21 Best Things to Do in Houston This Week: Selena Tribute and Rod Stewart

Tuesday, August 8

It had been sitting there for ages, but once Effects, which most thought had been lost forever, was unearthed, the treasure was ripe for a deep-clean and remount. The 1980 slasher flick — shot by alumni of George Romero, recently deceased creator of Night of the Living Dead, and starring Tom Savini (Dawn of the Dead); Joe Pilato (Day of the Dead); and John Harrison (Tales from the Darkside: The Movie) — is a low-budget romp into D.I.Y. horror filmmaking. “I’m always drawn to movies that were made with very little resources and eventually got bigger,” says Joe Ziemba of the American Genre Film Archive, which restored the film. “It’s more visceral than The Texas Chain Saw Massacre…and it’s way ahead of its time.” 7:30 p.m. August 8. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Mason Park, 531 South Mason. For information, call 281-492-6900 or visit drafthouse.com/houston. $5.41. — Steve Jansen

Wednesday, August 9

Explore the cultures of Spain, Mexico, El Salvador, Ecuador and other Latin countries through costume and dance when the Ambassadors International Ballet Folklorico takes the stage for an exciting morning of choreography. “We are trying to share our culture and show the diversity that we have in our community in Houston,” says executive director Nelly Fraga. “The music and dances — that’s what keeps us together — and that’s why it’s so important to have the arts in our community.” Dancers aged four to adult will perform in ribboned costumes, accompanied by the recorder and mariachi, when Dancing to the Hispanic Rhythms comes to Miller Outdoor Theatre. 11 a.m. August 9. 6000 Hermann Park Drive. For information, call 281-373-3386 or visit milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free. — Susie Tommaney

Seize the day one more time as Fathom Events and Disney Theatrical Productions bring back the Tony Award-winning Newsies: The Broadway Musical for a summer encore at this exclusive two-day event. Bring the whole family to relive the true story of a courageous group of scrappy newsboys who become unlikely heroes when they rally forces to fight an unscrupulous newspaper tycoon. With lyrics by Jack Feldman, music by Disney favorite Alan Menken, book by Harvey Fierstein, stage and screen dreamboat Jeremy Jordan reprising his performance as “Jack Kelly,” and drawing inspiration from the titular film, the show is a guaranteed recipe for success. 12:55 p.m. August 9. Edwards Houston Marq*E Stadium 23 & IMAX, 7600 Katy Freeway. Price varies by location; visit fathomevents.com for list of participating venues. $16.24 to $19.49. — Sam Byrd

Thursday, August 10

Selena reigns over Tejano music to this day. Seriously, who hasn’t jammed in the living room to her disco medley at the Astrodome or belted out “Como La Flor” in one of Houston’s many taquerias? Adoring lovers of her music can enjoy the feeling once again with Los Chicos del 512. Aptly named after one of the performer’s songs, the band brings the magic of Selena back to the stage with a performance that’s as close as it gets to the real thing. Just “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom” down to Miller Outdoor Theatre for a night filled with music that has stood the test of time, and fall in love again with one of Texas’s most talented stars. 8:30 p.m. August 10. 6000 Hermann Park Drive. For information, call 832-487-7102 or visit milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free. — Sam Byrd

Dun-dun. Dun-dun. Dun-dun — you know the rest. It’s Jaws, baby! More than 40 years later, Steven Spielberg’s single shark fin keeps swimming through pop culture; this week Alamo Drafthouse and Birth.Movies.Death present the one-off Jaws Movie Party. “This film still holds up,” says Robert Saucedo, Alamo programming director. “Spielberg and his team were wise to keep the shark hidden and allow [the] audience’s imaginations to take charge. We had a sold-out screening earlier this summer and you can just sense an audience being sucked into the film, even if they’d seen it a hundred times before.” This screening comes with party favors, including a shark-fin hat. 7:30 p.m. August 10. 531 South Mason, Katy. For information, call 281-492-6900 or visit drafthouse.com. $10. — Vic Shuttee

A very strange trial is about to take place in a town called Hope, located in downtown Purgatory, where criminal defense attorney Fabiana Aziza Cunningham has filed for an appeal on behalf of her catatonic client, Judas Iscariot, who has been sentenced to hell. Her opponent is El Fayoumy, the prosecuting attorney from hell. “Literally from hell,” says Courtney Lomelo, who plays defense attorney Cunningham in Gravity Players’ pretty dang mental staging of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot. The full-length play by Stephen Adly Guirgis also features expert witnesses Sigmund Freud and Satan. “I would say it is a metronome of light and dark, comedy and drama, physical and spiritual,” says Lomelo. 7:30 p.m. August 10. Continuing 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. August 10 through September 3. Chelsea Market Theatre, 4617 Montrose. For information, call 281-892-1323 or visit facebook.com/gravityplayers. $25. — Steve Jansen

