PW's Weekend Picks: Nov. 22-24

By PW Staff
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Nov. 22, 2013

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Friday, November 22

MUSIC
Red Baraat
As the instant exchange of information is now commonplace worldwide, so has the term “global community” become ubiquitous. Exposure to different cultures brings different music, and fortunately, this combination of different styles of music brings revolutionary groups like Red Baraat.

Bhangra and other forms of punjabi beats added real flavor to Western hip-hop in the early 2000s via Missy Elliot’s “Get Ur Freak On” and “Addictive” by Truth Hurts. In 2008, famed dhol player/drummer Sunny Jain built the Brooklyn-based Red Baarat mixing elements of hard-driving North Indian bhangra rhythms with a bit of jazz, go-go, brass funk and hip-hop. The vibe of this eight-piece sound machine is undeniable, resulting in acclaim and popularity in all corners of the planet. Like most brass bands, Red Baraat has an energy designed to make a crowd move. Unlike most, however, its sound is uniquely inspiring. The tightly organized percussionists drive the vibrant horn section to new heights of musical union. The band also strives to challenge itself each show, demonstrating its obvious prowess with frequent improvisation.

Drawing crowds even more diverse than the multicultural group itself, Red Baraat’s celebration of world music is remarkably infectious. “We are simple creatures that desire community,” explains Jain in the band’s official bio. “If we can unite people of all backgrounds and ethnicities to partake in the exuberance of life through the universal language of music, then life is that much sweeter.” / KENNEDY ALLEN

8:30pm. $15-$18. With West Philadelphia Orchestra. The Blockley, 3801 Chestnut St. 215.222.1234. theblockley.com

PERFORMANCE
Keigwin & Company
Celebrate a decade of Larry Keigwin’s acclaimed choreography with performances from several of his best-known shows, including Boys, set to the music of Eartha Kitt, and its companion piece, Girls, backed by a medley of Frank Sinatra tunes. 7:30pm. $20-55. Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, 3680 Walnut St. 215.898.6702. annenbergcenter.org
 
MUSIC
Minor Alps
Matthew Caws, frontman of underappreciated ‘90s alt-rockers Nada Surf, and Juliana Hatfield premiered their new side project Minor Alps just last month with the release of their debut album, Get There. Offering a poppier, more intimate feel than either of their previous endeavors, they play World Cafe this Friday. 8pm. $18-$29. With Sylvan Esso. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St. 215.222.1400. philly.worldcafelive.com
 
STAGE
The Apple Tree
Drexel’s performing arts program presents its own version of The Apple Tree, featuring three one-act musicals including songs composed by Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick, the duo behind Fiddler on the Roof. 8pm. $15. Through Nov. 24. Mandell Theater at Drexel University, 33rd and Chestnut sts. drexel.edu/westphal

FOOD
The History of Chocolate
For the year’s last Tertulia, or social gathering, Raices Culturales and Casa de Venezuela continue their mission to promote Venezuelan culture with a focus on the history of chocolate in the country. Visitors are encouraged to bring their best homemade chocolate dessert for the chance to win even more sweets from Venezuelan manufacturer Chocolates El Ray. 7pm. $5-$10. Crane Old School, 1417 N. Second St. 215.232.3203. cranearts.com
 
STAGE
Polaroid Stories
Writer Naomi Iizuka reimagines the myths of characters from Ovid’s Metamorphosis using interviews conducted with kids living on the street, exploring their relationships with one another. Directed by Sarah Mitteldorf. 8pm. $18-$20. Allens Lane Theater, 601 West Allens Lane. 215.248.0546. allenslane.org


Saturday, November 23

MUSIC
Luscious Jackson
Tell me if you remember this one: “With my naked eye, I saw all the falling rain coming down on me. With my naked eye, I saw all if I said it all I could see.” It was 1996 when these lyrics, the infectious hook from Luscious Jackson’s “Naked Eye,” pushed the genre-bending ladyband, named after former Philadelphia 76ers starter Lucious Jackson, into mainstream waters. They’d risen to crazy success after just four years on the music scene, introduced via the Beastie Boys’ Grand Royal imprint—it’s impossible to read anything about LJ that doesn’t mention the Beasties—and, later, Capitol Records.

Between the musical glory years of 1991 and 2000, when punk, alternative, hip-hop and grunge seemed to flourish both independent of and alongside each other, this undeniably badass quartet—comprised of Jill Cunniff, Gabby Glaser, Vivian Trimble and Kate Schellenbach—managed to become a mainstay in the mélange that was New York’s sonic scene. They released three full-length albums, adding a funk-fueled R&B flavor to grunge-ridden alternative radio and teen movie soundtracks. They broke up at the turn of the century to concentrate on other aspects of their lives: two years following Trimble’s harmonious departure and after 1999’s Electric Honey failed to even gain chart traction.

