Calendar: May 1-8

By PW Staff
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Grandchildren Album Release Party
Grandchildren began as Aleks Martray’s solo project, but evolved into a six-piece pop orchestra with dueling drums and an instrument-swapping horn section. Don’t miss tonight’s performance, which also features New Hope, Pa.’s Lawsuits and Laser Background, Andy Molholt’s psych pop project. 9:15pm. $10. With the Lawsuits, Laser Background + DJ POW POW (Man Man’s Chris Powell). Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave. 215.739.9684.

Frank Hyder: The Frontier
Hyder’s work focuses on human faces displayed as oversized portraits and carvings on panels that can be manipulated by the viewer. Hyder also depicts schools of fish in his work, in which the colorful fish blend into one another, creating an abstract piece that is still accessible and identifiable. Through June 15. Projects Gallery, 629 N. Second St. 267.303.9652.

When the Rain Stops Falling
Spanning the years from 1959 to 2039 and weaving events from London to Australia, playwright Andrew Bovell’s When the Rain Stops Falling is an intimate saga about families growing apart and coming back together. Through May 18. $18-$20. Allens Lane Art Center, 601 W. Allens Lane. 215.248.0546.

The Gantry + Magazines
New York indie rockers the Gantry bring their high-energy, danceable tunes to the Troc. Tonight, they’re joined by Magazines, who will be celebrating the release of their debut album. 8:30pm. $8-$10. With Tiny Cities. The Trocadero Theatre, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888.

The Proposition Tent
This temporary laboratory and social space set up in a vacant lot on North 11th Street stages propositions on a variety of themes by four kinds of participants: a local artist, an international artist, a local business or nonprofit, and a thinker/writer. Combining ideas from different minds, this is an art show that pushes limits. 7pm. Free. North 11th and Carton sts.

Metropolitan Gallery 250 presents The Sidework Series
It’s so common, it’s almost cliche—the struggling artist, tending bars or waiting tables for money, working on their art when time allows. This exhibit gives emerging artists a chance to show their work at Metropolitan Gallery 250, Metropolitan Bakery’s nonprofit community art gallery. Through May 26. Free. Metropolitan Gallery 250, 250 S. 18th St. 215.545.6655.

Alchemy Uncensored
Discover the steamier side of alchemy as Joel Klein, historian of early-modern alchemy, speaks about the portrayal of sex in alchemical texts. View centuries-old graphic depictions of hermaphrodites, and learn what these texts mean to modern alchemy. 5pm. Free. Chemical Heritage Foundation, 315 Chestnut St.

Saturday, May 4

An Open Book: An Evening with Justin Furstenfeld
Blue October’s a lot of things to a lot of people—even sometimes their savior. Furstenfeld, as lead singer and primary songwriter for the arty Houston-based post-grunge emo outfit, has been a poster boy for salvation despite drug use and mental instability. Through decades of songwriting, touring, break-ups and make-ups, drugs, self-abuse and yes, even some mental health breakdowns, Furstenfeld’s been writing about it unapologetically. And in April 2009, he put out Crazy Making: The Words and Lyrics of Justin Furstenfeld, a companion book to illuminate lyrics, expand on the meaning of songs and let the world see just how fucked up he really was. Calling on influences as far and wide as Elliott Smith and Peter Gabriel, Michael Stipe, U2 and, naturally, the Cure and the Smiths, Furstenfeld’s led Blue October through six big records. And these records, with Crazy Making, will serve as a template in which he’ll communicate to, in all likelihood, an adoring audience all the good and all the bad.

He’s sober now, focusing on keeping the darkness away and staying a loving father and husband. But Crazy Making plainly lays bare a past that’s riddled with drugs and mental fits (Furstenfeld’s struggled from anxiety and bipolar episodes), and he’s not afraid to mine the years of writing he’s done to document the best and worst of times. In fact, part of the appeal of this night is that you can ask him anything you want during a Q&A session, and he’ll give you the most honest answer he can muster. / Bill Chenevert

8:30pm. $30. With Ashleigh Stone. Theatre of Living Arts, 334 South St. 215.922.1011.

Lucy Kaplansky
A jack of all trades, Kaplansky has managed to become a clinical psychologist, open her own private practice and eventually sell it, all in between her on-and-off-again folk-singing career. She’s remained close with her onetime singing partner, Shawn Colvin, making guest appearances on her albums, as well as letting the “Sunny Came Home” star produce her debut. Always championed for strong harmonies, Kaplansky shows she’s still got it on her new record, Reunion. 7:30pm. $22. Tin Angel, 20 S. Second St. 215.928.0770.

Performance Garage Dance Marathon
Lace up your shoes and stretch out those tights for this all-night dance marathon and community block party to support the Performance Garage, a space that supports the local dance and art community. Their goal is to reach $32,000 through a dance marathon, where sponsors support each hour you keep your feet moving and body shaking. 11am. $25-$100. Performance Garage, 1515 Brandywine St. 215.569.4060.

