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Artscapes

Artscapes: Newport Opera Star Heads “Aida” Cast for Pacific Symphony

In 1994, Opera Pacific presented a full-scale production of Verdi’s grand opera, Aida,” the larger-than-life tale about the doomed love triangle of an Egyptian princess, a young Nubian slave girl, and the soldier they both love. “Aida” is a massive undertaking that takes weeks of...

Artscapes: Backhausdance Premieres Quartet of New Works at The Barclay

Last year, Orange County-based dance group Backhausdance (founded in 2003 by dancer and choreographer Jennifer Backhaus, a resident of Newport Beach), took a giant step towards national recognition with its sold-out inaugural concert at Irvine Barclay Theater featuring the world...

Postmodern Jukebox Plays Segerstrom Center Feb. 17

What would you call a musical group that takes modern pop and rock songs, “retrofies” and reimagines them as everything from 1920s jazz to 1950s do-wop, shoots low-budget videos of themselves performing the songs in a living room, and then garners millions of views when the...

Center Stage

Center Stage: Pacific Symphony’s Sizzling Summer Season

As the weather warms and night skies swarm with summer stars, OC music lovers’ thoughts turn toward Pacific Symphony’s annual Summer Festival at Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre. A treasured tradition for almost three decades, the series- which opened with its annual 4th of July...

Center Stage: Newport Theater Arts Center Prepares for 38th Season

Classic Americana closes out Newport Theatre Arts Center’s 2015-2016 season this weekend with the last few performances of “1776 The Musical.” The patriotic play delves into the diverse personalities behind the signing of the Declaration of Independence, delivering a lively and...

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Curtain Up

Curtain Up: Ron Raines Stars in Jerry Herman Tribute Concert

The last time I saw Ron Raines, we were having lunch with fellow opera singer Roberta Peters at Amici Restaurant prior to a rehearsal of the Opera Pacific production of “The Merry Widow.” That was in 1994. Since then, Amici and Opera Pacific have closed their doors, but Raines is...

Artscapes: A Musical Matilda Moves to Segerstrom Center

Is it a children’s musical for grownups, or a grownup musical for children? Whatever the case, it’s clear that “Matilda” is popular with audiences of all ages. The show received its West End premiere in November of 2011 and was immediately acclaimed by British critics and...

Outta Here

OUTTA HERE: Telluride, Colorado

Telluride, Colo., is best known as the premier ski resort in southern Colorado.  We however, found it to be one of the most beautiful summer destinations in the southwest.  At almost 9,000 feet in elevation, the mountain vistas are spectacular. Wildflowers bloom here in summer. ...

OUTTA HERE: Life and Death Valley

During a recent spring visit to observe and photograph wild flowers in the Eastern California deserts, Death Valley was abundant with not only flora, but fauna in the form of many desert animals and the surprisingly resilient Death Valley Pup Fish.  A hold over from the last ice...

OUTTA HERE: Northern California/Southern Oregon

The area around Medford, Ore., is very well known for a lot of reasons.  For nature lovers, hikers and photographers, the Rogue River Gorge, Crater Lake and Mount Shasta are short drives. For wine lovers, the region is loaded with great wineries and tasting rooms. Historic...

Sound Check

Soundcheck: The English Beat Goes On

It’s Election Day, but Dave Wakeling can’t vote. Although he’s lived in Los Angeles for the last 20 years, the frontman and guitarist of seminal new wave-ska band The English Beat that plays at The Coach House Nov. 26 is still a green card-er: a citizen of the United Kingdom, his...

Soundcheck: Three Dog Night Keeps Rocking

They had 21 consecutive Top 40 hits, 12 gold albums, three #1 hits (“Mama Told Me Not To Come,” “Joy To The World,” and “Black & White”), and launched numerous careers for songwriters like Randy Newman and Harry Nilsson (and one wine-loving bullfrog named Jeremiah). Between...

Summer Fun

Get Ready for the 8th Annual Lobsterfest

Hundreds of Maine lobsters will be flown in to Newport Beach on Sunday, August 7 for the 8th Annual Lobsterfest, held at Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina from 3 to 8 p.m. More than 700 people are expected to attend this annual celebration of summer, which centers...

Summer Fun: Fireworks, Music and Shakespeare

Summer hits with a bang this weekend thanks to the Fourth of July, and continues all summer with myriad events from concerts in the park to Shakespeare on a diamond (a baseball diamond). Fourth of July Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina teams with the City of Newport...

Biggest Beach Party of the Year Comes to Newport Dunes June 26 – 28

Get ready for the biggest beach party to be held in Newport Beach this year: Newport Beach Party: A Celebration of Community, held at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort June 26 – 28. The three day event is designed to raise money for a variety of charities, including the Newport...

Under Cover: Books

Under Cover: Library Lecture Shines Light on College Sports

With Valentine’s Day having just passed, I’m sure there are more than a few of us who have been hit with a case of the “inequivalent gift blues.” Perhaps your loving husband brought you a little blue box, and you gave him some store-bought sugar cookies? A night at Nobu met with...

Under Cover: For the Love of Zelda

Love is in the air, and perhaps also on your TV screen. Of course, the word love is subjective, as is the love story depicted in the new Amazon original series, “Z: The Beginning of Everything.” Recounting the saga of one of the literary world’s most well-known love stories, “Z”...

Under Cover Book Club Picks “The Nix”

Happy February! As we draw a big red “X” through the first month of this new year, there is much to look forward to – more political unrest, polarizing views on social media, and thankfully, a new Under Cover Book Club read to escape into, when the former two become a little hard...

Weekend Getaway

Weekend Getaway: A Hidden Wine Oasis in Carmel

By Christopher Trela & Catherine Del Casale | NB Indy It’s been more than two decades since Christopher last visited the Monterey area, and Catherine has vague recollections of taking a field trip to Monterey while attending grade school in Napa Valley, so when we were...

Weekend Getaway: Idyllwild Arts Hosts “Jazz in the Pines” Aug. 20-21

There’s nothing like listening to great live jazz in the great outdoors, which is why I’ll be heading to the mountains this weekend for the 23nd Annual Idyllwild Arts Jazz In The Pines, an outdoor music festival held on the grounds of the Idyllwild Arts Academy in the San Jacinto...