PW's Weekend Picks: Nov. 8-10

By PW Staff
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Friday, November 8

MUSIC
The Head and the Heart
The Head and the Heart make for a nice story, and not just ‘cause the band’s name denotes the human sources of pain, pleasure and everything in between. The six-piece, Seattle folk-rock outfit released their sophomore LP, Let’s Be Still, last month, and critics are in agreement that it represents a big step in musical progression for the young harmonizers. But before the new record, the 2010 contract with Sub Pop and the 2011 late-night appearance on Conan, the Head and the Heart were selling self-burned copies of their self-titled first album to indie record stores in Seattle. They developed enough of a cult following that astute record labels came knocking. After they finally chose Sub Pop from that long list of suitors, all they had to do was release that handmade debut all over again, albeit with a few studio tweaks.

Aided by the infectious singles “Down in the Valley” and “Lost in My Mind,” their 2011 re-release was a smash hit. Critically, however, the response was a bit more hesitant, as some thought the Head and the Heart would develop into another cookie-cutter Mumford and Sons rip-off. Let’s Be Still works to ease those concerns, as the crew displays lively pop sensibilities not seen on their first album.

They’ve come a remarkably long way for a band that didn’t exist four years ago;  it looks as if their music is finally catching up to their fame. / MAX UFBERG

8pm. Sold out. With Thao & the Get Down Stay Down + Quiet Life. Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden St. utphilly.com

ART
Celebrate the Surrealists: Works from the Collection
See the world in a whole new way with a little assistance from the likes of Dali, Matta and Tanning as surrealist artwork is exhibited at the art museum. DJs Broadzilla and Anthony Campuzano will be on hand to add a little ambiance. 6pm. Free with RSVP. Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy. 215.763.8100. philamuseum.org

MUSEUM
Sleepover at the Mütter
Why watch Night at the Museum when you can live it? The exhibits won’t come to life like in the movie, but you’ll have a jam-packed night of pizza, popcorn, a screening of The Sixth Sense, a live séance, a flashlight-guided museum tour and a continental breakfast to greet you in the morning. 6:30pm. $200. The Mutter Museum of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, 19 S. 22nd St. 215.563.3737. collegeofphysicians.org/mutter-museum
 
ART
Juvenile in Justice
This exhibition features works from three artists hoping to reform the juvenile justice system and keep art programs alive in schools on behalf of the Juvenile Law Center and InLiquid, a nonprofit devoted to creating exposure and work for visual artists. Noon. Free. Crane Arts, 1400 N. American St. 215.232.3203. cranearts.com

SCREEN
Awesome Fest: Drive-In Movie Theatre
Eighty years ago, the first drive-in movie theatre came into being, and even though it’s far from the promising industry it once was, the nostalgics still hold out hope for a comeback. The Awesome Fest is making that happen with a drive-in theatre at Eakins Oval. Arachnophobia (1990) and Big Ass Spider! (2013) will be screened this weekend as part of the month-long series. 7:30pm. Eakins Oval, 2601 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy. theawesomefest.com
 
STAGE
Hands Across Veronica
Look on as Veronica and Aubrey navigate their way through weight loss and relationship troubles in Walking Fish Theatre’s latest play, directed by Naked Feet Productions founder Hannah Tsapatoris MacLeod.  Through Nov. 30. 8pm. $20. Walking Fish Theatre, 2509 Frankford Ave. 215.427.9255. walkingfishtheatre.com

ART
PMA Contemporary Craft Show
The Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show showcases close to 200 artists from all over the world in a three-day confab dedicated to presenting an insider’s look at creating and showcasing art. There will be on-site artist demonstrations, studio tours and entire room exhibitions showcasing the work of many talented artists. Through Nov. 10. PA Convention Center, 12th and Arch sts. pmacraftshow.org


Saturday, November 9

PARTY
The AfroFuturist Affair: Dark Phase Space
Here’s a question: If science fiction is a part of pop culture that’s supposed to be about imagining all sorts of amazing futures, why did it spend the entire 20th century looking so depressingly uber-white? Star Trek’s Lt. Nyota Uhura and Star Wars’ Lando Calrissian were rare exceptions; until recently, people of African descent have been vastly under-represented within the realms of fantasy and sci-fi, despite the fact that there’s never been a shortage in the diversity of their fans and creators. Culture critic Mark Dery coined the term AfroFuturism in 1993, and it’s now used to describe the black presence in sci-fi, magic and fantasy. Concepts of technology, mythology and cosmology have existed within African-American and African culture as long as there has been folklore—yet many people who consider themselves part of that tradition lacked a voice. Until now.

