Short List: Week of March 18 - 25 | Featured Events | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Short List: Week of March 18 - 25

click to enlarge PHOTO BY PARK HYUNSUK
Photo by Park Hyunsuk

Thu., March 18 -- Art

You probably wouldn't go to Yongsan, one of South Korea's oldest red-light districts, looking for fine art. But Yongsan's sex workers have talents beyond what they sell on the streets. In Our Lives, Our Space: Views of Women in a Red-light District, Korea, prostitutes used digital photography to depict their Seoul home. Curator Sealing Cheng, of Wellesley College, opens the 40-image exhibit tonight with a tour and a talk about this empowering project on display at the University of Pittsburgh's Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Anna Reilly Lecture: 4 p.m. Exhibit continues through Tue., March 23. 650 Schenley Drive, Oakland. Free. 412-624-6485 or


Thu., March 18 -- Film

Carnegie Mellon's wats:ON? keeps reeling into this weekend. The annual arts festival's "Adventures in Virtuality" theme encompasses tonight's "Projecting Images" talk, by "media archaeologist" Erkki Huhtamo. Tomorrow's the Machinima Film Festival, showcasing films made in virtual environments (like role-playing video games). And Saturday brings a rare Pittsburgh visit from pioneering experimental filmmaker Ernie Gehr, who'll screen his 1970 landmark work "Serene Velocity" on 16 mm along with some of his recent digital works. Bill O'Driscoll Huhtamo: 6 p.m. Machinima Film Fest: 8:30 p.m. Fri., March 19. Ernie Gehr screening and talk: 6 p.m. Sat., March 20. Studio for Creative Inquiry, CMU campus, Oakland. Free.


Fri., March 19 -- Dance

Dance Alloy Theater's consistently fun Alloy on Alloy series lets the company's dancers show what they can do choreographing as well as on the move. Tonight, in the Alloy's intimate studio setting, Michael Walsh continues his often-comic exploration of how dancers' personal lives interact with their performances, while Maribeth Maxa waxes pelagic with "Ebb, Flow." Adrienne Misko also contributes a short work, and the program (reception following) rounds out with a peek at Coming Up Short, a work in progress by DAT alum Stephanie Thiel. BO 7 p.m. Also 7 p.m. Sat., March 20. 5530 Penn Ave., Friendship. $10. Reservations recommended at 412-363-4321 or


Fri., March 19 -- Art

Politics, we're told, is the art of the possible. But genuine politics, says contemporary philosopher Slavoj Žižek, is the art of the impossible. Thinking likewise, Mattress Factory directors Barbara Luderowski and Michael Olijnyk once declared that "nothing is impossible." It's the sort of sentiment likely to draw artists and curators (and perhaps visitors, too) to one's museum. The proposition is tested with a new exhibit from Mark Garry and Georgina Jackson, both of Dublin, Ireland, currently serving a two-year curatorial residency at the museum. Artists Karl Burke, Rhona Byrne, Brian Griffiths, Bea McMahon and Dennis McNulty (all based in Dublin or London) unveil the fruits of their own two-month residencies creating new and context-specific works in the Mattress annex. Nothing Is Impossible opens with tonight's reception. BO 7-9 p.m. Exhibit continues through Aug. 8. 1414 Monterey St., North Side. $10. 412-231-3169 or


Fri., March 19 -- Pop

RJD2 isn't one to let himself be typecast: The producer, vocalist and instrumentalist has released records ranging from hip hop to instrumental dance music. (His 2007 album The Third Hand used only tracks and samples on which he himself played.) His latest effort, The Colossus, features collaborations with numerous friends and associates -- and an eclectic mix of slow jams, uptempo post-Britpop tunes and dancey rockers. He brings it live tonight at Mr. Small's Theatre; Break Science and Happy Chichester also appear. Andy Mulkerin 8 p.m. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale. $20. 866-468-3401 or


Sat., March 20 -- Stage

While playwright Cori Thomas and director Chuck Patterson are both New York-based, City Theatre's world-premiere production of When January Feels Like Summer is at least partly home-grown. Emerging playwright Thomas' culture-clash/culture-blend comedy ("Hindi goes hip-hop") was developed at City's 2008 Momentum new-plays festival, as well as at the Sundance Institute Theater Lab. And the comedic action is played by a cast including such notable locals as Joshua Elijah Reese and Carter Redwood. Preview performances commence tonight. BO 5:30 p.m. Show continues through April 11. 1300 Bingham St., South Side. $19-48. 412-431-2489 or


Sat., March 20 -- Opera

Remember that Bertolli commercial with the sad singing chef ("I make-a lasagna! / I take all day!")? Yeah. Well, the Italian chef is adapting a French song from the Spanish-set opera, Carmen. The famous aria (which actually never mentions lasagna) is sung by Carmen, the brazen gypsy, as she seduces the innocent Corporal Don Jose. Carmen's lusty come-ons lead to passionate love triangles, murder and more in this opening night at the Pittsburgh Opera. AR 8 p.m. Also 7 p.m. Tue., March 23, and March 26 and 28. Benedum Center, 803 Liberty Ave., Downtown. $10.50-195.50. 412-281-0912 or


