Robin Bloom shares her recommendations for what to do this week in the Philadelphia region!
Brian Sanders’ JUNK
Brian Sanders’ JUNK continues to challenge the concept of traditional dance theater with the annual spring production of My Funny Bone. The 90 minute revue style show tells the story of how Sanders’ got his funny bone with an irreverent look at life, love and the pursuit of happiness and all of the humor and pain that comes with it. A troupe of six acrobatic dance artists, led by guest emcee and narrator Kyle Yackoski (Tribe of Fools), pushes boundaries in a unique performance caught somewhere between Lawrence Welk and the Gong Show, with six shows, May 10-14, Penn’s Landing Playhouse, 211 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia. “First Time Free” Thursdays invites regular JUNK attendees to bring a guest for free to see the company for the first time. Photo by Steve Belkowitz.
Pennsylvania Ballet’s “Re/Action”
Pennsylvania Ballet presents Re/Action, the final program of its season, with five performances May 11-14 at the Academy of Music. See the company premiere of Christopher Wheeldon’s “Rush,” George Balanchine’s “Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux” (originally written for Act II of Swan Lake), Tarantella (whose world premiere was at the Academy of Music in 1864), and the pas de deux from Rubies, a fast-paced and glamorous portrayal of New York City, set to a jazz-inflected score by Igor Stravinsky. Also, a world premiere by Matthew Neenan, Pennsylvania Ballet’s Choreographer in Residence, is set to various Vivaldi Cello Concertos. Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.
Spruce Street Harbor Park reopens
Spruce Street Harbor Park returns for another season Friday, May 12, kicking off with the first annual Univestival, a weekend-long festival with live music, activities, and more. The park features floating gardens, landscaped barges, and net lounge offering over 50 colorful hammocks, lights, craft beer, food, games, and more, located in the Marina at Penn’s Landing, Columbus Boulevard and Spruce Street, Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation.
Dad Vail Regatta
The annual Dad Vail Regatta, the largest collegiate regatta in the United States, with over 100 colleges and Universities from the U.S. and Canada, returns Friday, May 12 and Saturday, May 13 on the Schuylkill River, named for Harry Emerson “Dad” Vail, coach at the University of Wisconsin between 1911 and the late 1920’s. There’s a free shuttle for spectators and the best place to watch is at the Grand Stand. Admission is free. Photo by Matt Slocum/AP.
National Public Gardens Day
Friday, May 12 is National Public Gardens Day, created by The American Public Gardens Association to celebrate and promote awareness of public gardens in North America, and to encourage visitors to explore their local botanical gardens and arboreta to learn about new plants, get landscaping ideas for their yards, and appreciate the impact that gardens have in their communities and daily lives. Philadelphia has over 30 gardens within a 30-mile radius – the largest concentration of gardens in the Gardens in the region. Gardens include Shofuso Japanese House and Garden, Scott Arboretum, Welkinweir, Bartram’s Garden, Chanticleer, Grounds for Sculpture (pictured), Longwood Gardens, and Mt. Cuba Center.
LOVE Your Park Week
The 6th annual LOVE Your Park Week, a week-long, citywide celebration of Philadelphia parks is May 13-21, including service projects, events, educational programs, family activities, tours and more at over 100 parks throughout Philadelphia. Kick-off is Saturday, May 13. Find out what is happening near you and volunteer. Presented by the Fairmount Park Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks and Recreations. Events include: The Fitler Square Spring Fair, Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., with live music, a silent auction, flowers, herbs, baked goods, gently used books, children’s activities, vendors, and more, 23rd and Pine, Philadelphia. The annual May Fair in Clark Park returns Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., with music by local bands, food from some of the favorite vendor trucks in University City, crafts, children’s activities, book sale and more, 43rd and Chester Avenue, Philadelphia. Gorgas Park May Fair & Ridge Runners Car Show is Saturday, May 13, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., at Gorgas Park (pictured), Ridge and Hermitage Street, Philadelphia. Photo by Meg Pinto/NewsWorks.
Artist Bash: Personal Stories on Public Style at The Barnes Foundation
The Barnes Foundation hosts Artist Bash: Personal Stories on Public Style, Saturday, May 13, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. The evening of poets, dancers, musicians, and fashion designers performing and strutting on the red carpet features the Ikiré Jones men’s fashion line (pictured), classical Indian dancer Roshni Tailor, poet Lyrispect, live music by AveNoir, and the sounds of Worldtown’s DJ Oluwafemi. Exhibition access included, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of the Barnes Foundation.
Night Market is back for 2017! Many of the city’s restaurants and street food vendors join together for the (brand new) Night Market Burholme at the intersection of Cottman and Rising Sun Avenues (also known as “Five Points), Thursday, May 11, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. Inspired by Asia’s lively outdoor markets, the event spotlights Philly’s best ethnic and regional restaurants and food trucks, along with live music, art, and more. Photo by Dave Tavani for The Food Trust. Rittenhouse Square will be transformed by the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen’s annual Fine Craft Market, Friday, May 12, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday, May 13, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and Sunday, May 14, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. The event brings to town over 140 fine craftspeople from across North America with crafts ranging from ceramics to jewelry to handmade clothing to artisan furniture and more, along the sidewalks around Rittenhouse Square Park, 1800 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. The 10th annual Lehigh Avenue Arts Festival, also known as the Portside Community Arts Festival, is Saturday, May 13, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., rain or shine, with live music, food, crafts, children’s activities, live painting, and more at its original location at Belgrade Street and Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia.
