From Center City to the Jersey Shore, we’ve got your week covered. WHYY’s Arts Calendar curator Robin Bloom searches hundreds of listings each week to find out what’s happening in the Delaware Valley. Here are her picks:
Woodmere Art Museum presents an exhibition of internationally renowned painter Louise Fishman, “Generations: Louise Fishman, Gertrude Fisher-Fishman, and Razel Kapustin,” comparing the abstract and mystic paintings of Louise Fishman with those of her mother and aunt. The juxtaposition of the three highlights each artist’s use of non-traditional materials and subjects. Also on view, “Murray Dessner: A Retrospective,” a look at the career of the Philadelphia painter and Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts professor, with approximately thirty of his favorite works on display, showcasing his bold and dynamic style including “Urbino Rising” (pictured), October 13 through January 6 at 9201 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia. Admission: $10, discounts available for seniors, students, children, and museum members.
Lehigh University’s Zoellner Arts Center presents “African Visions of Barack Obama,” folk and popular images of America’s 44th President. Curated by George Jevremovic, who set out to locate, collect and exhibit a group of artwork created by all sorts of trained and self-taught African artists during the period leading up to and during Obama’s first year in office, on display through December 9, 420 East Packer Avenue, Bethlehem, PA.
The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University presents the Art of Science Gallery Exhibit, “James Prosek: Ocean Fishes.” Prosek is known for his detailed and arresting watercolor paintings, which primarily feature fish and other ocean creatures and this exhibit features a sampling of these stunning, life-size, watercolor images, including an Atlantic sailfish, king mackerel, mako shark, swordfish, tarpon, and more, opening October 13 through January 27 at 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia. Included with museum admission: $15 adults, $13 children 3-12, seniors, college students and military personnel, free for members and children under 3.
Luna Theater Company opens its 11th season this weekend with the revival of Jeffrey M. Jones’ comedic “Freudian” classic “Seventy Scenes of Halloween.” Based on his failed first marriage and dedicated to his ex-wife, the play is directed by Aaron Oster and onstage through November 3 at the Skybox @ The Adrienne Theater, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia. Tickets: $15-$30. Not recommended for children under 16.
Curio Theatre Company kicks off its 8th season of ensemble-based theatre with Milan Stitt’s “The Runner Stumbles,” based on a true story from a century ago in rural Michigan, starring Artistic Director Paul Kuhn, Aetna Gallagher, Liam Castellan, Isa St. Clair (pictured), and Steve Carpenter (pictured), and is directed by Curio co-founder Gay Carducci, who says the play is “about a crisis of faith, with a hint of mystery,” onstage through November 10, Calvary Center, 4740 Baltimore Avenue, West Philadelphia. Tickets: $15-$20.
Quintessence Theatre Group continues to perform and adapt epic works of classic literature and drama for the contemporary stage with a third season featuring Shakespeare’s “Othello” at the Sedgwick Theater. Alexander Burns directs The Bard’s classic tragedy with an ensemble that includes Sean Close, Daniel Fredrick, Alexander Harvey, and many more. Opening night is Saturday, October 13 and the production runs through November 4, 7137 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia. Post-show discussions with the cast and director Thursday, October 18 and Sunday, October 28. Tickets: $30, $20 for seniors, $15 for youths 25 and under, $10 for industry and student rush tickets.
The Hedgerow Theatre presents “Sherlock Holmes and the Crucifer of Blood,” through November 25, written by Paul Giovanni and directed by Jared Reed. Based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Sign of the Four,” the Tony Award-winning play follows a mysterious death connected to a bizarre and deadly curse, 64 Rose Valley Road, Media, PA, $10-$32.
The Langhorne Players present Patrick Hamilton’s “Rope,” directed by Ken Junkins. The inspiration for Alfred Hitchcock’s 1948 film, the play centers around a morbid trick by two friends who murder a fellow student and hold a tea party while the dead body sits in a trunk amidst the unknowing guests, through October 20, Tyler State Park, 1440 Newtown-Richboro Road, Newtown, PA. $14-$16.
Reading Terminal Market’s 11th Annual Harvest Festival is Saturday, October 13, 10am-4pm, celebrating the foods of the Pennsylvania harvest, as Filbert Street (Harry Ochs Way) is closed to traffic and transformed into an urban farm with hay bales and corn stalks, hay rides around the market, a pumpkin patch, freshly made donuts, locally grown produce and more, including a contest to guess the weight of the pumpkin (pictured) to win a prize, 12th & Arch Streets, Philadelphia.
