Tag Archives: Peter Sellars

Desdemona: The stories you didn’t read in Shakespeare

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Desdemona, one of the highlights of the Cal Performances season had its opening last night in Zellerbach Hall. The work is a collaboration between Nobel-prize winning novelist Toni Morrison, singer/songwriter Rokia Traoré, and director Peter Sellars. Sellars talks about the genesis of the work in the video above.

As The New York Times detailed yesterday, the collaboration grew out of a furious argument Sellars had with Morrison a decade ago about Othello. Sellars thought it was a terrible, senseless play; Morrison disagreed. Sellars agreed to stage a production of Othello, while Morrison agreed to “talk back to Shakespeare”. Desdemona was originally staged at the Théâtre Nanterre-Amandiers near Paris. It has three further performances in Berkeley (tonight, Friday and Saturday), before moving to New York next week for two performances. It then transfers to Berlin and will be staged in London to coincide with the 2012 Olympics next summer. … Continue reading »

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Tickets expected to go fast for Michael Pollan’s food class

Michael Pollan
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When word leaked out in the spring that Michael Pollan would be co-teaching a class on the rise and future of the food movement, students at UC Berkeley rushed to sign up. The 10-week, two-unit course was filled minutes after it was listed online.

Now, the general community has a chance to participate in this gold rush.

UC will be releasing tickets for Edible Education 101 on a first-come, first-serve basis on August 15. There will be about 282 tickets available for each class and people will be able to sign up for just one lecture or all of them, said Carolyn Federman, director of development for the Edible Schoolyard, which is co-sponsoring and paying for the course. The tickets will be free and will be sold through Ticketweb, she said.

Pollan is co-teaching Edible Education 101 with Nikki Henderson, the executive director of People’s Grocery, a food justice organization in Oakland. While Pollan and Henderson are the co-teachers, much of the class will center around lectures given by luminaries in the food movement. Confirmed speakers include Carlo Petrini, Peter Sellars, Marion Nestle, Frances Moore Lappé, Raj Patel, Ann Cooper, Eric Schlosser, and Alice Waters. … Continue reading »

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On a stage near you: Cal Performance’s new season

John Malkovitch will star in Cal Performance's "The Infernal Comedy: Confessions of a Serial Killer" in October
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[Update, 04.27,11: Watch a video of director Peter Sellars talking about “the Desdemona Project”, the upcoming theatrical event he is producing for Cal Performances.]

Cal Performances knows how to serve up a star-studded arts menu. Names such as Peter Sellars, Toni Morrison, Mark Morris, Keith Jarrett, John Malkovitch, Roz Chast and Susan Graham are just a few of the many all-star monikers that pop out on the new season line-up of the UC Berkeley-based culture powerhouse.

But even more impressive is the sheer spectrum of the offerings Berkeleyans have to look forward to this year and next. In presenting the new season, Cal Performances Director Matías Tarnopolsky said there were 25 new artists and companies coming to Berkeley this year, as well as a new series focused on family-friendly performances.

Recitals will center on piano works, the dance program will be mostly modern and the theater focus in on Samuel Beckett, Tarnopolsky said. And he stressed the organization’s commitment to early music, a personal passion, as an example of the range on offer.

“Cal Performances has always prided itself on offering adventurous and compelling work,” he said Tuesday. The underlying mantra, he continued, is “artistic excellence, advocacy and accessibility”. … Continue reading »

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