Sat., March 20 -- Rock

Armed with contemplative quietude, the charming naïveté of being in one's early 20s, and a voice that lies somewhere between The Weakerthans' John K. Samson and the warble of Jolie Holland, Small Houses' Jeremy Quentin is poised to get some attention beyond the corner of Michigan from which he hails. Last month he released a debut album, Our Dusking Sound, and tonight Small Houses appears at Most Wanted Fine Art along with Sleep Experiments and Mother Sun. This show is organized by frequent CP contributor Manny Theiner. AM 8 p.m. 5015 Penn Ave., Garfield. $6. 412-889-7526 or


Sun., March 21 -- Rights

Onetime WPXI reporter Bev Smith is now one of the best-known African-American voices in talk radio; her late-night show is syndicated nationally by American Urban Radio. She's been chosen as the keynote speaker for tonight's annual meeting of the Pittsburgh chapter of the ACLU. She'll present on the topic of social-justice issues in the African-American community. The night also features an address on the chapter's activities in the past year by director Vic Walczak. It's open to members and non-members alike. AM 7 p.m. Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, 1815 Metropolitan St., North Side. Free. 412-681-7736 or


Mon., March 22 -- Words

Sci-fi romance has come a long way since Han and Leia's tight-lipped I love yous. In the novel The Time Traveler's Wife, Henry and Claire's perfect romance is interrupted by a genetic defect that unpredictably yanks Henry in and out of time. Author Audrey Niffenegger specializes in stories about modern, truthful characters in fantastical scenarios; Her Fearful Symmetry, Niffenegger's anticipated second novel, is a modern-day London ghost story. Readers have fallen hard for Niffenegger: Both books are New York Times bestsellers, and Time Traveler's Wife recently became a Hollywood movie. Niffenegger breaks from teaching at Columbia College Chicago to visit the Drue Heinz Lecture Series. AR 7:30 p.m. Carnegie Music Hall, 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland. $10-25. 412-622-8866 or


Wed., March 24 -- Stage

There's a reason Alice's Adventures in Wonderland keeps getting remade on film, on stage and more. Actually, there are too many reasons to name. But it sounds like the University of Pittsburgh's Repertory Theatre is trying to touch all the bases with its new production. Alice, adapted from the Lewis Carroll classic by Emilia Anderson and Tamara Goldbogen, features live actors, puppets, and the appropriately surreal live original music of local neo-vaudevillian Buddy Nutt. Goldbogen and Sam Turich direct. The show opens tonight. BO 8 p.m. Continues through April 3. Studio Theatre, Cathedral of Learning (basement), Forbes Avenue at Bigelow, Oakland. $12-22. 412-624-7529 or


Wed. March 24 -- Rock

Pittsburgh institution Get Hip Recordings hosts some overseas friends tonight at 31st Street Pub, following their appearances at Austin, Texas' South By Southwest festival: Thee Vicars, bratty, snarling youngsters from the U.K. who've lately been touring with the likes of the Black Lips and King Khan, and Norway's surf punks Pirate Love. Also on the bill are The Wailin' Yeahs. So, are these bands garage-revival revival, or garage-revival-revival revival? Hard to say. But dancing to raucous, cathartic grooves is never really out of style. Aaron Jentzen 9 p.m. 3101 Penn Ave., Strip District. $10. 412-391-8334 or


Wed, March 24 -- Rock

It's hard to think of many towns more likely to appreciate young classic-rock torchbearers than Pittsburgh. Three such bands swagger into Gooski's tonight, including local hosts The Long Time Darlings. From Buffalo, there's the Sabbathine thunder of Chylde, and from Boston, Township's metallic Deep Purple boogie. Gooski's ain't exactly a stadium, but a well-placed blast of guitarmony from one of these bands might fool ya -- or trigger an acid flashback. AJ 10 p.m. 3117 Brereton St., Polish Hill. $5. 412-681-1658


Thu., March 25 -- Music

Members of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra head out for their annual Community Engagement concerts. The PSO brings classical tunes to the people with neighborhood concerts at reduced rates. Tonight in the Hill District, assistant conductor Thomas Hong's string ensemble plays Vivaldi's rousing (and timely) "Spring," from The Four Seasons, alongside other classical works. And in Wilkinsburg on Sat., March 27, Pittsburgher Kenny Blake lends his saxophone to Vaughan Williams and Bizet. AR 7 p.m. (St. Benedict the Moor Church, 91 Crawford St., Hill District; $4 students, $6 seniors, $8 adults; 412-392-6479). Also 7 p.m. Sat., March 27 (Wilkinsburg High School, 747 Wallace Ave., Wilkinsburg; $3 students, $7 adults; 412-871-2125).

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