Timing can be an irritating problem when it comes to trying to summarize events for an entire weekend. Do it too soon; and you can be (and I have been) faced with having to provide incremental updates as additional news arrives. Do it too late; and you risk having little impact, because many readers have already made their weekend plans.
All this is a long-winded apology because the “comprehensive” preview piece I wrote yesterday for the second weekend in November was not as comprehensive as I had anticipated. The good news is that I found myself with a batch of updates within less time that it would have taken the virtual ink to dry had it been real ink. One of these items concerns the San Francisco Opera (SFO), which was part of yesterday’s article; and the other involves two weekend events at the Community Music Center.
Yesterday SFO announced a change in the casting of their production of Gioachino Rossini’s La Cenerentola, which beings its six-performance run on Sunday afternoon, November 9. Ironically, the role is not one I mentioned in summarizing the many virtues of the ways in which Rossini’s librettist Jacopo Ferretti reconceived the Cinderella fairy tale. That is the baritone role of Dandini, Prince Ramiro’s valet, who, in another nod to the librettos that Lorenzo Da Ponte wrote for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, exchanges his clothes with the Prince to allow the Prince to learn more about some of the women vying to marry him. Italian baritone Fabio Capitanucci had been scheduled to sing this role but had to withdraw for health reasons. He will be replaced by Adler Fellow (and graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music) Efraín Solís, who made his SFO debut this past summer singing the role of Prince Yamadori in Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly.
To repeat the full schedule and ticket information, La Cenerentola will be given six performances. These will take place at 2 p.m. on November 9, and 16, and at 7:30 p.m. p.m. on November 13, 18, 21, and 26. Further information may be found at the event page for this production on the SFO Web site. Tickets are priced from $25 to $370 and may be purchased through that same event page. They may also be purchased at the SFO Box Office in the War Memorial Opera House (301 Van Ness Avenue at the northwest corner of Grove Street) or by calling 415-864-3330. The Box Office is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. It is open for telephone orders only on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Standing Room tickets go on sale for $10 (cash only) at 10 a.m. on the day of each performance.
Those interested in more modern fare may prefer to check out the Community Music Center (CMC) in the Mission. I have already written about the one-hour Concert with Conversation event featuring jazz pianist Dan Tepfer taking place at 6 p.m. on Friday, November 7. Later that evening, the Capp Street Concert Hall will present another improvisation event in conjunction with Outsound Presents, this one co-produced with Cultural Odyssey. This will be a performance by the world music/jazz ensemble THE PYRAMIDS (not to be confused with the surf rock group that does not use all capital letters). THE PYRAMIDS was co-founded by Artistic Director Idris Ackamoor in Paris during the summer of 1972, and the group is now on their LAST BAND STANDING 2014–15 tour. One source of influence is that adventurous approach to free improvisation cultivated by saxophonists such as John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman. This is complemented by the influence of the sort of politically-conscious funk of James Brown and the Miles Davis who led the On the Corner sessions.
THE PYRAMIDS will begin their San Francisco performance at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, November 7. The venue will be the Capp Street Concert Hall, allowing adequate time to set up following the Concert with Conversation event. CMC is located in the Mission at 544 Capp Street. General admission will be $12 with a $10 rate for students and seniors. Children under the age of twelve will be admitted at no charge.
The following night in the same venue Mark Clifford will host a performance featuring new music and dance. Clifford is both a composer and a multi-instrumentalist with a specialty in vibraphone, currently based in Oakland. He has prepared a program of original chamber music compositions, as well as an arrangement of a piece by Steve Reich. There will also be a percussion ensemble performance of a composition by Toru Takemitsu. This program will begin at 8 p.m. on Saturday, November 8. General admission will be $15; and, again, students and seniors will be admitted for $10.