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COURTESY ANDREW MCMAHON
Songwriter brings ‘old soul’ perspective
If there’s an "old soul" element in singer-songwriter Andrew McMahon’s work, he’s got a reason.
McMahon was diagnosed with cancer at age 22, just as he was getting ready to release the album "Everything’s in Transit," the debut album for his band Jack’s Mannequin. Despite being unable to tour with the album and do much to promote it, it peaked at No. 37 on the Billboard 200 charts — not really a surprise, since he’d already led a successful touring band called Something Corporate.
It took only six months for McMahon, a primarily self-taught pianist and vocalist, to get back onstage, helped by a transplant of stem cells from his sister Katie McMahon. Success for Jack’s Mannequin followed with the albums "The Glass Passenger" and "People and Things," which both reached the top 10 on the Billboard charts. McMahon also started composing the NBC show "Smash," earning a nomination for an Emmy for his song "I Heard Your Voice in a Dream."
McMahon took time off in 2012, putting an end to Jack’s Mannequin and severing ties with his recording company. He called it "a metaphorical hard reset" after the hectic pace of the previous decade, during which he also got married and became a father.
Now 32, he has since re-branded himself as Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, releasing a polished album of that name last year. It features the single "Cecilia and the Satellite," an upbeat love song from the perspective of someone who’s "been knocked down and got up again." There goes that old soul again.
Where: The Republik, 1349 Kapiolani Blvd.
When: 7 p.m. Friday
Info: flavorus.com or 855-235-2867
COURTESY VIOLETTA BERETTA
FRIDAY – SATURDAY
The Fourth Annual Hawaii Burlesque Festival and Revue struts its stuff this weekend with two evenings of provocative pleasures at the Doris Duke Theatre.
Friday evening is billed as "Pasties Across the Pacific" and will have a travel theme. Guests are invited to wear clothes suitable for boarding a plane, train, automobile or ship. The show will feature Shannon Doah, who began her dancing career performing in San Francisco’s notorious North Beach in the 1960s and went on to perform in top Hollywood strip clubs.
She’ll be joined by 17 other burlesque performers, including Layne Fawkes from Oregon, Flower Bel from Switzerland, Coco Das Vegas from France, and "boylesque" performer Dick Sunday, with additional entertainment by comedian Chris "The Entertainer" Riel.
On Saturday it’s the "Hot Lava Hukilau," so wear your beach clothes. Highlighting the evening will be Kitten de Ville, named Miss Exotic World 2002 and a popular pinup girl. She’s considered one of the founders of the modern burlesque movement and has appeared on films and music videos.
In keeping with the theme of the evening, Saturday’s show features an appearance by Bambi the Mermaid, a co-founder of the Burlesque at the Beach show in Coney Island, N.Y., while California beaches will be represented by Sheila Starr Siani, Sassy Stiletto and Scarlett Letter. Maui is sending the Kit Kat Club and dance duo Miss Riding Good & Her Big Bad Wulf, joining festival mastermind Violetta Beretta, pictured, Madamex and others to make up a healthy Hawaii contingent for the show.
The shows follow two days of lectures and seminars held earlier in the week, so you know these performers will be rarin’ to perform.
Where: Doris Duke Theatre, Honolulu Museum of Art
When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday (cocktails at 5 p.m.)
Cost: $30-$45 ($80 for two-day VIP pass)
COURTESY HAWAI‘I CONVENTION CENTER
Sunset Mele offers evening of fun and film
With a long weekend coming up, schedule in one evening of light entertainment with the latest "Sunset Mele on the Rooftop," an evening of family fun Sunday at the Hawai’i Convention Center.
The evening starts at 5 p.m. and features performances by local musicians Kuikahi and John Feary ("It’s Just Me," "Easy Living"), who will entertain the crowd in the cool air of the convention center ballroom. The ballroom will be decked out like a market, with keiki activities, arts and crafts vendors and snacks like gourmet popcorn, hot dogs and bentos.
Then head up to t roof for the animated film "The Lego Movie," featuring the voices of Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson and others. Screening starts at around 7 p.m.
Where: Hawai’i Convention Center
When: 5 p.m. Sunday
Cost: Free ($5 parking at convention center)
Info: fb.com/hawaii conventioncenter or 943-3025
COURTESY THE ACTORS GROUP
FRIDAY, SEPT. 20
‘Storefront’ takes on neighborhood politics
"Storefront Church," which opens at TAG on Friday, might seem a world apart from Hawaii, with plot points revolving around the politics of a New York neighborhood, and characters including a borough president, Jewish accountant and storefront church preachers.
Director Kathy Bowers thinks Hawaii audiences won’t have any problems relating to the plot. "I think local politics is probably the same no matter where you go," she said. "It’s just that it’s on a bigger scale in some places than in others.
"There are those who are in politics to do a good job, to serve others, and there are those who are politics for their own power."
Apartment dweller Jessie Cortez (Mary Ann Shirley Gray) takes out a mortgage to help preacher Chester Kimmich (Vontress Mitchell) establish a storefront church below her Bronx apartment. But with construction at a standstill and not a single sermon given, she’s wondering what’s going on.
"Each of the characters in the play has their own conflict," Bowers said. "All of them deal with doing what’s right and what’s politically correct, and their spiritual side versus their secular side."
"Storefront Church" is the third play of a trilogy by Pulitzer-Prize winning author John Patrick Shanley. TAG staged the second in the trilogy, "Defiance," last season.
The plays "all deal with this struggle we have, as we walk this path of life, between what we know, what we believe we should be doing and what the world tugs at us to do," Bowers said.
Others actors in her veteran cast are Eli K. M. Foster, Gerald Altwies, David Starr and Brian Gibson.
Where: The Actors Group, 650 Iwilei Road, Suite 101
When: 7:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays, through Sept. 20
Info: taghawaii.net or 722-6941