The It List: Five things to do this weekend, March 6-8

Ballet, Afro-Cuban music, local art, a documentary premiere and Cal track & field provide plenty of choice for weekend activities

The Joffrey Ballet
The Joffrey Ballet’s Beyond the Shore, part of the program at Cal Performances. Photo: Cheryl Mann

JOFFREY BALLET Among the works The Joffrey Ballet will be presenting during their Cal Performances residency this weekend is Beyond the Shore, which was the focus of choreographer Nicholas Blanc’s work during the Joffrey’s first UC Berkeley residency in 2017. So audiences who saw the early creative process will now see the finished ballet. The group will also be performing two ballets with music by Igor Stravinsky (Christopher Wheeldon’s Commedia and Stephanie Martinez’ Bliss!). The program concludes with Justin Peck’s The Times Are Racing. Friday, March 6 and Saturday, March 7, 8 p.m., and Sunday, March 8, 3 p.m., Zellerbach Hall.

SAME GOD On Sunday, the Elmwood Cinema presents the Berkeley premiere of Same God, an award-winning documentary by Linda Midgett that explores the controversy over an ex-Wheaton College professor who wore a hijab to support Muslims. Same God tells the story of Dr. Larycia Hawkins, an African-American political science professor at Wheaton College — an evangelical school outside of Chicago — who wanted to show support for Muslim women. Within days, Wheaton’s Provost suspended Dr. Hawkins, eventually moving to terminate her tenure. Sunday, March 7, 7 p.m., Rialto Cinemas Elmwood, 2966 College Ave.

FREE BIRD Urbano Cellars Art Space opens Free Bird, featuring the work of Berkeley artist Niki Banffy-Nesbitt this weekend. “After spending a lot of her childhood moving from town to town and state to state, she now spends significant time in the spring and summer exploring, absorbing, and sketching, and much of the fall and winter in her studio transforming those sketches and memories of place into abstracted landscapes.” The exhibition is curated by Kimberly Rowe and Banffy-Nesbitt will be giving a brief artist’s talk at 3 p.m. on Saturday. Opening reception, Saturday, March 7, 2-6 p.m., Urbano Cellars, 2323B Fourth St.

ROBERTO FONSECA Cuban pianist, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer and bandleader Roberto Fonseca performs at the Freight & Salvage on Saturday night. Havana-born and based, Fonseca has released nine solo albums, collaborated across genres, been nominated for a Grammy Award and toured the world several times over. He has a simply stated aim: “Wherever people are, I want them to hear my music and say, ‘This is Roberto Fonseca’.” Saturday, March 7, 8 p.m., Freight & Salvage, 2020 Addison St.


TRACK & FIELD Stories are swirling around about the Summer Olympics in Tokyo being canceled. You can get a fix of track & field this weekend at Edwards Stadium, when Cal’s team opens its outdoor season with a meet against UC Davis, Saint Mary’s, Santa Clara and USF. Field competition starts at 9 a.m. with the men’s hammer throw. Action on the track kicks off at 1 p.m. with the women’s 4×100 relay. Saturday, March 7 from 9 a.m., Edwards Stadium.

Don’t miss these other events covered on Berkeleyside:

Berkeley Rep’s ‘Culture Clash (Still) in America’ still has its mojo after 35 years
Can Berkeley’s Civic Center become the heart of the city? Gehl Studio thinks so 
Big Screen Berkeley: Fraud and faith are at the center of the Oscar-nominated ‘Corpus Christi’
YMTC’s ‘The Music Man’ comes with a message (maybe) 
Breathtaking art show in Berkeley explores death, and life 
The work of Arthur Szyk, whose political cartoons lampooned Hitler, resonates today