KQED’s Cy Musiker and David Wiegand share their picks for great events around the Bay Area this week.
We’ve got rockers young and old on this edition of The Do List, but first our Shoutouts! I’m highlighting the Monday Apr. 10 comedy fundraiser for NARAL Pro-Choice America, featuring Nato Green, Zahra Noorbaksh, Will Durst and others at the Punch Line in San Francisco. Funny for a good cause. David’s pick is the closing night, Saturday, Apr. 9 of the 15th annual Oakland International Film Festival, which features a reunion of some of the cast of the original Roots TV series, including Louis Gossett Jr., Melvin Van Peebles, Danny Glover and others at the Scottish Rite Temple in Oakland.
April 9: A great alternative to watching the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony on Sunday on HBO, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes are touring the West Coast for the first time in 10 years. This “rock and roll circus” co-founded by John Lyons in 1976 is closely associated with — and sounds a bit like — Bruce Springsteen and his E Street Band, though maybe with more R&B in its genes. Worth it just for the Miami Horns. Details for Southside Johnny’s two shows Sunday at Yoshi’s in Oakland are here.
A Summer of Love Trio:
April 8- Aug. 20: The world is indulging its fascination with anniversaries this year, with celebrations of the Summer of Love at three local museums. June 1967 is when hippies descended by the tens of thousands on San Francisco’s Haight Ashbury, even though the real action, the Trips Festival and the Human Be-In, had happened months before. The Summer of Love: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll at the de Young museum in San Francisco features rock posters, photographs, music and light shows, costumes (I got rid of all my paisley years ago), and avant-garde films. Details for the de Young’s show are here.
April 7-Sept. 27: Meanwhile, the GLBT History Museum
opens its show Lavender-tinted Glasses: A Groovy, Gay Look at the ‘Summer of Love’, which highlights the roles of four queers who helped make the Summer of Love, including poet Allen Ginsberg and singer Janis Joplin. Details for that show are here.
Through May 21: The Berkeley Art Museum got a head start on everyone with its show Hippie Modernism: The Search for Utopia, which looks at the impact of hippie culture on architecture and design. Details for the exhibit are here.
April 7-9: Gioachino Rossini wrote a lot of operas. “Give me the laundress’ bill and I will even set that to music,” he once joked off his prolific career. The sheer size of his musical portfolio also means some of his work doesn’t get produced, like the one-act romantic farce, La Scala di Seta, or The Silken Ladder. The Phènix Opera Company is promising a fully staged production of this charming comedy, with piano accompaniment. This little company is a labor of love for Osvaldo de Leon, a pianist and music teacher based on the Peninsula. Details for the performances Friday through Sunday at the Black Box Theater at the Spindrift School of Performing Arts in Pacifica are here.
April 7-22: Here’s more on scrappy theater groups: Ragged Wing Ensemble, Gritty City Repertory Youth Theatre, The Lower Bottom Playaz, and Theatre Aluminous are all resident companies at The Flight Deck in Oakland. They’ve come together to put on a play about gentrification, called Overnight, with music by the terrific pianist and composer Kev Choice. Ragged Wing co-founder Anna Scheiderman says the show is based on this premise: what if a huge apartment tower sprang up on your block overnight. “There’s a question that one of the characters asks in this show,” Schneiderman told me, “‘How do you get people to take action.’ And the other character answers, ‘you get them to realize they’re not standing still.’ So not doing something is a choice as well.” Details for Overnight at the Flight Deck are here.
April 11-13: Mitski Miyawaki — known simply as Mitski — is among the hottest indie-rockers around, named recently by The New York Times as one of the artists making songs that tell us where music is going. Mitski’s lyrics are smart satires on race in America, and she also writes hard driving music to get you hooked. She is headed to Coachella with stops in the Bay Area first. Details for her show at Harlow’s in Sacramento on Tuesday are here. The performer is at the Catalyst in Santa Cruz on Wednesday — details here. And then she’s at The Fillmore in San Francisco on Thursday, with details here.