Art & Culture

Sizzling August Arts Events

August arts events for San Benito County

At the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music on Sunday, Aug. 10 from 4 to 7:30 p.m., we will have the opportunity of experiencing "Dream Music at the Mission," which will be performed in the splendor of the sanctuary at Mission San Juan Bautista. Marin Alsop and the Festival Orchestra will bring the season to triumphal close with works by Stacy Garrop, Clarice Assad, Michael Daugherty and Detlev Glanert. Chicago-based composer Stacy Garrop’s music is centered on direct and dramatic narrative; Thunderwalker has been celebrated by the Chicago Tribune as “a big, bold tour de force for large symphony orchestra that seizes your attention at once and refuses to let go.” This is an early heads up for an Aug. 10 culminating performance." 

Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg returns to the festival to perform in two works for solo violin and string orchestra, each written specifically for her. Fiery dynamism and innovation are the hallmarks of this internationally acclaimed violinist and she performs as soloist in Dreamscapes, a work by Brazilian composer Clarice Assad. Assad explores the tension between awareness and unconsciousness, the dreamer and the dream; the work’s form is loosely based upon the composer’s research on the subject of REM sleep and lucid dreaming.

Salerno-Sonnenberg then performs in celebrated American composer Michael Daugherty’s "Fallingwater." Inspired by the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright and four of his most admired buildings—Taliesin, Fallingwater, Unity Temple and the Guggenheim Museum—Daugherty writes, “As I stood in the center of [Taliesin], I noticed a large circular music stand made of wood, designed by Wright himself, with four sides for use by string quartets. I began to hear a composition for strings in four movements, as an emotional, spiritual, and musical exploration of Wright’s aesthetic of ‘organic architecture.’”

 The evening culminates with the U.S. premiere of "Three Songs without Words" by distinguished German composer Detlev Glanert, who is acclaimed for operas and orchestral works that demonstrate his lyricism and a fascination with the past viewed from a modern perspective. "Three Songs without Words" was commissioned for the bicentenary celebration of Felix Mendelssohn, whom Glanert pays respect to in both the title of the work and the idea of a song being shaped by pure musical forces rather than text. The piece is written for a large orchestra and does not refer to the styles of the early 19th Century; nonetheless, “Glanert does justice at all times to the poetry in Mendelssohn’s music, to the delicacy of his melodies.” (Mitteldeutsche Zeitung)

Meet-up Between Concerts: Pack a basket and join other Festival-goers for between-concert picnicking in the Olive Grove adjacent to the Mission.

Post Evening Concert: Stroll to Jardines de San Juan restaurant (115 Third St.) to bid the season and its music-makers a fond farewell.

The Addams Family in Hollister

San Benito Stage Company announces auditions for its teen musical, a weird and wonderful comedy, “The Addams Family”. Auditions will be held on Aug. 14 from 5-8 p.m. and Saturday, Aug. 16 from either 9 a.m. to noon or 1:30-4:30 p.m. at the Granada Theatre on 5th Street in Hollister. Teens ages 13-19 are encouraged to audition. The show opens Oct. 31. For more information go to www.sanbenitostage.org or call 831-636-0122 or Kristy at 831-636-6810.

Aromas Day

Author Joyce Oroz announces that Sunday, Aug. 24 is Aromas Day, hosted by the Eagles. So many celebrations in the world, so little time—so I suggest you go to the best one, the one with everything from live music to classic cars to Art in the Park to rock climbing and so much more. Between 7 and 11 a.m., join us for a pancake breakfast served country style in the historic Aromas Community Grange. While you’re there, be sure to check out all the wonderful items in the silent auction that benefits the Terese White Memorial Scholarship Fund. The scholarships are awarded to outstanding Aromas students going on to college. 

 The street fair opens at 9 a.m. and runs full-speed until 4 p.m. with more attractions than trees in the park. Arts and crafts vendors line the streets along with food and educational booths. There will be newly designed collector’s item T-shirts decorated with an original Aromas scene. If you love to look at classic cars there will be some real eye-candy for you to drool over. Be sure you stroll through the lovely, “Art in the Park” featuring artwork by the award winning Aromas Hills Artisans. This is your chance to purchase original artwork and incredible crafts directly from the artists. There will be a wide variety of media, such as stained glass, hand-crafted greeting cards, embroidered infant wear, beaded and metal jewelry, photography, and local authors. 

