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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

River Family Christmas in Monte Rio Hall

“River Family Christmas” 
at the Russian River Hall in Monte Rio
By Kit Mariah
It is Thanksgiving weekend and at the River family household, all thoughts turn to Christmas. Hardly is the turkey finished, when preparations for the River family Christmas party get underway. Since Eleanor River’s four sons and their families live so far apart, they get together for just one weekend and celebrate two holidays. Though the usual observance is a month away, the River family finds a way to observe all the traditions of Christmas, while preparing for a big holiday party.

The community is invited to help kick off the holiday season by spending an evening or afternoon with the River family whose holiday traditions include surprising one another and lots of singing. Members of the River family will sing Christmas music from many genres, including country, blues, jazz, pop, classical , musical theater, sacred,  and international. There is a chance for the audience to sing traditional Christmas carols, too.

Musical talent flourishes in the “River Family Christmas” cast. Maple Profant, professional piano player and vocalist, is the piano accompanist. Dave Hardy (lead guitar), Oak Reinier (guitar, harmonica), and Darcy Reinier, (stand-up bass, guitar, ukulele) will provide band accompaniment. Koli Kohler, a high school student from Forestville, (piano, guitar, ukulele) has written an original song for the show.

Jennell Parr and Kate Brodersen, who have entertained river audiences for years with Christmas duets as the Noel Sisters, will charm us again with their harmonies. Other veterans of earlier holiday shows at the Hall include George Schult, Dee Buechy, Michelle Randall, Johnny and Natasha Gutierrez, and Noel Yates. New to the Hall for this show are Veronica Saunders, Laura Saunders, Bill Young, and Tom Lowrie, a tenor with River Choir. As a special treat, local opera singer Beth Freeman and theater founder Michael Tabib will make guest appearances.

This all new musical show was created by Kit Mariah for Curtain Call Theater. Kit is one of the founders of KGGV radio, where she hosted a live music broadcast show, created KGGV’s 15 Fridays of Summer Free Concert Series, and was coordinator for KGGV’s Strawberry Festival. She is in her eighth year of hosting Kit Mariah’s Open NO Mic at Main Street Station in Guerneville. Kit has written and directed children’s shows and Christmas pageants and produced shows for non-profits. Last year Kit was musical director for “The Oldest Profession” by Paula Vogel. Kit sings blues and jazz and has a degree in music from Sonoma State.

 “River Family Christmas” runs only one weekend, Thanksgiving weekend, Nov. 25 and 26 (Fri & Sat) at 8 pm and Nov. 27 (Sun.) at 4 pm, at Russian River Hall, 20347 Hwy 116, Monte Rio. Reservations can be made by calling 524-8739, beginning Nov. 10, 2011Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children under 12, accompanied by an adult. Don’t miss this show - bring the family and leave singing together!!