Off Center Festival Returns to Segerstrom Center, Now thru 2/2

Off Center Festival Returns to Segerstrom Center, Now thru 2/2

Segerstrom Center's Off Center Festival returns for its third consecutive year today, January 23 - February 2. This year's festival will showcase an entirely new lineup of wonderfully creative and innovative contemporary performance companies and artists.

The Center will host its first POP: Party on the Plaza - free to the public on January 24 - that will feature a performance by Southern California's celebrated Latino/Chicano theater troupe Culture Clash and the two bands Little Willie G. and Thee Midniters and Latin rock band La Santa Cecilia. Also featured in this year's festival will be Sekou Sundiata's blessing the boats: the remix, Die Roten Punkte's Super Musician, Edgar Oliver's Helen & Edgar, Phil Soltanoff's LA Party, the world premiere of KEEP CULTURE AND CLASH ON: 30 Years of Revolutionary Comedy Remastered by Culture Clash, Rinde Eckert's Becoming Unusual... The Education of an Eclectic and Gilbert Castellanos and The New Latin Jazz Quintet. The Off Center Lounge in Leatherby's Cafe Rouge will be open again with a special low-cost post-performance menu and the opportunity to mix and mingle with the festival artists.

"Our third Off Center Festival will continue to enhance the eclecticism of the Center's programming," said Center President Terrence W. Dwyer. "These are audacious works that are exciting and topical. Our goal is that they reflect the current interests and passions of our audiences and artists from throughout the region and nationwide. In addition, we will offer a free party on the Arts Plaza which will add a celebratory kick-off. I also invite audiences to join us each evening in the Off Center Lounge at Leatherby's Cafe Rouge to meet the artists and fellow attendees and to talk about the shows."

Tickets go on sale Sunday, November 24 at 10 a.m. PST. They will be $25 for each performance and can be purchased online at, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa or by calling (714) 556-2787. The TTY number is (714) 556-2746. Tickets may also be purchased for just $15 by clicking the Buy Tickets button on the Center's Facebook page at Some performances are suggested for mature audiences only. Please contact the Box Office for suggestions. Artists and program are subject to change. For more information, visit

Sekou Sundaiata's blessing the boats: the remix / Center Debut

January 23 - 26 in Founders Hall

As a brilliant poet and storyteller, Sekou Sundiata created a very personal and inspiring story of hope, compassion and wonder. It makes you consider the physical body, its changing nature - how we are all vulnerable but can get through most anything with the support of loved ones. blessing

the boats: the remix tells the moving, personal story of a man and his health as he experiences illness that turns out to be kidney failure. Within this emotional and profound journey, he reflects on the utmost compassion of the friends who come forward to donate one of their kidneys, and ultimately, the grace by which he feels so blessed.

POP: Party on the Plaza

January 24 on the Arts Plaza

On January 24, the Center hosts a FREE Off Center Festival party on the Arts Plaza. It will feature performances by Culture Clash, the bands Little Willie G. and Thee Midniters and La Santa Cecilia plus food trucks for dinner and snacks.

"Smart and deadly funny. A comic grand slam!?," wrote the Boston Herald. Culture Clash consists of three Latino members (Richard Montoya, Ric Salinas and Herbert Siguenza) who have been writing and performing together for twenty years. Each artist plays multiple characters, crossing all racial, social, and sexual boundaries, reinventing our ideas of storytelling and community.

"Little Willie G. is considered to be the best singer to come out of East Los Angeles and has one of the most powerful and soulful voices in the music- world today," says Rolling Stone Magazine. A charismatic figure/singer, Little Willie G.'s style has drawn comparisons to Jackie Wilson and Frank Sinatra.

L.A. Weekly hailed La Santa Cecilia as "the best Latin alternative band of the year." They exemplify the modern-day creative hybrid of Latin culture rock 'n' roll music. The group draws inspiration from all over the world, utilizing Pan- American rhythms such as cumbria, bossa-nova, rumba, bolero, tango, jazz and klezmer music.

