Tradition meets innovation as Ballet Arizona once again celebrates American ballet pioneer George Balanchine. With this year's All Balanchine, the company will take on three works that spanned as many decades in the New York City Ballet founder's acclaimed career. Works Allegro Brilliant, Stravinsky Violin Concert, and La Sonnambula all come to life with choreography by Ib Andersen, a protege of Balanchine himself and one of just a handful of masters allowed to reproduce Balanchine's work.
See the legacy of Balanchine in action at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 1, at Symphony Hall, 75 North Second Street. Performances continue through Sunday, May 3. Visit www.balletaz.org or call 602-381-1096 for tickets, $15 and up. Becky Bartkowski
The Soul Justice Project
Just like your mother always told you, there are two sides to every story. And The Soul Justice Project is will tell each of them. By combining theatre with dance, spoken word, music, and mixed media, The Soul Justice Project plans to explore the politics of American media outlets, while giving each side of the issue a voice. From 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Friday, May 1, such local performers as Sydney Jackons, Myrlin Hepworth, and Xanthia Walker will represent Phonetic Spit, Mesa Arts Center's spoken word and education partner, and bring a powerful mix of arts, politics, and community to the stage, One East Main Street. Tickets are $22 for adults and $10 for students. For more information and to purchase tickets, check out mesaartscenter.com. Evie Carpenter
Free Comic Book Day
On the high holy geek day that is Free Comic Book Day, you might be tempted to dash into comic book stores across the Valley, hoarding comic rag swag. Instead, calm your Lex Luthor-like aspirations and get into the spirit of the day by getting to know the people of your local comic shop's community and what they're reading. Whether it's recommendations of boundary-breaking superhero Ms. Marvel, the epic sci-fi/fantasy of Saga, or the further adventures of the Belcher family in the Bob's Burgers comics, a fellow fan can probably quench your comic thirst.
Free Comic Book Day is Saturday, May 2, and will be celebrated across the Valley at various local comic book stores including All About Books & Comics, Ash Avenue Comics & Books, Drawn to Comics, Enterprise Comics, Gotham City Comics & Coffee, Jesse James Comics, Pop Culture Paradise, and Samurai Comics. Visit www.freecomicbookday.com for more information. Jose Gonzalez
Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market
Just because it's chipped or rusted doesn't mean it's not a great find. From the slightly bent-out-of-shape to the truly out-of-this-world, Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market returns with all the handmade and vintage goodies one could want. With more than 170 vendors, expect booths from local companies like Hello Apparel, Robin's Nest Creative Designs, and Zinnias on Melrose.
This spring sell-off is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 2, at WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 North Pima Road. Early bird entry for VIPs begins at 8 a.m. Shopping continues on Sunday, May 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Entry fee is $5 per person, $5 parking fee per vehicle; children under 12 get in free. Call 480-599-8974 or visit www.junkinthetrunkvintagemarket.com for more. Janessa Hilliard
Cinco de Mayo Phoenix Festival 2015
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Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexico's victory over the French army in the 1862 Battle of Puebla. The rich history and cultural importance of America's favorite Mexican holiday is celebrated annually downtown at the Cinco de Mayo Festival Phoenix. The event, naturally, features a plethora of fine food, cold Mexican beer, and smoky tequila, as well as performances from Ballet Folklorico, Olympic-style boxing, a kid's zone, and live music from locals Fayuca, along with national headliners Sir Mix-A-Lot and Ginuwine. Don't miss the chance to brush up on the significance of the day, too.
The fun runs from 2 p.m. to midnight Saturday, May 2, and continues on Sunday, May 3, at the intersection of East Van Buren and North First streets. General admission is $5 general before 5 p.m. and $15 after. Reserved seats are $25, while VIP passes are $50. Visit www.cincophx.com. Glenn BurnSilver