Short List: Week of September 16 - 23 | Pittsburgh City Paper

Short List: Week of September 16 - 23

Short List: Week of September 16 - 23
Courtesy of Srishti Dances of India

Often in life, a journey without can lead to a more telling one within. Three years ago, Srishti Dances of India founder Sreyashi Dey and photographer Charlee Brodsky traveled together to Kolkata, India, to photograph Dey's intricate mudras, or hand gestures -- an integral part of the classical Odissi dance style -- in a cultural setting. Further collaborations followed with Michigan poet Zilka Joseph; a series of small performances led to the world premiere of India -- A Light Within, on Sat., Sept. 18, at the Kelly-Strayhorn Theater. "Each of us is trying to capture the inner spirit and inward journey our work reflects for us," says Dey by phone from Ann Arbor, Mich., where the former Pittsburgher has relocated. "The work is a spiritual quest not just about India but about the human spirit." Formed in Pittsburgh in 1995, Srishti Dances has performed throughout the U.S. and in India with the goal of preserving the ancient Odissi style. In the 90-minute Sept. 18 performance -- Srishti's first Pittsburgh show in three years -- four dancers including Dey, her twin daughters, Ishika and Kritika Rajan, and Debnita Talapatra, will perform five works in traditional costume set to commissioned Indian music (recorded). Spirituality is the heart of the program, which centers on temple-inspired dances. "Indian dance is not meant necessarily for entertainment in a way that some American dance would be," says Brodsky, a professor of photography at Carnegie Mellon University. "It is an expression of one's spiritual life and, I would also say, a history of the culture." During and between dances, Brodsky's photographs will be projected behind the dancers, and Joseph will recite her accompanying text live. "All three of these elements can exist independently of each other," says Brodsky. "We are pulling them all together and I think together they make for a different kind of performance and art piece." Steve Sucato 8 p.m. Sat., Sept. 18. 5941 Penn Ave., East Liberty. $10-25. 412-363-3000 or


Thu., Sept. 16 -- Dance

We're glad Attack Theatre's been around 15 years -- if only because such recent shows as Incident[s] in the Strip included some of the troupe's best work ever. Launching a new season, five dancers including co-founders Michele de la Reza and Peter Kope offer Site/Re-site, which Attack calls "a landscape of gadgets, widgets, sonic diversity and kinetic wonderment," all in a former bar. As usual for Attack, live music's key: This weekend, the sounds come courtesy of Deoro (a trio featuring Attack music director Dave Eggar); next week, it's Chatham Baroque, and Ben Hardt and His Symphony. Bill O'Driscoll 8 p.m. Shows continue through Sept. 25. 1400 Smallman St., Strip District. $15-35. 412-281-3305 or


Thu., Sept. 16 -- Folk

Fans of old-timey music, Alison Krauss and pretty much everyone else on the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack will feel right at home tonight at The Pittsburgh Center for the Arts in Shadyside, when folk-music society Calliope presents acoustic folk trio Red Molly. The Mollys will showcase their strong, clear three-part vocal harmonies on traditional folk songs as well as covering songs by Bob Willis, Gillian Welch and Darrel Scott. Kelsey Shea 7:30 p.m. 6300 Fifth Ave., Shadyside. $17 ($15 for members). All ages. 412-361-1915 or


Fri., Sept. 17 -- Horror

Given that Horror Realm credits its very existence to Night of the Living Dead -- which launched the "modern horror" genre -- it's apt that the second annual convention is highlighted by Autopsy of the Dead. Jeff Carney's new documentary recounts the making of George Romero's 1968 shot-in-Pittsburgh zombie classic. Autopsy screens Saturday, but the homegrown con kicks off today, heralding three days of films (including a sneak preview of Chain Letter), author panels and an NOLD costume ball. There's even standup comedy, bellydancing and a performance by Pittsburgh's Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera. BO 4 p.m.-midnight. Also Sat., Sept. 18, and Sun., Sept. 19. Crowne Plaza Pittsburgh South, Mount Lebanon. $10-15 (weekend pass: $30).


Sat., Sept. 18 -- Words

Larry Harmon wasn't the only Bozo the clown, nor the first. But the character he codified -- and franchised in some 200 markets globally -- is "Bozo" to most. And Harmon's Bozo ran for president; received astronaut training; fielded assassination threats; and once visited New Guinea cannibals ... in costume. Such stories constitute The Man Behind the Nose: Assassins, Astronauts, Cannibals, and Other Stupendous Tales (Igniter Books), a book Harmon co-wrote before his death, in 2008. "Larry lived a reality-show existence before we ever knew what reality shows were," says co-author Scott McKenzie. "Larry felt there was no boundary the character couldn't cross." McKenzie and a clown named Bozo visit Joseph-Beth Booksellers today. BO 2 p.m. 510 S. 27th St., South Side. Free. 412-381-3600


