On Stage

A Length of Rope

Of choices and changes

Attend

What: "A Length of Rope"

Where: Cirque Lab, 1401 6th St.

More:

WHEN: 8pm Sat., April 8 and 6pm Sun., April 9

Cost: Entry is by donation

Info: http://www.alengthofrope.com

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Bellingham has a boomerang effect. Many people move away from the city of 80,000-plus on a regular basis, but after spinning around the earth’s axis for a spell of time, they eventually come back around.

Although she’s not here to stay, circus artist Ariel Schmidtke is looking forward to her return to the city by the bay after a four-year absence from local stages. And in lieu of a boomerang, she’ll be bringing other tools of her trade—a rope and a trapeze—to share with audiences at “A Length of Rope” performances April 8-9 at the Bellingham Circus Guild’s Cirque Lab.

Using acrobatics and shadow puppetry, the one-woman show explores significant choices every human comes to during the course of their lifetime. The rope and trapeze suspended on opposing sides of the stage represent the struggle of choosing between different directions, whether that pertains to a choice of place, identity, friendship or love.

As someone who’s upended her life many times in the name of pursuing her creative passions—whether it was studying with the Dream Science Circus at the age of 18, touring the country with the New Old Time Chautauqua, or exploring the origins of Nouveau Cirque in Paris—Schmidtke says “A Length of Rope” came about when she realized she needed to move on from a three-year teaching assistant job in Wilmington, North Carolina.

“Though I loved teaching, the public school system wasn’t working for me,” Schmidtke says. “I found I could connect with my students best when working in informal educational situations. I also had to make a decision about choosing between a sedentary career life, and a more transient artistic life. This show came from many of the doubts I felt while working through those decisions.”

Although it was her own life choices that spurred “A Length of Rope”—which she honed living in Alaska for the past nine months and studying at creative nonprofit Anchorage Community Works—Schmidtke hopes audiences will connect to the work in their own way.

“This show is also all about making emotional connections,” she says. “I leave the narrative open to interpretation. Though there is an obvious struggle taking place, I allow the audience to make their own decisions as to what that struggle may be. In that way it makes the show not only cathartic for myself, but for the audience as well. We work through those struggles together, and I hope that by the end of the show many audience members will feel a sense of resolution.”

Prior to her solo feat of emotional and physical endurance,  Schmidtke’s former Capistrano Circus members Strangely and Esther de Monteflores will each be performing their own original pieces. Expect accordion prowess and witty banter from the former, and multimedia slackwire exploration from the latter.

“I have always been in awe of the work Esther creates, and we have a similar aesthetic view,” Schmidtke says. “I like working with Strangely because he fills in a lot of the performance skills I lack. He is great at interacting with the audience and improvising. Aside from that, the members of this troupe are not just artistic colleagues, they are great friends as well.”

More ...
Friday
Whatcom Art Market featuring Karen Silvernale

11:00am

Works by as many as 45 Whatcom Art Guild members can be viewed from 11am-5pm daily at Whatcom Art Market, 1103 11th St. Through Aug. 1, Karen Silvernale’s acrylic mixed-media work will be…

Future Artifacts at MoNA

10:00am

“Future Artifacts” shows from 10am-5pm daily through Oct. 10 in La Conner at the Museum of Northwest Art, 121 S. First St. The exhibit features work by Lummi Nation glass artist Dan Friday,…

An Artist's Universe at Hotel Bellwether

10:00am

View painter and mixed-media master David Syre’s latest installation, “An Artist’s Universe,” hanging throughout the corridors, lobby and dining room of Hotel Bellwether and the Lighthouse…

Celebrate Summer Exhibit

11:00am

Stanwood-Camano Arts Guild hosts a “Celebrate Summer” juried show from 11am-5pm Wednesdays through Saturdays through Sept. 2 at A Guilded Gallery, 8700 271st St. NW.

