21 Best Things to Do in Dallas This Week: February 28-March 6

If it's escapism you're after, try The Illusionists, a mind-bending show playing at Fair Park through March 5.EXPAND
If it's escapism you're after, try The Illusionists, a mind-bending show playing at Fair Park through March 5.
courtesy The Illusionists
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Tue 2/28
When reality is too tiresome, entertainment becomes our salvation. It serves as an escape from the stressors of the news cycles, of our daily lives — and its effects are pretty magical. Especially in the case of The Illusionists, which brings a production chock full of sleights of hand, disappearing acts and spectacle that’s seriously over-the-top to the Music Hall at Fair Park as part of Dallas Summer Musicals’ season. Beginning at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28, and running through Sunday, March 5, you can lose yourself in the astonishing feats of escapologists, tricksters, inventors and manipulators. The Illusionists is nonstop mind-bending fun, and even if they can’t make your reality totally disappear, they can certainly suspend it for a blissful couple of hours. Music Hall at Fair Park, 909 1st Ave., 7 p.m., $14 to $95, ticketmaster.com. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

The Lumineers got their start after Josh Fraites died of a drug overdose in 2002. Josh was the best friend of Lumineers vocalist and guitarist Wesley Schultz, and the brother of drummer and percussionist Jeremiah Fraites. It just goes to show that sometimes in the wake of tragedy, something really great can emerge. The indie-folk band have really made a name for themselves professionally the past few years and Tuesday the Denver-based band best known for their love song “Hey Ho” is playing Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie. Verizon Theatre, 1001 Performance Place, Grand Prairie, 7 p.m., $49.50 to $64.50, axs.com. — Diamond Victoria

Wed 3/1
English trio of sisters, the Staves, have been a fixture of the indie folk rock scene for almost a decade. They’ve toured with Bon Iver and released their second full-length album If I Was in 2015. An EP, Sleeping in a Car, was released a year ago. The band argues that “nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows.” And, hey, it’s 2017. They’re probably right. But they pull it all off with the style and ease of a band that is pioneering an entirely new sound of a generation to come. The Kessler, 1230 W. Davis St., 8 p.m., $16 to $30, thekessler.org. — Diamond Victoria

There are many colors to the South, specifically True South, a group exhibition at PDNB Gallery that runs through April 15. The show features diverse works — landscapes and environmental and classic portraits — on Southern subjects ranging from the Mississippi Delta to Texas. Artists include Keith Carter, Earlie Hudnall, Jr., Brandon Thibodeaux, Shelby Lee Adams and more. The show runs in conjunction with Jeanine Michna-Bales’ exhibition Through Darkness to Light: Seeking Freedom on the Underground Railroad, which covers approximately 1,400 miles of paths, crossings and sites used by abolitionists and slaves seeking freedom. PDNB Gallery, 154 Glass St., Suite 104, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., free, pdnbgallery.com. — Merritt Martin

Thu 3/2
The latest entry in the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s Texas Instruments Classical Series might very well send Sergei Rachmaninoff rolling in his grave. The program includes the master’s First Symphony and his Fourth Piano Concerto — two works that wreaked havoc on the composer’s confidence. Rachmaninoff suffered psychological breakdowns at the hands of both pieces, which are unique in their fierce perfectionism, foresight and the infamously disastrous critical receptions they both initially received. Rachmaninoff’s First Symphony owes its train-wreck debut to a supposedly drunk conductor and lack of practice, while his Fourth Piano Concerto fell victim to uneven, last-minute edits (the composer would go on to tinker with the composition for the next 30-plus years). For all the bitter history surrounding them, both works provide rare glimpses into Rachmaninoff’s manifold brilliance. The talented Garrick Ohlsson joins the DSO for Fourth Piano Concerto; Hans Graf conducts. Performances take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, March 2 to 4, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 5. Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St., 7:30 p.m., $26 and up, mydso.com. — Jonathan Patrick

The Moody Blues’ Justin Hayward knows a thing or two about selling 70 million records worldwide. Why? Because the Moody Blues have done just that. The classical-rock fusion group became widely popular in the ’60s rock ’n’ roll scene, and then took an unexpected turn into pop with hits such as “Wildest Dreams” and “I Know You're Out There Somewhere” in the ’80s. Hayward, the band’s singer and guitarist, is playing an intimate solo show Thursday at Granada Theater. Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave., 8 p.m., $47 to $85, granadatheater.com. — Diamond Victoria

