Mike Bartlett’s 55-minute play is an unrelenting cascade of cruelty, a psychological beat down that leaves not only Thomas, but also the audience, squirming. And under Christie Vela’s precise direction, it’s also a taut, thrilling display of predators toying with their prey.Full Story
First, a public service announcement: In its final death throes, CD Source is selling stock at the kind of recklessly reduced prices you only get when great things come to an end. Most of the Grade A stuff has probably been scooped already, but it’s worth stopping by to say your farewells and pick up some actual, tangible music for cheap. Goodbye, CD Source. You will be missed.
Now, onward, to the shows you should see this week.Full Story
Boom 94.5, Dallas’ classic hip hop station, should by now should be a preset on your radio dial. The station has now made a bid for even more of our affection, announcing today that it’s hosting a music festival in Fair Park on May 2. The festival didn’t have to go far to find some big names fitting the bill for “classic hip hop,” getting two rap heavyweights from down the road to headline. Houston’s unofficial mayor, Bun B, and Scarface, of The Geto Boys, are set to perform.Full Story
If the St. Patrick’s Day Parade down Greenville Ave. is a bowl of Lucky Charms, then the North Texas Irish Festival is a steaming pot of colcannon, a heartier, more fulfilling dish of St. Patrick’s Day entertainment. If you want to genuinely learn something about Irish culture this year, this massive (we’re looking at more than 600 volunteers and 14 stages to pull this thing off, according to organizers) fest is probably your best bet. It also looks like it should be a blast. Here are five reasons to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at Fair Park this weekend.Full Story
Chase Dobson hasn’t picked a college major yet, but his career as a respected classical composer is already flourishing. While a student at the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Dobson saw his original compositions performed at Carnegie Hall and featured on NPR’s From the Top. Now, this exceptional 18-year-old freshman, who currently lives in a dorm room at SMU, is preparing for yet another milestone in his burgeoning career. While most of his peers are spring-breaking at the beach, Dobson will watch as the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and pianist Lucille Chung give his Piano Concerto No. 1 its professional orchestral debut. We sat down with Dobson ahead of the DSO’s performances of his piece (March 12 through 15) to learn more about this young composer’s musical background and professional ambitions.Full Story
Coming off as a mash-up of The Full Monty (down-on-their-luck folks gamble on an unconventional show to save it all) and La Cage aux Folles (You want drag queens? We got drag queens! They even do the splits!), Kinky Boots trots out anthems of acceptance and “you do you” boosterism amidst a tidal wave of glitter and sequins. There’s even an 11 o’clock number so reminiscent of La Cage’s “I Am What I Am” that you might find yourself waiting for George Hearn to pop out. The show is flashy in the way that only the most superficial of stories are, without bothering to make the leap from caricature to character and with nary a memorable tune to follow you out the door.Full Story
March has arrived, bringing with it the return of evening sunlight, spring breaks, and St. Patrick’s Day. Despite what some people have said, spring break doesn’t last forever, so enjoy March while it lasts. Here are 25 things you can’t miss this month, as selected and summarized by D’s editors. Music Mavis Staples March 8, […]Full Story
It seems like David Cronenberg has been thumbing his nose at Hollywood for decades through his provocative body of work, but Maps to the Stars might be his most direct attack yet. The latest from the venerable Canadian filmmaker is a clinical showbiz satire that pulls no punches in its no-frills approach to a handful […]Full Story
Cinema lovers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area will finally have a compelling and contemporary South Asian film festival of their own. The sheer depth and diversity of the films on display at this new festival also stand out, with movies showcasing issues ranging from the Indian education system to LGBT rights to race relations.Full Story
It’s the formal structure of ballroom dancing (but more fun) combined with the populist appeal of The Dougie, and it’s about the most Texas thing you can do during a weekend night out. The barriers to picking up line dancing in North Texas are limited. Throw a rock at any reputable honky tonk in the area and you’re liable to hit somebody who could show you the ropes. However, I wouldn’t advise doing that, and you’re less likely to start a fight if you just take a class, something several of the joints on this list offer.
