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Off Center Festival | Adventurous and Altogether Outrageous


Segerstrom Center’s annual Off Center Festival returns January 10 – 26 for another line-up of three bold and contemporary productions making their Festival debuts. The powerful and evocative performance piece HEAR WORD! Naija Woman Talk True opens the Festival telling the real stories of Nigerian women and their obstacles with an all-female company.

Then acclaimed Latinx artist Flaco Navaja presents his first full-length solo show Evolution of a Sonero. Closing the festival is Obie Award-winner Ethan Lipton and His Orchestra with their Vaudeville-esque musical show No Place to Go – a refreshingly poignant ode to the unemployed. With a diverse blend of music and theater, all three productions are sure to provide an adventurous start to the New Year!

HEAR WORD! Naija Woman Talk True
Thursday – Saturday - January 10, 11 & 12 at 8 p.m. Samueli Theater

HEAR WORD! is an exhilarating performance piece that combines artistry, social commentary and true-life stories of inequality and transformation, delivered by some of Nigeria’s most talented actresses. “Hear word” is Nigerian Pidgin for “listen and comply,” and the show delivers an intimate view into the lives of women from all corners of Nigeria who are facing unique and universal issues, including the limitation of potential for achievement, independence, decision-making, and leadership.

Flaco Navaja: Evolution of a Sonero
Thursday – Saturday - January 17, 18 & 19 at 8 p.m. Samueli Theater

Live music by The Razor Blades: Carlos Cuevas (piano), Waldo Chávez (bass), Gabo Lugo (percussion), Victor Pablo (percussion), Hommy Ramos (Trombone)

Evolution of a Sonero is the first full-length solo show by acclaimed artist Flaco Navaja. With unabashed love for The Bronx, a gift for crafting memorable characters, and genuine good humor, Navaja and six top-notch musicians — aka The Razor Blades — bring on the charm, the rhythm, and the soul essential to a Bronx Sonero. Paying homage to many great musical icons — from Janis Joplin to Menudo, from The Doors to Héctor Lavoe, from Jimi Hendrix to Rubén Blades — the play is as much about Navaja’s creative evolution as it is about the wild mix that gives life to a rhyme, a people and a culture.

Ethan Lipton and His Orchestra: No Place to Go
Friday & Saturday – January 25 at 8 p.m.; January 26 at 2 & 8 p.m.
Samueli Theater

In No Place to Go, Obie Award-winning playwright, actor and singer Ethan Lipton, with his fine three-piece group, delivers an irreverent and musical ode to the unemployed through jazz, blues, country and lounge stylings, and a whole lot of imagination. It’s spacy premise: the company Lipton has worked for is relocating to Mars. And he doesn’t want to go. “Inspired by the Dust Bowl Ballads, it’s a surreal amalgam of songs, monologues, confessions, and dreams told by a modern-day troubadour” (The New York Times). Insightful, delightful and timely, Lipton’s modern Everyman maintains an unflappable spirit and shows how to keep calm and carry on.

All tickets are $25 and are on sale now at, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa or by calling (714) 556-2787. Off Center, programs are recommended for mature audiences. 

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