“A working musician is all I ever wanted to be,” Alejandro Escovedo says. That he is, and you can hear him in an intimate setting at GiG Performance Space courtesy of AMP Concerts. Roots-rock, punk rock…he always sounded like a version of Dylan to me. I’m not saying he’s derivative, not at all, but just as honest and poetic as ol’ Bobby—that’s what I hear when he writes and sings his own stuff. Alejandro’s on his Burn Something Beautiful tour, and Santa Fe will embrace him. One of the cuts on this album is “I Don’t Want To Play Guitar Anymore.” Don’t believe it. Nov. 4, AMPconcerts.org, holdmyticket.com
Because FUSION Theatre Company always sells out its shows, include Fulfillment Center in your early November plans at The FUSION Forum, the newly re-christened Cell Theatre (plus) in ABQ. This play is fresh from The Manhattan Theatre Club, but playwright Abe Koogler is from New Mexico; his parents live in Santa Fe. FUSION was searching for a Santa Fe venue as of press time.
“When we saw that it takes place in New Mexico, we were really excited. It’s just another example of our state having a profound effect on an artist,” FUSION Executive Director Dennis Gromelski says. “It is so timely, and there are very specific references to our community. With Jeff Bezos announcing the sale of Whole Foods to Amazon and what’s happening in retail every day—grocery stores are freaking out because these guys are going to deliver to your door in an hour.”
According to Dennis, the play’s setting is a metaphor and asks the question, “What does ‘fulfillment’ mean to all of us?” Good one. Jacqueline Reid directs an all-Equity cast, with Laurie Thomas and Bruce Holmes, James Wagner and Lillie Richardson in her FUSION debut. Nov. 2-18, fusionabq.org, 505.766.9412
I dream of a tango where the men’s pants are tear-away and we get to see black briefs as well as women’s panties. But Tango Buenos Aires cleaves to its origins, so I’ll have to make do with silky shirts cut down to Venezuela. And boleadoras. It’s sexy when they hit the stage, no? You do know that the Argentinian tango began in the brothels, so don’t make that little lemon-sucky thing with your mouth. See this “uncompromising” company of dancers and musicians at The Lensic Performing Arts Center and let them complete your education. Nov. 9, ticketssantafe.org, 505.988.1234
When Shira Greenberg of Keshet Dance Company closed Nutcracker on the Rocks after 20 years, she spun right around and started developing Alice, her new show debuting this month. “I made a big list of all the things I loved about [Nutcracker on the Rocks]: the energy of the cast, the camaraderie through the rehearsal process, the high expectations we hold for each of the dancers, the enjoyment we see from the audience, the adventurous storyline that we get to explore, and I wanted to find a story that would provide space for all of these things. I toyed with a variety of ideas, but Alice really stood out as the right fit for this next production,” she says.
Just as the old show used a mix of rock/pop/classical music, the new soundtrack will be from Cat Stevens, Stevie Nicks, Ben Harper, Christian McBride and more. Subtitled “an adventure of wonder and wondering,” it’s going to be another irresistible hit with fascinating dancers of all abilities. And it all takes place at Keshet Center for the Arts in the Que. Nov. 10-19, keshetarts.org, 505.224.9808
If you don’t know Cécile McLorin Salvant, then you only pretend to be a jazz fanatic. She’s as sweet and cool as Ella and as hot as Lady Day, depending on her mood. And of moods, she has many, evidenced by a mercurial style and impeccable, intelligent interpretations of standards like “Wives and Lovers” and “If A Girl Isn’t Pretty.” Cécile is on tour, with a stop at The Lensic in Santa Fe, to promote her new double CD Dreams and Daggers, but if you’re lucky, she’ll treat you to “What A Little Moonlight Can Do” and “You Bring Out the Savage in Me” from her debut album Woman Child. No matter what she sings, that velvet in her voice soothes—right up until it snags you. Request “Something’s Coming” for me. Nov. 15, ticketssantafe.org, 505.988.1234
Get your Christmas on early and experience George Frideric Handel’s Messiah with the full Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra and Chorus. The four soloists are relatively young but well-known and highly praised: “exquisite,” “dynamic,” “rich” and “sumptuous” are their voices as described by music critics. Led by the symphony’s new Principal Conductor Guillermo Figueroa (Bienvenido nuevamente, Maestro!), this yearly tradition will be sold out at The Lensic. Nov. 18-19, santafesymphony.org, 505.983.3530
Also at The Lensic is Wise Fool New Mexico’s Thanksgiving Weekend respite for families tired of political debate at the dinner table. Wash the pumpkin pie out of your hair and enjoy Circus Luminous, Wise Fool’s 14th annual acrobatic enchantment.
The theme this year is The Seasons, show Director Deirdre Morris says. She and Composer Jeremy Bleich collaborated on the original music motifs; this year’s “Spring” has the sweetest tones. As to the moves, the 18 cast members and 10 crew have surprises in store, including more props and lots of “straight-up dancing.” Aerial acts and acrobatic duets will be fresh and new. Nov. 24-26, ticketssantafe.org, 505.988.1234
by Stephanie Hainsfurther