Nerd Culture

Best Things to Do This Weekend: Demetri Martin, Untidy Secrets, Labyrinth

Want to hear a secret?
Want to hear a secret? Sarah Marie Rainier
Nothing to do this weekend? Let's change that. This weekend, you can boogie all night long, laugh along with Demetri Martin, or learn all about the booze you love at the Real, Wild & Woody Beer Festival. The choice is yours. For more things, to do visit our curated calendar.

Untidy Secrets
It’s appropriate that Belle and Sebastian, a band steeped in the written word, are the catalyst for new narrative works. “Get Me Away From Here, I’m Dying” is this month’s theme at Untidy Secrets, a storytelling event and zine swap. Settle down with stories by Jessie Balli, Brodie Foster Hubbard, Laine Baker, Marnee Burrus, Michael Palladino, and Sari Beliak. You might hear about naive boys that succeed or a tale that sets your mind to wander. Untidy Secrets’ mission is to encourage literature through alternative means, so writers and storytellers are encouraged to swap their printed work and network.

The storytelling starts at 8 p.m. on Friday, July 28, at Ash Avenue Comics and Books, 806 South Ash Avenue in Tempe. The event is free. For more information, visit the Ash Avenue Comics website. Jason Keil

Saturday Night Fever

Been kicked around since he was born. Gets low and gets high. Is literally crying for help. Per the Bee Gees, this is the dilemma of Tony Manero, protagonist of Saturday Night Fever. And since there’s “no time to talk,” he probably won’t get the therapy he obviously needs. But he’s a dancin’ man, and he just can’t lose.

Of all the films that have become stage musicals, this one makes some sense. Because disco. Arizona Broadway Theatre’s production of the lavish show continues through Sunday, August 20. Seating begins at 5:30 p.m. for a 7:30 showtime on Friday, July 28, at 7701 West Paradise Lane in Peoria. Ticket prices, which may increase with demand, start at $45 to $90. Call 623-776-8400 or visit the Arizona Broadway website. Julie Peterson

click to enlarge Compression by Bryan David Griffith, an artist represented by Bentley Gallery. - COURTESY OF BENTLEY GALLERY
Compression by Bryan David Griffith, an artist represented by Bentley Gallery.
Courtesy of Bentley Gallery
“Gallery Artists”
Recently, Bentley Gallery announced it’s representing Travis Rice, who holds a fresh master’s of fine arts from Arizona State. Rice’s work fills the gallery’s project space, but there’s even more to see. Bentley Gallery, 215 East Grant Street, is also showing selected works by several of its other artists in an exhibition called “Gallery Artists.”

It’s a summertime sampling of work in several media by artists who hail from Arizona and other parts of the world. Bentley Gallery’s cadre of more than 50 artists includes Bryan David Griffith, a Flagstaff artist whose media include fire. See the free exhibition from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Friday, July 28. It continues through Thursday, August 31. Visit the Bentley Gallery website. Lynn Trimble

Get down.
Bruno Girin via Flickr/CC
Good Times: Disco Party For Boys & Girls
Get ready to boogie all night long, because Rips is reviving the ’70s for one night only.

Good Times: Disco Party For Boys & Girls starts at 9 p.m. on Friday, July 28. Get ready to shake your groove thing to the sounds of disco, electro boogie, proto-house, and Italo disco. Expect all-night drink specials and free pizza.

Disco attire is encouraged. So whip out those bell-bottoms and strap on those platforms. There is no cover for this event at 3045 North 16th Street. For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Lindsay Roberts

click to enlarge Blanca Peak overlooks the white quadrant in "Black White Blue Yellow." - COURTESY OF HEARD MUSEUM
Blanca Peak overlooks the white quadrant in "Black White Blue Yellow."
Courtesy of Heard Museum
“Black White Blue Yellow”
We’re surrounded by mountains. Some of us like to conquer them as hikers or wedge expensive houses into their armpits, but most of us aren’t really living with them, chilling, listening. Artist Steven Yazzie shares the relationship of the Diné/Navajo people with four mountains that surround their homeland in his show “Black White Blue Yellow” at the Heard Museum through October 15.

Over a three-year period, Yazzie hiked the area bounded by Hesperus Mountain, Blanca Peak, Mount Taylor, and the San Francisco Peaks, snapping photos and making audio/video recordings that constitute the meat of the installation. Each point of the compass corresponds to its own sacred mountain and color. Bits of artist magic are sprinkled in to keep you on your toes.

The exhibition opens on Saturday, July 29, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 2301 North Central Avenue. Regular admission is $7.50 to $18. Visit the Heard website or call 602-252-8840. Julie Peterson

click to enlarge Get ready for some fun in the sun. - CITYSCAPE PHOENIX
Get ready for some fun in the sun.
CityScape Phoenix
Water’s what it’s all about during Arizona summers, and you can confirm as much when CityScape, 1 East Washington Street, hosts H2Oasis. The event takes over a stretch of Central Avenue and Patriots Park with eight giant water slides, all-ages games and activities, and shady spots to stretch out.

