Meal time – Circle Bar B Dinner Theatre’s second play of the new season is the aptly named “The Dining Room.” Written by A. R. Gurney, the author of “Love Letters” and “Sylvia,” the setting is the eating area of a well-off family’s home, while the action consists of a mosaic of unrelated scenes that are, as expected, alternately humorous, poignant and rueful. Six actors, including Montecito favorite Ed Giron, handle all the roles. WHEN: Friday and Saturday evenings at 6 pm, Sunday matinees at 2 pm, WHERE: Refugio Road, COST: $40, seniors $32 on Sundays, INFO: 967-1962 or

Migrants in art – While politicos countrywide debate the immigration problem, the SB Museum of Art traces the 100-year history of migrant workers in California in the new exhibit “Taking Root.” Vintage prints by photographers from the Works Progress program and Life and Look magazine and documents of Cesar Chavez’s legendary march to Sacramento are on view at the museum, while contemporary prints by News-Press photographers of Mixtec strawberry pickers in Santa Maria can be seen at Channing-Peake Gallery. WHEN: 11 am to 5 pm Tuesdays-Sundays, through August 6, WHERE: Santa Barbara Museum of Art, 1130 State Street, COST: $9 (discounts for seniors, students and children; free every Sunday), INFO: 963-4364.

‘Time’ out – Montecito actor Ben Bottoms stars in “All in the Timing,” David Ives’s sophisticated and hilarious series of wacky vignettes examining the foibles of modern life. Five actors explore such subjects as the do’s and don’ts of dating, missed connections, and the need for a universal language in this joint production of Rubicon and the Ensemble Theatre Companies, which hosted the production last year. WHEN: Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 pm, plus matinee on Saturday and Sunday at 2 pm; ends May 21, WHERE: Laurel Theater, 1106 East Main Street, Ventura, COST: $25-$49, discounts for students/seniors, INFO: 667-2900.

UCSB Music – The school closes out its academic music season with a series of concerts around campus (and one downtown). Ensembles range form the Wind Ensemble to the Opera Workshop, Symphony and Gospel Choir. Get the complete schedule online at, or call 893-7001.

Thursday, May 18

Free museums – Santa Barbara’s museums celebrate International Museum Day by offering free admission to all visitors today. Just about every place in town throws open its doors today, from the museums of art and natural history to the sea center and more. Regular hours apply.

AVP in SB – Karch Kiraly – arguably the greatest volleyball player in history and who learned the sport at Santa Barbara High School and on East Beach – leads a full field of hopefuls as the professional beach volleyball tour makes its annual stop in Santa Barbara. Former UCSB star Todd Rogers and his new partner, Santa Barbara resident Phil Dalhausser, who won two weeks ago in Tempe are one of the teams to watch, while on the women’s side 2004 Olympic gold medalists Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Trainor are still sweeping away the competition. WHEN: Qualifying rounds today, main draw begins 8 am Friday, 8:30 am Saturday and 11 am Sunday, WHERE: West Beach, near the Pier, COST: free today; $15 general admission ($5 students and children), $35 for courtside seats, INFO:

‘Nights’ returns – Santa Barbara Museum of Art’s amazingly popular third Thursday happy-hour-meets-art series returns for the summer, with the first installment programmed around the Renaissance to Rococo exhibit. Indulge in fantasies including pop-up pleasure palaces, Marie Antoinette and Louis the XVI’s “Great Duets” karaoke, the grand tour martini, baroque body bling, and much more merriment and mirth, all cultural, of course. Avoid the lines by signing up for the season-long Luxe Pass. WHEN: 5:30 pm to 8 pm, WHERE: 1130 State Street, COST: $25 ($10 discount for members), INFO: 884-6414.

Peerless pianist – Superstar classical pianist Andre Watts has emerged from his recent health issues with both his virtuous technique and intense passion intact. The onetime prodigy – who burst on the music scene at age 16 in a concert with Leonard Bernstein at Carnegie Hall 43 years ago – boasts a long resume rife with breakthroughs and superlatives, well earned for his fiery playing and conversant tone with the piano. Tonight’s recital includes works by Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Debussy and Ravel. Find out how he does it so well when Watts teaches a masterclass for UCSB piano students tomorrow (10 am, Geiringer Hall; free). WHEN: 8 pm, WHERE: UCSB’s Campbell Hall, COST: $45, INFO: 893-3535.

