The hot list of events for the coming week

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PSO comes to bat

Following baseball's opening day on Monday, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has two lineups for this weekend and some big bats in both.

Concerts at 8 p.m. Friday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday feature the classical stuff: the world premiere of Christopher Rouse's "Supplica" (a PSO co-commission), Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto in E minor (with Stefan Jackiw), Debussy's "La Mer" and Ravel's "La Valse," led by Slovakian conductor Juraj Valcuha. Tickets are $25.75-$105.75.

Saturday night will feature actor/singer Mandy Patinkin singing popular songs and Broadway tunes. You know him as Inigo Montoya from "The Princess Bride" (if not, we can jog your memory: "Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die"), as Saul Berenson in "Homeland" and as Che in the original Broadway cast of "Evita."

The first half of that concert features the PSO without Mr. Patinkin, playing music from "West Side Story," "My Fair Lady" and "Pirates of the Caribbean," led by PSO assistant conductor Fawzi Haimor. Mr. Patinkin and Broadway conductor Eric Stern will join for the second half for "It's Not Easy Bein' Green," "Bohemian Rhapsody," "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and others. $35-$115, ticket info above. Tickets for all the shows are at 412-392-4900 or


Phantogram alert

Phantogram, an electronic pop duo from Saratoga Springs, N.Y., arrives at Stage AE Indoors Friday having just released its sophomore album, "Voices."

The duo -- Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter -- has performed at Lollapalooza, Coachella and Bonnaroo, among other festivals, and collaborated with The Flaming Lips and Big Boi. "The conversations with him gave us composure and confidence," Mr. Barthel said of Big Boi. "He told us not to worry and to stay true to what we were already doing."

Jagwar Ma, an electronic duo from Australia, opens. Doors at 7 p.m. Tickets are $22.50 advance/$25 day of show;


Cedric live

Cedric the Entertainer is set to return with Ice Cube in "Barbershop 3."

But for now, he's on a stand-up run, coming to the Pittsburgh Improv, Waterfront, on Friday and Saturday.

The comedian/actor from Missouri, who got his start in the early '90s, is best known for performances in "Barbershop" and "The Original Kings of Comedy," the TV show "The Soul Man" and a series of hilarious Bud Light commercials.

Showtimes are 8 and 10:15 p.m. Friday and 7 and 9:15 p.m. Saturday. Tickets: $45; or 412-462-5233.

Dueling Zep tributes

Do you prefer your Led Zeppelin tribute bands to be male or female? We've got both this weekend.

Lez Zeppelin, the all-female version from New York, plays Altar Bar, Strip, at 9 p.m. Friday with Tommy Magik and the Wonderfulls. Chuck Klosterman once referred to this LZ as "the most powerful all-female band in rock history." Tickets are $17.50-$20;

ZOSO -- The Ultimate Led Zeppelin Experience fills Stage AE with Zep tunes on Saturday. The Los Angeles Times hailed the group as being "head and shoulders above all other Zeppelin tributes." Doors at 8 p.m. $15;


Let Them Eat Cake

Would you like to try the Decadent Baby Ruth Layer Cake or the Prohibition Pineapple?

They are among the cakes competing at The Midwife Center's ninth annual Let Them Eat Cake event 7:30-10 p.m. Saturday at the Pittsburgh Opera, Strip District.

The theme is: "Taking it to the Nines: A Roarin' Good Time," celebrating "the bold attitude of the 1920s."

Bakers and cake decorators will be submitting their cakes to be rated by a panel of expert judges. Attendees will vote for the People's Choice Awards for Best Taste and Decorated Cakes.

The event will include cake and champagne tasting, a beer and wine bar, refreshments, silent auction, a Roaring '20s photo booth and live music from the Boilermaker Jazz Band.

A VIP reception immediately before the main event will feature piano music from the jazz era by Emily Jones.

More information and tickets are available at or 412-321-6884. Proceeds benefit The Midwife Center for Birth & Women's Health, western Pennsylvania's only independent and licensed birth center.

Ayurveda and Wellness Fest

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens will present a special Ayurveda and Wellness Festival on Saturday, as part of its Tropical Forest Conservatory exhibit highlighting India.