Fri 3/3
It was the insult that launched a thousand T-shirt lines: that moment, during an October presidential debate, when Donald Trump interrupted Hillary Clinton to call her a “nasty woman.” Those two words sparked a solidarity movement among American woman. In the arts community, “nasty women” have come together to host exhibitions that make visual statements of solidarity and serve as a rallying point and organizational platform for female artists and allies. Sunset Art Studios will host the Dallas Nasty Women Exhibition, a sister event to the original NYC show that kicked off in January. From 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, March 3, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 4, you’ll have a chance to check out political statement pieces, tributes to women’s rights and human equality and visual proclamations of strength. And if you choose to take one of those home with you, 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit the Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center. Sunset Art Studios, 1811 Balboa Place, 7 to 9 p.m., free, sunsetartstudios.com. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Despite the catchy name, Nightmares on Wax is neither an ’80s horror movie inspired tribute band nor a recreational party drug. It is instead, the nom de plume of George Evelyn, a legendary English DJ and respected hip-hop innovator. With a wide-ranging discography of studio albums, DJ mixes and one-off singles, Evelyn has earned rave reviews and respected press for his laid-back groove approach to spinning. Shying away from a signature sound or formula, Nightmares on Wax tunes typically burn bright and eclectic, running the gamut of several genres, from R&B to modern jazz to acid house. In short, the music makes for a powerful and memorable conglomeration of styles and substance. His Friday night appearance at It’ll Do would be an ideal way to wind down after a long week. It’ll Do, 4322 Elm St., 10 p.m., $10 to $15, see Facebook. — Jeff Strowe

Sure, it’s fun to put on some random green stuff and claim the heritage of Saint Patrick as an excuse to get rip-roaring on some pints. But what’s better is celebrating some serious Irish and Celtic culture, food and drink and entertainment courtesy of the 35th annual North Texas Irish Festival. The fun begins at 6 p.m. Friday, March 3, in Fair Park, and continues from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Saturday and 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Sunday. From dancing and musical performances, to culinary demonstrations, to a Celtic Village and vendor marketplace to workshops and whiskey tastings, the NTIF has it all — yes, even sheep herding — to get you thoroughly green with excitement. Individual daily tickets are $10 to $20, and two- and three-day passes are available for $25 and $30, respectively. Fair Park, 1300 Robert B. Cullum Blvd., 6 p.m., $10 to $30,
. — Merritt Martin

Fort Worth DIY venue 1919 Hemphill has been shut down due to code complaints. A fundraiser at Three Links this week will help it get back on its feet.
Fort Worth DIY venue 1919 Hemphill has been shut down due to code complaints. A fundraiser at Three Links this week will help it get back on its feet.
Haley Yates

When we saw him, James McMurtry picked up guitar after guitar, alternating between electrics and acoustics, as he inspired a crowd of 200 people to move their legs while standing in place, although a few of the more wild attendees spun and danced in front of the stage. Similar to his father Larry McMurtry, who is an award-winning, best-selling author (Lonesome Dove, The Last Picture Show and Terms of Endearment), this Texas songwriter’s lyrics tell stories of everyday life. Songs like “Choctaw Bingo,” one of his more popular tunes; “We Can’t Make It Here,” Americana Music Awards’ Song of the Year; and “Too Long In the Wasteland,” a tune off his debut album, proved to be crowd-pleasers. Dan’s Silverleaf, 103 Industrial St., Denton, 9 p.m., $18 to $22, danssilverleaf.com. — Christian McPhate

Five years ago, The Public Theater in New York embarked on a mission to make their work, well, public again. To do this they partnered with Stanford professor and anthropologist Shirley Brice Heath and developed Public Works, a program that trains non-actors found in community centers throughout the city to perform in productions of Shakespeare. Not only has Heath’s research shown dramatic transformations in the health and self-image of the participants, but the performances themselves have been remarkable. Now Public Works is branching out to new cities, and Dallas is lucky to be the first guinea pig. See 200 volunteer, first-time actors give their all to Shakespeare’s The Tempest beginning 8 p.m. Friday, March 3, at the Wyly Theatre. Performances continue through Sunday. Call 214-880-0202 for exact times and to secure your tickets, which are free. Wyly Theatre, 2400 Flora St., 8 p.m., free, 214-880-0202. — Caroline North

