21 Things To Do in Dallas This Week

Get your Luchador fix while you body slam some tacos at this weekend's Taco Libre.
Get your Luchador fix while you body slam some tacos at this weekend's Taco Libre.
Brian Maschino
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Where would the world be without the miracle of nature's greatest mechanically separated meat product? Monty Python would not have turned Spam into a touchstone of modern comedy. Celebrate one of Britain's greatest contributions to the world with a live performance of Spamalot, the hit Broadway musical based on the classic film Monty Python & the Holy Grail, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St. This downright goofy parody follows King Arthur and his brave band of warriors (except for Robin the Not So Brave) as they search for the holy cup of Christ. Written by Monty Python star Eric Idle, Spamalot became the toast of Broadway after its premiere at the Shubert Theatre in 2005 and won three Tony Awards, including one for best musical. Tickets are between $42 and $96 and can be purchased online at Ticketmaster.com. Danny Gallagher

For those who missed out on Dallas International Film Festival, there’s no need to smother the popcorn cravings in an Orville Redenbacher bag at home. Film fest season is just getting started, and Dallas’ next fun comes Wednesday through Sunday in the form of the USA Film Festival at Angelika Film Center, 5321 E. Mockingbird Lane. The fest spans feature length to shorts, kicking off with Wednesday’s Halston biopic and a can’t-miss Thursday screening of Family, which stars Taylor Schilling, Kate McKinnon, Matt Walsh and tells the tale of an estranged aunt attempting to babysit a niece with plans to run away to the Juggalos. Friday and the weekend offer up all manner of shorts — the Narrative I and II screenings look particularly intriguing — features and salutes to Udo Kier, Constance Towers, Ed Asner and Timothy Busfield (all of whom will be in attendance for their events). Many of the screenings are free (claim tickets at the Angelika the day of the show), but ticketmaster.com has them for $10 for the rest. Visit usafilmfestival.com for a complete schedule with film details. Merritt Martin

A swirling tapestry of Russian folk melodies, paradigm-cracking imagination and nods to past greats like Debussy and the composer’s own teacher Rimsky-Korsakov, Igor Stravinsky’s “danced symphony,” The Firebird, remains one of the most beautiful and entertaining pieces of music ever set to paper. Few musicians succeed, much less reinvent, with their first large-scale works, but The Firebird was an instant cultural and critical success from its debut. Beyond the realm of western classical music, The Firebird had an immeasurable impact on the music of John and Alice Coltrane, too, shaping the future of improvised and avant-garde music forever. Performances start at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, April 25-27, and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 28, at The Meyerson, 2301 Flora St. Tickets start at just $19. More info at mydso.com. Jonathan Patrick


The Denton Arts and Jazz Festival is a North Texas springtime tradition. It’s a three-day community celebration of music, art and the outdoors that offers performers on seven stages at Denton’s Quakertown Park, 321 E. McKinney Ave. This year’s festival brings in some of jazz music’s heaviest hitters, including Ravi Coltrane Quartet and Taj Mahal & The Phantom Blues, and a huge variety of musical acts throughout the weekend, including folk, blues, country, rock and polka (Denton’s own Brave Combo closes the festival on Sunday). There’s a juried art show, an arts and crafts area with clothing, jewelry and other handmade goods for your home, plus six food courts featuring a monster variety of food, from regular festival fare (think funnel cakes and hot dogs) to German, Asian and Cajun dishes. Kids will enjoy a dedicated area with stations for art projects and crafts, as well as games, face painting and all-important bounce houses. The festival kicks off from 5 to 11 p.m. on Friday and continues from 10 a.m. until 11 p.m. on Saturday, and 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free. Find more information at dentonjazzfest.com. Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Adaptations rarely bring honor to their source material, and when it comes to Shakespeare’s works, the results are typically worse. Enter Giuseppe Verdi’s Falstaff, his final work, a comic opera adapted from the playwright’s The Merry Wives of Windsor and a masterpiece through and through. Even at 80, the genius composer breathed fresh perspective into another of Shakespeare’s plays, just as he had done twice previously with Othello and Macbeth. Centered on the clumsy efforts of knight Sir John Falstaff to simultaneously seduce two rich, married women (who know each other), Falstaff is as funny as it is relevant; watching arrogant misogynists embarrass themselves never goes out of style. Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 26, Wednesday, May 1, and Saturday, May 4; and at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 28. Tickets start at $19. Find more info at dallasopera.org. Jonathan Patrick

