Another weekend has arrived without jamming a newly sharpened pencil into your coworker's eye, so you deserve to celebrate your self-control. There are parties, movie screenings, dance shows, art shows, plays and operas. Get to it!
Thursday, October 23 Fire & Ice Tonight, Contemporary Ballet of Dallas leaps onto the stage of the Latino Cultural Center with an evening of dance. Director Valerie Tabor (one of our 100 Creatives) premieres her take on the Firebird Suite, a Stravinsky-classic that has been reworked by Polyphonic Spree guitarist Nick Earl. Other pieces include a restating of Tabor's "Personnel" and company member Erin Boone's "Fandango for Five," as well as guest artist Jennifer Arellano's "Diablo." It starts at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Latino Cultural Center, 2600 Live Oak St. $17-$35. More information and contemporaryballetdallas.com.
Night of the Living Dead Composers Open Classical DFW's Halloween special returns to haunt Klyde Warren Park (2012 Woodall Rodgers Fwy) this week. Stop by the park for a spooky night with Decomposing Beethoven (Open Classical Director Mark Landson) who hosts the show with Decomposing Brahms (Thiago Nascimento) at the piano. Highlights: Schubert's Death and the Maiden, Mozart's terrifying Queen of the Night arias, tap-dancing skeletons, and a bumblebee playing Flight of the Bumblebee. Starts at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. More info at klydewarrenpark.org.
Laurie Anderson If you know the name, Laurie Anderson, but don't fancy yourself an post modernist art music aficianado, it's probably because of her breakout hit in the 1980's "O Superman" - a pulsating synth piece that sounds like an amalgam of Phillip Glass and Imogen Heap. If you haven't heard of her, look up that song on Spotify, right the fuck now. She's totally a weirdo, in the best ways. And she'll be in Dallas Thursday night for a peformance at the Kessler Theatre (1230 W. Davis St.). Tickets sold out in a matter of minutes, but the Kessler has released a number of standing room only tickets for $40. Grab 'em while you can and see a truly one of a kind performer. More info at thekessler.org.
Friday, October 24 Ella Kruglyanskaya's Grafika Much of Latvian-born artist Ella Kruglyanskaya's work turns an eye on the female form. In Grafika, both her large and small-scale pieces present a caricatured look at the depiction of the body in art. She plays with both bold color and simple sketching for a varied approach on the sexuality of the body, at once cartoonish and serious. See the work in its opening reception at the Power Station (3816 Commerce St.) from 6-8 p.m. Friday. More information at powerstationdallas.com.
Driving Miss Daisy If you loved the movie with Morgan Freeman, but have never seen the Alfred Uhry play, Dallas Theater Center can rectify that for you. After a week of previews, opening night for this play, much of which takes place behind a steering wheel, happens at 8 p.m. But don't rush to the Arts District, this production revisits DTC's original home in the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Kalita Humphreys Theater in Turtle Creek. Tickets and more info at dallastheatercenter.org.
Marriage of Figaro Mozart's classic opera about all the men in love with Susanna (it's about other things too, but mostly that) kicks off the Dallas Opera's season. If you can't afford tickets to the opening night gala, don't worry, you can head to Klyde Warren Park for the simulcast. It's totally free and includes additional programming like a "worst bridesmaid dress" costume contest and pre-show entertainment. Plus, food trucks. It starts at 8 p.m. but arrive early to claim your post on the lawn. More information at dallasopera.org.
self-published at Cohn Drennan Contemporary Everybody has that friend who self published their novel and is begging you to stop by the Amazon page and give it a sparkling review. The idea of self-publishing can earn sneers from the people who believe in the value of the backing of a publishing house. But to present your work to the world with just your name tied to it can be daunting and requires a great deal of vulnerability as you in some ways are publishing a piece of yourself. It's the semantics that caught the attention of Lanny Quarles in the curation of self-published, the exhibition opening at Cohn Drennan Contemporary (4118 Commerce St.). Quarles invited a group of artists to display work based on the theme. See it during the opening reception from 6-9 p.m. Friday. More information at cohndrennancontemporary.com.
Prokofiev with Vadym Kholodenko Want to hear some kickass piano? Head to Fort Worth's Bass Hall this weekend to hear the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra paired with 2013 Cliburn Gold Medalist Vadym Kholodenko on Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor. The FWSO and Kholodenko plan to present all five of Prokiev's piano concertos and this is numero uno. See it at 7:30 p.m. Friday or Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $20-85. More information at fwsymphony.org.
Neil Raitt's Cabinectomy Goss Michael Foundation's artist in residence, Neil Raitt, found inspiration for his newest series of work, in, of all places, The Joy of Painting, a television program by Bob Ross. (The programs are actually pretty mesmerizing for kitschy television.) Raitt's work for this series playfully teases the series, linking directly to Ross' instruction to "do a little cabinectomy here." You'll see paintings that blend tranquil cabin scenes with a more digital language. He's also created "a dynamic french screen made of Coloradan pine acting to obscure, reveal, and support the paintings, as well as an enlarged "Magic Tree" slumped dolefully against real pine emitting a fresh pine scent." It will be on display alongside the work of the gallery's current (FEATURE) artist, Michelle Rawlings. Opening reception is 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Goss Michael Foundation (1405 Turtle Creek Blvd.). More information at gossmichaelfoundation.org.
