21 Best Things to Do in Dallas This Week, January 3-9

Take a chilly dip in the Fraternal Order of Eagle's pool Sunday during the Polar Plunge fundraiser and get a warm heart and a doughnut for your trouble.
Take a chilly dip in the Fraternal Order of Eagle's pool Sunday during the Polar Plunge fundraiser and get a warm heart and a doughnut for your trouble.
Melissa Hennings
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Tue 1/3
If getting lost in at least one good book is a resolution of yours this new year, it may be easier surrounded by some like-minded individuals in a cozy cafe. The Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture's book club is hosting a meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 3, at Deep Vellum Bookstore (3000 Commerce St.) to celebrate Kobo Abe's 1962 work Woman in the Dunes. The prize-winning Japanese novel tells the tale of Jumpei Niki, an entomologist who visits the seashore to collect insects. When he misses the last bus back home, nearby villagers offer him a house in the dunes to stay until morning, but things take an unexpected twist when Niki realizes their intentions aren't so innocent. He is expected to protect the home, and a woman in it, from the onslaught of sand threatening to overtake it. Without giving away too much of the plot, it's definitely set to keep you turning the pages. The novel was eventually turned into a film and was quickly translated into English two years after its original publishing. Deep Vellum Books, 3000 Commerce St., 7 p.m., free, dallasinstitute.org. — Diamond Victoria

Wed 1/4
The office world created by playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ Pultizer Prize-nominated play Gloria is the kind of office space that will make you run back to your workplace with your arms outstretched and a huge smile on your face. The office of a famous Manhattan magazine turns into a cutthroat killing floor as a group of aspiring writers and storytellers show just what they are willing to do to make it to the top of the office totem pole. See the carnage for yourself at the Studio Theatre at the AT&T Performing Arts Center during one of several performances at 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Wyly Theater, 2400 Flora St., 7:30 p.m., $40 to $99, attpac.org. — Danny Gallagher

Soul Funktion at Off the Record features $4 beers and a specially selected soundtrack crafted by one of Dallas’ most celebrated musicians, Wanz Dover. The jack-of-all trades artist, who’s been doing music professionally for 25 years and touches nearly every genre of music with his multiple bands and special projects, will be producing an exploration in funk, soul, afrobeat and dub music. The dance-worthy mix boasts gems from Moodymann, Theo Parrish to The O’Jays and so many more. Dover’s eclectic residency may even inspire some crate digging of your own, which can also be accomplished at Off The Record, since it offers a wide selection of vinyl for sale in the bar. Off the Record, 2716 Elm St., 9 p.m., free, see Facebook. — Mikel Galicia

Thu 1/5
If you’re worried that the groundbreaking Broadway musical Rent loses its edge in the hands of the Junior Players, you needn’t be. The material might seem a little mature for the teens acting it out on stage, but the provocative take on navigating dreams, love and loss in young adulthood is a veritable theatrical starter kit, giving its cast a wide range of emotions to draw from and a wonderful primer in musical theater. Besides, teenagers invented edginess — they’re right at home here as Roger, Mimi, Tom, Maureen and Mark. You won’t miss some of the more overt references to sex and drug use or the stray S-bombs that have been cut as you see these teens blazing trails in this pop culture phenomenon at Dallas City Performance Hall (2520 Flora St.) at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 5; Friday, Jan. 6; Saturday, Jan. 7; and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 7. Dallas City Performance Hall, 2520 Flora St., 8 p.m., $10 to $15, juniorplayers.org. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Nothing shakes off the holiday stupor quite like the artistry of a good classical performance, and this week the Dallas Symphony Orchestra is offering up something special. Dukas’ whimsical symphonic poem The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (you’ll remember it from Disney’s Fantasia) might headline the program, but the event’s true highlight is the Dallas premier of Matthias Pintscher’s violin concerto Mar’eh. Spindly and beautifully contoured, Pintscher’s composition darts and weaves, hisses and roars, as it explores the textural and spacial possibilities of the violin. Debussy’s Images and his revolutionary Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, alongside Ravel’s Alborada del Gracioso, complete the program. Pintscher himself conducts. Performances take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Friday, Jan. 5-7, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 8. Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St., 7:30 p.m., $19 and up, mydso.com. — Jonathan Patrick

