21 Best Things to Do in Houston This Week: Fútbol, Regrets and the Throne from GoT

Tuesday, June 27

An evil, scheming uncle teams up with a pack of no-good hyenas to bring down his brother’s reign as king by killing the monarch and getting rid of his son. Shakespearean in scope — and the winner of six Tony Awards — Disney’s The Lion King musical returns to the Hobby Center with its magnificent costumes, classic story of love, betrayal and perseverance, and memorable songs like “Circle of Life,” “I Just Can’t Wait to be King,” “Hakuna Matata” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight.” Dashaun Young, who has played Simba on Broadway and the West End and in Vegas, is back on the tour and playing the “highest highs, lowest lows and highest highs” that mark the journey of the young prince. “I usually don’t get to jump into characters who go on a complete journey. It’s fun to play on a daily basis.” BBVA Compass Broadway Across America brings in the national tour for a return trip through Houston; if you haven’t seen it before, prepare to be impressed as actors continue to build on the vision of director Julie Taymor, who took a cartoon as a starting point and made the live version better and more breathtaking than anyone had previously imagined. 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Sundays; and 2 p.m. Saturdays. Through July 23. Hobby Center, 800 Bagby. For information, call 713-315-2525 or visit thehobbycenter.org. $54.50 to $115. – Margaret Downing

Wednesday, June 28

“Our games are like a mini-Super Bowl,” says Gabe Gabor, media officer for the Mexican National Football Team’s U.S. tour. El Tri travels to Houston on its road to the Gold Cup to take on perennial African World Cup team Ghana, but Gabor says the real party starts with the AT&T Fútbol Fiesta, four hours before kickoff in the Mexico National Football Team vs. Ghana match. Boasting more than 120,000 square feet, the interactive festival features giveaways, live music, food and appearances by Mexican soccer legends. Gabor says he’s always blown away by how creative fans can get, so expect face painting, luchador masks, loud chants — and the unexpected. “I have seen a wrestling ring,” says Gabor. “That’s one of the craziest things I’ve seen, when they had the luchadores out there.” 7:30 p.m. June 28. NRG Stadium, 1 NRG Park. For information, call 800-745-3000 or visit nrgpark.com. $32 to $225. – Natalie de la Garza

The best team in baseball resides right here in Houston. Current division leaders and among the favorites to reach the World Series this season, the Astros host AL West rivals Oakland Athletics for a weeknight series featuring a special treat during the middle game. Every Wednesday home game is $1 hot dog night, but this contest against the A’s is also Game of Thrones Night at Minute Maid Park. Ticketholders will receive a Chris “Dragon” Devenski bobblehead doll and will learn the tale of how Devenski earned his nickname. The throne from Game of Thrones will also be at the ballpark and available for photo opportunities. 7:10 p.m. June 28. Also 7:10 p.m. June 27 and 1:10 p.m. June 29. Minute Maid Park, 501 Crawford. $7-$89. All ages. For more information, call 1-877-9ASTROS or visit mlb.com/astros. – Clint Hale

The rainbow ends at Sicardi Gallery but, instead of a pot of gold, Venezuelan artist Carlos Cruz-Diez has created a series of large-scale works that play with both scale and spectrum. He's no stranger to our area – his work inspired the landmark 2004 show "Inverted Utopias" at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and University of Houston students are familiar with his 15-meter long hue-soaked serpentine wall that has graced the main campus for a decade. For "Autonomía del color," his fifth solo show at Sicardi, he builds on those early years studying plastic and kinetics. Viewer perambulation is key to enjoying the massive Physichromie Panam # 259, the vivid Transchromies and freestanding Cromovelas. Open Tuesdays to Fridays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturdays 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. May 25 through August 24. 1506 West Alabama. For information, call 713-529-1313 or visit sicardi.com. Free. – Susie Tommaney

