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On Tap: ‘Front Porch Presents’ April 7 at Lafayette’s Town Hall Theatre

On Tap: ‘Front Porch Presents’ April 7 at Lafayette’s Town Hall Theatre


Town Hall Theatre Company will kick off a quarterly performance series featuring local musicians performing well-known as well as original songs in an entertaining evening for the whole family.

“Front Porch Presents” will open at 7 p.m. April 7 on the stage at Town Hall Theatre and will feature a special guest, Lafayette’s Stevie Coyle of The Quitters, along with eight other musical acts. A collaboration of Town Hall Theatre and Front Porch Open Mic, the series is meant to showcase and elevate local musicians.

“We are now celebrating our fifth year of Front Porch Open Mic,” says Lafayette resident Andrée Hurst, who launched the performance community with her husband, Austin Hurst, on their own front porch.

“It has been amazing to see how many talented musicians come out every month to perform, from Lamorinda east to Danville and west to Marin and San Francisco,” said Austin Hurst.

The Hursts say they are also deeply grateful to Lamorinda Music in Lafayette, which has allowed them to use their Big Room performance space in the winter months. Doors open at 6 p.m. with music from 7 to 9 p.m. at 3535 School St. in Lafayette. Get tickets online at and call 925-283-1557 for more information.

— Town Hall Theatre Company


Bedford Gallery’s ‘About Face’ exhibit opens April 15

Bay Area arts lovers will have the opportunity to take a deep dive into the practice of portraiture with “About Face,” coming to the Bedford Gallery at the Lesher Center for the Arts from April 15 through June 23.

Capturing a person’s likeness has evolved over the millennia from cave drawings to realistic (or impressionistic) paintings, sculpture and finally photographs, videos and holograms. To a canny viewer, portraiture can offer a glimpse into not only the soul, but also the social, cultural, and political setting of the subject — and the artist as well.

This juried and invitational show examines the age-old tradition of portraits, using a contemporary lens to speculate how future generations may perceive current social values such as beauty, power and cultural significance. This exhibition seeks to highlight contemporary portraits and explore how the genre continually changes and shifts as artists respond to the moment.

Among the works by 100 local, national and international artists in the exhibit are Andy Warhol’s four-minute Screen Tests “living portraits” of Rufus Collins, Allen Ginsberg, Kyotko Kishida and others; and San Francisco artist Marbie, who employs brightly colored shapes to convey a human form.

The exhibit will be open from noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday at the Bedford Gallery inside the Lesher Center for the Arts at 1601 Civic Drive in Walnut Creek. An opening reception will be from noon to 2 p.m. April 15.  For more information, call 925-295-1417 or visit online.

— Bedford Gallery


Branden & James to perform April 13 at El Campanil

From TV’s “America’s Got Talent,” El Campanil Theater’s Lobby Series will present “Branden & James — Rock the Opera” at 7:30 p.m. April 13.

With “dazzling cello and soaring tenor vocals,” Branden & James will blow you away with their unique charm and classic style playing intergenerational pop and rock songs from across the decades. Expect to hear music by Elton John, Andrea Bocelli, The Eagles, Lady Gaga, Puccini and more! Don’t miss this intimate Lobby Series event. Tickets are $20 (chair seat) or $22 (table and chair). Visit online for tickets and more details.

— El Campanil Theatre

‘Dinner at Eight’ murder-mystery will open Friday

The Antioch Historical Society will present a murder-mystery directed by Frank Ballesteros, “Dinner at Eight,” at 7:30 p.m. Friday and March 25 and at 2 p.m. March 26 in the Antioch Historical Museum at 1500 W. Fourth St.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and students and will be sold only at the door. For more details, visit online.

— Antioch Historical Society

Drama Factory play “Death of Triboulet” continues Friday

The Drama Factory has opened its new play “The Death of Triboulet (a Comedy )” at the Nick Rodriguez Community Theater. The play will continue Friday and March 25.

