Little known fact: In my younger years, I served as a stage hand for a local production of “The Nutcracker.” Essentially, I made sure that the Christmas tree got wheeled on stage at the right time and that the floors were mopped between shows (lest the dancers slip or trip). So, I’ve seen the show a couple of times and can say that there are few things more quintessentially Christmas than this ballet.
The Lively Arts Foundation presents its version of the retelling of “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” this Saturday and Sunday at the Saroyan Theatre. We have two tickets to give Saturday night’s performance for one lucky Beehiver. To enter to win, leave a comment on this post telling us what you think of as quintessential to the season. Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursday.
Please don’t enter more than once. Winners will be chosen at random and notified via email Thursday night. So check your email if you entered. Reminder: Because there are physical tickets, you will need to pick them up at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. St.) during business hours (8 a.m.-5 p.m.). Complete rules on the jump.
Carolla hosts the most downloaded podcast of all time, which, technically, means since the early 2000s or so. Still, Carolla, best known for his TV (“The Man Show,” Crank Yankers”) and radio (“Loveline”) work, is podcast royalty. His show was downloaded 60 million times between ’09 and ’11.
Carolla will be taping an episode of his podcast live at the Tower Theatre, Dec. 8 and we have tickets to put a few lucky Beehivers in the audience. Enter to win by leaving a comment on this post. Tell us what is your favorite podcast and why. The contest ends 5 p.m. Friday. Winners will be chosen by random and notified via email. So check your email if you enter. One comment per person, please. Rules on the jump.
Having the Amy Winehouse tribute Back To Black co-headline a show with ’50-60s R&B cover band Gayle and The Bowties is something that should have happened sooner, given both bands tread the same musical ground and both have a good following of fans. It is a show that people have been demanding, says Danielle Rondero, who plays the role of Winehouse in Back to Black.
We’ve got a set of tickets to give away to one lucky Beehiver. To enter to win, just leave a comment on this post. Tell us who’s your favorite female vocalist and why. The contest will end 3 p.m., Friday. Winners will be chosen by random and notified via email. So check your email if you enter. One comment per person, please.
In the mean time, watch a couple videos of the bands (and check out the full rules) on the jump.
Looking for a happy Friday evening? I don’t think you’ll have to look farther than the Lively Arts Foundation’s presentation of “Mystic India,” a live Bollywood dance spectacular. This kind of music and dance just seems to bring out the smiles in audiences. Here’s a description:
Audiences can expect an explosion of colors and energy as they travel on a celebratory journey through Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and Gujarat, and even through the progression of Bollywood films via a stunning visual display that fuses dance, theater, and spectacular special effects.
I’m giving away two pairs of tickets to the 7:30 p.m. Friday concert at the Saroyan Theatre. To enter, leave a comment on this post. (If you know something about Bollywood, feel free to share your favorite movies or dance styles.) Deadline is 7 p.m. today (Monday). One comment per person, please. I’ll be informing winners at about 7 p.m. via email, so check yours around that time. If you’re a winner, you’ll be able to pick your tickets up at Will Call. Rules are on the jump.
The two winners of the autographed posters are Bruce and Wilson. Thanks for your comments and keep an eye open for future contests.
ORIGINAL POST: “The Impossible” was scheduled to open in Fresno in early February but was moved up so that it opens here today. I put the movie on my list of the “Ten Best” films of 2012. Now, I want to know what you think.
Send me your short review of the movie and I will put you into a drawing to win one (1) of two (2) miniature movie posters for the film that’s been signed by the cast. That includes Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts.
The movie may not be here for long but I will still give you some time. All review comments must be posted by Jan. 14. The winners will be notified and they will be able to pick up their poster at the Fresno Bee during normal working hours.
UPDATE: Congrats to our winner, Steve! Thanks for playing everyone.
ORIGINAL POST: A visually reinvented national tour of “Dreamgirls” on Tuesday will make a stop at the Saroyan Theatre for a two-performance run — and the Beehive is giving away two tickets for opening night to a lucky reader.
