Hiatus Calendar

    Graduate student Kerry Hagan of the UCSD music department has composed a piece for the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus. The piece incorporates three elements: tape, orchestra and electronics to express the idea of space. The piece will be performed through March 14 at Mandeville Auditorium. The show begins at 8 p.m. For more information, contact (858) 534-4637.

    Spring break plans may not include heading out to Newport, R.I., to catch the prestigious Newport Jazz Festival, but that’s okay — it’s coming to San Diego. The festival, which began in 1954, features some of the most prominent jazz musicians today, including Terrance Blanchard, Cedar Walton and Lew Tabackin. The festival takes place at the East County Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $27. For more information, call (619) 440-2277.

    Whether you’re Irish or an Irish wannabe, ShamRock2004 is the place for those aged 21 and up to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Whether you’re there for the green beer, Irish music, or some combination of the two, this is certainly the place to take a much-needed break from finals. Bands scheduled to perform include Irish punk band Down’s Family, local Celtic bands, the dance troupe Pride of Erin and others. The party begins at 5 p.m. in the Gaslamp Quarter and lasts until midnight. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 the day of the event. For more information, call (619) 233-5008.

    Many claim to be movie buffs, and now is their chance to up the ante with the Premiere Pic Series. For six weeks, Madstone Theatres will premiere an independent film to San Diegans each week. The films shown have not been picked up by distributors until now. The series features a variety of themes, from the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as seen through a wedding to a musical about murder in outer space. The series runs through April 23. Ticket prices vary. For more information, call (619) 299-4525 or visit http://www.madstonetheatres.com/premierpicseries.

    The woes of a fallen singer struggling on the road to sobriety may seem soap opera-ish, but Neil Simon’s “The Gingerbread Lady” adds humor and life to what would be an otherwise tragic tale. The play tells the story of Evy, a successful singer who reunites with her family and friends after finishing rehab. The play runs through April 25 at Cygnet Theatre. Showtimes vary. Tickets are $22 to $26. For more information, call (619) 337-1525.

    Three divas, one stage — sounds like a recipe for disaster. Not quite. A spin-off of “Three Mo’ Tenors,” Marion J. Caffey once again embarks on an journey to present the beauty of the black operatic voice with “Three Mo’ Divas.” The show focuses on three female voices singing blues, jazz, Broadway tunes and gospel. “Three Mo’ Divas” plays at Lyceum Theatre through April 18. Showtimes vary. Tickets are $25.50 to $42.50. For more information, call (619) 544-1000.

    It’s hard to get more melancholy and bittersweet than San Diego native Gary Jules. The singer/songwriter has gained notoriety for his cover of Tears for Fears’ “Mad World,” which was featured on the “Donnie Darko” soundtrack. Many may think Jules has a fondness for simple, sad songs — and they’d be right. After his first record languished, Jules released 2001’s Trading Snakeoil for Wolftickets on his own, leading to a cult following overseas and a reputation as a master songwriter. The show begins at 7 p.m. at Canes Bar & Grill. Tickets are $10. For more information, call (858) 488-1780.

    What would a bus ride from hell be like? That’s the concept C.S. Lewis’ novel (and stage adaptation) “The Great Divorce” undertakes. Using a similar style to his beloved series “The Chronicles of Narnia,” the play looks at the question of the consequences of our actions in our future lives after death. “The Great Divorce” plays at Lamb’s Players Theatre through May 2. Showtimes vary. Tickets are $22 to $48. For more information, call (619) 437-0600.

    Bring some hip hop to spring break when N.E.R.D. and Black Eyed Peas play at 4th & B. The popularity of these two hip-hop groups has steadily grown with their new releases (2004’s Fly or Die for N.E.R.D. and 2003’s Elephunk for the Black Eyed Peas). With N.E.R.D.’s reputation as one of the most respected hip-hop pairings, and the Black Eyed Peas’ entrance into the MTV arena, it’s no wonder that their first show, at 8 p.m., is sold out. Luckily, a second show begins at midnight. Tickets are $23 in advance and $25 the day of the performance. For more information, call (619) 231-4343.

    Cheesy, heartfelt poppy ballads are Kelly Clarkson and Clay Aiken’s specialty, as they proved on “American Idol.” Clarkson’s rise to fame was aided by her popular single “Miss Independent,” and she has since done everything from soundtracks to bad movies-based-on-reality-shows. Even though fellow “American Idol” alumnus Aiken wound up in second place, his fans clearly thought differently, which helped shoot his album to number one. The pair will perform at Cox Arena at 7 p.m. Tickets are $38.25 to $48.25. For more information, call (619) 594-0429.

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