Friday, May 19

CALM Antiques Show – Eighty dealers sell everything from period furniture, garden artifacts, decorative accessories, paintings, estate jewelry, silver, glassware, china, porcelain, and more in this annual event that benefits Santa Barbara’s only non-profit agency specializing in the prevention and treatment of child abuse and neglect. WHEN: 11 am to 7 pm today, 11 am to 6 pm tomorrow, 11 am to 5 pm Sunday, WHERE: Earl Warren Showgrounds, Las Positas near Highway 101, COST: $6, seniors $5, under 12 free, INFO: 898-9715 or

Pickus on politics – Duke University professor Noah Pickus, also associate director of the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke, writes extensively on issues of immigration, citizenship and national identity. Pickus, who has advised several governmental and private organizations on tempering polarized positions on immigration, speaks about “Immigration Reform and the Politics of Citizenship” at the monthly luncheon meeting of the Channel City Club. WHEN: 11:30 am, WHERE: Doubletree Resort, East Cabrillo Boulevard, COST: $35, INFO: 884-6636.

Back to basics – Camerata Pacifica, the city’s most adventurous classical musical ensemble, ironically closes out 2005-06 with its most conservative – if still gorgeous – program of the season, featuring Mozart’s Quintet for Clarinet & Strings, K. 581 and Brahms’ Quartet for Piano & Strings, Opus 26. Bil Jackson is the featured soloist in the former, while the latter features Warren Jones wrapping up his first Camerata season as a sponsored chair and presaging his upcoming Music Academy of the West residency. WHEN: 1 pm and 8 pm, WHERE: Victoria Hall, 33 West Victoria Street, COST: $20 afternoon, $35 & $42 evening, INFO: 884-8410 or

Exhibition celebration – All are invited to a community celebration in honor of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art’s new “Taking Root” and the Channing-Peake Gallery’s “The New Okies” exhibitions. The Oaxacan-style festival includes food, music, dance, art activities, guided tours and traditional folk decoration. Following the party, filmmaker John Caldwell introduces “Rancho California,” which examines the world of migrant camps, screening at the Mural Room of the Courthouse. WHEN: 5 pm to 7 pm (screening 7 pm), WHERE: 1130 State Street, COST: free, INFO: 884-6414.

Yuk it up – The brand new Comedy Nights series at Hotel Andalucia continues with two more evenings of laughs from top comics. Tonight’s co-headliners are Todd Glass, who competed in “Last Comic Standing” last season and has appeared at SOhO and Jimmy Dore, familiar from appearances on “Comedy Central.” Next week: Greg Fitzimmons, seen all over TV, from late night with Letterman and Conan to “Comedy Central.” WHEN: 9 pm, WHERE: 31 West Carrillo Street, COST: $15 plus a two-drink minimum, INFO:

Saturday, May 20

SCAPE show – Southern California Artists Painting for the Environment presents its sixth annual exhibit and sale of paintings to benefit the Environmental Defense Center. More than 200 pieces in all media depicting endangered species in the county are up for grabs, with 40% of sales donated to the defense center. Artist demonstration, live music and refreshments round out the event. WHEN: 11 am to 6 pm today and tomorrow, WHERE: La Arcada Court, 1114 State Street (between the Santa Barbara Library and Museum of Art), COST: free, INFO: 962-1402 or

Art in parts – The two sides of “Contradiction” – Jack N. Mohr’s new art installation – are different enough that he’s showing them in two segments. Part I runs May 17-June 4, while a new set of abstract mixed media paintings exhibit June 21-July 9. Only one artist reception, though, tonight from 6 pm to 9 pm. WHEN: 1 pm to 6 pm Wednesday through Sunday, WHERE: Artamo Gallery, 11 West Anapamu Street, INFO: 568-1400 or

Baroque-Bach mounting – The Santa Barbara County Branch of the Music Teachers Association presents a showcase of Bach and Baroque music featuring local students selected by a panel of judges. WHEN: 1:30 pm to 3 pm, WHERE: First Congregational Church, 2101 State Street, COST: $10, students/seniors $5, INFO: 964-5483.

Music club special – After staging its own benefit concert earlier this month, the Santa Barbara Music Club pulls out all the stops for this next installment featuring pianist Betty Oberacker fronting a small chamber ensemble led by violinist Emil Torick. The program boasts two Mozart piano concerti (‘tis the tail end of the 250th birthday season after all), the D minor (K. 466) and C major (K. 467), with both works featuring cadenzas composed by Oberacker. The strong appeal of the event means a move to the Unitarian Society, but yep, it’s still free. WHEN: 3 pm, WHERE: 1535 Santa Barbara Street, INFO: 683-0811 or

Pre-tour Quire concert – Santa Barbara’s popular vocal ensemble Quire of Voyces presents a concert of American choral music in preparation for summer tour of England. WHEN: 7 pm tonight, 3 pm tomorrow, WHERE: St. Anthony’s Seminary, 2300 Garden Street, COST: $15, students/seniors $10, INFO: 965-5935.