I interviewed Charity Angel Dawson, who plays Effie White in the tour, for my cover story in Friday’s 7 section. She says the production has an updated visual look, including the use of LED screens. She calls it an “amped-up, modernized” version.
To enter the contest for the two tickets, leave a comment on this post telling us your favorite Effie from over the years. It could be an actress from the Broadway version, a local version or the movie. (If you can’t think of anyone, that’s OK — just say Jennifer Holliday. She’s the most obvious answer.)
Deadline to enter is 2 p.m. Monday. The winner will be chosen at random and notified via e-mail, so please leave a valid address. Only one entry per person, please. You’ll be able to pick up your tickets at the Saroyan’s Will Call window.
UPDATE: Winners have been notified by e-mail. Enjoy the show!
ORIGINAL POST: Steve Earle — acclaimed troubadour and singer/songwriter, actor, author, playwright and political activist — visits the Hanford Fox Theatre next Tuesday night, a stellar booking for the historic theater.
Tickets are on sale now for $32.50. You can get them at The Fox’s website. Or, if you’re a lucky Steve Earle fan who also reads The Beehive, you might be able to score a pair of tickets from us. Just leave a comment below, telling us why you love Steve Earle and you’ll be entered to win a pair of tickets.We’ve got a few to give away, so cross your fingers.
Deadline to enter is 10 a.m. Monday. We’ll choose the winners at random and notify them via e-mail, so please leave a valid e-mail address and please check it. Complete rules below.
ORIGINAL POST: There’s only one real way to experience the musical “RENT,” and that’s live. (The movie had its own charms, but it couldn’t capture the raucous energy of this much-beloved show.)
Here’s your chance with California Public Theater’s new local production, which has a short two-performance run. It opens Friday at the Tower Theatre and continues Saturday. As a Beehive reader, you can win two tickets to opening night. These are premium tickets (prices range from $23.50-$38.50), so you’ll get a great seat.
To enter, leave a comment on this post telling us your favorite song from “RENT.” (If you don’t know any, that’s OK — just tell us why you’d like to see this show.)
Deadline to enter is noon Thursday. The winner will be chosen at random and notified via e-mail, so please leave a valid address. I’ll be picking the winner at 12:15, so be sure to check your e-mail around that time. If you can’t do that and would rather be contacted by phone, send me an e-mail (separate from your comment) at firstname.lastname@example.org with your number, and I’ll contact you that way.
Rules are on the jump.
Pictured: Brian Pucheu as Roger. Photo by Jared Jurcak.
The winners of the tickets to the advance screening of “How to Train Your Dragon Live Spectacular” have been selected. They are: Christina, Ben, Lita and Andrea.
ORIGINAL POST: Opening night for the DreamWorks’ touring production “How to Train Your Dragon Live Spectacular” will be at the Save Mart Center Dec. 19. The production, based on the 2010 animated movies, features fire-breathing, flying dragons, some with a wing span of 46 feet.
The Beehive wants to give you a way to see the show without having to use any of your holiday money. Four winners and their guests will get to see the massive production for free.
We have four (4) family four-pack tickets to the opening night show. All the four winners will have to do is show up that evening and pick up their tickets at the will call window that gets them and three guests into the show. Just to be clear: there are four tickets for each winner.
Here’s all you have to do. Leave a comment below explaining why seeing giant dragons would make your holiday brighter. Deadline to enter is noon on Saturday. Winners will be chosen at random and notified via e-mail, so please leave a valid address. You will be notified by 5 p.m. Dec. 17 if you are a winner.
The winners of the tickets to the advance screening of “Parental Guidance” have been selected.
