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Entertainment Highlights: A ‘One-Woman Musical’ Debuts

  • Susan Gabriel, who has reached the Upper Valley by way of New York and Los Angeles,<br/>will premiere her “Please God Not Another Guitar Player’’ at the Tupelo Music Hall on Saturday night. Courtesy photograph

    Susan Gabriel, who has reached the Upper Valley by way of New York and Los Angeles,
    will premiere her “Please God Not Another Guitar Player’’ at the Tupelo Music Hall on Saturday night. Courtesy photograph

  • A scene from Sullivan’s Travels, Preston Sturges’ satire about Hollywood’s view of America.  It’s being shown Sunday at the Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph.

    A scene from Sullivan’s Travels, Preston Sturges’ satire about Hollywood’s view of America. It’s being shown Sunday at the Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph.

  • Susan Gabriel, who has reached the Upper Valley by way of New York and Los Angeles,<br/>will premiere her “Please God Not Another Guitar Player’’ at the Tupelo Music Hall on Saturday night. Courtesy photograph
  • A scene from Sullivan’s Travels, Preston Sturges’ satire about Hollywood’s view of America.  It’s being shown Sunday at the Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph.

Susan Gabriel landed in the Upper Valley a few months ago entirely by chance, after a career spent slingshotting across the country. She came to the area to visit a friend, grew enamored of it and moved to Woodstock full-time in the fall.

After years of living in and around Los Angeles and New York City, she said it was time for a change of pace.

“I like living in quiet locations,” Gabriel said. “The genesis of the work I do really requires that kind of environment.”

Now, the vocalist, pianist and flautist is planning to launch a tour from the area, premiering her one-woman show, “Please God Not Another Guitar Player,” at White River Junction’s Tupelo Music Hall on Saturday. From there, she plans to point the show south, down the East Coast.

Gabriel said the show, a combination of original music and satirical storytelling, deals with the quirks of modern culture, including romance, but the romance in everything, not just between people.

“This has more of a form to it, that it’s a one-woman musical, really,” she said.

The music between the stories is a sort of “eclectic pop,” as Gabriel described it, pulling from her background in jazz and blues, but synthesizing the elements of those genres into something along the lines of Bonnie Raitt, Sarah McLachlan or Norah Jones.

Those artists are known more for their individual sounds than their genre label; Gabriel, who also has worked with Woodstock’s Zack’s Place to put on shows, subscribes to that model. The songs “become a reflection of the story,” she said.

“The thing that really moves me is when people are moved,” Gabriel said. “If I can be a gateway for that, rock on. That’s the whole deal. And the music’s a great way to get there.”

Susan Gabriel will perform at the Tupelo Music Hall at 7 p.m. on Saturday. Tickets are $20, and can be purchased from tupelohallvermont.com.

Best Bets

Underland, a musical co-written by novelist Jodi Picoult, her son Jake vanLeer and musician Ellen Wilber, will be put by the Trumbull Hall Troupe on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Lebanon Opera House. The play follows Alex, a bully who makes fun of a classmate’s science project — a box full of nothing she calls “Underland” — and then ends up shrunk down and in that world. Friday and Saturday shows are at 7 p.m. and the Sunday show is at 3 p.m. Admission is by donation, and proceeds are donated to charity. To reserve tickets, go to trumbullhalltroupe.com.

∎ Maine-raised comedian Bob Marley will do a set at the Claremont Opera House on Friday, a day before a Concord stop and a week before several nights at the famed D.C. Improv in the nation’s capital. The Claremont show will begin at 8 p.m. Tickets are $27.50 in advance and $29.50 at the door, and can be purchased from claremontoperahouse.org or by calling the box office at 603-542-4433.

Looking Ahead

Now that Halloween’s in the books, it’s time to look forward to the Christmas season. Even if it’s not, well, many retail stores say otherwise. Northern Stage will celebrate by putting on the holiday classic W hite Christmas, a production with dates that will coat the month of December like so many fresh snowfalls. The play goes on for 24 days (some of which have more than one showing) in White River Junction between Dec. 4 and Dec. 31. For more information, go to northernstage.org.


Bluegrass group Bob Amos & Catamount Crossing will play at the Tunbridge Town Hall as part of Mountain Folk, starting 7:30 p.m. on Saturday. Advance tickets are $15, $20 at the door, and can be purchased from mtnfolk.org.

∎ The Handel Society, Dartmouth’s 100-member town-gown chorus, will be joined by a full orchestra on Tuesday at 7 p.m. for a performance including Francis Poulenc’s Gloria. Soprano soloist Colleen Daly will also join the production. General tickets are $15, and can be purchased from hop.dartmouth.edu.

∎ The Buttonwood Winds will perform Hindemith, Gershwin, Puccini and more at the first “Sundays@4” program in Woodstock this weekend. The show will take place at St. James Episcopal Church on the Green at 4 p.m. and is free, though donations are accepted. They’ll go toward future programming. For more information, call the church at 802-457-1727.

∎ The World Music Percussion Ensemble will perform on Saturday morning as part of the Hopstop Family Series at Dartmouth’s Alumni Hall. The show, which will feature takes on songs by artists from Gloria Estefan to Charanga Cakewalk, is free, and will begin at 11 a.m.

∎ That afternoon, the Dartmouth College Gospel Choir will put on a show called “Best Day of My Life” in the Spaulding Auditorium. Adult tickets to the 2 p.m. performance are $15, and can be purchased from hop.dartmouth.edu.

