Cal Lutheran Hosts Shakespeare Art Show June 1st through September 28th

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William Shakespeare-inspired art will be exhibited this summer at California Lutheran University while the annual Kingsmen Shakespeare Festival takes place on the Thousand Oaks campus.

“Shakespeare: A Celebration” will be on display from Thursday, June 1, though Thursday, Sept. 28, in the Kwan Fong Gallery of Art and Culture.

Bankside Gallery in London displayed the first version of this exhibit in 2016 in collaboration with the Globe Theatre to mark the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death.

At the Kwan Fong, a range of paintings and prints by artists from the British Royal Watercolour Society and the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers will relate to Shakespeare’s life and plays including “Hamlet,” “Macbeth,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “The Merchant of Venice,” “Twelfth Night”, “The Tempest,” “Winter’s Tale” and “Antony and Cleopatra.”

The featured artists include Corinna Button, who incorporates printmaking techniques into her paintings and ceramic sculptures, which can be found in the permanent collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum and Ashmolean Museum in England and the Jiangsu Art Gallery in China; David Brayne, whose textured paintings of abstracted figures are about open spaces and expanses; and Veta Gorner, a Russian-born printmaker who works from studios in England and Sweden.

The exhibit also features works by Hilary Adair, Jim Anderson, Margaret Ashman, Mychael Barratt, Jo Barry, Richard Bawden, June Berry, Dennis Roxby Bott, Liz Butler, John Crossley, Hilary Daltry, Anne Desmet, John Duffin, David Firmstone, Roger Harris, Julie Held, Frank Kiely, Anita Klein, Linda Landers, Sasa Marinkov, Anne Marlow, Mike Middleton, Julia Midgley, Bridget Moore, Sumi Perera, Simon Pierse, Richard Pikesley, Geoffrey Pimlott, Neil Pittaway, Trevor Price, Peter Quinn, Mark Raggett, Denis Ryan, Peter S. Smith, Richard Sorrell, Sandy Sykes, Bren Unwin, Roy Willingham, Judy Willoughby and Joseph Winkelman.

All of the works will be for sale and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the gallery.

This year, the Kingsmen Shakespeare Festival will run from June 30 through Aug. 6 and feature “Love’s Labour’s Lost” and “Julius Caesar.”

The exhibit is free. The gallery is located in Soiland Humanities Center at 120 Memorial Parkway. It is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

For more information, contact Rachel T. Schmid at 805-493-3697 or visit CalLutheran.edu/kwanfong.

"The Secret Paintings" Exhibit at Museum of Ventura County June 2 to August 6

The Museum of Ventura County launches the summer season with an opening reception for The Secret Paintings, unveiling the works of local artist Michael Pearce, 6-8 p.m., June 2, at the Museum, 100 Main Street, Ventura. Following the opening ceremony, patrons can view the collected works and have the opportunity to meet and speak with the artist in person. Admission to the Museum and reception is free for Free First Friday.

For this exhibit, Pearce has selected 35 works of art, for which he took inspiration from Renaissance and Pre-Raphaelite masters. With The Secret Paintings, Pearce seeks to emulate their ambitiousness and scale, which is reflected in the centerpiece of the exhibition: a monumental four-part work of oil on canvas themed for the summer solstice.

The Secret Paintings will be on display at the Museum through August 6. The museum hosts Free First Sundays as well as Appreciation Weekends with free admission for featured groups. Visit venturamuseum.org for a full schedule of free admission days.

Youth Musical Theatre Presents "The Drowsy Chaperone" in Thousand Oaks May 25-28

Youth Musical Theatre is pleased to bring The Drowsy Chaperone, the five-time Tony Award winning parody of 1920s musical comedy, to the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Scherr Forum Theater, May 25 - 28, 2017.  

With awards including Best Book and Best Original Score, The Drowsy Chaperone is a rollicking send-up of the Jazz Age, featuring one show-stopping song and dance number after another. The hilarious musical farce focuses on a die-hard yet anti-social musical theater fan who plays his favorite cast album – the fictional 1928 hit The Drowsy Chaperone – and then provides acerbic commentary as the musical comes to life right in front of him.

The show is directed by Raymond Saar, well-known in the West Valley for directing musicals which mix Broadway-quality production value with high-caliber student performances. Mr. Saar serves as the Artistic Director of Youth Musical Theatre, a non-profit performing arts group which consists of some of the most talented young performers in Southern California.

Performances are set for 7:30 pm May 25 - 28, with additional Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2:00 pm. Ticket prices range from $19 – 29 and can be purchased at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza Box Office (civicartsplaza.com) or Ticketmaster (800-653-8000).

DISCOUNTED TICKETS AVAILABLE ON LIMITED BASIS AT bit.ly/DrowsyChaperoneTO (affiliate link)

ABOUT YOUTH MUSICAL THEATRE

Youth Musical Theatre, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is a theater company whose mission is for our actors to work together to develop self-confidence and self-esteem while working towards a complex and concrete goal: an outstanding theatrical production. To learn more, visit www.youthmusicaltheatre.com or call (818) 884-9909.

