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What to do this Weekend: July 23-27

by Cristina Schreil

Just like that, July somehow is already coming to a close. Might we recommend a few virtual events to entertain you this weekend? 

This week brings a compelling mix of transporting performances (from eclectic indie to a titanic baroque cello recital) and intellectual talks (with topics spanning the Liberian Civil War and the Holocaust to ocean biodiversity). Find more curated events below.


1. Enjoy a live indie concert with Thao Nguyen.

Bridging folk, country and hip-hop, indie singer-songwriter Thao Nguyen’s unique sound takes center stage this Thursday. 

The compelling San Francisco-based singer of the band Thao & The Get Down performs her favorite songs in an online concert presented by the Asian Art Museum. 

Thursday, July 23 at 7 p.m. on Zoom. $0–$25 



2. Stories from Holocaust Survivor Herb Barasch.

In a virtual talk presented by the Contemporary Jewish Museum, Vienna-born Herb Barasch will speak about his experiences during the Holocaust, including surviving as a hidden child, and his post-war life in San Francisco after reuniting with his parents. 

This program is presented in collaboration with the Jewish Family and Children’s Services Preisler Shorenstein Institute for Holocaust Education. It is not recommended for children under 13.

Thursday, July 23, at noon online. Free. 



3. Groove deep with Cécile McLorin Salvant.

Grammy–winning jazz vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant’s phenomenal sound grabs the spotlight at this week’s SFJAZZ Fridays at Five concert. 

She performs with pianist Sullivan Fortner in this previously filmed concert. If you, like many, were disappointed that her March concert at the Paramount was postponed due to the coronavirus earlier this year, this stream is a must. 

Friday, July 24, at 5 p.m. online. Digital memberships are $5 a month.

Watch here:


4. Sink into Bach’s complete cello suites with a live performance.

St. Alban’s and Calliope: East Bay Music and Arts presents an epic livestream performance by Isaac Pastor-Chermak of J.S. Bach’s Six Suites for Solo Cello. 

As any classical music fan knows, the sublime, technically stunning suites are a cellist staple — and Pastor-Chermak offers a treat in performing all six, in order, in one night.

Friday, July 24, at 5:30 p.m. online. $35–$45. 



5. Delve into the mystery of the macabre in an art exhibition.

Arc Gallery & Studios is open by appointment and with social distancing protocols on Saturdays, from noon to 3 p.m. 

Until August 8, its current exhibition probes an enigmatic topic, via a representation of Bay Area artists who have been, as the gallery notes, “creatively ‘Awakened by the Midnight’ in all its gleaming darkness to share a contextual perspective.”

Email the gallery to schedule a safe visit.


6. Inspect love from all angles with SF Opera.

Of course, the opera is a place for romance. San Francisco Opera, however, probes affection and adoration of myriad types — from unrequited love to familial bonds — in its latest Opera Aficionado lecture programming. 

SF Opera promises that librarian Michael Bragg will dig into it all, “from the good intentions of a parent that turn to tragedy or the first touch of romance that ignites a love affair.” 

Sunday, July 26, at 1 p.m. online. $20.



7. Wrap up Ocean Week with a virtual live party

It’s Ocean Week at the Randall Museum, which is on its mission to foster love for science and nature amid the coronavirus pandemic. In this virtual week-long celebration of marine life and environments, there’s been science and art projects, games, videos and demonstrations available on the museum’s website.

The aquatic fun wraps with a live virtual party. Curious families can grab an up close look at feeding time and Ocean Exhibit creatures. 

Sunday, July 26, at 1 p.m. online. Free. 



8. Savor a personal musical program of ‘Influences.’  

The Center for New Music presents an intriguing online concert by composer and pianist D. Riley Nicholson. He will take listeners through a program of his past musical influences — including Poulenc, Satie, Meredith Monk and Hans Otte — culminating in the world premiere of his solo piano work Without

Sunday, July 26, 2:30 p.m. on Facebook, YouTube and the Center for New Music’s website. Free (donations encouraged). 



9. Discuss Wayétu Moore’s memoir with MoAD Book Club

The next meeting of the Museum of the African Diaspora’s book club not only explores the memoir The Dragons, The Giant, The Women — it features insights from Wayétu Moore, the author herself.  

As always, hosting is African Book Club founder Faith Adiele, who will chat with Moore about the memoir’s focus on the First Liberian Civil War and Moore’s family’s subsequent immigration to the United States. Books are available in the MoAD bookstore.  

Sunday July 26, at 5 p.m. on Zoom. Free.


10. Laugh with SF Punch Line.

Miss live comedy? Every Sunday, Punch Line presents the SF Comedy Showcase, broadcast right to where you are. Co-presented by Ronn Vigh and Drew Harmon, the show features new comedians each week. (There’s also a recurring show Wednesday nights).

Sunday, July 26, at 8 p.m. on Zoom. Free.  

RSVP to attend:


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