∎ Pure Kirtan, a band that performs music that can accompany yoga sessions, will celebrate the release of its second CD, Of The Heart, with a show in Newport on Saturday. The event starts at Flowing Forms Yoga at 6 p.m., and goes for three hours. Admission is $30, $45 for couples and free for those 16 and under. The fee includes a vegetarian Italian dinner, a copy of the CD and that evening’s yoga. For more information call 603-675-2146.


Theatreworks USA will put on a one-hour production of the children’s book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day at the Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph today. The 10 a.m. musical is recommended for children aged pre-kindergarten through third grade. All seats are $6. Call 802-728-6464 for tickets.

∎ Thetford’s Parish Players will continue their run of the drama The Shadow Box this weekend, with shows on Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, and can be purchased by leaving a message at 802-785-4344.

∎ Northern Stage will complete its run of God of Carnage this weekend, with shows today through Sunday. There will be a 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. production today, 7:30 p.m. shows on Friday and Saturday and a 5 p.m. matinee on Sunday to close out the run. Tickets range from $15 to $60. They can be purchased from northernstage.org.

∎ The Dartmouth Theater Department will continue its run of Big Love, a play about 50 brides-to-be who run to Italy to escape their impending marriages, through Sunday. Tickets are $12 for general admission, and can be purchased at hop.dartmouth.edu. This week’s shows are tonight, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

∎ The Theater Department will also present a weekend run of Glengarry Glen Ross, the famed David Mamet play about hyper-competitive real estate salesmen, at 8 p.m. on Friday and 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are $2, and can be purchased from hop.dartmouth.edu.


Billings Farm & Museum will show 5 Broken Cameras, the latest in its 2013-2014 film series, at 3 p.m. on Saturday. The film follows a Palestinian farmer named Emad Burnat, who lives on the West Bank, as Israeli settlements move onto his property. The title’s cameras refer to those broken over the course of filming. Call 802-457-2355 to purchase tickets, which are $9 for adults.

∎ Chandler Center for the Arts will present a screening of Sullivan’s Travels, the 1941 satire about a comedic director trying to make a more dramatic film, on Sunday. The film begins at about 7:30 p.m., following a 7 p.m. lecture by Vermont film historian Rick Winston. General admission is $9. For tickets, call 802-728-6464.

∎ Tupelo Music Hall will host a screening of parts three and four of Freedom & Unity: The Vermont Movie, titled Refuge, Reinvention and Revolution and Doers and Shapers, respectively, Sunday at 3:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. All six parts of the movie, a multi-director effort that charts Vermont’s history and culture, will be shown at Tupelo this month. General admission tickets can be purchased from flynntix.org.


The Old Sam Peabody Band and caller Delia Clark will host a third Friday Contra Dance at the Little Theater in Woodstock on Friday. The three-hour dance starts at 7 p.m., with a dance workshop at 6:45 p.m. There will be a pot luck dessert break. Admission is $8 for adults, and by donation for kids and seniors. For more information call Steve Hoffman at 802-785-4039.

Bar and Club Circuit

The leader of the well-known 1970s group The Pousette-Dart Band, Jon Pousette-Dart, will perform solo at New London’s Flying Goose Brew Pub & Grille tonight at 8 p.m.

∎ The g enre-spanning New Jersey group the Quimby Mountain Band will take their brand of a-little-bit-of-everything to West Lebanon’s Seven Barrel Brewery at 9 p.m. on Friday.

∎ Hanover’s Salt hill Pub will welcome DJ Ignite on Saturda y to play dance music. The music starts at 9 p.m.

∎ Classic rock and funk group Frydaddy will play the Salt hill Pub in Newport on Friday. The next night, acoustic rocker Brooks Hubbard will play . Both shows start at 9 p.m.

∎ Hubbard will also play at Sunapee’s One Mile West restaurant at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.

∎ Blind Owl Band, which traffics in bluegrass and rock and roll, will play at Salt hill Lebanon on Friday. Upper Valley mainstays Dr. Burma will play the next night. Both shows are at 9 .

∎ Susan Gabriel will perform at the Canoe Club in Hanover tonight. On Friday, folk musician Cormac McCarthy will play the club, followed by pianist Dierre Upshaw on Saturday. Jazz guitarist Ted Mortimer will play on Sunday. Jazz duo Cyn Barrette and Alki Steriopolous will play Tuesday, followed on Wednesday by pianist Keith Bush. All shows start at 7 p.m.

∎ Rockabilly group The Stone Cold Roosters will return to Hartland’s Skunk Hollow Tavern at 9 p.m. on Friday.

Open Mics

Tupelo Music Hall will hold its monthly open mic night at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. Registration starts at 6 p.m., and admission is $5. Americana’s Most Wanted is the featured performer.

∎ Salt hill Pub in Hanover runs an open mic hosted by Chad Gibbs on Mondays at 7 p.m.

∎ At Salt hill in Lebanon, Brian Warren and Seth Barbiero will host an open mic tonight starting at 8.

∎ Brian Warren also hosts an open mic at Bentleys Restaurant in Woodstock. It’s on Mondays, starting at 8:30 pm.

∎ Bradford’s Colatina Exit hosts an open mic on Tuesdays starting at 8 p.m.

∎ The Seven Barrel Brewery in West Lebanon runs an open mic on Wednesdays, beginning at 8 p.m.

∎ Gregory Brown hosts an open mic at Hartland’s Skunk Hollow Tavern, beginning at 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.

Jon Wolper can be reached at jwolper@vnews.com or 603-727-3242. Send Highlights to Highlights@vnews.com.