Mullica Hill’s 44th Annual Fall Festival Weekend is Saturday & Sunday, October 13 and 14, 10am-5pm, with a Civil War Re-enactment, a Ghost Walk that explores the town’s haunted history, a Build A Scarecrow event, and entertainment along Main Street. Mullica Hill, NJ. Free.
Laurel Hill Cemetery hosts Halloween events including Ghosts Among our Graves: Paranormal Investigation of Laurel Hill Cemetery, Saturday, October 13, 6pm; Fall Family Day, Sunday, October 14, 1-3pm; Specters of the Silent City after Sunset: Stories for the Spirited Soul, Tuesday, October 16, 6pm; 8th Annual Gravediggers’ Ball, Friday, October 19, 7pm; Sinners, Scandals and Suicides, Sunday, October 21, 1pm; Edgar Allan Poe: Deep into that Darkness Peering, Tuesday, October 23, 6pm; Halloween Flashlight Tours, Friday, October 26-30, 3822 Ridge Avenue, Philadelphia.
First State Ballet Theatre presents “The Sleeping Beauty,” Saturday, October 13, 7pm, and Sunday, October 14, 2pm, set to Tchaikovsky’s musical score and staging by Kirov-trained Artistic Director Pasha Kambalov, at the Grand Opera House, 818 N. Market Street, Wilmington, DE. Tickets: $28-$48 adults, students half off adult price, senior and group discounts.
The Pennsylvania Ballet opens its 49th season with the haunting and poetic “Giselle,” October 18-28, with a score by Adolphe Adam and choreography by the French master Marius Petipa, at the Academy of Music, Broad Street, Philadelphia. This production marks Principal Dancer Arantxa Ochoa’s retirement after 16 years of dancing with the Company. Tickets $30-$125, with discounts for groups of 10 or more. Also available: backstage tours, talks with staff and dancers and more.
Yannick Nézet-Séguin begins his inaugural season as Music Director with the Philadelphia Orchestra on Thursday, October 18 with the Gala Opening Night Concert at 7pm, featuring world-renowned soprano Renée Fleming performing Ravel’s Shéhérazade, Brahms’ Symphony No. 4, and R. Strauss’ “Mein Elemer!,” from Arabella. Tickets start at $64. The season continues with Verdi’s Requiem, October 19-21, “Bell, Bernstein, and Brahms,” October 25-27, with Joshua Bell on violin, and much more at the Kimmel Center, Broad Street, Philadelphia. Tickets start at $26 for these programs.
Casa de Venezuela presents the 4th annual “Diálogo 365: CARPE DIEM,” alongside Art in City Hall, inspired by the words “Seize the Day,” by the poet Horace. Diálogo 365 promotes and collects Latino, Latin American and Caribbean art work from emerging and established artists in the Northeast region of the United States and is the largest exhibition of Latino art in the Philadelphia area, designed to showcase the talent of Latino artists in the Northeast region of the United States, opening October 18 through December 7, in the open spaces of Philadelphia’s City Hall, Broad and Market Streets, Philadelphia.
The Ven and Vaida Gallery presents “Made in China,” an exhibition of works by Amie Potsic curated by Butch Cordora. The Drexel Hill artist had an audience with the Dalai Lama in India 15 years ago, and has since focused on China’s human rights, empathizing with those affected by the nation’s policies. Potsic’s exhibition also finds inspiration in Chinese artist and political dissident Ai WeWe. “Made in China” looks at the contrast between the country’s arts and culture and its controversial modern reality. The exhibition will be presented through October 28, with Open Studio Tours on Saturday & Sunday October 20-21. A special reception will be held on October 21 as well as a Halloween Costume Closing Reception on the October 28, 18 South 3rd Street, Philadelphia.
Piffaro presents Pfeiffern! Music for Renaissance towns, courts and cathedrals, by the illustrious German composers of the 16th century that enlightened and entertained in their own day, highlighting Piffaro’s large collection of instruments, including shawms, dulcians, sackbuts, krumhorns, bagpipes, lutes, harps, and more, Friday, October 12, 8pm, Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill, 8855 Germantown Avenue; Saturday, October 13, 8pm, Trinity Center for Urban Life, 22nd & Spruce Streets, Philadelphia; and Sunday, October 14, 3pm, Sts. Andrew & Matthew Church, 719 Shipley Street, Wilmington, DE. Tickets: $35 general, $40 preferred, $15 students, senior discount $5 off ticket price. Free pre-concert lecture-demonstration 45 minutes before concert.
The 4th annual Bloktoberfest returns this Saturday, October 13, noon-8pm, offering a wide selection of beer by craft breweries from around the country, food from neighborhood vendors and food trucks, and multiple stages of live music on 4 blocks of South Street, between Broad Street and 18th Street, Philadelphia. Free to attend with beer proceeds going to local charities and programs.
