Wednesday • 4
Brighton Beach Memoirs
Neil Simon’s quirky New York humor has been an American favorite for years. The playwright’s award-winning works often draw from his own life experiences as a young Jewish man trying to find his place in ’40s New York. And whether on Broadway or in the film adaptations of his plays, Simon’s work always seems to hit a nerve. Theatergoers should expect laughs, tears, quick wit and sarcasm. Produced by the Jewish Ensemble Theater. At the Aaron DeRoy Theater, 6600 W. Maple Rd., West Bloomfield; 248-788-2900. Runs Wednesday-Thursday and Saturday-Sunday until June 5.
Wednesday • 4
Weeknights are heating up at Oslo, as the chill downtown sushi bar and lounge celebrates its one-year anniversary this spring. Wander in midweek and expect the unexpected: DJ sets by Andres (Slum Village, Mahogani Music), the Peoples Team (Anibal G and Brad H) or Oslo’s own sushi chef and techno producer Kaku Usui — all best experienced when sipping a ginger-and-pineapple martini or a Kalapili (a bloody Mary with wasabi). The first Wednesday of each month, Art Lab adds the visual and literary arts to Oslo’s sonic foodie scene, creating a gallery vibe with swank. This week, Art Lab features work by Heather Hall (wood sculpture), BCI (furniture), written work by Shelby Dean, pen-and-ink drawings by Jared Moore and a video performance piece (“Head”) by Cheryl Donegan. Resident DJs will spin. The 21+ program kicks off at 10 p.m., but dinner is served from 5 p.m. Say “Art Lab” at the door and there’s no cover. At 1456 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-963-0300.
Thursday-Friday • 5-6
Since moving to the 313, the 555 Gallery has hosted a bevy of rad events. The decidedly cool gallery, which used to call Ypsi home, now offers its arty goodness to folks in the D. Friday, May 5, they’ll host a one-night silent auction and music concert, courtesy of world-beat hipsters Nomo, Spanish rockers bogotáimport, techno and electro artist Edwin and much more. The gallery’s goal is to raise $2,500 for renovation, including improving acoustics in the performance gallery. But that’s not all — 6-9 p.m., Saturday, May 6, the 555 will host an artist’s reception for its latest exhibit, The Buddy System, a diverse collection of paintings from artists around the world. 4884 Grand River Ave., Detroit; 313-894-4202.
Friday • 6
Deceptions to the Rule
This week, Planet Ant Theatre in Hamtramck celebrates its sweet 16 — 16th original comedy, that is. Told in the traditional style of film noir, Deceptions to the Rule: The Stuff that Schemes Are Made Of, is replete with tough dames, private dicks and mayhem. The homegrown play tells the story of an ex-con hotel heiress, her washed-up father and alcoholic brother. When the ne’er-do-well protagonist commissions her former cellmate to treat her wacky family members to a dirt nap, the town’s corrupt police detective and down-on-his-luck gumshoe begin to complicate things. 2357 Caniff St., Hamtramck; 313-365-4948. Runs Thursday-Sunday until June 5.
Saturday • 7
May Play Day Celebration
FUN FOR ALL
Each year on the first Saturday in May, the Paint Creek Folklore Society hosts a springtime celebration of traditional folk arts, music and dance. The all-day event includes a hearty “stone soup” lunch, contra dance and Maypole dance workshops, and a concert courtesy of folkie Chicagoans Andi and I, barbershop quartet Framata Nowhere and others. The day will end with a potluck supper (please bring a main dish, dessert, salad or an appetizer to share) at University Presbyterian Church, 1385 S. Adams Rd., Rochester Hills; 248-375-0400. Proceeds go to Living Waters, a program that supplies fresh drinking water to impoverished and drought-stricken African nations. More info at paintcreekfolkloresociety.org.
Saturday • 7
Ever since their joint efforts with ’90s hometown rock heroes Hoarse, Watershed has been a favorite here at Night & Day. Due in no small part to frontman Joe Oestreich’s spotless vocals and “all rock, no filler” sensibilities, the band’s latest release, The Fifth of July, on Idol Records, deserves two Sissy Hankshaw-caliber thumbs up. On Saturday, the Columbus, Ohio, foursome returns to the D for an intimate show at everyone’s favorite DIY venue, 313.Jac. (Editor’s note: A little birdie told us that Oestreich recently lent his high-end trillmaster skills to the highly anticipated new Fags album. Props to any rock band that has the balls to do pop and do it well.) 624 Brush St., Detroit; 313-962-7067. Diatribe master, Jimmy Doom to open.
SATURDAY • 7
Walk Worthy Press
Detroit-based literary agent Denise Stinson made publishing news representing Rosalyn McMillan, Pearl Cleage and other big sellers. But in recent years she’s taken things to another stage with her own publishing company, Walk Worthy Press, aimed at the African-American Christian market. Now she’s literally putting the stories on the stage with live actors performing scenes from books by four of her authors (Denise Michelle Harris’ Sweet Bye-Bye, Derek Jackson’s A Man Inspired, Cheri Paris Edwards’ Plenty Good Rom and Tiffany Warren’s What a Sista Should Do). The authors will also be on hand for a discussion and book-signing. Eastlake Baptist Church, 12400 E. Jefferson Ave., Detroit; for information, call 313-821-9348.
MONDAY & WEDNESDAY • 9 & 11
We wish we had a picture of the bass-tuba-drum one-man-band setup that Tom Abbs plans to play for his first set Monday, but we’ll have to do without. Seattle-born Abbs has been based in New York for nearly 15 years, studying with heavies (Reggie Workman, etc.) and performing with heavies (Charles Gayle, etc.). He performs his first set to the accompaniment of a video by painter M.P. Landis, the second in collaboration with Detroit saxophonists Skeeter Shelton and Michael Carey. 8 p.m., Monday, at Motor City Brewing Works, 470 W. Canfield St., Detroit; 313-832-2700. Abbs also performs “a meditation in seven movements” with pianist Stephen Rush at Canterbury House at 8 p.m., Wednesday, May 11, at 721 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor; 734-665-0606.