Get down, kids -- Matt Pryor's New Amsterdams are set to rock Nita's Hideaway, Tuesday, August 26. The side project of the Get Up Kids vocalist/guitarist -- with drummer Jake Cardwell, guitarist Alex Brahl, and Get Up's Robert Pope on bass and organ -- the band brought expanded instrumentation to its latest album, Worse for the Wear, released earlier this month on Vagrant (and available for complete listen at www.newams.net). Also on the bill: Jesse Malin (whose debut, The Fine Art of Self Destruction, produced by Ryan Adams, got critics all worked up earlier this year) and Waxwing front man Rocky Votolato.
Doors open at 7 p.m. for the all-ages show. Tickets are $10 at Nita's, 3300 South Price in Tempe, or through www.ticketmaster.com. Call 480-966-7715 for more information. - Jill Koch
I Know Why the Staged Bird Sings
Tony winner hits the stage in Sun City
With much ado, Wonder Works Playhouse Theater kicks off its production of Bye Bye Birdie this Friday, August 22, with a "Dessert Night" fundraiser. Theater Works' education division presents the quadruple Tony winner, satirizing the exploits of drafted rock star Conrad Birdie, through August 31. Showtimes are 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays at The Lakes Club, 10484 West Thunderbird in Sun City. Tickets to the opening-night benefit are $15; tickets for the remainder of the run are $10 for adults, $8 for children. Call 623-815-7930 for reservations. - Jill Koch
Galileo probes science and ethics
He was a casualty of the original star wars: After inventing the telescope in 1609, Galileo proved Copernicus' theory that the sun -- rather than the Earth -- is the center of the solar system. His discoveries drew the ire of the Inquisition, and Galileo lived his last nine years under house arrest. The timeless tension between church authority and scientific discovery takes center stage as Grand Canyon University's Ethington Theatre, 3300 West Camelback, presents Bertolt Brecht's Galileo. The production runs Friday, August 22, through August 30; tickets are $10 for adults, $8.50 for seniors and children. Call 602-589-2871 for reservations.- Jill Koch