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Short List: September 5 - 11 

Photo courtesy of Charlie Gross

Photo courtesy of Charlie Gross

Sat., Sept. 8 — Event

City of Asylum/Pittsburgh might find it hard to top last year's Jazz Poetry Concert, which featured not only the sonic wallop of avant-jazz outfit Tarbaby but a surprise appearance by world-famous aerialists The Flying Wallendas. (Really.) But the group, which shelters and supports writers persecuted in their home countries, again offers its annual free showcase for live poetry, live jazz and live poetry-with-jazz. This year, perennial guest musical director Oliver Lake returns with his saxophone, his Steel Quartet and special guest Meshell Ndegeocello. The impassioned singer and bassist (pictured) is a 10-time Grammy nominee whose 10th and latest album, Pour une Ame Souveraine (For a Sovereign Soul), honors Nina Simone. Ndegeocello will perform with the Steel Quartet, whose Afro-Caribbean-inspired jazz repertoire is played by members including steel-pan virtuoso Lyndon Achee. The poets include four-time National Poetry Slam champ Patricia Smith, former COA writer-in-residence Khet Mar, current resident Israel Centeno and more. And that's not even counting any surprises. Bill O'Driscoll 7:45-9:45 p.m. Sat., Sept. 8. 500 Sampsonia Way (outdoors), North Side. Free. www.cityofasylumpittsburgh.org

click to enlarge PHOTO BY C. STANLEY, COURTESY OF THEATER J.
  • Photo by C. Stanley, Courtesy of Theater J.

Thu., Sept. 6 — Stage

They're irreverent, a little naughty and very, very musical. Self-billed as "America's Favorite Dragapella Beautyshop Quartet," The Kinsey Sicks harmonize on satiric originals like "Sell the Poor": "Sell the poor — 'cept the ones who face the guns in our wars. / Keep the ones who man the trenches, toil or clean or plant our soil, / the others we can trade for oil." Starting tonight, the nationally known quartet — Winnie, Rachel, Trixie and Trampolina — and their red, white and blue gowns visit City Theatre for five performances of their election-year show Electile Dysfunction: Kinsey Sicks for President. Bill O'Driscoll 8 p.m. Continues through Sun., Sept. 9. 1300 Bingham St., South Side. $40. 412-431-2489 or www.citytheatrecompany.org

click to enlarge Art by Eric Lidji.
  • Art by Eric Lidji.

Fri., sept. 7 — Art

Ideas and moments from large to small are explored at this month's Unblurred gallery crawl. At Artisan, brothers Derek and Andrew Nelson pursue a big idea — post-capitalist politics — in The Process of DIY, an exhibit of their stencils, skateboards and more. Meanwhile, at Assemble, journalist Eric Lidji offers Assemble Daily News, a pop-up newspaper detailing everyday happenings too fleeting for everyday front pages. In between, check out art shows, crafts, dancing and even psychic readings at some two dozen venues on Penn Avenue. BO 6-11 p.m. 4800-5500 Penn Ave., Bloomfield, Friendship and Garfield. Free. www.friendship-pgh.org

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Fri., sept. 7 — Art

On some lips, it's the other f-word. But Feminist and ..., an exhibit curated by Hilary Robinson for the Mattress Factory, presents new works by six diverse women artists whose practices demonstrate feminism's range of voices and concerns. Contributors include veteran practitioners like renowned photographer Carrie Mae Weems; Iranian-born, internationally exhibited Parastou Forouhar; Loraine Leeson; and artist/activist Betsy Damona. Also contributing are two younger, Pittsburgh-based artists, Ayanah Moor and Julia Cahill. The exhibit doubles as a farewell for Robinson, a Carnegie Mellon art professor soon returning to her native England. The opening reception is tonight. BO 7-9 p.m. Exhibit continues through May 26. 500 Sampsonia Way. $12. www.mattress.org

Fri., Sept. 7 — Words

Pittsburgh's favorite undercover narcotics cop and homicide detective-turned-poet is back with a new collection, featuring titles like "I Bought the Whole Whorehouse" and "Lex Became a Junkie." Dog Unleashed (published locally by Awesome Books' Lascaux Editions) is Jimmy Cvetic's less-expurgated follow-up to Secret Society of Dog. Cvetic (a frequent CP contributor) is a showman and raconteur, his poems as brutal — and as brutally funny — as they are unburnished. Tonight's reading and book launch, at The Andy Warhol Museum, doubles as a fundraiser for Cvetic's several Western Pennsylvania Police Athletic League boxing gyms. BO 7:30 p.m. 117 Sandusky St., North Side. $20. 412-237-8300