Depressed and impoverished, Vincent van Gogh took body modification a bit too far when his left ear lobe was severed, though the exact details about that van Gogh-Paul Gauguin altercation remain a mystery. The Dutch Post-Impressionist painter wasn't really appreciated during his lifetime (1853–1890), but we're all gaga over van Gogh now. Now, in celebration of the 125th anniversary of the artist's death and a major reinstallation of the museum's collection at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Armchair Travel: Exhibition on Screen is out with a new flick: Vincent Van Gogh: A New Way of Seeing. View van Gogh's legendary masterpieces on the big screen along with interviews with curators, art historians and experts. There's still more to learn about the tortured genius, and this film reveals exclusive new research and recent discoveries. 2 p.m. August 10 and August 13. Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 1001 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-639-7515 or visit mfah.org/films. $7 to $9. — Susie Tommaney

Friday, August 11

Winter is finally here for Game of Thrones fans, but for Kelley Devine, it’s almost in her rearview mirror. After seven years at Winter Street Studios, the Houston-based artist is heading to a new studio at the Dakota Lofts north of downtown. Which means it’s time for a purge, so Devine is opening her doors for a Moving and Collection Sale. “Everything. Things I’ve collected, things I’ve bought and don’t have room for,” says Devine about the silhouettes, animals, abstracts, landscapes and photography up for grabs. “I’ve got 40 pieces inside my living room. Stacks and stacks.” Devine will be sharing her new digs with artist Shelley Shanks Lockwood. “It’s got wall space, open beams, large, really good sunlight. Full kitchen and full bathroom for entertaining.” 4 to 8 p.m. August 11. Continuing 12:30 to 5 p.m. August 12. 2101 Winter, Studio A1. For information, call 713-302-6343 or visit kelleydevine.com. Free. — Susie Tommaney

EaDo Playhouse’s show Sweet Charity lets you be a big spender without dishing out a lot of dough. The musical is set in 1960s New York, where we meet Charity Hope Valentine, a woman who puts the “hopeless” in “hopeless romantic.” The unlucky-in-love starlet bounces from one relationship to the next, each one more tragic than the one before. Executive director Luke Hamilton says the show “poignantly points out that if you don’t change what you’re looking for, you’re going to end up in the same place. It’s a tragically beautiful message that hits home with the show and the audience.” Bob Fosse’s Tony Award-winning choreography is the cherry on top for this night on the town. 8 p.m. August 11. Continuing 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 5 p.m. Sundays. August 11 through 27. 2619 McKinney. For information, call 832-210-5200 or visit eadoplayhouse.com. $25. — Sam Byrd

It's hard to improve on the biting wit of English novelist Jane Austen, who, with a keen eye, observed the British landed gentry and put pen to paper to shine an unfavorable light on their behaviors. Actor Emma Thompson succeeded when she wrote the Oscar-winning screenplay for Sense and Sensibility, which was transformed into screen magic under director Ang Lee. The Summer of (Jane) Austen is coming to a close — a partnership between the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Rienzi; Brazos Bookstore; and Rice Cinema — but not before a screening of this classic tale of practical (Thompson as Elinor Dashwood) and romantic (Kate Winslet as Marianne Dashwood) sisters in search of a husband of means. Will they find true love in the arms of Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman or Greg Wise? In true Austen style, look for happy endings after more than a few wrong turns. 7 to 9:15 p.m. August 11. MFAH, 1001 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-639-7515 or visit mfah.org/films. $7 to $9. — Susie Tommaney

Rod Stewart takes the stage at Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land this Saturday; Cyndi Lauper opens.
Rod Stewart takes the stage at Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land this Saturday; Cyndi Lauper opens.
Photo by Penny Lancaster Stewart

Friday, August 11

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but what happens when Vegas talent turns up in the Bayou City? H-Town will be scorching when La Divina Productions presents Hotter Than Hell Burlesque at The Heights Theater, with headliner (and Vegas import) Ms. Redd. Joining her onstage for this sizzling performance are Grace Gotham (New York City), La Divina and Minxie Mimieux (Dallas), Rosalee Bloom (Arkansas) and Houston's own Honey Moonpie and Sivene DeLynn. Insiders will recognize Mimieux from her crowning as Queen of Burlesque last year at the New Orleans Burlesque Festival. Expect high glamour, fierce drama and even a touch of whimsy. 9 p.m. August 11. 339 West 19th Street. For information, call 713-861-6070 or visit theheightstheater.com. $25 to $180. — Susie Tommaney