Lands Real and Imagined

11:00am

“Lands Real and Imagined” shows from 11am-4pm Tuesdays through Saturdays through July 31 at Allied Arts, 1418 Cornwall Ave. This installment will include landscape-inspired pieces from…

Larry Richmond at Good Earth Pottery

11:00am

Ceramic baskets by Larry Richmond will be highlighted from 11am-5pm daily through Saturdays, and 11am-4pm Sundays through July at Good Earth Pottery, 1000 Harris Ave.

Cabin Rain Revisited

11:00am

“Cabin Rain Revisited,” featuring paintings by the late Northwest master William Slater from 1939-2007, shows from 11am-6pm daily (except Tuesdays) through July in Mount Vernon at Perry and…

Quilt Exhibits in La Conner

11:00am

From 11am-5pm Wednesday through Sunday, visit La Conner’s Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum, 703 S. Second St. Currently on display are “Small Expressions: Handweavers Guild of…

Signature Member Show

11:00am

Peruse works by NW Pastel Society artists at a “Signature Member Show” from 11am-5pm Wednesday through Sunday through Aug. 1 in Anacortes at the Scott Milo Gallery, 420 Commercial Ave. More…

Diablo Lake Boat Tours

11:30am

Seattle City Light and the North Cascades Institute will team up to offer Diablo Lake Boat Tours starting this week with outings aboard the Alice Ross IV at 11:30am and 2:30pm Thursdays…

Fluid Formations and More at Whatcom Museum

12:00pm

View “Fluid Formations: The Legacy of Glass in the Pacific Northwest,” “El Zodíaco Familiar,” “All Dressed Up,” “Silk for Suffragettes and Schoolchildren: The Impact of Kimono on European…

Summer Juried Exhibit and More

12:00pm

A “Summer Juried Exhibit,” Seiko Purdue’s “Kumihimo Wishes: Current Times,” Gregory Kammer’s “New Terrain,” and “Quilting Forward: New Works by the Bellingham Modern Quilt Guild” can be seen…

Community Boating Center Summer Hours

2:00pm

Sign up for summer classes and experiences and book rentals for a dinghy, kayak, keelboat, paddle board or rowboat at the Community Boating Center, 555 Harris Ave. Summer rental hours are…

Garden Parties at Boundary Bay Brewery

4:00pm

Steve Webb and the Great Mad Swirl perform at a Happy Hour Concert Series taking place every Thursday from 4pm-8pm at the beer garden at Boundary Bay Brewery, 1107 Railroad Ave. The weekly…

Quilt Museum Porch Sale

9:00am

Shop a gigantic selection of “fabrics, fibers and fancies” at a Porch Sale taking place from 9am-4pm Friday and Saturday, and 9am-2pm Sunday in La Conner at the Pacific Northwest Quilt &…

Wild Things

9:30am

Kids, adults and adventurers can join Wild Whatcom for a “Wild Things” community program exploring local trails and parks from 9:30am-11am every Friday. Please bring a simple, healthy snack,…

Jacobson and O'Neill

10:00am

View works by ceramicist and mixed-media artist Sara Jacobson and sculptor Brian O’Neill from 10am-5pm Friday through Sunday through Aug. 1 in Edison at Smith & Vallee Gallery, 5742 Gilkey…

Pilchuck Glass School Show

11:00am

“The Pilchuck Glass School Show” can be seen from 11am-5pm Friday through Sunday (and by appointment) through Aug. 22 on Camano Island at Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park, 2345…

Flags and Monuments

11:00am

Check out award-winning Pacific Northwest artist Sheila Klein’s new exhibit, “Flags and Monuments,” from 11am-5pm Fridays through Sundays through Aug. 1 in Edison at i.e. gallery, 5800 Cains…

Ferndale Public Market

2:00pm

The Ferndale Public Market takes place from 2pm-6pm in the parking lot of the Ferndale Grocery Outlet, 1750 LaBounty Dr. They’ll be on hand to punctuate the end of your work week with fresh…

Port of Anacortes Summer Concert Series

6:00pm

The Port of Anacortes brings back its free summer concert series starting tonight with a show from the Chris Eger Band and the Powerhouse Horns from 6pm-8pm at Seafarers’ Memorial Park, 601…

Farmtunes with the High Mountain String Band

6:00pm

The High Mountain String Band perform at a revived “Farmtunes” series taking place from 6pm-9pm at Bellewood Farms, 6140 Guide Meridian. The free, family-friendly music series continues with…

LaFever Dream

6:30pm

The up-and-coming acoustic folk/bluegrass trio, the LaFever Dream, will make music from 6:45pm-8:45pm at All That Jazz Boutique Gallery, 1015 Railroad Ave., STE 105.

