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Mayor of Losing City Will Travel to Winning City for Day of Service & Tour of City

Mayor Edwin M. Lee and Detroit Mayor David Bing today agreed to a friendly mayoral wager on the outcome of the 2012 World Series between the San Francisco Giants and the Detroit Tigers. Game One takes place this evening, October 24th at AT&T Park in San Francisco. Games One and Two will be played Wednesday and Thursday in San Francisco before moving to Detroit’s Comerica Park on Saturday for Game Three, followed by Game Four and, if necessary, Game Five.
The Mayor of the losing city will travel to the winning city for a day of community service and a tour of different companies based in the respective cities. If the San Francisco Giants win, Mayor Bing will come to San Francisco to spend a day playing baseball with young people in the Junior Giants program, and he will have a chance to tour the City so Mayor Lee can show Mayor Bing why San Francisco is the Innovation Capital of the World. If the Tigers win, Mayor Lee will travel to Detroit to tour the Chevy Volt factory – Mayor Lee’s official City vehicle is a Chevy Volt – and learn more about Detroit’s leadership in the electric vehicle market. Mayor Lee will also participate in a day of service benefitting the youth of Detroit.

“San Francisco is completely awash in Giants fever. It seems that everyone in the City is wearing Giants Orange, celebrating the improbable National League champions,” said Mayor Lee. “The San Francisco Giants are truly the comeback kids – this team never quits. With the steel nerves of Romo, Zito, Vogelsong, Cain, Scutaro, Posey, and Pagan, and the managing prowess of Bruce Bochy, this team can stare down the toughest of opponents. The City of Detroit also has a reputation for making an impressive comeback, although I fear I won’t get to see this firsthand, as the Giants are bound to win the World Series.”

“The Detroit Tigers have brought plenty of excitement and a lot of pride to the people of Detroit, the entire metro area and the state of Michigan during this post-season,” said Mayor Bing.  “I am pleased to make this wager with Mayor Lee, because Verlander, Fister, Sanchez and Scherzer are the best pitching rotation in baseball right now, and dominant pitching is always the key to victory in October.  With Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and others swinging big bats, the entire team playing excellent defense, and with a great manager in Jim Leyland, I am extremely confident that the Tigers will prevail.  The Giants have had great success, but we’ve already proven we can handle any team out of the Bay Area.”

The San Francisco Giants are making their second World Series appearance in three years, following come-from-behind victories in consecutive playoff series against the Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals. The Giants’ road to the 2012 World Series included six do-or-die elimination games, all of which the Giants won in dramatic fashion.

The Detroit Tigers are fresh off a decisive victory against the New York Yankees, sweeping the American League Championship Series and earning a berth in the World Series for the first time since 2006. The Tigers also beat the Oakland A’s in the first round of the playoffs.

Mayor Lee is urging Giants fans and local businesses to show their pride in the National League Champion team by wearing the Orange & Black or displaying signs, flags or any form of support for the hometown team.

The San Francisco Giants flag will continue to fly over City Hall, and City Hall, Coit Tower, the Ferry Building, the Embarcadero Center, the TransAmerica Pyramid, the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco International Airport, the City’s Official Tree in front of McLaren Lodge and other San Francisco buildings and landmarks will all be lit in Giants Orange until the end of the World Series.

As the Giants begin the World Series, Mayor Lee and the San Francisco Giants joined Mayor Bing and the Detroit Tigers to urge all fans to treat each other with respect. Wherever fans choose to watch the game – AT&T Park or elsewhere – be safe and practice good sportsmanship. In the end, the World Series celebrates the game of baseball, and rivalries should remain on the field.



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Saturday, January 19, 7:00–7:30 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour pre-performance talk with Chuy Varela, music director of KCSM radio, and the artists.  Sightlines is a continuing program of pre-performance discussions with artists and scholars, designed to enrich the concertgoer’s experience. These talks are free to event ticketholders.

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Saturday, January 19, at 8:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour
Dee Dee Bridgewater, vocalist
Christian McBride, bass
Ambrose Akinmusire, trumpet
Chris Potter, saxophone
Benny Green, piano
Lewis Nash, drums

Program: Celebrating the 55th Anniversary of the Monterey Jazz Festival, members of the Festival bring a line-up of jazz greats, direct from the longest consecutively running jazz festival in the world.

Tickets: Range from $20.00 – $56.00, subject to change, and are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.

Thursday, January 24, at 7:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Special Event
Yo-Yo Ma, cello
Kathryn Stott, piano

Stravinsky/Suite Italienne
Villa-Lobos, arr. Calandrelli/Alma Brasileira
Piazzolla, arr. Yamamoto/Oblivion
Guarnieri, arr. Calandrelli/Dansa Negra
De Falla/7 Canciones Populares Españolas, G. 40
Messiaen/Louange à l’Eternité de Jésus
Brahms/Sonata No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108

Tickets: This performance is sold out. Tickets range from $30.00 – $175.00, subject to change, and may become available from last minute returns through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.

Saturday, January 26, 7:00–7:30 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Joffrey Ballet pre-performance talk with dance specialist Kathryn Roszak.  Sightlines is a continuing program of pre-performance discussions with artists and scholars, designed to enrich the concertgoer’s experience. These talks are free to event ticketholders.

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Saturday, January 26, at 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 27, at 3:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Joffrey Ballet

The Age of Innocence (2008): music by Philip Glass and Thomas Newman; choreography by Edwaard Liang.
After the Rain (2005): music by Arvo Pärt; choreography by Christopher Wheeldon
The Green Table (1932): music by F. A. Cohen; choreography by Kurt Jooss

Tickets: Range from $30.00 – $92.00, subject to change, and are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.

Sunday, January 27, at 3:00 p.m.

Hertz Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at College Ave., Berkeley

Nicolas Hodges, piano

Debussy/Etudes, Books I and II
Busoni/Study after Mozart
Birtwistle/Gigue Machine (World premiere)
Stravinsky/Three Movements from Pétrouchka

Tickets: Start at $42.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Friday, February 1, at 11:00 a.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Program:  Hubbard Street Dance Chicago presents a special one-hour performance for school children.

Tickets: $8.00 per student or adult chaperone, available in advance only through Cal Performances at (510) 642-9988.  SchoolTime performances are open to students in kindergarten through grade 12 in Bay Area public and private schools.  Supplemental study guides for the classroom are provided.  For more information about the SchoolTime program, contact the SchoolTime coordinator at Cal Performances by email at or by phone at (510) 642-0212.

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Friday & Saturday, February 1 & 2, at 8:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Too Beaucoup (2011): music by Ori Lichtik; choreography by Sharon Eyal and Gaï Behar
Little Mortal Jump (2012): music by Philip Glass, Beirut, Andrew Bird, Hans Otte, Max Richter, Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan; choreography by Alejandro Cerrudo
TBD: New work by Alonzo King

Tickets: Range from $30.00 – $68.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

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Saturday, February 2, from 6:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m.
Artist Talk

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

A pre-performance talk with HSDC Artistic Director Glenn Edgerton and dance specialist Kathryn Roszak. This event is free and open to the public.

Sunday, February 3, at 7:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

World Stage
One Earth Tour: Legend

Program: Celebrating the limitless possibilities of the traditional Japanese drum, the taiko, Kodo returns with their awesome drums that mesmerize the audience, including the massive o-daiko, a 900-pound instrument carved from the trunk of a single tree and played by two men.

Tickets: Range from $22.00 – $58.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Friday, February 8, at 8:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

World Stage
Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca

Program: Founded in Madrid in 1993 by director Martín Santangelo and his wife Soledad Barrio, Noche Flamenca celebrates the purity, essence and drama of one of the world’s most expressive art forms, flamenco.

Tickets: Range from $22.00 – $58.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Sunday, February 10, at 3:00 p.m.

Hertz Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at College Ave., Berkeley

Eric Owens, bass-baritone
Warren Jones, piano

Program: “[Commanding] the stage with a warm, sympathetic voice and presence” (Associated Press), bass-baritone Eric Owens makes his Cal Performances debut. Program TBA.

Tickets: Start at $46.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Sunday, February 10, at 7:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Strictly Speaking
Ira Glass

Program: Host and creator of public radio’s This American Life—now heard on more than 500 radio stations each week by over 1.7 million listeners—Ira Glass returns to Cal Performances.

Tickets: Range from $30.00 – $72.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Tuesday, February 12, at 8:00 p.m.

First Congregational Church
2345 Channing Way, Berkeley

Christian Tetzlaff, solo violin

Ysaÿe/Sonata for solo violin in G minor, Op. 27, No. 1 “Joseph Szigeti”
Bach/Sonata for solo violin in C major, No. 3, BWV 1005
Kurtág/“a choice” out of Signs, Games and Messages
Bartók/Sonata for solo violin, Sz 117, BWV 124

Tickets: Start at $52.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Friday, February 15, at 11:00 a.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

Circus Oz

Program: Australia’s Circus Oz presents a special one-hour performance for school children.

Tickets: $8.00 per student or adult chaperone, available in advance only through Cal Performances at (510) 642-9988.  SchoolTime performances are open to students in kindergarten through grade 12 in Bay Area public and private schools.  Supplemental study guides for the classroom are provided.  For more information about the SchoolTime program, contact the SchoolTime coordinator at Cal Performances by email at or by phone at (510) 642-0212.

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Friday, February 15, at 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 16, at 2:00 p.m. [FF]
Sunday, February 17, at 3:00 p.m.

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

World Stage
Circus Oz
From the Ground Up

Program: Australia’s Circus Oz fills the Zellerbach stage with their renowned brand of collective mayhem including fearless aerial artists laughing at gravity, slapstick knockabouts descending into chaos, and live on-stage musicians.

Tickets: Range from $22.00 – $76.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Sunday, February 17, at 3:00 p.m.

Hertz Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at College Ave., Berkeley

Leonidas Kavakos, violin

Program: Violinist Leonidas Kavakos comes to Cal Performances for the first time.

Tickets: Start at $48.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Tuesday, February 19, at 8:00 p.m.

First Congregational Church
2345 Channing Way, Berkeley

Milos, guitar

Program: Montenegro-born guitarist Milos makes his Cal Performances debut.

Tickets: Start at $36.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Sunday, February 24, 11:00 a.m. & 3:00 p.m.

