Vegas International Variety Act Festival at Silverton
Acrobats. Aerialists. Clowns. Contortionists. The building blocks of every Cirque and Spiegelworld show in town are on display at the Vegas International Variety Act Festival (VIVA Fest, for short). Watch them compete, collaborate and show off in a variety of showcase events. February 15 - 18, Times & prices vary, thevivafest.com. –Geoff Carter
Ha Ha Tonka at Beauty Bar
We don’t see very many acts from the Ozarks in Las Vegas, but lucky for us, Americana quintet Ha Ha Tonka is coming our way, in support of its fourth album, 2017’s tuneful and resounding Heart-Shaped Mountain. With The Unwieldies, Paige Overton, February 16, 8 p.m., $10. –Mike Prevatt
The Glass Menagerie at A Public Fit
Local theater company A Public Fit (named Las Vegas Weekly’s Best Theater Troupe in 2015) brings Tennessee Williams’ classic 1944 play to Downtown, with a modern, entrancing update. The production, which coined the term “memory play,” is narrated by Tom, a character reminiscing on his past as his family’s caretaker. A shoe warehouse worker and aspiring poet in St. Louis, Thomas supports his mother and sister in a tale that was loosely based on Williams’ own life, providing a snapshot of his strained familial relationships and the responsibilities that fell on his shoulders as he sought his own dreams.
“These are dysfunctional people—people who have regrets,” says director Ann Marie Pereth, who was drawn to the play for its timelessness and relatable themes. “We always have regrets with people who we love the most … who we tend to fight with the most. ... This is our first attempt at a classic. The writing is so beautiful, and that’s why it’s stood the test of time.” February 16-March 11, Thursday-Sunday, times vary, $25-$30, 100 S. Maryland Parkway. –Leslie Ventura
Villalobos Brothers at Fifth Street School
This contemporary Mexican sextet—led by Ernesto, Alberto and Luis Villalobos—isn’t content with merely re-creating the music native to its country. It applies melodies, rhythms and flourishes from the rock, jazz and Irish folk realms—and includes occasional spoken word passages, too—to create a truly international sound. February 17, 7:30 p.m., $8-$16. –Mike Prevatt
Two free poetry events
On February 17 at 7 p.m., the Writers Block Book Shop, hosts After Hours Poetry Hour, a reading and book signing. LA-based street artist Franki Elliot will read from her just-released third book, Stories for People Who Hate Love. Vietnam-born poet and fiction writer Vi Khi Nao is both prolific and award-winning; expect readings from her recent books Umbilical Hospital and A Brief Alphabet of Torture. Las Vegas transplant Noah Cicero had an award-winning film made from his first book, The Human War. He’ll read from his newest two books: poetry collection Nature Documentary, and the philosophical Blood Soaked Buddha/Hard Earth Pascal. Check out our January interview with Cicero at lasvegasweekly.com.
Black Mountain Institute’s Breakout Poetry series serves as an “early warning system for daring and compelling new talent.” The speakers are curated by UNLV’s Creative Writing MFA students, and February 21 at 7 p.m. they bring poet Chen Chen to UNLV’s Rogers Literature & Law Building (RLL), room 101. RSVP at February 17 & 21, blackmountaininstitute.org. –C. Moon Reed
Beauty and the Beast at Reynolds Hall
What we’ve recently been told is a “tale as old as time” is actually older than that: The story of Beauty and the Beast precedes the Disney versions, both live-action-and-animated. It precedes the 1958 Lew Christensen ballet adaptation of the story, upon which this Nevada Ballet Theatre production is based. It even precedes the 1946 film by Jean Cocteau. In fact, this love story by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve is 277 years old, and that’s the version NBT is bringing to the stage—a rich, lyrical fantasy that’s true to its storytelling roots but also informed by all its previous, wonderful iterations. Christensen’s choreography is intact, and the staging promises to be a feast for the eyes. And it’s got a score by Tchaikovsky, who was born a century after this story was first published. Old as time, indeed. February 17 & 18, Times vary, $29-$139, Smith Center. –Geoff Carter
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