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The Little Mermaid: The “Under the Sea” World Vibrantly Graces the Live Stage

I grew up on Disney movies. Now that I have a four-year-old daughter, I thoroughly enjoy watching them with her and impressing her with my song knowledge. One of my favorites is The Little Mermaid. For those unfamiliar with the plot, the story follows a headstrong young mermaid whose dream is to live as a human on land. She falls in love with a human, Prince Eric, and will do anything, even go against her father’s warnings, to be a part of the prince’s world and follow true love.

Photo by Bruce Bennett

Photo by Bruce Bennett

Most of the movie takes place underwater and I was curious to see how they were going to portray an underwater world on stage. I was fascinated by the quick and realistic scene changes from ocean to land. The underwater swimming scenes were impressive and I was surprised with how the use of lighting, props, and flying ropes truly gave the effect of them swimming with the greatest of ease! I noticed right away that even when the sea characters were standing, they were moving their bodies in a way to show they were staying afloat in water. I appreciated the attention to even those small details. The cast was amazing, especially Alison Woods as Ariel, Jennifer Allen as Ursula, and Melvin Abston as Sebastian.

Photo by Bruce Bennett

Photo by Bruce Bennett

There were some significant changes from the movie, but they added to the experience in a positive way. There is a part about Ariel’s mother and her death that is completely glossed over in the movie. It helped to make more sense of the over-protective, King Triton. Another major change was that Ursula, the evil sea witch, is actually King Triton’s sister and Ariel’s aunt in the play. They also played up the fact that Flounder, Ariel’s best friend fish, has a major crush on her. There is a certain animosity between Ariel and her six sisters in the movie, but they were a lot more vindictive and jealous of Ariel in the performance, which made for some amusing scenes.

Theatre Under the Stars - Disney's "The Little Mermaid" at TUTS, September 2015.

Theatre Under the Stars – Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” at TUTS, September 2015.

One of the most memorable acts was the “Under the Sea,” performance. The vibrant visual perfectly matched the upbeat classic, which called for audience participation to help sing-along. Sebastian led the chorus of brightly colored characters as they tried to persuade Ariel why the ocean life is the best life. There were giant “floating” jellyfish, vibrantly colored sea creatures, and whimsical fish! Another brief, but extremely memorable and hilarious act was “Les Poissons” with Chef Louis (played by Jeff Skowron).

All in all, The Little Mermaid, was an entertaining experience. It’s a great show for adults and children alike. It’ll have you singing out loud or, at least, wanting to learn the words so you can join in. The show will only be running until this Sunday, so don’t miss your chance to see this Disney classic live!

***This post was written by the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Lindsey Adams.

Mozart: The Funny Genius

MozartWhen we think Mozart, we most always think composer of classical music, a guy who wrote a lot of pieces, who was maybe killed by Salieri (Amadeus lied to us), and was a musical genius.

However, there was a lot more to Mozart than that. The composer was so multifaceted, and in fact, possibly the biggest smart-a$$ of the 18th century.

His famed “Requiem” created so much controversy, intrigue, and speculation, and his operas, though not popular in his time, have since become hits of the opera world. But, what about some of his lesser known pieces such as, “Leck mich im Arsch” K. 231, “Bona Nox” K.561, or “Difficile Lectu” K. 559? If we were to listen to these canons without knowledge of the German language, they would sound quite lovely. You could imagine a group of people possibly raising their voices up to the heavens, however, that is not the case…

Mozart’s sense of humor albeit, juvenile, was evident in his music. “Leck mich im Arsch” can be translated as…let’s just say that the first word and last word sound what you probably think it means.

In “Bona Nox,” Mozart writes almost a lullaby of words except for the last bit. Here is a rough Translation, “Goodnight! You are quite an ox; My dear Lotte. Goodnight! Phooey, phooey! Goodnight, goodnight! Poop in your bed and make it burst! Goodnight, sleep tight, and stick your bum to your mouth.”(Note: Two of those words were made PG as to not offend conservative classical music lovers.) While shocking to some, it’s quite funny to most others. Mozart loved potty humor (scatology). Not only did he use it in his music, but also in letters written to and about family members.

In one letter to his cousin, Maria Anna Thekla Mozart, he wrote, “Well, I wish you goodnight (so far so good). But first, poop into your bed and make it burst. (What?) Sleep soundly, my love, into your mouth your bum you’ll shove.”

