Berkeley Arts Festival Calendar


Music Matters...or Does It?


Music has been a powerful force behind social movements for generations-from '60's civil rights rallies to today's Women's March and Black Lives Matter protests. But why does music matter to activists, has it really made a difference, and how can it endure?

Join Noel Paul Stookey (of the '60's trio Peter, Paul & Mary) and distinguished special guests for a musical evening demonstrating the power of music to inspire and mobilize. Musical artists will fuse discussion and performance into an immersive look at music's ability to amplify the message, advance the cause, and empower us all to stand on the front lines of social change.

Curated by Noel Paul's non-profit, Music to Life, Music Matters...or Does It? reflects on the biggest social issues of yesterday and today to uncover how music has influenced and inspired artists for social change.

This intimate venue experience is only available for one-night at Alumni House. We are expecting this event to sell out quickly-purchase your tickets today to secure your spot!

Dec 11, 7pm to 9:30pm, Alumni House

Way Out West Concert Series - Matt Renzi's "Arm-Sized Legging"

CJC's Way Out West Concert Series provides composer-performers from the Bay Area and beyond with a Tuesday evening showcase for forward-looking original work in jazz and related genres. Join us weekly in Rendon Hall for Way Out West!

Arm Sized Legging is project consisting of woodwinds (saxophone, oboe, english horn), violin, cello, bass and drums, playing a repertoire of all original compositions. The music explores textures and colors as well as the various sonorities of the strings, woodwinds and drums combined together in a unique way. Although many parts are written out, there is also plenty of room for improvisation and the group makes use of free-form as well as traditional song forms to use as the basis of collective soloing. The addition of the cello to the standard Jazz saxophone trio adds a contemporary classical flavor to the mix.

Matt Renzi- saxophone, oboe, english horn
Helen Newby- cello
John Wiitala- bass
Tim Bulkley- drums

Multi-reedist and composer Matt Renzi has been performing professionally for the past 20 years at international jazz festivals and music venues worldwide. He holds a Bachelor's in Music (Performance) from the Berklee College of Music and Master's in Arts (Classical Composition) from San Francisco State University. Matt can be heard on a variety of recordings including the award winning "Lines and Ballads" (Fresh Sound Records) as well as his latest release entitled "Rise and Shine" (Three P's Records) which features his New York trio. Matt has performed and recorded with Marc Johnson, Michael Formanek, Eddie Marshall, Herbie Lewis, Ben Monder, Eberhard Weber, Bob Moses, Ralph Alessi, Bobo Stenson, and the Berlin Philharmonic Quintet.

Dec 11, 7:30pm to 9:30pm, Rendon Hall/Fiddler Annex @ California Jazz Conservatory 2040 Addison Street, Berkeley

Iko YaYa plus Dance Lesson with Mike Ferketich

Doors at 7:30 pm / Dance Lesson with Mike Ferketich at 8:00 pm / Show at 8:30 pm

Tickets are $12 Advance / $15 Day of Show

Buy Tickets Here

Iko Yaya dishes out steaming New Orleans-drenched "swamp and roll" for dancing. The band is made up of longtime members of some of our favorite local groups, and it'll be a night of "bon temps roulez" big time! The musicians got together in 2013 to play the Louisiana-influenced music that moves them, and, as Jim Scott reports, "That's when the party started!" Tonight it's a full plate of their favorite New Orleans-based dance music - blues and boogie, Cajun/zydeco, R&B, Second Line, and even country - all delivered with a Mardi Gras vibe. Among the dance favorites are "Mardi Gras Mambo," "It's All Over Now," "Hey Pocky Way," and "Waltz Across Texas."

I*ko Ya Ya is Singer-percussionist Cheryl McBride (born and raised in New Orleans, a member of SwingThing, and one of our regular dance teachers)
Guitarist Jim Scott (Mark St. Mary, CZ & the Bon Vivants, Jeffery Broussard)
Bassist-singer Lance Houck
Saxophonist Otoe Mori (Humanistic, Smooth Jazz Alley)
Trumpeter Marty Arvan
Drummer Sam Siggins (California Cajun Orchestra, Courtableu, Creole Belles)
Accordion, guitar, singer Andre Nigoghossian

Dec 11, 8pm to 11:30pm, Ashkenaz Music & Dance Community Center, 1317 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley