June Arts and Music Calendar
We’re almost halfway done with 2018 — how is this possible? With the arrival of June means summer’s around the corner, so don’t be shy about hanging outside this month. Outdoor comedy and theater, art walks and a San Francisco tradition featuring a huge parade are all coming up these next few weeks — so get excited for some summer vibes! There’s no shortage of great indoor events as well, so read on to find out what our friends are offering this month:
Photo of performers at Clusterfest. Provided by Another Planet Entertainment.
Clusterfest (June 1-3) at Civic Center/UN Plaza
The second annual Clusterfest is coming back to San Francisco, and the star-studded lineup includes Jon Stewart, Amy Schumer, The Lonely Island, Trevor Noah and many more. There'll be three days of comedy, music (what's up Third Eye Blind and Wu Tang Clan!), attractions like the South Park County Fair, live podcast recordings and performances from drag queens. Tickets range from $99-$290 and can be purchased online. Take BART to Civic Center/UN Plaza and walk four minutes to Civic Center and Bill Graham Auditorium.
Walnut Creek Art & Wine Festival (June 2-3) at Walnut Creek
Walnut Creek's Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau present the city's Art & Wine Festival, which is celebrating its 37th year this year. There will be family-friendly Bay Area music and entertainment, a premium wine tent, a craft beer garden, a sports lounge, food vendors and works of art from over 200 local artisans. Some of the art that will be on display includes fine art, photography, mixed media and metal art. The festival's hours on June 2 are from 11am to 6pm, and on June 3 are 11am to 6pm. Admission is free. Take BART to Walnut Creek and take a free shuttle ride to and from the festival.
San Leandro Cherry Festival (June 2) at Bay Fair (San Leandro)
San Leandro was once the cherry-growing capital of the region, and the city’s annual Cherry Festival has been honoring that heritage since 1909. There is a parade that begins at 10am on San Leandro Boulevard and the festival will last until 6pm. Visitors can expect music and entertainment on the main stage, along with food vendors and a Kids Zone at other areas of the festival. Admission is free. Take BART to Bay Fair (San Leandro) and walk to 320 West Estudillo Ave.
Photo provided by Berkeley Juneteenth.
Berkeley Juneteenth (June 17) at Ashby (Berkeley)
June 19, 1865 marked a historic day for U.S. slaves -- it was the day when news reached Galveston, Texas that President Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation. After news broke, slaves flooded the streets and rejoiced in newly discovered freedom. Berkeley is one of many communities across the country that has adopted Juneteenth as a celebration of African-American culture and traditions. On Sunday, June 17 from 11am to 7pm, visitors can come listen to live music which will include some of the best of the African-American experience: drumming, jazz, blues and much more. There will also be specialty performances like dance and spoken word, along with historical exhibits and art for children. Admission is free. Take BART to Ashby (Berkeley) and walk 4 minutes south of Martin Luther King Jr Way, toward Alcatraz Avenue and Adeline Street.
What the Constitution Means to Me (May 10-June 17) at Downtown Berkeley
Heidi Schreck used to deliver speeches about the Constitution in American Legion Halls all across the U.S. back in high school to help pay for college. Now the Obie Award-winning performer has reinvented her speech she gave at 15 to a new audience and explores the effect the document has had on four generations of women in her family. The piece also includes a debate between Schreck and a local high-school debater over the future of citizens’ inalienable rights. Head over to Berkeley Rep Theatre and go watch what New York Magazine called one of the 10 best shows of 2017. Tickets range from $30-$97 and can be purchased online. Take BART to Downtown Berkeley and walk 2 minutes to Berkeley Rep.
Walnut Creek Uncorked (June 20) at Walnut Creek
Head over to Walnut Creek Uncorked on June 20 for an evening of strolling through downtown Walnut Creek and exploring the city’s unique artisan shops from 6 to 9pm. There will be a variety of wines to sip and tasty bites to savor. The event will also include hydration stations and live entertainment. Tickets are $40 in advance and $50 on the event day, and can be purchased online. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Walnut Creek Education Foundation — cheers to that! Take BART to Walnut Creek and walk 11 minutes to the event’s starting location, which is at City Hall Plaza.
Soft Power (June 20-July 8) at Powell Street
"Soft Power" is a first time collaboration between Tony Award winners David Henry Hwang ("M. Butterfly") and Jeanine Tesori ("Fun Home"). It is an East-meets-West musical based on the story of a Chinese executive in America, circa 2016, who falls in love with a U.S. leader. Their romance starts to shift the power balance between the two countries, with a potential new order in the future. The piece is inspired by inauthentic portrayals of Asia that are often put forth by the West, and is what the LA Times describes as "smart, splashy and wonderfully funny." Go see what The Hollywood Reporter calls “the most creatively ambitious new musical of the year!” and what Entertainment Weekly says is a "form-busting examination of the American dream." Tickets range from $29-$165 and can be bought online. Take BART to Powell Street and walk 8 minutes to the Curran Theater.
