Dianne Reeves at the SFJAZZ Center

Opening earlier this year in Hayes Valley, the SFJAZZ Center is the first and only structure dedicated solely to jazz music in the United States. This custom-built auditorium has been designed in such a manner that complements the music, and provides an intimate environment for the artist and the audience. The SFJAZZ Center also includes a wonderful restaurant and bar on site.

This past Saturday evening, the SFJAZZ Center hosted the sensational Dianne Reeves. An American jazz singer, Dianne Reeves is a four time Grammy Award winner, most notably for her work on the Good Night, and Good Luck soundtrack. While I have been familiar with Reeves’ work, this was my first time seeing her live–and she is even more incredible in person. Reeves was born to be a musician, and luckily, she chose to go down the path of jazz.

Her commanding presence on the stage drew the attention of every member of the audience. Reeves sang some classics, some of her own songs, and added her own artistic improvisations. I looked around me to see person after person completely captivated by the evening’s performance; I even witnessed an audience member moved to tears by one of the final numbers.

The SFJAZZ Center is truly an asset to San Francisco, the Bay Area, and the jazz community as a whole. With a wonderful summer season, attending a performance at the center is an absolute must! Check out the upcoming shows at http://www.sfjazz.org/.

Abercrombie & Fitch Addresses Controversy–Kind Of.

Suor Angelica & Gianni Schicchi

Opera San Jose is ending its 2012-2013 season with an outstanding double bill featuring Italian operas Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi. Giacomo Puccini’s Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi are parts one and three of Il trittico (The Triptych)–three one-act operas with contrasting themes.

While the operas were originally written to be presented together, they are more commonly performed alone or paired with one another. Suor Angelica (Sister Angelica) tells the story of a nun desperate for salvation after committing a mortal sin, while Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi tells the comical tale of a con artist striving for wealth and fortune.
The cast of Opera San Jose provided a riveting performance of these Puccini classics. The aria, “O mio babbino caro” (“Oh My Beloved Father”), the most well-known of Gianni Schicchi, stands out as a beautiful and simple voice among the chaos of the story. Cecilia Violetta López (Lauretta) delivers a moving interpretation of the famous aria, leaving the audience in awe of her striking talent and presence on the stage.
Do not miss this double bill runs from now until April 28th at the California Theatre, 345 South First Street in downtown San Jose! Tickets are on sale at the Opera San Jose box office, by phone at (408) 437-4450, or online at www.operasj.org. We cannot wait till the 2013-2014 season!

Blue Man Group

Created in 1987 by Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton, the Blue Man Group has been enjoyed by 17 million viewers. Blue Man Group is unlike anything I have ever witnessed before, and surpassed any expectation I could have had. If you haven’t seen Blue Man Group, this is one thing you have to make time to see, and take your family and friends along with you!

BMG National Tour 7 ©Paul Kolnik

Bald men painted in blue? Sounds strange, right? A little perhaps, but this is all a part of what makes Blue Man Group different from any other theatrical experience you may have had in the past. Blue Man Group combines humor, acting, technology, paint, and music to create a performance that leaves you on the edge of your seat the entire show. What makes Blue Man Group particularly unique is their constant participation with the audience. There’s a strange and wonderful connection between the entire audience as you together experience what is Blue Man Group.

BMG National Tour 6 ©Paul Kolnik

Just a little warning, if you’re sitting in the first few rows, be prepared for things to get a little…messy. :)

BMG National Tour 5 ©Paul Kolnik

Blue Man Group will be at Broadway San Jose and the Center for the Performing Arts in San Jose running through April 7. Tickets are on sale now at the www.sjtix.com box office or call 408-792-4111 for more details. This is must see show for everyone–young and old! Be sure to follow Broadway San Jose on Facebook and Twitter for updates on their new 2012-2013 season and special messages for fans/followers!

BMG National Tour 2 ©Paul Kolnik