Wheeler Auditorium, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave., Berkeley

First Stage for Families
Kaila Flexer, violin & leader
Oakland Folkharmonic
with Shira Kammen, fiddle
with Gari Hegedus, multi-instrumentalist

Program: Kaila Flexer’s Oakland Folkharmonic and Teslim perform music from Greece, Turkey and the Middle East and original compositions in this one hour concert.

Tickets: Start at $20.00 (adults)/$10.00 (children), and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Sunday, February 24, at 3:00 p.m.

Hertz Hall, UC Berkeley Campus
Bancroft Way at College Ave., Berkeley

Susanna Phillips, soprano

Program: Soprano Susanna Phillips makes her Cal Performances debut. Program TBA.

Tickets: Start at $46.00 and are subject to change, tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at; and at the door.

Single tickets for the general public are now available for purchase by phone, in person, mail, fax or online. The Family Fare [FF] series offers 50% off single ticket prices for children 16 and younger. Family Fare event for January and February 2013 is Circus Oz (Sat., Feb. 16, at 2:00 p.m.).  Half-price tickets are available for purchase by UCB students for all Cal Performances events. UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount on all events; UCB faculty and staff, senior citizens and other students receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded).  Subscriptions may be mailed, faxed to Cal Performances’ Ticket Office at (510) 643-2359, or phoned in to (510) 642-9988. For more information, call Cal Performances at 510.642.9988, e-mail a brochure request to Cal Performances at or visit the Cal Performances web site at

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Wayne Harris And Friends A Happy Hour (or two) Of Music, Stories and Shameless Signifyin’ THE MARSH Berkeley Cabaret

November 2 – 30, 2012

Fridays at 6:00 pm

Free And Open to All With A Full Bar & Food!

Wayne Harris and his buddies will be playing jazz, blues and R&B for the Friday Happy Hour crowd at The Marsh Berkeley during November. The shows will be a bit like an urban A Prairie Home Companion, with various musical and storytelling moments. Think Garrison Keillor meets Langston Hughes with a healthy dose of “Yo Mama” jokes. Here are the lineups:

11/2 – Jazz quintet, including pianist Larisa Migachyov and new stories from Wayne Harris

11/9, 11/16 & 11/30 – The Intones (The East Bay’s Best Rock, Blues, R&B and Bugle Band)

11/23 – Jazz quintet, guest pianist and new stories from Wayne Harris

And here are the guest performers: Jeremy Goodwin, Mark Kenward, Steve Ekstrand, Richard Trafford-Owens, Rick Goodwin, Megan Armstrong, Jeff Weinmann, Dennis Aqulina, Terry True…and…who knows who else might show up!

Another not-to-miss, free, TGIF entertainment! This is fast becoming a favorite Marsh Berkeley event!

A full bar offers festive happy-hour discounts including $5 specialty cocktails, and handpicked wine ($4) and beer ($3). There is also great bar food—Portobello Panini’s, Mango Guacamole Salsa, and fresh-baked cookies. It’s free and everyone is welcome; including those getting an early start for our 8:00 pm performances.

Wayne Harris, one of The Marsh’s favorite solo performers, recently won BEST OF SF FRINGE for Tyrone “Shortleg” Johnson And Some White Boys, starring Wayne and his band. 

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Digital download of album featuring music performed during the acclaimed

March 2012 Festival available for pre-order from the iTunes Store today

On Tuesday, November 13, 2012, Michael Tilson Thomas(MTT) and the San Francisco Symphony(SFS) will release American Mavericks, a hybrid SACD recording featuring rarely recorded works by three American composers, Henry Cowell, Lou Harrison and Edgard Varèse on SFS Media, the Orchestra’s in-house label.  The album includes Henry Cowell’s Synchrony and his Piano Concerto with Jeremy Denk, Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Organ with Percussion Orchestra with Paul Jacobs, and Edgard Varèse’s Amériques.  The performances were all recorded live in concert at Davies Symphony Hall and feature composers and works from the San Francisco Symphony’s American Mavericks festival dedicated to America’s innovative musical heritage of the 20th century. The American Mavericks album can be pre-ordered starting today, October 23, from the iTunes Store and on SACD from the San Francisco Symphony Store at American Mavericks will be available for purchase at music retailers everywhere on Tuesday, November 13. A short 6-minute video about American Mavericks featuring concert footage and interviews with Michael Tilson Thomas and soloists Jeremy Denk and Paul Jacobs can be viewed at

The recording opens with Menlo Park native Henry Cowell’s Synchrony, followed by his Piano Concerto featuring soloist Jeremy Denk, who taps into the far-flung imagination of Cowell’s signature forearm tone clusters. MTT says of Cowell’s Piano Concerto, “The piece is fun, swashbuckling, and outrageous, and it takes a very special spirit such as Jeremy Denk to really put this over with the fervor with which it was meant to be played.”

Bay Area composer Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Organ and Percussion featuring soloist Paul Jacobsis a work fusing sounds both rich and brilliant. The 1972 concerto utilizes a variety of percussion instruments from glockenspiel, vibraphone, celesta, and tube chimes to oxygen tanks and wood drums built by Harrison’s partner William Colvig. The solo organ part requires Henry Cowell-style tone clusters played with the palm of the hand and specially-cut wooden slabs. MTT calls this concerto “an overwhelming sonic spectacular!” MTT has a long history of performing Lou Harrison’s works. In the fall of 1995, he opened his inaugural concert as Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony with the world premiere of Harrison’s Parade, a composition MTT and the SFS commissioned for the occasion.

French-born American composer Edgard Varèse is revered by musicians as diverse as Frank Zappa and Robert Lamm, keyboardist for the pop group Chicago. Closing the American Mavericks recording, his Amériques requires an enormous 129 piece orchestra and is instantly recognizable for its signature siren and 13-person percussion section. Varèse wrote it three years after his emigration to the US and meant it as “a meditation, or the impression of a stranger who asks himself about the extraordinary possibilities of our civilization.” The work features a battery of percussion and overwhelming orchestral sonics to portray Varèse’s images of his new home. In New York magazine, Justin Davidson enthusiastically described the Orchestra’s performances of Amériques in New York City as “a rigorous evocation of a freak-out.” A longtime favorite of MTT’s, the SFS performed Amériques in both American Mavericks Festivals – in 2000 and 2012.

MTT and the SFS have been praised by critics for innovative programming and for bringing the works of American composers to the forefront. David Littlejohn, in the Wall Street Journal, called MTT, now in his 18th season as Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony, “an indefatigable champion of American music.”  In his first season as Music Director, Tilson Thomas included an American work on nearly every one of his San Francisco Symphony programs, and ended the season with An American Festival, a groundbreaking two-week celebration of American music and precursor to the 2000 and 2012 American Mavericks festivals. The American Mavericks festival has become an icon of American orchestral music.  In Spring 2012, as part of the San Francisco Symphony’s 2011-2012 Centennial Season, the festival featured, in addition to the works on this release, fully staged performances of John Cage’s Songbooks with Meredith Monk, Jessye Norman, and Joan LaBarbara and four world premieres by composers Mason Bates, John Adams, Meredith Monk, and Morton Subotnick, in performances both in San Francisco and on tour to Ann Arbor, Chicago, and at Carnegie Hall in New York City.  In the New Yorker Alex Ross opined, “Tilson Thomas’s crusade on behalf of what he calls ‘American Mavericks’ tradition is among the finest things that he or any conductor has undertaken in recent years.” Starring the work of composers whose art influenced and changed the face of American music-making, the spirit of the festival is a hallmark of the San Francisco Symphony’s artistic values. Resources about the American Maverick composers is at and a blog documenting the 2012 festival can be found at /blog. A book about the first American Mavericks festival of 2000 published by the University of California Press is available from the San Francisco Symphony Store.

The San Francisco Symphony’s recording series on SFS Media reflects the artistic identity of its programming, including its commitment to performing the work of maverick composers alongside that of the core classical masterworks. Later this season, MTT and the SFS are scheduled to release a new recording of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 recorded at the close of their Centennial Season in 2012.
All SFS Media recordings are available from the Symphony Store in Davies Symphony Hall and online at as well as other major retailers. The recordings can also be purchased as downloads from iTunes, Amazon and other digital outlets. SFS Media recordings are distributed by harmonia mundi U.S., SRI in Canada, Avie Records internationally, and by IODA to digital outlets.


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Proposition 37, GMO Labeling Mandate, Wins Support Of 100 Celebrity Chefs

California’s GMO labeling ballot initiative Proposition 37 has already attracted lots of emphatic support and dissent from a host of voices, from Michael Pollan to Danny DeVito. But on Monday, a large contingent of people with a lot of credibility on food issues threw their weight behind the proposal: celebrity chefs.

Over 125 chefs, including some of the most famous cooks in America, have co-signed a strongly worded open letter penned by Alice Waters, the famously pro-organic founder of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, Calif. In the letter, Waters argues that “the future of food is at stake,” so “this is the moment when we need to stand together as chefs, restaurateurs, and people who care about food to support Proposition 37.”

Underneath Waters’ own statement is a pledge in support of the bill:

We, the undersigned, endorse California’s Proposition 37 – The California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act.   As chefs, we are on the frontlines of feeding America and we have an enormous stake in ensuring transparency in our food system. It is our duty to nourish our guests, both in body and soul. However, we can’t prepare the best food we know how when information about the ingredients we purchase is hidden from us with labels that are missing basic facts. This includes foods that are genetically engineered or contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs). While Proposition 37 does not require restaurants to label their food as genetically engineered, it provides chefs the ability to knowingly source ingredients made without GMOs.

Fifty countries around the world—representing more than 40 percent of the world’s population—already require GMO labeling, including all of Europe, Japan, India and China. Polls show that more than 90 percent of Americans want to know if their food is genetically engineered.

We demand the right to know what’s in our food and we are adding our collective voices to this movement!

The celebrity chefs who’ve already signed the letter include Mario Batali, Jacques Pepin, Cat Cora, Michelle Bernstein, Bill Telepan, Dan Barber and Floyd Cardoz.

From the Huffington Post

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Francis Xavier “F.X.” Crowley For San Francisco District 7 Supervisor

Editorial: Sentinel Endorses Francis Xavier Crowley for District 7 Supervisor

There is only one candidate that truly represents the west of Twin Peaks neighborhoods and that is F.X. Crowley. We give Crowley our strongest endorsement as the best candidate to succeed outgoing Supervisor Sean Elsbernd and represent District 7.

