Things To Do

Awesome Things to Do in Dallas This Weekend, Aug. 6 - 9: Spaghetti Westerns, One-Minute Plays, More

When boredom strikes this weekend, pull these events up on your iPhone faster than a gun from a holster in a classic spaghetti western, speaking of which, you can see one of those at the Texas Theatre. 

Thursday, Aug. 6
Neo Camerata
The phrase “summer tour” evokes images of a bunch of dudes in wrinkled black t-shirts in a giant van, stretching their legs in a Chipotle parking lot, squinting in the sun, and throwing handfuls of empty Lone Star cans in the trash can. Summer is prime touring season for musicians, but Neo Camerata’s crew rolls a little differently through their 32-city, 43 concert tour. For starters, they probably were never compensated in beer. Also, this is no rock band, though their appeal is as broad: Neo Camerata is an innovative classical group that seeks to level the playing field and present their music as accessible, fun and original. The group isn’t confined to concert halls and $60 admission; they prefer to pop up in coffee houses, parks, galleries, and anywhere that they can connect to music lovers. So, they’re making the circuit, much like that van of disheveled rockers…but without all the bail money. Neo Camerata pulls back into Dallas after six weeks on the road on Thursday—and will perform one last show before they unleash all their luggage and sleep for a week. From 7:30 until 9:30 p.m., catch their upbeat and energetic take on classical music at Common Desk, 2919 Commerce; admission is free, though donations of $10 to $20 will be much appreciated by the well-traveled musicians. See Facebook for more. -Jennifer Davis-Lamm

The (out)Siders Project
Sure, teenagers are innately dramatic creatures but that doesn’t mean that all teen theater has to consist of super earnest cautionary tales and overwrought after-school-special material. In fact, teens do great justice to the more realistic themes that make up the groundwork of great drama: alienation, family dynamics, social conflict, uncertainty, broken hearts, identity crises…because more likely than not, they are grappling with at least one (if not most) of them at any given time. That’s what makes S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders such fertile ground for a teen theatre project—and Cry Havoc Theatre has corralled and adapted the seminal work for a fascinating production that incorporates not only a classic coming-of-age tale, but also includes original music, ideas from student essays, and dialogue generated from the testimony of former gang members. The (out)Siders Project brings echoes of The Outsiders into a modern-day Dallas setting, and the teenage cast gives an urgent physicality to the production which launches at the Latino Cultural Center, 2600 Live Oak Street, at 7 p.m. Thursday. Additional performances are 7 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m.Saturday. Tickets are $6 for students and $11 for adults; they can be purchased online at - Jennifer Davis-Lamm

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
If you close your eyes, you can hear the theme song from The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly. Just imagine the wind blowing a tumbleweed across a desert prairie, or a cowboy reaching for a gun in his holster, or a band of horses galloping across the American plains. Ennio Morricone’s music for the film is almost more famous than the Clint Eastwood masterpiece itself. This weekend, you can see The Good, The Bad and the Ugly in all its remastered glory at the Texas Theatre (231 W. Jefferson Blvd.) for just $10. It shows at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 4 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. More information and a trailer containing the legendary music at

Friday, Aug. 7
The Tribe
We take for granted that film is, at its roots, a visual experience…particularly because our movie-going experience has been so co-opted by sound. We like soundtracks, Dolby effects, and foundation-shaking volume in our films. But imagine if that were all stripped away: the music, the dialogue…leaving nothing but a visceral and entirely visual experience that challenges notions of how narratives can play out. What you’d have then is The Tribe, a movie done entirely in sign language, with no dialogue, no subtitles even—laying its plot out nakedly for the viewer to scrutinize and soak in. Director Miroslav Slaboshpitsky’s violent, explicit tale of a boarding school for the deaf has been almost universally critically lauded for its reliance on audience perception—and for its gritty, no-holds-barred exploration of organized crime, adolescence, and the often-bleak realities of Ukraine existence. The inventive film will leave audiences in a continued state of stunned silence during its run at The Texas Theatre, 231 West Jefferson, beginning at 6 p.m. Friday, with additional screenings at 7:20 p.m. Saturday and again at 6:20 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $10 at; find more information at -JDL

EXXOTICA has already proven its ability to generate controversy. Turns out, conserative organizations in Dallas have a problem with porn, at least they have a problem with an entire weekend being dedicated to porn in the city's convention center. Whatever your thoughts on the existence of the three-day sexy expo, it's happening. There will be big lips, big boobs, and really weak storylines, as well as appearances all the way up the porn celebrity totem pole to Ron Jeremy. Classes, demonstrations and panel discussions, plus the Ms. EXXXOTICA competition begin at 5 p.m. Friday and last through Sunday at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center, 650 S. Griffin St. Passes start at $49.99 and are available at

