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Instagrammable Murals You Must See in Costa Mesa

Posted on August 29, 2022 | 10:54am

Did you know Costa Mesa is the City of the Arts®? Yes, the city trademarked the term because of the vibrant performing and visual arts at the spectacular Segerstrom Center for the Arts. But Costa Mesa’s eclectic arts scene extends far beyond its performances. The city is home to a collection of vibrant murals that inspire and excite. Found throughout neighborhoods adjacent to businesses, schools and even a church, murals are a great way to understand an artist’s perspective and intent and add beauty, whimsy and sometimes a memorial to a community. Here are a few great examples of murals in Costa Mesa that deserve your Instagram’s attention. 

“Welcome Home”

By Shepard Fairey

125 E. Baker St.

Measuring 136-feet long by 55-feet high, Shepard Fairey’s “Welcome Home” was the largest mural in OC when it was completed in 2017. Found on the back of Baker Block Apartments, it faces the 55 freeway. 

According to Fairey “This piece in sum is a message of peace, independence and the beauty and openness of humanity and nature.” Geometric shapes, mandalas, florals and nature elements surround a female figure with a lotus flower in her hair. 

Requiring over 460 cans of spray paint, “Welcome Home” also incorporates a bit of surf culture, a recurring theme in Fairey’s works. He hopes that people come to understand how positively art impacts the community. 

“Kobe and Gianna Bryant”

By Tyke Witnes

745 W. 19th St., Ste. H

When Tyke Witnes learned about the helicopter crash that took the lives of nine locals that included Gianna and Kobe Bryant, he knew the Lakers mural that he’d been contemplating would instead be dedicated to them. He spent approximately 12 hours total on the tribute, only pausing after seven to make sure his daughters were ready for school on time.

According to Witnes “The mural is first and foremost for the family, Kobe’s wife and his three children.” Then it’s for the family of all the victims, locals and their friends. Finally, it’s for the fans like Witnes who feel like they’re part of Kobe or he’s a part of one’s family. It incorporates the names of all the individuals on the plane, as well as a nod to Kobe and Gigi’s father-daughter relationship with halos and an infinity symbol.

Located across from El Toro Bravo on 19th Street, Witnes is married to Paloma, who operates the shop on behalf of her mom, Cora Bonilla. 

“Dolly Parton”

By David Gilmore

719 W. 19th St.

After learning the singer funded research for a COVID-19 vaccine, STRUT Bar & Club founder Luke Nero hired artist David Gilmore to design a mural dedicated to Dolly Parton on the exterior of his nightclub.

The finished project comes in at 50 feet by 20 feet and it took Gilmore a month to complete the glamorous portrait, as he referenced a compilation of images as inspiration for his work. 

Per Nero: “Not only is she an icon in the queer community and beyond, but she is truly a model of inclusivity.”


By Mac + Retna

960 W. 16th St.

A portrait of a woman on one exterior wall of RVCA headquarters was completed by the team Mac + Retna in 2009.

At least one additional mural (not by the artists) can be found along 16th Street as visitors approach the driveway.

“City of the Arts”

By Joshua Madrid

900 Arlington Drive

Adjacent to both Costa Mesa Skate Park and Bark Park, the “City of the Arts” mural can be found on a storage building at TeWinkle Park. 

Completed in 2017 by local muralist Joshua Madrid, the design was created in a Mandala style, as shapes emanate from a colorful, central point. Its interpretation varies based on the viewer.

“Home Sweet Home”

420 W. 19th St.

On the property of First United Methodist Church of Costa Mesa, “Home Sweet Home” was created by artist Brian Peterson. 

Designed to inspire and engage, one side of the mural asks the question, “What solves homelessness?” A painting of Robert Morse, a former homeless man, is featured along the adjacent wall. Morse currently spends his time assisting homeless families. 

An interactive artwork, the depiction of a furnished family room with couch invites visitors to ponder the question while staging themselves within the mural. The answer, according to non-profit Faces of Santa Ana (which Peterson is the founder of) is found hanging above the couch: Home Sweet Home.

