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Best Virtual Bets: Fashion, Pretty Fire, and The Sound of Music

On Sunday, DACAMERA will provide a soundtrack to Anri Sala’s installation Time No Longer, 2021, at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou.EXPAND
On Sunday, DACAMERA will provide a soundtrack to Anri Sala’s installation Time No Longer, 2021, at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou.
Photo by Lawrence Knox, Courtesy of Buffalo Bayou Partnership and Weingarten Art Group
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If you’re curious how the art of the ancient world might translate to contemporary fashion or just how many Rodgers and Hammerstein II aficionados can fit in a football stadium, you’re in the right place. We have this and much more, so keep reading to find this week’s best virtual and socially distanced events.

Get a little taste of Fashion Week Houston-style when the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and Houston Community College join forces to present Fashion Fusion VI: Antiquities to Modern Art on Thursday, May 6, at 7 p.m. Presented virtually this year, the annual collaboration sees student-designers from HCC’s Fashion Design program challenged to create looks inspired by the museum’s collection. During the program, viewers will also get behind-the-scenes peeks into the designers’ studios and vote for their favorite creations. You can watch the runway looks, modeled in the MFAH galleries, on Facebook Live.

Following Asia Society Texas Center’s April 2020 program on countering anti-Asian racism in the time of coronavirus and Asia Society Southern California’s two-part series on standing again racism in the time of COVID, the two organizations will join together this Thursday, May 6, at 7:30 p.m. for Standing Against Racism in the Time of COVID: A Conversation on Activism. The moderated discussion, followed by audience Q&A, will feature CNN reporter Amara Walker, Georgia State Representative Bee Nguyen, San Francisco State University professor and Stop AAPI Hate co-founder Dr. Russell Jeung, and Compassion in Oakland co-founder Katrina Ramos. You can view the webcast and submit questions on YouTube or Facebook.

Take a deep dive into the Apollo Chamber Players tonight, May 6, at 8:15 p.m. when the Houston-based ensemble that kept new music lovers well fed during the pandemic with their 20x2020 Virtual Festival premieres a new documentary about their origins and approach to programming. MoonShot: The Remarkable Journey of Apollo Chamber Players, narrated by St. John Flynn and set to a soundtrack by the ensemble, will screen at Moonstruck Drive-In Cinema in East Downtown Houston. Gates open at 7:15 p.m. and concessions will be available. The screening is free, but you have to RSVP as it is limited to 100 cars.

The Houston Ballet returns to in-person, live performances this weekend at Miller Outdoor Theatre with Houston Ballet Reignited on Friday, May 7, and Saturday, May 8, at 8 p.m. The program, which features excerpts from popular ballets, will include a scene from Artistic Director Stanton Welch’s Romeo and Juliet danced by Karina González and Connor Walsh. Walsh recently told the Houston Press that he thinks the Romero and Juliet pas de deux “will be a breath of fresh air for any performing arts lover.” Seated tickets to the in-person performance have been distributed, but no tickets are required to sit up on the Hill. Gather your friends and family and get there early, masked and ready to claim your pod, which accommodates 10 adults, on the Hill.

On Friday, May 7, the Ensemble Theatre will open their online production of Charlayne Woodard’s autobiographical Pretty Fire. The five-part play, starring Delali Potakey, Crystal Rae, and Krystal Uchem, is an “effervescent memoir of growing up in the bosom of a loving African American clan in Albany, N.Y., circa 1960,” written mostly “from the point of view of a rambunctious, show-biz-adoring child.” The Ensemble Theatre’s production, co-directed by Rachel Hemphill Dickson and Ensemble Artistic Director Eileen J. Morris, will be available on-demand through May 30. Tickets are $25 and you can learn more here.

Houston Grand Opera presents My Favorite Things: Songs from The Sounds of Music with soprano Jeanine De Bique.EXPAND
Houston Grand Opera presents My Favorite Things: Songs from The Sounds of Music with soprano Jeanine De Bique.
Photo by Marco Borggreve

Who’s up for a socially distanced singalong? Us too! On Saturday, May 8, at 7:30 p.m. the Houston Grand Opera will head over to the University of Houston’s TDECU Stadium for My Favorite Things: Songs from The Sound of Music. If not for COVID-19, Houstonians would be enjoying the Rodgers and Hammerstein II musical at the Wortham this month. But the next best thing is joining soprano Jeanine De Bique (singing the role of Maria) and baritone Michael Mayes (singing Captain von Trapp), the HGO Chorus and Orchestra, to sing along to the show’s much beloved songs during HGO’s first live performance in more than a year. Doors open at 6 p.m. and you can get tickets ($10 for adults and $7.50 for kids) here.

Conductor David Robertson (filling in for Houston Symphony Music Director Andrés Orozco-Estrada), and Concertmaster Yoonshin Song will tackle nuevo tango master Astor Piazzolla’s Four Seasons of Buenos Aires during the Houston Symphony’s Mozart + Piazzolla’s Four Seasons. Song, who has performed the piece only once before, says, “Piazzolla’s music has its unique language,” with this piece offering “a journey-like quality, sometimes taking you to a dream and to places outside your everyday reality.” Joining Piazzolla on the program are works from Giovanni Gabrieli, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and former Composer-In-Residence Gabriela Lena Frank. You can experience the concert in-person at Jones Hall this weekend, or you can get a $20 ticket to the livestreamed concert on Saturday, May 8, at 8 p.m.

On Sunday, DACAMERA will provide a soundtrack to Anri Sala’s installation Time No Longer, 2021, at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou.EXPAND
On Sunday, DACAMERA will provide a soundtrack to Anri Sala’s installation Time No Longer, 2021, at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou.
Photo by Lawrence Knox, Courtesy of Buffalo Bayou Partnership and Weingarten Art Group

Get “a glimpse of the apocalypse crystallized as a work for clarinet, violin, cello and piano” at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou Park on Sunday, May 9, when DACAMERA Young Artists perform Olivier Messiaen’s "Quartet for the End of Time.” The 1941 work, written while Messiaen was held in a German prisoner-of-war camp, will serve as the soundtrack for Anri Sala’s new art installation, Time No Longer. The free concert in the park will begin with a short discussion by DACAMERA Artistic Director Sarah Rothenberg at 5:45 p.m. followed by the performance at 6:15 p.m. You can pick up a ticket here.

Jhumpa Lahiri, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning collection of short stories titled The Interpreter, will be featured on Monday, May 10, at 7 p.m., concluding the 2020/2021 Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series. Lahiri will join author Yaa Gyasi in conversation and give a short reading from Whereabouts, her first novel since 2013 and the first novel Lahiri's written in Italian (and translated to English). The book, “a muted portrait of urban solitude,” spends “a year in the inner life of a solitary woman in an unnamed European city.” You can purchase a $25 ticket to view the livestream here, and note that each ticket comes with a hardcover copy of Whereabouts.

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