Category Archives: theater

Upcoming in Uptown…

So there’s much ado in the Uptown District of Oaktown and it’s all pretty fun and exciting stuff…

uptown sculpture garden, uptown art park

First up, an Art Park / Sculpture Garden. Becks’ Living in the O blog posted about this news late last week with We did it! The Uptown sculpture garden will soon be a reality.  Her post tells the story of a bunch of scrappy folks (activists, bloggers, and blog readers) who fought the good fight against plans to install a large parking lot in the now vacant lot on Telegraph [photo above], in favor of something far more interesting. Against all odds – they were frequently told there were no other viable options for the lot and a motion to approve it was even unanimously passed – they pressed on and proved that a few committed individuals really can make a difference.  And what a difference this will make…

With a $200,000 grant from the NEA to help make the art park a reality:

“The park will include rotating temporary exhibitions of public sculpture, newly commissioned public art projects, and an amphitheater for events by arts and community organizations… [and] the division is partnering with Black Rock Arts Foundation to exhibit works of public art, many by Oakland artists.”

How cool is that? Super cool.

oaksterdam, oakland pot school, new mural for uptown

Next up, a new mural for Uptown. Possibly.  I’m not sure of the status of this project but I was informed a few weeks ago that Oaksterdam University was interested in painting over one of their walls (all white with green lettering) with a more artistic mural depicting the cultural richness of the Uptown area. My understanding is the project was slated to be completed by the end of the year, and that the hope was for local Oakland artists to produce the work.  I heard there was going to be an open proposal process but haven’t heard any specifics since… I’ll keep you posted.

Also, a restored street clock. Remember my post Past & Present about the old Art Deco street clock at 16th and Broadway? Well, apparently the clock is in the process of being restored (this info in from Naomi Schiff, thanks!).  I happened by there a couple of weeks ago with my beau… we were on our way to a show at the Fox, and I said, “Hey!  The clock is gone!”  He thought I had the wrong corner, but I knew I was right.  Hah.  I can’t wait to see the finished product…

And lastly, how about a new Parkway Speakeasy? Ok, this is not a for sure deal, but a group of film lovers, community activists, and entrepreneurs are rallying to re-establish the sorely missed Parkway Picture Pub Speakeasy Theater, and one of their proposed locations is Uptown (they’ve cited difficulties in negotiating with the landlords of the old location).

I, for one, think Uptown would be a fabulous location for a small dual screen theater specializing in eclectic films.  If you think so too, check out their site The New Parkway for more information including multiple ways to get involved and help make this a reality.

Remember, individuals can make a difference.  Go Uptown!

Grand Lake Movie Magic…

So after spending several sweltering hours in our dirty, heat-trapping, and bug-ridden garage reorganizing everything last Sunday, we decided to treat ourselves to a good ol’ fashioned summer blockbuster movie at a great ol’ fashioned movie palace… The Grand Lake Theater.

Tim knew which movie he wanted to see and when he went online to lookup the movie times, he went straight to the Grand Lake’s info… 7pm.  That set our pace for the rest of our late afternoon project, because frankly, despite the fact that the movie was likely playing at other local theaters at other times, he knew there was no place else I’d rather go.

grand lake movie palace, grandlake theater, rialto cinemas

The Grand Lake Theater is my favorite movie theater in the East Bay for the following reasons:

  1. It’s gorgeous. An old movie palace dating back to the 1920’s, its main auditorium is huge (rare these days) and the decor is elaborate and beautiful, definitely from a bygone era.
  2. They never ever play commercials.  And they never will according to an interview with owner Allen Michaan.  This is practically unheard of and I really know of no other theater that doesn’t except for the Paramount, which only occasionally plays classic movies.
  3. They play first run movies. A great place to see the big blockbusters… especially on opening night. The energy is amazing!
  4. Great location. Plenty of options for dining and/drinks nearby for before or after, or a leisurely stroll around the lake… always lovely.
  5. Their incredible rooftop signage. Only now occasionally lit, due to the extreme expense of running and maintaining, this spectacular rooftop sign is one of the few remaining constructions of its kind, rising over 50 feet above the roofline, with letters as tall as 12 feet!  It’s a real treat to catch it lit at night in all its glory, but it’s also a stunning Oakland landmark by day, everyday.
  6. Independently & locally owned and operated!
  7. The Mighty Wurlitzer played on Friday and Saturday nights. Taking you back to a simpler time, and often featuring a musical medley of classic soundtrack songs, this wholesome entertainment surprisingly sets an almost reverential tone for the big screen movie experience. Here’s a shot of the organ player on one of my weekend night visits…

mighty wurlitzer, organ player grand lake, grand lake theater organ

The Grand Lake was opened in 1926 by West Coast Theaters (also responsible for Oakland’s Fox Theater) as a vaudeville show and silent movie house. The Mighty Wurlitzer was a common feature of theaters dating to this era – its purpose to provide accompaniment to the silent movies.

