The St. Paul Concert Series features pianists Clara and Marie Becker in a duet duo live from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Walnut Creek at 7 p.m. May 14.
This live performance will be streamed online and listeners are also welcome to attend in person (as permitted at the time of the performance). To register for tickets and receive the live link, reserve a seat in person, or confirm attendance status in person, visit stpaulswc.org/concert-series.
Twins Clara and Marie Becker are artist prodigies on tour from Germany. Studying under internationally renowned artists such as the piano duo Hans-Peter & Volker Stenzl, they have performed extensively in Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, Israel, Bulgaria and Russia and have been featured in BBC Music Magazine and numerous TV performances.
In Saint-Paul, the twins will take us on a musical tour through Europe, performing compositions for four hands by Schubert, Mendelssohn, Dvorak and Smetana. After the performance, there will be a Q&A session with the artists. In downtown Walnut Creek, the St. Paul’s Concert Series offers world-class monthly performances to the local community for an affordable donation-based cost. Average donations are $20 ($10 for students). All are welcome, regardless of donation.
— St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Cuban film debuts in the Bay Area, Canadian film opens May 13
“Un Traductor” (“A Translator”), a Cuban film, debuted in the Bay Area and is screening at the Orinda Theater. The film is based on a true story and follows a professor of Russian literature at the Cuban University of Havana who is assigned to work as a translator for child victims of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster when they are sent to Cuba for care. medical.
Also on the program, “You Will Remember Me”, a Canadian film, which will be released for at least a week from May 13. As the story progresses, Edouard, a public figure and retired history teacher, slowly begins to lose his memory. Accustomed to expressing himself on major issues, he must be more discreet, even if he believes he still has a lot to say.
Edouard’s son-in-law enlists his daughter, Bérénice, to help watch over him, even though she’s a bit lost herself. Their relationship will lead Edouard to revisit a moment in his personal history that he had chosen to forget and lead Bérénice to find meaning in her own life. See a trailer for the film on youtu.be/Gmq6UrYc500. The theater is located at 4 Orinda Theater Square. For tickets and times, visit internationalshowcase.org online.
— International showcase
COVID infections hit theater crew and cause schedule changes
As with many current productions, COVID-19 infections have hit the Pittsburg Community Theater, forcing the troupe to cancel its opening weekend of “Oliver!” at the El Campanil Theater in Antioch. The play was due to open on Saturday, but to protect the cast and crew and give those affected time to recover, the troupe now plans to open May 5 and continue for five performances over a weekend.
The updated performance schedule is 8 p.m. May 5-7 and 2 p.m. May 7-8. The musical will still take place at El Campanil, 602 W. Second St. in Antioch. For more information, contact the El Campanil ticket office at 925-757-9500. If you have already purchased tickets and cannot attend any of these dates, contact Dianna Scheppers at 925-439-PLAY (7529).
— Community Theater of Pittsburgh
Ukrainian interfaith concert for peace scheduled for May 7
A Ukrainian Interfaith Peace Concert will be held May 7 at the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Antioch, 2200 Country Hills Drive. The concert is sponsored by the Ukrainian-American Coordinating Council, the Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County and the Interfaith Peace Project.
There will be Ukrainian singers and dancers, an organist, a professional trumpeter, a Jewish cantor, a Filipino choir and more. Admission is free, goodwill donations are accepted. All proceeds will go to helping refugees. For more information, call Walter Ruehlig at 925-864-0314.
— Contra Costa County Interfaith Council
All-female Mariachi Reyna of Los Angeles ready to perform
Livermore Arts will present Mariachi Reyna of Los Angeles at 8 p.m. on May 7 at the Bankhead Theater.
Enriching the medium as America’s first all-female mariachi ensemble, Mariachi Reyna of Los Angeles brings sensitivity, beauty, warmth and liveliness to the historic art of mariachi, paving the way for female mariachi musicians. In a musical landscape where songs are often written by men and from a male perspective, Reyna has created her own story. Tickets cost between $20 and $68 and can be purchased online at sforce.co/3uKKHRh.