“Costa Mesa Bloom”

By Aaron Glasson

1870 Harbor Blvd.

Artist Aaron Glasson incorporated three major elements into his mural that adorns a bench at Triangle Square: flowers, abstract shapes and color. “Costa Mesa Bloom” was commissioned by Travel Costa Mesa in 2018 and with the partnership of Triangle Square, was dedicated to the city.

“A healthy garden has a lot of diversity. The same is true of communities. It’s a metaphorical representation of Costa Mesa being a blend of locals, visitors and people who have moved here from other parts of the world,” Glasson explains.

The abstracts in his artwork are inspired by the cityscapes of Triangle Square and Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Finally, the bold hues featured brings the otherwise white space to life. By weaving the trio of elements, Glasson reflects the city’s eclectic environment. 

Per Glasson, “I deeply believe in the power of public art to invigorate our urban landscapes, and the lives of those who inhabit them.” 

“You Are Loved”

By Alex Cook

2380 Notre Dame Rd.

College Park Elementary School’s PTA worked with artist Alex Cook in 2020 to come up with a new mural after the school received a paint refresh, covering older artwork. What they came up with was a literal positive message.

Representing not only the district’s Mandarin immersion program housed at College Park, but the two primary languages spoken at the school, the phrase “You are loved” is written against a colorful backdrop in Spanish, English and Mandarin. It’s a comforting reminder for students as they go about their day. 

“Thalo Sun”

By Gabriella Kohr

2930 Bristol St.

Park at the LAB/Anti-Mall and head towards Seabirds Kitchen for the next installation. Painted in 2021 “Thalo Sun” has a sense of movement, thanks to its hills and waves. Muralist Gabriella Kohr’s inspiration for this piece was surfing.

Multiple Pieces

3070-3150 Bristol St.

Canvas, a modern office complex covering over 300,000 square feet of work space, is home to over 17 custom pieces by local artists. Some of the outdoor murals include:

“Freely Give” and “Freely Love” by Zao One

Colorful cubes found outside of the north and south parking structures, respectively.

“Butter” by Ali Sabet

A face composed of many layers of faces outside the south parking structure.

“Calypso” by Charmaine Olivia

Mural depicting the goddess who detained Greek king Odysseus on the island of Ogygia for seven years. It can be found next to the yoga garden.

Teddy Kelly’s mural welcomes all guests as they step onto the Canvas campus! Originally from Mexico and making his home in Orange County, Teddy Kelly’s graphic murals evoke the spirit of surf, skate and street culture ingrained in Costa Mesa.

“Kobe, Gianna and Friends”

By Andaluz (@andaluztheartist)

512 W. 19th St.

Restaurant Social Costa Mesa was already the home of the “Have A Nice Day” mural.

Efren Andaluz III worked with Social co-owner Andrew Dorsey to add to the wall after the January 26, 2020 helicopter accident.

Wanting to honor all the victims, he researched muralists on social media until he found Andaluz. The New York-based artist was flown out to fulfill the request. A fan of Bryant, he lives by the athlete’s Mamba Mentality “in order to always be the best version of himself.”

“Have a Nice Day”

512 W. 19th St.

Directly next to the Kobe and Gianna mural mentioned above, and perhaps one of the city’s most photographed murals, it’s a great spot to take your selfie and to add a smile to your day.

Find a mural on this list and tag @travelcostamesa and #cityofthearts on Instagram for a chance to be featured! See more Costa Mesa murals and street art here.

Note: please be mindful of the setting in which the mural is located. Park in designated areas and do not trespass if an area is locked.

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Posted in Misc

Take Advantage of Great Summertime Dining in Costa Mesa

Posted on August 3, 2022 | 10:07am

As families get ready for back to school and the end of summer, it’s a great time to take a road trip to explore Costa Mesa’s local dining scene for Labor Day Weekend. Squeeze out every last bit of the summer weather and outdoor experiences in Southern California. We’ve got a bite for every time of day and covering a breadth of cuisines that Costa Mesa has to offer to create your next Eatcation®. Are you hungry yet? We are!

Breakfast: Boil & Bake

Many consider the morning meal the most important of the day. We’re not inclined to argue with that, especially if it means bagels. At the brand new Boil & Bake these doughy rounds are naturally leavened, becoming a canvas for seasonal flavors. Owner Carlos Perez and chef Luke Bramm combine their restaurant acumen to convey an East coast concept with a West coast state of mind. 