Strings and things – Argentina’s Santa Fe Guitar Quartet has toured internationally since 1989, creating a sound that over time has been compared to a small string ensemble. Relating the performance to the current exhibit at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the quartet will perform works by Bach and Vivaldi, along with a variety of pieces by Latin composers. WHEN: 7:30 pm, WHERE: First United Methodist Church, 305 East Anapamu Street, COST: $19, INFO: 963-4364.

Kris & Shannon in Hell – Following Richard Thompson’s whimsical trip through 1,000 years of pop, Sings Like Hell gets back to its mission of presenting under-the-radar singer-songwriters deserving of wider recognition. Tonight’s installment teams returnee Kris Delmhorst – who blends soaring melodies, rural roots and urban sensibilities – with Shannon McNally, who walks the line between country, folk and soul armed with a piercing wit and smoky voice. WHEN: 8 pm, WHERE: Lobero Theatre, 33 West Canon Perdido Street, COST: $39.50 advance, $42.50 at the door, INFO: 963-0761.

Sunday, May 21

Jewish Festival – The season of ethnic festivals at Oak Park gets underway with the 20th annual Jewish Festival, celebrating the rich traditions and culture of Jewish people everywhere. Israeli and other folk dancing, ethnic foods, crafts, art and, of course, the big annual used book sale are all part of the fun, which this year also includes Park Haverim, an all-day children’s activities area offering rock climbing, moon bounce and other games and crafts as a taste of the annual summer day Camp Haverim. WHEN: 11 am to 5 pm, WHERE: Alamar and Junipero Streets, COST: free, INFO: 898-2511 or

Electronic clarinet – New York-based bass clarinetist Michael Lowenstern plays what he calls “tech-infused jazz,” but whatever the term, it’s fascinating music that he delivers with such humor and enthusiasm that it’s hard to resist. Sponsored by Santa Barbara’s new Iridian Arts. WHEN: 8 pm, WHERE: Center Stage Theater, 751 Paseo Nuevo (Chapala @ De la Guerra), COST: $15, students $13, INFO: 963-0408.

Monday, May 22

Montecito musings – Speaking of Stories visits the village with tonight’s installment featuring stories written by Montecito resident T. C. Boyle, Joe Spano, Julie Pearl, Charles de L’Arbre and Joe Velasco and Boyle himself reads stories from the celebrated writer’s latest collection, “Tooth and Claw”; the author delivers “La Conchita,” his take on the recent local mudslide disaster. A benefit post-event reception follows immediately on stage. WHEN: 7:30 pm, WHERE: Lobero Theatre, 33 West Canon Perdido Street, COST: $13-$30 (reception extra $50), INFO: 963-0761.

Wednesday, May 24

Opera on the Go – The concert at lecture series comes to a close with a panel discussion featuring contemporary composers Stephen Schwartz, Jake Heggie, and Daniel Catán tackling the composing opera for modern audiences, including such subjects as merging opera with other performing arts, selecting subject matter appropriate for current audiences and concerns regarding vocal demands on singers. The high-powered panel will be moderated by Santa Barbara educator Peter Frisch. WHEN: 5:30 pm to 7 pm, WHERE: Victoria Hall, 33 West Victoria Street, COST: $15 each, $12 for season subscribers, $5 students, INFO: 898.3890,

‘Bleep’ benefit – Get a sneak preview of “Down the Rabbit Hole,” the sequel to “What the Bleep Do We Know?” the spiritual/physics docu-feature that turned heads and became a cinematic sensation two summers ago. The movie plays for four nights only with net proceeds earmarked for the long-running SBCC Adult Ed Mind/Supermind program of mind-opening lectures, which hasn’t had a budget increase in eight years. WHEN: 7:30 pm tonight through Saturday, WHERE: Lobero Theatre, 33 West Canon Perdido Street, COST: $10, INFO: 963-0761 or 698-0378 or

Thursday, May 25

Docent alert – Ahoy there! Love teaching, leading, learning and the sea? Santa Barbara Maritime Museum kicks off a new docent class with an orientation meeting today. If you’re interested, you can apply for the five-week training, which includes maritime history, ship wrecks, oil exploration, naval military history, environmental effects, and much more. WHEN: 4 pm to 5:30 pm, WHERE: 113 Harbor Way, INFO: 962-8404, extension 111.