H2Oasis is also pet-friendly (though you should consider shoes for your pup), and runs from 4 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, July 29. Admission is free, and the whole shebang is open to the public. For more information, see thr CityScape website and the Facebook event page. Lauren Cusimano

Pen Cap Collective’s 2017 Poetry and Art Showcase

Samedi Johnson is an Arizona State University student who creates stunning artwork and animation inspired by anime, comics, and cinema. A nonbinary artist, you may have seen one of their beautifully designed posters for activist events plastered on one the columns around campus or a drawing featured in a local zine. The intermedia major is one of the 20 visual artists and 15 poets featured at the Pen Cap Collective’s 2017 Poetry and Art Showcase. The event will feature work by people of color and queer and femme communities.

Celebrate expression at 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 29, at FiftyOne West, 51 West Southern Avenue in Tempe. Admission is $5. For more information, visit the FiftyOne West website. Jason Keil

click to enlarge Get ready to see stars. - BARRY GOSSAGE/PHOENIX MERCURY
Get ready to see stars.
Barry Gossage/Phoenix Mercury
Phoenix Mercury v. San Antonio Stars
The Phoenix Mercury’s marquee player, Diana Taurasi, will go down in history as one of the best basketball players of all time. But the greatest player on the 2017 version of the Merc just went down, period. Midway through an MVP-caliber season, Brittney Griner suffered a knee and ankle injury that will sideline the all-star through mid-August. In an already abridged 34-game season, losing the team’s leading scorer and defensive centerpiece for 10 games is a devastating blow for Phoenix, who are still in the thick of the playoff race.

Luckily, the team has some depth and — in Taurasi — the most adept scorer in WNBA history. Perhaps even more fortuitously, the WNBA’s punching bag, the San Antonio Stars, bring their paltry level of play to Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 East Jefferson Street, at 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 30. Tickets are $9 and up. Visit the Mercury website or call 602-379-7800 for details. Rob Kroehler

Demetri Martin
Let’s be honest. If anyone has the right to call their tour Let’s Get Awkward, it’s comedian Demetri Martin.
His quirky demeanor, bowl haircut, and drawing tablet used to HELP illustrate his jokes are all part of his glorious geekery. Martin’s type of stand-up features clever and hilarious one-liners delivered with a deadpan style that comedy hasn’t seen the likes of since Steven Wright got everyone all jazzed in the ’80s. In addition to illustrations, he also uses musical instruments, from keyboards to banjos, to drive his funny words home. His observational and sometimes surreal humor has earned the Yale grad a prosperous career in the stand-up world, as well as in TV and film.

See him joke and draw at 8 p.m. on Saturday, July 29, at Talking Stick Resort, 9800 East Talking Stick Way in Scottsdale. Tickets to the 21-and-over show are $20 to $60. Call 480-850-7777 or visit the Talking Stick Resort website. Amy Young

click to enlarge Make some art waves with Jennifer McCurdy’s Coral Nest exhibited at Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum. - COURTESY OF MESA ARTS CENTER
Make some art waves with Jennifer McCurdy’s Coral Nest exhibited at Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum.
Courtesy of Mesa Arts Center
“Making Waves”
Catch a wave without heading to the coastline. In a new exhibition of wave-inspired art, four artists share distinct takes on what that means.

Katie Glusica’s work explores the relationship between weaving and wave/particle duality, Lucrezia Bieler’s delicate paper-cutting reflects the balance of nature, and Jennifer McCurdy’s wheel-thrown porcelain addresses the ordered symmetry and asymmetry of the natural world. They’re featured, along with Robert Donne, in the “Making Waves” group exhibition at Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum, 1 East Main Street.

See the free exhibition between noon and 4 p.m. on Sunday, July 30. The show continues through Sunday, August 6. Visit the Mesa Arts Center website. Lynn Trimble

Although David Bowie’s Jareth the Goblin King did not have power over Jennifer Connelly’s Sarah in Jim Henson’s cult classic Labyrinth, Bowie’s codpiece held a hypnotic sway over those of a certain generation watching on cable. Don’t miss your chance to see the late rock star’s impressive bulge on the big screen, complete with animated subtitles so you can quote and sing along to this musical masterpiece. Admission includes a prop bag with smell-along cards, bringing a new dimension to your journey through the Bog of Eternal Stench.

The magic dance begins at 4:15 p.m. and again at 7 on Sunday, July 30, at Alamo Drafthouse Chandler, 4955 South Arizona Avenue. Tickets are $12.94. For more information, visit the Drafthouse website. Jason Keil

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Lauren Cusimano was the Phoenix New Times food editor from 2018 to 2021. Joys include eating wings, riding bikes, knowing everyone at the bar, talking too much about The Simpsons, and falling asleep while reading.
Jason Keil was the Phoenix New Times culture editor from August 2019 to May 2020.
Contact: Jason Keil
Rob is a Phoenix native, husband, dad, and an active member in the local music scene. He's written original songs for feature films.
Contact: Rob Kroehler
Julie has written for the Night & Day events calendar section since 2005. As a student at Arizona State, she received the Glendon and Kathryn Swarthout Creative Writing Award and the Theatre Medallion of Merit.
Contact: Julie Peterson
Lynn Trimble is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer specializing in arts and culture, including visual and performing arts
Contact: Lynn Trimble
Amy Young is an arts and culture writer who also spends time curating arts-related exhibits and events, and playing drums in local bands French Girls and Sturdy Ladies.
Contact: Amy Young