For Chris Lopez, "Women Rule Magic" came about the same way many fun events do: finding an excuse to hang out with friends. And its scheduling — Feb. 10 at Elements Venue — was inspired by feedback the magician received about being able to provide a date-night experience.

In speaking of his own work, photographer Bob Kolbrener conveyed a sentiment shared by all three artists featured in the winter exhibitions at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

For audiences who like a bit of illegality mixed into their theater, the late January offerings are right up your alley. Whether it's a bumbling family aiming to steal back the farm they've worked on for years or a pair of cool old ladies serving up a fatal cocktail to aged bachelors, crime …

You better get moving: This is the last week to catch a glimpse of "Driven by Art," the public art project from the Bakersfield Museum of Art. Designed by local artists, 33 painted fiberglass trucks have been on display mostly in downtown Bakersfield (one is at The Marketplace) since September.

Let no one say the beginning of the new year lacked flair. With the holidays behind us, we can focus on getting back into the swing of things, namely enjoying the art, music and fun of First Friday. Here's a look on what's happening this week.

June Gaede tried her hand at many professions — short-order cook, private investigator, radio announcer, factory worker — but her joy and triumph was as an educator. Gaede, who died Saturday at age 86 due to complications from pneumonia, had a nearly 60-year career teaching in Kern County, i…

This year's production of "The Nutcracker" will again have a live orchestra, but a smaller one, in what could be standard operating procedure from now on.

To keep it "fresh," many choreographers have updated Tchaikovsky's immortal "The Nutcracker" ballet. There's a hip-hop version, a 1950s update using modern dance choreography, a London production that resets the Christmas party into an orphanage straight out of Charles Dickens. 

Thursday, artist David Vanderpool debuts his second solo exhibit in as many years at the Arts Council of Kern. You may have seen his art displayed at the Kern County Fair, where his drawings have won many awards over the years, but it was his work at Kern Valley and Corcoran state prisons th…

High schools bring their fall productions to the stage in advance of winter break. Here is a look at two shows debuting this week: "The 1942 Holiday Radio Murder Mystery" at South High and Liberty High's "The Game's Afoot."

Holiday travel takes people all over the globe, so it's no surprise that the local theater community is taking audiences on an adventure for the holidays. From Depression-era West Texas to the North Pole and somewhere between here and heaven, this quartet of holiday productions are on the move.

Along with the closing weekends of "The 39 Steps" at Stars and "Rock of Ages" at The Empty Space, theater-goers have a chance to check out two limited-engagement shows offered at Bakersfield College and Cal State Bakersfield.

Bakersfield loves its veterans, and the mural at the southeast corner of 20th and Eye streets is proof of that. But the painting, including the Statue of Liberty, Rosie the Riveter and soldiers at Iwo Jima, tells only part of the story. By the end of the year, the mural will pick up the rest…

This First Friday, prepare to put on your walking (or dancing) shoes and go east. With the Arts Council of Kern art walk and existing art spaces in full swing in the downtown arts district, the event spreads further east with two new ventures — a block party on 19th at K and L and a new gall…

When asked to describe the style of "The 39 Steps," which opens Friday at Stars, director Joe Lowry labels it a tramedy. The play — based on the 1935 Alfred Hitchcock film, which was adapted from John Buchan's 1915 novel — mixes tragedy and comedy elements into a engaging production.

It's been at least a decade since a major local theater has brought "Fiddler on the Roof" to the stage. And like the members of the Russian village who band together in the show, so, too, have actors from a variety of local theaters for this special engagement coming to Temple Beth El next week.

Bakersfield College just wrapped up its production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” but Shakespeare fans need not fret as Cal State Bakersfield’s theater department will continue the comedies this week with a run of “Love’s Labour’s Lost.”

Bakersfield might not have the colorful changing of seasons that other towns can boast, but with an annual sidewalk art festival it has its own way of ringing in autumn with a spectrum brighter than those red and orange leaves.

While many Bakersfield theater-goers love a repeat — “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” anyone? — local groups still like to keep things fresh, from all-new productions to shows that haven’t had a chance to really rock the town. Along with Stars’ local debut of “Catch Me If You Can…

Following on the wheels of its massive Driven by Art public art project, the Bakersfield Museum of Art is again bringing art out into the community. This weekend, more than 200 artists will hit the pavement for the annual Via Arte Italian Street Painting Festival, creating elaborate chalk ma…

When it came time to find a setting for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” the show that opens the 32nd Kern Shakespeare Festival at Bakersfield College Thursday, director Brian Sivesind knew there would be no blast from the past.

Different art forms all have the same general purpose: for an artist to express oneself and connect with others who have felt the same way. A painting, a photograph, a poem or a song can all express the same sentiment in a variety of ways.

How do you avoid the pressure of directing a musical based on a popular 2002 Oscar-nominated film? For Bruce Saathoff, who’s directed “Catch Me If You Can” opening Friday at Stars, you don’t worry about the movie.

Those who think a writer’s life is full of epiphanies with pen in hand and heaps of praise, take note. The everyday grind can be filled with revisions, distractions, soul-crushing critiques and moments of hope. “Seminar,” opening Friday at The Empty Space, explores the highs and lows of the …

If you’ve been to the fair even once in your life, you already have a list of favorites to check out. But we’ve compiled a list of the best of the new — and a couple of returning traditions — you should add to your itinerary.

If you’ve been to the fair even once in your life, you already have a list of favorites to check out. But we’ve compiled a list of the best of the new — and a couple of returning traditions — you should add to your itinerary.

A diamond anniversary — 60 years — deserves to be celebrated in a big way. That’s just as true for an art museum as it is for a marriage.

A diamond anniversary — 60 years — deserves to be celebrated in a big way. That’s just as true for an art museum as it is for a marriage.

Looking at its 100th anniversary poster, you’ll see all the things that make the Kern County Fair: the agriculture, the exhibits, the rides, the entertainment. Look a little closer and you might also recognize a face or two, because another fair tradition is seeing people you know come out f…

Looking at its 100th anniversary poster, you’ll see all the things that make the Kern County Fair: the agriculture, the exhibits, the rides, the entertainment. Look a little closer and you might also recognize a face or two, because another fair tradition is seeing people you know come out f…

Earlier this summer, a new billboard popped up at China Grade Loop and North Chester Avenue, turning some heads with its colorful wording. Of course with a title like “Female Dick — Last Train to Bakersfield” it’s bound to stand out.

As many film buffs will tell you, a good movie knows no language barriers. And just south of the border, critically acclaimed movies are being made, with few opportunities to see them in the States.