Sat., Sept. 18 -- Jazz

The Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra opens the performance season at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture with a show celebrating the music of two local legends, Billy Strayhorn and Mary Lou Williams. Nationally known, locally based trumpeter Sean Jones, who revived the Orchestra, handles the musical direction. The concert is paired with an exhibit by noted New York-based photographer Frank Stewart. BO 8 p.m. 980 Liberty Ave., Downtown. $20-30. 412-456-6666 or


Sat., Sept. 18 -- Music

Local online magazine The New Yinzer is all about sustaining, promoting and building Western Pennsylvania's literary community, but tonight it'll be mixin' and minglin' with Pittsburgh's music scene as well. The party, called Less Chat, More Hat, goes down at Brillobox and features local throwback garage band The Mount McKinleys, as well as Whiskey Tango Foxtrot and More Humans. The show will be followed by a dance party with 'Burgh DJs Miscellaneous G, Electric Slim and Sinister. KS 9 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $5. 412-621-4900 or


Sun., Sept. 19 -- Freebies

Time for RADical Days, the Allegheny Regional Asset District's annual potpourri of free stuff: museum admissions, live performance, film, art demos and more, through Oct. 24. From Sept. 29-Oct. 10, free events occur daily at dozens of venues. It's all courtesy of RAD, the sales-tax-funded body that supports libraries, parks, sports stadia and arts groups. The festivities begin today with free admission to Pittsburgh Penguins training camp, at Consol Energy Center; the Carnegie Science Center; and nearby "floating classroom" RiverQuest. Also new this year: text-message alerts, by texting "RAD" 76274. BO Pebguns: 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Science Center: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. RiverQuest: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. North Side. 412-227-1900 or


Mon., Sept. 20 -- Words

Karl Marlantes' novel Matterhorn spent 10 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, spawning a 30-city book tour. Now this critically acclaimed narrative about the Vietnam War has Marlantes touring yet again, exploring what it means to be in the midst of a divisive war. Matterhorn follows Waino Mellas, a young Marine who, not unlike vet Marlantes, finds the war on the ground to be an uneasy mix of horror, bravery, confusion and camaraderie. The Washington state-based author visits Joseph-Beth Booksellers tonight. Weenta Girmay 7 p.m. 510 S. 27th St., South Side. Free. 412-381-3600 


Tue., Sept. 21 -- Rock

She dwells now in Tucson, Ariz., but Marianne Dissard was born in France and mixes French and American musical traditions -- not so much in the style of the '60s ye-ye singers who took on rock 'n' roll, but more like a French fan of introspective American indie. She's worked with Calexico before -- members of that band appear on her latest, Paris One-Takes -- and she's also experienced as a writer and filmmaker. Dissard brings her French-language Americana to Pittsburgh for the first time, tonight at Zombo Gallery. Andy Mulkerin 7 p.m. 4900 Hatfield St., Lawrenceville. $7. All ages. 412-904-3703 or


Wed., Sept. 22 -- Music

You wouldn't guess it by the name, but Holy Fuck doesn't have a whole lot to say -- lyrically, that is. The instrumental electronic dance band from Toronto performs tonight at Brillobox. Unlike most experimental electric bands, Holy Fuck is refreshingly laptop-free, relying on actual instruments to create an organic electro-pop sound using just drums, bass, effects pedals, turntables and a film synchronizer. Fellow experimental bands Indian Jewelry and South Seas Sneak will open. KS 9:30 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $15. 21 and older. 412-621-4900 or


Wed., Sept. 22 -- History

For decades, starting in 1926, Uptown's Paramount Pictures Film Exchange Building was where the Hollywood studio stored its prints; rumored visitors had names like DeMille and Chaplin. But the structure, ornate façade notwithstanding, fell into disuse and was recently slated for demolition. Now investors led by Rick Schweikert are renovating, with hopes of remaking the designated-historic Exchange as a theater space with a café and screening room. They're seeking new shareholders, too, but today they just want visitors. A day-long open house culminates in a party with live music. Reservations at [email protected]. BO 10 a.m.-10 p.m. (7 p.m. party). 1727 Boulevard of the Allies, Uptown. 412-352-3417 or


Short List: Week of September 16 - 23
Courtesy of Matias Corral

Thu., Sept. 23 -- Rock

Sometimes called the nicest guy in indie rock, Ted Leo is considered among the most entertaining as well -- on and off the stage. The veteran's shows are as energetic as ever. And when he's not on tour, he's engineering stunts like last month's online hoax in which he claimed to be putting together a musical, not unlike another Lookout! Records alum, Green Day. Having missed this past spring's Pittsburgh date, he and his band The Pharmacists (which now features Dischord Records stalwart James Canty) play Diesel tonight; Heavy Cream and Pet Clinic open. AM 7 p.m. 1601 E. Carson St., South Side. $13-15. All ages. 412-481-8800 or