They are: Doreen Nagle, bebe, Jennifer Caser, Luis Solis. Shaonmemdez, Zach, Jeff Pierce, Gaynell, Dwight Wilcox, Jeanne, Rose, Gwen, Shell, Pam, Nancy Castano, Barry Falke, Deborah Hamilton, denise, Frances, Ken Chavez, Jackie, Julita, Ryan, Mary Vaux, Erica Perez, Oscar, Janet Klise, Barb, Sandra Terrel, Christine, Joanne, Cisco Mendez, Susan T, Fresno Dan, Haley P, Emily Wedin, Lita, Angie Rosenthal, Joseph Rodriguez, Kris, Wes, Angela Whitney, Dan, Kristi, Kristen Petersen, Carrie, Sergio, Efren, Kim, Alexy, Raymond Gonzalez, Ron, Dixion Bainbridge, Frank, Edith, Dave, Chris, Jason Valasquez, Kristi, Terri, Julio, Monica, Kelly Nicholson, Paul Schlesinger, Wes, Leonor Villamueva, Kristen Wilson, Amanda Delgado, Ernie, Brian L. Baker, Charlie and Robert Lara.
I have a four-pack of tickets to give away to one reader to the 7:30 p.m. Saturday performance at the Saroyan Theatre. To enter, leave a comment on this post telling us your favorite “Nutcracker” memory. (Or, if you’ve never seen the show, tell us why you’d like to go.) I’ll select one comment at random as the winner.
Deadline is 2 p.m. THURSDAY.
If you win, you’ll be able to pick up the tickets at the door. Please don’t enter more than once. Check your email between 2 and 2:30 p.m. Thursday to see if you won, because that’s how I’ll be notifying winners. Complete rules on the jump.
In the meantime, you can read my piece about Michaela DePrince’s amazing journey from African orphanage to this weekend’s Sugar Plum Fairy in Thursday’s Life section. (She’s pictured above.)
Alt-rock/Christian band Project 86 visits Fulton 55 tonight, fresh off the release of “Wait for the Siren,” its latest album. It’s been a while since we’ve seen them in Fresno, and this time, the SoCal-bred rockers are playing with San Jose rockers I Am Empire and Fresno band Session. Get your tickets here. Or, if you’re the first person to leave a comment saying you want to go, we’ll get you a pair of tickets from promoter Love the Captive. You’re welcome. Just be sure to leave a valid e-mail address so we can contact you. An since this tonight, be close to your e-mail.
The tickets come to us courtesy of the Fox Theatre and Fresno band Strange Vine, who landed the opening spot for the blues icon. Round of applause for them.
Here’s how this will work: Leave a comment below telling us where in the central San Joaquin Valley you’d take B.B. King to hang out. Remember, he’s a king. Pick something good. Deadline to enter is 9 a.m. Thursday.
We’ll pick one commenter at random to win the tickets. The winner will be notified by e-mail, so please leave a valid address and please check it. Complete rules below.
UPDATE: Here’s our final batch of winners: Lisa (Toby Mac), Norma (Kendrick Lamar) and Erica (Grande/Beatty). Enjoy the fair everyone. Thanks for playing!
ORIGINAL POST: It’s just about fair time, which means here on The Beehive it’s also ticket time. The Big Fresno Fair starts Wednesday and runs through Oct. 14. There’s a concert each night, and we’ve got a pair of tickets for pretty much all of ‘em. The good news: We’re giving them to YOU.
Here’s how this is going to work: Leave a comment below, telling us the three shows you’d like to see (in order). If you don’t include a wish list, your entry won’t be valid. We’ll pick four random winners each day at 1 p.m., starting Monday, until all the tickets are gone. So get in quick for the most chances to win.
The first winners will have first choice of tickets. If you win and the tickets you want are already gone, I’ll e-mail you and see what’s next on your want list. So be sure to include a valid e-mail address. All the official rules are on the jump, as is the list of concerts. Good luck!
If you need some fair reading, please check out The Bee’s fair preview story in this Sunday’s newspaper.
UPDATE: Congrats to our winners, Christine and R. Henderson. Check your e-mail!
ORIGINAL POST: The Fresno Philharmonic opens its 59th season this weekend with a special concert featuring Kelley O’Connor. O’Connor is a local girl who still lives here, but is also a world-traveling opera singer who has won a Grammy.
