Weekend Update, Feb. 17-20, 2011

The weekend is so close you can almost taste it.  As usual, ATLRetro reminds you about what’s happening, including a new section at the end with ongoing events such as theater performances and exhibitions.

Thursday Feb. 17

Celebrate one of the most dynamic decades in pop music history when LIBBY’S AT THE EXPRESS PRESENTS THOSE FABULOUS FIFTIES, featuring songs made famous by Nat “King” Cole, Rosemary Clooney, The Mills Brothers, Buddy Holly, Hank Williams Sr., and the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Elvis Presley. The variety show stars local chanteuses Lisa PaigeWendy Melkonian and Libby Whittemore, with musical arrangements by Robert Strickland, tonight through Sunday Feb. 20 at 7:30 PM at Actor’s Express in west Midtown.

Ghost Riders Car Club celebrates Vietnamese New Year with classic ’50s honkytonk and rockabilly every Thursday in February at Pho Truc in Clarkston. Listen to Tongo Hiti’s luxurious live lounge sounds, as well as some trippy takes on iconic pop songs, just about every Thursday night at Trader Vic’s. The Joe Gransden Trio is at Atmosphere from 7-10 p.m. And Breeze Kings play the blues at Northside Tavern.

Friday Feb. 18

This Friday could be dubbed legends night if you’re into punk, country or new wave. Jonathan Richman, founder of proto-punk garage band The Modern Lovers, takes the stage for an intimate gig at the Highland Inn Ballroom. Then it’s a country double-header with “Dancing Outlaw” Jesco White and Roger Alan Wade, who penned songs for Johnny Cash and other greats, hit Star BarTinsley Ellis brings on the blues at Variety Playhouse. Or for vintage new wave that never gets old, roam to Athens to see The B-52s rock lobster at Classic Center

Photo credit: Avidity Photography

Burlesque performances by Minette Magnifique are among the highlights of CARNIVALE, the annual fundraising gala for Actor’s Express at 8 p.m. at The Gallery at King Plow Arts Center. The evening promises to transport attendees metaphorically to Rio with street performers, dancers, live music, interactive gaming booths, palm and tarot card readers, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a raffle and a silent auction to benefit the 23-year-old theatre company located in west Midtown.

Saturday Feb. 19

Opening today at the High Museum of Art is HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON: THE MODERN CENTURY, another blockbuster exhibit showcasing a photographer and photojournalist who captured on film many of the seminal moments  of the 20th century from World War II to the assassination of Ghandi, China’s cultural revolution to civil rights and consumer culture in America. The MOMA-organized display will be at the High through May 29.

Later, at the High, see Serge Bromberg’s Cesar-winning documentary HENRI GEORGES CLOUZOT’S INFERNO about the struggles of the French director (DIABOLIQUE, THE WAGES OF FEAR) to film this legendary unfinished 1964 movie. Described as a “hallucinatory psychological thriller about a man driven mad by jealousy,” INFERNO starred Romy Schneider as a water-skiing vixen and Serge Reggiani as her possessive husband. Showtime is at 8 PM, and the screening is part of the High’s 12th annual FRENCH FILM YESTERDAY AND TODAY series.

Jonathan Richman plays a second show at the Highland Inn Ballroom. Or if you miss the ‘80s and don’t mind some driving, time travel to @tmosphere in Logansville with Denim Arcade, a new cover band featuring the multitalented Becky Cormier Finch of Three Quarter Ale that promises to play anything from Pat Benator to Rush, Blondie to Van Halen.

Sunday Feb. 20

Blues diva Francine Reed brings her hypnotic voice to Eddie’s Attic in the evening. During daytime hours, if you have the big bucks, drink and nosh at the 2nd annual ATLANTA WINTER WINE + JAZZ FESTIVAL at Georgia Freight Depot, featuring fine wine tastings and seminars, nibbles form Atlanta’s top restaurants and caterers, a vendors marketplace and door prizes, all set to a live jazz soundtrack. VIP admission starts at 2PM, with general admission at 3 PM, and festivities run to 6 PM.


Head back in time and over there to A NOVEMBER DAY: A WAR STORY, a timeless fable about friendship set against the backdrop of World War I, presented today by Thingumajig Theatre of West Yorkshire, England, through Sun. at The Center for Puppetry Arts. Performers use hand, rod and shadow puppets, live music and a transforming set to tell the tale of a British soldier in WWI and his unexpected friendship with a stray dog. Suitable for ages 10 and up, with a teen and adult workshop Sat. Feb. 19.

THE RED BALLOON takes flight via Theatre du Reve in 7 Stages’ Backstage Theater from Feb. 16-27. The stage adaptation uses puppetry and live original music to bring to life the classic 1956 French movie about a boy who befriends a shiny red balloon. Suitable for ages 4 and up.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec died in 1901, but it’s not a stretch to say that his vibrant posters and prints of showgirls, nightclub stars and the café culture influenced the 20th century romantic view of Paris and still inspire today’s burlesque performers. The High Museum of Art’s dynamic new special exhibition, TOULOUSE-LAUTREC AND FRIENDS: THE IRENE AND HOWARD STEIN COLLECTION, runs through May 1.

Finally don’t miss this week’s KOOL KAT Emily Yetter’s sneak preview of  J.M. BARRIE’S PETER PAN under the big tent at Pemberton Place, next to the World of Coca-Cola.  Performances run through March 20.


See you back here Monday for This Week in Retro Atlanta. If you know of a cool happening that’s coming up, email ATLRetro@gmail.com.

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