Jeff Terich

4 Must See 2016 Summer Concerts in San Diego

There’s a lot of competition for live music in San Diego, and the competition doesn’t always come from other live shows. Beaches, parks, museums, galleries – there’s no shortage of options for fun summer activities, but if you’re starting to figure out your summer plans, I’d like to suggest marking a few select dates on your calendar for some great concerts coming to town between June and September. I’ve assembled some great options for those seeking out a great live music experience this summer, from old-schoolers to newcomers, be it rock, pop or R&B. Start planning now – you don’t want to miss ’em.

Brian Wilson

The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds celebrates a milestone 50-year anniversary this year, and founding member and singer/songwriter Brian Wilson is playing the album in its entirety on tour. One of the stops is at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, and the concert is free to ticketholders at the San Diego County Fair, which is a major plus. God only knows there aren’t many opportunities to hear one of the great artists of our time perform the entirety of one of the best albums ever released, especially without paying a steep ticket price, so wouldn’t it be nice to be there when it happens?

Where: Del Mar Fairgrounds – 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014
When: June 30, 2016
Time: 7:30 PM
Cost: Free to fair goers. Reserved Seating – $16-$118
> Find out more about Brian Wilson at the San Diego County Fair

Savages

Three of the best shows I’ve seen in the last year and a half were all played by Savages. The London-based outfit has a dynamic stage presence, intense but big-hearted, loud yet overflowing with charm. It doesn’t hurt that their two albums, Silence Yourself and Adore Life are two of the best indie rock/post-punk records of the past five years, and in a live settings they grow into something even more powerful. This one’s at the top of my list, and should definitely be up there on yours as well.

Where: Observatory North Park – 2891 University Ave, San Diego, CA, 92104, USA
When: July 29, 2016
Time: 8:00 PM
Cost: $25
> Get Tickets to Savages at Observatory North Park

Duran Duran/Chic

Individually, I’d be pretty enthusiastic about recommending a show that featured either Duran Duran or Chic, but both bands? That’s definitely a must see. New wave icons Duran Duran have been on tour with disco/funk legends Chic since earlier this spring, but their double-headlining old-school dance party makes their way to Sleep Train’s outdoor stage right in the middle of summer, making for a perfect night of vintage jams in an open-air setting. Freak out!

Where: Sleep Train Amphitheatre – 2050 Entertainment Circle, Chula Vista, CA 91911
When: August 2, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
Cost: $36-$152
> Get Tickets to Duran Duran: The Paper Gods Tour with CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers

Anderson .Paak

California’s Anderson .Paak (the period is intentional) has been making funky, just slightly psychedelic R&B for a few years now, but his new album Malibu has made him an early MVP for 2016. His style is a mix of ’70s-era soul a la Stevie Wonder or Marvin Gaye, filtered through contemporary electronic and hip-hop sounds, with more than his fair share of unique quirks. His music is pure joy, and nothing but good times are guaranteed when he hits the stage.

Where: House of Blues San Diego – 1055 5th Avenue San Diego, CA 92101
When: August 3, 2016
Time: 8:00 PM
Cost: $20-$45
> Get Tickets to Anderson .Paak at House of Blues San Diego

> Explore more of San Diego’s Concerts and Music Scene

Susan Myrland

Arts Worth Traveling For: 3 Creative Festivals Not to Miss

Poets and Painters Spoken Word and Graffiti Art Festival

If you need an excuse to stay a little longer in San Diego, we have one word for you: festivals. From Shakespearean folios to interactive film fests, you can immerse yourself for a day or a week, enjoying the unique combination of cultural enrichment and pure escapism at these fun fests.

Discover Shakespeare’s First Folios

First Folio! San Diego 2016

Title page with Droeshout engraving of Shakespeare. Credit: Shakespeare First Folio, 1623. Folger Shakespeare Library.

