From left to right, top row: Celesta M. Billeci, A&L’s Miller McCune Executive Director; Ashley Wheater, (MBE) The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of the Joffrey Ballet, and Celesta M. Billeci; Dorothy Largay, A&L Council member.
From left to right, bottom row: Ashley Wheater; Russell Steiner & Bridget Yin, A&L Leadership Circle members, and Lynda Weinman, A&L Council member, & Bruce Heavin, A&L Program Advisor. Photos available for media download here. Photo Credit: Isaac Hernandez
UCSB Arts & Lectures (A&L), the Central and South Coasts’ premier cultural arts presenting organization, proudly announced its 2021-2022 season of world-class events at “The Wait is Over!” season reveal party for donors, sponsors, friends of the University and members of the media. The upbeat event to introduce the season’s lineup, focusing on the theme – CREATING HOPE – was held on Tuesday, August 31 at the Santa Barbara Historical Museum’s outdoor garden courtyard.
Following strict COVID-19 safety protocols, UCSB staff and A&L team members were thrilled to meet and greet party attendees safely and in person for the first time in 20 months. Opening remarks were made by A&L’s Miller McCune Executive Director Celesta M. Billeci, who shared her heartfelt appreciation for the unwavering support the organization received from UCSB A&L patrons, students, visiting lecturers, artists, thought leaders and the Santa Barbara community during the challenges brought on by the pandemic.
“This is a time that calls for optimism, resilience, courage and vision. Santa Barbara needs Hope, and Arts & Lectures is uniquely positioned to respond. A&L’s 2021-2022 CREATING HOPE programming initiative has already inspired our community with presentations by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, chef José Andrés and author Anne Lamott. We will continue to inspire, through shared experiences with thought leaders, creative problem solvers and arts visionaries who will guide us forward. CREATING HOPE programs strengthen human connection, promote emotional well-being, joy and compassion, and envision positive change. When we launched our CREATING HOPE programming initiative in spring 2021, we stepped forward with programs to bring hope to our campus and community. And we remain deeply committed to this endeavor, as you’ll see reflected in the events throughout the season. We’re conscious that things are rapidly changing and our wish is to accommodate as much of our community as possible. An at-home live stream option will be available for many events this season for those of you who cannot attend in person.”
The audience was treated to an appearance by special guest speaker Ashley Wheater, (MBE) The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of the Joffrey Ballet. Mr. Wheater expressed his deep regard for the contributions UCSB A&L makes to enhancing the cultural landscape of the Santa Barbara community. He revealed exciting plans for the Joffrey Ballet’s two programs; May 11 – Liam Scarlett: Vespertine, Itzik Galii: Mono Lisa, Chanel DaSilva: Swing Low, Justin Peck: The Times are Racing; and May 12 – Gerald Arpino: Birthday Variations, Nicolas Blanc: Under the Trees Voices, Itzik Galili: The Sofa, Yoshihisa Arai: Bolero.
Highlights for the new season include two new series, Soul of America and Justice for All. The season includes several commissions including the world premiere of a new work by Jennifer Koh and Davóne Tines, titled Everything Rises; and two installments of the Danish String Quartet’s Doppelgänger Project. Series subscriptions go on sale Wed., Sept. 1 at 10 a.m. and single tickets go on sale the following week on Wed., Sept. 8 at 10 a.m.
The 2021-2022 season kicks off with a blockbuster string of events on Sun., Oct. 10 with former U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and presidential candidate Julián Castro, followed by music from the soulful roots trio The Wood Brothers with special guest Kat Wright (Oct. 12), the first installment of Danish String Quartet’s Doppelgänger Project (Oct. 14), Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra’s Fandango at the Wall with The Villalobos Brothers (Oct. 15), and environmental activist Paul Hawken on Regeneration: Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation (Oct. 20).
Additional events, including performances, films and public lectures, will be announced throughout the season.