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AASC’s ‘Cinderella’ - NCCO & Anne Sofie von Otter - Kung Pao Kosher Comedy - Peter Robinson

Lance Huntley

This week on Open Air, KALW’s radio magazine for the performing arts, guest host Leah Garchik talks about the African-American Shakespeare Company's unique annual holiday offering of Cinderellawith AASC founder and executive director Sherri Young and lead actress Funmi Lola (pictured). Cinderella, the often told tale of a scullery maid determined to take her life into her own hands and make it better, runs for 4 performances, December 20-22 at the Herbst Theater in San Francisco. 

This is the AASC’s 18th production of Cinderella since its inception in 2000. As a holiday staple for the company for close to two decades, Cinderella has experienced a number of revisions, additions and updates over the years. According to Young (who is directing), this year’s emphasis is on the magical moments and elements of the show, and especially on the relationship between Cinderella and her Fairy Godmother.

British violinist Daniel Hope is stopping by in his capacity as Artistic Partner of the New Century Chamber Orchestra (NCCO) to share details about the ensemble’s Christmas concert series together with internationally acclaimed Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter. 

Performances are on Dec 18 (7:30pm) at the First United Methodist Church in Palo Alto; on Dec 19 (7:30pm) at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in San Francisco; and on Dec. 20 (7:30pm) at the First Congregational Church of Berkeley. On the program music by Bach, Vivaldi, Thad Jones, Irving Berlin, and others. 

We talk with British award-winning writer and stand up comedian Mark Maier, and with local comedian and organizer Lisa Geduldig about the 27th Annual Kung Pao Kosher Comedy: Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a Chinese Restaurant. Performances are at the New Asia Restaurant in San Francisco's Chinatown on December 24-26 with 2 shows a day. Kung Pao answers the age-old question "What are Jews supposed to do on Christmas?”

Plus, Open Air’s regular contributor and critic at large, Peter Robinson, discusses the murder mystery movie Knives Out, with Daniel Craig; and the book Say Nothing - A true story of murder and memory in Northern Ireland, by Patrick Radden Keefe. Also, what’s happening in 2020 at the Marin Philosophical Society; and tips on how to keep New Year’s resolutions. 

Open Air with guest host Leah Garchik, heard live on Thursday, December 19 at 1pm. Listen now or anytime…