All the world on a stage

The Mondavi Center announced its 2017-18 season Sunday. This will be its 15th anniversary year, and, as usual, the lineup celebrates artistic diversity. The latest season includes touring European orchestras (the Mariinsky Orchestra from Russia, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra from London); big name jazz acts (Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, for this visit fronted by pianist Chick Corea, subbing for bandleader Wynton Marsalis); a public radio star (semiretired Garrison Keillor); the Compañía Nacional de Danza from Spain, etc.

But there are will be some surprises as well. The season opens September 21 with Los Tigres del Norte, the venerable Mexican-American norteño band that formed in San Jose in 1968. These guys sing corridos and favor cowboy hats. Decades ago, you’d find them playing county fairs (they still do), but nowadays they also work the arts circuit at universities.

It wasn’t necessarily by design, but the upcoming Mondavi season also features an abundance of acts incorporating that much maligned instrument—the accordion. The main attraction will be the Accordion Virtuosi of Russia, a small orchestra of button-pushing squeeze-box players. Other acts include the Spanish gaita player Cristina Pato, the Irish band Danú, the jazz outfit Hot Sardines, and a Bosnian folk duo. For more information on dates and prices visit