Cabrillo Music Theatre Presents "Peter Pan" in Thousand Oaks July 14-27

Cabrillo Music Theatre, the resident, professional theater production company of the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, has cast Thousand Oaks native Carly Bracco as lead in Peter Pan. Beginning July 14, Cabrillo Music Theatre will conclude its 2016/17 season with ten performances of the musical based on J.M. Barrie’s classic tale, with its final performance on July 27. Slated for only a two-week run, Cabrillo Music Theatre has added an additional matinee performance on Wednesday, July 19, due to early ticket sales.

Bracco, who graduated from Thousand Oaks High School, and then UCLA’s Musical Theater program in 2010, has performed in the roles of Tootles, Jane and Wendy in the Peter Pan National Tour, having the opportunity to perform alongside Cathy Rigby. Bracco currently stars as Elsa in Disneyland’s live musical production of Frozen at the Anaheim-based theme park.

Peter Pan will feature the score by Morris "Moose" Charlap and Jule Styne, with lyrics by Carolyn Leigh, Betty Comden and Adolph Green. In this Tony Award-winning musical, Peter and his mischievous fairy sidekick Tinkerbell visit the nursery of the Darling children late one night and — with a sprinkle of pixie dust — begin a magical journey across the stars that none of them will ever forget. Featuring the iconic songs "I'm Flying," "I've Gotta Crow," "I Won't Grow Up" and "Never Never Land," the musical intends to capture the full magic, warmth and adventure of the popular Disney film and musical of the same name.

Following Peter Pan, Cabrillo Music Theatre will begin its 2017/18 season, which features Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and a Disney classic whose title can’t be announced until July 1. To buy tickets for Peter Pan or to learn more about Cabrillo Music Theatre and how to become a season ticket holder, visit www.cabrillomusictheatre.com.

ABOUT CABRILLO MUSIC THEATRE

Cabrillo Music Theatre is the Ovation Award-winning resident professional theatre production company of the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, and a nonprofit theatre organization. For more than three decades, Cabrillo has been enriching the cultural life of Ventura and Los Angeles counties and the surrounding areas by providing an extraordinary performing arts experience through live, Broadway-quality productions of musical theater. It is Cabrillo Music Theatre’s mission to provide the highest-quality theater experience, foster educational opportunities, and promote cultural and artistic enrichment to enhance the quality of life in Southern California. For more information, visit www.cabrillomusictheatre.com.

Three Concurrent Art Exhibits at Buenaventura Gallery in Ventura May 23-June 24, 2017

Monterey Coast, north view.

Monterey Coast, north view.

Works by Ojai painter Kathy Bodycombe and Ventura printmaker and photographer Christina Altfeld will be featured May 23-June 24 at the Buenaventura Gallery.

Their shows will share wall space in the Clophine Dooley Gallery as the rest of the downtown Ventura gallery is devoted to Buenaventura Art Association’s fifth annual Collage Open Competition. A reception for all three exhibitions will be 5-7 p.m. May 27, at which awards for the collage show will be announced.

Bodycombe’s “Duets” show will have oil-on-canvas landscapes from places she has lived or visited on both U.S. coasts and in Europe, ranging in size from 6 inches square to 24 by 36 inches. She has been painting for 15 years.

“I have pairs of two paintings that are similar in size, subject and style that complement each other,” she said. “The pairs share a location for the subject, share the same size format and style, but differ in composition.”

Altfeld, a lifelong photographer who’s also been exploring multiple forms of printmaking for 10 years, chose “Ocean Atmosphere” as her title. She uses polymer metal intaglio plates and paper lithography to create pieces hand-printed on an etching press and further hand-paints many of them. She also will present some cyanotype original prints and plans to have about 20 pieces, from 8 inches square to 14 by 24 inches.

“Living near the ocean’s edge, I spend time walking on the beach both in the morning and often at sunset time. I have been watching the sea kelp being washed up on the shore knowing I wanted to use it somehow in my work,” Altfeld said. “This show presented the perfect opportunity to create a new series inspired by my walks by the sea.”

The Collage Open Competition will have two- and three-dimensional original glued collage, mixed-media collage or assemblage artworks, of which at least half must be glued collage.

Judging the entries will be Kathy Leader, who grew up and received her art and art education degrees in South Africa and now teaches privately and in workshops in her West Los Angeles studio. First-, second- and third-place awards will be $300, $200 and $100, and winners of those and honorable mentions will also get one-year memberships to BAA.  

The Buenaventura Gallery, 700 E. Santa Clara St., Ventura, is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays. For more about the nonprofit Buenaventura Art Association and its programs, visit www.buenaventuragallery.org or call 648-1235 during gallery hours.

Live Standup on the Hill Monthly Comedy Show at Hillcrest Center Thousand Oaks

The Hillcrest Center for the Arts hosts a monthly show: Live Standup Comedy on the Hill.  The Center has teamed up with local comedian Jason Love to produce a top-tier show with a new lineup of professional comics each month.  This new experience in comedy entertainment brings some of Hollywood’s funniest headliners to Thousand Oaks.  Upcoming show dates are May 13, June 3 and July 8, 2017.  All shows are at 8:00 pm with doors opening at 7:30.  The hour and a half show is for eighteen years and up only, and beer and wine may be purchased with valid ID.  Summer settings are often outside, under the stars.   