Children and the "young at heart" will enjoy the petting zoo featuring farm animals such as chickens, ducks, little goats and bunnies. And, of course, there will be pony rides face-painting and a magician. Older children (and adults) will want to tackle the climbing wall. Enjoy a wide range of music by talented local groups all day long. Don’t forget the nonprofit food booths, like the Boy Scouts, and 4-H. 4-H Youth will have a booth on the street selling plants and homemade jam. They will be handing out information about the 4-H Youth Development Program. 

At 2 p.m. it’s the highlight of the day: the big, small-town parade. If you wish to be in the parade, entry forms are available at Marshall’s Grocery store and the Old Fire House Market in downtown Aromas. For more information, call 726-1348.  Enjoy an easy drive on Highway 129 from Highways 1 or 101 to Rogge Lane. Follow the signs to the off-site donation parking on Markus. Aromas Day is a free, family-friendly get-together you don’t want to miss. See you there! For more information, go to www.AromasDay.com or call Cara at 831-588-9407.

On Sunday, Aug. 24 author Joyce Oroz will be signing her novel, Shaking in Her Flip Flops, a Josephine Stuart Mystery, at the Dragonfly Gallery in down town Aromas from noon to 4 in the afternoon. Oroz has five published books in her popular series and a sixth one will be out in the fall. The Dragonfly Gallery at 380 Blohm Ave. has a large selection of books by local authors.

Aromas Grange Events

Tales and Trails, Friday, Aug. 1 from 1-2 p.m. Listen to tales, myths and stories with Bob and Liz from Tales and Trails Storytelling.

Get Ready for the San Benito County Fair

August is the perfect time to strategize about your artistic entries in the San Benito County Fair. The Fair is Oct.3-5, 2014 but the deadline for registering that you intend to enter a project is Sept. 5. So you need to make decisions about which projects to enter even if you don’t bring it to the fairgrounds for judging until September 30.  There are modest entry fees ($1.00-$2.50). You can enter and pay online at http://entryoffice.sanbenitocountyfair.com or use a paper entry form with check or cash mailed or delivered to the fair office at the Bolado Park Event Center.

New this year is a literary arts department. We are starting out small with “short poems by short people/bam-a-ham or jamon-y-Ramon” – 4- and 5-year-olds writing poems in English or Spanish of four lines in the rhyming style of Dr. Seuss. Heatherly Takeuchi is the department chair.

Photography Department Chair Rob Lee has added two categories: Humor and the California State Park 150th Anniversary. State parks provided spectacular prizes – special ribbons, pins, patches, and entry passes to State Parks. All photos must have been taken within the last 12 months and you are limited to five entries per person. Adults can enter at three levels: novice, intermediate and advanced. The “Juniors” divisions are split in two: elementary (up to 8th grade) and high school. See the Exhibitors Handbook for information about matting.

Fine arts: Thanks to the generosity of State Parks, Chair Louise Roy added a category for artwork about our San Benito County State Parks: Hollister Hills SVRA, San Juan Bautista Plaza, and Fremont Peak. Artwork must be framed and securely wired for hanging. Artwork must be completed within the past two years. Minimize size of artwork 8” x 10”, maximum size including frame: 34” x 40”

Celebrity storytime: The county library bookmobile will be at the Fair on Saturday. County Librarian Nora Conte is lining up readers to join County Sheriff Darryl Thompson and other VIPs for the “Celebrity Storytime” to read picture books for 15 minutes. Contact Nora if you are interested or know someone.

Clothing and textile arts: The Quilt exhibit enjoyed their changed location at the Fair last year, from the Heritage Room to a section of the Pavilion, which doubled the number of admirers. This Department includes quilts, clothing, and home furnishings so this is where knitting and crocheting is entered.

Crafts: Entries in this department cover a wide range, including stamping, scrapbooking, decorative arts like decoupage, holiday decorations, jewelry, painting, stained glass, woodworking and wood carving, basketry, handmade paper, and hand-spun specialties.

Flower arrangements: Don’t overlook the creative possibilities of flower arrangements using fresh or dried flowers in the Floriculture Department: 25 themes (e.g. Betty Boop, Hollister Biker Rally) in fresh flowers and 18 themes (Lights Out, Fair theme of “Pigs, Pies and Paintings”) in dried arrangements.

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Darlene Boyd