The Comeback

7:00pm

Watch Hockey Teeth, Northwest Hip Hop Collective, and India Glover with Lilyplayscello perform at a livestream taking place from 7pm-10pm at Make.Shift Art Space, 306 Flora St. The streamed…

Cory Vincent

8:00pm

“Grunge blues” can be heard when Cory Vincent performs from 8pm-10pm at Thousand Acre Cider House, 109 Grand Ave. Entry is $5-$40 (depending on how many people will be at your table). All…

Afterglow Comedy Hour

9:00pm

Attend a monthly Afterglow Comedy Hour from 9pm-10pm at Stemma Brewing Company, 2039 Moore St. The recipe is simple—add seven comedians, give them one hour to fit in their funny business, and…

Dive-In Movies at the Waterslides

9:30pm

The film Who Framed Roger Rabbit? continues a “Dive-in” Movies at the Waterslides series at 9:30pm in the parking lot of the Birch Bay Waterslides, 4874 Birch Bay Lynden Rd. The series…

Saturday
Whatcom Art Market featuring Karen Silvernale

11:00am

Works by as many as 45 Whatcom Art Guild members can be viewed from 11am-5pm daily at Whatcom Art Market, 1103 11th St. Through Aug. 1, Karen Silvernale’s acrylic mixed-media work will be…

Future Artifacts at MoNA

10:00am

“Future Artifacts” shows from 10am-5pm daily through Oct. 10 in La Conner at the Museum of Northwest Art, 121 S. First St. The exhibit features work by Lummi Nation glass artist Dan Friday,…

An Artist's Universe at Hotel Bellwether

10:00am

View painter and mixed-media master David Syre’s latest installation, “An Artist’s Universe,” hanging throughout the corridors, lobby and dining room of Hotel Bellwether and the Lighthouse…

Celebrate Summer Exhibit

11:00am

Stanwood-Camano Arts Guild hosts a “Celebrate Summer” juried show from 11am-5pm Wednesdays through Saturdays through Sept. 2 at A Guilded Gallery, 8700 271st St. NW.

Lands Real and Imagined

11:00am

“Lands Real and Imagined” shows from 11am-4pm Tuesdays through Saturdays through July 31 at Allied Arts, 1418 Cornwall Ave. This installment will include landscape-inspired pieces from…

Larry Richmond at Good Earth Pottery

11:00am

Ceramic baskets by Larry Richmond will be highlighted from 11am-5pm daily through Saturdays, and 11am-4pm Sundays through July at Good Earth Pottery, 1000 Harris Ave.

Cabin Rain Revisited

11:00am

“Cabin Rain Revisited,” featuring paintings by the late Northwest master William Slater from 1939-2007, shows from 11am-6pm daily (except Tuesdays) through July in Mount Vernon at Perry and…

Quilt Exhibits in La Conner

11:00am

From 11am-5pm Wednesday through Sunday, visit La Conner’s Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum, 703 S. Second St. Currently on display are “Small Expressions: Handweavers Guild of…

Signature Member Show

11:00am

Peruse works by NW Pastel Society artists at a “Signature Member Show” from 11am-5pm Wednesday through Sunday through Aug. 1 in Anacortes at the Scott Milo Gallery, 420 Commercial Ave. More…

Diablo Lake Boat Tours

11:30am

Seattle City Light and the North Cascades Institute will team up to offer Diablo Lake Boat Tours starting this week with outings aboard the Alice Ross IV at 11:30am and 2:30pm Thursdays…

Fluid Formations and More at Whatcom Museum

12:00pm

View “Fluid Formations: The Legacy of Glass in the Pacific Northwest,” “El Zodíaco Familiar,” “All Dressed Up,” “Silk for Suffragettes and Schoolchildren: The Impact of Kimono on European…

