Calendar: May 16-22

By PW Staff
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted May. 16, 2012

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Wednesday, May 16

Ride of Silence
Chris Phelan organized the first Ride of Silence in Texas after cyclist Larry Schwartz was hit by a bus and killed in May 2003. Since then, the Ride has spread to cities across the country to commemorate the many people killed or injured in bicycle-related accidents. This week, the Ride of Silence spreads worldwide with an anniversary event that hopes to include hundreds of cities and countries. In Philly, it all kicks off at the art museum with a brief ceremony followed by a eight-mile, police-escorted ride. Participants are asked to remain silent during the ride and to follow all laws, wear helmets and not exceed 12 mph. There are no sponsors, no registration fees and no souvenir T-shirts. Instead, the Ride of Silence focuses on increasing awareness and riding with intention. -Ashley Kole

6:45pm. Free. Philadelphia Museum of Art, 26th St. and the Benjamin Franklin Pkwy.

Hot Water Music
“Punk is dead” exists in the great stratum of insipid perspectives, floating somewhere between “Gays shouldn’t be allowed in the military,” “The world is flat,” and “Tim Burton still makes good movies.” Should you ever run into someone backing that incredibly daft argument about the genre, bust out Hot Water Music’s “God Deciding,” a song that originally appeared on the Gainesville, Fla.-based band’s 2002 split with Alkaline Trio. Aesthetically, it sounds little like OG punk—it’s too earnest and finely produced to fit in the class of 1980—but the track carries an inspired, revelatory energy, the defiant desire to bring power abusers to trial, and Chuck Ragan’s irrepressible, gristmill-like growl. All those traits make “God Deciding” deeply punk at heart, and the Clash would have almost certainly given it a smashed Fender of approval. With HWM now touring behind the freshly released Exister, their first new record since 2004, hopefully their sheen and fire haven’t faded with age. -Reyan Ali

7:30pm. Sold out. First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut St.

Super Cagematch

Over the past year, the Philly Improv Theater has hosted a battle each week between two local improv teams who fought to out-funny one another and to avoid audience elimination. This week, the four remaining teams have one last chance to prove themselves as Philly’s funniest. First up are improv vets Nathan Edmondson
and Steve Kleinedler of Half-Life against the young comedic threesome Safe Weird. Next, dynamic duo Jessica Ross and Andy Moskowitz, otherwise known as Jessica Tandy, duke it out with Jason Grimley and Ralph Andracchio of Grimacchio. At the end of the evening, the winners of those matchups go head-to-head in the ultimate improvised battle royal. Come out to see whose routine will reign supreme. -Nicole Finkbiner

7:30pm. $8-$10. The Shubin Theater, 407 Bainbridge St. 

Thursday, May 17

Il Postino
Center City Opera Theater presents the East Coast premiere of Il Postino, the Spanish-language opera based on Michael Radford’s popular film of the same name, this week. Huge Vera plays the role of the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, a winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature that was revered by his countrymen. In this tale of fiction, Neruda, who is exiled to an Italian island due to his leftist politics, teaches his postman to love poetry. Il Postino launches CCOT’s brand new “Hispanic Opera Initiative” which is an ongoing effort designed to introduce the Hispanic and Latino communities to the beauty of opera. -Laura Goldman

8pm. $39-$79. Prince Music Theater, 1412 Chestnut St. 215.238.1555.

Class Actress
The Palladium is now an NYU dormitory, Danceteria has turned to office space, and ever-changing Area had its last decor makeover in the late 1980s. But don’t tell that to Class Actress. Elizabeth Harper, who started as an open-mic folk singer, found her inner Material Girl when Philly producer Mark Richardson remixed an early composition in glittery dance pop style. Now, he, Richardson (not the Pitchfork dude) and Scott Rosenthal channel the endlessly grooving, synth-burbling decadence of N.Y.C. in the 1980s, a time when cherry-bon-bon singles like “Holiday” and “Shining Star” could be stretched to 20-minute epics. Key difference: Instead of Madonna’s famous bustier, Harper wears a trenchcoat. -Jennifer Kelly

9pm. $13-$15. With Penguin Prison. Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave. 215.739.9684.

Friday, May 18

Sex-positive activists Pleasure Rush and ScrewSmart have come together to celebrate National Masturbation Month in style. Creamium is a lighthearted celebration of self-love, that mixes equal parts education and entertainment. Make sure to check out the Destination Masturbation Stations, designated spots throughout the lounge where local sexperts will cheerfully discuss groovy goings-on around the city. Or pit your masturbatory know-how against fellow enthusiasts in a tongue-in-cheek game show modeled on the board game Cranium. The evening is all in good fun, but it also has a serious purpose. Although few people today believe chronic wanking leads to hairy palms, a combination of lingering shame and misinformation still prevents some from exploring their own bodies. Participate fully in the fun, but please, leave all handy high-jinks at home. -Raymond Simon

9pm. $5-$10. Tabu Lounge, 200 S. 12th St. 215.964.9675.

Saturday, May 19

Philadelphia On Parade
Before this city turns into a sweltering summer sewer, the Mann Center wants to help you make the most of these pleasant springtime temps. This Saturday, grab a lawn chair, pack a picnic, rally up all your favorite companions and head to Fairmount Park for an extravagant afternoon of festivities. There will be five stages of live entertainment from more than 800 performers including the Keystone Chinese Lion Dancers, Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra, Universal African Dance & Drum Ensemble and Swift Technique. There will also be dance workshops, arts and crafts stations, face painting and a craft marketplace. At the Independence Blue Cross Health Pavilion, you’ll find instructors sharing life-saving techniques and healthy eating tips as well as yoga, Zumba and line-dancing demos. -N.F.

11am. Free. The Mann Center, 5201 Parkside Ave. 215.546.7900.

Vintage Kicks
Vintage Kicks sing about everything from the 1 percent and Wall Street to surfing gnarly waves with a catchy, pop-punk infused chorus-verse-chorus formula overflowing with “hey, hey’s!” and “oh, uh-oh’s.” Slightly reminiscent of that ’90’s “What’s My Age Again?” trio, this Philly five-piece formed less than two years ago, but you’d never know it giving a listen to their seasoned-sounding 10-song EP, King Geek. Despite their youth, Vintage Kicks know when to pay respects to a fallen source of inspiration. As evidence, see their recently released YouTube video of the keyboard-heavy cover of late Beastie Boy Adam Yauch’s “I Don’t Know,” and dance to the revamped classic. -Gabrielle Chepurny

8:30pm. $8-$10. MilkBoy Philly, 1100 Chestnut St.

Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival

The annual Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival showcases the best fashion, food and entertainment that Rittenhouse has to offer. Attendees can enjoy samples from Top Chef contestant Jennifer Carroll, food from the seven Stephen Starr restaurants in the neighborhood and cocktails from a few of the bars and lounges. The neighborhood’s best boutiques will also display this season’s beauty and fashion trends with an all-day fashion show with frocks from Knit Wit, Joan Shepp, Arcadia Boutique and more. -Sydney Scott

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