At a glance ……

A scene from ‘Noises Off’ – previewing at the San Francisco Playhouse this week – Courtesy SF Playhouse

Comedy at the San Francisco Playhouse

Previewing at the San Francisco Playhouse this week is Michael Frayn’s hugely successful British comedy, Noises Off – a play within a play, depicting the drama and hilarious goings-on behind the scenes during the production of a farce by a touring theater troupe. There’s a barrel of laughs in this slapstick comedy – with overblown egos, failing memories, jealousy and passionate affairs.  Noises Off runs at the Playhouse until May 13. For tickets – and to find out more – visit the San Francisco Playhouse website

Joshua Redman – © Jay Blakesberg – Courtesy SFJAZZ

Still Dreaming at SFJAZZ
Still Dreaming – the ensemble comprising the talents of Joshua Redman, Ron Miles, Scott Colley and Brian Blade – is at SFJAZZ this week, with a program inspired by the music of Old and New Dreams, the 1980’s band (featuring Redman’s father, tenor saxophonist Dewey Redman) which celebrated the legacy of  Ornette Colman, the alto saxophonist and composer described by The New York Times as “one of the most powerful and contentious innovators in the history of jazz”.  Still Dreaming is in the Miner Auditorium from March 23 to 26. More information is available on the SFJAZZ website.

Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony © Spencer Lowell

MTT leads San Francisco Symphony in 20th century greats
The program opens with John Cage’s The Seasons, commissioned by the Ballet Society in 1947, for a work choreographed by Merce Cunningham. It’s followed by Robin Holloway’s Europa and the Bull, written in 2014, portraying “Jupiter’s lustful hankering for the beautiful nymph, Europa” (Robin Holloway), and the concert ends with Bela Bartók’s 1943 five-movement Concerto for Orchestra.  The performances take place at Davies Symphony Hall on March 23 and 24. For more information visit the San Francisco Symphony website.

Violinist Nicola Benedetti – © Simon Fowler

Benedetti plays Bruch with MTT and SF Symphony
Nicola Benedetti – “Scotland’s star violinist” according to The Telegraph – is the guest artist on March 25 and 26, playing Max Bruch’s gorgeous Violin Concerto No 1, in a program which also features Cage’s The Seasons and Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra.  See more on the San Francisco Symphony website

Violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter – Courtesy San Francisco Symphony

Anne-Sophie Mutter in recital
As part of the San Francisco Symphony’s Great Performers Series, Anne-Sophie Mutter, with “her peerless technique” (The Independent) is in recital at Davies Symphony Hall on Sunday March 26, with pianist Lambert Orkis. Ms Mutter plays Mozart’s Violin Sonata in A major, and Saint-Saëns’ Introduction and Rondo capriccioso. This recital is a co-presentation with San Francisco Performances.   Find out more on the San Francisco Symphony website

The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge – Courtesy King’s College, Cambridge

Choir of King’s College, Cambridge at Zellerbach Hall
Cal Performances presents a concert of works by the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, under Director of Music Stephen Cleobury. Included in a program drawn from the English choral tradition are works such as Fauré’s Cantique de Jean Racine, Gabrielli’s O magnum mysterium and Purcell’s I was glad, sung with “the precision and grace that make this choir world famous” (The Guardian).

The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine – Courtesy National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine

Also appearing at Zellerbach Hall this weekend is the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, led by Theodore Kuchar, playing Verdi’s Overture to La forza del destino, Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No 3 – with soloist Alex Slobodyanik – and the Shostakovich Symphony No 5.
The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge are at Zellerbach Hall on Friday, March 24, and the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine on Sunday, March 26.

See more on the CalPerformances website.

Bass-baritone Cody Quattlebaum – Courtesy San Francisco Opera

2017 Schwabacher Debut Recitals
San Francisco Opera Center and Merola Opera Program present the first of the 2017 Schwabacher Debut Recitals this weekend. The recital features mezzo-soprano Taylor Raven, bass-baritone Cody Quattlebaum (a finalist in the recent Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions) and pianist Mark Morash in a program which includes works by Debussy, Ibert, Korngold and Berg.  It takes place in the Taube Atrium Theater (Veterans Building) on Sunday, March 26. For more information, visit the San Francisco Opera website.

The Emerson String Quartet – © Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

Emerson Quartet at Stanford
As part of its 40th anniversary season, the Emerson Quartet appears at the Bing Concert Hall in Stanford on Sunday. Described by The New York Times as “one of the most impressive of American string quartets”, the Quartet – winner of nine Grammy’s – is known for its versatility with new works as well as classics. This performance, which includes works by Ravel, Debussy, and an early quartet by Alban Berg, takes place at the Bing Concert Hall on Friday, March 24. For more information visit the Stanford Live website.


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