Temple Theater’s 2012-2013 season opens with Steven Sater’s “Spring Awakening.” Based on Frank Wedekind’s controversial 1891 German play of the same name, the rock musical tackles teenage sexuality in 19th century Germany with music by Duncan Sheik. The production runs through November 4, Tomlinson Theatre, 1301 West Norris Street, Philadelphia. $25 with discounts for seniors, students, and staff.
Germantown Avenue will be transformed into an outdoor arts marketplace this Sunday, October 14, for The Chestnut Hill Fall for the Arts Festival. Over 150 artists and crafters from across the country will display their work between Willow Grove and Rex Avenues in addition to live music, food, and children’s rides and activities, 11am-5pm, Germantown Avenue, Chestnut Hill. Free. [This event has been rescheduled from Sunday, October 7 to Sunday, October 14.]
Bartram’s Garden and Data Garden host “The Switched-On Garden,” an interactive exhibition exploring the relationship between plants, music, and technology, this Sunday, October 14, 2-8pm, as participants have the opportunity to wander the Garden and connect with their natural environment through live music, performance and sculpture that blurs the distinction between biological and digital worlds. The line-up of artists includes Spaceship Aloha, King Britt, Steven Litt, duo Leslie Zacharkow and Kyle Stetz, Sam Cusumano, and more at 54th Street & Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia. Free and open to the public.
Lyric Fest performs “Old City ~ New Song II,” a program of striking new vocal works by Philadelphia Composers including two World Premieres: a setting of the witticisms of Benjamin Franklin, “Ben Unleashed,” by Thomas Lloyd, and “From On the Road,” by Allen Krantz, a setting from Jack Kerouac’s Beat novel of 1951, alongside the Philadelphia “founding fathers” of song, Samuel Barber and Leonard Bernstein. Performed by Kelly Ann Bixby, Thomas Lloyd, Jarrett Ott, Suzanne DuPlantis, Randi Marrazzo, and pianist Laura Ward, Sunday, October 14, 3pm, the Academy of Vocal Arts, 1920 Spruce Street, Philadelphia. Tickets: Single $25, student, $5, 6 concert subscription $120.
Philadelphia’s three day Terror Film Festival begins Thursday, October 18-20. This year’s line-up of 29 films brings together horror, comedy, sci-fi, fantasy, thriller, and dark drama as well as lots of monsters, ghouls, demons, and other creatures, Ethical Society Building, Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia. $5-$35.
The Philadelphia Film Society presents the 21st annual Philadelphia Film Festival, October 18-28, offering over 200 films that have screened across the world with more than 50 filmmakers and industry guests at seven venues throughout Philadelphia including Ritz East, Ritz at the Bourse, Prince Music Theater, Gershman Y, Rave, Shoemaker Green, and Annenberg Center. Special events include panels, director Q&As, parties and more. Program available online. $5-$12, with special ticket packages available.
On display at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) is “A Mine of Beauty, Landscapes by William Trost Richards,” an exhibition of small-scale watercolors by the American landscape and marine painter, created between 1875-1885. The exhibition of a man hailed as “America’s best known watercolor painter,” documents both a friendship between the artist and his patron, Philadelphia collector George Whitney, that spans continents and decades, on view through December 30, North Broad Street, Philadelphia. Admission: Adults $15, Seniors 60+ and students with ID $12, Youth 12-18 $10, Children under 12 free.
New City Stage Company presents “RFK,” a historically accurate solo performance recounting the last four years of Robert F. Kennedy’s life, from 1964-1968 with music, film and footage from the era, just in time for the 2012 presidential election, written by Jack Holmes, directed by Ginger Dayle and featuring Russ Widdall (HBO’s The Wire) as RFK, onstage through October 21 at The Adrienne Theatre Second Stage, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia.
October is Mural Arts Month and Philadelphia’s Mural Arts Program, the largest public art program in the U.S., celebrates with “Works of Progress,” mural dedications, exhibitions, special tours, artist talks, and more throughout the month of October. Highlights include celebrations of four major projects: The Roots Mural Project, Philly Painting, Peace as a Haiku Song, and Aqui y Alla.
The 8th annual DesignPhiladelphia Festival, in partnership with The University of the Arts, is underway with over 100 events and more than 400 participating designers and a mix of open studios, exhibitions, lectures, runway shows, tours, workshops, in boutiques, galleries, museums, universities, warehouses, city streets and more venues across the city, through October 14. Many events are free and open to the public.
