A drama-filled weekend



The weekend's best events:


Friday, Nov. 5

The Elephant Man

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre

CAST’s latest performances of The Elephant Man are a good example of the old saying “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” This drama by Bernard Pomerance tells the famous true story of the hideously deformed Joseph (John) Merrick who is discovered and rescued from a freak show by surgeon Frederick Treves. As Merrick becomes re-accustomed with society, his inner beauty and heroism inspires those around him. Folks also begin finding flaws within themselves. Looks like more cover-ups may be needed.


Comedy: Stand-up comedian Mike Birbiglia has some pretty funny stories to tell. He’s told them on Comedy Central and numerous stages, but only recently has he taken to penning them to paper with his debut book, Sleepwalk With Me And Other Painfully True Stories. Currently on tour in support of his recent work, he’ll stop into Knight Theater for a performance tonight.


Theater: With a title like Women Who Steal, you might think that this play - at The Warehouse up at Lake Norman - by Carter W. Lewis is going to involve some hair-pulling. You’ll be surprised to learn that it actually involves two women, Peggy and Karen - the latter who recently committed adultery with the other woman’s husband - who go on a joy ride together. Apparently they are “fueled by tequila and Meat Loaf” - which means there might still be room for a cat fight, right?



Saturday, Nov. 6

“The Faces of Afghanistan” film series

Main Library

The United States has entered the 10th year of its “war on terror” in Afghanistan, Osama Bin Laden is still on the loose and soldiers and innocent civilians keep getting killed. There’s really no other way to describe the situation than grim. Keeping all this in mind, the Canadian Consul has teamed up with the Main Library to present a film series, titled “The Faces of Afghanistan.” It features documentaries that highlight current events in Afghanistan from an Afghan refugee standpoint. The series kicks off today with screenings of Good Morning Kandahar and Afghan Chronicles. http://charlotte.creativeloafing.com/gyrobase/film_the_faces_of_afghanistan_film_series/Content?oid=1090100

Benefit: North Carolina Dance Theatre is responsible for putting on some pretty stellar performances around town. Take for instance, its previous Dracula performances - with both impressive and entertaining footwork and theatrics. But behind the scenes of the big stage, NCDT is also at work teaching dance to a range of folks, including those ages 7-10 years old. Its Corps De Ballet will host its Cocktails for Costumes, in order to raise funds for NCDT Reach - which provides free dance instruction to these children. At the benefit tonight, folks can enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, live jazz, an array of dance costumes and a silent auction. http://charlottehappenings.creativeloafing.com/gbase/Events/Event?oid=oid%3A231173&max=100

Festival: You don’t need the strength of a viking or the trickery of a troll to attend SAGA of the Carolinas’ Scanfest 2010 at The Atrium. The annual festival, celebrating all of Scandinavia - which, in case you don’t know, includes the countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden - features an assortment of cultural displays, food (Swedish meatballs, Scandinavian pancakes, pastries and more), dancers in native costumes, a “Viking Village” with arts and crafts, a Lego-building contest, music from the folk band Nordic Lights and more.


Sunday, Nov. 7


Duke Energy Theatre

Laughter is tolerant as Collaborative Arts delivers its latest farce, Incorruptible to the stage of Duke Energy Theatre. In the play - described as a “dark comedy about the dark ages” - a one-eyed con man, a mercenary monk, a singing prostitute, a ruthless peasant and a nun from hell must join forces to help b ring light to their ailing community and its non-active saint.


Music: Asheville-based Jacob Darden packs a wallop with his songcraft. It's poignant, concise and evokes a veteran songwriting disposition. He occasionally channels Dylan to be sure, the strumming and harmonica expose that evidence nicely, but he's got original chops as well. Israel Darling's recording Dinosaur Bones and Mechanical Hands is a fine collection of tunes with nary a weak track. Check out the band tonight with Love Colt and Chasing Pedestrians at Tremont Music Hall.


Food: When it comes to standard fare like burgers (beef and turkey), Mattie's Diner does well. The burger is uniformly satisfying while hot dogs come with regional dressings: sauerkraut, chili, or cole slaw.


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