Wendy Williams
The Federal Communications Commission is run by the most prudish group of whiners ever to serve in a public office. They serve a land that values itself on the idea that all men and women can say anything they wish without fear of reprisal from their government except when it comes to a couple of words that some old ladies in rural Montana find objectionable, Would it be nice if you could hear the true words of your favorite television personalities without fear of facing some overpriced fine? Talk show host Wendy Williams will get just such a chance when she takes to the stage of the Verizon Theater in Grand Prairie at 1001 Performance Place at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 7th as part of her “The Sit Down Tour…Too Real for Stand Up.” The host of the Emmy nominated “The Wendy Williams Show” will get to speak her mind without bothering to check with the censors or the sensibilities of her guests from the comfort of her plush, luxurious lounge chair. Tickets are between $63.75 and $179.75 depending on available seating. VIP tickets include a seat in the first 10 rows as well as a post show reception with Williams in person. Tickets are available at - Danny Gallagher

Swing in the Park
That Mad Men Netflix binge you’ve been on probably already has you wearing skinny ties and calling women “broads,” but you can really have a mid-century experience at Swing On The Park this Friday. Hosted at Klyde Warren Park, swing instructors from Studio 22 will lead even the most two-left-footed of novices through an introductory west coast swing class. You don’t need to worry about bringing a date if you’re #foreveralone, and you can totally count this as your cardio for, well, the rest of your life. -Amy McCarthy

Saturday, Aug. 8
The One Minute Play Festival

A lot can happen in one minute. You could win the lottery, get hit by a bus, adopt a cat or see an entire play at The 2nd Annual One Minute Play Festival hosted by Kitchen Dog Theater. The whole point of the festival – besides entertaining you for the length of time it takes to boil a box of rice – is to showcase thirty local playwrights and fifty brand new plays and make it all about Dallas. Seriously. By commissioning local writers, the whole festival is tailored just for us and each play will likely feature all our inside jokes. We’ll see such hits as “Hot enough for ya?” “Are they ever going to finish 635?” “Deep Ellum’s back? What is it 1996? Where’s Andrew Dice Clay?” and more. Block your calendar for an hour, literally, and go see fifty plays Saturday through Monday at 8 p.m each night at Greer Garson Theater at SMU, 6110 Hillcrest Avenue. Tickets are $20. - Nikki Lott

The Grand Slam

Summer is the best time for drama: while many theatre companies settle in for a bit of a break, the more experimental stuff comes out to play. And by capitalizing on our innate need to seek out a cool space during hot weather, the off-the-beaten path dramatists draw audiences for fringe festivals, innovative productions, and fun theatrical concepts like House Party Theatre’s The Grand Slam. This drama series features three new plays from local playwrights, actors and directors performed in separate locations on separate nights…and then brought together for a marathon performance of all three works followed by a massive after-party. The event kicks off at 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 8 with “No Guts” by Sammy Rios, performed at 4314 Elm Street; then, at 8 p.m. on Monday, August 10, catch Haley Nelson’s “On Staying Indoors” at The Basement Gallery 115 S. Beckley Ave.  An 8 p.m. performance of Oliver Garfield’s “HPT#2” at AR Warehouse 2203 Obenchain St.will follow on Saturday, August 15, and on Monday, August 17 at 8 p.m., all three plays will be performed, concluded with a closing bash that will feature local art, music, and poetry. Tickets for the plays are $5 per night; the Grand Slam roundup will be $10,and admission for all four nights is available for $15 at -JDL

Us and This
It's difficult not to like a good ceramic piece. Often ceramic art bridges a certain functionality and a more experimental aesthetic. Is that a bowl, you might find yourself asking of the work by Jeremy Sims, or is it something far more interesting? Opening at 5 p.m. Saturday, That That Gallery, 3901 Main St. hosts, Us and This, a solo exhibition of Sims' work, at which you can ask just such a question. A portion of the proceeds from sales of the work will go to The Fund for Rebuilding Baltimore, a city dear to That That's director, Samantha McCurdy and Sims. More at

Mockingbird Mantra
We could all use a little more zen in our lives, especially of the free variety. CorePower Yoga will host a free yoga class for beginners at Mockingbird Station on Saturday, which is the perfect excuse to finally figure out whether or not your body can actually bend. Bring a yoga mat, towel, and water bottle, and maybe people will actually believe that you’ve been to a yoga class or even know what “downward dog” really means. Happens at 9 a.m. Saturday. 

Sunday, Aug. 9 
Realms of the Fourth Eye
Described mysteriously only as a “definitive journey of exploration and experimentation into realms unknown,” this event looks as if it might be a mini Dallas version of Burning Man. The “leave no trace” festival (aka pick up your trash, you jerks) will feature art installations from artists from Texas and beyond, live music, and what promises to be a totally chill environment. You can BYOB, bring lawn chairs, blankets, whatever you need to be comfortable, and just hang out and soak in the totally collaborative environment. If you’re really strapped for cash, admission on Sunday is totally free.  -AM

Sunset Screenings: Rebecca
If you've been dreaming of returning to Mandalay, or just dreaming about watching a movie outside, you're in luck. The AT&T Performing Arts Center kicks off the return of the Sunset movie screening series with Alfred Hitchcock's Rebecca. Based on the Daphne Dumarier novel of the same name, this creepy film is about a young, naive woman who marries a charming older man only to find out his beautiful mansion is filled with secrets.  See the film for free at 3 p.m. Sunday in the Strauss Square. 

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Lauren Smart
Contact: Lauren Smart