Worth a Look
Publication Date: Friday Nov 7, 1997

Worth a Look

@caption:The film, "The Crusader's Trail," is shown Nov. 10 at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts.


Follow the 'Trail'

"The Crusader's Trail," when German and French knights traveled on their path from Europe to the Holy Land, is highlighted in the next Golden Gate Geographic Film Society program. The film will be shown at 2 and 7:45 p.m. Monday, Nov. 10, at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, Castro and Mercy streets, Mountain View. Tickets are $8 general; $4 ages 14 and under. For more information, call 903-6000.

@caption:International Irish-American group, Solas, performs Nov. 12 at Covenant Presbyterian Church.

Irish music

'Sunny Spells and Scattered Showers'

Solas, an international Irish-American band, supports its current release, "Sunny Spells and Scattered Showers," with a concert at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 12, at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 670 E. Meadow Drive, Palo Alto. The distinctive ensemble chemistry that has placed Solas at the vanguard of the root-faithful Celtic music scene is capturing the imagination of an ever-widening audience.

"Once it comes to their attention," said Solas' Seamus Egan of traditional Irish music, "people respond to its passion and its universal emotions, which are readily accessible whether you're Irish or not."

Tickets are $15 adults; $10 children 12 and under. For more information, call 967-8850.

@caption:Dream Theater checks into The Edge on Nov. 12.


Dream tunes

Progressive rock fans are among the most passionate followers in the music world. For many of these folks, classic acts like Yes, Rush and King Crimson were more than just bands, they came close to being religions.

Dream Theater, which plays The Edge, 260 California Ave., on Wednesday, Nov. 12, has been called the progressive rock group of the '90s and has justifiably attracted a number of loyal fans. Music lovers dig Dream Theater's melodies, which are hook-laden no matter how dark or heavy the individual tune may be, as well as each band member's instrumental skills.

"The crowds have been great," said Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci during a recent phone interview from a tour stop in Milwaukee. "The one thing about our fans is that they are passionate. They play air guitar and air drums. You really get the feeling that they are participating and having as good a time as we are."

Although band members grew up listening to progressive rock, they have found the label somewhat limiting as of late.

"In the past, (the label) was kind of cool because it would say where our roots come from, like Yes," Petrucci said. "(But) this band actually has a lot of influences, and to just be called progressive, it could pigeonhole us."

The variety of influences shows up on "Falling Into Infinity," the band's fourth release. The styles range from pop to hard to showy rock 'n' roll, but some fans have critiqued it as not being progressive enough. On "Falling Into Infinity," Dream Theater brings in bits of simple, dark rock, a la Black Sabbath, as well as modern pop sounds that wouldn't sound out of place on a Sting or Peter Gabriel release. That might represent sacrilege to progressive rock aficionados, who want Dream Theater to stick to the virtuoso showmanship. But, to Petrucci, the willingness to experiment with different sounds is the very foundation of progressive rock.

"The whole irony to me is that progressive means the ability to do anything," Petrucci said.

Big Wreck opens the evening at The Edge for Dream Theater, and the show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $17 in advance. For more information, call 324-EDGE. Dream Theater faithful don't have to be sold on this gig, but Petrucci recommends that even those that aren't in the know come check out the show.

"I think the show is real exciting," he said. "We do things that we don't normally do on records. I think the energy is real high, and if anything it's entertaining."

@caption:Double Exposure, featuring Eleanor Alberga and Thomas Bowes, performs Nov. 8 at First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto.

Classical music

Double Exposure

Double Exposure, featuring violinist Thomas Bowes, pianist Eleanor Alberga and pianist Karen Hutchinson, will perform music by Elgar, Fitkin, Alberga and Brahms at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 8, at First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto. Tickets are $16 general admission; $12 students and seniors. For more information, call 725-ARTS.

@caption:Sculpture by Ushgani


'Emotion In Stone'

Nature Gallery, 87 Town & Country Village, Palo Alto, celebrates its 10th anniversary in presenting "Emotion In Stone," fine art sculpture by Ushangi. The show opens Saturday, Nov. 8.

Ushangi was born in Tiblisi, in what is now the Republic of Georgia, and currently resides in Menlo Park. He has been an artist since the age of 9, with his first stone sculpture completed at age 11 and his first award in competition at age 13. Ushangi is a 1968 graduate of the State Art School in Tiblisi and a 1972 graduate of the Georgian National College of the Arts.

From 1981 to 1989, Ushangi was a sculptor for the Russian department of monuments. During this period, he was also a master/teacher at the Moscow Studio of Fine Arts. Since immigrating to the United States in 1989, Ushangi has had exhibitions and been commissioned in Washington, D.C.; New York; Los Angeles; San Francisco and Palo Alto.

The gallery's regular hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays to Saturdays. The gallery will also be open on Sunday, Nov. 9, from noon to 5 p.m. For more information, call 327-8700.

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