I didn’t feature this theater in my Art Deco series because the building has very little in the way of Art Deco design, other than the added Streamline styled marquee.  I’m not sure what year it was added, but below you can see a historical photo from 1926 without the marquee.

grand lake theater circa 1926

courtesy acmeron

And below is the marquee from late 2007, adorned with one of the owner’s frequent lefty political rants. People either love this blatant politicking or hate it, some even boycotting the theater in protest. Personally, I find it refreshing to hear a local individual’s voice speaking out in an effort to better our society (regardless of whether I agree with his stances). This is one of the benefits of being independently run… not to be confined to corporate-driven consumer messages.

art deco streamline, streamline marquee, bush cheney political rant, grand lake theater politics

As you can imagine, running an old movie house like this can be quite expensive. When Michaan (technically his company Renaissance Rialto, Inc.) bought the theater in 1980, he spent $3.5 million on renovation and expansion. The balcony was converted into a second theater, and the Grand Lake Theater saw its heyday of profits shortly thereafter with a multi-month run of E.T. (1982) in which lines wrapped around the block.

Later in 1985, two adjacent storefronts were converted into additional auxiliary theaters, both with classic period decor for similar era movie palaces (Egyptian Revival & Moorish). Since then, the expansion of multiplexes like those in Jack London Square and Emeryville has increased competition for movie goers, and profits have dwindled. Owner Michaan is fiercely dedicated to the theater’s preservation however.

“I would feel really, really bad if something happened to this building – if it wasn’t a theater,” Michaan says. “The Grand Lake is special. It’s one of the last of its kind. I sort of feel like I made a lot of money here over the years, and I owe it to the theater, even though it doesn’t make me any money any more.” (For Grand Lake Theater owner, movies must go on (by Peter Hartlaub, SFGate))

Anyone who’s been in the neighborhood recently has surely noticed the new paint job the exterior has received, huge scaffolding set up on all sides of the building. Improvements like this, plus the new roof and recently added 3D projection system (comparable to Pixar’s private screening auditorium) don’t come cheap. It’s all part of Michaan’s effort to woo the public back to the “classic golden age of Hollywood moviegoing experience.” I hope he succeeds.

This gem is one of my favorite things about living in Oakland.

And here’s a wonderful little film featuring interviews with the theater’s owner, the wurlitzer organ player, the general manager, and projectionist. It’s fascinating, featuring history, finances (did you know ticket sales cover only the costs for the studio films and the PG&E bill?), and a neat glimpse at that amazing sign on the roof and the mechanics behind it…

More info…
Grand Lake Theater on Yelp
Grand Lake Theater on Flickr
Grand Lake Theater on Cinema Treasures (interesting comments thread)

Woodminster Theater: Cathedral in the Woods

Ok kids… it’s time for our summer musical kickoff!!!

Uh oh, I can hear a few of you groaning already…

I’ll admit it… I have a few friends (not to be named) who’d rather have splinters driven under their fingernails than be forced to sit through hours of song & dance.  But I feel bad for them.  I really do, because for me (someone who saw Grease at least 14 times and, decades later, still knows every song word for word), this is pure summertime bliss…

Imagine  yourself perched above the fray of the city, nestled into a 1940’s amphitheater tucked into the redwood forest of Oakland’s hills, the sun is sinking low, and you see the first twinkling star pierce the indigo sky as the actors take the stage… this is the scene every summer at the Woodminster Amphitheater (dubbed Oakland’s Cathedral in the Woods) located in Joaquin Miller Park.

joaquin miller park, art deco outdoor amphitheater, woodminster theater

The Woodminster Summer Musicals

“The Woodminster Amphitheater is a classic open-air performance facility that seats 1500. In its early years, it was host to a variety of performances, pageants, and events. Then, in the summer of 1967, a fledgling Oakland arts organization called Producers Associates began to produce Broadway musicals at the Woodminster Amphitheater. A beloved Oakland tradition was born. ”

For  those who haven’t been to this hidden spot, the venue is quite similar to the Greek Theater in Berkeley, though smaller, more comfortable (real seats rather than concrete), and quite a bit more picturesque.

