Weekly Entertainment Guide – John Cage tribute, ‘Visions of Camden,’ and ‘DEEP BLUE’

    Looking for something to do? WHYY’s Robin Bloom has some recommendations on what’s happening in the Philadelphia region. Here are her picks:

    Cage: Beyond Silence

    Cage: Beyond Silence, the celebration of avant-garde composer John Cage, culminates with variations on the Number Pieces, with ten unprecedented musical collaborations and a large-scale presentation of the composer’s rarely performed final work over ten days. Highlights include “Songs & Harmonies” with local music ensemble Relâche, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Friday, January 11, 5pm-8:45pm, and four pre-eminent post-Cagean musicians Pauline Oliveros, Keith Rowe, Christian Wolff, and Michael Pisaro gather to perform “Meetings,” January 13, 8pm, International House in Philadelphia. Catch more events through January 20.


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    “Visions of Camden”

    The Stedman Art Gallery at Rutgers University in Camden provides a unique perspective on the rich history of the City of Camden with “Visions of Camden,” an exhibition showcasing a wide array of media including glass slides, photographs, prints, maps, postcards, posters and more, offering impressionistic views of the city. Also on view, a remounted stained-glass image of “Nipper” from the former RCA Victor tower, artifacts discovered during construction, and oil paintings and sketches by artists William M. Hoffman Jr., Howard N. Watson, and Mickey O’Neill McGrath. The exhibit is open to the public and is on display through March 1, Fine Arts Complex, Third Street between Cooper Street and the Ben Franklin Bridge, Camden, NJ.


    “Rabbit Hole”

    Opening this weekend at Old Academy Players is David Lindsay-Abaire’s “Rabbit Hole,” winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award for Best Play. The production follows young couple Becca and Howie and their attempts to cope with the sudden loss of their 4-year-old son, through January 27 at 3544 Indian Queen Lane, Philadelphia. Audience members are encouraged to bring canned and non-perishable food items for the North Light Community Center Food Cupboard in Manayunk. Free onsite parking.



    ArcheDream for HUMANKIND brings its longest running show, “DEEP BLUE” to the Sedgwick Theater, this Saturday, January 12-27. The visually provoking show has traveled the globe, entertaining audiences with puppets, music, masks, and costumes created mainly by Philadelphia artists, performers, and musicians, 7137 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia.


    “Austin the Unstoppable”

    George Street Playhouse offers a free performance of “Austin the Unstoppable,” by Barry Wyner and Daniel Israel, directed by Kevin Del Aguila, Saturday, January 12, 12pm, a fun, upbeat musical comedy about eleven year old Austin who faces the long-term consequences of an unhealthy lifestyle when he learns his mother has been diagnosed with Type II Diabetes. Designed toward students in grades 3-8, the hour long production includes a post-play discussion at 9 Livingston Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ.


    “How I Became a Pirate”

    The Omaha Theatre Company brings their production “How I Became a Pirate” to Bristol Riverside Theatre for six performances, Saturday, January 12 and Sunday, January 13, 11am, 1pm, and 3pm, based on the best-selling children’s book by Melinda Long, 120 Radcliffe Street, Bristol, PA.


    Bruce Hornsby at Scottish Rite Auditorium

    Bruce Hornsby comes to the Scottish Rite Auditorium for a performance, Saturday, January 12, 7:30pm, 315 White Horse Pike, Collingswood, NJ. Discounts available to Camden County residents.



    “Why I’m Scared to Dance by Jen Childs”

    Act II Playhouse presents “Why I’m Scared of Dance by Jen Childs,” a one-woman show written and featuring Jen Childs, co-founder and artistic director of 1812 Productions, where the performance originated. Join Jen’s lifelong quest to become a great dancer in this physical comedy directed by Harriet Power for two weeks only, January 15-27, 56 E. Butler Avenue, Ambler, PA. Also at Ambler: Stand-Up Comedy Weekend, Friday, January 11, 8pm and Saturday, January 12, 7pm & 9pm.


    “Eugene Onegin”

    The Academy of Vocal Arts continues its season with Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin,” Tuesday, January 15 at the Helen Corning Warden Theater. Based on the classic Russian novel by Alexander Pushkin, the opera is a story of love, pride, and lost opportunity between Tatiana and Eugene Onegin, the man who dismisses her affection. Music Director Ghenady Merison provides piano accompaniment in the semi-staged, costumed production running through January 22 at 1920 Spruce Street, Philadelphia.