Opera buffs jonesing for a night at The Metropolitan have another chance to catch it on the big screen when The Met: Live in HD returns for a summer encore of Verdi's Macbeth. Hear the pure voice of star soprano Anna Netrebko as she sings the role of the murderously cunning Lady Macbeth in this chilling production by Adrian Noble. Željko Lucic is the doomed Macbeth, Joseph Calleja is Macduff and René Pape as Banquo; Fabio Luisi conducts. As with all things Fathom, this special encore presentation includes interviews with the cast, crew and production teams. 7 p.m. June 28. Edwards Houston Marq*E Stadium 23 & IMAX, 7600 Katy Freeway. Price varies by location; visit fathomevents.com for full list of participating venues. $13.53. – Susie Tommaney

Thursday, June 29

Texas has been nailed with three asteroids, but the one that bulldozed the Yucatán Peninsula 65 million years ago — creating Chicxulub Crater and wiping out the dinosaurs — “had more of an impact than the other three combined,” says Dr. David Kring, who will talk about Chicxulub’s destruction of Texas during “Asteroid Day 2017: Impacting Asteroids in Texas,” part of the Houston Museum of Natural Science’s Distinguished Lecture Series. Kring explains that Chicxulub produced tsunamis across the Gulf of Mexico and through the area that is now Houston (which was submerged at the time) up to about halfway to Dallas. “The heights of the waves were 30 to 50 meters high, which is a conservative estimate,” says Kring. “Some models have the height of the waves at 100 to 300 meters, which is the height of some of Houston’s tallest buildings.” 6:30 p.m. June 29. 5555 Hermann Park. For information, call 713-639-4629 or visit hmns.org. $12 to $18. – Steve Jansen

“Dysfunctional relationships are what most good plays center around in some way,” says Mildred’s Umbrella founder Jennifer Decker. With the company’s ninth annual Museum of Dysfunction in the wings, 19 new ten-minute plays are about to put your so-called strained relationships to shame. With help from fellow Houston director Leighza Walker, the Umbrella reading team uncovered new works from both professional and student playwrights that, for Decker, run the gamut of emotions. “There’s a good mixture of comedy, tragedy and silliness that there’s something for everyone.” Watch out for college playwright Audrey Webb’s comic tale of a loner kid convincing a grown-up to buy her beer, and professional mainstay Suzanna Bradbeer’s Bethlehem, PA, which promises a dead pet, a case of insomnia and a recent mastectomy. 8 p.m. June 29. Also 8 p.m. June 30, July 1, July 6-8. Studio 101, 1824 Spring, No. 101. For information, call 832-463-0409 or visit mildredsumbrella.com. Pay what you can. – Vic Shuttee

Friday, June 30

Tolkien fans can opine for hours about the characteristics and quirks of Orcs, Hobbits, elves and dwarves, but how much time is spent discussing the animals of Middle Earth? Come view Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring on the Houston Museum of Natural Science’s larger-than-life (60 by 80 feet) 4K screen, buy some popcorn and explore the paleontology of the Shire. “‘Come for the movie, stay for the facts’ is our tagline,” says Charlotte Brohi, vice president of film programming. She tells us that David Temple, co-curator in paleontology, will discuss animals and fossil creatures after the screening. She says the museum’s “Take Two” series is a way to better appreciate classics in a whole new way, as everything looks amazing on the big screen. The summer series continues with Top Gun (July 14), Titanic (July 28), The Princess Pride (August 4) and Captain America: Civil War (August 18). 7:15 p.m. June 30. 5555 Hermann Park Drive. For information, call 713-639-4629 or visit hmns.org. $4 to $5. – Susie Tommaney

