Picks of the Week: Baroque beats, tubular tunes and objectionable ogres to welcome November


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Happy Monday, Berkeley!

Somehow it’s November already, and we can’t decide if October was an excruciatingly long month or a vexingly short one. 

Either way, dive into Monday with an exploration of not one, not two, but three cities without having to travel further than 2334 Bowditch in Berkeley. At 4:00 p.m., the Center for Latin American Studies is screening Francisco Cruces’ “The Order I Live In: An Indoor Urban Symphony.” Through the voices of 20 individuals, the documentary tells the stories of city-dwellers in Madrid, Mexico City and Montevideo and highlights the impacts of the self on the urban center and vice versa. Cruce, co-director of the film, anthropology professor at Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia in Spain and visiting scholar at UC Berkeley, will also be present for a Q&A after the screening.

Tuesday is, first of all, Election Day, so turn in your ballots! It also marks the San Francisco Main Public Library’s “Seeking Asylum” poetry reading. The event, organized by Oakland-based 501(c)(3) literary journal “Poets Reading the News,” will begin at 6:00 p.m. and feature Bay Area poets Josiah Luís Alderete (“a full-blooded Pocho Spanglish speaking poet from La Area Bahia”), Alan Pelaez Lopez (“an Afro-Indigenous poet, collage, installation and adornment artist from what is now known as Oaxaca, México”) and Kim Harvey (“a San Francisco Bay Area poet and associate editor at Palette Poetry”). The evening will center on the current potential of a border crisis and where we might uncover currents of hope.  

On Wednesday, relax midday with this week’s noon concert in Hertz Hall, presented by the University Baroque Ensemble. The group will be playing 18th-century instruments and will draw selections from the likes of Antonio Vivaldi (known for his high-energy compositions) and George Frideric Handel (a preeminent composer of choral music). Not only are these concerts free, but they present a wonderful opportunity to appreciate UC Berkeley’s music program. Since first offering free concerts in the Greek Theatre more than 100 years ago, the department has remained committed to community engagement and joint musical appreciation. 

Then on Thursday, spend your evening at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. From 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., the museum’s most recent “Five Tables” collection, “Corporeal Woman,” will be available for viewing in its art study centers. Selections will consider portrayals of women in art, specifically in terms of questions of autonomy of the body, and will include phantasmic portraits from Arnold Genthe (who’s known for his photos of the Bay Area) and, interestingly enough, photographs of a naked woman fanning herself from motion-picture pioneer and stern-looker Eadweard Muybridge. 

Celebrate Friday by slipping into an oversized blazer and some leg warmers and heading west to San Francisco for this season’s first Union Square Flashback Fridays Ice Skating Party. Regular rink skating rates apply (about $20 per head) but you’ll get to slip and slide along to Madonna and Lionel Richie like never before. Hopefully, you’ll be out there “All Night Long (All Night),” or at least until the rink closes at 9:30 p.m.

On Saturday, get your Clipper Card ready once again, as San Francisco’s de Young Museum is hosting a block party for the opening day of its newest special exhibition, “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963–1983.” This will be a rare chance to see the exhibition, which considers the American Civil Rights Movement as well as the Bay Area-specific Black Panther Party, free of charge. The lineup for the day also includes a plethora of live musical performances from artists such as DJ Nina Sol and rapper Ruby Ibarra, as well as panels and activities led by We The Healthiest, a local group that aims to foster healthy practices in urban communities. 

Sunday’s the perfect day to kick back and watch some “Shrek.” The third movie of the series is playing at 3:00 p.m. at Oakland’s The New Parkway Theater, where you get to lounge on couches while you watch! Sure, DreamWorks may have released “Shrek the Third” more than 10 years ago, it may have an approval rating of 41% on Rotten Tomatoes and film critic Bob Mondello may have written, “there’s no real reason for anyone over the age of 11 to see this one” for NPR. But we’d like to offer the grumpy green guy a pass because, after all, there’s only so many jokes one can make about farts and earwax. It’s a chance, at the very least, to appreciate Julie Andrews’ pleasantly posh Queen Lillian

And if you’re not quite sure what to think of the flick after you’re done watching? Read up on some of the latest film reviews from The Daily Californian to jog your critical movie-watching brain; Sarah Runyan’s assessment of “Jojo Rabbit” makes for an especially poignant read. 

Finally, we suggest this clip of quick California quails, an animal that the Wildlife Heritage Foundation describes on its website as “a handsome, round soccer ball of a bird,” to brighten your Monday. If they can pitter-patter weightlessly like the wind, so too can you through the coming week!

Until next time.

At a glance:

Monday, 11/4: “The Order I Live In: An Indoor Urban Symphony,” Free, 4:00 p.m., 2334 Bowditch St., Berkeley

Tuesday, 11/5: “Seeking Asylum,” Free, 6:00 p.m., San Francisco Main Public Library, San Francisco

Wednesday, 11/6: Baroque Noon Concert, Free, 12:00 p.m., Hertz Hall, UC Berkeley, Berkeley

Thursday, 11/7: “Five Tables of the Corporeal Woman,” Free, 4:00 p.m., BAMPFA, Berkeley

Friday, 11/8: Flashback Fridays Ice Skating Party, about $20, 6:00 pm, Union Square, San Francisco

Saturday, 11/9: Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963–1983,” Free, 10:00 a.m., de Young Museum, San Francisco

Sunday, 11/10: Shrek the Third,” $8-10, 3:00 p.m., the New Parkway Theater, Oakland

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Contact Ryan Tuozzolo at [email protected].