Crowley is the right leader to represent the District and to ensure public safety by adding more police and fighting crime in our neighborhoods as well as being a voice of fiscal responsibility on the Board of Supervisors.  Having grown up in the District, there is no better candidate to represent D7 than F.X. Crowley.

Crowley is a native San Franciscan who was born and grew up in the District in Miraloma Park–and graduated from St. Ignatius College Preparatory (SI) in 1977. He is a longtime Stagehands union leader who has won the respect of the business community and a highly regarded civic leader, having served as the President of the Public Utilities Commission and a Port Commissioner with distinction.  He fought to rebuild and protect Hetch Hetchy on the PUC and was a strong leader for growth and fiscal responsibility as a member of the Port Commission.

Crowley has won the endorsement of Sen. Diane Feinstein; Lt. Gov. and former Mayor Gavin Newsom; San Francisco Police Officers Association; San Francisco Firefighters; Sen. Leland Yee; Assembly Speaker Pro Temp Fiona Ma; Former Mayor and Police Chief Frank Jordan, Retired Judge and former Senator Quentin Kopp; Planning Commissioner Mike Antonini; Justice Harry W. Low; Thomas “Tippy” Mazzucco, President, San Francisco Police Commission; Diarmuid Philpott, President, United Irish Societies, and retired SFPD Deputy Chief; Joe Russoniello, former United States Attorney; and Kevin Ryan, former United States Attorney.

And he has our endorsement as well.

Crowley’s leadership is in sharp contrast to the other candidates in the race, one of them being Mike Garcia, a retired Louisiana options trader who until recently was a registered Libertarian who expressed his desire to legalize drugs.  Garcia is clearly out of step with the voters of the District who favor strong enforcement of drug laws to prevent home break-ins; and Norman Yee, a left-wing/ Progressive member of the school board and advocate of legalizing prostitution, has demonstrated that he is out of touch with voters. Lastly, there is candidate Joel Engardio, who has at least been honest in admitting he is a carpetbagger who only moved into the district over a year ago to run for this seat.

There is only once choice for District 7 voters and that is district native Francis Xavier Crowley.

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Mummenschanz returns to Zellerbach Hall for the Thanksgiving weekend with three performances on Friday & Saturday, November 23 & 24, at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday November 25, at 3:00 p.m.  The universally loved theater troupe specializes in transforming inanimate objects like tubes, boxes and toilet paper into living characters in a whimsical show of lights, shadows, masks, and choreography. This year marks the 40th anniversary of Mummenschanz’s founding. The group will be touring internationally with a new program titled 40 Years, which features highlights from past creative endeavors.  The two hour show with intermission will feature over 30 sketches performed by Floriana Frasseto, Philipp Egli, Raffaella Mattioli, and Pietro Montandon.  “Mummenschanz transcends words and culture and cuts straight to the heart of what it is to be human” (Cape Times).

Formed in 1972, Mummenschanz was created by Bernie Schurch, Andress Bossard and current performer Frasseto to create a nonverbal theatrical language that would transcend the traditional barriers of nationality and culture.  The company was successful from its start at the 1972 Avignon Festival.  One of Sweden’s most popular cultural phenomenon, the group has toured the world, including Eastern Europe, North and South America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.  The troupe spent three years on Broadway from 1977 – 1980 with a production that contained no words or music.  Their shows are known for the vast number of props in the shape of versatile faces, half-body and whole-body masks, and three-dimensional sculptural heads.  In 1998 the ensemble decided to set up the Mummenschanz Foundation following the death of founding member Bossard to promote originality in theatrical works. For more information, go to their website

Mummenschanz will give a SchoolTime performance for Bay Area students on Monday, November 26 at 11:00 a.m. at Zellerbach Hall.  Tickets are sold in advance only.

Tickets for Mummenschanz on Friday & Saturday, November 23 & 24, at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday November 25, at 3:00 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall start at $22.00, and are subject to change. Tickets are available through the Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.  Half-price tickets are available for UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens, other students and UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded). For select performances, Cal Performances offers UCB student, faculty and staff, senior, and community rush tickets. For more information about discounts, go to or call (510) 642-9988.

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“Africa’s premier diva” (Time magazine), Angélique Kidjo, brings the party to Zellerbach Hall on Saturday, November 17 at 8:00 p.m., performing selections from her newest album Spirit Rising (2012) as well as other favorites. The album “has an amazing party atmosphere” (Groove Guide), and the audience should be prepared to dance in their seats. A “dynamic and unstoppable” (The New York Times) musician who has performed around the world, Kidjo is known for her unique blend of Afropop, jazz, gospel, Latin and tribal music. Accompanying her for the evening are musicians Dominic James (guitar), Daniel Freedman (drums), Magatte Sow (percussion) and Itaiguara Brandao (bass). In addition to her performing and songwriting, she uses her global renown to advocate for human rights as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and was named one of The Guardian’s Top 100 Most Inspiring Women in the World.

Growing up in the West African nation of Benin, Angélique Kidjo began performing in a band with her eight siblings at age six. She became lead vocalist in the Kidjo Brothers Band at age 11, and soon incorporated influences from many cultures, including rhythm-and-blues, soul and American rock ‘n’ roll into the group’s repertoire. Kidjo’s stage presence and spectacular singing propelled the band to local fame, and success spurred her to begin writing music in her mid-teens. While in school, Kidjo formed a group called Les Sphinx and recorded a solo album, Pretty, which made her a household name throughout West Africa.

The political situation in Benin prompted Kidjo to move to Paris in 1983; there, she studied jazz and began to mix Euro-pop, funk and electronica into her music. She also attended law school and considered a career as a human-rights lawyer. She married composer and bassist Jean Hebrail and moved to New York City in the late 1980s, and she has been based in the United States ever since.

Kidjo newest album Spirit Rising was recorded live in Boston in June 2011 and features collaborations with Dianne Reeves, Branford Marsalis, Christian McBride and Josh Groban, among others; it was released in February 2012. She has won five Grammy Awards in the category of Best Contemporary World Music. In 2010, she was granted an honorary Doctorate from Berklee College of Music and has recently been awarded the prestigious Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the France Ministry of Culture.

She is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and a Live Earth Ambassador for the 2010 Run for Water, a series of 6 K runs that helped increase awareness of the global water crisis. Kidjo formed the Batonga Foundation in 2007 to support education for girls in Africa. The foundation’s website is For more information visit


Tickets for the Angélique Kidjo on November 17 at 8:00 p.m. and in Zellerbach Hall start at $22.00, and are subject to change. Tickets are available through the Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door. Half-price tickets are available for UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens, other students and UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded). For select performances, Cal Performances offers UCB student, faculty and staff, senior, and community rush tickets. For more information about discounts, go to or call (510) 642-9988.

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Legendary Sailing Yacht Returns to SF Bay to Raise Funds in Fight to Cure Leukemia & Lymphoma  

October 21 Regatta pits Dorade’s All-Female Crew led by
JJ Fetter against Ted Turner on Santana

Dorade( In 1936 Dorade helped put the Saint Francis Yacht Club on the map, winning the prestigious and demanding TransPacific race to Honolulu.  This weekend she returns to San Francisco to sail under the St Francis burgee once again in the seventh annual Leukemia Cup Regattataking place on Sunday, October 21. JJ Fetter, a four-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, will lead an all-female, all-star crew aboard Dorade, sailing in the invitation-only classic yacht division against another historic racing yacht, Santana,helmed by Ted Turner.

“What a perfect way to bring Dorade home,” said Doradeowner Matt Brooks. “She is the only boat to have ever won, handily, every major ocean race; and even today, she’s still competing and winning in races from Newport to the Caribbean, and now here on San Francisco Bay.”

Dorade was designed by the legendary Olin Stephens, creatorof six out of seven successful America’s Cup defenders between 1958 and 1980. Olin and his brother Rod Stephens designed and built Dorade in 1929.  In 1931 – at the ages of 20 and 22 – they sailed Dorade in the TransAtlantic Race, winning against a fleet of much larger boats and more experienced crews.  That win was followed by an extraordinary series of victories in the Fastnet, Cowles, and Bermuda races.  In 1936 San Francisco’s Jim Flood purchased Dorade and brought her to San Francisco.  Since then, she has changed owners many times, sailing the west coast, Europe, and most recently in Newport, Rhode Island.

In 2010, Brooks and his wife Pam Rorke Levy went to Newport in search of a classic yacht, and were immediately entranced by Dorade’s history and pedigree.  Rather than keep her as a museum piece, however, the pair decided to do something that many thought was impossible: restore her to full ocean-racing capacity.

“We needed to toughen up Dorade herself, but we also needed to develop a stable of crew members with the right skills, chemistry and experience to race a classic boat in trans-oceanic races.” said Brooks. “Races like the Leukemia Cup help us prepare both the boat and our crew for the kind of long-range sailing she hasn’t seen in decades, keeping in mind that while she may be game, she is also an eighty-year-old lady.”

“Our goal is to repeat all of her early ocean races, including Newport-Bermuda which we completed this past this June, the TransPac and Newport-Bermuda next year, and in 2015 the TransAtlantic, Fastnet, and Cowes,” said Dorade owner Pam Rorke Levy. “In her early years, Dorade won all of these ocean races, a record that stands unbeaten today. We are pleased and honored that her return to the Bay begins with the Leukemia Cup Regatta.”

Along with Levy and Fetter, Dorade’s crew for the Leukemia Cup is an all-star team comprised of Liz Baylis, Paige Brooks, Melinda Erkelens, Melissa Purdy Feagin, Laurel Gaudet, Pam Healy, Genny Tulloch  and Sally Lindsay Honey – wife ofAmerica’s Cup technology director Stan Honey.

A native of San Leandro, California, Brooks learned to sail in Monterey Bay as a boy, and went on to race on San Francisco Bay on his first yacht Quarter Pounder, sailing under the St. Francis flag. Brooks is also a well-known mountain guide, and over the past forty years has racked up first ascents in the Sierra and the French alps, established a mountaineering equipment company, and has been honored with a Presidential Gold Medal and a lifetime achievement award from the American Mountain Guides Association. Since soloing as a pilot at age 13, Brooks has also set many world records in the air, including the record time for circumnavigating the globe (westward) and flying westward across the US, all in a specially equipped Citation business jet.  Levy is an Emmy-winning filmmaker and creative director, well known to Bay Area audiences and the arts community for creating and producing such shows as KQED’s arts program Spark.