    “The Amish Project”

    The Renegade Company joins with Simpatico Theatre Project to expand their popular 2011 production, “The Amish Project.” This gripping drama explores the 2006 Nickel Mines schoolhouse shooting in Lancaster, PA and its impact on the community and the world. Simpatico’s Janice Rowland stars and James Stover directs. “The Amish Project” features two half-priced previews on January 15 & January 16, opens January 17, and runs through February 3 at the Walnut Street Theatre’s Studio 5, 825 Walnut Street, Philadelphia.


    Pilobolus Dance Theatre

    The creative and physically daring dance troupe Pilobolus returns to the Annenberg Center for Dance Celebration’s 30th anniversary season for four performances, Thursday, January 17, 7:30pm, Friday, January 18, 8pm, Saturday, January 19, 2pm and 8pm, and Sunday, January 20, 2pm, with an after-performance talk back with the company on January 18, Zellerbach Theatre, 3680 Walnut Street, Philadelphia.


    “Exorcism: A Play in One Act”

    South Camden Theatre Company, Camden’s “Off-Broadway” theater, offers a special workshop production of “Exorcism: A Play in One Act,” by Eugene O’Neill, four performances directed by Joseph Paprzycki, about a suicide attempt, drawing on a dark incident in O’Neill’s own life, portraying an early example of personal human drama that would become the center of his later work, January 18-20, 400 Jasper Street, Camden, NJ. Each performance includes a post-show talkback with the audience and cast members.


    Rebecca Jordan at Tin Angel

    Neo Soul Singer-Songwriter Rebecca Jordan performs at the Tin Angel, Friday, January 18, 20 S. 2nd Street, Philadelphia.



    “The Beautiful Life of the Woman Komachi”

    “The Beautiful Life of the Woman Komachi” opens Friday, January 18 through Sunday, January 20, presented by Villanova Theatre and the Villanova University Asian Studies Program. Joanna Rotte, Director of Villanova’s Asian Studies Program, wrote the play as an adaptation of five short plays from traditional Japanese Noh Theatre. Each act shows a transformative event in the life of Ono no Komachi: Japan’s beloved beauty and poet. Elizabeth Dowd directs. Performances will be held in the Connelly Center Cinema on Villanova’s campus, 800 Lancaster Avenue, Villanova, PA.


    Primordial Ink by Alexis Nutini

    NAPOLEON opens its space to the vibrant and grandiose reduction prints of Alexis Nutini. The prints on display show abstract and vividly colored landscapes influenced by Nutini’s trans-national childhood. Born to a pair of anthropologists, Alexis spent his days exploring the rural villages and cities of central Mexico before moving to the United States at the age of ten. This sense of adventure translates to Nutini’s plate carving process, which is mostly improvised. “Primordial Ink: Alexis Nutini’s Synthesized Worlds” displays the artist’s electrically colored prints, along with a collection of wood panels stained using pencil and collage, on display through January 25, 319 North 11th Street, Philadelphia.


    Linnea Tober Solo Show

    On display at Newark Arts Alliance is a solo exhibition of Linnea Tober’s photographic abstracts. Originally a painter and mixed-media artist, Tober turned to photography when she realized it allowed her to play with color and movement, two of her main focuses while creating art. Each of her pieces begins as a nature photograph, which she then swirls and edits digitally to create flowing abstract bursts of form and color, through January 27, 276 East Main Street, Suite 102, Newark, DE.


    Thomas G. Brady Selected Works

    JSF Contemporary announces the opening of its new gallery space in the heart of the booming arts neighborhood of Fishtown. The inaugural exhibition features selected paintings and pastels of artist Thomas G. Brady. Brady has received several awards such as the Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant in 2000, the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts Painting Fellowship in 1995-96, and was the Discipline Winner for the Pew Fellowship in the Arts in 1995 and 1997. His work is also in several museum collections including the Mead Art Museum at Amherst College, the Woodmere Art Museum in Philadelphia and the Eleanor D. Wilson Museum in Roanoke, VA. Gallery hours are by appointment only at 11 W. Girard Avenue, Philadelphia.

    Other events happening thoughout the region:

    Staff members of the Delaware Center for Horticulture display their artistic talents at TheDCH Staff Art Show, “We Don’t Just Work, You Know,” Friday, January 11, 5:30pm-8pm. Paintings, drawings, weaving, sculpture, culinary creations, and even shoes made from plants will be available for purchase, with proceeds benefiting TheDCH and its programs. The event will be accompanied by a wine & cheese reception, 1810 North DuPont Street, Wilmington, DE.

