How to spend this week in metro Phoenix? Discover some singer-songwriters at a local showcase, see hip-hop mashed up with burlesque, and listen to bilingual poetry at Palabras. For more things to do, visit the New Times' curated calendar.
The Brockway Experience: Broadway Rock Live
What’s cooler than hearing your favorite Broadway song live? Hearing your fave performed by a rocking-out theater group.
AC Theatre Company presents The Brockway Experience: Broadway Rock Live, featuring Valley-based musical theater performers including Lynzee 4Man, Eddie Maldonado, and Chanel Bragg. These singers will tear through Broadway favorites rebooted as hard rock hits. The show runs till August 19, and starts at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 17, in the Hardes Theatre at Phoenix Theatre, 100 East McDowell Road.
General admission for the all-ages show ranges from $17 to $26. Tickets are available by calling 602-254-2151
or at the Phoenix Theatre website, where you can also find more information. Lauren Cusimano
Considered his finest work, Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven was the director’s way of saying goodbye to the Western, but the violent tale about the last ride of a group of gunslingers only cemented his iconic status in the genre.
Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the influential movie that gave the cowboy film some prestige has been given a 4K restoration. When it screens at the Alamo Drafthouse in Chandler, attendees will get to hear an interview between Los Angeles Times critic Kenneth Turan and Eastwood at the Cannes Film Festival about the making of this masterpiece.
Ride into the sunset at 7 p.m. on Thursday, August 17, at 4955 South Arizona Avenue. Tickets are $8.62. For more details, visit the Drafthouse website. Jason Keil
Third Thursday Songwriter Showcase
One thing you can count on in life is that in every month there will be a third Thursday. It might not be much, but take what you can get.
You can max out that guaranteed occasion by attending the Third Thursday Songwriter Showcase at a venue that is focused on spotlighting singer-songwriters, both their music and personal stories. This time, the night is hosted by Eddy Roswell and features Eric Ramsey and Robby Roberson.
The show is done in the round, which allows the attention to pivot among all three performers as they play music and offer career insights. Get an earful at 7 p.m. on Thursday, August 17, at the Listening Room, 4614 North Seventh Street. Admission is $12. Call 480-390-4900 or visit the Listening Room website. Amy Young
New Times' Beer Olympics
How much do you like beer? Tempe Marketplace and New Times are teaming up to throw one of the sudsiest events of the year, the Beer Olympics.
The brew-fueled event returns on Friday, August 18. Participants can enjoy an evening of 21-and-over games including giant beer pong, flip cup, and cornhole. The event runs from 8 to 11 p.m.
General admission tickets start at $15. If you want to compete as part of a team, you and your pals can register as a group of four or more for $70.
Bump n’ Grind — A Hip-Hop Burlesque Spectacular
Name generators have gotten out of hand — although the one that gives you your NPR correspondent name is eerily perfect. But before we had rules for things like our porn star names (Freckles Lane), we had homegrown drag names and their near cousin, stripper — uh, burlesque performer — names. So fun!
Hence our delight to discover that Irma Gherd, along with several other performers, will uncover, shake, and wiggle at Bump n’ Grind — A Hip-Hop Burlesque Spectacular on Friday, August 18, at Crescent Ballroom. Diamond Femme Productions combines your favorite hip-hop tracks with steamy, undulating women for a memorable evening.
At 308 North Second Avenue, doors will open at 7 p.m. to let you enjoy some music before things warm up. Admission’s $10 in advance, $15 at the door, and limited to folks 21 and older. Reserved tables are already sold out. Call 602-716-2222 or visit the Crescent Ballroom website. Julie Peterson
“Xico Retrospective: A Celebration of 20 Years”
With careers spanning two decades in the Valley’s creative scene, artists Martin Moreno and Joe Ray are in a league of their own. But they’re also part of Xico Arte y Cultura, 1008 East Buckeye Road, Suite 220. The multidisciplinary arts group was founded by Native American and Chicano artists in 1975.
See work from the group’s permanent collection during the free opening reception for “Xico Retrospective: A Celebration of 20 Years,” which takes place from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, August 18. The show includes diverse print media from serigraphs to woodcuts, with works that explore politics, pain, heritage, and understanding.
Featured artists include Damien Charette, Baje Whitethorne, Randy Kemp, Larry Yanez, and Dora Hernandez, to name a few. Visit the Xico Inc website. Lynn Trimble
Considering how well a bet worked out for comedian and actor Deon Cole, you might wanna lean toward responding affirmatively the next time someone proposes, “I’ll give you $50 if you …”
In his case, a friend offered to pony up that amount if Cole — known for keeping his pals in stitches — would take the stage at an amateur comedy night. In addition to earning a chunk of pocket change, the comedian started a career that has led to some pretty big gigs, like appearances on popular comedy TV shows Black-ish and Angie Tribeca.
