21 Best Things to Do in Dallas This Week

Check out the Roni Horn exhibit at the Nasher Sculpture Center this week.
Check out the Roni Horn exhibit at the Nasher Sculpture Center this week.
courtesy Nasher Sculpture Center
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Tue 05/23
It’s hard to be ethereal and industrial at the same time, but Roni Horn’s exhibition at the Nasher Sculpture Center, 2001 Flora St., accomplishes exactly that. Her massive, heavy glass sculptures could double as some sort of construction equipment — until you get close and realize the marvelous complexity of them. The light that floods the Nasher plays with the surface of the glass, illuminating, radiating and reflecting a visual experience that changes with your perspective, with the time of day, and with the interplay of tiny flaws and precise curves on each piece. The effect is that the incredibly weighty pieces seem almost angelic, making Horn’s minimalism downright otherworldly. See the Horn exhibition from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays until Aug. 20. Admission to the Nasher is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors and members of the military, and free for kids younger than 12 and first responders. Visit nashersculpturecenter.org to learn more. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Every few years, some quirky trend resurfaces and takes over literature, film, beauty and music. It seems the tide of mermaid popularity is on the rise again with mermaid-colored hair, mermaid tails sold as bikini bottoms and even a live-action release this year of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale "Little Mermaid." But in 1990, the film Mermaids, based on the novel of the same name and starring Cher, took on a more metaphorical approach to our on-again, off-again obsession for the mythical creatures. Sure, the film lacks rainbow-colored fish-women singing love songs in the sea. But legend says mermaids attracted men who became enchanted at the possibility of love but eventually drowned or left because the two worlds were incompatible. That plays along nicely with the plot of one woman’s love-’em-and-leave-’em lifestyle. Catch some of the mystic as Magnolia Theater, 3699 McKinney Ave., screens Mermaids at 7:30 and 10 p.m. Tuesday, May 23, as part of its Big Movie series. Tickets are range from $8.50 to $10 and can be purchased at landmarktheatres.com. — Diamond Victoria

Wed 05/24
Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon and Betty Ford became fast friends as members of the Congressional Club, the group for those married to current and former members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. One Thirty Productions presents Elaine Bromka and Eric H. Weinberger’s Tea for Three, a play that goes behind the scenes with each of the first ladies, turning Johnson, Nixon and Ford into emotive, theatrical characters through their stories, speckled with political opinion and thoughts on their roles in history. Together, they traversed the ins and outs of political life, each with her own set of successes and challenges before serving the United States as first lady. Tea for Three takes the stage for its final performances from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 24, and Thursday, May 25, at the Bath House Cultural Center, 521 E. Lawther Drive. Tickets are $12 to $16. Call 214-532-1709 or visit onethirtyproductions.org. — Merritt Martin

The questions of how we all ended up on this big blue ball we call home and how long we’ve been on it are as old as time — however old you think time is, anyway. Creationism and evolution are certainly hot topics. But in 1925 when a public schoolteacher decided to spread the gospel of Charles Darwin instead of God, he broke the law, leading to the Scopes trial, formally known as The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes. The then-media spectacle would ultimately become the inspiration of the 1955 fictional play Inherit the Wind, written by Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee. At the time, the play was a means to discuss the McCarthy hearings, and in 1960, Spencer Tracy and Gene Kelly starred in its motion-picture debut. But you can check out all the drama firsthand during Dallas Theater Center’s production of the still-timely through June 18 at Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. Wednesday's show starts at 7:30 p.m. For more showtimes and to purchase tickets, visit attpac.org. — Diamond Victoria

It could just be coincidence that Sundown at Granada, 3520 Greenville Ave., is playing the 2004 Mean Girls not long after its Broadway counterpart was announced to debut in March 2018. Yep, it’s definitely a thing. The Plastics return with all the cattiness and one-liners for a stage production of the classic teenage comedy written by Tina Fey. So to get into the spirit of things, and enjoy half-price whisky while you’re at it, Sundown’s rooftop screening at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 24, is where you need to be. Get caught up in all the over-the-top high school drama again with Cady, Regina, Gretchen and Janis at this free event. Wearing pink is optional. For more information, visit sundownatgranada.com. — Diamond Victoria

