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The top five arts and culture events this week

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Gazette Staff/SourceMedia  ::   UPDATED: 21 January 2014 | 3:37 pm   ::  

Each week Hoopla and the Iowa Cultural Corridor Alliance team up to bring you the best arts and culture events in Eastern Iowa.

Here are the hidden gems for this week.

The Englert Theatre presents Mike Birbiglia’s My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend this Thursday, October 4, at 8:00 p.m. In My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend, Mike shares a lifetime of romantic blunders and miscues that most adults would spend a lifetime trying to forget. On this painfully honest and hysterical journey, Birbiglia struggles to find reason in an area where it may be impossible to find — love. Winner of the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Solo Show, My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend was nominated for both the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Solo Performance. Time Out New York gave the show 4 stars, calling Mike a “seasoned pro” who “balances punch lines and pathos.” The New York Times called the show “ridiculously enjoyable” and it was selected as a Critic’s Pick by The New York Times, Time Out New York, and New York Magazine. Now, after receiving critical acclaim in Australia, Canada and London, and completing a successful 15-week run in New York City, Mike Birbiglia brings his hit show to The Englert Theatre. Reserved seating is $30 in advance, $32 day of show.

Coe College Theatre presents Elephant in the Room, a new adaptation of Strindberg's Miss Julie. Originally an examination of class issues prevalent in Northern Europe during the late 19th century, this drama, in a provocative re-framing, provides us with a peek into the unique complexity that is born out of the collision between race and class in today's world. This "Miss Julie" is a violent and dangerous dance between three characters in antebellum New Orleans, foretelling of the quieter, but equally dangerous way we dance around issues of race today. "Elephant in the Room” is written by Tisch Jones (under her maiden name of Patricia Rhone). Jones, a recently retired theatre professor at the University of Iowa, is also guest directing the play. Shows are October 4, 5, 6, 12 & 13 at 7:30 p.m. Performances will take place in the Dows Fine Arts Center. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $8 for students age 18 and younger and senior citizens age 55 and older. For tickets, call 319.399.8600.

The final Downtown Iowa City Gallery Walk of the year takes place this Friday, October 5, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. at 16 venues in downtown Iowa City and coincides with American Craft Week, October 5-14. This national event celebrates fine craft art and their makers. Communities of individuals, small businesses and organizations across the country join together to celebrate the way that handmade objects enrich daily lives and contribute to the national aesthetic and economy. Gallery Walks are self-guided, free, family-friendly and open to the public. Maps are available at each location. Refreshments are served, and exhibits are ongoing at least through the month. Gallery Walk venues include Active Endeavors, AKAR, Bella Joli, the Chait Galleries, the Englert Theatre, Glassando, Home Ec Workshop, Iowa Artisans Gallery/D.J.Rinner Goldsmith, Iowa State Historical Society, MidWestOne Bank, MC Ginsberg, r.s.v.p., the Senior Center’s Old Post Office Gallery, Textiles, The Paper Nest, and United Action for Youth (UAY).

The Marion Chamber of Commerce invites you to attend the 2nd Annual Appetite for Marion, this Saturday, October 6, from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. in Uptown Marion’s City Square Park. This event features live music by The Janey’s Band (blues), food offerings by Marion restaurants and caterers and a beverage tent with beer and wine. Admission is free. A 5K Run/Walk will also be a part of the Appetite for Marion festivities. Spanda Inc. is presenting Band on the Run 5K Run/Walk which begins at 4 p.m. on October 6 and will feature a fun route starting and ending in Uptown Marion.

See Judy Carmichael in Concert with Chris Flory this Saturday, October 6, at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts. As part of West Music's Piano Extravaganza 2012, Grammy nominated pianist/vocalist Judy Carmichael is the featured Steinway Artist. Judy, accompanied by her guitarist Chris Flory, will perform Jazz standard greats from artists such as Fats Waller, Art Tatum, Gershwin, Goodman, and more. Judy Carmichel's warm personality and commitment to her art translate into uplifting and memorable performances. The NY Times says "Judy Carmichael is astounding, flawless and captivating." Concert tickets are $12, children ages 12 and under are free.

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