For a sweet treat, check out the Cheesecake for Breakfast, featuring blackberry compote and a graham cracker crumble. The Heirloom is adorned with flavorful tomatoes, capers, dill and extra virgin olive oil. Salmon lovers must request a Fully Loaded Lox for the sprouts, red onion and house-cured seafood. And the best non-food item: a thoughtfully cozy patio, complete with shade covering and surrounded by plants. 270 Bristol St., Ste. 114; www.boilbake.com.

Brunch: Paragon Cafe

Formerly a pop-up within Shuck Oyster Bar, Paragon just moved into more permanent digs within SoCo Collection across from ARC. Cooking up brunch on the daily, the time you’ll want to go is Saturday late morning when it offers live jazz in addition to chef Dean Isom’s decadent menu and cocktails. Its menu blends traditional alongside modern indulgences to satisfy a range of paletes. 

French toast or French toast bites? Filet mignon or ribeye a la carte? If these are the toughest decisions to make at Paragon, count us in. Royal blue hues welcome you whether in the dining room or along its lengthy bar counter. Speaking of the bar, you’ll find a few riffs on classic beverages. Bourbon fans may want to sip on a Hang ‘Em High or perhaps splurge on a photo-friendly mimosa flight. Either way you’ll have a lovely time. 3321 Hyland Ave. Ste. E, (657) 247-0101; www.paragonrestaurants.com

Lunch: Nourish Organic

If a morning meal is something you normally skip, then make the midday one count at Nourish. Specializing in organic, vegan and ayurvedic dining, a duo of featured proteins are rotated daily allowing for both variety and balanced flavors to satisfy those open to trying this healing Indian cuisine.  

A truly customizable dining experience includes vegetables, soup and ancient-grain flat bread. For digestive issues, try a cup of kitchari rich with moong lentils and basmati rice. Attention to every aspect of cooking is considered, down to the purified water used to cook and wash all ingredients (none of which are purchased frozen or pre-packaged.) You’ll leave feeling good inside and out. 1170 Baker St., Ste. G2, (714) 617-4001; www.nourishayurveda.org.

Afternoon Tea: Tableau Kitchen and Bar

Normally found in resort properties or stand-alone teahouses, afternoon tea is the time of day that simultaneously relaxes and energizes participants. To our delight, Tableau at South Coast Plaza recently began offering tea service from 3-5 p.m. daily. The best part of this particular experience happens to be the variety of tastes included; it’s the perfect size to share with another. Check out our Instagram reel at Tableau to see more!

Begin with selecting a pair of teas (Spring Jasmine and African Nectar Rooibos were our faves). Each tea tower is adorned with a series of delights both sweet and savory. Hazelnut mousse with caramel, mocha ganache and linzer sable is decadent, while blueberry rhubarb pie is subtly tart. Call “dibs” on a prosciutto and provolone scone while reaching for a spoonful of horchata panna cotta with candied chestnut and pear sorbet. Supplement your meal with one of the new cocktail listings, because why not? You deserve it. 3333 Bear St., Suite 119, (714) 872-8054; www.tableaukitchenandbar.com.

Dinner: Bred Hot Chicken

It’s okay to admit that you miss the OC Fair and all of its deep fried goodness. That’s why we sought out this food truck by Bred Scott that recently expanded operations into a non-roaming location at The LAB “Anti-Mall.” Found along the perimeter of this bustling plaza, we almost missed it. Bred’s self-serve touch pad system makes ordering a breeze if you haven’t already paid by phone.  

Serving up tenders three ways, simply choose your own hot chicken adventure. Sandos can be plated on buttery brioche, toasted white or on slider-sized buns. For a bread-free meal, definitely dive into some loaded crinkle cut fries on a bed of vinaigrette slaw. We prefer our Nashville hots au naturel with a blend of comeback sauce and dilly ranch. Feeding a crew? There’s even a 10-pack of tenders available. 2930 Bristol St., Ste. A104, (714) 696-9468; www.bredhotchicken.com.

