April 10, 2018
The Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, which announced it’s 2018–2019 season on Friday, is maintaining a sense of adventure with undeniably hip offerings, while there are still established artists coming who will appeal to the community in and around the university. [Disclosure: Mondavi Center’s executive director is chairman of SFCV’s board.]
The season pre-starts in August with a return engagement by the Punch Brothers, while in October the folk-fest continues with I’m With Her (Sara Watkins, Sarah Jarosz, Aoife O’Donovan), and the farewell tour of Joan Baez in November.
On the classical side, there is a radical technological event occurring in September with Callas in Concert. This is a cinematic reconstruction of great Maria Callas performances using digital techniques and laser holography, with remastered audio of her voice, all accompanied live by the Sacramento Philharmonic. And if this works, next year: Elvis.
Also appearing at Mondavi: pianist Igor Levit, a duo recital with Lawrence Brownlee and bass-baritone Eric Owens, plus old faves Sir James Galway, Pinchas Zukerman and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. The orchestra series includes the return of the Czech Philharmonic (with pianist Kirill Gerstein), the Russian National Orchestra, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields (with pianist Jeremy Denk), and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra with their new music director Thomas Søndergård.
In dance, Company Wang Ramirez brings Borderline, Akram Khan Company returns with a coming-of-age story, Chotto Desh, featuring immersive digital projections. Camille A. Brown & Dancers will bring excerpts of Black Girl: Linguistic Play, and Ballet Preljocaj contributes La Fresque, a story-ballet inspired by the Chinese fairy tale “The Painted Wall.”
The jazz offerings include trumpeter/composer Wynton Marsalis leading the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (September 22, 2018) in a performance of his suite Spaces, which features dancers Jared Grimes and Lil Buck. Chicago’s Marquis Hill Blacktet arrives in October, while pianist Vijay Iyer appears with cellist Matt Haimovitz in March and also with his sextet in May. Veronica Swift and the Benny Green Trio are scheduled for February, while Storm Large and Le Bonheur sing classic cabaret with a modern twist in May.