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Fri., Sept. 7 — Screen

Thrills and chills! It's the sixth annual Drive-In Super Monster-Rama, at the Riverside Drive-in. Eight 1970s horror and exploitation features will be shown in 35 mm and screened into the wee hours. Tonight, it's Theatre of Blood, Horror House, Equinox and Son of Blob; Saturday's program offers Twins of Evil, Countess Dracula, Raw Meat and Psychomania. And bring a couple extra bucks for the "BITEY the Killer Funnel Cake" T-shirt. Al Hoff 8 p.m. Also, 8 p.m. Sat., Sept. 8. Route 66, North Vandergrift. $10 per person each night (kids under 12 free with adult). Overnight camping available for additional charge. 724-568-1250 or www.riversidedrivein.com

Sat., Sept. 8 — Art

Concept Art Gallery is 40 years old, and to celebrate, it's asked a couple dozen curators to "forecast the next 40 years" at this venerable venue. Local experts, from Barbara Luderowski and Linda Benedict-Jones to Curt Gettman and Murray Horne, selected work by artists including Dylan Vitone, Caren Mincemoyer and Ryder Henry. The sure-to-be-jammed opening reception for Curator's Choice is today. BO 4-6 p.m. Exhibit continues through Oct. 7. 1031 S. Braddock Ave., Edgewood. 242-9200 or www.conceptgallery.com

Sat., sept. 8 – Rides

It's nearly 50 years since mods and rockers famously clashed in the south of England. So the inspiration for the annual Steel City Mods vs. Rockers event is hardly news. What is news is that this rally for vintage motorcycles and scooters has a new home. First hosted at SouthSide Works, then last year in Bloomfield, it's now at McKees Rocks' Twin Hi-Way Drive-In, presumably to allow more room for showing off sweet rides. There are still bike contests and a pin-up contest, though, along with live music by The Legendary Hucklebucks and The Turbosonics. BO 1-6 p.m. 5588 Steubenville Pike, McKees Rocks. $5-10. www.steelcitymodsvsrockers.com

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Sat., Sept. 8 — Dance

OvreArts is an ambitious new classical-music ensemble that collaborates with young local composers, choreographers, dancers and visual artists to create original works. With successful shows at Heinz Chapel already under its belt, OvreArts returns to premiere two fully orchestrated new ballets, "The Alkonost" and "Infinity." The OvreArts Sinfonia and OvreArts Chamber Singers join Texture Ballet Company and The Pillow Project for two performances, this afternoon and tonight at Downtown's CAPA Theater. BO 4 and 8 p.m. 111 Ninth St., Downtown. $27.99-$39.99. www.ovrearts.showclix.com

Sun., Sept. 9 — Music

If Indian music's gained a cult following in recent years, it's mostly for the kind of contemporary stuff you'd hear from Bollywood. But there's a few millennia more to the music than that. Today, experience a guided tour when musicians of Pandit Jasraj Institute of Music perform A Musical Program on the History of Indian Music. The narrated program, at Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, is presented by Pitt's Department of Music and nationally based music organization Chhandayan. BO 5 p.m. Schenley Drive, Oakland. $5-10. 724-265-7957

Tue., Sept. 11 — Words

Camille Utterback is one artist whose works get both seen and used. Her art — typically colorful, large-scale and highly kinetic interactive-video works — is not only exhibited in museums internationally, but has also transformed public spaces in cities like Sacramento, Calif., and her hometown, San Francisco. This fall, Utterback is a visiting professor at Carnegie Mellon University. Today, she launches this season's School of Art Lecture Series with a free talk on campus. BO 5 p.m. Kresge Theater, College of Fine Arts building, CMU campus, Oakland. Free. 412-268-2409 or www.cmu.edu/art

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Thu., Sept. 13 — Stage

Sam Singleton Atheist Evangelist is his name, and for years he's toured the country with his gospel of no-God. Tonight, Brother Sam rides into town with Revival. His new one-man show is a "participatory parody" of the sort of old-time revival meetings that Sam (the creation of actor Roger Scott Jackson) attended as a young 'un. "It has music, testimonies, a sermon, all the things you'd expect, except God," says Sam, whose other shows include Too Big for God, and If the Ocean Was Whiskey and God Was a Duck. The satire commences tonight, at the Carnegie Science Center theater. It's free. BO 7 p.m. North Side. Free. 412-237-3400 or www.samsingleton.com

Thu., Sept. 13 — Words

In his best-selling 2010 book The Other Wes Moore, combat veteran and former White House fellow Wes Moore contrasts his life with that of a man with the same name. Both grew up fatherless in Maryland, at around the same time, but the "other" Moore is serving a life sentence for murder. Tonight, Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures and the Hill House Association host Moore at the Hill House Kaufmann Center. His presentation, Discovering Wes Moore, shares its title with Moore's new young-adult version of his book. BO 7 p.m. 1825 Centre Ave., Hill District. $5-10. 412-622-8866 or www.pittsburghlectures.org

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