About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS):
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.  Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada.

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Planning Commission OKs West Coast’s Largest Phallus


The glorious, metal and glass Transbay Tower received final approval from the San Francisco Planning Commission on Thursday, clearing one of the last major hurdles before crews can finally get to work erecting the 1,070-foot icon in the city’s skyline.

When last we heard from the Planning Commission, the architecture team from Pelli Clarke Pelli had presented designs to connect the tower at First and Mission Streets to the new rooftop park next door with an awesome funicular. At yesterday’s meeting, architect Fred Clarke showed off some of the actual metal and glass that will make up the building’s outer skin. The metalwork apparently is thinner at the top, but grows thicker and denser towards the base, which is not really helping all those phallic comparisons. According to Clarke, the metalwork also gives it a “light texture” and an ambient glow.

As if things couldn’t be more awesome now that San Francisco will have a downtown funicular, several of the planning commissioners requested that the developers look in to adding an observation deck on or near the building’s top floor, 61 stories above SoMa. (By comparison, One Rincon Hill has 60 stories, but those views are only accessible to the spendy penthouse owners.) A senior managing director for developer Hines was a little noncommittal, telling a reporter, “I think the request to investigate the observation deck is reasonable and we will certainly work with staff to fully investigate that topic.” As fans of viewing things from above the fog, we’re certainly rooting for it.
Next hurdle: Developer Hines has to buy the land from the Transbay Joint Powers Authority, but those negotiations are already underway.


From SFist

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DLA Piper, Sen. Mitchell Tainted by PG&E San Bruno Case: Recusal is the Only Path to Integrity for Law Firm, California Public Utilities Commission

George Mitchell: Reputation at Stake


This week’s unilateral announcement by the California Public Utilities Commission to select DLA Piper—a global law firm that has represented the company headed by the current CPUC President Michael Peevy and worked to defend utility companies in major litigation—has sent shock waves throughout California’s legal community, elected leaders, the public and the media.

The fact that none of the parties at the negotiating table–with the exception of the ‘defendant’ in the case, Pacific Gas & Electric Co.–knew of or agreed to mediation nor was a party to the selection of the mediator, has raised ethical and legal questions that stun even the most passive observers in this monumental national public safety case.

The most fundamental basis of mediation is the agreement by all parties that it is necessary, closely followed by the mutual agreement of an unbiased and neutral mediator.  That very principal has been broken in every conceivable fashion by the California Public Utilities Commission and admitted as such to the Associated Press when CPUC Commissioner Mike Florio said in an interview he felt the move to inform PG&E first about the selection of DLA Piper had not been well thought out: “I think we handled this rather poorly. Announcing it before people were brought into it was not a good idea,” Florio said.

In our opinion, it’s beyond not being a ‘good idea,’ it breaks the very foundation of mediation and ruins the integrity of the CPUC process and DLA Piper’s participation.

If DLA Piper and Senator George Mitchell hope to retain any integrity and their reputations in the legal community, they must immediately resign this assignment now they have become aware of the unethical and potentially illegal manner in which they were selected.  We urge them to resign even before the CPUC leadership has the opportunity to rescind their appointment. It is not only the honorable thing to do, but it is the only thing that will preserve their reputation and demonstrate that they are not simply stooges for the utility industry and CPUC President Michael Peevy.

We commend San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera for standing up and demonstrating his leadership in joining the challenge to demand the CPUC decision to unilaterally appoint DLA Piper and Sen. George Mitchell as mediators when they have conflicts not only with their representation of utility companies, but directly with the interests of San Francisco itself.

As always, San Bruno must win praise for being a leader in its attempt to protect public safety and its citizens in opposing this dubious appointment.  And The Utility Reform Network and the California Division of Ratepayers Advocates should be justly proud that they stood up and truly represented the ratepayers in calling attention to this disgraceful appointment of the clearly conflicted DLA Piper and Sen. Mitchell.

We hope for the sake of Sen. George Mitchell and DLA Piper that they resign now that they know their appointment was tainted, their position conflicted, and their very reputation is at stake.

Their integrity is in their hands and their decision.


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Opinion: Is City Hall a place for Bike Racers?

Opinion: Will Kane, from the SF Chronicle

The 2012 Dew Tour Toyota City Champions are held at Civic Center Plaza in San Francisco, CA Thursday October 18th, 2012. Photo: Michael Short, Special To The Chronicle / SF

  • The 2012 Dew Tour Toyota City Champions are held at Civic Center Plaza in San Francisco, CA Thursday October 18th, 2012. Photo: Michael Short


 The dirt bikers launching off ramps into jaw-dropping flips in front of City Hall this week will bring crowds, money and excitement to town.

That much is clear. But in San Francisco, one person’s sporting event is another’s political hot potato – and it isn’t hard to find people for whom the four-day Dew Tour extreme sports festival also means a surplus of exhaust fumes, dust and nuisance.

“There is a very large mound of dirt right in front of City Hall,” said Supervisor John Avalos. “Is this really the best use of public lands?”

The skateboard, dirt bike and BMX bike competition, called the “America’s Cup of BMX biking” by one city official, started Thursday and will fill the Civic Center area until Sunday. Demolition will take a few more days.

Construction zone

Crews have spent the last week sculpting dirt jumps with small bulldozers and hammering together grandstands and skateboard half-pipes. The plaza, usually a popular hangout for tourists and tired drifters, has been cut off since construction began Oct 8.

“Our parks are places that have general access and general use,” said Avalos, a frequent critic of the city Recreation and Park Department. “If Rec and Park is going to shut down the park for two weeks so we can put on a weekend event, does that make a lot of sense?”

It makes total sense, said Sarah Ballard, a Rec and Park spokeswoman. Parks are supposed to be places that attract a variety of users, she said.

“In this case, we have actually undertaken a concerted effort to bring people to Civic Center,” Ballard said. “This is a continuation of the efforts to bring activity to Civic Center Plaza.”

Try it yourself

And every part of the Dew Tour, save a few ticketed grandstands, is entirely free to the public, she said. On Sunday, hometown amateur skaters will be able to skate the same course the pros do.

“We think it is an exciting opportunity for San Franciscans and it, frankly, allows us to reach a demographic that is hard to reach – the teenage demographic,” Ballard said.

Organizers of the tour, whose main sponsor is the Mountain Dew soda company, paid the lean parks department almost $311,000 to rent the plaza for 17 days, Ballard said. The sponsors of the event have also booked 2,300 combined nights in city hotels. Even more rooms are filled by friends, family and fans.

“I think it is chasing cheap dollars,” Avalos said. “I think a good portion of the public is going to feel that way.”

Soda subsidy

And on top of all that, Avalos asked, why is the city taking money from Mountain Dew owner PepsiCo anyway?

“Rec and Park has a mission to provide recreation; they had a whole campaign to get rid of soft drinks,” Avalos said. “This is an event that is promoting Mountain Dew. Are we really lowering our standards by putting on events like this?”

Phil Ginsburg, head of the parks department, said fans were smart enough to make their own decision.

“There are a lot of sponsors at this event. Every major event has corporate sponsors,” he said. “We don’t believe in kids drinking soda. This event promotes healthy activity.”

View from sidelines

Crowds packed the sun-drenched plaza Thursday afternoon as the skaters warmed up.Paul Wood, 49, a regular in Civic Center Plaza, glowered from the public library.

“Good idea, wrong location,” he said. “It is an infringement of people’s – what do you call them? – civil liberties to have this here, because we don’t have access. They should hold it in Cow Hollow, like the America’s Cup.”

But Gregg Wilson, 43, of San Francisco, said he was stoked to see the skaters.

“I’m here to see what the kids are doing, man,” Wilson said while sitting on his board on the plaza. “I’m 43 years old, I’m retired” – from skating.

“That’s San Francisco for you, someone is always going to complain,” he said when told of Avalos’ objections. “We got naked guys walking around in the Castro. That’s something they should worry about.”

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San Francisco City Attorney Blasts CPUC, PG&E Over DLA Piper Law Firm Selection in San Bruno Blast: Will DLA Piper Recuse Itself?

DLA Piper Law Firm Conflict in CPUC PG&E Case

More Bad News for DLA Piper: Conflict is raised by SF City Attorney. DLA Piper is adverse to S.F. in litigation, claims several utilities among its clients. CPUC Has Refused Comment on Conflict, Call for DLA to Recuse Firm

San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera today expressed serious concerns about the California Public Utilities Commission’s unilateral appointment of former U.S. Senator George Mitchell and DLA Piper to mediate a settlement of enforcement actions against Pacific Gas and Electric Company over the deadly September 2010 explosion of its natural gas pipeline in San Bruno, Calif.

Mitchell currently serves as chairman emeritus of DLA Piper LLC, an international law firm that represents multiple parties currently involved in separate litigation against the City and County of San Francisco. The firm’s utility sector clients include Southern California Edison and Exxon Mobil.

“I have the highest regard for U.S. Sen. George Mitchell, and I greatly admire him for a distinguished public service career that includes major diplomatic achievements in Northern Ireland and the Middle East,” said Herrera. “But the legitimacy of an enforcement action involving one of the deadliest gas pipeline catastrophes in California history must be beyond reproach. What’s at stake in these proceedings is the safety of millions of Californians, and they deserve a process untainted by the appearance of utility industry bias. I don’t doubt Sen. Mitchell’s integrity or good intentions.”

Herrera continued “But the fact is, he leads a law firm that is both adverse to San Francisco in litigation, and that represents major gas utilities involved in cases before the CPUC. Moreover, the commission’s decision to unilaterally appoint a mediator raises larger questions about why the CPUC elected to appoint an outside mediator in the first place. It’s possible that mediation could prove helpful. But it is far more important that CPUC live up to its obligations as an industry regulator that protects the public interest.”

Herrera has been sharply critical of the CPUC following revelations from an independent review panel’s 2011 investigation into the San Bruno tragedy, which concluded that the commission’s “culture serves as an impediment to effective regulation,” and which went on to fault state regulators who “did not have the resources to monitor PG&E’s performance in pipeline integrity management adequately or the organizational focus that would have elevated concerns about PG&E’s performance in a meaningful way.” In July 2011, Herrera initiated steps to sue the CPUC along with federal regulators for failing to reasonably enforce federal gas pipeline safety standards as required by the U.S. Pipeline Safety Act. Herrera later elected to omit CPUC as a defendant after the commission showed signs of progress.

