September O.C. Events: Outdoor Concerts, Virtual Happenings, and More

Note: Restrictions for gatherings can change suddenly, so please check before making plans to ensure your in-person event is happening.

Darden Sisters; Photograph by Emily J. Davis

In-Person Events

Sisters Selah, Clarah, Havi, and Tabbi Darden—singer-songwriters, musicians, and Fullerton natives—play covers and original songs in their signature Americana style at this drive-in concert. Tickets are $30 per car and must be purchased in advance. Muckenthaler Cultural Center, 1201 W. Malvern Ave., Fullerton, 714-738-6595,

The fourth annual jazz festival will proceed with limited capacity and other social distancing measures. This year’s open-air performances feature jazz quartet Lao Tizer on Thursday and Grammy-nominated pianist Gerald Clayton on Friday. Catch the preshow sunset reception on the terrace both nights. Casa Romantica Cultural Center and Gardens, 415 Avenida Granada, San Clemente, 949-498-2139,

The indie-pop band best known for its high-energy performances and upbeat hits like “Out of My League,” “The Walker,” and “HandClap” will play songs from its latest album, “All the Feels,” at this installation of Drive-In OC. Ticketholders can watch from their cars or folding chairs in designated spaces around their vehicles. Meal and snack boxes will be available for preorder, and all tickets must be purchased in advance. City National Grove of Anaheim, 2200 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, 714-712-2700,

Botanically themed sculptures by local landscape designer and ceramic artist Dustin Gimbel are integrated with the plants and flowers throughout Sherman Gardens for this site-specific installation, encouraging garden lovers to explore the structure and form of plants. Sherman Library & Gardens, 2647 E. Coast Highway, Corona del Mar, 949-673-2261,

In this romantic comedy, 20-something Jordan Berman watches and celebrates as all of his close girlfriends get married one after the other. He’s actively looking for Mr. Right, but somehow he can’t seem to find the fairy-tale ending his friends have discovered. Written by award-winning playwright Joshua Harmon, the play explores the highs and lows of young adult life. Chance Theater, 5522 E. La Palma Ave., Anaheim, 714-777-3033,

SEPT. 24
Colorado-based singer-songwriters Stephanie Bettman and Luke Halpin are known for their bluegrass and folk compositions, which blend Bettman’s fiddling and Halpin’s guitar playing with soaring harmonies. The duo, which has been touring together since 2008, has a reputation for high-energy performances that include plenty of storytelling between songs. Muckenthaler Cultural Center, 1201 W. Malvern Ave., Fullerton, 714-738-6595,

Featuring more than 40 paintings of the North American wilderness made between the late 1800s and the 1980s, this exhibit looks at the connection between the idealized landscapes depicted in the works and the long-standing perception of the American countryside as rugged and limitless. Many of the paintings show areas that would eventually become National Parks. UCI Institute and Museum of California Art, 18881 Von Karman Ave., Irvine, 949-476-0294,

SEPT. 26
The premier event on the dog surfing circuit, this annual contest features the best dog surfers catching as many waves as they can in 12-minute heats. Judges assess the dogs’ top five waves on confidence level, length of ride, and overall ability to ride the wave. This year, the competition will take place withhout spectators, but fans can take part in a virtual watch party online. Huntington Dog Beach, 100 Goldenwest St., Huntington Beach, 949-297-6536,

Virtual Events

Bowers Museum
The Bowers Blog takes a deeper look at items from the museum’s collections, providing photos and historical background on such varied topics as Fijian weapons; artwork featuring the American flag; archival photographs spotlighting sports in Orange County; and California painter Guy Rose. In addition, virtual art instruction from Kidseum teaches children how to make tie-dye mandalas and coffee watercolor landscape paintings, while the virtual speaker series September lineup will include video conversations with experts on the women of early Disney animation (Sept. 5 and 6) and the 20th Century Fox collections (Sept. 13).

Laguna Playhouse
Local singer-songwriter Jason Feddy continues to add to his series of “Jason Sings the Police Blotter” songs, musical sendups of the oddest entries on the Laguna Beach police blotter. Playhouse artistic director Ann E. Wareham also regularly updates her “Intermission With Annie” series, in which she chats with actors and directors like Joe Spano and David Ellenstein.

Musco Center for the Arts
As part of its @ The Musco series, the center recently added videos of two online discussions: “CoPA Designs for the Musco Stage,” in which theatrical designers for Chapman University’s College of Performing Arts discuss how they create sets, costumes, lighting, and sound design for CoPA’s productions; and “Voices of Our Time,” which features musicians and directors from the LA Opera explaining how they adapt a show originally staged at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for the smaller Musco stage.

Pacific Chorale
The group’s website includes several videos of past performances, including rehearsals for the 2019 “UnSung Heroes” program and recordings of live performances of “Ave Maria” and “Gloria in Excelsis.” In addition, it offers a list of links to audio recordings that feature the chorale.

Pacific Symphony
Symphony musicians continue to add “Quarantine Clips” to the group’s YouTube channel, featuring everything from backyard performances of the Beatles’ “Blackbird” to principal cellist Warren Hagerty’s “The Bach Project,” every movement of all six Bach cello suites played in 38 clips. KUSC-FM (91.5) will broadcast Augustin Hadelich playing Paganini’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the symphony Sept. 6.

Philharmonic Society of Orange County
The symphony orchestra maintains a list of free live-streaming concerts being presented by music organizations around the world. The listing is frequently updated and includes between five and 15 concerts daily, from live online music festivals to chamber music concerts.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts
“Center at Home” now includes video series led by teaching artists such as Maria Simeone, whose “Mindful Moments” videos focus on practicing mindfulness; Cynthia Callard, who leads viewers through a step-by-step process for making multimedia artwork; and Renée Ortiz, who offers a tutorial on collage. The site also continues to add highlights from Broadway shows, musical acts such as Jazzy Ash and the Leaping Lizards, and ballet troupes including American Ballet Theater.

South Coast Repertory
SCR Community, a series of free online arts events, continues on Sept. 14 with the final installment of “El Teatro de la Comida,” an exploration of the ways food brings people together. Reservations are required to receive the link to the live event, and ticketholders are encouraged to contribute to a food drive organized by SCR in collaboration with Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

Muckenthaler Cultural Center
The center’s sculpture garden has expanded to include “The Wave” by Daniel Miller, a large brushed stainless steel piece; eight 19th- and 20th-century Papua New Guinea story poles created by Latmul craftsmen that feature detailed carvings of crocodiles, fish, and birds; and “Untitled” by Sofia Enriquez, a large-scale painting with modern portraits inspired by traditional Catholic paintings.

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