Current events would suggest we are living in a sex farce at the end of the world. That description is also the subtitle of a new play written by Matt Lyle and Matt Coleman and directed by Jeffrey Schmidt, Raptured: A Sex Farce at the End of the World, in which the congregants of the Third Baptist Church of Uncertain, Texas, are convinced that the rapture — the supposed moment when believers vanish from Earth and are instantly transported to heaven, a belief one could only arrive at by taking literally an especially nonsensical passage of the Bible — will occur within the next two hours, and they’ve got to enjoy their last moments on Earth. The comedy opens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and runs through May 19 at Theatre 3’s Norma Young Arena Stage, 2800 Routh St. Suite 168. Other upcoming show times are 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday and 7:30 p.m. Monday. Tickets are $15 to $20, with discounts available for seniors, students and children. Jesse Hughey

10,000 Maniacs, the critically acclaimed Jamestown, New York, band, will kick off their 2019 tour in Houston and make it to Dallas just in time to hit the stage at Kessler Theater. They'll even come back for seconds, playing two shows back to back. Fort Worth folk act Izzy will open for the band both nights. As one of the first indie bands, they helped create college rock along with bands like R.E.M., and they’re still making music today. For almost four decades, 10,000 Maniacs hasn’t stopped hitting and playing shows. 2019 marks their 38th year in action, and they don’t show any signs of slowing down. Cob Vaughn


Environmental education and awareness of our planet are the attractions of the world’s largest EarthX Expo, going on all day at Fair Park, 3921 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., through Saturday. Download the EarthX mobile app to see the wide array of events and exhibits planned for the entire family, ranging from a tiny-house village, animal petting zoo and scuba diving, to bike testing, yoga and test-driving a solar car. At 10:30 a.m. Saturday, in the Hall of State, hear the Dallas mayoral candidates reveal their policies for the environment, followed at 11:45 a.m. by a program on climate action. Register online at EarthX.org for free admission or pay suggested $5 entry fee at the gate. For info, call 214-310-1200 or 214-206-9803. Reba Liner

Remember when taco night at your parents' house started with ground beef, a packet of seasoning and a stack of brittle, plastic-like, premade shells pulled from a yellow box? No? These were Midwestern gringo tacos — not a hint of fiery spice, and we never even heard of cilantro, let alone lengua. No one can argue they were good tacos, but they were pretty damn tasty to a 12-year-old. We've grown up and so has America's tacos, thanks to the influence of Mexican street food, but the joy that came with those long-ago taco nights remains. The Taco Libre festival perfectly captures the serious deliciousness of authentic tacos and the fun of eating six or seven of them in a sitting. Two taquerias straight from Mexico City are among the 25-plus locals that will fill Dallas Farmers Market Shed, 920 S. Harwood, this Saturday for the fifth installment of the festival. Enjoy $2 tacos, lucha libre wrestlers and live music from Bidi Bidi Banda, Las Carnales, Superfonicos and Mariachi Sol Azteca. The fun and food starts at 3 p.m., or 2 p.m. for VIP ticket holders. Advance tickets are $17 for regular admission and $55 for VIP and $10 for children ages 6-12 at Prekindle.com/TacoLibre. (Prices go up the day of the event, and it generally sells out.) Patrick Williams

One of the most interactive legs of the SOLUNA international music & arts festival, Passport to the Park returns with a day of free, culturally rich and diverse outdoor activities for families. The day includes a morning of yoga with classical music accompaniment and a community mosaic art project all are invited to help create. It showcases a series of live performances from Booker T. Washington’s Mariachi Pegaso, Helping Hand Drums, SMU Meadows’ World Music Ensemble, the Bruce Wood Dance Project, the riveting Banda Magda and more. Passport to the Park starts at 10 a.m. Saturday at Klyde Warren Park, above Woodall Rodgers Freeway. This event is free. More info at mydso.com. Jonathan Patrick