DLA Piper LLC contacted Herrera’s office last Friday, before the CPUC announced its appointment of Mitchell to serve as mediator, to inform city lawyers about litigation and other matters in which DLA Piper is currently adverse to the City and County of San Francisco. Those cases include litigation involving hotel chains and airlines.

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San Bruno, Ratepayer Advocates Challenge California Public Utilities Commission, PG&E: Demand CPUC Rescind Appointment of Sen. George Mitchell in Blockbuster PG&E Announcement

A blistering attack by the City of San Bruno, ratepayer advocates and Assemblyman Jerry Hill called into question the California Public Utility’s appointment of Sen. George Mitchell and his law firm DLA Piper as mediators in the PG&E explosion and fire settlement.

Mayor Jim Ruane of San Bruno, Thomas J. Long, Legal Director of consumer advocacy group The Utility Reform Network (TURN), and Karen Paull, Acting Legal Counsel, The Division of Ratepayer Advocates (DRA) all stood in front of the CPUC this morning and lambasted the “unholy and cozy alliance” between regulator CPUC and the regulated Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

The City of San Bruno and consumer advocates signed a letter demanding the CPUC rescind the appointment of Sen. Mitchell immediately because the CPUC  went behind their backs in appointing the mediator to oversee the talks and presented evidence that CPUC and PG&E had ex-parte contact in making the decision. The groups objected to the choice of mediator and said they should have been consulted before regulator CPUC appointed the mediator.

The California Public Utilities Commission had announced Monday that it had appointed former U.S. Senator George Mitchell to serve as mediator in the talks.

San Bruno City Manager Connie Jackson and attorneys with San Francisco and the consumer groups said the CPUC had notified PG&E before it appointed Mr. Mitchell, but didn’t notify San Bruno, San Francisco, or ratepayer advocates and officials.

“The unilateral announcement by the CPUC Monday that it had selected a mediator without consulting any of the parties at the negotiating table is consistent with the cozy and unholy relationship between the CPUC and PG&E.  This action is symbolic of the broken, dysfunctional and dishonest relationship between PG&E and the CPUC, the agency that is supposed to be the watchdog and protector of the public’s interest,” said Mayor Ruane of San Bruno.

“San Bruno is rightly concerned that the DLA Piper law firm has previously represented utilities–and that the firm was selected unilaterally by the CPUC and PG&E without the participation of any other party, which goes against the fundamental principles of mediation,” said Mayor Ruane at the press conference today.

“It also is of deep concern to us that DLA Piper has a lengthy list of corporate clients, including Southern California Edison, which the current chairman of the CPUC, Michael Peevey, once headed, according to news media reports about the appointment.

“In order for any mediation to succeed, the mediator will have to assure all the parties to our satisfaction that they have no conflicts, that they can be an unbiased mediator, and that the process will be open, transparent and fair,” Mayor Ruane said.

He continued: “We find that there is too much of a coincidence that one week before the announcement of DLA Piper as mediator, we were told that “a mediator with gravitas” is necessary to settle the negotiations, and now, with the unilateral start of mediation, that PG&E shareholders are paying for the mediation. This leads us, we rightly believe, to the conclusion that the CPUC and PG&E have had improper ex-parte contact as part of this process.

“We state unequivocally for the record that no fine or settlement with PG&E will ever be legitimate or credible without the participation of the City of San Bruno.

“We call into question the integrity of the entire CPUC process that has occurred over the past two years since our community was ripped apart by the negligent and systematic safety failures of PG&E and the inability of the CPUC to independently protect and represent the interests of the residents of San Bruno and the people of California.

“The healing process has physical manifestations in the reconstruction of our Crestmoor neighborhood. However, the scars and horrors of the explosion and fire remain. The City committed to its citizens that it would be an active and relentless participant in all of the investigations that followed.

“We remain at the table to represent the interests of the citizens of San Bruno, the memory of those whose lives were taken by PG&E’s negligence, their families and friends, and equally important, every other city, town and community in the State of California so we can help others prevent what happened to us,” Mayor Ruane concluded.

Mayor Ruane and the consumer advocate attorneys said Sen. Mitchell’s previous work for Southern California Edison, a utility where CPUC Chairman Michael Peevey was formerly an executive, made them question whether he would be impartial.

PG&E and CPUC investigators said Friday that they had started fresh talks to settle the investigators’ allegations that the utility violated numerous state and federal safety rules prior to the fatal 2010 pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

The CPUC had been holding public hearings following three investigations investigators completed after a section of the utility’s gas pipeline in San Bruno ruptured on Sept. 9, 2010, igniting a giant fireball that killed eight people and injured 58. The fire destroyed 38 homes and damaged 70 others. The neighborhood where the blast occurred hasn’t been fully rebuilt, although some houses have been rebuilt.

Both federal and state investigators blamed PG&E for the blast and found that defects in the utility’s aging pipeline and inadequate pipeline safety management contributed to the pipe’s rupture.

A CPUC judge suspended those hearings last week, after state investigators, who are employed by the CPUC, asked to stop the hearings to allow time for a fresh round of talks with PG&E.

Members of the CPUC have said they plan to order fines and possibly other penalties against PG&E over the San Bruno disaster.

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Author and native New Yorker, Fran Lebowitz brings her sardonic wit to Zellerbach Hall for one night only, Thursday, November 15 at 8:00 p.m. as part of Cal Performances’ Strictly Speaking series. Lebowitz has developed a unique place for herself as the voice of the self-proclaimed “Me Generation.” She offers insights on contemporary issues such as gender, race, gay rights and media as well as her own pet peeves, ranging from celebrity culture to tourists and strollers. She will talk about her life experiences and then hold a Q&A with the audience. The Philadelphia City Paper called Lebowitz “the single inheritor to the smart-not-smarmy, sarcastic, cosmopolitan crown left by Dorothy Parker.”

Born in New Jersey, Lebowitz worked many odd jobs before being hired by Andy Warhol as a columnist for Interview.  Her first two book, Metropolitan Life and Social Studies are collections of essays that were later compiled and re-published as The Fran Lebowitz Reader. In 2010, Martin Scorsese directed a documentary about Lebowitz entitled Public Speaking. The film features clips from her speaking engagements and debuted on HBO.  In addition to her speaking tours, Lebowitz is also seen by the public in her reoccurring role as a judge on the popular detective show Law and Order.  She recently broke a ten year writer’s block (which she humorously referred to as “Writer’s Blockade”) and began working on a new novel Exterior Signs of Wealth, which is purportedly about rich people who want to be artists and artists who want to be rich.

Tickets for Fran Lebowitz on Thursday, November 15 at 8:00 p.m. at Zellerbach Hall start at $20.00 and are subject to change.  Tickets are available through the Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.  Half-price tickets are available for UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens, other students and UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded). For select performances, Cal Performances offers UCB student, faculty and staff, senior, and community rush tickets.  For more information about discounts, go to or call (510) 642-9988.

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October 31 through November 11, 2012


For Art for Human Rights, we have selected artworks from the collection that inspire thought about a range of human rights issues, both individual and collective, local and international. The exhibition includes work from Fernando Botero’s provocative Abu Ghraib series along with selections from from a 1968 photo essay on the Black Panthers in the Bay Area by Ruth-Marion Baruch and Pirkle Jones. Rounding out the exhibition is a porcelain cube sculpture by Ai Weiwei, whose works and actions increasingly accentuate the fragile situation of those who speak out against human rights abuses in his native China.

The exhibition is organized by Chief Curator and Director of Programs and Collections Lucinda Barnes and Assistant Curator Stephanie Cannizzo.


Related Public Programs

Sunday, November 11, 4:30 p.m.


Alison Klayman (U.S./China, 2012)

Introduction by art critic Jeff Kelley

PFA Theater

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry is the first feature-length film about the internationally renowned Chinese artist and activist. Director Alison Klayman, an American freelance journalist who was based in Beijing between 2008 and 2010, gained unprecedented access to the artist, documenting his working method, political activism, personal life, and rise to stardom.


Thursday, November 15, 4 p.m.


BAM/PFA Museum Theater

Join Eric Stover, faculty director of the Human Rights Center at the UC Berkeley School of Law, and UC Berkeley Associate Professor of Rhetoric Michael Mascuch as they explore issues arising from the work on view in Art for Human Rights. Admission is free.

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The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) presents TRIMPIN: NANCARROW PERCUSSION ORCHESTRA / MATRIX 244 NOVEMBER 2—DECEMBER 23, 2012

The UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) presents Trimpin: Nancarrow Percussion Orchestra / MATRIX 244, a new sculptural sound installation by the Seattle-based artist Trimpin. The work is created in honor of the hundredth anniversary of the birth of the avant-garde expatriate American composer Conlon Nancarrow (1912–97), best known for his rhythmically complex and intensely layered compositions for the player and prepared piano. Trimpin’s performative installation results from several years of study and investigation and incorporates percussive instruments originally designed by Nancarrow, which Trimpin recovered from the composer’s Mexico City home and has carefully restored.

A MacArthur Fellow (1997), Trimpin is recognized for his creative investigations of acoustic music in spatial contexts, often using salvaged and reconfigured instruments and technological equipment to extend the traditional boundaries of instruments and the sounds they produce. Nancarrow’s radical player-piano scores, which he composed from the late 1940s, existed only as unique, individually punched player piano rolls until Trimpin convinced Nancarrow, soon after they met in 1987, to allow him to convert the vulnerable rolls into MIDI files, creating an enduring format for these otherwise fugitive pieces.

For this new installation, commissioned by Other Minds in collaboration with BAM/PFA, Trimpin has drawn on his deep understanding of and admiration for Nancarrow’s music and creative approach. Nancarrow spent several years of his life on a large scale, vacuum-actuated percussion orchestra, capable of performing rhythmically complex compositions on an array of hand-built ceramic and orchestral drums, wood blocks, gongs, and other instruments. With less than desired results, Nancarrow eventually abandoned his dream orchestra. Over sixty years later, Trimpin has reimaged and rebuilt the orchestra using three salvaged upright pianos, which have been broken apart, reconfigured, mechanized as player pianos, and “prepared” to play a variety of Nancarrow’s scores, as well as Nancarrow’s drums, unveiled for the first time in this exhibition. The compositions are rearranged and fragmented across three pianos in short and varied pieces, and include some phrases from original Nancarrow rolls, seemingly punched for use by the percussion orchestra. The motion of visitors in the gallery triggers the acoustic environment, incorporating the audience and spatial environment into the character and performance of this work. The installation performs in real time over the course of the exhibition, with hundreds of feet of player-piano paper spilling out onto the gallery floor, expanding the piece into an evolving spatial performance of acoustic sound.