Marginal Utility presents “Four Quartets,” an interactive installation of new works by the Philadelphia based artist Jeanne Jaffe, informed by T.S. Eliot’s book of poetry by the same name. Based on the rhythm, time, and musicality of Eliot’s poems, Jaffe’s exhibit plays with those themes of time, paradox, recurrence, stillness, and the possibilities within them, and can be seen through October 21 at 319 North 11th Street, Philadelphia.
PA Suburbs & Delaware
The Lenape Chamber Ensemble opens its 38th season Friday, October 12, 8:15pm at Tinicum Lutheran Church, Upper Black Eddy, PA and Sunday, October 14, 3pm at Delaware Valley College, Doylestown, PA with a program of Messiaen’s “Fantaisie for Violin and Piano,” Beethoven’s “Harp” for string quartet, and “Piano Quartet in C minor” by Brahms. Pianist Marcantonio Barone and violinist Timothy Fain will perform. $15-$18.
Peter Wentz Farmstead hosts a “Fall Harvest on the Farm,” Saturday, October 13, 10am-3pm, with the opportunity to explore the traditional chores performed during the autumn harvest on a colonial farm. Visit the garden for a tour, spend time in the summer kitchen to experience food preservation and open-hearth cooking, and join the farmers in the barn as they shell corn and press apples for cider. Also, view paintings of rural landscapes by local artists, Shearer Road, Worcester, PA. $2 per person suggested donation.
“Meshuggah-Nuns!” is onstage at Arcadia University Theater through October 21. Mark Wade directs Dan Goggin’s spin-off to “Nunsense!” in which a group of musical nuns on a cruise step in to save the day when the cast of “Fiddler on the Roof” gets seasick, 450 South Easton Road, Glenside, PA. Tickets: $15 with discounts for seniors and Arcadia University students.
Theatre N at Nemours hosts a screening of “As Goes Janesville” with filmmaker Brad Lichtenstein, Thursday, October 18, 6:30pm. The documentary follows the debates surrounding laid-off union workers in Janesville, Wisconsin. Lichtenstein spent three years with laid-off workers, business leaders, and a state senator trying to protect worker’s rights while filming. After the screening, WHYY “Delaware’s First” reporter, Nichelle Polston will lead a discussion with Wilmington Mayor James M. Baker and Brad Lichtenstein, 11th and Tatnall Streets, Wilmington, DE, Free but advanced registration required.
Explore “Rainforest Adventure” at the Delaware Museum of Natural History, through January 6, a multi-sensory expedition that introduces visitors to tropical rainforests around the world, highlighting the challenges facing these unique ecologies. The exhibit features over 40 interactive components, computer games, opportunities to discover plant and animal life in different layers of the rainforest, become a scientist, climb through the rainforest canopy, explore a gorilla next and more, 4840 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE. Admission: $9 adults, $7 children (3-17), $8 seniors, children 2 and under free.
The Delaware Theatre Company presents “The Outgoing Tide,” by Barrymore Award-winning playwright Bruce Graham and featuring an all-star cast including Michael Learned of the TV series “The Waltons,” Ian Lithgow, and Peter Strauss, directed by Executive Director Bud Martin, through October 28, 200 Water Street Wilmington, DE. The production will then move to 59E59 Theaters, Off-Broadway, in New York for six weeks. Tickets: $35-$49.
Celebrate the fall harvest at the 9th Annual South Jersey Pumpkin Show. The Salem County Fairgrounds will be host to a weekend of music, crafts, contests, and a number of pumpkin-centric activities including a pumpkin toss and pumpkin weigh-off, Friday, October 12, 4pm-9pm, Saturday, October 13 and Sunday, October 14, 10am-7pm, 735 Harding Highway, Woodstown, NJ, Free.
The 2nd Mercer County Cultural Festival is Saturday, October 13, 11am-6pm, celebrating diverse cultures with live traditional dance and musical performances, foods from around the world, craft vendors, art demonstrations, children’s activities and more, Mercer County Park, West Windsor, NJ. Rain date October 14. Admission and parking free.
Before the Bridge Festival supports independent artists working in the New Jersey area with a line-up featuring a mix of local bands and nationally known artists including She Hates Me, Heyward Howkins, Belgrade, Sweatheart, Illinois, and more, Sunday, October 13, 1pm-10pm, Haddon & Woodlawn Avenues, Collingswood, NJ, Free.
Camden Children’s Garden hosts Mum Madness and Pumpkin Parade Family Festival this Saturday and Sunday, October 13-14, 1pm-4pm, a salute to autumn with pumpkin crafts, pumpkin stories and activities, all set in the blazing colors of the Garden’s beautiful chrysanthemums, 3 Riverside Drive, Camden, NJ. Admission $6 per person, free for children two and under.
