SFJAZZ presents banjo maestro, Béla Fleck, with Abigail Washburn in the Miner Auditorium this weekend. Winner of 15 Grammy® Awards, Fleck is regarded by some as the premiere banjo player in the world, with a remarkable performing and recording career which has taken him into the realms of classical music, and seen collaborations with artists such as Chick Corea, Zakir Hussain and Edgar Meyer.
Abigail Washburn is a clawhammer banjo specialist, and a vocalist in the bluegrass and American old-time tradition. She is known to be a passionate Sinophile, and includes in her repertoire songs which combine Mandarin lyrics with traditional Chinese melodies and old-style American music, in her efforts to share US music in China, and Chinese music in the US.
This husband and wife duo has also recently released a new CD, Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn, featuring both original and traditional material which showcases both Abigail’s voice and their individual styles on various types of banjos.
The performance on 28th November is nearly sold out, but there are still tickets available for the 29th. For more information, visit www.sfjazz.org.
ODC Dance opens its annual Christmas presentation, The Velveteen Rabbit, which is now in its 28th season. This classic interpretation of Margery Williams’ beloved children’s book is by ODC Co-Artistic Director, KT Nelson, set to a score by Benjamin Britten, with recorded narration by British actor, Geoff Hoyle. The Velveteen Rabbit tells of the strong relationship which develops between a boy and his stuffed rabbit – who comes to life – and is related from the perspective of the rabbit who wants nothing more than to become real. The story explores the deep bond between the boy and his rabbit – who, despite his aging and well-worn appearance, is still much loved by the boy – and how they depend upon one another in both good and bad times.
Watch a trailer: http://www.odcdance.org/videogallery.php?param=208
The Velveteen Rabbit, choreographed and directed by KT Nelson, runs at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco from 28th November to 14th December. For more information visit www.odcdance.org.
Back from their seven-city national tour, the musicians of the San Francisco Symphony presents two concerts this weekend, led by Finnish conductor, Susanna Mälkii, with pianist Jeremy Denk as guest soloist. Mr Denk plays the Piano Concerto No 3 by Béla Bartók, and the program includes The White Peacock by Charles Griffes, and Brahms’ Symphony No 2.
This is Ms Mälkii’s second appearance with the Symphony since her debut here in 2012. The current season marks her second as Principal Guest Conductor of the Gulbenkian Orchestra in Lisbon, and she has recently been appointed Chief Conductor of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, effective from the 2016-17 season.
Jeremy Denk – Musical America’s 2014 Instrumentalist of the Year – has been a frequent guest of the San Francisco Symphony since his debut performance in 2004. He accompanied the Symphony on its 2012 American Mavericks Festival and Tour, playing Henry Cowell’s Piano Concerto, and his most recent appearance with Michael Tilson Thomas and the Symphony was in 2013, with the Mozart Piano Concerto No 25.
Susanna Mälkii conducts the San Francisco Symphony, with soloist Jeremy Denk, at Davies Symphony Hall on Saturday 29th November at 8.00 pm, and on Sunday 30th November at 2.00 pm. For further information and to buy tickets, visit the San Francisco Symphony website.
On the subject of Davies Symphony Hall, it’s worth noting that piano virtuoso Yuja Wang appears in recital as the guest of San Francisco Performances at Davies on Monday, 1st December, at 7.30 pm. Widely regarded as one of the most electrifying artists of her generation, Ms Wang will play selections from Schwanengesang and Die schöne Müllerin by Schubert – transcribed for piano by Liszt – Schubert’s Sonata in A Major, Mozart’s Turkish March from Sonata in A, a selection of works by Scriabin, and Balakirev’s Islamey.
For further information and tickets, visit the San Francisco Performances website.
San Francisco-based Yaelisa & Caminos Flamencos present the revival of one of their most popular programs, Canciones, this weekend, featuring flamenco dance set to traditional and popular songs. With guest artists Marina Elana, Manuel Gutierrez and Jesus Montoya, the company will perform interpretations of music by artists such as Ray Charles, Leonard Cohen, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, the Beatles and The Police.
Canciones runs for two performances – on 29th November at 8.00 pm, and 29th November at 3.00 pm – at the Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. To purchase tickets online visit brownpapertickets.com/event/882679 or call 800-838-3006.
The San Francisco Playhouse’s production of the Burt Bacharach/Hal David/Neil Simon musical, Promises, Promises, (see zoomdune.com) is proving so successful that the directors have scheduled an additional performance this weekend – at 7.00 pm on Sunday, 30th November. Book online and get two-for-one tickets to this special added performance, using the code THANKSGIVING.