The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

Yiddish singer Anthony Russell
Anthony Mordechai Tzvi Russell sings opera, Jewish cantorial music and Yiddish art songs. His Convergence will be performed at the Jewish Music Festival this weekend. Photo: Anthony Russell

CONVERGENCE One of the highlights of this year’s Jewish Music Festival will be Sunday night’s performance of Convergence by Anthony Mordechai Tzvi Russell, together with Bay Area klezmer trio Veretski Pass. “I knew no precedent of a Yiddish song organically growing out of a Negro Spiritual, but inside my own head — and I hesitate to say this, but in my heart — I felt I didn’t particularly need a precedent,” explains Russell. Convergence combines diverse strains of traditional Jewish and African-American music to explore exile, spirituality, hope and redemption. The performance includes animation work by San Francisco-based artist Meredith Leich. Tickets ($25, $22 for students, seniors and JCC East Bay members) are available from Brown Paper Tickets. 7 p.m. Sunday, March 23, JCC East Bay, 1414 Walnut St. 

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's NestMORE THAN FANTASY The death of Saul Zaentz earlier this year robbed the Berkeley artistic community of one of its key figures. Zaentz donated 35mm prints of all of his productions to the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive, which is marking his career with showings of three of his best works. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest will screen on Saturday, March 22, at 5:30 p.m., with the cosponsorship of the Berkeley Film Foundation. Ticket prices range from $5.50 to $9.50 and are available from the BAM/PFA website.

New Esterhazy QuartetNEW ESTERHAZY QUARTET If you didn’t get your fill of Vienna when the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra came to town the other week, the Bay Area-based New Esterhazy Quartet is performing three Viennese works — by Haydn, Schubert and Schoenberg — at the Hillside Club on Friday, March 20 at 8 p.m. The program opens with Haydn’s late unfinished quartet in D minor, Op. 103, continues with Schoenberg’s D major quartet, and closes with Schubert’s G major quartet, D. 887. Tickets are $15 general admission, $10 for Hillside Club members and seniors. Tickets only available at the door.

Lexicon of SustainabilityMEET YOUR FARMER As part of the Lexicon of Sustainability exhibition at the Brower Center, local farmers, fisheries, farmers’ markets and groceries are invited to share their stories, and offer samples of their harvest as well as CSA signups on Saturday, March 22. Participants of all ages can become a part of the exhibit and learn more about sustainable food terms by painting their own information artworks and experiencing a Bay Area food map. Music will be provided by a local band, and shorts from the Know your Food film series will be played all afternoon. Admission is free, but space is limited so booking is required through Brown Paper Tickets. 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, March 22, David Brower Center, 2150 Allston Way.

Fleetwood MaskFLEETWOOD MASK No, not Fleetwood Mac. Still, the tribute band promises “40-plus years of musical history brought to life,” from the early blues tunes to more recent hits. Two performances, on Saturday, March 22 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 23 at 2 p.m., are benefit concerts for Theatre First, the new tenants of Live Oak Theatre. Berkeleyside readers get discount tickets for $15! (Use the code “Berkeleyside” when booking online). Live Oak Theatre, 1301 Shattuck Ave.

Don’t miss these other events recently featured on Berkeleyside:

Steven Epp is back with ‘Accidental Death of an Anarchist’
‘Saved by the Bay’ explores lives of academic refugees
Trey McIntyre Project: Farewell tour comes to Berkeley
‘Maidentrip’: A 13-year old’s remarkable personal odyssey
Leave sharp objects at home: David Bromberg is back

Check out Berkeleyside’s event calendar for many more events, and make sure to post your own community happenings.