The Berkeley Art Center has put on many provocative shows in its 50-year history but now faces challenges about how to pay for its building.
After years of neglect, Berkeley has begun requiring nonprofit organizations renting buildings from the city to undertake and pay for long-deferred maintenance and capital improvements. About one dozen nonprofits have entered into lease negotiations with the Parks, Recreation and Waterfront department over the past few years. While a few of those leases have been signed, many have dragged on for two to four years and are still unsigned.
The very first GLAS Animation Festival opens this week in Berkeley. With screenings and related events happening at multiple sites, including Landmark’s Shattuck Cinemas, the David Brower Center, Berkeley Art Center and the Firehouse Art Collective, the inaugural festival runs March 3-6.
DEMYSTIFYING BATS In an appropriately timed event, come learn about local bats on Saturday Oct. 31 at the UC Botanical Garden with Director of NorCal Bats, Corky Quirk. Quirk will talk about bats and discuss the harmful myths that surround these potentially cute animals. You’ll also learn the importance of bats in our environment. Live bats will be presented for viewing and discussion. Saturday Oct. 31, 10 a.m., UC Botanical Garden at Berkeley, 200 Centennial Dr.. Price: $15 Adult/$10 Adult Member/$5 Youth (ages 3-17). Details on Berkeleyside’s Events Calendar. (more…)
NOT YOUR USUAL LIBRARY EVENT The Berkeley Public Library Foundation is holding a “spirited after-hours event” on Saturday, Oct. 10. Tall Tales & Local Ales will feature David “DJ Dave” Wittman, of “Whole Foods Parking Lot” fame (if you haven’t seen it, drop everything and watch now). Wittman will be joined by an all-star cast of storytellers, including Kay DeMartini, Scott Sanders, Saida Acevedo, Rachman Blake, Robin Claire and Berkeley High senior Lena Sibony. Musicians from the BHS music programs will perform. Local cider and beer is provided by Crooked City Cider, Hoi Polloi, Sierra Nevada, Triple Rock and Calicraft, plus home-made ginger ale, lemonade and hearty finger foods. 14-years-old and older welcome. The evening benefits “It’s Time for Central,” high-impact renovations at the Central Library, including a new space for teens, renovation of the reference room, expanded space for art installations, improved interior lighting and more. Berkeleyside Nosh is a sponsor of Tall Tales & Local Ales. Tickets are $50 for the first two, and $35 for additional tickets available online. Saturday, Oct. 10, 7-10 p.m., Berkeley Central Library, 2090 Kittredge St. (more…)
HENRY IV PART 1 AT JOHN HINKEL PARK Berkeley’s beautiful amphitheater at John Hinkel Park plays host to The Free Theater for four weekends, starting on Sat., July 11. The company is putting on a spartan, feisty production of Shakespeare’s play Henry IV Part 1. Just like when Shotgun mounted productions at the open-air amphitheater, it will be “pass the hat” after the show with sausages on the grill. Music will be played, swords will be clashed, and impassioned text will take hold of the space. The fledgling company is mentored by Shotgun Players as part of its Make a Difference program. Henry IV Part 1 runs through Sunday Aug. 2. Watch a video about the production, and get full details, on The Free Theater’s website. (more…)
BAY AREA BOOK FESTIVAL Downtown Berkeley will be overrun by books, authors and readers this weekend when the inaugural Bay Area Book Festival comes to town. The free event spans several blocks, and sections of Allston Way, Milvia Street, Addison Street, and Kittredge Street will be closed to traffic from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. The areas usually filled by cars will be occupied instead by booksellers, storytellers, artists, art installations, and more. Dozens of panels, with themes of culture, poetry, technology, and more, will be held in indoor spaces around the Downtown area throughout the day (don’t miss the Berkeleyside Uncharted panels with authors Wallace J. Nichols, Ben Parr, and Design Within Reach founder Rob Forbes, moderated by Berkeleyside publisher Lance Knobel and American Oz: Berkeley and the Bay Area, moderated by Berkeleyside executive editor Frances Dinkelspiel). The stretch of Allston Way in front of Berkeley High School will be home to a food court and beer and wine garden. (On Saturday, the weekly Berkeley Farmer’s Market will be in its usual spot on Center between MLK and Milvia.) On Sunday evening, the band The Deadliners (composed entirely of authors) will play starting at 5:30 p.m. in Civic Center Park. To top it all off, on Saturday at 7 p.m. bestselling author Judy Blume will be speaking about her new adult book, In the Unlikely Event and about her experiences as a censored author. For more information, visit the Bay Area Book Festival website. (Berkeleyside Uncharted is one of the festival’s three main media sponsors.) (more…)
GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS This weekend is your last chance to see Theatre First’s production of Glengarry Glen Ross at Live Oak Theatre, as its run has its final day on Sunday. David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy about working-class real-estate salesmen trying to eke out a living in the fast-paced economy of the 1980s and claim their piece of the American Dream became an instant classic of American theatre and is regarded as one of the playwright’s best plays. For details and to buy tickets, visit Theatre First’s website or phone 510-981 8150. (more…)
UNCHARTED Wake up tomorrow morning and mingle with some of the most prominent and captivating thinkers across the disciplines. Berkeleyside presents the second annual Uncharted, a two-day festival jam-packed with stimulating discussion and debate. On Friday, Oct. 24 and Saturday, Oct. 25, festival speakers and participants will gather at Berkeley Rep and Freight & Salvage to engage with big, daring, and dangerous ideas. This year’s exciting program includes musings on robotics, new energy, stereotyping, marriage equality, and 3D printing. A few one and two-day passes are still available for the extravaganza, which lasts 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, with workshops, coffee breaks, and a party on Friday evening. Find out more. (more…)
TEEN SHREK This weekend, TeenStage will be performing “Shrek The Musical” at the Julia Morgan Theatre, 2640 College Avenue. Based on the popular 2001 kids movie, the musical follows an ogre and talking donkey on their adventure to save a princess from a fiery dragon. TeenStage is Berkeley Playhouse’s educational program, which features kids aged 12-18. The play lasts two and a half hours and will be shown four times this weekend: 7 p.m. on Friday, 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets are $20 for general admission and $15 for youth general admission and can be bought at the Berkeley Playhouse website. (more…)
REMEMBERING HIROSHIMA AND NAGASAKI Aug. 6 and 9 mark the 69th anniversaries of the nuclear bombings of the Japanese cities Hiroshima and Nagasaki by U.S. armed forces, effectively ending World War II. This Friday, to commemorate these anniversaries, the Newman Nonviolent Peacemakers will be hosting a movie screening of Oliver Stone’s “The Bomb” — part of his series, “The Untold History of the United States” — followed by a discussion. The event is free and will go from 7-9 p.m. at Newman Hall, 2700 Dwight Way. (more…)