Free popcorn, parking and flicks put movie nights at the Czech Center Museum Houston on our must-do lists for Bayou City bargains. As a fitting tie-in with the museum's WWII exhibit "Vedem," the museum is screening wartime flicks during August, September and October. First up is spy thriller Anthropoid, based on the true story of a mission to assassinate SS General Reinhard Heydrich, the main architect behind the Final Solution and acting Reichsprotektor of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. Operation Anthropoid was a top-secret mission led by self-exiled Czech and Slovak soldiers (Cillian Murphy and Jamie Dornan) that changed the course of history. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. 7 p.m. August 11. 4920 San Jacinto. For information, call 713-528-2060 or visit czechcenter.org. Free. — Susie Tommaney

Saturday, August 12

Who’s the best rock and roll singer? Some say it’s circa right-now Rod Stewart, who’s currently on an 18-city tour with a multi-piece band that includes a saxophonist, a harp player, violinists and dancers. The London-born and -raised, recently knighted Sir Roderick David Stewart, 72, has sold more albums than God, thanks to his hits “Maggie May,” “Some Guys Have All the Luck,” “Young Turks,” “Tonight’s the Night,” “Rhythm of My Heart” and, of course, “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy,” all tunes that have been performed on this tour, according to The Plain Dealer in Cleveland. Opening is Cyndi “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” Lauper, touting her recent, country-tinged Detour album. 7:30 p.m. August 12. Smart Financial Centre, 18111 Lexington Boulevard, Sugar Land. For information, call 281-207-6278 or visit smartfinancialcentre.net. $94.50 to $154.50. — Steve Jansen

While steering a kayak, take a peek at one of Houston’s quirkiest, albeit smelly, features: the colony of Mexican free-tailed bats that reside under the Waugh Street bridge. BOATS, Bats & Brew, a spinoff of Bayou City Outdoors’ bike-based edition, invites folks to BYOK (plus life vest and plenty of bug spray) to see a live-action nature special in downtown Houston. “It’s wild, as in it’s wilderness wild. You’d never expect it because you’re in the middle of this massive city, [but] you launch and get on the water and it’s immediately different,” says BCO owner Kelly Howard. “And paddling the bayou at night is a whole new animal.” After, stick around for drinks at a nearby brewery and totally-not-cheesy bonding. 7:30 p.m. August 12. Fonde Center Parking Lot (behind Sabine Street Lofts at the bayou), 110 Sabine. For information, call 713-524-3567 or visit bayoucityoutdoors.com. Free. — Natalie de la Garza

Heather McCarty waves her magic wand and a venue is instantly transformed into a pop-up art gallery teeming with collectors in search of works by emerging and established artists. Although in this case the magic wand is actually a panel of professional experts and the “fairy godmother” is organizer Conception, a global movement that is mounting shows in Los Angeles, Boston and Houston this month alone. McCarty says the Conception Contemporary Art Show will be their fifth pop-up in Houston, and they always use SpindleTap Brewery. “Their brewing room is like a museum with super-high ceilings. We put up panels for one night. It’s open to the public as well; people will come in from the brewery.” Expect acoustic music, a laid-back but professional vibe, a cash bar and noshable macarons. “We want the art to stand out so we don’t bring in vendors,” says McCarty. “We have a lot of abstract painters, mixed-media artists, fun sculpture artists and some photos — concept or abstract.” 5 to 10 p.m. August 12. 10622 Hirsch. For information, visit conceptionarts.com. Free to $25. — Susie Tommaney

Who makes the best fried chicken in Houston? That’s up for debate, says Vince Milson, event coordinator with the Stack Marketing Group. “There’s no real authority in Houston,” he notes. “I often have arguments with my family about who makes the best fried chicken.” The debate partially inspired Milson to start the inaugural Southern Fried Chicken Festival, which will feature fried-chicken specialists such as Chops Gourmet Texas Catering, The Waffle Bus, The Bird Food Truck and Pat’s Wings on Wheels cooking for attendees and competing to be fried-chicken champ. The festival, which doubles as a campaign for colon-cancer awareness, will also include vegan eats courtesy of Nicolas Carson, chicken-wing and watermelon-seed-spitting contests, and performances by Blaze and Black, Ganesha, and Sambabom Houston. 4 to 10 p.m. August 12. Levy Park, 3801 Eastside. For information, call 832-633-4587 or visit southernfriedchickenfest.com. $10 to $75. — Steve Jansen

