CABARET AT SMITH CENTER
A bohemian cabaret singer falls in love with an American writer, their world of delusion peeled back in Roundabout Theater Company’s touring production of Cabaret. The Sam Mendes revival takes audiences to 1931 Germany at the end of the Weimar Republic, when an emcee at the salacious, run-down Kit Kat Club urges everyone to leave their troubles outside—a suggestion proving impossible in the looming rise of the Third Reich and Germany’s economic depression. John Kander and Fred Ebb’s original music and lyrics set the tone for the changing times. June 14-19, 7:30 p.m.; June 18 & 19, 2 p.m.; $29-$129. —Kristen Peterson
Maybe you’re not familiar with Leggero, but at it’s a safe bet you’d recognize the Illinois-born comedian/actress/talking head making her bones on different TV shows, like Comedy Central’s Another Period, a turn-of-the-century send-up of Kardashian-level fame. Leggero brings her new husband, the equally accomplished funnyman Moshe Kasher, to Beauty Bar, undoubtedly to tackle issues personal and not. Laughs and love. June 10, 8 p.m., $20. —Jason Harris
The Fringe rewards good guessers. Its eclectic menu offers odd and unusual fare—some funny, some serious. But it can also be a brutal mistress. Some of the productions, whether due to the new-ness of the material and/or the cast, or simply bad luck, are awful train wrecks. But these, frankly, can also be their own reward. As long as you can keep a good sense of humor and remember that each show lasts only an hour, you can walk away with a story memorable in its own right.
My picks—as always with the Fringe—focus on original material. Erica Griffin and Ernie Curcio both have new pieces this year. Griffin’s Juju Goes to Pahrump follows the trials and tribulations of Juju as she heads over the hump—after getting dumped by an ET. Curcio’s All Day It’s Tomorrow has a similar absurdist bent, as a couch-born loser places some bets on advice from a higher being in an attempt to prove himself to his ex-girlfriend. John Bremmer’s The Proposal has a more realistic setting: a New York City subway station, where two pickup artists tangle with the wrong woman.
Mouthy Bitch, from Reel Good Girl Productions, tackles sexual relationships with an aggressive, uncensored take. Poor Richard’s Players brings a death-row inmate’s one-man show to life with So, I Killed a Few People..., and Happy Hour Improv delivers the dark to children’s TV with Peppy Piper’s Playpen (I can only imagine why a show about friendship needs a mature-content warning). You’ve been warned. Now ignore it and take your chances at the Fringe. June 10-19, $12 per show, $130 for all 13; showtimes at lvlt.org. —Jacob Coakley
There might be no better measure of Prince’s influence than PunkSexy, the mohawked tribute record featuring covers by Las Vegas bands. It officially came out five days before the Purple One’s sudden death on April 21, so expect a balance of poignancy and punked-up funk/R&B from participants The Negative Nancys, The Quitters, The People’s Whiskey, New Cold War and Franks & Deans. June 10, 10 p.m., free. —Mike Prevatt
Now in its eighth entrails-spackled year, the Las Vegas Death Fest is Downtown’s most stomach-churning attraction this side of the Heart Attack Grill menu. The three-day marathon of misanthropy has become an international attraction, drawing brutalists from Italy (Exhumer), Colombia (Masacre) and the Netherlands (Disavowed), among many others. The fest’s numerous exclusive performances this year include the American debut of France’s Darkall Slaves and a rare live set from LA’s long-running extremists Crematorium.
Since LVDF is all about death, naturally, let’s count down the band names that represent the five worst ways to die.
5. Forced Asphyxiation. These bong-brandishing Boston badasses want to take all the air from your lungs—and replace it with weed smoke. Their new album of old-school New England death metal, Terrifying Hydroponic Carnage, is a wicked good time, kid—until your probation officer surprises you with that random drug test.
4. Artery Eruption. And now for some tongue-in-(butt)-cheek, Cali-gross-out grind that imagines you as a fountain of blood, kind of like that Saturday Night Live “Big Red” skit from back in the day. Look, if you’re gonna die, you might as well go out with a grin, which these dudes carve into your stupid face via ragers like “Getting a Woodie in Your Sweats and Setting It on Fire.”
3. Odiusembowel. No doubt, getting disemboweled is a total day-ruiner—one might even say it’s rather odious, which these New Zealand nutjobs helpfully point out. It’s not all splattered entrails, however, as this bunch does have a softer side, promising to make sweet, sweet “Ocular Intercourse” to you, sugar.
2. Cranial Engorgement. Imagine your head swelling with blood until it explodes, Scanners-style. Hey, that’s arguably a better fate than being “Sodomized and Left to Die,” which is but one of the many queasy crowd-pleasers this California three-piece comes hard with. Pass the Pepto.
1. Coathanger Abortion. These Tennessee deathgrinders hail from the Bible belt, which is fitting, because belts are good for strangling. Non-discriminatory in their contempt for humankind, they don’t even need to wait until you’re born to want you dead. June 9-11, doors at 3 p.m. on June 9 and noon on June 10 & 11, $10-$80.—Jason Bracelin
The meal that has eluded Cosmo’s generally dynamic dining offerings arrives, with flair and flavor. Egg-loving Alvin Cailan brings the innovative breakfast sandwiches that have captivated LA eaters for five years to the Strip. Are these things as good as the hype? Opening June 10, 7 a.m.; Monday, Wednesday-Friday, 7 a.m.-7 p.m.; Tuesday, Saturday & Sunday, midnight-7 p.m. —Brock Radke
Nick Thorburn’s 11-year-old, Canadian-born indie outfit went Use Your Illusion last month, releasing its sixth and seventh albums on May 13. Judging from setlists, expect a heap of that material plus some oldies when the band tops a strong bill that also features Man Man leader Honus Honus and locals Dark Black and Hidden Levels, plus DJ Midnight Affair. June 11, 9 p.m., $10-$12. —Spencer Patterson
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