Cure your case of the Monday blues with a week full of things to do. This week in the Valley, the biggest golf party of the year tees off, Bar Flies returns to downtown Phoenix, and Danny Neumann's action figure Instagram project finds a place in a Scottsdale Gallery. For more options, consult New Times' guide to free things to do anytime and our handy, curated calendar of events.
Well, January is nearly in the books, and you’ve yet to make good on your vague-yet-admirable resolution to become more interesting. No, stacking your Netflix queue with documentaries doesn’t count — especially in this sprawling metropolis of ours where there’s never a shortage of interesting things to do. For instance, this Monday, January 30, CALA Alliance (Celebracion Artistica de las Americas) is hosting its third edition of Crossfade LAB at Crescent Ballroom, 308 North Second Avenue. The event features an “experimental conversation between Grammy award-winning Mexican musician Julieta Venegas and acclaimed Los Angeles artist Rafa Esparza” and will be moderated by 2016 MacArthur Fellow Josh Kun. Not bad for a dreary Monday. The event starts at 7 p.m., and admission is $20. Visit Crescent Ballroom's website or call 602-716-2222 for details. Rob Kroehler
Waste Management Phoenix Open
If you thought the holiday season was over, we’re here to tell you that you’re not in the clear yet. Yes, the nationally recognized, major holidays have passed, but there’s still one event left in Phoenix that’s basically achieved the status of local holiday: the Waste Management Phoenix Open presented by Ak-Chin Indian Community. The Phoenix Open has become a time of celebration, when friends and family come from near and far to spend the day together, imbibe, and watch sports. That’s really all you need for a holiday, right? While the Open spans a full week and the first official round doesn’t start until February 2, you can still go out and enjoy the practice rounds and everything else the Open has to offer on Monday, January 30. Best part? Admission that day is free, and the gate opens at 7 a.m. To see the full lineup of events, check out the Waste Management Phoenix Open website. Evie Carpenter
We’re all for experiencing nature, but we are not down for experiencing bugs. Which is why we prefer to experience the great outdoors vicariously through the work of artists like Robert Rice. Rice does the dirty work, capturing Arizona’s flora and fauna with both traditional and digital cameras. Immerse yourself in a 35-year retrospective of his work titled “OPUS 99” through Saturday, March 11, at Chandler’s Vision Gallery, 10 East Chicago Street. No bug spray required. Admission is free, and Tuesday hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. See details at Vision Gallery's website or call 480-782-2695. Becky Bartkowski
More than 50 years have gone by since the death of Malcolm X. The minister and activist was assassinated by three members of the Nation of Islam, an organization he once led. A new, touring production by New York’s the Acting Company offers a closer look at the details of his life.
X was written by the award-winning poet and playwright Marcus Gardley and directed by Ian Belknap. Together, the pair utilized Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar story as the framework to bring to life details about Malcolm X, his life, and the circumstances surrounding his demise. Learn about the complex historical figure at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 1, at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe Street. Tickets are $25. Call 602-252- 8497 or visit Herberger Theater's website. Amy Young
"The Super Neumanns"
Imagine Superman dressed in his signature blue tights and red cape, a look of unflappable determination molded into his chiseled face, about to face a job that would shake even the strongest man in the universe to his core: cleaning out the litter box. Artist Danny Neumann has Superman in this and other everyday scenes in his new exhibition, “The Super Neumanns: 365 Photos by Danny Neumann.” The show is presented by R. Pela Contemporary (run by longtime New Times contributor Robrt Pela) at Walter Art Gallery, 6425 East Thomas Road in Scottsdale. It follows the Super Neumanns, a family of custom-made action figures, in a year of their lives after they’ve moved into their new Fisher Price Dollhouse. The comedic, insightful, and incredibly detailed vignettes make these superheroes appear to be just like us … kind of.
“The Super Neumanns” opens from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, February 2. Call 602-320-8445 for more information. Evie Carpenter
Kevin Smokler's Brat Pack America
Does hearing the names Duckie Dale, Lloyd Dobler, and Long Duck Dong make you giddy with nostalgia? You’re not alone — ’80s teen flick fanatics are everywhere.
Join author Kevin Smokler to see just what an obsessed fan looks like when he visits with his book, Brat Pack America: A Love Letter to ’80s Teen Movies. The recent title explores the fictional and real towns where some of these popular flicks took place, like Back to the Future’s Hill Valley, California, and Shermer, Illinois, the setting of many John Hughes movies, including The Breakfast Club and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Smokler also fills the book’s pages with interviews with actors and loads of facts about these timeless teen classics. Geeks and goonies unite at 7 p.m. on Thursday, February 2, at Changing Hands Bookstore, 300 West Camelback Road. Admission is free, but the book costs $16.95. Call 602-274-0067 or visit the Changing Hands website. Amy Young
Wine & Web Design
If you follow in the steps of the great author Ernest Hemingway, you live by the mantra, “Write drunk, edit sober.” Well, we want to put a little spin on this saying, and specify it just a bit: Write code drunk, edit sober. And we’d venture to say the coders behind Tech Talent South would agree, considering they’re hosting the workshop Wine & Web Design. Even if you’ve never thought about HTML or CSS before, this two-hour workshop will give you the basic tools you need to build your own website. Plus, wine will be provided to, you know, help the creative juices flow. The workshop is on Thursday, February 2, from 6 to 9 p.m. at CO+HOOTS Midtown, 221 East Indianola Avenue. Register online through Meetup. Evie Carpenter
Read on for more things to do this week, including Bar Flies.
