What are you doing this weekend? If it's not anything on this list, you may want to reconsider your choices. This week you can get jazzed up at DeFrancesco + The People, check out the Fantastic Planet exhibition, and check out the artifacts from Pompeii. For more things, visit the Phoenix New Times' calendar.
Fly by Night
Ever wondered what Romeo and Juliet would be like if the Shakespearean tragedy was a lot more cynical and featured rock music? And no, we aren’t talking about West Side Story.
The Brelby Theatre presents Fly by Night, a toe-tapping rock musical that combines all the forbidden romance of Romeo and Juliet, but with a lot more biting comedy. Perfect for date night for the most sarcastic couple.
Go see the dark comedy in action at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 11, at 7154 North 58th Drive in Glendale. Tickets are $25 at the Artful.ly website. Lindsay Roberts
DeFrancesco + The People
The jazz organ? It wasn’t very popular until Joey DeFrancesco began pumping the keys of his vintage Hammond a few decades back. The 47-year-old got his first record contract at age 16 and has been performing and recording ever since. DeFrancesco + The People will play two shows at The Nash on Friday, May 11, featuring his Grammy-nominated CD release Project Freedom.
The four-time Grammy nominee has toured or recorded with artists like Miles Davis, Ray Charles, Diana Krall, and George Benson. The shows start at 7 and 9:15 p.m. at 110 East Roosevelt Street. VIP tickets are $250 each for the early show, which includes a $160 donation to The Nash Education programs. General tickets start at $40. Order at the Nash website. Stuart Warner
Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum celebrates figurative art this season, with several exhibitions showing diverse takes on the human form — and the human condition. The official opening reception happens at Mesa Arts Center, 1 East Main Street, from 7 to 10 p.m. on Friday, May 11. The free event includes a large-scale installation of illuminated humanoid figures called Fantastic Planet, created by Australian artist Amanda Parer. But you can also enjoy live music by the Jaime Cortez Band, plus light refreshments and a cash bar.
The exhibition lineup includes “Adventure and Control” featuring works by Rachel Bess, “It Is Important to Be Nobody” featuring works by Colin Chillag, and “Life & Death Portraits” featuring work by Marilyn Szabo. They’re all based in metro Phoenix. There’s also a group show called “We the People,” which includes works in diverse media by contemporary American artists. Plus, you’ll see wry, whimsical ceramics by Patti Warashina. Visit the Mesa Arts Center website. Lynn Trimble
Chingona Soles Annual Art and Fashion Show
See how professional artists and designers transform black stiletto pumps into works of art, as Torres Multicultural Communications presents its Chingona Soles Annual Art and Fashion Show at Luna Culture Lab, 803 East Washington Street. It’s happening from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, May 11. Admission is free, but wear your nice duds.
The evening includes an auction of decorated stilettos, including some created by elected officials and community leaders. Proceeds benefit Los Diablos, the Latino chapter for ASU’s alumni association. There’s also a fashion show featuring local designs. Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton will be there (wearing flats, we suspect), as will city councilmember Kate Gallego. Odds are, everyone will want to run home and paint a pair of shoes after the shindig. Visit the Luna Culture Lab website. Lynn Trimble
Phoenix Mercury v. Seattle Storm
Phoenix and Seattle are two cities whose dramatic climates are probably too often topics of conversation.
Get an early look at the Mercury’s 22nd season at 7 p.m. on Saturday, May 12, at Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 East Jefferson Street. Tickets start at $11. Visit the Talking Stick Resort Arena website. Amy Young
Peach Pop-Up and U-Pick
Peaches will be the laser focus of the Peach Pop-Up and U-Pick coming to Agritopia from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, May 12. The urban farm in Gilbert will be inviting people to pick their own fruit for $3 per pound. Sounds like a party, yes, for there’s nothing like chomping into juicy peaches in a field on a sunny day. This event, though, goes next level. The sweet, orange-fleshed star will be showcased in other peachy ways.
Iconic Cocktail Co. will distribute peach-sour sodas. SEE SALT and Tempe-based caterer Chef Phoenix will incorporate peaches into various concoctions. Finally, M&J Chocolate Couture (based in Gilbert) will be passing out “chocolate creations.” For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Chris Malloy
"Pompeii: The Exhibition"
"Pompeii: The Exhibition" transports visitors to the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius over the ancient Roman city in 79 A.D. In addition to the 4-D simulation of the disaster, there are displays of preserved artifacts that were buried under the layers of ash.
“There is a level of reverence that comes over you when you see the body casts,” says Chevy Humphrey, President, and CEO of the Arizona Science Center. “It reminds you that we are powerless over nature. You get chills because that could be you.”
See the devastation before time runs out on Saturday, May 12, with timed entry from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 600 East Washington Street. Adult tickets are $18. For more information, visit the Arizona Science Center website. Jason Keil
Coffee & Crime Book Club
True crime has been having a major pop culture moment, and we are here for it. Mindhunter? Binged in one sitting. Golden State Killer? Fully obsessed. My Favorite Murder? SSDGM is our life motto. And we’re definitely not alone. If anything, it’s become apparent that a lot of other people share our “creepy” interests.
If you’re looking to mix things up a little, consider joining the Coffee & Crime Book Club. Hosted by Scottsdale’s The Poisoned Pen, the monthly gathering assembles voracious readers who very well might have spent hours in the EAR/ONS Reddit, too. On Saturday, May 12, they will meet up to discuss A Curious Beginning, the new novel from Deanna Raybourn, who’s best known for penning the Lady Julia Grey mystery series.
Bring your theories and insights to 4014 North Goldwater Boulevard, #101, Scottsdale, at 10:30 a.m. See the Poisoned Pen website for details or call 480-947-2974. Becky Bartkowski
’90s Block Party Tour
R&B musicians and groups of the ’90s made a whole generation of people want to dance, party, get romantic or jam out in their car. The ’90s Block Party tour on Saturday, May 12, will bring a little taste of ’90s to the Valley with R&B,
The concert starts at 7:30 p.m. at Comerica Theatre, 400 West Washington Street. Tickets run from $59.50 to $195.50. For more information, call 602-379-2800 or go to
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Scottsdale Bacon and Beer Classic
Like bacon? Like beer? This weekend, a festival aggressively devoted to the two best words that begin with “B” will be blitzing Scottsdale Stadium, 7408 East Osborn Road. On Saturday, May 12, the Scottsdale Bacon and Beer Classic will kick off with more than 50 regional beers and 20-plus dishes featuring bacon. There will be all kinds of beer-and-bacon-themed events as well, including a beer blind-taste test, a bacon-eating contest, lawn games, and more.
General admission costs $55 and gets you all the bacon you can eat, and all the craft beer you can fit in your stomach. Gates open at 1 p.m. Visit the Bacon and Beer website. Chris Malloy
The Sound of Music
Alamo Drafthouse, classic movies, singing to famous songs, your mom. If these are a few of your favorite things, you are in luck. The Sound of Music is coming to Alamo Drafthouse, 4955 South Arizona Avenue, Chandler on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 13. Say so long, farewell,
It’s not just a movie screening, though. You can combine your love for your mother with brunch. The movie, screening at 1 p.m., will have a specific brunch menu with wine pairings. The hills will be alive with the sound of your mom being wine-drunk. Head over to the Alamo Drafthouse website to see what’s on the menu. Dillon Rosenblatt