Fans of the Bard are in for a treat, as San Diego is the only California stop for “First Folio! The Book That Gave Us Shakespeare,” a traveling exhibition commemorating the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death. The folio is the first collected edition of Shakespeare’s plays, published in 1623 by two of his fellow actors. Without their foresight, treasures such as “Macbeth,” “Julius Caesar” and “Twelfth Night” might have been lost. The rare volume will be on display from June 4 to July 7 at the San Diego Central Library’s Art Gallery, complemented by props and costumes from The Old Globe Theatre. Admission is free but reserving tickets in advance is highly recommended.

In addition, the Old Globe, San Diego Public Library and several partners are hosting Shakespearean-themed performances, panel discussions, film screenings, family workshops and tours – even an alternate reality game – throughout May, June and July. Many of the events are free; some require reservations.

When: June 4 – July 7, 2016
> Find out more about First Folio San Diego 2016

Graffiti Art Meets Poetry Slam

Poets and Painters Spoken Word and Graffiti Art Festival - San Diego Festivals

At the Jacobs Center’s Market Creek Plaza Amphitheater, you’ll find a year-round calendar of culture from jazz to culinary fusion. On June 25 from noon to 5:00 PM, the Poets and Painters Spoken Word and Graffiti Art Festival presents award-winning poet/playwright Gill Sotu along with Writerz Blok graffiti artists Jose Venegas and Sergio Gonzalez. This free event includes a poetry slam, live mural painting, music, storytelling, hands-on workshops and some of the hottest all-style dance from The Junkyard Dance Crew.

When: June 25, 2016
Time: 12:00 to 5:00 PM
Cost: Free
> Find out more about the Poets and Painters Spoken Word and Graffiti Art Festival

Immersed in Mozart

Mainly Mozart Festival

The Mainly Mozart Festival is a long-running local tradition, expanding over the years to include a range of composers from the 18th and 19th centuries. Performances are held in cathedrals, the outdoor Spreckels Organ Pavilion and the exquisitely restored Balboa Theatre, a 1924 jewel box that CNN Travel listed in the top ten of “World’s Most Spectacular Theatres.” This year’s edition of Mainly Mozart is more than music – there’s also a one-woman play, “The Other Mozart,” and a three-day symposium, “Mozart & the Mind: an Exploration of Prodigy,” with renowned speakers from science, medicine and the arts.

When: June 2-18, 2016
> Find out more about the Mainly Mozart Festival

> Discover More Festivals in San Diego

Robert Arends

Top 5 San Diego Spots to Explore the Birthplace of California

The new San Salvador, the Mayflower of the West! Photo credit: Jerry Soto

The new San Salvador, the Mayflower of the West! Photo credit: Jerry Soto

Did you know, San Diego was discovered by Europeans 473 years ago? Yep, only 50 years after Columbus and more than 200 years before the Spanish missions were started.

Spanish explorer Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo sailed his galleon ship, the San Salvador into San Diego Bay on Sept. 28, 1542 – going down in history as San Diego’s “first tourist.” He didn’t stay long, though, as there was no San Diego Zoo or LEGOLAND for the crew to explore. 😉

Today, tourists by the millions are drawn to our attractive sun-kissed shores in search of sun and fun, as well as the fascinating living history of San Diego.

Following are Top 5 places to step back in time and trace Cabrillo’s momentous discovery, and the founding of San Diego:

1. Maritime Museum of San Diego

San Salvador docked at the Maritime Museum. Photo credit: Jerry Soto

San Salvador docked at the Maritime Museum. Photo credit: Jerry Soto

Last month the Maritime Museum of San Diego launched a full-size, functioning replica of the San Salvador – the Mayflower of the West – much to the delight of landlubbers like me! The $6.2 million vessel took 5 years to construct (check out this cool time-lapse video of the ship’s construction) and can be seen docked at the museum’s pier on Harbor Drive. Plan is to have it open to the public (as in actually go onboard) later this year, hopefully by the holidays {fingers crossed}.