Mozart was 21. “Well, he was young, he grew out of it.” Not really. By this age, Mozart had written approximately 30 symphonies and was already well known across Europe.

Why do I make this connection and why do I think it’s important to make? I believe we take classical music too seriously, and clearly Mozart didn’t. He created chorals and music with butt lyrics, partied, and loved it. He was a cheeky, humorous, and having fun with what we call music. This is a person who composed over 600 works in a life that spanned only 35 years. While there most certainly were times that he focused and cut the crap, (pun intended), he still lived with a sense of lightheartedness. Let’s just say that if the creators of South Park had lived in the 1700s, Mozart would have been dying to write the score.

This Saturday, January 23rd the Sacramento Philharmonic and Opera will present the funny genius’s “Requiem” at the Community Center Theater. Concert begins at 8pm. To learn more about the show and how you can purchase tickets, visit the Sacramento365.com event listing here.

***This blog post was written by the Sacramento Philharmonic and Opera’s Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Raymond James Irwin.

Sports365: Warm up with these hot battles


There are crazy competitions going on in Sacramento this month. Head out and see who will prove their mettle in these head-to-head battles.

Despite the wet weather, the River City’s sports scene is heating up! This January see some of the sports world’s heavy-hitters duke it out on the court, on the field, and in the octagon.

The Harlem Globetrotters (1/17-1/18) at Sleep Train Arena:
Like I’ve mentioned in past Sports365 posts, basketball is my favorite sport. While I do love to watch the Kings most, sometimes it’s cool to see the game pushed to its limits — The Harlem Globetrotters do just that. This traveling basketball troupe boasts the highest winning percentage in sports history (yes, they have lost) and are some serious b-ball wizards. Whether you’re looking for remarkable hoop skills or hearty laughs, the Globetrotters will deliver in some unexpected ways. This is your chance to help the Harlem Globetrotters celebrate their 90th season.

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters.

I saw the Globetrotters for the first time when I was first getting into basketball. I had been to a few Kings games and understood the sport, but hadn’t truly been “wowed” yet. This all changed when my family and I headed to what was then Arco Arena. I had heard about their tricks and skills but was not prepared for what was to come. One of the very first things I saw was a Globetrotter sink three consecutive behind-the-back half court shots. At that time, I thought it was impossible to make a half-court shot let alone three in a row. Of course, he did this after walking out of the tunnel to half-court while spinning a ball on his finger the whole time. The performance continued to amaze the entire crowd and gave the eight-year-old me an everlasting appreciation of basketball.

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters.

I still have the souvenir ball from that day, a reminder of one of the most fun sporting events I have ever been to. The players may have changed since I saw them, but the Harlem Globetrotters are guaranteed to put on a show that will amaze your whole family.

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters

Photo courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters.

For more information about the Harlem Globetrotters’s stop in Sacramento, click here.

More duels:
If the Harlem Globetrotters don’t fulfill your competitive nature, there are a few more bouts going on this month that you won’t want to miss.

Sacramento Kings vs. Atlanta Hawks
Sleep Train Arena
Jan 21
Come and check out the Kings as they look to take revenge against the Hawks. The Sac365 crew will be on hand to guest host the Kings’ Instagram account for this game too.

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Kings

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Kings.

West Coast Fighting Championship: King of Sacramento
McClellan Conference Center
Jan 23
Who will become the “King of Sacramento”? Find out at this exciting MMA event. You’ll see amateur fighters battle for recognition and champions fight for bragging rights.

Photo courtesy of West Coast Fighting

Photo courtesy of West Coast Fighting.

42nd Annual Charity Guns and Hoses Football Game
Hornet Stadium
Jan 30
See which first responders reign supreme in this pigskin tradition of our local firefighters taking on local law enforcement.

Photo courtesy of Sacramento Pig Bowl Association

Photo courtesy of Sacramento Pig Bowl Association.

Check back with Sports365 in February to see what activities I am most excited for! If you’d like to plan ahead on your own then head over to the Sports section of Sacramento365.com.

