Night and Day

Sep 8, 2010 at 12:00 am

Susurrus strips away the traditional trappings of theater — actors, sets, even the very stage itself — to provide an unorthodox theater experience, both sensually intimate and baldly exposed. Audience members, armed with a map and an audio headset, amble through the Matthaei Botanical Gardens listening to a story of love and loss told through bits of opera, discussions of botany and lessons in bird dissection. Acclaimed Scottish playwright David Leddy drew themes from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream for his dramatic sound collage; the play first premiered at Glasgow's botanical gardens in 2007 and has since been produced around the world. Leddy is known for his experimental, often site-specific works, which have taken place in train sheds, derelict backstage spaces and even his own house. Susurrus runs through Oct. 3, at the Matthaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N. Dixboro Rd., Ann Arbor; contact the University Musical Society at 734-764-2538 or for tickets and info; $30.

Hallogallo 2010
In Dusseldorf in the early '70s, two musicians left the incipient Kraftwerk to form what would become the relatively obscure yet largely influential Krautrock duo Neu! The short-lived collaboration between Michael Rother and the late Klaus Dinger — the pair released just three albums between '72 and '75 — achieved modest underground success, but remained mostly unknown in this country, despite being name-dropped by the likes of David Bowie, Brian Eno and Thom Yorke. Now, for the first time since the duo helped launch the Krautrock zeitgeist, fans and newbies alike can experience Neu!'s experimental sounds, layered guitars and relentless motorik beat — live! Hallogallo 2010 consists of Rother on guitar, Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth on drums and Aaron Mullen of Tall Firs on bass; the trio performs Neu! songs, as well as selections from Rother's solo discs and his work with Harmonium, at 8 p.m. at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, 4454 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-832-6622; $10.

Cluster Fuck
Detroit artist Ron Zakrin presents a collection of drawings, paintings and assemblages in this solo exhibit. While the pieces stand alone in their own right, taken together they explore larger themes, including the demise of goodness, ethics in genetic art, heartache and mythology in the 21st century. Dude, sounds heavy! Zakrin, who has been active as an artist and musician since the mid-'90s, creates colorful works that contain characters both real and mythological. His evocative and strangely unsettling images are uniquely appropriate to exploring the anxieties, both modern and timeless, of existence. Cluster Fuck opens with a reception from 6 to 11 p.m. at 323 East Gallery, 323 E. Fourth St., Royal Oak; 248-246-9544; displays through Oct. 7.

Considering the City
Considering the City features works by artists, architects, urban planners and designers that explore cities in the 21st century. The seemingly constant evolution of urban life creates singular issues that require inventive solutions, from the repurposing of land to the exploiting of ignored resources. The participating artists address these problems and others, propose solutions both real and fantastic and offer a commentary especially relevant to a city with "right-sizing" on its horizon. The exhibit opens with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. at Work Detroit, 3663 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-593-0940; displays through Oct. 8.

Art & Apples Festival
Michigan's second-largest juried art fair, the 45th annual Art & Apples Festival features more than 285 artists from across these United States, displaying and selling artworks in mediums including photography, ceramics, glass, jewelry, prints, metal, wood, painting and sculpture. Beyond the fine art flair, expect free kiddie crafts, entertainment from local acts on three stages and three different food courts slinging scrumptious edibles, including homemade apple pies. Presented by Paint Creek Center for the Arts, the fest takes place 4 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Rochester Park located west of Main Street, north of University in Rochester; 248-651-4110 or

Talking Headstones
A joint effort of the Grosse Pointe Theatre and the Grosse Pointe Historical Society, Talking Headstones is a historical drama that brings characters and stories from Grosse Pointe's past to the present-day stage. Neat! The third annual production features an entirely new script covering the years 1890 to 1930, made up of a series of vignettes that portray notable incidents from the city's past. What's more, the whole shebang takes place in a cemetery, lit only by candles. How's that for a historical immersion? Starts at 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday, at St. Paul's Cemetery located at the corner of Moross and Country Club Lane in Grosse Pointe Farms; contact the Grosse Pointe Theatre at 313-881-4004; $15.