So whether you were two-stepping before you could walk or you’re a flat-footed cowboy looking for some practice, here are the best places in North Texas to go line dancing.Full Story
In the spring of 2013, Jaap van Zweden and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra took a multi-city tour across Europe. In April of 2016, they’ll do it again, returning to some of the same cities they hit in 2013 (i.e. Amsterdam, Vienna) as well as stopping in several new countries.
The announcement of this tour, which includes performances in the Netherlands, Scotland, England, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Spain, comes as part of the orchestra’s 2015/2016 season announcement. In subscription concerts at the Meyerson Symphony Center next season, Dallas audiences will hear van Zweden and the DSO perform all of the works they’re programming on the tour, including Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, Mozart’s 24th Piano Concerto (with soloist David Fray), Shostakovich’s Seventh Symphony, and the complete first act of Wagner’s Die Walküre (with soloists Michelle DeYoung, Clifton Forbis, and Kristinn Sigmundsson).Full Story
Jose Rivera’s 2000 play bills itself as magical realism, and in some ways it is. There’s a Moon spouting poetry while a Coyote seduces a Cat, dulled by domesticity, with lurid talk of life in the wild. But really it’s a jaggedly realistic portrayal of a marriage hanging by a thread, as career soldier Benito comes home to his anxious wife Gabriela, who’s so fed up with base life she can’t even stock the fridge before her husband’s return.Full Story
Mike Adams is a busy guy, and he doesn’t seem to be interested in slowing down anytime soon. The band is currently on tour, stopping by The Crown and Harp in Dallas on February 21. I caught up with Adams on the road to talk songwriting, hustling in the age of social media, and the occasional meatball in the pecan pie of life.Full Story
A hip term for the state of visual art is “zombie formalism”—referring to a mishmash of acceptable and safe techniques that has been adopted in painting’s closed-case movements. Dallas, it could be said, applies the zombie approach to its music scene, cannibalizing its own history in the process. Consider the following: Trees, Club Dada, and the Bomb Factory have all been closed at one point during the past decade and change. In April, all three venues will be open at the same time for the first time since the 1990s. We keep revisiting the past, re-creating old venues as though the problem was the venues, not the people playing in them.Full Story
On the first crackling track of the Be Here to Love Me album, the late, great Townes Van Zandt shares words that, aside from his distinct Texan drawl, could come from any other artist. “I don’t envision a very long life for myself,” he starts. “Like I think my life will run out before my work does. I’ve designed it that way.”
As it turns out, the Fort Worth native—who turned away from his family’s oil money to pursue life as a traveling musician—was right. (His relatives were the namesakes for East Texas’ Van Zandt County). He died of a heart attack in 1997 at age 52, after years of struggling with addiction. But he left the world with brilliant, shadowy songs that, despite their undertones of longing and leaving, still light up whatever is darkest in us at the time.Full Story
It’s never too early to get excited for St. Patrick’s Day. Even if your most recent encounter with Irish culture was scrubbing that U2 album off your iPhone, let’s keep in mind all the good things Ireland gave the world before Bono ascended to never-before-scaled heights of pretentious absurdity. There are plenty of ways to […]Full Story
When history happens, it also happens to the people living next to it. That’s the concept of Jonathan Norton’s most recent play, Mississippi Goddamn, which retells the events leading up to the 1963 assassination of civil rights activists Medgar and Myrlie Evers from the perspective of their neighbors.Full Story
It’s Loop time again in Addison, which means 10 days of nonstop theater, dance, art, song, and even puppets at WaterTower Theatre’s annual fringe festival. Previous years’ lineups have been uneven at best, but this year looks especially promising.Full Story
Numerous interesting and beautiful moments—including a memorably fine concerto performance by co-concertmaster Alexander Kerr—unfortunately added up to a disappointingly one-dimensional concert by the Dallas Symphony under guest conductor Lawrence Foster Thursday night at Meyerson Symphony Center.Full Story
This is pretty familiar territory. Like its characters, Focus is slick, manipulative and emotionally detached. By the end, it feels as though moviegoers are the ones who need to check their pockets.Full Story
$kaduf sounds like nobody else in Texas, but he couldn’t have come from anywhere else. It’s a point of pride for the Pleasant Grove rapper. His lyrics are intensely personal, turning a microscope on himself and the city he grew up in, but $kaduf’s sound is more New York City circa 1994 than south Dallas in 2015.
