Culture Calendar: Nine Must-See Arts and Entertainment Events in April 2014

shakespeare

Shakespeare Image via Shutterstock

1.

POETRY

The Shakespeare Now! Theatre Company presents the ultimate poetry slam—the Boston Shakespeare Sonnet-thon—wherein 154 different speakers perform all 154 of the Bard’s sonnets at the Boston Public Library. Members of the general public can also embrace their inner thespian by signing up to recite the 14-line favorites.

April 7, Boston Public Library, 617-734-3477, shakespearenow.org/sonnet-thon.html.

2.

HIP-HOP

As the man behind Boogie Down Productions, KRS-One has long been both an iconic emcee and an influential social activist on college campuses. He’s no mere museum piece, however: Find out firsthand when he throws down fiery rhymes at the Middle East.

April 17, The Middle East, 617-864-3278, mideastoffers.com.

3.

DANCE

Founded by a former Bolshoi principal, the Moscow Festival Ballet brings its sumptuous classical dance to Worcester’s Hanover Theatre for a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty.

April 18, The Hanover Theatre, 877-571-7469, thehanovertheatre.org.

4.

SHOPPING

Record Store Day is back for the seventh year, as this national promotion continues to remind people that buying music in brick-and-mortar stores has its charms. Many local shops, including Newbury Comics, Nuggets, and Somerville Grooves, are participating, so keep an eye out for exclusive day-only releases—like a five-LP unabridged recording of LCD Soundsystem’s farewell concert at Madison Square Garden, or a box set of the first 7-inch singles from North-ampton legends Dinosaur Jr.

April 19, various participating stores, recordstoreday.com.

5.

VISUAL ARTS

Local fine-arts mainstay—and Foster Prize finalist—Evelyn Rydz now has a solo exhibit at the MFA. The MassArt assistant professor is known for her hyperreal, ultra-detailed drawings. Lately she’s been using the U.S. coasts and marine debris to examine how plastic and other manmade objects literally fuse with the natural in the ocean. This show, “Forever Yours,” features photographs and drawings from her research in Hawaii.

April 19 through September 14, Museum of Fine Arts, 617-267-9300, mfa.org.

6.

THEATER

Over the years, the Boston Children’s Theatre has premiered a number of great stage shows for kids, and this month the company is launching The Homework Machine. A musical based on the popular book by Dan Gutman, it tells the fantastical story of a group of fifth graders who build a machine that does their homework, but soon causes their lives to fall into complete disarray.

April 19 to April 27, Boston Center for the Arts, 617-424-6634, bostonchildrenstheatre.org.

7.

MUSIC

One of the world’s most awe-inspiring musical sounds comes to Cambridge when Huun-Huur-Tu takes the stage at First Church. The group hails from Tuva, a Russian region bordering Mongolia, and their traditional music is based on throat singing, a technique that requires singing tones and overtones simultaneously—essentially performing multiple droned notes at once, to devastatingly powerful effect.

April 25, First Church in Cambridge, 617-876-4275, worldmusic.org.

8.

COMEDY

Cofounded by Burlington’s own Amy Poehler long ago, the New York City/L.A.–based Upright Citizens Brigade may be the nation’s most influential improv comedy company, and it has certainly seen many Boston-bred stars go through its ranks, like Rob Corddry, Jenny Slate, and Best Week Ever’s Ari Voukydis. Now it’s touring with a 90-minute show that stops at the Wilbur this month.

April 26, The Wilbur Theatre, 617-248-9700, thewilbur.com.

9.

ROCK

While Aerosmith was in temporary decline in the early ’80s, Boston’s hard-rock flag was flown by the Jon Butcher Axis, a power trio whose push by WBCN resulted in regular MTV airplay and a Grammy nod. Last year, the band released their first album with the original lineup since 1983—fittingly recorded at Somerville’s Q Division studios—and now they’re playing their hits and a tribute to Jimi Hendrix at Beverly’s Larcom Theatre.

April 26, Larcom Theatre, 978-525-9093, larcomtheatre.com.

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