Teotl: the sand show For its newest show Cara Mia Theatre Company lugged ton after ton of sand into an abandoned warehouse in Trinity Groves. The actors in Teotl: the Sand Show play in what at first glance looks like an oversized sand box. Designed in collaboration with Prism Co., a fledgling company earning a reputation for its innovative use of physicalized theater, this show uses masks and fight choreography to explore ancient Aztec mythology. Writer and director, Jeffrey Colangelo, says he was hoping to create the environment of an archaeological dig. Take the journey at 8 p.m. Friday or at another performance through November 2. The show takes place at 500 Singleton Blvd. Tickets range from $12 - 25. More information at caramiatheatre.org.
Saturday, October 25
The Flower in the Machine Described as "a powerful play about love in a dystopian society," Ochre House Theater's newest musical, Flower in the Machine, by Kevin Grammer promises all the things we've come to love about this splendid little company, which we recently named the Best Small Theater in Dallas: music, fine acting, and hilarious dialogue. In the play, a young couple falls in love in a world run by machines. When they try to espace, the machines fight back. See it at Ochre House Theatre (825 Exposition Ave.) on opening night at 8 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $15. More information at ochrehousetheater.com.
Systema at Zhulong Gallery Since opening earlier this year, we've been endlessly impressed with the display of art at Zhulong Gallery. This gallery has brought the neighborhood its first tastes of new media art from across the globe. The newest show, Systema, takes an interest in the uses of systems in various realms of human life from the economy to communication. Ranging from Berlin artist Patricia Reed to Chicago-based Hiba Ali, the show promises a diverse exploration of how we build contemporary life. See it on opening day from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.Saturday at Zhulong Gallery (1302 Dragon St.) or through November 29. More information at zhulonggallery.com.
Tiny Thumbs Can video games be art? Is there a gaming underground? It looks like CentralTrak's answers to those questions might be yes. This weekend, stop by the pop up exhibition that explores the growing gaming underground, all tied together with a central theme: LGBT experiences and issues. Yep, you'll want to be there for this one. Stop by at 8 p.m. Saturday.
THWRD Issue Five Release Party Recently named "Best Zine," by, well, us, THRWD continues to deliver content that shows us they're here to stay. Issue five comes out this weekend, so in true THRWD fashion, they're throwing a party. Stop by Red Arrow Contemporary from 8-11 p.m. Saturday and party with the cool kids. It's free to get in, but an issue of the mag will cost you $10. More info at thrwd.com.
Second Thought State of Mind Not many small theater companies survive. So it's a testament to the strength of the original company and the quality of work that for more than a decade, Second Thought Theatre continues to deliver plays worth seeing. Oh, and original company members keep doing awesome things. Like Allison Tolman, who's in the hit series Fargo now. She's the special guest at this one-of-a-kind evening with the company on Saturday. She'll talk about her experiences with Second Thought and what she's up to now (you know, being a big time TV star). The night starts at 6 p.m. with cocktails and canapes, followed by Tolman's Q&A at 7 p.m. and a "fund the mission" event at 8 p.m. Tickets to the event, held at Bridge Bistro, 921 North Riverfront, are $50. Visit secondthoughttheatre.com.
Dismember the Alamo The Alamo Drafthouse's annual scary movie (We're talking good, classic scary movies) fest starts at noon on Saturday. Stick around all day and see 'em all. There will also be short, pre-movie screenings of rare horror scenes, a costume contest with special prizes and who knows what else will ooze out of their sleeves. Tickets are $20 and available at drafthouse.com/dfw.
Sightings: Anna Bella Papp The minimalism of Anna Bella Papp's clay sculptures force the viewer up close. It's as though she's invited onlookers into an intimate moment with the art. For the tiny amount of space they actually inhabit, they imply much larger ideas. The Nasher Sculpture Center gives Papp her first museum exhibition as part of its small-scale Sightings series. See her work alongside the midcareer retrospective of Thomas Heatherwick in the main galleries, and marvel in the different ways sculpture interacts with architecture. Sightings: Anna Bella Papp opens to the public at 11 a.m. Saturday. The exhibition remains on display at the Nasher (2001 Flora St.) through January 18, 2015. Entry to the museum is $10. More information at nashersculpturecenter.org.
Sunday, October 26 Alton Brown Live! See the Food Network star in the flesh at 7:30 p.m.. Sunday when he brings The Edible Inevitable Tour to the Majestic Theatre (1925 Elm St.). Tickets are $35 to $67.50 and available at dallasculture.org.
Sunset Screenings: The Shining If all work and no play is a recipe for disaster, thank god for the weekends. If you've avoided The Shining until this phase of your life (what have you been doing?) you can see it for free on Sunday night as part of the AT&T Performing Arts Center's Sunset Screenings. The classic Stephen King novel turned Stanley Kubrick nut house screens at 7:30 p.m. Sunday night. BYOB.