2. Cabrillo National Monument

Impressive statue of Cabrillo at Cabrillo National Monument

Impressive statue of Cabrillo at Cabrillo National Monument

Wonder what Cabrillo looked like or what he saw as he sailed into San Diego’s impressive natural harbor? Head to Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego’s only national park. There’s a 14-foot high statue of Cabrillo (originally envisioned as a 150-foot tall sculpture!) and incredible 360-degree, birds-eye views of the city. Also fun to explore are the Old Point Loma Lighthouse (one of eight original lighthouses on the West Coast), tide pools and bunkers from WWII.

3. Old Town San Diego State Historic Park

Folklorico dancers at Old Town State Historic Park

Folklorico dancers at Old Town State Historic Park

The Junipero Serra Museum on a hill overlooking Old Town, marks the spot where Spanish friars and soldiers established a presidio and the first Mission San Diego in 1769 (the original structures are no longer visible; the ruins are buried). Downhill, Old Town State Historic Park with its adobe buildings, old timey plaza and other sites, shows what life was like at San Diego’s first “downtown” in the 1800s. This is where the Wild West meets mariachis and our Hispanic heritage.

4. Mission San Diego de Alcala

Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala

California’s first mission, Mission San Diego de Alcala in Mission Valley

In the aptly named Mission Valley near Old Town, is the second Mission San Diego de Alcala – which was moved here in 1774 to be closer to the San Diego River (makes sense). You can stroll through the mission and its beautiful gardens, chapel, church, a museum with original artifacts and an excavation site out back, believed to be the monastery.

5. Mission Trails Regional Park

Old Mission Dam in Mission Trails Regional Park. Photo credit: Ce Helton

Old Mission Dam in Mission Trails Regional Park. Photo credit: Ce Helton

Mission Trails Regional Park, one of the largest urban parks in the U.S., is just up the road from Mission San Diego. Highlights include the original Old Mission Dam, a state-of-the-art Visitor and Interpretive Center featuring exhibits dedicated to the Kumeyaay Indians who lived here 1,000 years ago and 60 miles of hiking trails including an awesome trek to the top of Cowles Mountain, the city of San Diego’s highest peak (1,593 feet).

See you in San Diego, and make your own history! 🙂

Jeff Terich

Four of the Best Live Bands in San Diego

The Burning of Rome

San Diego is increasingly becoming a more attractive destinations for touring bands to play, and there’s certainly no shortage of places for bands to play in town. But it would be a mistake to overlook the many excellent homegrown musicians that make San Diego’s music scene unique. San Diego had an explosion of talent in the early ’90s, and since then, has given rise to a long list of unique, innovative bands. There are a few bands today that stand out for being great live acts, however, and if you get the chance to see them, don’t pass it up.

Rocket from the Crypt

Rocket from the Crypt

Since the early ’90s, Rocket from the Crypt has been an iconic staple of the San Diego music scene, thanks to their legendary live shows, which include a long list of great rock ‘n’ roll songs (which most fans know all the words to) and a constantly changing wardrobe of matching onstage uniforms. They took a six-year break beginning in 2006, but since reuniting, their shows have been just as thrilling as they were in the early days.

> Hear more of Rocket from the Crypt

The Burning of Rome

The Burning of Rome

If you’ve spent a good amount of time in San Diego and you haven’t seen The Burning of Rome, you’re missing out on a guaranteed good time. Their raw, but theatrical indie rock tunes are catchy and full of energy, but even better yet is their live presence, particularly guitarist Joe Aguilar, whose animated antics will keep your eyes glued to him through the duration of the show.

> Hear more of The Burning of Rome

Wild Wild Wets

Wild Wild Wets

First and foremost, Wild Wild Wets simply write great songs. That’s a good starting point for why they’re worth investigating, but their live show becomes a sensory experience that involves psychedelic projections and heavy doses of reverb and effects. It’s a trip. They also curate a quarterly showcase of similar-minded but eclectic bands from San Diego and Los Angeles called the San Diego Freak Out, which is never anything less than an uproarious party.

