She can flex her rippled six-pack one pop at a time. She wrote a book titled The Gut Book! Learn How to Lose Weight and Flaunt a Waist Like Mine!. But Nakarát (née Jennifer Gerhardt) isn't a fitness instructor. She's a teacher and performer of "Raks Sharqi" ("Dance of the East"), better known as belly-dancing in the West. Nakarát shows off not only the figurative benefits of belly-dance, but her own captivating cabaret style. "That's what we think of when we think of belly-dancing -- the real glittery, beaded, two-piece costumes," she says. Gerhardt brings a culture fest to the Blue Nile Cafe, 933 East University in Tempe, on Saturday, February 12, with a 7:45 p.m. show that includes a comedian and African drummers and dancers. Tickets cost $7 to $10. Call 602-870-7690. --Niki D'Andrea
Rock 'n' Roll Requiem
Do not go gently into this good cause
Sometimes, the best way to stave off the sorrows of death is to celebrate life and thank those who make every moment worth living. On Friday, February 11, through Sunday, February 13, local rockers celebrate the possibility of a peaceful end and aid Hospice of the Valley with the "Hospice Rocks" fund raiser, taking place at Hollywood Alley, 2610 West Baseline in Mesa. A dozen bands -- including Blanche Davidian, MadCaPs, Super Sternal Notch, and Fred Green -- clip the amps in the name of charity. Tickets cost $10 for each night, but $25 advance weekend tickets are available. Call 480-329-3969. --Niki D'Andrea
Hollywood gets Punk'd
Hollywood has issues. Between the Sequel Set-Up Syndrome and the casting agents who keep giving Keanu Reeves starring roles, the billion-dollar blockbusters have us thinking that maybe the warm, fuzzy feeling in our tummies is just a tapeworm after all. Mega-movies like Shrek and The Lord of the Rings touched our hearts and raked in piles of cash. And for that, they deserve to be skewered! Thank God Tinseltown goes tits-up to the troglodytes in the lampoon musical Forbidden Hollywood, opening at the Queen Creek Performing Arts Center, 22149 East Ocotillo Road. Nothing is sacred in this show full of elaborate costumes and satirical sketches -- Cameron Diaz, Jim Carrey, and, yes, Keanu have all gotten hosed here. The hilarity hits Thursday, February 10, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $25. Call 480-987-7469. -- Niki D'Andrea
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