The Atlantic City Antiques Show returns to the Atlantic City Convention Center with a panel of accredited appraisers, a repair clinic, and a variety of antiques for purchase, Saturday, October 13, 9am-6pm and Sunday, October 14, 11am-5pm, 1 Convention Boulevard, Atlantic City, NJ. $15-$30.
The Riverside Symphonia performs “Magnificent Journeys,” featuring harpist Bridget Kibbey, Friday, October 12 and Saturday, October 13, 8pm, with a program of Rossini, Ravel, Prokofiev and more in the intimate setting and excellent acoustics of the Church of St. John the Evangelist, 44 Bridge Street, Lambertville, NJ. Tickets: $15-$45.
Cape May hosts Halloween Happenings with a Harvest Festival Crafts & Antiques Show, Saturday, October 13, 10am-4pm, Scarecrow Alley at the Physick Estate, Ghosts of the Lighthouse Trolley Tours, murder mystery dinners, psychic teas and much more including trick or treating at the Physick Estate on October 31, 5pm-7pm, Cape May, NJ. Some events free, others fees apply.
Elfreth’s Alley hosts Halloween events: “Stoker’s Dracula,” Saturday, October 13, 8pm as actor Josh Hitchens brings the monster to life with his stunning one-man adaptation of Bram Stoker’s classic novel; “Ghosthunting 101,” Saturday, October 20, 8pm, a special investigation of America’s longest lived on street with hands-on training led by a team of paranormal investigators; “Yellow Fever Tour,” Sunday, October 28, 1pm, 2pm and 4pm, with stories of despair and self sacrifice from 1793 with actor Trish Troilo; 124-26 Elfreth’s Alley, between Front and 2nd Streets just north of Arch Street, Old City, Philadelphia.
Edgar Allan Poe’s macabre writings have long resonated with artists and his troubled life and mysterious death continue to intrigue broad audiences around the world. The Brandywine River Museum examines this phenomenon with “Picturing Poe: Illustrations for Edgar Allan Poe’s Stories and Poems,” featuring works by more than two dozen artists including Édouard Manet, Paul Gauguin, Horst Janssen (pictured), and more. From the seemingly straightforward to the abstract, each artist’s work reflects his or her own time and personal interpretation of Poe’s work on view through November 15 at U.S. Route 1, Chadds Ford, PA. Admission: $12 adults, $10 seniors 65+, $6 students and children 6-12, children 5 and under free. Museum admission is free Sunday mornings from 9:30am-noon (through November 18).
The annual “Terror Behind the Walls,” the massive haunted house inside the castle-like walls of the abandoned Eastern State Penitentiary, is back with Hollywood-quality sets, custom-designed props, animatronics, digital sound effects and a cast of more than 200 performers in a theatrical production that consists of six haunted attractions including the “Gauntlet,” “Lock Down,” “Infirmary,” “The Experiment,” “Night Watch,” and the new “Detritus,” expanding into areas of the prison never entered by the public. Also new this year is the VIP Experience ALONE, a personal tour. Ranked among the top 10 haunted attractions in the country, “Terror Behind the Walls” runs on select evenings through November 10 at 22nd Street and Fairmount Avenue in Philadelphia. Tickets: $40 with discounts on ESP website.
Hagley Museum and Library celebrates the fall season with “October Hayrides” Saturdays, October 13, 20, and 27, 11am-4pm, with tours of the beautiful fall foliage, family activities, live music and more including a gunpowder explosion, the roll mill in action, working nineteenth-century machines, and the steam engine. Rides leave on the hour and half hour. Activities are included with admission: $11 adults, $9 students and seniors, $4 children 6-14. Free for members and children 5 and under. The Hagley Craft Fair is Saturday, October 20, 10am-5pm and Sunday, October 21, 10am-4pm in the Library and Soda House. Admission $3 for members and $5 for non-members. Use Hagley’s entrance off Route 141, Wilmington, DE.
Rockwood Park and Museum hosts Ghost Tours on Saturdays in October: Ghost Tour I, 7pm-8:30pm includes tours of the mansion seeking paranormal experiences, while guides relate stories documented by those who have worked and lived there in the past, 1.5 hour tour, $20 ages 12 and up; Ghost Tour II, 9pm-12am, with instruction and hands-on use of paranormal investigative equipment, 3 hour tour, $40, adults only, October 13, 20, 27 at 4651 Washington Street Extension, Wilmington, DE.
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To submit an event to be considered for the Weekly Entertainment Guide email Robin Bloom at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brett Rader contributed reporting to this week’s guide.