Nancarrow at 100: A Centennial Celebration
BAM/PFA, Other Minds, and Cal Performance salute Nancarrow with a spate of music, films, and discussions across the UC Berkeley campus from November 2 through November 4, 2012. Nancarrow at 100: A Centennial Celebration kicks off with a conversation between artist Trimpin and BAM/PFA Chief Curator and Director of Programs and Collection Lucinda Barnes about Trimpin’s MATRIX installation and Nancarrow’s legacy. BAM/PFA also hosts Don’t Shoot the Player Piano: The Music of Conlon Nancarrow at the PFA Theater, two evenings of rarely seen films, some biographical, others visual tributes to Nancarrow’s music, including the West Coast premiere of James R. Greeson’s Conlon Nancarrow: Virtuoso of the Player Piano. Cal Performances presents three concerts in Hertz Hall that will display Nancarrow’s diverse body of work, including performances by Trimpin and Rex Lawson, Calder Quartet, and Lawson with Chris Froh, Graeme Jennings, Helena Bugallo and Amy Williams. Lastly, there will be two public panel discussions at Hertz Hall: The Expanding Universe of Conlon Nancarrow and Eyeballs Out! How Performers Learned to “Play” Nancarrow. Guests at these discussions will include Yoko Sugiura-Nancarrow, widow of the composer, music archivist Felix Meyer, and music publisher Peter Garland, biographer Kyle Gann, as well as the festival’s numerous performers. See the schedule below for details for all the events.

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K*STAR*PRODUCTIONS home of the Kendra Kimbrough Dance Ensemble (KKDE) Presents 15th Anniversary Celebration Concert “In The Meantime” as Tribute to Breast Cancer Awareness Month

K*STAR*PRODUCTIONS, home of the Kendra Kimbrough Dance Ensemble (KKDE), presents its 15th Anniversary Celebration Concert, “In the Meantime” ( This original dance-drama probes the period of time during which a person awaits news that may significantly alter her life. “In the Meantime” combines dance and text to provide a glimpse into the hidden anxieties of anticipation, and an intimate insight into the meantime—when one hopes for the best but must prepare for the worst. “In the Meantime” was written in collaboration with Izzie-nominated Delina Patrice Brooks, a Bay Area-based songwriter, playwright, dancer, and choreographer, and features vocalist Tossie Long and accompanist Tasche.

“In the Meantime” will be performed on Friday and Saturday, October 26–27, 2012, at 8pm at Laney College Theater, 900 Fallon Street, Oakland (Lake Merrit BART accessible). Tickets ($8–$22) are available at; by calling 888.819.9106; or at the Box Office one hour prior to the concert. Further information is available at

On Friday, October 26 (8pm), the program opens with Dimensions Extensions Performance Ensemble performing repertory by Kendra Kimbrough Barnes and Latanya Tigner. A discussion follows the concert.

On Saturday, October 27 (8pm), K*STAR*PRODUCTIONS/KKDE says “Thank you” to the audience that has supported its work for the past 15 years by hosting a post-performance reception, featuring the mesmerizing sounds of Boon, who also will perform an opening set. All are welcome to enjoy this celebratory evening of live music, dance and reflection as K*STAR*PRODUCTIONS/KKDE mark this milestone as a viable and valuable organization in the community.

Director Kendra Kimbrough Barnes presents “In the Meantime” as a tribute to Breast Cancer Awareness Month, remembering her mother’s battle that ended 21 years ago, and to the many families still affected by the disease. This dance-theater work probes the lives of women who cope with different aspects of breast cancer. KKDE explores what it’s like to face the possibility of death while managing the demands of life. Through movement and text, the dancer-actors articulate the gripping emotional commitment and vulnerability of those suffering from breast cancer, whether researching preventive measures, caring for a loved one who is ill, or personally facing the disease. In The Meantime also takes an honest look at breast cancer awareness campaigns.

“’In The Meantime’ is a spell-binding work that pays tribute to the strength and resilience of women,” says Kimbrough Barnes. “I’m honored to mark the company’s 15-year milestone with a performance intended to uplift those who have suffered or are suffering from this epidemic.”

Kendra Kimbrough Barnes established KKDE in 1996 after graduating from San Francisco State University’s Dance Department. She later received her MA in Arts Administration while on full scholarship at Golden Gate University. Kendra’s work displays true vision as she grows and establishes herself as an accomplished choreographer. KKDE has received funding from the Zellerbach Family Foundation, CA$H grant, the City of Oakland, and other sources. An accomplished dancer, Ms. Kimbrough has performed with Robert Henry Johnson, Robert Moses, and other renowned Bay Area choreographers. Currently she teaches children in Oakland through Dimensions Dance Theater’s Rites of Passage Program, and teaches Jazz, Modern, African-Haitian, Pilates, and Yoga at the College of San Mateo.

The Kendra Kimbrough Dance Ensemble (KKDE) focuses on paying respect to the rhythmic cycles of life to create a holistic cyclone of expression. The group consists of well-versed dancers that strive to bridge cultures through performances and workshops that reach a diverse audience. KKDE is committed to representing a range of ages, body-types, and movement styles, and strives to inform audiences about various social issues. The ensemble teaches, creates and presents dance works that build on a wide array of dance forms, with choreography that integrates modern dance with movements inspired by African, Brazilian, and North Indian cultures.

Delina Patrice Brooks (Writer / Creative Collaborator) earned a 2009 Isadora Duncan “Izzie” Award nomination for “Beauty, The Beast: A Dance-Theater Production”, coined as her breathing self-portrait. She has studied and performed dance in the U.S., Western Europe, Southern Philippines and Guinea, West Africa. She has received funding from The Zellerbach Family Foundation, City of Oakland’s Cultural Funding Program, and The East Bay Community Foundation. Brooks has been presented by Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Youth Speaks, The Black Choreographers Festival, The Crucible, and University of Wisconsin-Madison, among others. She has performed with The Living Word Project, ASE Dance Theatre Collective, City Circus, Willows Theater, African American Shakespeare Company, Cherrie Moraga/Cihuatl Productions, Rhesus Media Group, and other companies.


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Esa-Pekka Salonen is considered one of today’s most brilliant musicians, not only as the Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Philharmonia Orchestra and for his remarkable legacy as Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic but for his work as a composer as well. Cal Performances will present a special evening featuring Salonen’s work on Thursday, November 8 at 8:00 p.m. in Hertz Hall. The concert will be moderated by Cal Performances’ Director Matías Tarnopolsky and the composer who recently received the 2012 Grawenmeyer Award for Music Composition. Maestro Salonen will then lead the Philharmonia Orchestra, an ensemble of “blazing originality” (The Sunday Times) in three distinct concerts: Friday, November 9 at 8:00 p.m. features the music of Beethoven, Berlioz and Salonen; Saturday, November 10 at 7:00 p.m. is a concert version of Alban Berg’s masterpiece Wozzeck; and Sunday November 11 at 3:00 p.m. concludes the residency with Mahler’s triumphant Symphony No. 9. All orchestral concerts take place in Zellerbach Hall.

Under the leadership of Tarnopolsky, Cal Performances has established a program of great orchestras in residence on the UC Berkeley campus, designed to deepen the relationship between the world’s finest ensembles, the Northern California cultural community and the campus community through lectures, master classes and extended programs. Opportunities for the community to better know Maestro Salonen and the musicians of the Philharmonia include the Composer Portrait concert mentioned above, a special Composer Colloquium hosted by the UC Berkeley Department of Music, an open master class with the UC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Salonen, and other events to be announced.

Committed to providing unique opportunities for the University community to interact with the artists coming to Cal Performances, Tarnopolsky has arranged for the UC Berkeley Chamber Chorus and members of the UC Berkeley Symphony Orchestra not only to perform with the Philharmonia but to tour with the ensemble as part of Wozzeck. The 25 members of the banda and 30 members of the chorus will travel to Los Angeles’s Walt Disney Concert Hall for a performance, with the musicians in the banda continuing on with the Philharmonia to New York’s Avery Fisher Hall. “These kinds of experiences for our UC Berkeley students are life changing,” said Tarnopolsky.  “We are thrilled that one of our most important on-going goals—the integration of Cal Performances more fully into the University— has been manifested in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Esa-Pekka Salonen’s merit as one of the leading composers of our generation will be displayed as the residency opens with a Composer Portrait concert of four of his compositions. The first of these works, Dichotomie, is for solo piano and will be performed by the adventurous new-music advocate Gloria Cheng who premiered the piece in 2000. The work contains two movements: the first, Mécanisme, mimics an active and imperfect machine that evolves into the second, Organime, which represents life. Hommonculus will be performed by the esteemed Calder Quartet. Written in 2007, Salonen wanted to create “a little piece that behaves like a big piece” and does so through a 15 minute composition that has all the thematic content of a longer work. The Calder Quartet, known for breaking the boundaries of what a string quartet does, includes Benjamin Jacobson and Andrew Bulbrook (violins), Jonathan Moerschel (viola) and Eric Byers (cello).  Mania, the third piece, was written in 2000 by Salonen for his childhood friend, cellist Anssi Karttuneo. It is about “movement that never stops,” explains Salonen. “The tempo fluctuates between extremes, gestures become other gestures.” The work will be performed by UC Berkeley’s Eco Ensemble, led by David Miles, and cellist  Kacy Clopton.  Clopton also performs in the fourth work, Knock, Breathe, Shine, written in 2011 and made up of three movements reflecting the title.

Salonen’s work will also be featured in the first concert with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Helix (2005)—an “exuberant showpiece” (Los Angeles Times)—is composed in the style of a classic overture but with tempo markings that steadily increase throughout the work. The concert continues with two favorites of the orchestral repertoire: Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 and Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique.

