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KPBS Midday Edition

San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Motels, 'Cabaret' And Hova

A 2017 photo of Linda Libby and the cast of "Cabaret" at Ion Theatre.
Daren Scott
A 2017 photo of Linda Libby and the cast of "Cabaret" at Ion Theatre.
San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Motels, 'Cabaret' And Hova
San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Motels, 'Cabaret' And Hova GUEST: Nina Garin, editor/producer, KPBS/Arts Calendar

This is KPBS Midday Edition. It is the weekend before the weekend before Christmas and all through the house not a Christmas event is storing on this preview. Superstar and an iconic Broadway musical and hotel art are the topics and joining me is Nina Garin.I should say this is peak Nutcracker we can and you can find them anywhere.This a new staging of cabaret in San Diego.This is being put on by Ion Theatre Company , which is a really small theater and when you go, the space is so small that it actually feels like you are in a cabaret and even the actors talk to you and make you feel like you are patron.Can you remind us what cabaret is about.It's about Germany before the Nazis come to power. There was this club called the Kitcat club but it was a refuge for people living an alternative lifestyle. Then it's told through various characters but mostly narrative.Tell us about the character.It's a character who is around and telling stories but also symbolizes different things. Also famously by Alan coming on Broadway.We have some coming as the MC . This is him from the 1998 Broadway show.I understand this production is doing something unusual with the character of the MC.Yes, it has two emcees. The first is the traditional one that we heard it's unusual to have a woman in play that character, but then they added a second one played by an actor, who I think might be 14. He is an MC was a nationalist figure and as the show progresses, their roles change and it's a very fascinating --This production pulls in some modern day politics?Yes. The second MC does things like wear red baseball cap and also just the theme of nationalism and it feels relevant.Cabaret is at the Ion Theatre Company playing through December 23. Next we have a unique art fair .This is an art show that transforms hotel rooms into galleries and stages.What is the thinking behind this?It is a way to create a hub of excitement and bring attention to the local art scene but also a really unique place to work if you are an artist. You are given this big space and have more creativity and it's a unique idea.How does it work? Does each room have a theme?Each room is the individual artist or in our collective or maybe a group of musicians. So each room you going to will be guided by whoever is in charge.I understand there will be things to see and very unexpected places.It will be anything from sheets that you can open and you might open towards.About how many artists are participating?There's about safety and all from Southern California. It's not just visual art but also musicians and a handful of things that you might not expect.Hotel/motels happens tonight in North Park. Finally Jay-Z is headed to San Diego after recently being nominated for eight Grammys.He leads the race with the most nominations. He's nominated for the big three album of the year, record of the year and song of the year.Why is this album so important?Its much more mature and he is more thoughtful. He's been in the business for decades . This is a reinvention. He sings about race and wealth and social upset inMany listeners will know that JC is married to Beyoncé. Does a song about her on this album.Yes, she talked about infidelity by JC and this is the response that everyone has been waiting for. He addresses it on the song 4:44.Let's listen.[ Music ]That was 4:44 by Jay-Z. As you mention he has been at this for decades now. Water his live audiences like?He just turned 48 but he's bringing a mix of ages. He's bringing the people who were there when he first started out and bringing new fans. He's making one to $2 million per city. There's a lot of excitement about him.He performs next Tuesday, December 19. I've been speaking with Nina Garin.Midday edition is produced by Michael Lipkin and Brooke Ruth. Meditation senior producers Meghan Burk. Stay with us for KPBS Roundtable after the break. I'm Maureen Cavanaugh. Have a great weekend.

This weekend features iconic names in theater and hip hop, as well as an unconventional art show.

'Cabaret'

Theater

Ion Theatre Company stages the musical theater classic, "Cabaret."

This musical is set in a Berlin nightclub just before the Nazi rise to power. But the Kit Kat Club serves as a refuge for those who feel marginalized, or who are disturbed with the political climate.

The intimate local production adds clever nods to modern American politics, and also features two people playing the role of the iconic Emcee. The results are both clever and heartbreaking.

Details: 8 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays; 4 and 8 p.m. Saturdays. Through Dec. 23. Ion Theatre, 3704 6th Ave., Hillcrest. $18 to $59.

A photo from the Hotels/Motels art fair. Ernest Silva (2003 @ the Travelodge, downtown)
Fallen Tree Exhibitions
A photo from the Hotels/Motels art fair. Ernest Silva (2003 @ the Travelodge, downtown)

Hotels/Motels

Visual Arts

An alternative to the traditional art gallery, "Hotels/Motels" is a show that transforms hotel rooms into art spaces.

Artists from all over Southern California will meet at the Lafayette Hotel to turn each space into a different experience. Some will be performance rooms with poetry and music performances. Others will have art exhibits where visitors can find work inside desk drawers or projected on curtains.

Details: 7 p.m. Friday; noon to 10 p.m. Saturday. Lafayette Hotel, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. $15 to $20.

A promotional graphic for Jay-Z's album, "4:44."
A promotional graphic for Jay-Z's album, "4:44."

Jay-Z

Music

San Diego gets a visit from hip hop superstar Jay-Z.

His latest album, "4:44" was nominated for 8 Grammy awards, leading the competition for most nominations. It is an album that brings a more mature sound from the iconic musician.

On "4:44" Jay-Z raps about everything from race, wealth and even his infidelity to his wife Beyonce. But because Jay-Z is always an entertainer first, concertgoers can also expect to hear beloved hits like “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” and “Empire State of Mind”

Details: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Viejas Arena, 5500 Canyon Crest Drive, SDSU. $45 to $438.

San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Motels, 'Cabaret' And Hova