Despite his Golden Era influences (he names Nas and Gang Starr as two favorites), $kaduf’s music is clearly forward-thinking. He’s working to re-introduce classic storytelling to a genre that has largely moved away from it, and is breaking a lot of stereotypes about Texas hip hop along the way. According to $kaduf, Dallas has one of the biggest hip hop scenes in the world, but it’s missing a breakthrough artist to truly put the city on the map. When $kaduf says he plans to be that person, we can believe him. Ambition and talent go a long way.
The rapper’s currently working on a self-titled LP, which he says will be a more introspective record than his EP from last year, Groveside The Realest. We sent $kaduf some questions via email to ask him about his writing process, the state of Dallas hip hop, and Big B’s burgers. Read our Q&A below, and catch $kaduf tonight at the Crown and Harp, where he’ll be the featured performer at Too Fresh Productions’ producer beat battle.Full Story
March is a great time to be a music fan in Dallas, as many of the thousands of bands following the SXSW star to Austin this time of year tend to make a pit stop in North Texas. We’re maybe starting to see some trickle in ahead of the inevitable spillover. Whatever the reason, there are a lot of great shows in Dallas this week, from a birthday party heavy on local acts to a national pop star with a surprisingly heavy hit. Oh, and Diana Ross. Here are some of the more compelling shows rolling through town in the next seven days.Full Story
February’s closing out ugly with school closures and weather the indoors were built for, as icy roads and sleet showers may be forcing families to spend a little too much time together. But March is almost here, bringing with it the lure of later sunsets and warmer weather. We have almost endured another winter, and it’s time to rejoice with the family who made it through with you. Fortunately, there are a lot of family-friendly things to do this month, from dog variety shows to Irish festivals. Here are our picks.Full Story
Matilda the Musical, Jersey Boys, and the Carol King musical Beautiful are among the Broadway shows coming to Dallas for the 2015-16 season. The AT&T Performing Arts Center announced the latest season of its Broadway Series, which will also include performances of Cabaret and Love Letters.
Matilda the Musical, based on the Roald Dahl novel about a precocious child who used her supernatural powers to fight against tyranny and conformism years before Harry Potter, will kick things off Sept. 23 at the Winspear Opera House. Jersey Boys, which follows the rise of the pre-Beatles pop group sensation The Four Seasons, is another standout. Musicals seem to benefit from telling stories that already feature great tunes.Full Story
For Black History Month, Justin Adu wanted to celebrate the people making history today. Every day this month, the artist has shared the photos and stories of young African Americans living in North Texas. A disposable camera in hand, Adu interviewed and photographed 28 people for “The Revolution,” an exhibition at the Texas Theatre next Wednesday, March 4.
Adu met with local activists, writers, entrepreneurs, and other young professionals for the project. What all 28 people have in common is a commitment to community—a desire to work together to make our world a better, more honest place.
We talked with Adu about the photo project, the stories he heard, and the importance of diversity in local art and culture.Full Story
What is most troubling about the Water Theater isn’t that it is being deaccessioned by the city; what is disturbing is what it reveals about how Dallas values its role as a cultural steward.Full Story
I actively disliked the original Hot Tub Time Machine, which squandered its delightfully absurd story in favor of countless variations of the same joke: isn’t it funny to mention penises and the things we do with them?
Aside from some clever bits at the beginning and the end that took full advantage of the central time-traveling premise, I didn’t much care for the sequel either. This time the gang (Rob Corddry, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke) visit the future, and the screenplay’s vision for what’s to come is frustratingly unimaginative.
But will you enjoy the sequel? This pie chart breaks down the composition of its target audience:Full Story