The Mondavi Center enters its second decade as an arts presenter with a 2013-14 season that continues a well-established presentation ethos. The new season offers a focus on keyboard artists, and the center continues its artist residencies.
The new season begins Sept. 21 with a performance by the Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club. The 13-member orchestra features alums Guajiro Mirabal, vocalist Omara Portuondo and trombonist Jesus Aguaje Ramos.
The season ends May 17-18, 2014, with Mondavi pianist-in-residence Lara Downes performing "But Beautiful Billie Holiday Remembered," with solo transcriptions of songs Holiday made famous. Downes will be joined by accompanist Jed Distler.
For 2013-14 the center will offer 68 productions in 103 performances at Jackson Hall and the Vanderhoef Studio Theatre, roughly the same number as the current season.
Mondavi executive director Don Roth said the center has sought to strike a balance between return engagements like the Buena Vista Social Club, the dance ensemble Group Corpo and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic with debut performances by artists such as Emmylou Harris, Murray Perahia and Ahmad Jamal.
The big draw will be the center's typically powerhouse classical music offerings, including the San Francisco Symphony in two performances at the center on Oct. 18 and in May of next year. The Royal Philharmonic will perform under the baton of Pinchas Zukerman in January, in a program including Beethoven's Violin Concerto in D major.
On the soloist side, violinist Gil Shaham will perform Nov. 1, and pianist Perahia is slated to appear in February.
The dance offerings in the new season include appearances by the Stephen Petronio Dance Company in February and Ballet Hispanico on Oct. 11.
The center will offer more performances in the intimate Vanderhoef Studio Theatre, including the male vocal quartet New York Polyphony (Nov. 2-3), the 3 1/2 octave voice of Theo Bleckmann (Nov. 16-17), and the Fred Hersch Trio (Nov. 6).
Roth said that as it enters its second decade, the center is fostering more interaction between touring artists and the community.
"Bringing artists in residence is something that has been a growing emphasis for us," said Roth.
As part of that effort, the Stephen Petronio Company will take over both theaters in February for an entire week, with the dance company involved in activities around the campus and the Davis community.
Another such effort will be the Music Accord residency, which brings together standout violinist Shaham and composer William Bolcom, who has written a work that Shaham will bring into the community.
MONDAVI CENTER 2013-14 SEASON
Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell, Sept. 30
Stewart Goodyear, piano, Oct. 5
Alexander String Quartet, Oct. 6 plus three other dates
Asphalt Orchestra, Oct. 6
Ballet Hispanico, Oct. 11
San Francisco Symphony Oct. 18; also May 15, 2014
SF Jazz Collective, Oct. 23
Momix, Oct. 26-27
Theo Bleckmann, Nov. 16-17
Nicholas Kristof, Jan. 13, 2014
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with Pinchas Zukerman, Jan. 25, 2014
Chris Thile, Feb. 28, 2014
Stephen Petronio Company, Feb. 25-28, 2014
Academy of St. Martin in the Fields with Joshua Bell, March 22, 2014
Peter Sagal, April 11, 2014
Subscriptions go on sale Monday. Personal assistance for ticket orders will be available at an open house from 9 a.m. to noon April 27 in the Mondavi Center lobby.
The deadline to renew subscriptions is May 31.
Single tickets go on sale Aug. 9.
Information: www.mondaviarts.org; (530) 754-2787
Call The Bee's Edward Ortiz, (916) 321-1071. Follow him on Twitter @edwardortiz..