Things To Do

Best Things to Do in Dallas This Weekend

On Sunday, Dallas Neoclassical Ballet will perform before a 5 p.m. screening of the surfing flick Endless Summer at Texas Theatre.
On Sunday, Dallas Neoclassical Ballet will perform before a 5 p.m. screening of the surfing flick Endless Summer at Texas Theatre.


Although the electronic music genre has typically been dominated by men for the past few decades, Suzanne Ciani’s innovative approach to music making during the 1970s and ’80s made her a pioneer in popularizing the genre. The classically trained pianist and composer turned her attention to computer-generated music in the ’70s and eventually helped lay the groundwork for new age music to come. She mastered synthesizers, music sequencers and drum machines, and she worked with advertising companies to give television viewers auditory bliss, such as the mouth-watering sound in Coca-Cola's’ Pop & Pour commercials. Ciani’s role in electronic music is undeniable; just ask filmmaker Brett Whitcomb, who previewed his documentary, A Life in Waves, at this year’s South by Southwest festival. The film follows Ciani’s career and was a huge hit at this year’s Oak Cliff Film Festival. If you missed both previews of the film, which becomes available on VOD on Aug. 4, Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., offers three chances to see it. The first is at 8:15 p.m. Friday, July 28. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., 8:15 p.m., $10, – Diamond Victoria

It’s counterintuitive, but honestly, the best way to power through a hot summer night is to dance. Get up, get moving and get sweaty. The beat makes the time breeze by, and the energy level makes the heat bearable. Swing in the Park + Social Dancing helps you sail through the humidity from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday, July 28, at Klyde Warren Park, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway. The evening kicks off with a free swing class from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. with Studio 22 that covers all the basic turns, steps and hops you’ll need to get moving. From 7:30 until 10 p.m., put all your new moves into play during the social dance; you can take breaks and hit up food trucks to fuel your grooves. Admission is free, and you don’t need experience or even a partner to join in. Learn more by visiting the event page on Facebook. Klyde Warren Park, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, 6:30-10 p.m., free, see Facebook. – Jennifer Davis-Lamm

You know Jeffrey Allen Townes, aka DJ Jazzy Jeff, as Jazz from the '90s sitcom Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. But what you may not know about the Philly-born record producer, DJ, actor and comedian is his recognition for making the transformer scratch — the forward/backward, slow-down/speed-up manual manipulation of a needle and vinyl record to create entirely new songs — famous in 1985 with the instrumental single "Jazzy Jeff Scratch." He also, along with co-star and then-music partner Will Smith, won the first-ever Grammy Award for best rap performance in 1989. Sharing the bill is Dallas' DJ Sober. It'll Do Club, 4322 Elm St., 9 p.m., $20 and up, 214-827-0262. – Diamond Victoria

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Gucci Mane plays Gas Monkey on Friday.
Jonathan Mannion
In many ways, Atlanta trap pioneer Gucci Mane is a vestige of an older, bleaker system in which rappers faced murder charges and drug trafficking on the regular, and authenticity was defined by cold-blooded street cred and ruthless indifference. (Gucci sidestepped murder and assault charges in the mid-aughts before recently spending three years in prison.) But Gucci has shed that version of himself — the person who seemed to prioritize hustling over hip hop — and reinvented his persona. He dropped a few dozen pounds, threw off several chemical addictions and traded his gilded grill for pearly whites. Fortunately, all the features that made him a beloved king of his hometown remain intact, musically speaking; the blasé mood, the radical way he finesses words to meet his languorous, chewed-up flow — all have been sharpened to a finer, more efficient point. The new wave of idiosyncratic rappers from Gucci’s stomping grounds — the so called “Weird Atlanta”— is indebted to the surreal aesthetics of its royal forefather. If that sort of creative wildfire is indicative of what Gucci Mane’s midas touch is capable of producing, hip-hop fans owe it to themselves to spread his gospel to the furthest reaches of the globe. Long live the king. Gas Monkey Live, 10110 Technology Blvd. E., 8 p.m., $55.20-$129, – Jonathan Patrick