Producer and host Jason Love has appeared on HBO, Comedy Central, America's Got Talent, and over 20 national broadcasts.   He has performed overseas for the troops and on the seas for cruise lines, and was a finalist at the Cabo Comedy Festival.  Jason’s non-profit, Love & Laughter, brings free shows to cancer support communities and others in need.

Standup Comedy on the Hill tickets are only $12 presale for general admission and $15 at the door.  Tickets may be purchased at the Hillcrest Center for the Arts Box Office or by calling (805) 381-1246 or www.hillcrestarts.com.

Upcoming shows:

Saturday, May 13, 2017:  The show includes Don Friesen, winner of the San Francisco International Comedy Competition, who has a one-hour Netflix special, and Tony Baker a regular at the Hollywood Laugh Factory who has performed on Last Comic Standing and at Gabriel Iglesias' Standup Revolution on Comedy Central. 

Saturday, June 3, 2017:  Lineup includes Tom Clark, who has been seen on Conan, Late Late Show, and Just for Laughs in Montreal, and Karen Rontowski, who has been seen on Letterman, Comics Unleashed and Live at Gotham.

Saturday, July 8, 2017: Show features Dwayne Perkins, a regular correspondent on the Jay Leno Show and one of Rolling Stone magazine’s 5 comics to watch, and Andy Hendrickson who regularly performs overseas for our troops, as well as on Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham and the Late Late Show.  

"Little Shop of Horrors" at Hillcrest Center Thousand Oaks June 2-18, 2017

Panic! Productions closes its 2016-2017 season with a fresh take on the crowd-pleasing musical, “Little Shop of Horrors,” June 2 through 18, at the Hillcrest Center for the Arts in Thousand Oaks. The Alan Menken-Harold Ashman (“Beauty and the Beast,” “The Little Mermaid”) musical will be directed by J. Bailey Burcham, with choreography by Tyler Matthew Burk, and musical direction by Josh Bednarsky.

“Little Shop of Horrors,” based on the 1960 cult classic film by Roger Corman and Charles Griffith, is the macabre, yet hilarious tale of meek flower shop assistant Seymour, who pines for co-worker Audrey. During a total eclipse, he discovers that an unusual plant, which he has named Audrey II, feeds only on human flesh and blood. The 1982 stage musical ran for five years off-Broadway and was made into an Oscar-nominated film, directed by Frank Oz, in 1986. Burcham, hot off his searing, critically-acclaimed lead performance in Panic! Productions’ mounting of “Danny and the Deep Blue Sea” at Theatre 68, will put his stamp on the show by updating the action to Los Angeles’ Skid Row in 1994.

Elijah Malcomb plays Seymour and Catriona Fray is Audrey. Also in the cast are Trae Adair, Lora Hakanson, Cariel Hughes, Fay James, Terika Jefferson, Mookie Johnson, Jokull Jonsson, Allison Martinez, Paul Panico, Olivia Van Den Berg, and Lindsay Zana. Set design is by Rei Yamamoto, lighting design by Shara Abvabi, and costume design by Barbara Mazeika. The production stage manager is Tawni Eccles.

“Little Shop of Horrors” opens Friday, June 2, at 8 pm and continues Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm, Sundays at 2 pm through June 18. There will be additional performances Thursday, June 8, at 8 pm and Saturday, June 17, at 2 pm. Tickets are $25/$22 student and seniors, with group rates available, and can be purchased at panicproductions.org, by calling 805/381-1246, or by visiting the box office. The Hillcrest Center for the Arts is at 403 W. Hillcrest Drive, Thousand Oaks.

Footworks Youth Ballet Presents "Swan Lake" in Oxnard on June 3-4

FOOTWORKS YOUTH BALLET presents for the first time Tchaikovsky’s famous classical ballet Swan Lake in two full-length performances at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center. A free family educational lecture and story time will begin one hour prior to the performance time.

Come join Footworks Youth Ballet for its full-length performance of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. The tragic love story is about Odette, a princess who has been cursed by an evil sorcerer. During the day she must swim as a swan in a lake of tears, but at night she becomes the beautiful princess in human form. The spell can only be broken by a prince who swears his eternal love for her.

Come see the story unfold with Princess Odette, Prince Siegfried, the evil Rothbart and his daughter Odile. It is sure to dazzle audiences with its fresh choreography, colorful costumes and professional sets. In keeping with the mission of Footworks, principal roles are often danced by student dancers, giving young artists opportunities not found elsewhere. Matinees are offered on both regular performance days (June 3rd and 4th at 2 p.m.).

Where: Oxnard Performing Arts Center – 800 Hobson Way, Oxnard, CA

General Public MATINEES: Saturday, June 3rd, 2:00 P.M. and Sunday, June 4th, 2:00 P.M.

Outreach Performance for Students: Friday, June 2nd 10:00 A.M. Act I (Cost: Sliding scale of $0-$5 per ticket - contact: outreach@footworksyouthballet.org)

Tickets: $14, $18, $22

Ticket Hotline: (805) 486-2424

Online Ticket Orders: www.footworksyouthballet.org

Footworks Youth Ballet is a nonprofit ballet company whose purpose is to provide educational opportunities to young people through the art of ballet.