Fine Dining/Dessert: Collage Culinary Experience

Avocado is extra, and so are you. When it comes to that extra meal, whether it be dessert or a classy dinner out, leave it to this food hall within Bloomingdale’s to satiate your hunger. Mah Jong’s by Chef Mike serves a succinct menu covering meatless options, comforting soups and timeless entrees. Its eye-catching decor and cocktail bar mean one can linger for a while. 3333 S. Bristol St., (949) 295-3841; www.mahjongsbychefmike.com.

Churrino next door will craft a Brazilian dessert masterpiece to order, meaning hot, fresh chewiness at your fingertips. Fillings, drizzles and toppings mean countless combinations. Then cool off with one of Churrino’s chilled drinks (which are often a treat on its own)– the Biscoff latte is a sweet option if you aren’t familiar with the flavor. Vegan suggestions and an order ahead feature mean less waiting, more eating. (714) 884-4775.

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Posted in Misc

LGBTQ+ Travelers: PRIDE in Costa Mesa with Luke Nero of STRUT

Posted on June 24, 2022 | 6:27pm

Stage of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club - LGBTQ+ feature
Stage of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club

LGBTQ+ travelers can feel at home in Costa Mesa, as the city prides itself in having a great collection of inclusive entertainment and attractions in Orange County. Follow us on social @travelcostamesa as Vincent Elejorde, and LGBTQ+ content creator (@vincentelejorde), takes us through some of his favorite spots in Costa Mesa, including Strut Bar & Club. We were able to connect with Luke Nero of Strut to tell us a little more about his venue, PRIDE, and how Costa Mesa fits in with it all.

Entrance of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club - LGBTQ+ feature
Entrance of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club

Interview with Luke Nero

-Can you tell us your name and title?
Luke Nero – CEO & Founder

-What is something you can tell us about yourself that not everyone knows?
I value peace and quiet. Working in the dark craziness of nightlife the need for balance is essential.

-Tell us about your journey that brought you here to Costa Mesa.
I wanted to open a Gay club for the longest time and Orange County provided that opportunity. It was a very underserved market, and I could showcase a lifetime of nightlife experience to a whole new audience. That excited me.

-What about Strut is unique to Orange County?
It’s not just unique to Orange County; its entire concept is social media driven and aimed at an all inclusive market.

-What was your inspiration in creating something like Strut?
I wanted a venue that was fun to be in. That was visually stimulating at every angle. If I am bored, then so are the customers. That’s how I operate.

Seating of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club - LGBTQ+ feature
Seating of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club

-Why did you choose Costa Mesa as the location for Strut?
It chose me. The venue was available and I took it. It already had a queer energy about it as it was the Lions Den for decades. It was the perfect marriage.

-What special offerings and promotions do you have at Strut?
We are open 4 days (Thursday-Sunday) with popular SoCal DJs, riveting drag shows featuring many famous queens (including local favorites), curated seasonal cocktails, many insta-worthy features and great vibes radiating from open to close.

Luke Nero on Pride

-What does PRIDE mean to you?
It’s a time to remind people we are here. We have always been here, and we ain’t going anywhere!

-What is Strut doing to support OC Pride?
We are happy to be the house that everyone can celebrate Pride in. In reality it is Pride 52 weeks of the year for us.

-What are you hopeful or excited about for the LGBTQ+ community in Orange County?
That we build a stronger, tighter sense of community.

-What is something you would tell the LGBTQ+ traveler about Costa Mesa?
Costa Mesa is very cool and trendy. It has one of the largest concentrations of small businesses in the United States and we are very happy to be part of that this growing community.

Bar of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club - LGBTQ+ feature
Bar of Strut Bar & Club in Costa Mesa, photo provided by Strut Bar & Club


This post was brought to you in partnership with OC PRIDE. OC Pride will be held on June 25th in nearby Santa Ana; for more information, visit www.prideoc.com. For more events in Costa Mesa, check our calendar of events!

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Posted in Misc

The 2022 Broadway Show Season is Here! Only at Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Posted on June 16, 2022 | 9:40am

As Orange County’s largest nonprofit arts organization, Segerstrom Center for the Arts (SCFTA) is an established venue for thespians and musicians alike. Named after the Segerstrom family, their continued support for the performing arts is unmatched. 

