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Futurefarmers: Out of Place, in Place

Founded in 1995 in San Francisco, the internationally renowned Futurefarmers group takes a collective, playful, inquiry-based approach to art making that spans multiple disciplines and ways of inhabiting the world, from sailing and farming to environmental design and DIY scientific experimentation. Their imaginative, environmentally-conscious projects provoke audiences to question the many ways that humans try to control nature, or imagine themselves as separate from it. Their work can be described as social sculpture, a type of making that activates art’s potential to change society. Futurefarmers: Out of Place, in Place surveys their practice to date, and includes what they call a new “speculative fog-harvesting machine,” a live project to be constructed and activated over the course of the exhibition. This exhibition is part of YBCA’s ongoing Changing the Ratio initiative. Over 70% of YBCA’s exhibitions from 2017 through 2019 are dedicated to monographic exhibitions of female artists or female-led collaborations.

Lamplighters Music Theatre — The Pirates of Penzance

One of the most beloved of all operettas, and known as one of the “Big Three” of the Gilbert and Sullivan canon, Pirates is full of some of their most famous musical numbers, including “I Am the Very Model of the Modern Major General,” “Poor Wond’ring One,” “With Cat-like Tread,” and the glorious anthem “Hail Poetry.” Director Nicolas Aliaga frames his first production with Lamplighters through a more modern lens, emphasizing the late 19th Century concept of the “New Woman,” which embraced an entirely new feminist ideal. Major-General Stanley’s wards are intrepid, curious, and hardy, and the pirates themselves are gentlemen whose true crime is merely casting off society’s expectations; this will be a show about not doing what you are expected — or, indeed, duty-bound — to do!

Richard Howell / dawsondancesf — MANGAKU

With their fifth collaboration, Howell and Dawson continue their journey of bridging jazz and contemporary ballet. Borrowing from the title of Howell’s just-released jazz album, Coming of Age—MANGAKU, this program features the world premiere of MANGAKU, an ensemble work for nine dancers with live musical accompaniment from Howell and guest artists. Rounding out the program is Floating in Mid Air, another Dawson-Howell collaboration, a work which received its premiere at San Francisco’s Bayview Opera House earlier this year.

Dawson works in the contemporary ballet idiom, characterized by balletic grammar mixed with lissome spines, thrusting rib cages and swerving limbs. Dawson has a snappy vibe, and his confident choreography is at its best when showing off the speedy athleticism and muscularity of his dancers.

—Mary Ellen Hunt

Referring to Richard Howell: I have the deepest respect for his musical abilities. He walks in the same path as the great ones: Joe Henderson, Don Myrick to be mentioned in the same light. I have great belief in his talents. He will continue to make contributions in the time to come.

—Maurice White
Founder of Earth, Wind & Fire

Garrett + Moulton Productions — Stabat Mater and Mad Brass

Award-winning choreographers Janice Garrett and Charles Moulton return to YBCA Theater with a stellar cast of 23 dancers to present “Stabat Mater and Mad Brass” — an evening of two world premieres celebrating the resilience and joy of the human spirit. Together, these new works traverse a vivid visual, musical and theatrical landscape of both the sacred and profane, evoking a journey of transformation and exploring the capacity of the heart to meet adversity with love and grace. In a world increasingly filled with messages of fear, alienation, and despair, Garrett and Moulton’s work manifests images of light and hope. Since 2002, the company’s signature exuberance, lush physicality, and deep soulfulness have delighted, moved and inspired Bay Area audiences.

Post-performance Q & A with the Artists — Friday, September 7th

Gala Benefit Reception — Saturday, September 8th
Join the artists for a post-performance party featuring wine, hors d’oeuvres and desserts in the Grand Lobby. Purchase a benefit ticket that includes both the performance and after-show festivities.

Bay Area Now 8 Opening Night Party

Celebrate the opening of BAY AREA NOW 8, YBCA's signature triennial. The exhibition showcases 25 local artists, architects, and designers in a broad range of creative practices, including painting, photography, ceramics, textiles, video installation, and digital media. For the first time in its history, Bay Area Now also includes architects and designers working at the leading edge of environmental, landscape, and housing design.

Bay Area Now 8 Exhibition

The only survey exhibition of its kind in Northern California, YBCA's signature triennial BAY AREA NOW returns in its eighth manifestation as a key component of YBCA's 25th anniversary season. At a time when the challenges facing artists in the Bay Area continue to mount — from rising rents and displacement to too few venues that can elevate and support emerging artists — an exhibition that focuses on what is being created in studios across the region is not just desirable, but vital.

Selected through a process of studio visits conducted from fall 2017 through spring 2018, the exhibition showcases visual artists in a broad range of creative practices, including painting, photography, ceramics, textiles, video installation, and digital media. For the first time in its history, Bay Area Now also includes architects and designers working at the leading edge of environmental, landscape, and housing design.

The picture that emerges — of both the region and the artists who call it home — presents a resilient Bay Area, where humor and care come together with intimate reflections on individual and personal histories, and where bodies and geographies propose a fluid understanding of race, gender, and nature. Using materials as surrogates for gender and environmental politics, the participants point to an in-between space that, by rejecting rigid dichotomies, suggests a delicate optimism.

In celebration of the artists and curators who took part in previous editions, as well as the current state of YBCA as an institution, the exhibition research and text materials will include a look back at the history of Bay Area Now.

YBCA 100: The Future of Visual Culture

From Kat Gordon’s fight for female leadership in advertising to Nnedi Okorafor’s exploration of African stories in science fiction, having diverse voices at the table offers insights into people’s drastically different realities. Whether in the media, in the workplace, or in political office, representation in visual culture has become a key conversation on the path to equity.

Don’t miss this opportunity to join Gordon, Okorafor, and other influential thought leaders and culture makers for conversations that will have lasting impact beyond this day and beyond these walls.

See the full YBCA 100 Summit schedule »

YBCA 100: Reimagining Political Power

Tarana Burke’s founding of the ‘me too.’ Movement, and Janet Mock’s fight for transgender rights have empowered people to come together and shed light on the injustices that often go ignored or unnoticed. By bringing voice to the voiceless and publicly exposing hidden truths, these influencers demonstrate that power is never just reserved for a few, and that you do not need a political platform to instigate a critical mass. And it is through organized movement that democracy demonstrates its full force.

Join Burke, Mock, and other YBCA 100 honorees at the YBCA 100 Summit to reimagine political power and reenvision who can elicit cultural change.

See the full YBCA 100 Summit schedule »

YBCA 100: Black WOMEN Rock! Performance

Party with the YBCA 100 honorees and celebrate the YBCA 100 with some of the most progressive women musicians in the country. jessica Care moore’s Black Women Rock! seeks to empower young women instrumentalists, vocalists, and poets to tell their stories and inspire future generations of Black women rockers. At the YBCA 100 Summit they present a refreshing lineup of local and national women rockers. What better way to end a day of engagement and inquiry than with a powerful and thought-provoking celebration!

See the full YBCA 100 Summit schedule »

Holcombe Waller — Requiem Mass: A Queer Divine Rite

In partnership with San Francisco’s iconic Grace Cathedral and in conjunction with YBCA’s upcoming Fall 2018, REQUIEM MASS: A QUEER DIVINE RITE by composer Holcombe Waller remembers those who suffered persecution for their sexual orientation and gender expression. Holcombe Waller is one of America’s most unique voices in music theater and a 2011 United States Artists Berresford Fellow in Music, with an approach to music “as total theater.” After traveling to multiple cities worldwide, from Waller’s hometown of Portland, Oregon all the way to Sydney, Australia, Requiem Mass will have its San Francisco premiere as an evening length musical ceremony at the iconic Grace Cathedral in Nob Hill on November 16-17, 2018. The piece is an emotional and personal work that is informed by research into the pivotal gay history from the 1980s through present day. It is driven by community engagement and local community input from experts in liturgical music, queer theory, and faith-based equality initiatives. Through a series of workshops from June through September, Waller has also been working with an all-abilities volunteer community choir to produce the performance.

Come together as a community for this intimate and deeply moving piece.

Lamplighters Music Theatre — A Little Night Music

A Little Night Music is the enchanting story of three couples and their romantic machinations, set during the magical and romantic midsummer of Sweden at the turn of the last century. The story of the play unfolds through the eyes of the young and the memories of the old. The show employs an affectionate nod to the operetta style, blending witty and urbane dialogue with beguiling melodies. The proceedings are both manipulated and reflected on by a quintet of singers serving as a Greek chorus of sorts, sometimes participating in the action while offering commentary on the white lies, false witness and little treacheries of the lovers throughout the story. This exquisite blend of theatre and music styles provides an enchanting adventure as it explores the themes of lost loves, the yearning of the young, the sometimes foolishness of re-discovered middle-aged love and the gilded memories of the old. Accomplished stage director Dennis Lickteig directs his first show with Lamplighters since becoming Lamplighters’ Artistic Director.