Fri 1/6
You’ll be able to experience the '80s, whether for the first time or the second, on Friday, Jan. 6, when '80s nostalgia tribute band the Molly Ringwalds take to the main stage at the House of Blues Dallas. This British-born tribute band call themselves “the world’s greatest '80s experience” from the songs they cover to the costumes they wear while they are playing. You’ll hear '80s staples like Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” and Nena’s “99 Red Balloons” being belted out by musicians dressed as members of Devo and Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snyder. They’ll take you back in time and you don’t have to risk altering the present or your very existence in order to do it. The show starts at 9 p.m. and the doors open at 8 p.m. House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., 8 p.m., $10 to $35, livenation.com. — Danny Gallagher

Josh Abbott and his band of fellow fraternity brothers have come a long way from their humble beginnings spent gigging for beer money in bars around Texas Tech University. The past several years have seen their star steadily rise as the drunken collegiate audiences have multiplied to include festival headlining slots, high-profile celebrity fans, and song placements in big-budget film and television soundtracks. Ever the Texans, though, the band still tends to reserve a large portion of their touring schedule for shows in the Lone Star State. Friday night's performance at Billy Bob's will likely bring out the best in the band, with their raucous mix of bare-bones country, ruminative songwriting, and sweet Texas soul serving as the perfect remedy for your post-holiday blues. Billy Bob's Texas, 2520 Rodeo Plaza, 10:30 p.m., $18 to $35, billybobstexas.com. — Jeff Strowe

Ask any of the truckers who have run into him along the highways, or any of the musicians who join him in the honky-tonks of Austin and you'll likely receive confirmation of why Dale Watson has been granted the nickname of "The Real Deal." Whereas many neo-traditional country acts in the past couple of decades have sung about trucking and life on the open road, the Austin-based Watson has kept it decidedly real. See him with Ray Benson at The Kessler on Friday. The Kessler Theater, 1230 W. Davis St., 8 p.m., $22, thekessler.org. — Kelly Dearmore

Sat 1/7
Of the extensive list of celebrity icons and heroes who died in 2016, for many of us, no death hit harder than the loss of David Bowie. To celebrate what would have been Bowie’s 70th birthday, Texas Theatre (231 W. Jefferson Blvd.) presents Forever Bowie — A Birthday Salute to Our Rock N' Roll Messiah, a two-night celebration. In addition to a costume contest, DJ Mr. Rid hosts Bowie Scaraoke in the Saloon with live visuals and music videos mixed by Ben Jousan (aka Dollar Ben of Video Juice). DJ Mr. Rid, Mark Ridlen by day, holds a special place in Dallas’ nightlife history as one of the original DJs at the legendary Starck Club, as well as the brief re-opening of the club in ’96. Ridlen’s massive music collection occupies three rooms of his house — so expect to hear some familiar favorites, as well as hidden gems from Bowie’s many alter egos from the Ziggy Stardust to the Thin White Duke to Aladdin Sane. The party is free to attend. Costumes recommended. The night kicks off at 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7. The following night at 10 p.m., the theatre hosts a Bowie dance party and birthday countdown with DJs Micheal J. Rox and George Quartz. Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., 10 p.m., free, thetexastheatre.com. — Daniel Rodrigue

Whether or not you care about our psychological need to feel fooled without losing our wallets and/or purses, you’ll definitely want to catch magician Michael Carbonaro’s live show at 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7, at the Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St. The world-renowned stage magician and star of TruTV’s hidden camera magic show The Carbonaro Effect will perform an evening of tricks, scams and illusions both from the stage and right in front of his audience members’ eyes. Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St., 7 p.m., $44 to $184, attpac.org. — Danny Gallagher

In both of their artist statements, Texas artists Katherine Houston and Roi James touch on the unknown. For Houston, it’s a lack of actual control over the outcomes of her “reverse paintings” on Plexiglas — she paints on one side, but the viewed result is what comes through the other side. For Roi, it’s the painted study and “exploration” of how the unknown, uncertainty, tension and chaos can result in harmony. Seems fairly perfect that Laura Rathe Fine Art (1130 Dragon St.) hosts their joint show Genesis through Feb. 11. See the works first during an opening reception at 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7. Laura Rathe Fine Art, 1130 Dragon St., 5 p.m., free, laurarathe.com. — Merritt Martin