On the SCFTA campus you’ll find Argyros Plaza, South Coast Repertory and the new location for the Orange County Museum of Art, set to open later this year. With the current season in full swing, we wanted to provide a comprehensive rundown of this year’s musicals, Broadway performances, one-night-only shows and everything in between. Peruse the list below, or use the events calendar as your guide when selecting performances.

Group of singers from Come From Away - Segerstrom Center for the Arts
First North American Tour of Come From Away – Photo by Matthew Murphy, 2018

Come from Away

Playing from June 21 to June 26, Come From Away takes you into the heart of the remarkable true story of 7,000 stranded passengers and the small town in Newfoundland that welcomed them. Cultures clashed and nerves ran high, but uneasiness turned into trust, music soared into the night, and gratitude grew into enduring friendships.

Mozart and Mahler

Awesome is the only to describe twin piano phenoms. Christina Naughton and Michelle Naughton; returning June 25 only. Watch as the duo takes Mozart’s rarely performed Concerto for Two Pianos to the stage. On the second half, Mahler’s popular Symphony No. 4 evokes memories of youthful innocence and a rustic German countryside.


On July 2, Googoosh, the Iranian music icon, is live on stage in what could be her last appearance. Twenty-One the ongoing world tour finally comes to Southern California. This show will be one of the main pillar events of this world tour with new songs and acts added to the packed setlist of Googoosh.

Pretty Woman: The Musical

Starring Broadway superstar and Tony Award-nominee Adam Pascal as Edward Lewis and rising star Olivia Valli as the charming and charismatic Vivian Ward, Pretty Woman: The Musical springs to life from July 5 to the 17th.

Featuring an original score by Grammy winner Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance, and a book by the movie’s legendary director Garry Marshall and screenwriter J. F. Lawton. Pretty Woman: The Musical will lift your spirits and light up your heart, delivering on all the iconic moments you remember. Prepare to experience this theatrical take on a love story for the ages.

Aditya Prakash Roots: A Karnatic Exploration

An award-winning vocalist known for his powerful and emotive voice, Aditya Prakash is one of the foremost young virtuosos of Karnatic music, the traditional classical style of South India, and will be performing on July 31.

A Los Angeles native from a family immersed in arts and culture, Aditya’s intensive musical studies began in childhood. At 16 years of age, he became one of the youngest musicians ever to tour and perform with sitar maestro Ravi Shankar. In anything Prakash does, he finds his roots and discovers his Karnatic voice at the heart of it. 

The Australian Pink Floyd Show

Astonishing audiences worldwide for more than three decades, The Australian Pink Floyd Show will perform August 6. Setting the gold standard in live concerts, they are widely considered to be one of the most popular tribute bands in schools.

Pulling music from every phase of Pink Floyd’s journey, from Ummagumma to The Division Bell and all albums in between, this tour pays tribute to those legendary Pink Floyd productions. Featuring state of the art lighting and video, pinpoint lasers, gargantuan inflatables and the flawless live sound that was the benchmark of Pink Floyd shows, TAPFS guarantees to deliver a memorable experience.


Come see how the world could be from August 8 through August 21. Winner of eight 2019 Tony Awards, this acclaimed new show from celebrated singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and innovative director Rachel Chavkin is a love story for today and always.

Intertwining two mythic tales — that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone — as it invites you on a journey to the underworld and back. Mitchell’s beguiling melodies and Chavkin’s poetic imagination pit industry against nature, doubt against faith, and fear against love. Hadestown is a haunting and hopeful theatrical experience that grabs you and never lets go.

The Joshua Show

A modern-day Mr. Rogers with hipster appeal, Joshua Holden and his puppet sidekick, Mr. Nicholas, bring their award-winning family production The Joshua Show September 24-25. When Mr. Nichols makes an unnerving self-discovery that causes him to spiral down a path of loneliness and despair, it’s up to Joshua and his cast of characters to show his best friend the joy in being yourself. With live music, tap dancing, physical comedy, and multiple styles of puppetry, this whimsical show is sure to bring out everyone’s joyful side. 

