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.
Hal Hughes tries to spin a play out of material that would make Joseph Campbell pee with delight. "The stories in The Fisherman's Three Sons have been inspired and borrowed from the Jack tales of Appalachia," says the program, "which had their origins, like those collected by the brothers Grimm, in the oral traditions of Europe." When an Appalachian fisherman dies, his three grown boys wander in separate directions to seek their fortunes. The youngest and meekest, Jack, helps a mysterious old wizard, who rewards him with a magical burlap bag. The bag has the power to hold anything Jack wants. He just has to say, "Whickety-whack! Git in my sack!" and anything, even Death, will be sucked helplessly into the folds of burlap. For a while, in fact, our hero carries Death around like a sack lunch. The fairy-tale material is fascinating at first, and well-acted, but Hughes indulges in so much of it that the story winds up being an exercise in pure symbolism instead of drama. When the wizard turns into a princess claiming to be the "High Priestess of Whiteburg," we really, really don't care whether she makes it back to Whiteburg in order to claim her mystical crown. Transitions between the live-action play and puppet scenes are also clumsy. The intricate puppets (by Gitty Duncan), projected images from the Tarot, and interludes of fiddle music (by the playwright and Jill Kjömpedahl) make a rich sensual feast, but underneath it there isn't enough human story to carry the show, even as a symbolic dream.
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.'"