Friday, November 10
Pennsylvania Ballet @ Merriam Theater
The PAB presents three new ballets, the first two being world premieres: Tilt by choreographer Helen Pickett and composer Philip Glass; It Goes That Way by choreographer Matthew Neenan and composer Laurie Anderson; Episode 31 by choreographer Alexander Ekman and composers Ane Brun, Mikael Karlsson and Erik Satie. Through November 12.
Lee Ranaldo @ Johnny Brenda’s
The Sonic Youth veteran is known as one of the best guitarists in the biz. His latest, Electric Trim, dropped in September and features appearances by Sharon Van Etten and Nels Cline, Kid Millions, and some lyrics by Jonathan Lethem.
Broken Stones @ The Drake
InterAct presents the world premiere of a play written by Fin Kennedy about a U.S. Marine investigating the looting of the Baghdad Museum in 2003. Directed by Seth Rozin. On Saturday, November 11, Tongue & Groove will perform an improvised play on the set of Broken Stones, as part of their Stolen Set series.
8Static Festival @ Icebox Project Space
Where to start? Okay, Chipmusic (or chiptune) is a genre that celebrates old-school computers and gaming consoles — lots of synths, MIDI and other electronic bloops and squelches. 8Static is a monthly chip music dance party that also hosts an annual festival. If you’re into that scene then names like Roboctopus, Auxcide and Cheap Dinosaurs surely need no introduction. Through Saturday.
Brian Posehn @ Helium Comedy Club
Brian Posehn is a funny comedian (and writer and podcaster) you might have seen on Mr. Show, The Sarah Silverman Program or Big Bang Theory. Through Sunday.
Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival
PAAFF screens shorts, features and movies from all over Asia and the diaspora. I posted about bunch of trailers earlier in the week. Runs through November 19.
Doug Stanhope @ Trocadero
The raspy, irascible and often drunk comedian is known for his blunt, cynical rants. He won’t exactly lift your spirits, but he’ll make you laugh.
The Secret Cinema @ Fleisher Art Museum
Famed Philly film archivist reprises and updates his City Of Brotherly Crime program, featuring The Jungle (an amazing documentary shot by Philly teens in 1967) and The Besieged Majority (a documentary special filmed by NBC News about rising crime in Germantown/East Mt. Airy).
Mike Daisey @ Suzanne Roberts Theatre
Philadelphia Theatre Company presents noted monologist Mike Daisey performing This is Not Normal and The End of Journalism. Through Sunday.
The Craftsman @ St. Stephen’s Theater
Lantern Theater Company presents the world premiere of this “darkly ironic” play by Bruce Graham. “From the ashes of World War II, Dutch patriots discover that one of their own — a rich and reputable art dealer — has sold rare Vermeer paintings to the Nazis. Accused of treason and on trial for his life, he must decide whether to destroy his own reputation or to reveal bigger secrets behind these works that the Dutch consider national treasures.” Through December 10.
Tegan and Sara @ Tower Theatre
Last month the twin Canadian pop stars released The Con X: Covers, a compilation of LGBTQ/ally artists covering songs from Tegan and Sara’s breakthrough record, The Con. Contributors include Ryan Adams, City and Colour, Kelly Lee Owens, Bleachers, Hayley Williams, Shamir, CHVRCHES and more.
Two Gentleman of Verona @ Latvian Society Theater
Not the Shakespeare play, but EgoPo Classic Theater’s production of John Guare’s rock musical based on the Shakespeare play. Through November 12.
Bela Fleck @ Colonial Theatre
Fleck has won 16 Grammys for his innovative, intricate banjo style. Abigail Washburn opens.
A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie @ Electric Factory
The young Bronx rapper released The Bigger Artist in September, a well-received debut that features guest appearances by Trey Songz, Robin Thicke, PnB Rock and more. Boogie says he’s inspired by his daughter and Chris Brown.
Emily Zeitlyn/Honey Watts @ Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop
An evening of great voices. Emily Zeitlyn is known as passionate frontwoman of The Weeds and Arc Divers, and songs like this. Led by Liz Fullerton, Honey Watts does moody acoustic rock and country.
Nikki Volpicelli/Basic Edition 4 @ YOWIE
Philly Mag writer and noted music critic Nikki Volpicelli celebrates the release of her poetry collection I’ve Always Shown Up Too Late. Also, Tattooed Mom’s zine Basic Edition unveils its fourth issue featuring Mel Paget, Gabriela Basyuk, Csenge Csató and more.
The New World @ Bucks County Playhouse
BCP presents the world premiere production of a musical comedy about the pilgrims’ arrival in Massachusetts in 1620. Book by Regina DeCicco and L.F. Turner, music by Gary Adler and lyrics by Phoebe Kreutz.