Segerstrom Center for the Arts – HAMILTON And Peggy National Tour – Company5 – Photo by Joan Marcus


On stage from September 28 through October 16, Hamilton is the story of America then, told by America now. Featuring a score that blends hip-hop, jazz, R&B and Broadway, Hamilton has taken the story of American founding father Alexander Hamilton and created a revolutionary moment in theatre—a musical that has had a profound impact on culture, politics, and education. Hamilton is based on Ron Chernow’s acclaimed biography. It has won Tony, Grammy, and Olivier Awards plus the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

An Evening with Bernadette Peters

Dazzling audiences and critics with her performances on stage, film, and television, on recordings and in concert, Bernadette Peters will be performing on September 29. Peters recently starred as Dolly Gallagher Levi in the hit musical, Hello, Dolly! She has been awarded three Tony Awards, a Golden Globe, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Featuring songs from the Broadway shows she’s performed in as well as from her Grammy Award-winning and nominated albums, including standards, Rodgers & Hammerstein, and Stephen Sondheim, it will be the most illuminating of evenings. 

Samara Joy

Known for her smooth vocals and deeply emotive music, New York jazz musician Samara Joy’s success rises with every performance. She is making her Jazz Series debut in Samueli Theater on October 1. After winning the 2019 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition, Samara Joy released her debut album that was immediately met with glowing reviews. 

Apollon Musagete & Garrick Ohlsson

Apollon Musagète Quartet teams up with pianist Garrick Ohlsson for a wondrous concert in Samueli Theater October 9. Known as a dynamic quartet whose popularity on the European classical music scene continues to soar, Apollon Musagète Quartet is one of the most creative and charismatic ensembles in international music.

Founded in 2006, Apollon Musagète Quartet is comprised of four musicians: violinists Pawel Zalejski and Bartosz Zachlod, violist Piotr Szumiel and cellist Piotr Skweres. Award-winning classical pianist Garrick Ohlsson is the only American to win first prize in the VIII International Chopin Piano Competition.

Chris Mann

Back by popular demand, award-winning singer, songwriter and actor Chris Mann returns to Segerstrom Center for three hilarious vocal performances from October 20 to 22. In 2020, Mann’s uproarious music parodies took the internet by storm as videos like “My Corona” and “Hello (From the Inside)” garnered 300 million views and made viewers across the globe laugh when we needed it most. His success includes four EPs, a live album, and an additional studio album under his belt. You might even remember Mann’s performance as the Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera at the Center in 2015.

Leonardo! A Wonderful Show About a Terrible Monster

This live theater production is adapted from the beloved children’s books by Mo Willems, and realized through various methods by critically-acclaimed multimedia artists Manual Cinema on October 29 and 30. Leonardo! tells the story of a monster who longs to be scary and the big decisions about identity and empathy that we all must make.

Manual Cinema combines handmade shadow puppetry, cinematic techniques, and innovative sound and music to create immersive stories for stage and screen. Using vintage overhead projectors, multiple screens, puppets, actors, live feed cameras, multi-channel sound design, and a live music ensemble, Manual Cinema transforms the experience of attending the cinema and imbues it with liveness, ingenuity, and theatricality. 

Calidore String Quartet

The acclaimed chamber music ensemble Calidore String Quartet is bringing works by Mozart, Schumann, and a world premiere of the String Quartet No. 2 by Hannah Lash commissioned by Elizabeth and Justus Schlichting for the Chamber Series on November 2. Founded at the Colburn School in Los Angeles, “Calidore” serves as an amalgamation of “California” and “doré” (French for “golden”), representative of its reverence for California’s diversity and culture as well as the strong support received from the group’s original home.

Belinda Carlisle

As the lead singer of the Go-Go’s, Belinda Carlisle has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame along with her other bandmates and has had a career that spans over four decades. Her one-night-only concert on November 2 includes a performance of her greatest hits. This singer-songwriter has touched the hearts of pop fans with her unique blend of gutsy vocals, emotively charged melodies and picturesque lyrics.