In an entertainment world built upon a constantly shifting terrain of pop culture, it takes a lot for a mezzo-soprano to be noticed. That’s the case no matter how effusive her reviews or how shiny her 2007 Grammy Award, which she won for a recording of the world premiere of contemporary composer Osvaldo Golijov’s opera, “Ainadamar.”
“Actually I think I am very incognito in Fresno,” says O’Connor.
Well, Beehive readers, we’ve got a chance for you to enjoy her Philharmonic performance for free. We’ve got two pair of tickets to the 8 p.m. Saturday show at Saroyan Theatre. (there’s another at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, btw). Ticket info here.
For a chance at our free tickets, leave a comment below. Deadline to enter is noon on Friday. Winners will be notified via e-mail, so please leave a real address and PLEASE check it. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something from us in the past 30 days. Complete rules below.
UPDATE: Congrats to our winner — Cristina. Enjoy the concert!
ORIGINAL POST: We’re a week away from one of the most anticipated rock shows of the year. The Black Keys hit Save Mart Center on Oct. 1 and you wouldn’t want to be the “lonely boy” (or girl) left out, would ya?
Tickets are on sale now, costing $46.50. But one lucky Beehive reader is going to get a free pair for us. Here’s what you gotta do: Leave a comment below telling us your favorite Black Keys song and you’ll be entered to win.
Deadline to enter is 10 a.m. Thursday. A winner will be picked at random and notified via e-mail, so please use a valid e-mail address and please check it. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something from us in the past 30 days. Complete rules below.
The concert features two local faves: Violinist Patrick Contreras and roots rock/Americana group Lance Canales & The Flood. Tickets cost $7 in advance or $12 at the door. Orrrrrrrrr, if you’re lucky enough, you can walk away with a pair of tickets just by commenting on this post.
We’re giving away two pair of tickets. All you have to do to get entered is leave a comment below. Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursday. We’ll notify the winners by e-mail, so please leave a real e-mail address and please check it. Complete rules below.
UPDATE: We’ve got our 75,000th comment. It actually came last week (sorry, I was on vacation) on this post, from Natali. Congrats to her and thank you to everyone who reads every day and helped us reach this milestone.
ORIGINAL POST: To our wonderful readers (and you trolls too):
The Beehive is closing in on our 75,000th comment and to mark the occasion, we’re going to hook up that special commenter with a $75 gift card to Yard House. I won’t tell you exactly how close 75K is, other than to say it’s in sight.
Comments need not be on this post to win. Any Beehive post will do. We, however, will keep an eye on excessive/repeat commenting and reserve the right to not publish comments from people who are trying to flood us just to win the prize.
Let us also use this opportunity to thank those of you who read loyally and comment. We appreciate you — especially in an era where people are more likely to comment on Facebook and Twitter. Thank you!
** Before you ask, no, I won’t tell you how close you are if you promise to buy me a half-yard.
You might not expect one of the year’s most impressive dance performances to be staged in August, but that’s exactly what’s happening 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Saroyan Theatre. The Lively Arts Foundation is bringing eight world-class dancers from the San Francisco Ballet to town. The company is considered one of the three top in the country, which means we’ll get the chance to experience some amazing talent on stage.
We’re devoting the cover story in Friday’s 7 section to the event, and you’ll get to read all about each of the eight impressive dancers. Tickets to this show run from $30-$78.
So here’s the contest: I have two pairs of prime orchestra seats (rows N and O) to give away to two lucky Beehive winners. This is a quickie contest: I’ll give the tickets away to the SECOND and EIGHTH commenters on this post.
These are paper tickets, so you’ll have to be able to pick them up at The Bee’s front counter between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Friday.
The winner will be notified by email, so keep checking. If I don’t hear from you within half an hour after I send a winning-confirmation e-mail, I’ll pick someone else at random. No repeat comments please. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something in the past 30 days. We won’t post any comments until we have a winner. Complete rules after the jump.
