Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Concert at MHP was warmly received!

We are pleased to share some of the feedback that we received from audience members, after our October 23 concert at the School of Arts & Culture @MHP.

"[The concert] was world class and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The friends we brought were [also] very impressed with the performance and the plaza." - Frank M.

"[I] enjoyed the skill of [the] performers [and was] exposed to new pieces." - Maria C.

"The artists are so professional. I'm very impressed." - Anonymous

"Good performance." - Anonymous

"Excellent." - Anonymous

Thanks, everyone, for your support for our work!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Win Tickets or Gift Certificates from Local Arts Organizations

We have great news. Arts Action 21 has expanded its October giveaway. First of all, the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts (MVCPA) has increased the value of their prize vouchers to $100. Each of the two vouchers are valid for two tickets at MVCPA valued up to $100.

The Community School of Music and Arts (CSMA) has joined in the giveaway by offering two gift certificates valued at $75 each and good for classes or camps at CMSA. And the School of Arts and Culture @MHP has contributed two gift certificates good for classes valued at $50 each.

To enter our random drawing for these fantastic prizes, join our Facebook page during the month of October 2011! Since not everyone has a Facebook account, Arts Action 21 is also providing an alternative way of entering the drawing. Simply leave your name and e-mail address on the form below.

So, that's it. You now have six chances to win a great prize from Arts Action 21 and our community supporters.

Limit one entry per person. You may enter the drawing by "liking" our Facebook page, or by completing the online entry form. Contest ends at midnight 10/31/2011. Each winner will be notified, and must be able to pick up his/her prize at MVCPA, CSMA or the School of Arts & Culture @MHP in Mountain View or San Jose, California. Unclaimed prizes will be returned for a drawing among the remaining eligible entries.

Arts Action 21 is dedicated to partnering with local arts organizations in Silicon Valley. If you would like promote your organization, or would like to sponsor a giveaway, please contact us at the e-mail address listed in the sidebar.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Join us for our upcoming events on October 16 and October 23!

Multicultural Perspectives: A Showcase of Ethnic Dance and Music
Traditional disciplines and contemporary interpretations will be featured in this array of cultural offerings.  The featured performing groups will include the Abhinaya Dance Company of San Jose, the Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, Los Lupenos de San Jose and the Marimo-Kai Koto Ensemble.
Sunday, October 16, 2:00 pm
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, SecondStage
500 Castro Street, Mountain View, CA
Free admission.  Donations accepted.

Exploring Artistic Heritage: A Piano and Chamber Music Concert
Pianist Patricia Cheng (in collaboration with French hornist Armando Castellano, violinist Po-Wei Lai and moderator Hector Armienta) will present a concert of works by Bach, Beethoven and Brahms, illuminating the role of the past in the creative process.
1st performance:
Sunday, October 16, 7:30 pm
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, SecondStage
500 Castro Street, Mountain View, CA
$10 suggested donation.

2nd performance:
Sunday, October 23, 2:00 pm
School of Arts & Culture @MHP
1700 Alum Rock Avenue, San Jose, CA
$10 suggested donation.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

We're celebrating National Arts and Humanities Month in October 2011!

In October 2011, Arts Action 21 will celebrate National Arts and Humanities Month by partnering with several organizations to present a variety of artists and art forms to new audiences in Silicon Valley, in a series of programs at the Community School of Music and Arts (CSMA) at Finn Center, the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, and the School of Arts and Culture at the Mexican Heritage Plaza. In collaboration with the Castellano Family Foundation, the City of Mountain View Performing Arts Committee, Contemporary Asian Theater Scene and CSMA, Arts Action 21 will be pleased to present its third annual celebration of National Arts and Humanities Month.

The month's activities will begin on Sunday, October 9 at 3:00 pm, with an educational program at CSMA (located at 230 San Antonio Circle, in Mountain View). Titled “Listen and Learn: Exploring Artistic and Musical Heritage,” this special event will feature presentations and performances by Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, Marimo-Kai Koto Ensemble, Patricia Cheng (piano) and Armando Castellano (French horn). The suggested donation for this event is $5.

The CSMA program will be a preview of the full-length performances that will take place the following two Sundays (October 16 and October 23). Titled Sunday Arts Live 2011, this series will explore the arts as a way of understanding, appreciating and coming to terms with the past.

A full day of performances will be presented on Sunday, October 16, in SecondStage at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts (MVCPA), located at 500 Castro St. These programs will celebrate not only National Arts and Humanities Month, but also the 20th anniversary year of MVCPA.

The festivities on October 16 will begin at 2:00 pm, with a show titled "Multicultural Perspectives: A Showcase of Ethnic Dance and Music." The performing groups will include the Marimo-Kai Koto Ensemble, the Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, the Abhinaya Dance Company and Los Lupenos de San Jose. This lively, exciting program will present diverse traditional disciplines mixed with contemporary interpretations. Admission for this event is free, and donations will be accepted.

On October 16 at 7:30 pm, pianist Patricia Cheng will be joined by French hornist Armando Castellano, violinist Po-Wei Lai and moderator Hector Armienta, in a program titled "Exploring Artistic Heritage: A Piano and Chamber Music Concert." The program will illuminate the role of the past in the creative process, through performances of and discussion about Bach's Prelude and Fugue in E-Flat Major (from The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book II); Beethoven's Sonata in F Major for Piano with Horn, Op. 17; Brahms' Ballades, Op. 10; and Brahms' Trio in E-Flat Major for Piano, Violin and Horn, op. 40. The concert will be held in SecondStage at MVCPA (located at 500 Castro St., in Mountain View); and the suggested donation for this event is $10.

