Changing How Art Matters: Exclusive Interview with SBMA’s Eik Kahng
By Joanne Calitri   |   January 31, 2023

We are most honored to have spent time doing an in-depth interview with Eik Kahng PhD, Deputy Director, and Chief Curator of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (SBMA). Preferring to concentrate on work minus the accolades, she graciously accepted to do it between curation, establishing new high-caliber art education programming for our town at […]

Double Debut Day for Classical Ensembles 
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 31, 2023

Less than six years after the four-decades-old Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra played its final concert in town, a new ensemble that’s even more community-based and oriented is stepping in to fill the void with an even more ambitious approach.  The Santa Barbara Chamber Players (SBCP), created by local musicians who first practiced during the pandemic […]


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Remembering David Crosby: Long Time Gone
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 31, 2023

David Crosby’s death at age 81 on January 18, just five weeks before he was slated to perform as part of the Lobero’s 150th anniversary celebration, was surprisingly shocking even though he’d been in less than perfect health for years. After the initial sadness, what came quickly to mind and heart was both the first […]

Playing with Planes and Trains
By Richard Mineards   |   January 31, 2023

Santa Barbara Symphony was clearly on the right track with its first 70th anniversary concert of the New Year! Plains, Trains, & Violins at the Granada under maestro Nir Kabaretti was a celebration of the influence of music of the Americas with local ties to our Eden by the Beach. The entertaining performance included Uruguayan-born […]

DiDonato’s ‘EDEN’ Communing with nature through music
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 24, 2023

A week after California finally emerged from a series of threatening atmospheric river rainstorms, award-winning mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato is bringing her new passion project to town. EDEN is a timely theatrical experience co-commissioned by UCSB Arts & Lectures that explores our connection to nature and its impact on our world adding movement and theater to […]

Castro’s Convertible Approach to the Blues 
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 24, 2023

Over 30 years, 15 albums, and untold thousands of miles on the road, blues guitarist/singer-songwriter Tommy Castro has played everything from horn-fueled R&B to blues-tinged rock ‘n’ roll to Memphis-infused blue-eyed soul. But in 2021, with more time on his hands due to pandemic closures, he decided to step way outside of his comfort zone […]

‘Patient’ Is a Virtue 
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 24, 2023

An age-old artists’ conundrum of the relationship between creativity and madness gets explored anew in a world premiere original play, The Patient, at Center Stage Theater this weekend. Peter Frisch, the veteran theater director, TV producer, and educator, collaborated on the writing with Shay Munroe, an L.A.-based actress and writer (and former student of Frisch’s […]

  • Book ‘em: From the Page to the Stage
    By Steven Libowitz   |   January 24, 2023

    In her new book How to Stand Up to a Dictator, 2021 Nobel Peace Prize-winning journalist Maria Ressa expresses the fear that the world is “in the last two minutes of democracy” and wonders if we’re at the tipping point for democracy, or fascism. Ressa discusses the story of how democracy dies by a thousand […]

    Dance Dimensions: SBDT Debuts 
    By Steven Libowitz   |   January 17, 2023

    Santa Barbara Dance Theater, which in its association with the UCSB Department of Theater/Dance is the only professional dance company that is in residence in the entire UC system, presents its 2023 season, Intimacy & Autonomy, next week at the Hatlen Theater on campus. The second season under new artistic director Brandon Whited, who is […]


    Sounds at SOhO
    By Steven Libowitz   |   January 17, 2023

    Two local singer-songwriters whose stars continue to rise are heading back to SOhO in an early-year best bet on January 12. Mendeleyev, whose folks named him after the Russian chemist best known for creating a version of the periodic table of elements, continues his own creative ways with a diverse catalog that ranges from fervent […]

    Film Fest Fervor Mounting
    By Steven Libowitz   |   January 17, 2023

    The Banshees of Inisherin stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson– who reteamed for Martin McDonagh’s award-season darling dark comedy after having first appeared together in the director’s brilliant 2008 film In Bruges – have been tapped to together receive SBIFF’s Cinema Vanguard Award on February 16. The announcement rounds out this year’s acting awards at […]

    ‘The Fabelmans’
    By Christopher Matteo Connor   |   January 17, 2023

    Has the movie-going public gone crazy? It’s a question I’ve been asking myself, and a question that – in some way or another – has been making the rounds in public discourse for years. If you aren’t familiar with the Scorsese vs. Marvel fiasco that continues to plague the poor man many years later, I […]

    Let’s Travel
    By Leslie Zemeckis   |   January 10, 2023

    With the holidays behind us, if you’re like me, you long to travel. Well, this month’s list of books will send you from Havana to Singapore, and all from the comfort of your couch. In Armando Lucas Correa’s tremendously moving The Night Travelers, we arrive in Berlin in this story spanning three generations of women. […]

    Abundance After the Winter Dry Spell
    By Steven Libowitz   |   January 10, 2023

    The arts and entertainment scene in Santa Barbara stays particularly fallow in the current year-spanning four-week period, as none of the major producing organizations in town are staging events between mid-December and mid-January, save for the Santa Barbara Symphony’s annual New Year’s Eve concert. The Lobero is the first downtown to spring back into action, […]