Brian Carrici ,55, said. “I go to all of the shows in Bakersfield. The first show I ever saw was in 1971-72–The James Gang. In fact, Rare Earth will be playing June 8 here at the Amphitheatre and I intend to go to that concert as well,” Carrici said.

Hotel California is a band's name and they pay tribute to The Eagles.

Hotel California is a band’s name and they pay tribute to The Eagles.

Other events coming this summer include:

Martina McBride-June 28

Air Supply-June 29

Summerland Tour-June 30

For more details go to www.ticketmaster.com

or like Bright House Amphitheatre on www.facebook.com/Bright-House-Network-Amphitheatre

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“The Good, The Bad and The Judges,” Tour at Historic Union Cemetery Fascinates Public

28 Apr
"THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE JUDGES," TOUR AT HISTORIC UNION CEMETERY FACINATES ALL AGES.

“THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE JUDGES,” TOUR AT HISTORIC UNION CEMETERY FASCINATES ALL AGES.

Tours of the Historic Union Cemetery and more information on their events can be found at http://www.UnionCemetery1872.com

COL. THOMAS BAKER'S OBELISK EXEMPLIFIES HIS DEDICATION TO MAKING BAKERSFIELD LIVE FOR ETERNITY.

COL. THOMAS BAKER’S OBELISK EXEMPLIFIES HIS DEDICATION TO MAKING BAKERSFIELD LIVE FOR ETERNITY.

Judge Banjamin Brundage (1834-1911) was instrumental in relocating Kern County's seat from Havilah to Bakersfield.

Judge Benjamin Brundage (1834-1911) was instrumental in relocating Kern County’s seat from Havilah to Bakersfield.

A stroll through the emerald golf course grounds of Union Cemetery Saturday morning, April 27, for “The Good, The Bad, and The Judges,” tour was fascinating. It was a special tour of the Pioneers Section where Bakersfield’s founding fathers are buried.The City of Bakersfield is named after Col. Thomas Baker, who was an attorney, a judge, and served as a senator from Fresno and Tulare counties 1861-1862. He loved the land and with Harvey Brown, bought swamp land in 1863 that is now Bakersfield.  He is one of ‘The Good,” as well as one of “The Judges”. His profound knowledge and foresight was instrumental in the creation and promotion of Bakersfield and the welfare if it’s residents.

Benjamin Brundage, (1834-1911) was Bakersfield’s first Superior Court Judge. The original Kern County seat of government was in Havilah, but Brundage fought hard to have the seat of government permanently moved to Bakersfield.  Brundage Lane is named in his honor.

Ralph shot Horace Montague December 1, 1915. He was hanged to death at San Quentin January, 1, 1915.RALPH M. FARISS, IS ONE OF THE “BAD” (1889-1915).

Peggy Schrader tells tour group about the infamy of one of  Bakersfield’s trouble makers, Ralph M. Ferris (1889-1915). Ralph, a resident of Bakersfield, was hanged in San Quentin in 1915 after he committed a train robbery in which  he shot and killed Horace E. Montague, December 1, 1913 near El Monte, CA. 
        VICK DOCENT DESCRIBES SHOOT OUT BETWEEN PERCY DOUGLAS AND CHIEF EDWIN L. WILLOW.

VICKI SCHALLOCK DESCRIBES SHOOT OUT BETWEEN ANOTHER “BAD”– PERCY DOUGLAS AND THE “GOOD” CHIEF EDWIN L. WILLOW.
 
EDWIN L. WILLOW WAS A MAN WHO WORE MANY HATS--OWNER OF WILLOW FURNITURE, DEPUTY SHERIFF, AND FIRE CHIEF

EDWIN L. WILLOW WAS A MAN WHO WORE MANY HATS–OWNER OF WILLOW FURNITURE, DEPUTY SHERIFF, AND FIRE CHIEF.

UNION CEMETERY IS 141 YEARS OLD, AND PRESENTLY UNDERGOING RECONSTRUCTION

UNION CEMETERY IS 141 YEARS OLD, AND PRESENTLY UNDERGOING RECONSTRUCTION.

LAST YEAR THE CITY OF BAKERSFIELD DECLARED UNION CEMETERY A HISTORIC SITE--RENOVATIONS ARE UNDERWAY

LAST YEAR THE CITY OF BAKERSFIELD DECLARED UNION CEMETERY A HISTORIC SITE–RENOVATIONS ARE UNDERWAY.

GROUNDS KEEPER, ROBERT GALAVIZ TAKES GREAT PRIDE IN RESTORING THE BEAUTY TO UNION CEMETERY.

GROUNDS KEEPER, ROBERT GALAVIZ TAKES GREAT PRIDE IN RESTORING THE BEAUTY TO UNION CEMETERY.

JIM DOCENT WELCOMES VISITORS TO UNION CEMETERY.

JIM MCCONNELL WELCOMES VISITORS TO UNION CEMETERY.

As one of the grave stones reads:

 “ Reader, Behold! As you pass by, As you are now, So once was I, As I am now, so you must be, Prepare for death and follow me.”

The Empty Space Theatre Steals the Show with their Rendition of the off-Broadway Hit “Crimes of the Heart”

20 Apr
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“The Empty Space 10 Year Celebration” courtesy of http://www.esonline.org/

The Empty Space Theater is still going strong as their 10th season in Bakersfield is in full swing. Well known for its fearlessness and bold show choices like Tony Kushner’s  “Angels in America.” This time  The Empty Space Theatre is setting their sights on the off-Broadway hit “Crimes of the Heart” written by Beth Henley and Directed by Bob Kempf.

