Workin for the Weekend – eventseekr’s Top Picks for 11/4/2011/-11/6/2011

Hooray for Wednesday! The weekend is almost here. This Wednesday is a bit more special, though, since today is Hump Day and Dia de los Muertos. If you’re looking for something fun to do tonight, try heading to the Mission District for the Festival of Altars and the Day of the Dead celebration. Otherwise, let’s see what this weekend has to offer!

Margaret Jenkins Dance Company: Light Moves at YBCA November 3-5:

In Light Moves, the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company has worked with multi-media artist Naomie Kremer, composer Paul Dresher and poet Michael Palmer to produce a visually dazzling piece that attempts to make a space where music, poetry and dance cohere with animated images of light and color. It’s a performance that challenges artists from different genres to collaborate and make a cohesive product/story, but at the same time seems almost like an experiment to see how much information an audience can absorb when so much visual stimuli is on stage at once. Personally, I think the overall effect may trigger brain overload, but since I’m not planning on ever taking any mind-altering substances that are stronger than alcohol/caffeine, this will be a truly welcome experience.

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Alonzo King LINES Ballet – Novellus Theatre at the YBCA 10/19/2011 [Review]

Award-winning choreographer Alonzo King is famous for his ability to express global traditions through contemporary ballet. For the 2011 Fall Season, which runs at the Novellus Theatre in the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts through Sunday, October 23, LINES Ballet kicks off the show with the premiere of Resin, a piece that’s set to Sephardic music, and ends the night with 1998’s Who Dressed You Like a Foreigner?, which is set to tabla music by Zakir Hussain. After the show this past Wednesday, Alonzo King sat with the audience for a Q&A session, where he remarked on the ubiquitous, all-encompassing nature of art and artistry and the fulfillment it provides. He also made a self-affirming comment to the audience: “We are all gods.” Based on what I saw that night, I am inclined to agree.

Yujin Kim and Ricardo Zayas. Photo by Quinn B. Wharton. Courtesy of Mona Baroudi PR.

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Workin for the Weekend – eventseekr’s Top Picks for 10/14/11-10/16/11

It’s Wednesday again, which means that eventseekr’s got your weekend plan right here. In addition to  TIMF, Richard Serra at the SFMOMA and the SF Vintners Market, there’s a lot of good stuff lined up, and some of it for an awesome cause. Katie K. and Lucia C. teamed up to bring you this week’s edition of Workin for the Weekend.

Treasure Island Music Fest Night Shows (October 14-16): Everyone is talking about Treasure Island Music Festival, and for a good reason; it’s one of the most popular Bay Area events this weekend. However, if you’re not the festival type or you don’t feel like dedicating your entire Saturday and Sunday to pushing through crowds of ecstatic fans, you can still be a part of the action and get your live music fix at one of the TIMF night shows. The Head and The Heart show and The Drums show (which I am excited to be covering!) are already sold out, but tickets for the other night shows are still available. On Saturday, JFK (of MSTRKRFT and Death From Above 1979) will be playing a TIMF after party DJ set at Mezzanine in San Francisco. MSTRKRFT was at TIMF in 2009, and this year Death From Above 1979 is featured on Saturday’s lineup. For music lovers who favor a more laid-back vibe, Thao with The Get Down Stay Down will play at The Independent in San Francisco on Sunday. All of the TIMF night shows are restricted to ages 21 and over.  –Katie

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Faustin Linyekula/ Studios Kabako at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts [Review]

For Americans in the 21st Century, the concept of “punk” is unbelievably stale, but in some other parts of the world, not perverted by the whole “suburban mall punk” culture, that word still signifies promise and vitality. Late 1970s punk is what inspired Congolese choreographer Faustin Linyekula to create his new piece More, more, more… future, which was first shown in San Francisco on September 29th at the YBCA. Linyekula and his team, including the prominent guitarist Flamme Kapaya, attempted to combine punk’s scorched-earth approach and political urgency with the culture of ndombolo, based around a very sensual and hedonistic Congolese pop music style.

Photo by Agathe Poupeney.

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Bay Area Now 6 at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts [Review]

The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts is my favorite art venue in San Francisco – more often than not its exhibitions provide excellent brain food. It is a prime place to see artists that have their works shown at world-class exhibitions like the Venice Biennale. Currently, the center is holding its own major recurring show, the “Bay Area Now” triennial (until September 25). What are we to make of it?

The triennial consists of three parts: Performing Arts, Film/Video and Visual Arts. I am going to weigh in on the last of the three. The exhibition does not have an overarching theme; it is more like a showcase of emerging talent responding to various “Bay Area issues,” which include our relationships with nature and technology as well as “nomadism” in a globalized world and drug politics. Bitterly missed are the themes that, in my opinion, are absolutely crucial to any discussion of the current state of affairs in the Bay Area: the deepening social inequalities, labor issues, and the slow exodus of the middle class from San Francisco. The pieces on view are smart and witty, but strangely safe and inoffensive. Some may consider the neon sign in the form of a marijuana leaf hanging right above the front entrance offensive, but to me it is such a familiar feature of the San Franciscan pop culture landscape that it is barely worth mention.  Even the works that deal with the least comfortable theme – David Huffman’s abstract paintings that, as the gallery assistant told me, imply places where poor African American youths congregate to play games but also to buy and sell meth – seemed to me more wistful than poignant.

Suzanne Husky, Sleeper Cell. Credit: Suzanne Husky.

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