Debbie Croft: Array of music, drama coming to foothills

August 11, 2013 

On stages in several foothills communities are shows for every preference in live entertainment:

• The Mariposa Evenings Summer Concert Series presents The Trespassers on stage tonight, and What It Is featuring Tim Hagar on Saturday night. Next weekend, Aug. 16-17, The Core Shots and The Franklin DeWitt Band will appear. Concerts start at 7 p.m. in the Mariposa Art Park at the south end of town between the Pizza Factory and Chocolate Soup. Bring blankets or lawn chairs for seating. The concerts are free, but tips are appreciated. Details are available at, or by calling (800) 903-9936.

• For an evening of old-fashioned cliff-hanging suspense and humor, Oakhurst's Golden Chain Theatre presents "An Evening of Melodrama," beginning this weekend. Two one-act plays are on the program: "Run to the Roundhouse Nellie" and "The Shagwood Secret." This production will run on the weekends until Sept. 22. Show times are Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Check the website for more information,, or call (559) 683-7112.

• "RESPECT: A Musical Journey of Women" features popular hits from the early 1900s to the present day. Through a century of music reaching to all generations, 50 songs carry the story of how women have influenced America's music. From "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" and "Piece of My Heart," to "These Boots Were Made for Walking" and "Hero," the storyline shows how women's independence uncovered some unexpected revelations about themselves, the men in their lives and the world around them. Now through Sept. 1, "RESPECT" is showing at the East Sonora Theatre. For more information about upcoming productions, performance dates and tickets, visit or call (209) 532-3120.

• Also in Sonora at the Stage 3 Theatre will be Rod Harris and friends, presenting "Cool Jazz for a Hot Afternoon." On Sunday at 3, instrumental and vocal favorites will fill the afternoon in the intimate setting downtown. Reservations are necessary as seating is limited. All seats are $15. Call (209) 536-1778 for tickets, or visit

• This is the last weekend for the Bear Valley Music Festival. Tonight's 7 p.m. concert features soprano Shawnette Sulker. Her voice has been heard in leading roles of operas across California, Hawaii and Europe. Sulker was a winner of career scholarships with the East Bay Opera League Vocal Competitions, and served as resident artist for the Natchez Music Festival in Mississippi.

Other festival activities include Bollywood's Gala and Auction takes place Saturday evening, beginning at 5:30 p.m., featuring music and dance from India.

An afternoon of Mozart's best with the Festival Orchestra will welcome two noted guests on Sunday at noon.

Mathew Krejci has been the principle flute of the festival for 29 years. His skill has taken him around the world, including the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and a convention of Czech-Slovak Society of Arts and Sciences in Olomouc, Czech Republic.

Harpist Meredith Clark is based in San Francisco and plays alongside musicians from the country's leading symphonies. Her work with San Francisco Symphony's educational outreach program, Adventures in Music, provides elementary school students the opportunity to hear and appreciate classical music.

The festival's new chef, Henry Chapernot, will present a catered brunch on Sunday at 10 a.m. For ticket prices and menu, visit, or call (209) 753-2574.

The festival is held in Bear Valley, a town in the Stanislaus National Forest, off Highway 4.

Debbie Croft writes about life in the foothill communities. She can be reached at

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