Bar Flies: Lost and Found
Phoenix, it’s story time once again. Bar Flies takes its monthly turn on the basement stage of Valley Bar, 130 North Central Avenue, on Thursday, February 2. Event co-producer Katie Johnson has curated a lineup for the reading event, themed “Lost and Found,” that features a few names we bet you’ll recognize. Hear true tales starting at 7 p.m. from Brad Snyder, Tania Katan, Kim Porter, Sean David Christensen, and Daniel Thomson. Salvador Bravo will choose the music. Find tickets ($5) and details through Ticketfly. Becky Bartkowski
If you’ve ever seen a Halo Movement Collective production, you know it’s unlike anything else being done in Phoenix. Founder, artist director, and choreographer Angel Castro intertwines meaningful contemporary dance, art, and fashion in powerful and mesmerizing ways. On Friday, February 3, he’ll enchant audiences once again with Halo’s newest show, CELL. The production uses our sleep cycle to explore memory and the human psyche, as 18 dancers move through an art installation with the audience in the middle of it all. CELL also includes a piece by Tyler Hooten, collaboration with George Jones, and a special guest performance. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at Unexpected, 734 West Polk Street. Tickets are $20 for general admission, $30 for VIP, and $15 for students at halomovementcollective.com. Evie Carpenter
Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly is a very, very good choice for your first opera. Or your 50th. The score’s all that, but the thing that’ll really drag you in is a love story about the most sweet, devoted teenage woman and the most faithless, insensitive shitstorm of a man. It is what it is.
The melody of Butterfly’s aria “Un Bel Dì Vedremo” (from Fatal Attraction and other pop-culture-y settings) will sound familiar, but once you learn what it’s about, it will tear your fucking heart out for the rest of your life. Arizona Opera’s production continues through Sunday, February 5, at Symphony Hall, 75 North Second Street. Showtime on Friday, February 3, is 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $30 to $165 at Arizona Opera's website or 602-266-7464. Julie Peterson
D.L. Hughley and George Lopez
Sometimes it doesn’t get any better than TV dads. They’re wise, sarcastic, and usually have to take the fall for whatever goofballery that behind-the-scenes writers have whipped up for said sitcom. Celebrity Theatre is hosting two such television patriarchs for one night of stand-up comedy: D.L. Hughley and George Lopez.
Danny Zelisko presents two shows with both comedians for a night meant for the 18-and-older crowd at Celebrity Theatre, 440 North 32nd Street. Dad jokes start rolling at 6:30 p.m. for the first show, 9:30 for the second show, on Saturday, February 4. Club doors open at 4:30 p.m. for the first show, and 7:30 for the second.
Tickets range from $126 for a four-seat table to $101 for rows one to eight, $70 for rows nine to 13, and $51 for rows 14 to 25 (though there really isn’t a bad seat in the house). Call 602-267-1600 or visit Celebrity Theatre's website. Lauren Cusimano
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Plays that involve a teensy-weensy cast and scores of costume changes are oh-so-trendy. But things trend for a reason — and in the case of Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery, theaters get to dump a healthy chunk of budget into wardrobe and somewhat less into actors, while you’ll be amused by the meta and impressed by the ensemble’s virtuosity. After years of torturing performers and designers with run-of-the-mill quick costume changes in character, playwright Ken Ludwig has come up with a silly show that’s partially literally about said changes. For that, we salute him.
Phoenix Theatre’s production continues through Sunday, February 12, at 100 East McDowell Road. Showtimes on Sunday, February 5, are 2 and 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $30 at 602-254-2151 or through Phoenix Theatre's website. Julie Peterson
Sun Devil Criterium
If you’ve spent any time at all in downtown Tempe, you’ve probably had your proverbial tower buzzed by one of the many college students whizzing around on their fixed-gear bicycles. Rest easy though, some of those fixies do have brakes. However, if you happen to be in Tempe on Sunday, February 5, don’t expect any of those cyclists to actually use their brakes — they’ll be racing. For money. State Bicycle Co. has teamed up with ASU Cycling to host the Sun Devil Criterium, a number of timed, fixed-gear bicycle races throughout downtown Tempe with the winner of each race pocketing $75. If your need for speed is eclipsed only by your need to buy more ramen, visit arizonareg.com or call 480-409-4753 to register. $15 and up. Races start at 7:15 am. Rob Kroehler