Theater & Performing Arts

Laurie Anderson

When: May 7-8, 8 p.m. 2010

Performance artist Laurie Anderson has tackled just about every big issue in the book. Her greatest hits include "O Superman (For Massanet)," a 1981 piece that used maternal imagery to represent the international arms race, and 2008's Homeland, which fixated on election year oratory, post-9/11 patriotism, and consumer fetishism. This year, Anderson returns to Zellerbach Hall (Dana St. and Bancroft Way, Berkeley) to present Delusion, a new multimedia work that she premiered at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver. Compared to Homeland, this new piece is less grounded in the present and more oriented toward magical realism. It incorporates gothic imagery, ghostly freighters, specters from the past, and forests that could either be a sordid natural environment or a representation of the author's mind. Like all of Anderson's shows, Delusion will center partly on spectacle and partly on the deeply psychological soundscape that Anderson creates by blending electronics with classical violin. But language is paramount: She is, first and foremost, a storyteller. Laurie Anderson performs Friday and Saturday, May 7 and 8. 8 p.m., $30-$56. CalPerfs.Berkeley.edu

Rachel Swan

Price: $30, $42, $56

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