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Author Anastacia Grenda

  • Anastacia Grenda

    Arts Editor

    Grenda has covered the arts scene for Orange Coast since 2003, and has been the magazine’s arts editor since 2008. She writes the monthly Arts page and the Don’t Miss events calendar that appears in the print magazine, compiles the extensive events calendar for, and offers arts and entertainment recommendations in our weekly Don’t Miss electronic newsletters. You can sign up for those newsletters here.


Artist Spotlight: Salwa Rizkalla, Gala of the Stars

Born in Cairo and now a Huntington Beach resident, Rizkalla thinks globally. The artistic director of Fountain Valley’s Festival Ballet Theatre brings dancers from around the world to Orange County every August for the Gala of the Stars. Soloists Quenby Hersh and Agnes Su trained at Rizkalla’s Southland Ballet Academy, which also runs a summer program that attracts international students and teachers. The 66-year-old studied at a Russian ballet school in Egypt, and danced professionally before coming to the U.S. in 1979. Read more...

Arts: Multimedia Spiritualist

Lance Jost

The 1971 retro sci-fi, 100-foot mural in Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Lady Studios in New York City wouldn’t seem to have much in common with the 15 mosaic Stations of the Cross at Saddleback Church’s Rancho Capistrano property. But for Jost, the 72-year-old artist behind both projects, they convey his spirituality and belief in eternity. His other work includes bronze sculptures, polyurethane paintings on aluminum panels, and a fountain and mosaic commissioned by his hometown of Dana Point. Read more...

Feb. 16-22 Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus dominated pop culture for most of 2013, with her hits “We Can’t Stop” and “Wrecking Ball”—and the wild videos and live performances that accompanied them. She’ll try to keep people talking with her tour, which makes a stop in Orange County. Read more...

Arts: Music Festival Director

Carla Neuss

In high school, Neuss played classical piano and viola, and as an undergrad at UC Berkeley she studied theater and literature, and participated in a student theater group. So it’s not surprising the 27-year-old Laguna Niguel resident chose a career in the arts. “There are a lot of fantastic organizations that have huge staffs, but I wanted to find a smaller one with an exciting vision where I could make a difference.” Read more...

Feb. 9-15 “Wall of Sound: New Works by Zimoun”

Using simple objects such as cotton balls and cardboard boxes, the Swiss-born artist Zimoun creates sculptures and installations that are a feast for the ears as well as the eyes. He shows some of his creations in “Wall of Sound: New Works by Zimoun.” Read more...

Feb. 2-8 "Liliom"

Hamburg Ballett’s artistic director and chief choreographer John Neumeier uses the same source material as Rogers and Hammerstein’s “Carousel” to spin the tale of “Liliom” and its star-crossed lovers, with music by Oscar-winning composer Michel Legrand. Read more...

Jan. 26-31

Pink’s latest tour is a crowd pleaser, full of her popular ballads and rock anthems and her signature aerial moves. Expect some of her older hits in addition to songs from her latest album, “The Truth About Love.” See a live performance of a single from that album, “Try”. Read more...

The Frida Cinema, an Indie Movie House Founded by a Reel-Time Artist

Meet Logan Crow and his ambitious Santa Ana project

This month marks the opening of The Frida Cinema, an independent two-screen movie house in downtown Santa Ana’s East End neighborhood. Its founder and executive director is 38-year-old Logan Crow Read more...

Jan. 19-25

The third annual Off Center Festival brings an all-new slate of eclectic performances to Segerstrom Center for the Arts, including a show by Culture Clash; “Helen & Edgar,” based on Edgar Oliver’s eccentric upbringing; and Sekou Sundiata’s “blessing the boats: the remix,” about a man with kidney disease. It all starts with a free party on the plaza with Culture Clash and music by Little Willie G. and La Santa Cecilia. Read more...

Snapshot: Mr. Corey’s Opus

As he exits the local stage after 20 years, Philharmonic Society of Orange County President Dean Corey is overseeing a special season, as well as publication of his book on Beethoven’s music

The war stories Corey recites are as wide-ranging as the programming he selects, from Henry Segerstrom conducting the Mormon Tabernacle Choir to concerts by the incomparable Vienna Philharmonic. Corey’s last day with the society is June 30. The sum of his cultural legacy will last much longer. Read more...

Jan. 12-18

Fourteen dancers steam up the stage, accompanied by a vocalist and an orchestra, in the touring version of the Broadway hit “Forever Tango.” As the show’s creator and director Luis Bravo put it, “The tango is a feeling that you dance.” Read more...

Berenika Schmitz, Arts Crusader

She has traveled the world as a concert pianist, but Schmitz considers herself “… a citizen artist. I care what happens in the arts beyond me.” So Schmitz—who studied music and government at Harvard and earned a master’s degree in cultural policy from Oxford University—invests her time and energy cultivating the arts close to home Read more...
READ NOW: Serial Killer Seduction

Our "Center of the Universe" story is being read all over the world right now. Click here for the story.


Who Did Randy Kraft Seduce?

Current photos of author Jay Roberts.


A Fact-Checker's Journey to a 1980 Afternoon

Our intrepid intern tracks down the details in Roberts' story.


Why Isn't Randy Kraft Dead?

Our original piece on one of California's deadliest and most depraved serial killers. 


Editor's Letter, October 2013

Our editor considers "Center of the Universe" to be compelling—and incredibly frightening. Click above to find out why.