> Hear more of Wild Wild Wets

The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble

Sure Fire Soul Ensemble - Live Bands in San Diego

If you want something that has a little more groove than grit, then there’s a lot happening in the local funk and soul community. The best of the bunch is The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble, whose “cinematic soul” style is like the lost soundtrack to a 1970s crime drama. They groove hard, but with some subtle nuances – not that those nuances are crucial when you’re getting down to their concise, highly danceable funk when they’re onstage.

> Hear more of The Soul Fire Ensemble

> Hear More Live Bands in San Diego

Guest Blogger

7 Billion Others Brings The World To Balboa Park

7 Billion Others - Museum of Photographic Arts

Balboa Park offers many ways to wile away an afternoon, but for the next few months, one of the best options is at the Museum of Photographic Arts.

It’s there you’ll find the exhibit “7 Billion Others” on view through September 13, 2015. It’s an incredibly moving look at the human condition and finds universal themes across drastically different living conditions and cultures.

The exhibit features multiple videos of individuals from 84 different countries. The videos are the work of authors Sybille d’Orgeval and Baptiste Rouget-Luchaire, who traveled the world for seven years with reporters, asking interview subjects the same 45 questions. “What meaning does life have for you?” “What did you learn from your parents?” “What message do you want to pass on to your children?” “What do you fear?”

They recorded all the testimonials, ending up with a quilt of interpretations and experiences.

It’s hard to avoid clichés when describing 7 Billion Others because the themes are so universal and broad. Cliché or not, we’re going to describe it here in the hopes that you’ll visit this groundbreaking work.

The videos are grouped by questions and by subjects, like those of love, fear, or happiness. In one video, a Los Angeles woman admits her idea of happiness is a cliché. Every day she tries to imagine that something fabulous will happen to her. A woman from France says happiness is harder to find. She believes some people are born with a propensity for happiness and she isn’t one of them. A 26-year-old man from Bangladesh says he isn’t completely happy because he hasn’t yet found love. He asks: why don’t girls like me?

Almost all of the interview subjects are filmed from the neck up, with their faces filling the frame. As you watch face after face appear, the physical differences are so captivating. It’s amazing to think we all have the same parts – two eyes, a nose and mouth – yet we look so drastically different and individualistic.

The interview subjects discuss plenty of weighty topics. An Iraqi Christian woman explains that she left her country because of killings and robberies while a Serbian man, now living in France, tells of how he dreams of his homeland every night. A woman in Senegal describes poverty as a kind of violence. A man in Japan says in order to fall in love, you have to be willing to destroy yourself. One woman from Africa fears living through another volcano. A common fear across countries is going to hell or fear of God. A man from Cuba said he’s more afraid that God doesn’t exist and that we’re alone in the universe.

Part of the7 Billion Others exhibit includes videos of the authors and reporters at work in the field. You see them going through footage at the end of a long day, often in third world countries. Some of the behind-the-scene videos give more context to the interview subjects. You might see their houses or families surrounding them.

All of this creates an overwhelming sense of connectedness and understanding with individuals living across the world. San Diego marks 7 Billion Others’ U.S. premiere. I guarantee you’ll leave feeling inspired and in awe of how complex we are as human beings.

> Find out more about 7 Billion Others

Jeff Terich

4 of the Best Jazz Clubs Throughout San Diego

Jazz Band - Croce's Park West
Jazz Band - Croce's Park West

Photo courtesy of Croce’s Park West

San Diego has more than its share of small-, medium- and large-sized venues to see rock and pop music. But beneath the din of the punks and the beatmakers, there’s a small but thriving jazz scene in San Diego that always has something to offer, whether it grooves in the pocket or goes wild with free improvisation. Pick up on what San Diego jazz musicians are laying down at these clubs.

Croce’s Park West

For the traditional jazz experience in San Diego, there’s no better place to start than Croce’s. After 30 years in the Gaslamp Quarter, owner Ingrid Croce recently relocated the restaurant and jazz club to Bankers Hill, where it continues to host live jazz musicians nightly, as well as during their Sunday jazz brunch. Serious jazz heads and casual listeners alike will feel right at home here.

Where: 2760 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92103
> Find out more about Croce’s Park West

Seven Grand

Seven Grand isn’t exclusively a jazz club. It is, first and foremost, a whiskey bar, and if you want to taste some top shelf bourbons or scotches before the show, there’s a lot to choose from. But around 9:00 PM, the stage opens up to an eclectic lineup of acts, from the weekly Gilbert Castellanos jazz jam to the more modern approach of artists like Ian Tordella. And best yet, there’s never a cover for any of its shows.

Where: 3054 University Ave., San Diego, CA 92104
> Find out more about Seven Grand

Dizzy’s

Dizzy’s, admittedly, is in a peculiar spot. By day, it’s the showroom for San Diego Jet Ski Rentals, so if you think you’ve ended up in the wrong spot, just keep that in mind. But it turns out that a big, open showroom for watercraft is actually a fine spot for a jazz concert. It’s spacious, and with excellent acoustics, and there’s no noisy bar scene to distract from the subtler performances. If you want an antidote to the louder and more chaotic clubs, this is the jazz venue for you.

Where: 4275 Mission Bay Drive, San Diego, CA 92109
> Find out more about Dizzy’s

The Loft at UCSD

A casual coffeehouse, wine bar and music venue all combined into one space on the UC San Diego campus, The Loft has had quite a few notable touring and local bands on its stage. But a hefty chunk of its music programming comprises jazz, both conventional and avant-garde – much of it courtesy of some talented locals (and students to boot!). It’s a comfortable space to chill, but just remember, it closes while school’s out for the summer.

Where: 911 Lyman Lane, La Jolla, CA 92037
> Find out more about The Loft at UCSD

> Explore San Diego’s Jazz and Music Scene

Jeff Terich

4 of the Best All Ages Live Music Venues in San Diego

The Irenic - An All Ages Music Venue in San Diego
The Irenic - An All Ages Music Venue in San Diego

The Irenic – An All Ages Music Venue in San Diego

San Diego is a haven for bargoers – the explosion of the craft beer scene has proven that this is a town that enjoys an IPA or two. But for those not yet of legal drinking age, that means being able to see live music can be a bit more complicated. As it turns out, however, there are several great options for under-21 music fans, and here is a handful of the best all ages live music venues.

The Irenic

If The Irenic looks like a church, that’s because, technically it is. Operating as Mission Gathering on Sundays, North Park’s The Irenic acts as a functional and non-denominational music venue the rest of the week. Its live music program is diverse, hosting everything from punk to electronic and indie rock throughout the year. And all ages are welcome at every show, making it a perfect spot for kids with a thirst for live music.

Where: 3090 Polk Ave., San Diego, CA 92104
> Find out more about The Irenic

Lestat’s

A little bit mellower than other venues in town, Lestat’s regularly showcases folk and singer/songwriters in San Diego, with occasional touring acts coming through as well. So if you’d rather ease into the live music scene with something a bit more laid-back, it’s a comfortable and friendly spot, with a coffeehouse next door that’s open late at night, just in case the show lets out early (just check in with your folks, they worry).

Where: 3343 Adams Ave., San Diego, CA 92116
> Find out more about Lestat’s

House of Blues

From marquee touring bands on its main stage to smaller indie acts in its Voodoo Room, the House of Blues – located in the Gaslamp Quarter – can have anywhere between one and three shows happening on any given night. And while it’s not strictly an all ages venue, a great many of its shows are open to those under 21. Just make sure to check their website before buying tickets to avoid confusion.

