5Q :: Crystal Pelkey on beads and Hollywood clienteleIf Crystal Pelkey wants the Northland to know that Teatro Zuccone isn’t just Renegade Comedy Theatre’s personal playground, she is succeeding admirably.
By: Matthew R. Perrine, Budgeteer News
If Crystal Pelkey wants the Northland to know that Teatro Zuccone isn’t just Renegade Comedy Theatre’s personal playground, she is succeeding admirably.
This week, the three-night-only “Fire on the Water” will be staged at Teatro, which she manages. The show isn’t so much a typical production as an art spectacle, combing the talents of local dancers (both traditional and of the fire-twirling order), music, jewelry and costumes.
In an effort to catch our breath, we turned over the “mic” to Pelkey:
Budgeteer: The scope of this production is amazing — how did it all come about? And, is “Fire on the Water” indicative of more non-RCT productions coming down the pipeline?
Pelkey: My friend Bailey Woodruff is a tribal belly dancer, and a couple months back she told me about how she always wanted to do a show where everything was local. At the same time, I was booking artists to show the community that Teatro is open to them in various creative ways.
In addition to Renegade Comedy Theatre’s season, we are and will continue to book local, regional and national acts in music, dance, other theater groups and meetings, presentations, seminars, etc.
After that discussion, I ran into Juliana Bertelsen of Over the Top Dance Studio on the street. I have always been a fan of her high-energy productions. I asked her if she would be interested in working with us. That next week the three of us met and the chemistry and synergy was fantastic and the makings for a wonderful show were well underway.
Northern Theatrical Costumes is a wonderful resource to the community, so I wanted to showcase the great things they have to offer; this show was a great way to do that.
This show will serve as a coming-out party for my jewelry of sorts. To the public at large, that is.
How long have you been producing jewelry? It seems to be quite a burgeoning enterprise in the area — do you find it hard to stand out as a jeweler locally?
I have been designing jewelry for others for a year and a half — after Lisa Heyesen came up to me in the bathroom at a meeting and said, “Hey, can you make me one of those necklaces?”
I’m very blessed and fortunate to have amazing ladies like Lisa spread the word about my jewelry and be walking advertisements for my signature and custom designs.
Several of my friends wear my designs while working at Pizza Luce, Chester Creek Cafe, the Scenic Cafe and Lake Avenue Cafe. That opens me up to a wide audience.
It’s so successful that I can’t keep my signature beaded earrings in stock at Bead Harbor.
On that, how did Renée Zellweger end up owning one of your pieces?
Well, that’s funny actually. She didn’t really have a choice. She and George Clooney were in town promoting “Leatherheads” and I gave her a necklace I made out of Lake Superior agates as a gift. She loved it. But, then again, she’s a great actress.
She asked me if I made what I was wearing, and I said yes, and she said that everything was “so beautiful.” Then we hugged, and she had her assistant take a picture of us.
Finally, on a less-Hollywood note, what makes a perfect Duluth day for you?
A perfect Duluth day for me is when the sun is shining, people are smiling, creative things are happening and I surround myself with people who recognize what a great place this is to live, work and play. So, basically that is every day — except the sun part.
NEWS TO USE
“Fire on the Water,” an art extravaganza featuring Over the Top dancers, Spin Collective fire dancers and local music, will be held at 8 p.m. at Teatro Zuccone Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 8-10. Cost is $10. Call 336-1414.