Palo Alto Weekly

Arts & Entertainment - June 24, 2011

Worth a look

Art

'Echoes from Life'

Bronze conveys strength. But Nancy Stevenson's sculptures also exhibit serenity and trepidation, curiosity and wistfulness. The feelings are all in the works' faces and gestures, fitting for an artist who was once a clinical psychologist.

The octogenarian Palo Alto resident says she hopes her art expresses "universal emotional experience." She wrote in an artist's statement, "My hope is that when viewers look at my work they are reminded of a familiar or forgotten feeling, and that they experience anew an awareness of the beauty and complexity of the human form."

This month, Stevenson is showing several of her sculptures at the Portola Art Gallery at Menlo Park's Allied Arts Guild. Her show is called "Echoes from Life."

Together with the sculptures, San Mateo fine and commercial artist Jared Sines is showing paintings he describes as impressionistic landscapes and still-life scenes. He has a particular focus on coastside and other water scenes, and rural subjects such as old barns.

The show is up through June 30 at 75 Arbor Road, open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Go to portolaartgallery.com or call 650-321-0220.

Comedy

Will Durst

News reports provide ample comic fodder for Will Durst, a Bay Area comedian with a taste for bopping politicians, politics and various sacred cows in the proverbial nose.

Besides regularly performing live shows, the Emmy-nominated Durst writes columns, hosts radio shows, appears on TV and serves as a commentator for various media outlets.

This Saturday, Durst is coming to the Midpeninsula to give a live comedy show at the Performing Arts Center at Menlo-Atherton High School. The event, titled "Comedy for People Who Read," is scheduled for 8 p.m. at 555 Middlefield Road.

Tickets are $20. Go to ticketweb.com or call 925-449-1724.

Theater

'A Raisin in the Sun'

Some classics are classics for a reason. The Lorraine Hansberry play "A Raisin in the Sun" first opened on Broadway in 1959, and it retains its popularity and power.

This weekend, it opens at a smaller, nearer stage: the intimate Pear Avenue Theatre in Mountain View. Directed by Aldo Billingslea, the production has its opening night on Friday and then runs through July 10.

A professor at Santa Clara University, Billingslea is also an actor who may be familiar to local audiences from his recent roles at TheatreWorks, including the lead in August Wilson's "Radio Golf" in 2008 and the title character in "The Elephant Man" in 2007. The "Raisin" cast includes local actress Jennifer Perkins-Stephens of East Palo Alto as Ruth.

Show times are 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sundays, at 1220 Pear Ave. Tickets are $15-$30. Go to thepear.org or call 650-254-1148.

Festival

Concours d'Elegance

On June 26, the Palo Alto Lions Club presents an exhibition of more than 300 classic cars: It's the 45th annual Concours d'Elegance, from which proceeds will go to the American Diabetes Association and local Lions Club charities.

Featured vehicles of American and European make will be on display, along with electric and hybrid cars, vintage race cars and a few rarer varieties of Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg, according to a Concours press release.

The show runs from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Stanford's Sand Hill Road Athletic Field at the corner of Sand Hill Road and Pasteur Drive. Adult admission is $25 ($20 online pre-sale), students with ID pay $10, and under-12 children enter free in the company of an adult. See paconcours.com.

Music

'Thanks for the Memory'

The Peninsulaires Men's Chorus and the Mission Valley Women's Chorus will team up with the Stanford Ballroom Dance Team on June 25 to raise funds for, and say "Thanks for the Memory" to, Northern California's USO.

The USO has coordinated recreational services for the military since the '40s. In keeping with the 70-year tributary theme of the performance, song and dance selections carry a vintage quality, starting with the USO's earliest days and moving through the ages.

The music and dance performances are at 2 and 7 p.m. in Spangenberg Theater, Gunn High School, 780 Arastradero Road. For tickets ($25 advance, $30 door), go to supportnorcaluso.com.

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