WALNUT CREEK

'Web Ballet' work from online suggestions

Diablo Ballet of California will become the first professional dance company to create an entirely new dance work from ideas suggested by Internet users.

This "Web Ballet" will be based on choreography suggestions submitted by individuals all around the world to Diablo Ballet's Twitter page (@DiabloBallet) to be performed March 1-2 at the Shadelands Arts Center Auditorium in Walnut Creek.

Now through Thursday, Feb 14, those interested may use the Twitter hash tag #DiabloWebBallet to suggest:

  • Emotion of the dancers (happy, sad, etc.)

  • The mood of the entire work (intense, lighthearted)

  • Specific dance moves (turning, jumping, specific steps)

    Participants will also be able to help select the music of the piece by voting on the three selections found on Diablo Ballet's YouTube page: http://www.youtube.com/user/diabloballet

    The work will be choreographed by Robert Dekkers, a Diablo Ballet dancer, the artistic director of San Francisco's Post:Ballet, and one of Dance Magazine's 2011 25 to Watch.

    Submissions closes on Feb. 14 when Dekkers and Lauren Jonas, Diablo Ballet's artistic director, will select seven choreographic suggestions. Dekkers will then have two weeks to utilize all of the winning ideas and create a new dance work.


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    "Diablo Ballet is proud of making dance accessible, and this concept will allow people to participate in the creative process," Jonas said. We're thrilled to break new ground and to show how the global web community can come together to create the power of dance."

    More information on how to participate may be found at http://www.diabloballet.org/performance.html

    Bedford Gallery's new 'Art Makes' program

    "Art Makes" is a new program created by the Bedford Gallery that allows kids a way to engage with the gallery's exhibits in a hands-on way, and will have its second outing Saturday, Feb. 16 in conjunction with the gallery's "Broadway revealed" exhibit.

    For each exhibit the Bedford hosts, docents there will offer an Art Makes project for kids of all ages related to the theme of that exhibit.

    The Feb. 16 Art Makes event runs from 2 to 4 p.m. in the gallery, housed inside the Lesher Center for the Arts in downtown Walnut Creek.

    For more information, go to www.bedfordgallery.org

    'Broadway Revealed' at Bedford to end

    "Broadway Revealed: Behind the Theater Curtain" is scheduled to run through this Sunday, 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 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 at Bedford

    "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 encourage artists to meditate on the complex and diverse relationships between humans and animals, addressing such issues as antagonism, admiration, attachment, and even the politically charged issue of animal rights.

    Contra Costa

    Children's Chorus auditions continue through February

    Auditions and placement interviews for spring semester spots in the Contra Costa Children's Chorus take place the next two Wednesdays, Feb. 20 and 27 starting at 3:45 p.m. at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, 1035 Carol Lane in Lafayette.

    These auditions are open to boys and girls ages 7 through 15.

    The chorus' newest class, "MetroGnomes," is now accepting children ages 5 and 6, with no interviews necessary. For more information, e-mail frontdesk@childrenschorus.org

    The Contra Costa Children's Chorus has, since 1984 provided vocal training for children's voices, theory instruction, performance skills and local performances. For more information, e-mail frontdesk@childrenschorus.org or call 925 945-7101. The website is www.childrenschorus.org

    Moraga

    'Lightness of Seeing' photography show open

    The Moraga Art Gallery's new show, "The Unbearable Lightness of Seeing," features the unique combination of Dave E. Dondero's hyper-realistic California landscapes and Erik Wilson's thought-provoking and often ironic urban scenes.

    The two have been friends for 30 years, but this is the first time their work has been seen together in a show celebrating the "lightness" of the fleeting visual moments life brings us, whether the telling expression of a stranger or the play of clouds above a solitary oak.

    The show, which opened Jan. 16, runs through March 23, and admission is free.

    'Saint Mary's museum of art honored

    The Saint Mary's College of California Museum of Art were honored with a 2012 Arts Recognition Award by the Arts & Culture Commission of Contra Costa and the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors -- a nod to its contributions to the cultural heritage of the Bay Area, and to Contra Costa County in particular.

    Museum director Carrie Brewster said she is "thrilled" with the honor.

    Darwin Marable, chairman for the Arts and Culture Commission of Contra Costa County, said "the Saint Mary's Art Museum was honored for its permanent collection, including its William Keith Collection, and noteworthy one-person exhibitions which bring local, national and international known artist to Moraga and Contra Costa County."

    For 17 years, Arts & Culture Commission has been recognizing arts leaders in area communities through the Arts Recognition Awards, which honor individuals, charitable institutions, businesses and charitable organizations

    Lafayette

    'Tokens of Affection' land for Valentine's Day

    When it's cold outside, come in and enjoy the warmth of Lafayette Gallery's winter show "Tokens of Affection," on exhibit through March 9 at the gallery, 50 Lafayette Circle, Lafayette.

    Cards and gifts, ceramics, paintings, prints, glasswork, jewelry and photography, all created by local artists who love what they do, will be on display and for sale. Valentines cards and more have arrived.

    A free champagne and chocolates reception will be held Friday, Feb. 1 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the gallery; all are welcome.