***This blog was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

2nd Saturday Roadmap: A guide to a night on the grid

What better way to start the New Year than a 2nd Saturday affair? There is tons of great art being displayed this month throughout Sacramento and I’ve rounded-up some of the shows I’m most excited to check out this weekend. This month I’ll be checking out all “The Grid” has to offer.

Join me in celebrating Sacramento365.com partnership with the In the Sac app by checking out these great exhibits on 2nd Sat and exploring all the grid has to offer.

Quality Family Time:
I’ll start my journey off right with some cold pressed raw juice from the Sun & Soil Juice Company. I’ll definitely be grabbing a Sweet Green (a sweet apple, cucumber, spinach, lime, and ginger blend), but depending on how tired I am I might be grabbing a cold brew coffee (from Pachamama coffee) for the road. My first gallery stop in 2016 will be at the Axis Gallery to check out the Family Stories…or Down the Rabbit Hole Exhibit. This exhibit features the stories of Angela Casagrande’s family retold through heavily edited photographs.

Brighten Up and Fill Up:
After getting lost in a world of black and white, I’ll be heading to a slightly brighter exhibit. Get Lit at Little Relics Boutique & Galleria presents Kristen Hoard’s LED infused metal sculptures. These whimsical works are sure to lighten up what looks to be a gloomy overcast day. By this time, I’ll probably work up an appetite — don’t be surprised if you catch me with a beer and a pulled pork sandwich at Tank House BBQ.

Photo courtesy of Kristen Hoard

Photo courtesy of Kristen Hoard.

Get Inspired:
The stop I’m most looking forward to is at the Artists’ Collaborative Gallery. This month, the Old Sacramento venue will be featuring the work of the incredible Priscilla Wong. Priscilla has an uncommon muscle disorder that has taken much of her mobility away. This hasn’t stopped Priscilla remarkably, she paints using only her tongue and toe. Seeing someone create so much beauty after such hardship is something everyone should see. After taking in Wong’s impressive work, I’ll mull over what I’ve seen at Ten 22’s Dine Downtown meal.

Photo courtesy of Artists' Collaborative Gallery

Photo courtesy of Artists’ Collaborative Gallery.

Laugh the Night Away:
I’ll end my day with some laughter at the Sacramento Comedy Spot’s Barger’s World. Starring Eric Barger, a favorite of the Comedy Spot, the show is a fictitious kids television show that’s really not for children. After laughing my butt off, I’ll head over to LowBrau to try a couple of their newer brews.

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Comedy Spot

Photo courtesy of Sacramento Comedy Spot.

This 2nd Saturday is sure to be full of fun and great art. You can follow my map if you’d like, but if you’d like to plan your own you can check out Sacramento365.com’s 2nd Saturday page to craft your own adventure. Whatever you plan to do, make sure to get social with us by using the hashtags #Sacramento365 and #intheSac.

***This blog was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

Get to Know January Featured Artist Gioia Fonda

Jan2016_ProfileWith the New Year comes a new way of doing things. After a few years getting to know Sacramento365.com featured artists through online communication, we’ve decided to return to the art of conversation. In 2016, our team is connecting with creatives working on projects that will be impacting the Sacramento arts landscape, interacting with them in the spaces where they craft their dreams and masterpieces.

Interdisciplinary artist Gioia Fonda helps us kick off our re-energized interview series here.

Pippin: The Search for Fulfillment

I have always thought of musicals as not quite my cup of tea; Pippin, however, bucks this trend. This production is the tale of Prince Pippin (played by Brian Flores) and his search for fulfillment. His family is set in their ways, but Pippin, a recent college graduate, is clueless on what he should be doing in this life — a story that many of us can relate to. For two hours, the audience joins the unsated prince in his crusade to achieve true happiness in this amusing adventure.

Photo by Joan Marcus

Brian Flores as Pippin and Gabrielle McClinton as the Leading Player (Photo by Joan Marcus).

But what makes this play truly special is the fact that it is a show within a show. The setting is actually a traveling circus led by the bustling ringmaster. The Leading Player (played by Gabrielle McClinton) and her troupe of players will take you on this glorious journey filled with song, dance, magic, and incredible stunts. These players were the highlight of my theatregoing experience; besides their dancing and singing, they provide some of the most incredible action of the play through acrobatics and magic tricks. You’ll see some incredible feats of the human body sprinkled throughout the play that will truly captivate your attention. One of the players, in particular, stands out (literally and figuratively); this giant man stands, at least, a head above everyone else on stage (he may even be twice as tall as some of the other cast) and anchors many of the acrobatics stunts. This one cast member alone may be worth the price of admission, but Pippin provides much more excitement.