Woodminster Cascades, woodminster amphitheater and cascades, joaquin miller

Built in 1941 as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project (I’ve been covering a lot of these lately, eh?), the art-deco amphitheater and its associated “Cascades” (a stunning series of waterfalls, fountains, and reflecting pools built into the hillside) were dedicated as a memorial to California’s writers.  In fact, “the trees and other vegetation along the Cascades… are designated Writers Memorial Grove, and individual plantings are dedicated to California’s great authors, including Joaquin Miller as well as Bret Harte, Jack London, Mark Twain, Dashiell Hammet, Ina Coolbrith, and many others.”

Woodminster Amphitheater, Joaquin Miller outdoor amphitheater

Joaquin Miller Park, Woodminster Theater, woodminster amphitheater

A portion of the park was originally land owned by “Poet of the Sierras” Joaquin Miller, who “settled on 70 acres of grassy hillside, which he purchased parcel-by-parcel in the hills above the ‘City of the Oaks.'” He built numerous structures and monuments on the land (still present today) and coordinated the planting of over 75,000 trees (many also still standing today, though we now know these to be non-native and not necessarily ideal… eucalyptus, monterey pine, etc) all in an effort to create an inspirational artists’ retreat.

After his death, the Oakland Parks Department purchased the land from his estate, later adding adjacent redwood groves.  “Today, Joaquin Miller Park covers more than 500 acres. Many of its trails lead to adjacent Roberts and Redwood Regional Parks, which are part of the East Bay Regional Park System. ”  But I digress.

joaquin miller park, cascades, east bay outdoor amphitheater

east bay parks, oakland parks

Back to our summer musicals…

The opening show of the season is going to be fantastic… John Waters’ classic Hairspray.  Waters has been touring the PR circuit recently (NPR, Colbert Report, etc.) touting his new book Role Models so he’s been on my mind a bit, and I’m excited to see this revival.

woodminster amphitheater

woodminster amphitheater

Tonight is the final dress rehearsal at 8pm… get your sneak preview on for just $10. Otherwise show officially opens this Friday, July 9th and will run through July 18th. Adult tickets run from $25 to $40 (depending on seats), but group discounts are available, and all kids 16 and younger are admitted FREE (with paying adult).  Ticket info here.  Don’t forget to dress warmly… bring layers and blankets; it can be quite chilly at night.

See you at the show!

More info…
Woodminster Theater on Yelp

Burns and Byron
In men whom men condemn as ill
I find so much of goodness still.
In men whom men pronounce divine
I find so much of sin and blot
I do not dare to draw a line
Between the two, where God has not.

~ Joaquin Miller

Vagina Monologues at the Uptown

I’m going to briefly interject this snippet into my Art Deco series, because it was a really cool event and there’s just one more night (tonight!) if folks are interested…

vagina monologues, uptown nightclub

I went to the Oakland Vagina Monologues at the Uptown last night, a fundraiser for the creator Eve Ensler’s organization V-Day, dedicated to ending violence against women and girls worldwide. As I walked through the door of the club I was greeted by a large pink furry vagina, wearing pumps and pink socks no less, who hugged me and offered a Hershey’s chocolate kiss. Why, thank you Miss Vagina, I said.

Continuing into the club, gorgeous women of all shapes, colors, and sizes scurried about in t-shirts blazoned with the motto – I hella ♥ Vaginas. The collective empowerment was palpable!

The show is a series of monologues gleaned from Eve Ensler’s interviews with a wide range of real women: seniors, six year olds, sex workers, women who’ve suffered abuse, or women who’ve simply been fascinated or mystified by the power of the vagina.

Beautifully performed by local activists rather than professional actors, pieces turned from deeply self-revealing stories of shame, acceptance, and celebration – both tragic and humorous in the telling, to tales of reverence for the vagina’s ability to carry forth precious life into this world, to a hilarious catalogue of the various moans of ecstasy, to a beat-poetry-inspired reclamation of the word “cunt,” that will have you cheering the c-word at the top of your lungs at its end. As one who has always shied from the blunt force of the word and its negative implications, I surprised myself with this celebratory outburst.

