14 Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix, January 23 to 29

"Between" debuts at Eric Fischl Gallery.EXPAND
"Between" debuts at Eric Fischl Gallery.
Denis Gillingwater
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Get this, Phoenix: We planned your week. And spoiler alert: It totally rules. From visual art and yoga to a weeknight geek-out and a group trail trek, you've got a lot to do. (And even more things await on New Times calendar of events.) Let's dig in.

A decade ago, local artists Jay Harding and Denis Gillingwater first talked about partnering together to produce a show. This month, that conversation becomes real-life collaboration when Phoenix College’s Eric Fischl Gallery hosts “Between.”

Gillingwater’s work is an examination of “digital noise,” using stills from CCTV cameras and black-and-white photographs in his installations. Hardin combines drawing, painting, and digital prints into his “organic grids,” a collection of geometric, wooden modules. The contrasting pieces play off one another, framing the focus on process over product. An opening reception will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. on Monday, January 23, in the Fine Arts Building at 1202 West Thomas Road. “Between” is on view through Friday, February 17, during regular gallery hours. Call 602-285-7277 or visit the Eric Fischl Gallery website for details. Janessa Hilliard

Deep breaths, yogis.EXPAND
Deep breaths, yogis.
Courtesy of Sutra Roosevelt

Intro to Vinyasa
It might seem like everyone you know is a yoga expert, but don’t feel bad if you’re a newbie. This Intro to Vinyasa course is geared for you. Vinyasa, itself, is a form of yoga that focuses on aligning breathing and movement for a harmonious union that benefits both your body and mind. This course will help you learn about the process, as you learn to practice primary postures, basic stretches, and breathing techniques. Breathe deep for inner peace from 6 to 8 p.m. on Monday, January 23, at Sutra Studios, 1029 North First Street. Admission is $18. Call 602-368-6008 or visit Sutra's website. Amy Young

Nerds + pizza = hacknight.EXPAND
Nerds + pizza = hacknight.
Jon Stephenson

Not all hackers look like Jonny Lee Miller, but you can see for yourself at the weekly Hacknight hosted by Gangplank Avondale. Gangplank offers a workspace for software and hardware projects, as well as anything you may have cooked up in your head.

Hacknight attendees have access to a 3D printer, arduinos, an industrial sewing machine, a projector, and more. The idea, aside from your own, is to join the group to collaborate and make friends. There’s also pizza, but you’re welcome to BYOF.

Hacknight hours are 7 to 10:30 p.m. on Tuesdays in the Main Space on the first floor at 525 North Central Avenue, Avondale. There is no required registration or fee. For more information, visit the Gangplank Avondale website. Lauren Cusimano

"Play Ball"
Two words: spring training. It’s the subject of an exhibition called “Play Ball: The Cactus League Experience,” which features images and artifacts exploring the history of spring training in Arizona from 1947 to the present. We’ve come a long way, baby.

It turns out that baseball memorabilia spanning seven decades reveals a lot about the communities where baseball is a big deal, and the ways team sports tend to reflect issues facing society at large.

See the exhibition on Tuesday, January 24, between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. inside the Gallery @ The Library, located at Civic Center Library, 3839 North Drinkwater Boulevard in Scottsdale. The exhibit, which also includes a Cactus League Hall of Fame, is free. And it continues through Tuesday, April 4. Visit the Scottsdale Library website. Lynn Trimble

The Huskies are coming.EXPAND
The Huskies are coming.
John M. Quick/Flickr Creative Commons

ASU Basketball vs. Washington Huskies
The ASU men’s basketball team has been nothing short of mediocre in recent years. And while the hire of coach Bobby Hurley infused the program with some optimism, it hasn’t yet shown up in the win column. Still, Hurley’s pedigree and no-nonsense style yielded results in Buffalo, where he coached prior to coming to the Valley. There’s no reason to doubt Hurley’s coaching acumen now; it’s his ability to recruit that remains to be seen. Maybe Hurley will pick up a few pointers from Lorenzo Romar, the Washington Huskies head coach, when they visit Tempe’s Wells Fargo Arena, 600 East Veterans Way, on Wednesday, January 25. Washington has struggled this season, but their recruiting hasn’t. Their roster includes the nation’s best player, Markelle Fultz. Tickets to the game, which starts at 9 p.m., are $7 and up. Visit the Sun Devils website or call 480-727-0000 for details. Rob Kroehler

