Niki D'Andrea, Author at PHOENIX magazine - Page 2 of 15

#1: Jerusafunk at Valley Bar, January 8
In this show dubbed “East Meets West,” Phoenix’s own “klezmer gypsy jazz” band, Jerusafunk, performs their unique brand of boogie on a bill that also includes local rabab prodigy Qais Essar and his new backing band, The Qosmonauts, and L.A.-based Jewish cultural revival band Mostly Kosher. $5. 8 p.m. January 8 at Valley Bar.

#1: The Music of David Bowie at Symphony Hall, December 30
Backed by a full rock band and the Phoenix Symphony under the direction of conductor Martin Herman, vocalist Tony Vincent pays tribute to the late David Bowie, singing tunes from the flamboyant star’s vast hit list. Audiences can expect to hear renditions of “Rebel Rebel,” “Space Oddity,” “Fame,” “China Girl,” and “Changes,” among others. $59-$119. 7:30 p.m. December 30 at Symphony Hall.

#1: Blind Boys of Alabama at Musical Instrument Museum, December 23-24
Formed in the late 1930s at the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind, Blind Boys of Alabama continue to tour and perform their spirited gospel songs. Tunes from their latest album, “Talkin’ Christmas,” will also be on tap this tour. $48.50-$63.50. 7:30 p.m. December 23 and 2 p.m. December 24 at Musical Instrument Museum.

If it’s true that “silence is golden,” then the trend of “silent reading clubs” around the Valley is rich indeed. The idea of people showing up at a bar or a coffee shop with books and simply sitting and quietly reading together has its appeal, especially considering how much “information” we’re barraged with these days. This month, two local silent reading groups are hosting events – and one is breaking the silence.

When it comes to introducing children to the works of William Shakespeare, there may be no more fitting entree than “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The Bard’s tale of star-crossed lovers, magical meddling, and musical fairy merriment is a comic romp kids can follow even with the playwright’s original dialogue. So it’s fitting that Southwest Shakespeare Company has been touring Phoenix schools with their adaptation, titled “A Midwinter Night’s Dream.” The company’s performance at Kerr Cultural Center on December 9 marked the first time they performed it for adults, and it was a good look at what audiences can expect when SSC performs “A Midwinter Night’s Dream” at Taliesin West this weekend.

#1: Cirque de la Symphonie at Orpheum Theatre, December 16-18
Aerialists twirl on festive red curtains high above the Phoenix Symphony in this spectacular collaboration with the Cirque troupe. The special holiday production also features seasonal music such as “Deck the Halls,” “White Christmas,” and movements from “Swan Lake” and “The Nutcracker,” performed by the symphony while painted strongmen, hula hoop artists and jugglers dazzle the audience. $30-$109. Call for show times. December 16-18 at Orpheum Theatre.

Who knew Scrooge was such a great dancer?

As the curmudgeonly character from Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” actor Robert Kolby Harper does the running man, the cabbage patch, the dab, and even twerks. It’s hilarious – as it’s meant to be in this shake-and-bake parody of the classic from improv comedy enterprise Second City – but it’s also impressive, because the dude has some seriously sweet moves.

#1: “Mamma Mia!” at ASU Gammage, December 6-11
Experience all the audio magic of ABBA -- from “Dancing Queen” to “Super Trouper” -- interwoven into a humorous and heartwarming story of friendship when this Broadway hit’s “farewell tour” takes a final run in Tempe. $15-$225. Visit website for show times. December 6-11 at ASU Gammage.

#1: Marilyn Szabo’s “Life & Death: Portraits” exhibition at monOrchid, December 2
For more than 25 years, Marilyn Szabo captured with her camera portraits of luminaries like Allen Ginsberg, Mohammad Ali, and Ray Manzarek, along with photographing people in her artistic and familial life, including sculptor Klaus Ihlenfeld and her mother and friends. Several of Szabo’s most striking and revealing images are featured in the exhibition “Life & Death: Portraits.” Free. Opening reception at 6 p.m., December 2 at monOrchid. The exhibition runs through December 26.

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