Things To Do

Cheap And Free Things To Do in Dallas This Week

Don't miss Oak Cliff Earth Day.
Don't miss Oak Cliff Earth Day. Brandon Elliott


"This newly commissioned performance explores the dark glamour of American life, its history of transformation and reinvention," says the Dallas Symphony Orchestra about Eyes as Bright as Diamonds. We're not exactly sure what that means, but it appears to involve rather grim-faced women in military-ish uniforms. With flags. The Haltom Color Guard and its drum line take part, along with dancers and DSO musicians. Here's one thing we know for certain: Dallas' beloved singer-songwriter Sarah Jaffe performs. It's free and part of the Soluna Music and Arts Festival. A free Sarah Jaffe show — that's enough to know. Soluna: Eyes as Bright as Diamonds happens at 5:45 p.m. at the Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St. Find more information at Patrick Williams


TV stars Sheree J. Wilson and Clarence Gilyard (Walker, Texas Ranger) team up again as an aging southern Jewish woman and her proud black chauffeur in Driving Miss Daisy, a Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Alfred Uhry. Shows are at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Eisemann Center, 2351 Performance Drive in Richardson. You'll remember Gilyard, who teaches acting at the University of Nevada, from the Matlock series and Top Gun; Wilson's role on Walker was Alex Cahill-Walker, and on Dallas she was April Stevens Ewing. Call 972-744-4650 for tickets; for more information, visit Reba Liner


Wither? Well, we suspecteth that America doth head straight to Hades in ye olde hand basket, but the question posed by the in name of a series of staged readings of plays at Undermain Theatre is rhetorical and derives from a quote by Jack Kerouac. The plays all look at the state of America and where we're headed. Friday's reading is a love offering by Jonathan Norton, about the rough experiences of a nurse's aide attending Alzheimer's patients, which is pretty much where we see ourselves headed, all right. See Whither Goest Thou America? A Festival of New Play Readings at 7:30 p.m. at the Undermain, 3200 Main St. Performances also happen at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, which includes a talk with the director and cast; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, with a talk with the author; and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $15, except for the Saturday show, which is $20. Find them at Patrick Williams

Post-hardcore band The Funeral Portrait released a new album in January. A Moment of Silence is the band's full-length debut and presents a concept album for life after death in a world with no higher being. Talk about packing in as much emotional punch as possible. The quartet from Atlanta began in 2014 and has since shared stages with We Came as Romans, Silverstein, Dance Gavin Dance and others. With Oh, Weatherly, Offended By Everything, Southway and Tiger Parade, 7 p.m. Friday, April 13, RBC, 2617 Commerce St., 469-487-6149, $13-$15. Diamond Victoria


Isn’t a farmers market by definition kind of bohemian? Isn’t Dallas Farmers Market’s Boho Market redundant? Things will get extra boho Saturday with local, handmade and vintage fashion, craft beer and food. There will be plenty of small businesses and local vendors there to support by buying whatever boho things they’re selling. Boho it up from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Dallas Farmers Market, 920 S. Harwood St. Admission and parking are free. Paige Skinner

The only true and appropriate way to kick off an entire month dedicated to the arts is with a block party. Think theater, dance, music and the circus all on one block. The night kicks off with Dallas’ Skyline High School Band, followed by Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts’ Gospel Choir. Performing arts company Strange Fruit will deliver the theater, dance and circus parts. Then DFW artists will perform, including Jessie Frye, Bandan Koro African Drum and Dance Ensemble, Alebrije, and The Bralettes. The Changing Perspectives Block Party happens at 6 p.m. Saturday at Sammons Park, 2403 Flora St. Register at; tickets are free. Paige Skinner

Powerman 5000 continues to be an outlet for Michael Cummings, known best as Spider One. The lineup he had for the group’s breakthrough, Tonight the Stars Revolt!, has long since left, but he keeps the name going. Backed by musicians who joined the band in the past handful of years, Powerman 5000 has a new album called New Wave. It's sci-fi allegory for the metal and hard rock crowd. It's not meant to be high concept, but it's not meant to be stupid, either. With Bit Rot, Scary Cherry & the Bang Bangs, Junk and Mammothor, 8 p.m. Saturday, April 14, Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or, $16. Eric Grubbs

The Wild Detectives might just be our favorite little Oak Cliff culture hub. With locally roasted coffee beans, a great selection of beer and wine, a retail floor filled with literary gems and concerts on a regular basis, it's no wonder the WD has approached its fourth year as a successful business. For its four-year anniversary, check out some great local music from hip-hop soul act M3CCa, the ambient and experimental Black Taffy, rapper Sam Lao, and other local and out-of-town acts. With Ley Line, Skinny Cooks, M3cca, Adam & The Figurines, Black Taffy, Sam Lao, Ronnie Heart and Tempranillo, 2 p.m. Saturday, April 14, Wild Detectives, 314 W. Eighth St., 214-942-0108 or, $15 (full day). Diamond Victoria


Looking for a fun, family friendly way to round out your weekend? Peruse the pies at Dallas Pizza Fest from noon to 9 p.m. Sunday at Deep Ellum Art Co., 3200 Commerce St. Win up to $250 in a pizza-eating contest, listen to live music, let the kids enjoy bounce houses and games, or leave the kids with a sitter and check out the beer and wine garden. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for children. Visit Emily Goldstein

Try earth-friendly food, browse the work of artisans, take a yoga or dance class, and see music and dance performances at Oak Cliff Earth Day. Registration and check-in for the annual Run for the Environment 5K begin at 8:30 a.m., and the main event is from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at Lake Cliff Park, 300 E. Colorado Blvd. If improving the health of your body and the planet isn't enough, exercise your mind with The Writer's Garret Earth Day Book Swap. New to the event this year are a Mother Earth Pageant and a Green Man Contest, which will present awards to adults and children. For more information, visit Emily Goldstein

Know what goes great with live music? Chili — and lots of it. Local nonprofit radio station KNON (89.3 FM) welcomes you to its fifth annual Chili Cook-off and Concert, featuring live music courtesy Colton Turner and Midnight Country. Think you make a mean bowl of chili? Head over to to register for the competition. There will also be a raffle for ticket-holders. The cooking begins at 8 a.m. and the judging at 10:30, with doors opening to the public at noon. If you consider yourself a big supporter of local music and culture, try to attend. This event benefits KNON, one of our city’s finest local stations. Noon Sunday, April 15, Gas Monkey Bar N’ Grill, 10261 Technology Blvd. E.,, $15. Jonathan Patrick
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Paige Skinner has written for the Dallas Observer since 2014.
Contact: Paige Skinner