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School Matinee Series

Thank you to the teachers, schools and homeschoolers who signed up for our 2020-21 Mondavi Center Virtual Events series and to the performers who shared their artistry with us. And a huge thank you to the California Arts Council, the John and Eunice Davidson Fund and Yolo Community Foundation, who made it possible for these virtual events to be free of charge.

Check back later in the spring to see what we have in store for next school year or email Jennifer Mast at to be added to a distribution list for future events.


Archived 20-21 Events

Black Violin

Recommended for grades 4-12.
This event was available from November 9-December 18, 2020.

This 40-minute student performance video is accompanied by a 20-minute pre-recorded question and answer video.

Black Violin enters the student virtual space with an all new, high energy, performance that takes their unique blend of classical music, hip-hop, jazz and pop to new heights. Recorded at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Florida, this engaging, high definition multi-camera video covers themes of perseverance, exploration and unity with songs like Rise, Unbreakable, Believer, Dreamer and Impossible is Possible.  Embedded in the performance is a message for students and educators about challenging stereotypes and status quo conventions, and that pathways to success require commitment, practice and unwavering dedication.  During a separate pre-recorded question and answer session, Black Violin discusses their personal history, their journey to the stage, and their plans to continue their mission with their non-profit organization, Black Violin Foundation.


Calidanza Mexican Dance and Music

Recommended for grades K-6.
This event was available from December 2020-February 2021.

A dynamic California-based Mexican dance company, Calidanza performs the unique dances and music of Mexico in four separate 20-25 minute videos, which can be shown in any order. Introductions are in Spanish and English and include insights into the performing arts. Additionally, through short (2-10 minute) optional mix-and-match activity video modules, students learn rhythmic patterns, dance steps, songs, and crafts as they also learn about Mexican culture.

Calidanza is led by artistic director Steven Valencia. A dancer, choreographer, instructor, and director for the past two decades, Valencia was honored with the 2011 Maestro Award from The Latino Arts Network of California and the California Arts Council, awarded to a singular individual who is a master of cultural practice in the arts and a leader in the community


Dahlak Brathwaite

Adapting History
Recommended for grades 7-12.
This event was available from February-March 2021.

Adapting History is an oral telling of American music through history and American history through music. From gospel to blues, jazz to R&B, America has produced some of the most innovative music of the 20th century. Although the songs are easy on the ears, their inception occurred in cultural climates that were often discordant. Musical artist Dahlak uses spoken word poetry & hip hop to narrate the sometimes tense, sometimes strained history of our nation. This musical chronicle shows that despite struggle, conflict, and misunderstanding, we can still learn, adapt, and be brilliantly creative.


Mondavi Center’s School Matinee Series offers an extraordinary opportunity for school groups to experience the magic of live performance first hand. We have designed these matinee performances to complement and enhance K–12 curriculum, giving students entertaining, as well as informative, access to world-class multicultural, multidisciplinary artists. 
To be kind to the environment, we are no longer mailing printed tickets for school matinees. Each order will still have assigned seats.
To help prepare for a visit to the Mondavi Center at UC Davis, free CueSheet teacher guides are available to download.
Pre-Matinee Classroom Talks - This is a program managed by Friends of Mondavi Center, our donor-based volunteer support organization. Friends schedule school visits to classrooms attending specially selected school matinees to support the instructor’s preparation for students that are attending the performance. Docent Guides for each matinee are researched and written by Friends and distributed to the docents. A Classroom Talk lasts approximately 30 minutes. Every effort is made to satisfy the requests of schools regardless of distance (usually within 90 minutes of UC Davis). 

To Order

To be kind to the environment, we are no longer mailing printed tickets for school matinees. Each order will still have assigned seats and seating information will be mailed one month prior to the show date.

Mondavi Center Ticket Office
Attn: Group Sales
University of California, Davis
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616-8543

Parking: $10/vehicle*
Processing Fee: $8 with each order

*Parking price is valid through June 30, 2020. Parking fee not required for buses.

A purchase order must be submitted with all invoice requests.

Contact Us

For information on ticketing:

Rajiv Laffey
Event Supervisor and Group Sales Coordinator

For information on SMAT programs:

Jennifer Mast 
Arts Education Coordinator