Sami Ladeki, the iconic restaurateur behind Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza and Toast Gastrobrunch, has opened a blended concept — Toasted Gastrobrunch + Dinner — in Oceanside at 339 North Cleveland Street. Toasted offers all the brunch favorites from (now shuttered) Toast Gastrobrunch — Brisket Hash, Stuffed French Toast, Chilaquiles — served daily from 8am to 3pm. Then, at 3pm happy hour begins with shareables and other delicious items at half price until 6pm. The classic Sammy’s dinner menu then takes center stage featuring new specialties as well including an octopus shareable, a roasted lamb shank entrée, and lobster orzotto. The Oceanside location is steps from the pedestrian walkway to the beach and takes the place of the former Carte Blanche Bistro & Bar. “When we were presented this opportunity, we couldn’t pass it up,” says Ladeki. “The beauty of the design, coupled with the location and the amazing redevelopment of the downtown in Oceanside, made me fall in love with the site.” Being a veteran himself, Ladeki is extending a 20 percent discount to all military personnel, as he does at all of his locations.
La Jolla Music Society continues its 54th season this month with concerts by the very best artists in opera, classical, piano, blues, and jazz, and a bilingual kids’ concert that will delight children and parents alike. Taking over The JAI for two shows on Saturday, January 14, at 6:30 and 8:30pm, are Davina and The Vagabonds, who’ve carved a niche in the blues world with high-energy live performances and rollicking compositions. On January 18, LJMS presents the first concert date on Joyce DiDonato’s Eden tour, which will continue throughout North America and on to Europe. For this performance, DiDonato will be joined by the Challenger Middle School Choir under the direction of Marielena Teng. Just named the No. 1 classical pianist of all time by ClassicalFM.com, Leif Ove Andsnes returns to LJMS after 20 years on January 19. Andsnes brings us a program of lush, brooding pieces including the famed Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 31, with an unmatched wash of color and depth of sound. One of the world’s longest-running musical events, the Monterey Jazz Festival celebrates its 65th year with a once-in-a-lifetime ensemble on tour, landing at the Balboa Theatre on January 26. Back by popular demand, Latin Grammy Award-winning teaching artists 123 Andrés (“Uno, Dos, Tres Andrés”) return for two shows in The JAI on January 28 at 10am and 11:30am to get kids and families excited about learning and moving together in Spanish and English while singing, dancing, and sounding out as they compose an eclectic mix of sounds from all corners of Latin America. The month comes to a close with the LJMS debuts of two brilliant rising stars of classical music, violinist Johan Dalene and pianist Giorgi Gigashvili. First Prize Winner at the 2019 Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition and a 2019–2021 BBC New Generation Artist, 20-year-old Swedish phenom Dalene delights audiences with his refreshingly honest musicality. This Discovery Series program on January 29 in The Baker-Baum Concert Hall includes challenging works by Arvo Pärt, Lera Auerbach, Grieg, Brahms, and Ravel.
Corteo, the most enchanting arena production from Cirque du Soleil, is heading to San Diego for seven shows at Pechanga Arena from September 6 to 10. This unique production, directed by Daniele Finzi Pasca, first premiered in Montreal under the Big Top in April 2005. Since its creation, the show has dazzled more than 10 million spectators in 20 countries. The show brings together the passion of the actor with the grace and power of the acrobat to immerse the audience in a theatrical world of fun, comedy, and spontaneity situated in a mysterious space between heaven and earth. In a Cirque du Soleil first, the stage is central in the arena and divides the venue, with each half of the audience facing the other half, giving a unique perspective not only of the show, but also a performer’s eye view of the audience, an atmosphere like never before in Cirque du Soleil arena shows. The set curtains, inspired by the Eiffel Tower, and the central curtains, which were hand-painted, give a grandiose feel to the stage.