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San Diego’s Top Weekend Events: Trolley Opera And Toy Pianos

Rossini's

Credit: San Diego Opera

Above: Rossini's "La Cenerentola" ("Cinderella") is performed at Opera Queensland in this undated photo. The opera will be in San Diego in October.

The long weekend brings offbeat events, like a toy piano festival and opera near the trolley tracks. Plus, a tribute to Gene Wilder.

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Opera on Track

Music

If you're curious about opera but aren't sure you're ready to buy a ticket, there's a chance to get a free preview along the San Diego Trolley lines.

The San Diego Opera and San Diego MTS team up to present Opera on Track, a series of free, abridged performances of "La Cenerentola (Cinderella)."

These family-friendly performances will be performed in English, and there will be discounted tickets for upcoming opera performances available for purchase.

Here's a look at the schedule:

Saturday, Sept. 3

11 a.m.: Santee Trolley Square Amphitheatre, 9844 Mission Gorge Road (Santee Trolley Station, Green Line)

Saturday, Sept. 10

11 a.m.: Market Creek Amphitheatre, 404 Euclid Ave. (Euclid Avenue Station, Orange Line)

2 p.m.: Glashaus Art Studio, 1815 Main Street, Suite B (Barrio Logan Station, Blue Line)

Saturday, Sept. 17

10 a.m.: Mission Valley Library, 2123 Fenton Parkway (Fenton Parkway Station, Green Line)

Noon: 24th Street Station, National City (Blue Line)

2 p.m.: E Street Trolley Station, Chula Vista (Blue Line)

Saturday, Oct. 8

1:30 p.m.: Children’s Museum Park, 200 W. Island (Convention Center Station, Green Line)

Sunday, Oct. 9

1 p.m.: Old Town Trolley Station tunnel (Green Line)

Find additional details here or call (619) 533-7000.

A photo of the artwork "The Epiphany of db Foster."

db Foster Exhibit

Visual Arts

Southwestern College Art Gallery presents the work of db Foster (Daniel Foster).

"Outside In" showcases the work of the artist who created pieces in isolation for nearly 30 years. He's known for surrealist art, and works with everything from acrylic and chalk to watercolor and colored pencil.

Foster lived in San Diego from 1986 to 2003 and moved to Riverside to serve as the Executive Director of the Riverside Art Museum. He returned in 2012 for a three-year stint as the Executive Director of the Oceanside Museum of Art.

Earlier in 2016, he presented his first-ever solo show at Susan Street Fine Art Gallery in Solana Beach. "Outside In" is his second exhibit.

Details: 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 5:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays. Southwestern College Art Gallery, 900 Otay Lakes Road, Chula Vista. Free; call (619) 421-6700 during gallery hours for more details.

Special Feature KPBS/Arts Events Calendar

Find San Diego's best arts events on the KPBS/Arts events calendar.

Toy Piano Festival

Music

A toy piano is just what it sounds like: a small piano-like instrument made to be durable for children. Instead of hammers hitting strings like on a traditional piano, the hammers hit metal rods. Plus, a toy piano has a very limited range and only a few keys.

It also produces a really great sound, one that inspired composer John Cage to write "Suite for Toy Piano."

So to celebrate both John Cage's birthday and toy pianos, UC San Diego puts on an annual Toy Piano Festival.

Now in its 16th year, the event features new scores for toy piano, including the premieres of "Toy Piano Suite 16" and "Labor Day Lullabies."

Details: 1 p.m. Saturday. Neil Morgan Auditorium, Central Library, 330 Park Blvd., downtown. Free; find tickets.

Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Hulton Archive Getty Images

Actor Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka in Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory in 1971. Wilder died Monday at 83.

Gene Wilder Tribute

Film

ArcLight Cinemas presents a tribute to comedian and actor Gene Wilder, who died earlier this week from complications of Alzheimer's disease.

The La Jolla theater will screen two of his most beloved films, "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" and the satirical Western, "Blazing Saddles." All proceeds will be donated to The Alzheimer's Foundation.

Details: "Willy Wonka" screens at noon Saturday; "Blazing Saddles" screens at 5 p.m. Saturday. Arclight Cinemas, Westfield UTC, 4425 La Jolla Village Drive. $11 to $14; find tickets.

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