Bugs...Outside the Box Exhibit at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History 5/27-9/10, 2017

The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History presents a new exhibit, Bugs... Outside the Box. Now is your chance to examine all the intricacies of the insect world....without a microscope! From beetles to butterflies, the exhibition features a literal army of giant bug sculptures with one aim in mind - shining a light on museum collections, taxonomy, and the power of magnification.

More info at www.sbnature.org.

“Plastic Oceans: A Sad Reality” Exhibit at William Rolland Gallery at CLU 4/22 to 5/13

A small interactive exhibit created by California Lutheran University students to educate people on the state of the world’s oceans will be on display April 22 through May 13.

“Plastic Oceans: A Sad Reality” will be exhibited in the alcove of the William Rolland Gallery of Fine Art on the Thousand Oaks campus.

In just a few short centuries, human achievement and industrial advancement have brought our world into an unprecedented technological landscape. But what have these accomplishments cost the largest ecosystem on our planet? This exhibition provides a snapshot of the current state of some of the world’s oceans.

Complete with model fish and an interactive station, the exhibit is perfect for families and is educational for all age groups.

Students in the university’s Arts Management and Museology class curated the exhibit. They are Danielle Nguyen from Chatsworth, Hannah Long from Albany, Dillon Lutza from Valencia and Michaela Bunker from Sacramento.

Entrance to the gallery is free.

The gallery is located in William Rolland Stadium, which is north of Olsen Road near Mountclef Boulevard on the Thousand Oaks campus.

It is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

For more information, contact curator Rachel Schmid at rollandgallery@callutheran.edu or 805-493-3697 or visit CalLutheran.edu/rolland.

“Forward: CLUFest 2017" Exhibit at Kwan Fong Gallery at Cal Lutheran 4/21 to 5/14

Robots, virtual reality and interactive projections will be part of CLUFest 2017, a California Lutheran University exhibit highlighting multimedia students’ work with cutting-edge technology.

“Forward: CLUFest 2017” will run from April 21 through May 14 in Kwan Fong Gallery of Art and Culture on the Thousand Oaks campus. A reception will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, April 22.

The 13 graduating seniors in the multimedia capstone class planned and curated “Forward” to explore technological growth through unconventional uses of design and storytelling. It highlights the work of students of all class levels majoring and minoring in multimedia by showing their capabilities as emerging innovators in design, gaming, cinema, visual effects and interactive media.

Unique features of this year’s exhibit will include a demonstration of robots designed by computer science students, an interactive projection on the floor that responds to motion, and a student-designed virtual reality space. An upside-down-room photo booth created by the capstone students gives the illusion of standing on the ceiling. Other features include videos and projected artworks.

For a series titled “Rewind,” each of the capstone students re-created one of their earlier works to show how their skills have developed in a range of specialties during their years at Cal Lutheran.

The capstone students are Audrey Askegard of Simi Valley, Matthew Bianchi of Granada Hills, Jordan Bowlby of Alpharetta, Georgia, Tyler Chinappi of Oak Park, Tyler Graper of Simi Valley, Will Houser of Bainbridge Island, Washington, Joey Luau of East Los Angeles, Allyssa Moscotte of Granada Hills, Alexandria Pico of Saugus, Nikki Snook of Simi Valley, Jacob Steagall of Thousand Oaks, Morgan Terhar of Bothell, Washington, and Kevin Zucker of Thousand Oaks.

The gallery is located in the Soiland Humanities Center at 120 Memorial Parkway. It is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Parking is available at the corner of Olsen Road and Mountclef Boulevard.

Cal Lutheran’s Multimedia Department is sponsoring the free exhibition. For more information, contact Tim Hengst at 805-493-3241 or thengst@callutheran.edu.

Disco-Style Adaptation of Shakespeare's "Hamlet" at Cal Lutheran April 20 through 30

‘Hamlet’ takes a disco turn in production   

Cal Lutheran professor wrote musical adaptation

The California Lutheran University Theatre Arts Department will present an original disco-style adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” in April.

The Mainstage Production of “Hamlet, Disco Dane of Denmark” will be performed at 8 p.m. April 20, 21, 22, 27, 28 and 29. A 2 p.m. matinee will be presented on April 30. All performances are in the Black Box Studio Theatre on the Thousand Oaks campus. The run time is one hour and 10 minutes.

Written and directed by theater arts professor Ken Gardner of Thousand Oaks, the play is set in Club Elsinore, the hottest disco in the Big Apple, in 1978. It contains original songs as well as parodies of classic disco songs.

Originally performed at Cal Lutheran in 2004, the play has since undergone rewrites, including the revision of three songs and addition of one new tune. Singer Michael Falcone, a Cal Lutheran alumnus from Newbury Park who played the original Hamlet, returns to play the role of his dead father, King of the Disco Floor.

In the play, the King of the Disco Floor roams the club at night as a ghost and appears on the club video screen. Sad collegian Hamlet leaves Denmark University for New York City to get to the bottom of the death of his father. The opening video montage of Hamlet hitchhiking to the Big Apple will include cameo appearances, including one by Cal Lutheran President Chris Kimball.

