The Free Library of Philadelphia is taking a giant leap into the Streaming Digital Future of Everything today, launching Hoopla — a service that lets library cardholders check out TV, movies, audiobooks, and music. (The service is available for tablets and smartphones via apps on iTunes and Google Play.)
“Think of it like a Netflix for libraries,” the Free Library said in a blog post introducing the service. “And because you stream, rather than download, content from Hoopla, there are no waiting lists, no holds, and of course, no late fees! ”
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It's been a decade since Arcade Fire hit our radar. In 2004, they were everyone's pet band, offering only vague hints at the navel-gazing extravagance to which they'd someday aspire. Well, they're there now, with orchestral arrangements, endless promotional gimmicks and stadium-filling anthems. Love them or leave them in the everything-that's-wrong-with-indie dust, they're bound to put on a great show at the Wells Fargo Center. Can't make it? Hit up the after party at Union Transfer to party with lead vocalist Win Butler and co. Monday, March 17th, 7:30 p.m., $30.50-$70.50, Wells Fargo Center, 3601 South Broad Street; After-party, 10:30 p.m., $15, Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden Street.
Benny Martinez, an active informant brought his story — and accusations of police corruption — to Daily News’s Wendy Ruderman, who brought Editor Barbara Laker in on the story. What they unearthed rocked the police force and led to a 10-month series in the Daily News. “Tainted Justice” led to an FBI probe and the review of hundreds of criminal cases in Philadelphia. Ruderman and Laker won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting for the series. In their new book Busted: A Tale of Corruption and Betrayal in the City of Brotherly Love, Ruderman and Laker recount the reporting process — the good, the bad and the scary. Ruderman and Laker are lively, fun characters who will make for a great evening at the library. Tuesday, March 18, 7:30 p.m., free, Central Branch of the Free Library, 1901 Vine Street.
Here's a band that hasn't even been around since Arcade Fire released Funeral, yet they already feel like a Philadelphia institution. Perhaps it's all the love from XPN (they played a Free at Noon last week) or the rest of the Internet, but War on Drugs is something of a badge on our local-music sash. With a new album coming up (and streaming now), War on Drugs is strong as ever, and playing for the city that loves them most. Tuesday, March 18th, 8:30 p.m., $18, Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden Street.
This year's One Book, One Philadelphia season wraps up on Wednesday, concluding its 12th season with a bang. Kevin Powers, author of the 2014 "one book," will appear and speak on his work. Look forward to musical performances from Philadelphia Orchestra's Udi Bar-David'-led, multicultural, genre-spanning outfit, Intercultural Journeys. Wednesday, March 19th. 7:30 p.m., Central Branch of the Free Library, 1901 Vine Street.
Pulitzer Prize-winner Paula Vogel and The Wilma Theater Artistic Director Blank Zizka team up for the world premiere of Don Juan Comes Home From Iraq. The show tells the story of a returning marine’s journey through Philadelphia to find his lost lover, and touches on modern-day experiences of recent veterans who are returning from Iraq or Afghanistan. Look out for a surreal twist. Opens Wednesday, March 19, runs through April 20, $23-$66, The Wilma Theater, 265 S. Broad Street.
Journalist Tom Junod has written for Esquire magazine since 1997, when he followed editor David Granger to the magazine from GQ. Junod has produced important works at Esquire, including, “The Falling Man,” “The Rapist Says He's Sorry,” and a 2001 piece on R.E.M. lead singer Michael Stipe, in which he satirically fabricated information. Thursday, March 19, 12:00 p.m., free (RSVP to email@example.com or 215-746-7636), Kelly Writers House Arts Café, 3805 Locust Walk.
This is technically a weekend hap, but something worth planning ahead for: MANNA, the local non-profit that provides meals to people living with life-threatening diseases like HIV and cancer — hosts it's annual Shut Up and Dance fundrasier and concert. The one-night-only benefit features a performance of original choreography by the Pennsylvania Ballet. One piece to look out for is by PA Ballet's Ian Hussey, who has choreographed a number to a song by out Philly singer-songwriter Joshua Thomas, who will be there to perform it live. Not to be missed. Saturday, March 22nd, 6 p.m. (VIP reception), 8 p.m. (show), $25-$100, Forrest Theatre, 1114 Walnut Street. For more info, go to mannapa.org.
