Monday, December 03, 2012

Putting On the Ritz

{listen as you read!!}

Take a pinch of nearly all of your favorite things, add a generous dash of Christmastime, and stir it all together.  That was Saturday night for me.  Served at the historic Bing Crosby theater.

I found out about the concert just days before it opened, but as soon as I saw it I knew I had to go or perish in the attempt.

The Spokane Jazz Orchestra was performing a Glenn Miller tribute concert, featuring Miller's arrangement of the Nutcracker suite.

The Nutcracker and I go way back - nearly all of my favorite Christmas childhood memories have either George Winston's December or the Nutcracker suite as the backdrop. The Russian Dance is my favorite movement - it never fails to make me want to do a crazy waltzing romp like I used to;)
And Glenn Miller - no explanation needed.  Glenn Miller is the ultimate!
I had no idea he had arranged the Nutcracker.  It sounded like a match made in heaven.  And my incredible brother said he would take me.

So I reserved the tickets, laid out the new green dress, and listened to Stompin' at the Savoy and A String of Pearls till my feet were dizzy.  

The excitement of getting ready, driving the hour and a half into downtown Spokane, seeing the freeway at night... might not be much to most.  I don't get out very often.
We arranged to rendezvous with Chip and Missy, sweet sisters and friends that I actually met through my blog about two years ago.  Chip is an wonderful accordionist, which is how we discovered each other;)  They brought a friend with them, and Aubrey and I also picked up our friend Christopher for the evening.  We had dinner at Subway, then the six of us strolled down the alien streets of the big city at night.  It was the perfect little mini adventure.
We stopped in an amazing bookstore to while the hour or so to go before the show started.  I was deeply engrossed in a marvelous book on the history of espionage most of the time... espionage is such a lovely word.  Implications aside, of course... and I totally want a wristwatch camera.  The glove-mounted handgun was cool, but a little impractical for my needs;)

Wandering around a giant bookstore at night decked in plaid, vintage jewels, and heels is almost as fun as descending on Subway in said attire.
Chip, Missy, and Yev started back to the theater early, and when my two escorts and I started back toward the Bing, we were having so much fun talking and looking and laughing that we ended up about three blocks behind the theater.  Under a bridge covered in grafitti. 
 Thankfully, I had a 2nd degree black belt on one hand and a GPS wielding bro on the other, and we made it back to the entrance of the Bing in the nick of time.  Whew.
We found our seats, half blinded by the brilliant light and rush and din of people inside.

Then the show started.

And it was gorgeous.  The Bing was stunning.  The music was sparkling, the guest vocals marvelous.
And I was really and truly sitting there seeing it all.

The grand finale, In The Mood, brought the house down.  I almost choked up it was so tremendously superb.  Glenn Miller is very near to my heart as, beside the sheer fact of his spectacular sizzling jazz, my great grandfather was a complete fan.  The first time he heard Glenn Miller was at a Paris concert after being the sole survivor of an air squadron shot down over France in '44.  I never met him, but I know he would have been loving it as much as I was if we still had him.
And the last time I saw my amazing great grandmother, one of her last days on earth, she was lying in a hospital bed in her living room, ravaged by stage 4 cancer.
But she was dancing to in the mood
A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H
I got a gal in Kalamazoo
Don't want to boast but I know she's the toast of Kalamazoo!
Zoo, zoo, zoo, zoo, zoo...


  1. Oh, La, La! KellieFalconerDesign debuts in the lovely Bing Crosby Theatre! What a fabulous evening with friends and what an outfit for Puttin on the Ritz! A quelle Soiree!!Thanks too for the music to enjoy as I read this post. And may I thank Algy for bringing us along for a view of the gala!!

  2. Oh, that sounds like a lovely way to spend an evening! I bet it was wonderful. :)

  3. That sounds like a wonderful night! I wish I had heard of it--I live about a half hour away from Spokane, and if I could've found someone to go with me, I would've gladly spent my night listening to the sounds of Glen Miller.(:

    I love the photos as well!


  4. Oh, it sounds like an absolutely fabulous evening! Wonderful Glenn Miller music and a bookstore = loveliness.


  5. It all sounds quite thrilling! Glen Miller, The Nutcracker, vintage pearls, books, plaid, the Bing Crosby Theatre... Let me just say... you have extraordinary taste and class. =]
    And thank you for letting us share a glimpse of your fabulous sounding trip!
    Almost as good as being there. =]

  6. Squee!!
    (sorry, I stole your line, Ally;)
    LOVE the pictures!! And I wish I could have been there. You know I would have been:)

    See ya tomorrow! =)

  7. How fun, Kellie! Sounds like you had a most marvelous time. And what special memories to have of your great grandparents.
    So glad you finally got to wear your dress to a special event like you wanted to. :)
    I love George Winston's music, and my sisters and I used to dance around ALL THE TIME to the Nutcracker! Funny how some girls are inclined to do the same things... such as dancing to the same music. ;)

    The Middle Sister and Singer

  8. Isn't descending on unsuspecting fast-food restaurants in old-fashioned glory the best? I love doing that.

    You really captured the feel of your evening with this post, I think. Sounds like it was completely lovely!

  9. Thanks for the wonderful comments, everyone! They made me so happy.

    Vicki - I had no idea you were so close - wish you could have come! That would have been so fun... we've got to get together some day. DW party, yes? :smile:

    Emaline - thank you so much!
    Brigid - yes! That was such an amazing surprise;D That's so fun that you used to dance to the Nutcracker - it's the best.
    Victoria - I love it! Just too much fun... Thanks so much:)



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