Attendance Stays Strong at Downtown Events


GRIDIRON 2010: The Tulsa Press Club Educational and Charitable Trust cast is ready to showcase Gridiron 2010 “Dewey Dare? Or, Laughter Is the Best Public Option,” featuring 30 songs that poke fun in a semi-loving way at people and situations that are ripe for good-natured ridicule. Top Tulsa talent and celebrities are part of the fun for the show to be held March 12-13 at 8 p.m. in the Liddy Doenges Theatre, Tulsa Performing Arts Center.

Courtesy Tulsa PAC

There’s been a lot of bad news and capricious weather to deal with recently. But, despite the notion that people stay home in times of unsettled economy and black ice, attendance at entertainment events has been solid. There is so much to see and do around T-town; Tulsans haven’t let any downturn stop them from having a memorable arts experience and a little fun.

Ready for March madness? Basketball aside, there are more than 30 performances coming up at the alone, but not before February wraps with a few notable shows. Tulsa Opera’s Rigoletto begins on Feb. 27 and continues on Mar. 5 and 7. If you’ve been wanting to test opera waters and waiting for the right moment to jump in, now is the time. Rigoletto is the work of Giuseppe Verdi, probably the world’s most beloved and accessible opera composer. Rigoletto centers on a hunchbacked court jester, who is unsuccessful in keeping his chaste daughter out of the clutches of his employer, the Duke of Mantua. (Verdi had to dial down the plot for the censors of his day.) The voices Tulsa Opera has assembled for this production will be outstanding.

Those who are game for good theatre will enjoy Odeum Theatre Company’s Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom Feb. 25-28. This play is about a family whose kids’ involvement with video games begs the question “What is real?” Theatre North stages A Song for Coretta Feb. 26-28 about five black women, in line to view the casket of Coretta Scott King, who share feelings about their proud heritage and ongoing injustices in America.

American Theatre Company’s The Immigrant (Mar. 5-13) deals with the success of the American Dream as played out in a story of a Russian Jew who escapes the pogroms for life with a Christian family in a small Texas town. This musical premiered in New York in 2000. For theatre of the imagination, you’ll want to check out Flight Mar. 5-6, presented by Living Arts. This production incorporates live theatre, machines propelled into motion by performers, film projection and song. Audiences who enjoyed August: Osage County will like the flawed-family saga of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, presented by Theatre Tulsa Mar. 19-27.

On the lighter side, the denizens of Tuna, Texas, are back. Quick-change comedians Joe Sears and Jaston Williams play a whole town of hilarious characters in Tuna Does Vegas Mar. 8-11. Following that, Mar. 12-13, the Tulsa Press Club Educational and Charitable Trust puts on Gridiron 2010. “Dewey Dare? Or, Laughter Is the Best Public Option” features 30 songs that poke fun in a semi-loving way at people and situations that are ripe for good-natured ridicule. Top Tulsa talent and celebrities are part of the fun.

Vancouver comes to Tulsa this March with the Borealis String Quartet. Performing the music of Haydn, Dvorak and Beethoven for Chamber Music Tulsa on Mar. 14, this young Canadian ensemble prompted one music critic to exclaim, “Light used to be faster than sound, until these people came by.” Their special guest will be pianist Jean-Francois Latour.

The Joy Luck Club author Amy Tan talks to Town Hall on the morning of Mar.19. Multi-talented instrumentalist and storyteller John McCutcheon plays in the PAC’s intimate Williams Theatre for the Trust that night, while upstairs in Chapman Music Hall, Tulsa Ballet follows the wild success of Dracula and Sleeping Beauty with a program featuring three acclaimed choreographers. The Contemporaries (Mar.19-21) will be entertaining, stimulating and, as with any Tulsa Ballet production, gorgeous to view. And March’s roster doesn’t stop there. There will be more about late-March events next month.

Around town, you will be treated to big-name talent at the Center early in March with guitar superstar Eric Clapton on Mar. 2, joined by The Who’s Roger Daltrey. Singer Nora Jones, who has local ties, performs at the Brady Theatre on Mar. 5. At the Cain’s on Mar. 6 is the Bob Wills Birthday Celebration with the Texas Playboys. Access the Cain’s web site for a complete list of all they have scheduled! On Mar. 20, the Black Eyed Peas get it started with enough boom, boom, pow to raise the roof at the Center. There will be some fine March madness rocking that space for sure.

For tickets or more information on events go to, and check out a range of events happening in the greater Tulsa area at

Updated 02-25-2010

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