Homer Onstage x 2: High School’s Hi-jinks and High-art Theater
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 7, 2021

As if persevering through a pandemic isn’t sufficiently perplexing, Santa Barbara High’s theater arts department is undertaking the challenge of cramming years of classic sagas into a single evening performance. In The Iliad, The Odyssey, and All of Greek Mythology in 99 minutes or less, written by Jay Hopkins and John Hunter, the student actors […]

Viva la FIESTA FIVE! Movies Return to Downtown as Metro Theatres Reopen
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 1, 2021

In one of those quirky COVID coincidences, Metropolitan Theatres is reopening its doors just as the Santa Barbara International Film Festival is about to get underway with a hybrid virtual/drive-in edition.  Nine days after the county moved back into the red tier, movie theaters will be allowed to open indoors at 25 percent capacity or […]

 

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Dark, But Optimistic: Paula McLain’s ‘When the Stars Go Dark’ Addresses Reality of Child Abduction
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   April 1, 2021

It is every parent’s nightmare. Their child goes missing. It is 1993 and young girls are disappearing in Northern California.  The New York Times bestselling author Paula McLain (The Paris Wife) makes an abrupt departure from her popular historical novels to delve into the world of suspense and crime mystery in When the Stars Go […]

Getting Innovative: From Drive-ins to Zoom Q&As, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival is Ready
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 1, 2021

Over its 36-year history, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival has had to deal with challenges such as raising funds to keep the fest afloat in the early days; pivoting quickly following the departure of its new executive director after a single season at the helm; and erecting barricades to hold back the masses when […]

Arts in Lockdown #24: Artist Baret Boisson
By Joanne Calitri   |   April 1, 2021

Baret Boisson is an American artist currently working from her studio in Carpinteria. Her renowned series, “Inspiring Greatness,” which opened at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis in 2016, continues to this day with a new portrait of Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman, commissioned by Lisa Loiacono Lloyd. The series began humbly with her passion […]

Thomas Reynolds Gallery
By Lynda Millner   |   March 25, 2021

There’s something new at 1331 State Street: the Thomas Reynolds Gallery near the Arlington Theatre! The Gallery was founded in 1994 in San Francisco in the Pacific Heights neighborhood and was known for contemporary California art and artists. I met with Thomas Reynolds the other day and he said, “I am also an editor-publisher and […]

Arts in Lockdown #23: Sharon Hendrix
By Joanne Calitri   |   March 25, 2021

Sharon Hendrix is an icon. As a black American female singer working in a predominately white-male, music industry since 1978, her vocals, dance routines, stellar stage outfits, nonstop smile, professionalism and business savvy grace the world’s top performing arts venues. She’s played the London O2 Arena, Broadway Theatre, Las Vegas, and Europe, numerous TV specials […]

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‘Storm Reading’ Revisited
By Steven Libowitz   |   March 19, 2021

Back in 1988 nobody could have predicted the success or impact of Storm Reading, a theatrical play starring and based on the life experiences of Neil Marcus, a humorist-philosopher who lives with a neurological disorder called Dystonia that dramatically impacts his ability to speak and control movement. That includes Rod Lathim, who as head of […]

Arts in Lockdown #22: Bi-Racial Arts Champion Entrepreneur & Mom Ashley Woods Hollister
By Joanne Calitri   |   March 11, 2021

The multi-faceted bi-racial Ashley Woods Hollister is an arts champion and curator, and supporter of the Santa Barbara nonprofit community. She’s served on the boards of Explore Ecology, on the Santa Barbara Mental Wellness Center since 2007, and just joined the board of the Foundation for Climate Change Action. She is the co-founder of T.W. […]

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Red-Letter Days for CAMA
By Hattie Beresford   |   March 11, 2021

On March 6, 1920, the Morning Press reported that the petroleum industry was booming in Ventura, prohibition agents were arresting bootleggers and rumrunners, and fruit vendors were setting up stands along the highways so booze-deprived drivers could quench their thirst by sucking on oranges. (I kid you not, there was an article in the newspaper!) […]

Mission: Impossible Objects
By Steven Libowitz   |   March 10, 2021

Ed Lister, who is known in both Los Angeles and Santa Barbara as a skilled scenic artist with credits in the theater credits and mural making, has created a series of vibrant abstract silk screen prints, or serigraphs. They were made starting in the early 1970s while he was teaching printmaking at the Chelsea School […]

The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah (St Martin’s Press)
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   March 4, 2021

“The four winds have blown us here, people from all across the country, to the very end of this great land.”  For those of us who live in Montecito we are all too familiar with the land we love. Though lush and verdant, it has on occasion betrayed us with drought, fires, and mudslides. Still, […]

Arts in Lockdown #21: Musician Brayell
By Joanne Calitri   |   March 4, 2021

Brayell is a multi-instrumentalist, recording artist, and music producer in the genres of rap, hip-hop, and alternative. He has recently explored a version of indie pop music in his just-released single titled, “Made Her Feel Good,” a heartfelt song reminiscent of a breakup. He began recording at age 15 and, in 2017, started releasing his […]

Race Relations Past and Present
By Steven Libowitz   |   February 26, 2021

Earlier in February, UCSB Arts & Lectures hosted the MacArthur Foundation “Genius Award” playwright-actress Anna Deavere Smith as part of its virtual Race to Justice series. The university’s Department of Theater and Dance closes out the month with a production of Fires in the Mirror: Crown Heights, Brooklyn, and Other Identities, Smith’s groundbreaking one-woman show […]

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