Jordan Erickson, a theater arts major from Thousand Oaks, will play Hamlet. Other cast members are Carrie Bower, a biochemistry major from Brea; theater arts major Chris Clyne and theater arts/political science major Peter Johnson of Camarillo; Bridget DeMaria, a theater arts/communication major from Los Alamitos; theater arts major Janelle Detina of Chicago; theater arts majors Will Haddock and Gaby Reublin of Thousand Oaks; and biology major Ruth Smitherman of Roy, Washington.

Alumnus Seth Kamenow, who designs sets for the Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center in his hometown, transformed the entire Black Box Theatre into a disco. Liz Murphy, a theater arts major from Thousand Oaks, devised the lighting and Christopher Baldwin Reynolds, a theater arts major from Moreno Valley, designed the video and sound. Faculty member Noelle Raffy created the costumes, complete with bell bottoms and other disco regalia, and faculty member Josh Clabaugh is the technical director. Ron DiBuccio, a member of the band 3 Strange Daze, helped with musical composition. Glenn Jordan, an Emmy Award-winning composer and former member of Sha Na Na, created and recorded the musical accompaniment.

The theater is located at 141 Memorial Parkway. Admission is $10. Tickets may be purchased at CalLutheran.edu/theatre-arts. They may also be available at the door. For more information, call 805-493-3452.

Upcoming Shows at the Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center

BIG FISH: THE MUSICAL

April 15 – May 21, 2017

Friday & Saturday at 8:00 pm, Sunday at 2:00 pm

No Performance April 22

Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center, 3050 Los Angeles Ave in Simi Valley

Big Fish is a heartfelt, powerful, and truly magical musical about fathers, sons, and the stories that we use to define our identities. Big Fish centers on the story of Edward Bloom who has lived a full and fantastical life, populated by witches, giants, and mermaids, marked by true love that stops time in its tracks, and framed by heroics that push the limits of believability. His adult son, Will, is no longer amused by his father's fantastical tales, insisting on a rational rather than a fantastical account of one's life. When Will learns that he and his wife will soon have a son of their own, he embarks on a journey to find out his father's "true" life story and discovers what being a father truly means. With spine-tinglingly beautiful music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, and a funny, heartwarming book by John August, Big Fish is a magnificent "big fish" of a tale, itself-spectacular, fantastical, and overflowing with love. Produced by special arrangement with Theatrical Rights Worldwide. Tickets for BIG FISH: THE MUSICAL are $25 for Adults, $22 Seniors 60 & Above and $18 for children 12 & Under and can be purchased online at www.simi-arts.org or by calling (805) 583-7900.

THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK

April 22 at 2 pm and April 23 at 7 pm, 2017

Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center, 3050 Los Angeles Ave in Simi Valley

Produced by Lit Live.  As Jews in German-occupied Holland, the Franks are fighting for their lives. When young Anne's sister, Margot, is called to appear before the authorities, the Franks must go into hiding. Produced by Lit Live and directed by Seth Kamenow, this well-known story - told through the beautifully innocent eyes of Anne - is educational, timely and heartbreaking. Tickets are $22 Adults, $15 Seniors 60 & Above and Military, and $10 for Students and Educators. and can be purchased online at www.simi-arts.org or by calling (805) 583-7900.

25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE

Presented by Actors’ Repertory Theatre of Simi

June 3 – July 9, 2017

Friday & Saturday at 8:00 pm, Sunday at 2:00 pm

Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center, 3050 Los Angeles Ave in Simi Valley

Presented by Actors’ Repertory Theatre of Simi. Winner of the Tony and the Drama Desk Awards for Best Book, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee has charmed audiences across the country with its effortless wit and humor. Featuring a fast-paced, wildly funny and touching book by Rachel Sheinkin and a truly fresh and vibrant score by William Finn, this bee is one unforgettable experience. An eclectic group of six mid-pubescents vie for the spelling championship of a lifetime. While candidly disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their home lives, the tweens spell their way through a series of (potentially made-up) words, hoping never to hear the soul-crushing, pout-inducing, life un-affirming "ding" of the bell that signals a spelling mistake. Six spellers enter; one speller leaves! At least the losers get a juice box. A riotous ride, complete with audience participation, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a delightful den of comedic genius. Tickets are $25 Adults, $22 Students and Seniors 60+, and $18 Children 12 & Under. and can be purchased online at www.simi-arts.org or by calling (805) 583-7900.

"Painting the Sky" - The Kites of Tyrus Wong at Malibu City Hall April 2 - July 28, 2017

The Malibu Cultural Arts Commission’s next public art installation “Painting the Sky: The Kites of Tyrus Wong,” opens Sunday, April 2 in Malibu City Hall.

Wong, who passed away on December 30, 2016 at the age of 106, was one of the most celebrated Chinese-American artists of the 20th century. He was a Hollywood studio artist, painter, printmaker, calligrapher, greeting-card illustrator and, in later years, maker of unique elegant kites.