The Texas Queerlesque Festival opens the art of burlesque dancing and cabaret performing to all sexual and gender identities as the event returns for its second year. The festival will offer more than 60 performers, including such notable names as Gigi Holliday, Ruby Lam and Louie Luxxe. Guests can also learn this rare art form in a number of classes by enrolling in the festival’s Unicorn School and learning skills in seminars such as “Dance Like a Diva,” “Glitter Glam” and “Dropping the Political Bombshell.” The Texas Queerlesque Festival runs from Thursday, July 27, to Sunday, July 30. The festival’s Unicorn School sessions will be at Sue Ellen’s, 3014 Throckmorton St. and are $35 to $55 per person. The shows “Rhinestone Riot” and “Rainbow Revolution” will be at Viva’s Lounge, 1350 Manufacturing St., Suite 120, with tickets that are $25 to $175 per person. Visit for tickets and more information. Sue Ellen's, 3014 Throckmorton St., and Viva's Lounge, 1350 Manufacturing St., Suite 120, Thursday-Sunday, $25-$175, – Danny Gallagher

In 2014, Little D Markets jumped on the opportunity to bring people into lovely spaces that weren’t being championed for community events. Thanks to Little D, we have the Commerce Street Night Market, 444 W. Commerce St., from 6 to 10 p.m. the last Friday of each month in the Pike West Commerce outdoor pavilion. The free, open-air market offers a family-friendly stroll with live music; food options to satisfy cravings for tamales, ice pops and more; and vendors selling wares ranging from clothing to natural skincare to stained glass to pet attire. The Oddfellows-run bar will serve beer, wine and watermelon sangria while DJ Durty Laundry spins tunes. Culture vultures will appreciate the pottery workshop by James Olney of Oak Cliff Pottery from 7 to 9 p.m. For more details, visit the event page on Facebook. To learn about becoming a vendor or hosting a workshop, visit 444 W. Commerce St., 6-10 p.m., free, – Merrritt Martin

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Swing into action at Klyde Warren Park's free Swing in the Park + Social Dancing event Friday night.


It’s officially summer when Slightly Stoopid rolls into town. The feel-good reggae rockers from California are on their annual summer tour, and they’re bringing Iration, J Boot and The Movement with them. Slightly Stoopid is one of the most prolific touring bands in the country and has played nearly every stage possible over the last two decades, meaning it's mastered the craft of delivering its hybrid style of alt-reggae for crowds. Now it’s just a matter of finding out which tracks the band will perform from its 12-album deep catalog. Fans of Iration, who are direct support on this bill, will have a chance to see the group perform its latest No. 1 reggae single, “Fly With Me,” from its upcoming album. Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 6:30 p.m., $35-$99, – Mikel Galicia

An actor in the Dallas-Fort Worth area probably has a jam-packed schedule and a variety of headshots. Actors in The JIM Experiment have spent the the year performing various roles on stages across the two cities and stretching their skills before prepping for this annual improv event at 8 p.m. Saturday at ICT Studio (the Rudy Seppy Studio), 2333 W. Rochelle Road in Irving. For the sixth year, the JIM crew brings laughs in new and unexpected ways with a combination of wacky improv games and material that develops right onstage (and sometimes in the audience) like magic. Tickets are $15. Visit ICT Studio, 2333 W. Rochelle Road, Irving, 8 p.m., $15, – Merritt Martin

Since its earliest days, the hip-hop genre has emphasized community and collaboration, and its dance counterpart is no different. In its sixth annual installment, The Dallas Hip-Hop Dance Festival continues to celebrate this fact by producing an educational dance convention, competition and showcase all rolled into one. As always, there will be dance battles, hip-hop music and fellowship at this year’s festival, which seeks to showcase both established dancers and emerging talents throughout the southern United States. The festival runs from Friday, July 28, to Saturday, July 29, with the convention and battle Friday at Magnolia Hotel Dallas Park Cities, 6070 N. Central Expressway, and the showcase Saturday at the Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St. Tickets for the battle are $15; tickets for the showcase are $25. More info at Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St., Friday-Saturday, $15-$25, – Jonathan Patrick

More than their iconic and steamy album covers, Ohio Players bring heat to the stage with their signature fusion of funk, soul and R&B. They're best known for the chart-topping singles "Funky Worm," "Fire" and "Love Rollercoaster" throughout the 1970s. And although the band has seen plenty of lineup changes throughout its on-again, off-again 59-year run, four original members are slated to play this week's show: Billy Beck, Jimmy "Diamond" Williams, Clarence "Chet" Willis and Robert "Rumba" Jones. The Door Dallas, 2513 Main St., 8 p.m., $30-$100, – Diamond Victoria