Written and directed by Max Ballesteros, the story centers on Triboulet, the court jester to the king of France, in his own comedy of errors as he tries to save the king from death, all the while hoping to save his own life. This is an original production being staged for the first time. The show is suitable for most ages.

Masking is suggested but not required, and the runtime is about 90 minutes. Tickets for all of the performances are available at the box office on the date of each show as well as online in advance at The theater is at 213 F St. in Antioch. For more details, visit online or call 925-695-4123.

— The Drama Factory

County fair entries are being accepted through April 14

Online entries for the 2023 Contra Costa County Fair close on April 14. Think you own the best pig, bake the most delicious apple pie, made a beautiful quilt or have an uncanny knack for making crafts? Want to see who’s the best in all of Contra Costa County? Then be sure to enter the Contra Costa County Fair’s competitive exhibits.

Entry information is available online at This year’s fair, entitled “Once Upon a Fair,” will run May 18-21.

— Contra Costa County Event Park


Theater to show Oscar submission from Sweden on Friday

The International Film Showcase in March will present Sweden’s “Cairo Conspiracy,” an Academy Awards submission and Cannes Film Festival prize winner. The Tarik Saleh film opened Saturday at Napa’s Jarvis Conservatory and will be shown Friday at the Orinda Theatre.

The film story centers on Adam, the son of a fisherman, who is offered the privilege to study at the Al-Azhar University in Cairo, the center of power in Sunni Islam. Adam, however, becomes a pawn in the conflict between Egypt’s religious and political elites.

For Orinda Theatre showtimes or more information about the International Film Showcase, visit or online.

— International Film Showcase


Town Hall Theatre to present drama ‘The Shape of Things’

Town Hall Theatre Company will present a story of love, art, connection and deception in Neil LaBute’s “The Shape of Things” as part of its Main Stage season.

When normal, boring Adam and unconventional and exciting Evelyn meet in a museum, Adam’s life is changed for the better … or worse. A young student drifts into an ever-changing relationship with an art major while his best friends’ engagement crumbles, unleashing a drama that peels back the skin of two modern-day relationships.

Featuring amazing, thoughtful and honest performances from Linda Maria Girón, Alejandro Eustaquio, Andrew Mondello and Mayreni Sweis under the direction of Salim Razawi, “The Shape of Things” will raise questions about truth, beauty and trust.

“My first encounter with ‘The Shape of Things’ was early on in the pandemic,” said the play’s director, Salim Razawi. “A group of artists and I were trying to nurture our artistry without being able to gather in a theater safely, so we gathered virtually to read and discuss plays. This particular work resonated with me, because one of the overarching themes is art and love.”

Performances will be Friday and March 25, and tickets are $25 to $40. The Friday show will be a “pay-what-you-can” performance. Note that masks are required for theater-goers. The theater is at at 3535 School St. in Lafayette. For more information, call 925-283-6673.

— Town Hall Theatre Company


Village Theatre Art Gallery to exhibit encaustic paintings

The town of Danville’s Village Theatre Art Gallery will present a new art exhibit featuring a collection by established Bay Area artists of encaustic paintings.

Coming from the Latin word “encastiko,” meaning “to burn in” or “to fuse together,” encaustic painting is a special form of art, different from traditional painting methods that use paintbrushes and oil or acrylic paint. Instead, encaustic art uses heat as a method to fuse together pure color pigment with beeswax to produce unique works that present as sometimes smooth, sometimes ridged and always inviting as multiple layers draw viewers in.

The exhibit, “Convergence: The Intersection of Wax, Color & Design, An Exploration of Encaustic Art,” is curated by Rinat Goren and will run from March 25 through May 26, with an opening reception from 4 to 6 p.m. March 25. The artists featured in the exhibit will be present to discuss their work, and all art in the exhibit will be available for purchase.

The reception and exhibit are open to the public and free to attend. For information on the exhibit or the gallery, visit online or contact Visual Arts Coordinator Marija Nelson Bleier at 925-314-3460 or

— town of Danville

Submit area arts-and-entertainment On Tap items to Judith Prieve at

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