Alban Berg’s Wozzeck, one of the essential works of the 20th century, will be performed on Saturday. This concert version includes Johan Reuter, baritone (Wozzeck), Angela Denoke, soprano (Marie), Peter Hoare, tenor (the Captain); Frode Olsen, bass-baritone (the Doctor), Hubert Francis, tenor (the Drum-Major) and Joshua Ellicott, tenor (Andres). The UC Berkeley Chamber Chorus, directed by Marika Kuzma, and the Piedmont East Bay Children’s Choir, directed by Robert Geary, will serve as choruses in the Tavern Scene; and members of the UC Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, directed by David Milnes, will perform as the Tavern and Military banda (see page 2).

The final concert will feature Mahler’s glorious Symphony No. 9, which was written at the end of his life, and is thought to be his farewell to the world; he died having never heard the work performed. The great conductor Herbert von Karajan has said that “it is music coming from another world, it is coming from eternity.” With this work Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra complete their residency.

The UC Berkeley Music Department will host a Composer Colloquium with Salonen on Friday, November 9; time and location, to be announced. Salonen will hold an open master class with the UC Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, conducting Debussy’s La Mer, on Sunday November 11, 5:30–7:30 p.m. in Hertz Hall. Both events are free and open to the public.

Sightlines pre-performance talks will be given by music specialists before each concert on November 9,10 and 11 at 7:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. respectively, in Zellerbach Hall. Each Sightlines will focus on the repertoire to be performed at the corresponding concert. Sightlines is a continuing program of pre-performance discussions with artists and scholars, designed to enrich the concertgoer’s experience and are free to ticketholders. For more information about the speakers, visit

Esa-Pekka Salonen was born in Helsinki, Finland, and studied french horn, composition and conducting at the Helsinki Conservatory.Though he considers himself primarily a composer, in 1973 he took a post as conductor at the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra to ensure his compositions would be performed. He has since worked with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic and Philharmonia Orchestra as principal conductor. Salonen has worked throughout his career as a composer and has remained committed to pioneering the works of other living composers as well. He is a member of UNESCO’s International Rostrum of composers, in 2006 he was named Musical America’s Musician of the Year and in 2012 won the Grawenmeyer Award for Music Composition. More information can be found on his website at

The Philharmonia Orchestra has long been considered one of the United Kingdom’s foremost musical pioneers. Throughout its history, the ensemble has been committed to finding new ways of bringing its top quality live performance to audiences worldwide, and to using new technologies to achieve this. Since 1945, millions of people have enjoyed their first experience of classical music through a Philharmonia recording and today, audiences can engage with the orchestra through webcasts, podcasts, downloads, computer games and film scores. The orchestra has created original contents that include artist interviews and features on repertoires and projects that have been watched by more than a million people on YouTube. In May 2010, the orchestra’s digital “virtual Philharmonia Orcheatra” project, RE-RITE, devised with Salonen, secured the Philharmonia’s position as a digital innovator and has won both the PRS Audience Development and Creative Communication Awards. More information about the Philharmonia Orchestra can be found at

Tickets for the Composer Portrait: Esa-Pekka Salonen on Thursday November 8, at 8:00 p.m. in Hertz Hall begin at $42.00 and are subject to change. Tickets for the Philharmonia Orchestra with Esa-Pekka Salonen, principal conductor, on Friday, November 9, at 8:00 p.m.; Saturday, November 10, at 7:00 p.m.; and Sunday, November 11, at 3:00 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall begin at $30.00 and are subject to change. Half-price tickets are available for UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens, other students and UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded). For select performances, Cal Performances offers UCB student, faculty and staff, senior, and community rush tickets. For more information about discounts, go to or call (510) 642-9988.

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San Francisco Receives $600,000 for Two HOPE SF Public Housing Projects from

Nation’s Premiere Neighborhood Transformation Program

Mayor Edwin M. Lee today joined the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to announce two planning grants for the Choice Neighborhood Initiative (CNI) for the City’s HOPE SF public housing transformation projects: $300,000 for Potrero Annex/Terrace in the Potrero community and $300,000 for Sunnydale in the Visitacion Valley community. The CNI planning grant funding will allow each team to build upon their existing community engagement and planning work to craft comprehensive, community-driven plans to transform these public housing developments into thriving mixed-income neighborhoods.

“San Francisco made a bold step by launching HOPE SF and I thank HUD for supporting us in this journey to transform our City’s most distressed public housing sites into thriving communities,” said Mayor Lee. “These grants will allow us to create the type of transformation plans for Sunnydale and Potrero that are good for residents and good for our City. The future is bright for the transformation of public housing in San Francisco, and we will continue to work with all of our partners to make sure these projects move forward.”

“While many of these grantees have already collaborated to get to this stage, this funding enables them to take their initial discussions further to plan out strategies to build stronger, more sustainable communities that will address distressed housing, failing schools, rampant crime, and all that plagues the nation’s poor neighborhoods,” said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “HUD’s Choice Neighborhoods Initiative represents the next generation in a movement toward revitalizing entire neighborhoods to improve the lives of the residents who live there.”

HUD’s Choice Neighborhoods Initiative promotes a comprehensive approach to transforming distressed areas of concentrated poverty into viable and sustainable mixed-income neighborhoods. Building on the successes of HUD’s HOPE VI Program, Choice Neighborhoods links housing improvements with necessary services for the people who live there – including schools, public transit and employment opportunities.

HOPE SF is the City’s innovative initiative to revitalize the City’s most distressed public housing sites into mixed-income communities without displacing existing residents and while providing residents with services that will allow them to thrive in the transformed communities. San Francisco in 2011 also received a $30.5 million CNI implementation grant for the Alice Griffith/Eastern Bayview HOPE SF redevelopment.

As a part of the City’s HOPE SF Initiative, over the last few years, both the Sunnydale and Potrero teams have been working with residents, community members, businesses, community-based organizations and other stakeholders to develop a neighborhood transformation plan that includes revitalized housing, quality services and a plan for improving the surrounding neighborhood. This award complements this process by delivering critical funding to craft a comprehensive community plan that will be well positioned well for federal funding that could complement the other public and private financial resources necessary to implement these projects.

The Sunnydale and Potrero HOPE SF transformation projects seek to transform 785 and 606 existing public housing units respectively, into thriving, mixed income communities. The Sunnydale transformation project is led by Mercy Housing and the Related Group.  Bridge Housing is leading the Potrero transformation project.

“Sunnydale and Potrero have unique challenges – that is why is it is particularly exciting to celebrate our commitment to putting our money where our mouths are,” said District 10 Supervisor Malia Cohen. “I am committed to improvements for Sunnydale and Potrero – I will continue to work toward safer streets, more resources, stronger commercial corridors and opportunities for education and employment for the residents. Thank you HUD for believing in our City’s comprehensive approach to improve public housing, support our residents and invigorate our neighborhoods.”



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Funds from Federal New Starts Program to Finance Extension of Muni Metro T Third Line through

SoMa, Union Square & Chinatown Neighborhoods

Mayor Edwin M. Lee and several key officials today announced Federal approval of an agreement dedicating $942.2 million in federal funds to the Central Subway Project. The agreement finalizes the financing for extending Muni Metro’s T Third Line through South of Market, Union Square and Chinatown and is the latest in a series of rigorous Federal, State and local approvals.

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Congresswoman Jackie Speier, Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Administrator Peter Rogoff, Board of Supervisors President David Chiu and other Federal, State and local officials joined Mayor Lee at a ceremony held today at the future site of the Central Subway’s Union Square/Market Street Station to announce the approval of the New Starts funds.

“This historic investment in San Francisco’s modern public transportation system will not only connect our City’s diverse neighborhoods and create thousands of jobs today, but it will vastly improve our transit system for our City’s growing population and workforce,” said Mayor Lee. “We thank President Obama, Secretary LaHood, Democratic Leader Pelosi, Senators Feinstein and Boxer and all our Federal, State and local funding partners for their vision and support.”

“When the Central Subway is complete, our City will see a stronger economy, a larger workforce, decreased pollution, less congestion, and faster, safer commutes,” said Leader Pelosi. “Working with partners and leaders from government, business, and the community, this project will serve as an economic engine for our City, improve and enhance our infrastructure, and connect the diverse communities of San Francisco.”

“This federal grant will fund San Francisco’s first new downtown subway in decades, transforming the Third Street line into the busiest in the city and moving tens of thousands through the central business district every day,” said Senator Feinstein. “With bus traffic, rush-hour congestion and pollution on the rise, this quick, emission-free alternative will be a vital addition to our infrastructure. It’s a key investment to modernize San Francisco’s public transit system.”

“There was a time when the transcontinental railroad was finished and the nation was knit together,” said Congresswoman Speier. “The Central Subway Project is one of those moments—bringing San Francisco closer to the Peninsula and Santa Clara counties.  This is a great vision and a great day for all commuters.”

“By extending the T Third Line through SoMa, Union Square and Chinatown, we will connect major job, retail and cultural centers to rapid transit and speed up transportation through two of the City’s most congested corridors,” said Board President Chiu. “The Central Subway is an essential addition to our local transit network. We look forward to realizing the decades-long vision of bringing fast, efficient transit to the 4th and Stockton corridors.”

The Central Subway’s Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA), the formal agreement of financial assistance through the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) New Starts program, was approved by FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff on October 11th. The investment will help fund construction of the subway tunnels, subway stations, surface-level station, train tracks and operating systems that make up this critical transit extension. New light-rail vehicles, utility relocation and project design, planning and administration are also included in the total project cost, to be financed in large part by New Starts.

New Starts contributed $92.4 million to the Central Subway Project to date. The remaining $849.9 million will be distributed in annual allocations as the project progresses. The second phase of the two-phase Third Street Light Rail Project, the Central Subway is expected to cost about $1.6 billion, with the federal government contributing close to $1 billion and state and local funding sources providing the remaining amount. Combined, the SFMTA will receive 50 percent of the funding for Phases 1 and 2 of the Third Street Light Rail Project from federal sources.

The Central Subway will extend the T Third Line from the Caltrain Station at 4th and King streets to Chinatown, providing a direct, rapid transit link from the Bayshore and Mission Bay areas to SoMa and downtown. Traveling north from 4th and King streets, T Third Line trains will enter a subway tunnel on 4th Street between Bryant and Harrison streets, beneath the I-80 overpass. They will then continue north under 4th Street, stopping at the Yerba Buena/Moscone Station before passing beneath Market Street and the existing Muni and BART tunnels. Trains will then travel below Stockton Street, stopping at the Union Square/Market Street Station before continuing to the line’s terminus in Chinatown.