Smothers Brothers at the Bankhead Theater in June
The Bankhead will feature America’s favorite siblings, the Smothers Brothers, for another performance in June. After an unprecedented sell-out from their first performance, the Smothers Brothers will delight audiences for an additional performance on June 14, in addition to their sold-out June 13 performance (originally scheduled for January but postponed to June 13 due to the rise outbreak of the omicron variant of COVID-19).
Tickets for all shows in the 2021-2022 Bankhead Presents season are available online, by calling 925-373-6800, or at box office counters. For a full list of events, visit livermorearts.org.
— Livermore Arts
Diablo Symphony to Host Mother’s Day Concert May 8
Celebrate Mother’s Day at 2 p.m. on May 8 in Walnut Creek at the Lesher Center for the Arts with the Diablo Symphony and a program that celebrates all mothers, featuring the pioneering work of African-American composer Florence Price.
The program will open with Price’s ‘Symphony No. 3’, highlighted by beautiful melodies and sonorities in movements that combine musical idioms found in African, Romantic and Modernist traditions. The third movement evokes a plantation juba, a fast-paced dance involving “body percussion” performed when slaves were not allowed to have instruments that could allow them to transmit secret codes.
The program continues with two works featuring local soprano Heidi Moss Erickson. “Songs My Mother Taught Me” by Antonin Dvořák is a melodious and melancholy song about a mother’s tears, memories and influence. Samuel Barber’s masterpiece “Knoxville Summer of 1915” dreamily illustrates James Agee’s prose poem that recalls the comfort and security felt by a child surrounded by a loving family.
The program will end with a medley of numbers by legendary jazz musician, composer and bandleader Duke Ellington, including his famous ‘Sophisticated Lady’. Advance tickets are available at the Lesher Center box office (1601 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, 925-943-7469) and online at diablosymphony.org.
Tickets will also be available at the door. Call the Lesher Center or check their website (lesherartscenter.org) for the COVID-19 requirements in place for event attendance on the date of this concert.
— Diablo Symphony
‘Epic Finale’ on May 14 and 15 at the Lesher Arts Center
California Symphony will perform “Epic Finale” at the Lesher Center for the Arts in Walnut Creek at 7:30 p.m. on May 14 and 4 p.m. on May 15.
The closing concerts of the 2021-22 season will feature Tchaikovsky’s epic ‘Symphony No. 5’ (the composer’s most frequently performed symphony), with Nathan Chan performing Sir Edward’s iconic ‘Cello Concerto’ Elgar and the West Coast premiere of “Next Week’s Trees” by Young American Composer-in-Residence Viet Cuong.
Bay Area native Chan’s musical career began when he made his debut as a conductor with the San Jose Chamber Orchestra at the age of 3. In 2009, aged 16, he was featured in the British television series “The World’s Greatest Musical Prodigies”.
“Next Week’s Trees” is named after “Walking to Oak-Head Pond and Thinking Of The Ponds I Will Visit In The Next Days And Weeks” by American poet Mary Oliver. Cuong describes the work as “a gentle reminder of the uncertainty of the future, the confident hope of the present, and the propelling force of life that pushes us through any doubt that a new day will come.” Presented virtually in May 2021, the work receives its long-awaited premiere in person at the California Symphony.
The event takes place at the Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek. Tickets can be purchased online at californiasymphony.org/shows/epic-finale.
— Lesher Center for the Arts
Women’s choir to sing “Songs from the Silver Screen”
The Diablo Women’s Chorale sings “Songs from the Silver Screen” at their spring concert at 3 p.m. May 22 at Hillside Covenant Church, 2060 Magnolia Way. Do you know what movie “When You Wish upon a Star” was in? How about the movie where we all first heard “Too Darn Hot”? Many songs have made their movie debuts, and this season the band decided to honor the major role the songs have played on the big screen.
The program includes selections from the 1950s through 2010. To purchase tickets in advance, visit bayareane.ws/3v8FwuC or call 800-838-3006.
— Diablo Female Choir
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