Walnut Creek

'Gourmet gallop' benefits Diablo Ballet

Walnut Creek's Diablo Ballet presents its fourth Gourmet Gallop, a one-night gourmet walking tour adventure from 6 to 9 p.m. Aug. 7, to include wine tasting, cocktails and nibbles at some of the city's finest restaurants. Diablo Ballet dancers and pianist Justin Levitt will join the fun.

The event is a benefit for Diablo Ballet's acclaimed PEEK youth outreach program, bringing arts education to 5,000 underserved East Bay elementary school children annually.

Among the participating establishments are Lark Creek, Massimo, Walnut Creek Yacht Club, Opa!, Hamachi, SF Creamery Company, Lottie's Creamery, Silk Road, The Counter, We Olive, Peet's Coffee, L'Artisan Gourmet Parisian, 54 Mint and Forno.

Tickets are $35/person by July 24, and $45/person after that date. Go to www.diabloballet.org or call 925-943-1775.

Chevron Family Theatre Festival returns July 19

The Chevron Family Theatre Festival returns to the Lesher Center for the Arts on July 19, the eighth annual family-friendly event with brand new performers as well as popular favorites.

The festival offers a low-cost day of nonstop theater, dance and music performances along with visual arts activities both inside and outside the Lesher Center.

The event is presented by Chevron, and produced by the Diablo Regional Arts Association and the Lesher Center.


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New to the festival this year is Popovich Comedy Pet Theater, which features Gregory Popovich and 30 trained animals including dogs, cats, geese, birds and mice in a comedy/circus act. Popovich rescued and trained the animals in the show. As a juggler, clown and pet trainer, Popovich combines physical comedy, balancing and acrobatics.

Among returning favorites this year are Sesame Street star puppeteer Leslie Carrara-Rudolph, a central Contra Costa native with years of local theater experience; Alex Ramon Magic, the second annual performance by this Richmond-born-and-raised performer of card tricks, illusions and modern day magic; Fantasy Forum Actors Ensemble and the Emmy award-nominated Pushcart Players, who will perform "Red Riding Hood and Other Stories."

Ticketed shows are $5 each, and can be purchased by calling the Lesher Center Ticket Office at 925-943-SHOW (7469) or by visiting www.LesherARTSCenter.org

Valley Art's 'Memory Gardens' through July 3

The Valley Art Gallery's show "Memory Gardens" features the paintings of Bea Guttman, whose abstract paintings evoke memories of the gardens and landscapes that inspired them.

Guttman's paintings are rooted in both geometric and organic forms, and the natural world -- fields and gardens -- often provides the inspiration for her introspective work. The paintings are referential, not realistic, and the process transforms literal representations into nonobjective evocations.

The gallery is at 1661 Botelho Drive, Suite 110, in downtown Walnut Creek just off California Boulevard. In addition to the "Memory Gardens" exhibit on the gallery main walls, the gallery has 30 rolling walls, which display more than 300 additional works of art. Go to www.valleyartgallery.org, or call the gallery at 925-935-4311.

MORAGA

'Face to Face' with portraits of elite

Photographer Michael Collopy is noted for his commissioned portraits of public figures and his portraits of Nobel Peace Prize winners, and large-format photographs of many of them -- including Pope John Paul ll, Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev and five U.S. presidents -- are on view at the Saint Mary's College Museum of Art on the school's Moraga campus.

"Michael Collopy: Face to Face with Movers and Shakers" also features images of Bono, Paul McCartney, George Clooney, Quincy Jones, Frank Sinatra, Kim Kardashian, Steve Jobs, Elie Wiesel, Alice Walker, Cesar Chavez, Carmelo Anthony, Tim Lincecum, Michael Phelps and Kerri Walsh Jennings.

Moraga Art Gallery's 'Luminous' exhibit

The floral photographs of Lucy Beck, and fruit and vegetable bowls and jewelry by Margaret Dorfman are featured in the new Moraga Art Gallery show "Luminous -- Nature Revealed and Reimagined."

The show is running through Aug. 9. The gallery is located at 522 Center St. in the Rheem Shopping Center, and is open from noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

For more information, visit the gallery's website at www.moragaartgallery.com, call 925-376-5407 or email moragaartgallery@gmail.com.

Lafayette

Environmental films back with 'Two Wheels'

Sustainable Lafayette is continuing its environmental film series this summer and will present, in partnership with BikeLafayette, the feature-length documentary film "With My Own Two Wheels," a film about the bicycle as a vehicle for change.

It tells the stories of five individuals in Zambia, Ghana, India, Guatemala and California who use the bicycle as a way to create positive change for themselves and their families.

"With My Own Two Wheels" was nominated for the Social Justice Award in Documentary Film at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The Lafayette screening will take place at 6:30 p.m. July 31, at the Lafayette Library and Learning Center. The film producers, who live in Berkeley, will attend to answer questions about the film and its message.

Free snacks, cookies, coffee and refreshments will be served. A donation of $10 ($5 for students) is requested for entry.

'Unique Art, Unique Homes' at the Lafayette Art Gallery

Each piece of work at The Lafayette Art Gallery's new show "Unique Art, Unique Homes" reflects the individual view of the artist who created it.

This show is an opportunity for homeowners and interior designers/decorators alike to view the breadth of artistic offerings in the gallery.

See how the Lafayette Art Gallery can become a partner in the design process for your home.

Also, in July a kinetic sculptural piece by Scott Tyler will grace the gallery's patio. he and his wife Grace Upshaw both attended Acalanes High School and remain active members of our Central Contra Costa community.

The Lafayette Art Gallery is also continuing the popular "Second Fridays" program, monthly receptions to which the public is cordially invited.

Come between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. July 11 and Aug. 8 to meet the artists, have a glass wine, enjoy good conversation and see the art.

'Orchestra of Time' showing at Klein Gallery

"Orchestra of Time" looks at the evolution of time; in particular, the show looks at how art can serve as a snapshot of a moment in history. The theme of time also speaks to the process behind artwork and the joy that artists experience while dedicating their time to their art.

"Orchestra of Time"will be on display through Aug. 1. The exhibit features pieces by Bay Area artists Erik Bender, Jeslyn Cantrell, Tim Hancock, James Jarett and Deni Kending. Paintings, sculpture, wood block prints and a mural will be on display.

Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and Saturday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday; and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

The gallery is located at 50 Lafayette Circle in Lafayette.

'Funny Face' next up in 'Dance on Film' series

Diablo Ballet, in conjunction with the Lafayette Library & Learning Center, Lamorinda Weekly and the Lafayette Community Foundation, continues the popular "Dance on Film" summer series at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 10, with the classic movie musical "Funny Face."

The film will be screened in the library's Community Hall, 3491 Mt. Diablo Blvd. in Lafayette.

Before the screening, Diablo Ballet artistic director Lauren Jonas and Diablo Ballet dancer Edward Stegge will present fun facts about the film.

A "Pygmalion" story set in the world of high fashion, "Funny Face" (1957) stars Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn.

The "Dance on Film" series celebrates some of the finest examples of dance captured in popular movies.

The series debuted in 2012 to sold-out screenings and enthusiastic audiences.

Admission is $5 for all ages; proceeds benefit the Lafayette Library Foundation.

For more information, visit www.Diabloballet.org or call the Lafayette Library at 925-283-6513.