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San Diego weekend arts events: 'Flourish,' 'Paradise TBD' and contemporary dance meets rock climbing

A photograph from a series by artist Jon Lardizabal will be on view at "Flourish," an exhibition of works by AAPI artists presented by Teros Gallery at Pixley's Oddities, opening May 28, 2022.
Jon Lardizabal
A undated photograph from a series by artist Jon Lardizabal will be on view at "Flourish," an exhibition of works by AAPI artists presented by Teros Gallery at Pixley's Oddities, opening May 28, 2022.

This weekend in the arts: an AAPI Heritage Month art exhibition presented by Teros Gallery; a new, experimental music opera with Project [BLANK]; Disco Riot’s “Choreo & Climb" pairs performance with rock climbing; a reading from border poets; and the Symphony and San Diego Master Chorale do Beethoven’s Ninth.

'Flourish': AAPI Heritage Month Art Show

Visual art
Presented by Teros Gallery, "Flourish" follows last year's "Ghidorah Lives" exhibition, produced by Teros and held at Good Faith Gallery. This year, the exhibition will be at Pixley's Oddities, a curiosities, book and zine shop and tattoo parlor.

The exhibition is curated by Teros' Carmela Prudencio, who said several through lines developed as they prepared the exhibition, but the show itself is intended to celebrate the "generative" solidarity she and others observe as the Asian American/Pacific Islander community collaborates.

Artist and curator Carmela Prudencio stitches sheets of paper together for her work in "Flourish," opening Saturday, May 28, 2022 at Pixley's Oddities.
Courtesy of Teros Gallery
In this undated photo, artist and curator Carmela Prudencio stitches sheets of paper together for her work in "Flourish," opening Saturday, May 28, 2022 at Pixley's Oddities.

"There's so much to say about how we're perceived as model minorities, how Asian American communities are perceived as submissive and quiet, and this is loud. Like, I want this to be louder than what we feel like we're allowed to be," said Prudencio. "That is where this flourishing and celebration of all this solidarity of this community really comes from, is that we don't want to hide anymore. But also it was really reasonable for us to want to hide and keep it low because of the violence that's been happening, too. So how do we band together as a community and build strength?"

Featured are 16 regional artists identifying as Asian American or Pacific Islander. Prudencio has artwork in the exhibition — a stitched together series of risograph-printed collage works.

"I've been working on a piece that's really an ode to my ancestors, and how I'm able to hear them, even though I feel so far away here in the United States from the Philippines," Prudencio said. "I've been working on this because of feeling this connection of memory and trauma to my body, but my body to its relation to geography and landscape."

Work by artist Kim Sweeney will be on view at "Flourish," opening Saturday, May 28, 2022 at Pixley's Oddities.
Kim Sweeney
Work by artist Kim Sweeney is shown in this undated image. It will be on view at "Flourish," opening Saturday, May 28, 2022 at Pixley's Oddities.

Other exhibiting artists include recent Bay Area transplant Colin Choy Kimzey, Carolyn Ramos (who stole our hearts with her "Seinfeld Girlfriends" series in 2020), T. Jay Santa Ana, Kim Sweeney, Tarrah Aroonsakool, Thao Huynh French, Jon Lardizabal and more.

Lardizabal's work is a series of photographs that show his grandmother preparing chicken in the indigenous Igorot pinikpikan style for Thanksgiving.


"(Lardizabal's) photos really resonated with me, thinking about family holidays where we're all coming together, and how we're able to inject our culture into these Western traditions to preserve those memories, to preserve what the generations before us have handed down," Prudencio said.

Details: Opens Saturday, May 28, 2022 with a reception from 5-9 p.m. Exhibition hours are Wednesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Pixley's Oddities, 4201 Park Blvd., University Heights. Free.

'Paradise TBD'

Opera, Experimental music, Theater
Local chamber performance group Project [BLANK] will perform the world premiere of Clinton McCallum's opera "Paradise TBD," written for electronic instruments and five singers. McCallum is a Baltimore-based composer, and he studied at UC San Diego.