Thu 05/25
It’s hard to visit the Dallas Farmers Market without imagining the amazing meal one could put together with all of the fresh, seasonal produce and food products available. Thanks to the Farm Shed Dinner at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 25 (dinner is served at 7:30 p.m.), neither imagination nor much effort is necessary … on behalf of the diners, that is. The Dallas Farmers Market and Tres Dallas welcome Grow It Forward Farm of Edom to The Shed, 1010 S. Pearl Expressway, for a meal featuring dishes such as fried green tomato with chow chow, tarragon buttermilk and watermelon radish, peach al pastor quail, pork tenderloin and roasted squash. Tickets are limited and cost $70 for dinner, drinks and gratuity. Purchase them online at dfmfarmshed.com/dinners-2/. Keep an eye on this site for future dinners as well. — Merritt Martin

It’s time to bend and snap, y’all: Elle Woods is back in town with Legally Blonde: the Musical. Theatre Arlington, 305 W. Main St., stages the beloved tale of tiny dogs, pastel suits, big dreams and expensive legal educations obtained solely for the purpose of sticking it to a douchebag ex. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through June 4. Let Elle inspire you with her perk, her legal prowess and her determination to show the world (particularly the aforementioned ex) that she’s more than just a sorority girl with a pink-hued wardrobe. She’s a sorority girl with a pink-hued wardrobe who has crushing student debt — so there. Tickets are $20 to $25 at theatrearlington.org/show-blonde.html. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

If the word “circus” evokes visions of a sepia-toned theatrical experience as opposed to a loud, gaudy and vaguely exploitative big top, then you’re going to want to step right up for Circus 1903: The Golden Age of Circus. This production, from the folks who brought you The Illusionists and War Horse, assembles daredevils, aerialists, contortionists and all the other captivating circus acts you’d expect, puts them in gorgeous costumes and then introduces circus elephants that will blow your mind — mostly because they’re puppets. That’s right: no more chained-up, downtrodden pachyderms. Instead, Circus 1903 utilizes innovative puppeteers to bring you all the majesty of circus animals without the cruelty. It'll bring on the ballyhoo at the Music Hall at Fair Park, 909 First Ave., from Tuesday, May 23, through Sunday, June 4. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and 1:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $16 to $95 at ticketmaster.com. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Legendary punk band X will play one of the best venues in Dallas on its 40th anniversary tour. Fronted by John Doe and Exene Cervenka, the harmonies remain one of the greatest sounds on the planet. With the guitar majesty of Billy Zoom, who can jump from playing like Eddie Cochran to Johnny Ramone in an instant, and DJ Bonebrake, a rock-solid drummer, the group is hard to beat. Though it's been around for almost a handful of decades, people want to hear the classics from the first four albums. Whether it's "White Girl," "The World's a Mess, It's In My Kiss" or "Los Angeles," these songs have never lost their luster. But don't take this band for granted. It won't be around forever. The show is at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 25, at The Kessler, 1230 W. Davis St. Tickets are $26 at thekessler.org. — Eric Grubbs

Legally Blonde: The Musical is running now at Theatre Arlington.
Legally Blonde: The Musical is running now at Theatre Arlington.

Fri 05/26
Professional Elvis Presley impersonators prefer to be known as Elvis tribute artists — or simply ETAs. And this weekend, North Texans have a chance to witness performances by some of the top Elvis tribute artists from around the globe as they gather to compete at Texas’ Tribute to Elvis Festival and Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest from Friday through Sunday, May 26-28. Southfork Ranch, 3700 Hogge Drive in Parker, hosts the three days of Elvis-themed entertainment meant to honor the life, music and fans of Elvis. Each day, the festival will feature Elvis-themed shows in the ranch’s Oil Baron’s Ballroom, including Friday’s "Long Live the King," celebrating Elvis’ musical career; Saturday’s “Rockin’ Across Texas,” featuring greatest hits and concert classics; and Sunday’s "Spirit of the King," showcasing Elvis’ gospel music, followed by some of Elvis’ country classics. Three-day all-access passes cost $195 in advance or $225 at the door and include all shows, all rounds of the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest preliminary heat, reserved seating for the events and access to the nightly after-hours parties. Single-day tickets cost $85 in advance or $95 at the door. Events start at noon Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday, with headlining performances at 8 p.m. For tickets, more details and a complete schedule, visit texaselvisfestival.com. — Daniel Rodrigue

In their first tour since Summer 2015, Irish icons U2 will put on a show they already played 30 years ago in Fort Worth. U2’s 1987 album, The Joshua Tree, was frontman Bono’s love letter to America and its traditional forms of music and will be played in its entirety, along with a selection of older hits and possibly snippets of the group's still-in-production album, Songs of Experience. The show is presented with a clear political message, but one that fits well with the equally political album. Nonetheless, reviews of the first few shows in the tour (Dallas will be the sixth) have said the music is the driving force. The Lumineers will open for U2 in Dallas but will likely be overpowered by nostalgic tracks like “With or Without You” and "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For," presented against an accompanying video specially made for each of Joshua Tree’s 11 tracks. The show is at 7 p.m. Friday, May 26, at AT&T Stadium, 1 AT&T Way in Arlington. Tickets start at $35 and are available at ticketmaster.com. — Nicholas Bostick

