Things To Do

21 Best Things to Do in Dallas This Week: March 28-April 3

Fan Expo returns this weekend with Mark Hamill, Stan Lee, Tim Curry and lots of cosplaying Dallasites.
Fan Expo returns this weekend with Mark Hamill, Stan Lee, Tim Curry and lots of cosplaying Dallasites. Mike Brooks
Tue 3/28
Los Fabulosos Cadillacs
has been making a fine blend of reggae, jazz and ska for almost 40 years. The Argentinian eight-piece has had many different members over the years with plenty of albums and world tours to boot. If you've never heard of the band, know that this is not some kiddie ska band you'll see on a random Warped Tour stage. This is a band that has legs, and has developed a sound set to a world beat, whether you know the language of their lyrics or not. All you really need to know is how to move to the rhythm of their music, which is quite enjoyable and powerful. Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 8 p.m., $75-$250, — Eric Grubbs

Every Tuesday night, the Lemmon Avenue location of Buzzbrews hosts a unique open mic experience with fewer predictably whiny singer/songwriters and more surprisingly talented opera singers, cellists and pianists. On Tuesday, you can join the good folks from Open Classical for an open mic night specifically catering to those who love to play (or love to hear) classical music. You’ll see an eclectic range of instruments, talent levels and musical styles — from a riveting string quartet playing Schubert to a tap dancer who improvises her movements to the accompaniment of a Mozart sonata. If you want to participate, you’ll need to sign up on the event’s Facebook page (just search for “classical open mic”), but sitting back and enjoying the show with some coffee or a beer requires no commitment and is always entertaining. Buzzbrews, 4334 Lemmon Ave., 8-11:30 p.m., free, — Katie Womack

Wed 3/29
The Dallas International Film Festival is about to start, and this year’s festival will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Oscar winning Bonnie and Clyde starring Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty. You've probably seen the classic film, and now's your chance to hear the movie’s Oscar-winning screenwriter, Robert Benton, talk about its creation at the Dallas Film Society’s annual Art of Film gala. This year’s event will feature a live interview and Q&A with screenwriter Benton, the man behind other Oscar-worthy films such as What’s Up Doc?, the original Superman, Kramer vs. Kramer and Places in the Heart. Sixty Five Hundred, 6500 Cedar Springs Road, 7 p.m., $500, — Danny Gallagher

Thu 3/30
Singer Richard Butler and his band Psychedelic Furs haven't released any new music in over 25 years. However, that hasn't stopped them from relentlessly traveling the globe and waving the '80s New Wave, post-punk flag proudly for adoring audiences. Although the band found success early in their run with a string of chart-topping hits, they are still perhaps best known for "Pretty in Pink," which was refashioned into the title track of the legendary John Hughes film of the same name. You can safely expect to hear that one when they hit the Granada stage Thursday night. Astute listeners should arrive early and catch Robyn Hitchcock, the extraordinary English songwriter, visual artist and gifted raconteur. A bit of a legend in his own right, Hitchcock just received the distinguished Grulke Prize for Career Act at this year's SXSW Festival. His history is also intertwined with that of the Furs, so a couple of onstage duets aren't out of the question. Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave., 7 p.m., $35-$80, — Jeff Strowe

If you're a film freak, then you live for film festivals. It’s like dying and going to Film Buff Heaven without the part where you actually die. The Dallas International Film Festival will give film lovers of all walks of life the chance to see some new and thoughtful movies and revisit some classics that helped make Dallas a mini-film mecca. The festival kicks off Thursday at Dallas City Performance Hall with a screening of director Arthur Penn’s Bonnie and Clyde. The festival runs through Sunday, April 9, with a series of screenings of new and notable movies such as director Noel Wells' Mr. Roosevelt, the sci-fi drama Rememory starring Peter Dinklage and the documentary Cassette: A Documentary Mixtape. Festival passes range from $150 to $750 per person depending on timeframe availability and access to different parts of the festival. Festival tickets can be purchased online at Also check the website for screening times and locations. Dallas City Performance Hall, 2520 Flora St., 7 p.m., $150-$750, — Danny Gallagher

