self (the remix)

Last weekend I had a chance to see Mo’olelo Performing Arts Company‘s production (they also have a blog) of Robert Farid Karimi’s self (the remix) featuring Karimi and DJ D Double:

Storyteller/performance artist, def poetry jam performer, national poetry slam champion robert farid karimi — supported by an amazing soundscape spun live by Chicago DJ and Violator All-Star DJ D Double — mixes together stories, movement, and music to tell the tale of a first generation child of Iranian and Guatemalan immigrants learning how to survive the cultural imperialism of the United States on his quest to find wholeness in the fractured atmosphere of the 70s and 80s.

It’s a coming-of-age story that seems to have a new relevance given the current tensions between the US and Iran and the heated rhetoric around immigration. I usually enjoy solo performance, and although this is technically a dual performance, the “style” is similar to other narrative solo performances (c.f. Josh Kornbluth). What was particularly effective is the way in which DJ D Double weaves the soundtrack and effects into the narrative. It’s rapid-changing and pulls samples, beats, and songs from every direction, providing an structure to support Karimi’s performance while commenting and in an effect becoming its own character. In terms of “solo performance,” it’s some of the best use of sound I’ve seen.

The show only has a few more performances, starting tonight and going through this weekend. If you’re in San Diego and reading this (probably 5 people total), then go check it out!

Noose at UCSD Library

A noose was found at the UCSD library, and the campus police have issued a report calling it “[h]anging a noose with intent to terrorize.” It’s unclear if the incident is related to the recent outcry over the off-campus “Compton Cookout” party. During a recent teach-in, there was a massive walk-out by students angry at the school’s response. There are going to be new protests today over the noose incident.

update: I say that it’s unclear if it is connected but what I really mean is that it’s not clear if the party organizers are involved. The timing is too close for it to be unrelated. I would not be surprised if it turns out to be some idiot’s bad idea of a “joke” or “site-specific provocative art.”

update 2: A student has contacted the police and confessed to placing the noose. No other news, however.

update 3: Students are occupying the chancellor’s office.

update 4: More updates here.

Concert Bleg : Bach Collegium San Diego presents all 6 Bach Motets

Six Bach Motets BWV 225-230 & Gala Reception

Ruben Valenzuela, Music Director

Vocalists of the Bach Collegium San Diego
Daniel Zuluaga, Lute
Shanon Zusman, Violone
Michael Sponseller, organ

Saturday, 20 February
St James by-the-Sea Episcopal Church
743 Prospect Street, La Jolla CA 92037
(Gala Reception to immediately follow in Van Schaick Room)

Sunday, 21 February
Loyola Marymount University (Murphy Recital Hall)
1 LMU Drive, Los Angeles CA 90045

Concerts at 7pm

$35 Reserved Patron
$25 General Admission
$15 Student/Senior

For tickets or other inquiries: online or (619) 341.1726

Since its founding in 2003, the Six Bach Motets have been at the core of the BCSD’s repertoire, but never ALL SIX! The motets will be performed with vocal ensembles ranging from 4-16 voices.

The San Diego concert will be immediately followed by our annual Gala Benefit Reception in the Van Schaick Room of St. James by-the-Sea. Plan now to attend both!

For combination ticket packages are available for both concert and gala. Please refer to our website for details.

Concert Bleg : The Messiah

I’m singing again!

The Messiah

Orchestra Nova
Conducted by Jung-Ho Pak

Bach Collegium San Diego
Ruben Valenzuela, Music Director

Guest Artists:
Virginia Sublett, Soprano
Katherine Lundeen, Alto
Robert MacNeil, Tenor
John Polhamus, Bass

St. Paul’s Cathedral, San Diego
Thursday, December 10, 7:30 p.m.

St. James by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, La Jolla
Friday, December 11, 7:30 p.m.

Solana Beach Presbyterian Church, Solana Beach
Saturday, December 12, 7:30 p.m.

This season’s Masterpiece Messiah is an encore presentation of our dramatic video experience of the great masterpieces of art
complementing the most famous of all oratorios, George Frideric Handel’s Messiah. Joined again by Bach Collegium San Diego, our
interpretation has become well-known for its original 18th-century period approach, creating an unforgettable emotional experience that
goes beyond most traditional performances.

New this year and by popular demand, we’re adding a performance at St. Paul’s Cathedral, Downtown San Diego. Don’t miss out on one of the hottest tickets in town during December. Buy tickets online or call 858-350-0290.

Cedar Creek Falls

I went hiking with a friend to Cedar Creek Falls last weekend. It’s in the Cleveland National Forest (so you need an Adventure Pass to park). The first part of the trail winds down into a valley. Spring is approaching and there were some nice wildflowers blooming and new growth.

Flower on Cedar Creek Falls Trail

Flower on Cedar Creek Falls Trail

The trail isn’t too tough if you just want to see the bottom of the falls, but we went to see the top first:

The top of Cedar Creek Falls

The top of Cedar Creek Falls


The short way down to the bottom is steep and required some squatting/crab walking. Definitely a bit more than I was expecting, but it’s a pretty view:
Cedar Creek Falls

Cedar Creek Falls


You can follow the creek back to meet up with the trail leading back up out of the valley. We saw some families with little kids, so they probably didn’t go to the top. On the way back we saw a number of fire-blackened trees:
A tree that looks a bit like a rook

A tree that looks a bit like a rook

It’s not a dramatic waterfall (this is arid San Diego county after all), but the advantage of the hike is that on the way back you can stop by the famous Julian Pie Company. Next time I’m out there I’ll try Mom’s.