WALNUT CREEK

'Viva Arts' fundraiser goes to 'Havana'

A five-piece Cuban band, catering by Havana Restaurant and Wilma Lott Catering, and Cuban Mojitos will highlight "Midnight in Havana," this year's fundraiser for the Friends of Civic Arts Education Foundation to be held starting at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 8 at the Shadelands Auditorium, 111 N. Wiget Lane in Walnut Creek.

Money raised from this event provides scholarships for both children and adults to attend Civic Arts programs as well as needed equipment and supplies. Last year, "Viva Arts!" raised nearly $30,000, and Friends President Michael Weiner hopes to increase the total this year.

"This is our first sit-down dinner, and we have a professional auctioneer, Damon Casatico, to direct both the live and cocktail auctions," Weiner said in a news release. "There will be complimentary wine and beer and, of course, the featured cocktail Cuban Mojitos."

Los Boleros, a professional Cuban band, as well as students from CAE's Youth Theatre Company and instrumental ensembles will provide entertainment.

For more information, call 925-939-2787 or go to www.friendsartsed.org.

Free chamber music concert Feb. 12

The Contra Costa Performing Arts Society's Tuesday evening chamber concert of classical music for next month takes place Feb. 12 beginning at 7:30 p.m. at Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church, 55 Eckley Lane in Walnut Creek.


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The free concert will open with a piano quintet by Shostakovich, followed by Soprano Diane Barton Brown singing songs by Faure and Ernest Chausson, accompanied by pianist Nancy Rude. Barton Brown will also sing Airs and Fancies by American opera composer Seymour Barab accompanied by violin, cello and piano. This concert concludes with Beethoven's String Quartet in C Major which features violins, viola and cello. Free.

For more information, go to www.ccpas.org

'Broadway Revealed' at the Bedford

"Broadway Revealed: Behind the Theater Curtain" is scheduled to run through Feb. 17 at the Bedford Gallery at the Lesher Center for the Arts.

It reflects the breadth, ambition, and showmanship of New York's iconic theater district to the gallery with a behind-the-scenes look at world-class theater production via artist Stephen Joseph's photographs of some of Broadway's most critically acclaimed productions.

The performance images are bolstered by photos of theatrical props, costumes, and other artifacts.

The exhibit is designed to showcase the complex support network of design, lighting, directing, and staging that come together to create the magic world of the theater.

The artists of "Captured" have been committed to exploring the unfamiliar and unknown creatures and environments that share our world. That exhibit demonstrates the complex dialogue between the arts, scientific exploration and organic, found materials is being expressed in a contemporary context.

The gallery, in the Lesher Center for the Arts, is open from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, and from 6 to 8 p.m. on dates of evening performances at the Lesher.

'Animals, Real and Imagined' starts March 3

"Peaceable Kingdom: Animals, Real and Imagined," a juried show devoted to investigating our storied and rich relationship with the animal world, will be on exhibit March 3-May 19 at the Bedford Gallery inside the Lesher Center for the Arts.

"Peaceable Kingdom" invites prominent curators to assemble a collection of innovative and appealing works by national artists. This exhibition will explore the presence of animals in the visual arts, and how they appear as metaphors, totems, objects of fear and sources of emotional attachment and affection.

This juried exhibition will address such issues as antagonism, admiration, attachment, and even the politically charged issue of animal rights.

'Princess and the Pea' for the kids in January

The Saint Mary's College Performing Arts Department will present a stage adaptation of the classic Hans Christian Andersen story "The Princess and the Pea" Jan. 30-31 at the college's LeFevre Theatre, 1928 St. Marys Road, Moraga.

This is the department's annual fairy tale performance, which are popular and often sell out before Jan. 1. Staying faithful to the Andersen text, the students will add their own imagination, theatricality, acting, sets and costumes.

Performances are: Wednesday, Jan. 30 at 7 p.m. and Thursday, Jan. 31 at 4 p.m. All tickets are $8; call 925-631-4670 or go to brownpapertickets.com for more info.