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
You'll hear how contemporary playwrights have an increasingly difficult time getting their work produced in local theater circles because so many companies choose established (some would say "safe") productions because they believe more people will attend.
By the time most American female thespians graduate from puberty, they've already become all too intimate with the overproduced script of Our Town and the painful lyrics of Bye Bye Birdie's unpleasant ditty "How Lovely to Be a Woman." To counter the country's lack of teenage drama (Ricki Lake notwithstanding), ACT's Young Conservatory, which is chock-full of tender-aged talent, has been commissioning plays like Dust specifically for the younger class. English playwright Sarah Daniels' drama follows an unpopular American teen named Flavia who, while on a field trip overseas with her cruel peers, gets caught in an underground time warp that spirals her into ancient Roman London. In this past time she learns to fight in a company of kick-ass female gladiators, and builds enough confidence to ward off the jeering and jerking around of her cliquish classmates. The actors, many of whom are still in high school, do a wonderful job with the production, especially Adde Bigelow, whose understated reading of Flavia makes the text all the more interesting and credible. Some of the portrayals of high school snobs and airheaded "Girlie Glads" (who perform a Spice Girls-esque dance routine midplay) are a tad over the top, but they'd likely communicate the essence of the show to a younger audience. ACT's rendition of this morality play is visually compelling and contains combat scenes performed in terrific costumes against a stunningly versatile set (designed by Russell Milligan). Dust's production values are high and its acting fun to watch, but teens and their parents should be aware that it's more appropriate for a preteen demographic; while local high-schoolers can surely relate to the angst associated with geekdom and wearing the wrong lipstick color, some might feel that inner-city life often presents them with more pressing problems.
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.'"