Berkeley Arts Festival Calendar



May 2, 11:45am to 2:45pm, The Cheeseboard Pizza, 1512 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley

Angela Marino | Populism and Performance

Populism and Performance in the Bolivarian Revolution of Venezuela (Performance Works)

May 2, 3pm to 4:30pm, University Press Books, 2430 Bancroft Way, Berkeley

Stitch 'n Bitch

May 2, 6pm to 9pm, Caffe on San Pablo, 2500 San Pablo Ave., BErkeley

Jazz in the Neighborhood Presents...Erik Jekabson

Our Berkeley neighbors and jazz colleagues at Jazz in the Neighborhood are hosting a weekly Jazz in the Neighborhood Residency at the California Jazz Conservatory, with Erik Jekabson featured on May 2 The Erik Jekabson Quintet performs original music by trumpeter Erik Jekabson. The band plays modern jazz with funk, fusion and latin jazz influences. Much of the music is groove-oriented and has lyrical melodies, but it also has modern and sophisticated harmonies.

Erik has six CDs out under his own name: his most recent album is "Erik Jekabson Quintet" (2017) on the Wide Hive Record Label. Erik also co-produced and played on four other recordings which are widely available: The Electric Squeezebox Orchestra's "The Falling Dream" and "Cheap Rent;" "Vista: the Arrival" and "New World Funk Ensemble." He's recorded as a sideman on numerous other jazz recordings, as well as doing session work in many other genres of music and on movie and video game soundtracks. He's spent time on the road with Illinois Jacquet, John Mayer, Galactic, and the Howard Fishman Quartet, and has performed at such notable venues as the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Algonquin Room, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Madison Square Garden, the Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Late Night with David Letterman. When Erik Jekabson isn't playing and composing, he's teaching a wide variety of students and running the Young Musicians Program at the California Jazz Conservatory.

Band Members and Instrumentation:
Erik Jekabson (trumpet),
Dave Ellis (saxophones),
Dave MacNab (guitar),
John Wiitala (bass)
and David Flores (drums).

May 2, 7:30pm to 9:30pm, Rendon Hall/Fiddler Annex @ California Jazz Conservatory 2040 Addison Street, Berkeley

The Moth StorySLAM - EGO

The Moth StorySLAM

Instagram The Moth StorySLAM, according to the London Guardian, is "brilliant and quietly addictive." The Village Voice calls it "an exuberant moveable feast." Now that feast is moving to the Freight!

What is the Moth StorySLAM exactly? It's an open-mic storytelling competition. You're invited to watch and listen - and if you put your name in the hat, you might be selected to compete!

How to Tell a Story at The Moth StorySLAM:
First, consult for the season line up of themes and prepare a 5 minute, true story, to be told without notes.

6:30pm: Sign up to tell a story, volunteer to be on a judging team or just sit back and listen.
7:30pm (SHARP): We'll pick the first name and the show will begin. Each teller will have 5 minutes to tell his or her tale. After each story, the judges confer, and give a score. The teller with the highest score becomes our StorySLAM winner. The winner will compete with the year's other winners in our next GrandSLAM Championship.

Be forewarned: The Moth is for true stories. OK, there won't be a fact-checker there, and the FBI probably won't dig into your files to verify the names and dates and places, but please know, emphatically, The Moth is not for fiction stories. The tiny fictions and lies we tell ourselves are part of our "true stories" but fabricated people, places or events are not allowed.

The Moth is not a venue for readings; it is a venue for tellings. No notes, papers, or cheat sheets allowed. Contestants are judged on sticking to the five-minute time frame, sticking to the theme and having a story that sticks-one that has a conflict and a resolution.

Story tips:
No standup routines please: The Moth loves funny people but requires that all funny people tell funny stories. Steer clear of meandering endings: Your last line should be clear in your head. Start in the action and set up the stakes.

May 2, 7:30pm to 8:30pm, Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, 2020 Addison Street, Berkeley

Dudu Tassa & The Kuwaitis, Yemen Blues w/ Ravid Kahalani, and Gili Yalo

Dudu Tassa & The Kuwaitis
One of the most prominent singer-songwriters and guitarists, and a dominant figure on the Israeli rock scene, Dudu's latest project is a tribute to his grandfather and great-uncle. Known as the Al-Kuwaiti Brothers, they were highly popular composer/musicians in Baghdad during the first half of the XXth Century. Dudu interprets their songs in Arabic and Hebrew and integrates new sounds into his rock band line-up, to create a new style, best described as Iraq'n Roll. His band was Radiohead's opening act for the 2017 US tour, and he has performed, among others, in the Sziget Festival, Colours of Ostrava, 4 Cultures Lodz, and Coachella.