Where: 1055 5th Ave., San Diego, CA 92101
> Find out more about House of Blues

Observatory North Park

Like the House of Blues, the 1,100-capacity Observatory North Park isn’t an all-ages venue every night; sometimes it’s limited to 18-and-up audiences, and occasionally, 21 and up. But a quick look at the calendar reveals that most of the time, the venue is pretty teen-friendly, and under certain circumstances – like Future Islands’ two upcoming shows in September – bands will book separate shows for two different age groups.

Where: 2891 University Ave., San Diego, CA 92104
> Find out more about Observatory North Park

> Discover More All Ages Fun in San Diego

Jeff Terich

5 Summer Concert Picks in San Diego – 2015

Taylor Swift - The 1989 World Tour

It’s no secret that San Diego is a great city for live music. It’s home to legendary bars like The Casbah, historic venues like The Observatory (formerly the North Park Theater), and open-air venues like Humphreys. And in just the last month, none other than The Rolling Stones paid a visit to the city with a blockbuster concert at Petco Park. The concert calendar only keeps getting better through the summer, however, with headlining acts that range from younger buzz bands to living legends. Here are five of the best bets for summer concerts in San Diego.

Best Coast

Best Coast

Best Coast hail from Los Angeles, but their ultra-catchy, melodic indie pop and aesthetic that celebrates all things California could just as easily be the soundtrack for San Diego. And when they come to the Observatory in North Park, it most certainly will be. The group just released their third album, California Nights, and it’s a more mature and nuanced, though no less accessible collection of pop gems. Swoon to their moody dream-pop ballads and have a giddy sing-along to favorites like “The Only Place.”

Where: Observatory North Park – 2891 University Avenue, San Diego, CA 92104
When: June 26, 2015
Cost: $25
> Get Tickets for Best Coast at Observatory North Park

Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson is 82 years old, but the country music legend is still as musically active as ever, having just released Django and Jimmie, his new collaboration with fellow icon Merle Haggard. Willie’s catalog is so deep and varied that you never really know what you’re going to hear. Some standards from Stardust? An outlaw number from his Shotgun Willie days? A selection or two from the Red-Headed Stranger? All of the above, perhaps, with a sprinkling of Hank Williams covers and “On the Road,” come encore time. Timeless classics, all of them.

Where: Harrah’s Resort Southern California – 777 Harrah’s Rincon Way, Valley Center, CA 92082
When: July 24, 2015
Cost: $55-$125
> Get Tickets for Willie Nelson

 

Echo & the Bunnymen

Echo and the Bunnymen

Those of us who grew up in the ’80s have a special kind of reverence for new wave/post-punk favorites Echo & the Bunnymen. From their debut album Crocodiles on up to their self-titled 1987 album, they pretty much owned the decade (not to mention placement of their songs in films like The Lost Boys and Pretty in Pink). And though they’re probably not touring with a string section like they did when they were playing Ocean Rain in its entirety, that doesn’t mean you won’t get a chance to hear “The Killing Moon.”

Where: Humphrey’s Concerts by the Bay – 2241 Shelter Island Dr, San Diego, CA 92106
When: August 6, 2015
> Get Tickets for Echo & The Bunnymen

George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic

George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic

Gotta have that funk! George Clinton didn’t invent funk, but he most certainly helped shape it in the 1970s with his bands Funkadelic and Parliament. Those two separate entities and their cosmic, conceptual catalogs have been merged into one psychedelic funk revue, and the hits run deep: “Flash Light,” “One Nation Under a Groove,” “Tear the Roof Off the Sucker,” etc. Free your mind and your hindquarters will follow.

Where: House of Blues – 1055 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101
When: August 19, 2015
Cost: $30-$45
> Get Tickets for George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic

Taylor Swift – The 1989 World Tour

Taylor Swift - The 1989 World Tour

Taylor Swift has come a long way since starting off her career as America’s teenage country sweetheart. She’s pretty much conquered the pop game, and the ubiquity of “Shake It Off” is proof enough at that. I tend to prefer the songs on Red (“State of Grace” is the jam), but whatever era of Taylor you consider best, this will no doubt be one of the biggest concerts of the summer.

