Monday, December 15, 2014

12/15/14 Jive

Good evening, it's Monday, Dec. 15th, the Ides of December!, and this is the Jive at Five – Our daily community calendar and run down of night time programming, here on 88.1 FM WESU Middletown, your station for NPR, Pacifica, independent and local public affairs by day and the best in free-form community programming week-nights and weekends. I'm Maria Johnson, producer and host of Reasonably Catholic: Keeping the Faith. Tomorrow’s show is the second half of a series on hyper incarceration. Att’y Brian Moran, author of The Justice Imperative, will be my guest, offering perspective on this largely undiscussed economic and social justice issue.

Now here’s a rundown of some of what’s going on in our area this week:

At the Buttonwood Tree in Middletown, tonight at 8 brings Moments of Gratitude. Tomorrow (Tues.) at 6 it's Laughter Yoga, with a vegetarian potluck. Wednesday at 7, it’s the Middlesex Drum Circle. Thursday at the Buttonwood Tree, it’s a High Vibe Groove Jam with Cin Ta Mani (pronounced chin TA mani) with high-energy smoothies and other treats by Kale-Yum for sale. Friday, the Jolly Beggars bring the rich tradition of Celtic folk music and storytelling to the Buttonwood. Saturday morning at 10:30, the Aligned with Source workshop, hosted by Annaita Gandhy, takes place. Saturday night at 8, La Hot Jazz performs The Great American Songbook. On Sundays Food Not Bombs serves food outside the Buttonwood Tree around 1pm. All are welcome to enjoy the meal and to help prepare it, beforehand, at First Church on Court Street in Middletown at 11:30am. Later, from 3 to 5, renowned jazz pianists, composers and educators Jen Allen and Noah Baerman bring their new group, Trio 149,  featuring Jen on piano, Noah on synthesizer, and Jonathan Barber on drums, to the Buttonwood. This performance celebrates the recent publication of Sitting In: Jazz Piano, a new instructional book co-authored by Jen and Noah. Details about all events are at 

In New Haven tonight, at Cafe Nine,  it’s the Comedy Simulator at 8. Tomorrow (Tues.) brings Natalie Tuttle and The Moonshine Players. Wednesday, it’s the Kings and Queens of East Rock Christmas Party. Thursday brings Frenchy and The Punk, along with The Suitcase Junket, to the Café Nine stage. Friday, it’s Ceschi and Anonymous Inc; Political Animals; and Tommy V.; among others. Saturday afternoon’s Jazz Jam Session at 4:30 features the George Baker Band, followed at 9 by Rude Boy George, The Clams and Someone You Can Xray. The Original Sunday Night Jam is with The Langley Project.

Up in Hartford, at Blackeyed Sally’s, tonight’s Jazz Monday’s featured artists are Atla & Matt DeChamplain. Tomorrow (Tues.), Michael Palin's Other Orchestra, an 18-piece band, works out new material. Wednesday’s blues jam is with Tim McDonald. Friday brings a Phish tribute to Café Nine, with 7 Below. Saturday, The Curl Daddys , a California-styled surf band, recreates a time of hot rods, bikinis and fun in the sun.

Manic Productions presents various shows at area venues this week. Wednesday, The Box Tiger, along with Atrina and Dangerous Animals, comes to Bar in New Haven. Friday, We Are the In Crowd, with Nick Santino of A Rocket to the Moon, comes to The Space in Hamden.  Also on Friday, The Slackers, with Mephiskapheles and Jesse Wagner (of the Aggrolites), come to The Ballroom at The Outer Space in Hamden. Sunday, Anthony Raneri (of Bayside), along with Wolves at Bay, performs at The Space. Details at

On Wednesday evening at 7, Middletown Scottish Country Dancers host classes at First Church on Court Street. Partners not necessary, but soft-soled shoes are recommended. Information by calling Lucile Blanchard at 860-347-0278.

Down in New Haven, at Toad’s Place, Thursday brings Rae Sremmurd. Friday, it’s night one of Kung Fu & Friends, presenting Steely Dan’s “The Royal Scam,” with Steely Dan members Jon Herington and Bernard Purdie. Also performing will be Consider the Source and Gubbulidis, featuring Mihali & Zdenek of Twiddle. Friday at Toad’s, it’s the Joyful Giving Holiday Soiree, featuring Paris, Cary Liptak, Ricky Alan Draughn, and Kyle Serniak. Admission to the show includes a donation to ConnCan, an educational advocacy group, plus holiday themed treats. Cocktail attire is requested. Saturday brings night two of Kung Fu & Friends to Toad’s, with Twiddle and Cosmic Dust Bunnies. for more.