Yemen Blues w/ Ravid Kahalani
Conceived from vocalist Ravid Kahalani's vision, Yemen Blues' original music mixes of Yemen and West Africa influences with contemporary grooves from funk to mambo and the deep soul of old chants. Conjuring up a rich and diverse aural palette with the use of percussion, oud, horns, and strings, Yemen Blues coexists in both the past and present, at once timeless and modern. The collective is a true collaboration of top master musicians, its core including Ravid Kahalani, Itamar Doari, Rony Iwryn, Shanir Blumenkranz and Itamar Borochov.

Yemen Blues was founded by Ravid in 2010, a then rising star in Israel who grew up in a traditional Yemenite family. He learned the language and the traditional chants of his origin, and then extended his influences in the areas of Blues, Funk, Classic Opera singing as well North & West African soul.

He joined forces with internationally renown bass player and composer Omer Avital, and together they created a music vision that attracted media and promoters with their intense showcases. The addition of Israeli-Uruguayan percussionist Rony Iwryn, Israeli

percussionist Itamar Doari, New York trumpeter Itamar Borochov solidified the group's diverse. In 2012 A known New York bassist and oud player Shanir Blumenkranz joined the band when Omer Avital left the band to focus on his own projects. These days, Yemen Blues more then ever developing their electrifying sound with Ravid's vision and the phenomenal core of Yemen Blues to a new album and powerful live show.

Yemen Blues' myriad influences carry over on stage, where the ensemble navigates from the boisterous to the romantic, from joyous celebration to anguished balladry. Horns fire off emphatically,

percussion adds deep rhythmic textures, and the enchanting oud strums out subtle melodies. Frankly, Yemen Blues is one of the most gripping and fun live bands in contemporary music today.

Yemen Blues has toured extensively over the past several years, performing for enraptured audiences across the globe. Top musicians from around the world are taking notice as well.

Gili Yalo
From his base in Tel Aviv, Gili Yalo is launching a solo career in a new project that combines Ethiopian roots with soul, funk, psychedelic and jazz music. Gili Yalo, who has collaborated with top music producers Beno Hendler and Uri Brauner Kinrot (Boom Pam), incorporates sounds from traditional Ethiopian music into a contemporary music production. The result is an exceptional, rich, vivid melody accompanied by Gili's unique voice with lyrics in both English and Amharic.

The music made by Gili Yalo embodies his own personal story, which inspired the rhythm and flow of the whole project. And what a story he has to tell: Operation Moses was the covert evacuation of Ethiopian Jews from Sudan during a famine in 1984. These Ethiopian Jews fled from their native land on foot to refugee camps in Sudan.

Together with his family, Gili Yalo made this perilous trip, walked through the desert towards the "Promised Land" and sang to his beloved ones. In the course of this exhausting and emotional journey, the music encouraged Gili and his family to keep on moving. Gili Yalo's band is made up of five musicians, including guitar, bass, keyboard, drums, and trumpet. An entrancing rhythmic motion is apparent when listening to Gili's music, from the groove, beat and flow, and up to the lyrics, concept and style of the project.

Today Gili Yalo's music gives a new meaning to traditional Ethiopian music. The expression of his story through an advanced music production represents his own personal triumph. Venue


May 2, 8pm to 9pm, The UC Theatre Taube Family Music Hall, 2036 University Avenue, Berkeley

Balkan Folkdance

This monthly event is a revival of '70s-style Berkeley folkdancing with some international request dancing to recorded music, capturing the spirit that David Nadel was inspired by when he opened Ashkenaz in 1973 with Balkan folkdancing. One does not need a live band to experience the communal pleasure of dancing together, and the dance lessons help newcomers join in the experience

Doors at 6:30 pm; Dance at 7:00 pm
Buy Tickets on EVENTBRITE
Tickets are $7

May 2, 8pm to 11pm, Ashkenaz Music & Dance Community Center, 1317 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley