Robin Bloom offers 20 suggestions for what to do this week.
24th annual Philadelphia Film Festival
The Philadelphia Film Society presents the 24th annual Philadelphia Film Festival, October 22 through November 1, offering over 130 films from all over the world at venues throughout Philadelphia including Ritz East, Ritz at the Bourse, Prince Theater, and PFS Roxy Theater. The festival opens with Anomalisa by directors Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson. Closing film is Michael Moore’s Where to invade Next. The Academy-Award winning filmmaker will be in attendance for a closing night celebration on October 30. Special events include an opening night party, closing night masquerade party, festival lounge, panel discussion, Wes Craven’s Halloween Nightmare, and more. Pictured: King Georges, film by Erika Frankel about Chef Georges Perrier, 2015.
FirstGlance Film Festival
The 18th Annual FirstGlance Film Festival Philadelphia, known for supporting indie films, premieres over 40 independent films this weekend starting on Friday, October 23 through Sunday, October 25. Films include Excess Flesh, Non-Stop to Comic Con, Superbob, and Digital Physics. Local and international films screened at The Franklin Institute’s Franklin Theater, 222 North 20th Street, Philadelphia. Enjoy the after parties each night following the late night screenings. Pictured: Schmoolie the Deathwatcher, featured short (Philadelphia premiere).
The Middle East Cinema Festival
The Middle East Cinema Festival kicks off October 26-29 with seven diverse feature films designed to further understanding of Middle Eastern societies and cultures through cinema. Free screenings of The Shebabs of Yarmouk, Theeb, Zero Motivation (pictured), Boys with Broken Ears, Ghadi, Traitors, and Sivas at International House Philadelphia’s Ibrahim Theater, 3701 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia.
Broadway Tour of “Bullets Over Broadway”
The Broadway Tour of Bullets Over Broadway comes to the Philadelphia area, stopping first in New Brunswick, New Jersey at the State Theatre, October 23 and 24 and then in Philadelphia October 27 through November 1 at the Academy of Music. The musical was written by Woody Allen, based on his film by the same name about a young playwright whose first Broadway play is financed by a gangster. The score consists of jazz and popular standards of the 1920s and includes well known songs like Cole Porter’s “Let’s Misbehave.” Photo by Matthew Murphy.
Irish Heritage Theatre’s “Juno and the Paycock”
The Irish Heritage Theatre puts presents Sean O’Casey’s classic Irish drama Juno and the Paycock, the second in the playwright’s “Dublin Trilogy.” One of the most highly regarded and often performed plays in Ireland, the powerful and moving story about a mother’s dream of a better life for her children during the tragedy of Ireland’s civil war is directed by Peggy Mecham. Cast includes Kirsten Quinn, Ethan Lipkin, John Cannon, Gina Martino, Dexter Anderson, Kevin Rodden, Angelique Bouffiou, Jim Guckin, Jackie Cohen, Thomas Robert Irvin, Carlos Forbes, and David Kuong, through October 31 at Plays and Players Theatre, 1714 Delancey Place, Philadelphia. Photo byAlexis Mayer.
“Audubon to Warhol: The Art of American Still Life” at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
The Philadelphia Museum of Art explores the history of American still life with Audubon to Warhol: The Art of American Still Life, opening October 27 through January 10. Surveying nearly two centuries of the genre, which starts in Philadelphia, featuring nearly 100 artists ranging from the Peale family of painters of the early American republic to Georgia O’Keeffe and Roy Lichtenstein and the emergence of Pop Art in the early 1960s. Still lifes of the mid-19th century, typically created for parlors and dining rooms, are presented in a re-created Victorian parlor. A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia. Pictured: Carolina Parrot, from “The Birds of America,” c. 1828, by John James Audubon, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond: Gift of Alma and Harry Coon.
