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
The annual Bay Area Playwright's Festival has nurtured some theatrical heavy-hitters since it was founded by director Robert Woodruff 30 years ago, including Sam Shepard, Mac Wellman, and Anna Deavere Smith. Festival alumni have gone on to win every major award in the theater world from the Tony to the Pulitzer. Spread over 10 days at the Magic Theatre, this year's lineup features workshop performances of plays by six up-and-coming and established dramatists. Inspired by Jean Genet's The Maids, Zakiyyah Alexander's Sweet Maladies follows the fortunes of three recently emancipated slave girls. In Annie Baker's Body Awareness Week, a stranger causes trouble in a small Vermont town when he starts to take pictures of naked women. Into the Numbers by Christopher Chen explores the effects of celebrity on Iris Chang, famed author of The Rape of Nanking. A quest for a missing half-brother is at the heart of Julie Hébert's play, Tree. I am Montana by Sam Hunter tells the story of an Israeli soldier turned mega-mart employee. Meanwhile, Kevin Oakes' futuristic mystery play, Mr. Fujiyama's Electric Beach, follows a detective on the hunt for a murderer through San Francisco's shady demimonde. Other festival highlights include a new play symposium featuring Woodruff and Jesse McKinley of the New York Times and a seminar on intellectual property rights.
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.'"