A few years back, students voted for a lock-in fee that gave UCSB Arts & Lectures more funds than it had ever received before, which explains the increasingly exciting lineup of films and performances that A&L is able to bring to campus every year. Not only is A&L able to bring big names to campus, but, because of the lock-in fee, it is able to do so with special affordable ticket prices for students and, as a special thank-you, offer at least one free event for students every quarter.
Known for bringing innovative films to Campbell Hall, A&L does not disappoint this Fall Quarter either, with 11 of the best yet. Starting off strong tonight, Stephen Chow’s martial arts/comedy/high-octane soccer flick “Shaolin Soccer” will screen at 7:30 and 10 for $5. It is the highest-grossing Hong Kong film ever made, so it’s a sure bet. Wednesday, Sept. 29, will bring one of the most radical documentaries ever made to campus. “The Corporation,” filled with interviews by Howard Zinn, Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky, takes a critical look at how corporations rule and shape the world today. And if the New York Observer called it “more radical than ‘Fahrenheit 9/11′”, it’s probably gonna knock your socks off.
For an interesting inside look at the Iraqi media, catch the 7:30 p.m. showing of the acclaimed documentary “Control Room” on Oct. 6. Filmed as the Iraq War was beginning, this documentary will help you get a better understanding of how the Iraqi people were informed of news and how Al-Jazeera functions as a nationalistic media source. Continuing with the documentaries, Oct. 20 brings the film “Bright Leaves” to Santa Barbara. It is a telling tale of the tobacco industry and is narrated by Ross McElwee, who returns to his native North Carolina to confront what was once a family business.
Other films coming to Campbell Hall this quarter include “Since Otar Left…”, a touching drama about Georgian women (Oct. 25); “The Jazz Passengers: With the Creature From the Black Lagoon in Shocking 3-D,” a Halloween treat with the Jazz Passengers radio-playing the campy horror film behind them interactively (Oct. 29); the quietly understated Korean masterpiece “Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter… and Spring” (Nov. 4); the documentary “Home of the Brave,” which follows the life of the only white woman to die in the civil rights movement (Nov. 9); “Riding Giants,” a surf film that follows world-class surfers tackling the largest and most dangerous waves of Oahu’s North Shore and the Bay Area’s Mavericks (Nov. 22); and “Springtime in a Small Town,” a period drama set in China in 1946. As a special thank-you to students for their generous support of A&L, there will be free admission for students with a valid I.D. to “The Three Stooges – 70th Annivoisary Blowout!”, which will show seven classic shorts of the Three Stooges.
If live performances are more your style, A&L has got you covered as well. In the way of dance, France’s Lyon Opera Ballet will have a two-night stay Oct. 4 and 5 at Campbell Hall, wowing audiences with their progressive and risk-taking repertoire. Don’t expect any tutus here; these are some of the most athletic and dynamic ballet dancers around. If you are a ballet dancer yourself, there will be a master class Oct. 3 at the Santa Barbara Ballet Center downtown. The other dance performance this quarter is Alonzo King’s LINES, who will be performing “Before the Blues,” a narrative of the American South set to a jazz score by Pharaoh Sanders, on Nov. 16. Its mishmash of ballet, jazz and modern sets it apart from most other dance troupes, as does its 22-year history.
Music fans should take note of this season’s extensive and diverse lineup. The quarter starts out strong with piano master Daniel Barenboim playing 12 preludes from J.S. Bach’s “Well-Tempered Clavier” and Beethoven’s Sonata 23, “Appassionata.” Other performers include Portuguese fado singer Mariza (Oct. 18); “The Matriarch of the Blues” Etta James (Nov. 8); spunky Afro-pop star Ang