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
When the San Francisco Arts Commission wanted someone to dress up City Hall for the building's 100th anniversary last year, and become the structure's first artist-in-residence, it took a leap of faith by choosing Jeremy Fish.
I half expected Theatre Rhino's season opener to be an updated or revisited version of that cool, hippied-out Broadway musical from the 1960s about a group of young people coming of age in an era of war and rebellion. But Hairstory has nil to do with Hair -- or anything else, for that matter, besides the obvious subject of human dermatological outgrowth. At the start, a local barbershop owner named Moxie has just died, and five of his employees have gathered together in his salon to commemorate his passing with an evening of reminiscing and storytelling. There's little plot involved in these proceedings, which include two acts of 17 musical numbers, and the characters are as stereotypical as they get: the flaming young hottie (Jerry Van Carlos Gore), the bleached-hair queen (Trent Morant), the single bartender in a muscle T (Henry Lee), etc. The cast members appear to have been chosen primarily for their vocal strengths, which is OK given that the bulk of the show is song. Unfortunately, most of the songs are unoriginal and poorly written, and the book is no better. The play's supposedly based on interviews with people about their hair -- but writers Johari Jabir and Doug Holsclaw are no Eve Ensler or Anna Deavere Smith when it comes to docudrama. Like the Rhino's typical fare, Hairstory is silly and campy, but that's its genre, not its problem; its real downfall is the mediocrity of the script, which can make it hard to tell when the play's trying to be serious vs. when it's making fun of itself. The show works best when it's delivering flat-out satire, as it does with tunes like "Ontological Afro" (a fun number sung by the entire cast, clad in enormous Afro wigs) and "Fine Tooth Comb" (a melodic worship to woman's most orgasmic beauty tool). Both feature Kathleen Antonio -- as Celeste, the gossiping beauty -- whose strong vocals, stage presence, and nuanced performance make her the highlight of the evening. Antonio does what she can (as do all the cast members) to hold the production together, but the ensemble is up against a lot, not least of which is awkward, inconsistent direction. For some reason, the Rhino's subscriber-based audience seems to enjoy this feel-good fluff. Riveting it's not, but I guess we all need a little silliness sometimes.
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.'"