Rashid and Doug and Leila: THREEsome stacks the spoons with actors Dylan Kim, Bernhard Connor Verhoeven, and Jenny Cohen-Sanchez.EXPAND
Rashid and Doug and Leila: THREEsome stacks the spoons with actors Dylan Kim, Bernhard Connor Verhoeven, and Jenny Cohen-Sanchez.
Laura Durant

Egyptian-American playwright Yussef El Guindi knows about outsider status from several perspectives. His familiarity with issues of Middle Easternness and Muslimness is supplemented by his English upbringing, which eventually delivered him to Cairo as an undergrad ripe for ridicule whose slipshod Arabic just sounded weird.

El Guindi has traditionally turned to comedy to open dialogue about diversity and inclusion in this wackadoo century. His 2015 work THREEsome commences as a young Arab-American couple’s experiment in inviting a white American dude into their bedroom. Before the final curtain, the characters also help the audience explore sexuality, violence, and the aftermath of Egypt’s 2011 revolution.

Nearly Naked Theatre presents the Arizona première of the play at 8 p.m. Thursday at Phoenix Theatre, 100 East McDowell Road. The run continues through Saturday, February 4. Call 602-254-2151 or visit Phoenix Theatre's website for tickets. General admission ticket prices start at $26 but may increase with demand. Julie Peterson

Pick up issue two of Queer Fear.EXPAND
Pick up issue two of Queer Fear.
Courtesy of Queer Fear

Queer Fear Launch Party
Queer Fear, a new zine focused on the LGBTQ+ experience, debuts its second issue this week during a full-scale launch party. “Issue Two” includes photo essays from editor Joseph Dick and photographer Richard Douglas, alongside explorations of gender from a first-person perspective. (See the issue at queer-fear.com.)

The night starts at 7 p.m. on Thursday, January 26, at the Listening Room Phoenix, 4614 North Seventh Street, and features a poetry reading and storytelling starting at 8 p.m. A selection of queer zines will be available for purchase, courtesy of Wasted Ink Zine Distro.The evening is free, but a $5 donation — benefitting One-N-Ten, an organization that helps local LGBTQ+ kids and teens — is appreciated. Funds from each Queer Fear zine sold will go to providing housing for displaced LGBTQ+ youth. Janessa Hilliard

Read on for more things to do this week — and weekend.

Explore works by Diane Silver at Gebert Contemporary during the Local Edge Scottsdale Artwalk.EXPAND
Explore works by Diane Silver at Gebert Contemporary during the Local Edge Scottsdale Artwalk.
Photo by Lynn Trimble

Local Edge Artwalk
Maybe it’s been a while since you walked the line in Old Town Scottsdale, where blue and green sidewalk graphics lead gallery-goers around the arts scene centered around Main Street and Marshall Way.
Give it another try between 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 26, when the Scottsdale Gallery Association turns one of its weekly art walks into a free Local Edge Artwalk, where you can chat with local artists, watch live painting, and enjoy live music.

Participating galleries include Art One, Calvin Charles, Gebert Contemporary, and Tilt, to name a few. Explore works by Nicole Royse at Carstens, then hit Lotus Contemporary Art for an exhibition featuring James Hernandez and Joshua Dopp. Gallery hours vary slightly, so hit your favorites first. Visit the Scottsdale galleries website for details. Lynn Trimble

Sneak peek of a Jessica Rajko piece featured in Breaking Ground 2017.EXPAND
Sneak peek of a Jessica Rajko piece featured in Breaking Ground 2017.
Courtesy of Jessica Rajko

Breaking Ground 2017
For the 10th anniversary of her Breaking Ground contemporary dance festival, CONDER/dance artistic director Carley Conder is putting the focus on local artists, but also showing works created around the country — so it’s a good way to explore what’s happening in contemporary dance both in and beyond Arizona.

The two-night affair has a different dance lineup each evening, and both nights include a free preshow performance as well as Tiny Dances choreographed by Arizona artists and performed during intermission on four-by-four-foot stages.