But a new century, dub step and twerking can’t keep a good band down. In 2011, Cunniff, Glaser and Schellenbach rejoined forces somewhat quietly, crowdsourcing the necessary funds (in two days!) to begin working on a new, full-length Luscious Jackson album. That LP, Magic Hour, was released two weeks ago, garnering extremely mixed reviews from print and digital ‘zines. Rolling Stone said its “vocals still waver charmingly off-key, grooves still conjure a Nineties Lower East Side rent party.” Thankfully, since Philly’s the first of two East Coast dates the ladies are playing—beating NYC by two weeks—we’re ‘bout to bear witness for ourselves. / RANDY LOBASSO

8:30pm. $20. Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden St. 215.232.2100. utphilly.com

PARTY
The Diabolique Ball
One of the most endearing things about Philadelphia is the vast array of bizarrely beautiful social gatherings that satisfy as many offbeat cultural interests as there are residents—mostly free of judgment. The Diabolique Ball, for instance, has established itself as the premiere formal BDSM/fetish event on the East Coast and, for the past 16 years, has been providing those communities with an opportunity to play and explore on a large, communal scale (while raising money for some truly worthwhile charities).  

Diabolique Ball 2013: Grindhouse Horror promises to feature kinky carnival-style “play stations”—and don’t confuse them with the video jawns, people—plus full-frontal fetishistic horror movie footage. With costume requirements ranging from black-tie formal to baring all but genitalia, ball guests are sure to witness the creme de la creme of the city’s goth/industrial, fetish and alternative lifestyle scenes. Speaking of costumes, they’re mandatory, and there’s a strict no-nudity, no-coercion policy. Under no circumstances will sexual activity be allowed, as attendees’ comfort and safety is paramount. In fact, the event’s website has a list of rules and etiquette points so all confusion can be prevented. Peep it before purchasing tickets (and be a good little bitch).

This year, proceeds from the Diabolique Ball will benefit ActionAIDS, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit organization dedicated to improving HIV+ individuals’ quality of life. Go be bad to do some good. / K.A.

9pm. $40-$50. The Trocadero Theatre, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888. diaboliquephilly.com

MUSIC
India.Arie
The Grammy Award-winning neo-soul queen returns after a four-year hiatus with a new album. Songversation finds Arie returning to her roots, featuring spare instrumentation with honest and engaging lyrics. 8pm. $36-$59.50. With Gramps Morgan. Keswick Theatre, 291 N. Keswick Ave. 215.572.7650. keswicktheatre.com
 
FESTIVAL
Holidays on the Hill
Chestnut Hill launches a new, month-long festival to celebrate the holiday season featuring events including Stag and Doe shopping nights, gingerbread house decorating and holiday house tours. The “Circle of Trees” lighting event at Woodmere Art Museum tonight kicks off the holiday cheer that continues through Christmas. 5:30pm. Free.  Woodmere Art Museum, 9201 Germantown Ave.  215.247.0476. chestnuthillpa.com

ANIMALS
“Puppy Doe” Candlelight Vigil
This candlelight vigil is held in honor of a pit bull puppy named Kiya, affectionately known as “Puppy Doe,” who was found starved and beaten earlier this year. The downtown gathering aims to raise awareness about animal cruelty. 5pm. Free. Thomas Paine Plaza, 1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.

PARTY
Off the Clock! 2013
The Philadelphia Chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects invites you to an evening of live music, photography, illustration, paintings, poetry, fashion and more. This is the group’s annual event where entrepreneurs and artistic types showcase and sell their work while networking with likeminded individuals from various professions. 6pm. $10-$15. The Soup Factory, 6143 Germantown Ave. 267.331.6704. philanoma.org


Sunday, November 24

DANCE
SHARP Dance Company: Perceptions
SHARP asked individuals to submit letters about someone that influenced them in a life altering way, changing their perceptions. This performance aims to submerse its audience in these letters. 8pm. $15-$25. Christ Church Neighborhood Theatre, 20 N. American St. 215.922.1695. sharpdance.org
 
MUSIC
Girls Like Nice Things
This all-ages concert features carnival attractions, games, aerial dancing, a photo booth and more. Roc Nation recording artist Bridget Kelly takes the stage, along with performances from Mylah and Gogo Morrow. 6pm. $20-$35. Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden St. girlslikenicethings.com

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