BILL SANTIAGO With his knack for biting political satire and a fondness for taboo topics that has garnered him comparisons to George Carlin, comedian Bill Santiago should be well received in Berkeley. On Friday, Jan. 31, Santiago is performing at La Peña, at 3105 Shattuck Ave., where he’s presented his renowned wordplay, astute observations and bilingual comedy in the past. The show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door.
“HOMELESSNESS” AT EXPRESSIONS Many homeless artists in Berkeley have never had an opportunity to showcase their work — until now, at Expressions Gallery at 2035 Ashby Ave. The gallery is displaying paintings, sculptures, photography and digital art by homeless and previously homeless artists, as well as pieces by community members whose work explores aspects of homelessness. Many of the pieces, on view through April, were provided by and created at Building Opportunities for Self Sufficiency in Berkeley and St. Mary’s Center in Oakland. Gallery hours are 12 p.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays to Saturdays and 12 p.m.-3 p.m. Sundays.
DIGITAL RENAISSANCE FAIRE The Digital Renaissance Faire is not the Renaissance faire of your childhood — yet it’s not particularly digital either. In its own words, DRF is an “open forum for artists, educators, and collaborators,” and its first event of the year, “Warmth,” is going down at Cloud 9 at 1320 9th St. Warmth is an all-night endeavor that begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday Feb. 1 and concludes on Sunday at 10 a.m. — after faire-goers have gotten their fill of live music, electronic music, yoga, dancing, art and healing workshops, and free coffee (you may need it). Tickets are $12 ahead of time and a bit more at the door. A complete list of offerings and performers can be found on the Facebook page.
CAL WOMEN’S BASKETBALL Can’t get enough sports on Superbowl Sunday? Luckily there’s time to squeeze in the Cal Women’s Basketball game against Stanford at 1 p.m. before you plop down on the couch. It’s been a winning season for the team, whose nationally acclaimed point guard Britanny Boyd is a Berkeley High alum. It’s also a Cal Kid’s Day, which means the first 500 kids in Haas Pavilion will receive a Boyd replica jersey and food trucks will be on site for lunch. Tickets are $7, or $1 if you bring a Superbowl-related sign.
LUNAR NEW YEAR Ring in the Year of the Horse with a parade and performance on both Saturday Feb. 1 and Sunday, Feb. 2. The Fourth Street shopping district will present a lion dance, a parade and martial arts demonstration on Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. Solano Avenue Association is bringing the likes of the SF Chinese Orchestra, the SF Circus, Ah-Lan Chinese Dance and Golden Lion’s martial artists to the Albany Twin theater for its lively Lunar New Year Celebration on Sunday. The event promises to be energetic and bright — much like the Zodiac Horse sign itself. The performance begins at 10 a.m. at 1115 Solano Ave., and everyone is invited to join the parade that follows at noon. Donations are encouraged.
Don’t miss these other events recently featured on Berkeleyside:
Big Screen Berkeley: Oscar-nominated short subjects
Martha Graham Dance Co. serves up 3 classic feasts
Baryshnikov is back at Berkeley Rep with ‘Man in a Case’
Check out Berkeleyside’s event calendar for many more events, and make sure to post your own community happenings.