Vijay Iyer Trio

As an active composer and musician, Vijay Iyer has carved out a unique path as an influential presence in the music industry over the past 25 years. Iyer is teaming up with Linda May Han Oh (double bass) and Tyshawn Sorey (drums) on November 5.

This trio incorporates deeply interactive and emotionally resonant work into their concerts. Now, the acclaimed trio is bringing their incredible work to Samueli Theater to captivate audiences with music that’s both innovative and deeply rooted in tradition.

Lila Downs

Mexican-American singer Lila Downs returns on November 8 with a concert that will feature her signature Latin-influenced sound. Winner of six Latin Grammys and one Grammy, Downs is one of the most powerful and unique voices that exist today. Her music reflects the cultures of Oaxaca, Mexico, and the U.S., in which she grew up. She sings in Spanish and English, sometimes incorporating indigenous Mixtec, Zapotec and Maya. With a symbolic stage presence and emotional storytelling through song, her singing transcends all language barriers. Lila Downs’s lyrics often reflect stories of social injustice and the experiences within the suppressed Latin American stories of women of indigenous and working-class origins.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts - The cast of the original Broadway production of Moulin Rouge! The Musical. Photo by Matthew Murphy
Segerstrom Center for the Arts – The cast of the original Broadway production of Moulin Rouge! The Musical. Photo by Matthew Murphy

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

The winner of 10 Tony Awards, Moulin Rouge! The Musical is coming November 9 through November 27. Enter a world where Bohemians and aristocrats rub elbows and revel in electrifying enchantment. Baz Luhrmann’s revolutionary film comes to life onstage, remixed in a new musical mash-up. Moulin Rouge! The Musical is a theatrical celebration of Truth, Beauty, Freedom, and — above all — Love. 


In her debut theatrical production, Ashli St. Armant brings us North, a new musical for children and their families on November 12 and 13. Follow precocious Lawrence and his mother, Minnie, as they escape the Deep South and travel North through the Underground Railroad to seek freedom. Their route through Louisiana’s bayous, the bustling city of New Orleans, and the young town of Lawrence, Kansas introduces the audience to the diverse, multi-faceted lives of Black Americans during this time period. 

Set in the 1850s, North is based on actual accounts of slave escapes, as well as Ms. St. Armant’s personal family history of overcoming slavery in Louisiana. Segerstrom Center for the Arts is proud to be one of three Performing Arts Centers commissioning this production. 

Jessica Vosk

This fall, celebrated singer and actress Jessica Vosk is headed to Samueli Theater for her Cabaret Series debut on November 17 through 19.

Vosk made her Broadway debut in the 2014 musical adaptation of The Bridges of Madison County. From there, Vosk performed in the Broadway casts of Finding Neverland and Fiddler on the Roof, assuming the role of Elphaba on Broadway from 2018–19 after a successful run in the show’s national tour. Most recently, Vosk made her Carnegie Hall debut in November 2021.

Mavis Staples, Kandace Springs

Soul singer and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Mavis Staples arrives in Orange County with a December 9 concert in the Renée & Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. A living legend, Mavis Staples was raised in the church’s gospel singing, revered for her protest songs in the Civil Rights era and reinvigorated in our current age as a singular singing force.

Opening the show will be vocalist, pianist, and songwriter Kandace Springs. Springs has wowed Center audiences before in the Samueli Theater, with her God-given instrument being described by Prince as “a voice that could melt snow”.

Chita RiveraThe Rhythm of My Life

Chita Rivera makes her way to the Center as a highly decorated and well-respected Broadway icon on December 11. The triple threat originated many iconic roles including Anita in West Side Story, for which she received the Lifetime Achievement Tony Award in 2018. She became the first Hispanic woman to be awarded the Kennedy Center Honor Award in 2002 and went on to be recognized for her fabulous contributions as a singer, dancer, and actress in 2009 by being awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The Broadway Holiday Hollywood Songbook

The Broadway Hollywood Holiday Songbook is coming to the Center and spreading festive cheer this season from December 15-17. This performance by Aaron Lazar and Kerry O’Malley features holiday songs from Broadway shows and films.

Making her Center debut is actress and singer Kerry O’Malley whose Broadway credits include Billy Elliot, Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, Into the Woods, and Annie Get Your Gun. Aaron Lazar is an American actor, artist and entrepreneur who has performed on Broadway, television, and film. 