Die Roten Punkte: Super Musician / Center Debut January 24 & 25 in Samueli Theater

Die Roten Punkte (German for The Red Dots and pronounced DEE ROTTEN POONK-TEH) is a two-piece band from Australia by way of Berlin's underground rock scene. Otto and Astrid Rot are a lipstick- smeared, tantrum-loving, sonic collision someplace between The B-52s,

Kraftwerk and early Ramones. "Pants-wettingly funny!" said Canada's Uptown Magazine. Otto (vocals, guitar, keytar, loops) and his petulantly imperious sister Astrid (drums, vocals, glockenspiel, cowbell, accordion) squabble their way through their ridiculously infectious songs in a performance that is equal parts rock concert and comedy sketch show. One of the most hilarious gigs you'll ever see.

Edgar Oliver: Helen & Edgar / Center Debut

January 24 - 26 in the Studio Performance Space

Edgar Oliver has a cult following mesmerized by his spellbinding tales. "Utterly absorbing and unexpectedly moving," Oliver delivers spoken memoirs from his childhood. He, his sister Helen and his mother Louise are among the characters. Each story is represented with remarkable artistry and masterful use of language and phrasing. Riveting from the moment he

Phil Soltanoff: LA Party / Center Debut

January 29 - 31 in the Studio Performance Space

In LA Party, a monastic-vegan/raw food fanatic falls off the wagon one night and spends an evening on a wild L.A. bender. Phil Soltanoff is an award-winning theater artist creating innovative, hybrid work in which the

arts collide in compelling ways. He challenges familiar forms, builds links among seemingly incompatible media and materials, and employs new technologies in surprising and human ways. The short story collides with live video in which six performers produce a compelling composite human being.

Culture Clash / World Premiere / Center Debut
KEEP CULTURE AND CLASH ON: 30 Years of Revolutionary Comedy Remastered January 30 - February 2 in Founders Hall

Culture Clash is celebrating its 30th anniversary as the most prominent Chicano/Latino performance troupe in the country. For its Center debut, the company will present the world premiere of KEEP CULTURE AND CLASH ON: 30 Years of Revolutionary Comedy Remastered. This is theater of the moment, written and performed first for the people and communities on which their works are based and, ultimately, for broader audiences. Culture Clash uses performance collage to bring history, geography, urban excavation, forensic poetry and storytelling together in a contemporary, movable theater narrative through a Chicano point of view. Their videos, short films and art exhibits have been shown at The Smithsonian; The Whitney Museum of American Art; Sundance Film Festival; The San Juan, Puerto Rico Film and Video Festival; The Art Institute of Boston; Palm Springs Film Festival and The Los Angeles Film Festival, among others.

Rinde Eckert: Becoming Unusual ... The Education of an Eclectic / Center Debut January 31 & February 1 in Samueli Theater

Becoming Unusual ... The Education of an Eclectic is a work in progress, solo concert of song, dramatic monologues, lecture and video. Award- winning composer, musician, singer, librettist, actor and director, Eckert explains that his goal is to build a theatrical logic in his works that is fiercely interdisciplinary, "a theatre that accepts various modalities of meaning and

feeling without subordinating one to the other." Eckert describes many of his characters as "little men with big ideas whose consequences of their hubris are often disastrous." Sometimes tragic and austere, sometimes broadly comedic, entirely grounded by presence, his work is alchemical: moving from rumination and distillation to hard-won illumination, or its lack.

Gilbert Castellanos and The New Latin Jazz Quintet / Center Debut February 1 in Founders Hall

Award-winning Southern California trumpet virtuoso Gilbert Castellanos is recognized as an American master by DownBeat magazine. Zan Stewart of the L.A. Times says: "[Castellanos] plays with e?lan, evincing a more individual, ever-large sound offering hard swinging, often ear-grabbing

solos...[proving] that music with deep roots in jazz's glorious '50s and '60s can sound completely contemporary today." He draws on two lifelong influences - the hardbop pioneers of modern jazz who have inspired him and the rhythmic pulse of the Latino heritage that nurtured him. Castellanos has worked with world renowned artists Dizzy Gillespie, Wynton Marsalis, Charlie Haden, Les McCann, Poncho Sanchez, Diana Krall, Willie Nelson, Michael Buble? and Natalie Cole, to name a few.