There are bits of delightful entertainment strewn throughout Pippin. One of the best parts of this show is the music and dance numbers; two of the songs in particular, “War is a Science” and “Extraordinary” really stood out to me. Early on, “War is a Science” provides some of the funniest moments of the whole show and showcases Pippin’s silliness as a character. The backdrop for this song is King Charles (played by John Rubinstein, who coincidentally played Pippin in the original 1972 version) and his army marching and preparing in an orderly fashion while Pippin’s charges off in an exuberant, yet ill-considered manner. My second favorite song, “Extraordinary”, showed Pippin living a life that was anything but. You’ll see Pippin step out of his comfort zone and hear a few clucking “chickens.”

Photo by Terry Shapiro

Some of the Player acrobatics (Photo by Terry Shapiro).

Another notable element of Pippin is its tendency to break the fourth wall. Throughout the play characters will run off stage towards the audience and a few of them may even appear in seats. There is also a sing-along section which had everyone around me gleefully singing with one of the show’s most enjoyable characters (Berthe played by Sabrina Harper). The breaking of the fourth wall leads to some truly remarkable moments, but none better than the production’s finale.

All in all, Pippin was a joyous experience that you should not miss. You’ll laugh, be enthralled by the acrobatics, be stunned by the costumes, and have a wonderful time. For more information about the Broadway Sacramento production check out the Sacramento365.com listing here.

Note: I would consider leaving the kids at home because Pippin has a couple moments that some parents might find inappropriate for young ones. I would recommend this show for ages 13 and older.

***This post was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

Almost Another 365 in the Books

Old Sac 2The Sacramento365.com team takes a look back at 2015…
and shares their goals for the new year.


As the holidays come rolling in and 2015 comes to an end, we at Sacramento365.com have plenty to be grateful for. Whether it is new faces joining the fold or some huge social media milestones, we’ve hit a lot of home runs this year. We said goodbye to Rachael Lankford earlier this year as she moved on in her career, but were fortunate enough to bring on a wonderful new face to our team, Karlee Cemo.

2015 has been a whirlwind of fun, busy schedules, and teamwork; and 2016 should be more of the same…and more! Here are a couple things our staff is looking forward to and a couple things we’re reminiscing on.

Dylan: 2015 was quite the crazy year for me. I was still learning my job on the fly for much of the year and just when I started feeling really comfortable with my role, my boss got a new job! Luckily, we were able to find a replacement fairly quickly and continued work as usual. I love seeing all of the events coming through our system and am happy to provide this wonderful resource to all who think, “What is there to do in Sacramento?” I look forward to keeping my finger on the pulse of Sacramento in 2016!

Jamila: Wow, this year was loco, but in the best way possible. Through circumstances out of my control, I’ve learned to grow out of my comfort zone. Not only did I learn the possibilities of the Sacramento365.com website, I learned the importance of teamwork. Partnerships, new additions, and nurturing the skills within our team helped Sacramento365 grow in so many ways — just see how fast our social numbers have climbed in the last half of the year! I am so happy with the synergy of our little team. I can’t wait to show you what we’ve got up our sleeves!

Karlee: I stepped into my role here at Sacramento365.com at the beginning of August, and I will be the first to admit that I knew I had some big shoes to fill. I also knew that I was taking on an opportunity that would allow me to utilize my greatest strengths to help promote one of my greatest passions, Sacramento. It was a dream that I had worked hard to turn into a reality. In the past five months, we have reached significant social media milestones, established new partnerships, and have taken many of our ideas on paper and implemented them into effective strategies. Personally, I am incredibly grateful to be part of such an awesome, creative, and hard-working team. As a team, we are thankful for our amazing partners and users of our site, because none of this would be possible without your continued support. I am looking forward to 2016 for many reasons, a primary one being that I know it will be an exciting year for our website and team!

Sacramento365.com has grown a lot over this past year and plans to continue to do big things in the year ahead. Keep in touch to see all of the exciting things we’ve got coming your way.

We at Sacramento365.com would like to wish you a happy new year!