Opera Santa Barbara Returns

Opera Santa Barbara at 25: Returns to its first home, the Lobero Theatre

In 1993 Marilyn Gilbert and the late Nathan Rundlett founded the Santa Barbara Grand Opera and the company’s first production was Die Fledermaus at the Lobero Theatre. Subsequent early productions included a company premiere of La Traviata – its first grand opera (1995), four performances of Carmen during Old Spanish Days, and then the “little company that could” launched its first full season with La bohème, Don Giovanni and Rigoletto in 1996. The company officially changed its name to Opera Santa Barbara before their 2003 tenth anniversary season with productions of Don Giovanni and Madama Butterfly. Subsequent years saw performances of Rigoletto, Ballo in Maschera, Italiana in Algeri, Faust, Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci and Elixir of Love.

“This anniversary season not only celebrates the last 25 years but also documents our commitment to the next 25 and beyond. – Kostis Protopapas

Artistic & General Director Kostis Protopapas has pledged to nurture the future of opera by presenting contemporary works alongside the classics, to embrace change and to continuously seek new ways to share our vision and enrich lives.

Opera Santa Barbara closes its 25th Anniversary season at the Lobero Theatre with what is sure to be a memorable conclusion this season with Robert Ward’s “The Crucible” based on Arthur Miller’s classic American drama. 

CAMA Celebrates 100 years

CAMA at 100: The Centennial Season of Santa Barbara’s oldest arts organization

Beautiful music, exciting music, profound music—Community Arts Music Association has been bringing this gift to Santa Barbara for 100 years.

Born in the dark days following World War I, flourishing during the roaring twenties, and eluding demise during the great depression, CAMA has endured through a story of struggle, survival, and triumph as compelling as the world-renowned music and performers it presents.

CAMA’s roots date to the 1919 Civic Music Committee and the 1921 Orchestra Committee (Music Branch) of the Community Arts Association (CAA). Though they differed in approach, the two organizations were in accord in wanting to promote and provide the very best in classical music for Santa Barbara. It was the CAA that, in 1922, took on the monumental task of re-building Jose Lobero’s declining Opera House into the Lobero Theatre that we know today. Both organizations continued their work side-by-side until 1926 when the CAA Music Branch took on the work of the Civic Music Committee. In 1941, the Music Branch incorporated as a separate entity, CAMA, and continued the work begun in 1919.

CAMA’s presentation of live classical music performances featuring world-renowned artists and orchestras over the past 100 years is a testament to its founders and successors who have upheld their commitment to enriching Santa Barbara’s cultural life, and those who have supported this legacy. Today, CAMA continues to enrich the lives of the Santa Barbara region and its visitors to experience and enjoy classical music through live performances and educational outreach for future generations.

+ Celebrate the centennial season with CAMA’s Masterseries:  Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra (March 9), Garrick Ohlsson Piano, (March 30), Augustin Hadelich, Violin, (April 17), Mischa Maisky Cello and Lily Maisky Piano, (May 6).

Oh Say Can You See

Santa Barbara, Oh Say Can You See… the Stars and Strips are on display for National Flag week

The Lobero Theatre Foundation has brought out their specially-engineered rigging to hang a massive 40 ft x 60 ft American flag on the back of the Lobero Theatre’s flyspace–one of downtown’s most visible facades for National Flag Week.

The flag is visible when facing toward the ocean from Carrillo Streets and higher. This is a great opportunity to climb up to the top of the courthouse or enjoy a stroll through the paseos this week to get a look at Old Glory. Flag day will be celebrated this Wednesday, June 14, 2017. 

If you get some good photos of the flag, tag us @loberotheatre on Facebook & Twitter and we’ll share

#GiveDay

Help us celebrate the Lobero by joining in our first Lobero Give Day on Wednesday, February 22–our 144th birthday!

“Give Days” are like a 24-hour digital pep rally, and we’re throwing our first this Wednesday. And, like any party, we want to invite all our friends to be there.

The Lobero is Santa Barbara’s community theater, a home for so many of our favorite memories; whether you performed on this stage, or watched a young performer here, so many of us got our first taste of the stage right here. The Lobero has been right here for 144 years, which, is pretty incredible. It’s been a big part of Santa Barbara history, standing proud since the big earthquake of 1925, seen each and every Old Spanish Days celebration, and remains the favorite venue for many top performers.