Halloween is so far away that it feels like it’s in another century. You can’t speed up time, but you don’t need to break the laws of time and space to dress like your favorite movie monster or celebrate all things horrid and macabre. The Famous Monsters Convention, organized by the horror fan magazine Famous Monsters, will celebrate the long and storied history of horror, sci-fi and fantasy movies and TV shows with a series of special programs and events from Friday, May 26, to Sunday, May 28, at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Dallas. This three-day convention will feature celebrity guests including renowned monster actor Ricou Browning from the original Creature from the Black Lagoon, Butch Patrick from The Munsters and all three of the Lone Gunmen from TV’s X-Files; special clinics and classes on makeup and costume-making techniques; art and costume contests and more. The Sheraton Hotel is at 400 N. Olive St. Three-day passes are $69 per person or $99 with a merchandise bonus. Family passes that include four three-day adult passes are $199 each. One-day passes are available for $29 on Friday and Sunday and $39 on Saturday. Visit famousmonstersconvention.com to purchase tickets or learn more about the convention. — Danny Gallagher

In December 1983, New York art-rock act Talking Heads was on what would turn out to be the band’s final tour. It was touring to promote its latest album, Speaking In Tongues, which had become the band's commercial breakthrough release. Over the course of three nights at Hollywood's Pantages Theater, director Jonathan Demme and cinematographer Jordan Cronenweth captured some proverbial lightning in a bottle by documenting the magical performances of David Byrne, Tina Weymouth, Chris Franz and Jerry Harrison at the Talking Heads’ peak as the the band played through several of its best tracks, including "Psycho Killer," "Once in a Lifetime" and "Burning Down the House." The concert footage was edited and released as the groundbreaking 1984 concert film, Stop Making Sense. Memorable for scenes including Byrne’s oversized “big suit” and his dancing with a lamp, the film is nearly universally acclaimed as one of the best concert films of all time, and Leonard Maltin once called it “one of the greatest rock movies ever made.” See a late-night screening of the classic film at Inwood Theatre, 5458 W. Lovers Lane, as a part of the theater’s Midnight Madness series. The screening begins at 11:59 p.m. Friday, May 26. Tickets cost $10.50 at landmarktheatres.com. — Daniel Rodrigue

It's summertime, and that can only mean one thing: We’re getting another Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Johnny Depp’s most lucrative film franchise has become as familiar with the summer season as sunburn, heat exhaustion and the West Nile virus, and this one is no exception, thanks to the release of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. A new sequel can be a hit-or-miss affair. So if you have to see the movie because you’ve got kids who love to play pirates in the backyard or a spouse who wishes you were Jack Sparrow, you might as well go to a screening that will guarantee you a good time, no matter how good or bad the movie is. The Alamo Drafthouse in Dallas is offering a special Pirate Party the night of the film’s opening with a 2-D screening from 8 to 11 p.m. Friday, May 26. The party will feature a costume contest for the best-dressed pirate in the bunch, as well as a live performance by the Dallas pirate band The Bilge Pumps. The party is free to attend. Tickets for the 7 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. screenings of the movie are $12.45 per person and can be purchased at the box office or online at drafthouse.com. — Danny Gallagher

The Dream of Gerontius is a journey of epic proportions that follows a man from death to judgement and ultimately purgatory. Considered Elgar’s most brilliant choral effort, The Dream takes up themes as heavy — and heady — as eternal grace, isolation, brute morality and the prospects of infinite pain and unending pleasure. Meditative, painterly and forceful on a grand scale, the composition is fueled by a very human sort of drama as much as abstract notions of spirituality and religion. This will be the Dallas Symphony Orchestra premiere of what is arguably Elgar’s magnum opus. Directed by Joshua Habermann, the 200-strong Dallas Symphony Chorus will be out in full force. Our very own Jaap van Zweden conducts. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, May 26-27, at the Meyerson Symphony Center. Tickets start at $25. More info at mydso.org. — Jonathan Patrick

U2 will play Joshua Tree in North Texas for the second time — 30 years later.
U2 will play Joshua Tree in North Texas for the second time — 30 years later.
Danny North