Segerstrom Center for the Arts - Richard Thomas (“Atticus Finch”) and Yaegel T. Welch (“Tom Robinson”). Photo by Julieta Cervantes
Segerstrom Center for the Arts – Richard Thomas (“Atticus Finch”) and Yaegel T. Welch (“Tom Robinson”). Photo by Julieta Cervantes

To Kill A Mockingbird

All rise for Academy Award winner Aaron Sorkin’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork. Majestic and incandescent, it’s filled with breath and nuance and soul. Performances begin December 27 and continue through January 8, 2023.

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Brittney Au discusses AAPI Heritage Month with Ed Lee, Owner of Tableau Kitchen and Bar

Posted on May 28, 2022 | 3:19am

Brittney Au is a creative professional specializing in graphic design, a lifestyle content creator, food lover, and “accidental activist.” She grew up in Arcadia with her mother, father and brother and knew from a young age that she had the creative spirit within her. Brittney shares her food, home decor and fashion adventures on Instagram @BrittneyAu for her 23.8k followers. Brittney is also passionate about food and dining and worked with The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) on selecting Tableau Kitchen and Bar in South Coast Plaza for one of the AAPI Heritage Month Features that Travel Costa Mesa would be focusing on during the month of May.  Tableau has participated in fundraising events for OCAPICA, is dedicated to community involvement, and is centered around supporting non profit causes.  Ed Lee, owner of Tableau and other restaurants in the area, took the time to answer some of Brittney’s questions about food, culture, and community.

Brittney Au: “What does AAPI Heritage Month mean to you?”

Ed Lee: “First let me say that  I have been truly blessed  to have a rich and wonderful Asian heritage that I’m proud of. AAPI Heritage month means we as Asians and Pacific Islanders have the opportunity to share our rich culture with others through our business and special events. There are so many great events throughout OC which  means I can also learn about other Asian and Pacific Islander cultures.”

Brittney Au: “In what ways has your culture shaped your identity?”

Ed Lee: “I am Chinese born in Brazil so my culture is a mix and it has shaped my identity as an immigrant to the U.S.A. I embrace my roots knowing the difficulties that previous generations have gone through to make a better life for my generation. My values, my work ethic, my motivation to help others and my gratitude in life all have a connection to my culture, my parents and my faith in God.”

Brittney Au: “What advice do you have for the AAPI Community?”

Ed Lee: “Let’s continue to embrace our culture and share it with others, pass it on to the next generation, and learn from one another.”

Brittney Au: “Why did you choose Costa Mesa to have your business?”

Ed Lee: “Costa Mesa is a great shopping and food destination — it has become the food Mecca of OC.”

Brittney Au: “OCAPICA was part of selecting you for this feature because of the work you have done with them.  Can you share about your work with them and all your other philanthropic initiatives at Tableau?”

Ed Lee: “I have worked to support OCAPICA  via my other restaurants Wahoo’s and Toast Kitchen & Bakery. In the early years working with OCAPICA, I was able to use my connections in OC to bring other restaurateurs onboard to participate in the newly formed Tastemakers event. Since then, the event has grown every year and is the one event I personally enjoy the most. Tableau has only been open for four months and in the short time we have been open, we have done charitable work with Vocational Visions, Uncork for Hope, Illumination Foundation and National Charity League. Our large custom table which seats 12 was made specifically to help us fundraise for worthy charities. We call it the Giving Table because it allows us to donate dinners to be auctioned off at charity galas. We are honored to be participating at OCAPICA’s Tastemakers event Wednesday September 14 , 2022.”

Travel Costa Mesa thanks Brittney Au for sharing her adventures touring Costa Mesa on our Travel Costa Mesa Instagram.  Thanks to Ed Lee and the Tableau Kitchen and Bar team for sharing his responses with us, and OCAPICA for supporting our efforts in amplifying AAPI voices during AAPI Heritage Month.  OCAPICA will be hosting their Tastemakers fundraiser event on Wednesday, September 14.  Join the OCAPICA newsletter for updates on ticket information coming this summer.

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