The exhibit will be on display from April 2 to July 28, 2017 in the City Hall Atrium. The opening reception on Sunday, April 2, 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM, will feature a screening of a documentary about the artist and an exhibit of photographs of his kites.

The documentary, “Tyrus,” written and directed by Pamela Tom, is an in-depth portrait of the life and enduring impact of Wong, taking viewers on a journey from his birthplace in Guangzhou, China in 1910, to the boarding houses of L.A.’s old Chinatown and the studios of the Golden Age of Hollywood. The film will be screened at 3:00 PM and has a 73-minute running time.

Photographs from Sara Jane Boyers’ collection “Go Fly a Kite: Saturdays at the Beach with Tyrus Wong” will be on display in City Hall during the exhibition.

Wong’s career took off while working at Disney where, as a landscape painter, his talent was put to work creating the look and style for Disney’s classic animated feature “Bambi.” He then moved to Warner Bros. Studios where he worked for over 30 years as a pre-production illustrator on dozens of live-action films including “The Sands of Iwo Jima,” “Rebel Without a Cause” and “The Wild Bunch.”

After retiring, Wong re-discovered his childhood love of flying kites. He designed and hand made hundreds of kites using bamboo, rattan, nylon and string. He would fill the sky at the beach in Santa Monica with his whimsical creations: flocks of butterflies, owls, cranes, and swallows, schools of fish, a panda, and on windy days, a 100-foot- long centipede.

For more information visit MalibuArtsandCulture.org/Kites or call (310) 456-2489 ext. 337.

"A Woman's Place: The March on Washington" Exhibit at Museum of Ventura County 3/11-4/9

Photo by Rena Pezzuto

Photo by Rena Pezzuto

The Museum of Ventura County mounts an exhibit that pays tribute to Ventura County participants in January’s Women’s March on Washington called “A Woman’s Place: the March on Washington.”  Comprising signs, posters, ephemera and multi-media presentations, the exhibition commemorates the efforts of women in Ventura County who took to the streets across the country to affirm their place in society.

“A Woman’s Place” is a pop-up exhibit that will be installed at the museum’s Main Street location from Saturday, March 11 – Saturday, March 25 (NOTE: EXTENDED TO APRIL 9). A pop-up exhibition--as the name suggests--is a temporary art event, short in duration and brought about by a significant public incident or occurrence.

According to curator Anna Bermudez, “It was immediately apparent to me that the women’s march was history in the making. In my role at the museum, I felt that my participation could take the form of an exhibit that pays tribute to the women who marched, and to all women.  My call for items was answered quickly and decisively.”

The exhibit comprises items from participants in the march, who demonstrated in Ventura, Los Angeles and Washington DC. The items are highly personal—hats, t-shirts, bus tickets, photos and signs—each fortifying a strong and lasting message. First-hand accounts from participants will be filmed and screened in the exhibit, providing an oral history element that will become a part of the museum’s library holdings.

Executive Director Elena Brokaw said, “This is what we’re all about; telling the collective stories of our lives and times. Museums, and especially our museum, are a site where ideas converge. We are not always looking to the past; we reflect the times as they are happening.”

The opening reception will be held on Saturday, March 11, from 5:30 – 7:30 pm, will feature women who participated in the event across the country, representing multiple generations. Admission is $10 per person; $5 per member. There will be live music and refreshments. 

Location: 100 E. Main Street, Ventura

 

Premiere of Photography Exhibit at Four Friends Gallery in Thousand Oaks

The Four Friends Gallery will hold a Public Opening Reception on March 11th from 4:00 to 8:00 pm of its premier exhibit, “Open Intake” and first in a series of gallery shows.   The exhibit includes 130 pieces of original photography from over 35 local professional artists.  Sizes range from 3 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches "Tiny Photographs" by Larry Janss to 6 feet by 4 feet by Sol Hill.  Complimentary light snacks and drinks will be served.

Four Friends is located at 1414 Thousand Oaks Blvd. Suite 111, Thousand Oaks.  This exhibit, which held its “soft” opening on February 24, closes on Wednesday, March 22nd. Gallery hours for this show are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1:30PM to 5:30 PM and by appointment.  The next show is slated to open on Friday, March 24th featuring the work of photographer Zoe Marieh Urness.

This is the premiere event of this new space as an emerging center for the arts.  Weekend evenings are often host to Brogden Bay Presents: a concert series focusing on folk, American Roots and, occasionally, good old Rock and Roll/Blues. Past concerts have featured performers such as Jim Kweskin and Geoff Muldaur, A.J. Croce, Albert Lee, Corky Siegel and Danny Kortchmar.  Next up in the concert series is An Evening with Mollie O’Brien and Rich Moore on Saturday, March 25, 2017 at 8:00 pm.

If you stop by on Saturday mornings between nine and noon beware of a group of small but mighty actors, learning their craft from Gold Coast Theatre Conservatory’s professional staff, Billy Parish and Stephanie Wilson.  Students study all aspects of theatre arts with master classes in comedy and audition technique and a free performance on May 4 at the Civic Arts Plaza for area schoolchildren, A CELEBRATION OF CALIFORNIA’S NATIONAL PARKS. 

