Berkeley Arts Festival

The Berkeley Arts Festival Calendar is dedicated to the notion that in Berkeley every day is an arts festival. With the first month-long Arts Festival in 1997, we initiated this web site and realized that it could fill a need for information about the activities of all the Berkeley arts organizations year-round. So we expanded it and kept it going, as a guide for the arts-loving people of Berkeley and in appreciation of the City's continued support.

The Berkeley Arts Festival presents

We again have a home for the Berkeley Arts Festival this year, 2133 University Avenue right next to Ace Hardware. We have scheduled concerts with some of the most creative people in Berkeley--the musicians, composers and writers who bring vibrant talents for all to hear and see. So come along with us on an exciting journey into their domains.
Suggested donation $10-$20 unless otherwise noted. Check for changes on our website:

Friday, September 30th 2016

Jerry Kuderna Lunch Concert

Pianist Jerry Kuderna plays from classics to the newest compositions.

12 noon to 1:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Trio Improvisations

Trio Improvisations
with Chris Brown, piano; Donald Robinson, drums; John McCowen, clarinets

8pm to 9:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Sunday, October 2nd 2016

Duo Moderna

Duo Moderna (Monica Chew and Jerry Kuderna) presents an all Bartok-recital featuring the two piano version of Miraculous Mandarin, op. 19. Depending on whom you ask, the Miraculous Mandarin is either a lurid tale of a young woman sexually exploited by three tramps and a seemingly-unstoppable Mandarin, or a tale of redemptive power of embracing all that is alien and terrifying in ourselves. The first half of the program includes the incredibly beautiful Improvisations, op. 20, played by Jerry, and Etudes, op. 18, played by Monica.

4pm to 6pm, Berkeley Arts Fesitval 2133 University Avenue

Thursday, October 6th 2016

Duo Apartment D

A night of acoustic and electro improv music with Apt. D and Kaori Suzuku, Nava Dunkelman and Yang Yang. Apt. D is an electro-improv duo that explores sound and space by combining live electronic processing and experimental performance of voice and pipa during improvisation. Ingibjorg Fridriksdottir brings a background of both experimental electronic music and vocal training from Iceland. Sophia Shen combines her traditional Chinese pipa playing techniques with her new approaches to the instrument. The unique soundscape and the emotional depth that the duo creates are a result of an exchange and convergence from two very contrasting musical backgrounds and cultures.

8pm to 9pm, 2133 University Ave

Friday, October 7th 2016

Jerry Kuderna Lunch Concert

Pianist Jerry Kuderna plays from classics to the newest compositions.

12 noon to 1:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Saturday, October 8th 2016

19th Annual Music for People & Thingamajigs Festival Rock Music in Alternate Tunings

Solo Organ (Doug Katelus)
Fraid o' Freyja (Dylan Bolles, Suki O'Kane, Edward Schocker)
Winner's Bitch (Joy Sue Hutchinson, Suki O'Kane
DJ Paratune

MFP&T19 breaks with its tradition of gallery and proscenium concerts to assemble for a night of rock in alternate tunings. Each act balances experimental and rock idioms, from heavy drone to swirling psychedelia, giving audiences not only a rare glimpse into the often surprising influences and passions of these avant-garde performers, but an experience of the through lines to the work they are more commonly known for creating.

8pm to 10pm, 2133 University Avenue

Sunday, October 9th 2016

Insight Cove Theater Company presents: MisCast (a gender crossed musical theater recital).

Featuring Jenny Adler (Soprano) and Dwight Okamura (on piano) as well as guest singers from the newly established Insight Cove Theater Company. With songs by musical theater composers of past and present, including: Stephen Sondheim, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Frank Wildhorn, Lin Manuel Miranda and more.

Jenny Adler earned a bachelor's degree in classical vocal performance from UC Davis in 2012. She has since performed throughout the east bay with organizations such as the Berkeley Broadway Singers and Berkeley Jazz School. She has been studying under voice instructor Jonathan Nadel since 2008. She regularly produces plays and recitals throughout the year.

Insight Cove Theater Company (previously known as One Flew Over Theater Company) was started in October of 2015. Their debut production, Life Force: The Seven Ages performed at the Temescal Arts Center in May of 2016. They are currently preparing for a one act festival.

$12 at the door. All proceeds go towards helping Insight Cove Theater fund future productions.

