When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
We've all had that day: the one where you accidentally hit "Reply All" on an email intended for one or get rear-ended as you're backing out of the veterinary clinic where you've just spent your life savings to find out that the results on your cat's blood work are "inconclusive."
Through Aug. 17. Tickets are $15-20; call 999-8870 or visit
The Shee Theatre Company makes a grand entrance into the San Francisco scene this week with English playwright Anna Furse's semibiographical account of a late-19th-century "hysteric." The historical character Augustine, documented as a 15-year-old housemaid who went mad with hysteria, was placed under the care of a big-shot Parisian neurologist, Professor Jean-Martin Charcot, who experimented on and displayed her in his very own lunatic asylum, aptly called the "Museum of Suffering." The play begins with a chilling scene of Augustine writhing in anguish on her bed of misery inside the hospital, and follows her gross deterioration as Charcot pricks her with needles, hypnotizes her, and tortures her with excessive doses of random drugs, including liberal prescriptions for "ovarian compression." Her symptoms (which only worsen with treatment) are rage, incoherence, epileptic fits, colorblindness, and sharp pains beneath her breasts and across her lower abdomen. While Charcot is entirely transfixed on what he sees as a bizarre physical manifestation of insanity, a young Sigmund Freud -- seen here, fictitiously, as a student of Charcot's -- begins to challenge the professor's theories on grand hystérie with his own psychoanalysis and dream interpretations. A solid piece of compelling and thought-provoking drama, Augustine is a piercing snapshot of a frighteningly misogynous era of medical history during which women were treated -- and paraded around -- like lab rats. Under Virginia Reed's impeccable direction, the cast of four proves an explosive ensemble, with the mesmerizing Laura Hope (as Augustine) at its helm. Reed makes good use of the playing space, bringing photographs, live violin music, and well-choreographed dances of madness into the Exit's petite arena. The woman-centered Shee company's debut production hits the bull's-eye with this meaningful exploration, and sets high expectations for its future endeavors.
Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'.
Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"