Being reduced to just another band from Austin is something that happens far too often in the Live Music Capitol of the World. Year in and year out, hundreds of eager, young musicians play local venues and house shows, eager to make a name for themselves. Unfortunately, when a scene is brimming with that much talent, competition is stiff and it's hard to become more widely recognized. But psychedelic rock outfit The Mammoths have become widely recognized, and for good reason. The quartet weaves soulful lyrics with rhythm and blues to create their sound; a sound which parallels that of a young Led Zeppelin. They are making their second stop through Dallas Saturday night at Trees for the EP debut of their latest album, So Cold (currently available on Spotify). It's also the last show before the kickoff of their two-month tour across the U.S., where they will also be filming a documentary of their lives on the road. Trees, 2709 Elm St., 8 p.m., $10, treesdallas.com. — Diamond Victoria

Greg Piazza composes and snaps the simple, the uncluttered and the geometric through his camera lens as he travels. But photographs aren’t the final result of his artistic eye. As shown in Wall Gallery’s collection of Piazza’s work, Painted Lens, there’s an another layer. A painted one. Piazza translates his inspiring images onto canvas with an array of glorious colors. It’s a vivid representation of raw image versus developed … except which one is which may not be so literal or obvious. Wall Gallery (1529 Dragon St.) hosts the exhibition through Feb. 11. An opening reception offers first glimpses at 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7. Wall Gallery, 1529 Dragon St., 5 p.m., free, wallondragon.com. — Merritt Martin

Most people first encounter Tyler Shields' photographs because of some controversy surrounding some of his images. To put it mildly, the L.A.-based contemporary photographer, artist and filmmaker knows how to push people’s buttons from his black-and-white image of a muscular naked black man hanging a hooded Klansman from a tree to the paparazzi-style photograph of Lindsay Lohan’s breast being grabbed in a car. Truly one of the most provocative contemporary photographers, Shields evocative images prove anything but subtle. While some of his images may look impossible, Sheilds says he prefers to create worlds for his subject to inhabit. “I don't use any Photoshop,” Shields told ELLE. “Everything that you see is real.” After beginning his career directing music videos, Shields quickly moved to still photography. Shields’ list of fashionable faces and celebrity collaborations makes his photography remarkably attention-grabbing and eye-catching. His collaborators have included Mischa Barton, Emma Roberts, Aaron Paul, Demi Lovato, Francesca Eastwood (Clint’s daughter) and Lindsay Lohan. Samuel Lynne Galleries (1105 Dragon St.) hosts the opening reception for photographer Tyler Shields’ exhibition Provocateur tonight from 5 to 8 p.m. Shields will be attending the opening, which will also serve as a launch for his latest book, Provocateur. The exhibition runs through February 11. Samuel Lynne Galleries, 1105 Dragon St., 5 p.m., free, samuellyne.com. — Daniel Rodrigue

Abstract art is often confused with chaos, with many art consumers believing that the artists’ process was random and disordered, though with beautiful effect. Dallas artist Douglas Leon Cartmel turns that notion of the abstract on its head with works that give form and structure to some of the most random happenings in the world. His paintings take the form of graphic mapping, acoustic data, digital renderings and seascapes that coalesce the realistic with the arbitrary, creating happy and recognizable accidents. His largely monochromatic solo debut at Holly Johnson Gallery, 1845 Levee St., will open at 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7. White Noise brings together the atmospheric and structurally intriguing work of Cartmel, whose background in architecture lends a fascinating perspective to abstract art. The show will be on display through Saturday, March 18. Holly Johnson Gallery, 1945 Levee St., 5 p.m., free, hollyjohnsongallery.com. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Formed in the mid-'60s, Herman’s Hermits are an inexplicably relatable British pop-quartet from the beginnings of Beatlemania. Designed as a non-threatening R&B troupe, the group had minor successes in the States with danceable Billboard No. 1 hits like “Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter” and “Can’t You Hear My Heartbeat,” and remained a steady feature during the 1970s. After their time in the spotlight, the group has stayed alive through the efforts of its remaining band members Barry Whitwam (who plays in his own version of the band billed as "Herman's Hermits starring Barry Whitwam,” in North America) and original singer Peter Noone, who’ll be heading down to Winstar to play through some obscure but enjoyable English Beat. The show should be a treat for anyone with this band in mind or to at least celebrate the less remembered gem of a decade defined by its musicians. Winstar World Casino; 777 Casino Ave., Thackerville, OK; 7 p.m., $35 to $55, winstarworldcasino.com. — Nicholas Bostick