Sat 3/4

The days of subtle seduction, artistic striptease and hourglass-figured women in pop culture, widely celebrated in the 1940s, are not entirely gone. Naughty, but playful, performances by stripteuse with figure-hugging corsets may seem like a thing of the past, but Dita Von Teese reignited the classic entertainment enjoyed by men and women with the wave of Neo-Burlesque in the 1990s. Von Teese, who's real name, Heather Renée Sweet, is just as glamorous, grew up celebrating the iconic beauties of the classic film and pin-up era. And on March 4 and 5 at 7 p.m. at House of Blues, 2200 N Lamar St., Dallas will get a chance to experience the steamy entertainer first hand. Tickets starts at $135 and are available at houseofblues.com. - Diamond Victoria

If it’s no longer enough for you to practice your warrior poses in the confines of a sweaty yoga studio, consider this an officially sanctioned excuse to break out and work that bridge pose on … a bridge. The annual Yoga on the Bridge event, hosted by All Out Trinity, spans the Trinity with asanas, deep breaths, and namastes aplenty. From noon to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 4, the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge will host yoga practitioners of all levels as they strike a pose. Instructors Jennifer Lawson, Todd Boergerman and Woni Lang of Sync Yoga will put participants through their paces for a satisfying outdoor experience that will stretch both body and soul. Registration is $15 for adults and free for children; proceeds benefit the Trinity Commons Foundation. Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, Singleton Boulevard at North Beckley Avenue, noon to 1 p.m., $15, see Facebook. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Vinyl junkies and DJs will have a chance to add to their collections as 30 vendors spread their bins and crates filled with 12-inch records, 45s and memorabilia across 40 tables for the Discogs Presents: Crate Diggers Dallas Record Fair & After Party at Club Dada. The family-friendly, all-ages Record Fair runs from noon to 6 p.m. with a 21-and-up after-party kicking off at 8 p.m. The after-party features legendary Detroit House DJ and producer Kai Alcé, Chicago-based Zernell who founded the record label Grimy Edits and the clothing line Grimy Gear, as well as Stones Throw Records’ J. Rocc was one of the original turntablists who started DJing in the mid-’80s before founding the internationally influential Beat Junkies in ’92. A fantastic lineup of local DJs — including Gavin Guthrie, Wanz Dover, JT Donaldson and more — will spin records during daytime sets while folks flip through the vendors’ crates. The event is free to attend with no RSVP required; organizers say folks can “just show up with a valid ID” for the after-party. Club Dada, 2720 Elm St., noon to 6 p.m., free, see Facebook. — Daniel Rodrigue

The livelihood of DIY art spaces in Dallas came under question last year when several complaints about code compliance arose and some spaces were shut down. 1919 Hemphill is one of the most iconic and longest running DIY venues in North Texas, and found itself among these safe art spaces under scrutiny. Now the venue is slated to host their first show in almost two months on March 10. And tonight offers up a great opportunity to support 1919 as Three Links puts on a benefit for the venue with local bands iill, Obstruction and Vault Dwellers. Three Links, 2704 Elm St., 9 p.m., $10, threelinksdeepellum.com. — Diamond Victoria

Long before the proliferation of smartphone cameras and Instagram filters, Dan Burkholder was one of the first fine art photographers to embrace digital technology, creating the digital negative back in 1992. Burkholder literally wrote the book on it, Making Digital Negatives for Contact Printing, in ’95. And his prints continue to combine the control of digital advances in photography with the classic look of darkroom prints. Jill Skupin Burkholder, Dan’s wife, is also a talented artist, photographer and printer. Sun to Moon Gallery presents the couple’s exhibition Kindred Spirits: The Photography of Dan Burkholder & Jill Skupin Burkholder. Both artists are introducing new prints, including some remarkable images Dan shot during three recent trips to Cuba. Many of Jill’s images on exhibition were captured in the Great Trinity Forest in Dallas. Jill captured the diverse wildlife living within the native areas of Dallas with a motion-sensitive trail camera and then transformed the photographs into encaustic works of art using resin and beeswax. The couple will be on hand to discuss their work during the artists’ reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, March 4. The exhibit runs through March 18. Sun to Moon Gallery, 1515 Levee St., 5 to 8 p.m., free, suntomoon.com. — Daniel Rodrigue