Trisha Brown: In the New Body at Bryn Mawr College
The Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series focuses an internationally known choreographer with Trisha Brown: In the New Body. The year-long festival showcases the iconic works of the groundbreaking choreographer, dancer and leader of post-modernism by showcasing her iconic choreography with free and ticketed performances, classes, workshops and talks with artists who know her work best, October 23-25. Proscenium Works, 1979-2011, daring works that span three decades – rarely seen in Philadelphia – includes Set and Reset with music by Laurie Anderson and set design by Robert Rauschenberg; If you couldn’t see me, solo work Brown choreographed for herself, performed with the dancer’s back to the audience; Present Tense (pictured) with music by John Cage and set by painter Elizabeth Murray. Curated by Lisa Kraus, who danced with the Trisha Brown Dance Company from 1977-1982. A master class with Trisha Brown Dance Company takes place Thursday, October 22, 4pm. Proscenium Works, 1979-2011 can be seen Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24, 8pm, in McPherson Auditorium, Goodhart Hall, 101 N. Merion Avenue, Bryn Mawr, PA. Photo by Nan Melville.
Brandywine Ballet Company’s “Carmina Burana”
Brandywine Ballet Company offers two premieres of new choreographic works: Carmina Burana by resident choreographer Nancy Page, set to the music of Carl Orff, portraying the medieval collection of poems and texts about life, fortune and fate. The Brandywine Singers and their percussion orchestra bring the epic score to life under the direction of Jonathan Kreamer. Also on the program is Swan Lake – Act II by Philadelphia based choreographer Meredith Rainey. Four performances take place October 23-25, Emilie Asplundh Concert Hall, 700 S. High Street, West Chester, PA. A meet and Greet will be held on October 25, 4:30pm-7pm at Spence 312 S. High Street, West Chester, PA. Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.
In time for Halloween, Roxey Ballet stages a dance adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, October 23 through November 1. Parental discretion is advised as the contemporary ballet company interprets the story with pyrotechnic, sound and lighting effects, showcasing 14 professional dancers in the intimate 72 seat Canal Studio Theater, 243 North Union Street, Lambertville, NJ. Come dressed in your Halloween costume! Photo courtesy of Roxey Ballet.At the shore? Catch the Atlantic City Ballet’s annual presentation of Dracula is Halloween night, October 31 at 4pm and 10pm in the Celebrity Theater, Claridge Hotel, Park Place and Boardwalk, Atlantic City, NJ.
Zydeco Crossroads Weekend
Zydeco Crossroads Weekend closes out a yearlong showcase of traditional Creole music, dancing, and culture with five live Zydeco bands including Corey Ledet and His Zydeco Band, Rosie Ledet (pictured), Ruben Moreno, Keith Frank & The Soileau Zydeco Band, Wayne Singleton & Same Ol’ 2-Step, Friday, October 23, doors open at 6pm, Saturday, October 24, doors open at 2:30pm, World Café Live, 3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. Also catch the Philadelphia premiere of the new Robert Mugge documentary film about the project Zydeco Crossroads: A Tale of Two Cities (filmed in Philadelphia and Lafayette, Louisiana), a panel discussion, Zydeco dancing lessons, Cajun food, commemorative posters, and more.
Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra
Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra embarks on an 11 city tour that includes Philadelphia with a performance that captures the spirit of 5000 years of Chinese civilization, Sunday, October 25, 2pm in Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. The program features all-original Shen Yun works inspired by traditional Chinese melodies alongside Western classical masterpieces including Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Sarasate. Chinese instruments such as the two-stringed erhu and the plucked pipa lead the melody on top of a full Western orchestra, conducted by Milen Nachev, with Chinese classical singers, soloists, and orchestra musicians from around the world, Broad Street, Philadelphia. Photo caption: Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra performs at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall in Washington, DC, 2014. Photo courtesy of Shen Yun Performing Arts.