Dally in the Alley
Part block party, part music fest and part city-wide neighborhood social, the Dally consistently ranks as one of the city's fave fests, thanks in part to the grassroots spirit it has maintained since its humble beginnings more than 30 years ago. This year, Detroit's street fair continues its mission of being the greenest of events in the city, partnering with Recycle Detroit and other organizations to keep the Corridor clean by diverting 85 percent of trash into recyclables (want to help? e-mail [email protected]). Along with earth-friendly initiatives, the Dally boasts a plethora of local vendors hawking records, vintage threads, sunglasses, books, crafts, food and more, as well as a kid crafts and a kid parade. Genre-spanning sounds will be provided by the Summer Pledge, Space Band, Cetan Clawson, Moon Pool & Dead Band, the Blueflowers, Lady Te, Gardens, the Reelers, Isles of ESP and Ben Collins, to name just a few. Proceeds from the event will help the North Cass Community Union purchase, rebuild and restore the Horace Dodge Garage where the Dodge brothers built their first car. Noon to 11 p.m. between Forest and Hancock streets, Third and Second avenues in Detroit;; rain date Sept. 12.

Baltimore Annex Theatre
This troupe of experimental theater rogues has lived and worked together for the past three years in a Baltimore warehouse, staging productions both classic and original (notably, an acclaimed play based upon the Old English poem Beowulf). The group travels to Detroit with its latest production, Fistful of Flowers, described as a "psychedelic Western" that explores the land of big sky, interminable saguaros and the fractured characters who call the desert home. The performance may also feature individual members of the clique showing off their particular talents, from the recitation of epic poetry to throat singing. Patrick Elkins warms up the crowd with a new shadow puppet show, Wayang Kucing: Jamboree Edition 2010 (huh?). Starts at 9:30 p.m. at the Trumbullplex, 4208 Trumbull St., Detroit; $6.

Emerge and See II
This one-day festival celebrates local creativity in a myriad of forms, from music and film to graffiti and screen printing. More than 50 artists and musicians will showcase their goodies in an orgiastic cross-pollination of types, genres and communities. Live graffiti, break dancing and performance art pieces will all take place; displaying artists include Jaclyn Schanes, Lisa Norton, Amanda Holt and Martin Thoburn. The musical lineup features Neon Escape, the Satin Peaches, English, Jaydun, Lord Scrummage, DJ Steve Dronez, Leif (Kolt) and more. To emphasize the inclusive nature of the creative community, interactive exhibits, such as the building of a milk jug-and-plastic bottle installation, are also on the agenda. 7 p.m. at the Crofoot, 1 S. Saginaw St., Pontiac; 248-858-9333; $11; all ages.

Domestic Disturbances
Domesticity is anything but dull in this group exhibition featuring works by Jamie Adams, Julie Blackmon, Mark Greenwold and Hooper Turner. While each artist offers a distinct interpretation on home life, they all share a quietly cracked essence that challenges ideals of domestic tranquility and the perfect family. Many pieces exude edgy humor and subtle wit, while others are imbued with sexuality — but all upset the notion that domesticity always equals bliss. Domestic Disturbances opens with a reception from 2 to 5 p.m. at David Klein Gallery, 163 Townsend St., Birmingham; 248-433-3700; displays through Oct. 16.

WWE Smackdown
Admit it — you like wrestling! Combining the absurd drama of soap operas with the raw physicality of half-nelson slams and pile drivers, professional wrestling (sports entertainment, if you will) provides the purely visceral pleasure of all good lowbrow amusements — good guys, bad guys, secret alliances, backstabbing friends, table slams! Combine the ringside action with wrestling's real life drama — stars who've hit rock bottom, steroid abuse, behind-the-scenes machinations — and it's no wonder nearly 500 million homes tune into WWE programs every week. See the antics up close and personal when Smackdown broadcasts live from Detroit, featuring Kane, the Big Show, Jack Swagger, Christian and more. 6:45 p.m. at Joe Louis Arena, 600 Civic Center Dr., Detroit; 800-745-3000 for tickets; $18-$73.