Cole gives his take on personal and universal issues during shows at 7:30 and 10 p.m. on Friday, August 18, at Stand Up Live, 50 West Jefferson Street. Admission is $22 for the 21-and-older event. Seating is first-come, first-served. All tickets require a two-drink minimum. Call 480-719- 6100 or visit the Stand Up Live website. Amy Young
Forget the single-serving dessert. Cupcake! is a south Scottsdale monthly fetish-themed dance party.
The elektro, industrial, EDM, darkwave, and bass-heavy party features resident DJs Self.Destukt, Betty Blackheart, and ///she/// — as well as a themed photo booth, roaming photography and video, a best-dressed contest, a no-pants dance-off, go-go dancers, giveaways, and drink specials. Fetish, drag, goth, or just dark clothing in general is encouraged.
Darkness rules from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Friday, August 18, at The Rogue Bar, 423 North Scottsdale Road. Entry is $6 or free before 10 p.m. with a RSVP from the Facebook event page. Call 602-733-3208 for more information. Lauren Cusimano
Will and Grace Trivia Night
Can’t wait for the new season of Will and Grace? Get an early fix at Kobalt Bar, 3110 North Central Avenue, when the nightlife spot hosts Will and Grace trivia night at 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 19. Fans of Karen, Jack, and company can expect a challenge with progressively harder questions, some of which will include video clips.
Kobalt will pay homage to the hit sitcom with special Karen Cocktails, character-themed prize baskets, and T-shirt giveaways. The cost of entry is $15 for teams of up to four people, and $5 for individuals. Proceeds from the event will go to the Omaggio LGBTQ Youth Chorus. For more information, call 602-264-5307 or go to the Facebook event page. Laura Latzko
Arizona Cardinals v. Chicago Bears
Pointing out that the NFL is far and away the nation’s most beloved professional sports league isn’t exactly earth-shattering news at this point. Even the league’s Hall of Fame Game — a meaningless exhibition game that took place earlier this month between the Cardinals and Cowboys — drew better television ratings than the MLB and NBA could dream of under similar circumstances. Couple that information with the fact that there’s no dearth of Chicago transplants living in the Valley (hello, Lou Malnati’s), and the upcoming Arizona Cardinals preseason game against the Chicago Bears on Saturday, August 19, is downright front-page news. Not willing to pony up $41 or more to catch the 7 p.m. game live at Glendale’s University of Phoenix Stadium, 1 Cardinals Drive? No worries, you can watch the game in all its inconsequential preseason glory on NBC, because football. For details, visit the Arizona Cardinals website or call 623-433-7101. Rob Kroehler
Read on for more of the best things to do in metro Phoenix this week.
Poesia en Voz Alta
Calling all bilingual storytellers and poets, Spanish speakers, and lovers of languages.
On Saturday, August 19, the microphone at Palabras will be open to all for Poesia en Voz Alta, or “poetry in high voice.” From 7 to 9 p.m., ven a disfrutar de una noche de poesía y letras or, ahem, come enjoy a night of poetry and storytelling. Tell your story, read your poems, or just listen at 1738 East McDowell Road. Admission is free. For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Lindsay Roberts
It isn’t a party without some Corona, right? But don’t expect ice-cold cervezas with a wedge of lime at the Pre-Eclipse Party at the Arizona Museum of Natural History. The corona at this party refers to the outer atmosphere of the sun, which will be visible during the total solar eclipse taking place on Monday, August 21. The family-friendly celebration on Saturday, August 19, will prepare you for this rare celestial event. The museum is working with Arizona State University to put together some festivities that are out of this world. You can learn about telescopes, pinhole-camera viewers, and life in alien worlds. And you can make your own model eclipse.
This educational and interactive event starts at 1 p.m. at 53 North Macdonald in Mesa. The party is free with the price of museum admission, which is $12 for adults. For more information, visit the Arizona Museum of Natural History website. Jason Keil
For some, a sensory deprivation tank means going to one of those flotation spas for a closed-in, saltwater soak to achieve inner peace. The main character in Altered States, a sci-fi horror flick from 1980, had a more intense experience.
Cinemania is a new monthly series hosted by Dan Stone of the Unfathomable Film Freakout. Stone presents the movie, starring William Hurt as a Harvard scientist who adds LSD to his tank stints to unlock his consciousness. His curiosity leads him down a rabbit hole of physical and psychedelic experimentation that ultimately results in, well — just watch the movie.
Altered States screens at 10 p.m. on Saturday, August 19, at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street. Admission is $9. Call 602-595-9187 or visit the Film Bar website. Amy Young
“A Tribute to James Galanos”
Singer Diana Ross and former first lady Nancy Reagan had at least one thing in common. Both women wore dresses designed by James Galanos, a designer born in Philadelphia in 1924 whose parents emigrated from Greece. His other clients? Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Grace Kelly, and Marilyn Monroe.