Photo courtesy of Visit Concord.
Music & Market Series (June 21 and June 28) at Concord
On every Thursday evening until September, Visit Concord is hosting its 30th annual Music & Market Series at Todos Santos Plaza. There will be free concerts in the park, along with a farmers' market to shop from. On June 21, LUMBERYARD will be performing favorite covers from the 60's and 70's, and on June 28 there will be a performance from The Highway Poets, whose music is new retro soul. Hours are 6:30pm to 8pm. Admission is free. Smoking, dogs and alcohol are not permitted in the Plaza, but feel free to bring picnic supplies and lawn chairs. Take BART to Concord and walk 8 minutes to Todos Santos Plaza.
Dry Powder (June 22-July 22) at Downtown Berkeley
Does a play centered around the topic of high finance have you intrigued? If so, “Dry Powder” may be the show you need to see. After his private equity firm forced job cuts at a national retailer, Rick is facing some harsh backlash. He must decide between two very different solutions -- one from his Managing Director that’s more ideal, or one from a firm partner that is more controversial. “Dry Powder” — which Time Out New York calls “...lacerating...nuanced...extraordinarily timely” — is celebrating its Bay Area premiere at Aurora Theatre. Tickets are $38 and can be purchased online. Take BART to Downtown Berkeley and walk 2 minutes to the theater.
Photo provided by SF Pride.
San Francisco Pride Celebration and Parade (June 23-24) at Civic Center/UN Plaza
San Francisco Pride has been an annual celebration since 1972, and it’s the largest gathering of the LGBT community and allies in the nation. There are over 200 parade contingents and contributors, and more than 20 community-run stages and venues. Celebrations begin on Saturday in Civic Center Plaza, and the parade takes place on Sunday morning at 10:30am, kicking off from Beale Street along Market and ends at Market and 8th streets. Keep your eyes peeled for the BARTmobile that will be driving down the parade! There will be plenty of speakers, performers and exhibitors to check out both days. Come celebrate equality with thousands of other attendees at one of the most famous events in San Francisco. Admission is free. Take BART to Civic Center/UN Plaza and the festivities will be right there!
The Contemporary Jewish Museum exhibitions (Ends July 8, 29) at Powell Street
The Contemporary Jewish Museum hopes to show the diversity of the Jewish experience to a modern audience through exhibitions and educational programs. Some of its current exhibitions are:
"Kutiman: Offgrid Online" runs through July 8. It focuses on Kutiman, a young Israeli musician and composer, who utilizes audio and video from the web to focus on themes of assemblage, cut-up literary technique, appropriation and found art into the realm of music and sound composition.
"The Art of Rube Goldberg" also runs through July 8. It explores the career of the celebrated cartoonist and is the first retrospective exhibition of his work since 1970. Visitors can see never-before-exhibited original drawings, sketches, rare photographs, films, letters and memorabilia from his family archives.
"Contraption: Rediscovering California Jewish Artists" runs through July 29. It is a group show from 16 California-identified artists of Jewish descent that are both historical and living. From the living artists there will be large-scale mechanical installations, as well as ceramics, drawings, sculpture and paintings.
Tickets range from $5-$14. Admission is free for members and visitors age 18 and younger. There is also free admission on every first Tuesday of each month. Take BART to Powell Street and walk 6 minutes to the museum.
Angels in America (Ends July 22) at Downtown Berkeley
Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning play, “Angels in America,” is at Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Tony Taccone is the artistic director of the play in his 20th anniversary season. The play was first staged 26 years ago, and originally commissioned by the Eureka Theatre in San Francisco. It’s a two-part drama that explores subjects like American politics and gay identity, along with love and loyalty. Tickets range from $40-$100 and can be purchased online. Take BART to Downtown Berkeley and walk 2 minutes to Berkeley Rep.
Photo courtesy of Asian Art Museum.
Divine Bodies (Ends July 29) at Civic Center/UN Plaza
The Asian Art Museum houses one of the largest collections of Asian art in the world with 18,00 objects — some pieces dating back 6,000 years.
Its current feature exhibition, Divine Bodies, showcases more than 40 traditional Hindu and Buddhist paintings and sculptures, along with some modern photo-based work. Divine Bodies encourages attendees to ponder themes of transformation, transcendence and the relationship of the bodies to the cosmos. Tickets range from $10-$25, and there will be free admission on May 6. Take BART to Civic Center/UN Plaza and walk 4 minutes to the museum.
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