Asian Gracefully @ PHIT
Brooklyn actor/comedian Woody Fu performs his “one-(china)man show” about “Asian-American diaspora, internecine racism, and how the straight Asian male is the most marginalized group on PornHub.” Friday & Saturday, November 10 & 11. [Note: I got the days wrong earlier so I fixed it.]
Nick Zedd @ PhilaMOCA
This event is billed as the “first-ever Philadelphia retrospective for one of the most controversial filmmakers of the 20th Century.” Nick Zedd — known for his movies Geek Maggot Bingo or The Freak from Suckweasel Mountain, Thrust in Me and The Adventures of Electra Elf — will be in attendance.
Walk in My Shoes @ Painted Bride Art Center
This Theater of Witness play is performed by police and community members and deals with “race, poverty, trauma, inequality, power, abuse, safety, heroism and injustice.”
Saturday, November 11
EMA/The Blow/Olivia Neutron-John @ PhilaMOCA
An evening of lo-fi pop by artists who sound like nobody else on the planet. The music of EMA, aka Portland’s Erika Michelle Anderson, is droney and spooky, really unnerving stuff. The Blow, meanwhile, makes hot, breathy dance numbers that drill themselves into your skull, in a good way. Absolutely show up on time for Olivia Neutron-John, a recently import to Philadelphia who howls and quakes over a frozen lake of synths.
Chris Kasper/The Lawsuits @ Underground Arts
This is the last show for Philly’s The Lawsuits, a lovely and scruffy rock band who knows how to mix the earthy with the ethereal. Stick around for headliner Chris Kasper, who does it sweet and folky.
No Age/Taiwan Housing Project @ Everybody Hits
A killer bill, if you’re into noisy, lo-fi rock. L.A. art-punk duo No Age will drop Snares Like A Haircut on Drag City in January. Stormy Philly indie kids Taiwan Housing Project released the hellacious Veblen Death Mask back in May.
Mortal Remains @ South Street Cinema
A screening of Mark Ricche and Christian Stavrakis’ “docu-thriller” about mysterious death of filmmaker Karl Atticus, the “godfather of the slasher film.” Members of the cast and crew will be in attendance.
Diane Coffee @ Boot & Saddle
Sometimes strange and psychedelic, other times sweet and Motownish, Diane Coffee likes to work interesting little grooves into his music. It’s unpredictable, for sure, but I wouldn’t call it uncomfortable.
Modern English @ Johnny Brenda’s
“I Melt With You” was essential listening at the high school dances of my childhood. I wrote a big thing on the song yesterday. Wild that they’re playing Johnny Brenda’s.
Matthew Jakubowski/Christine Kendall @ Jezabel’s Studio
A reading by a couple West Philly writers.
R.LUM.R @ Kung Fu Necktie
Pleading, heart-beating R&B from Nashville. This dude’s voice soars like a dove angel, which is what doves turn into when they die.
Michael Mann @ Wagner Free Institute of Science
The Penn State professor of atmospheric science delivers a lecture entitled Dire Predictions: Understanding Climate Change.
Bob Dylan @ Tower Theatre
A classier, more intimate venue than the hockey rinks Dylan sometimes plays. Saturday & Sunday, November 11 & 12
Vir Das @ Punchline
The YouTube/Bollywood actor/comedian drops by for two nights of standup. Das is the founder of The Weirdass Pajama Festival, billed as India’s “largest comedy festival.” Saturday and Sunday, November 10 and 11.
Sunday, November 12
Freedom Shorts XVII @ Trocadero
Day two of this festival screening short works by filmmakers from Philly and beyond (Iceland, South Africa, Florida).
Soccer Mommy @ Everybody Hits
Sophie Allison’s voice is wonderfully sweet and sour, a smart fit for her jangly indie-pop melodies. Fans of Little Red Car Wreck will dig Soccer Mommy’s new Audiotree Live EP. Here’s something to bob your head to.
Philly Zine Fest @ The Rotunda
“Philly’s oldest and truest small press festival” welcomes zinemaker Ariadna Gonzalez, Dre Grigoropol, Justin Duerr, Kit Fraser, James DeWitt, Aurora Diaz and more.
Philly Really Loves Petty @ Ardmore Music Hall
This Tom Petty tribute features Flightschool, Illinois, Alec Ounsworth, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Jim Boggia, Kenn Kweder & Jon Houlon, Joey Sweeney, Matt Sevier and more.
Dark Blue @ PhilaMOCA
Dark Blue’s kind of a Philly post-punk supergroup, featuring members of Purling Hiss, Clockcleaner, Paint it Black and more. John Sharkey’s voice has never been richer or heavier.