The work is about the traumatic aftermath of natural disasters, spanning through long-ago history into the present day, including how societally inflicted impacts like poverty, colonialism and climate change factor into the trauma. The characters are each survivors of one of these disasters, brought together through some time and space magic.

Project [BLANK]'s Brendan Nguyen is music director, and the production is directed by Robert Castro. Vocalists are Anishka Lee-Skorepa, Mariana Flores Bucio, Leslie Ann Leytham, Jonathan Nussman and Miguel Angel Zazueta.

The work will be performed in three concerts at Bread and Salt.

Details: Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 3 p.m. Bread and Salt, 1955 Julian Ave., Logan Heights. $10-$25.

More theater: Don't miss KPBS arts and culture reporter Beth Accomando's recent features on Diversionary Theatre's new production of "Eighty-Sixed" and Lamplighter Community Theatre's "Red Jasper."

Choreo & Climb

Dance, Music, Rock climbing
Contemporary dance company Disco Riot brings back their "Choreo &___" series this weekend. The philosophy of the series is to pair dance performances with audience participation in some form of activity — in this case, rock climbing; in a previous iteration, roller skating. Disco Riot is also featuring a version of Choreo &___ with the City of San Diego's Park Social project later this summer.

Two Disco Riot dancers appear to levitate in a still from Chelsea Zeffiro's "Girldream (1996)"
Sam Zauscher
Disco Riot dancers perform in Chelsea Zeffiro's "Girldream (1996)," which premiered at their "Spectra" program on Apr. 21-23, 2022 in San Diego, Calif.

On Saturday, at the Grotto climbing gym in Miramar, audience members will be given a short safety lesson and have the opportunity to participate in a free climbing time. The Grotto is a bouldering gym, so it's not ropes-based climbing. Throughout the evening, there'll be more chances to climb between several performances — all loosely connected to the climbing setting.

"Some of the inspiration for this particular iteration is the juxtaposition of climbing," said Disco Riot artistic director and cofounder Zaquia Mahler Salinas last month. "So what are some things that kind of oppose climbing, or juxtapose climbing, or things like falling, or suspension or descending? So those are some of the themes that the choreographers have been asked to work with."

The choreographed works include "current," a duet for dancer and violin by Odessa Uno and Jesús Cervates; Joyce Lin and Sharlette Sek's "Intersection"; work by Nicole Oga; and several pieces from Fresh Congress Dance Company.

Details: Saturday, May 28 at 5 p.m. Grotto Climbing and Yoga, 9828 Miramar Rd., Miramar. $20-$35.

FlowerSong Press Reading

Though based in McAllen, Texas, FlowerSong press has an active cohort of Southern California poets that they have published, and they'll be holding a reading on Saturday evening with four authors. Performing are Sonia Gutiérrez, author of "Dreaming With Mariposas"; Matt Sedillo, author of "Mowing Leaves of Grass" and "City on the Second Floor"; Briana Muñoz, author of "Everything is Returned to the Soil/Todo Vuelve a la Tierra"; and David A. Romero, author of "My Name is Romero."

FlowerSong highlights voices from and about borderlands. You can read three incredible poems from bilingual poet Briana Muñoz, recently published here, in Cultural Daily.

Details: Saturday, May 28, 2022 from 6-8 p.m. Barnes and Noble, 1040 El Camino Real, Encinitas. Free.

Beethoven's Ninth Symphony

Classical music
The San Diego Symphony joins the San Diego Master Chorale for two outdoor performances of Beethoven's powerful "Symphony No. 9.” The Symphony will also perform British composer Edward Elgar's mournful "Cello Concerto in E minor," with Alisa Weilerstein on cello.

Details: Friday, May 27 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, May 28 at 5 p.m. The Rady Shell at Jacob's Park, 222 Marina Park Way, downtown. $25-$90.

For more arts events and editor's picks, or to submit your own, go to the KPBS/Arts calendar here. And be sure to sign up for the weekly KPBS/Arts newsletter.