And that’s the beauty of this show… despite that fact that all humans were borne through them, all women have them, and most men covet them, you will still be surprised by the breadth of experience and emotions surrounding this simple body part. Ensler’s monologues shine a warm illuminating light on a topic long shrouded in darkness and secrecy, and though the evening isn’t all fun (there are some deeply disturbing facts shared about the prevalance of rape, violence against and sexual torture of women around the world, including right here in our own United States), the balance seems right, and the message, undeniably important.

oakland vagina monologues, vday fundraiser, vday oakland 2010

The primary beneficiary of the two-night event is local Oakland-based A Safe Place, a volunteer organization that provides housing, crisis counseling, referrals and information services to battered women and their children. They will receive 90% of the proceeds, while the remaining 10% will be used to benefit the City of Joy project, part of this year’s “spotlight campaign” in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).  The project supports women survivors of sexual violence to heal, and provides them with opportunities to develop their leadership through innovative programming including group therapy, storytelling, dance, theater, self-defense, comprehensive sexuality education, and economic empowerment.

If you’ve never seen this show, or even if you have, please come support these organizations in their good works. Grab your mom, grab your girlfriends, even grab your guyfriends (I was amazed how men in the audience laughed when I laughed, gasped when I gaspedwe’re really not all that different y’all), and high-tail to the Uptown.

Uptown Nightclub is located at 1928 Telegraph Ave in Oaktown (cross street 19th)
Doors: 7pm, Show: 8pm
$20 The Uptown
(510) 451-8100

Tickets seem to be unavailable on Ticketweb, so you may want to call to see if it’s Sold Out.  Folks were buying at the door last night with no problem.

Dave Chappelle played Oaktown!

Ok…  I’m backtracking a bit here, so no spoiler alert necessary… I’m sure everyone and their brother knows by now that Dave Chappelle played a great, relatively new (opened in October 2009), little club in Oaktown called The New Parish.  What folks may not know, is that I was lucky enough to see one of these shows.  Woo hoo!!

First, The New Parish at 18th and San Pablo.  It was called “Town Hall” prior to its new debut last fall, and apparently Dave made a super-secret appearance there in April of 2009 (his first appearance in Oakland since 1996)… not a bad notch to have on your belt.  Prior to its short-lived incarnation as Town Hall, the venue was known as Sweet Jimmie’s after its proprietor Jimmie Ward, who opened the club in 1990 (he had a previous location, opened in 1982, but it was damaged during the Loma Prieta earthquake).

“Sweet Jimmie” Ward died just a couple of weeks ago at the age of 74… I’m going to quote extensively from a blogpost I found about his passing (Sweet Jimmie Ward Dies – Aimee Allison | Oakland Seen) because his story fits neatly into the framework I discussed last week, of that first generation of Southern Blacks who came to Oakland in search of better opportunities, to leave their lasting marks on our city:

A former longshoreman, he was one of hundreds of thousands who came from the South to work at the shipyards or on the Army base during World War II and stayed to raise families and start businesses and shape neighborhoods. Ward made Sweet Jimmie’s into the place to go – dressed to the nines – where old soul from Mississippi and Louisiana and Georgia was alive.

Those in Sweet Jimmie’s generation brought small town manners and blues and political organizing and art. They created a legacy and culture in Oakland that defines us today. Now, Oakland’s black population has plummeted under the weight of unemployment and police sweeps and shady mortgages. But you can still see the storefront of the old Sweet Jimmie’s at 577 18th Street in downtown Oakland. Many people don’t know that for many years it was an important meeting place for African-American political and community organizations. It was a center of influence. And while many celebrate the remaking of culture and nightlife in the city, I am taking a moment to mourn what we lost. See, Sweet Jimmie’s wasn’t just another nightclub, Jimmie Ward just another nightclub owner. He represented an era here in Oakland. And that era is over.

While that era may be over, it is no secret that Sweet Jimmie’s nightclub suffered a decline in its later years.  There are some entertaining stories on YelpEven Dave Chappelle did a riff on this during his show, spoofing on the scene from Sixth Sense… “I see dead pimps… and they want me to do things for them!” The crowd roared in hilarity, because before the whole remaking of the Uptown district of Oakland, this little stretch of San Pablo was known to be hella-ghetto, to put it bluntly.