Summer Juried Exhibit and More

12:00pm

A “Summer Juried Exhibit,” Seiko Purdue’s “Kumihimo Wishes: Current Times,” Gregory Kammer’s “New Terrain,” and “Quilting Forward: New Works by the Bellingham Modern Quilt Guild” can be seen…

Community Boating Center Summer Hours

2:00pm

Sign up for summer classes and experiences and book rentals for a dinghy, kayak, keelboat, paddle board or rowboat at the Community Boating Center, 555 Harris Ave. Summer rental hours are…

Garden Parties at Boundary Bay Brewery

4:00pm

Steve Webb and the Great Mad Swirl perform at a Happy Hour Concert Series taking place every Thursday from 4pm-8pm at the beer garden at Boundary Bay Brewery, 1107 Railroad Ave. The weekly…

Quilt Museum Porch Sale

9:00am

Shop a gigantic selection of “fabrics, fibers and fancies” at a Porch Sale taking place from 9am-4pm Friday and Saturday, and 9am-2pm Sunday in La Conner at the Pacific Northwest Quilt &…

Wild Things

9:30am

Kids, adults and adventurers can join Wild Whatcom for a “Wild Things” community program exploring local trails and parks from 9:30am-11am every Friday. Please bring a simple, healthy snack,…

Jacobson and O'Neill

10:00am

View works by ceramicist and mixed-media artist Sara Jacobson and sculptor Brian O’Neill from 10am-5pm Friday through Sunday through Aug. 1 in Edison at Smith & Vallee Gallery, 5742 Gilkey…

Pilchuck Glass School Show

11:00am

“The Pilchuck Glass School Show” can be seen from 11am-5pm Friday through Sunday (and by appointment) through Aug. 22 on Camano Island at Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park, 2345…

Flags and Monuments

11:00am

Check out award-winning Pacific Northwest artist Sheila Klein’s new exhibit, “Flags and Monuments,” from 11am-5pm Fridays through Sundays through Aug. 1 in Edison at i.e. gallery, 5800 Cains…

Ferndale Public Market

2:00pm

The Ferndale Public Market takes place from 2pm-6pm in the parking lot of the Ferndale Grocery Outlet, 1750 LaBounty Dr. They’ll be on hand to punctuate the end of your work week with fresh…

Port of Anacortes Summer Concert Series

6:00pm

The Port of Anacortes brings back its free summer concert series starting tonight with a show from the Chris Eger Band and the Powerhouse Horns from 6pm-8pm at Seafarers’ Memorial Park, 601…

Farmtunes with the High Mountain String Band

6:00pm

The High Mountain String Band perform at a revived “Farmtunes” series taking place from 6pm-9pm at Bellewood Farms, 6140 Guide Meridian. The free, family-friendly music series continues with…

LaFever Dream

6:30pm

The up-and-coming acoustic folk/bluegrass trio, the LaFever Dream, will make music from 6:45pm-8:45pm at All That Jazz Boutique Gallery, 1015 Railroad Ave., STE 105.

The Comeback

7:00pm

Watch Hockey Teeth, Northwest Hip Hop Collective, and India Glover with Lilyplayscello perform at a livestream taking place from 7pm-10pm at Make.Shift Art Space, 306 Flora St. The streamed…

Cory Vincent

8:00pm

“Grunge blues” can be heard when Cory Vincent performs from 8pm-10pm at Thousand Acre Cider House, 109 Grand Ave. Entry is $5-$40 (depending on how many people will be at your table). All…

Afterglow Comedy Hour

9:00pm

Attend a monthly Afterglow Comedy Hour from 9pm-10pm at Stemma Brewing Company, 2039 Moore St. The recipe is simple—add seven comedians, give them one hour to fit in their funny business, and…

Dive-In Movies at the Waterslides

9:30pm

The film Who Framed Roger Rabbit? continues a “Dive-in” Movies at the Waterslides series at 9:30pm in the parking lot of the Birch Bay Waterslides, 4874 Birch Bay Lynden Rd. The series…