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  • May 31-June 18: UniverSoul Circus

    May 31-June 18: UniverSoul Circus

    May 31-June 18 After Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey said its goodbyes and completed its final tour last week, the UniverSoul Circus looks to start putting the circus game in a chokehold. The show, founded in 1994 by Baltimore native Cedric Walker, aims to give a platform for people of color...

  • Wednesday: “Friday the 13th”

    Wednesday: “Friday the 13th”

    May 31 Slasher films—defined by that that ominous “ch-ch-ch” sound that means trouble’s afoot, a bunch of hot, white teens being hot and dumb, and a pretty much anonymous and unstoppable killer—have been referenced and replicated so often that the horror movie subgenre can lose some if its bite....

  • Sunday: Chariot Festival

    Sunday: Chariot Festival

    May 28 I am salivating as I write this thinking about all the pakora, naan, curry, tikka masala, kabobs, biryani, and other Indian grub I’m gonna stuff myself with this Sunday. But the annual Chariot Festival held at the Inner Harbor is more than just a feast for the belly. The festival’s anchor...

  • Sunday: Sowebo Arts and Music Festival

    Sunday: Sowebo Arts and Music Festival

    May 28 Southwest Baltimore’s annual festival is one of the city’s best, combining an intimate neighborhood vibe with substantial talent. This year is the 34th running, and there are three stages full of music, with the Rise Up Stage featuring Troll Tribe’s reggae-ska-folk thing, To The Moon’s experimental...

  • Thursday-Sunday: Maryland Deathfest

    Thursday-Sunday: Maryland Deathfest

    May 25-28 Deathfest turns 15 this year, with four days of shows across two venues (this year, Baltimore Soundstage and Rams Head Live) with over 70 bands. This Baltimore Institution, which has grown into an international event with additional fests in Oakland, California, and Tilburg, Netherlands,...

  • Thursday: Baby's On Fire Happy Hour

    Thursday: Baby's On Fire Happy Hour

    May 25 If you've ever been to the Mount Vernon record store and cafe Baby's On Fire, you know that the owners make a lot with a little. What the store lacks in space is made up for with the wonderful curation of the records it sells, stacking plenty of local music alongside indie staples, a healthy...

  • Wednesday: Young Writers Present!

    Wednesday: Young Writers Present!

    May 24 Since 2008, Writers in Baltimore Schools encourages Baltimore City students to write and explore their voice on the page in school programs, after-school programs, and summer courses. This Wednesday at Red Emma’s, these students will share their work. A full experience of the students' writing...

  • Wednesday: CinéBistro fundraiser to benefit Baltimore School for the Arts

    Wednesday: CinéBistro fundraiser to benefit Baltimore School for the Arts

    May 24 Thanks to a $130 million deficit in Baltimore City Public Schools' budget for next year, every principal in the district has had to make decisions about where to cut back in order to save money. The push is to try to avoid laying off teachers, for obvious reasons. Baltimore School for the...

  • Richard Collins III's death is just what we feared

    Richard Collins III's death is just what we feared

    The death of 23-year-old Richard Collins III was what we feared when Donald Trump was elected this past November. It wasn’t because of economic insecurity, or because of identity politics, or whatever else well-paid white writers got to opine about from their positions of privilege. We feared loss....

  • Stoop Storytelling and Everyman Theatre offer tales from backstage tonight

    Stoop Storytelling and Everyman Theatre offer tales from backstage tonight

    May 22 I’m always curious about all the behind-the-scenes stuff that goes into putting on a play—the messy parts that include humans working together without wanting to kill each other, memorizing lots of lines, tackling a giant task, and somehow pulling it off (or not). The people from Stoop Storytelling...

  • Fellow DJs and friends gather at DJ Vicious V's memorial

    DJ 5Starr and fellow turntablists like DJs Rocky Styles, Ogun, Sonny Brown, Scottie B, and Big Nellz memorilzed Vicious V, who was gunned down last week at the Downtown Cultural Arts Center on Howard Street. 

  • Snail Mail Live at WTMD in Photos

    Read about Snail Mail in our Sizzlin Summer issue here. 

  • Monday: Stoop Storytelling at Everyman Theatre

    May 22 I’m always curious about all the behind-the-scenes stuff that goes into putting on a play—the messy parts that include humans working together without wanting to kill each other, memorizing lots of lines, tackling a giant task, and somehow pulling it off (or not). The people from Stoop Storytelling...

  • Thursday-Sunday: Movie with Orchestra: E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial

    May 18-21 The last several decades would be strange without the “Imperial March” stamped into our minds as Darth Vader stands on the bridge of his Super Star destroyer in “The Empire Strikes Back.” “Schindler's List” shared the horrors of the holocaust with the melancholy, violin-dominated theme...