Making a gift on #LoberoGiveDay will help to ensure this community stage remains a viable community asset for many years to come. But don’t worry, if you can’t make a gift, there are other ways to get involved:

Save me and use as your profile pic on #GiveDay!

 

  • We’d love to hear your stories on Wednesday, February 22. Please share a memory or story on Facebook and Tag us @LoberoTheatre. (Add the hashtag #LoberoGiveDay so we can keep track)
  • Would you be willing to share on your own page asking people to make a gift to support your favorite theater? Let us know, and we’ll send you everything you’ll need.
  • Save this cute photo and make it your temporary profile pic for the day.

Thanks so much to all our friends, fans, followers… We couldn’t do it without you!

RSVP here on Facebook

The Lobero Theatre: A Historical Shelter & Architectural Inspiration

In 1925, Santa Barbara experienced a devastating 6.3 magnitude earthquake that resulted in 13 casualties and  eighty-five percent of the commercial buildings in Downtown Santa Barbara were destroyed or badly damaged. One of the only buildings left untouched was the Lobero Theatre.

Inspired by the 90th anniversary of the Santa Barbara earthquake, and the wonderful exhibit now on display at the The Santa Barbara Historical Museum, Emily Solomon takes us on a trip back in time…

Residents of Santa Barbara flocked to the Lobero for shelter and safety during this time. After the earthquake, there was lots of rebuilding that had to take place. One of the most influential architects on the project was George Washington Smith, who at the time was noted one of the most popular architects in the United States. During a California trip during WWI, Smith was visiting friends in Montecito. He enjoyed Santa Barbara so much that he ended up buying property to build himself a home and studio. His architectural style for the home was inspired by farmhouses he saw on a trip to Spain in 1914.

The Spanish Colonial Revival architectural style carried into his rebuilding efforts in Downtown Santa Barbara. Before the earthquake, the city’s buildings were mainly designed in the Moorish Revival style. In the end, Santa Barbara got a complete facelift and if the earthquake didn’t happen, we wouldn’t have the beautiful Spanish style homes and businesses that line our streets today.

The Lobero Theatre’s Mediterranean look also was a major factor during the rebuilding project. Smith and the other architects wanted the buildings to have uniformity, and the fact that the Lobero already had that Spanish look, made their decision to rebuild in that specific style even easier.

It is a remarkable history, and oh what stories this stage could tell! Santa Barbara has changed dramatically in 142 years, and the Lobero has always been at the heart of it all.

June 29 marked the 90th anniversary of the Santa Barbara earthquake. The Santa Barbara Historical Museum currently has a spectacular exhibit, showcasing still photographs and videos of footage of the earthquake. To take a sneak peak before visiting the exhibit, click here. 

Whenever you step into the Lobero Theatre, you feel like you’re in a space that has seen so much history and musical talent over the past 142 years. The Lobero shed a light on this, “History of a Community Stage” in the recent BACKSTAGE at the Lobero, which you can read here. This is just one more piece of history to recognize its historical importance, not just as a haven for great music fanatics, musicians, dancers and theatre enthusiasts, but also as a landmark of architectural brilliance and change.

 

Emily Solomon, Go-Content

Author Bio: Emily Solomon is no stranger to the Lobero Theatre. She recalls dancing in the theater during her early teenage years. While she spends most of her time writing content for local Santa Barbara businesses and for online publications, she always manages to escape to her favorite music venue to hear her favorite tunes and discover new artists to love. Emily is a graduate of Emerson College with a degree in Writing and Publishing. She currently runs an online content business called, Go-Content. Contact her at emilyfaye@go-content.com

What People are Saying: Encore: Lobero Preservation work, one year later

The Lobero Theatre: Newly Refurbished, bolder sound and history in between

Guest post by Emily Solomon

Whether you’re a native Santa Barbarian or you haven’t been in this beautiful paradise for very long, it’s likely you have  seen at least one show at the Lobero Theatre. It’s hard not to get addicted to the intimate atmosphere the theater provides, bringing anyone who crosses its path that much closer to the magic of live entertainment. After 140 years of award-winning performances, the recent “Encore: Lobero” preservation work of the Lobero Theatre has proved that the music truly still lives on in this historic landmark.

“Fantastic restoration of the theater. Thanks so much for preserving history for all to enjoy.”