The trio born, bred and formed in Oak Cliff known as The Bralettes play a catchy brand of bubblegum punk that’s sure to warm even the coldest of cynical critic’s hearts. Paulina Costilla (guitars and vocals) backed by drummer Andy Cantu and bassist Molly Hernandez know how to write ear worms with emotional lyrics any outsider can identify with. The LP-release show serves as the last date of The Bralettes East Coast tour, which saw the trio play for the first time at venues in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia and nearly a dozen other cities. To date, The Bralettes only have six songs available to stream online — one three-song EP and three singles — so the band’s debut full-length, 10-song album Cheers! has been eagerly anticipated by fans. Cheers! was produced, recorded, mixed and mastered by Ian Salazar at The Acid Pad in Arlington. (Multi-instrumentalist Salazar plays bass and sax in Acid Carousel, and guitar and vocals in Majik Taylor — to name a few). Daniel Rodrigue

In just two years, Fort Worth’s Fortress Festival has earned rave reviews from local and out-of-town attendees and critics alike for mixing world-class touring acts with homegrown North Texas talent. The fest has already been called a “Can’t Miss Music Festival” by Harper’s Bazaar, an “arbiter of taste” in Texas Monthly and reportedly a “defiant outpost for Black music” by the Daily Dot. Headlined by Fort Worth’s own Leon Bridges, Fortress Fest’s third annual two-day event boasts a buzzworthy 22-act lineup with a cool mix of performers, ranging from hip-hop to indie-rock and indie-pop to a couple of “collectives.” A few of Saturday’s highlights include sets from Dallas-based Def Jam signee Bobby Sessions, pop and R&B singer-songwriter Tinashe and Scottish synth-pop trio Chvrches, who headline the first night. But the chart-topping rap duo behind behind “Black Beatles,” “Swang” and “No Type,” Rae Sremmurd, is slated to deliver one of the fests can’t-miss sets. Sunday’s bill includes eight-piece London-based electronic-pop collective Superorganism, Houston-based psych-funk band Khruangbin and Tank and the Bangas soulful fusion collective out of New Orleans who won the NPR Tiny Desk Contest in 2017. Visit fortressfestival.com for the full schedule. Daniel Rodrigue

Perhaps the greatest Ozzy Osbourne guitarist still breathing, Zakk Wylde has become something of an institution in his own right. From his iconic guitars, tooth-chipping riffs and badass biker aesthetic, everything about him could be found right up the alley of any red-blooded metal head. The fact that Wylde is also known as a genuinely agreeable fellow is just gravy. His band, Black Label Society, has reached its platinum 20th anniversary and is celebrating by issuing a re-release/re-blend of their debut studio album, Sonic Brew, on May 17. Due to Wylde’s inability to acquire the original masters for the album, portions of the “re-blend” were re-created in studio by BLS’ drummer and bassist, Jeff Fabb and John DeServio. But before the album’s official re-release, BLS will spend two nights in Dallas as part of their 20 Years of Sonic Brewtality Tour. The first night, the band will play Sonic Brew in its entirety, with the second being dedicated to greatest hits. This should be a standout weekend for local head bangers. Nicholas Bostick

It's been over a decade now since "Young Folks" was a mainstay of modern rock radio, car commercials and campus dorms. The ubiquitous and catchy single featured non-ironic whistling, staccato beats and just enough whimsy to fit right in with mid-2000s musical fads. And though it still holds up surprisingly well all these years later, the song's authors, Swedish alternative rockers Peter Bjorn and John, are far from one-hit wonders. Out on tour behind the recent release of their eighth studio album, Darker Days, the trio — consisting of Peter Moren, Bjorn Yttling and John Eriksson — continue to create moody, atmospheric medleys and sunny, melodic pop hooks that prove worthy of repeated listens. Yttling has also carved out a nice niche as an in-demand collaborator, having written and produced with the likes of Chrissie Hynde, Robyn and Neko Case. Yell for "Young Folks" if you must, but enjoy the remainder of their vast catalog as well as they play Club Dada on Saturday night. Jeff Strowe


The author of the upcoming tome The Ever Expanding Encyclopedia of Fungi is promising to expand your understanding of psychedelic fungi at the First Ever Psychedelic Mushroom Convention, which will include lectures by mycologists including Alan Rockefeller and trauma therapist and researcher Heather Hargraves, a specialist in the “neurological underpinnings of various states of consciousness.” It’s an interesting time to have such an event, as the use of psychedelic drugs, including those found in various species of mushrooms, is being taken more seriously by mainstream scientists in recent years. The convention is set for 2:30 p.m. Sunday, but the venue was still up in the air. Search Facebook for "psychedelic mushroom convention" for the latest info. Tickets are $12 at knowlegeheals.stampr.io — and yes, the word “knowledge” is misspelled in that URL. Jesse Hughey