It will feature presentations from local instructors on a variety of wellness-themed topics, family-friendly discovery and activity stations, Indian-inspired food tastings and more. The exhibit includes a spice and tea market display, Ayurvedic healing gardens, a field research station and temple facade.

It runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is free with regular admission: $15; $14 for seniors and students; $11 for children (2-18);

Baby dinos

"Erth's Dinosaur Zoo Live" will be at the Hillman Center for Performing Arts on the Shady Side Academy Senior School campus, Fox Chapel, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

Cute baby dinosaurs and a giant teeth-gnashing Tyrannosaur will come to life in this theater production that takes audiences on a tour through prehistoric Australia and brings an eye-popping array of ancient creatures to life on stage.

A special preshow dinosaur party with the Carnegie Museum of Natural History features dinosaur activities and face painting for kids from 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Tickets: $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and $15 for students; or 412-968-3040.


Chatham 'Crossings'

Historically informed performance trio Chatham Baroque performs "Channel Crossings," celebrating French and English composers. Joined by guest viola de gamba player Martha McGaughey, the concerts feature works by Purcell, Visee, Marais, Simpson and others.

The concerts are 8 p.m. Saturday at Synod Hall, 125 N. Craig St., Oakland, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Memorial Chapel, Chatham University, Shadyside. Tickets: $10-$30; 1-888-719-4253 or


Sports auction

The 20th annual MGA Sports Memorabilia Auction Sunday from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Club at Nevillewood will feature signed memorabilia from Ralph Kiner, Starling Marte, Pedro Alvarez, Bill Mazeroski, James Neal, Chris Kunitz, Pascal Dupuis, Antonio Brown, Joe Greene, Jack Lambert and more

There will be free autographs from celebrity guests Andy Russell and Steve Blass and raffles of a year-of-beer, a handmade quilt and themed gift baskets.

The $35 admission includes dinner, live music and a welcome bag. Proceeds benefit the Myasthenia Gravis Association of Western Pennsylvannia, providing free supportive services to MG patients and their families since 1955. Go to for more info. For reservations, call 412-566-1545.


• The Syracuse punk/hardcore scene produced one of SXSW's buzz bands this year in Perfect Pussy, hailed for its noisy, abrasive sound and brutally honest poetry. Touring on the debut, "I have lost all desire for feeling," the band plays The Shop, 4314 Main St., Bloomfield at 8 tonight with Zeitgeist and Illegals. Admission $8.

• No Depression magazine wrote of The Steel Wheels: "Truth: Mumford and Sons, The Avett Brothers and Old Crow Medicine could all learn something from these cats." The Americana roots band from Virginia performs at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Carnegie Lecture Hall, Oakland, touring on the "No More Rain" album. The show is presented by Calliope. Tickets are $39, $23 student rush with ID; 412-361-1915 or

• The John McIntire Dangerously Live Comedy Talk Show presents "Yuppies vs. Yinzers ... can we all just get along?" at the Cabaret Theater, 655 Penn Ave., Downtown, at 10:30 p.m. Panelists include Councilman Dan Gilman, Pittsburgh police spokeswoman Sonya Toler, PG SEEN columnist Natalie Bencivenga and tech entrepreneur Kit Mueller. Admission is $10 or free with ticket stub from a same-night Cultural Trust event. Information: or 412-325-6769.

Trio Nova Mundi -- the resident ensemble at Grove City College made up of violinist Maureen Conlon Gutierrez, cellist Elisa Kohanski and pianist Becky Billock -- will play works by Beach, Ponce, Coleridge-Taylor and Schoenfield at 7 p.m. Sunday at First Unitarian Church, 605 Morewood Ave., Shadyside. "Trio Romantico" by Ponce features a reconstruction of lost pages from that work. Tickets: $18, $10 for students; available at the door. More at

• The Green Art/Green Innovator's Festival takes place all weekend in Friendship and Garfield, in coordination with Friday night's Unblurred art crawl, at 4800-5500 Penn Ave. Details at

• Pittsburgh Opera's production of "La Boheme" has two more performances Friday and Sunday (more at 412-456-6666 or, but if you can't get enough Puccini, head to the Cinemark Robinson or Pittsburgh Mills in Tarentum for the Met Live in HD screening of the Franco Zeffirelli production at 12:55 p.m. Saturday. Encore screening is 6:30 p.m. Wednesday.

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