In 2013, with the compassion and desire of board members and generous contributions from the Santa Barbara community, the renewal of the Lobero Theatre was ready to begin. This construction project was no small task. Because the theater has been around since 1873, it’s a historical landmark. The Foundation design team worked diligently with the Historic Landmarks Commission, historians and archivists to ensure that the changes to the Lobero Theatre would keep with the architectural integrity of the original theater. The Lobero Theatre was going to get a much-needed facelift with the following end goals: new seats, ceiling preservation work, interior painting, improved air flow, expanded restrooms and ADA compliance upgrades throughout.

“The Lobero is one of Santa Barbara’s crown jewels! I wanted to cry when I first saw what you have done for this beloved venue! Excellent work you guys!”

Today, every patron that walks through the beautiful Lobero Theatre is able to enjoy new, comfortable seats, a heating and air conditioning system that have improved airflow within the theater immensely. Restrooms have also been enlarged to meet today’s accessibility requirements. The theater is now equipped with eight wheelchair spaces and areas for companion seating. For hearing impaired patrons, the auditorium is now wired with Hearing Loop technology, allowing patrons wearing hearing aids to adjust their devices to amplify the sound to their comfort.

“Your new seats are sooo comfy!”

This is truly what makes supporters of the Lobero so special. No matter what walk of life you are, we all have the right to hear and appreciate the art of live performance. The Santa Barbara community understands that through and through.

The outside of the building has also undergone necessary changes too. The walkway to the main entry is now equipped with a compliant ramp and level landings at the top and bottom. The area where many people enjoy mingling on before and after shows, was redone to create a level area for patrons to gather safely. The Paseo at the side of the theater was re-paved with brick and a new ramp leading to the Green Room stairs,a nd side steps have been put in place to meet code.

“Beautiful historic feel, love the attention to detail.”

If you haven’t gotten the chance to experience the new and improved theater, there are some huge acts to check out. See for yourself why the Lobero Theatre is where the fantasy world of music lovers comes to life.

 

Read more audience comments:

  • “I love the Lobero. Wonderful facelift. Every time I am here, I feel the spirits. The place just resonates with wonderful energy.”
  •  The Lobero is the perfect size. Not too big, not too small. Perfect for a Tierney Sutton concert!!
  • Great remodel, especially the ‘loos!
  • I used to dance on the Lobero stage as a young girl. Fond memories and still my favorite theatre.
  • My family appreciates the theatre donating tickets to senior living facilities; my dad is able to participate in that.
  • Still the best musical venue in Santa Barbara.
  • You do a wonderful job of enriching my life and the lives in our community.
  • My first visit, but it’s beautiful! I love the seats and ceiling!
  • Just the right size venue. Every seat is a good seat. Beautiful interior, comfortable new seats and newly enlarged men’s restroom. Small town location and ‘feel.’
  • While the mission may be our Queen, the Lobero is definitely our Princess. So proud of our town and how the Lobero is this beautiful jewel in our crown.
  • How wonderful to see that the Lobero is still the fantastic, vibrant venue I remember! Kudos to all involved in preserving and enhancing of this fabulous theatre.
  • I moved here from Chicago a year and a half ago. I have seen amazing dance, music and films here. Thank you for all the wonderful events that help make me feel a part of the community.

Emily Solomon, Go-Content

Author Bio: Emily Solomon is no stranger to the Lobero Theatre. She recalls dancing in the theater during her early teenage years. While she spends most of her time writing content for local Santa Barbara businesses and for online publications, she always manages to escape to her favorite music venue to hear her favorite tunes and discover new artists to love. Emily is a graduate of Emerson College with a degree in Writing and Publishing. She currently runs an online content business called, Go-Content. Contact her at emilyfaye@go-content.com

 

Quisicosas, 1951

The Lobero has a shared history with Old Spanish Days Fiesta, and we love to Viva.

In true #TBT (Throwback Thursday) style, Check out this gem from a 1951 production of Quisicosas at the Lobero Theatre. There is so much to enjoy in this vintage program — from the Spanish pronunciation guide, to the inserted flyer for the Music Academy of the West‘s Summer Festival Gala, with tickets for $3! Not to mention the old phone numbers and the fact that you can still eat at El Paseo before a show at the Lobero.