The summer days may be hot, but the Houston Zoo has the most refreshing afternoons in town. Cool Nights is back again, and the organization welcomes people to the Coolest Backyard Bash. “We’re gearing it toward the young-adult audience,” says Marketing Manager Lauren St. Pierre. “It’s hot outside in the summer, but we want people to enjoy the cooler weather and fun activities to advance the experience here.” Partake in games fit for even the swankiest backyard parties, including giant Jenga, Connect Four and cornhole. Folks can also groove to a live band as well as purchase beer and snacks. Also, look forward to an up-close experience with the animals. Buy tickets online for a special discount, and make sure to arrive by “last entry” at 7:30 p.m. 5 p.m. to 8: 30 p.m. June 30. 6200 Hermann Park Drive. For information, call 713-533-6500 or visit houstonzoo.org/cool-nights. $10 to $18. – Sam Byrd

Everybody cut loose, because Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon ends at the SPLASH Pool at Hotel Derek where Footloose is screening on the three-story movie wall. Float & Flick is one of the coolest ways to enjoy a movie: The ticket price includes gourmet popcorn and a drink, but almost everybody upgrades to the tasty bites and fruit cocktails from Revolve Kitchen + Bar's summer menu. Don't procrastinate for this one. If you're itching to see a young John Lithgow blow his top over the ungodly sin of dance, then secure your spot by emailing ladyderek@destinationhotels.com. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., and the film begins when the sun goes down. 8:15 p.m. June 30. 2525 West Loop South. For information, call 713-961-3000 or visit hotelderek.com. $20. – Susie Tommaney

The Catastrophic Theatre celebrates the walk of shame with its summer romp, Tamarie's Merry Evening of Mistakes and Regrets.
The Catastrophic Theatre celebrates the walk of shame with its summer romp, Tamarie's Merry Evening of Mistakes and Regrets.
Photo by George Hixson

Saturday, July 1

Houston’s musical-theater prodigy Tamarie Cooper is back at it again, with a cavalcade of new tunes at Catastrophic Theatre’s annual darkly comic fundraising bash, this year titled Tamarie’s Merry Evening of Mistakes and Regrets. With her typical cohort of oddballs in tow (Ronnie Blaine, Kyle Sturdivant and perennial favorite Greg Dean), Cooper writes, directs and stars in this bonkers journey through the id and ego, full of original tunes, yuk-yuk cabaret-style banter and, of course, sex stuff. Talking earlier this year about the process in each of her self-titled romps, Cooper was reflective. “It’s all about opening up and being brutally honest, sharing ridiculous, crazy stories,” she said. “Maybe very tragic, or you may be telling something funny. There’s always a safe place in rehearsals, [where] you can trust each other and take risks as an actor.” 8 p.m. July 1. Continuing 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays. June 29 through August 12. 3400 Main, No. 285. For information, call 713-521-4533 or visit catastrophictheatre.com. $10 to $75. – Vic Shuttee

Punk never goes out of style, and the fact that the Mydolls are still touring proves the point. There’s a new doc in the works, set to premiere at South by Southwest next year, but we’ll get a sneak peek at the hip music + drinks + film Mydolls Party this Saturday. Trish Herrera talks about how the Houston-born band differed from the formulaic sounds coming out of California and Michigan. “We weren’t just classic punk rock. We were art punk,” says Herrera, who performs along with Dianna Ray, George Reyes and Linda Younger. “If we had just followed along and wore leather and spikes and had the same traditional sound that everybody had, we wouldn’t have been true to ourselves.” The doc is a blend of grainy shots from the ’80s and current footage, plus new interviews with local and national celebs who “knew us in the punk rock world.” 7 to 9:30 p.m. July 1. 14 Pews, 800 Aurora. For information, call 281-888-9677 or visit 14pews.org. $25. – Susie Tommaney

