A local institution for more than 40 years, Bakersfield Music Theatre pulls in patrons with a schedule of major Broadway musicals and other songful spectacles. Stop by on October 8 for a one-night-only performance of Direct from Vegas: Frank Sinatra, featuring Gary Corsello crooning un-remixed versions of Sinatra classics such as “Luck Be a Lady” and “Come Fly With Me” to the orchestral accompaniment of five full-sized musicians. The hit musical Chicago (November 13, 14, and 20) follows the exploits of a pair of femme fatales driven to murder by the stiff breezes of the Windy City, while "This and That: A Night of Song and Dance" (February 26) combines the mouth-powered melodies of Bakersfield Music Theatre with the legendary leggery of the Civic Dance Center. Hairspray (April 30, May 1, and May 7) caps the season with the tuneful tale of a teenage dance queen whose fancy footwork and well-kempt coiffure help her to defeat her enemies, the Philadelphia Eagles.
California Keyboards Music Center has sharpened the ears and tamed the wandering digits of the Southern Valley for more than 35 years. Each weekly 30-minute lesson is taught by instructors whose performance resumés include enlivening Carnegie Hall, marching in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and treading alongside jazz greats like Ella Fitzgerald.
Santa Barbara Revels, a nonprofit performing arts group, celebrates autumn and fundraises with Oktoberfest, a German festival replete with a complimentary buffet of bratwurst, sauerkraut, and potato salad. Toast the Biergarten Musikmeisters' cheerful tunes and sentient mustaches with included glasses of light and dark Brewhouse pilsner, or salute crisp apple strudel with a glass of wine. Door-prize tickets (not included with this Groupon) promise a shot at one of 12 fun packages, including one that enlists specialists to map family genealogy and prepare tax returns. During the live auction, bidders dressed in lederhosen and dirndls compete for luxurious getaways to Beverly Hills or Santa Monica, or a chance to win back their confiscated street clothes. Though not required to attend, a 10% discount on costume rentals from Victorian Vogue encourages Oktoberfest attendees to flesh out the festive scene with vintage regalia.
The Hershey Theatre, conceived in 1933 by noted philanthropist and chocolatier Milton S. Hershey, stands as an opulent tribute to the performing arts. Taking architectural cues from Saint Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the foyer’s towering arches gleam with golden paint and crystal chandeliers. The blue-and-gold mosaic that leads to the main seating area is the masterwork of two German artists who spent two years on its construction. Once inside the theater, audiences might think they’ve stepped onto the streets of Venice thanks to the atmospheric ceiling, stonework facades, and gondoliers paddling them to their seats. ####Bethel Woods Center for the Arts Music has permeated the 800 manicured acres where the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts has stood since 1969, when farmer Max Yasgur agreed to let love, peace, and harmony grow wild at the very first Woodstock festival. These days, the renowned outdoor venue and cultural center continues to attract the biggest acts in music to its pavilion stage. The open-air design ensures ample ventilation on the natural sloping lawn, and a roof protects up to 15,000 fans from inclement weather and the prying eyes of Cessna pilots.
Since 1982, Good Company Players has enticed audiences with its first-rate stage creations inside 2nd Space Theatre's cozy, intimate space. Groupon customers thirsty for drama can quench their pangs with a ticket to any of the upcoming three productions, beginning with Born Yesterday (running through June 12), a politically revved satire centered on a corrupt mobster and his capricious lady friend as they navigate ethical road cones in the nation’s capital. A woman’s daily struggles with her love life, pitch-perfect sister, and nagging inability to open pickle jars is lovingly chronicled in Skin Deep (June 16–August 7), while audiences can behold the flexing of the troupe’s dramatic physique in Stalag 17 (August 11–October 9)—a suspenseful tale situated in a WWII German prison camp. All three shows carry a PG rating, rendering them ideal entertainment for the whole family.