October is Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month, so I thought I’d start off today with a little something from Purchase alum Stanley Tucci: “Stanley Tucci Shares His Grandmother’s Famous Tomato Sauce Recipe:  The Actor on Memories of His Grandparent’s House and His Inherited Love of Cooking.”
Get the recipe and listen to an excerpt from his audiobook.


Restart Stages at Lincoln Center
Now streaming on demand.
From April–September 2021, Lincoln Center welcomed audiences to Restart Stages at Lincoln Center—an outdoor performing arts center with 10 performance and rehearsal spaces—to help kickstart the performing arts sector and New York City’s revival. While Restart Stages at Lincoln Center is now over, the summer’s incredible performances will live on—on-demand! Over 200 artists and productions took the stage, and we’re happy to share a collection of them with you. Enjoy these musical concerts, provocative discussions, family shows, and spoken word for the first time, or re-live the experience.
Restart Stages at Lincoln Center · Lincoln Center

Three Short Plays by Tracy Letts
Steppenwolf Theatre Company
Streaming now through Sunday, October 24
These three gripping virtual projects, written by ensemble member Tracy Letts, create the opening landscape for Steppenwolf’s upcoming live season and will mark a bridge between where they have been and where they are going. The virtual stage is a celebration of the profound connection that theatre—in whatever form it finds itself—offers us all.
Get tickets for “Three Short Plays”

PBS presents The Kennedy Center at 50
Streaming now through Friday, October 29
This special celebration and re-launch of live, in-person performing arts in America will be hosted by six-time Tony Award® winner Audra McDonald and feature the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO). Were you in the audience when McDonald was the featured performer at our 2011 Gala?
Watch The Kennedy Center at 50 on PBS

Bard College presents  Artists Confronting Society—A Panel Discussion and Performance
Thursday, October 14, 8pm
Zoom Webinar followed by YouTube Livestream
Musicians and composers featured in the 2021 China Now Music Festival will discuss how Asian American artists are responding to this moment in history. The webinar will be followed by the Del Sol Quartet performing Huang Ruo’s A Dust in Time, a meditation on the pandemic.
Access the panel discussion and performance

The Metropolitan Opera presents Terence Blanchard’s Fire Shut Up in My Bones
Tuesday, October 19, 6:55pm
Live audio stream
Fire Shut Up in My Bones is the Met’s first performance of an opera by a Black composer. Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Grammy Award–winning jazz musician and composer Terence Blanchard’s adaptation of Charles M. Blow’s moving memoir.
Listen to Terence Blanchard’s “Fire Shut Up in My Bones”

The Greene Space presents Kelly Hall-Tompkins: Recitation and Remembrance
Tuesday, October 19,  7 – 8:15pm
You can also watch live via YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.
WQXR’s Artist Propulsion Lab concert series continues with an assortment of pieces that encapsulate violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins’s unflagging spirit, deep love of connection, and commitment to social justice.  The program features two contemporary works, both written for Kelly during the pandemic: Guy Mintus’s Inner Compás  — a flamenco-tinged Israeli piece — and a memorial to Elijah McClain composed by Ellen Zwilich.  To close the evening, she will be joined by fellow Propulsion Lab Artist Kara Dugan for the premiere of Kelly’s new arrangement of “My Mother’s Menorah” from Eileen Sherman’s The Odd Potato and selections from her recording The Fiddler: Expanding Tradition.  Purchase PAC audiences will remember her appearances with Ted Sperling and the Westchester Philharmonic.
Listen to Kelly Hall-Tompkins “Recitation and Remembrance”

The San Francisco International Arts Festival
Online from October 20 – 24
Despite the numerous crises brought upon by the pandemic, artists have not lost their need to innovate and engage in creative opportunities. SFIAF is proud to not only provide a platform for these brave performers but also to reconnect them with their beloved audiences and to give everyone unprecedented access to art through technology. The virtual festival-within-a-festival runs from Oct. 20 to 24, with recorded performances and lively discussions via Zoom where guests can interact with some of the artists.
Visit the San Francisco International Arts Festival website



Culture Picks is a weekly feature celebrating the performing arts. The arts are back and there is so much to take in, both live and virtual. Cultural connoisseur and PAC staff member Coni Guhl is here to help you sort through it all. Each week we will post her curated selection of events featuring the artists you know and love from The PAC Center Series, plus a sampling of stellar local experiences. Enjoy!

All times are EDT unless otherwise noted.

Photo: Kelly Hall-Tompkins © Gregory Routt