The List: Special football-free edition, guaranteed to have no first downs

Welcome to a special “Super Weekend” edition of The List, a curated offering of promising events for the weekend. Why stay home watching football while there’s a whole world of local stuff to enjoy and support?

1. 9th Annual SuperBowl Alternative Concert

Counterprogramming can be an effective marketing strategy for arts organizations. Obviously, the chamber group Musica Viva has had success in the past with its annual “SuperBowl Alternative Concert. This year’s event will be held in the Fine Arts Building at Porterville College, 100 E. College Ave., Porterville.

Sure, it’s a bit of a road trip from the Fresno area. But just think of all the time wasted on Super Bowl pre-game fluff. Put that time into driving, and you can cheer string instruments instead of running back. (“Everyone is a winner in this Alternative SuperBowl event!” the organizers proclaim.)

And just who are these non-football fans behind the annual concert?

The event features “The Emerald Duo,” consisting of violinist Susan Doering and cellist Dieter Wulfhorst. The program is titled “Whimsical Winners: Music with Poetry” and features music inspired by poetry.

If you go: 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3, Fine Arts Building, Porterville College, 100 E. College Ave. Tickets are free, with donations appreciated.

2. Experience ‘Grey Gardens’

Have you ever gone to a play, instead of watching a bunch of them, on Super Bowl Sunday?


Visalia Community Players is in the opening weekend of the musical “Grey Gardens,” which tells the story of the eccentric packrat aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. The musical is based on the famous 1975 documentary by Albert and David Maysles. James Ward of the Visalia Times-Delta caught up with director Auggie Hernandez:

It’s an entertaining and heartfelt story of family dynamics, loss, joy, and regret. There are great moments of lightheartedness and comedy intertwined with the grief of looking back at the dreams that never came to be.

StageWorks Fresno offered an exceptional production of “Grey Gardens” a few years ago in a big hit for the company.

If you go: 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3, Ice House Theatre, 410 E. Race Ave., Visalia. Tickets are $16-$20. (Opens Friday, Feb. 1, and continues through Feb. 17.) 

3. Fig Garden closing reception

Are you one of those who kept meaning to get out to Anne Scheid’s new exhibition at Fig Tree Gallery but seem to have run out of time? You’re in luck. Not only is the gallery open on Sunday as a football alternative, but there will be a closing reception to honor the artist.

I featured Scheid on the January episode of “The Munro Review” on CMAC and made her an ArtHop pick, too. For longtime fans of the artist, this show represents a departure from her usual black-and-white palette as she introduces color into the equation.

If you go: 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3, Fig Tree Gallery, 644 Van Ness Ave., Fresno. Artist talk will be at 2 p.m. Free.

4. Read a book

Come on. When’s the last time you spent a Sunday afternoon on the couch with no screens on whatsoever? I just finished up the latest Haruki Murakami novel and am bursting with literary fervor. Make a date with the written word! If you have other alternative Super Bowl suggestions, leave a comment.

The Munro Review has no paywall but is financially supported by readers who believe in its non-profit mission of bringing professional arts journalism to the central San Joaquin Valley. You can help by signing up for a monthly recurring paid membership or make a one-time donation of as little as $3. All memberships and donations are tax-deductible.

Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

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