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Spotlight: Good time to shop for holiday events

It’s time for Spotlight’s annual reminder that tickets make outstanding Christmas gifts (partly because they slip so easily into stockings).

Here are a few post-Christmas events to choose from:

The 34th Annual Northwest Bach Festival, Feb. 28-March 18, St. John’s Cathedral – Featuring national treasure Gunther Schuller as the artistic director. Complete listings at, tickets available through TicketsWest outlets (800-325-SEAT,

Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival, Feb. 22-25, University of Idaho in Moscow – Featuring headliners Tower of Power, Paquito D’Rivera and the Blind Boys of Alabama. Tickets go on sale Friday by calling 1-88-UIDAHO or online at

Sasquatch! Music Festival, May 25-28, The Gorge Amphitheatre, lineup to be announced – Discount four-day passes are now on sale, via www.sasquatch (The complete lineup will be announced in February.)

Jeff Dunham, March 25, Spokane Arena – The comedian-ventriloquist. TicketsWest.

Brad Paisley, with The Band Perry and Scotty McCreery, Feb. 9, Spokane Arena. The country megastar show of the winter. TicketsWest.

“The Sound of Music Singalong,” Dec. 30, INB Performing Arts Center – The movie musical, audience-participation style. TicketsWest.

Lisa Lampanelli, Feb. 3, INB Performing Arts Center – Comedy’s “Queen of Mean.” Tickets go on sale Friday through TicketsWest.

Wilco, Feb. 6, INB Performing Arts Center – The world’s best alt-rock band? I vote yes. TicketsWest.

The New Shanghai Circus, Feb. 18, INB Performing Arts Center – Acrobatics and more, Chinese-style. TicketsWest.

Spokane Symphony, various dates, Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox – A wide variety of concerts from classics to pops ( Riders in the Sky, among others). (509) 624-1200 or TicketsWest.

Soul Salvation with Ruthie Foster and Paul Thorn, Feb. 3, Bing Crosby Theater – A world-class soul and blues concert. TicketsWest.

An Evening with Jake Shimabukuro, Jan. 17, Bing Crosby Theater – The Jimi Hendrix of the ukulele (really). Hawaiian music meets rock, classical and jazz. TicketsWest.

Martin Sexton, Jan. 29, Bing Crosby Theater – An Americana-folk-rock poet. TicketsWest.

Randal Bays Duo, Feb. 4, Bing Crosby Theater – Irish fiddler and guitarist. TicketsWest.

Wylie & The Wild West, Feb. 10, Bing Crosby Theater – Cowboy love songs. TicketsWest.

Portland Cello Project, Feb. 16, Bing Crosby Theater – The wildly popular genre-mixing cellists. TicketsWest.

Charlie Hunter, Feb. 26, Bing Crosby Theater – Jazz-rock guitar virtuoso. TicketsWest.

“D isney’s Beauty and the Beast,” Jan. 26-29, INB Performing Arts Center – The national touring musical. TicketsWest.

Well, you get the idea. You can also find many offerings from the Spokane Civic Theatre and Interplayers Professional Theatre on, as well as the full Get Lit! literature festival lineup.

Sing with the Chorale

Here’s a new way to celebrate the holidays: The Spokane Symphony Chorale is offering a “Caroling with the Chorale” event Dec. 4, for those amateur singers among us who would love to sing with the Chorale for a day.

For $35, you can join the Chorale for its public performance at 3 p.m. at the Davenport Hotel, enjoy a buffet dinner afterwards, and then (if you wish) sing at area nursing homes and hospitals later that evening.

The schedule will run like this: rehearsal for singers at 1:30 p.m.; performance at 3 p.m.; reception with buffet at 4:15 p.m.; and transportation to nursing homes and hospitals at 5 p.m.

To sign up, call (509) 458-8733 or go to www.spokanesymphony

Non-singers can attend the show and buffet for $25, or the show only for $10. It’s part of Christmas Tree Elegance, the Spokane Symphony Associates fundraiser.

Bing Film Fest

The annual Bing Crosby Holiday Film Festival will run all afternoon and evening on Dec. 10 at the Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague.

Here’s the lineup:

• Noon, “White Christmas,” the 1954 classic.

• 2:30 p.m., “Holiday Inn,” the 1942 classic, which first introduced the song “White Christmas.”

• 4:30 p.m., “Going My Way,” Bing’s 1944 Oscar-winning movie.

• 7 p.m., songs and stories from Bing’s nephew, Howard Crosby.

• 7:30 p.m., a reprise of “White Christmas.”

The event will include coffee, hot cider and treats; wine will be available for sale after 4 p.m.

There will also be a number of attractions on display, including Crosby’s Oscar statuette, a selection of Bing photos from Jerry Dicker’s collection and the original signed contract for “Going My Way,” which reveals that the movie’s original title was “The Padre.”

It’s all free, but a $5 donation is requested to support the Advocates for the Bing Crosby Theater.

Holiday stage events

Here are a few more holiday-related stage events in the next few weeks:

The Eugene Ballet’s “Nutcracker,” Friday, 7 p.m., Panida Theater, Sandpoint, call (208) 263-6139 for tickets; also Dec. 4, 3 p.m. at the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum in Pullman, through TicketsWest.

“It’s A Wonderful Life,” Dec. 9-17, Panida Theater, Sandpoint, a “radio-style presentation” of the movie classic by Sandpoint Onstage. Tickets and info available at www.sandpoint

“A Christmas Carol: Scrooge & Marley,” Dec. 1-3, 7:30 p.m. each night, Harry and Colleen Magnuson Theatre at Gonzaga University. This is part of the Second Stage Readers Theater Series. $2 donation suggested at the door.

‘Carol’ puppets

Speaking of “A Christmas Carol,” I was impressed by the giant-sized puppets in the Spokane Civic Theatre’s current production, created by Patrick Treadway.

And I’d also like to give credit to Sheryl Martin, who designed the excellent costumes for the puppets.