    The 40th Street Artist-In-Residence Program will be holding an opening reception for its annual “Friends and Neighbors” exhibit this Friday, January 11 from 6pm-9pm. This yearly tradition is a chance for 40th Street resident artists to invite other artists with strong ties to the neighborhood to be showcased. This year’s exhibit will show work from artists including Mike Ball, Sarah Brown, Kylin Mettler, Janis B. Pinkston, and others, 4007 Chestnut Street, First Floor, Philadelphia. Free.

    The musical “Showboat” comes to the Broadway Theatre of Pitman this Friday, January 11. Spanning from 1880 to 1927, the play shows the lives and loves of three generations of performers on the Mississippi River show boat, the Cotton Blossom. Audiences will recognize the musical’s famous songs, like “Ol’ Man River,” “Can’t Help Lovin’ Dat Man,” and “You Are Love.” Tackling themes like racial prejudice and tragic love with spectacle and seriousness, “Showboat” changed Broadway musicals when it debuted in 1927. Runs through February 3 at 43 South Broadway, Pitman, NJ.

    Camerata Philadelphia performs “Dance & Romance,” Saturday, January 12, 3pm. Music Director Stephen Framil leads the ensemble in Poulenc’s “Les Soirees de Nazelles,” Bach’s “Suite No. 1 in G” featuring Framil himself on cello and dancer Sun-Mi Cho, and Rachmaninoff’s “Sonata in G minor for Cello and Piano” with pianist Tomoko Kanamaru, the Church of the Holy Trinity, Rittenhouse Square, 1904 Walnut Street, Philadelphia.

    The William Way LGBT Community Center continues its live music series with a concert featuring composer Jennifer Higdon, pianist Ching-Yun Hu and violinist Judy Geist, Saturday, January 12, 7pm. The program includes two of Higdon’s pieces, “Secret and Glass Gardens” with Ching-Yun Hu, and “Sonata for Violin and Piano” with Ching-Yun Hu and Judy Geist. Ms. Hu will also perform solo pieces. The artists will be available for an audience discussion after the concert, 1315 Spruce Street, Philadelphia.

    Local composer Van Stiefel and Poet David Livewell have collaborated on a concert with the Kennett Symphony Children’s Chorus, inspired by the work of painter Andrew Wyeth. Stiefel’s music is set to three poems from David Livewell’s book, “Woven Light: Poems and Photographs from Andrew Wyeth’s Pennsylvania.” Each song addresses a different period in the painter’s life: “Roasted Chestnuts, 1956,” “The Big Room, 1983,” and “Me, 2007.” The concert will also feature performances by baritone Randall Scarlata and percussionist Chris Hanning, Saturday, January 12, 7:30pm in the Asplundh Concert Hall at West Chester University of Pennsylvania, 700 West High Street, West Chester, PA. Free.

    The 3rd Thursday Camden Art Crawl continues on January 17, 5-9pm, with the chance to enjoy Camden’s creative arts community in the secure/patrolled historic Cooper Grant Neighborhood on the campus of Rutgers University, Camden, NJ.

    The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra performs Beethoven’s most lyrical symphony, “Pastoral,” at Patriots Theater at the War Memorial on Friday, January 18, 7:30pm. Beethoven’s celebration of country life will be accompanied by Brahms’ “Variations on a Theme by Haydn” and Haydn’s “Trumpet Concerto,” with Jacques Lacombe conducting and Garth Greenup on trumpet, 1 Memorial Drive, Trenton, NJ.

    Onstage at the Wilma Theater is the off-Broadway hit comedy, “Assistance,” the second section of Leslye Headland’s “Seven Deadly Sins” series, directed by David Kennedy, portraying corporate office politics loosely based on the playwright’s own experience as Harvey Weinstein’s assistant, through February 3, 265 South Broad Street, Philadelphia.

    On display at Painted Bride Art Center is “One Year,” an installation of hundreds of wire sculptures that explore the public apathy toward rising urban violence, featuring one for each murder in Philadelphia in 2012. The exhibit features work by Janice Hayes-Cha, Brenda Howell, Karen Hunter McLaughlin, Julie Mann, and Kimberly Mehler, inspired by the action and resilience of Mothers in Charge, whose work transforms grief and aims to prevent violence, through February 10, 230 Vine Street, Philadelphia.


    Brett Rader contributed reporting to this week’s guide.

    To submit an event to be considered for the Weekly Entertainment Guide email Robin Bloom at artscalendar@whyy.org.

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