What’s Goin On

by Eileen Sondak October 3, 2017


north-coast-rep-noelle-marion-phil-johnson-aaron-rumley-2last-of-the-red-hot-loversSan Diego Symphony 

The San Diego Symphony will launch its season on Oct. 6 with “The Hero’s Life,” conducted by Edo de Waart and featuring Jean-Yves Thibaudet on piano. Thibaudet will perform as the guest artist for the Symphony’s Opus Gala on Oct. 7 as well. That spectacular fundraiser will start with a reception, followed by the performance and a lively after party – and this annual event is always an audience favorite.

The Symphony’s Family Concert Series will begin on Oct. 15 with “Symphonic Tales. “Romance, Mystery, Marsalis,” slated for Oct. 27 – 29, with Nicola Benedetti on violin. The three-piece program will feature Wynton Marsalis’ Violin Concerto. The Symphony’s Film Series starts on Oct. 28, with “Ratatouille.”

The entire season at Symphony Hall will include 11 guest conductors, 14 works new to the San Diego Symphony, and well-known soloists the likes of Pinchas Zukerman, in addition to a world premiere concerto by Adam Schoenberg, commissioned by violinist Anne Akiko Meyers. Sounds like a winning season!

San Diego Opera

The San Diego Opera will kick off its season on Oct. 14 with Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Pirates of Penzance.” The comic operetta features Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King, and will keep audiences at the Civic Theater laughing through Oct. 22.

La Jolla Playhouse  

The La Jolla Playhouse is ready to close its world premiere production of the black comedy, “Wild Goose Dreams,” on Oct. 1.

The Playhouse will present its Without Walls Festival Oct. 19 – 22. The eclectic line-up will include works by New York, Los Angeles, and San Diego artists.

Old Globe Theatre

The Globe’s Main Stage production of “Benny & Joon,” a brand new musical based on a ‘90s romantic comedy musical, is still going strong. The season-opening show — peopled by unforgettable characters and boasting a charming and tuneful score — will remain at the Globe through Oct. 22.

The Globe’s White Theater is staging “The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey,” a solo work written and performed by James Lecesne. This play about a brash New Jersey detective eager for a challenging case, will stick around in the Globe’s theater-in-the-round setting through Oct. 29.

North Coast Rep

North Coast Repertory Theater will end its run of Neil Simon’s “Red Hot Lovers” on Oct. 1, but on Oct. 18, NCR will bring to life John Steinbeck’s masterpiece, “Of Mice and Men.” The seething drama about an unlikely friendship and the illusionary nature of dreams will stay on through Nov. 12.

 San Diego Rep

San Diego Repertory Theater will pull down the curtain on “Roz & Ray” (a two-character, history-based play set in San Diego) on Oct. 1. Following on Oct. 19, is Robert Askins’ “Hand to God.” An innocent-looking puppet in an angst-ridden church youth group forms the basis of this black comedy, directed by Sam Woodhouse. It was a smash on Broadway, but be prepared for explicit language. The show will be ensconced on the Lyceum Stage through Nov. 12.

Cygnet Theatre

Cygnet Theater is ready to unveil the San Diego premiere of “The Legend of Georgia McBride,” a musical play about an unemployed Elvis impersonator who takes on another flamboyant character as a drag queen. The crowd-pleasing comedy, written by Matthew Lopez and directed by Sean Murray, will take over the Old Town Theater Oct. 11 through Nov. 12.

Lamb’s Players Theatre

The Lamb’s Players will revive the down-home musical “Smoke on the Mountain” Oct. 6 through Nov. 19. The show abounds with blue grass, gospel, and traditional songs.

San Diego Musical Theatre

San Diego Musical Theatre will continue to show off its production of “Billy Elliot” (a co-production with the California Ballet Company) through Oct. 8. The musical – about a young boy who stumbles into dance in a coal-mining town in England – is being performed at the Spreckels Theatre.

Welk Theater  

Welk Theater is featuring a contemporary piece composed by Kander and Ebb. “Kiss of the Spider Woman” is one of the rare musicals Welk presents that is not suitable for the 17 and under crowd, but it’s a great choice for mature audiences – with a Tony Award to prove it. The dramatic musical will be ensconced at Welk’s Escondido home through Oct. 22.

Coronado Playhouse

Coronado Playhouse is performing “Little Shop of Horrors” through Oct. 15. This delightfully silly sci-fi spoof has clever rock songs to propel the offbeat plot.


