Thursday (9/27): Recover from the first day of classes with a little night music at the Santa Barbara Courthouse Sunken Gardens. From 5 to 8 p.m., this urban oasis will host bebop-infused contemporary jazz musicians Shaun Oster, Tyler Sussman, Joey Fior and Ralph Lowi of The Shaun Oster Jazz Quartet as part of the weekly Courthouse Jazz Series. Admission is free.
Friday (9/28): Grab your tutu and put on your pointe shoes, as Ballet Santa Barbara opens its fourth season tonight, with the premiere of “Les Petits Ballets Santa Barbara” at Center Stage Theater in the Paseo Nuevo Mall. The program will feature four newly commissioned ballets choreographed to original music by José Luis Greco, as well as classic compositions by Mozart, Ravel and Fauré. The show starts at 7 p.m., and more information is available at (805) 682-6872.
Saturday (9/29): Award-winning author Naomi Klein is best known for her book “No Logo,” in which she describes the economic exploitation of communities that lose their land to big corporations. She continues to document this issue in her latest book, “The Shock Doctrine,” and you can hear her speak about it at the Victoria Hall Theater tonight, courtesy of Arts & Lectures and the UCSB Women’s Center. The lecture starts at 8 p.m., and admission is free.
Sunday (9/30): 17 Pygmies describes its sound as a mixture of classic rock, folk, psychedelic, cinematic and alternative styles with an emphasis on eclecticism and experimentation. This iconic ’80s band is back on tour now, and coming to SOhO tonight. The show starts at 7:30 p.m., and admission is $8. Sorry kids, this one’s 21 and over.
Monday (10/1): Check out the nation’s first university screenings of world-renowned filmmaker Michael Moore’s controversial documentary about the American healthcare system, “Sicko.” This critically acclaimed film paints a detailed portrait of the embattled U.S. system and the people it affects, and it screens at 7:30 and 10 p.m. in Campbell Hall. Tickets are just $5 for UCSB students, courtesy of Arts & Lectures.
Tuesday (10/2): Beloved California-based activist and artist Ray Strong, who helped found the San Francisco Art Students League and Santa Barbara’s Oak Group, passed away in July 2006. Now, the Sullivan Goss Gallery is hosting an exhibit dedicated to this master of landscape painting. Check out “Ray Strong: Hidden Treasures” before it closes on Oct. 7. The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and more information is available at www.sullivangoss.com.