In 2000, Aimee Mann and her husband Michael Penn co-headlined an unlikely but engrossing show at the old Joint, the two sharing the stage, performing each other’s songs and having comedian Andy Kindler do bits in lieu of awkward stage banter. It was called Acoustic Vaudeville, and it felt like a singer-songwriter showcase turned into a variety show.
Maybe that’s why Mann has signed on as a participant of Laugh Tracks: The Believer Variety Show, to be held April 14 at Fremont Country Club during The Believer Festival. It'll be the Oscar nominee and recent Grammy winner's first local performance since a 2003 Paris Theater gig, and she'll join hosts Jean Grae and John Hodgman, comedian Aparna Nancherla and writers Nick Hornby, Meg Wolitzer, Ayelet Waldman, Wajahat Ali and Lawrence Weschler.
Tickets are still available for $5-$15 here. Proceeds will go to Black Mountain Institute’s City of Asylum program, which provides sanctuary for authors threatened or silenced in their home countries.
The Believer Variety Show is one of four events happening in multiple venues during the April 13-14 festival, a sequel to last year’s well-attended debut. Participants will include Academy Award-winner Barry Jenkins, novelist and BMI Shearing Fellow Tayari Jones, writer Mohsin Hamid, literary icon Dave Eggers, author and UNLV professor José Orduna, graphic novelist Thi Bui, poet Jericho Brown and more.
For more information, visit festival.blackmountaininstitute.org.