DAVIS — Providing the finest family entertainment is always a major focus of the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, University of California, Davis.
For the 10th anniversary season, the center features renowned orchestras, lifelike marionettes, the inimitable tales of Dr. Seuss and the finest in modern cirque performance.
As a reminder, half price tickets for all children ages 17 and under are available for every Mondavi Center presenting program event. A complete lineup of family programming can be found at mondaviarts.org.
“We are proud to once again bring the best of the arts to our region’s children — and parents.” said Jeremy Ganter, Mondavi Center programming director and associate executive director. “Introducing young audiences to the performing arts is a core part of our mission, and we hope our family programming provides enrichment and enchantment for audiences of all ages.”
The Hallmark Inn, Davis Children’s Stage Series begins with the San Francisco Symphony Family Concert on Friday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. This celebration of the holidays marks the symphony’s first family program at the Mondavi Center and will feature the orchestra accompanying the wonderful short film “The Snowman,” plus favorite holiday classics and a sing-along with the orchestra.
The series continues with perennial favorite, Cashore Marionettes, which returns for five performances. The extraordinary show, titled “Simple Gifts,” is a series of touching portrayals and poignant scenes from everyday life set to music by such composers as Vivaldi, Strauss, Beethoven and Copland. Performances will be held Friday, March 15 at 7 p.m., Saturday, March 16 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. and Sunday, March 17 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
This year’s installment of Lara Downes’ Family Concert concludes the Children’s Stage series on Sunday, May 19 at 3 p.m. in Jackson Hall. The program returns the audience to the wonderful world of Dr. Seuss with Gertrude McFuzz, the beloved tale of the girl bird who learns to like herself just as she is. Pianist Downes and the entire Davis High School Orchestra, under the baton of music director Angelo Moreno, will perform Robert Kapilow’s original score, as well as other musical delights for children of all ages.
Family fun also abounds in the Mondavi Center’s Marvels Series, which features the finest in modern cirque and movement based performance.
First up is Cirque Mechanics presenting Birdhouse Factory, a clever spin on American ingenuity in the industrial age, on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. The Mondavi Center is proud to host the regional debut of Les 7 Doigts de la Main (The Seven Fingers of the Hand), a Montreal-based circus featuring former Cirque de Soleil choreographers and dancers, performing the mind-bending PSY on Sunday, May 12 at 3 p.m. And, a special just added event features the return of Pilobolus Dance Theatre, one of America’s most popular and accomplished dance companies, on Feb. 24 at 3 p.m.
Complete information about the Mondavi Center’s 2012–13 season is available at mondaviarts.org, 530-754-2787, 866-754-2787 (toll-free) and 530-754-5402 (TDD).