Off Center Lounge at Leatherby's Cafe Rouge January 23 - 26 and January 31 - February 2

The Off Center Festival isn't over when the curtain goes down on performances - audiences are encouraged to mix and mingle with the artists in Leatherby's Cafe Rouge. It is a special opportunity to discuss the works with the creators and performers, talk about the concepts and have all those questions addressed that oftentimes go unanswered. And there will be a special low-cost post-performance menu that is available starting at 9 p.m.

KPCC 89.3FM, Southern California Public Radio is the exclusive radio sponsor for the Off Center Festival.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is unique as both an acclaimed arts institution and as a multi- disciplinary cultural campus. It is committed to supporting artistic excellence on all of its stages, offering unsurpassed experiences, and engaging the entire community in new and exciting ways through the unique power of live performance and a diverse array of inspiring programs.

Previously called the Orange County Performing Arts Center, Segerstrom Center traces its roots back to the late 1960s when a dedicated group of community leaders decided Orange County should have its own world-class performing arts venue.

As Orange County's largest non-profit arts organization, Segerstrom Center for the Arts owns and operates the 3,000-seat Segerstrom Hall and intimate 250-seat Founders Hall, which opened in 1986, and the 2,000-seat Rene?e and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, which opened in 2006 and also houses the 500-seat Samueli Theater, the Lawrence and Kristina Dodge Education Center's studio performance space and Boeing Education Lab. A spacious arts plaza anchors Segerstrom Center for the Arts and is home to numerous free performances throughout the year as part of Segerstrom Center for the Arts' ongoing Free for All series.

The Center presents a broad range of programming each season for audiences of all ages from throughout Orange County and beyond, including international ballet and dance, national tours of top Broadway shows, intimate performances of jazz and cabaret, contemporary artists, classical music performed by renowned chamber orchestras and ensembles, family-friendly programming, free performances open to the public from outdoor movie screenings to dancing on the plaza and many other special events. It offers many education programs designed to inspire young people through the arts. These programs reach hundreds of thousands of students of all ages with vital arts-in-education programs, enhancing their studies and enriching their lives well into the future.

In addition to the presenting and producing institution Segerstrom Center for the Arts, the 14-acre campus also embraces the facilities of two independent acclaimed organizations: Tony Award-winning South Coast Repertory and a site designated as the future home of the Orange County Museum of Art.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is also proud to serve as the artistic home to three of the region's major performing arts organizations: Pacific Symphony, the Philharmonic Society of Orange County and the Pacific Chorale, who contribute greatly to the artistic life of the region with annual seasons at Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

Off Center Festival 2014
Segerstrom Center for the Arts - January 23 - February 2, 2014

600 and 615 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, CA

Sekou Sundiata's blessing the boats: the remix - Founders Hall January 23 - 26 at 8 p.m.

POP: Party on the Plaza - Arts Plaza
Culture Clash - Little Willie G. and Thee Midniters - La Santa Cecilia January 24 at 6:00 p.m.

Die Roten Punkte: Super Musician - Samueli Theater January 24 & 25 at 8:30 p.m.

Edgar Oliver: Helen & Edgar - Studio Performance Space (Rene?e and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall) January 24 - 26 at 7:30 p.m.

Phil Soltanoff: LA Party - Studio Performance Space (Rene?e and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall) January 29 - 31 at 7:30 p.m.

Culture Clash / World Premiere - Founders Hall
KEEP CULTURE AND CLASH ON: 30 Years of Revolutionary Comedy Remastered January 30 - February 1 at 8 p.m.
February 2 at 3 p.m.

Rinde Eckert: Becoming Unusual ... The Education of an Eclectic - Samueli Theater January 31 & February 1 at 8:30 p.m.

Gilbert Castellanos and The New Latin Jazz Quintet - Founders Hall February 1 at 9:30 p.m.

Single tickets: $15 via the Center's Facebook page; $25 at the Box Office, on-line or by phone. The Box Office is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, CA 92626 Open 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. daily or by calling (714) 556-2787.

Information provided is accurate at the time of printing, but is subject to change. Segerstrom Center for the Arts is a private, non- profit organization. "Segerstrom Center for the Arts" is a registered trademark.

Pictured: La Santa Cecilia. Photo by Humberto Howard.

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