A major improvement over existing transit service along the congested 4th Street and Stockton Street corridors, the Central Subway will cut travel times by more than half. Peak-hour travel times along this 1.7-mile route now average more than 20 minutes on Muni buses. Travel times on the Central Subway will average less than eight minutes.

With the addition of the Central Subway, the T Third Line is projected to become the most heavily used line in the Muni Metro system by 2030. About 65,000 customers per day are projected to ride the T Third Line in 2030 – about 20 percent more than are projected to ride the most heavily used existing Muni Metro line, the N Judah Line.

Construction is currently underway at four sites along the Central Subway Project alignment. Tunneling contractor Barnard Impregilo Healy Joint Venture is constructing a major excavation known as a launch box at the site in SoMa where tunneling will begin next year. Also in SoMa, work has begun to build below-ground walls, called headwalls, at the future site of the Yerba Buena/Moscone Station on 4th Street between Folsom and Howard streets. At Union Square, two blocks of Stockton Street between Ellis and Geary streets are currently closed to vehicle traffic to allow for headwall construction at the site of the future Union Square/Market Street Station. In addition, crews are working to relocate utility lines in North Beach to prepare to construct a retrieval shaft – an excavation on Columbus Avenue where the project’s two tunnel boring machines (TBMs) are planned to be removed in 2014.

The Central Subway Project is the second phase of the SFMTA’s Third Street Light Rail Project. So far, the Third Street Light Rail Project has received $256.8 million in federal funding, including $123.4 million for Phase One of the project. Phase One constructed the 5.2-mile segment of the T Third Line currently in service between the Sunnydale Station in Bayshore and SoMa’s 4th Street Caltrain Station.


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THE MARSH San Francisco EXTENDS Brian Copeland’s The Waiting Period Through December 8, 2012

The Marsh San Francisco is proud to extend Brian Copeland’s critically acclaimed solo show, THE WAITING PERIOD through December 8, 2012. The Marsh could not be more proud of this sold-out show’s continuing and significant contribution to local discussion and understanding of this often fatal disease.

The show plays on Friday at 8:00 pm and Saturday at 5:00 pm on The Marsh MainStage, 1062 Valencia Street in San Francisco. For tickets, the public may visit www.themarsh.orgor call 415-282-3055. Fridays are Educator Nights. Please note: teachers, students and those working in the mental health field get special discounts. For information call 415-282-3055.

Copeland, a multi-talented actor, playwright, author and talk show host, has basked in the glow of both public and critical acclaim for nearly a decade. And yet, along with such other well-known figures as Mike Wallace, Tipper Gore and Yves San Laurent, he suffers from debilitating bouts of depression. As William Styron, another well-known sufferer, put it: “Mysteriously and in ways that are totally remote from normal experience…depression takes on the quality of physical pain…it is entirely natural that the victim begins to think ceaselessly of oblivion.”

This show is an unrelenting look at a ten-day period in Copeland’s life—the mandatory

ten-day waiting period before he could lay his hands on the newly purchased gun with which he planned to take his own life. Even in the midst of this tragedy, however, his wonderful sense of the comedy of life does not desert him (how much should he spend on the gun?), indeed serves him insidiously well as a buffer against the grim reality of his intention. Copeland hopes this very personal, and ultimately redemptive, story will reach people who struggle with depression—often called the last stigmatized disease—as well as their families and loved ones. Interspersed with interviews with other sufferers, the play, like so many Marsh stories, also offers outsiders an insider’s view, thereby expanding our understanding and, hopefully, our humanity. As critic Sam Hurwitt put it in The Idiolect: “It’s a play I’d strongly recommend to anyone who is now or has ever been depressed or who knows someone in that situation. But honestly, it’s such a strong piece that I’d recommend it just as heartily to anyone who’s ever been human.”

In 1995, San Francisco ABC radio affiliate KGOpremiered The Brian Copeland Showthat remains the most listened to program in its time slot. His previous hit show, Not A Genuine Black Man, ended a seven-year run at The Marsh Berkeley earlier this year.


WHERE: MainStage, The Marsh San Francisco, 1062 Valencia Street, at 22nd St

Parking: New Mission Bartlett Garage, 21st St between Mission & Valencia

The nearest Bart Station is 24th & Mission

TICKETS: Thursdays: $20-35 sliding scale
Fridays: $25-$35 sliding scale
Saturdays: $30-$35 sliding scale
$50 Reserved Seating
For tickets, visit or call 415-282-3055

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Markegard Family Grass-Fed Offers Workshops for the Aspiring Urban Farmer

If you have an itch to drive out of the city learn more about the country life, then Markegard family of Half Moon Bay have a workshop series that might be for you. The Markegards run a large grass-fed farm and ranch in Half Moon bay and raise beef, lamb, eggs and pastured pork, all available via CSA or purchase at the ranch. And in addition to regular ranch tours, the Markegards feature detailed workshops for the aspiring, or simply curious, urban farmer.

The first workshop on November 4th is “Cheese Making 101″ with cheese maker Louella Hill of San Francisco Milk Maid. Using fresh milk from the farm, students will learn cheese-making basics like cultures, molds and rennet. Students will create butter, buttermilk, ricotta-style cheese and end with a wheel of Havarti cheese for on-site eating or aging. The workshop will take place at TOTO Ranch a scenic coastal farm along the San Mateo coast. The cost is $75 and space is limited.

For those who want a deeper understanding of the milk they drink, the Markegards also offer a “Principles of Raw Milk Farm Walk” and workshop on November 5th. Hosted by Tim Wightman, an expert on raw milk production, the workshop will cover all the basic and key principles of quality, safe raw milk production. Students will learn more about soil, forage and herd management and how to look for the best quality milk from local sources. The workshop and farm walk is also at TOTO Ranch and the cost is $45.

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Sightlines: A pre-concert talk with UC Berkeley

musicologist Rachanna Vajjhala on Tuesday November 13, at 7:00 p.m. will explore the concert’s repertoire

Cal Performances is delighted to welcome back “a rare and marvelous artist,” (The New York Times) the internationally renowned pianist Emanuel Ax. The concert, on Tuesday, November 13 at 8:00 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall, includes favorites of the piano repertoire: Beethoven’s Sonatas in A major, Op. 2 No. 2 and C minor, Op. 13 (Pathétique) and Schubert’s Sonata in B-flat major, D. 960. Since winning the Arthur Rubinstein Piano Competition nearly 40 years ago, Ax has gained “overwhelming authority as musician, technician, and probing intellect emerges quickly as he plays.” (Los Angeles Times)

A Sightlines pre-performance talk will be given Tuesday, November 13 at 7:00 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall by UC Berkeley musicologist Rachana Vajjhala. These events are free to ticketholders. For more information about the speaker, visit

Emanuel Ax was born in Lvov, Poland and moved with his family to Winnipeg, Canada at a young age. He attended the pre-college division at Juilliard and studied French at Columbia University. He first entered the public spotlight in 1974 at age 25, when he won the first Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv and has since won many international competitions and become one of the most prominent pianists in the world. Each season his distinguished career includes appearances with major symphony orchestras worldwide, recitals in the most celebrated concert halls and a variety of chamber music collaborations.

Devoted to chamber music literature, Emanuel Ax regularly works with such artists as Young Uck Kim, Cho-Liang Lin, Yo-Yo Ma, Peter Serkin, Jaime Laredo and Isaac Stern.  Since 1987, he has worked exclusively for the Sony Classical record label and has produced an exhaustive library of solo and chamber piano repertoire.

Ax is dedicated to performing new music.  He gave the world premiere of John Adams’ Century Rolls with the Cleveland Orchestra in 1997, the European premiere with the Concertgebouw Orchestra in 1998 and the New York premiere with the Cleveland Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in 2000.  In recent years Ax has turned his attention toward the music of 20th-century composers, performing works by such diverse figures as Sir Michael Tippett, Hans Werner Henze, Paul Hindemith, Ezra Laderman, Peter Lieberson, Joseph Schwantner, William Bolcom, André Previn and Aaron Copland.  More information can be found at

Tickets for Emanuel Ax on Tuesday, November 13 at 8:00 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall start from $30.00, subject to change. Tickets are available through the Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988; at; and at the door.  Half-price tickets are available for UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens, other students and UC Alumni Association members receive a $5.00 discount (Special Events excluded). For select performances, Cal Performances offers UCB student, faculty and staff, senior, and community rush tickets. For more information about discounts, go to discounts.php or call (510) 642-9988.

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Cal Performances thanks Wells Fargo and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for their major support of the Season.
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Mayor Edwin M. Lee today issued the following statement after Shinya Yamanaka, M.D., Ph.D., Gladstone Institutes Senior Investigator and UCSF Professor of Anatomy, was named to receive the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent:

“Today we honor Dr. Yamanaka’s award of the prestigious Nobel Prize and his celebrated discovery of transforming adult cells to develop into any cell in the human body with boundless potential for medical advancement.

It is a proud day for all San Franciscans as we come together to celebrate Dr. Yamanaka’s achievement and commend everyone at the Gladstone Institutes, UCSF and Kyoto University. I also want to congratulate Dr. John Gurdon of the University of Cambridge with whom Dr. Yamanaka shares the Nobel Prize with.

Today is another reminder why we often say that San Francisco is the ‘Innovation Capital of the World.’”

The Gladstone Institutes is located in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission Bay, one the nation’s premiere life sciences clusters. Designed from the ground-up as a premier center for science and innovation, Mission Bay is a 303-acre mixed-use, transit oriented, and sustainable redevelopment project area. Mission Bay is anchored by a number of leading research institutions including UCSF’s Mission Bay Campus and Medical Center, the Gladstone Institutes, the California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences (QB3), and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). Mission Bay is home to more than 40 life sciences companies with more than 110 life sciences companies citywide. Companies located in Mission Bay include FibroGen, Nektar, Celgene, and Pfizer. There are now four life sciences incubators located in Mission Bay. The first phase of the UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay is under construction and will include a 289-bed complex featuring three separate hospitals specializing in serving children, women, and cancer patients.

At full build out, Mission Bay will accommodate over 6,000 units of housing (30 percent affordable), 4.4 million square feet of office and R&D space, a 43-acre UCSF research campus and 550-bed medical center, 500,000 square feet of retail, a 500 room hotel, 49 acres of new public open space, a new 500-student public school, a new public library, a new fire and police stations and other community facilities.

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