Young Austrian boys’ singing voices have echoed across their lands since the era of the Holy Roman Emperor until present day, and now the Vienna Boys Choir is crossing the Atlantic to San Diego’s shores. With a history spanning back to 1498, the sailor-suited boys have set audiences adrift with their angelic chords singing from Gregorian chants to holiday fare and Mozart to Strauss. Get in the holiday cheer from the centuries-old, and ever-young Wiener Sängerknaben, yuletide time is here!
The best gifts don’t require batteries and children know this best. Imagination has no boundaries but in dreams it takes one into worlds where ‘impossible’ does not exist. Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, under the spell of The San Diego Ballet and the San Diego Children’s Choir will unfurl cascades of snowflakes, sugarplum fairies, battling militant rats taking on leaping Cossacks, an Arabian sojourn for two, and more – all from a young girl’s surreal dream. Pyotr’s perfect score is ready to sprinkle on the fantasy, and innocence is prime grounds for an endless dance of creations.
December 16th – 18th
For nearly two decades, a creature has lurked during Holiday time around El Prado way. He’s hard to spot because he despises streaming lights, children’s merriment, and bells - and singing only makes him greener than green, stemmed down to his heart that’s two sizes too small, from what is said. This so-called ‘Grinch’ has sinister eyes and a smile full of lies and he’s out to stop Christmas from the blissful folks of Who-ville, and San Diego too! Be on the lookout, many sightings have occurred around The Old Globe. He may be in disguise too as Jolly Ol’ fella St. Nick, so please, inform the theatre’s personnel if the Grinch is spotted near.
Now – December 26th
Jungle bells, jungle bells, roaring all the way! Oh, what fawn it is to prance at the zoo all night and day! Surely, you can bear a little winter weather to hang out with some bonobos, chill out with an artic fox, and have a hoot with the hyenas during the San Diego Zoo’s Jungle Bells celebration. For the organization’s centennial, surprises will be waiting at every turn with bedazzling lights, exotic fare, music, animal-themed holiday tales, and even Santa will be keeping it cool. With these and otter options, Southern Koalifornia’s weather is perfect for a night’s stroll at the zoo. No jackets and scarfs required but if you get cold there’s some boas to keep you warm, but only until 8pm!
Now – January 2nd
Not to sound macabre but it's in the job to cause fright within this column. Get your shakes on in prime time to invite the season of fear in. Give your shivers a twist with MOPA’s Horrible Imaginings Film Festival with all variants of grey-dread from horror, thriller and suspense to fantasy, fiction and enough artful eeriness to keep you crawling back for more. Get in the darkness, San Diego, we can't be America’s finest weather all the time!
September 7th – 11th
Renowned artists from both Californias, Latin America, and Asia unite for the third installment of Happening En El Valle. Contemporary crafters will showcase their talents via paintings, installations, sculptures, dances, music and much more. Set amidst the vineyards of the undulant hills of El Valle de Guadalupe, there will be plenty of art-making merriment for all ages. No contemporary art fest is complete without regional cuisine and libations, so, get your cultural arts fix in Baja’s wine country!
Hot from the shores of Rio, landing in Mission Beach, comes the unity of tribal spirit that only the annual Brazilian Day San Diego can bring. The Carnaval-feel event will once again dazzle the ever-increasing attendees that join in the festivities. It is everything from samba to capoeira, bossa nova to açaí, and a whole bunch of colorful offerings in between that you’ll be saying “obrigado” in no time.
Telling stories from the trenches to the flight deck can be told in many ways, but film captures a human essence that engages everyone. For its second year, the GI Film Festival shares the experiences of the Unites States of America’s most valiant citizens. Military documentaries, short films, family features along with an awards ceremony and panel discussions bring five days worthy of any rank or class of support for the armed services.
September 14th – 18th
3 Days. 30+ musical acts. 20 comedic performers. 20 artists. 10 Top chefs. You +1. Sponsored in part by Mercedes Benz of El Cajon, KaaBoo returns for its second edition and all the numbers are adding up for a good time under the sun. With the spectrum of offerings at this year’s festival it will be an easy stroll to get your cultural arts fix in no time. Top international, national, and local musicians, artists, humorists, and kitchen masters will please any diverse palate with over 40 hours of memories to share –get comfy seaside style.
September 16th – 18th
October’s nights are about to get a dash of bellissimo with a hint of amore. Reaching the decade-long marker, The San Diego Italian Film Festival is bringing movie fans 10 of the finest Italian films. This year the event pays homage to film director Ettore Scola and will showcase his 1976 classic Brutti, Sporchi E Cattivi (Ugly, Dirty and Bad). Along with fabulous Italian chefs cooking for an exclusive night of eating together, it is a festival that you can’t forget about it.
October 5th -16th