  • Thursday: “13th”

    May 18 In her groundbreaking 2010 book “The New Jim Crow,” Michelle Alexander highlights the mass incarceration of black males and other men of color through initiatives like the War on Drugs waged during the Reagan era and Bill Clinton's 1994 crime bill that instituted the three-strikes law. The...

  • Slow and Steady: Snail Mail is making moves

    At Maryland's music mega-fortress, Merriweather Post Pavilion, 17-year-old Lindsey Jordan yells at concert rabble-rousers in a heavy, stern voice: "Sir, don't stand on that chair! . . . Sir, put that out!" She has been laying down the law and holding doors for bands backstage as a Merriweather...

  • City Paper staff recommends some summer music

    Kleenex/LiLiPUT, "First Songs" (Kill Rock Stars) The cover of Kleenex/Liliput's compilation album "First Songs," released last December as a double LP with their music from 1978-1982, features three of the band's female members in cardboard, vaguely crustacean-inspired costumes, a la Dada daddy...

  • Murder Ink 5/17/17: 9 murders this week, 127 murders this year

    One of this week's victims was a 17-year-old girl who was shot when someone fired into a crowd. Baltimore had 32 fewer murders by this date last year, and 32 fewer in 2015 as well, a year that ended with a record 344 homicides. Baltimore has never had a year with 400 murders. If nothing changes,...

  • Ice To Meet You: Charm City gets you ice, the old-fashioned way

    She calls them "the ding-a-lings." Not her funny relatives or the nosy neighbor lady down the street. It's industry endearment for the guys who drive the snowball and ice cream trucks that cruise summertime Baltimore to bring icy treats and—instead of the tinkling bells of once upon a time—incessant,...

  • Merriweather Post Pavillon looks back at 50 years of music—and forward to some big changes

    Summer means outdoor concerts, and for 50 years, people around Baltimore and Washington have been heading to Merriweather Post Pavilion for music in the woods. Originally designed by Frank Gehry as a home for the National Symphony Orchestra, the pavilion and lawn have played host to some of the...

  • Savage Love: Anti-Climax

    I'm a happily married straight man. My wife, who is 33 years old, cannot orgasm through intercourse since we had our last child. Her explanation is that she has this constant sensation to pee. Now we find other means to please her through toys, oral, etc. Are there exercises or other means to get...

  • Saturday: 142nd Preakness Stakes

    May 20, Gates open 8 a.m., Pimlico Race Course, 5201 Park Heights Ave., (410) 542-9400, preakness.com, $40-$450. The second jewel in the Triple Crown returns to Pimlico.

  • Saturday: Baltimore Vintage & Antiques Expo

    May 20 Have you been to a mall recently? In case you forgot, they're craven hellholes that make you feel compelled to buy everything around you (because it's ostensibly cheap, but also, cheaply made through incredibly unethical labor more often than not) and also make you realize how little you...

  • Thursday: Crab Derby

    May 18 The Old Lexington Market Crab Derby has a storied history, from that first race in 1859 (won by a Blue Crab named, probably in ironic jest, “Officer Rigdon” by then-Mayor Thomas Swan, but that’s another whole thing). Though marred by allegations of “fixing,” unsanctioned “outhouse races,”...

  • Wednesday: 4th Annual America's Best Racing Pre-Preakness Party

    May 17 The Preakness itself is already a huge party. But what's stopping you from knocking back cocktails and gorging on delicious snacks at a pre-party for the main party? Enter: The racing site America's Best Racing, which is once again taking over the Sky Bar at Mt. Washington Tavern for a night...

  • Sizzlin' Summer Staff Picks

  • Sept. 15: Sturgill Simpson

    Maybe you saw current "real country music" hero and low-key authentic country troll Sturgill Simpson on "Saturday Night Live" back in January. During his performance of ‘Call To Arms,’ a hearty protest song which sounded as much like Sonny Sharrock guitar skronk as Blooz Brothers rockin' and rollin'...

  • Aug. 12: Muslim Food Festival

    Now in its fifth year, the Muslim Food Festival is one of the most underrated festivals the city has to offer. The fest was established, according to its Facebook page, with one goal in mind: "Uniting the Ummah one bite at a time!" Held just outside the city line in Baltimore County at the Islamic...

  • Aug. 6: J. Cole

    The reclusive, often melancholy and deeply meditative rhyme-smith J. Cole is making his rounds with his 4 Your Eyez Only tour. Cole is a titan in the rap world, but sometimes he gets the same treatment as Andre 3000 in that his greatness gets taken for granted. All of his albums have gone platinum,...

