A Christmas Gift from Taryn Darr: Grandma Frances’ Wassail Recipe

Wassail
‘wäsəl,’ ‘wä-sāl’
verb

  1. To drink plentiful amounts of alcohol and enjoy oneself with others in a noisy, lively way.
  2. To go from house to house at Christmas singing carols. (“Here we go a-wassailing…”)

noun

  1. Spiced cider or ale or mulled wine and spices drunk during celebrations for Twelfth Night and Christmas Eve.

I grew up in Oregon and every Christmas, the family would gather from near and far to celebrate the holidays at my Grandma Frances’ home in Astoria where a big batch of her wassail recipe would be simmering away on the stove. It wasn’t Christmas until you walked into her house and that unbelievable smell of fruit and spices hit you.

Wassail Photo
This is a recipe that my great grandma made for Grandma Frances when she was a girl. Grandma Frances is a little older now and has passed the torch. Now my mom and my aunt make it for all of us. My mom even has the original recipe card—soft, tattered and well-loved! When I grew up and moved out and got my own place in Seattle, I remember calling her at Christmas and saying, “I need the wassail recipe” and now I have my own beat-up recipe card that I keep close all season long. Continue reading “A Christmas Gift from Taryn Darr: Grandma Frances’ Wassail Recipe”

Eric Ankrim on Holiday Inn

What was the first show you were in at The 5th?

The Rocky Horror Show, in the fall of 2003. I had just graduated from UPS that summer, and I went right into the ensemble of that insane production alongside Cheyenne Jackson, Louis Hobson, Laura Griffith, Billie Wildrick, Nick Garrison, Steven Taylor, Brandon O’Neil, Daniel Cruz, and SO many others who became local and national stars, and made friendships that have lasted to this day. What an introduction to the 5th! Continue reading “Eric Ankrim on Holiday Inn”

Buyer Beware: It’s Scalper Season

How to guarantee you are getting the best prices when you buy tickets for a family outing this holiday season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year: twinkly lights are on the trees, your favorite peppermint and eggnog beverages are on sale at all the coffee shops, family and friends are coming to visit and there is a multitude of festive events to choose from to put you all in the spirit. It’s always exciting to plan a trip to downtown Seattle with the family—an afternoon of shopping, a ride on the Westlake carousel, a fancy dinner at one of the stellar area restaurants, and tickets to a spectacular show like Irving Berlin’s Holiday Inn at The 5th Avenue Theatre.

This is also an exciting time for ticket re-sellers to prey on families trying to plan special occasions just like this. These brokers (also called scalpers) buy tickets to entertainment events all around the city and then sell them to unsuspecting consumers at more than 100% markup. This practice is legal in the state of Washington, but can be very hard on the wallet!

Here are some tips to make sure you are getting the best deal on tickets to shows like Holiday Inn this winter! Continue reading “Buyer Beware: It’s Scalper Season”

The Golden Door

By Albert Evans, Artistic Associate

In 1949, Irving Berlin added a new song to his soon-to-open Broadway musical, Miss Liberty, a fictional account of the sculpting of the Statue of Liberty.

Instead of writing his own lyric, Berlin borrowed lines from “The New Colossus,” a sonnet by Emma Lazarus engraved on a bronze plaque and mounted on the statue’s pedestal.

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

These words held a special meaning for Berlin. In 1893, when he was five years old, his family fled Tsarist Russia—along with the many thousands of other “homeless, tempest-tost” refugees driven from their homes by brutal anti-Jewish pogroms.

Berlin’s last memory of Russia was watching his house burn down while his mother held him and wept. His first memory of America was seeing the Statue of Liberty, her torch lifted to welcome him and his family as their crowded boat arrived in New York Harbor. Continue reading “The Golden Door”

Sarah Rose Davis on Holiday Inn

What was the first show you were in at The 5th?

My first show at the 5th was  A Christmas Story in 2010. I was the swing, which meant I understudied eight women in the ensemble. It was my first professional job out of college and I had never even understudied one person in a show, let alone eight. I was terrified.

How many shows have you done at The 5th in total?

I had to actually go back through the season archives to figure out how many exactly. I have done 22 productions with The 5th and Holiday Inn will be my 23rd. That is only counting the mainstage productions. I have also done over a dozen new works and readings with The 5th. Continue reading “Sarah Rose Davis on Holiday Inn”

Matt Owen on Holiday Inn

5. Matt Owen as Ten Hanover in Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn at The 5th Avenue Theatre - Photo Credit Mark KitaokaWhat was the first show you were in at The 5th?

The first show was Anything Goes in 2000. Where has the time gone???

How many shows have you done at The 5th in total?

I think Holiday Inn makes 20…or 21? Not exactly sure! Continue reading “Matt Owen on Holiday Inn”

Taryn Darr on Holiday Inn

What was the first show you were in at The 5th?

My first show was Gypsy in 2001(with Matt Owen!) I played a Hollywood Blonde and the front end of the cow, respectively.

2. Taryn Darr as Lila Dixon in Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn at The 5th Avenue Theatre - Photo Credit Mark KitaokaHow many shows have you done at The 5th in total?

I’ve lost count. I do, however, remember exactly where I was when I got my first offer at the 5th. I was home for Christmas in Gresham, Oregon. I cried tears of joy. I continue to be grateful for every moment I get to spend on this stage. Continue reading “Taryn Darr on Holiday Inn”