The AfroFuturist Affair, founded by Philadelphia attorney Rasheedah Phillips, presents its third annual charity & costume ball this Saturday, designed specifically to provide a practical outlet for art, music, speculative fiction and film within the parameters of AfroFuturism. This year’s theme is “Dark Phase Space,” which Phillips describes as a physics concept: Phase space refers to a system that exists in all possible states of being until it’s observed or measured—at which point it collapses into one state. “I took this concept as metaphor,” she says, “and applied it to the modern state of blackness: how we are measured or observed under the gaze, and thought to exist as this monolithic, stereotypical culture or race.”

In addition to providing a tangible outlet for an intangible concept, the AfroFuturist Affair boasts a worthwhile mission: Proceeds go towards its scholarship fund. The ball takes place at MythMedia Studios, helmed by Li Sumpter, an art and design studio in the Window Factory Arts buidling dedicated to projects that employ art, myth and media technologies to address 21st- century concerns and cultural trends. Together, these visionaries promise to bend the rules of space and time, and have a whole lot of fun in the process. Full disclosure: I’ll be emceeing. Come say hello. / KENNEDY ALLEN

9:30pm. $10. Costumes encouraged. Window Factory Arts, 2301 N. Ninth St. darkphasespace.eventbrite.com

MUSIC
The Joshua Redman Quartet
Joshua Redman is in the prime of his musical career (And to think: We almost lost him to law school). The dude is smart as hell—he’s got a Phi Beta Kappa BA from Harvard and was accepted to Yale Law—but took a temporary leave from academia to destroy the jazz world. In 1991, Redman won the Thelonius Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition, and he’s never looked back. It wasn’t too long afterward that he was collaborating with the greats of New York City’s thriving jazz scene and signing a recording contract with Warner Brothers, who released his self-titled debut 20 years ago, earning him his first Grammy nomination, the first of several awards and accolades.

The thing about Redman is—and this is worth knowing about tonight—he’s an extremely flexible saxophonist. In addition to having mastered tenor, alto and soprano horns, he’s also perfected the art of bending his instrument to the genre. He’s played with tons of jazz greats, but he first crossed my radar playing with one of my all-time favorite jazz-soul outfits, Soulive. Redman’s also worked with folks like the Roots, Yo-Yo Ma, John Scofield, Big Daddy Kane, DJ Logic and Quincy Jones. At the Annenberg, though, you can expect him to be dwelling in his latest, a more classical effort, this year’s Walking Shadows. And by bringing in friends to ably fulfill piano (Aaron Goldberg), bass (Reuben Rogers) and percussion duties (Gregory Hutchinson), Redman’s sure to deliver yet another sophisticated, expertly executed jazz set.  / BILL CHENEVERT

8pm. $20-$60. The Annenberg Center for Performing Arts, 3680 Walnut St. 215.898.6702. annenbergcenter.org

BENEFIT
The Hopeful City Gala and Fundraiser
BuildaBridge, a nonprofit arts education and intervention organization, provides hope and healing for children and families experiencing trauma in difficult areas of the world. 7pm. $150. Independence Mall West, 150 N. 6th St. 215.842.0428. hopefulcity.org
 
TECHNOLOGY
Barcamp Philly 2013
Barcamp is a tech design “unconference” where the schedule board is created the morning of the event by any attendees who wish to deliver a presentation. Programmers, entrepreneurs and artists gather for this innovative all-day geek convention where the beer flows amid discussions of tons of techy topics. 8am. $20. University of Pennsylvania Huntsman Hall, 3730 Walnut St. 215.898.5000. barcampphilly.org
 