  • July 23: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: 40th Anniversary Tour

    Thomas Earl Petty was never going to make it on his looks. That was the thing you’d notice, looking at the cover of 1979’s “Damn the Torpedoes” through the eyes of a teenager. The skinny kid with the prominent nose, the weak chin. Just imagining how that played in late-’60s Gainesville, Florida...

  • July 4: Visionary Pets on Parade

    If you’re anything like me, July 4 is a day full of barbecue, fireworks, and feeling less and less convinced that America was ever great. At least, it’s hard to look at a bajillion stars and stripes and not think of the blood, hatred, and institutional neglect that linger not far behind those patriotic...

  • June 28: Kara Walker & Hank Willis Thomas

    Typically reserved for one screen-based work at a time, the BMA's next Black Box installation brings together separate works by Kara Walker and Hank Willis Thomas, two artists who, over the course of their careers and in multiple disciplines, have been interrogating what it's like and what it means...

  • Road Trip Games

    You can’t have a proper road trip without a road trip game, and everyone has a favorite. If you don’t, I have one for you I learned from some Vermont friends: anal. Nope, it’s not a sex thing (unless you want it to be). All you do is put the word “anal” before the model name of every camper or...

  • June 23: Steve Miller Band with special guest Peter Frampton

    Pompatus goiter-rocker (and 2016 Rock Hall of Fame inductee) Steve Miller brings his classic rock juggernaut band to Maryland again, this time with special motherfuckin’ guest Peter Frampton, who is not quite as old and has not sold quite so many records (as he was never able to duplicate 1976’s...

  • June 23: Trixie Little presents: The End Times Are Near

    Stephen Hawking recently said that the end times are indeed near—like 100 years away near. But really, it doesn’t take a genius to get that sense. Climate change is ramping up and our government (which just might get us killed before global warming does) is doing less and less to combat it. But...

  • July 22: Priests

    Just a week after a rotten tangerine fascist took office, Washington D.C. punks Priests released their new album "Nothing Feels Natural," a 10-track, 40-ish-minute digressive stroll through what it feels like to be alive right now. Which is to say it feels fucking insane and loud, at the brink...

  • June 17 and 18: Baltimore Pride

    Pride moves up about a month this year, taking place in the middle of June instead of the middle of July, as it has been years prior. The parade and block party have also moved away from Mount Vernon, where it was previously held, and in the Station North, Old Goucher, Charles Village neighborhood....

  • Films New and Old at the Parkway Theatre

    One thing that has gone a little under-discussed amid all this excitement about the new Parkway Theatre is that along with it being the permanent home of the Maryland Film Festival, the Parkway will also be a year-round, adventurously programmed place to see movies. And its first week of programming,...

  • June 17: Celebration "Wounded Healer" Album Release Party

    Bands come and bands go—it's true both on a national stage and here in the city's music scene. Few have been as durable and compelling as Celebration, the psychedelic rock band that is nearing its 15th year of existence. From the sound of it, though, maintaining a band while pushing toward advanced...

  • June 14: Journey with special guests Asia

    If you are a human of a certain age—say, 15 in 1981—then Journey’s ‘Who’s Crying Now’ is seared into your cerebral cortex in a way that makes just about anything that happened when that song was playing come flooding back when you hear it. That can be good, or bad, depending on events and your...

  • Sweating

    At the end of last summer, my roommate helped me take my AC unit out of my window and the front plastic covering shifted and broke a little, which consequently popped the tiny fan control knobs right off. (I hope my landlord isn’t reading this, but if you are: TJ, I’m sorry, but also, maybe can...

  • June 6: Chance The Rapper at Royal Farms Arena

    Chance The Rapper is a mix between Kirk Franklin and Eminem. The often unpredictable president of the new black boy joy brigade and ardent, yet palatable advocate for Christianity ushered in a new lane for artists, gaining an enormous following while remaining independent. He makes his living by...

  • June 9: Neil Diamond

    That gravelly baritone, born of smoking cigarettes with Barbra Streisand in front of Brooklyn’s Erasmus High School, is coming to Baltimore and everywhere around the world. Fifty-two years after Neil Diamond’s first hit, ‘I’m a Believer,’ made Micky Dolenz and The Monkees pop-culture touchstones,...

  • June 3: Manny Machado Starting Lineup Giveaway

    When I was a kid, Starting Lineups—little plastic figures depicting real-life sports stars—were among my favorite toys to collect. And really, they weren't toys to play with. You could move the arms of the figure and maybe, say, take off the helmet of a football player. But beyond that, the range...