Back up in Hartford, at Infinity Hall, Thursday brings The Wizards of Winter: A Trans Siberian Orchestra Experience to the stage. Friday, it’s Judy Collins, who will also perform at Infinity Hall’s Norfolk venue on Saturday. Saturday’s Hartford performance is by Albert Cummings. Sunday brings Jen Lowe and the Super Sensitive Dude-A-Palooza to Infinity Hall in Hartford. Details about all shows at

Thursday evening at 7, the veterans’ writing group meets at Russell Library on Broad Street.

Looking for something different to do with the family the weekend before Christmas? On Friday evening at 7 and on Saturday at noon and 4, ArtFarm’s Circophony brings Circus on the High Seas to the Oddfellows Playhouse, 128 Washington Street, Middletown. In this display of teen talent, sailors are clowns, pirates dance on stilts, an octopus juggles, sea creatures dive through hoops and the mermaids are contortionists. Details at

Saturday brings the final opportunity to enjoy Middletown’s Holiday on Main Street, drawing young and old downtown to celebrate the holiday season for more than 25 years now. With a variety of entertainment every week ranging from free horse and carriage rides to Santa Claus, there is certainly something for everyone. Details at

On Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m., the "Journey Writer's Workshop," a talented group of writers, playwrights, poets, singers and actors showcase their gifts at Sweet Harmony Café & Bakery, 330 Main St., Middletown.

Also on Sunday, at 5, the Greater Middletown Chorale, backed by the New Haven Symphony, performs Handel’s Messiah at the MHS Performing Arts Center, 200 LaRosa Lane, Middletown. Details at

Now here's a rundown of cinema off the beaten track in Central Connecticut:
At Real Art Ways in Hartford tonight, it’s Improv’d Cinema, in which the Sea Tea Improv troupe fixes up another bad movie. In the spirit of the holidays, they’ll secretly pick five of the worst festive flicks they can find; the audience will vote on which one to play; then the sound will be muted so Sea Tea Improv can dramatically improve the terrible film by voicing over the entire movie on the spot. Friday begins a run of Awake: The Life of Yogananda, an unconventional biography of  an Indian Swami who brought yoga and meditation to the West in the 1920s. Saturday and Sunday bring a showing of The Tale of Princess Kaguya, in which a mysterious young princess enthralls all who encounter her, but ultimately she must confront her fate, the punishment for her crime.

At Cinestudio, the Trinity College cinema in Hartford, tonight and tomorrow (Tues.), it’s Keep on Keepin’ On, a documentary about a student/mentor relationship. Wednesday, in an alternative holiday tradition at Cinestudio, the run of Samsara begins. It’s a mesmerizing non-verbal visual experience celebrating the diversity and inter-connectedness of life on Earth, shot in 100 locations and 25 countries. Samsara - a Sanskrit word meaning the ever turning wheel of life - was made, according to director Ron Fricke, to “delve deeper into my favorite theme: humanity’s relationship to the eternal.” Sunday afternoon’s screening  at 12:55 is of a live performance by the Bolshoi Ballet of The Nutcracker.  That’s followed at 4 and 7:30 by It’s a Wonderful Life, running through Christmas Eve. Showtimes and other details are at

Now here's a rundown of what's on air on WESU-FM tonight:
5: Afternoon Jazz
6:30-8: 75% Folk
8-9:30: Rumpus Room
9:30 -midnight: Attention Deficit Disk Jockey
12-3: A free form mix of wonderfulness
3:  Maximum Rock and Roll Radio
4: BBC
5: Morning Edition from NPR

That’s all for today’s Jive At Five, tune in each and every weekday at 4:55 pm to hear about what’s going on in the community and on the air right here at 88.1 FM WESU, a community service of Wesleyan University since 1939.

The written form for what you've heard on today’s Jive is online at

And if you value WESU as a source for information and entertainment in your life, how about honoring the 75-year legacy of community radio at WESU and supporting our future with a donation during our annual winter holiday pledge drive. Every dollar counts and we need to hear from you!

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