Local concert promoter Art Silva and his Artourage have a 20-band festival happening Saturday afternoon at Blackbeard’s. The Rock Expo offers this rare convenience: When you wanna take a break from music, you can go play mini golf or skee ball.
Just leave a comment below telling us your favorite thing about Blackbeard’s. We’ll pick five winners at random and give each of them a pair of tickets. Winners will be reached by e-mail, so please leave a valid one and please check it. Deadline to enter is 5 p.m. Thursday.
UPDATE: Congrats to our winners — Kassandra, Andrew and Chrysti. Enjoy the show.
ORIGINAL POST: Friday night’s concert at Fulton 55 is looking like a great night of local music. You’ve got undeniable local favorite 40 Watt Hype, the chilled out sounds of reggae/rock band Clouded Vision and the indie/electro/pop of Sahab.
Tickets cost $10-$12, and while that’s a very fair price for those three acts — we at The Beehive love to hook up our readers. So here’s the deal: We’ve got three pairs of tickets to give away to the show.
Want ‘em? Here’s what you gotta do. Leave a comment telling us which Beastie Boys song you’d like to hear 40 Watt Hype cover. Word is they’re doing an MCA tribute during their set at Friday’s show.
Deadline to enter is 8 a.m. Friday. Winners will be notified by e-mail, so please leave a real address. And since this is a quick turnaround, please, please, please check it. Official rules below.
On their own, I’d recommend HMBSMS. With Strange Vine and Poor Man’s Poison on the bill? This is stellar.
Tickets cost $8 in advance or $10 at the door. But you can win some right here on The Beehive if you’re lucky. We have three pair to give away, courtesy of Strange Vine. To get entered into our contest, just leave a comment below that uses the words “poison” “strange” and “sister.”
We treasure creativity. The winner, however, will be chosen at random and notified by e-mail, so please a leave e-mail address and please check it. Since the show is right around the corner, this is going to be a quick contest. Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursday. Complete rules below.
If you were singing along after just reading those names, then this post is for you. New Edition is in town next week, playing June 15 at Save Mart Center as part of its reunion tour. That’s Ronnie DeVoe, Bobby Brown, Ricky Bell, Michael Bivins, plus Ralph Tresvant and Johnny Gill — if you’re wondering.
You can head over to Ticketmaster and buy some tickets. They’ll run ya $46-$92. Or you can cross your fingers that you’ll snag our free pair.
Here’s how it’s going to work. Leave a comment below telling us your favorite New Edition-related song. So either something from the proper group, one of the group members’ solo careers or one of New Edition’s off-shoots, like Bell Biv Devoe. Deadline to enter is 9 a.m. Monday. We’ll pick a winner at random and notify that person via e-mail. So please leave a real e-mail address and please check it. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something from us in the past 30 days. Complete rules below.
The event is a benefit for Terry’s House, and you can buy tickets for $20. Or you can take a dare with us and try to win tickets. Just leave a comment below telling us what YOUR daredevil name would be and you’re entered to win. Deadline to enter is 10 a.m. Thursday. A winner will be chosen at random and notified via e-mail, so please a valid address and please check your e-mail. Complete rules below.
If you’re interested in learning more about Bubba Blackwell, and you should be, because he’s quite a character, read my Q & A with him from today’s Fresno Bee.
On-the-rise R & B singer Bei Maejor visits Fresno on Friday night, playing at Skye Nightclub, which is what Rome Nightclub is calling itself these days. Maejor caught some ears last year with his debut single, “Trouble,” which featured J. Cole. It was a favorite of mine — and you might dig it too, check the video below.
Where Bei Maejor (pronounced “Be Major”) is most prolific, though, is behind the scenes. As a producer and songwriter he’s worked with the likes of Justin Bieber, Trey Songz, Ne-Yo, Drake, Ciara and many others. If you wanna check out the show, it starts at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $10-$15 and can be purchased here. Check the flier below.
GIVEAWAY: A prize for those of you who read to the bottom. We’ll give a pair of tickets to the show to the first FIVE commenters. Be sure to include a real e-mail address, so we can contact you.