Even though the mainstream love Green Day received during the worst of the George W. Bush years has not reached the same level in 2017, the Bay Area trio remains highly relevant. The band’s shows are part arena rock show and part tiny club show; even the people in the back of the place feel involved. American Idiot might be the band's biggest achievement, but they surely had an amazing run up to it, especially with Dookie and Nimrod, albums they hopefully will play some tunes from. And don't miss opening act Against Me! The four-piece will knock your socks off with their blend of tuneful, banged-up pop-punk. American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave., 7:30 p.m., $49 to $70, americanairlinescenter.com. — Eric Grubbs

Sun 3/5
Dallas is quite the food city. We’ve got everything: top-notch barbecue, unbelievably beautiful achievements in pastry, huge hotels serving all the courses and small cafes dishing up casual perfection. The Dallas chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier has it all too … or, rather, the chefs who create it. Sunday the LDEI celebrates women in wine, food and hospitality with A Dame Good Party (formerly known as Raiser Grazer) from 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday, March 5, at Sixty Five Hundred. Stroll more than 30 stations manned by top female chefs, restaurateurs, cheese makers, mixologists, pastry chefs and others. Mingle with women of the wine industry and at 7:30 p.m., participate in a live auction. Proceeds from A Dame Good Party benefit the LDEI Dallas chapter’s scholarship funds, endowments and programs which support women in food, wine and hospitality. General admission is $75 ($100 day-of); VIP is $125 (available through March 4). Sixty Five Hundred, 6500 Cedar Springs Road, 6 to 9 p.m., $75 to $125, prekindle.com. — Merritt Martin

He’s sung about having sex with dolphins. He’s sung about sandwiches, and love-making and God all in one breath. He makes R&B that sounds like it’s from 2050, but feels like it’s from 1970. His ultralight-beaming mega single “I Believe I Can Fly” soundtracked a movie about Michael Jordan teaming up with the Looney Tune cartoon characters in an intergalactic basketball game played against mutated, extraterrestrial amusement park proprietors. His approach to songwriting is at once crass and myopic and gloriously — somehow gorgeously — tasteless. For all the beauty in R. Kelly’s music there’s just as much blandness counteracting it, just as much imagination as ignorance, as much emotion as some inferior substitute of it. But there’s never been an R. Kelly before R. Kelly and there certainly won’t be another one after him. Pure individuality — is there a greater measure of artistic success than that? Gas Monkey Live, 10110 Technology Blvd. E., 8 p.m., $95 to $150, gasmonkeybarngrill.com. — Jonathan Patrick

Even if you consider yourself a country bumpkin, this is one city whose allure is hard to beat. Chicago’s Second City is a 55-year-old comedy metropolis, bustling with the kind of talent that has both tickled our national funny bone and informed our cultural dialogue for decades. At 8 p.m. Saturday, March 4, the boundary-eschewing comedy troupe comes to the Kessler for “The Best of Second City,” a revue of most cutting-edge and infamous songs and sketches from its venerable history. Re-experience the hilarious material first made famous by alums like Stephen Colbert, Gilda Radner, Bill Murray, Tina Fey and more — plus get a glimpse of the current generation of superstars. The Kessler, 1230 W. Davis St., 8 p.m., $24, prekindle.com. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Tue 3/7
Every year, I either make or break my nut by selling as many helicopters as I can at this event. You think you know what it entails? You think you can start snapping necks and cashing checks? This is the Hai Heli-Expo 2017. POW! It’s the largest helicopter trade show and expo in the world! POW! POW! This three-day event from Tuesday, March 7, through Thursday, March 9, will feature vendors, industry professionals and more than 700 exhibitors from all over the world with 60 different types of helicopter aircraft on display on the show floor. POW! There’s also more than 100 courses, seminars and workshop on the latest in helicopter flying technology that cover everything from safety measures to salesmanship. POW! Membership registration is required. Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, 650 S. Griffin St., 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., $30 to $510, heliexpo.rotor.org. — Danny Gallagher

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