This week, you can practice some philanthropy and watch some passionate performances. Here are some ways to support your favorite local theaters and view the best of the arts from the comfort of your own home.
AFRO-PERUVIAN SEXTET Coronavirus restrictions can’t hold the Afro-Peruvian Sextet down! “We will be damned if we are going to skirt our responsibility to keep you entertained and inspired during these difficult times,” they write about their upcoming event. Mixing together rhythms and sonic textures from jazz and traditional Afro-Peruvian music, the sextet will offer their signature sound via livestream. You’ll hear an audio tapestry made from trumpet, saxophone, guitar, drums, double bass and even quijada, a percussion instrument made from the jawbone of a donkey. Prepare yourself for a groovy performance. Sunday, July 12, 4 p.m. PST. Tickets start at $18.
AURORA FUNDRAISER After months without performances, Berkeley’s theater companies are in need of our help. Aurora Theater is hosting its annual Supernova fundraiser online this year. Just like its in-person event, Supernova will feature an online auction, a VIP reception and a main event. Artists like Sam Jackson, Beth Wilmurt and the Bay Area Theatre Cypher will keep the digital crowd in good cheer. They’ve also launched a unique fundraising structure called Fund-a-need to get support from the community. A $100 donation goes towards one month of a Zoom premium membership, $500 pays one week’s salary for a backstage worker during production — all the way up to $5,000 pays a director’s fee and benefits for one show. Come out and support your arts community. Main event is Monday, July 13, 6 p.m.
UC THEATRE FUNDRAISER Your neighborhood nonprofit music venue, the UC Theatre, is relying on you to help them continue their mission. They are specifically looking for contributions to their education fund that supports their youth platform, the Concert Careers Pathways Program. The free, nine-month program for people ages 17-25 teaches technical, creative, and business aspects of concert and event promotion. The program primarily supports women, people of color and those with low income, dedicating itself to addressing the lack of diversity in the concert promotion industry. With your help, the theatre can continue the program and refashion it for the post-pandemic environment. Show up for your local theatre community and our promising youth.
STAY AT HOME SYMPOSIUM Have you been flexing some creative muscles but haven’t shared your work yet? Here’s your chance: submit a work of poetry or prose, paintings, photographs or more to the Stay-at-Home Symposium, a community collaboration and music series led by Musaics of the Bay. Promoters of the power of classical music, Musaics of the Bay will use the submissions as inspiration for new musical compositions that will be performed weekly online. They will also release a weekly podcast with conversations between the artists, performers, and composers. Here, you have the opportunity to be both an artist and a muse. The next YouTube video will be released on July 13 featuring composer Skyler Baysa and pianist Julia Hamos.
BEST IN SHOW ESSAY We’ve been spending a lot more time with our pets since we’ve had to stay inside. You’ve forged a stronger bond, taught some new tricks, and created lasting memories. If your pet has lifted you up in the past few months, consider submitting an essay to Berkeley Humane’s storytelling contest. You can tell us about your experience with a rescue animal that you own or have interacted with — a tale of tears, laughter, and even redemption. Finalists will receive a cash prize and the winner will be crowned the coveted title of Best in Show. Make sure you get your pet’s editorial opinion before you submit your story. Submissions due by 11:59 on July 15.