One era ends… another begins… and I am here to loudly celebrate the new era of The New Parish, Uptown, and Oakland at large.

But let’s get back to the show…

For those who don’t know (I didn’t know) Dave is known for his ridiculously long sets… My friend who went to the late show said she left at 4:15 am and Dave was still going strong! We went to the early show… Thank God!

While we lined up outside, we were told that Dave was across the street at the Piedmont Piano Company.  Doing what you might ask?  Well… I assume playing piano.  And if you’re gonna play piano, this is a pretty sweet spot indeed.

piano company, piano company on san pablo, uptown piano company

Housed in the historic California Furniture building, just one of dozens of Art Deco gems in downtown Oakland (stay tuned… I’m hoping to do a whole Art Deco series next month), the new location just opened a few weeks ago. They’re a family owned and operated business, providing not just new and used pianos for sale, but rentals, tuning services, music lessons (including guitar, drums, and more), and recitals. That’s right… they’re utilizing this gorgeous space for live performances too. Next performance is March 13th at 8:00pm Rebel Tumbao…  “merging Roots Reggae and Roots Afro-Latin vibrations with original compositions and wicked arrangements of Bob Marley’s music, all with a critical progressive social message for our times.”  Sounds pretty cool, eh?

But I digress…
waiting in line, dave chappelle, new parish

As we waited in line, we chatted with all the folks who were equally excited to see Dave in such a small venue. I don’t know for sure but my guess would be that the Parish holds about 300 people. The line ran right past the windows of the new restaurant next door, Hibiscus, where Dave would later eat dinner after he tired of his piano playing. I heard from friends the drinks are good. We’ll have to check them out another day…

The Parish staff were ultra-professional and seriously buttoned-up. Notices were posted along the full length of the line about restrictions on photography, video, and most interestingly, heckling… “NO HECKLING WILL BE TOLERATED.” Who the hell would heckle Dave?! Anyway, despite all the notices, the doorman gave us the full verbal run-down as well… You can’t do this, you can’t do that, you will get thrown out. I asked, “Jeeezzz… Are we allowed to laugh?!” Absolutely. Enjoy the show.

new parish, oakland new parish, oakland music clubs

Above is the one and only picture I took inside, taken well before Dave took the stage… there was no way I was getting thrown out of that gig. It’s a pretty bad shot, but it gives you a feel for the space. I’ve been to one other show at the Parish and there was no seating as there was for this show (to enforce the two drink minimum). Typically there’s a nice dance area directly in front of the stage with wrap around areas on three sides and an upstairs with another bar and prime viewing from on-high.

What else can I tell you? Dave was hilarious. Of course. There was a ton of interplay between him and the crowd and I was surprised how conversational the show was… definitely not a scripted routine. The man is smart. And quick. Of course race played a big theme throughout the show, but not just black vs. white and not your stereotypical race-based humor. The crowd was incredibly diverse, as is our city, and Dave poked fun at all of us equally. The female scientist from Tunisia. The hipster Saudi with his trucker cap askew. And the hippy kids from Nevada who entered the club with backpacks in tow. I could try to replay the jokes, but I know they’d fall flat. I’ll just say we all laughed together, at each other, at ourselves, and for me, it was a truly transcendent experience. Props to The New Parish… Thank you!

Holiday GUIDE – part II

Only 1 week left (phew)… For those of you who didn’t make it out last weekend due to lousy weather, overindulgence, or more pressing engagements, there are a few more artisan oriented shopping events this weekend, if you still need to pick up some last minute unique and special gifts.  And if you’re not interested in shopping, scroll down (after photo) for other noteworthy events…

Friday, December 18th

  • Smokey’s Tangle Shopping Mall and Holiday Something to do (6pm – 9pm)

    Smokey’s Tangle Art Gallery has turned itself into a mall this December. Get your photo taken with Santa, make a holiday card, test out the chair massager, and listen to demented christmas music all in our heartwarming mall-like atmosphere.
    http://www.smokeystangle.com/

Saturday, December 19th

  • Lil Tuffy @ Kuhl Frames + Art (11am – 4pm)