Art Star Craft Bazaar
The 14th Annual Spring Art Star Craft Bazaar returns this Mother’s Day weekend with over 140 local and national artists and crafters offering high quality handmade goods that reflect the unique and quirky pieces found at Art Star Gallery & Boutique’s popular retail shop. With live music from local bands, food, craft demonstrations and more, rain or shine, Saturday and Sunday, May 13-14, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., Penn’s Landing Great Plaza, Columbus Boulevard between Market and Walnut Streets, Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of Art Star Gallery & Boutique.
Celebrating Mothers, Spring and New Beginnings at Bartram’s Garden
PhilHarmonia performs A Choral Concert Celebrating Mothers, Spring and New Beginnings, Saturday, May 13, at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Enjoy music by Sergei Rachmaninoff, Clara Schumann, Edward Elgar, John Bennett, Colin Britt, Darmon Meader, Joseph Flummerfelt, and more, with receptions following each in the stone barn at Bartram’s Garden. Discover the home of America’s first great botanist, John Bartram. Take a quarter mile walk up the meadow to see amazing views of the Philadelphia skyline and explore the garden, community farm, and recreational trail, 5400 Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of Bartram’s Garden.
Mother’s Day Tea Ceremony at Shofuso Japanese House and Garden
Enjoy a Mother’s Day Tea Ceremony at Shofuso Japanese House and Garden, Sunday, May 14, 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Located in Philadelphia’s West Fairmount Park, Shofuso was built in Japan in 1953 using traditional techniques and materials and moved to Philadelphia on the site of several previous Japanese structures continuously maintained since the 1876 Centennial Exposition. The traditional-style house with its hinoki roof, the only one of its kind outside of Japan, can be toured, along with the gardens, koi pond and island. Photo courtesy of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden.
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia’s “Pictures at an Exhibition”
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia closes its season with the world premiere of Dirk Brossé’s Pictures at an Exhibition. The multidisciplinary collaboration with the Philadelphia Museum of Art was inspired by seven American paintings in the museum’s collection including Thomas Eakins’ “The Gross Clinic” and “Grand Canyon of the Colorado River” by Thomas Moran (pictured). Images of each painting will be projected above the orchestra in two performances, Sunday, May 14, 2:30 p.m. and Monday, May 15, 7:30 p.m. Also on the program is the world premiere of Dai Wei’s “Two of Us,” telling the story of two sisters separated in children and the battle to reunite, Perelman Theater at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia. Related events and programs include a post-matinee Q&A session and “Concerts and Cocktails.”
Dark Star Orchestra
Dark Star Orchestra recreates Grateful Dead set lists with accuracy, performing one show from the over 2500 that the Dead performed during their 30 year tenure. The Chicago-based band plays the McCarter Theatre Center, Monday, May 15, 7:30 p.m., 91 University Place, Princeton, New Jersey. Photo by Suzy Perler.
PAFA’s 116th Annual Student Exhibition
PAFA marks the completion of another class of artists with the 116th Annual Student Exhibition, May 12 through June 4. The longest-standing exhibition of its kind offers PAFA’s emerging artists the opportunity to curate, install, and sell their own work in a professional setting with approximately 1000 works in various media by 38 graduating MFA students, 59 third and fourth year Certificate and BFA students, and 8 Post Baccalaureate students, 128 North Broad Street, Philadelphia. Opening reception is May 12, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. Photo by Jonathan Wilson/NewsWorks.
“Assemblage: A Regional Collective of Women Artists” at Delaware Art Museum
The Delaware Art Museum focuses on a group of female artists from the greater Philadelphia area who formed a group to meet regularly to share ideas and discuss the ongoing art scene. Assemblage: A Regional Collective of Women Artists features over 50 works by 17 artists who use various media and include the figure, animals, architecture, nature, and both realistic and abstract forms in their designs. Painting, printmaking and drawing, bright colors and monochrome designs, three-dimensional pieces, and found objects contribute to the diversity of the artists’ styles. Several members have taught in colleges and universities and have exhibited nationally and internationally with works displayed in private and public collections, galleries and museums. Artists include Rosalind Bloom, Wanda Chudzinski, Lauren A. Litwa, Pam Taggart, and Carol Wisker, May 13 through September 3, 2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington, Delaware. Pictured: “Many New Moons,” 2017 Lauren A. Litwa Oil and pencil on Canvas, 42 x 44 inches, Courtesy of the artist.
Each week, the Entertainment Guide spotlights interesting local arts offerings happening now, including music, dance, theater, museums, special exhibitions and other arts events from across the region.
To submit an event to be considered, email Robin Bloom at firstname.lastname@example.org.