Do you believe in magic? Ever wondered if you could be hypnotized or have your mind read? Do you think it’s possible to change someone's memories or predict the future? “Astonishment artist” Mat LaVore hopes to persuade people to believe in a miraculous world of magic, mind reading and hypnosis during his Magic & Mystery performances, which include 90 minutes of LaVore’s crowd-pleasing feats, ranging from card and coin tricks to swallowing needles to hypnotizing people into forgetting their names. Unlike some hypnotist acts, attendees don’t need to worry about off-color humor or embarrassing moments while they are under hypnosis onstage. LaVore’s clean show conjures embarrassment-free laughs. Witness Mat LaVore: Magic & Mystery for yourself at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 29, in the Wyly Theatre’s Studio Theatre at the AT&T Performing Arts Center, 2400 Flora St. General admission tickets cost $40, and front-row seats are available for $55. For tickets and more information, visit Wyly Theatre, 2400 Flora St., 8 p.m., $40-$55, – Daniel Rodrigue

There are way too many cons these days. It’s impossible to attend them all without having supernatural powers that allow you to be in three places at once. So you’ll just have to prioritize, and you’ll definitely want to keep Saturday, July 29, open on your calendar because it marks the start of Texas’ first Latino Comic Con. This daylong festival will celebrate comics and pop culture from a Latino perspective, featuring live talks and Q&A sessions with influential artists like “El Peso Hero” creator Hector Rodriguez and Eliza in a Box Comics’ Eliamaria M. Crawford. The festival will also give attendees chances to compete in a Latino character cosplay contest and meet many other special guests from the comic book world, like Rio Bravo Comics, Funimation and Dusk Publishing. The best part: It's free. Take that, overgrown convention industry! The Texas Latino Comic Con will be from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at the Latino Cultural Center, 2600 Live Oak St. Latino Cultural Center, 2600 Live Oak St., 11 a.m.-5 p.m., free, see Facebook. – Danny Gallagher

If you like sports podcasts, music podcasts, political podcasts or pop culture podcasts, you’ve probably already figured out that you can get a dose of all of the above in I Am Rapaport: Stereo Podcast. Actor/director Michael Rapaport brings a little bit of everything to the table in his weekly(ish) collaboration with childhood friend Gerald Moody, getting all blustery about sports one minute and taking on the challenges of parenting the next. Rapaport is profane, fiery and insightful, and you never know what he’ll serve up in his expletive-filled, go-with-the-flow show. See I Am Rapaport recorded live at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at the Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd.; tickets are $25 to $30, available online at or at the door. Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., 8 p.m., $25-$30, – Jennifer Davis-Lamm

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Pick up some handmade goods at Commerce Street Night Market on Friday.
Little D Markets/ Beckley & Co


Styx is still straddling a line between being an arena rock band and a progressive rock band. It's going to play a couple of new songs, since it's touring off of its new concept LP, The Mission, but expect this to also be a hits-laden set. Songs like "Lady," "Renegade" and "Too Much Time on My Hands" will be performed by a lineup that has been together for almost 20 years. Lawrence Gowan has proved to be a suitable replacement for Dennis DeYoung since he can replicate DeYoung's vocals and not come across as a Svengali. Tommy Shaw and James "J.Y." Young seem happy touring with this version of their band, and most Styx fans do, too. Starplex Pavilion, 1818 First Ave., 7 p.m., $20 and up, – Eric Grubbs

The Endless Summer is director, filmmaker and narrator Bruce Brown’s seminal 1966 surfing documentary that takes viewers on a weather-chasing, globe-trekking adventure with world-class surfers in search of the perfect wave and an endless summer. Brown’s camera and his sly sense of humor followed California-based surfers on a tour of the uncharted waters off the coast of South Africa to Australia’s shark-filled seas to the tropical shores of Tahiti and other equally picturesque beaches. Surf's up at 5 p.m. Sunday, July 30, at the Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., as the Dallas Neo-Classical Ballet presents the classic surfing film, The Endless Summer, with a pre-show ballet performance. DNCB is bringing back Sous le Soleil by artistic director Emilie Skinner, as well as new work by DNCB’s Erin Boone. The ballet performance starts at 5 p.m., followed by the screening. Tickets are $15. For more information and tickets, visit Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd., 5 p.m., $15, – Daniel Rodrigue