2pm to 6pm, 2133 University Ave

Tuesday, October 11th 2016

2 + 2

Ingrid Laubrock / Tom Rainey Duo
Ingrid Laubrock - saxophone
Tom Rainey - drums
Myra Melford / Ben Goldberg Duo
Myra Melford - piano
Ben Goldberg - clarinet

8pm to 10pm, 2133 University Ave.

Friday, October 14th 2016

Jerry Kuderna Lunch Concert

Pianist Jerry Kuderna plays from classics to the newest compositions.

12 noon to 1:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Saturday, October 15th 2016

Reconnaissance Fly

Reconnaissance Fly is a team of goofball composers and superhero sidemen who deploy progressive rock, jazz, funk, avant-pop, and free improvisation against the forces of tedium. Members are Brett Carson on keys, Rich Lesnik on reeds, Polly Moller on vocals, flute, and guitar, Larry the O on drums and percussion, and Tim Walters on bass. Their show celebrates their new EP, Off By One, soon to be available from Bandcamp.

Plus Carl Weingarten an American guitarist, photographer, and founder of the independent music label Multiphase Records. Described as "one of the best indie musicians working today" by the San Francisco Chronicle, Carl is best known for his atmospheric sound and use of the slide guitar and Dobro. Weingarten has played a significant role in the progressive independent music scene since the 1980s, recording numerous solo and collaborative instrumental albums.

An early practitioner of the recording/performing technique called Looping, Carl's techno-pop trio Delay Tactics used tape and later digital delays as the heart of their sound. Carl has since toured nationally as both a soloist and session guitarist, adding his unique atmospheric guitar in rock, jazz and ambient music settings. Carl's music has been featured on NPR's All Things Considered and the syndicated radio programs Hearts of Space, New Sounds, and Echoes. His 2002 CD escapesilence was voted the #1 album on the annual Echoes Listener's Poll. In 2012 Carl's CD Panomorphia, was honored by the Zone Music Reporter during an awards ceremony in New Orleans as ZMR's best "Chill/Groove" CD of the year. Carl's follow up CD Life Under Stars was nominated in 2015 by Zone Music Reporter in the Best Instrumental Album category.

8pm to 10pm, 2133 University Ave

Friday, October 21st 2016

Jerry Kuderna Lunch Concert

Pianist Jerry Kuderna plays from classics to the newest compositions.

12 noon to 1:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Thursday, October 27th 2016

Lucien Ban - Matt Maneiri

ECM Recording Artists

Lucien Ban - piano
Matt Manieri - violin

8pm to 10:30pm, Berkeley Arts - 2133 University Avenue

Friday, October 28th 2016

Jerry Kuderna Lunch Concert

Pianist Jerry Kuderna plays from classics to the newest compositions.

12 noon to 1:30pm, 2133 University Ave.

Today's Events - September 29


TROMBONGA pulls into Caffe Trieste with some Horace Silver, Melba Liston, Curtis Fuller and David Bowie. Come grab a latte or a cold one, if you prefer, consider some supper, and get past the presidential pre-occupations for a minute.

The four trombones are:

Curtiss Mays, David Hemphill, Justin Mar and Pat Mullan, leader

7pm to 9pm, 2500 San Pablo Avenue

Purnamasari plus TBA

$TBA. 525-5054.

8pm, Ashkenaz Music & Dance Community Center, 1317nSan Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA, United States

Ongoing Events

On The Streets, Under The Trees: Homelessness and the Struggle for Housing in Urban and Rural California.

An exhibition of photographs by photo/journalist David Bacon

Many people remain unaware that poverty and homelessness are not just hardships faced by those living in large cities, but also affect countless numbers of unhoused people in rural areas. Bacon's exhibit remedies that blind spot by giving equal attention to low-wage workers and homeless people in the countryside. The show offers compelling portraits of people who are homeless, or as Bacon terms it, "people living outside."

He traveled throughout California, connecting with people in the cities and on the farms, taking their pictures and hearing their stories. He is fluent in Spanish, enabling him to learn from the experiences of farmworkers and undocumented immigrants.

September 18 through October

Mike's Out of Doors Sculpture Wall

Location: South side of Ashby Avenue between Pine Street and Elmwood Court.

Open: 10 am to 10 pm,  Monday through Saturday.