Sat 05/27
The month of May has a lot of great things going for it, but one of our favorite things is the announcement that various farmers markets are open again, featuring produce plucked at freshness, the finest of meats, and jams and jellies waiting for early morning toast. And if you’re at the Farmers Market at Cedar Crest, 3163 Cedar Crest Blvd., between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday, May 27, you’ll also get a live cooking demonstration by chef Eboni Dionne. This Saturday marks the first of the season for the market nestled in the Cedar Crest neighborhood with the perfect view of Dallas’ skyline, but it’s definitely not the last. The next market will open June 3 and every other Saturday through the summer. Check out Facebook for more on the Farmers Market at Cedar Crest and Dionne. Admission is free; bring cash for goodies. — Merritt Martin

Pia Camil has long bridged the intersection between commodity and humanity — using her body or sometimes her audience’s bodies to anchor expressions of consumer culture or to mingle with the trappings of commerce. Her latest exhibit at the Dallas Contemporary, 161 Glass St., titled Bara, Bara, Bara, tackles notions of trade and U.S.-Mexico relations. She’s collected T-shirts that were made in Latin America, exported to the U.S., and used and discarded by consumers only to be shipped back to Mexico for sale. Camil has stitched them together, forming canopies of T-shirts that hang as awnings and present overarching questions about the effects of our consumer economy. Camil will adapt her exhibit, part of the SOLUNA festival, for a collective experience and performance piece, allowing the audience members to interact with each other and with the commercial relics Camil has curated. The performance will begin at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 27, followed by a 5 p.m. artist talk. Admission is free; visit mydso.com/buy/tickets/pia-camil for details. — Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Remember that wedding where the bride’s family hired some really corny lounge singer to belt out pop tunes for the dancing masses and sounded like a car running over a family of squirrels? The Dan Band could easily shred that band with the power of its awesome sound. Comedian and singer Dan Finnerty and his crew have turned the art of covering pop tunes into expletive-laced celebrations of musical flair into an impressive career that goes far beyond the simple concert stage. They’ve produced some hilarious albums and even a TV concert special produced by Steven Spielberg. They’ve also made some memorable appearances in movies like Old School and The Hangover. Now you no longer have to endure another screening of Starsky and Hutch just to enjoy them. You can see them perform live at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 27, at the House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St. Tickets are between $20 and $35. VIP package upgrades are also available and can be purchased online at houseofblues.com/dallas. — Danny Gallagher

Sun 05/28
Everything tastes better in the summertime. Don’t wait for the hottest part of the summer to enjoy a barbecue and beer party. Get started this week with the Deep Ellum Brewing Co.’s seventh annual Brew-BQ. This annual outdoor food and music party will feature live performances by Israel Nash, as well as everything else you’d find at a neighborhood cookout, like tons of slowly cooked meats provided by Triple G, outdoor games and all the delicious beer you can cram into your stomach. Brew-BQ will run from 6 to 10 p.m. Sunday, May 28, at the Deep Ellum Brewing Co., 2823 St. Louis St. General admission tickets are $35 for adults and $15 for people 21 and younger. Admission is free for children 12 and younger. VIP tickets are $50 for the first 100 people who purchase them and $65 after those are sold. Tickets can be purchased online at prekindle.com/brewbq7. — Danny Gallagher

Helping dogs in need and sipping great beer may be two of the best things in the world. And if you had the chance to mix the two on a lazy Sunday afternoon, wouldn’t you? Queue the Dallas Pets Alive 5th annual Pup Crawl from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 28, at five bars in Deep Ellum. Get a taste of some of the area’s finest beer with five Community Beer Co. pints at Cold Beer Co., Anvil Pub, Twilight Lounge, Dot's Hop House and Braindead Brewery. You’ll want to arrive early at Cold Beer Co., 3600 Main St., for check-in, the first pint of beer and brunch. DPA is mainly run by volunteers and saves hundreds of surrendered or stray animals from euthanasia each year. It relies on the generosity and support of folks in Dallas’ animal-loving community. Proceeds from the tickets, which cost $30 in advance or $40 at the event, go toward medical and behavioral care to the many pets fostered and treated through DPA. For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page. –– Diamond Victoria

Mon 05/29
In honor of the nation’s veterans and first responders, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra plays a free show, full of patriotic singalongs for the whole family, at 8:15 p.m. Monday, May 29, at Flag Pole Hill Park, 8100 Doran Circle. But it’s not just any trip to the symphony. Arrive early for a cozy spot, bring your blanket and enjoy an explosive fireworks display of red, white and blue under the stars with a packed picnic. The event is free and is sure to get everyone a little misty-eyed. For more information, visit mydso.com. –– Diamond Victoria

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