  • June 3: Boundary Block Party

    This will be the 10th year now that the Boundary Block Party has brought neighbors from Sandtown-Winchester, Upton, Druid Heights, Madison Park, Penn North, Bolton Hill, and Reservoir Hill together at the small park where three of those neighborhoods meet for an afternoon full of hot dogs and burgs,...

  • The Charles Summer Revivals

    We can't give you a full-stop list of what the Charles Theater will be resurrecting this summer because it hasn't been released as of press time, but I was lucky to get the names of at least three revivals happening in July and August: Ken Russell's "The Devils," a baroque and bonkers 1971 movie...

  • June 3: Jermaine Dupri presents SoSo Summer 17

    I’m now at the age where the people behind hits of my youth are compelled—maybe by dwindling bank accounts, maybe because huge cheering crowds aren’t something you lose a taste for—to head out on the road for reunion tours. Last year, it was Diddy et al. and his Bad Boy reunion (which was great,...

  • June 2-25: "Promenade: Baltimore"

    In the spring, Single Carrot took theatergoers around its Remington neighborhood as part of "A Short Reunion," a series of nine plays in people's homes and out on the streets. Now, the company will make the whole city its oyster for "Promenade: Baltimore." A co-production with Hungarian company...

  • June 2 and 3: Nights on the Fringe

    The Charm City Fringe Festival—a multi-venue showcase of relatively under-the-radar performers from Baltimore and beyond—only comes once a year, and it’s not until November. But you can whet your palate at the Baltimore Theatre Project this summer with two nights of theater, dance, comedy, poetry,...

  • Have a Picnic

    Now until the temperature dips below 70 degrees, the natural urge during the season of humidity and back sweat is to stay inside, assuming there is air conditioning. But you should go against this instinct and gather your friends to head outside and have a picnic. Baltimore has a lot of great green...

  • June 2-4: Capital Jazz Fest

    OK so forget all about that naked-ass video from 2013 (and the ensuing copyright lawsuit from Marvin Gaye’s estate): If Robin Thicke is not a purist’s idea of a jazz man (an azz man, maybe!), there is no doubt he puts on a hell of a show. Even though the live act could never match the pseudo-erotic...

  • June 1-18: "Men on Boats"

    Jaclyn Backhaus' "Men On Boats" tells the story of a group of American explorers in the West whose job in 1869 was to map the area around what we now know as the Grand Canyon. The play is based on the journals of John Wesley Powell, one of the explorers, but this seems to be far from a Great White...

  • May 26-29: Balticon

    With a thriving comic convention, several gaming and comic shops in the city, and a cafe dedicated to all things great and geeky, Baltimore is a very nerd-friendly town. You can probably trace that acceptance back to the Baltimore Science Fiction Society, which has been holding it annual convention...

  • Get a Beach Body

    It’s that time of the year again—time to shed your winter cushion and transform into a new you attractive enough to be visible, time to make that new suit worth the money. All your favorite IG celebs have been on it since February. So, here’s what you do—this is a guaranteed transformation: Put...

  • May 24: Bon Iver

    Justin Vernon, who records his ambitious solo project under the name Bon Iver (similar to say, John Darnielle's The Mountain Goats or Phil Elverum's Mount Eerie) made a big name for himself with 2010's "Bon Iver, Bon Iver," a record that mixed sad-bro indie folk with Talk Talk "Laughing Stock"...

  • Melanin Free brings its "clever racket" to the Crown tonight

    May 13 When noise duo Melanin Free, consisting of Qué Pequeño and Jenghis Pettit, put out their debut "White Noise Boys" last year, it seemed like a very good lark. Put together quickly and oppositionally, it was essentially a troll on the predominantly white and, ahem, sometimes overtly racist...

  • "Best DJ in the Club" DJ Trillnatured gets the party going at the Crown tonight

    May 13 DJ Trillnatured, aka Jessica Hyman, always plays the best records, mixing new jelly with old jams, essentially forcing everyone to have a good time. The BALTIGURLS member and regulator of revelling makes sure that drinks are spilling and people are sweating in this dancery. She's back with...

  • Join StillPointe Theatre tonight for the Beach Ball

    May 13 Summer is almost here, and that means beach weather is due to arrive right with it. You know those good old Maryland summer days of mid-90's heat and high humidity, when you feel sweaty and gross immediately after walking for a little bit outside. StillPointe Theatre has very thoughtfully...

  • Experience the power of great writing tonight at Read St. Readings

    May 12 Sometimes good writing is a salve, a balm to soothe a burn, a glint of wisdom or joy; sometimes it cuts you deeper, digging into an old wound long forgotten. It's like, all within the same moment, remembering the undiscussed dent punched in the wall at your sister's apartment, the way the...

  • Neighborgoods Opening Party

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