The potential bone-chilling temperatures in the weekend’s forecast won’t matter − as long as you bundle up, that is, or get moving at one of the many dance events in the region. There’s also hot music from the ‘90s as the killer bees of the Wu-Tang Clan buzz into town, winter festivals make the season merry and bright, and Dame Helen Mirren presides at one of the top events on Philadelphia’s social schedule.
Wu-Tang Clan: 25 Years of 36 Chambers
Franklin Music Hall
421 N. Seventh St., Philadelphia
Jan. 24, 8:30 p.m.
Pioneering ‘90s hip-hop collective The Wu-Tang Clan makes an appearance with the entire crew. The Staten Island, N.Y., group broke through with its 1993 release “Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)” and then split off so that each member of its 10-man group would go on to release his own solo album or albums.
Spearheaded by its main producer RZA (Robert Diggs), Wu-Tang Clan spawned an entire empire of affiliated acts, launched a clothing line and influenced hip-hop and mainstream culture in a way not seen before or since.
When original member ODB died in 2004, the group continued, releasing various projects, but its cultural influence waned. Still, they are among hip-hop’s greatest collectives of all time. Their 2014 album “The Wu – Once Upon A Time in Shaolin” was planned for release as a single copy to the highest bidder. Disgraced pharmaceutical entrepreneur Martin Shkreli bought it for $2 million, but it’s never been released to the public in its entirety.
Newark Restaurant Week
Various venues in Newark, Delaware
Through Jan. 27
$10 and up
Newark wraps up its Restaurant Week with discounted dining options at 11 participating restaurants. Two and three-course lunches and dinners are on the menu with restaurant options ranging from American fare to Mexican and Irish food.
Latin Night at the Lodge
Blue Cross RiverRink
101 S. Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia
9 p.m.–1 a.m.
No matter how frigid the weather, Latin dance, including salsa and bachata, is sure to warm you up. As part of their Winterfest, Blue Cross RiverRink hosts salsa and bachata dance lessons with dance experts Frankie Gerard and salsa/bachata world champion dancer/choreographer Jose Luis Maldonado as well as a dance party with three DJs, the Chucky Santos Band and performances by three different dance studios. The party is billed as all ages, but only those 21 and over will be served drinks.
Chinese New Year Celebration
Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine St. (between 19th and 20th streets on the Parkway)
10:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
The Chinese New Year doesn’t begin until Feb. 5, but an early celebration is happening at the Free Library’s main branch this weekend. The event includes activities for all ages, in conjunction with Philly’s W.E. Cultural Exchange Institute. Yoga, tai chi, a tea ceremony and performance, an introduction to pu-erh tea and a lecture “The Aroma of Shangri-La” are all on the day’s schedule.
Final Fridays: Werk It!
Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Jan. 25, 5–8:45 p.m.
Free with museum admission
Enjoy the “Fabulous Fashion” exhibit with a dance party celebrating the LGBTQ ballroom community. Not only will DJ and cultural critic madison moore spin, there will be voguing lessons and a fashion show inspired by the exhibit presented by the members of POSSE (Promoting Openness Through Safer Sex Education.) Although there’s no specific dress code, with all this fabulousness in the room, this is the evening where no sartorial choice is wrong, as long as it’s worn with confidence.
“Ragtime” the musical
208 Vine St., Hammonton, New Jersey
Through Feb. 17
You may remember the 1981 movie based on the book by E.L Doctorow. “Ragtime” ultimately morphed into a Broadway musical as well, which won four Tonys during its original Broadway run in 1998, including one for lead actress Audra McDonald. Current stars Samuel L. Jackson, Debbie Allen, Elizabeth McGovern and Jeff Daniels all made one of their first film appearances in the movie version.
The musical intertwines the uniquely American stories of a Jewish immigrant, a Harlem musician and a wealthy mother in a timeless way. Performances on Jan. 31 and Feb. 7 will include a post-show talk with director and cast. On Feb. 14, a “please touch” performance will allow the audience to have more sensory access to the show.
Martha Graham Dance Company: The EVE Project
Annenberg Center, University of Pennsylvania
3680 Walnut St., Philadelphia
Jan. 25, 8 p.m.; Jan. 26, 2 and 7 p.m.
The late contemporary dance pioneer Martha Graham’s iconic troupe continues its groundbreaking work with “The EVE Project” in celebration of the 2020 centennial commemoration of women’s right to vote. In the Philadelphia premiere of “Chronicle” and two of Graham’s other works − as well as “Deo,” the preview of a brand-new performance by Maxine Doyle and Bobbi Jene Smith − Graham’s continuing influence is undeniable.
Fire and Ice Festival
Downtown Bethany Beach, Delaware
Through Jan. 27
Free, with some ticketed events
Winter on the beach? Why not? Ice skating and ice sculptures, a treasure hunt, a culinary showcase and a beach bonfire are among the family-friendly activities in the Delaware shore town during this winter festival extravaganza.
162th Annual Anniversary Concert and Ball
Academy of Music
240 S. Broad St., Philadelphia
Jan. 26, 5 p.m.–2 a.m.
Among Philadelphia’s most iconic events, the evening includes a concert by the Philadelphia Orchestra led by music director and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin, a pre-concert reception, and a post-concert dinner and ball at the neighboring Bellevue Hotel. This year’s added attraction is the chance to rub elbows or take selfies with Dame Helen Mirren, the British acting legend and Oscar winner. The reception is sold out, but limited tickets are still available for the concert, dinner and ball.
Lambertville/New Hope Winter Festival
Through January 27th
Free, with some ticketed events
Lambertville and New Hope are hosting a variety of events during their annual festival including ice-carving demonstrations, a chili cook-off, a beef and brew event, concerts, gallery crawls, a read-a-thon and a soup-a-thon. Some events are sold out, but there are still tickets available for others.
Jerry Blavat and Friends 40th Anniversary Show
Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center
300 South Broad St., Philadelphia
Jan. 26, 8 p.m.
The “Geator with the Heater” celebrates his 40th anniversary with his 40th show at the Kimmel Center. The ever-popular radio personality will bring his celebrated musical friends including The Stylistics, Jay Siegel’s Tokens, The Chantels, The Miracles, Brenda Holloway, the Stylistics and some surprise guests as well. (Tickets are limited, but are still available).