February 28, 2024

VBGIGs Performance Series Returns in 2024

A series of free performances by world-class, culturally rooted artists will begin March 2024.

Villalobos Brother 2024 VBGIGS Performers

Pictured: Grammy Award-winning Villalobos Brothers

VBGIGs (Virginia Beach Globally Inspired Gatherings), a series of free performances taking place throughout the city, is set to return beginning March 2024. In alignment with the City’s arts strategic plan, Arts Plan 2030, VBGIGS aims to bring world-class, culturally rooted performing artists to Virginia Beach residents in their neighborhoods and nearby venues.  

VBGIGs events are family-friendly, and kids in attendance will receive a VBGIGs passport and collectible destination stickers to track which world regions they’ve “visited” at different VBGIGs performances. The series encourages attendees to learn about their neighbors near and far and spark cultural curiosity through the performing arts. 

Presented by the Virginia Beach Cultural Affairs Department, all VBGIGs performances are free to attend. Four performances are scheduled for 2024 between March and July. See the schedule below.

Mediterranean Blues featuring Melos 
Sunday, March 17, 2 p.m., Simon Family Jewish Community Center, 5000 Corporate Woods Drive  

Spyros Koliavasilis and his protégé Nicholas Mitrione perform together in the duo known as Melos, meaning melody in Greek. This free, family-friendly concert features Rebetiko music, sometimes referred to as the Greek Blues. Started by people known as Rebetis — marginalized communities, such as refugees and the urban working class of the 1920s and 1930s — it captures the feelings of oppression, despair, hope and love like no other music. 

Melos duo will perform a selection of songs and present a meet and greet in the Fleder Multipurpose Room. Program presented in partnership with the Greek Embassy of Washington, D.C. and the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater

Mediterranean Blues featuring Melos

Festa Brasil featuring Dendê & Band 
Sunday, April 14, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), 2200 Parks Ave.  

Dendê and Band will bring Carnival to Virginia Beach! This tropical, traditional-meets-funkadelic extravaganza will have you out of your seat and grooving to the sounds of Brasil in a whole new way. Dendê & Band embodies a cross-pollination of deep roots in Samba de Roda and Candomblé blended with an eclectic palette like rumba, afrobeat and mbalax. 

Dendê will also host his solo Recycled Sounds demo-performance in honor of Earth Day and the Virginia MOCA exhibit, Mark Dion and Alexis Rockman: Journey to Nature’s Underworld, which explores our strained relationship with the environment. Specific performance times will be posted at Virginia MOCA’s Family Fest entrance.  

Program presented in partnership with Virginia MOCA and the Mamadêlê Foundation. 

Dendê Band

Classical Dance of India featuring Padmarani Rasiah Cantu
Saturday, May 4, 2 p.m., Meyera E. Oberndorf Central Library, 4100 Virginia Beach Blvd.   

Come and journey with us to another land, into the timeless and alluring mythology of India! Join Padmarani Rasiah Cantu and her senior disciple, Bhagya Nair, as they share exciting, dramatic and epic tales from India through Bharatha Natyam, a classical Indian dance form over 2,000 years old. It began as a temple worship and is now performed at venues throughout the world, giving audiences a chance to experience the beauty and mystery of India while advancing an understanding of its people and traditions. 

Program presented in partnership with Virginia Beach Public Library and Asian Indians of Hampton Roads.  

Padmarani Rasiah Cantu

Amor a Mexico: An Evening with the Grammy Award-Winning Villalobos Brothers 
Friday, July 12, 7 p.m., Zeiders American Dream Theater, 4509 Commerce St. 

The music of Mexico has long been unforgettably unique, but when the Villalobos Brothers perform their distinctive brand of contemporary folk music from Veracruz, it is electrifying, intoxicating and extraordinary! Experience music inspired by their childhoods in Veracruz, Mexico. Blending Son Jarocho, Son Huasteco, and Latin Jazz, they spark an unforgettable vision of the sound of the Mexican spirit. Their music bridges cultures, and their stories of immigration and achievement inspire all. Fall in love with Mexico, its music and its most dynamic band of brothers.  

Program presented in partnership with the Hispanic Leadership Forum of Hampton Roads, Inc. and the Zeiders American Dream Theater.  

Additional 2024 VBGIGs performances will be announced as scheduled. For more information about VBGIGs events, and to register for your free tickets, visit culture.virginiabeach.gov/events, or email artsinfo@vbgov.com.  

Contact Information

Cultural Affairs Department

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