On Thanksgiving Day in 1976, a little Band from Canada pulled into Nazareth for one last twirl upon the stage. Now 40 years later, a celebration of The Band’s final show is kicking off its second leg in Grand Prairie. The Last Waltz 40 Tour brings together former Allman Brothers Band guitarist Warren Haynes, legendary Louisiana musician Dr. John (who also played the original show in 1976), and Emmy Award winning musician and producer Don Was. A myriad of special guests and backing band members including the likes of Muddy Waters and Harry Connick Jr. will also be in attendance, and to top it all off Steady Rollin’ Bob Margolin and founding Band member Garth Hudson will take the stage at Verizon, all to pay tribute to one of the most important nights in rock ’n’ roll history. The original concert was immortalized in the Martin Scorsese-directed “rockumentary” of the same name and included music legends Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and Joni Mitchell, and while this show won’t be quite as star studded, only a time machine could give you a better chance to see The Last Waltz in person. Verizon Theatre, 1001 Performance Place, Grand Prairie, 8 p.m., $65-$149.75, — Nicholas Bostick

With just two albums under their belt, St. Paul and the Broken Bones have received hefty honors; Rolling Stone called them rock’s hottest band and Sir Elton John claimed them as one of his favorite bands. Elton John had to speak with singer Paul Janeway right after he heard their music and eventually invited the band to perform at his famous Academy Awards viewing party earlier this year. Stories like that are almost becoming routine for Janeway and the eight-piece band, who’ve been turning heads and garnering attention from all corners of the music world since the release of their debut album in 2014. Janeway’s grand, captivating voice is often compared to that of Otis Redding and Al Green, without exaggeration, and the band’s soul revival sound is laced with classic rock ’n’ roll. Their live shows are often described as fiery, wild and spiritual. Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 7 p.m., $30, — Mikel Galicia

Fri 3/31
He was in The Office. He was in Pineapple Express and This Is the End. Regardless of the format, Craig Robinson is always, always funny. While we’re all familiar with his work in television and movies, few have experienced Robinson in his natural habitat: stand-up comedy. And, in many ways, this is where the actor and comedian really shines. Incorporating live music, improvisation and his unique, laid-back charm, Robinson really brings the heat on stage. Catch one of his two stand-up dates Friday at the Arlington Improv. Arlington Improv, 309 Curtis Mathes Way, No. 147, 8 and 10:30 p.m., $32, — Jonathan Patrick

To say that stand-up comic Lisa Lampanelli is an acquired taste is an oxymoron, insomuch as it implies there's anything tasteful about the Queen of Mean. Her act, made popular by her appearances on celebrity roasts, is filled with the sort of comments your redneck, racist, homophobic uncle might say after a snootful at Thanksgiving dinner. Only in Lampanelli's case audiences laugh — loudly — as she unpacks stereotypes about Jews, blacks, Latinos, gays and every other ethnic group whose members fill her audiences, waiting their turns to be hit by the comic's fire hose of extremely un-P.C. humor. If only Uncle Earl had grasped the power of transgressive irony — if he didn't really mean what he says, unlike Lampanelli — he might have given up his job at the gas station and found success on the stand-up circuit. Lampanelli performs Friday at the Majestic Theatre. Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St., 8 p.m., $39.50-$44.50, — Patrick Williams

It’s time to get those feminist fingers flying, y’all. In honor of Women’s History Month, the Meadows Museum will host the Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday, March 31. It’s a celebration of women’s contributions to the arts with a practical purpose: participants will add to the body of information about female artists available on Wikipedia after a tutorial — and art experts and scholars will be on hand to bolster entries with sage advice on research and citations. The event also encourages women specifically to add content (though everyone is welcome), especially since less than 10 percent of Wikipedia contributors identify as female. That means there’s a potential for bias and a lack of female perspective on a site that’s responsible for filling in the gap for many information seekers. Bring your laptop and charger to this come-and-go event, and get ready to to make a digital mark on women’s history. Meadows Museum, 5900 Bishop Blvd., 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., free, see Facebook. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Brian Wilson has penned some of modern music's best compositions and lyrics. The former Beach Boy suffered the pangs of a "genius" status thanks to pressures from recording studios, his father and bandmates, but made it out alive and has given fans quite a canon of solo records to enjoy. Wilson released his 11th studio album, No Pier Pressure, a couple of years ago with guests including country artist Kacey Musgraves and indie rock duo She & Him. Wilson is one of few songwriters around today who shaped popular music into something visceral and timeless. Choctaw Casino Resort, 4216 S. Highway 69/75, Durant, Oklahoma, 8 p.m., $55-$75, — Diamond Victoria

Want to meet your heroes? People say it's risky, but you can find out for yourself when the
Fan Expo pop culture convention kicks off this weekend at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. Beloved stars Mark Hamill, Stan Lee, Tim Curry, Norman Reedus, Alan Tudyk and Eliza Dushku will be on hand to take photos with fans, sign autographs for them and headline live Q&A panels. There’s also plenty of things to do that don't involve famous faces, such as themed dance parties, screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and other films, gaming rooms, cosplay contests and seminars covering every aspect of the entertainment and comics industry. The three-day fan convention runs Friday through Sunday. Single-day passes are $25 in advance or $30 at the door on Friday, $50 in advance or $55 at the door on Saturday and $40 in advance and $45 at the door on Sunday. A deluxe pass for all three days of admission is $89 in advance and $95 at the door. Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, 650 S. Griffin St., Friday-Sunday, $25-$95, — Danny Gallagher

Sat 4/1
Whether it’s an upgrade to a fancy lens or a switch from digital to film, photographers are always on the hunt for new ways to capture stories or enhance their art. The Dallas Center for Photography narrows down the search a little with their Photo Swap Meet from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 1. There, shutterbugs will find 25 tables stocked with lighting, lenses, accessories and cameras aplenty with options to buy, trade or just stare longingly. Admission is $5 for the event, which is co-hosted by Don’s Camera. Dallas Center for Photography, 4756 Algiers St., 10 a.m-4 p.m., $5, — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Big Texas Beer Fest promises to deliver a memorable 2017 showing. For its sixth annual event, the fest is offering up over 500 unique beers and 120 breweries, along with limited edition swag, food trucks and a hell of a good time. Focused on shedding light on the North Texas craft beer scene — and the entire Texas beer community in general — this year’s beer fest marks a must-attend celebration for all local beer nerds. The two-day event takes place at 6 p.m. Friday, March 31, and 1 p.m. Saturday, April 1, at the Fair Park Automobile Building. Fair Park Automobile Building, 1010 First Ave., Friday-Saturday, $35, — Jonathan Patrick

Five months after the Edge flipped formats to Star 102.1 — and some of its playlist regulars migrated to the Eagle — Edgefest lives on. Headlined by Blink-182, who have been fine without Tom DeLonge, this year's lineup also mixes in local legends the Toadies and the Nixons, plus 311, the Offspring, Chevelle and Black Pistol Fire. It’s a long day, but the weather is usually enjoyable, or at least tolerable, this time of year. Sure, it's awkward that the local institution it’s named after is no longer around, but it's nice the festival didn't get the ax when iHeartMedia decided DFW needed one more station playing Maroon 5. Toyota Stadium, 9200 World Cup Way, noon, $9.71-$225, — Eric Grubbs
click to enlarge Party like it's 1995 at Foam Wonderland Saturday. - WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
Party like it's 1995 at Foam Wonderland Saturday.
Wikimedia Commons

When you hear the words "foam party" you might think of Ibiza in the '90s, sweaty bodies writhing to techno beats as suds are dropped from overhead, creating a sticky, fun mess. Or maybe you think of ... Gilley's Dallas in 2017? We were pretty sure foam parties had dried up with the supply of Clearly Canadian, but apparently they're still a thing. Foam Wonderland at Gilley's (1135 S. Lamar St.) bills itself as the "Ultimate Foam Party Experience." The touring, 16-and-up event features performances by EDM artists Carnage, Lookas, Protohype and NIGHTOWLS, and promises an intense laser light show. VIP means you get to skip the line and you'll get a free shirt and towel. A swimsuit and goggles is the recommended attire and don't forget to put your cell phone in a zip-close bag. Gilley's, 1135 S. Lamar St., 4 p.m.-10 p.m., $30-$50, — Caroline North

Dallas-born artist Nic Nicosia is known for his staged photographs and films that create dramatic portraits of their subjects despite their sometimes elaborate setups. At Home On Time features a selection from Nicosia’s current photographic series “living (in) rooms.” It’s a bit meta, really, with the images showcasing living spaces where the artist’s work currently hangs, but in true Nicosia fashion, he inserts even more props — from his own sculpture and drawings to flowers and other accessories — and stages with lighting and various activity for the residents involved. These portraits created via lived-in spaces are on exhibit noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday from April 1 to May 6 at the Erin Cluley Gallery, with an opening reception 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday April 1. Active participation has always been one of the most alluring things about Nicosia’s work, and At Home On Time should excite die-hard fans as well as those just discovering the photographer’s wit and feist. Erin Cluley Gallery, 414 Fabrication St., 11 a.m.-1 p.m., free, — Merritt Martin

Sun 4/2
Just under a year ago, the children’s museum Frisco Discovery Center gave up a chunk of its massive building to open the world’s first National Videogame Museum. Some snobbish parents who don’t let their children engage with anything more stimulating than a toaster oven probably thought the idea of an education museum dedicating an entire wing of its space to video games was counterproductive. However, anyone who’s been there can tell you that it’s about much more than playing video games. It’s an entertaining and educational space that chronicles an industry built on innovation, new technology, commerce, computer science, math and (God forbid) entertainment. So if you haven't been to this unique museum yet, you’ll get a chance to experience it for free when the National Videogame Museum opens its doors to the public without a cover charge on the weekend of its one-year anniversary from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, April 1, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, April 2. The two-day celebration will also feature video game tournaments, special giveaways and opportunities to take photos with video game cosplayers dressed as their favorite characters in addition to the museum’s regular exhibits such as its massive, playable Pong screen and the ’80s throwback video game arcade. National Videogame Museum, 8004 Dallas Parkway, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., free, — Danny Gallagher

If rap had a Mount Rushmore, Ghostface Killah would be on there twice. He’s the genre’s greatest storyteller; one of hip-hop’s most mythologized personalities, and a lyricist who capably channels the short jumps of Hemingway, the richness of magical realism, and the ferocity of the street all at once. Immediacy is at the forefront of all the very best emcees, and Ghostface has it in effortlessly uncoiling droves. Sure, it’s been a minute since Ghostface’s prime, but gods don’t age poorly — they grow, they change. The rapper’s metaphorical prowess and slithering bars haven’t so much dulled over the years as given way to a newfound wisdom, as made explicit in the carefully measured collaborations and concept work he’s explored of late. The don, the raconteur, the self-aware legend — which Ghostface will show up in Dallas this week? You’ll have to go to find out. Gas Monkey Live, 2330 Merrell Road, 7 p.m., $20-$40, — Jonathan Patrick

Play a giant game of Pong at Frisco's National Videogame Museum in honor of its first anniversary. - DANNY GALLAGHER
Play a giant game of Pong at Frisco's National Videogame Museum in honor of its first anniversary.
Danny Gallagher
Everyone’s favorite singalong cult classic, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, is every bit as weird now as it was some 40 years ago when it first left us scratching our heads, unable to look away from the screen. The musical comedy horror film introduced us to the garter belt and thigh high clad transvestite scientist, Dr. Frank-N-Furter. Tim Curry’s career would forever reflect the iconic role just like the heaps of glitter or layers of red lipstick he flaunted for the part. The Rocky Horror Picture Show was also the first film to inspire a shadowcast to play out the story on stage while the film rolled. And if you’ve never played the role of an audience member for the one-of-a-kind experience, now is your chance. Sunday The Church (2424 Swiss Ave.) hosts “Rocky Horror Movie and Shadowcast” presented by Los Bastardos. The 21-and-up event is free for those with a VIP “Dog Tag” and $5 without one. The Church, 2424 Swiss Ave., 8 p.m., $5, — Diamond Victoria

Mon 4/3
A frail, brunette girl, her hair pulled back in a wispy bun, clothed in a simple dress, crawls — perhaps pulls herself — across a field of tall grass toward a farmhouse in a clearing, well-worn tire tracks leading right to the front door, just a couple of yards away. The viewer of Andrew Wyeth’s famous painting, “Christina’s World,” never sees the girl’s face, so there’s no expression to draw from, and nothing more to glean from but her twisted body and thin, crimped fingers. From this painting, author Christina Baker Kline (Orphan Train) has created a world for the girl, blending fiction and reality, in her novel A Piece of the World. Restricted by illness to her farmhouse world, the Christina from the painting becomes an unlikely muse for Wyeth. Arts & Letters Live welcomes Kline to the DMA’s Horchow Auditorium Monday for a discussion and reading from her new release. Tickets are $20 to $40 at Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood St., 7:30 p.m., $20-$40, — Merritt Martin

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Caroline Pritchard studied English at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, and in 2012 returned to her hometown of Dallas, where she spends her free time seeking out new places to roller skate and play pinball.
Contact: Caroline North