Salon Saloon gets heavy for its December double-header

Paul D. by Sean Smuda .jpg
Photo by Sean Smuda
Paul D. Dickinson 
This Friday, Salon Saloon is serving up a double-dose of witty entertainment for its December installment. The evening will feature the Heavy 100, a year-end review exploring 2012's highlights on topics ranging from familiar to obscure. The event is split into two shows, one early and one late, so audiences can catch all the guests by seeing both programs, or just take in half of the festivities.

Ben Heywood  Zoe Prinds-Flash.jpg
Ben Heywood
Photo by Zoe Prinds-Flash 
There will be five guests for the early slot, and five guests for the late show. Each guest will deliver their end of the year list, which can vary in number depending on the person. In past years, some guests have given a standard best 10 list, while others have focused on one topic. 

The idea for the Salon Saloon's Heavy 100 sprouted at the end of its first season at the Bryant-Lake Bowl in 2010. "We got together a handful of guests, and put together a best-of list," explains host Andy Sturdevant. 

This will be the third time Salon Saloon attempts the endeavor. "We ask the guests to keep topics somewhat rooted in the year," he says. They could be about some aspect of culture, or the guest's own personal experiences. "They really have been all over the map."

Unlike a regular year-end list, the Salon Saloon's Heavy 100 tends to be more personal, and strange. The folks from Works Progress, producers of the show, along with Sturdevant and guests, come up with the subjects beforehand. 

On the early show, writer David Hansen will be talking exclusively about Dwarf Portraits, a game that came out this year. Paul D. Dickinson will give his pick on the best parking lot and best east-side bodega. Soap Factory executive director Ben Heywood will be joining the conversation via Skype for the early show, "hopefully sitting in front of a roaring fire," says Sturdevant, as he is visiting his mother for the holidays. On the late show, Dennis Cass will discuss year-end post humanism. Other guests include Sasha Aslanian, and Jayanthi and Robin Kyle for the early show, and Steven Lang, Emily Cook, and Maggie Ryan Sanford for the later program.
 
andy sturdevant photo by sean smuda.jpg
Photo by Sean Smuda
Andy Sturdevant 
Meanwhile, Sturdevant and the Works Progress staff are cooking up ideas for next year's season. Generally, they come up with themes beforehand, and then figure out who around town might have something to say on that topic. "We have an intuitive approach," he says. Guests often include people who have recently released books or records. The result is a kind of live talk show/presentation showcase.

Salon Saloon will be taking January off, but will produce shows from February through May on themes such as "St. Paul," "rivals," "The Failure Show," and the ominously titled "Final Show," which Sturdevant says will address topics of finality. Will it be the last Salon Saloon? "That's hard to say," he says. "We're giving ourselves the option." 

IF YOU GO:

Salon Saloon: Heavy 100 Year-End Review
7 p.m. (doors at 6 p.m.) and 10 p.m. (doors at 9:30 p.m.)
Friday, December 28
Bryant-Lake Bowl
$6-12 sliding scale


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