San Diego's Top Weekend Arts Events: Alvin Ailey, 'Cabaret' And Zandra
Speaker 1: 00:00 Spring is in the air this weekend and boy has San Diego ready for it. We also have a breath of fresh air in the weekend preview today with some very sophisticated arts options. Worldclass dancers from Alvin Ailey dance theater, a local production of cabaret and a conversation with Zandra Rhodes about the fashion of Princess Diana joining me as KPBS arts calendar editor, Nina Garen. Nina, welcome. Hello. Happy Spring. Happiest for Alvin Ailey dance theater's coming to town. Remind us about this company. Alvin Ailey. American dance theater is a company that was founded by choreographer Alvin Ailey so that he could include more African Americans in the world of dance. And since forming that company in 1958 it's evolved into one of the most innovative modern dance groups and earned the title of cultural ambassadors to the [inaudible] world. So the company is here for two days and I understand each night we'll be different. Yeah. Usually company comes to San Diego for more than one night. Speaker 1: 01:02 They'll do the same show, but this one is performing two different programs. So the first night, which is March 26 it's a collection of newer modern dance works. The Second March 27 is highlights of ballets created by Alvin Ailey and it features everything from classical to jazz to Cuban music. And then both nights finish with one of his most beloved dance is called revelations. Revelations is not new. Revelations first premiered in 1960 it's one of his masterpieces. Can you tell us more about it? Yeah, it's a 36 minute dance that's a celebration of African American life and culture, but it also highlights the struggle and pain of the black experience. Um, the music is all spirituals, songs, sermons and Gospel. People see it over and over again. It's just so powerful. You brought music from revelations. Let's listen. Speaker 2: 01:59 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 02:11 Alvin Ailey dance theater will be here after the weekend. It's next Tuesday and Wednesday at Jacobs Music Center. Most of us know that La Jolla playhouse is staging a world premiere musical about Diana. But this weekend there's a talk that's all about Diana's fashion. Yes. Oh yeah. Play House has an audience engagement program called discovery Sunday, which I moderate. Just let you know. Um, and we explore themes behind each of the productions and because Diana really found her voice through fashion, that's going to be the topic for this event. And the guest at this event is Zandra Rhodes remind a Sushi is, she's the fabulous fashion and textile designer. You might know her because she has a bright pink hair. She's around San sometimes. Um, her designs are all about bright colors and bold pattern. She's English and she actually designed stresses for Princess Diana as well as for Freddy Mercury and Brian May have queen and then she also designs for operas and she started with the San Diego opera. Speaker 1: 03:17 So you've seen the musical, is fashion really a big part of this show? Yes, completely. The actress who plays Diana has 35 or 36 costume changes and she was flying in from New York before they even started rehearsals to do hours and hours of fittings. So you're going to see a lot of different styles. I know Diana, the show is mostly sold out. Do people still need a ticket to come to this discussion? Um, they do not. The talk is free, you can just show up to the theater by four after the performance and you come in, grab a seat. There's going to also be an audience Q and. A so people can ask Dame Zandra Rhodes about Diana and the London fashion scene dames. Zandra Rhodes. We'll be at the La Jolla playhouses discovery Sunday program or this Sunday. And finally Coronado play house opens its production of cabaret this weekend. Now for people who perhaps have never seen it and just heard about this musical, remind us about it. Speaker 1: 04:16 It was first staged on Broadway in 1966 but more than 50 years later it has themes that are still pretty relevant. It's about the Kit Kat club, which was a refuge for artists and outcasts just as the Nazis were coming to power in Germany. Why is Coronado play house doing this show now? Well it seems like the message about a country and political conflict is still pretty important. Um, and this particular version is going to explore even further the psychology of people who are maybe are too afraid to act or speak up against power, and they have an added advantage because this theater is already set up like a cabaret, isn't it? Yeah, it's great if you haven't seen a show there. It is a small room and people sit around tables, so it's a perfect setup for cabaret, and they're using that to make the story even more intimate and realistic because they'll have onstage seating and audience interactions. Cabaret is one of those musicals with a timeless soundtrack. Let's listen to one of the songs. This is money from the 1998 Broadway soundtrack performed by Alan Cumming. Speaker 3: 05:29 Yeah. Speaker 1: 05:42 Cabaret opens tonight at the car, not a playhouse, and continues through April 28th. For more weekend events, be sure to check out kpbs.org/arts Nina Garren is KPBS arts editor. Thank you for joining us. Thanks. Have a great weekend.
Spring is in the air, bringing some very sophisticated arts options: world class dancers from Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, a local production of "Cabaret" and a conversation with Zandra Rhodes about the fashion of Princess Diana.
Alvin Ailey Dance Theater
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is a company founded by choreographer Alvin Ailey so that he could include more African-Americans in the world of dance.
Since forming the company in 1958, it has evolved into one of the most innovative modern dance groups, earning the title of “Cultural Ambassadors to the World” from the Library of Congress.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater will be in San Diego to perform classic pieces like “Revelations,” a favorite that celebrates black heritage and a world premiere about spiritual awakening titled “The Call.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Jacobs Music Center, 750 B St., downtown. $29 to $99; find tickets to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
The musical "Cabaret" was first staged on Broadway in 1966, but more than 50 years later it’s a show with themes that are still relevant today.
In "Cabaret," The Kit Kat Club was a refuge for artists and outcasts just as the Nazis were coming to power in Germany.
And starting this weekend, the Coronado Playhouse transforms into 1930s Berlin, where the Emcee and Sally Bowles will perform songs like “Wilkommen” and “Maybe This Time.”
This version will also explore the psychology of people who are too afraid to act or speak up against power.
Details: Opens 8 p.m. Friday. Continues 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Through April 28. Coronado Playhouse, 1835 Strand Way, Coronado. $22 to $28; find tickets to "Cabaret."
Zandra Rhodes at "Diana"
Designer Zandra Rhodes will discuss her relationship to Princess Diana at a talkback event on Sunday at the La Jolla Playhouse.
The world-premiere musical "Diana" explores the Princess of Wales’ bold fashion choices - from her iconic wedding gown to a sexy black dress. Rhodes, who designed clothes for the princess, will discuss why Diana’s fashion choices were so important.
You don’t need a ticket to the show to attend the talk, just show up to the theater by 4 p.m. and you’ll be able to attend the discussion for free.
Details: 4 p.m. Sunday. La Jolla Playhouse, 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla. Free; find details about the event.