"FLASH," a new dance piece at UC Davis, was created by choreographer and director Qudus Onikeku out of his upbringing in violent Lagos, Nigeria.
Onikeku, part of the college's Granada artist-in- residence program, was named the 2012 New Choreographic talent at La Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques in France.
Fusing movement based on Yoruba culture, hip-hop, capoeira and Nigerian masquerade tradition, Onikeku designed all scenic elements in addition to the musical soundscape and the a cappella songs. In the Main Theatre, Wright Hall, UC Davis, 8 p.m. today and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $12-$19. For information call (530) 754-2787 or (866) 754-2787 or go to tickets.mondaviarts.org.
Art, music and spoken word will mix and mingle Saturday night when poets read works based on a Sacramento Fine Arts Center exhibit while the Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet performs.
Nine poets John Allen Cann, Frank Graham, Tim Kahl, Kathleen Lynch, Laura Martin, William O'Daly, Bob Stanley, Richard Turner and Mary Zeppa wrote poems based on the SFAC exhibit "Animal House," featuring animal-themed art. The Brubeck Institute jazz fellows then composed music to accompany the poetry.
It all comes together in Jazz and Poetry 4, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Sacramento Fine Arts Center, 5330 B Gibbons Drive, Carmichael. Tickets are $20 and all artists involved will be present. Refreshments at 6:30 p.m.; concert at 7 p.m. For information, call (916) 971-3713 or go to www.sacfinearts.org
Art in motion
Director Doniel Soto specializes in creating hard-to-define collective movement and sound-centered narrative theater. His latest piece at Mira Loma's Black Box Theatre, "The Perfect Plot," centers on artists making art. The idea has the potential to be oh-so precious, but Soto has a habit of making his work a thrilling visceral experience for the audience.
Audiences might find actors morphing into human sculptures, then moving to the sounds of their own wordless singing as they leap off scaffoldings or catapult one another through the air. Soto honed his physical movement theater with the long- lamented Abandoned Productions, which transformed the shaggy space now known as California Theatre into a funky (and often drafty) performance space.
Soto works with high school students now, and once a year they put up a production that never fails to amaze both fans and those unfamiliar with his work. "The Perfect Plot" has shows tonight and Saturday, as well as March 21-23, with performances at 8 p.m. Tickets are $7-$10 and the shows often sell out. For information go to blackboxtickets.com the website doesn't tell you where Mira Loma High School is, so I will: 4000 Edison Ave., Sacramento. Information: (916) 971-7465.
Call The Bee's Call The Bee's Marcus Crowder, (916) 321-1120. Follow him on Twitter @marcuscrowder.