Breaking Ground 2017 includes three works commissioned for the festival, which feature choreography by Mary Fitzgerald, Jessica Rajko, and oneTON Collective. Be one of the first to check it out by heading to Tempe Center for the Arts, 700 West Rio Salado Parkway, at 7 p.m. on Friday, January 27. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. production are $25. Visit the CONDER/dance website for show and ticket information. Lynn Trimble

Don't miss this year's Desperado Film Fest.EXPAND
Don't miss this year's Desperado Film Fest.
Lisa Guarnieri

Desperado LGBT Film Fest
As movie stars once again flood red carpets and congratulate each other on last year’s accomplishments, we can’t help but notice that, once again, one group has been severely underrepresented: the LGBT community. But Desperado LGBT Film Festival is ensuring that’s not the case in Phoenix. From Friday, January 27, through Sunday, January 29, stories of fatherly love, maintaining relationships in the face of adversity, and living in cultures that don’t quite understand will take over Paradise Valley Community College, 18401 North 32nd Street. Along with feature length and short films, the festival also includes a discussion about Latino fathers with LGBT children after the screening of El Canto del Colibri and the Diversity Leadership Alliance leading a workshop on transitioning after the screening of Real Boy. All-access passes for the festival are $80, while general admission is $10 per film. To purchase tickets and see both synopses of the films and a full schedule, visit Desperado Film Festival online. Evie Carpenter

It's story time, Mesa.EXPAND
It's story time, Mesa.
Courtesy of The Moth

The Moth
Whether in a coffee shop or basement bar, there’s plenty of storytelling taking the stage across town. While some are backed by media companies and others are organized by seasoned speakers, all of them are in the image of the Moth.

The literary must-see returns to Mesa Arts Center at One East Main Street on Friday, January 27, with a new set of true stories — told live.Hosted by Dame Wilburn, a Moth GrandSLAM champion and frequent teller, Friday’s Moth Mainstage show features performances from Los Angeles-based comedian and Moth regular David Montogmery; Pittsburgh Moth StorySLAM performer Catherine Palmer; emergency physician and Carefree native Bess Stillman; poet and performer Enrique Garcia Naranjo of Tucson; and weather chaser and Mesa resident Jared Stevenson.

Stories start at 8 p.m. Tickets run $35 to $45 and are available by calling 480-644-6500 or visiting Mesa Arts Center online. Janessa Hilliard

National Trail Trek

While other Americans are shoveling front walks in late January, the City of Phoenix is hosting its 21st annual National Trail Trek. This 15.5-mile group hike covers South Mountain’s well-known National Trail, from Pima Canyon in the east to the western San Juan Lookout within the 16,000-acre South Mountain Park.

With all that trail ahead, there will be plenty of opportunities to spot Sonoran flora, hopefully some fauna, and maybe some ancient Hohokam petroglyphs. The hike runs from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, January 28. The first shuttle leaves at 7:05 a.m. from the Activity Complex, 10409 South Central Avenue.

Registration is $55 per person and includes water, lunch, shuttle transportation, prizes, and a few surprises. Call 602-262-7393 or visit the City of Phoenix website. Lauren Cusimano

Monster Energy AMA Supercross
Indoor motorcycle riding might not work in your small apartment, but it plays out awesomely in a gigantic stadium. The Monster Energy AMA Supercross racing competition brings off-roading inside, using dirt that has been sculpted by construction equipment to create the terrain. The setting allows for great views from any seat. Watch these two-wheeled racers from around the world maneuver for victory. The main event happens at 7 p.m. on Saturday, January 28, at University of Phoenix Stadium, One Cardinals Drive in Glendale. Tickets are $15 to $175. Admission for the pre-event Pit Party from noon to 6 p.m. is $10. Visit the Supercross website. Amy Young

Fifty Shades of Felt rhymes with belt rhymes with welt.EXPAND
Fifty Shades of Felt rhymes with belt rhymes with welt.
Courtesy of All Puppet Players

Fifty Shades Darker
The film version of Fifty Shades Darker is scheduled to open February 10, enabling many’s way awkward Valentine’s date. You could prepare by screening the Razzie-sweeping first entry in the series or reading its literary precursor, reviewed variously as clunky, asinine, dull, awful, and depressing.

Or you could immerse yourself in the revival of Fifty Shades of Felt from All Puppet Players, a somewhat filthy and extremely funny fully mounted (so to speak) play for mature audiences. It will be an evening to remember — with pleasure and perhaps with pain.

Showtime is 8 p.m. on Saturday, January 28, at Playhouse on the Park, 1850 North Central Avenue. Performances continue through Saturday, February 11. Call 602-254-2151 or visit the All Puppet Players website for tickets, $23 to $50. Julie Peterson

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