Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Checkout the Wicked Queer, an LGBT film festival or The Sound of Music at the Boston Opera House.

Héctor Medina in VIVA. Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

Héctor Medina in VIVA. / Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures

Wicked Queer: The Boston LGBT Film Festival

The Boston LGBT Film Festival is back for its 32nd year. On Thursday, the event opens at the Institute of Contemporary Art with VIVA, the story of a young aspiring drag performer and the ensuing clash with his conservative father. An opening party at Empire Restaurant and Lounge will follow the screening. The festival spans 11 days, with events located throughout the city. There are 163 films— from shorts, to foreign features, to documentaries—covering a broad range of topics in a broad range of locales. There’s also a screening of blockbuster Carol, a series of shorts focusing on queer women of color, and a documentary about three gay Palestinian friends. Executive Director James Nadeau explains that the festival can speak a political message: “We have to remember that it’s not the same everywhere… there are still places where you can be killed for being gay.” But, he also adds that the event highlights diversity and “shows the breadth of the community and all the different ways of telling the LGBTQ experience.”

Tickets range in price, through April 10,

Welcome to Night Vale: Ghost Stories 

Bizarre and dark-humored, the audio-drama podcast is a mock community news show set in a mysterious fictional town somewhere in the Southwestern U.S. Night Vale is a strange place— there’s a forbidden dog park, unexplained lights in the sky, and seemingly endless other oddities. The Guardian describes the show well: “Welcome To Night Vale belongs to a particular strain of American gothic that encompasses The Twilight Zone, Stephen King and Twin Peaks, with a bit of Tremors thrown in.” Its quirky style and surreal subject matter has made it popular. Launched in June of 2012, the bi-monthly podcast has topped the iTunes top 100 chart, and it currently sits at number 37. The podcast is coming for a live show entitled “Ghost Stories” in Boston as the first stop in their tour. Texas-based folk singers Danny Schmidt and Carrie Elkin will be performing as well. According to Cecil Baldwin, the lead actor in the podcast and live show, “Ghost Stories” is presented in radio style theatre, accompanied with live background music but without sets or costumes. Baldwin hopes that the show can give listeners “an experience that’s not just in their ear buds.” While the show will certainly attract fans, Baldwin says it’s open to anyone. “We try to make the live shows as accessible as possible. If you listen to all of it [the podcast], some, or none, it should be something fun to follow.” 

Tickets start at $27.50, April 2, 8 p.m. at the Orpheum,

Photo by Matthew Murphy

Photo by Matthew Murphy

The Sound of Music

Your favorite childhood musical is back in town, in an adaptation directed by the three-time Tony Award winner, Jack O’Brien. You know the tale: an energetic young nun leaves her convent to take care of the stern Captain von Trapp’s children in 1930s Austria on the eve of World War II. True love, heroic escapes, and plenty of adorable singing ensue. 20-year-old Kerstin Anderson, previously a sophomore at Pace University, stars as Maria. The Los Angeles Daily News writes in their review, “So, go see The Sound of Music, as it will be unlike any other you have encountered, even for those of us who think we’ve seen it all.” Who knows, it very well could become one of your favorite things.

Tickets start at $45, through April 10 at the Boston Opera House,

Spring Craft Beer Fest

Hosted by the Boston Event Guide, over 1,400 beer-lovers will flock to The Boston Center for the Arts in the South End on Sunday afternoon. Local beers to try include Downeast Cider, Down the Road Brewery, Mighty Squirrel, and Artifact Cider. Pair your beer with a mouth-watering assortment of cheese, jerky, and chocolate. Proceeds from an auction will go to Project Smile, a local nonprofit that donated stuffed animals for children in need.  Jeff Popkin, the event’s organizer, says he’s excited about one type of beer in particular. “I’m interested to try some nice summer beers,” he says. “It’s the time. The snow has stopped!

Tickets are $49. Tastings start Sunday at noon or 4 p.m., Cyclorama, 539 Tremont St.,

Courtesy of The Realish Housewives: A Parody Tour Company

Courtesy of The Realish Housewives: A Parody Tour Company

Realish Housewives of Boston

It’s the Real Housewives franchise with a Boston twist, a comedic parody…of a parody. The cast is stacked with over the top characters with hilariously Housewives-specific backgrounds: a baroness, a neck supermodel, and a self-described “glambitious” woman. Co-writer Tim Sniffen explains, “Part of the goal was to take this thing everyone is aware of and push it to the limit.” But the show is still original. “We don’t want to just recreate The Real Housewives, but comment on it.”

Tickets are $38, through April 3, Shubert Theatre,