Where: Petco Park – 100 Park Blvd., San Diego, CA 92101
When: August 29, 2015
Cost: $97-$479
> Get Tickets for Taylor Swift – The 1989 World Tour

> Hear More During One of San Diego’s Summer Concerts

Guest Blogger

San Diego Summer Theater Season Highlights 2015

Motown The Musical - Broadway San Diego

Summer in San Diego isn’t all beaches and barbecues. There’s a lot of great theater happening on our local stages. With our city’s laidback attitude and sense of style, you can leave the beach and head to the theater in your flip-flops – just make sure to change out of that bathing suit!

Here are some of your best drama and musical options for the summer of 2015.

Motown the Musical

Motown The Musical - Broadway San Diego

Photo courtesy of Motown The Musical

It doesn’t get more toe-tapping and hip-shaking than a musical about the greatest hits of Motown. This is the national touring production of the Broadway musical about Berry Gordy, the legendary founder of the Motown record label. You can expect to hear all your favorite songs by Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder and The Jackson 5.

Where: San Diego Civic Theatre – 1100 Third Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101
When: June 9-14, 2005
Cost: Starting at $22.50
> Find out more about Mowtown The Musical

Come From Away

Come From Away - La Jolla Playhouse

A rock-inspired, original musical about what happened to the small town of Gander, Newfoundland when 38 planes were diverted there on September 11, 2001.  An international slumber party ensues, despite the tragic circumstances, with the townspeople entertaining travelers with music and an open bar. Original musicals are tough to find these days and this world premiere looks very promising.

Where: La Jolla Playhouse – 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037
When: May 29 – July 5, 2015
Cost: Starting at $25
> Find out more about Come From Away

Everybody’s Talkin’: The Music of Harry Nilsson

Everybody's Talkin': The Music of Harry Nilsson

If you were around in the 70s, you surely remember these song lyrics: “Everybody’s Talkin’ at me,” “Can’t live, if living is without you,” “One is the loneliest number,” and “You put the lime in the coconut.” The songs of Harry Nilsson are so recognizable, yet not many know the story of this musician and his wild escapades. The Rep’s world premiere musical includes Nilsson’s beloved music and some top talent, including Tony-Award winning actors in the leads.

Where: San Diego Repertory Theatre – 79 Horton Plaza, San Diego, CA 92101
When: May 23 – June 21, 2015
Cost: Starting at $18
> Find out more about Everybody’s Talkin’: The Music of Harry Nilsson

Dogfight

Dogfight - Cygnet Theatre

Based on the classic indie film of the same name, this musical is about three young marines on the eve of their deployment to Southeast Asia. The night of debauchery turns serious when one of them becomes entangled with an awkward waitress at the center of a cruel bet. Her idealism changes him, and challenges his compassion and ideas about romantic love.

Where: Cygnet Theatre – 4040 Twiggs St., San Diego, CA 92110
Where: July 16-August 23, 2015
Cost: Starting at $25
> Find out more about Dogfight

Kiss Me, Kate

Kiss Me Kate - The Old Globe Theatre

This Cole Porter classic will get the premiere treatment of recent Tony Award-winning director Darko Tresnjak, who charmed audiences with his hilarious staging of “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.” Porter’s witty songs mixed with showstopping dance numbers tell the story of a divorced couple whose battles threaten to take down a musical version of “The Taming of the Shrew.” As far as entertainment goes, this is a sure thing.

Where: The Old Globe Theatre – 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego, CA 92101
When: July 1 – August 2, 2015
Cost: Starting at $39
> Find out more about Kiss Me, Kate

The Quality of Life

For a smaller, more intimate theater experience, head up to Carlsbad to see “The Quality of Life,” a drama about two very different couples: one living in a yurt in Northern California after a fire destroys their home and another from the Midwest who recently lost a child. As the couples converge, their different life perspectives inform how they handle tragedy. Intrepid is a small, ambitious theater company that has won the praise of critics and audiences. This theater experience will undoubtedly be powerful and worthy of discussion over a glass of wine after the show.