Majestic Theatre's tout for its 60th anniversary screening of Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot calls it "the funniest movie ever made." Fans of Mel Brooks or Monty Python might have doubts about that, but Wilder's movie has Marilyn Monroe at maximum hotness, so at least there's plenty to look at between the yuks, which are fairly frequent, if not exactly up to today's woke standard. Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis also star in this story about two jazz musicians on the run from the mob who don dresses and hide out in a girls' band. See it at the Majestic, 1925 Elm St., at 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets, $11.75, can be bought in advance at prekindle.com. Patrick Williams

From his online sports and culture commentary to his brilliant performance in provocateur Harmony Korine’s recent film The Beach Bum, Snoop Dogg never ceases to remain relevant. Celebrating the 25th anniversary of his indisputable masterpiece, Doggystyle, Snoop Dogg is touring with old friends Warren G, The G Funk All Stars, Tha Dogg Pound and more. Twenty-five years on and Snoop’s iconic delivery — smooth as velvet, languid as a dream — is as enthralling as ever, still scanning as something genuinely radical and peerless. Above lyricism, mood and even presence, Snoop’s insouciant vibrancy, the way he ambles through each bar, remains his greatest feature, each syllable and distinct emphasis a hook to itself. Rap will never find another stylist quite like Snoop Dogg. Jonathan Patrick

Long before the early uproar trying to demonize the style of rapping known as drill music, most of the young proliferators of the aggressive, violent style of hip-hop grew up on Chicago’s South Side during a particularly violent period in the city’s history known to be plagued by record numbers of murders and gang violence. Like other drill forerunners in Chicago, Keith Cozart grew up with the murders making headlines every week. Cozart reportedly started rapping on his mom’s karaoke machine as a young child, began recording at 11 or 12, and in 2012, at 17, he released his debut album as Chief Keef, Finally Rich, which included singles “I Don’t Like,” "Hate Bein' Sober" and “Love Sosa” — some of drill music’s most iconic songs. (Expect to hear all three songs at the concert.) Kanye West helped catapult "I Don't Like" to many new ears after dropping a remix on his Cruel Summer compilation album as "Don't Like.1." Whether folks love or hate Chief Keef’s delivery and style, he’s quickly solidified a cult-like following. Daniel Rodrigue


Dallasites101 and Downtown Dallas Inc. are hosting a late-night party at 7 p.m. April 25 to celebrate the installation of the interactive artwork Impulse in Main Street Garden, but Thursday already has plenty to do and Monday not so much. That makes the latter a grand day to take a nighttime ride on one of Impulse's dozen LED-lighted seesaws, which are rigged to create varying waves of light and sound as viewers ride them. Organizers call it interactive art; we call it a good excuse to ride a really tricked-out seesaw, aka the king of playground equipment. Impulse will be on display in the park, 1902 Main St., 9 a.m.-11 p.m. daily through May 6. Learn more at dallasartsdistrict.org/impulse-dallas Patrick Williams


A girl's dream to break away from her domineering, sexist mother in Los Angeles to attend school in New York is the framework for playwright Josefina Lopez's Real Women Have Curves. Issues of class, immigration and female empowerment also figure into the comedy-drama, which was made into a successful movie starring America Ferrera in 2002. Dallas Theater Center is bringing it back to the stage in a production directed by Christie Vela. Performances begin April 26 and continue through May 19 at Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. Tuesday's show begins at 7:30 p.m. Find tickets, $17.50-$65, and a complete schedule at my.dallastheatercenter.org. Patrick Williams


Wanna try 40+ Dallas restaurants in one night while sipping beer, wine and cocktail samples? You can go whole hog at Iron Fork, the Dallas Observer's annual food event bringing together some of the city's best restaurants, including Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse, Sandwich Hag, Taqueria Taxco and Five Sixty by Wolfgang Puck. While you’re eating, watch chefs Aundre Blassingame and Keith Browning throw down in a live cooking competition hosted by the World Food Championships. Advance tickets are $45 for general admission and $75 for VIP. It begins at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, at Centennial Hall in Fair Park, 1001 Washington St. Visit observerironfork.com for tickets and information. Beth Rankin

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