Arts & Events

Arts Calendar

Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:31:00 PM

THURSDAY, MARCH 12 -more-


Berkeley High Jazz All-Stars Honor Longtime Band Director

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:29:00 PM

The Berkeley High School Alumni Jazz All-Stars, featuring musical director Peter Apfelbaum, will perform Sunday afternoon in almost 20 different groups to honor band director and teacher Charles Hamilton’s 27 years of service. -more-


Alameda’s Virago Stages ‘The Hermit Bird’

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:30:00 PM

Going into Bridgehead Studio in Alameda—practically across the street from the Nob Hill Market on Blanding—the newly-collaged doorway, a real portal now, is the first thing to catch attention. Then, inside, is the “Isolated Beauty” exhibit, featuring works in different visual media which parallel the theme of The Hermit Bird, the original play by John Byrd that Virago Theatre Co. is premiering at the studio. (The band Pike County will play before this Friday’s performance—also thematic to the region in which the play is set.) -more-


SF Cabaret Opera Presents ‘Marriage of Figaro’

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:30:00 PM
The cast of The Marriage of Figaro: Steven Hoffman (Figaro), Eliza O'Malley (Susanna, Berkeley shows), Joaquin Quilez (Count Almaviva), Meghan Dibble (Cherubino), and Suzanna Mizell (Susanna, San Francisco shows)

Stripped of its overtly political satire, Mozart and Lorenzo Da Ponte premiered their adaptation of Marriage of Figaro, proclaiming a new form of musical theater. San Francisco Cabaret Opera’s production (under the aegis of Goat Hall) teases out the vaudeville still lurking in the sleek new—or Neo-Classical—model, once again fusing entertainment with lavish singing. The show started last weekend in San Francisco and now, with some changes in cast and accompaniment, migrates to the Hillside Club, a few bucolic blocks east of the Gourmet Ghetto. -more-


24th Jewish Music Festival Presents an Eclectic Program

By Ira Steingroot Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:32:00 PM

If you think Jewish music is confined to singing Hava Nagila at Jewish summer camp, well get ready to have another nagila. The Jewish Music Festival, now in its 24th year, features music in Hebrew, Ladino, Yiddish and English performed by a cosmopolitan array of singers and musicians representing traditions that range from the Sephardic Balkans, European classical, Eastern European Chasidic and klezmer, Indo-European Gypsy, Middle Eastern Mizrachi as well as blues, jazz, swing, bluegrass, gospel, rock, punk and hip-hop. In whatever lands that Jews have lived, they have absorbed musical influences and in turn have influenced the music of their adopted lands. Nowhere has this been truer than in the United States. -more-


Humor and Education in Berkeley Symphony’s Family Concerts

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:33:00 PM

Adventure in Music, the second installment in Berkeley Symphony’s new family concert series, led by conductor Ming Luke and featuring San Francisco Opera violinist Dawn Harms, will include “Spring” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons; Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Violin Concerto in D Major”; Leopold Mozart’s “Toy Symphony”—and the theme (by Danny Elfman) from The Simpsons TV series. -more-


Baroque Orchestra in Richmond Sunday

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:34:00 PM

Bay Area Baroque Orchestra, a group of Bay Area musicians led by conductor Frances Blaker, will play a program of Corelli, Bach and Lully at 4 p.m. Sunday, Mar. 15 in Richmond. -more-


Around the East Bay: 'Favorite Cantatas'

Friday March 13, 2009 - 03:58:00 PM

American Bach Soloists bring Favorite Cantatas of their namesake to First Congregational Church at 8 p.m. Saturday (lecture at 7), a show that will also play in Belvedere, San Francisco and Davis, featuring remarkable baritone William Sharp, excellent singers soprano Yulia Van Doren and alto Jennifer Lane, and Bach Soloists’ own extraordinary tenor, musical director Jeffrey Thomas. $10-44. (800) 838-3006. http://americanbach.org. -more-


Around the East Bay: 'The Nose'

Friday March 13, 2009 - 04:31:00 PM

Russian actor-director Oleg Liptsin, who has presented a piquant Beckett’s Happy Days and a remarkable staging of Dostoyevsky (Notes From Underground as Apropos of the Wet Snow) in Berkeley, will premiere the first part of his latest project, The Nose, a solo show centered around Gogol’s Overcoat, celebrating the great Russian author’s 200th anniversary. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Phoenix Theatre Annex, 414 Mason St., Suite 406, San Francisco (near Union Square). $15-20. (415) 944-1555. http://phoenixtheatresf.org, http://theatreensemble.org. -more-


About the House: Home Repairs: Best to Broaden Your Approach

By Matt Cantor
Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:36:00 PM

Some of you may remember Rube Goldberg. He’s a favorite case study of mine when it comes to home remodeling. If you know who he is, you’re giggling now. Rube, a UC Berkeley grad and local engineer (he worked on the sewer systems in San Francisco!) invented cartoon machinery that would perform one simple task in 20 or more complicated and ludicrous steps. -more-


Community Calendar

Wednesday March 11, 2009 - 07:31:00 PM

THURSDAY, MARCH 12 -more-