“We have six months seasons and based on what people present to me and I what want to do, in this case “Crimes of the Heart,”  it felt like it would just be a good fit. The talent we have here, especially the female talent. The four parts we had for women in this show, I knew they were the people to do it at this time,” said Kempf. “I enjoy plays that are written by southern playwrights. They feel things deeper, emotions are bigger.”

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Doc (played by Brian J. Sivesind) and Meg (played by Cody Ganger) realizing the time they have lost and the love they still have for each other. Photo by Casey Webb.

There certainly were no small roles in this performance. The three main actresses, Amy hall (playing Lenny), Cody Ganger(playing Meg), and Ellie Siversind (playing Babe) performed as the Magrath sisters and had excellent chemistry on stage. Their character’s portrayal of depth and longing for the betterment of their lives was only match by their regret and scars from their traumatic past.  Jennifer Maddern (playing the sisters cousin Chick Boyle) was wonderful in her role as the passive aggressive socialite, always trying to either distance herself from her family or control them with shame and guilt.

A very poignant  scene between  the characters Doc Porter (played by Brian J. Sivesind)  and Meg Magrath  involving a scorned and discarded love, rekindled by Meg returning to her old home to deal with a family emergency and finding Doc still living in town with a wife and two children.  Finally,  Matthew Borton (playing the role of Barnett Lloyd), conveying the struggle of his characters desire to finally exact  revenge on the man who destroyed his father’s  lively hood or to save Babe from going to prison and in do so, giving up his only leverage to redeem his family’s honor.

The play has all the hallmarks of a southern tragedy, full of manic highs and soul crushing lows. The question remains, will these characters forgive themselves and each other or will they fall victim to the crimes of the heart?

The Empty Space Theatre  is located at 706 Oak St.

Dates for the performance:

April 12, 13, 19, 20, 26  27 at 8pm

April 21 @ 2pm

A Diamond in the Dust…

14 Apr
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Bakersfield Sign Photo taken by Nick Chapman

If someone described to you what Bakersfield has to offer, like theater, classic orchestras, entertainers like Elton John and James Taylor performing live in concert, local artists performing music and art, and modern cuisine. People would not believe it was Bakersfield but rather some other major metropolis area.  In California, there exists a common attitude that Bakersfield is just an oil town. Devoid of any real experience of art, culture, or entertainment.  However, after living here for over ten years I can say that this mindset is not absolutely true. There is life here in Bakersfield, not just people living but a infusion of artistic and cultural awakening. This movement is not only expressed by artists and groups passing through Bakersfield but by the citizens themselves.

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The Rabobank Arena.
Photo provided by the Marriot hotel.

The venues here in Bakersfield  are putting on great performances. Major locations like the Fox Theater and Rabobank Arena continue to bring  great talent to Bakersfield. While local theaters like The Empty SpaceBakersfield Community Theater, and Spotlight Theater bring many local artist to the stage and gallery. There are museums and zoos, fairs and concerts, and everything in between.

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The Fox Theater Photo taken by Bobak Ha’Eri July 26 2009

The dilemma Bakersfield faces  today is that it desires to be both current and cultured as it duels with the equally passionate effort to remain the quiet conservative town it once was.

Bakersfield’s reputation as being one of the top 10 conservative cities in America, with a strong christian base lends people to believe that this city remains unmoved by currents trend in culture.  Yet, there is an undercurrent of nightlife, contemporary art, classical music, ballet, live bans, and sporting events, all bubbling up to the surface.

Bakersfield has over 350,000 residents now and has had a  41% jump in growth since the last decade. This created a more diverse society which grew the desire for a wider preference of the kinds of entertainment the city has to offer.  Bakersfield’s fun and creative side may not be the first thing people think about this city. But if you can wipe the dust away and if you know where to look, you will realize what a diamond it can truly be.

Bakersfield Culture Sizzles as Art and Theatre Celebrate 10 years at “The Empty Space”

14 Apr
"Kreative Allusions," by John Kirkeby

“Kreative Allusions,” by John Kirkeby-photo by Wanda Winkler

Bakersfield Culture Sizzles as The Empty Space Art Gallery/Theatre Celebrates Ten Years The Empty Space theatre and art gallery, located at 706 Oak St., is a cultural icon in Bakersfield. It is celebrating it’s tenth anniversary with an exhibit from John Kirkeby called, “Kreative Allusions” and a play called, “Crimes of the Heart,” written by Beth Henley and directed by Bob Kempf. Gallery director, Jesus Fidel, 30, prides the theatre/gallery as beng, “the only totally nonprofit, donation based theatre/gallery in the U.S. run by 20 volunteers 365 days a year,” said Fidel. Each month a different artist is featured in the art gallery and a different play is presented to the public. The plays are usually locally written or off-Broadway shows, with suggested donations of $15 for adults and $10 for students and seniors per theatre show. Visiting the gallery exhibit is free and delicious snacks, coffee and wine is available. While the artist reception hours are between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. on weekends, the plays take place in the evenings on weekends. For a schedule of this month’s showings and future events go to www.esonline.org. John Kirkeby, retired from Xerox ten years ago, now has more time to be creative. He is celebrating his second showing at The Empty Space. “I really like the casual atmosphere at this gallery. For my first exhibit I was really nervous and brought 41 paintings and sold only a few. This year I have 21 paintings and they are selling very well,” said Kirkeby. He also has many prints of his artwork to choose from for sale at the gallery. If you are artistic and would like to exhibit your work to the public you can contact Michelle Guerrero, 35, the marketing director at (661) 327-7529. Both Guerrero and Fidel have been with The Empty Space for three years and are always available to answer any questions. If you love art you can also go to the Bakersfield Museum of Art website, www.bmoa.org for more information on  Bakersfield’s hidden art treasures.