See more than 40 of his couture-quality, ready-to-wear ensembles and accessories created from the 1950s through the 1990s from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, August 20, at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue. They’re part of a retrospective exhibition called “A Tribute to James Galanos,” which continues through Sunday, January 7, 2018.
Featured pieces come from private collections and the museum’s fashion design archive, which includes more than 7,000 objects, including designs Galanos gifted to the museum in 1990. The exhibition is free with museum admission, which is $18 for adults. Visit the Phoenix Art Museum website. Lynn Trimble
Cocktails + Calligraphy
Getting married? In a bridal party? Really enjoy penmanship? Need a drink? These are all good reasons to attend Cocktails + Calligraphy, an upcoming workshop hosted by They Call Me Spindles, The Marry Mart, and Couple of Bartenders.
This wedding workshop offers up ideas, trends, and techniques for the big day, with a focus on calligraphy projects and creating impressive cocktails. The event is ideal for a morning with the maid of honor, the whole bridal party, yourself, your mom, whomever.
Cocktails + Calligraphy runs from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday, August 20, at the Gather Estate (an urban backyard-style event venue), 2600 East Southern Avenue in Mesa. Tickets are $5 at the Marry Mart website. For more details, see the Facebook event page. Lauren Cusimano
Church doesn’t have to involve hymnals and pews. On the third Sunday of every month, the Sky Lounge hosts Church, a 21-and-over club night for members of the hip-hop scene to congregate, listen to music, and network. The next installment on Sunday, August 20, will feature performances from Marley B, a Tucson recording artist who has opened for E-40, Tech N9ne, and Big Boi, and Valley hip-hop artists Eddie Wellz, Ardy Reapz, and Tru Vonne. Throughout the night, DJ Aaron Michael will keep the energy going with top mainstream hits. Church starts at 10 p.m. at 132 East Washington Street, and admission is $10. For more information, go to the Facebook event page. Laura Latzko
Barrel cactus get a twist in work by Robert P. Meyer, an artist inspired by desert landscapes. The beauty of desert plant life isn’t always apparent to Arizona transplants, who sometimes pine for the forests or oceans they left behind to settle here in the Valley. In some cases, it’s only the seasonal blooms of color that inspire us to take a closer look and appreciate the beauty of Arizona’s cactus.
Meyer captures and amplifies that beauty in paintings for his “Sonoran Shades” exhibition at the Herberger Theater Center Art Gallery, 222 East Monroe Street. See the free exhibit, curated by Carrie Meyer, from noon to 5 p.m. on Monday, August 21. It continues through Tuesday, August 29. Visit the Herberger Theater Center website. Lynn Trimble
Trivia and Tunes Tuesday
We’re into geek gatherings, which get peppy simply as a side effect of sheer numbers. August 22 brings Trivia and Tunes Tuesday, which is not just an old box of Trivial Pursuit and a mixtape. From 7 to 9 p.m., Geeks Who Drink Pub Quizzes conducts a spirited competition. Then, legendary VG cover band minibosses takes the stage until 11 p.m. Unbe-freakin-lievable.
It’s at The Grid: Games and Growlers, a bar and grill with a lengthy name and beer for days. For the time being, this happens every Tuesday, so enter it into your “If I ever do get out of the house” app or whatever it is you do. Let it fly at 525 South Gilbert Road in Mesa. Visit the Grid Facebook page or call 480-621-8088. Julie Peterson
“Around the World”
World travelers Dwight and Maie Heard moved from Chicago to Phoenix in 1892 and founded the Heard Museum in 1929. Flash forward nearly 90 years, and the museum’s “Around the World” exhibition pays homage to its debut exhibition, with rarely displayed work by indigenous people of Mexico, Canada, New Zealand, Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), Guatemala, Sudan, and The Philippines.
Curated by Tricia Loscher and Ann Marshall, the exhibition includes cradleboards from Plains Indian cultures, paintings from Guatemala, and masks from Africa, as well as many additional pieces. You can see “Around the World” between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Tuesday, August 22. It’s free with museum admission, which is $18 for adults.
While you’re there, explore the sculpture gardens and additional exhibits, including the one featuring works by Phoenix artist Steve Yazzie. Visit the Heard Museum website. Lynn Trimble
Besides revealing what Channing Tatum looks like in wrestling tights, the 2014 film Foxcatcher also illustrated the pressures of playing the sport at the Olympic level.
Similar challenges could be part of the discussion at this month’s First Draft Book Club. Stephen Florida by Gabe Habash is this installment’s conversation piece. The main character in this self-titled book is a college student and wrestler in his senior year of school. As he strives toward success, he battles a crumbling psyche.
Grab a beer or a thirst-quencher of the nonalcoholic variety and gather with other reading buffs to talk about this debut novel at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, August 23, at Changing Hands Bookstore, 300 West Camelback Road. Admission is free. Call 602-274-0067 or visit the Changing Hands website. Amy Young