Where: Carlsbad Village Theatre – 2822 State Street, Carlsbad, CA
When: July 3 – August 2, 2015
Cost: Starting at $25
> Find out more about The Quality of Life

> Discover San Diego’s Vibrant Theater Scene

Robert Arends

San Diego’s ‘Mayflower of the West’ San Salvador Sets Sail Labor Day Weekend!

You know the old saying, “In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue…” Well, San Diego has its own historic maritime tale: “In 1542, Cabrillo sailed the ocean blue and discovered…San Diego.” Yep, hard to believe that over 470 years ago(!)Portuguese explorer named Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, who sailed for Spain, came across our little slice of paradise.

San Salvador

Cabrillo didn’t stay long, though; just enough time to anchor his ship, the San Salvador, off Point Loma, note and name our beautiful bay, and continue up the coast.

Launch of the San Salvador

San Salvador Completed - Maritime Museum of San Diego

The completed San Salvador and its amazing construction crew. Photo credit: Jerry Soto

San Diego makes history again Labor Day Weekend, September 3-5, 2016, during the Maritime Museum of San Diego‘s maiden voyage celebration of the first full-scale, historically-accurate working replica of the San Salvador, the “Mayflower of the West.” The impressive $6.2 million vessel stands 60 feet tall, weighs 230 tons and took the Maritime Museum five years to construct.

Coinciding with the museum’s annual Festival of Sail, the largest tall ship festival on the West Coast, visitors can for the first time board the San Salvador and enjoy a variety of onshore exhibits spotlighting this seaworthy recreation of Cabrillo’s 16th century galleon.

The adventure continues through October as the San Salvador embarks on a Pacific Heritage Tour of California’s coast, serving as a seafaring symbol of California’s origin story and the history of America from a West Coast perspective, and it will anchor in the following cities:

  • September 15-18: Oxnard, Channel Islands Maritime Museum
  • September 23-25: Monterey, Monterey State Historic Park
  • September 30 – October 9: Morro Bay, Central Coastal Maritime Museum Association

At each port, visitors will be able to board the ship and discover immersive dockside exhibits and events.

More Cabrillo Sites in San Diego

For history buffs, following are a few other cool Cabrillo sights (including a couple hidden in plain sight) to check out while you’re here:

Cabrillo National Monument

Cabrillo National Monument - the Plymouth Rock <a href=

Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego’s only national park, commemorates Point Loma peninsula (Ballast Point, to be exact) as the “Plymouth Rock of the West” where Cabrillo came ashore. Cabrillo, the first European to set foot in California, claimed the bay for Spain. He noted it was “a very good port.” Couldn’t agree more, señor Cabrillo 😉

It would be more than 200 years later before the first Spanish mission was founded here.

There’s a 14-foot statue of Cabrillo with panoramic views of San Diego Bay and downtown; a phenomenal photo opp! Did you know: the Cabrillo sculpture was initially envisioned as a colossal statue that would exceed the Statue of Liberty in height!

California Tower in Balboa Park

California Tower Balboa Park

California Tower in Balboa Park

Cabrillo find #2 is located high atop the California Tower in Balboa Park, part of the San Diego Museum of Man. You’ll need binoculars to spot this one. The large weathervane on top of the cathedral-like tower is, in fact, the San Salvador. Pretty cool! For the first time in 80 years, the California Tower is now open for visitors to climb. Reservations required. Don”t forget to bring your camera!

On the museum’s façade, there’s also a clay and plaster figure of Cabrillo. If you’re facing the building, he’s just below and to the right of Junipero Serra , father of the California missions (right of the balcony).

San Diego Museum of Man façade. Can you spot Cabrillo?

San Diego Museum of Man façade. Can you spot Cabrillo?

So now you know about our discoverer, Cabrillo, and his mark on San Diego’s – and California’s – history 🙂