It’s possible Cissy Segall Davis is the ultimate matchmaker. The managing director of Miller Outdoor Theatre had already been working with Houston-based Beatles tribute band The Fab 5 for a few years now; when the Texas Medical Center Orchestra performed last year, she was very impressed. “My mind immediately started thinking of possible collaborations and the ‘lightbulb’ went off,” wrote Davis in her email to us, thanks to recent bronchial challenges. It was her idea to pair the bands for Saturday’s Wells Fargo Presents The Fab 5 & Texas Medical Center Orchestra: 50th Anniversary Tribute to The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. “The audience will have a full night of incredible music and get to enjoy a spectacular tribute to a band that forever changed the rock and roll landscape, and particularly to an album that is so much beloved,” wrote Davis. 8:30 p.m. August 12. 6000 Hermann Park Drive. For information, call 281-373-3386 or visit milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free. — Susie Tommaney

While it's true that we can't rewrite history, local artist JooYoung Choi has found a way to create alternate realities of her own story through art, video and song. "A Better Yesterday" has been exhibiting at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston since May and it features ambiguous fictional situations from Jack Early, Lily van der Stokker and Choi. In association with this colorful, whimsical and therapeutic exhibit, CAMH is hosting a hands-on workshop so that teens and adults can create characters, design worlds and spin their own narrative. Space is limited for Paracosm 101: World Building with JooYoung Choi. 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m. August 12. 5216 Montrose. For information, call 713-284-8250 or visit camh.org. $20. — Susie Tommaney

Sunday, August 13

We get that she was bored with waitressing, but it was quite a leap for Bonnie Parker to run away with handsome ex-con Clyde Barrow and embark on a violent adventure stealing cars and robbing banks. Americans were fascinated by these gun-toting lovers during their 1930s crime spree, and the infamous criminals gained even more notoriety when Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty portrayed them on the big screen with 1967's release. Now, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the film, TCM Big Screen Classics is presenting Bonnie and Clyde in association with Fathom Events. Be on the lookout for supporting performances by Gene Wilder, Gene Hackman, Michael J. Pollard and Estelle Parsons. 2 and 7 p.m. August 13 and August 16. Cinemark Memorial City, 310 Memorial City Mall. Price varies by location; visit fathomevents.com for list of participating venues. $7.55 to $9.99. — Susie Tommaney

Lannister lovers and Stark supporters will (temporarily) unite the seven kingdoms at Rec Room for laughter, wine and good company to watch this week’s new episode of HBO’s megahit Game of Thrones. “We start an hour before the show goes live,” says host and comedian Kathryn Way. “We chat, get drinks and get comfortable. We watch it in the theater room with the subtitles on. Everyone knows not to talk or I’ll kill them, and we watch the episode. I draw a weekly winner for a medieval dragon goblet — because I’m very extra,” she says, laughing. “Then a panel full of comedians and trivia nerds talk about what we just watched.” Why should you join the fun? Way offers this argument: “Isn’t it the most popular show on television? It averages about 14 deaths per episode, and even people that aren’t that nerdy can be completely into this drama.” 7 p.m. August 13. Continuing 7 p.m. Sundays. August 13 through August 27. 100 Jackson. For information, call 713-344-1291 or visit recroomhtx.com. Free. — Vic Shuttee

Monday, August 14

He protected Gotham as the Dark Knight, while she laughed her way through mayhem as The Joker’s scrappy sidekick, yet fate’s always had a way of teaming them up. This time, two of DC Comics’ most iconic figures are back on the (crime) scene in Fathom Events’ Batman and Harley Quinn, a new adventure in which this different dynamic duo thwarts the disastrous plans of Poison Ivy and Jason Woodrue (a.k.a. The Floronic Man). Fans of the animated series will recognize the voice of Kevin Conroy as Batman; The Big Bang Theory’s Melissa Rauch makes her debut as Quinn. With these two working together, there’s no telling what twists and turns the story might take in the newest DC Universe story. 7:30 p.m. August 14. Edwards Houston Marq*E Stadium 23 & IMAX, 7600 Katy Freeway. Price varies by location; visit fathomevents.com for a list of participating venues. $13.53. — Sam Byrd

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