    The 2nd Annual Exhibition of works by SF designer Lil Tuffy continues with over 225 limited edition screenprinted rock posters for Bay Area, National and European shows. As always, ready-made frames will be available…remember your music and art loving friends this holiday season!  http://KuhlFrames.com/

  • Stocking Stuffers Craft Fair @ We Art Space (11am – 4pm)

    Original ready-t0-hang art, and hand-crafted items such as jewelry, clothing, housewares, and more… http://WeArtSpace.com/

Sunday, December 20th

  • Stocking Stuffers Craft Fair @ We Art Space (11am – 4pm)

    Original ready-t0-hang art, and hand-crafted items such as jewelry, clothing, housewares, and more… http://WeArtSpace.com/

holiday lights, circle of lights, mountain view cemetery

Mountain View Cemetery Holiday Circle of Lights

For those of you ahead of the game and actually ready to kick back and enjoy that vacation you’ve been waiting for for months, here are some interesting local oaktown holiday and non-holiday events to check out…  have fun!

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (friday, 12/18)

Mentioned in yesterday’s post too… part of the Paramount’s classic movie series.  Tickets are $5 and include pre-film entertainment. Doors at 7pm… movie starts at 8pm.  paramounttheatre.com

Reality Playings: Experiments In Experience/participation Performance (friday, 12/18)

CRITIC’S Choice: East Bay Express… Frank Moore, world-known shaman performance artist, will conduct improvised passions of musicians, actors, dancers, and audience members in a laboratory setting to create altered realities of fusion beyond taboos… Temescal Art Center at 8pm.  http://www.eroplay.com/events.html

Holidays at Dunsmuir Estate (sat/sun, 12/19 – 12/20)

Experience the wonders and classic beauty of the holidays at Dunsmuir Hellman Historic Estate. Walk back in time through our beautifully decorated mansion, enjoy live holiday music, have breakfast with Father Christmas, find the perfect gift in our Holiday Shops, activities for the kids, and much more!  (11am – 5pm)  http://www.dunsmuir.org/calendar_holiday09.html

Ghost Town Farm Tour (sunday, 12/20)

Due to popular demand, Novella Carpenter is having another farm tour!
When: Sunday, December 20, 11am-2pm
What: Signed copies of Farm City, Goat Town t-shirts, fried green tomatoes, and hot chocolate made with goat milk for sale. Goat snuggling and tours free.
Where: Ghosttown Farm, 665 28th Street, at Martin Luther King
http://novellacarpenter.com/

Charlie Hunter at Yoshi’s, Oakland (sunday, 12/20)

Celebrating 10 years of Home for the Holidays CHARLIE HUNTER With Very Special Guest Doug Wamble… saw this show Saturday night… Awesome.
When: Sunday, December 20, 2pm matinee and 7pm shows
http://www.yoshis.com/oakland/jazzclub/artist/show/954

“A Christmas Carol, the Musical” at Lisser Theater, Mills College (12/19 – 12/23)

Charles Dickens’ classic gets the full Broadway treatment by the Broadway team of Alan Menken (“Beauty and the Beast,” “Little Mermaid,”), Lynn Ahrens (“Ragtime,” “Seussical”) and Mike Okrent (“Crazy For You,” “Me and My Girl.”)  This spectacular musical retains its emotional power and pure joy, thanks to the marvelously-told story, and the score with beautiful melodies and emotional lyrics.
http://curtaincallperformingarts.net/tickets_-_a_christmas_carol

The Oakland Ballet Performs the Nutcracker (12/24 – 12/27)

The Oakland Ballet Company presents Carlos Carvajal’s Nutcracker accompanied by the Oakland East Bay Symphony, performing the beautiful Tchaikovsky score.

This beloved holiday tradition has a spectacular growing tree, a spirited party, battle scenes, and a trip through the snow forest and the land of the sweets. The San Francisco Chronicle describes Carvajal’s Nutcracker as a “time-tested production, featuring glittering costumes and a live orchestra.”

TICKETS: $15-$50 with student and senior discounts through www.ticketmaster.com  or 1-800-745-3000.  Or better yet, avoid the butt-load of convenience charges that Ticketmaster applies by going directly down to Paramount Theatre (Box Office on 21st street – if you bring a non-perishable food item for the Alameda County Food bank, you get at additional 20% off your tickets – not a bad deal!), 2025 Broadway 510-465-6400, paramounttheatre.com http://www.oaklandballet.org/