Sun 1/8
Those lovable “Hyppies” in East Dallas have cornered the market on the sugar rush, loading their pastry racks with sometimes ridiculous and highly coveted doughnuts that people will go great, great lengths to obtain. And it’s not just the marshmallows or bacon-and-banana laden pastries that keep people coming back: It also so happens that the folks behind the counter at Hypnotic Donuts like to spread more than a little love in their community. Their annual Polar Plunge event has been raising funds for charity and dropping body temps for five years now, as participants dive into a wintery pool via a $10 donation and then warm up with drinks, treats, and the general glow of goodwill afterward. This year’s event kicks off at the Dallas Fraternal Order of Eagles (8500 Arturo Drive) beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 8. And even if the only thing frosty this year is the topping on the donuts, the Alzheimer’s Association, Dallas Chapter, still benefits from the out-of-season swim session. For more information, find the Facebook event page. Fraternal Order of Eagles, 8500 Arturo Drive, 3 p.m., $10, see Facebook. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Cat enthusiasts will like the Divine Feline exhibit at the DMA.
Cat enthusiasts will like the Divine Feline exhibit at the DMA.
courtesy DMA

We like to classify ourselves as one of two kinds of people: cat people and dog people. But if we're all being honest with ourselves, there's just something magical about cats. Something dogs just don't quite possess. At least in the same way. Is it cats' complete disregard for the rules? Their quirky misadventures in kitchens and bathtubs? Or maybe how they slink around with the confidence of a god? Well, as it turns out, these little lions in our living rooms were once revered as gods. Ancient Egyptians caught on to the cat trend long before we wasted hours in bed watching videos of them knocking drinks off coffee tables. And if you haven't yet caught a glimpse of where these little kitties first saw their fame, head to the Dallas Museum of Art (1717 N. Harwood St.) today for the closing day of Divine Felines: Cats of Ancient Egypt, an exhibit featuring all kinds of cats and the role they played thousands of years ago. Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood St., 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., $16, dma.org. — Diamond Victoria

Mock the Red Hot Chili Peppers all you want. Say that frontman Anthony Kiedis simply reads the Wikipedia page for California over leftover funk and punk beats. Well, if they are that infamous on the internet, there are thousands of other people willing to pay good (to crazy) money to see them play the American Airlines Center. They have a decent new album to promote, called The Getaway, and they have plenty of hits from Californication, By the Way and Blood Sugar Sex Magik to play, too. That is saying something for a band that has been around since the '80s doing exactly what they want to do. Look for famous Chili Peppers superfan Michael "Grubes" Gruber somewhere in the audience, and you'll find someone in heaven. Certainly catch opening act Trombone Shorty with his Orleans Avenue act, who brings New Orleans jazz and funk into the modern world and is as relevant as ever. American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave, 7 p.m., $50 to $105, ticketmaster.com.  — Eric Grubbs

Former member of the Grammy Award-winning duo the Civil Wars, John Paul White has broken an almost decade-long silence with the release of his album, Beulah, in August of this year. The singer-songwriter, whose solo career has been anticipated by many, has been working behind the scenes for years, penning other artists' songs, such as Jason Aldean's "Relentless." He's also be a co-writer with Taylor Swift. Club Dada, 2720 Elm St., 7 p.m., $16 to $18, dadadallas.com.— Diamond Victoria

Mon 1/9

On a Friday night when you're stumped about what to do, and you comb the internet to find a plethora of options includings plays, classical music events and dance performances, you partly have TACA to thank. (Or blame, depending on how comfortable you are with your new problem, making a difficult selection.) The Arts Community Alliance, gives grant money each year to the Dallas performing arts organizations it deems the most aristically excellent and innovative. Last year it gave out $1.3 million to 48 organizations, and if you turn out to the 2017 TACA Grant Awards Celebration, which doubles as TACA's 50th anniversary party, at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the Wyly Theatre (2400 Flora St.), you can find out who the lucky recipients are for this year. The event, which includes a Champagne reception, is free to attend, but first you need to register at eventbrite.com. Wyly Theatre, 2400 Flora St., 5:30 p.m., free, eventbrite.com. — Caroline North

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