Also to be offered are insightful lectures as part of the Four Friends’ Salon Series, live theatre by Equity Actors from Gold Coast Plays and photography workshops taught by masters in the field.

Gallery Director Christopher Broughton was engaged to direct the gallery from the Brooks Institute of Photography which recently closed its doors after over 70 years of operations. During Chris’ three decades’ tenure at Brooks he taught courses in Digital Photography, Advanced Studio Applications, Optics of Fine Art and Photographic Theory in both Undergraduate and Graduate programs as well as heading the Brooks’ Masters Program. Chris has influenced and inspired over 3,645 students, many of whom are currently working professionally and are master artists in their own right.

In partnership with the Gold Coast Plays & Theater Conservatory and Brogden Bay Presents, Chris envisions the gallery becoming a local and accessible center for visual and performing arts.

Larry Janss is a fifth-generation Californian, born on the Conejo Ranch in Thousand Oaks. He attended the California Institute of the Arts and, in 1967, attended the first of many Ansel Adams’ Summer Photography Workshops. He later assisted Adams on many of his myriad projects over the course of Adams’ life. Larry’s photographs have been featured in two New West Symphony classical music commissions and performances – one a photographic interpretation of Ferde Grofé’s symphonic masterpiece, the Grand Canyon Suite; the second, a multimedia presentation with Robert Kyr’s original symphonic piece, Yosemite: Journey of Light.

For more information, visit www.fourfriendsgallery.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Four-Friends-Gallery-455275737841255. Or call 805/497-7691.

"A Certain View" Art Exhibit at Fred Kavli Theatre Gallery in Thousand Oaks 3/16 through 7/17

"Window to Orb"  by Janet Milhomme

"Window to Orb"  by Janet Milhomme

“A Certain View” comes to the Fred Kavli Theatre Gallery

New Kavli Theatre Art Exhibit focuses on 15 contemporary artists

The Cultural Affairs Department of the City of Thousand Oaks is pleased to present “A Certain View,” a group exhibition at the Kavli Theatre Gallery in the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza. 

This exhibit features bold and colorful works from 15 contemporary artists from Los Angeles and Ventura counties. Through sculpture, painting, photography, collage and mixed media, each of the artists has pursued abstract and contemporary forms and colors with a unique and individual style that presents their view of the world around them. 

The exhibition is on public view from March 16 through July 17. A brunch reception to meet the artists is scheduled for May 27 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.  All residents of Thousand Oaks and Southern California are invited to join the City of Thousand Oaks in this opening reception.

This new art show highlights the outstanding works of numerous Thousand Oaks and Southern California artists, and includes a range of media. Artists include (in no particular order) Janet Milhomme, Connie Tunick, Geri Schonberg, Debra Sokolow, Pamela Fong, Dennis Griffin, Rod Seeley, Roland Roy, Susan Ciufo, Arlene Tepper, Carol Roullard, Annee Hahn, Melanie Roschko, Nurit Avesar, Raj Naik.

For further information about the "A Certain View" exhibit or the upcoming May 27 Artists Reception, contact Beth Neal, Special Events Coordinator of the City of Thousand Oaks Cultural Affairs Department at (805) 449-2766.

“Personal Stories/Shared Narratives” Art Exhibit at CSU Channel Islands 3/1 to 4/2

The work of Los Angeles artists Lesley Krane and Cecilia Z. Miguez will be on display from March 1 through April 2 at the John Spoor Broome Library Gallery on the CSU Channel Islands (CSUCI) campus.

The opening reception of “Personal Stories/Shared Narratives” will be March 7 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the Broome Gallery with both artists giving short presentations about their work.

Krane, who also teaches art at CSU Northridge, expresses herself through photography and Miguez, a Uruguay-born artist, uses sculpture, but exhibit curator Irina D. Costache, Ph.D. saw a connection between their styles and put together “Personal Stories/Shared Narratives.”

Krane’s work in “Personal Stories” is a series of photographs of white rooms meant to depict private spaces we all need.

Krane’s process involves shooting film (yes, film — not digital images) on a toy camera she has used for years. She double exposes black and white film by shooting her photos, then running the film back through the camera while shooting clouds. 

Figures are part of Cecilia Miguez’s work, but there is an abstract element that distinguishes her work, which is often in wood, bronze, iron and/or glass.

Limited parking is available on campus with the purchase of a $6 daily permit; follow signs to the parking permit dispensers. Free parking is available at the Camarillo Metrolink Station/Lewis Road with bus service to and from the campus.  Riders should board the CSUCI Vista Bus to the campus; the cash-only fare is $1.25 each way. Buses arrive and depart from the Camarillo Metrolink Station every 30 minutes from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday. For exact times, check the schedule at www.goventura.org.

Moorpark College Theatre Arts Department Presents "HAIR" March 2-12, 2017

The Moorpark College Theatre Arts Department is pleased to announce a very special presentation of “The Tribal Rock-Musical, HAIR” to be performed on the Moorpark College campus from March 2nd to March 12th on the main stage of the Performing Arts Center.  Join us as we celebrate the 50th Anniversaries of both “HAIR” and Moorpark College.  Journey back to the “Summer of Love” and see Moorpark College just as our first students experienced it when our doors opened in 1967.

