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L.A. Beat


The L.A. Beat

Theatre Outré to give Didi d’Edada Christmas spirit with a drag interpretation of “A Christmas Carol’

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Even Didi d’Edada need a boost of Christmas spirit.

 Theatre Outré puts their own twist on Charles Dickens’ Christmas classic “A Christmas Carol” as they welcome the family home for the holidays to perform two shows of “ A Very Didi Christmas Carol,” Friday, Nov. 26 and Saturday, Nov. 27 at 7:30 p.m. at Didi’s Playhaus.


David Gabert, Tiny Tim and Jay Whitehead are excited to celebrate A Very Didi Christmas Carol. Photo by Richard Amery

“We have a lot of our favourite local actors,” said Theatre Outré  Artistic director Jay Whitehead, who penned the original musical comedy with Kathy Zaborsky, featuring beloved drag performers Didi d’Edada (Jay Whitehead) and Castrati (Kathy Zaborsky) and a lot of Lethbridge drag favourites. Aaron Collier and Richie Wilcox also make an appearance through sound cues.


“It’s the whole Club Didi family. We’re workshopping this script with a staged reading for the world premiere,” Whitehead said.


“The whole family stops by to give Scrooge character Didi d’Edada the Christmas spirit. Didi’s heart is opened by a Tiny Tim puppet, ” Whitehead said.


The 12 member cast includes familiar faces from numerous local theatre groups including New West Theatre, Shakespeare In the Park, Impromptu and Theatre Outré.


 Whitehead and Zaborsky will be joined by Cole Olson, Erica Barr, Katie Fellger,  Ashley Thomson,  Deonie Hudson, Jordan Payne, Erica Hunt, David Gabert, Stephanie Wickham and Katrina Violet.

“But there’s costumes and music and decorations,” added Theatre Outré General Manager, David Gabert.


Sixth Annual Festival of the Lights set to open at Nikka Yuko Japanese Centre

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The Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden are ready to light up those long winter nights with the sixth annual Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden Winter Lights Festival and simultaneously show off the new Bunka Centre set to open Nov. 26 with the festival.

The sixth annual Winter Lights Festival opens at Nikka Yuko Japanese Gardens, Nov. 26. Photo by Richard Amery


The Sixth annual Winter Lights Festival opens at Nikka Yuko Japanese Gardens, Nov. 26. Photo by Richard Amery

There are approximately 170,000 lights all over the Nikka Japanese Garden, reflecting the theme of Kamakura.


“It means igloo in Japanese,” said  Nikka Yuko Marketing and Events Manager Melanie Berdusco, noting there are five mini igloos that kids can crawl into. 


“Igloos bring people together,” Berdusco continued.


 Last year nearly 20,000 visitors  enjoyed the Winter lights festival in two months despite Covid 19 restrictions.




The Nikka  Yuko  just received a $90,000 grant from Travel Alberta to build an adult sized igloo featuring 360 projection system which will be  constructed by January.


Blues and University concerts among this week’s highlights

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Celebrate the first week of December with  a lot of live music. The blues is the thing this week.

The week begins early with local synth pop musician Ty Vandendool, who has a  farewell party at the Slice on Tuesday, Nov. 30 before he  leaves Lethbridge for greener pastures.

The show begins at 7 p.m.. Admission is by donation.

Paul Kype and Texas Flood play Casino Lethbridge this weekend. Photo by Richard Amery


As usual there is also a comedy open mic at Good Times on Tuesday. Good Times features  Brad Semotiuk and  Celeste Lampa on Friday and Saturday nights at 8 p.m.. Tickets are $16.64.

 Also for comedy, Drunk Improv: Extra Eggnog Edition is happening at  Didi’s Playhaus on Saturday, Dec. 4. The showbegins at 7 p.m. Admission is pay what you can. 

 Things are picking up at the university.  The U of L wind ensemble  performs at University Theatre, Wednesday, Dec. 1. Tickets are  $12 students and alumni, $15 seniors and $20 for adults. The U of L Jazz Ensemble performs at University Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 4. Their “ Back  In Swing” show features the music of  Duke Ellington, Thelonius Monk, Bob Mintzer, Benny Golson and more. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m.

 The Watertower’s regular weekly  jazz night is 6-8 p.m., on Dec. 1 as well.

 The Owl Acoustic Lounge‘s monthly jazz jam is  Thursday, Dec. 2. HBO3 and Ryan Heseltine play at 8 p.m. 


 MonkeyJunk’s Tony D plays the blues at the Geomatic Attic’s downtown venue, Thursday, Dec. 2. Eric Braun will be opening the show at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35.

 As usual the Slice weekly open mic is on Thursday.


Classical music fans will want to check out a free afternoon show at Casa with the Unconventional  Trio. on Friday, Dec. 3. Trumpeter Josh Davies, bass trombonist Nick Sullivan and pianist Deanna Oye will be performing works by Eric Ewazen and Arthur Frackenpohl, a famously hilarious operatic duet by Rossini, and a pair of songs by Michael Hennagin, originally for voice and based on some of the poetry of Emily Dickinson. The free concert begins at 12:15 p.m.


Time away from touring renews Del Barber’s commitment to music after Covid

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Manitoba troubadour is looking forward to returning to Lethbridge to play the Geomatic Attic, Nov. 28.

 There was no dust on Barber during Covid 19 as in addition to having a baby boy four months ago and mourning the passing of his father and often co-writer,  he recorded and released  a new CD “Stray Dogs” and already has another one loaded and ready to go.


Del Barber returns to the Geomatic Attic, Nov. 28. photo by Richard Amery

“I recorded ‘Stray Dogs’ over five days in my cabin north of Winnipeg with my touring band,” said Barber, looking at the first big snowfall of this winter.

He hired Edmonton producer Scott Franchuk to come to the cabin to produce the mostly acoustic project.


“I had 20 songs and whittled them down to the nine on the Cd,” he said, adding he made the most of not being able to tour.


“ I’ve got a five year old and just had a son four months ago, so this gave me the opportunity to stay home and go through  all of my notebooks and song ideas,” he said, adding he didn’t get to road test the songs like he usually does.


“Not really. I don’t usually write about myself. I write about other people’s stories. I was able to play the songs off  my other five records first,” he said, adding these sings are more introspective.


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About L.A. Beat

L.A. Beat is Lethbridge, Alberta's only online arts and entertainment magazine.

It is designed to support music, art, drama and other cultural endeavours in and around the city.

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