'White Album Xmas' and a circus: fab for holidays
There's no shortage of things to do around the holidays in Portland, including some particularly quirky holiday events that one might only find in the City of Roses.
That includes a holiday circus spectacular that also is a tribute to The Beatles.
In fact, it's the 10th such event at Alberta Rose Theatre. Called the "Annual White Album Xmas," it stages 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30-Sunday, Dec. 3, and Dec. 6-9. There'll be a matinee at 2 p.m. Dec. 3.
The stage at the cozy theater at 3000 N.E. Alberta St. is split in half for the show — on the right side is a full band and on the left are circus performers.
The 15-piece band, The Nowhere Band, plays the entire "White Album" by The Beatles from start to finish.
The roughly 35 aerialists perform with the music, and there's a theme or storyline that they follow through the show. It includes aerialist troupe Rose-city Acro Devils (RAD), Leapin' Louie Lichtenstein, AWOL Dance Collective, Omri & Paulina and Circus Luminescence.
Organizers decided to do The Beatles tribute because of the "pun" in the name, according to Alberta Rose talent buyer Adam East. ("White Album" instead of "White Christmas.")
The album, actually titled "The Beatles," was the ninth by the group, released on Nov. 22, 1968. It includes beloved tracks such as "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da," "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" and "Revolution 9."
"It's just so good. It's really awesome to hear people play it so well and so note for note. That's just enough for a music fan, but then there's all of this eye candy, circus jugglers and crazy things going on," East says.
The Nowhere Band, from Portland, has been performing it every year. They are a regular at the Alberta Rose — they performed the 50th anniversary celebration performances of the Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" in August.
East says the performance is electric, and that after 10 years many people have made it a tradition to go to the "White Album Xmas."
"There's a huge sense of anticipation, as well as payoff. For every show it's really something special. So many people really love it and are coming back," he says.
Seats are filling up fast for the shows. Find out more at www.albertarosetheatre.com