“And today, In the year 1951, Fiesta seethes again around and within Lobero. Santa Barbarans and their guests reliving the days of the past, and holding fast to those traditions that lend enchantment to life for all who dwell here.” (pg 4, Quisicosas program) 

Click, and enjoy.

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Lobero Theatre carriage, Old Spanish Days Fiesta parade, 2014. Photo: Stephen Adams

Lobero Theatre carriage, Old Spanish Days Fiesta parade, 2014. Photo: Stephen Adams

Viva La Fiesta!

 

 

 

 

Violin Femme, Back again

Violinist Adrienne Biggs returns to play the Lobero after her debut in 1975

This story came in through the Lobero’s Facebook page.
“I played my first violin concert at age 9 at the Lobero, and am super excited to return “home” nearly 40 years later for Danny Click’s show on May 3, as his fiddler!” – Adrienne Biggs

Adrienne Biggs, aka, Violin Femme, and her musician parents (Grammy-winning singer/arranger Salli Terri and Ojai-based composer John Biggs) lived in Santa Barbara in the 1970’s. Mom, Salli, also taught at UCSB. The Biggs family played the Lobero Theatre on Dec. 17,1975. (Check out the photo in front of the Lobero’s kiosk!)

Adrienne mentions on her facebook page that she didn’t have the typical upbringing: “Instead of vacations, our family toured professionally in nearly 30 countries, performing an eclectic program including Renaissance to Americana music on period instruments that we owned, like harpsichord, piano, krumhorns, hurdy gurdy, recorders, hand bells, portative organ, rauschpfeife and of course, violins.”

After playing in youth and then professional orchestras and ensembles, in the early 90’s Adrienne moved to San Francisco and played with numerous bands in all of the notable venues, including Danny Click and the Hell Yeahs, who take the stage by way of Sings Like Hell this Saturday, May 3.

Learn more at about Adrienne at ViolinFemme page on Facebook, or check out DannyClick.com. Better yet, buy your tickets today.

If you have history with the Lobero Theatre, tell us your story! We’d love to hear it.

Santa Barbara International Film Festival & Lady Lutah

SBIFF moves into the Lobero for another fabulous festival season

Not to miss at the Lobero this year:

  • New documentary film, Lutah, honors one of the Lobero’s–and Santa Barbara’s–foremost female architects

  • Panels, Panels, Panels!

  • Minipacks on sale now at the Lobero Box Office

LUTAH explores the life of a little-known architect who left a big legacy.  Lutah Maria Riggs navigated her way through the male-centric world of architecture and brought a freshness to the established architectural styles of Southern California — Including, the Lobero Theatre. This film will be shown at the Lobero on Friday 1/31 at 11 am and again on Wednesday 2/5 at 4:30pm. Read the full description here.

LoberoVintageWorkers_web

Riggs was responsible for the columns and capitals of the Lobero Theatre remodel and for design elements of the historic El Paseo complex and Casa del Herrero. Smith financed her second commission, her own home called Clavelitos in Montecito. The Lobero Theater is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

 

Get ready for an amazing round of panel discussions with top industry talents.

These eagerly anticipated Q&A’s are a festival highlight year after year, offering insight in the multi-faceted journey from script to screen.  SBIFF brings in the best of the best to discuss their trials and triumphs.

Don’t miss the Directors Panel, Producers Panel, VFX panel, Writers Panel and Women’s panels at the Lobero this year.

Purchase Minipacks for 4 or 10 films at the Lobero Box Office.

Package holders get to enjoy a new feature this year to reserve your spot in line. Check in for the desired film one hour before start and grab your “cue card.” Be sure to return 20 minutes before the credits roll, and you’re in. ProTip: Minipacks are great to share, that way no one gets the screen-fatigues.

Viva la film Fest. As always, keep an eye out on the TBA listings, and we’ll see you at the theatre.

Thanks to Santa Barbara Seasons, LutahMariaRiggs_Seasons_Fall12-web, click for full story. Photo Courtesy Santa Barbara Historical Museum

Holiday Wishes

The Lobero Theatre Foundation would like to wish all of our friends and fans a wonderful holiday season.

We hope you’ll join us tomorrow night, December 17, for a Holiday Open house from 5-7 p.m. Enjoy self-guided tours, refreshments, music by Vocal Point, and holiday cheer galore. Free!

If you haven’t had a chance to come by and catch a show yet, this is a great opportunity to check out the refreshed space.  Click to read our invitation

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