BENEFIT
Philadelphia Heart Walk
This annual 5k walk aims to raise awareness and funds to combat the No. 1 killer of Americans: heart disease and stroke. Activities for adults and children will also be available before the walk. 8am. Free. Citizen’s Bank Park, 1 Citizens Bank Way. 215.575.5218. heart.org
 
DRINK
Craft Beer Express: From Around the Bend, Oregon
Craft Beer Express is a lengthy pub crawl celebrating craft beer all over the city. Oregon’s Deschutes Brewery, whose beers are new to Philly, will be featured with a tap takeover at The P.O.P.E., one stop on this season’s Express. 8am. $10. Kraftwork, 541 E. Girard Ave. craftbeerexpress.com
 

ART
Celebrating Our Founders: Albert and Alan LeCoff
Old City’s Center for Art in Wood hosts this exhibition honoring their founders and celebrating the future of the gallery. A private viewing of Vietnamese artist Binh Pho’s new work, Shadow of the Turning, will also be included. 6pm. Free. Center for Art in Wood, 141 N. Third St. 215.923.8000. centerforartinwood.org

PARTY
15th Annual Bacchanal Wine Gala and Auction
This event celebrates California’s Napa Valley and the infamous Paris Wine Tasting of 1976, in which a California wine rated best in each category of a blind tasting, upsetting the dominant French wine makers of that time. Revel in your American spirit, and stick it to the Marquis de Lafayette at a classy, black tie gala featuring a gourmet four-course dinner, dancing, auctions and tastings. 7pm. Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, 128 N. Broad St. 215.972.2037. pafa.org
 
BENEFIT
16th Annual Every Family Party
The PMA invites families to join their fundraiser event, where all proceeds benefit the museum’s art programs for children. Guests will have the opportunity to explore and make art inspired by their current exhibition, Leger: Modern Art and the Metropolis. 5:30pm. $25-$30. Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy. 215.763.8100. philamuseum.org


Sunday, November 10

MUSIC
Elvis Costello
There’s a certain age bracket rock legends belong in—let’s generalize and say 60 to 80—at which we start wondering if their new record or a tour is gonna be any good. Well, Elvis Costello’s not there yet. At 59, he and The Roots have just delivered one dank, dark, funky and fun collaboration with Wise Up Ghost on Blue Note. And though he may be in the same family as fellow Brits Roger Daltrey or Nick Lowe, or (dare we suggest) even Americans like Bob, Bruce, Neil or Paul, there’s no doubt in our mind that this Elvis has not left the building. As part of an intimate, short-lived domestic run of dates, the London pub rock icon is touching down in Philadelphia without help from his (and our) Wise Up friends—but here’s hoping at least Questlove surprises us by stepping behind a kit for a song or two.

Costello’s certainly a seasoned and even-tempered statesman of rock ‘n roll. If you’ve seen him on his Sundance series or on anything like a VH1 Storytellers or Later with Jools Holland, you know he’s witty, clever and a good storyteller; some might be about his amazing wife, Diana Krall, or about “football” or not eating meat. Maybe he’ll wax on about his dozens of collaborative efforts (with Jenny Lewis, Allen Toussaint, Bill Frisell, etc.) that’ve spawned memorable records. Hopefully, above all else, he’ll do a few tunes from his formidable catalog: like “Watching the Detectives,” “Allison,” “Pump It Up,” and “Radio Radio.” Fingers crossed. / B.C.

8pm. Sold out. The Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad St. 215.670.2300. kimmelcenter.org

CONFERENCE
The Feminist Rebellion
In the wake of the March to End Rape Culture that took place in Philadelphia last month, Socialist Action convenes a public forum on the current state of the women’s liberation movement. Panelists from the world of feminism will present lectures and discussions. 2pm. Free. William Way LGBT Community Center, 1315 Spruce St. 510.268.9429. socialistaction.org

MAGIC
Tom McDonnell
Magician Tom McDonnell has been trickin’ for 25 years now. Children young and old will enjoy his lighthearted act. Yes, there’s a rabbit. 3pm. $15. Grasso’s Magic Theatre, 103 Callowhill St. grassosmagictheatre.com

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