“The kind of art we’re producing, it’s not -suitable for a library,” says Victor “SEIYGE ZELLEZ” Blanchard, co-founder of the Isosceles Krew, the boundary-pushing artist -collective HPD once inadvertently complimented when officers called them “erratic and abnormal,” who are presenters of A Little Taste of Glory, a garden party and art show inspired by Mardi Gras. Like Mardi Gras, the evening — named for a line fans of Nacho Libre should recognize — is “open to the public, there’s no door to walk through, nobody to pay a cover to,” says Blanchard. “There are very few obstacles to having a good time.” The art, themed around categories like hip-hop and superheroes, is curated by the Krew, the food is from Wokker Texas Ranger, and the music is by skacore band Metanoia; even haircuts from Chico El Barbero will be available. 6 p.m. July 1. Jackson Place Oasis, 4702 Jackson. For information, call 713-301-7888 or visit isosceleskrew.com. Free. – Natalie de la Garza

Between Guardians of the Galaxy’s hit soundtracks and all the nostalgic “remember when?” TV dramas set in times gone by, it seems people can’t get enough ’70s tunes nowadays. Houston audiences can get their fix in person with Music Box’s latest cabaret, Feelin’ Groovy! “This era of music really speaks to people,” says Rebekah Dahl, the powerhouse singer, producer and co-star of the production. “We’ve got everything from rock and roll like Steppenwolf and Janis Jopin to folk music: Arlo Guthrie, John Denver. A little bit of everything makes people happy.” Beyond her enthusiasm to watch co-stars Cay Taylor, Kristine Sullivan, Luke Wrobel and Brad Scarborough (Dahl’s husband) shine, Dahl admits to prizing her chance at a certain Bob Marley tune. “‘Redemption Song,’ to me, is his most beautiful song, and trying something like it just excites me to no end.”
7:30 p.m. July 1. Continuing 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, July 7-29 and August 11-26, 2 p.m. July 23 and August 20. July 1 through August 26. 2623 Colquitt. For information, call 281-513-1504 or visit themusicboxtheater.com. $27 to $37. – Vic Shuttee

An exciting new exhibit based on the distinguished collection of a noted financier and philanthropist makes its United States premiere in the Bayou City. "Rebel, Jester, Mystic, Poet: Contemporary Persians — The Mohammed Afkhami Collection" showcases works by 23 Iranian-born artists through painting, sculpture, photography and video. Fereshteh Daftari winnowed down more than 300 objects in curating this exhibit for the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto – where the exhibit made its debut – and the selected objects celebrate both the ancient and the modern. The mystic current is revealed through sculpture (Parviz Tanavoli's Blue Heech/Blue Nothingness) and painting (Mohammad Ehsai's Mohabbat/Kindness), while the Internet era is satirized through a staged photo of a bubble gum-chewing young woman in Shirin Aliabadi's Miss Hybrid 3. War and terror also are referenced; one piece transforms silhouettes of fighter planes into traditional carpets. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 12:15 to 7 p.m. Sundays. July 1 through September 24. Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 1001 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-639-7300 or visit mfah.org. Free to $15. – Susie Tommaney

They're fierce. They're talented. And the funky Punjabi dance teams are bringing it this weekend for another edition of Clutch City Bhangra Competition 2017. Alamo City Bhangra, last year's second place winners, are back for another chance at glory, going up against Asap Bhangra and several other troupes ready to match wits with sick choreography, colorful costumes and a thumping beat that makes it hard to sit still. The big night includes live performances by G. Sidhu and Kay V. Singh. Those wanting to dig deeper should check out the Bhangra funk workshop (6:30 p.m. June 30, Hyatt Regency, 1200 Louisiana) and exclusive after-party (11 p.m. to 3 a.m. July 1, The Hive, 4701 Nett). 6 p.m. July 1. University of Houston, Cullen Performance Hall, 4800 Calhoun. For information, call 201-562-3236 or visit clutchcitybhangra.com. $20 to $40. – Susie Tommaney