In the age of Aquarius, a time of harmony and understanding, “HAIR,” puts rock music and the counter-culture that went with it on stage.  In our new age of protest and political engagement, “HAIR” offers historical perspective to some of the hottest issues of today and insights into non-violent social action.  The show acts as a bridge between generations and viewpoints.  Phenomenal musical numbers include Aquarius, Good Morning Starshine, I Believe in Love, Hair, I Got Life, What a Piece of Work Is Man and Easy to be Hard.  This show has vitality, a timelessness and a meaning that outlives the late 1960’s in America while speaking to the audiences of today.

“Of course the big question that everyone asks about “HAIR” is ‘Are you going to do the nudity?’,” said John Loprieno, Theatre Arts Department Chair and Director, “My immediate response is that the question of nudity is only the tip of the iceberg!  This show is jammed packed with hotly contested social and political commentary and, given some of the civic engagement happening around the country today; ‘HAIR’ is particularly relevant.  Our students have been participating in some of the protests in both Los Angeles and Ventura counties.  As part of our preparation, we would have them share the chants and call-outs that they experienced at the protests.  After 50 years, some of the issues of concern are still part of the American consciousness and at the heart of the debate on our national identity.  I hope every young person on our campus and community comes to see this highly entertaining and yet powerful and thought provoking production.” 

“HAIR” will run March 2nd through March 12th with evening performance from Thursday to Saturday @ 8:00pm and Sunday matinees @ 2:00pm on the main stage theatre at Moorpark College.  American Sign Language (ASL) interpreted performances Sunday, March 5th @ 2:00pm and Friday, March 10th @ 8:00pm. Tickets may be purchased through the Moorpark College Performing Arts Center Box Office at (805) 378-1485 or online at www.moorparkcollege.edu/pac.  Moorpark College is located at 7075 Campus Road in Moorpark, 93021.

California Fibers:Time Exhibit at Studio Channel Islands in Camarillo April 1 - May 6, 2017

The Studio Channel Islands Blackboard Gallery is pleased to presentCalifornia Fibers:Time from April 1 – May 6, 2017, with an opening reception on April 1st from 4-6 PM.

California Fibers:Time  features the work ofseventeen members of California Fibers- Linda Anderson, Charlotte Bird, Ashley Blalock, Carrie Burckle, Doshi, Gail Fraser, Polly Jacobs Giacchina,  Lynne Hodgman, Chari Myers, Kathy Nida, Michael Rohde, Mary Beth Schwartzenberger, Rebecca Smith, Cameron Taylor-Brown, Lydia Tjioe Hall, Peggy Weidemann and Lori Zimmerman.

All works in the exhibit address the theme of “Time” as interpreted by each artist.  For example, Linda Anderson describes her work Becoming as a rite of passage“marking a moment of maturation…and… two boys experiencing that moment in time.”  Kathy Nida deals with “time’s increasing speed and its toll on living things as we age…”  Peggy Weidemann views time as “much more than a clock…it is ever changing…and can live in our memories as well as the present and influence our future.” Mary Beth Schwartzenberger ‘s work Inscription places “our human experiences of today next to people from so long ago (as) a thoughtful reminder that we as humans are…more the same than different.”  Lydia Tjioe Hall’s series One a Day began the year after her daughter was born. “Knowing that I would not have much time to work on larger pieces, I decided to work on small pieces that would add up to a larger installation in the end.”

Ashley Blalock

Ashley Blalock

A gallery walkthrough is scheduled on Thursday, April 6, at 5:30 PM with Michael Rohde, and a panel discussion with moderator Katherine Cooksey and panelists Carrie Burckle,  Mary Beth Schwartzenberger, Cameron Taylor-Brown and Lori Zimmerman is planned for Saturday, April 22 at 1 PM.

California Fibers:Time will run through May 6, 2017. Artists will be present at the opening on April 1 from 4-6 PM. The Channel Islands Blackboard Gallery is located at2222 East Ventura Blvd., Camarillo. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday from 11-5 PM and Saturday from 11-3 PM.  For more information contact Katherine Cooksey, Gallery Director, at 805-383-1368 or at kcooksey@studiochannelislands.org

THE STUDIO CHANNEL ISLANDS BLACKBOARD GALLERY studiochannelislands.org

Studio Channel Islands is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the creative life of Old Town Camarillo and the communities within Ventura County, fostering connections between artists and visitors, and celebrating the cultural identity of our community. Ongoing programs include Artists-In-Residence open studios, arts education classes, diverse Blackboard Gallery exhibitions, cultural events, festivals, and much more. The Blackboard Gallery is the largest gallery in Ventura County and features artists from around the world.        

CALIFORNIA FIBERS californiafibers.com

California Fibers, founded in 1970, supports artistic growth and professional advancement for contemporary Southern California fiber artists. The imagination and superb craftsmanship of these artists place them in the highest echelons of their fields. The group has an extensive exhibition history in the USA and abroad. Many of its members are well-represented in museums and private collections and are recipients of prestigious awards from around the world. Their creative expression includes weaving, basketry, sculpture, quilting, embroidery, felting, surface design, knitting, crochet, wearables, and mixed media.