Local News Matters Arts & Entertainment newsletter
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The Bay Area is a hub of artistic expression, attracting artists, writers and musicians from around the globe to live, work and create. We highlight some of the offerings here
• K-pop takes the Bay Area: Sure, a lot of people will be spending Feb. 2 hanging on every play of the Super Bowl, as our beloved 49ers take on the Kansas City Chiefs. But thousands of music fans, mostly young women, will be at the SAP Center in San Jose that evening screaming for a group of guys they probably find way cuter than 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. We’re talking about Korean pop group SuperM, which performs at 7 p.m. Anyone who doubts that K-pop has a following in the Bay Area should consider that another such outfit, BTS, has booked Levi’s Stadium for two nights next year. Tickets for the SuperM show, meanwhile, are $50-$224 on ticketmaster.
• It was a very bad/good year: In the annals of San Francisco history, 1906 ranks pretty high for chaos and tragedy, but political scientist and author Lincoln Mitchell would also have us consider the turmoil that was 1978 for the City by the Bay. His new book “San Francisco Year Zero” (Rutgers University Press, $34.95, 312 pages) is subtitled “Political Upheaval, Punk Rock and a Third-Place Baseball Team,” and it knits together such disparate events as the assassinations of George Moscone and Harvey Milk, the Peoples Temple massacre, the emergence of the Sex Pistols and the Dead Kennedys and the unifying force that the ascendancy of the San Francisco Giants became. Mitchell comes to the San Francisco Public Library, 100 Larkin St., to talk and sign books at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 29.
• Doubling down on Johannes: The California Symphony pulls out all the stops for its “Brahms Fest” this weekend, mounting two concerts devoted to the great Romantic composer’s music. The centerpiece is the gorgeous Double Concerto, with violinist Alina Kobialka and cellist Oliver Herbert as soloists. It’s old home week for the two young musicians and conductor Donato Cabrera, as he had them both under his baton when he conducted the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra several years ago. Brahms’ Third Symphony and the Hungarian Dances 5 and 6 round out the bill, and the symphony is publicizing the famed No. 5 with a hilarious “Brahms in the Buff” video at https://youtu.be/hALh96hcv1k. Concert time is 8 p.m. Feb. 1 and 4 p.m. Feb. 2 at the Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek. Tickets, $44-$80, are at 925-943-7469 and www.californiasymphony.org.
• Stanley Jordan takes on Hendrix: Head to Sweetwater Music Hall in Mill Valley on Jan. 30 and you’ll find one iconic guitarist paying homage to another. Stanley Jordan, one of the finest bassists the jazz world has ever known — revered for his guitar neck-tapping technique — will take on the music of Jimi Hendrix, though filtered through a jazzy prism. He’s backed by a three-piece band here, and he’s been known to wear Hendrix Band of Gypsys-inspired duds during the performance. The show is at 8 p.m.; admission is $32-$37; 415-388-3850, www.sweetwatermusichall.com.
• Simply ‘Fantasticks’: We will spare you the “Try to Remember” puns and just point out that the classic musical “The Fantasticks” (featuring that tune about which we’ll construct no puns) opens a 3½ -week run in San Jose on Jan. 30. Think of the sweet-natured Harvey Schmidt/Tom Jones show, about two fathers who stage a feud thinking it will get their kids to fall in love, as a possible antidote for these loud, angry times. It’s being presented by Guggenheim Entertainment, and it runs Jan. 30-Feb. 23 at 3Below Theaters and Lounge in downtown San Jose. Tickets are $25-$55; 408-404-7711, www.3Belowtheaters.com.