First Annual Philadelphia Cheesesteak Festival
Celebrate Philly’s favorite sandwich at the First Annual Philadelphia Cheesesteak Festival, Saturday, October 24, 11am-5pm at Lincoln Financial Field. Sample over 40 different cheesesteaks from vendors around Philadelphia. The fun includes a cheesesteak challenge eating contest, cook-off, world’s largest cheesesteak built by Steve’s Prince of Steaks with Amoroso’s Baking Company, live music, beer, carnival games, and more. Cheesesteak eggrolls, dumplings, chicken cheesesteaks for sampling as well as vegetarian and gluten free offerings. Photo by Brent Hofacker.
SPOOK-TACULAR Monster Mash at Please Touch Museum
Please Touch Museum hosts a SPOOK-TACULAR Monster Mash, Saturday, October 24, 5:30pm-8:30pm (member access at 4:30pm). Dress up and enjoy trick-or-treating throughout the Museum galleries with goodie bags you can design yourself, themed art activities, ghoulish treats, a Halloween-themed photo booth, free and unlimited carousel rides, light refreshments, dance party, and more, Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia.
Frightful Fall Fun
On Halloween night in 1867, William Hunter, Jr. died in a mysterious fall from the Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion’s attic window. In the room was a doll. Since then, there have been more strange deaths in the house, and the doll is always present. A group of paranormal investigators arrive at the Mansion to solve the mystery, but end up in the middle of another haunting murder. Join in the live murder mystery at the Victorian Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion, October 24 through November 1, 200 W. Tulpehocken Street, Philadelphia. Reservations required.Wagner Free Institute of Science hosts Animal Bites! A Spooky Creature Feature, a Halloween family open house featuring live animals from the Elmwood Park Zoo, Saturday, October 24, 12pm-4pm, with activities and crafts and more. Visitors are encouraged to come in costume, 1700 West Montgomery Avenue, Philadelphia. Free. Geared toward children ages 6-12 with all ages welcomed.Head to Manayunk for Halloween fun with the Rocky Horror Picture Show on Thursday, October 22, 9pm. Dress in your Rocky Horror attire and sing and dance along to the screening of the film, along with an interactive shadow cast performing on stage, Venice Island Performing Arts Center. Follow the scarecrows for trick or treating on Saturday, October 24, and enjoy a dog and kid Costume parade, bring-your-own carved pumpkin contest, crafts, Philadelphia Flea Market, and more. The evening concludes with movie screenings of It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown for kids at 6:30pm and Evil Dead for adults at 8pm. #SassySaysMechanical Theatre invites you to experience The Madness of Poe, a site-specific theatrical piece based on some of the most notable works of Edgar Allen Poe, who called Philadelphia home between 1837-1844. Experience the Master of the Macabre’s works like never before in a setting that was contemporary with Poe’s time, Historic Strawberry Mansion, October 23-31, 2450 Strawberry Mansion Drive, Philadelphia.
Fall Fun with Furry Friends
East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District’s Fall Fest & Spooky Saturday is October 24, 11am-4pm, with free activities for all ages and dogs too. Expect trick or treating, food and drink offerings, a craft show, live music, costume contest for kids and dogs, pumpkin painting, and more, by the Singing Fountain, East Passyunk Avenue and Tasker and Mifflin Triangle, East Passyunk Avenue and Mifflin, South Philadelphia. #SassySaysThe 9th annual PAWS Mutt Strut, Dog Walk and Adoption Festival is Saturday, October 24, to raise funds and awareness for PAWS’ efforts to save Philadelphia’s homeless, abandoned, and unwanted animals. Check-in begins at 9am, strutting starts at 11am, with music, food, pet costume contest, training tips, pet activities, grooming and more at the Navy Yard, 4500 South Broad Street, Philadelphia. If you don’t have a pet, you can “rent” a PAWS dog. #SassySays
Look for #SassySays for pet friendly events. Let us know if your event is pet-friendly! Email firstname.lastname@example.org and put #SassySays in the subject line.
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 email@example.com.