If your loved ones are sick and tired of receiving candles, neckties and other uninspired gifts, then stock up for the giving season with these definitely-not-cookie-cutter objects at the Russian Cultural Center - Our Texas. We're talking hand-crafted nesting dolls, hand-painted samovar sets, balalaikas and the glowing halos of painted icons. The "Russian Summer Bazaar" lasts all month but, seeing that many of these souvenirs are one-of-a-kind, our advice is to hit the center earlier rather than later. 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. June 1 through July 31. 2337 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-395-3301 or visit ourtx.org. Free. – Susie Tommaney

If you squint real hard it kinda sorta looks like a giant taco, but Benjamin Terry's Inverted Sunset has more of a nautical feel, with its colorfully-painted and enameled wood planks folded over into an eye-pleasing taco-esque sculpture. Pieces by this Denton-based artist are on view at Art League Houston in "Thingness." And if you weren't paranoid before, you will be soon. Over in the front gallery they've installed 250 surveillance cameras and, yes, the cameras do follow visitors as they walk through the space. "Speak of the Devil" addresses the invasive qualities of CCTV surveillance and is the brainchild of Iowa-based artist Edward Kelley. Running concurrently is an exploration into the ephemeral nature of memory in "Suspended Memory" by Houston artists Shane Allbritton and Peter Bernick-Allbritton. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. June 9 through July 22. 1953 Montrose. For information, call 713-523-9530 or visit artleaguehouston.org. Free. – Susie Tommaney

Sunday, July 2

What do ancient ruins, graffiti and juke joints have in common? They’re all part of the varied subject matter found in the summer exhibit at the Texas Quilt Museum, “Dynamic Diversity: Quilts by African-American Artists.” Museum curator Dr. Sandra Sider tells us that’s the whole point. “Diversity is a catchphrase for multiculturalism. I sort of flipped it: diversity of theme, subject and style.” Houston artist Carolyn Crump, who has been doing a series on juke joint themes, has a nine-foot-tall quilt in the exhibit titled The Butterfly Catcher. It’s a three-for-one summer, with “Art Quilts of the Midwest” (guest curated by Linzee Kull McCray) and “Hearts and Flowers” (19th-century antique quilts) running concurrently. Noon to 4 p.m. July 2. Continuing 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. June 29 through October 1. 140 West Colorado, La Grange. For information, call 979-968-3104 or visit texasquiltmuseum.org. $6 to $8. – Susie Tommaney

Singer and civil rights legend Nina Simone is a household name to many, but audiences may get to know the singer’s life more intimately at Ensemble Theatre’s Simply Simone. “She was a great American legend, not simply a black legend,” says the show’s director, Patdro Harris. “I’m very excited to tell her story through music. Actually, I grew up with a friend in Atlanta who was part of the Simone family — so I grew up calling her Aunt Nina.” What attracted Harris to the script, which the Ensemble has produced twice before, was how the title role is divided into four different parts. “There’s a child Nina, there’s a classic young artist one, there’s the activist one and one from her later years. I love the way the story is told; it’s not a revue — it’s a true musical.” 3 p.m. July 2. Continues 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 3 p.m. Sundays. June 29 through July 30. 3535 Main. For information, visit ensemblehouston.org. $38 to $42. – Vic Shuttee

Monday, July 3

Start rehearsing the dance moves to “Y.M.C.A.,” because The Village People are bringing the disco love to Miller Outdoor Theatre. Originally formed in 1977, the group has produced unforgettable dance music for women and Macho Men alike, earning a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame between Liberace and Betty Grable. They were also recognized by Guinness World Records for the world’s largest “Y.M.C.A.” dance event, which took place at a Sun Bowl appearance in 2008. Eric Anzalone, better known as “The Biker,” says it’s a start-to-finish blast. “We are a party band. We’ve always been a party band. Some people refer to us as one of the original boy bands.” Costumes encouraged, so dress up as your favorite Village Person and relive all the memories with fellow fans. After all, it takes a village, people. 8:30 p.m. July 3. 6000 Hermann Park. For information, call 832-487-7102 or visit milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free. – Sam Byrd

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