Looking for more Philly events? We’re keeping track of the best local to-dos now through May in our Philadelphia Event listings.
Every week we round up five of the best things to do in the week ahead. Weather pending, of course.
Philly “rock and roll theater company” BRAT Productions is getting a head start on Valentine’s Day with “Three Chord Fiction: Love Bites.” Designed as a way to introduce Philly to the next generation of cabaret performers, the showcase pairs actor-singers with local musicians and tasks them to perform a musical tale about love. After every night’s show a different band will take the stage to woo the audience with an amorous-minded set of tunes. Singers include Red 40, drag queen Cleo Phatra, Senor Papos & Jota, and BRAT resident artist’s Jess Conda’s alter ego Len performing with the Ladies of the Cursed Church Theater. Scheduled bands are The Fancy Balloons (Feb. 4), TJ Kong (Feb. 5) and Upholstery (Feb. 6). Feb. 4-6, 8 p.m., $10, Tin Angel, 20 S. Second St.
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If you’re looking forward getting a new e-reader for Christmas, you may not want to look to the Free Library for help filling it up with books: The e-book service has become so popular that access is being restricted.
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Sixers legend Julius “Dr. J” Erving will be giving a free talk tonight as a part of the Free Library of Philadelphia’s Author Event series.
The Doctor, who mesmerized Sixer fans from 1976 to 1987, will discuss his life on and off of the court, as well as to promote his recently released book Dr. J: The Autobiography (in which we learn some things we wish we could unlearn). Of course, the good doctor is no stranger to shilling products. In the spirit of shameless self-promotion, let’s look back at the top five Dr. J commercials.
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The Inquirer reports: “The Yellow Birds, a 2012 National Book Award finalist, will be named this year’s One Book One Philadelphia selection Wednesday morning in a ceremony at the Free Library of Philadelphia. Powers will join Mayor Nutter; Marie Field, chair of One Book One Philadelphia; and Siobhan A. Reardon, president and director of the Free Library, for the event.”
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Get ready to brush up on your culinary literacy. This Saturday, August 24th @ 11:30 a.m., The Free Library of Philadelphia will host chefs from the Philadelphia Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier as they present a cooking demonstration of recipes that take advantage of summer’s bounty in “Craveable Fruits & Vegetables: Delicious Dishes to Eat Right Now”. Recipes and samples will be distributed to attendees.
The program is at the Main Library at 1901 Vine Street and is free of charge.
Did you know the Free Library regularly hosts author events with acclaimed chefs and is proud to offer the robust Julie Dannenbaum Culinary Literacy Collection at the Parkway Central Library?
Craveable Fruits & Vegetables [Free Library of Philadelphia]
Of course you already know about the Free Library’s virtual installation at Suburban Station (we are somewhere toward the bottom on the hold list for the Tenth of December). But have you seen the library’s new subway ads lately?
The Free Library is already on top of its Facebook and Twitter game, sharing interesting trivia and answering readers’ questions. Now they are featuring local librarians and other staff in a series of snarky subway station ads.
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Thomas Keller of Bouchon, Per Se, The French Laundry, Ad Hoc and Bouchon Bakery will be speaking at the Free Library of Philadelphia along with pastry chef and co-author of Bouchon Bakery, Sebastian Rouxel.
The event begins at noon with the Inquirer’s Michael Klein moderating.
Tickets are $15 for adults, $7 for children and students.
Thomas Keller and Sebastian Rouxel [Free Library of Philadelphia]
Julie Powell whose debut “Julie & Julia” became a movie this year is back with her second book, “Cleaving.” She’ll be appearing at the Free Library’s central branch next Tuesday in support of the book. Cleaving chronicles her troubled marriage and her interest in learning a physical skill.
Julie Powell has a new foodie project [Metro Philadelphia]
Julie Powell [Free Library]
Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession [Amazon]