The Sunday Arts Live 2011 series will conclude with a repeat performance of "Exploring Artistic Heritage: A Piano and Chamber Music Concert." The concert will take place on Sunday, October 23 at 2:00 pm at the School of Arts and Culture at the Mexican Heritage Plaza (located at 1700 Alum Rock Ave., in San Jose). The suggested donation for this event is $10.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Silicon Valley Arts Spotlight: Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra

This month, Arts Action 21 is pleased to spotlight the Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, an educational and performing arts organization featuring young musicians based in the San Francisco Bay Area.  The Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, also known as FYCO, will be performing at this year's celebration of National Arts and Humanities Month on Sunday, October 16 at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts.

Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra promotes Chinese music as an integral part of Chinese-American culture by training young musicians to play traditional instruments.  Through music, FYCO creates opportunities for students to learn Chinese culture, music heritage, and builds teamwork and leadership skills.  Students’ repertoire includes Chinese folk songs, musical storytelling (Quyi), regional operas (Xiqu), and religious music. 

Led by Chinese music educator and Artistic Director Gordon Lee, Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra has over 130 student musicians that comprise three groups of Beginner, Junior, and Senior skill levels.  Most of the students are American-born Chinese youth, ranging from 7 to 18 years of age. 

Georgia Lu is FYCO's General Manager, and her son Michael started playing with the orchestra when he was 6 years old.  He is now 14, and plays in the Senior group.  Regarding her son’s experience, Ms. Lu remarked:

“Our son has learned about the Chinese culture and history through the music.  The orchestra teaches them teamwork, and you feel fulfilled and excited when they all have a very good performance.”

For more information about Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, visit http://www.fyco.org/.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spotlight on new Arts Action 21 partner: Contemporary Asian Theater Scene

Next in our series of feature articles about Silicon Valley arts organizations is the following post about Contemporary Asian Theater Scene (CATS).  Arts Action 21 is collaborating with CATS to present this coming October's celebration of National Arts and Humanities Month in Mountain View, CA.  Please keep reading to learn about CATS' history, mission and activities!

Contemporary Asian Theater Scene, known as CATS, was formed 15 years ago by four visionaries, who saw the potential cultural future of Silicon Valley.  They wanted to bring Asian American artists and artistic disciplines to the South Bay, recognizing that this region could support such endeavors and not look to San Francisco.  Thus, their mission for CATS was to enliven the South Bay with innovative, educational and cultural artists and art forms.

Through the years, CATS has been recognized for presenting an eclectic mix of music, comedy, drama and film.  One event that is welcomed annually is CATS’ Asian Comedy Night, an evening featuring up and coming comics of Asian descent.  CATS has had a long association with the Center for Asian American Media and has participated in the San Jose portion of the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival.  CATS has been responsible for recruiting local agencies and organizations to be co-presenters of various films at the festival.

CATS has encouraged emerging artists by hosting a playwriting contest (in collaboration with Calabasas Rep), presenting play readings by local Asian American playwrights, inviting artists to perform at “CATS Talent to Go” and notifying actors of auditions and opportunities.  Another outstanding event was an afternoon with best-selling author, Lisa See.

Such groups as Ethno-Tec, Object Theater, 18 Mighty Mountain Warriors and the Grateful Crane Ensemble have been brought to the South Bay by CATS.  CATS is now looking to present various musical jazz groups as well as classical musicians.  In October, CATS will join Arts Action 21 in presenting two programs to celebrate National Arts and Humanities Month.  

Recently launched is a series of films and panels under the title:  J-Town Cinema.  Films are presented at the Japanese American Museum of San Jose and at the Akiyama Wellness Center.  Also on tap is an evening at San Jose Repertory Theater where we will see the world premiere of Philip Gotanda’s play, “Love in American Times” and attend a reception with the playwright.  Please call 408-867-4525 for more information.

Look at the CATS Facebook page for any updates on what CATS is presenting.  Join us in our 15th year of great cultural events in the South Bay!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

New series of blog posts will feature Silicon Valley arts organizations, starting with Quinteto Latino

To further Arts Action 21's mission of nurturing a thriving arts community in the 21st century, this blog will periodically feature posts about the work of arts organizations and artists in the Silicon Valley region.  With this entry, we are pleased to introduce our readers to the work of Quinteto Latino, an innovative and dynamic chamber group which has served the community for ten years.

Quinteto Latino, a wind quintet specializing in the interpretation of Latin American classical and contemporary music, was founded in 2001 by French hornist and San Jose native, Armando Castellano. Since the group’s inception, the passionate artists of this unique wind quintet -- flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, and bassoon -- have dedicated themselves to performing with world-class artistry in communities not traditionally served by classical musicians.

Though a musician his entire life, Armando rarely had the opportunity to perform works culturally relevant to him and his community until the formation of this unique ensemble. By championing young and lesser-known composers of Latin American and Caribbean heritage, Quinteto Latino seeks to expand the boundaries of classical music, reach new audiences, and inspire new generations of players.

The members Quinteto Latino are enthusiastic educators, and they perform in schools through the San Francisco Symphony's Adventures in Music program, using music to discuss culture and diversity. The group performs throughout the year at private events, recitals, and benefits by invitation, and are especially interested in serving the Latin community with their music. Their mission is two-fold: to expand the cultural boundaries of classical music, and to make that music available, relevant, and inspiring to entirely new audiences.

Quinteto Latino's next public event is on May 3, 2011, at Berkeley Chamber Performances.