Event highlights for the week of April 4, 2018.
There are few low-maintenance flowers that yield as stunning results as the dahlia, but you have to do the work to get there. Dahlia plants bloom from tubers, which look like little magical sprouting potatoes you put in the ground. After planting the tuber, you can expect dahlias to bloom around eight weeks later, but try to refrain from watering immediately after planting, since tubers can be prone to rot. These perfectly symmetrical little poms come in beautiful fiery hues perfect for a mid-summer bloom. Show up early for the best selection.
INFO: 9-11 a.m. Saturday, April 7. Red Apple Cafe. 783 Rio Del Mar Blvd # 15, Aptos. mbdahlias.org. Free.
Contra dancing is as much about socializing as it is about dancing. Of course there is dancing involved—a lot of it—but it’s also kind of like high-speed dance dating without time for the ensuing awkwardness. Contra dancing takes place in sets and consists of two lines, where your partner (if you have one) is usually across from you in the other line. Dancing experience isn’t necessary, but there is a beginner’s workshop 20 minutes before the dance that is recommended. Bring comfortable, non-marking shoes to protect your feet and the floors and refrain from wearing cologne or perfumes.
INFO: 6 p.m. Sunday, April 8. Veterans Memorial Building, 846 Front St., Santa Cruz. santacruzdance.org. $12 general admission, $8 students.
Saturday 4/7 and Sunday 4/8
The term “taiko” refers to a spectrum of japanese drums and percussion instruments and the ancient musical performance. Throughout history, taiko has been used in marches, celebrations, theater and even war. In celebration of their 27th year in Santa Cruz County, Watsonville Taiko is showcasing the wind element to portray the movement of energy and time across history. According to the group, taiko drumming awakens the winds of distance times, and is a fitting celebration of energy and power.
INFO: 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Cabrillo Crocker Theater. Lower Perimeter Road, Aptos. 479-6152. cabrillovapa.com. $21 general admission, $16 student/senior, $12 children 15 and under. Photo by Philip Shima.
Friday 4/6-Sunday 4/22
Thornton Wilder’s Pulitzer-Prize-winning play will make a dramatic scene in Santa Cruz. Our Town is perhaps Wilder’s best known work, though it is also one of his most modest in its minimalist theatrical style. Directed by local producer Suzanne Sturn, the play gives new meaning to the idea of a theater experience. The stage manager, a character in the play, breaks the fourth wall not only by directly addressing the audience, but also by prompting actors and cueing scene changes, as if the rehearsals are the final product. The play is outside of the norm, and will introduce new perspective and context to everyday life in a bold and ambitious way.
INFO: 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays. Center Stage, 1001 Center St., Santa Cruz. brownpapertickets.com $25 general admission, $10 students and teachers.