Art & Wine Tour – Get your tickets early for this very popular event: the evening of strolling between galleries to check out the latest exhibits while sipping wine and sampling tasty hors d’oeuvres is a perennial sell-out. Now bigger than ever, the event sports a baker’s dozen galleries, 15 wineries (plus the Santa Barbara Brewing Co.’s beers) and more than 20 eateries, including the Arts & Letters Café and Elements. The latter is across the street from the new gathering place, the Courthouse. New this year: artist Masatoyo Kishi has donated an original painting from 1967 to be auctioned off, with proceeds earmarked for the Children’s Holiday Parade. WHEN: tours 5 pm to 7 pm, final party 7 pm to 9 pm, COST: $50, INFO: 962-2098, extension 22

Friday, May 26

Fleetwood’s vine – Yes, the “Rumours” are true. Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Famer Mick Fleetwood is now a winemaker, too. His Santa Barbara county-grown wines, made in conjunction with local experts, are a big hit, if not yet the multi-million sellers his albums with Fleetwood Mac were. The Waterfront Grill serves his pinot noir, and you can pick up his 2002 Cuvee at Gelson’s, which is where Fleetwood will sign bottles of wines, CDs and more in an appearance this afternoon. WHEN: 5 pm to 7 pm, WHERE: Loreto Plaza, 3305 State Street, COST: free, INFO: 687-5810.

Saturday, May 27

Living things – Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History and its pier sister the Sea Center open new exhibits today that are sure to be hits with the kids. “Toadally Frogs” takes a close-up look at more than 20 live species of the amphibians from around the world, from Dart Frogs to Clawed Frogs. “Sharks…bite size” showcase the tiny brethren of the Great White, including swell sharks, horn sharks, thornback rays and more, none of which measure more than 12 inches. For more info visit

I Madonnari – The annual street painting festival transforms Mission Plaza into an Italian pavement palette for 150 large-scale drawings by local artists (and children, too). Music, food, and activities for the children are all part of the fun. WHEN: 10 am to 6 pm, today through Monday, WHERE: Los Olivos and Laguna Streets, COST: free, INFO: 569-3873.

On the Verge – Get an early glimpse at the future of dance when the Santa Barbara Dance Alliance presents its 11th annual teen choreographers showcase, “On the Verge.” Working with local mentor-choreographers, the 20 pre-professional teens have composed pieces ranging from ballet, jazz, modern and flamenco; performers include more than 75 teens, who also help out with all aspects of production, marketing and costumes. WHEN: 8 pm, WHERE: Marjorie Luke Theatre, Santa Barbara Junior High, 721 East Cota Street, COST: $15, students/seniors $10, patrons $50 INFO: 966-6950 or

Sunday, May 28

Sprung Floor Dance Festival – Santa Barbara Country Dance Society and the city’s Parks & Recreation join up for this annual day-into-night 12-hour contra dance festival. The title refers to the spring-loaded dance floor at the Carrillo Ballroom – one of very few in the West – that cushions impact and reduces strain and injury. The marathon features four bands and callers, workshops in singing and other dance styles, plus a potluck dinner smack in the middle. WHEN: 1 pm to 1 am, WHERE: 100 East Carrillo Street, COST: $25 ($15 after 7:30 pm), INFO: 969-1511.

Recital redux – Violinist Orin Hildestad returns to Santa Barbara to present an encore performance of his doctoral program as part of Trinity’s monthly music series. WHEN: 3:30 pm, WHERE: Trinity Episcopal Church, 1500 State Street, COST: free, INFO: 965-7419.

Youth Symphony concert – Four soloists from within the Youth Symphony Orchestra get a chance to shine after winning a competition for the coveted slots in tonight’s spring concert. The soloists include violinists Lisa Nakashima (playing Accolay) and Marie Hebert (Mozart), cellist Andrew Hsu (Saint-Saens) and flutist Lillian Ocampo (Griffes); the whole orchestra takes on Dvorak’s tone poem “The Golden Spinning Wheel.” A reception follows the performance. WHEN: 7 pm, WHERE: Lobero Theatre, 33 West Canon Perdido Street, COST: $13, students $6, INFO: 963-0761 or