Unsuspecting Susan
Penny Beene brings us Stewart Permutt’s tale of a gossiping, quintessential English country lady who is faced with serious surprise and tragedy amidst an otherwise ordinary life. The play deals with England’s two faces, multicultural city life and traditional country life, two sides that would rather pretend the other didn’t exist. 7:30pm. $20-$25. Through May 12. Skybox at the Adrienne, 2030 Sansom St. 215.567.2848.

South Street Headhouse District Spring Festival
Celebrate the beginning of the festival season with … a festival! This all-ages event offers food, music, shopping, art, cocktails and kids’ activities. Noon. Free. South St. between Second and Eighth sts.

Tinmouth Record Release Show
Merging genres and styles, Tinmouth offers honest lamentation with a playful air. Tonight, the three-piece celebrate their new album, One More Relevation, with local rockers Bueno and the Goods and Acres of Diamonds. 8:30pm. $8-$10. With Bueno and the Goods and Acres of Diamonds. The Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888.

Artists Against Hunger Exhibition
A diverse group of artists have donated works to be shown and subsequently sold off in this exhibit. Money gathered from sales will go directly to The Food Trust, a group working with neighborhoods, schools, policy makers, grocers and farmers to help improve people’s health by making healthy food available to them. 1pm. Free. Through May 5. DaVinci Art Alliance, 704 Catharine St. 215.829.0466.

SPY: The Secret World of Espionage
We’ve all had dreams of the exciting life of espionage, but what’s it really like to be a spy? Learn about the technologies used in this dangerous career—navigate through an actual laser field, use voice-altering technologies, see through walls, and create a spy disguise. Through Oct. 6. The Franklin Institute, 222 N. 20th St.

Pie in the Sky Kite and Food Truck Festival
The Philadelphia German Brass Band provides backing music to a nice afternoon at Penn Treaty Park, complete with face painting, food and, of course, the kite contest. All proceeds go to the park for the new playground they’re planning. Noon. Free. Penn Treaty Park, 1199 N. Delaware Ave.

6th Annual March of the Sombreros
Northern Liberties does Cinco de Mayo in this bar/restaurant crawl to celebrate everyone’s other favorite drinking holiday. All attendees get to take advantage of the plethora of drink specials, and most importantly, receive a free sombrero. 7pm. Free. The Piazza at Schmidts, 1050 N. Hancock St.

Sunday, May 5

Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium’s ‘Onion de Mayo’
Why celebrate Cinco de Mayo getting sloshed with a bunch of frat dudes in sombreros when you can enjoy a uniquely theatrical fiesta with the Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium? For their annual fundraiser/performance, the troupe will once again be celebrating a publication that shares their appreciation for the absurd: The Onion, “America’s Finest News Source.” Comprised of brand new material all ripped straight from the pages of the weekly satirical paper, the 70-minute production stars a cast of some of Philly’s favorite veteran talents and IRC regulars, as well as a few new faces. As for some of the absurdist literary gems they’ll be bringing to life, audiences can expect sublime renditions of “Well Folks, It Appears Someone Down There is Shining a Laser Pointer Into the Cockpit and We’re About to Crash” and “In My Professional Medical Opinion, Pick At It,” amongst others. This year marks IRC’s seventh season of presenting rarely produced absurdist works from authors around the globe, using clowning, physical comedy and other vaudevillian elements to create accessible, yet wildly entertaining experiences for theater goers of all ages. Proceeds from the one-night-only show will support the upcoming revival of their critically acclaimed production, Franz Kafka’s The Castle in September. To meet the overwhelming demand, a third show has just been added. So if you don’t already have a ticket, you’re going to want to get on that fast. / N.F.

6pm, 8pm and 10pm. $20. L’Etage, 624 S. Sixth St. 215.592.0656.

The Breeders’ Last Splash
Black Francis may have been too controlling to let Kim Deal write any songs for the Pixies after their debut, but she got her revenge when her side project, the Breeders, released their second album in 1993. Coupled with a strong lead single, “Cannonball,” Last Splash propelled Deal into superstardom, letting her escape the cult-hero status of her old band. 8pm. With the Tweens. The Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888.

King Los & Hi-Rez
Touring behind a mixtape might sound kind of excessive, but welcome to 2013, where there is officially no difference between that and a proper release. King Los, Bad Boy’s new up-and-comer from Baltimore knows this, so he has decided to celebrate his latest by embarking on a 16-city tour. 8:30pm. $15-$17. With C4. The Blockley, 3801 Chestnut St. 215.222.1234.

Monday, May 6

Eating Alabama
A couple moves back to Alabama, set on eating organically, just like their grandparents did. They find, however, that due to changes in the food system, things aren’t going to be easy. Fair Food Philly will be at the screening, offering product tastings and selling local crops. 7pm. Free. The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St. 215.573.3234

Flesh and Blood
Acclaimed Pennsylvania-born playwright Michael Hollinger presents a comedy where time jumps back and forth, secrets and truth flow like water, and the questions are begged, “What do we owe our parents,” and “What do we owe our children.” 7pm. $10. Theatre Exile’s Studio X, 1340 S. 13th St. 215.218.4022.

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