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Old 06-12-2007, 10:25 AM
 
Location: OB
2,404 posts, read 3,947,765 times
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Here in Philly, we have this thing with first Fridays were all the private art galleries throw open their doors, independant artists hock their wares as they line the streets of Old City while street performers wander playing their music; creating a very enjoyable artsy, wine-and-cheese, shake-down-street-type atmosphere. Are there any similar events in San Diego?

In a similar vein, Philly has the Avenue of the Arts where I can catch Wicked, Momma Mia, an opera, the orchestra, or any number of events/shows. Outside of Balboa Park (zoo & musuems) where's the Art District in San Diego?

What are your thoughts on the San Diego's art scene? Are the venues decent? How do you feel about the rotation/shows which come through?

Last question, parks; those big, sunny, flat, open areas in the middle of the city where we enjoy the sun, read and people watch. Philadelphia has Rittenhouse Square, DC has the National Mall, NY has Central Park; San Diego has the beach, Balboa and few other national parks. But what about a simply park/square, does San Diego have anything that compares?

Thanks!
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Old 06-12-2007, 02:09 PM
 
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The only experience I have with the arts were from school trips to Balboa Park and Spreckels Theatre for an opera.

There are Broadway shows, a Symphony Hall and the Spreckels Theatre in downtown.


Broadway San Diego Presents the 2007-2008 Season
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Old 06-12-2007, 05:47 PM
 
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For me, it's hard to compare Philly to San Diego. Apples & oranges, in my book. Different cities, cultural histories & all that. For example, I couldn't compare the Philadelphia Orchestra to San Diego Symphony. Philly is a top 5 orchestra whereas SD Symphony ranks somewhere in the top 40. Although SD may have a multi-million dollar gift from the Jacobs Family, they don't pay their musicians or staff the way the Philly musicians & staff are paid.

We don't really have a dedicated "arts district" like Philly's Avenue of the Arts. I think the closest thing we have is Balboa Park with the various museums, Globe Theatre, gardens, etc...The other big venues are spread throughout San Diego and LaJolla.

Most Broadway shows come through the Civic Theatre which is also the home of the San Diego Opera.

The San Diego Symphony performs at Copley Symphony Hall but they also do run-outs & perform in venues like the Escondido Center for the Performing Arts. During the summertime, Symphony Pops performs at Embarcadero.

As far as the quality of the venues, the Civic Theatre has terrible acoustics & is just not the right venue for opera. Copley Symphony Hall's acoustics are better. Maestro Ling has configured the orchestra in such a way that allows the orchestra's dynamics to sing through in that hall as much as possible.

As for the actual shows/talent that comes through, the Opera manages to bring in some great operas with some big names: Richard Leech - MET Opera tenor, bass-baritone Ferruccio Furlanetto (amazing voice!!!) to name the 2 I've seen most recently. I wish they had a better venue though because the sound there just drops off the edge of the stage.

The Symphony brings in big name talent, too & Maestro Ling has done an incredible job making the symphony a much more cohesive-sounding machine.

I am not very familiar with the Broadway scene but have enjoyed what comes through the LaJolla Playhouse. Terrific productions that have then moved on to NY's Broadway.

As for city parks, we don't have park squares that are common in NYC, Boston or Savannah. There are of course neighborhood parks but none that quite compare to what I think you're envisioning. It's hard to beat the beaches though.
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Old 06-13-2007, 07:01 AM
 
Location: OB
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Thats for taking the time to write that up.
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Old 06-13-2007, 11:42 PM
 
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You're welcome, mossomo. Wish I could be more help but my exposure to the arts is geared more towards orchestral/operatic genres.
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Old 06-14-2007, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo - Kensington
5,291 posts, read 12,738,305 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mossomo View Post
Here in Philly, we have this thing with first Fridays were all the private art galleries throw open their doors, independant artists hock their wares as they line the streets of Old City while street performers wander playing their music; creating a very enjoyable artsy, wine-and-cheese, shake-down-street-type atmosphere. Are there any similar events in San Diego?
Yep! They scene is probably alot smaller here than in Philly, but the concept is still the same. Cliquish, hip, and close knit is how I would describe it. It's fun if you wanna watch people try so hard to look cool, and hear a good DJ or band at the same time.

Thursday Night Thing (TNT) in downtown SD - First Thursday of the month Events - TNT (http://www.mcasd.org/events/TNT/index.asp - broken link)

Ray at Night in North Park - Second Saturday of the month rayatnight

Kettner Nights in Little Italy - Monthly on different night (see calender)
The Art and Design District


Quote:
Originally Posted by mossomo View Post
What are your thoughts on the San Diego's art scene? Are the venues decent? How do you feel about the rotation/shows which come through?
Art scene is appropriate for a city our size, some might say it's on the smaller side, but it's here. With LA so close, most people flock there to try to make a name for themselves.

Museum and concert shows that pass through here are hit and miss. We've got the venues, ie, outdoor amphitheaters and venues, House of Blues, smaller live music venues, etc, but again, SD isn't known for being a concert city. Blame it on getting up early to go surfing the next morning...

The big museum exhibits usually make a stop here. Right now the Dead Sea Scolls and the controversial Bodies Exhibit are in town and are doing quite well with attendance.

SD and Philly are alike in that we live in the shadows of much bigger and more famous cities.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mossomo View Post
Last question, parks; those big, sunny, flat, open areas in the middle of the city where we enjoy the sun, read and people watch. Philadelphia has Rittenhouse Square, DC has the National Mall, NY has Central Park; San Diego has the beach, Balboa and few other national parks. But what about a simply park/square, does San Diego have anything that compares? Thanks!
Ok, man, don't expect SD to have the same cute little squares and parks scattered around the city like they do in Philly. We're not an East Coast city, by any means. Instead, people head to the miles of coastline and urban canyon and mountain parks we have to jog, walk, hike and bike. You wouldn't expect me to move to Philly and complain about how there aren't any beaches for my dog to swim in or lack of good surf spots, would you?

FYI - While Rittenhouse and Washington Squares are nice, I'd much rather waste my day walking along the boardwalk or biking along Mission Bay Park.

Last edited by sdurbanite; 06-14-2007 at 06:58 PM..
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