That journey to the ends of the Earth seeking enlightenment you had planned won’t be necessary — profound answers to your deepest questions about the multiple meanings of life are soon to be available at Campbell Hall, the Granada Theatre, the Music Academy of the West’s Hahn Hall, and the Arlington Theatre. Through the 12 series subscription plans available for its recently announced 2015-16 season, UCSB Arts & Lectures brings an entire year’s worth of fantastic events well within reach.
Although the five-concert Marquee series, which includes the Silk Road Ensemble with Yo-Yo Ma at the Granada on Sunday, February 21, or Monday, February 22, and the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hear Renee Fleming sing in a space as intimate as Campbell Hall just a week later, on Sunday, February 28, tops the list, the cost for one subscription to all five events is still comparable to the check for one dinner for two at many of our city’s fine-dining establishments.
The season kicks off with a party, as New Orleans phenomenon Trombone Shorty makes the transition from Campbell Hall, where he has appeared in the past, to the Granada on Friday, September 18. If you have ever wondered what the Granada would be like if it were in the French Quarter on Mardi Gras, here’s a way to find out. Watch out for false fire alarms, because it is going to get hot in thurr.
A&L’s musical offerings are richer and more varied than ever this year, with seven different subscription series all devoted to sound. The Marquee series is for the big names, plus Cameron Carpenter, a fascinating artist who has singlehandedly rewritten the book on how classical organ music is performed. He will bring his International Touring Organ to the Granada on February 9. The Chamber Arts series boasts three of the world’s top string quartets — Calder, Kronos, and the Danish String Quartet — all at Campbell Hall, and all for just $88 if purchased as a subscription, which is an incredible deal.
Up Close & Musical is the title for A&L’s series of concerts at the Music Academy’s Hahn Hall. These concerts often sell out, so subscribing is a good way to make sure you won’t miss The Orlando Consort when they perform alongside Carl Theodor Dreyer’s silent film The Passion of Joan of Arc on Sunday, January 10.
The biggest “get” of the season may well be Ry Cooder, who is coming as part of the Roots series. Cooder rarely performs live, and this show teams him up with Sharon White and bluegrass and country legend Ricky Skaggs. Move now if you want to see this show — it comes up early in the year, on Tuesday, September 29, at the Granada. Bold Grooves is a four-show series that begins with Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings at Campbell Hall on October 28, and includes the un-missable Pink Martini holiday show at the Arlington on Thursday, December 3.
There’s so much more, including a Dance series with Twyla Tharp, Akram Khan, and Alvin Ailey, and lectures by the Davids — McCullough and Gergen — that you will want to pick up the season announcement brochure or go online at artsandlectures.sa.ucsb.edu to get the whole list and all the descriptions. But feel free to call 893-3535 right away if you already have something in mind.