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L. Peter Callender as Richard III ~ Valley of the Moon Festival ~ Music@Menlo ~ King of Cuba

Lance Huntley
L. Peter Callender (Richard III) in African-American Shakespeare Company’s production of 'Richard III', directed by Kirsten Brandt....";

This week on Open Air, KALW’s radio magazine for the Bay Area performing arts, guest host Peter Robinson talks with actor L. Peter Callender and director Kirsten Brandt, about the production of Shakespeare’s historical play Richard III by the African-American Shakespeare Company (AASC), which opens this weekend and runs through July 29.

Produced for the first time by AASC, the production will star the company’s artistic director, L. Peter Callender, as the King “you love to hate,” in a role he has played only once before. For Kirsten Brandt, who directs AASC for the first time, this is also her second encounter with Richard III; she made her professional directorial debut with this play in 2001. Performances are at the Taube Atrium Theater (401 Van Ness) in San Francisco.

From the Valley of the Moon Music Festival, we talk with founders-directors Tanya Tomkins and Eric Zivian. The fourth edition of the festival offers a program of six concerts exploring Vienna in Transition: From the Enlightenment to the Dawn of Modernism.

The Valley of the Moon Music Festival takes place at the Hanna Center in Sonoma on Saturdays and Sundays between July 15 and 29. The festival explores some of the most influential music composed in Vienna: from a lesser-known Oboe Quartet by Vanhal (1771), through the chamber music of Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert, to Schoenberg’s Second String Quartet (1908). A pre-concert lecture, Echoes of the City: Vienna's Musical Pasts by Nicholas Mathew, professor of Music History at the University of California, Berkeley, will take place at 3 pm on July 15.

Cellist David Finckel stops by in his capacity as artistic director and co-founder of Music@Menlo. The 2018 edition of this music festival, titled Creative Capitals,  takes a musical and historical journey through seven cultural Capitals of Western Music: London, Paris, St. Petersburg, Leipzig, Berlin, Budapest, and Vienna. Running from July 13 to August 4, the festival presents over fifty events in three venues in Atherton and Menlo Park, including concerts, master classes and multimedia symposia.

Plus, we talk with novelist/playwright Christina García and comedian Marga Gomez about the new comedy King of Cuba, presented by Central Works in Berkeley.

King of Cuba runs from July 21 through August 19 at the historic Berkeley City Club. The play was developed by García in the Central Works Writers Workshop, and features the lesbian-gender-bending comedian Marga Gomez, and the Grammy-winning ‘bongocero’ Carlos Caro. The play is about two combative octogenarians: “El Comandante,” a ruthless dictator, in Cuba, losing his grip on power over a crumbling nation, and the other, an irascible exile in steamy Miami, who is hell-bent on staying alive long enough to see the dictator to his grave.

Open Air with guest host Peter Robinson, hear it live on Thursday, July 12 at 1pm…