JCompany Youth Theatre will stage “The Lion King” Oct. 20 through Nov. 5 at the JCC in La Jolla. This musical masterpiece, directed by Joey Landwehr, should be a hit with the whole family.

San Diego Chorus

San Diego Chorus will present its 66th annual show, “A World of Harmony,” on Oct. 7 at the Lincoln Performing Arts Center. The event includes performers from Sweden and New Zealand.

City Ballet

City Ballet will hold a fundraiser celebrating its 25th anniversary on Oct. 7 at the Hotel Del Coronado. The “Silver Jubilee Gala” will include a cocktail reception, dinner and wine pairing, a season preview performance by the City Ballet dancers, and dancing to live music.

San Diego Museum of Art

The San Diego Museum of Art has opened its vaults to show off a treasure trove of artwork usually kept under lock and key. “Visible Vaults,” a collection of 300 pieces, including works by Andy Warhol, Rodin, Toulouse-Lautrec and other great artists, will be on view through Nov. 12 of next year.

Also on display at the Art Museum is “Brenda Biondo: Play,” an exhibition of 25 photographs focusing on children’s playgrounds. The show will run through Jan. 10, 2018. “Reflections on Monet,” a small-scale exhibition that includes the famous Water Lily painting and one piece on loan from the John and Toni Bloomberg Collection, will stay put through Jan. 21.

The newest exhibition at the Art Museum is “Modern Masters from Latin America: The Perez Simon Collection.” This show (opening Oct. 21) features 1,000 works by seminal figures, including Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Fernando Botero. These artworks will be on view through March 11, 2018.

Museum of Contemporary Art

The Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla is closed for renovation and expansion, but the downtown facility is featuring “Dimensions of Black: A Collaboration with the San Diego African American Museum of Art.” The show is ensconced through next January.

Birch Aquarium  

Birch Aquarium is featuring “Hall of Fishes,” which is unlike any other exhibition in the history of the aquarium. It also serves as a working laboratory. Birch also has an installation on light by scientist Michael Latz, and an exhibition that helps you understand Scripps’ expeditions to discover and protect the planet. “Expedition at Sea” immerses you in the experience of life and work aboard the Sally Ride research vessel. It includes a 33-foot long projected triptych and hands-on learning opportunities.

Reuben Fleet Science Center  

The Reuben Fleet Science Center will be showing three films: “Dream Big: Engineering our World,” a first-of-its-kind film that will transform the way we think about engineering; “Islands of the Lemurs,” an up-close-and-personal look at some fascinating creatures; and “A Beautiful Planet,” an astronaut’s view of Earth.

The Fleet has two special exhibitions: “Dream, Design, Build” and “Game Master.” “Dream…” explores the Fleet’s collection of interactive engineering activities (and will remain on permanent display), and “Game Master” showcases the world’s best video game designers, with more than 100 playable games. The exhibition will stay on through Jan. 15, 2018.  The museum has several other permanent exhibitions, including “Don’t Try This at Home,” “Tinkering Studio,” “Block Busters,” and “Origins in Space.”

Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum is featuring “Extraordinary Ideas from Ordinary people: A History of Citizen Science.” Among the items on view in this exhibition are rare books, art and historical documents. “Ultimate Dinosaurs” features dinosaurs from the Southern Hemisphere. They include many we have never seen or heard of before, based on new groundbreaking research.

Also on display is “Animals: Machines in Motion,” an exhibition that explores plants and animals as machines built for survival. Check out two films: “Whales 3D” and “A Reef Reborn.” The Nat also offers “Fossil Mysteries,” “Water: A California Story,” and “Skulls.”


Mingei International Museum is showcasing “Kanban: Traditional Shop Signs of Japan,” an exhibition that features a variety of forms and mediums, through Oct. 8. Joining that show is “Homage to the Horse and Other Steeds,” an exhibition of objects celebrating the nobility and power of horses from all over the world. This exhibition is slated to stay on through Nov. 12.

Mingei’s newest exhibition, “Arline Fisch: One of a Kind,” a retrospective view of jewelry and other art forms designed by this San Diego resident, will be on display through Jan. 7, 2018.

San Diego History Center

The San Diego History Center is celebrating “The History & Heritage of the San Diego Jewish Community” in its current exhibition. Also on display is “Irving Gill: New Architecture for a Great Country,” and “Art and Heritage: Maurice Braun, Belle Baranceanu, and Harry Sternberg.” The museum’s permanent exhibition, “Placed Promises,” chronicles the history of the San Diego region – and its newest exhibition, the America’s Cup Exhibition, highlights the sailing race held in San Diego three times since 1988.




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